Changes on the Horizon

When I started blogging on October 23, 2005, my goal was two-fold: (1) to give myself the chance to write something that might be read by more people than myself and my husband (he's super supportive of my writing efforts, but I wanted a larger audience) and (2) to give my friends and family in the States a more intimate look into my life (since missionary prayer letters don't always provide the details that loved ones crave). That was almost six years ago. (Wow!) I've seen a lot of changes since then. I've gone from being an American abroad, paralyzed and frustrated by the language and culture, to someone with a deep appreciation for my adopted country who has learned to drive by the rules of the road here. I’ve gone from childless housewife with a part-time job and several ministries in the church to full-time stay-at-home mom with three small boys! And I've gone from occasional writer to committed blogger.

Over the years, my blogging frequency has been erratic. I'd didn't write at all in 2007 (the year that began with the birth of our first child), and 2010 saw another hiatus (perhaps because that year began with morning sickness and ended with a 3-month-old infant in my arms). But this past spring, I made the decision to begin writing again, with the goal of adding a new post here once a week. It's been a rewarding half year, and connecting with you, my readers, has definitely been the main reward! So I wanted to let you know that some changes are coming to this blog. Now that I've sort of got the hang of writing regularly, I want to become more intentional about blogging. I'll be moving my blog to a different hosting domain, and you'll be seeing a new name, new look, and new format. To pursue my blogging dreams, I've been reading a variety of resources. I just finished reading Bryan Allain's hilarious eBook 31 Days to Finding Your Blogging Mojo. It was so funny that I was having trouble getting through it, because every few paragraphs I had to stop to fend off my two older kids, who kept running over to find out what I was laughing about! But beyond Bryan's off-the-wall sense of humor, what I loved about this book was its imminent do-ability. The chapter-a-day format breaks it up into manageable portions, and each day's reading ends with an assignment that is both practical and feasible. By the time I complete all 31 assignments, I know that I'll be well on my way to meeting my blogging goals. I can hardly wait till the kids are tucked in for the night and I can grab a pen and do the first day's assignment! If you're a blogger, check out Brian's book on Amazon Kindle or as a PDF, and then come back here to let me know what you thought about it!

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Summer’s Here Again

Summer has arrived in Ukraine. For the last two weeks we've been enjoying sunny weather with temperatures in the high 70s and low 80s (that's the mid to high 20s, for all you Celsius readers out there). Even after living here for eight years, I am still amazed by the change from the dead of winter to the blaze of summer. In January it seems impossible that the earth could ever become warm again, but each June and July I find myself sweating and longing for the cool of autumn. I guess many things in life are like that. Night gives way to day. Tears end, and joy returns. No difficulty is permanent. As it says in the Psalms, "Weeping may endure for a night, but joy comes in the morning."

Now that summer is upon us, I've been reflecting on this past spring. I would love to hear what things you found interesting during that season. If you're a blogger, leave a comment with a link to your favorite post that you wrote during March, April, or May. (If you're not a blogger, you can link to your favorite post on someone else's blog.) I'm looking forward to reading your favorites! Here's mine.

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