Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Moments big and small

Upon returning to Timu last month, Terrill immediately started an Ik orthography workshop. He wanted to implement the knowledge he had learned at the last orthography workshop before it started to fade. He also desperately needed to do community testing of the alphabet and get it approved by people who actually speak the language. We are three weeks into this new workshop and it is due to end on Saturday. Praise God: Terrill has learned much about the language and has made progress in describing it. 

So what are we gals doing while Terrill is away (the workshop is being held at our old compound)? Well, I'm still seeing a few patients every morning. I've narrowed my patient base down to children under 10 years old and wound care. The girls usually 'help out' in a number of ways and come alongside as I treat people. I hope it's teaching them about compassion and serving others.

When we're not seeing patients, the girls can often be found at their coloring table. Janet is on a rainbow kick and likes to make everything multi-colored. Lemu is still learning to sit at a table for longer than five minutes. We're trying to learn to focus on a project for a longer time period with her. 
They both love to help in the kitchen. Last week I let Lemu mix the guacamole up. It was half gone by the time I got it on the table. But I suppose avocado is healthier to lick up than cake or cookie batter. They are also good at helping to make hummus and making sure it is seasoned correctly. It takes a good number of licks to confirm it is just right. 
 One of their newly acquired skills is putting toothpaste on their toothbrushes. I never thought about the fine motor skills required to do this until having to teach someone else. They also like to dress up with whatever is in their toy box. We labeled this picture "Our little Isrealites".
 One little boy brought a beautiful purple bird (that he'd found in a nest in the garden) to our house to play with. The girls spent an entire morning carrying that bird around and trying to get responses from him. Sadly, the bird was young and didn't last long.
 We have a flower called a firelilly that grows on the hills around our house. The kids love to pick these flowers and wear them on their heads. One little girl came over to play and brought Lemu this gift flower to wear.
 Here is the flower growing outside our house. We like them so much that we've transplanted a number of them into our compound already. It's our effort at protecting them from children.
 Janet & Lemu are currently about five pounds different (Janet being the heavier one) but Janet persists on playing 'baby' with Lemu and carrying her around on her back. Lemu, having been carried for most of her first three years, loves the game. They call it 'kuku' in Ik.
 The rains started in Timu about a month ago. So this is the time to dig up the ground and get things planted. I have about four nursery beds that we're trying different vegetables in. So far, the green beans and carrots have done the best. I had other young plants that I had planted last November, but they got eaten by goats when we went to Kampala. Here in Uganda we don't worry about deer or rabbits, but goats. Not surprisingly, the girls like digging in the dirt too. They are helping out by planting some herbs in pots for me. The cilantro has already sprouted.
 Here we were enjoying one of our very last pizzas. Pizza in Timu? Yep, thanks to my folks! They sent over a box specially filled with pizza ingredients, including a big block of vacuum-sealed cheese. And the cheese lasted for over a month in the mail! After eight and a half years of marriage, I'm finally starting to make pizza. When it's the favorite food of my two little girls, I couldn't get around it.
Yesterday was actually a pretty special day for us...a day to celebrate. It's our year-long anniversary since we first got the girls. Can you believe it's been that long already? Our lives have changed so drastically. And it's not just our circumstances that have changed; it's our very cores. Friends have told me on numerous occasions that children have a way of showing us the worst in us. They were right. But if I can't see the worst, I won't so readily recognize my need for a Savior. And I need Him badly. I now realize that only through parenting can God do a special sanctifying work in our lives. He sanctifies in many ways, but parenting has been the most intense way for me. And don't I want to be intensely sanctified? So even though this road we're traveling is difficult and hard...I need to be on it. Today I'm thanking God for these children and for the ways God has used them to change me. May our next year of parenting be as fruitful as the past one has been.


The Reeds said...

Wow. A year? Is it possible! Happy "first" birthday! My friends joke that teh first birthday is more a celebration for the parents that they've survived the first year. :) it's so beautiful to see the girls' affection for one another.
As always, love the update.

Richard and Sally Hoffman said...

As parents ourselves, we know that our Heavenly Father in His perfect love, grace, and mercy may not merely use our children to show us the “worst” in us – that is, where He wants to show us more surely HIS strength in OUR weakness (II Cor. 12:9), but also to REJOICE that much MORE as HE brings out the BEST in us (Phil. 1:3-6). And this He has surely done over this past year, as we have had the joy of watching over your shoulders in this blog as you have richly shared HIS life through YOUR lives with Janet and Lemu and beyond to all the Ik (I Thess. 2:8). HAPPY ANNIVERSARY☺☺☺☺!!!!
P.S. “Terrill has learned much about the language and has made progress in describing it”: May I humbly add, after having just reviewed his magnificent 600-page Grammar, that this is an UNDERSTATEMENT? PRAISE GOD INDEED☺☺☺!!!

Notinthewild said...

Congratulations on being a year into the adventure of a lifetime!!
Love all the pics seeing those babies do what they do!