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Friday, March 30, 2007

A Little Crazy but We're Surviving!

Will Daddy recognize his Caleb and Evie when he gets back??? ... Jonathan is still in Siar land, so I haven't talked to him in 5 days. I know that's not long for some people, but we definately miss him! We are all doing well though, praying for Daddy every chance we get! He is scheduled to come home in about a week, so we appreciate your prayers for a safe return. We'll celebrate Easter without him, but we'll still be with friends so I'm thankful for that! Thank you to everyone praying for us while he is on this building trip!

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Ready to Go!

On February 7th we got on this little plane to head out for our bush orientation. We flew to Kandrian first and stayed for two nights then went on to Gergering. We really enjoyed our time in the bush making friends with new brothers and sisters in Christ, studying pigin on a new level, and helping our kids adjust to bush life! Enjoy all the new pictures of our adventures in Gergering!

NTM Guesthouse in Kandrian

Jonathan, Zoe and Caleb enjoyed some snorkeling while we stayed 2 nights in Kandrian.

Boatride from Kandrian

We had a two hour boat ride from Kandrian to Sara (where we would start to hike) Zoe got sick, but the seas were relatively calm.

We had to wade through water up to my chest to get to shore! (can you see the boat out there?)

Our four hour hike into Gergering

We began our hike with excitement, but starting out wet with salt water above the waist, and the jungle heat, it certainly took its toll on us!
We all shared coconuts to get re-hydrated!

Thankfully we had carriers for all of our cargo and the kids! OK, we're wimps!

Our Time in Gergering

The women thought it was great that I carried this basket back on my head after working in the garden with them! (or I should say tried to carry it!)

My new friend Kaipuna taught me how to "grease a coconut".

Muddy Swim!

Searching for something different to entertain the kids... Jonathan was led by the village kids to this swimming hole. They loved it!

Building a House Cook

One thing the believers in this village have started doing together is "work projects" (as we would call them in America.) When someone needs a new house cook everyone works together gathering the bamboo from the jungle, making the walls and the roof, and the wives cook a meal for all the workers. I think they built three while we were there so Jonathan got to help out too!

Fun Kid Pictures...

A Bit of Construction...

Jonathan did some work on the house we were living in. It is basically built out of bush poles and plywood. Some of the wood was rotting so he replaced those boards and screens so we would have less mosquitos in the house!

Garden time

I (Melissa) was able to go to the garden with a few women. This time was with Kaipuna and Kordea. We hiked up a small mountian and took a rest in this little hut, then continued to pick greens, kaukau and tapiok. The picture on top is the two of them making baskets out of a coconut tree leaf to carry our produce home. These two women have gone out as missionaries themselves into neighboring villages, so it was encouraging to talk to them!

Tribal Church Potluck

The people welcomed us into Gergering with 8 nights straight of "potlucks" in the village. They all looked something like this with a bunch of saucepans full of sweet potato, taro and tapiok with greens cooked in coconut milk. This is something new the church has started since they are growing in the Lord. They have taken hospitality and recognizing that we are one body in Christ very practically!

Bush Life...

This would be a papaya and Olivia wanting to be held!

Zoe helping do laundry in the twin tub washer!

Zoe's Pet Bat!

Some of the village kids brought this bat for our kids. Zoe loved carrying it around, scaring Eve, and trying to feed it some banana. It was a baby and probably needed milk so we only kept it a couple days!