Bonjour — Stateside!


Not kidding. I have been wearing pants, socks, long-sleeves, and sweaters since being back in Colorado, not to mention my winter coat and gloves when I go outside. A few times I’ve been tempted to turn up the heat…or just get a room heater for my room. Last night I turned on the humidifier, it’s just so dry!

So I got back to the States safe and sound on Monday night. My flights were fairly uneventful…on the flight from Chicago to Co Springs there was some seating confusion and there was a German couple sitting in my row, the wife in my seat. I tried asking her where her seat was but she spoke no English, so then I started to speak French to her without even thinking about it!

So I was walking through the Chicago airport and as I passed this one lady, she looked at me and smiled! You know what I did? A little jig. Hooplah! So then I decided to see how many people I could get to smile at me if I smiled at them (don’t worry, I chose my victims with wisdom). I love that Americans will smile back, but unlike the Africans, their eyes only hold yours until it’s “uncomfortable”. Then they look away.

I am planning on writing more later about how I’ve been digesting being back…I don’t really want to try and dig through it all on my second day. I do just want to say that I am so glad to be spending time with my family here! Well, at least with my parents (my sister disappeared the day after I got back…oh the fun social lives of high schoolers!). Got to see a few friends, but it’s been nice having a few days to just chill. Graduation parties are coming up, dance, lots of fun things…but first let me recover from jet lag!

Leanne, Hannah…I miss you guys like crazy. So thankful for the “conversation” we had my last morning. Dan and Alicia, have a wonderful time Stateside! Hope your first team experience was AWESOME and LEGIT! Fellowship Alliance Chapel team, I still talk about you all, even to my family here! Very excited to visit your church this year. Other interns (Shannon, Robert, Reinette), my experience wouldn’t have been the same without ya’ll. I love love love meeting other young people with a heart for the world and service. Alace and Steve, you and your family are such an encouragement! It was such a privilege to get to know a family like you who is obeying God even when it isn’t easy. (not going to lie, I am praying you guys come to the States Joey’s senior year!).

To all my readers, family, friends–ya’ll rock! It has been such a blessing to have people who are interested enough to read about my experiences. Your comments, e-mails, and even just the readership stats have been so heart-warming. And if reading my or other blogs has made you interested in Gabon, either giving or serving, please don’t hesitate to further inquire about what you can do! E-mail me at and I will point you in the right direction.

Below are some pictures from my last week or two. Uploading stuff is SO my faster here in America so I will be sharing more stuff over the weeks to come. A youtube channel with videos is on its way!

Some of the wonderful boys at Hope House

Chouchou, baby Anne, et moi! (chouchou is the daughter of our house-cleaning neighbor, Mama Justine)

Jill (a visiting nurse–she’s getting married in July, yay!), me, and Sam Straw playing our last game of Settlers of Catan. If you come to Libreville, you can expect Sam or me (if I’m there) to ask if you like this game!! And if you do, be prepared to pull late-night Settlers stints! Mwuahaha…

Front row: Jill, Alace, me, Hannah, Leanne Back row: Sam, Jean-Romain, Eric Bill, Steve

My wonderful sisters Leanne and Hannah


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