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Photo Friday- Fall

We’ve spent the last 2 weeks soaking up the beauty of fall in Massachusetts.  Fall is my favourite season and the leaves have been so colorful here this year!  I’m in awe of the colours God painted in nature!  It’s been many years since I’ve seen a fall this beautiful.  Last time we lived here for one year it wasn’t nearly as vibrant.  Josh argues I’ve never seen one this beautiful thinking it couldn’t be as pretty in NJ.  The kids certainly haven’t seen a fall like this and we’ve all been enjoying it.SONY DSC SONY DSC Leaves

We raked some leaves, but I know more raking is in our future.

rakingLeave Pile

We went apple picking.  Unfortunately we picked the one orchard that had a bad season and ended up only getting “drops” (apples on the ground).  It was still a beautiful day and the kids love any time they can get with their cousins.  I managed to turn the drops into a pretty yummy apple pie and apple crisp too.

cousinscousins swingfamilykidstractorStowe SignApple Drops

The kids also painted.  Last time we lived in MA we didn’t have any decorations for our home as they were all in storage .  I had the kids paint white canvases to make our apartment a little more homey.  I decided to have them paint another one for this apartment and they both had a lot of fun doing it.  Art is their favourite special at school.

ArtPaintings

Photo Friday #42

We had fun at Whitinsville Christian School’s first Homecoming last Saturday.  The kids enjoyed all of the games that were set up to play.  It felt like summer here that day!SONY DSC SONY DSCSONY DSC SONY DSC SONY DSC

This is how the kids waited in line for one of the games.  Makenna was hanging on her cousin for a while before I took this picture.  Maybe that explains his expression!  SONY DSC

Friends we made in PNG visited us this week!  SONY DSCThis is how Connor and Bella sat as they watched a movie.SONY DSC

The past few days have not felt like summer, but we’ve enjoyed driving around seeing all the beautiful fall foliage!

Photo Friday: Seafood

This was a slow photo week in MA so I’ve decided to share photos from our  5-week stay in a PNG village back in the beginning of 2013.  We were so happy to have an ocean allocation, especially Connor!ocean25We lived there in a traditional PNG-style house with no running water or electricity.  Connor didn’t love a lot about our village living, but what he did love was being so close to the water!  We could hear the ocean crashing as we fell asleep at night and we could eat seafood.

Many people have asked the kids what they liked to eat in PNG and Connor proudly says “fish eye ball”.  It’s true!  Our boy who has to be talked into eating any meat that’s not plain chicken, a hot dog or burger actually ate many fish eye balls during our village living!  I don’t have photos of him eating eye balls, but in addition to fish eye ball he was willing to try almost anything that came out of the ocean.  Since then he hasn’t been as excited about seafood so it must have had something to do with while in the village eat like the villagers.ocean34 ocean24 ocean21Makenna was very adventurous during these 5 weeks too!  She ate octopus that was given to her for her 7th birthday!  Although I also ate it, I let my kind lady friend help pound it with large rocks to tenderise it.  ocean33Although Makenna did not eat the snail below (even though the kids gave it to her to eat), both kids tried crab.  I called it soft shelled crab but Josh said it was just a small crab that they told us to eat with the shell on and it was definitely crunchy.ocean31 ocean15

Many people from the village spent time each day fishing.  They are blessed to have the protein of the sea.  For those that live further from the ocean, protein is much harder to find and much more infrequent in their diets.

Hiking in PNG

I’m in the process of going through our photographs from PNG and organizing them. Since Internet was so costly in PNG, I know there are many photos we never shared. So, as I’m reminiscing I’m going to share more photos.  I’ll start with photos from the weekly hikes we took during the Pacific Orientation Course (POC).   As I sit here almost 33 weeks pregnant and walking around the grocery store is usually the most exercise I’m getting, it’s funny to think of the strenuous hikes through the bush of PNG!

Our first hike was a “community hike” where we hiked with our school-aged children. Connor said he was sad to stay back in the nursery but there is no way he would’ve wanted to move his little legs as much as we did. Makenna was a real trooper and in the weeks following that hike she took weekly hikes with the other kids.blog2 blog3 blog6

We hiked through dense foliage.

hike hike3 hike4 hike8 hike11 hike14 hike16

We hiked through water.hike17hike6

We hiked through mud (my least favourite hikes!).Muddy Shoes

We went on a 3-day hike and carried all we needed on our backs.3DayHikeSarah3DayHikeJosh

Our hikes were a highlight for us at POC!  It was nice to get out of the classroom and explore the beauty God created in PNG.  It was also fun to start feeling more in shape and notice we weren’t breathing as heavy on subsequent hikes as the weeks progressed!

Photo Friday #40

Our weeks have started to fill up with seemingly normal American activities:  soccer, class trips, choosing which grocery store to go too (what a luxury!), etc.  Josh is coaching Connor’s soccer team and we’re at the soccer field twice a week. These are some of Connor’s favorite days!  It combines two of his biggest loves:  Daddy and Soccer!

Josh & ConnorKickSoccer Pose

There was a Jamboree Saturday to kick off the fall soccer season.  Connor ran in the “fun run”, but chose to run without his shoes.  I blame that on his time in PNG.  Shoes are optional most places and most kids even at the high school level run track barefoot.Run Soccer Metal

Makenna has something called “Creative Design” in her class at school. She gets the choice of various activities like sewing, legos, arts and crafts and origami. Here’s a photo of her working on sewing a sock puppet next to her cousin.CreativeDesign

Makenna is learning about the events leading up to American Independence in school. She had fun during a class trip to the Boston Tea Party Museum this week.blogblog2

I’m 31 weeks pregnant. 9 weeks to go!

31 Weeks

Photo Friday #39

Well who would have thought we had to come to Massachusetts to sweat, but this last week has been hot!  The kids insisted they wanted to go to West End Creamery (a place they remembered from last time we lived here) last weekend so we went just long enough to play one round of mini-golf and cool off with some ice cream.  You’d think we would be used to the heat, but it feels hotter and definitely more humid than we’re used to in the highlands of PNG.  Ukarumpa is at 5,000 feet and we enjoy much cooler temperatures there than the low lands.West End CreameryConnor Golfing 3 Golfers

Makenna has been enjoying wearing all of the “new” clothes she was given.Outfit

Makenna has also been learning to ride a bicycle someone gave us.  Actually, we were blessed with a 2nd bike this week so now we have one for each of the kids!  People have been so generous with us.  A friend also dropped off some sports equipment. Connor’s been sitting back and watching Makenna ride bikes, but he picked up the bat and ball right away to play with Josh.Bike2 Bike1

After being in the U.S. 7 weeks, I finally opened my first bag of flour and container of yeast.  Makenna has been sweet talking me and telling me that she really likes the pizza I make the best.  Really?  The dough I bought at Trader Joe’s isn’t as good as mine?  I usually bought 11+ pound bags of flour in PNG and went through it really fast.  I think the 5 pound bag I bought here will last me a while!  I bought tortillas instead of making them, and I think they taste just fine.  Although, maybe when it’s not so hot I’ll start baking again.  It’s not that it’s that hard.  I know many of you might be making your own pizza dough too.  I’ve just been enjoying a little break!

Pizza Dough

Photo Friday- First Day of School

The big news for the week is the kids started school Monday!  They both love their teachers and look forward to going each day which is a huge blessing!  1st DayConnors Class Kennas Class

We’ve also been busy getting things done to make our move to Massachusetts official.  We waited at Registry of Motor Vehicles and got license plates for the van and got it inspected.  Next to get new drivers’ licenses and start getting us all to the doctor and dentist!  Fun stuff!Plates

Josh is in Greenbay, Wisconsin for Pacific area meetings.

Josh

I got to go to the kids’ school today to help Makenna and her classmates do a nature scavenger hunt on the school property.  I stayed for their picnic lunch and was able to snap this photo of Makenna and her cousin eating lunch together.  They’ve been happy to be reunited!

Picnic

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