Monday, September 27, 2010

Sometimes I want to scream, "Get a real job!!"

Today, I was having a talk with a friend on Facebook Chat. Her and her husband also graduated from ETBU and in 3 weeks are expecting their first child. I often read Kristen's blog as she expresses the joys and frustrations of pregnancy. I told her that her blog has never made me want to be pregnant and not want to be pregnant so much at the same time!! But I guess we'll wait a few more years unless the Lord has another plan..but Kristen and I got to chatting about our husband's jobs. Kristen's husband, Mark, is also a youth minister and so we instantly connected on the pros and cons of being "the youth minister's wife". So Kristen, this blog is for you...

On Sunday, at church, Ellison and I were walking down to the youth sunday school rooms when a person passed us and said, "Hello, Pastor Ellison."..."Hello, Ellison's wife."....... WHAT?

After marrying Ellison, I lost my own identity. I get "Ellison's wife, youth pastor's wife, that girl with Ellison, Mrs. Ellison, Tsang tai"..literally everything except, Brittney. Now although at times in my life I've cursed my mother and regretted having the same name as a scantly dressed teen pop-star, but I've never wanted to hear my actual name so badly in my life!!

Life in ministry is definitely difficult. I think I often don't give Ellison enough credit. The Lord has blessed him in tremendous ways and he is really great at what he does. And sometimes, if I don’t watch my attitude, I find myself saying to him, “I’ve had a hard day at work. All you did was take teenagers out for ice cream and plan a lesson.”

I saw a chapter in a book once that read...

As youth pastor's wives we often think.. "My spouse gets to go to amusement parks and take kids out for pizza during his workday, while I’m lucky if I get to eat a granola bar at my desk in between phone calls, e-mails, and my boss’s increasingly idiotic requests upon my time. I don’t see how I can even pretend that his job is harder."

Yes, but I guess he's not really going to an amusement park for his amusement. He’s balancing 25 permission slips, trying to keep PDA to a minimum, making sure no one gets kidnapped, trying to figure out what to do with a kid who just puked on a roller coaster, and trialing phone calls from parents whose children aren’t answering their cell phones.

Oh, and two kids forgot towels and will have to ride on the bus home for 2 hours in smelly clothes, and that kid with ADHD drank five energy drinks on a dare, and the “it couple” in youth group broke up at the amusement park so the whole youth group is taking sides, and the kids are complaining that the PG movie playing on the bus is for babies, and the bus driver is warning your spouse that if anyone else spills on the bus he is leaving the entire youth group in a ditch and driving away. And parents are calling because the youth group is running thirty minutes late thanks to the ADHD kid; one parent is charging your spouse for their child’s canceled piano lesson and complaining to the board of elders that the youth pastor doesn’t keep his promises.

When it's put that way, I see that being a youth pastor is exciting at times, but it's not always fun and games. I'm finding there are many ups and downs to being a minister's wife and I'm surviving..possibly even thriving. And although I don't always have the energy of a 12 year old, at the end of the day I still count my blessings and am truly thankful for a man who is working hard for the glory of His kingdom and I'm happy to join with him in that purpose.

More Lovin' from My Oven

I really love to bake, however here lately I've run out of reasons to make things. It's dangerous to just make things for the fun of it because we'll just sit around and eat them all ourselves and for the simple fact that my Nana told me "You're going to be waddling..." But here are a few things I have baked over the past month...

Maltesers Cupcakes (British version of Whoppers)

My Great-Grandmother's Peanut Butter Cookies

Blueberry Cream Muffins

YUMMMMMMMMYYY!! I'm going to be baking something for a friends birthday this week as well..we'll see what I come up with.

Much Needed Update (1 of 1237 for September)

I can't believe I've become one of those people who let you wonder what's been going on for weeks...geez. I'll fill you in with a few pictures. Sorry it's been so long..

Work has been super busy, a nice change from my previous post. I've been having to work late on Tuesdays in order to organize English related learning events in the Library. This was my first event, English Board Game Night. I had 6 students and I even was able about to talk about Christ to 3 girls from the mainland. I love using my job as a ministry opportunity..

We've been super busy with the youth as well. Every Friday in September we've had an event. This past week's event was really amazing. Ellison rented an open-top double decker bus and we rode around Hong Kong going to the difficult schools of the youth on board. At each school we stopped outside to pray for this school year. It was a really amazing experience. To top the night off the driver drove us down by the harbour for an incredible night view (view picture below).

We recently were hit by a typhoon, although it wasn't a direct hit we got rain and wind for days! (My kind of

Speaking of's been super hot this past month. Here's a disgusting picture of Ellison covered in sweat to prove that. He only had gone for a short walk outside.

Saw this car as we were leaving Ruby Tuesday's...I think this person likes Hello Kitty a bit too much. It's even on the license plate!!

Since I've moved back to Hong Kong I've been begging for a Christmas tree. I love Christmas time and enjoy decorating for the holiday. I had been searching on a website for a second hand on for months and finally found the perfect one!! It's 7 foot and actually from Crate and Barrel in the US. A lady was selling it here in HK and it also came with a whole HUGE box of Crate and Barrel decorations. I got the whole lot for $500HK (or $63US)!! I put the bottom part together just to get a feel of how big it would be! YAY!

A lot more things have been going on, but I'll make separate posts for them as they are definitely blog worthy! :)

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Perks of being Uni Staff

Lately, I've been day dreaming about what it would be like to be in university again. With Jud and Cassy being here, I'm often jealous of their late nights and sleeping in routines. I feel old when I want to go to bed by 10 and don't want to go out on the weekends because I FINALLY get to sleep in one day. I guess that's what they call being an adult. I'm married and have a job now, which I guess calls for higher priorities...

My job has been pretty stressful lately. My boss just keeps laying it on me and one of these days I'm going to be so overloaded I'll crack...just waiting for the day! But as stressful as my job has been lately, I do get some pretty awesome perks. Students and staff members of HKBU get discounts at Festival Walk (the mall located closest to campus.) We not only get discounts at most stores but also at some restaurants near by as well. I also get full access to the library and gym here on campus. Working accross the street from Ellison, we get to come to work together every morning and have lunch together most days as well. Seeing him at times through the day really helps when things get chaotic. But one of the greatest perks of all came to us the other day..

We've been needing a new computer. We have a desktop, which is in the office, which is serving as a storage room right now. But even if it was plugged's all in German. I can't even begin to change the German windows because I can't read enough German to even know where to CLICK! Then there's Ellison's laptop, or lack there died on us about 3 months ago. Oh, and then there's my laptop. I bought it about 4 or 5 years ago and recently had to delete everything and restore the computer back to factory settings. It's still decent, but needs a lot of work. It doesn't even have Microsoft Office anymore. So Ellison has been using the church's laptop for studies and work, but it's about time we give that one back. We talked about getting a Macbook because it would allow Ellison to design things for his ministry with ease. Neither of us know much about using a Mac, but we checked into it. We looked at them in some of the electronic stores around Hong Kong and then checked out the Apple store online. We finally decided to get a Macbook Pro and found out that even STAFF MEMBERS qualify for the Education discount. So not only did we get the computer for a couple hundred (US) dollars cheaper, Apple is having a back to school promo and we got a free Ipod touch. On top of that, we also got a free printer/copier/scanner. And we were able to get incredibly great deals on the Iworks software and Microsoft Office with the discount as well. Altogether we saved about $600US on our new computer and components! Pretty sweet perks I think...

Thanks Apple for great service and awesome promotions and Thank you HKBU for giving me a staff card.