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Moving Home: Why I Loved Intermissionary

I doubt anyone noticed, but I’ve been majorly MIA for TWO whole months! Consistency on the blog during summer is a challenge because my routine is all over the place. Last summer I took an unintended blog hiatus for two months (although I wrote about culture shock and re-entry afterwards), and the same thing happened this summer. Even though I only spent one week at Intermissionary Chamonix, I’ve gotta tell you about it. Partly because I participated in the very...

Choosing a New City: Things to Consider; Provocative Joy; Moving Home Series

Moving Home: Choosing a New City

I am thinking about home all the time these days! If you’re new here, you should know that I’ve been living on a ship for the past 3 years. Yes, a real ship with portholes, toilets that make loud sucking noises, and watertight sliding doors (like in Titanic). Three years and this season is coming to an end. Even though I only have two months left, I’ve done barely anything productive to prepare. I’ve spent a lot of time on...

3 Role Models To Inspire My Career

#LoveBlog2017 Here’s my second contribution to this month-long blog challenge. If you already subscribe to the Provocative Joy newsletter, you know what I’m introducing! If you haven’t subscribed to my monthly update, you can find the sign-up box at the end of this post (it even counts as an entry in the giveaway). It’s where I get a little more personal, share blog-news and how I’m living out what I write about. I’m linking up today (as well as this post...

My Plan After Mercy Ships? Swim Upstream

Airport life these days The man at the front of the queue went up to the airport desk clerk pointing and looking toward the end of the counter. He was describing someone –a woman, red hijab, with black polka dots. Just as the clerk hopped down to look for her, she came running around the corner with two massive suitcases on wheels. At first I thought it was the man’s wife and he had lost her, but as she rejoined her pile...

Enjoy Christmas While Flat Broke; Christmas on a budget and first Christmas home; DIY cheap gifts

I’m Trying to Enjoy Christmas (While Flat Broke)

Pull out the maletas. draft a packing list… we’ll be home for Christmas! The Figueroa’s will enjoy Christmas at home! A bold prayer I’ve been trying to claim for the past 12 months is finally being realized. I’ve missed two Christmases with my sisters and family and I wanted to be home this time and enjoy Christmas with them. In October when we were deciding, we didn’t have very much money in the bank and it seemed foolish to consider flights...

Inspiration at work on the Africa Mercy, Mercy Ships

Inspiration at Work in the Africa Mercy Community

working with real people Some people are never happy. They are always looking for the next “big thing”. The next job or house will make them feel like they’ve made it. Or they’re constantly hiding. They are always trying to cover up their mistakes, defend their actions and poor decisions even when they know where the fault lies. Some people are so insecure that they can’t bear to own it because it would leave them too exposed. We all know...

Building Community Guest Blog Finding Joy

Building Community Through Blogging

What’s the most appealing part about blogging aside from the actual writing? The community! As a member of a unique community on board the Africa Mercy, I think it’s awesome to find community across the oceans revolving around something I enjoy doing. The appeal is in meeting other bloggers and sharing with them, learning from them, and walking the journey together. If I wanted to write without interacting with others, I’d have a journal, not a blog. Although, I’ve got stacks of...

Nurses left unfulfilled in their job can ask these questions to sort themselves out.

For Nurses Who Crave A Challenge: Part Two

  Need something different? Last week I opened up and revealed what lots of people talk about behind closed doors with friends they trust. It doesn’t have to be a secret. There’s nothing wrong with confessing, “I looked forward to this job, this time, this place, but I just don’t love it. In fact, I don’t know if I can keep doing this.” I’m sure people all over the world anticipate the start of something that’s supposed to be really...

Nurses left unfulfilled in their job can ask these questions to sort themselves out.

For Nurses Craving A Challenge: Part One

Nursing is your calling but you followed it to the Africa Mercy only to meet disappointment. This isn’t everyone, but I’ve heard it enough to know I’m not the only one. “Nursing on the Africa Mercy isn’t challenging enough. I want to use my brain more!” If you’ve never said or felt that, you don’t need to keep reading. I don’t want my experience to taint yours. However, if you don’t feel challenged or fulfilled here, you have company. I’ve been...

Ivanna Figueroa |Provocative Joy | How to create a culture of generosity, sharing economy, the value of sharing with friends | Andre Primus TEDx Flour City Flower City RocShare

Sharing: How to Cultivate a Culture of Generosity

The sharing economy A friend of mine, Gigi, commented a few nights ago and it got me thinking a lot about how I found myself in a sharing economy accidentally. I shared my chocolates from my Christmas package with her. She said it made her feel so good that people were always sharing things with her on the ship. It felt different here than it did at home. I didn’t think much of her comment because I felt the same way. When people offer...