Sunday, February 5, 2012

Our story in a time line

August 14 1973 - Maddy is born in Holland and grows up there.

November 26 1977 - Tim is born in the US while his parents are on their 1st furlough; they are missionaries in Gabon, Africa. Tim grows up in the jungle in Gabon.

In Maddy's early years her grandparents visit Opa's best friend, his 2nd world war buddy, in the US every year and Maddy is intrigued by their stories about America. A seed is planted and Maddy decides that 'when she grows up' she will go to the States.

September 1983 - Tim goes to boarding school.  Down side: he is hours away from his parents. Up side: he grows up in the jungle, playing on vines, building forts in the forests, swimming in the river.  

July 1987 - Tim and his family visit Amsterdam on their way home on furlough.

September 1990  - At age 12 Tim moves to another boarding school in Cote d'Ivoire, International Christian Academy.

July 1992 - Tim and his family move back to live in North Carolina. Tim becomes a great soccer and basketball player.

September 1994 - Maddy finished college and is ready for her big departure to the States. Once in the States she feels at home right away, lives in the Boston area and packs up her car several times to drive across the country.

July 1996 - In his senior year Tim is picked to carry the Olympic torch down the main street of his city. The Olympic games are in Atlanta.

September 1996:  Tim gets a scholarship for Nyack College, New York.  

Summer 1998:  Tim travels to France with a short-term missions soccer team.  It is at this world cup, that Tim falls in love with Dutch national soccer team.  He still has his Dutch shirt and Dutch flag.

November 1998 - Maddy gets to know Jesus and will do nothing but follow her new friend and Heavenly Father.

January 1999 - Maddy sits next to this amazing girl in church and the two hit it off.  Melissa from Malvern PA is in college in MA.

May 1999 - Maddy is baptized and soon after senses that the Lord wants her to move back to Holland.  Maddy doesn't want to go 'home' at all but knows loving God means following His plan, even if it doesn't make sense.

New Years eve 1999 into 2000 - Maddy stands on top on the YWAM building in Amsterdam. She can hardly believe she starts this new millennium in Amsterdam.  

May 2000 - Tim graduates from college.

Back in Holland Maddy misses everything about the States; her friends, her flavored coffees, sun shine, snow in the winter and so much more.  Still she knows God wants her in Holland and she builds a life.  She goes back to school, starts her own production company working for National TV and enjoys spending time with her family.  In this season hardship is present but she is fighting her way up all the time.  As a result she officially changes her name into: Hope.  During this time many visits back and forth to the States take place.  She makes a point to see her friends in Boston and PA at least once a year.  Whenever she is in the States she will visit her Vineyard church in Boston and her Vineyard church in Media PA.

May 2008 - Tim moves back to Gabon to minister to the people that he loves, the Gabonese, many of the Gabonese he knew from childhood.

January 2010 - Tim meets Joe and Joy who come to help him serve in Gabon

September 2010 - Hardship in Tim's live and he moves back to the US.  

January 2011 - Tim is asked to be the executive director of E4 Project.  He will continue to live his dream and serve the Gabonese.

January 2011 - Maddy buys a cute little white house on a dike, along the canal, looking out over wonderful Dutch country side with sheep and horses.  It's her dream place and she is back to living close to mom.  It feels like a new start.

April 2011 - Maddy gets hired for a TV Programm "Destination Unknown".  A program that takes her all over the world.

September 2011   - Tim moves to Philadelphia, where Joe and Joy are.

January 2012 - "Destination Unknown" takes Maddy to New Jersey and Maddy decides to extend her stay with 2 weeks so she can see Melissa in PA. Of course she plans her trip so that she can have 2 Sundays in her church.

January 29 2012 - Maddy sits in church next to an amazing couple, Joe and Joy.  Pastor Mark hooks them up and takes every one to lunch.  They hit it off.  Also, there is this boy who is intrigued by this girl in church who he's never seen before... he doesn't get to talk to her though.

February 5 2012
11 am Maddy is back in church.  The boy is too.  They end up sitting next to one another.  Joy, from the week before, introduces her best friend Tim to Maddy.  They talk, and they don't stop even as the service begins.
1 pm The pastor sees a single boy and a single girl chat and thinks it's great to take people out to lunch, AGAIN!
3 pm Tim's intrigued, Maddy is intrigued but the lunch has come to an end, they each go their separate ways.
5 pm Maddy has Melissa's birthday party to go to / Tim has plans for Super Bowl Sunday.
7 pm  Melissa's birthday party comes to an early end since Melissa is given a surprise get away by her husband.  Maddy e-mails Joy that she doesn't want to spend her last night in the States on Super Bowl Sunday alone.  Can she crash her party?  Joy's plans had also changed, there was no party but she was at home and YES I should come, and Tim was there too.
11 pm Super Bowl Sunday comes to an end.  Tim and Maddy leave at the same time ;-)
In the parking lot Tim makes his move for he realizes this girl is getting on the plane tomorrow, it's now or never.  They hang out in a Diner till way in the morning.
The day we met, Maddy at Melissa's birthday party.
February 7 - Maddy gets home and receives an e-mail from Tim, he thinks that skype would be a great way to connect. And 30 minutes after walking in the door Maddy and Tim are on skype... and every day after that.  Longgggg skypes take place, their longest being 13 hours!

Looking back Maddy and Tim feel skype is the best way to date because there are no distractions of going to the movies where you don't talk, or hanging out with friends where you do not really have one on one time.  This to them was the best way. They had long and deep conversations from the get go.

March - On his way home from Gabon Tim visits Maddy in Holland for 6 days. Since Maddy is in Bolivia herself, it is her mom who picks Tim up from the train station. 

The longest stretch of not seeing one another follows... 7 weeks.

April  - Maddy visits Tim in the States for 3 weeks.

May 5  - Tim proposes.

July 7 - Engagement party in Holland.

July - Maddy finishes up her work in Holland, packs up her life and gets ready for departure...

July 27 - Maddy arrives in the States...

October 6 - Although the plan was to get married in Holland, they end up marrying in the States. Mom, oma, best friend and bridesmaid Cindy and marriage counselor Elizabeth fly over from Holland.