Posted in celebrating life, enjoying life, Hi, We're New Here, JOY, living in their world, roadtrip!, sisterhood, thankful and grateful

Road Trip!!!

We had an opportunity to head to South Africa for a few days while getting a car rack installed on our vehicle. We took a few days to play and gather supplies after the car work was done before we returned to Mozambique. Here’s some of our adventure.

I love that despite having a bed for each girl, there in our little cottage, our ladies chose to share a big sister sleep-over each night. Their little hearts are beautiful. No one could be left out.


We went ahead and got our hair trimmed while there in South Africa. I usually trim everyone’s hair while we’re here in Mozambique, but the girls enjoyed the spoiling.

Eden REALLY enjoyed the hair washing part.


The girls enjoyed the opportunity to play in restaurant play areas while we waited on our food. Honestly it was insane some of these play areas for the kids and they absolutely had a blast.

We even went to an indoor splash pad.

And burned crazy amounts of energy at a trampoline park.


We had some really yummy “American” food.


And while it was an utter blast, I love that my girls could not wait to come home to their backyard, their bikes, their friends and their Mozambique. It was a beautiful time as a family to appreciate the blessing of more “Western World fun” while still appreciating the richness of life here amid the more simple. I love that my girls were really able to embrace that well; rejoicing in both places and having family conversations about the value of the two worlds we live in. And all of our hearts were full to the max as we turned down our street to return home here in Mozambique.

God has truly blessed us to the uttermost.

We are beyond grateful.


Thanks for the fun, South Africa!




Posted in Hope, life thoughts, my heart, Overwhelmingly Thankful

The Gift of Another Moment

Settling back in after a trip to South Africa finds me sitting in a quiet napping house with newly mopped floors. The week’s homeschool lessons are complete on this freeing Friday and the new trampoline is all set up to the squealing delight of four little girls.

Today our neighbor’s chicken decided to begin hatching her seven or eight eggs under our little “garden of Eden” tree. Little did mother hen know that we would be returning home with a pouncing seven month old puppy when she laid her happy little eggs under that quiet tree. You know mother hen was thankful I packed the toddler play pen gate in the crate so she and her little chirpers can live to see another day behind their fence of protection.

After completing week four of homeschooling things are starting to feel a little less crazy. We’re still working out the dynamics of six rambunctious girls in our home (with the addition of our two friends to our school day), but we are enjoying learning together. Patterns are sinking in so I no longer have to be everywhere at once. That right there is lovely, friends. Now I only need to multi-task two to three of these ladies at a time. That’s much more manageable. 😉

I’ve found myself in a state of quiet lately. We have been working through news of dear colleagues going on to see Jesus face to face after a bad car wreck in the Congo. They already are and will continue to be sorely missed, especially here on Sub-Sahara African soil. We held our breath and sent out continual prayers as we awaited news of another couple that we hold dear who were also among the wreckage. We reached out to ‘hold hands’ with our precious friends in Uganda as we all waited to find out when the dear couple would make it to hospital care. And as God answered our prayers in them arriving safely, they have begun to navigate through the shock and the trauma of all that unfolded in the horrible accident. In the quiet, we too begin to sift through it all.

I wish our arms could really reach across countries. Just to hold your friends and sit in the quiet together. And just pray. Just so they’re not alone.

We are just so thankful that while we are far, our prayers cover great distances in a mere second. God is not limited by time and space. He has proven Himself to be Enough. In all circumstances.

These past forty-eight hours have been more quiet in heart. Prayers continually going up. And between the giggles of bounding little girls’ education, I just find myself stepping back for a minute here and there and saying “Thank You, Lord. … Thank You for the gift of another moment.”

Thank You for the gift of another hug from one of these wonderful little girls.

Thank You for the gift of hearing my husband share an encouraging conversation with his accountability partner. I can hear the joy bouncing in his voice as he shares of what You have been teaching him lately.

Thank You for the gift of colleagues that are there to support us, even researching and sharing tricks on how to get rid of ants for a friend.

Thank You for the gift of friends in our city that help teach our kids responsibility and share in deep conversations about life.

Thank You for the gift of a well-trained, tongue-bouncing dog trotting beside my preschooler as they run in the wind.

Thank You for community and the feeling of home.

Thank You for friends at church and encouraging each other through life struggles.

Thank You for long car drives to just hold Matt’s hand and laugh about old stories while the girls sleep in the back.

And yes, thank You for even those little chirpers in the backyard that arouse such curiosity and delight as we feed them over the fense before retunring them to the neighbors.

Thank You, Lord.

I don’t deserve it.

It really is a gift.

This very moment You have given.

Posted in enjoying life, everyday schooling, homeschooling, living in their world, thankful and grateful

Our Side of the World Lately

We have been jumping into the homeschool year (we school on the late Jan/early Feb to November school year just like the rest of Africa) and here’s a few pictures of our happy new norm to share.

The bigs have been enjoying some quiet art time during the littles’ nap time. Thanks again Goga and Gopa for the awesome drawing instructional books.

We have enjoyed school this year with our fellow Missionary friends here serving at the local hospital. We made a world cake together in celebration of our completion of the first two weeks of school’s focus on the world. We got a bit creative (our norm) since ingredients and decorations can be challenging here, but it sure was a tasty lesson.

We will be traveling throughout the world this year in school (complete with fake passports) and to help us on our travels, so many of you wonderful people have videoed yourselves reading us stories about other countries and science topics, like ecosystems from around the world. To say we have enjoyed hearing your voices and sharing a story together is the understatement of the year!

And then of course, sometimes you just have to liven up Spelling by spontaneously giving spelling words through spare tube connector joints. Hehe. Abi was delightfully surprised when in the middle of her focused writing, I leaned in and gave her the next spelling word whispered through the tube. Hehe.

It can be really busy teaching and involving 6 little girls whom are overflowing and bounding with energy. And this year we have the added joy and challenge of not just teaching 3 different school levels to accommodate for the age differences, but 5 different school levels as we catch back up on the older two’s English education after a year of no grammar, spelling, different math, relearning how to write in print, and a few other things for last year’s Portuguese school. That being said, we are all thriving and really enjoying our time together in our little one-room schoolhouse.

On rainy days we also enjoy doing a dance video or two thanks to the fun world of YouTube kids dance videos. Here’s a little film so you can dance along too. 🙂

And I leave you with a few excited presentations of their Kindergarten+ (thanks to a few three year olds) Creation lessons from the first two weeks.

Ok, back to the lesson planning books for me. 🙂

We love you all!!!

Posted in celebrating life, Crossing Cultures, enjoying life, living in their world, Mozambique

Dança, Dança!

(Title translated: Dance, Dance!)

Minhas pequenas Moçambicanas (My Little Mozambicans).

[Boa noite, Irmã Suzana! Minhas filhas tem uma canção para você e nossa familiares lá em Quelimane!]

(Translation of song: Hallelujah, Hallelujah we are saved in Jesus.)

Éden está dançando como uma moçambicana… ou quase…

(Eden is dancing like a Mozambican… well, sort of. Hehehe)

Posted in BRAVO, living in their world


Rachael used a Little House on the Prairie book that her Aunt Jes gave her a little while back to make a corn husk doll. I love how she used the resources available to her – grabbing some grass pieces from our backyard and following the step by step instructions to make the doll. She even ties a rock into the doll’s head to give it shape.

And then when I was sick, Rachael came up with the idea of a pop-up card of us holding hands.

Abi went out and picked 16 varied colored flowers to bring a freshness to one sick day. I didn’t get a picture of it in it’s full splendor due to being down for the count, but it was really quite lovely.

Then came another beautiful flowered creation with each individual piece cut out and glued on. Rachael poured an hour and a half into this masterpiece.

It’s really fun to see the creative juices flowing. I absolutely love the heart behind their creations.

And for those of you who gave us art supplies to bring over here to Mozambique, here is some of the fruit of your thoughtful gifts. The girls are loving it. Thank you, again.