Archive for October, 2014

I’ve been involved in pro-life ministry since I was a teen. (That’s getting to be quite a ways back now!) Here’s the latest newsletter from the pro-life organization I’ve been involved with for years now, helping start this outreach here in Kiev. Olya has been so faithful in this ministry. May God bless their work, them personally, and provide all their needs.

Charitable Foundation “Ukrainian National Line Of Aid In Crisis Pregnancy”

Newsletter June 20 – October 20/2014

Dear Vitaliy&Anne,

Thank you for your prayer support of our ministry. We are pleased to let you know that our family is waiting for the birth of a child.

The Scriptures say, ” Behold, children are a gift of the LORD, The fruit of the womb is a reward.” (Ps.127: 3). But our society can be called a hostile environment for the children, if you realize that 95% of the reasons for abortion in the list of abortion minded girl are her comfort, material stability and reputation. Frightening figures on how often abortions are performed in Ukraine and how tolerant we are to sexual promiscuity entail disastrous consequences.

God hates the shedding of innocent blood. God hates sexual immorality. The Lord says to His people through Hosea: “So you will stumble by day, And the prophet also will stumble with you by night; And I will destroy your mother. My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge. Because you have rejected knowledge, I also will reject you from being My priest. Since you have forgotten the law of your God, I also will forget your children. (Hosea 4: 5-6)

As a result, the nation is being separated from God and His many blessings; it dives into a spiritual haze.

We are afraid for our people, we do not want to have such future. We would like to share with you some little things that happened in our ministry over the last 3 months that help to change the situation in Ukraine.

Grains of truth about the sanctity and value of human life were sown at the summer Christian camp “Canaan” in Odessa region

In July, there was conducted a training for the Odessa center “Choose Life”

In August we participated in the summit for ministers of crisis pregnancy centers from Eastern Europe, conducted by Life International.

In September we conducted a number of workshops on the value of human life in Western Ukraine (Rakhov, Mukachevo, Uzhgorod)

Charitable Foundation “Ukrainian National Line Of Aid In Crisis Pregnancy”is involved in the social movement “The territory of responsibility” and in establishing of the public movement “Ukraine for the family.”

Also, we conducted a training “DISK-test” for our volunteers, which has improved the dynamics of a team work and showed the value of every minister.

During this time we received calls on the Hotline, conducted counseling and met with the abortion minded girls. Now we look after 8 girls who have kept their pregnancy.

A few stories of our girls:

Luba Y grew up in a family of alcoholics. Luba abused alcohol too. She had a bad marriage, which ended in divorce. She raised two children by herself. Accidentally she came to a Protestant church, where she experienced the healing touch of the Lord. She stopped drinking. But then Anatoly came into her life – a man with a criminal background. However, Luba believed him, and they began to live in a civil marriage. Luba got pregnant. Although the relationship with Anatoly were not good, she decided to keep her pregnancy. They had quarrels, scandals, she ran away from home and had to stay with her friends. Sometimes she had no money to buy food for herself and her children.

Now volunteers of our organization help Luba not only with food and necessary things – they try to convey to her with love the truth and spiritual values of the Word of God. So far, only her eldest kids go to Sunday school, but we pray that the fullness of life with Christ would become a reality for Luba too. Together with the volunteer Olya, we gave Luba a stroller as a gift on her son’s birthday.

Eugenia was an orphan. She grew up in a foster family. Upon reaching the age of majority and finishing the state program she became homeless. She got into a bad company, was involved in taking drugs and stealing. As a result, she was put in a prison. After being released from prison, she decided to stop taking drugs. She met a guy and got pregnant. Before and after childbirth she stayed in a social center for mothers with children in Donetsk. The child’s father died of hepatitis C. In order not to communicate with the former friends Eugenia moved to Mariupol. There she met another man. She got pregnant again, but she couldn’t rely on the assistance of the child’s father because he did not want to take responsibility. It was very hard for Eugenia. She received some support from the people whom she had met earlier. It turned out that they were Christians, home group leaders. She left Mariupol with them when it became dangerous there. Together, they called our Hotline for pregnant women asking for help. We helped Eugenia with the clothing. Together with a Kiev church, we put her in a center for refugees and women in crisis.

Eugenia has kept her pregnancy and is very open to fellowship. We continue to support her with food and other necessary things. She seeks the Lord, goes to church, cares for her older daughter Julia and is waiting for the birth of another child.

Prayer needs:

  1. for vision and God’s wisdom in strategic development of the ministry
  2. for volunteers who will help to promote our website
  3. for opening new crisis pregnancy ministries in the regions of Ukraine
  4. for post-abortion seminar in November of 2014 (organizing, finances, ministers, women in need)
  5. for the women in crisis pregnancy be open to receive Christ
  6. for abortion preventing campaign in Chernovtsy 24-28.11.2014
  7. for Olya to have healthy pregnancy and good delivery



Read Full Post »

I’m reposting!!!! Oh, my! My first two kids were 2 and 4 when I wrote this!

A few months back, in a breastfeeding textbook, I read that new parents need to eventually move into their own “style” of parenting, rather than trying to robotically copy some formula-method they’ve read about. I think I’ve done / am doing that…

I found that when my first two kids were really young, I had to sift through the parenting philosophies I had somewhere imbibed. I don’t think my ideas came from my parents, but more from a legalistic sphere I had been in.

This is one post that I wrote during that time. … I think I still agree with myself now that 5 more years are under the bridge and 2 more kids in my little flock. Here you go:

Do Justice, Love Mercy, Walk Humbly with God

OK, after writing this post and thinking more, I can now put into words why the first-time obedience training is so often a defeating trap for parents.

The trap is that it makes obedience the end and not the result.

Let’s think this through.

The two greatest commandments: Love the Lord your God with all your heart . . . . Love your neighbor as yourself. (cf. Matt. 22:37-39) Love is the goal, the end we want.

Note: God did not say “Obey the Lord your God with all your heart. . . Obey your neighbor as yourself.” He said to love.

OK, you think, but there’s a verse that says, “If you love me, keep my commandments.” (John 14:15) So, if I teach my child to obey, am I not teaching him to love?

. . .

Let’s read that question again, in a different way: Teaching my child to…

View original post 500 more words

Read Full Post »

This is going to be a sappy post, but I need to be sappy every so often. It’s healthy.

The kids and I were watching “The Sound of Music” yesterday, and the Reverend Mother broke out into her “Climb every mountain … ’till you find your dream” song. And I remembered how, when I was a kid, we had a tape of the Sound of Music songs, and I used to love listening to and singing along with this song.

Climb every mountain,
Search high and low,
Follow every byway,
Every path you know.

Climb every mountain,
Ford every stream,
Follow every rainbow,
‘Till you find your dream.

A dream that will need
All the love you can give,
Every day of your life
For as long as you live.

And I was thinking how I sang this song in my childhood and live it out in my adulthood.


I climbed the mountains,


crossed the streams,


followed the rainbows,

Center Salvation

Center Salvation

and found my dream.


And it really does need all the love I can give every day of my life for as long as I’ll live.


Vitaliy teaching missions to his fellow Ukrainians



ladies' Bible study / seminar

ladies’ Bible study / seminar

And with God, I never know what “dream” will be coming next, or mountain or stream or rainbow, for that matter.

Read Full Post »

I’m excited that I met a small goal: moving from “obese” Body Mass Index to only “overweight.” (Lots of online calculators help to measure BMI.)

So after a  month, I’ve lost 18″ and 10lbs. (With T-Tapp, they focus mainly on inch-loss).

Lest you think it’s all a dream and taketh no work, I did actually gain back 3″ 2 weeks, then lost them again plus more. And just remember, I’m still postpartum, and I’m breastfeeding 2 kids (newborn and 2yo). And as Charlotte Siems says, when you are in the “more to lose” category, you just have “more” to lose (meaning the numbers are usually bigger initially because there’s a lot there to work with).

I’m not fitting into my “normal” clothes as fast as I want, but I got into a pair of jeans that are smaller and fit much better than the size 16’s that were getting really saggy-baggy.

I found my other jean skirt that I love, but can’t get into it without ….. doing really funny things, and let’s not try sitting down once it’s zipped … 😀

But hey, I’m moving on– progress, not perfection! (per C.S. again)  And my body is really changing–I feel it especially in my stomach area, which is what T-Tapp focuses on (a strong core).

On this journey, I’m at a point where I might be ready to “deal with” what I eat. Or how much I eat. I was reading Charlotte (again) for tips and inspiration, and she had a post about changing our yeses and no’s. Example, saying “no” to the joy of a chocolate bar means I’m saying “yes” to the joy of being thinner. … I’m thinking about this a lot.

Last night I said “no” to a chocolate bar before bed (which I really love), and in so doing, I said “yes” to reaching my from-obese-to-overweight goal.

So when the girls were painting their spelling words, I painted my “school” words with them, too:


Yes No

I’m saying yes or no all the days long.

It’s an adventure, people.

Read Full Post »

The girls learn to spell only the words they missed on the test– the lesson starts with a little test, then they study (through 10 easy steps) the words they missed. Writing the word on the table with their fingers or in a medium is one of the ten study steps–so we did a plate of flour today:


Then they do some kind of sensory activity to study/play with those words–the program gives a bunch of suggestions. So today I told them to paint their words–one of the suggestions. So we got messy. It was cool 🙂

Vika’s word to study was “every.” (Then she wanted to do more, so she did “love” and “Sokols.”)


Andre saw the fun, and he came over to join in …


Skyla’s words were “seventh” and “when.”


Sheesh, what an easy way to feel “creative.”

I painted words with them, too, which I will post about next…

Read Full Post »

Vitaliy’s hobby

Vitaliy’s hobby is his aquarium. I could go on and on about how he’s developed it in small ways here and there. But it’s something he just naturally enjoys. And not only he.


Read Full Post »

we are the banya babes

I think a banya is like a sauna. I never did much by way of saunas, but I think that’s the equivalent. Banyas are big things here.

The heating room Vitaliy and the guys built onto the Center doubles as a small banya. Vitaliy went, then he started taking the girls, and now I’m going.

Well, confession, I’m going to try doing more sportish things with Vitaliy in the upcoming years, as kids get more independent, and so I thought banya would be a good place to start. It’s not a sport, but it’s … close enough for me, ha ha. I did a banya once before with Vitaliy years ago, and I didn’t really enjoy it— it’s an altered physical state— and I was NOT about to jump into A POOL Of fREEZING COLD WATER in between my overheating/overhumidified experiences. But I’m actually starting to plan on that now. …. maybe after a few years months weeks of regular banya use.

Am I out of my brain?


My children, in their Ukrainian life, love it all, of course. No learning-to-like-it curve for them.

Speaking of Ukrainian life! I remember the time, about 7-10 years of living here, I could finally sip HOT tea– there is a technique to it that I stumbled upon. WeLL, I want to share with the world that I recently learned how to crack/open sunflower seeds with one hand and my teeth, like the Ukr’s do. Yes, buddy, I’m arriving. It makes an amusing conversation with them as I drive (eating sunflower seeds) and tell them this. They all just learned how to do it in childhood, of course. Most of them don’t even remember learning, though one gal said she remembers learning/practicing.

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »