Valerie's Trip to the Hairdresser

When I was a little girl, my mum went grey before all the other mums. It probably didn’t help that she was 37 when she had me. New friends invariably asked if she was my grandmother, but she was self-confident enough that she didn’t care and never tried to hide her true hair colour. However, I decided that if I were to follow her into premature greying, I would dye my hair. Thirty years passed, which included several stints of pain, and I have indeed gone prematurely grey—even earlier than my…

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Peter's Adventures at the Hospital!

Pictures: Peter in his hospital gear (sorry, hon, caught you blinking!); my lunch; Peter's lunch.

As most of you know, Peter is currently going through some problems with his adrenal glands. This is actually a recurrence of a problem he had three years ago. After someone has had severe adrenal problems once, ever afterwards their glands are weak. So, taking a special medication every day is necessary to prevent a relapse. However, Peter had some medication issues when we went back to Canada…

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Contradictions, paradoxes, and the God who defies them...

Living in Japan seems to entail a series of contradictions and paradoxes. On the one hand, we've been here for a few years and have figured a few things out. On the other hand, we are still very ignorant of many aspects of the culture and language, and often feel adrift. Thank goodness that the missionary life has nothing to do with how adequate we are, and everything to do with how capable our Heavenly Father is!

The past three days have been a blast—and not once did I remember to take…

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And then there was day 28...

By the end of our second week in Japan, we had bought a new car (to be picked up in three weeks), secured a loaner car in the interim, received our new cell phones, and gotten the Internet hooked up to our house. We were feeling pretty good about our ability to navigate within the Japanese culture.

Two weeks later, we got a phone call telling us that the car would be ready ahead of schedule. We still didn't have our insurance set up yet—car insurance is another lengthy and particular process…

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A Look Back: Day 12

After eleven days back in Japan, it was hard not to feel like a failure. Everything...we...did...involved...so...much...struggle—and waiting. You see, in Japan officials are very particular about the order that things happen in. There's no expediting a process. If you need a certain piece of ID to get something set up, there are often no alternate pieces of ID that you can use. If a certain set of steps is prescribed, you have to follow the pre-defined method. In a culture that emphasizes…

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