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Sunday, July 5, 2009

The week that was--in black and white

The funniest moment of the week, may well have been the sign we saw a battered looking African beggar holding at the corner of M-3 and Tokai Rd.

"Kids have gone to Disney World
Porche is in for repair.
Plz. help."

We have LOTs of beggars around us here, and we are constantly trying to figure out what is the right thing to do with them. I got kissed by a drunk lady who was begging from us yesterday. Sloppy experience.

Last Sunday we went to a church in Pinelands. It would be nice if I took a picture of it as it is a beautiful, older CESA church, but I don't carry my camara to church very often, so no picture.

While in church, I got thinking about how it was the first sunny day we'd had in awhile, and maybe I should get Gabby up Table Mountain while the sun was out. I never hear weather reports, so I had no clue if this would be a one day sunny affair or if we could count on it to stay awhile.

So after church, we split into 2 groups, with Paul taking the majority home (the cable cars are expensive!) and I took Gabby and Evangel to Table Mountain. Also influencing this decision was the fact it was Gabby's birthday. What a memorable way to spend a birthday. The views from up there are breath-taking and awe-inspiring. The sky is such a shade of blue that I just want to flop on a rock and contemplate, but one has to be careful when one is with teen-agers. They get embarrassed so easily.

Now I REALLY needed the camara. Nothing I could say would convey the beauty of the top, or the scariness of that cable car. There we are, over 50 people, dangling together in a thing shaped like a Christmas tree ornament! I start mumbling, "It is because of the Lord's mercies that we are not consumed, because His steadfast love never ceases..." That's one of my verses that comes to mind when I get into an airplane. Did I mention the cable car is spinning, too? Well, spinning sounds fast, and this was slow, so maybe rotating would be the better word, but you get the idea.

It took most of the afternoon to accomplish this. We could see snow on the Hottentot Holland Mountains, and Gabby really liked this. She said she's always wanted to see snow on her birthday. She can tick that off her list. Kind of funny to have to come to Africa to do it.

Monday - Thursday was a dream come true for me! Evangel and Gabby went to teach a children's class near our house. Not that I want to get rid of them, it's just our dream for our kids that they go into some life work that is leading others to Christ. On Thursday Evangel did a chalk talk for the first time in her life. She copied Paul's "Brazen Serpent" picture. I asked Gabby how it looked, and she said, "Excellent!" but Evangel was just horrified that she had forgotten the shadow at the foot of the cross. This was a family first. The first time one of them has gone off without us for ministry.

Paul was preaching in the prison, and I wanted to do a few errands as well as school with the boys. We had at least 3 art lessons this week, also a dream come true. It's an area I tend to neglect in homeschooling, but I've just downloaded a course, and we're doing it. Yippee!
I went to the American Consulate 4 times (!!) They ought to know me by now. I had to get a new passport and Paul needs extra pages in his. The new passports are gorgeous, and they gave me extra pages right off the bat this time.

I had a trip of returning things to the mall--car seat covers that don't fit and a video both Paul and I bought. It's a good one, (Come What May) but 1 copy is enough. Plus both Paul & I needed new glasses. Just after we ordered them, Berwick swiped my old ones off my face with her gigantic paw while I was coming up the stairs towards her, so they're all warped.

Evangel is at a very self conscious age, so I was praying about her contribution to the Bible classes. She came home the first day saying happily, "I love my kids!" Then I knew she'd be fine, and giving, not just thinking of herself and her shyness.

My 2 main events that I had to lead were the Ladies' Bible study for the Spanish ladies in the prison, and a puppet workshop on Friday. I really enjoyed the Bible study, once it got going, and we had a nice time together. It makes me feel 22 again, like when I was in Peru, fumbling around in Spanish. There are 5 ladies, all from Catholic backgrounds, who all seem to be doing well. We can't see their hearts, or even much of their lives, but we have high hopes for them.

The puppet show had one serious problem: I couldn't find the main 3 puppets, the famous BL, Monkey, and Isabel. Finally, after looking all week, in desperation, I announced to the family, "I'll give 10 rand for every puppet you find." Evangel found them in 10 minutes, and is now R30 closer to her goal of buying a unicycle.

We felt like we had some real talent in the puppet show group, and oodles of enthusiasm. Most of the kids were homeschoolers and their moms were enthused, too. We would like to take the group "on the road" at some point, to schools or Bible clubs or something.

What a relief when that was over! The only event left was Youth Group on Friday night. Our kids recently started going to Plumstead Baptist's youth group and really enjoy it. So Friday afternoon I was free to go hunt a part for our broken vacuum cleaner and was delighted to find a match! James got the vacuum cleaner going and our carpets are relatively clean after a week of being swept only.

While the kids were at Youth Group, I hung out with Margie and her husband, Nick Collins. They told me about a lady who lived in a retirement home, and Nick's mom asked her, "Aren't you bored here?" The lady said, "No, we're busy all the time. We look for our lost car keys, and our misplaced library cards, and all the other things we can't remember where we put." :-) I could relate.

Saturday looked blissfully free, but we packed it pretty full. I was on a mission to make it a memorable 4th of July so I cooked a sausage and potato salad lunch, and planned Church Window cookies for dessert. Unfortunately, those are supposed to chill 4 hours, so they got procrastinated til supper, and we decided to walk to Kalk Bay to the ice cream shop for some exoctic flavors. Josh got licorice. Yum!

That was a tiring hike of almost 3 hours including stops to hunt shells, so we flopped down to watch a dvd I had rented called Akeela and the Bee. When we could move again, we went down to the beach in the dark and shot off a few firecrackers (9, to be exact). Danielito (10 months) hated that.

Now it's Sunday, again and we're off on another busy week. Hopefully this update makes up for some of the letters I didn't get written, right Mom?


  1. Sounds like you all are busy. Great job trying to explain the cable car, still it can't be put well in words.

  2. Vickie - I can relate also. A couple of weeks ago I went to the YMCA and while walking out discovered I was carrying the bottle of spray cleaner that is there for cleaning off the treadmills after you work out. What?!! So I took it back and discovered I'd left my water bottle in the spray cleaner rack. Pathetic!

    Really enjoy reading your blog from time to time.

  3. Hi Ann,
    I'm glad someone reads it. That's funny about the bottle switch. How is your family? Your parents?

  4. Hi Vicki,

    The deodorant we make is easy. Equal parts baking powder (alluminum free) and corn starch...that's it! We add a little baking soda and some drops of essential oils like tea tree or lavender or both :) It is messy like powder so use it before you dress. I use 2 round cotton make-up thingy's that you can pat under your arms and throw away after a couple of weeks. Let me know what you think. Love you, Joni

  5. It's been a while since I've checked your blog, and I'm reading it "backwards" - NOW I know which chalk drawing is which!

    Love reading about your adventures!

  6. Yep, I love reading about your adventures, too.
    And now I know which chalk drawing is E's.