I am going to do some bragging on my family, if thats okay with you.

First off…the man of the house. Ed turned 34 on March 12! We celebrated by fixing a meal of his choice – which of course involved steak (if you know me, we don’t get these that often because they are so expensive!) and caesar salad – and a dessert of his choice – which involved cheesecake and cupcakes from Two Little Red Hens, one of his favorite dessert places in the city. As you can see, the kids enjoyed the benefits of this too!

This guy is an awesome daddy – usually, when he is home, I have to tell the whole family way more times than usual to quiet down because they are usually tickling, wrestling, chasing, or doing some sort of playing together.  I know he is tired when he gets home, but he jumps right in, helping me and giving the kids attention.

He ran his first half marathon this past Sunday and beat the time he wanted to complete it in. While he has done a ton of triathlons, he will tell you running is his weakest part, so working towards and completing a half is a big deal. He has been training, often getting up at 4 in the morning to run before coming home, getting ready, getting the kids off to school, and going to campus. Even with staying up late or getting up at night with a newborn, he would get up that early (most days that is 😉 ).  I wanted to take the kids and cheer him on, but that would have meant getting everyone up, ready, fed, and out the door on the subway for an hour ride to Lower Manhattan in the freezing cold….as much as I really wanted to, it wasn’t in my capacity.  So, he Face Timed us as he got to the finish and we cheered him on and crossed with him.  Granted, he has sacrificed the most, but we all have for him to do it, so it was nice to cross the line “together”.  Good job babe!

Now let me brag on Emerson…before we moved and I was doing preschool with her, I would get so frustrated because she just wasn’t learning her letters and sounds AT ALL!  I would try multiple ways to teach her, but it wasn’t clicking. I was hoping going to preschool here in NYC would help. While it has helped a little, we got word from her teacher in January that she only knew 8 of the 26 letters and she was a little behind. Not a big surprise. One thing we had noticed is that repetition in learning works well for her so we broke out flash cards, took a few letters a week and started working with her on learning them.  I am happy to report that she now knows all 26 upper and lower case letters and their sounds!!  I am so proud at her for sticking with it (the rewards for learning along the way didn’t help either 🙂 ) and learning them….now on to sight words. We are discovering that she is a little slower to process things (and even her teacher noticed) so what would take most kids one week to learn is taking her two. She is most definitely skilled in gross motor things (hence riding a bike without training wheels at 3 years old) but just a little slower in learning other things. So proud!!

This picture below is me bragging on God.  Huh, you might say??!??  Well, we knew coming here that ministry would be hard and that we might not see many decisions for people placing their faith in Christ.  Well, the last two weeks (and this week as well), we have had spring break groups come in from all over the country and inundate the campuses throughout NYC.  Yes, there goals have been to get in spiritual conversations and hopefully share the Gospel, but they also were helping with things like Bible studies, info meetings to get ministry started on campuses, publicity, and even just making connections in hopes we could get on campuses where we currently aren’t. The picture below is of some students sharing the Gospel at St. Johns College, where Ed has been working.

Last year, of the three spring break groups that were here (including our group from NC State that we traveled here with), they saw 5 students trust Christ, which was HUGE.  This year, in the first two weeks, we saw 25 students place their faith in Christ!!  We saw God open doors at colleges like Hunter College, a school in Manhattan that we haven’t been able to really get anything started at since 9-11. We saw God do amazing things and we are praying that continues this third week of Spring Break.  God is doing some really cool things here in NYC, things we don’t even know about or can’t see, and we are so glad to be a part of it!

Ok, so this picture isn’t bragging, but I thought I would share. While I do really miss the convenience of having a car here, this picture reminds me of why I am glad I don’t have one. We had a big snowstorm and for days afterwards (and even today still), people are digging their cars out of layers of snow and ice. These guys spent the whole time I was waiting on Kinsley’s bus digging this car out…so we are talking like over 30 minutes. Bless it. So when I complain about not having a car, remind me of this picture 🙂

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