Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Summer Update....

It has been way too long since we updated this blog. Our life has been busy as usual and between travelling and computer and Internet problems, I have not had time to post anything. So this will probably be a really long post.

Early June, we were in Muapula again for another STS training. This one was for a group of Bible students, studying in Maputo. They were in Muapula doing practical training and we held an STS training for them. It went really well. Our family also enjoyed a week on the farm there. We churned butter, helped tag and vaccinate all 183 sheep, we watched them slaughter and butcher a couple sheep, Jurnee fell in love with a 1 day old calf and spent her days at his side. It was really a nice week.

Then we had to make a trip to Malawi to add pages to my passport and do a few things at the embassy in Lilongwe. We also took a few days and relaxed in Zomba. It has been so busy around here, we needed to get away for a few days. The kids rode horses and we took some walks and toured the dam on top of the mountain. It was really nice to just be away with just our family.

Then the end of June, we went back to Malawi and picked up Tim's brother, and sister-in-law, and their 3 kids. It is our first family visit besides our parents, so we were so excited to spend some time with them. We visited a couple of game parks in Malawi and then returned to Lichinga, where we took them to church, did a couple village visits, went down to the lake, where they got a great African driving experience. We got stuck twice. The villagers had to literally pick up our car and move it to get us out. It took about 10 of them, but they did it. We have really enjoyed showing them our life here. Grant, their youngest, and Traeger are just 3 days apart and they celebrated their birthdays together. They are great buddies and Traeger is loving having his cousin here.

Tim will leave on Saturday to take them back to Malawi. We then have one week left until our Spiritual Life Conference. I am planning this conference again, and I have been shopping, planning, cooking and organizing this conference for 50 people. It is a lot of work, because we have it down at the lake and there is no electricity, only charcoal to cook on, everyone has to camp. We have to prepare for everyone to have filtered water and bring down everything including tents, bedding, dishes, cooking pots, utensils, food, etc... It is quite a task. Please pray that is goes well and all the details fall into place.

In August, Tim is teaching at the YWAM discipleship school. He is teaching on missions. Please pray that he will have time to study and prepare and that the week of teaching goes well. We have one couple we are mentoring and doing marriage counseling with, that are attending the school. They are doing great and really enjoying it. We are excited about what difference this can make in their spiritual lives as well as their marriage. They have had no Bible training previously and are leading a small church in Lumbiza. Pray for them and that God really works in their lives through this and they come out with a stronger marriage.

Tim also will be doing another marriage/parenting seminar in a village with the local Uniao Batista Church the middle of August. Please pray that this also will be a success and that the people's hearts will be open to hearing God's plan for marriage and families.

Then in September, we will be having the Yao conference. Plans seem to be moving along for that and we have had a couple days of meetings and prayer and we have had great attendance. Just please continue to pray that people will attend and that the details will come together and that it will be great tool for connecting the Yao believers and strengthening their faith.

One of the small groups during STS training in Muapula
Jurnee's favorite little friend. She has learned the word cow now and every animal she sees is "cow".

We would often find the girls at 6am in the sheep pen chasing around the baby sheep and holding them.

Kallen and her favorite.
 Karis and her favorite.
  We found this chameleon and notice his markings now. He is very agitated as Traeger is holding him.

This is the same chameleon after we put him back, completely comfortable now and completely green. They really are an amazing creature. Proof of an amazing Creator!
Zomba mountain.
Horse back riding on the mountain.
Thanks to Tim's parents we were able to spend a couple days with his brother and family at a safari lodge in Malawi. It was an incredible place. To get to it, we had to cross this rope bridge and then they picked us up in safari vehicles to take us to the lodge.

 Kallen and Karis' room.
Our view from the veranda.

Kallen says to me as we are getting ready for dinner. Mom there is an elephant at our room. I said, sure, okay(she often makes things up). She said. really there is an elephant, come and see. Sure enough, right outside their bedroom was this elephant chowing on the bushes. And the rooms don't are completely open to the outside. There is no windows or walls--just open to the river.
We could watch the hippos from our veranda.

 Our bathroom.
 Nyala antelope
All the kids at Mkulumadzi lodge.
 Jurnee's favorite toy, a giant millipede.
 Jurnee enjoying bath time.
 Another elephant we saw on our game drive.
 A beautiful African evening.
Enjoying the pool looking over the river.

It was our first time seeing a savannah monitor lizard. He was huge.
 A herd of elephant crossing the road right in front of us.
Also our first time seeing a python.
 Traeger and Grant celebrating their 9th birthdays together.
 They just have so much fun together.
Enjoying the lake.
All the cousins, Megan, Jurnee, Grant, Traeger, Leah, Kallen, and Karis.