Friday, December 30, 2005

Holiday Bowl

Sometimes I hate computers. I just wrote out this long sappy post but now that I clicked the wrong thing and it is all gone I am not really in the sappy mood any more. Basically I was saying OU won the hoiday bowl last night. Yeah!!! And there was this moment when I looked around and saw my family around me and everyone was happy. I said it much more elequently before but the moment is gone so this will have to do.
We had a great Christmas around here. Now we are all looking forward to New Year's. No big plans. Probably just games, food and fun. That's the Crosser tradition.

Friday, December 23, 2005

First day in Tulsa

So yesterday was our first full day in America. I woke up at 7:45 and was so excited that I couldn't go back to sleep. It was so strange to wake up and realize that we were really here! Matt got up soon after and we finished unpacking and organizing. I took a shower and called my mom and sister. My poor mom is sick! She doesn't feel very good but is trying her hardest to keep up with us because she wants to be doing what we are doing. I hope she is better soon! My mom came and got me from Greg's (where we are staying) and we went by her old house to pick up a few things that I needed. Then she took me to her new apartament. It is so cute! She has done a very good job decorating it! It is country with red and cream. I love it! She seems so happy there so that is good. Then my sister came by and we went to lunch, Taco Bueno and brought the food back to Greg's. A little while later Mary took me to Dad's so I could get the Suburban. Dad is so nice to let us use it when we are here. Back to Greg's and then it was dinner time. Matt wanted Golden Corral so off we went. After dinner I went to Wal-Mart. Let me just tell you there were a lot of options on the tooth paste isle! I am so not used to that! After about 10 minutes I picked a toothpaste and finished my shopping. After Wal-Mart I went to my friend Erin's house to see her for bit. I didn't get to stay long though because we were approaching 12 and I was fading fast.
Bet you always wondered what how a missionary might spend their first day in America huh? Well, there you go. My first day anyway.

Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Michael Buble

Ok, so last night was the Michael Buble concert. Can I just say I loved it!!! He is so cool! I love his music and his voice...he is awesome!! At the end of the concert in the encore he was singing the last line of the last song and all the instuments stopped, he stepped out in front of the microphone and sang the last line loud and beautiful. The whole place was quiet and you could hear him singing, just his voice...the man is good!! I loved it. He was a good entertainer too. He knew how to involve the crowd and make it fun. In the moments that he would talk between songs he could be a little edgy but his voice....the singing....would be hard to outdo. I think the only one I know of that could be better is Harry. I mean Buble is good but I would suspect that non can beat Harry.
At any rate me Matt and Josh had a great time. If you like Jazz or Swing as Michael Buble called it I would highly recomend attending a concert!!! It's a day later and I am still humming the songs. Good times!!

Saturday, November 26, 2005

Christmas Tree

Ok, so thanksgiving is over. We had a great one too! Lots of food, lots of phone calls, lots of FUN!!! Yesterday was a crazy busy day, as all Fridays are. But we made it through all of our English appointments and a coffee house. I was tired by the end of the day!
Today is Christmas tree day. We are going to decorate the house today. The Roterts and Josh are still here so we will have plenty of help. the only bad part is that we have to take it all down before we leave in December. But it will be worth it to have it up.
Matty leaves today so that is kind of sad. But we have all had a really good time together.
27 days until we are going to T town!

Monday, November 21, 2005

Busy Day

So today has been a BUSY day! But a fun day too. I got up this morning and apparently got bit by the cleaning bug. I cleaned the bathrooms and I mean really good. Trust me they needed it. I also cleaned almost all the windows in the house. This is a big task requiring the ladder and patience. I am not a good window washer so they don't get cleaned often and that means when I do it (about twice a year) it is a big job. But I got it done and they look great I might add!
Then Matt and I went out and did all the shopping for Thanksgiving. Everything is bought! That means tomorrow I can start cooking!! Fun!!! We went out to one of the big stores so I could load up and when we were leaving the store I realized I hadn't gotten everything for dinner. But we had to be at the train station soon to pick up Brian and Josh so we had to go.
We got to the train station at just the right time. Picked up the guys and went home. Unloaded the car and chatted for awhile. Then the guys left to go to the airport and I went back to the grocery store to finish my shopping. The boys went to pick up Matt Hodges. He is here for thanksgiving! It is always fun to have visitors!!
This evening we had a big mexican dinner together and the guys just headed back to Perugia for a few days. It was a really good day!
30 days until we will be in Tulsa!!!!

Saturday, November 19, 2005

Italian Burger King

A pic from our concert trip to Bologna to see Coldplay.
 Posted by Picasa

Hold your lighters, I mean cell phones high!!

Here are the glowing cell phones.... you can see the blue tints throughout the audience. Posted by Picasa

Coldplay Concert in Bologna

So, last week during our, Angie and my, trip to Perugia to see the Roterts and Josh I drove with Brian and Josh to see Coldplay in concert in Bologna (about two and a half hours away). It was great, on the way up we stopped at a Burger King, which is a rare find in Italy for dinner. We got to the venue about ten minutes before it started, we got our tickets at will call and made it inside just as the concert was starting. The concert was really good, however, I realized how long it had been since I had been to a concert like that when I saw everyone on the floor holding glowing cell phones up in the air instead of lighters. Then again, maybe that's just Italy. Posted by Picasa

Friday, November 18, 2005

Thanksgiving is Coming

Thanks to those of you who prayed for my uncle. He is doing much better now. He had the surgery and was even moved from ICU yesterday. Huge steps in the right direction. I am so thankful!!
We had a great time in Perugia, as always. I even got some Christmas shopping done. I have an one on-line order to place and I will be almost done. I started really early this year because I want to have all my shopping done when we go to the states. Except for what I get Matt. I will buy his stuff in America.
I am so in the holdiay spirit. This week is all Thanksgiving plans. Matt is going to order the turkey today. I am going to clean the house and start working on pie crusts, bread and things like that that I can make ahead. The Roterts, Josh and Matt Hodges will be here in Ancona on Wednesday. I love it!!! This is so my favorite time of year!!!!

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

Uncle Jim

We are in Perugia! Yea!!! It is always so fun to come and visit the Rotert's and Josh. And it came at just the right time. I found our yesterday that my uncle Jim fell at home and broke his hip. I think shattered it is more the right word. He is in the hospital waiting to have surgery and have a full hip replacement. But he had a stroke a few years ago and is on blood thinners. So the doctors can't do the surgery until his blood is thicker. Sounds icky! Your prayers are appreciated!!!!

Friday, November 11, 2005

Catch up November

So I wish that I had more fun things to say but this week has been pretty boring. We have gotten a lot of work done but not really any fun stories to tell. We have been calling November our catch up month. We are catching up and working ahead. It actually feels pretty good to be crossing things of our to do list that have been there for a long time.
We are going on a home service soon and will be in the states from the end of December to the end of June. We are really looking forward to being home for Christmas. I can't wait to see my nieces and nephews. I haven't seen any of them in two years!!! I know they have all changed so much and I miss them!!!
Besides that we have been making Thanksgiving plans. Looks like the team (minus the Casey's and Marcus) will be in Ancona for Thanksgiving. Harold and Enid Fowler are coming also so we will have a full house. Good times!

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

The Case of the Missing Wallet

So yesterday it was about lunch time and I decided that I wanted to go down to this little shop by my house that sells fresh pasta. They make it frest every morning. I am so loving their handmade ravioli!!! So I get dressed and find my purse but I decide to check and make sure I have some cash before I leave because the pasta store doesn't take credit cards. So I reach for my wallet and panic sets in......IT'S NOT THERE!!!!!! I dump my purse wallet... I look in my coat wallet. I start tracing my steps and get Matt involved in the search but we couldn't find it anywhere.
You know that panic feeling you have when your wallet is missing??? You start thinking about having to call the bank and get new bank cards, drivers licences and all those other priceless items you have in there that will be a HUGE pain to replace. Gulp!
I was pretty sure that the last place I had it was at the grocery store. So we went down there to see if I had left it. I walked in and the checker looked up at me and said "Oh your here! We found your wallet!" Ahhhh, I can breathe again. She called the manager who went and got it from the back somewhere and brought it to me. We decided to do some shopping since we were there and as we shopped every employee we saw asked me if I had gotten my wallet. Even the butcher asked me! Apparently, I was the talk of the store!
This is one of the pay offs to living in Italy. I go to the same small grocery store about every other day. The same people have been working there since we moved to Ancona 4 years ago. You start to get to know each other. Boy was I glad they knew me!!!!

Ahhh, don't they look beautiful? And they tasted great. We got the recipe from If you are interested you can get it at

Almost done...

It was definitely easier than we thought....

We decided to make funnel cakes tonight since we weren't able to go to the Tulsa State Fair this year. We have been craving them lately

Monday, November 07, 2005

Life Group on Sunday....

While the Casey's are in the states (during November), Life Group is once again meeting at our house. This Sunday, it was us, Daniel and Simona (who got married in August) and Daniel's sister-in-law, Simona, who has come a few times in the past. It went really well and was very refreshing. I love it when Life Group is like that.

Catch-up Month....

Well, since we are alone in Ancona (referring to Team members) we are taking this extra time to try and catch up on some "bonus" tasks. You know those things that always seem to have a lower priority level. On the back burner, waiting till a rainy day, etc.... I am wanting to upload all of our John curriculum to the internet for other churches to download and use. It has no words written on it, so they can be used in any language. Each has a color story card and a color sheet. I have the stories for each in Italian only, but I plan on making them in English too (eventually). There are about 23 weeks of the John curriculum and it was a huge undertaking to produce it (there are also videos for each week - in Italian, of course). We are working on the book of Judges right now and after that we will do a study on Creation and then Luke. Lots to create, but that is what God has equipped me for, so it brings me lots of joy to do it.

Thursday, November 03, 2005

Casey Good-bye

We just said good-bye to the Casey's. Sniff..Sniff The upside is that they will only be gone for about a month. It is going to be a wierd month though. Matt and I will be the only team members in Ancona! This will by far be the longest amount of time that we will have been alone here. Thank the Lord we have three wonderful team mates in Perugia!!! And that God is growing relationships with our Italian friends.
There is so much going on this month so I know it will go by fast. We have English every Friday, Life Group on Sundays, Perugia visit about mid month when the guys are going to see Cold Play in concet, Thanksgiving, a coffee house and a Micheal Bouble concert! Don't start to think we are big concert goers. These are the only two concerts we have gone to in I don't even know how long but it just so happens they fall in the same month. Not that there is anything wrong with that! Going to concerts more often I mean. I enjoy going to concerts we just don't take the time to go.
At any rate, I am sure we will keep ourselves busy with all there is to do but today I am a little bit sad to say good-bye to my friends.

Monday, October 31, 2005


Happy Halloween! I have always loved Halloween. I know some people think it is a bad holiday to celebrate but growing up it was a huge holiday in my family. My dad's business made it a big holiday. I remember changing my mind a thousand times on what I was going to dress up as for Halloween. I think I was just about everything at some time or stuff. As I got older Halloween started to mean pitching in at dad's store. It was always fun to work because the whole family was there together working and some of the same employes come back each year to work just at Halloween. Now that we are in Italy and Halloween isn't celebrated as much here we don't really do that much. I am sure we will watch Charlie Brown and the Great Pumpkin, a Halloween classic, and maybe a scary movie or something. Of course, I am sporting my Old Navy Halloween shirt and my candy corn earings!
On another note Brandy left Ancona today. She is on her way to Perugia to spend her last 5 days with the Roterts. Brandy was a great intern. I can't say enough good things about her. I will miss you Brandy!!!

Thursday, October 27, 2005

Finished, stronger and better than new!

Reinforcing the bottom....

Here I am in the middle of it.

The Couch "In the beginning"

The Couch

We noticed last week that one side of our couch was making lots of creeking sounds when you sat one it. One day I had to take the cover off so I could wash it and when I did you could see that the arm of the couch was seperating from the rest of the couch! Not a good thing. We have only had this couch less than 4 years and already it is falling apart. Matt assured me he could fix it. So yesterday I was at LaVia with Brandy and we came back to my house to eat lunch. When we walked in the door there was our couch all ripped apart! The apolstery pulled back and the arm taken off with pieces of wood laying everywhere. Matt had started working on it and it was at that point where it looks really bad and in the back of my mind I am thinking 'I sure do hope he can put that back together'. But sure enough by last night he had it all put back together and stronger than ever. He is such a handy guy to have around!

Sunday, October 23, 2005

Weekend with the Roterts

The Roterts were here this weekend. They just left to catch the train. I am always a little bit sad when they leave. We had a good weekend though. Friday they didn't get here until around seven but we had taco salad for dinner and watched some TV together. Saturday was a kid's ministry activity day and we went bowling. We had a really good group turn out, about 27 people including 4 families that are not members of our church. Today was life group and McDonald's for lunch. All in all a very fun weekend! Always made more fun when our friends are visiting.
This week begins Brandy's last week here in Ancona as my intern. I am really going to miss her! Not only because of her friendship but because when she leaves I will have the whole kids English outreach all on my own. Brandy don't leave!!!!

Sunday, April 17, 2005

Sorrisi Videos!!!!

One of the things that Angie and I do each week is prepare and lead a children's church time called "smiles" which is 'sorrisi' in Italian. Each week I make a video that we show the kids to help teach them the story. Follow the link included here (click here to see the video) to see one of our past videos, which is the story of Jesus walking on the water. Or you could also right click the link above to choose to download the video. Send us an email and let us know what you think of the video.

It's been a long time..... has been a couple of months since I took the opportunity to post anything. We have been incredibly busy the past couple of months. At the beginning of March, Mary Ann & David (Angie's sister and her husband) got to visit for about a week. Then a couple of days after they left a group from Ozark Christian College arrived. The OCC group was here for about 9 days and four days after that a group from one of our team's main supporting churches sent a group over. The group was from Shively Christian Church outside of Louisville, Kentucky. They got to be here about a little over a week as well. It was great having all the visitors, now we are just trying to get back on schedule.

While the group was here from Shively the pope died. This was a major occasion that our team had been anticipating for years. We were already scheduled to be in Rome with the group on the day of the pope's funeral. We got up early and headed to the Piazza at the Basilica of Saint Peter (where the funeral was going to held). After about two hours of pushing and shoving through throngs of people we made it to an open spot with allowed us to literally walk straight ahead into the piazza. So, we were in the middle of the piazza during the pope's funeral. An amazing experience to be sure, no matter what affiliation we feel towards the Catholic Church. It is one of those days that I will remember for the rest of my life.

We returned to Ancona and about a week later the Rotert family arrived on the field to begin their next phase of ministry (language and culture learning). We excited to have them here (they are staying with us a few days before heading to Perugia where they will attend language school for several months). Soon enough they will be back in Ancona where they will join our church planting efforts. We definitely look forward to that!

Monday, March 07, 2005

Four years in Italy

Today we are celebrating four years since our arrival in the country of Italy. When I look back at all the things that has happened over the last four years I can’t help but look forward with great anticipation to seeing all the things God has planned for us, our team and the people of Italy in the next four years.

- There is a church (body of believers) that consists of more than just our team!
- Many, many relationships have been formed with unbelievers in Ancona.
- Our church celebrated it’s first baptism (last October).
- We have had the assistance of ten short term groups, with another to arrive in a couple of weeks.
- Our church started our weekly Life Group (small intimate group of believers that meets in a home).
- Our church started our weekly Celebration service (Sunday worship service).
- Our church started Project Loving Ancona (reaching out with kindness to the community).
- Our church started La Fonte (a tri-monthly special study in God’s Word)
- Our church started Altissimi (a tri-monthly worship event)
- Our church started Collegamento (a tri-monthly prayer event)
- Our church started Gruppo di Slancio (a monthly small group for unbelievers seeking the truth).
- Our church started Sorrisi (Weekly kids programming during Celebration).
- Our church started Kid’s Time (Weekly kids’ ministry during Life Group).
- We are continuing to grow our presence in the community and the city.
- Numerous foundational documents and strategies has been laid down.
- Bible study series for foundational truths has been translated, illustrated and created.
- Worship resources have been found and we are continuing to find more.
- Children’s/Youth resources have been found and we are continuing to find more.
- Plus many, many, many more details.

In May we are going to launch our celebration service to the community. We will have been having celebration for about three and a half months by then. Many details have been and will be worked out by then. We hope to put out thousands of invitations and/or mailers. We hope to have raised the funds to construct two rooms in our attic for children’s classrooms (as well as storage). We hope to have raised funds for a new kitchenette for hosting events and fellowship dinners.

Thursday, February 03, 2005

Kid's Curriculum

Here is a pic from the new John curriculum we are creating for our kids ministry. I hand drew and colored this picture.

Here is the first drawing I made for the new curriculum.

New Celebration Service

Whew...for a few months we have been busy preparing for a major new addition to our ministry, our weekly celebration service. Having celebration ready to go, meant having our kids ministry setup, planned and ready to go as well. We came up with the name "Sorrisi" which means 'smiles'. Then we took the book of John and fleshed out curriculum for several months (the rest of the church is studying it as well at the same time). We asked Marta to write the stories, Angie has been coming up with crafts and activities and I have been drawing original story pictures, videos and art for crafts. Celebration and Sorrisi started last Sunday and it went really well. We have been working this week on the next few Sorrisi kids times. I'm glad that it has gone so well and felt so normal to add this new aspect.

Mid-Winter Rally

We were low on funds but several supporters enabled us to go to the annual Mid-Winter Rally. It was in Hermeskeil, Germany (which is near Frankfurt, Germany and the country of Luxembourg). A week before we were supposed to go to the rally, our differential went out on our car and our mechanic told us that our transmission probably only had another 500 km left on it. If we took care of it then, we wouldn't have to pay for labor twice, since they already had it apart for the differential. Two of our supporting churches took care of the expenses and provided us with a very safe and secure means for travelling to Germany for the rally.

The sessions went well and the fellowship provided much encouragement. During the week were gone we were able to eat some American food! We at Chi Chi's in downtown Luxembourg, Pizza Hut also in Luxembourg and Kentucky Fried Chicken in Frankfurt, Germany. On our return trip to Italy, we saw the Frankenstein Castle near Darmstadt, Germany. Our trip took us through the following countries...Switzerland, France, Germany, Luxembourg, Austria and back in Italy. We also were able to visit a Christian bookstore in Vicenza, Italy on the way home. We purchased many books, cd's and resources to help with our new Celebration services and kids' time "Sorrisi". The trip definitely refreshed us to start our year out right.