Friday, July 22, 2011

What we've been doing this week...

Whew!  This week has flown past, and while the internet and I are both available, I thought I'd take a minute to jot a few notes about what we've been doing.

Katherine helping Auntie Betsy clean the front porch

The kids and I finished up school in preparation for SITAG's Conference next week and for our move back to Marulaon.  So, they won't have school again until mid-August.  They have been quite diligent during the many days that I wasn't always available to come check their math immediately or read their spelling words.  I'm so proud of my kids!  I'm so thankful that I have a great family to nurture and serve.

One morning, a huge rainbow landed on Honiara's wharf.  Maybe Bikoi has the pot o'gold!

Now that school is finished, I've turned my attentions to preparing to go back to Marulaon:  making lots of granola, finalizing and printing school schedules, buying the things that village friends requested, etc.  Aaron has been really busy with meetings and e-mails trying finalize plans for SITAG's Conference next week.

Choate newsflash:

Aaron has recently been invited to participate in a workshop in Bangkok in September to be mentored in the area of Cultural Anthropology.  I am SUPER excited for him to have this opportunity!  So, instead of our family staying in Marulaon from mid-August until mid-November, it looks like we will be going to Marulaon for about a month (mid-August 'till mid-September), coming back into Honiara for three weeks while Aaron goes to the workshop in Bangkok, then heading back to Marulaon in early October and staying into December.  We're really thankful that Naomi's parents have been so generous and flexible to allow her to join our crazy crew.  Please pray for her as she adjusts to living with us.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011


 At Snapshots Around the World, this week's theme is baskets.  So many different types of baskets abound in the Solomon Islands!

Here, purses are called baskets.

We love our our basket woven on Guadalcanal!  We use it as a fruit basket...

 ...and as a tray for a yummy breakfast in bed.

And I recently purchased this basket made by a Malaitan to use as a book basket.

This is my current purse/basket that I carry around town - just right for a water bottle, hand sanitizer, and my money for market.  The Solomon Islands is a great place to find baskets!

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Sweet Sabbath

 "But you are a chosen people,...a people belonging to God, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light."  I Peter 2:9

Declaring His praises for:

-taste testing a new recipe made by my ten-year-old son

-friends willing to babysit so Aaron and I can go on a rare date

-learning to play Bananagrams with friends who will be going back home in a few days

-the smell of rain on the way

-plants on the porch that are still alive!

-Katherine's bed-head early in the morning (Aaron calls her "Troy" in reference to the Steeler's Troy Polamalu)

-friends who finally came back safely from the village after twenty-nine hours and being stranded on a ship with a failed engine in the middle of a storm

Saturday, July 16, 2011


 Last Sunday in church, we heard an anouncement for a fundraiser for Selwyn College, a secondary school here in Honiara.  We recognized the school as the one where Chief Leonard's son, Gerald, attends.  So, we made plans to go to support him.  I also planned to call Harris, Sarah's friend from Marulaon, to invite her to meet us there.

I tried over and over to call, but the cell phone was always turned off.  Disappointed, we headed out to the bazaar this morning, taking Jayninn with us.  We had just gotten settled in a shady place when we saw Harris walking in the gate!  She's grown so much since we saw her last at Christmas.  Her cousin currently attends Selwyn, and Harris hopes to attend Selwyn next year, too.

Before too long, Chief Leonard and his sister, Kathleen, showed up.  It was good to hear Lavukaleve again!  Kathleen brought some haleav (bivalve shellfish) skewered and cooked with rumit as well as some whole, cooked urio (coconut crab), so we quickly snatched some from her before she ever made it over to the booth.  Katherine loves haleav!

 We found all sorts of things for sale:  sugar cane, hand-carved paddles, heaps of uncooked kumara/umalau, green coconuts, cassava pudding, rice, watermelons (sliced and whole)...

...and yummy bar-b-qued fish, chicken, and sausage cooked right over the wood fires.

We enjoyed the local food and catching up on all of the news from our friends in Marulaon.  I'm happy to report that, according to Chief Leonard, all of the rain tanks are full!

Aaron and Chief Leonard talked a little bit of business about our upcoming trip to Marulaon in August,

then we all headed up the hill after a great afternoon of reconnecting with our Lavukal friends!

Friday, July 15, 2011

Happy Birthday, Olivia!

 Our first look at Olivia, eight years ago, in Tennessee...

...wearing her mama's clown costume in Texas...

...losing her first tooth as we flew over the Pacific Ocean...

 ...growing big and strong in the Solomon Islands...

 ...staying cool in the Solomon Islands...

...having fun in the Solomon Islands...

...and growing beautiful, inside and out, in the Solomon Islands.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Ice, Ice Baby

You know it's almost time to go back to Marulaon when Aaron comes in from shopping for the village and goes straight to SITAG's deepfreeze to deposit the rice and pasta and kill the little critters that hide inside.  In Lavukaleve, they are rais osou, "rice flies".

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Sweet Sabbath

"Let them give thanks to the Lord for his unfailing love and his wonderful deeds for men, for he satisfies the thirsty and fills the hungry with good things."  Psalm 107:8,9

Overwhelmed by His wonderful deeds:

-a little girl who loves to "sew" alongside her mama

-Handel's organ concerto in d minor, especially the adagio

 -a huge moth that decided to grace our porch for a while (the spoon is just for scale, we weren't planning moth sandwiches for lunch)

-my mama's birthday today

-trying new recipes

-Saturday morning Skype sessions with coffee cup close at hand

 -my new Kindle cover, made with love by a friend

-yummy apricot Scripture tea

-watching the smoke from the cooking fires (and being reminded of David Livingstone) as the sun sets over the Pacific Ocean

-earl grey soap

-ubiquitous hair rubber bands in the bathroom floor, because they mean I have three precious girls

-sous chefs who turn into head chefs and cook on Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday nights, when I get to play sous chef

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Hand in hand

"All praise to our redeeming Lord,
Who joins us by his grace,
And bids us, each to each restored,
Together seek his face.
He bids us build each other up,
And gathered into one;
To our high calling's glorious hope
We hand in hand go on."
-Charles Wesley

Making letter pretzels...

Trying another new recipe to share from "The Great Scandinavian Baking Book"...

And playing games with friends who are only in Honiara for a short time.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Monday, July 4, 2011

Honiara Woman's Daybook

For Today...Monday, July 4
Outside my window...tiny yellow birds flitting back and forth from the power lines to the trees.

I am thinking...and planning for the next few months here in Honiara and in the village - mostly about food and school.

From the learning rooms...Augustus Caesar, Virgil; Sarah - analyzing poems, decimals; Benjamin - using transitions in writing, math review; Olivia - writing a book report, math review; Katherine - having fun with nursery rhymes

I am thankful for...our home country and for our host country.  Both of them celebrate their independence this week.

From the kitchen...blueberry muffins in red, white, and blue start muffin papers, leftovers for lunch, and tonight, tacos shared with three Wycliffe leaders from three different countries (Papua New Guinea, New Zealand, & Korea)

I am reading..."Secret Adversary" by Agatha Christie

I am hoping...and praying that our friends in the village can get their e-mail working again soon.  They haven't had a connection in almost two weeks.

I am creating... still working on the cross-stitched bookmark for Aaron's grandmother.  It has to go in the mail soon!

I am hearing...Benjamin whistling (signs of a happy boy)

Around the house...extra sheets in the washing machine, trying to get ahead on laundry for the busy week to come

One of my favorite things...catching friends and family on Skype and chatting for a few minutes

A few plans for the rest of the week...Tonight:  enjoying the aforementioned company; Tuesday: picking up a SITAG couple at the airport, doing "airport-school" for a few hours, then picking up another SITAG friend when her flight arrives; Wednesday: SITAG team meeting (which means bake cookies to share); Thursday: celebrating a birthday with company for supper; Saturday: enjoying five extra kids for lunch so their parents can go on a date

Here is a picture thought I am sharing with you...our friend who serenaded us with a medly of American songs to help us celebrate the 4th.

And the winner is...


Sunday, July 3, 2011

Sweet Sabbath

"You turned my wailing into dancing; you reoved my sackcloth and clothed me with joy, that my heart may sing to you and not be silent.  O Lord my God, I will give you thanks forever." 
Psalm 30:11-12

-the days when the internet works, and for the days it doesn't because I appreciate the connection more

-Swedish tea ring

-friends who bring lice shampoo from Australia where none can be found in Honiara

-watching the sun rise during church

-enjoying watermelon/mint smoothies while playing a rousing family game of Skip-Bo

Friday, July 1, 2011


This bag was woven by one of the Kwaio translators, David, to help raise money for the Bible translation project.  It is deep enough to hold a water bottle and still have room for a billfold, phone, etc.  I have "field-tested" it and give it two thumbs up!

If you would like to own this one-of-a-kind bag, please leave a comment by midnight (CST), Sunday, July 3, and we will put your name in the bowl.  Our kids love to draw names for giveaways!