Friday, May 27, 2011

My cousin, my other cousin, and our friend

We have guests!!!  They've been here for a little over a week, and have 5 more days with us before they continue their travels to some other great cities in Europe.  They are: my cousin Grant Zimmerman, my other cousin Ben Getz, and our friend from our home church, Phil Schafer.  These three guys have just graduated from their undergraduate studies and decided to travel Europe before going on to graduate work and jobs in July.  And they started their trip with us!  We are so honored that they came this far east, and are spending such a great two weeks with our family!

Our kids are having an amazing time with the attention of these three great guys!  As you can see, the "big boys" are incredibly gracious to our kids: playing with them, reading to them, jumping with them, helping them with homework, holding conversations with them, even being their "horsey"!  The guys have been a huge help to Ed and I also, doing yard work, planting flowers, doing dishes, cleaning the kitchen, taking care of the kids, and tomorrow and Monday they will help us with our English camp promotions.

We will be going into the schools here in Bardejov, talking to the English classes of many of our town's public and private schools, telling them all about the English camp that will be held in July, and inviting them to come.  We let these classes know that the camp will allow them to practice conversational English in a fun and interesting way, and that there will be evening meetings lead by people from our local church.  Many students have come to camp in the past because of hearing about it during these in-school promotions.  We are praying that the hearts of the students in these schools will be open to this idea of English camps, and that they will want to join us this year.

We saw some girls from last year's camp in the town square this week, and all three of them want to come again this summer, and one of them is planning to bring some friends along with her!  That is exciting for us!  So, even though Grant, Ben and Phil won't be here for the camp in July, they will be great promoters of it with their bold personalities and energetic deliveries!  The guys have also been helping in our youth group, giving the devotion last Friday night, and both this Friday and Saturday nights.  The Slovak kids have loved meeting these guys and getting to know them.  And the guys have done a GREAT job getting out and meeting kids here in our town, even attempting to communicate with Slovak...great job, Ben!!!

So, Grant, Ben and Phil, we want to tell you a huge thank you for spending these two weeks with us, encouraging our family, blessing our home, and being a true breath of fresh air to us here!  You have been so easy to have, great to communicate with, and so fun to watch as you are enjoying every bit of life here in Slovakia, from the taste of our creamy milk, to the beautiful weather we've been having every day, to the touring of that amazing castle, to the Thursday night soccer you've gotten in on!  It's been great getting to know all of you better, and we and our kids have been blessed by your presence here in our home!

For any of you who are interested in reading more details about these weeks with the guys here, you can read Ben's travel blog.  You will be amused by these posts, as Ben is a great writer, and is great at documenting details!  You can find him at  He has also posted many pictures of the fun we've been having.  I laugh out loud nearly every time I read it!