Friday, April 24, 2015

Photo Friday [81]

Another week of life with the Freys:


5 months old!



Someone has trouble limiting the coloring to the paper...


 What do you mean you're going to take away the markers!!??


My pet project has been re-planting this flower bed.  I failed to get a true "before" picture, which would have included a bunch of leftover logs from when we cut down the large tree in our yard completely overgrown with five foot tall plants and a few small trees that took over the space while we were in the U.S. having Kate.  So this is the "before" picture after I already hacked down all the plants and we hauled away a truckload of logs that were too gnarled to split for firewood.  Hopefully I'll have a nice "after" picture for you soon.



 Greg's preschool class took a field trip to the airstrip to learn about planes and helicopters.  Brian went with him.  Apparently between our Greg and the daughter of one of our pilots, they already knew everything there is to know about aviation.  Yeah... ours is that kid who always raises his hand first and has something to say.  I don't think we're going to face any self confidence issues with him!


 Sitting in the helicopter.

 You may have already seen these on Facebook, but they are too fun not to share again.  Notice how Caleb is always the one running and Greg is the one doing the tackling?




I have been very happy to be able to spend a few mornings here, at our training center:



Next week the annual Translators Training Course will begin, and so the training center dorms are bursting with students from all over the country.  The course is taught in English, and so to prepare those students who would benefit from a little brushing up, we are holding a week-long English Enrichment course.  I've been helping out a few mornings while Greg is in school.






 Kate has been coming with me and does her part by sleeping or quietly cooing in the back of the room.  She has done quite well.


 In this shot the boys decided to photo bomb Kate's 5-month photos.  Love these guys!



Friday, April 17, 2015

Photo Friday [80]

Brian was gone over the weekend, but the kids and I got to have a little adventure.  We were invited to a birthday party for a two-year-old girl out at a coffee plantation near where we live.  


Coffee beans drying in the sun.


Caleb quickly commandeered the little girl's pink car.  He's looking "Super Pretty," don't you think?


Speaking of super pretty, there is this girl.


Here are a few photos from Brian's trip to the islands.  Last week I shared a photo of him on the island of Buka, which is so far from mainland PNG that it's in a different time zone.  After Buka, he went to visit another regional center in Kokopo, on the island of New Britain.


 It was Brian's first time in Kokopo, and he was thoroughly impressed.  This was the nicest, cleanest public market that he's seen here in PNG.



 During WWII, the Japanese had a large base in Rabaul, on the same island.  The town of Rabaul was destroyed in 1994 after a volcanic eruption, and the provincial capitol was moved to Kokopo.  There are a lot of WWII artifacts there.  This was outside a museum, that was unfortunately closed when Brian was there.


Pretty beaches, with a view of the volcano in the distance.


 On Brian's last day, he took an early-morning commercial flight to the airport at Hoskins.  He had to wait all day to catch a late afternoon flight on one of our center's airplanes back home.  So, he did what any good missionary would do.  He approached a truck full of Papua New Guineans and asked if he could hitch a ride a kilometer down to road to a mission station for New Tribes Mission.  The New Tribes folks were a bit surprised when Brian turned up out of nowhere, but when he mentioned that he had all day to kill and a suitcase full of tools, they let him into their workshop and gave him some work to do to keep him occupied!

Brian got home late on Monday, and we're very happy to have him back!



And from this morning - you know it's cold in your house when you wake up and see the color-changing cup you got from a street fair back in Oregon has turned red overnight!

Friday, April 10, 2015

Photo Friday [79]

Compared to Brian's outing at the Konai New Testament dedication, our week was pretty tame.  Even though we all had colds over the holiday weekend, we still managed to get out to have some Easter fun.

There was a community Easter Egg hunt at the school.



And a desperate mom even hid more eggs the next day in our backyard, in order to distract sick kids who were quickly driving her up the wall.





On Sunday we attended a sunrise service, but I don't have any photos of that for you.



We also had a fun brunch picnic with some friends on Monday.  We set up on the covered basketball court at Greg's school.  A good thing too, since it did pour rain.  Think big puddles and very wet, happy kids.


Greg asked me to take his photo on one of the favorite pieces of playground equipment.

We left the picnic early in order to meet someone special at the airstrip...


Daddy's home from the village!


Brian was home all day Tuesday, but he had to spend most of the day getting ready for his next trip.  He's currently out visiting some of our regional centers in the islands, doing generator work.

He only got one 16 kilo suitcase for his commercial flight, which looked like this:

He told me that he was able to fit a few clothes for his 5-day trip into his carry-on bag.


 I asked him to email me a photo to contribute to this week's post, so here he is, from sunny, far-away Buka:



So, we're without daddy again.  It's going much better this time though, since we're no longer sick and Greg is back in preschool.


 When did she get so chubby??





 One nice thing about Brian being away is that I have nice quiet evenings all to myself.  One night I sewed up some headbands for us girls.



And we got our chicken coop done!  Now we just need to locate some residents for it...


 I'll end with this very random photo creation.  It's sort of an inside Ukarumpa joke, but we were challenged to create a photo showcasing the orange store boxes that our food is delivered in.  Kate was a good sport.


Until next week!

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Konai New Testament Dedication

Here is a special post about the Konai New Testament dedication, which Brian attended over Easter weekend.  Brian isn't usually much of a photo taker, but I told him that he'd better not return without good blog fodder.  And he came through, thanks to his trusty phone camera.  

Here is the airstrip and village of Dahamo from the air.  Konai is a small language spoken by about 500 people who live in the north eastern part of Western Province.  It could be considered one of the more remote places in Papua New Guinea.  The Gospel was first brought to the Konai in the mid-70's by evangelists from another local tribe - not Western missionaries.

 

A very typical part of celebrations in Papua New Guinea is a  sing-sing with traditional costumes.  The costumes and dancing vary widely throughout the country.  This happened on Saturday, when the "out-of-town" guests were arriving.   Brian took some video for you to enjoy:


video


A closer look at some traditional Konai bilas, or decoration:



 Here is some more dancing,  this time featuring a man playing a kundu (drum).  This is the first time I had seen a kundu that was this long, but Brian was told that this style of drum is typical for the area. 

video



This is the house where Brian stayed, along with several other guests, including a contingent from Sweden.  They spent two nights in the village.



The men's bathing area.  Brian said you just lay down in the shallow water, which is maybe a foot deep.  He said it was very refreshing in the lowland heat!


Easter Sunday was the day of the dedication.  It rained all morning, and so the program, which was supposed to start around eight in the morning, didn't get started until around noon.  They started with a mumu - a feast cooked in a pit in the ground. (That's beef, pork, sago and taro, if you couldn't tell...)
 



 The New Testaments!  About 90 people had pre-purchased vouchers which they proudly traded in for their own copy.


 The couple in the center are Soren and Britten Arsjo (from Sweden), who led the translation.  The guys in blue shirts on the left are those who helped with the Konai translation.  But Konai is the second New Testament that the Arsjos have helped to translate in PNG!  Those fellows to the right in the green shirts?  They are the transaltion team from the Ama language in the Sepik - the first language that Soren and Britten worked in.  A completely unrelated language.  The story goes that when the Ama New Testament was complete, the Ama people told Soren and Britten that their work wasn't done, and they needed to bring God's Word to another group in PNG.  If it hadn't been for the request of the Ama, perhaps the Konai would not be celebrating their own translation now.
 

According to Brian, the best part of the dedication was at the end, when this group of young people stood up to read the Easter story in their own language.  Brian and the others were amazed at how fluently they read, with hardly any hesitation.  It was an affirmation that the Konai language is strong, and that the next generation is learning not only to speak it, but to read it well.  It looks like these New Testaments will see some good use in the years to come.

Friday, April 3, 2015

Photo Friday [78]

Just a few photos this week:

 Greg is into all things racing, and so this week I procured some black and white fabric to make
"racing flags" for the boys.



 We spent the weekend building a frame for our chicken coop.  We've decided to try getting a few laying hens.  The hens themselves are a small investment, but building materials are expensive here, so we tried to re-use as much lumber as we could.  The nesting box is an old shipping crate left here by the previous home owner.  The boys are pretty excited, although it will probably be a few weeks before our egg-laying operation is up and running.


Kate and Greg are pretty good buddies:
 



 And I promised a look at the paper money (Kina) that we use here in PNG.  I didn't have a K50 bill to photograph, but here are the others:



Pretty, eh?

'Till next week!

Friday, March 27, 2015

Photo Friday [77]

Lots of photos for you this week!



Someone fell asleep while playing.


Funny story... this electric knife was in the cupboard when we bought our house, and in the five and half years we've owned this house, I've never used it. I thought electric knives were only for like carving turkeys and stuff.  We only eat turkey once every few years here.  It wasn't until just recently that I realized it is the best thing for slicing homemade bread.  Way better than just a regular bread knife. I use it ALL THE TIME now.  I feel silly that it has lived in a box all these years.  


 Caleb's angry face.  He practices it a lot.  Did I mention he's two-and-a-half?  Yeah... 'nuff said.


 This week was dominated by our Branch Conference.  The boys spent the morning in a child care program.  Caleb was soooooo excited to get to go to "school" with Greg.


 I would bring Kate with me to conference in the mornings.  In the afternoons I would stay home with all three kids and would attempt to listen to the audio feed over the intranet.  "Try" being the operative word with the kids making lots of noise and needing attention.


On the last day, our newly-appointed Director (left) introduced the three associate directors who will be helping him govern the branch over the next two years.  (As you can see, Brian is the tallest of the new directorate team!)


Conference ended with a spontaneous prayer surrounding the Papua New Guinean colleagues who were in the room with us. [photo by Phil King]



 As I was folding laundry I decided to snap this photo of a large pile of little boy undies and shorts.  A huge part of my life right now has been the on-going process of potty training.  I may be a missionary serving in a far away country, but in day-to-day life, I'm dealing with a lot of the same stuff that moms back in the States are dealing with.

  As I was gathering up my coins and small bills for a trip to the market this morning, I was noticing how beautiful PNG money is, and was thinking how something that has become second nature to me is unfamiliar to you guys.  So here is a photo of the coins (maybe I'll do some photos of the bills next week)

Top left, with a picture of a bird of paradise, is the 50-toea coin.  The crocodile one with the hole in the middle is the One Kina coin.  On the bottom left we have a 10-toea, featuring a cuscus, and finally, the 20-toea with a picture of a cassowary.  There used to be a 2 Kina coin, but I haven't seen one of those in ages.  There is also a 5-toea coin, but it's used so rarely that sometimes at the store they will give you a small piece of candy with your change instead of a 5-toea coin.

So what will these coins buy you at the market?  Let's find out...
 
 Cucumbers for 20t, 50t or K1, depending on the size.


 K1 will buy you a sweet mandarin or a nice tomato.  (It's the beginning of the season for the mandarins... they will go down in price as they become more readily available).


 Or a bunch of carrots.


 20t will get you your choice of a green onion or some ginger.

 And that 50t coin?  Well, that's Greg's favorite...

Because it will buy you a doughnut!


That's all for this week.  See you next Friday.