Friday, August 30, 2013

What we're up to--and how you can pray


I loved sitting next to my husband last night in my friends' home, who train Ugandan pastors. I get excited just watching him do what he's so very gifted in, giving a seminar on biblical peacemaking/conflict management last night to a group of nine Ugandan pastors-in-training and their wives. Even more humbling, even sacred, was to hear them share intimate, conflict-related moments of their past with this group of men who've grown so close  to one another over the past year.

We continue tomorrow morning; would love your prayers that God would keep doing great things.

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Easy on the ice cream

I've been troubleshooting a bit lately. Costs of imported goods seem to be rising--perhaps the taxes?-- which likely hits Westerners more. Both my laundry detergent and my cheese alone, for example, went up two dollars per package last month. Holy cow. So as we try to maneuver a grocery budget, I'm realizing that produce, which is astonishingly inexpensive here, is a simple way to replace that bag of teddy cookies or fig rolls. Popcorn, veggie sticks, and g. nuts are a shoo-in; what else?

Enter my friend Terra's genius idea: fruit "ice cream." Three ingredients: chopped, frozen fruit; vanilla; and enough milk to make the mixer blades turn.

I can't believe it's this easy. But my kids love it. We typically use bananas--uber-cheap and non-imported. Love it that my kids are getting fruit with zero added sugar, and my snack cupboard remains shut. Confession: I adore this for breakfast, though I feel like a better mom when I don't call it "ice cream." My youngest and most picky eater asks for this every day. (See the grin?)

 Oliver refuses to "drink bananas," so we branched out to mango. Seriously--so. Good. Now I'm dreaming up flavor combos: mint mango? Coffee banana?

She pronounced it delicious. I think I'm hooked.

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Don't have a hernia

Great news today: I don't have a hernia. Come to think of it, you probably don't have one either. More great news! 

I'll save you some scrolling--no, you were not supposed to know I might have a hernia. I was just a wee bit concerned about the tender lump I found in my lower abdomen Saturday; it felt about the size of J.'s fist. And after a jaunt to the Surgery following church, I was awarded with my very own ultrasound appointment.
Not a big deal, and I'm not huge on posting intimate medical details on the internet. But in the midst of a series of setbacks this past weekend, surgery in a developing country on a yet-unknown-lump was just not sounding as fun as it might have on some other day.
Anyway, my little nugget is just a fluid-filled series of sacs-within-a-sac. At this point, we’re going to let it go. Depending on what’s in the sacs, my body may absorb it all on its own. If not, they can drain them (easily) or remove the outer sac (more complicated). The doctor seemed to indicate that this all fell within the "weird but not abnormal" category.

I'll take a get-out-of-surgery free card any day of the week, and am hopeful that this will be a non-issue in a couple of weeks. I’d thought my little knot felt smaller, but maybe I’m just self-soothing J. Also in good news, it was my cheapest sonogram ever: 24 bucks!
I will take that non-hernia and run with it.

On Grace

"I used to think that the ability to turn back time would be the greatest possible gift, so that I could undo all the things I wish I hadn't done. But grace is an even better gift, because it allows me to do more than just erase; it allows me to become more than I was when I did those things. It's forgiveness without forgetting, which is much sweeter than amnesia." --Shauna Niequist, Bittersweet


Yesterday watching my husband leave the gate for work, I murmured to Oliver, "There goes a great man."

She replied, "He has extra good. There goes an extra great man."

I couldn't agree more.

MK Myths, debunked

In case you had any lofty thoughts about the nature of missionary kids, allow me to gently restore you. My children's sinful/imperfect natures somehow slithered into their carry-ons on the trip over, and British Airways didn't charge me a thing. (I bet they'd give you the same discount!)

Exhibit A: Missionary kids throw fits, as displayed by child #4 in thrilling colors this morning. eMi, next door to us, is no longer under any pretense that said child possesses a form of self-control. Someone in this house needs a nap! (And so does the kid who threw the fit, actually.)

Exhibit B: Actual quote to one of my sons approximately two hours later: "When I take your finger out of your nose, this does not mean 'Please use your other hand.'"

Exhibit C: Question posed from my husband: "So who can tell me the first and greatest commandment?" Son pipes up excitedly, "GEORGE WASHINGTON!"

So when you see my children on home assignment--have no fear: I am not raising Super Children. Take a deep breath. Uh, unless one of them is laughing and waving his hand in front of his nostrils.

Fierce and fabulous

The boys enjoyed a two-and-a-half hour "weapons party" at a friend's yesterday.  I admit to a small amount of discouragement that the most creativity exercised in the entire six weeks of our school year thus far was enthusiastically channeled into cardboard armor--but hey! Creativity is creativity. The "fighting" was only disrupted by a few handfuls of imitation Doritos and popcorn.They had SO much fun in boy heaven.

Saturday, August 10, 2013

Good intentions

So. Had a friend over for tea; thought it would be nice to surprise her with a foot soak.
What went wrong: 

 a) used basin that had been used by someone else for bleach. Bye-bye, newish shirt and newish shirt my mom brought from America. Boo.

 b) thought I was adding jasmine essential oil. Grabbed oregano oil. Both of us think the water is accentuating our mosquito bites; oops, no. That's a skin reaction. No wonder things smelled like spaghetti sauce instead of flowers.

 c) Our sweet tea date takes a detour to the edge of the bathtub, where we must sit to soap the oil off our feet. Gracious friend is thankful for a tea date she will never forget .

 And...that's why most of you are glad you can enjoy my friendship from afar.
Tea, anyone?

And now for something completely irrelevant...

J.'s new trick: Crossing his eyes. Especially when in trouble, to make us laugh. What kind of parent would fall for that?! Well, judge for yourself