but, in a nutshell, everything in the past few weeks has been, in one word: challenging.
i have really had to lean on the Lord - even more than i expected - pray tons, admit failure, just get over it, and constantly count my blessings! which of course there are tons. but things are definitely challenging. it's just hard learning a new culture, having everything take forever, etc. but more than that, i have had to lay down my pride of just knowing how to do things well. everything seems to work differently here, mainly in setting up life. one example of this was getting cell phones ("mobiles"): we got to the store at 9:30 am when it opened, and we left at 3:30, with no phones in hand, and only one phone line for me set up (jordan was denied as well as Lori and other members of our team for reasons we still don't understand). of course we were incredibly frustrated but just decided we'd figure it out. thankfully, sweet shamsia, this lovely indian girl, kept working on it for us and now jordan and i BOTH have phones!! and they are smart phones! weirdly it was cheaper to get a smart phone on a business plan than it would have been to get regular phones on a residential plan. i'll take it!! :)
some other praises are: we came here with full one-time support! God totally provided for us in ways we definitely didn't expect. and we have an apartment!! we got it 4 days after arrival. it's a one bedroom in brunswick west. it needed some serious cleaning and love but now it looks awful cute and we even have pink carpet! haha. that was definitely a selling point for jordan. other praises - i understand the tram/train/bus system!! not perfectly but we can usually get from point a to point b with minimal stress and sometimes fun. :) other ones - we got to go to the beach and a cricket game this weekend! Nexus - a conference for all the Aussie staff - was super refreshing and was a great time for us to connect with the Lord.
there are definitely more - like a supportive, wonderful team and great weather - i could mention but i should go for now. more updates soon!! thanks for all the comments and messages you guys have left. it makes the world feel smaller.