five minute friday: tree

Every Friday, a group of like minded individuals gathers over @thegypsymama’s to write unscripted, unedited masterpieces for the sheer joy of writing. The only hard, fast rule is to leave comment love on the blog prior to your own.

This week the word is tree.


It all started with the memory of a tree in Africa, my missionary dream. The memory of that one acacia tree led to multiple adventures in the USA, Haiti, Uganda, Guinea, and Congo. It opened the door to the possibility of reaching out to people who need help. The dream of the tree has come full circle as I’ve come home and learned to reach out to people wherever I am. One little memory of a tree. How cool is that?


His… Michelle

Here’s how I’m earning my keep while visiting my brother and his family:






caught between two worlds

I’ve been home now for 24 hours. Things are great, weird, but great. I don’t know exactly how to describe the way I feel. On the one hand, I’m so happy to be with my family, but I’m following my Mercy Ships friends on Facebook as they prepare to leave the Canary Islands for the voyage to the Congo and I wish I were there too.

I’m caught between two worlds. I love my family and friends here in the USA. But I’m not the same. It seems like the longer I’m away from them, the farther away my heart is as well. Does any of this make sense? My family loves me and supports me, but they don’t ask about my life, probably because I tell them everything happening via the telephone and newsletters. It’s just weird.

I’m really looking forward to Saturday. Galen is coming up from Florida for a week with me and his brother. Three amigos together again. 😄 Robert is already planning what we can do in the way of hikes in the Pocono mountains. I can’t wait. Since Galen came back from Haiti, he gets it, the weird disconnect from everything American culture.

I’m filled with a surreal angst I don’t know how to handle. Or maybe it’s jet lag?

His… Michelle
Philippians 1:20




receptionist’s log: 17 July 13

Satellite image

Satellite image (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I’ve made it to the home stretch of my summertime job in reception! Woohoo! After today, I only have 2 more working days. Things are starting to pick up too. People are returning from their vacations. New crew are embarking to sail to the Congo. The biggest challenge I face is people showing up in crowds. I’m not good at crowd control. But the end is near. 🙂

There’s definitely excitement in the air. This Saturday, we leave Gran Canaria and sail to Tenerife. Pray for smooth seas as the channel between here and there is more shallow and more choppy. Apparently the ship rocks a good bit on these small voyages. Based on the ferry ride I had last year between Gran Canaria and Tenerife, I will need to take seasick meds.

As for all the construction. The jackhammers have stopped. The new floor is installed in the hospital. It’s green and super shiny. The new CT scanner is in and functioning. The coffee maker in Starbucks is clean and refurbished. The galley freezer and floor are repaired. The plumbing is being plumbed or something. The new wall for the new PACU got delayed. It will be finished after the ship arrives in the Congo.

Next Wednesday, 24 July 13, I will fly home to the USA for 3 weeks of family and friend fun! I’m super excited to see everyone! It’s the first time I will be with both of my boys at the same time since May 2012! They don’t know it yet, but I’m going to get a new photo of the 3 of us together. Our last photo is really awesome, but almost 2 years old. Ha! Let the packing begin! 😀

While I’m home, I hope to see as many folks as possible. We’re having a BBQ at my sister’s place on 3 August 13. Then on 9 August 13, I fly to Ft Lauderdale to go to a friend’s wedding on 10 August 13. And on 11 August 13, barring hurricanes, we’ll have another BBQ on the beach. It’s going to be a whirlwind!

Next Saturday, 27 July 13, the ship leaves Tenerife to begin the long voyage to the Congo. I sure will miss taking part in pirate watch, but I can’t say I’ll miss being stir crazy from being cooped up for 2 weeks. That’s right, I said 2 weeks! That’s a long sail!

cgnewzzOn 13 August 13, I make the long journey back to the Congo on the west coast of central Africa. I’m so excited to get back to work and I’m really looking forward to exploring a whole new region of Africa! Plus it will be my first time in the southern hemisphere! I can finally find out first hand if the water in the toilet bowl swirls the opposite way! Woohoo!

On 28 August 13, screening day! The biggest day of the year. Not only will we have one man waiting, but apparently there will be a huge crowd! It’s the first time the ship will be in central Africa. The news is travelling quickly.

But for now, I set my eyes and heart toward America! See you soon!

His… Michelle
Philippians 1:20