Over the past couple of weeks, I’ve tried a few times to sit down and write a bit…I’ve even woken up a few mornings with some great ideas, but by the time I start typing them out, they are either petty, emotive or just stupid.  So rather than subject you to that, I’ve just not written. Over the past week, we’ve had a bunch of really awesome things happen and I wanted to let you in on it. [next week has a pretty awesome milestone, as the person pictured to the left turns 1!]

First off, as many of you know, I’m having jaw surgery before we head over.  About a month ago I learned that it would be in mid-May, which was inconvenient, to say the least. I would have had both of my jaws operated on and then 10 days later give my final message at the Ithaca Vineyard…that didn’t sound like an ideal situation. Then last Friday I was driving around thinking that “so many things are going so well…if only the surgery was earlier.” Within the hour I received a call from the surgeon’s office saying they could move me up to April 13. If it had been a week earlier, which would have meant I’d have missed Easter, I would have had to say no, but this was perfect.

So Tuesday we went in and had 2 hours worth of x-rays, moulds of my teeth, pictures of my smile, measurements, etc. The only bad part was that it looks like rather than just surgery on my upper haw, I’ll be getting surgery on both upper & lower. That doesn’t change the recovery (which starts out with a 5-week liquid diet), but does double the length of the procedure (90 minutes to 3 hours). However, assuming all goes well, I’ll be home the next day, and back to work within a week. (Here are some tweets on the topic if you are interested.)

This morning, we had another very cool thing happened, which will have. an even bigger impact on our family. We have had a lot of trouble getting the girls enrolled in school.  The school system is very different and you don’t just move into an area and become part of that school district.  There was a school we really wanted to get the kids into but we learned that the application deadline for Fall 2012, was June 2011…for one of the kid’syear, there were 400 applications for 140 spots. So we called, wrote, emailed…until eventually, they wrote to ask us to please stop as they will not have a spot for either of our kids. In the meantime, we enrolled Brenna in a school about 20 minutes or so from where we’d be living but still hadn’t found a place for Erin. Well, this morning, totally out of the blue, Liz received an email saying they had spots for both of the girls! This is the school they had both wanted to go to from the start, will be much closer to where we’ll be living and planting the church, and overall is a great school. [The fact that Christopher Nolan (the author, not the director) is a graduate is probably cool to some of you, while the fact that a certain Irish rock band meet there is very cool for my kids.]

These have both been two major concerns for us, and many of you have been praying…thank you!

This afternoon we are heading to Albany (Liz & I lived there for 4-5 years before moving to Ithaca). We’ll be able to catch up with some friends tonight and tomorrow.  Saturday night, the Albany Vineyard is putting on a benefit for us at the Irish Mist (7:00 pm). And on Sunday we’ll be at the Albany Vineyard…Liz will be playing with the worship team, and I’ll be speaking about Ireland! If you are in the area, we’d love to see you.