Monday, December 28, 2009

We trust you had a wonderful Christmas. We did! We really enjoyed a couple of quiet days at home, lunch out with friends, and a bigger gathering at the guesthome for Christmas dinner. It's been wonderful!

Between celebrating we've had a few interesting moments. Kids love to come carol here, and we've had quite a few at our door. Kevin and Kaleb have enjoyed passing out candy to them and seeing their smiles.

Our spectic tank overflowed on Christmas Eve and people came and pumped it Christmas Day. They didn't seem to mind working that day, and we were VERY happy to have the septic tank empty!

Our field conference starts next Monday, but we won't be able to attend this year. We are sad to miss the fellowship, but are praying it will be a wonderful time for everyone who is there. There will be good teaching as well as updates on what is going on at different places on the field.

Last Tuesday we had a meeting with our co-workers from this island. We really enjoyed updates from several of our tribal locations. One report was from James & Kathleen. They are in an incredibly difficult situation with people who are in bondage to a local group and are not very interested in the Gospel. Pray with us for a breakthrough in this location. Pray also for James and Kathleen that God would give them encouragement and refreshment while they out of their location for several weeks.

Tomorrow the boys plan to join a badminton tournament. We are hoping it goes well!

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Well, I tried multiple times to upload a really cool video, but it isn't working. So... maybe another time!

Today Garry's back at the airport, this time arranging the fuel that's there to receive our shipment later today. Because we have to truck it from a couple of hours north it's best to order 50 drums at a time, which we did. I think next time will be easier-- hopefully no trouble sending a FAX, getting things organized at the hangar, or other last-minutes surprises next time:).

A friend invited the boys over to make crafts for Garry and I for Christmas. I'm looking forward to seeing what they do, and it's a rare opportunity for them to do something elsewhere.

Kevin's little birthday celebration turned out really nicely yesterday. One thing he's been enjoying lately is downloading badminton matches to watch, so we did some of that yesterday.

One of the families who live on this compound is Costa Rican, but she spends most of her time in another city. Yesterday she was here and we were able to meet. It was so much fun to chat with Latins again and the Spanish was so beautiful! Their children are in a Christian school and she's been attending a Bible study to make her daughter happy-- it sounds like she's actually learning lots and seeking truth. She was explaining how she grew up Catholic but they never read the Bible, just "did their thing". Pray for her.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Garry's home! We have spent the past couple of days working on projects and catching up on office work. It's been good to have fewer program responsibilities for a few days. Garry and the boys are working outside, setting up a bit of a shop and making a desk for Garry.

I thought you might like this photo from our travels this fall... the boys and a pile of our junk. At least, when you've packed it so many times and carted it so many places it feels like junk!

I went to the open market this morning and I really have to take pictures. This town has beautiful, fresh produce! It's rather like a farmer's market at home, and I love seeing all the fresh stuff and bringing home bags full for a small price. I was particularly glad to see fresh pineapple this morning since I'm just hungry for some. Kevin makes awesome fruit shakes which we've been enjoying in abundance. The broccoli was also really nice this morning.

Tomorrow we're going to celebrate Kevin's birthday! I know, it was December 1rst, but that wasn't very convenient with company and checkout flying, so we just decided to wait. He wants to eat pork chops for dinner and have chocolate cake with cream cheese filling. I found the pork chops (they have great pork in this country too) and the cake is baking while I blog. so, hopefully he has a special day remembering that's he's now 15 years old!

Tuesday, December 08, 2009

I love a nice mocha! We get real milk here-- at least, much more authentic than the UHT milk we usually drank on Palawan. Chocolate milk costs only an extra 7 cents per liter, so we've been buying some of that. Thus, mocha is a nice option for a hot afternoon. I have a pile of work to do, but at least most of the piles are gone from the top of my desk!

Garry has been in Northern Luzon for a day and is now back in Manila. It sounds like he was able to see the new hangar and the guys are making plans how to best utilize the space and set things up. Tomorrow evening he should be home again and I hope to get the whole story:).

Meanwhile the boys and I have been doing school, trying to do some catch-up. They've been doing great at staying focused and being diligent. In fact, I'm amazed at the things they're learning. Kevin is quite sure that lots of exercise is key to his academic success, and it seems to be true-- he's been training hard and playing hard and is doing really well with his school.

Last night at supper Kevin was telling me about his training partner who asked him yesterday, "Am I a 'he' or a 'she'?" Kevin assured him he's a "he" and Jun proceeded to ask about several other people... apparently he had missed quite a few of those on his last English test and wanted to do some practice with a native speaker.

Friday, December 04, 2009

Garry and Paul are up in the blue skies again today, doing one more check at one of our airstrips. The guys have spent a lot of hours on the fuel system problem over the past couple of days and they have things working well now. And no, he isn't drinking his coconut milk now, that was the other day!

This evening we all plan to have supper at Brian and Baileys-- I think she's making enchiladas and Spanish rice. Kevin says it's bound to be good cause they're from southern California!

Last week in the city the boys did some rock climbing at one of the sports stores. They had fun going up quite a few times as they could each climb for half and hour for less than $2! These photos are from my cell phone-- if any of you know why I have a white line down the middle of them, please let me know:)

Yesterday my helper told me she is only going to work until the end of the week, then she's quitting. Thankfully we were able to talk through some things and she is planning to stay now. It's hard to find good help, particularly someone you can trust, so I'm quite relieved.

These days Garry and I have been reading about the holiness of God and how we enter God's presence based on the blood of Jesus-- his forgiveness and cleansing. We've been struck again with how serious God is about sin-- how when we choose disobedience it separates us from Him and brings serious consequences. We've also been awed again by God's amazing provision-- that through His Son, Jesus, we can live in close fellowship with Him and actually know Him. Wow! May we each take advantage of the privilege that is ours!

Wednesday, December 02, 2009

All reports of yesterday's flights were good also... amazing how things are coming together. We spent a bit of time this morning getting organized for the guys to head north to check out the future helicopter hangar, finishing up some paperwork for Garry's aviation radio license, answering a few e-mails that he needed to take care of, and picking up some apples from town.

Paul and another one of missionaries here, Chris, joined us for lunch. The fridge was rather empty, so lunch was rather interesting. Kevin made awesome milkshakes, which cover over a multitude of missing items!

Now the guys are back at the hangar. I think they are working on a fuel system issue, but I'm not really sure at all. Hopefully it won't be a long afternoon since they hope to do a little more flying tomorrow and that always starts early.

I have really been enjoying having Bailey here. She's just fun and helpful. And Maycie is so terribly cute, to! Bailey's been doing a lot of the cooking and coordinating lately-- yeah!

Tuesday, December 01, 2009

Wow! What a beginning to this week! Garry and Paul have already been into all 5 of the airstrips that we regularly use here in Mindanao! We have had beautiful weather both yesterday and today, a huge answer to prayer. Wow, God!

Last time I posted Garry was in Manila getting his pilot license finished. What usually takes a few days and often a week was done in less than 2 hours. This was a direct answer to prayer-- thanks, God!

I don't know that much about today's flights yet, as Garry is still flying and I can't ask many questions on the radio. However, I do know that yesterday's checkout work went really, really well. All the guys seemed pleased with what they accomplished and how it went.

I've been enjoying catching up on some office work here at the guesthome where I'm using the radio. Bailey brought me lunch yesterday, which was a bonus. And both yesterday and today someone has made me coffee in the afternoon-- thanks, Gene! Yesterday morning started out rather stressful with my battery being totally dead and Garry's radio being off frequency. However, it's all worked out now and things are going well.

Yesterday I arrived home tired and with a splitting headache to find my house incredibly clean and the laundry all clean and dry and folded! I was so happy... particularly about the laundry since we've had loads of wet clothes for quite a while now.

I mentioned last week one of our tribal missionaries who was sick and couldn't even get a medical flight if necessary because of the weather. I'm thankful to report that she is feeling much better!

Well, Garry landed so I'm going home! it's always a good feeling to turn off the radio and listen to silence for a while:)!