the return

 

For some who do not know I have been the Canada for the past two weeks, I went “home.”

For the first five days my mom and I stayed in Moncton and visited with my grandmother, and my uncle & aunt. The days  we spent there were probably the most relaxing days out of the whole two weeks; for me at least.

Wednesday is when all the excitement started happening. The plan was to drive down to Saint John and be there in time for church, but…. it just so happened that the church’s annual business meeting was that night so there would be no youth service. I was obviously disappointed by this turn of events and was talking to one of my friends about it. She decided that she would try to round up some of the scattered youth. Well, after we had finished with the appointments my mom had scheduled for Wednesday, we headed to MY big meeting. IMG_4337

We all met at Starbucks, (of course) where I got to reconnect with my youth group again and nearly gave my best friend a heart attack. All in all it was a great night.

Cherish conference was the next big event on our schedule and the main reason for our trip, but I will talk more about that in a second post… see ya soon!

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IMG_4579Sunday night had to be one of the highlights of “the return”.  After an amazing church service we (the youth and I) went to Boston Pizza. Seeing as there were a lot of us spread across a long table, my desire to talk to everyone was limited. When most of the people left around 11 p.m. a couple stayed behind and we talked in the almost empty restaurant until midnight. It is times like those that I treasure.

IMG_1555The time did come for us to leave, and though it was a little hard to leave again, this place would always be my home.

 

 

Dog-on-it … vs … Doggonit

“Dominic, Timo, wake up it is 7 a.m. we have to walk the dog.”

Yes, the dog that I have been wanting since I was a child well… we have him. Some people might have heard of our attempt at being dog owners last August; to say the very least it did not really turn out, making it harder to convince momma to give the “dog thing” another chance.

IMG_4106The story starts with my dad looking on Chatellerault’s animal shelter website and coming across “Pollux,” a gray, three year old, fluffy canine. His description had listed him as a Tibetan Terrier even though the employees were not 100% sure.

Well you can probably guess what happened about a week later… What I was not ready for, was being woken up by whining and barking at 12:30 in the morning; making the first few days hard and frustrating. Since then he has stopped and I have been able to get my beauty sleep, (thank the Lord.)

Having to re-train him to our family’s rhythm will be the most challenging part, of course, but you know what? I am happy.

I have never been happier to be forced outside before 11 a.m…. or 12 a.m… or one… it’s at those times that I’m tempted to say “doggonit!”

Le Quiz, again?

Today, Châtellerault hosted approximately 20 young people from the churches of Bordeaux and Romilly-sur-Seine.

I had started quizzing when I was just a little girl, and at the time didn’t really enjoy it; one might put it this way, it took up too many of my precious Saturdays. My brother and I had quizzed together for several years before we decided to stop because of reasons I truly do not remember. After that we didn’t quiz again… until this past November at the youth convention. Can you guess what we did? We signed up for Bible Quizzing.

Well, we started to learn our Bible verses, which are in French might I add, a language I am still learning. Any how, my dad communicated back and forth with the quizzing coordinator and they arranged for a quizzing fun-day & training time here in Chatellerault, with a couple of exhibition matches thrown in for good measure. Today was the day. We got up early, headed to church were we met the Youth from Bordeaux, and after some train delays, the youth from Romilly also arrived. We played (quizzing) games, competed in several match-ups, and fellowshipped; just a completely wonderful day, even if it rained.

When I was young I didn’t know just how important quizzing was, now I appreciate and understand its concept. To hide God’s word in your heart is very important for a Christian. Yes, I still think it is a lot work, but this work is worth your time!

Proud Girl

You have probably heard those jokes and stereotypes about Canadians and I am here to tell you… they are not all false.

I have heard quite a few Canadian jokes and stereotypes and even aid my brothers in coming up with new ones. Here are a couple common things Canadians are known/stereotyped to be:

Canada, Canadian, OCDTo a lot of People we are the “invisible country” full of overly nice people, who

  • dominate Winter Olympics,
  • live in igloos or
  • use a dog sled, a polar bear, or a ski-doo to get to work.

Our speech is also very different; to some people our “About” sounds like “aboot.” We tend to over use the word “sorry” and like to end our sentences with “eh…?

Listen, you can call us snow-people, Eskimos, or even Lumberjacks, but you can’t call us late for a Tim Horton’s date! *badum tssss*. Sorry, lame joke, but I couldn’t resist.Vimy Ridge, Vimy, France, Canadian War Memorial, WWI

Still on the Canadian subject. This past Friday, on our way back from Belgium, we stopped in Vimy, France, and saw the Canadian War Memorial. The memorial was dedicated to the memory of 60,000 Canadian soldiers that died while seizing Vimy Ridge from the Germans in 1917 (World War 1).

Sure there are a lot of jokes on Canada but I am still a proud lumberjack… uh I mean Canadian. Now if you will excuse me, I am late for a Tim Hortons appointment. *jk… I can only wish, since there are no Tims here (as she softly cries in despair)*

Vimy, Canadian war memorial, France,

Now… one last thing… I decided it would be a cool idea to have a logo for my blog and this is what we came up with. What do you think?

Logo_GiF-+txt-1

Forever learning

I have been playing piano for most of my life, which by the way is not anywhere near some peoples experience. But guess what… I am still learning.

I started taking piano lessons at the age of five; and for five years I practiced classical music until circumstances caused us to find another piano teacher. We did find a new teacher and that is when everything changed. When I was younger I had imagined what it would be like to play in church, and with a jazz teacher this was about to become possible. He helped me with the cords I didn’t know, as well as how to fill in the gaps between the cords; little did I know, by preparing me for youth services (which wasn’t such a big deal) he was preparing me for my main job here in France. I am nowhere near defining myself as a pro but I will continue in bettering myself in this instrument that I love.IMG_3600

Piano is not the only thing that I am learning.  I have recently started picking up the guitar. Part of my wanting to learn guitar — other than it being  a beautiful Instrument– is probably wanting to be musically versatile.  Having a brother that plays is very handy for my newest project. I am happy to say I don’t think I am half bad, I’ve received no complaints as of yet.

I have an imagination and this is just one of the things I’ve envisioned. Now I’m seeing it become real.

 

It’s the most wonderful time of the year

Can you believe that we are in the last month of 2015…?

But before we worry about the new year we have Christmas to look after. Christmas is probably the most festive of the holidays, and I personally love Christmas and the idea of Christmas. Unfortunately over the years the idea of this holiday has been lost, and been replaced by other things. Some big symbols of Christmas today are the Christmas tree, reindeer, Santa, gingerbread men, and more. Another thing that has become a tradition is giving gifts; now I’m not against giving/receiving gifts, in fact I rather like getting gifts or seeing someones face when they open a gift, but hey you… reader, don’t forget the very first gift given on Christmas.

Switching gears:

Now excitement has — I guess you can say taken over. Tomorrow after services we leave for a 10 day much needed vacation. Though mom and dad have not come right out and said it, with my detective abilities I have put together several facts and I am 99.99% sure of our destination; I think I need to get myself a Watson though.

Detective Sophie signing off. (is that what they say?)

November… What!

So it is November… I’m speechless… 2016 is slowly creeping up on us. I am almost positive that time is speeding up; in my eyes every year goes by quicker than the last.

We are almost in the 2nd week of November (if you haven’t noticed). This is when the Americans will celebrate their Thanksgiving, and the Canadians start setting up their Christmas trees and playing those “I’m dreaming of a white Christmas” songs; though I’m sure after last year’s winter, less Canadians will be dreaming/wishing for a white Christmas. But, to get back on track, I’ve very much enjoyed my November so far.

EPU, UPC, youth convention of France,

the lead praise singers

Last weekend France held its 32nd annual youth convention, this year approximately 800-900 people attended. Praise the Lord! I got to speak, fellowship, and worship with some of my friends from around France. God moved in those services, and everyone left encouraged in some way.

Yesterday we celebrated Timo’s (my baby brother) 10th birthday. Though it wasn’t his official birthday we celebrated it with friends. We went to Stoony Park which is like a bouncy castle place. The age limit was 12 but hey I’m short enough to pass as a 12 year old. We all had a blast while surrounded by 3-5 year olds. But you know what they say “Once a child, always a child,” or maybe that’s just me.

So as we inch closer to the new year remember to enjoy the here and now.

Half way through October

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Paris in the fall

You  can tell the seasons are changing when you step outside and can see your breath.

To me, October is something that I associate with; thanksgiving (meaning stuffing yourself with delicious food), beautiful trees, pumpkins, and a lot of girls’ favorites… sweater weather! I am a summer baby, but when it comes to autumn, I absolutely love stepping outside and seeing the seas of reds, yellows, oranges, and browns. A highlight of my past autumns is the annual apple picking tradition (which I will unfortunately have to miss this year). See my brothers and I are secretly professional tree climbers, and while normal people take the ladders we take the liberty to climb to the tops of the trees and feast on the apples others have left behind.

Thanksgiving… mmmmm, one of my October favorites. It’s one of the times you can stuff yourself and not feel bad about it, all you have to do is say “Lord, I am so thankful for the absolutely glorious food I have just inhaled.” Just kidding maybe don’t say that. I don’t know about you but there are so many things I am thankful for.

October being one of them!

Where did the time go?

Cockle doodle doo. Time to wake up… summer 2015 is officially OVER!

For real though it seems like yesterday we were packing up the car and driving to Montreal to catch our flight to France, when we’ve actually been here for like 8 months.  I don’t know about you, but when I think about it, I mean really, really think about it, every year time seems to speed up, making the year go by quicker than last. Though the summer went by very quickly, and it wasn’t the busiest summer ever, there were a couple events that made my 2015 summer unforgettable!

#AYCFrance, #AYC2015, #AYC, Apostolic Youth Corp, Disneyland ParisMy first life/summer changing event was being a “tag-along” on the AYC (Apostolic Youth Corps) France trip. For ten whole days I got be with 41 young people as they traveled through France. I got to be in some awesome services and make many new friends. Not to mention going to Disneyland Paris with these  41 great people. It was one of the best experiences of my life for sure, and who knows I might just go on another one.

Miranda and I just playingThe second event that made my summer was being able to have someone from my home church in Saint John. My pastors daughter came and spent two weeks with our family, even though we didn’t do anything mind blowing just having someone from “home” was good enough for me. Being the oldest of three kids I often wondered what it would be like to have an older sibling, having her here was like having an older sister and I’m so grateful she was able to come.

I am sad that summer is over but all in all I couldn’t have asked for a better summer.

Getting our Computers

Tonight my dad told my brother and I to go downstairs and bring up a box. We obeyed quickly and went. In my mind I had an idea of what might be inside of the box, but when i saw it, I was almost certain i knew what was behind the cardboard box. i told my brother what i thought it was and we squealed but then suddenly stopped saying, “we gotta stay cool” so we walked upstairs grinning and smirking. Well we opened the box and were delighted in what we saw, and were also happy that our guess about what was inside the cardboard box was correct. We got our school computers!

Me & my macbookThere is a story on how we got our computers though. This past November we were in Montreal for a French conference, and my dad had told the pastor (a really good friend of ours) about how how we were saving for our school computers, which were much needed. That night during service, the pastor got me and my brothers to come up on stage and he took up an offering for us. When we got the final count on how much was raised, they had given us $1,700 plus what we had gotten from selling our scarves.

God did a miracle for us that night. and now i have a brand new, beautiful computer.
I will be using this computer mainly for school, but will also be using it for this blog.

Sophie