Fun in the...SNOW!!!

This morning we took the kids sledding. We stopped off to pick-up our car and before we were completely frozen, we let the kids play on the playground. ME's lips are not turning blue, her face is just dirty.


Lunch Time at Gideon's School...

Lunch time starts around 12:45 at Gideon's preschool. Around 1:00, they finish up lunch and the kids prepare for nap time. Gideon only attends half a day, so we pick him up after lunch. The teacher requires the kids to eat all of their lunch before they can be excused. Some days it takes Gideon a little while to finish his lunch. Today, at 1:30, I was still waiting on Gideon and all of the other kids had left for nap time. I went to see what was taking Gideon so long. For lunch they were having beet soup (which he managed to finish), fish and peas. He still had part of his fish and peas left to eat. I waited until the teacher left the room and shoved the rest of his lunch in my mouth so he could be excused. Gideon gave me a big hug and we went home.

A Night at the Sullivans...

Playing with the light up toys Granny sent...thanks Granny!!!




Total Chaos!!!

Finally...a moment of peace!


Mary Elizabeth...

Mary Elizabeth is modeling her new dress as she waits to go to Church. She loves to go any where and when anyone leaves, she runs to grab her shoes...just in case she gets to go too!

O' Christmas Tree...

Yes, Gideon is playing hide-n-seek behind our Christmas tree and no this is not an old picture---Kristie took it this morning. And yes, we do think it is time to stop celebrating Christmas and put away the tree!!! In Russia, people put up trees to celebrate the New Year and leave them up until around the 15th of January---through Orthodox Christmas (celebrated on January 7th) and Old New Year (on January 13th). We wish we could say we have been "busy" but actually it is more on the lazy side combined with the fact that Kristie (and the kids) love Christmas so much the Christmas tree has actually been up since November and has become a part of our living room. However, Kristie's goal this week is to say good-bye to our tree, because if she doesn't it will be March before the Christmas Season will come to an end for us! We leave next week for Ivanovo. While Keith is attending a very important conference there, Kristie and the kids will be hanging out with Nancy, Sarah, Anna, and Lesa (our teammates). We will return to Yaroslavl on Friday (February 9th) and leave for Prague, Czech Republic on Sunday (February 11th) for a three week training at the IMB regional offices. Please pray for fun, safety, and adjustment for our family as we travel, visit friends, and participate in these training opportunities.


Meet the SPUD Family...

Pirate Gideon and his skate boarding friend, Mommy, Daddy (look at those muscles!) and Mary Elizabeth (what a cute smile and pretty teeth!). I thought this Potatoe Head family was funny, since our news letters were once called SPUDs---Sullivan Prayer Up-Dates. Thanks Uncle Troy, Aunt Jill and Parks for such a fun present...we love it!


ME is enjoying her potty chair and is making some progress! We have had over 5 successes in the last week! Way to go ME!!! We are proud of you!

Dinner Guests...

We invited some friends over for dinner a learned many lessons...
*American kids like mac & cheese; Russian kids like shredded carrot salad with sugar.
*American kids like lemonade; Russian kids like hot tea.
*All kids like hot dogs and chocolate!
*Spiderman and all other Super Heroes are Satan (not from Satan, but actually Satan!)---this was sort of funny, because Gideon has Super Hero plates, cups, blankets, costumes, toys.
*Watching non-Christian cartoons is also bad.
*Women must wear skirts or dresses, not pants, and must cover their heads when praying.

What an eduational evening!


Good-bye Ellie!

Tonight we had to say good-bye to the Craigs (our friends and neighbors here in Yaroslavl)...hopefully just temporarily! Please pray for them as Tom is getting medical treatment in the states.


A Rare Moment...

After Church today, Keith and Gideon went sledding with Gideon's friend Dima and his dad Egor. While ME took a tap, Kristie had a whole hour of peace and quiet!!! It was so quiet that she was even able to hear the neighbor's telephone ring! She celebrated this rare moment of peace with a cup of coffee and a piece of cake...she also took a little nap herself! Keith and Gideon had a great afternoon in the forest playing in the snow. We are so thankful to all be feeling better...thank you for praying for us!


An Unexpected Visit to the Police Station...

Keith and I were on our way to have lunch on Tuesday, when we were stopped by a police officer. What initially started out as a minor traffic violation, resulted in a 5 hour visit to the police station. We were taken to the police station because with were without our documents (passports, visa, etc.), which were in the process of being registered. It is a very long story that involves a large knowledge of the Russian ever changing laws, but thankfully has a happy ending. Kristie was finally permitted to leave to go get Gideon from preschool and returned home. Thankfully, our business manager was able to send us copies of our documents and Kristie and the kids went to rescue Keith from the police station. As they were preparing to leave, Gideon said, "ME hurry we have to go get daddy out of jail!" I never thought I would hear one of my kids say that! Thankfully, we can laugh about the fun adventure now!


New Potty Chair...

Mary Elizabeth has a new potty chair and pull-ups (daddy and Granny's idea).

We have had a good week. Thankfully, we are beginning to feel better and ME has gone 4 days without throwing up! We are also so thankful that Gideon's return to preschool was less dramatic than we anticipated. He has done great and has only shed a few tears on Tuesday morning. We thank you for your faithfulness to our family and for your prayers, love, and encouragement. Please continue to pray for our health---Kristie is still not 100%---and Gideon's preschool adventures!


Gideon's Friend Arena

Last week, we went to visit our landlord's new home. Gideon had a fun time playing with their daughter, Arena and we enjoyed a fun time of fellowship and an unusual, but yummy meal---fish pie, caviar and fresh mushrooms! We are so thankful for such kind, generous landlords.

Momentary Laspe of Sanity...

Keith, Kristie, and ME are still trying to recover from the flu, while Gideon is full of energy and bouncing off the walls! ME is improving, but has still had minor, occasional relapses. Please continue to pray that we will all be better soon!

After over a month long break, Gideon is scheduled to return to preschool tomorrow. Please pray that he will adjust quickly and love school, his teacher and playing with his classmates. Please also pray that no tears are shed by Gideon or Kristie.


The Flu!

Keith, Kristie and Mary Elizabeth all have the stomach flu! Keith is actually doing better; Kristie is sleeping (or doing laundry) all of the time, but has managed to not throw-up; and poor ME has had a terrible week! She has hardly been able to eat or drink anything and in addition to throwing up, has a very tender, red bottom! We think she is improving, but this morning she developed a fever. On a positive note---the flu is a great way to lose those extra holiday pounds! Please pray we would all feel better soon!



We made it home around 4:30 PM---almost 30 hours traveling! We were also so happy to finally be home...especially ME. She got sick on the plane and threw-up numerous times. She also managed to spill orange juice and 7-UP on Kristie...not to mention her diaper also leaked while sitting on mommy's lap :-). Please pray that ME would feel better today and that we would all recover quickly from jet lag. Kristie and the kids have been up since 1:30 AM and by 4 AM, Kristie had already unpacked suitcases and put ME down for a nap!


The Last Supper...

Grandpa & Grandma

Uncle Greg, Aunt Leslyn & Kamryn

We can't believe it is already time to say good-bye and return to Russia. We have had an incredible time with our families and friends. We said good-bye to Kristie's family at Chili's. We hated that it got cut a little short when ME got sick. We love you all and already miss you loads!!!

Mary Elizabeth's First Hair Cut

Aunt Leslyn cut ME's hair today. ME did great and loved all of the attention. Thanks Aunt Leslyn for making me look so beautiful!!! We love you!!!

Great Grandma ...

Our last day in the states, we spent in Sapulpa visiting Great Grandma, Dimple Anguish-Barbara's mother. Thanks for the yummie lunch and wonderful day! We hope you are feeling great!