Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Our weekend at Rift Valley Academy

We got to spend the whole weekend at our old high school in Kijabe, Kenya. Not only did we get to see a bunch of old friends and staff members, we spent lots of quality time with my little brother Stan who is in ninth grade there. Isaac and Evan enjoyed playing with their Uncle Stan and it was so good for me to see what an amazing young man Stan is growing up to be! As you can see in the pictures, Eli got to play some rugby on the familiar "upper field".

Monday, October 22, 2007

Sudan to Kenya by air

On our flight from Sudan to Kenya, our friendly pilot invited Eli and the boys to come "help" fly the plane. As you can imagine both Isaac and Evan loved it. The pilot gave Eli his first flying lesson and let him control the plane for about 20 minutes. Yikes!

Friday, October 19, 2007

Our home in Yabus, Sudan

Our compound consists of:
a brand new secondary school
4 missionary homes
student dorms and staff housing
a community eating area
several kitchen huts
outdoor shower and outdoor toilet

Our house (until we build our own)

Instead of a tent or hut like we initially expected to live in, our house is made of brick and cement with a tin roof. The tin roof is nice for catching clean rain water.
The house has three rooms: one all purpose room where we have our table and chairs, our solar freezer, and a huge shelving unit Eli built for storage, one is our bedroom, and one is the kids' room.

Eli and Bethany's bedroom

Eli built our bed the day after we arrived in Yabus!

Isaac and Evan sleep in special mosquito net tents so we don't have to worry about critters sleeping with them

The kitchen

Our kitchen is in a separate mud hut. Our colleagues brought in a nice propane stove/oven and Eli installed a real sink and built a nice counter top.

Our shower

Our vegetable garden

We've got tomatoes, green beans, lima beans, 2 types of squash, pumpkin, watermelon, carrots, cucumbers, spinach, and broccolli. There's nothing like eating fresh produce from your own garden!

Family highlights

No two days are the same. But hopefully these photos will paint you a picture of our daily lives. Isaac and Evan play non stop all day and love Sudan. Every evening after dinner we spend a few hours together as a family as we wind down for bed. We've also set aside Saturdays as our day off and usually try to do something fun as a family. Some of our fun family outings: playing in the sand at the river, hiking up a huge rock, or walking to town for local donuts.

The boys help with the dishes


Dinner time


Fun family outings: hiking and trips to the river

Eli on the job

Marco and one of our raincatching contraptions

Our backup boat: an inflatable boat

The Buldit church building (one of the new church plants)

Our boat for crossing the river

Eli skins a snake for a souvenir

Let us introduce you to some of our friends

We are so thankful for all the special people God has brought into our lives in Yabus. These are a few people who have become like family to us.

Some of our young friends: Tsiyon and Benjamin

Bethany and some of her friends

Radiya: our nanny who helps watch the boys

Daniel - our night watchman with Evan

Yuna - Yabus compound manager kills a cobra

Thursday, October 18, 2007

In Memory

On October 14th, Eli's grandfather, PapPap, went home to be with the Lord. We will miss his ability to make everybody laugh and the welcoming arms he always extended to us. Although we will not go home for the funeral, we will see him again later in a much better place.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Wizard of OZ

Though we don't have hurricanes in Yabus, we got as close to one as we have ever seen. September, October and November are the rainy months here in Yabus and have caused no end to the joy in drinking fresh rain water and no end to the frustration as the paths turn to frothing mud. Yesterday began as any regular day but around three in the afternoon the wind really started to pick up and we soon were running around our home bringing everything away from the windows. The rain was coming down and blowing side ways into our home. The kids loved watching us rearrange the house and mop up the puddles that threatened our solitary line of possessions.
What we did not know, nor could hear above the noise of the rain on a tin roof, was that our colleague was reenacting the opening storm scene from Wizard of Oz. Nate Kidder, fellow Moody Alumnus, has been living in a sturdy canvas tent which soon found itself imitating a kite. Nate was sitting on his bed when the entire tent lifted and twisted forty degrees. Unhurt but surprised at the force of the wind, Nate soon evacuated the tent and relocated after the rain. Many of the students Nate teaches came to his aid and we had fun literally unbending the poles that hold his tent upright. We found a better location for Nate that hopefully will be better protection from the wind and even better protection from the sun in the summer.
Many of you might remember that we were debating whether to live in a tent or a hut when we first arrived. God has seen fit to provide us with a wonderful brick home which stood solidly during the storm. We are thankful for our home especially on a day like this.