Thursday, November 29, 2007

just so you don't forget what we look like as a family

it seems we don't get a whole lot of family shots these days and our good friends the gadberries took this photo just before we left the it's a little old...but it's a good memory!

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

scorpion #2

this one was pretty long...pretty flat...pretty still...but Greg managed to save the day once again! but it is ME who is taking the picture...i was only a foot away...i am getting more brave too !!!!

3 happy kids

yeah! we received 2 packages on the same day! just look at how happy they are to see what grandma and grandpa packed inside! thank you to grandma and didn't take so long and everything was inside...we think? dustin and andrea...thank you also for your packages...they will be put to good use! this is exciting for us as we hear many horror stories of packages never coming or things missing or lost for 7 we praise God that He helped these smiles arrive safely!

our new kitty!

oh what a cute kitty! this was a stray kitty that we cleaned up pretty good and then she ran away. maybe because she didn't like being strangled by hazel? who knows...but then as all hope was lost and paul was convinced that we would go through 5 kitties before one would stay with us...she came back home! she had been in a fight we can see...but we were all so excited to see her come in the yard. so...keep reading! cuz the same day she came back...

here's our puppy...

i think his name today was charlie? or fetch? the kids couldn't decide yet. but this little puppy was given to us by our neighbors. what a cutie! we couldn't resist. and he seems to be so fat yet that he can't walk...or maybe it's just that he is 6 weeks old and a little unstable. anyway, the kids are loving this little guy. he seems calm and really already potty trained! he whines to go outside to do his bigger duty anyway. so our family grows....

hazel and her puppy

she is such a mother to the animals...they let her do whatever she wants with them :D

Saturday, November 24, 2007

this keeps getting better!

we have been on google earth here for a bit and have discovered that you can see actual pictures of places. people have downloaded their pictures to see from ground level what you are looking at. so now...if you are serious about coming...or you just love looking around the can go look at Gili Air-Lombok, Indonesia (we have walked right there)...and on the island of Lombok there is a sweet volcano that you can look into and then also see the 3-D shot of it. i don't know if you will be as excited as we are right now, but just thought it would give you more visuals cuz we can't download pictures at the moment...again!

this is what you have all been waiting for!

you could google earth us! yeah!
here are our directions.
school. 7*19'57.52" S and 110*29'20.61"E
our house is close by.
7*19'57.10 S and 110*29'05.08 E

(the little *'s are really degree marks...)
let us know if it worked for you!
and let us know when you are coming to visit :D

Thursday, November 22, 2007


i am thankful
-for little people in my life that make me laugh so hard that it hurts
-that i sit here and type with a very full stomach
-for turkey, homemade cranberry sauce, real mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes, fruit salad, fresh veggie salad, pies, pies and homemade peanut butter cups! top it all off with caramel apple cider and we have a great reason to be thankful for our forefathers!
-for my husband who keeps us here in indonesia with all the paper work he has to do (and i don't)
-for tile floors, cuz they let the skitters ride in the house with a nice rhythm
-for guys who work on our house with the most simple tools ever made.
-for a safe home
-for a husband who is willing to go after and KILL the scorpions, spiders, cockroaches, ants, flies, mosquitoes, termites, and anything else that we keep finding in our house
-for feels us from hanging on so tight to lies and deception
-for and old...i have been greatly blessed
-for's nice to have a great support network
-paul, who can tell a story so anyone would listen
-hazel, who hugs me so tight...i don't want to let go
-gavin, who's mind is so creative and's fun to watch
-for a God who puts me struggle with things i wouldn't struggle with, if i weren't here
-for a God who sees me just as i He likes me! even when i forget so much.
-for cell phones, and internet and calls from home (i just got a call from my mom- 'happy thanksgiving mom!')
-and i am so very thankful that we have been provided for in so many ways. i never wonder if we are going to eat, or how will we sleep, or what will we's all taken care of!
thank God for what He has done in your life today...let me know some too! it's so good to hear what He is doing in your lives...

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

we had a day off today from school

what did we do? many things.
1. didn't sleep in cuz our children do not understand "days off" yet
2. found that we had many emails to catch up on and that was fun!
3. organized and put things away as we have more places to put things now...we are so american in that we have "more" than what we need at the present moment 'stored' in our house. we also had one of paul's friends over to play. his friend, Niko, thought Hazel screams too loud.
4. after we picked gavin up from school, he and i went with my new dutch friend to the market. gavin found a prized item. fly paper. you lay it down (we have seen it all over) and the flies just attach themselves to it and you don't have to go around swatting at them...which we are all getting really good at here :D i saw hazel get one with her hand today! (yes...we washed her hands) so anyway we bought 4 packages...3 papers per package. for 20 cents a package. we open it up right when we get home cuz we are soooo extremely excited to see how this works...we wait for an flies...we have had constant flies, name it...flying around inside our house for weeks...and now today there are none? hmmm?
5. so we leave again to go to the dr. cuz gavin has his 3rd ear infection. this was an event i will remember! no one spoke english in the waiting room. it was apparent that we arrived just after nap time. for everyone. i was thinking "this is going to be great to hear indonesian words from an indonesian i know ANY medical terms? i don't even know the word for EAR!" so we sat there and i was practicing in my head as gavin whined about not wanting to do this whole dr. thing. could we leave now? no...they called us in. so we began the visit and dr. here use the same instruments on everyone...i didn't know how to ask if they were clean! something i have been told from other moms..."make sure you ask for a NEW needle...and watch them open the package" ---so i am looking around the room and thinking it's not going to be bad. gavin is thinking otherwise. i get out in my best indonesian our situation and she takes a look in his ears. ear is very sick she says. and to make a long story short, she had a tube that sucked out all the green stuff in his ear. he loved that. we went home with medicine and we have to go back on monday. the whole thing cost $17...including the meds.
6. we get home and the sticky fly paper has been turned over on the floor somehow. (kitty? hazel? paul? or greg? i pull it off with great distress. it really sticks flies. but the glue is on the floor. while i go get a paper towel and fingernail polish remover...the cat runs into it and is now all over her feet. gavin comes and does the same. i tried to get the glue off the floor but it ended up all over me??? now i am even sticking to this computer! all of this...and still not one single dead fly! we paid way too much for this stuff!
7. you ask what did greg do today? he did his best to understand finances on this end. it's difficult for everyone on our team...not just the artists :D. he and paul went to one of our indonesian teacher's house. and his brother is an artist...a very good one...we hope to buy some of his stuff??? he came home and took paul and hazel to a soccer game that he is now playing in. we are waiting for them.
8. ok...i just remembered something from the REAL SIMPLE magazine. corn oil, olive oil, any of those oils will take the sticky stuff off your item that you bought and tried to pull off the sticker price tag....but it just wouldn't go. so i thought...yeah...same stuff...and i just tried it and it worked...our feet...our hands and our floors are free from stick...and are now extra slick from the oil! :D we should have a great night!

Monday, November 19, 2007

pauls letter to mom and dad on friday nov. 16, 2007

mom and dad,
i love you, but i don't want you to spank. when are we going to go into everybody's houses in the whole wide world? how do you talk in english and how do you say "this is our house- like Paul and Gavin's and Hazel's and Greg's and Marfa's house." let's never lose the Batman costume or the superman one. i don't like Indonesia, and sometimes we make a mess. By tomorrow, i want to see grandma and grandpa.

it's been so long

we have a lot of life that has passed over the days that have gone by. our internet has been down. we were barely able to receive emails. and we had to wait days for our emails to be sent. we had the internet guys in our home several times and they finally decided they would put our tower a little higher to reach above the trees instead of going through we have internet again! yeayheeehahhh!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! we very much appreciate technology but we do not know what to do when we don't have it.

today greg and i had our evaluasi untuk unit satu...evaluation for unit one for all you english speakers :D and we passed!!!! we get to go on to unit 2! another reason to celebrate! man? what am i doing sitting at the computer when we have all these things to be celebrating???!!! :D we are amazed at our level of understanding and ability to talk already. after sitting in class all day i can close my book and say "what did i learn?" and think nothing soaked in...but as the days go on i's working! kind of like the tide at the know it moves...but you just can't see it making progress...we have much more hope today than we did earlier...we have come over a big hump in the culture shock.

gavin now says "i sometimes want to go back home." this is improvement over him saying "i don't want to be here...i just want to go back." he has been invited to many friends houses and he is getting a "california boy" reputation at school with his faux hawk and his leaf green converse shoes.

we also adopted a new little kitty into the family. her name is orangy rose. paul is especially happy with this "model of cat" -- he says "it comes with those things that go in AND OUT (interpretation...claws) and that way it just sticks to you while you walk around." she was a stray but we have cleaned her up pretty good and she will be on the blog soon. hazel carries her around by the neck mostly and the cat just takes it. funny thing about cats here...the genetics are sort of different...they don't have tails...but ours has a half we like that!

work keeps getting done on the house little by little so we feel more settled all the time. this week they are leveling the backyard and putting in a patio area. soon we might have another place to play! i couldn't quite believe they just leveled over all the garbage in the backyard. it's like we have our own dump now. our fruit trees consist of two types of banana, papaya, orange, lemon, mango, and durian...but we are cutting down the smells bad :( blah! i guess you can acquire a taste for it...if you can get past the dirty sock smell!!!!

thursday is thanksgiving! we get to start class again on that day. and we even have class on friday...isn't that suppose to be the biggest shopping day of the year? a bunch of ladies are leaving their families behind on sat. and going to yogya to shop all day!!! and i am one of them!!! but first for celebrating thanksgiving, we will gather with our org. to dine in style with real turkeys!!! quite a treat! even homemade cranberry sauce. i am bringing carmel apple ciders...(i just buy the juice and add cinnamon right? and then to make caramel you heat sweetened condensed milk over a flame and it becomes caramel! ) and i am also in charge of chocolates...what more is there to be thankful for!!!!!!!!!

greg has started to play soccer on tuesdays with the jagas (the indonesian guards at the school) and he really likes it. he feels so tall and big going up against them. it's full on team though...they have jersy's and's good for him to get out there and learn some more indo words too...he always is yelling out his Spanish words for hurry! go! here! and all that!

we are missing friends and family. it's hard here for many reasons. we go up and down so fast emotionally. but we keep knowing why we live---for Jesus...not for me. we just have so much to learn on this side!

i have just a little encouragement for the "moms" out there. i know many who are full timers at home with their kids. i used to be that! and there were days that were sooo hard...soooo long and sooo far removed from the real world!!! i love being with my kids...but i had to grow into that. i have not been a typical mom. God taught me a lot about what it means to be a mom and how to do it and the high calling he puts on it. so i figured that i must be learning all this so that when i go to Indo i will be better equipped to REALLY stay at home with them. nope. he just needed me to know all of that so that when i now have to leave them for most of the day and gavin goes off to kinder...i can miss "staying with them" and i miss not knowing their every tear that falls...and their laughs and funny comments and the ways they are learning and discovering this new world. i miss out on the joys of life...the simple things...that only children can really show you...i know being a mom will never leave me...that i am still a mom ---just the same---only it's no matter your situation or your stage of being a "mom"...i just wanted to's the best thing ever and i love the sweetness it brings to my life. please enjoy your kids every day... God has so much to teach us through's so far removed from the real world! and to those of you who do not have kids yet...take this as encouragement for what may come. God knows just what you need, when you need it and how to get it to you. he can't be limited to the real world either!

Monday, November 5, 2007

a little embarassed

i told Paul that chrissy wanted his new hair cut posted on the blog. he said ok...but he couldn't stop being embarassed...
"is she going to see me?"
"yes paul...she and all those who want to look...will see you"
"can i see me?"


yep...this is a all know...but it's size and quickness is what is so alarming to me! these are what they call banana spiders. so far, this is the only LARGE on i have seen. but they do get bigger. i just hope those ones do not come into my house. it's i write i want to insert indonesian words...language school must be working! yeah!

this is how humid it is here. when you open a bag of M&M's...they are already slightly melted and have that shiny look. when you open a can of playdoh and drop it somewhere so your mom won't find doesn't dry stays just how it would in the can! when we put our clothes on...they are a wee bit damp...

greg and i painted a mural this weekend. love it! it's in OUR HOUSE! it's in our front "guest room" which is a place that you always have clean and picked up so that when guests come over, they have a place to sit and have tea...pronounced tay. and we hung our first piece of something on the wall and so yeah! feels more and more like we are getting somewhere! painting a mural made us feel so good... we were actually GOOD at something...this wasn't something new we had to figure out!...we didn't have to talk to do seems we can't talk in indonesian the way we want to and we can't speak english anymore either...when we first get out of class everyday greg and i walk to get gavin from school and we will be talking in broken english to each other "we go home now" "you want food?" "what we do today?" ha ha ha ha...these are the things that help us every day to see that we can laugh...we can live in this place cuz God has us here...and we got to paint a cool mural in the first month...and it was easy to get the look we wanted. so yeah for the little itty bitty steps we make each new day...telling ourselves that we are right where we are suppose to be...TODAY

Thursday, November 1, 2007


this is his big's a little old since i haven't been keeping up as well as i had been :D
but paul had a great big fall on our tile floor...cuz daddy was chasing him and he had really dirty, dusty feet and went around a corner like a cartoon character would and his cheek was the first thing to hit the floor. skin rubbed off onto the tile...but i am glad that is all that sounded way worse! he had a pretty nice size scab but it's already pretty much healed cuz he kept a huge bandaid on it for a couple of days...good for paul! but he wanted you all to know you do! and i finally got him to agree to cut his hair. it was getting really long...but i didn't have clippers so i just cut it with a scissors...we'll have to take another picture for you to be the judge of what it looks like...he is i am happy!

our downpour

not really, i changed pictures to see if it would download yet! this is just a nice rain that we had today. the kids love playing outside in it. it cools everything off so it's not so hot. the road was steaming today as it rained. this is our front yard. and yes...hazel is just in her diaper most days!

our first halloween

we had some kids and parents over to carve pumpkins...i have pictures but they aren't down loading but in order for the rest of the pictures to make sense...i thought i had better tell you what we were doing! you are missing a picture here where we have all the pumpkins lined cute...we were just doing "american" things as Gavin and Paul still want to be showing off their American ways...rather than the culture they reside...but time will tell...the time was good...and then...

BAM!!! DOWN POUR are suppose to be looking at our backyard again but something is down with the blogger and their picture downloads???...i don't think the picture does the down pour any justice anyway...but this was our first tropical huge burst of lightening and thunder let us know it was here...i have never heard such a loud noise!!! the tile and lack of cloth in our house create no sound barrier! the rain lasted for like 5 hours(which is not typical...usually just shorter amounts every day at the same time)......we didn't have power for 4 hours of it...and we didn't have candles...matches...or an umbrella and we had all these kids and some parents and a dark house...what to do? aunt karren saved the day and ran out to buy us what we needed! (everyone here becomes AUNT or UNCLE)

some trick or treaters

this is how they sat for the rest of the time...fearing the loud BAM...BOOM BANG! as they watched CARS on our laptop...cuz it didn't need electricity!

Night of the swarming termites

yes...another bug story...after the first BIG rain...which we got last night...the termites come out of the ground and find all the lights...we have an outside light in our driveway and so the neighbors thought this was a prime spot to catch their termites...they came over as we were huddled in our house but the kids got us to go out and see what was going on...this was amazing stuff! i don't knwo if you can see the spots in the photo but there are hundreds flying all over the place...gotta love it...right?

Gavin caught our first termite

yes...he was the brave one of us...out in his underware...earlier he had been begging to catch them as we sat inside our house with the lights off so they wouldn't come in the house as maybe 20-30 had already entered before we could get all the windows closed...and lights off...

then they put them in a bowl

and keep them for two make sure they are REALLY dead before the EAT them! yes! indonesians think this is a delicacy! they fry them up and eat them...rubbing their tummies...yummy they say!

paul wanted nothing to do with it

he said...ugh! mom! dad! they are all over me!

the catching of the termites

this is how true indonesians do it...

oh my hazel

this little lady loved tonight...she loves bugs! what is up with that? and i can't believe that i just witnessed our first large spider crawl out of this room and into the next RIGHT NOW... this night is creepy! and greg wants to keep the spider...i am fighting for a "no way!"

gathering more

the whole 15 mins. we were out seemed to last forever as they were swarming around my neck and arms and hair...even as i write...i can still feel them!