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Showing posts from May, 2006

Adoption

adopt vt. 1 to choose and bring into a certain relationship; specif., to take into one's own family by legal process and raise as one's own child
When I was little I had very blonde hair while every one else in the family had dark hair. Since I looked a little different than the rest of the family my dad would tease me and say I got mixed up in the hospital. My friend, Joy Beacham, was born in the same hospital as me but a few days earlier, so my dad said I was really a Beacham. As an adult Joy and I again became friends and I got to know two of the Beacham families. I realized (not that I had ever really believed it!) that I couldn't possibly be a Beacham! I am only 5'2" and there isn't a Beacham who is under 5'9"! I'm just too short to genetically have ever belonged to their family. Don't worry, I was never psychologically scarred by this teasing. I knew I was loved even if I had gotten mixed up in the hospital.

Last week we were invited to an…

Malnutrition is Real

This headline jumped out at me today when I looked at the All Africa site: "Annual 'Lean Season' Set to Strangle Sahel". Every year people plant their millet and pray for adequate rains to bring full abundant heads of grain. But even when the rainy season has been good, the harvest is never enough to get an entire family through the year until the next harvest. In a good year the grain may last until May. That means that no "free" (that is food they grew themselves and didn't have to buy) food is available from May until October. Not only is no food available, but those are also the months when they expend the most energy doing hard physical labor in their fields.

The article says "'Every year is a crisis year for the poorest people of the Sahel,' said Mustapha Darboe, World Food Porgramme Regional Director for West Africa. 'For too long this has been widely considered to be normal and acceptable. It is not. People should not be chronica…

Suzanne's Birthday

Today is Suzanne's 15th birthday. She has been a joy and I'm proud to be her mom! (Not that we haven't had our moments!)

Because her birthday is on a Monday we decided to have her party on Friday the 19th. The nice thing about that day was that there was no school. The district had set aside a certain number of snow days, but since it wasn't a snowy winter, they hadn't used all the days and so they gave it to them free. Daniel and Suzanne slept in and I cooked and decorated. John came home with a dozen roses for Suzanne. That is a tradition we borrowed from my sister's husband who gave his daughters roses for their 16th birthdays. But since there won't be any roses in Niger when she turns 16, John did it this year. She was really pleased.

She invited 6 girls from church/school to come to her party. They had such a good time together. We had home-made bread sticks, home-made pizza, and a vegetable tray for supper. Suzanne wanted "Dirt" f…

My Birthday

My birthday was May 7. It was a great day. John brought me breakfast in bed, but I told him to just bring me cereal since I had to get up and get ready for church. After church I got to sit down and do some cross stitch while everybody else made dinner! John made a delicious chicken meal and I forget what else.
I got lots of nice presents including some books, some scrapbooking supplies, a sun visor to wear this summer, a collapsible lawn chair, an earring organizer, a DVD (Walk the Line), and a cross necklace, CD's (Jars of Clay, Newsboys, Mercy Me, and Johnny Cash), and money from my parents, my in-laws, and a friend.
















Suzanne took all these pictures except the cake one. She's turning into a really good photographer.





My cake was an angel food cake with fresh fruit and Cool Whip.
I took this picture so I can look at it when I get to Niger and am starving for such a special dessert. I don't know, maybe I shouldn't look at it....maybe that will only make me long for the &q…

Drinking Chai

We've done a lot of traveling this year to speak at different churches. In the fall we went to a church in central PA and we stayed with some friends -- people who had been kind to John when he was first starting out as a single man on his own. They gave us a drink of "Mystic Chai". It sounded kind of new age to me...could Christians drink this stuff. Well, I got over my hangups about what it was called, I mean, it's just a drink after all. It was delicious and Suzanne and I loved it. Our hostess said she had bought it at Sam's Club, so we got some there. But, being the penny pincher I am, I decided if one could make their own mix it would be cheaper. So I got on the internet and found a recipe. I made it and we decided it was just as good or better than the store bought stuff! Suzanne drinks it every morning and every night. It's her comfort "food".

The recipe takes a little time to make because you have to run it all through the blender, but it…

Pray for Jean DeValve

On Monday, May 11, my mother-in-law, Jean DeValve goes to the hospital to have one of her kidneys removed. She has a cancerous growth on the kidney, but we are so thankful that it appears to not have spread elsewhere. In early March she wasn't feeling well, so went to the doctor. He diagnosed her with divirticulitis, but, while running tests, noticed something suspicious on her kidney. While the divirticulitis wasn't fun, we're glad she had it so the doctor was able to catch the more serious problem! He told Mom she was lucky, but she told him it was God, not luck. Do pray for her as this will be major surgery.

This is a picture of my mother-in-law and me in December at a Christmas tea at their church. It was an international theme, so I wore my Nigerien clothes and she wore this beautiful top a Chinese friend gave her. I spoke on "Christmas in Niger" and another missionary shared about "Christmas in India".Unfortunately, it's a bit blurry.

Birthday Boy

February 23 is long past, but I decided to take a small step back in time for today's blog.

Daniel turned 17 on February 23. I can't imagine where the years have gone! It seems just yesterday we celebrated his first birthday and now he's filling out college applications and preparing to leave the nest. He's a great kid and I have enjoyed every one of his 17 years.

Daniel was born in Niamey and that is where we celebrated his first birthday. He was just beginning to walk at that point. Wasn't he cute?!

This year we celebrated here in Pennsylvania. He wanted Nigerien food, so I used safari decorations. He invited guys and even some GIRLS! After supper the kids played some party games and then Daniel opened his gifts and we had an ice cream cake. Then the kids played board games.

Most of Daniel's gifts were air-soft things. Air-soft guns are pellet guns that shoot plastic pellets. The boys run around in the woods, chasing each other and shooting at ea…

Favorite Chores

There are a lot of chores I don't like: dusting or doing dishes for example. In fact, I'm rather indifferent about most housework. I do it because it needs to be done, but I neither love it nor hate it. But there is one chore I actually enjoy and it is doing laundry. I know, I know, all that hot Nigerien sun has given me brain damage.

I get more of a feeling of accomplishment from doing laundry than I do from my other chores. The day starts with piles of rumpled, dirty, smelly clothes and ends with neatly folded piles of sweet smelling wearable clothes. I love standing out in the sunshine, watching the squirrels scampering through the nearby leaves, seeing the trees budding out, and hearing the birds calling back and forth. I like organizing the clothes on the line: shirts together with towels and then trousers and shorts together, and socks and other small things in one place. I stop often to sniff the fresh aroma of the fabric softener. Often I'll pray as I hang the thing…