Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Fun Times

This past Saturday, our staff all got together and went to a local paint-balling course and spent all afternoon getting covered in bruises, paint, dirt, and sweat.

Friendly competition arose between the teams as each tried to 'kill' the other first whether that meant crawling through underground tunnels or sharpshooting from the wooden fort on one side of the course.

It was a great day of fun, relaxation, and laughter!

Monday, June 28, 2010

Saying Goodbye

Last week, my brother Derek left South Africa for the States. He's lived and served here for almost a year and while sometimes it was difficult to work so closely with my little brother, I secretly loved having a part of my family with me.

When I drove him to the airport, I couldn't cry. I've said goodbye to so many people over the years so many times that I feel like I've built up a solid wall of protection against feeling too much when I give that final hug at the gate.

But all week I've felt sad and somehow lonely.

I miss you little, big brother.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Being Vulnerable

I was reading my friend Jen's blog and her post today inspired me. I realized that it had been a long time since I had been open and honest on my blog which is odd because usually if I'm vulnerable anywhere it's through my writing. So here goes.

Emotionally, I've been in a funk for the past few weeks. With the DTS ending and life changing once again, I've struggled to find my rhythm in my daily routine, my relationship with God, and my level of homesickness. I've felt out of place and it's been uncomfortable. I'm someone who likes to know exactly where I'm at and to have a plan and a purpose and this feeling of drifting is difficult.

Lately, I wake up and feel sad for no reason at all and I don't think I realized it until I just typed those words. I'm sad and I don't know why.

I know I sound depressed, but don't leave thinking life is horrible for me right now. It's really not! I know God has something for me in this stage and I need to press into Him and find out what it is.

Vulnerable enough for you?

Monday, June 21, 2010

World Cup: Italy vs New Zealand

Yesterday, my friend Hayley and I went to the Mbombela Stadium in Nelspruit and watched New Zealand vs Italy play in the World Cup. It was an amazing experience! The crowds were crazy and the constant sound of the vuvuzelas were deafening. I'm so glad I went though I felt like I spent most of my time watching the crowd then paying attention to the game which tied 1-1.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Happy Father's Day!

Dear Dad,

Whenever someone asks the question 'who is your hero?' my first response has always been you. You're my hero. You've never failed me or let me down and it's not because you pretend to be perfect, but just the opposite. You've shown me what it is to be human and make mistakes. You've taught me by example to always get back up again and keep fighting even when life leaves you bleeding and broken on the ground.

You never chose the easier road and you always try to make the right decisions and encourage me to do the same. You've never been afraid of telling me the truth when I needed to hear it or supporting me through the consequences of my bad decisions.

Thank you for being such a good example of God the Father and showing me unconditional love. Thank you for encouraging me to take risks and go on adventures. I never could have done it without knowing you and Mom would always be there if I failed. Thank you for being the kind of Father I can be proud to claim.


I love and miss you beyond all reason. Happy Father's Day!

Your Daughter,


Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Autumn in Africa

My favorite time of the year has always been Fall. I love the sunny days, cool breezes, and chilly nights. Reds, yellows, oranges, browns, and greens, pumpkin spice lattes, Thanksgiving, and football games.

Though technically there isn't really an Autumn here in Africa just Summer and Winter, it feels like Fall. The leaves are falling from the trees and the nights are getting downright cold. I love it!

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Brittany's Special Coffee

When I first moved to South Africa, I was sadly disappointed to find out that iced coffee as we know it in the States doesn't really exist in my new home. I ADORE strong, cold coffee, even when it's chilly outside and prefer it to hot coffee 9 times out of ten. So imagine my surprise when I order an iced coffee from a local cafe and am given a lightly flavored coffee milkshake. Here iced coffee=milkshake. Ugh.

But really, how hard can it be? They have all the ingredients. So one day I went to my favorite cafe [Zannas] and explained how I wanted my coffee. Ignoring their shock and disgust, I assured them that yes, I was serious.

So this is what I told them . . . .

Take two shots of espresso and pour it over ice . . .

then bring me water and milk on the side . . .

and I'll take care of the rest . . .

. . . and presto! I have my perfect Iced Americano. It was over a year ago I gave those fateful instructions and now all my friends go in to order 'Brittany's Special Coffee' [I just say my special coffee]. There have been variations, such as people adding vanilla, but I remain true to the original.

You're Welcome!

Monday, June 7, 2010

DTS Slideshow '10

I created this slideshow for the students Graduation Night. So much fun!

DTS Slideshow '10 from Brittany Deniston on Vimeo.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

The End

Last night, our DTS graduated with lots of laughter and tears. It was a great night of testimonies, thank yous, worship, and a slideshow.


Today, we've been taking our former students to the airport or to catch a shuttle and it's all very surreal, but I'm so proud of them and how they relentlessly pursued God.

Friday, June 4, 2010

DTS Debrief

This past week has been so much fun! The DTS arrived home from their outreach on Sunday and Monday we all left for a week up to a local Retreat Center. It was a blast resting together, hearing outreach stories, and eating great food.

Here are some random photos from the week . . .

Tomorrow night is their Graduation and I'm having a hard time believing it's almost over. It's been a crazy last six months and I'm going to miss them all so much!