Brad and Laurel's Blog

Brad and Laurel's Blog

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On to Austria

January 19, 2013 1 Comment

We left Germany and headed back to Slovenia! Instead of going directly home we decided to stay in Austria for a few days. We stayed in a little one room apartment and it was perfect for our family! We had just enough beds for everyone, it had a kitchen so we could cook and save money BUT the only problem was it rained the entire time we were there!!! The boys were like little ping pong balls, bouncing off the walls! We went on short walks in the rain and window shopped. The town we stayed in was so cute, probably the cutest Austrian town I have been in, I bet the view was gorgeous too! Too bad we only caught glimpses of it now and again :). We did have really good family time, we played a lot of card games, started working on a puzzle, drank lots of hot chocolate and really enjoyed being together!

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Our Germany Adventure

January 18, 2013 1 Comment

Do you ever try to plan something and the details just don’t come together? You talk and talk to your spouse (or friend or whoever your planning with) and you go around and around and can’t come to a decision? Well, that was Brad and I about our trip to Germany. We knew we wanted to go and we needed to go to connect with a dear church family but the details were complicated and got more complicated a week before we left. Well, we got tired of talking about it and trying to find the perfect time to go, the perfect situation ect…and just hopped in the car and left! We left right after Christmas and drove to Germany and stayed for a week. We had a great time housesitting and dogsitting for some dear friends of ours and we connected with many friends we had not seen for quite some time.  We were able to visit one of our supporting church’s, Frontline Community. They had picked our JV Slovenia team to bless and had gathered presents for the kids, board games for our youth groups crockpots for the ladies, food for the men-well yummy American goodies for everyone, not just the men!  This church family has blessed us so much through the years in so many ways! We are so thankful for them and for their heart for the country of Slovenia! Thank you so much Frontline! The pictures below are all the goodies that we stuffed into a borrowed van and all the bags of American treats to give to each family on our team.

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Highlights of 2012

January 9, 2013

Looking Back 2012 was a great year for our family, not a ton of BIG things happened but a lot of little things that made for a good year!

Right at the end of 2011 Jackson took a few steps but really started being an official walker in January of 2012! For me when our boys started walking that was when I realized they aren’t babies anymore, they are toddlers!

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Landon learned how to ski in February of 2012. This was a huge deal for him since he had wanted to try skiing since he was 3!

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Our church family really started to grow and we started a children’s class!

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In the spring we even tried our hand at gardening! First we re-planted grass in the backyard and then we planted pumpkins, zucchini and tomatoes in a little side garden! It was a little crazy for us and not sure if we will do it again but it was fun for our family to watch stuff grow!

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My mom came and watched the boys for English Camp! I taught at English Camp which was super fun and I loved my class, translator and helper :)! We had a really great camp this year, truly memorable!

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Soon after camp my mom, the boys and I hopped on a plane and flew to America. I got the boys settled in VA with Brad’s family and then I trained up to New York to meet 5 of our Slovene High School Students for a crazy America Trip! We went to New York, Washington DC, VA, Nashville TN, GA, FL, and Disney World! It was such an amazing trip, one we will always remember!

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After the trip we came home exhausted and went on our annual camping trip with the boys. I think this is one of our favorite things to do as a family!

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We came home just in time for Landon to start Elementary School! Yes, folks my baby is in the first grade!

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Our back yard garden continued to grow and grow and we had a big harvest of American style pumpkins (they are hard to find over here in SLO).

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We had a BUSY CRAZY fall and then we jumped right into Christmas! We had a great Christmas and New Year’s and now we are looking forward to what God has for us in 2013!

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Christmas Day

December 30, 2012

On Christmas morning the boys woke up and we all went down the stair together with presents under the tree.  It totally looked like the picture I had in my mind when I thought about doing Christmas in our house in Maribor! It was the first Christmas we were able to be prepared and do Christmas well! 2 years ago we moved in right before Christmas Eve and barely had time to throw presents together, hunt down a tree and put it up! Last year we were in the states on home assignment and finally this year we were having Christmas at home. We had a great time slowly opening presents and just enjoying each other. I baked cinnamon rolls but they did not turn out, bummer! I will just have to try again :). Later in the afternoon some dear friends of ours came over and we had a great evening of Mexican food and lots of laughter! Our hearts are full and we are so thankful for our little family and good friends to celebrate Jesus birthday with!

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Christmas Eve

December 29, 2012

This year for Christmas Eve we had our dear friends and teammates Andrej and Nina and their daughter Eva over for Christmas Eve. We had such a sweet time opening presents, eating, laughing, having a tea party and just being together. It really was a special memory for our family. We are so thankful for the Lovse family! Thanks guys for spending some time on Christmas Eve with us!

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MERRY CHRISTMAS!

December 24, 2012

We just wanted to wish you all (those near to us and those far away) a very Merry Christmas! With much love from the Jenkins family!

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Vienna Trip

December 23, 2012

Last weekend we went to Vienna to go to the Christmas markets. Vienna is only 2 1/2 to 3 hours away from us but I have only been in Vienna one other time before this one. It really is such a beautiful city and they really do the city up nice for Christmas. We went to a Christmas market, then Starbucks 🙂 (a small taste of home!), walked around the city, went in a cathedral, then went home. Two sweet girls that are very special to our family came with us and we are so glad they came! The boys did great and seemed to really enjoy the trip too. Jackson is so funny with Christmas lights, he points and says “Wow” really loud and gets all excited! We had a great little day trip and had great company!

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Christmas Party

December 18, 2012

Brad and I and the boys have lived in Slovenia for 3 year now! Over and over again in these last few years, we will look at each other and say “We are so thankful for our team!”. We are not alone, we have many families that work in our same organization and live all over Slovenia. They are some of our dearest friends and we are so thankful for them! A few weeks back we all gathered together to celebrate Christmas. We had a great time. Our team leader read the Christmas story to the kids, the kids exchanged presents, the adults had a white elephant gift exchange and we went sledding! It was a great time. We always know Landon has a good time when he is with our team because he always cries when we have to leave! Here are a few pictures from the day, enjoy! 🙂

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Christmas Time

December 17, 2012


DSC_0405Well, after a long break, I am back to blogging! Sorry to those of you that kept checking and saw old posts from this summer! Life got away from me and was out of the routine of posting. Now I am determined to try again! So, instead of attempting to catch everyone up, I am just going to blog currently. Maybe now and again I will post about something from the summer or fall but for now let’s stick with winter and christmas!

This Christmas season so far has been so fun! We got our tree up at the beginning of the season and the boys had so much fun decorating it. Jackson kept putting the same plastic ball on the tree over and over again! Each time he would clap and say “Yeah” and we would cheer him on! He must have put that silly ornament on 25 times!

We have been doing an advent experience with the boys called “The Truth in the Tinsel”.  It is very good and has been a great experience for the boys. Everyday you are supposed to make a christmas ornament that represents different parts of the Christmas story. Landon is really understanding and remembering so much of the story. Although it has been great and I highly recommend it, I don’t know that I will do it again because I am in a house full of boys and attempting to do a craft each day with 3 boys (yes, I am including Brad :)) has been quite a challenge! However, we will persevere this year and try something easier next year!

Another thing that has made this Christmas season fun is it has snowed some and the boys have LOVED playing in the snow! It has melted for now but hopefully we will get some more. Here are a few pictures of this Christmas season so far!

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Camp!

July 15, 2012

Well, most of you probably know that life has been nutty with us hence the lack of blog posts! We came back a week ago or so from our big summer English Camp that we put on every year for Slovene High School students. It went REALLY well! We are so thankful for how well the camp went! We are now gearing up to take a group of youth to America (east coast)! Life is busy and full!