3. Kids Korner: we did a play group for any kids in the congregation the last day we were in Melbourne. The kids were awesome and really cute. Our teens planned the whole activity and interacted with the kids so well. Plus, I got my teaching fix for a few more days. 4. Tuesday Night: We. along with all the Belmore Rd youth, were invited to the Carpenter's house on Tuesday night for a pancake supper! We had American lemonade and delicious chocolate chip pancakes with strawberries! Unbelievable. After dinner and a couple of rounds of Apples to Apples, the whole gang headed down to Brighton Beach. We spent a few hours playing ultimate frisbee on the beach with downtown Melbourne in the background. Before we left, we sat on the beach and praised God in song, with waves crashing in the background and the sky painted red.
5. Sharing a room with the Crazies: The housing situation worked out for Amber, Anne, and I to all share a room at the Drews house for the week. We had such a good time, and definitely did not get enough sleep. Without these two, I would not have made it!6. Hanging Out: With the busyness of the holidays, it seems like forever since I got to hang out and catch up with a few members of our youth group. This trip was a great way to rekindle and strenghen relationships inside our group, and with friends who live in Melbourne.
7. Church Picnic: On Sunday following worship, we had a church picnic at a local park. We had a great time sharing a meal and spending time with the congregation. The best part was the youngies (under 18s) vs. oldies (over 18s) tug of war competition. Sadly, the youngies had youth on their side and beat us 2-1.
8. Gardening: We did more gardening that week in Melbourne than I have done in the last 5 years. Even though mowing lawns and weeding flower beds isn't my idea of fun, it was still one of my highlights because everyone had such a great attitude while were doing it. Each person found a project or task and worked so hard that we finished so quickly. 9. The Bus: We crowded 14 people into our 14 passenger bus for the 12 hour drive to Melbourne. You better believe that we were riding three across in the front seat. Then we spent a week driving around the greater Melbourne area in it...lots and lots of bus time. Even though it's a little bit uncomfortable, it was also the sight of so many hilarious moments, like Tim singing Mika songs (yes, he can hit those high notes) and nerf gun attacks. 10. Sister Sara: On the Thursday of the mission trip, Sara (15 years old) called me outside and said she needed to talk about something. I was a little bit nervous because we had had a pretty emotional girls' devo the night before. When I went outside, she told Amber and me that she had decided to be baptized on Sunday when we got home!!! I have been studying with Sara for about a year, and it was so exciting to watch her die to her old life and be raised as a new creation on Sunday. God's timing is always perfect!
Looking back over this list, it is a poor representation of everything that happened that week. It's just a glimpse of an awesome experience where God worked on us and through us. Melbourne Mish is definitely one of the highlights of my time in Australia.