Monday, February 9, 2009


So Ive decided that I'm more of a sporadic blogger than a constant blogger...I blog heaps..then dont blog for ages..then blog heaps..then dont blog for ages..then blog..then not..and so on and so on..Its almost an addiction..But at the moment Ive got a wee (a word ive picked up while ive been here?) bit of time so I may aswell make the most of it..At the moment Im sitting in one of the drop ins by myself and its pouring down with rain outside (mm classic english weather) so Ive decided to be a classic english person, get some chips from the chippie (yes yet another unhealthy option on my part but oh so necessary and convenient) and decided to sit here listening to the music channel until the girls arrive for girls now you know my situation i can continue to blog..

This weekend has been a bit of a toughie for me..and it has continued to today..I dont know why..But I been feeling homesickness intensely..and it almost feels as if it would be easier if I was home in my comfort zone doing what I always used to do..But instead I'm in a foreign country which is totally not my comfort zone..and believe me most of the time it is amazing..but not when I feel like this..everything is just so much harder..and I feel God challenging me..and I just feel as though I cant take a challenge at the moment..but even though im not feeling it at the moment I am a hundred percent CERTAIN that this is where God wants me and all the things I am going through now..all the things I am feeling are just part of life..and will help me to grow..and that he is with me through it..he never gives us anything that he knows we cant deal with..and I know tomorrow or the next day I will wake up and everything will feel okay again..I know that..and while I wait for everything to feel right again I will try and restrain from eating copious amounts of chocolate to comfort myself at this moment..haha Its not the kids, or the team I work with, its just doing it in a place and in a kind of work where I am out of my comfort zone.. But then I guess it gives me more of an opportunity to press into God and just trust.


Saturday, February 7, 2009

Roma Italia

ROME and new jeans..

I have had the laziest day ever today and it has been amazing, with possibly the only productive thing being going shopping for new jeans..I like to tell myself the reason that my jeans always get worn away on the thighs and get holes in them is because I walk everywhere and the natural rubbing of the fabric creates the holes...and definitely not because I have put on a bit of chub due to my ever increasing love for chocolate..and the large incredible numbers of take-out places in today I decided I needed to be rid of my jeans with holes in them (as they may not be the most appropriate things to wear whilst working with youth) and go and find some new ones..By being rid of them I mean that I am going to send them home for my mum to fix because quite frankly my sewing skills are so poor and the jeans would most likely end up being butchered if i tried to mend them..Now jean shopping has never been something that I enjoy..Its always so tricky trying to find the right style and fit and size because they all just seem so different..and what made it more tricky is Gillingham has one decent clothing if i couldnt find any there I would have to stay 'holy' with my old jeans..So theres me in this store with like 50 pairs of jeans carefully scrutinising them..and hating every minute of many styles..hipster flare? flare? boyfriend jeans? bootleg? mid rise? lowcut? skinny? straight? wide leg? what? i ended up with 2 of which i will take back tomorrow (not so successfull) and hopefully get a refund haha that took up a large proportion of my day...and then i debated going to the gym...but am still aching from my intense gym session a few nights back where i felt a little too over enthusastic about exercise and proceeded to do a tad too much..which in turn has made every part of my body hurt haha and walking up stairs has become rather Nothing like watching a bit of American idol to keep the blogging And now for the long awaited blog on...ROME..Italy Oh my word it was amazing!!

If there was one place in the world that Ive seen so far that I would prefer to live over New Zealand it would definitely be Rome. The people, the language, the culture, the old buildings, the history and the food is all just such an experience. I spent the whole day feeling like everything was just so surreal..and so dream-like...It was so brilliant!

I just couldnt believe that it was close enought that we could just pop over there for the day...The day started at 5:55am when I had to wake up..This was where I was considering flagging the whole trip and just staying in bed lol but a girls gotta look good for rome so i decided to drag myself out of bed..and man am i ever glad i did..We then had to drive to the airport..which took awhile and our flight was at 9:30..the leg room in the plane was amazing! way better than my flight to england..We arrived in Campiano (about an hour away from Rome) just in time for lunch..and as Luke (the dad of my host family) found us a car to hire martha, mum and me found the time to have an italian cappacino which i am so glad i didnt have to order because italian sounds like such a tricky language.. apparently it is frowned upon to order a milky coffee after 11:30am in Italy..i think we were just in the safe and I have to say it was the most amazing coffee i have not sure whether it was just the fact we were in italy..or the fact the sun was actually out and i didnt have to wear a coat..or the fact that we had the cutest little italian car (a red fiat 500) to drive around in..but the day started off perfectly!!
Luke was the delegated driver as he had driven in italy before and seeing as they drive on the other side of the road and are actually mental erratic drivers i am so glad he did..Its so funny coz it seems that there are no road rules..if you can fit in a space in the traffic you go there, if you stop for a second at a green light all the cars behind take it upon themselves to toot the horn incessantly in case you were just pausing for breath, and just in general the cars pull out whenever they want..Its hilarious.! And theres heaps of those little smart cars all over the place..classic

We parked the car and took on Rome by foot..which is totally the best way to do it coz theres so much to see that would be missed if you drove everywhere..I actually just cant even put into words the atmosphere thats in Rome and the amazingness of it all..First stop was the was like a dream come true..this amazing thing that iev seen in magazines and on tv and never actually thought i would see in real life for was crazy because its so immense..and you can just imagine people in the olden days 'rome-ing' (haha pun) around these places and just seeing them as normal buildings..and it was so funny coz there were these kids playing 5 aside football next to the colloseum totally unfazed by this massive old theatre that people come from all over the world to see that just sat beside them.

It was so funny to see people trying to make money dressed as roman soldiers and olden day people asking in italian if you want to have a photo taken with them and then find out that you have to pay for it lol its hilarious though coz there were these 2 dressed up soldiers having a fag and coffee break all dressed up next to the we walked around and ate pizza and pastries (italians know how to make food) oh my word..ive decided i am going to marry an italian..just for the language and the cooking ability..and being able to live somewhere as cool as

We had our little guide book and martha was frantically flicking through it everytime we saw something that we wanted to know what it was..we were like our own tour guides..And the language is just like a whole nother thing..Theres me trying to say simple italian sentences like please and thankyou and excuse me..and mixing them with english and just sounding like such a fool haha Which makes me realise before I go back I want to actually learn the language si that I dont sound like a stupid toursit (which was exactly what I was) lol

We also saw:

-The Roman forum which is like this amazing old roman city with like market places and pillars and amazing architecture and all the up to date inventions of the romans at that time..this was like ages ago and the romans had figured out how to put water pipes under everything..these guys were smart! haha It was just so crazy seeing all these things..and it all looks so historic and ancient..its actually just like a dream..Im being so vague with my descriptions but its so hard to explain something so amazing..!

-The Pantheon which was this amazing building with pillars..I think it was some kind of church because we got kicked out because mass was about to begin..but there was amazing artwork and gold gilding nd everything decorating the inside..It was actually mindblowing..Im gunna try do a blog after this with just photos of these things so its not just me blabbing about them..haha

-The trevilles fountain was also so stunning and so crowded with was like bright white and is like everything you see in the pictures..Apparently if you throw a penny in the fountain over your shoulder you are definitely going to return to Rome one i threw 2 pennies in for double luck haha and also because i think one of my pennies hit a tourist instead of going into the fountain lol i had to play it safe haha

and the atmosphere was just was like the feelingof summer but all year round..little cobbled streets with narrow roads and markets selling scarves and bangles and all sorts of amazing things..there were old buildings everywhere and all the houses were old and european..and it was just such a picture..I am so going back there again..i have to!

For dinner we went to this Italian pizza restaurant where the waiter talked to us in Italian..while I tried my hardest to figure out what he was saying and respond to him lol until a waiter started speaking english..he was my favourite because of it lol But Italian pizza is amazing...and they expect you to eat a whole pizza that was like 3 times the size of my face..even my stomach couldnt handle it and I had to leave some but it was so classic..and the best pizza ive ever had..followed by an espresso shot..which made me want to choke..Hilarious though because in Italy if you go out for dinner you dress up really fancy..and theres us in our day clothes surrounded by italians in heels and fur coats and sequined it was such an experience.
It was like a dream day..We got back to the airport ready for our flight home at 10:30pm..arriving in England at midnight..funnily enough in England it was icy cold..goodbye rome hello reality..

and we woke up in England on Sunday morning to snow..and it all felt like such a dream. the best dream ever.

Thursday, February 5, 2009


I love that each day I wake up knowing that I will stuff up...Knowing that in that day that lies ahead of me I will fall short somehow...but also knowing that with Gods grace this doesn't matter...That he will come in and make up the rest that I fall short of..
This is such a weird concept to the world. Because with everything if you stuff up you suffer the consequences. Its what we like to call justice. But in the past month or so the concept of grace and the AMAZINGNESS of grace has really stood out to me in what people have said and what Ive read.
I just cant get over that NO MATTER what we do, no matter how much I stuff up, no matter how may times I do something wrong or bad or something that im ashamed of...God still comes in with his grace and doesnt punish but forgives..No matter how ashamed I am, no matter if its the 674th time I have done the same thing..he gives us yet another chance, knowing full well that we will disappoint him..But his grace, the thing that we will never earn or deserve, comes in and helps me to continue..and what have I done to deserve this? nothing at all and i never will be able to..there is no way humanly possible of earning something as amazing as this..But he extends it to us for free each and every day..oh my word its mindblowing.

'in spite of the crazy times we're in, there's a lot to be thankful for. second chances. third chances. 734th chances. sunsets. sunrises. And the passing of time begins to make a lot more sense to me in the context of grace instead of karma. Under a rule where love triumphs over justice.'
-Jon Foreman

man im still figuring these things out but this hit me at staff conference, never really having fully understood grace, and its truly amazing and so freeing.

oh my..what a whirlwind

As I sit here eating porridge and its nearing midnight I know that I really don't want to start this blog because there is so much that I need to put in..and so much that ive done and new places Ive been that I am a little worried that this post may run on forever and you may get a little tired of reading the latest happenings (some that will be not so recent as I havent updated in forever) of my life..But I have started and already feel as if I am rambling as my fingers run over the I will continue and hope the rambling ceases and things are put into precise sentences that make sense..and not jibber jabber..

The last few weeks have been an amazing whirlwinf and dream-like that I can't say I remember many exact things that happened..But I'll try..The most exciting thing that has happened was that about 2 weeks ago my mum came to visit me in this amazing town of Gillingham..I must say the day that she was supposed to arrive I didnt do much work..I tried to focus in the office but I couldnt and kept peering out the window with my boss saying with a knowing tone 'oh jess why would you be looking out the window so much? are you expecting someone?!' haha and then i heard a clatter at the front door and the whole team went thumping down, only to find that it was one of the young people we work with..I must say i felt bad that i looked so dissapointed to see him (i think i may have said OH MAN, groaned and then slumped down ont he stairs) for which i apologised later..but then behind him pulled up a white van which held MY MUM...haha it was like a movie running up to the van with my arms open and enveloping her in a massive hug..haha to which the crowds gathered on the street clapped and cheered..wel they didnt really but how cool would that have been?! haha
But after that we pretty much hung out as much as we could..and it made me realise how much I actually missed her!!..It was so weird my two worlds colliding my home life and this life..


-We went to london for a long weekend and stayed in this hotel that had the rudest french people working there...It was too funny because me and mum just had to laugh at how rude they were to us.. mum asks 'oh excuse me are there phones in the rooms?' and the guy at the reception just laughed and said 'madame even the worst hotels have phones in the rooms' in a patronising which we just laughed all the way to our room..

-Trying to find our way around London was also quite a laugh..I'm not a good person to have around when directions are needed..and neither is she..and in a big city this is really unhelpful..haha but i must say i managed to zoom us around everywhere and decipher the tube maps..and manged to get us to Buck palace in time for changing of the which mum climbed up on the fence and swung off it to see over everyones heads..ahhhaha oh my word i had to laugh otherwise I probably would have died from embarrasment

-Going to Harrods department store in London... A little over my price range..try £1000 pounds for a pot of caviar..I bet it wasnt even that nice..and for all you New Zealanders..thats like $3000..oh my word..some people have far too much money

-We also went on this hilarious bus tour that was so crammed and was stuck in traffic so we didnt see ANYTHING...and everyone was hopping off and catching the tubes instead lol it was so tragic..but funny..and we did go on an amazing river was so cool!!

-Madame Tusaauds wax museum..all the famous celebrities models made out of wax..It was so epic..I couldnt believe how life like they were..not that ive ever seen any of the celebrities in real life but i can imagine..There were some there that were a tad poorly done which must be the b-list celebrities..But apparently once a celebrity loses popularity they melt their model down and make another one haha how bad would you feel.

-We went to the seaside..Its not like a sandy beach..But it was actually sunny (i know what a miracle) and the beach is all pebbly and cute..with these colourful beach huts along it..and an amazing little seaside town..It was too cute..Ive got heaps of photos of it all on facebook.

-Also ROME..we went to Rome which was the ABSOLUTE highlight of it all..It was so surreal and beautiful..and I think it deserves a post all to I'll leave it at that..until the next post..

It was so amazing having my mum here and she got to meet the amazing kids I work with..And got to hangout with them and laugh and joke with them..and actually see why I would love these kids so much and why I would give a year out to hangout with them..And with her seeing how amazing they were it made me realise the even greater need just to love these kids and NO MATTER WHAT, no matter what theyve done, how annoying they can be sometimes, whether Im tired, just invest time in them, see how they are, talk to them and just hangout..because if Jesus was here in person thats what he would be doing..and I know that he looks down on the kids and the drop ins and smiles.
And it is so obvious he is just doing some amazing things in their lives. whether they know it or not. and whether they acknowledge it or not. And I love that my mum got to see that.

love to all
Ill tell you all of my adventures in rome soon