Tim's blog

Being an Immigrant . . . As Written by Sarah

Posted by Tim on 20 September 2008 - 11:57am

Living in another country is full of adventures- some more pleasant than others. Dealing with immigration is one of those many adventures, which I had the pleasure of dealing with recently. ;) Coming into the country in March was no problem and we all received our G.N.I.B cards (like a green card) on our first attempt.

At that time I was given a “stamp 3” on my passport, which stated that I was not allowed to go to school or get a job here. I hadn’t foreseen this problem, so I asked the immigration officer what to do if I wanted to go to school here. He went to ask someone and came back with a list of things I needed to do in order to change my status.

  • I needed to: be accepted at a school here,
  • open an Irish bank account with 1,000 euro, and
  • leave and reenter the country.

He assured me that if I brought the proper paperwork with me when I left the country that the customs officer at the airport would take care of it. By the end of May I had decided to go to the Irish Bible Institute (IBI), so I started working on getting everything I needed to change my immigration status.

In August, I happily took a trip to London with the family, which doubled as the fulfillment to the requirement. Back at the Dublin airport I explained my situation to the customs officer, who promptly told me that all such issues were dealt with at the Guarda station in town (which is where we were in March getting our G.N.I.B. cards). So this wasn’t going to be as simple as I thought! I shrugged and went back to the Guarda station to see what they said this time.

After a short wait in the queue, I was matter-of-factly informed that I needed another reference letter stating that I’d paid my tuition at IBI and that I hadn’t needed to leave the country at all! Once again, I set out to fulfill their requirements. It really all does depend on who you talk to, so I was a bit fearful that I would be told something different upon my return to the Guarda station.

It’s interesting and, I must admit, a bit humbling to be an immigrant at the mercy of whichever immigration officer I happen to be assigned to. However, I know that in reality, my true citizenship is in heaven and that my Father is One in control! With this in mind, I went back to the very familiar guarda station to try my “luck” again. After waiting for about 4 ½ hours, it was my turn to speak to the immigration officer. She examined my papers and began looking very carefully at every page of my passport! “Have you left the country since March, “ she asked, “I can’t find a stamp.” I explained what I’d been told at the airport (and did my best to hide my irritation =), but she told me that she had to refuse my request. She then said something about talking to her supervisor and disappeared for a while.

When she came back, she seemed to have forgotten what she’d said because she looked at my papers again, scanned my fingerprints, and issued me my new card! The very next morning I legally went into orientation at the Irish Bible Institute!! As much fun as this whole adventure was, I’m very glad not to have to go back to the guarda station again…until next year. =) No worries though, because the Lord already has that sorted too…


Tullagh & Sugarloaf Mountain

Posted by Tim on 5 September 2008 - 8:02am

Today's blog is going to be mostly pictures! On Tuesday a precious couple from our church took us on a climb up Sugar Loaf Mountain, only a few miles from our house. It was incredible. God cleared out the rain just in time to allow us to make the climb.

On Wednesday the Guide Dog Association of Ireland "delivered" our new baby Golden Retriever Tullagh (the 'gh' is silent in Irish). Enjoy the pictures of our new 'opportunity to meet neighbors'!


Sarah holding Tullagh as he drifts off to doggy dreamland!

Tullagh on blanket










Can't beat a good ole doggie blanket, Where's mom by-the-way?


Tullagh in the back garden










Where did that crawly thing go . . . I know it was here a second ago?

View from Sugar Loaf

The view to the NE from Sugar Loaf Mtn - Brilliant!

Beginning the climb











Kathy, Sarah with Sam and Vreni entering the climbing area


Sarah on the way up











Sarah on her way up the 'easy' part!


Half Way Up











We're a little more than half way up at this point!


KD and Sarah at the Top

Kathy and Sarah in CELEBRATION MODE at the very top!

Baby Jones Pictures!

Posted by Tim on 9 July 2008 - 2:56am

    OK, I now have a few pictures to post of the new arrival.  You will note that Daddy Mark is a bit less than at his peak alertness on one or two - hard to understand, afterall he had 2 hours of sleep over the past 40 hours - what's the big deal. . . .

Andrea & Baby Kate

Way to go Andrea . . .


Mark, Andrea and baby Kate

Mark, Baby Kate and Andrea in the hospital ward - Dublin

'Grandpa Tim' and Kate

 They even let 'Grandpa' Tim hold baby Kate!

Mark & Kate

 Daddy and Daughter!


7 July - She's Here!

Posted by Tim on 7 July 2008 - 1:27am

6 July - 11:25 PM - Andrea Jones calls to say 'I think it's time, you better come now'! So it looks like baby Jones is now (see previous 2 blogs) committed to emerging from the womb!

11:32 PM - Kathy, Sarah and I jump in the car heading to North Dublin.

11:59 PM - We pull in to the 'Street where they live' park the car and head for their front door. Mark and Andrea are both standing outside, so we know this is serious! The taxi was called a few minutes earlier with the message "get here, my wife is in labor'!! Now that strikes fear into the heart of any cab driver!

7 July - 12:10 AM - The taxi arrives and a minute later Mark, Andrea and ?? are loaded up and heading to the Rotunda Materity Hospital, not far away.

12:23 AM - Mark sends a text - they are at the hospital and waiting for Andrea to be checked. All looks good. . .

5:30 AM - Katherine (Kate) Lily Jones emerges and orders breakfast! Wieghing in at 6 pounds 14.5 ozs, all is a 'normal' birth with no complications. Andrea is one tough Mamma - no tearing and no epadural. What a huge praise. And, speaking of praises - Mark says that Kate looks just like Andrea! Wheew . . . that was close!

We are not sure when eveyone will be home at this point, but I wouldn't be surprised if it is later today, stay tuned for pictures, fireworks, chocolate cigars and singing!

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