We Survived!!

Ringing in 2009 with Travis and little baby Ava!

I have to apologize for the delay in getting this recap posted.  If you really want to know what my deal is, I've just been so tired for the last 24 hours that even blogging has felt like a chore!  I am happy to report that NYE '08 was another great year and a big hit!!  We are so thankful for the way the Lord worked out so many details and for the students that he brought us.  There were snags along the way and unexpected glitches, but nothing that was a huge problem or a deal-breaker!  We haven't heard the final numbers yet, because frankly, as soon as the kids are gone and the clean-up is over, the staff is OUT OF THERE and no one wants to think about anything for several days!!  However, the rough estimate I got was somewhere around 480 kids... YAY!!  

I also want to thank you for praying for Jason and Greta and their new little girl, Julia Grace!  She was born on New Year's Eve around 2:30pm.  :)  Just in time for a 2008 tax deduction and for her daddy to make a quick appearance at midnight!  She was born perfect and healthy and Greta told me this was her easiest delivery yet!  I'm just sure it was because of all the people praying about this baby's arrival.  We are thrilled for them and looking forward to paying them a visit on Sunday.  Tonight is their first night home, so I'm praying for a smooth transition with 3 little ones to take care of now!!  Little Julia will always be celebrating her birthday now, along with hundreds of teenagers every year :)  That's what happens when your Dad is a youth Pastor!  

Travy also did a great job speaking at midnight and giving the Gospel to the kids.  I'm hoping to have a video soon that I can post for you, something that will go on youtube, but I do want to thank you for praying for us, specifically for him.  He made it all 12 hours, despite a cold, and we have had a really great couple of days to just relax and recover.  I'll be able to give you some better "stats" after they get back in the office next week and after we get to hear some feed-back.  I feel like we have literally withdrawn from the world for the last 2 days because we have been operating from a coma-like state!  I ended up being there from 4-8:30pm, and then from 10:00-3:00am.  I went home for a little break in between and to let the dog out :)  I was able to fall asleep around 4:00am until Travis got home around 8:30am.  We both went back to bed and I slept until 11:30am and Travis until 2:00pm.  Seriously, we were barely functioning yesterday!  You would have laughed if you could have seen us!!  On the bright side, I woke up just in time to see the 4th quarter of the Outback bowl, where my beloved Iowa Hawkeyes EMBARRASSED South Carolina with a big win!  That was a very pleasant way to start my 2009 off :)  I've been reading lots of great reflective posts from all of you, but honestly I think I need a few more days before I can post anything of any substance!  We are very grateful for the success of this event and for the many blessings we have ahead of us in 2009.  I hope your year is off to a great start so far!  Happy 2009~!!

The balloons falling from the ceiling, kind of a fun thing for the kids and the source of chaos once they hit the ground :) 

We feed the ball-drop in live from Times' Square for the kids to watch at midnight.  I got this picture with 2 seconds to go until 2009!  Then I had to find Travis and plant a kiss on him!

This is like our 3rd year in a row, standing in almost the same spot, ringing in a new year, surrounded by teenagers!  A super fun way to celebrate, even if we are exhausted  :) 

This picture makes me laugh because it was one of the first times I've ever had to deal with Travis and bad hair!  Just minutes before he was supposed to speak, he found me and had kind of a panicked look on his face...he had been in the bathroom for the last several minutes, trying to tame a major hair issue and he COULD NOT make it work!!  I took one look at him and started giggling...I also tried to "fix" it and it soon became apparent that it just wasn't meant to be!  I found this so funny because I am married to the man with "perfect hair."  He NEVER has a bad hair day, that's always seems to be my unfortunate fate.  However, he had been wearing a hat all day, so it was beyond repair.  We didn't have much time to do anything about it, so he just had to make the best of it!  Not what you want to think about before you stand in front of 600 people :)  It turned out fine, he was far enough away that you couldn't tell that much, but as soon as he was done, that hat went right back on for the rest of the night!!  

Doing crowd breakers with the junior high while we waited for registration to end and everyone to trickle in.  

Some of the registration madness that began as soon as we opened the doors!  I was very glad to not be a part of this team this year :)  I was in charge of snacks for all the that's a job right up my alley!  At any point in the evening, you could find me with something in my mouth and something else in my hand.  I had a pretty great gig going :)  Don't tell anyone, they might not let me get away with that next year!!


AmandaHoyt said...

Looks like it was a big success! So glad to hear! Happy 2009.
Hugs and prayers,

Adventures of Laura said...

Just wanted to let you know how much I enjoy your blog. We are expecting our first baby on March 25 so you and I are pretty close in our pregnancies. I've been following your blog since last fall but I figured it's high time I said hello. Glad the New Years Eve party was a success and I wish you a very happy 2009!

Jay & Leta Palmer said...

Cool party Steph! And Go Hawks!!!! :)

petrii said...

YAY Stephanie!!! I'm so glad things went well. I've been checking back to get the update. God is so good!! I prayed that Travis' cold would hold off and he'd be able to speak with that hindrance. (Cold's are major bummers when you have to speak.)

And how cute are you? I love, LOve, LOVE the hat and scarf!! You and Travis are sooooooo cute!!!

Have a Blessed and fun weekend,

petrii said...

oops that was suppose to say "without" that hindrance. Oh boy what can I say, didn't proof =)

Faith said...

Praise the Lord! Sounds like it was a huge success...I was praying for you guys so I'm glad to hear the update!

MissHeather said...

That's alot of teenagers!!! That's awesome!!! Happy New Year!!! This year will be amazing .. I just know it :)

Take Care.. and look for me around Grace tomorrow... I'll be there...


miss shortcake said...

That looks like fun! Happy New Year!

Rebecca Jo said...

So excited to hear how it went! I've been thinking so much about it. I knew you two would be WORN OUT! So glad the cold didnt keep your hubby down!! And glad to hear Julia Grace made it safely in the world! What a fun birthday she'll have for years to come celebrating with the teens!!!

Now, we'll pray what the kids heard will sink in their heart & carry them through the year!

Aspiemom said...

Wow, you had a great turnout and it sounds like things were great! (Teens wear me out - and I just have one!)

You look so cute pregnant!

amy said...

steph... you look GREAT! what an amazing event... i can't believe you stayed so long!!! just think, next year ava can enjoy it with you guys! i've loved reading all your updates... so glad all is going well! we're praying for the three of you! love you!