Saturday, December 1, 2007

There's going to be a party!!

My youngest sister, Vanessa, is getting married in early February and all the wheels are in motion. Next Saturday I will be hosting, along with my other two sisters, two wedding showers at my house. The first shower will take place at noon with (how shall we say?) the over 40 crowd. It will be a luncheon. The second shower will begin at 5:00 and is affectionately called the "Froo Froo and Fondue" shower where we anticipate great amounts of chocolate and giggling to be flowing late into the evening.

This is such a joyous time in our family's life. Vanessa has had a different road than most people her age. She graduated with an visual arts degree and then moved home for some time and worked as an administrative assistant. During these post college years of "what am I doing with my life" struggles, she answered God's call to serve Him through Bible translation. This entailed a summer in Thailand, 2 years of school around the country and eventually an assignment in St. Petersburg, Russia. When she committed to this she was committing to the isolation and uncertainties that lie ahead. She was placing herself in a setting where she may remain single for the rest of her life. There were many, many shed tears and long nights of conversation. This was a huge letting go for all of us. But Vanessa was willing to trust God and move ahead into the field regardless.

So, 16 months ago she sold all she had, said goodbye to her family and friends for 2-3 years and moved across the world to the begin this journey. It was in no way easy. Six months into her stay she began to notice a mass growing on her neck and her health failing. Within two weeks she was back in Indiana being tested for cancer. In early March Vanessa had a partial thyroidectomy- the mass was benign and she suffered some vocal damage that gradually healed.

God had in mind another type of healing for Vanessa as well. During the past year's uncertainties, she had regained contact with a long time school friend, Chris. Chris and Vanessa were in every grade school classroom together except one since the first grade. Chris always sought Vanessa's attention (to the point of annoyance sometimes) and companionship. He used to dress up in his special tie and cowboy boots for square dance day to be Vanessa's partner. Her first Junior High slow dance was with him. They did grow to become dear friends through their teen year, yet did not share a common faith. After high school Chris joined the military and they lost contact.

During those ten years apart, God called out to Chris and he responded in faith and has been growing every since. He is a remarkable father to his two children of whom he has sole custody today. Chris is intelligent, funny and strong. Most of all, he loves my sister in a way she has never known love. Vanessa has waited patiently and faithfully for God's best. And he clearly is just that. Chris says that he has always loved her and always will. This I believe.

Needless to say, we are over-the-top excited about this upcoming wedding!! And I really want to throw some great parties to celebrate!! This is where I need your help! We have the invitations sent and menus planned, but I am looking for some shower activities/games that would be fun and/or meaningful. I have a couple of ideas of my own, but at this point they aren't striking me as great.

Help me out ladies! Give me all your ideas. I need help.


Saralyn said...

Monica--I'm getting you back. I'm tagging you with some Christmas cheer. Go to my blog for the details

And congratulations to your sister!

Alaina said...

I have a few ideas - I'll try to e-mail them to you later today or tomorrow. Kids are calling... :)

So glad you like the stew!

Heather L. said...

Hi Monica,
I missed seeing you yesterday.
How exciting for your sister. Two showers is going to be a big day!!! If I think of any great ideas i'll let you know. :)

mindi said...

I don't have any ideas but yay for your sister! Sounds like another one of God's plans in motion. Wonderful.

Cindy said...

I'm so thrilled for V!

Wow- you are ambitious with two showers on the same day!

One thing I've done at a few showers I've hosted is have something (small plant to water, string bracelet, etc.) to remind the guests of the bride/mom/to-be. They went around the room sharing something they would commit to pray for , we prayed in a large group, and then they would be reminded to pray for the woman when they saw the bracelet or flower or whatever. Kind of wordy description of something simple. Sorry. :)

You guys could go out together and get your married initials tatooed on your hips. I think the first crowd would REALLY like that.

Sniz said...

My sister, Tiffini, throws the best showers ever. I mean it. She has a gift. She does this one game where she comes up with twenty questions, then sets up a time to have the groom answer them on video tape (before the shower). Then at the shower, she passes out the questions and all the women have to decide whether the bride will answer the same as the groom. Then she asks the bride the question, she answers it, then Tif plays the video of the groom answering the question and everyone sees if their answers were the same.
That's such a neat story about your sister!

Mary@notbefore7 said...

This is a beautiful post and such a tribute to the faithfulness of God and the timing of His perfect plan. It brought tears to my eyes. Congrats to your sister and I hope you all have a BLAST celebrating.