Friday, January 11, 2019

Photo Friday: New Year

Brian was on call over the Christmas/New Years break, and so we didn't get to take a longer vacation.  We did make the 2-1/2 hour drive (under current road conditions) to Goroka for the day last week.  The kids made it about two hours before we broke out the Plants Vs. Zombies on the phone.

Our trip took a bad turn right away when we stopped at a store to do a bit of shopping before we hit the restaurant/pool (the main attraction).  A bag was stolen out of our truck while we were inside.  Nothing of great monetary value was lost, but what we did lose were a few of the kids' pool toys, including Kate's flotation vest.  So that was a major bummer.

Still, a restaurant lunch was a nice treat.  And they made grilled cheese especially for us, even though it wasn't on the menu.

She was so excited to try out the swimsuit she got for her birthday.

The shallow end of the pool wasn't shallow enough for two of our kiddos.  No pool toys = lots of clinging to mom and dad.

I'm looking forward to school starting up again next week.  (The kids have had a five-week break).  Our time off from the normal routine has been pretty low key.

Butterfly wing found in the back yard.

 When mom mops the floor...

 A pair of dad's old socks were sacrificed to make a new stuffed animal for the kids to fight over.  Right now he's on a rotating custody schedule.

Thanks for stopping by!

Friday, December 28, 2018

Photo Friday: Wrapping up December

For our last blog post of 2018, here's looking back on December:

 Christmas baking...

 Singing along to Christmas music all day long

A few more ducklings - because they are kind of addicting.  These three went to show-and-tell in the third grade classroom and were a big hit.

 One weekend we rented the cherry picker and did some major trimming on the huge tree in our front yard.  The view from the front of our house has improved dramatically!

Greg had a role in the community Christmas play.

And of course, Christmas:

Greg really wanted this kapul skin that he saw at market.  I'm still not sure what he plans to do with it, but as you can see, he was very excited about it!

 A new princess dress.

Brian got a new floor lamp from me because our broken one really annoys him.

Lord of the Rings swords!

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to all of you!

Friday, November 30, 2018

Photo Friday : A birthday and a Jesus film dedication

Just yesterday I (Susan) traveled to Gulf Province (a first for me!)

It's a totally different landscape than the highlands.  It's mostly flat - a land of many, many rivers all making their way to the Gulf of Papua.

I was there to film the dedication of the Jesus film in the Mouwase language, and so we landed at the airstrip in Kikori, which is inland up one of those rivers from the Gulf.

The dedication was put together rather last-minute and so not everyone knew about it.  Here translator Robbie Petterson borrows the loudspeaker from the police vehicle to make an announcement inviting people to join us.

We got to cruise up and down the river in this boat while we waited for the dedication ceremony to start.  It's a much easier and faster way to get around than walking.

The river, though quite wide, was very shallow.  This was due in part to unusually dry weather, but we were also told that the major earthquakes that happened in the Highlands this past February caused huge amounts of silt to wash down these rivers, and that for a time the people were not able to eat fish out of these rivers for fear of getting sick.  (The fishing is OK now.)

I was only there for the day, and so I didn't get to see them show the whole Jesus film in Mouwase (which they did after dark last night) but here is the crowd watching the opening scenes of the video on Robbie's laptop.

Apparently around 500 people showed up to watch the film after dark last night!

The other big event this last part of the month was Kate's birthday!



 Testing out her new "Belle" dress to see how twirly it is.

Friday, November 16, 2018

Photo Friday: "Halloween", Carnival and the Beach

Hmm... this post is going to seem like all we do is have fun around here. 
We do still work.  I promise.

Halloween is not a holiday here, but the kids still got to dress up.  Our last-minute costumes (like, literally, less than an hour before we had to leave the house!) were a ballerina, some kind of warrior dog, and a pirate.

Several families and individuals volunteered to put on a trunk-or-treat type event with games and candies for the kids.

An Ukarumpa tradition which happens every year around the end of October is Carnival, which is part fundraiser for the High School and part raising funds for a charity.  Kids really look forward to this every year.

bouncy castle!

Mini golf


And rides.

This guy always goes a little above and beyond in his bidding at the charity auction.  This year we came away with a huge bag of laundry soap, a bunch of coffee, and some gift certificates to a home goods store.  We were outbid on the new wheelbarrow, which I'm still a bit sad about.

Not only did he paint Kate's nails (and do a pretty good job of it!), but he also allowed me to escape to the beach for a few days this week with some girlfriends, even though he had a very busy week of meetings and work.

 One of my friends was celebrating a milestone birthday, and so five of us ladies went down to a beach resort near Madang for two nights.  (One that happens to offer a missionary discount, which helps!)

 I'm always an early riser, but I was thankful I didn't miss this sunrise!

The snorkeling is pretty good here.

The past few weeks have held a lot of fun, but now we're back to work with a vengeance.  Brian and some other CAM guys are working weekends to help replace some cross arms on power poles, and I've got some photo and video work waiting for me this weekend. 

Friday, October 26, 2018

Photo Friday: October Highlights

How can it be the end of October already?!!

This was our month of ducklings.  We ended up with just six out of twelve eggs hatching.

The first week or so, when they were adorable fuzz balls, the kids had a lot of fun playing with them.

 Now at just over three weeks old, they're already getting pretty big.  They are also a lot messier, and I am having to clean their pen every day, so I'm looking forward to moving them on to new homes soon.  The plan was to wait until they were about a month old and we could make a good guess as to the sex.  We wanted to keep one female.  The other five will to move along elsewhere.  (Duckling anyone?  They'll be the perfect size for Christmas dinner come December!)

Another big event this month was Sports Day at the kids' school.  My boys are really into running, so they were really looking forward to it.

I have no idea where their athleticism came from, but they both did well.  We also had our share of ... ahem ... learning opportunities.  You know, how to lose well, etc...  Still working on that.

 One of Brian's co-workers left this lovely decoration for Brian in his office before he left on furlough.  Kate was delighted, of course.

This week we roasted marshmallows indoors.  The store had marshmallows in stock, but it had been rainy in the evenings, so...

Speaking of rain, I'm really excited about this:

Cement culverts were put in the drainage ditch that runs along the uphill side of our yard.  During heavy rains, that ditch would often overflow and the water would run straight across the yard to our basement.  I can hardly wait for a downpour now to see how well the new culverts do at diverting the water away from my house!

 Just playing games on dad's Kindle.

And last but not least, some dance moves from the Sprinklesaurus: