Sunday, December 30, 2007

My new look!!

My dear brother Tyler Patty redesigned my blog! Doesn't it look so cool!?

By the way, if you were wondering...the picture in the background (the colors), those are actually strands of colorful beads! I took that picture the other day and I really liked the colors, so I asked Tyler if he could fix up my blog, and he did!

So, to Tyler...THANK YOU!!

If you would like to have your blog done by TJP (Tyler), click on the little icon on the side of my page that says TJP.

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Christmas in The States!

This year my whole family flew to the states for Christmas. We haven't been back here for Christmas in 13 years! I was just a baby last time we were here!

We've had an amazing time in these past couple weeks. Here are som
e highlights of our time here!

Of course, being with my grandparents (and uncle Mike!) is the main highlight of this trip!
Picking out a Christmas tree!

Putting Christmas lights up outside with Uncle Mike!

Having my special day with Michelle! Can you see I got my ears pierced???!!

Here's some more pictures!

Getting a hot chocolate at Starbucks! I'm not a big fan of coffee... :o)
Christmas finally came!

Look at our beautiful Christmas tree!
Opening presents!

Here's all of us eating a scrumptious Christmas dinner...well, actually, lunch!

So, the conclusion is...we've had an AWESOME time here!

Monday, December 3, 2007


I'm in eighth grade as most of you know, and I go to czech school. But there is one thing I don't get out of school here, and that is ENGLISH WRITING!!

So last year my mom decided to enroll me in a online writing class. We always get a lesson, a theme on which to write about and then we get it corrected. On most of the assignments we get three revisions and then after the third revision, the teacher grades it. So I thought I'd show you one of my favorite papers I've written!

This is one I wrote last year - enjoy!

My giraffe, Susie Rose, and I are the best of friends. I found her when the local zoo in Rindapple flooded and needed temporary homes for their animals. I rushed over as soon as I heard about the offer, because I knew I wanted the giraffe. Sure enough, they handed her over to me and said they would come for her in about two weeks, after they repaired the zoo.

Throughout the two weeks I became more and more attached to the giraffe. I begged my parents to buy it from the zoo, and finally, they agreed. The zoo sold it to us and I named her Susie Rose.

People say I’m weird to have a giraffe for a pet. They argue that giraffes should stay in the wild. I can prove them wrong. It is very useful to have a giraffe for a pet!

Susie Rose helps me all the time with my chores. Since she measures nearly four meters tall, she helps me put away dishes on the highest shelves, change the light bulbs in our hallways, dust the surfaces of my dad’s tall bookshelves and even clean the gutters out.

If they still don’t believe me, I tell them all the ways she helps me in everyday life. For example, the other day, I went over to my friend’s house who lives across the creek. I had just come from school, so still had nice clothes on. Luckily, I took Susie Rose with me. As I came to the edge of the creek, I noticed that if I crossed it, I would get my nice clothes wet. Susie Rose had no problem with this. She stepped forward, leaned down so I could climb onto her back, and lumbered across the creek with me riding on her. My clothes stayed perfectly dry!

Last summer, I went with Susie Rose to pick cherries at my grandpa’s farm. He told me that the best cherries always grow at the tops of the trees. I wondered how I could climb to the top to get those cherries without falling out of the tree. With Susie Rose’s help, the task turned out “easy as pie”. We picked twelve full buckets of luscious, ruby red cherries and baked twenty pies for the annual fair in my grandpa’s town. If I didn’t have Susie Rose with me, I could never have brought any pies at all! Those townspeople were sure glad for my pet giraffe.

Going to the store with Susie Rose also makes life easier for my mom and me. Not only can she carry us to the store, thus saving gas money, but she can boost my mom up to the highest shelves to reach the products placed there. If I get lost in the store, I climb up onto Susie Rose’s head and call out to my mom. She sees me immediately and comes to my rescue. People sometimes give me strange looks when I am up on my giraffe’s head, but that doesn’t matter because I never have to worry about getting lost!

People question my parents and me about the health and nutrition needs of Susie Rose. Not to worry. My dad read that giraffe’s prefer to eat leaves from the acacia tree. Believe it or not, we already had a grove of acacia trees growing on our property! Susie Rose enjoys strolling through the grove and eating leaves from those trees every day. She also likes to eat herbs, shrubbery, buds and leaves of other trees, so she gets plenty to eat. By following my dad’s carefully planned diagram for her eating schedule, she keeps our yard trimmed and looking neat throughout the year.

Having Susie Rose for a pet has truly made my life happier and easier. I think more people should consider having giraffes as pets!


Saturday, December 1, 2007


This year, as always we spent Thanksgiving with our "extended" family of Josiah Venture.

On Thursday, we all gathered around for some Turkey and pumpkin pie (of course there was more food too!). We had a great time spending time together, and thanking the Lord for all the good things he's given us.

On the last night of conference we had our annual JVK (JV Kid) talent show! This year, I thought the talents were exceptionally good. Every JVK had a unique talent to share like playing the piano, singing, karate, dancing, comedy acts and much more! I played a piano duet with my mom that we had been practicing for over three weeks - it was great to finally perform it. If anyone was wondering, the people in the picture are Corey and Lindee Anderson.

After the talent show on Saturday, we had what we call "Midnight Movie Night"! We call it that because we start a movie at around ten thirty and it usually goes to around midnight. We split into our groups (Journey with Zeteo, Akiko with Frogs, Ducks with Beauties) and we watch our own movie. This year our group watched Shrek 3! We all piled our blankets and pillows together, to form what we call "Cozy Hoff". It's Akiko's (my group) special tradition for movie night. We all find our spot in the pile and that's where we stay for the movie. It's so fun!!

Although it was sad when the conference ended on Sunday, I felt really filled up and satisfied! I'm so glad I get to be a part of this!

This is my cousin Becca and I, with a gingerbre
ad house she decorated herself! They are also JV and I love spending that time with them!

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow!

Hurray! It finally snowed here in our little town!

On Thursday morning, I woke up, looked outside my window a
nd found eight inches of sparkling white snow! I couldn't believe my eyes. I have been waiting for snow for quite some time now, so I am glad it came.
Today we have about ten inches of snow surrounding us. I don't think it'll go anywhere soon - the temperature is in the high twenty's Fahrenheit! (-2 or 3 C)

Here's what the Winter Wonderland looks like!

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

My 13th Birthday!!

Yesterday was a really special day! It was my 13th birthday, spent with four of my closest friends.

My mom, Becca McMartin, Grace Pitcher, Lucy Till and I, shopped in a small mall in Ostrava from 3 to 6pm. We were only in like four stores the whole time! Isn't that crazy?!

The most fun shop that we spent time in was a jewelry/accessories shop that was so so cool, fun, and colorful! I loved it! Any girl who likes accessories would L-O-V-E this store. We spent a while in there looking for a particular style of jewelry that I wanted - some of those long big round beaded necklaces.

The rest of the time I tried on clothes and the girls would tell me what I should try on and what would look good with it or if it looked good on me. They were great at that! If they liked something they would say either: "Oh Claire that is totally you!!" or "That looks GREAT on you!" It was really fun to have them there only shopping for ME!

Turning 13 and all, I was looking for a different kind of look. I like the long shirts with the empire waist, and believe it or not we found two of them at the mall.

In the end I got a bunch of clothes and accessories, just the kind I wanted! I can't wait to wear them and see what people say!

Of course there were other very cool presents too. My dad gave me a metronome and my mom gave me a cool set of hair styling tools. Tyler gave me the 6th Harry Potter book in paperback, and Caleb gave me a collection of my favorite little things like a notebook, candles and a funny picture of him!

On Saturday, the Ellenwood family came over to celebrate my birthday with me early and guess what was on our satellite channel, “Jetix”? Drum roll please....HIGH SCHOOL MUSICAL 2!!! It was awesome! I loved it! It was also great to see it with the Ellenwood’s on European Satellite! I mean, Jetix IS a channel that comes from the Disney Channel but we don’t have Disney Channel here so it was cool that they showed the movie on Jetix!

Sunday, September 30, 2007

Exit 316 casting!

This Saturday we had the casting for one of the main roles in Exit 316. Because my dad works on the team, I got to watch all of the auditions, which was so, so fun!

My mom and I came about half-way through the auditions on Saturday and then all day today. We sat in the back and watched as girl after girl auditioned. It was always the same things: 1. Talk for a minute about themselves. 2. Do a monologue (one person talking) specially written for the auditions. 3. Talk to one of the guys (an actor in Exit 316), who helped us get to know them better.

But even though it was all the same, each one played it differently; and that's what made it fun. Some people wore a long skirt; others a hat or a scarf, but they all looked different.

Altogether there were three rounds. Each had narrowed down to a certain amount of girls and each had different tasks. About forty Christian girls tried out from all over the country, then they narrowed it down to nine.

In the end it came down to four girls and then down to one. I think they chose the right person for the role: she's a good actress, knows how to show emotion and is great with interviewing other people.

I loved being a part of this. I have never been on that side of the table - I've always been the one up front. I'm so glad I had the opportunity to experience this. I had so much fun!

This is the girl that won. The one on the left, just in case you were wondering. :o) Her name is Aneta and she's from Prague.

All in all, it was a great adventure and I can't wait for the new season of Exit 316!!!

Saturday, September 1, 2007

JV Kids camp!

On the 22nd of August, I woke up at 5 AM, got all of my stuff together and drove down to Frydlant with my family where our JVK bus was ready to be loaded. We all said our good-bye's to our parents and drove off. On the bus we had music, books, games and best of all, great friends. About 2/3 of the way in, we stopped in Ljubljana to pick up everyone from Slovenia. After around 5 more hours, we arrived at the place we were staying at 12:30 AM or so. Tired and sleepy, we all scrambled into our cabins and went to bed.

The next morning, I awoke to the sound of the breakfast bell. I got dressed and headed down to the teaching area to have a quick Bible reading with all of the other JV kids. Once that was done, we had American cereal for breakfast! I had Lucky Charms - Yummy!!

After breakfast Becca had a really cool surprise for us. Every year we get one thing to remind us of camp, kind of like a "souvenir". We all came over and Becca said that this year we were getting towels. I looked over at the dining area and spread all across the tables were colorful towels from stripy to swirly to pictures of surf boards, anything you can think of. I was so excited to pick out my own towel! I picked a green and pink one with all sorts of swirls and little pictures. I love it! These towels were given to us by various friends of JV, including my "Aunt M." and Mr. and Mrs. "AG"...THANK YOU!!

I love our group, Akiko. I loved it especially this year because we had Nate and Anna as our counselors. We also did way more things as a whole group not just Akiko boys separate and Akiko girls separate. We had Bible reading in the mornng together which was really cool because we could help each other and learn as a whole group.

This year at JV Kid's Camp we learned about prayer. I think it really helped me and I learned a lot. As always, Queen Blue (Mrs. Pitcher) taught us. One thing I really liked doing was a craft we did. We made prayer beads that remind us to pray either for a certain thing or just for anything. I made beads to remind me to pray for one girl in my class that has some problems in her life. I prayed that God would forgive her and that she would notice his presence.

I really felt God's presence at camp this year, I also really felt connected to the theme. I had never really learned about prayer so most of the things Queen Blue said were new to me. It's hard to express in words what I felt because it was just so amazing.
Also, I really enjoyed the place we stayed at this year. Right by the beach, beautiful weather and instead of tents (Thank you Becca!) we stayed in cabins.

If you look at this picture, you will see two cabins. The one to the right was ours. It's so cool to look at it now and remember all of the great times we had there.

It's so fun being a JV Kid!

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Vacation to Corsica!

I just got back from my vacation to Corsica. It was awesome! I loved it there, the beaches were beautiful and so was the scenery.

We got up at around 5 AM, met the Hash's and Ellenwood's at our Tesco and then drove all the way to Italy where we would take the ferry the next morning. Us girls slept in the cars and the guys pumped up mattresses and set them down outside by some trees close by.

Next morning we got up and headed towards the ferry. We got on it around 9 and rode on it for four hours!! I sort of liked it. We stayed in an eating area the whole time and played Zilch (a dice game) and cards. I got really sea sick though, so went on deck to get some fresh air. It looked so beautiful from there. You could see the land we just came from and watch the waves of what looked like endless blue water.

We arrived in Bastia, Corsica where we ate pizza and then carried on with our journey to the campsite we were to
stay at.

That afternoon we drove into our campsite, set up our tents and set off to look at the beach. It was really nice, the waves were really big that day so I got my pants all wet (which was actually kind of funny).

In the next few days we spent hours on the beach, swimming, talking, tanning and enjoying each others company.

After a week spent on Corsica, we packed up and took the ferry back to Italy. That night we drove to Pisa to see the Leaning Tower! It was so cool to actually get to see it!! We got some great pictures while there. Also, my mom had her birthday that day! To celebrate her, we had real italian Gelato (ice cream). It tasted so
ood and I will remember that taste for a long time.

We drove through the whole night and arrived the next morning in
Berchtesgaden, Germany. We set up in the cold morning air and ate breakfast.

Berchtesgaden is located in Germany, very close to the Eagle's Nest where Hitler had his headquarters.
As you might have guessed, we visited the Eagle's Nest next morning. We took a bus up the mountain to the parking lot, where we took an elevator up to the actual building of the Eagle's Nest. From there we hiked around on a trail that looped around the mountains. It was such a pretty trail! I could see towns in every direction and mountains higher than 1800 meters!

That day was also Noah's birthday. So after we came down the mountain we drove to an Alpine slide (summer toboggan slide). We
went on it 3 times, it was so cool; you can go so fast!

That evening, it rained hard. Our tent leaked a bit but altogether it was just that everything outside was wet. Luckily right before it rained we had gotten all of our things into dry places so nothing
important got wet. But that meant we couldn't do anything outside, which is really hard when camping!

The next day it rained even harder so we decided to leave a day early because it's not worth it to camp in the rain. But before we left we did one last thing to end vacation.

We found a big pool with lots of smaller pools, if you know what I mean, and spent four hours swimming. We had a lot of fun and I think it was a great end to vacation.

Last night we got home at around 3:30 am and went straight to bed. I loved sleeping in my own bed in a dry house again. But I won't get to for long, because tomorrow we leave on a bus at 5:30 am to JV kids camp in Croatia. So in one way, it's like I'm getting another vacation!

Please pray that it won't rain there as it has in so many other countries in Europe these past few days. We have had way too many years of rain at JV kids camp so pray that going more south will make a di
fference in the weather!

Monday, August 6, 2007

The Millers

Our good friends the Millers came over yesterday! This family used to live here in Czech but then moved back to America. When they lived here they were some of our closest friends; so it was really cool to see them again.

I had am awesome time with Emily (Miller) while they were here. We laughed, picked blackberries and her dad even made us a pie out of them! It was delicious.

We're going on Vacation soon. We're going to the island of Corsica, France. It's gonna be so fun. As usual, we're going with the Hash and Ellenwood family. We're going to drive there and take the ferry across to the island. The ferry's supposed to be four hours long! I hope I don't get sea sick! :o) I'm so excited, it will be so fun!

Monday, July 23, 2007

Tyler's Birthday

Last Friday, the 20th of July was Tyler's 17th birthday.

Tyler really wanted to go and see Harry Potter and the Order Of the Phoenix so my mom tracked down a theater in Brno playing it in English. Although it was hard to find, it was totally w
orth it; the movie was awesome! Even though I thought I wasn't really a Harry Potter fan, (Which now I sort of am!:o)) I really enjoyed the story.

For dinner we went to a Mexican restaurant in Frydek-Mistek named "La Bodega". There we gave out presents, talked and just celebrated Tyler. His main present from my dad, mom and Grandma and Bapa, was a laptop!! They really surprised him with it, he totally didn't expect it.

On the 21st, as you all kn
ow, the LAST Harry Potter book came out! So we rushed out to go see if they had it in an Ostrava book store and....they did!! My Dad and Caleb have been trading off reading it, Tyler is waiting for the American version being sent to him by my Grandma and Bapa. And me, well....I'm just now reading the second one. :o)

That's pretty much what's been happening around here, I'll keep you updated!

Monday, July 16, 2007

Work Day!

Today my whole family had a work day at our house.

Dad and Caleb chopped wood for about 3 hours, Tyler string trimmed around our yard and mowed our lawn and mom and I did a few things inside the house. Today was a really hot day so it was really hard for the boys to work outside. I was happy to work inside!!

Sunday, July 15, 2007


Last week when the boys were at camp, mom, dad and I went to Prague.

My dad had to speak at some kind of conference in Prague last Thursday so we went along with him and shopped while he was in the meeting. It was a lot of fun. We walked, talked, tried on some wacky clothes, my mom actually bought some! We also saw Shrek the third in English in the theater by the mall. I loved it!

We stayed at Hotel Krystal for two nights and then left Saturday morning.

New Blog!

Can you believe it? I started a blog! I'm just trying it out to see how I like it.