United Kingdom

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Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!  If you are interested, you can check out our 2013 Year in Review!

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Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!  If you are interested, you can check out our 2012 Year In Review!

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Yesterday, we arrived in LA (and, next week, headed to Vancouver) to visit family and attend my company’s annual retreat.  My parents have been so excited playing with the little guy – which really brings much pride to myself (not that I have done anything… except being partly responsible for his very existence… minor things like that).  As he is going to celebrate his first year birthday in a few weeks’ time, it’s a bit funny that there have been very few occasions when I have really felt like I have been a father to him.  I know it sounds weird, but it’s true.  Part of this is because Betty spends most of her time with her – devoting TONS of herself to help him to flourish at such a young age (his calculus skills are still developing, but he’s getting there).  I think there were two times when I really felt like I was a father to Benjamin. Read the rest of this entry »

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We left Birmingham on Friday, July 13th, bright and early at 5:30am, driving off into the misty cold weather we have come to expect this summer in the UK. Up until this point, life had been complete chaos but also complete with many of God’s graces and blessings, especially through the love of our friends in Birmingham. The list is endless really, but especially thank you to the Han family (for looking after Benjamin while Alex and I packed) and Kiet (for storing our furniture while in transition to people)! Read the rest of this entry »

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Merry Christmas everyone!  If you are interested, you can check out our 2010 Year in Review!

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History was just made this morning.  My parents traveled internationally, by themselves, and landed safely in London Heathrow airport.  If you don’t believe me, here’s the proof!

Why is this a historic moment?   Read the rest of this entry »

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For many of you who do not know, ever since I lived in Vancouver, I have grown to love the nature around me.  In my last place, my landlord — a pastor and his family — had a compost bin in his back garden.  We would fill the bin with all sorts of rubbish (vegetable clippings, tea leaves, egg shells — I even threw in some pork bones which I later found you are not supposed to do) and, after a few months, it would all turn into this very rich soil (bones included).  Aside from the fringe benefits of having stuff to plant with, it was also a means to minimise the amount of waste thrown out for the garbage trucks. Afterall, things that could be composted are usually tightly wrapped in plastic bags and added to landfills – a place where worms, slugs and other friendly critters could not help in the decomposition process. Read the rest of this entry »

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A French parliamentary committee has recommended banning Muslim headcoverings. The committee’s report claims that it “is the symbol of the repression of women, and… of extremist fundamentalism.” [1]

BBC reports that many in the UK also want this ban, claiming that it is “not British.” There is obviously a racist underpinning to such a statement, but I’m not even going to go there for now. What really unnerved me was what the journalist was implying about freedom of religion: “In a country [France] where the separation of state and religion is enshrined in law, a parliamentary committee report ruled the veil as “contrary to the values of the republic’…” [2]

And now begins my rant. Read the rest of this entry »

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Our New Home

For the first time since getting married, Betty and I have a place of our own to call “home.”

When we first got married, Betty moved into my basement suite underneath the home of a pastor and his family. They were good people but, on a regular basis, we could hear the piano playing next to our bedroom and the ping-pong table being used next to our kitchen.

The next time we moved was when we relocated here to the UK in September of last year. We stayed with good friends in a shared home as “temporary housing.”  Honestly, we have been really blessed by good friends and strangers who have opened their places to us to live.  But, as a young married couple with a desire to bless others, we thought it would be important to find a more personal “home”.  So, this all changed last week.

Here’s a shot of the front (with our Civic parked there) and our back garden (with the new compost bin we got — which, incidentally, is sold at a reduced cost since most municipalities actually subsidise them).  Our hope is that we will be able to use this place for God’s glory and, perhaps, entertain angels unaware.  If you would like to visit, drop us a line!

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US-UK PinWARNING: You are about to encounter a long rant.

So, since Betty and I have been here living in the motherland (England), I have been merrily driving around in our eternal blue Honda Civic without a license.  Well, without a proper UK license to be precise.  I can legally drive on my US license for the first year but have to go through the process to apply and test for a UK license if I want to drive anytime after that first year. Read the rest of this entry »

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