Saturday, November 29, 2008

Tis' the Season...

While you were all out hitting up those "Black Friday" sales, Mark and I were at home decorating for the Christmas season... We started out with a tree from a friends house, a palm tree, but as we saw the bugs creeping out of it, we nixed that idea... so we headed to a local store and picked up a skinny little 5' tree, and it works perfectly...

We got most of our shopping down and are ready for all the school holiday activities along with getting ready for Mark's parents to be here! They fly in on the 23rd of December.

Christmas Card's will be in the mail soon=).

In the Mean time, Happy Shopping and checking it twice! HO HO HO!


Gobble, Gobble, Gobble...

Happy Thanksgiving!
We had a wonderful Thanksgiving with both friends and family! Yes we said family!
On Thursday (your wednesday) we were celebrating Thanksgiving at Pastor Greg and his wife Sandy's home, just right across the parking lot. It was quite a feast and a time being together.


L to R: Pastor Greg, Josis's daughtter, Bill, Josis, Lisa and Mark.


Our Host's, Pastor Greg and Sandy... Thank you!
Part of the Spread!
On Friday morning as you were all preparing your Thanksgiving meals, Mark and I were sleeping in, but that afternoon we were able to spend an hour and 45 min with the Sawyer's through skype! We "hung out", talked about thanksgiving and what we did, we even played apples to apples. Thanks ang, for being our card holder throughout the game! It was great spending time with them and playing games just like if we were home....
Soon John & Betty will be here to visit us for Christmas! 25 days! Can't wait to pick you up from the airport!

One of Allison's many skype faces =) Jake in the background...
Our hand, shhhh no cheating.
Happy Thanksgiving Mom and Dad!
And Happy Holidays to you all!

Saipan Tsunami's!

Two weekend's ago Mark and I headed up to the north end of the island to the Marpi pool where a few of our student's were participating in the community swim meet! It was great watching the kids and fun to be just hanging out with them... They did an awesome job too! elementary got third place and junior high got 2nd. Great job Tsunami's!



The Bold and the Beautiful... and the Wild!

Two Thursday's ago, I was very BOLD. I did something I never thought Iwould do with this particular group of third graders I have this year, but I did it. We went on a field Trip. Our trip took us to the Saipan Zoo! Yes, it was small, but they had some BEAUTIFUL animals and the kids loved it... The reason i was so BOLD was because I took a class of 15 students, 12 of them being WILD boys and 3 girls....

It was a blast though!





Wednesday, November 26, 2008

THANKS be to GOD.

This week is a week for thanksgiving and an opportunity to honor those who you are thankful for... Here is a list of things that I am thankful for...and so blessed to have:

1. MARK. I am so in love and blessed by God to have such an amazing husband. Thank you Mark for all that you do.

2. FOOD. As i sit here at the dinning table, I can smell the aroma coming from the oven of the rolls baking for our thanksgiving dinner, and oohhh do they smell so yummy.

3. AIR CON, or as we say in the states, AC. What a blessing it is to have in your home here on a humid and warm island.

4. POWER. When we first arrived on Saipan, the island was experiencing never-ending power outages... needless to say that has been worked on since. =)

5. FAMILY. We miss you so much, and want you to know we are looking forward to our time this Christmas, Spring Break and Summer with you.

6. FRIENDS. Both here on island and back home.

7. SHELTER. Here on island there are definatly the homes that have the leaky roofs, and dirt floors, what a blessing it is to have a solid roof over our heads and concrete flooring.

8. FINANCES. Not that it is always easy, but we are being blessed by Christ in many ways. He will always bless you with what you need or atleast what he thinks you need. Sometimes our ideas are alittle bigger then what they should be.

9. HEALTH. We can't always be 100% healthy, but God will not give us more then what we can handle.

10. LIFE. We often take it for granted, but we need to realize how precious it is and what a blessing it is.

~ Now for my selfish things I am thankful for~
(Not that the ones above weren't selfish in one way or another, hee)

1. MUSIC. It is something that gets me through my day and helps me sit back and clear my mind.

2. PEDICURES. Today Jackie, Sandy, Terry and I all went to a spa downtown and got some wonderful pedicures, so soothing.

3. COFFEE. Just simply delicious.

4. OCEAN. I can't believe I live so close to it, yet I take it for granted everytime I am in it.

5.BLOGS... enough said.

6. SOPHIE KINSELLA. Books that take me into another mind-set.

7. SMUT TV. Jackie and I are obsessed =), What can I say. www.surfthechannel.com

8. TRAVEL. I can't wait to see the world... Shanghi in May! States in June! Wahooo!

9. PILLOW TOPS. Oh how Mark and I miss our pillow top mattress bed....

10. UTENSILS. It is amazing what you begin to miss when you don't have it. Today as I am cooking my dishes for our Thanksgiving meal tomorrow, oh how i miss some of my kitchen utensils that would make it so much easier to cook with.

Happy Thanksgiving from Saipan, to whereever you may be reading this from. May God Bless you and your family richly this Holiday Season!

Thanks be to God for his love endures forever.
B.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Giving Thanks for our Homegroup; Made of Friends and Family!

This past Monday Mark and I went to our weekly homegroup, but this week we didnt spend the time getting into God's word and our lives as Christains, But we did however get into the friendships that God has blesses us with and all that we are thankful for.

We celebrated Thanksgiving together a week early and oh was it sooooo delicious!

Just a sample of all the foods that were there... plus many desserts not shown...


Russ and Kanae (out weekly host's, Thank you!) Joel and Mark and I...



Mark, Irene in the back, Yulia and Sally




Left to right: Nikki, Sally's back, Bev, Mark, Me, Yulia and Irene.

"Give Thanks to the Lord for he is good, His love endures forever!"

Thankyou Lord for your many blessings in our lives, for our new home, friends and family and all we have been blessed by since arriving in Saipan. Lord, please be with our family and friends back home in the states during this week of Thanksgiving... Bless them and let them see your blessings. Amen.

A step to a Beautiful Marriage - Marriage Encounter

This past weekend Mark and I were invited by some friends to attend the Annual "Marriage Encounter" Weekend held on the island at the Grand Hotel Resort. And for the price we were excited =). Not only was it a good price, but we were excited to get away from "everyday" life on Saipan and just be the two of us. Needless to say we had no idea what we were getting into, but it turned out to be one of the most blessed weekends in our marriage.

This weekend was all about you as a couple, getting to know eachother again, renewing our marriage, rekindling our romance and regaining communication. Not only did Mark and I gain insight to ourselves, and us as a couple, but also to eachother. Plus, we made some great friends.

Thank you to Russ and Kanae for all your hard work on this weekend, introducing us to it, and also for all your prayers for the weekend. What a blessing you introduced us too. ALSO - thank you for the beautiful orchid! I just put it into a new pot and love being able to look at it! I love it!

Thank you to our parents, the Eimers family and Angela, for your prayers and letters. We had no idea we would be recieveing those, there were definatly tears of joy! And thankyou Suz for getting their addresses to Kanae...

Now for the plug! WE HIGHLY ENCOURAGE all married couples to attend a marriage encounter in your area, you may think you have a good marriage, but if you attend a marriage encounter and put into works the steps they give you you will have a GREAT marriage! If you want more info, please ask and we will find it for you!

Thank you Lord for your love, friendship and romance you put into our lives. Thank you for the gift you have given me in Mark, the gift is beyond words can discribe!





Our Hotel room view.... darn huh?
Marko on our Balcony.



May I present to you Mr. and Mrs. Mark Sawyer! "Just Encountered".

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Under the Sea, Under the Sea! Down where it's wetter, thats where it's better, Take it from Me!

So about two months ago, the Van Dams and us took our first trip to Managaha. It is a little island right off Saipan. It is about 3-4 acres big and no one lives on it. It is simply a beautiful tourist trap.
I had been thinking the whole way there, "Na, I dont need an underwater camera today... next time." But the moment i hit the water my plans changed. I ran to their little gift shop and bought a $20 disposable film underwater camera... i think it was a good deal, i can you it over and over again, I just need film each time =).

Well we used the whole roll of film up in that one day and just got our photos back, because I was to cheap to get them developed... So needless to say, here are some of our photos from our first time to Managaha...

Now take in mind, they are not the best pictures because of it being a disposable camera... I would love now to have a real one (Mom, Dad Oliver? Christmas? Maybe=) hehe). Enjoy!

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Halloween - Island Style

Halloween was absolutly a blast! We began the night at home dressed up as two pirates answering our door to some of my students who stopped by just to see if Mrs. Sawyer had candy, which i did =) It amazes me how dressed up people get here for Halloween, it is so fun to see. I havent seen outfits this dect our before!

After awhile at home, we hit up the Pacific Island Club with Kanae & Russ, and Nikki and Yosh. It was a fun filled night. We started out with a fabulous dinner and then a show put on by the club mates. They also had a costume Contest, in which Nikkie, Yosh, Mark and I entered. Luckily only 5 people totaly entered, giving us a great chance to win. Nikki got 2nd place winning dinner for two at the resort, and I won 3rd winning to passes to the water park. Thank you Kanae and Russ for a great evening at PIC!

After PIC the 6 of us headed downtown to Godfathers where everyone was dressed up in awesome costumes... There was a raffel going on as well. Now Mark and i never win in raffles, but we did. Mark was a free baby pig, yes a live pig... we havent picked it up yet, but when we do, we will be giving it to a family who will actually raise it and use it. I won us a turkey, ham and a case of pop. All of which will be used for the holidays =). I think we made it with a blessed night.

Nicole and I.

Joo Young, Sophia and I.

My hook enjoying his ribs at dinner.

Arrrr Mateys!

Yosh as Nacho Libre, Nikki as Corpse bride, Kanae a beautiful Pirate, Russ as blades of Glory, Me and Mark Pirates.. =)

Jack-o-Lanterns, a First for many!

So if you look below in my last post, you will see a photo of my beautiful $20.00 Pumpkin... Well another reason i bought it was because one random day in class i asked my students "How many of you have ever carved a pumpkin?" They're response, "Me, Me." Only two of my students raised their hands. And those two students were the ones who at one point lived in the states... The others had never felt the inners of a bright orange pumpkin. So on Halloween we deleted the afternoons lessons and learned how to carve a pumpkin. It was the most fun I have had carving a pumpkin. The kids were totally into it, and each of them screamed and giggled as they felt the pumpkin guts... Thanks to Marko, they later on got to try roasted pumpkin seeds and they also loved them...


Isaac and I. He had to have his hand shoved in. What a wimp =) Hehe. Love this kid!
Waiting so patiently for their turn.
Ryosei loved the Guts =) Suz, remember him? What a great kid!
Working Hard... its hard work.
Nice group shot with our pirate pumpkin!
Silly Class Shot!

Pumpkins, Pumpkins Everywhere.... NOT!

With my love of Fall, i was so excited for the opportunity to decorate our humble little beachy apartment with festival fall decor... but i didnt realize how hard it is to come by on an island... especially how expensive it was... So to my sadness for the first time in my life, i had an apartment full of fake pumpkins... until... one random afternoon Mark and I took off to a local grocery store and as we were walking through the produce section, i saw them... ugly little pumpkins, and yet i was still exstatic! So i bought it! For $4.00 ewwww.... picture below of how tiny and ugly it was....

Then randomly one afternoon, Jackie and Mark came home from work and said Joe 10 has pumpkins! So i stopped what i was doing, grabbed my purse and went as quickly as i could. You can ask Mark, i looked like a mother looking for a lost child in the grocery store! I was soooo excited! Pictures below of me and my beautiful $20.00 pumpkin! Carving pictures to come.

Beautiful Pumpkin!

Ugly little pumpkin.

So sad looking. =)

C-Town aka Cow Town

Did you know that Saipan used to have a rodeo? Can you imagine? Sitting on a hot island with dust flying in the air and the sweet smell of manuer? Well at one point in time Saipan did have a rodeo. But due to the economy and other factors it no longer exsists... However the area in which the rodeo did exisist is still there. It is called Cow Town. The buildings stand empty and the life is gone, but the near by beach named after it, is still just as beautiful. These are just a few pictures from our beautiful hike. This is the only beach Mark and I have seen waves at, yet it is to dangerous for Mark to try anything Dare-devily. Thank goodness =).

It is a very rock beach as you can see. But breath-taking scenery.


Jackie and I for a quick photo-op.

HURRY! Take the picture before the waves get us!
The Group: Top to bottom, left to right. Mark, Me, Abbey, Owen, Dean
Bev, Irene, Jackie, Emma and Jake. Thanks to Georgie for taking the picture.