Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Gabby Volleyball

Gabs started her Dalat experience with a bang!  She finally has settled down on her classes and is enjoying boarding life.

Again, like a kid after my own heart, she tried out for the volleyball team and made the 8th grade A team!  They had their first tournament this last weekend and her team took home 3rd place!  Yeah!! 

But before I go any further, I need to say a huge thank you to a friend of ours, Willie!  He took the time last school year to coach Gabby and two of her friends, on the finer art of volleyball, and his work and the girl's work have paid off!  Thank you so much Willie!!

Here are some of the pictures, of Gabby, I have pulled off the Dalat Athletics page on FB. Enjoy!

Saturday, September 16, 2017

Castle In The Clouds

Like most everything in Tembagapura, sometimes you just have to go with the flow... 

Last Christmas we were suppose to have the Castle In The Clouds Ball but because of too many things going on on-site, and the exodus of people going out for Christmas vacation, the ball was postponed until February.

Then February happened... Mass layoffs... So the Castle In The Clouds Ball was postponed again...

And then summer break....

So finally last night, the ladies got to sport their fancy dresses and the men were taken out of their Carhart miner work clothes, and we had the Castle In The Clouds Ball!

Yah, we can clean up... I still like my blue jeans and sneakers better... ;)

Princess Danella and her court jester... :D

Fancy ladies...

Bad influences... ;)


Superstars...Who wants to be on the blog?? ;)  Georgina, where are you???

There she is.... ;)  With my two stalkers! :D

Thank you ladies for putting on a night of needed entertainment in Tembagapura!  You stuck with it for many months and it turned out beautifully!

And of course our selfie... Couldn't decide which one to use...  Love these ladies!!

And then the princesses turned back into sneaker wearing moms and the guys went back to work...  Nothing like living the life in Tembagapura!

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Happy Birthday Marz!

Our beautiful baby girl is growing up!  Happy 19th Birthday Marz!  

A Cake Disaster!

I have never had a cake turn out this bad!  I'm not exactly sure what happened other than there was too much moisture in the air, or I didn't bake two of the layers long enough, or if the cake was just too moist!  Two of the layers were fine, but two of the layers just collapsed!  I tried to "save" it, but in the end, it wasn't savable other than throwing it all in a big plastic container and eating it with a spoon!  Kinda like eating ice cream out of the ice cream container... but not...! ;)

I decided I would get a little creative on the inside of this cake because the icing on the outside was only going to be white with a few sprinkles.  So I marbled the cakes to bake them and then cut out the two holes in the middle layers to make a confetti cake.

What you do to make a confetti cake is stack the layers as normal and then before you put the top layer on, you fill the hole with a mixture of sprinkles to match the cake.

Here's where the disaster starts.  You can see the second layer from the top start to crack. :(

Then the bottom layer crumbles and is almost flat on the cake plate.

I tried to do my best and save it by getting it crumbed coated as fast as I could, but no dice...  The layers just couldn't take the weight and I had to try and separate the bottom layer from the rest of the cake.  As you can see from the top of the cake, I also tried to put dowels in to hold it together... Yup, that didn't work either.

My curiosity was getting the best of me to see how the center of the cake would look like once cut open.  Just a heads up for everyone who cuts this type of cake... DO NOT do it on a wire rack!!  All the "confetti" falls through the holes!!! At this point, what's a mother mess... ;)

The final resting place...  I just laugh!!  This has NEVER happened to me before!

But all was not lost!  It was still very VERY edible!  Cake in a cup please... :D

I also happened to make some mini cupcakes with the left over icing... Thank Goodness!!  At least we had something that was cute to take the Happy Birthday picture!  Can you believe these pretty little things taste just a good as the disaster in the container!! ;)

The Birthday Girl!

For some reason Jen wanted to hold the disaster and not the pretty ones... But like I said, the disaster was just as flavorful as the others and the disaster was Jen's favorite to eat!

People always ask why I don't make cakes in Tembagapura.  Well besides the fact that you have to carry in every, I mean Every ingredient to make the cakes, there is a good possibility of this happening!

Oh well... Jen loved it AND beat me in cards!!  She had a good birthday! That's all that matters!  ;)

Sunday, September 10, 2017

Dalat Life

It has already been six weeks since school started for the Dalat kids.  They have been keeping themselves very busy...  Here's a hodgepodge of all the happenings...

All dorm outing to the bowling alley.  Boys are proud of the fact that they can lift a 5 pound ball!! LOL!!! ;)

Teddy on his Senior Sneak trip to Thailand.  Lucky kid!

Gavin enjoying a game of Monopoly with his dorm mates and Uncle Craig.

Gabs out on the volleyball court.

Definitely Chris' child!!


These last two make my heart sing!  Gabby, Uncle Craig, and her dorm sisters have been leading the singing during the worship services they attend on Sunday's.

Once again, thank you Aunt Betsy for the photos of the kids!  xx


Tonight was the first night I have been able to FaceTime with the three kids all together, since I dropped them off at boarding school!  It was so great to chat with them. Their personalities are changing and can be extremely funny. We had many laughs, for sure!

A couple people have asked how I'm doing with an empty nest. Most days are just fine. Then there are moments... (life isn't perfect...) moments when my mind isn't busy and it's taken back and memories surface... and a tear may just slip out... But I still have total, 100% complete faith, that this is where God has planted all of us in this place in time. So I may have my moments, but overall, life is really good.  It can be no other.  ☺️

Now the countdown starts... only 11 more days until I see the kids! 😍

Saturday, September 9, 2017

Landslide Update III

Because of my vast superior investigative journalistic abilities, here is the Banti road update. ;)

*Banti is the Papuan village approximately 2 miles from Tembagapura.

Yesterday, Chris and I went driving down towards the Banti gate so I could get some pictures, as best I could, of the road that had washed away and of the old Banti gate bridge that was now sitting in the middle of the river down stream.  It's really hard to get the whole perspective of the mass destruction because of the distance between valleys, but I tried...  I hope you can zoom in on these pictures...

Road to Banti, washed out.

The above zoomed in from where we were standing...  I'm not sure you can see it without zooming in more, there is a haul truck on what used to be the road.

The middle left is the zoomed in picture above.

These guys are hanging large plastic sheets to help stop erosion, from rain water, until the fix it crews can get to this part of the river.

This is the part that I was really looking for to get the pictures for this post.  The old Banti access road/gate.  There was once a bridge here that has now been sent down the river.

Now we have gone to the other side of the river and got a good look at more of the destruction.  The building in the upper left was approximately where we were standing while taking the above pictures.

The part that I have been looking for, the bridge, well part of the bridge... That massive chunk of cement in the middle right of the picture below...  The crumpled building, middle left, is where the bridge used to stand.  The picture does not do that massive chunk of cement justice!

And, that's it....I have been to all the places I can get to without getting into trouble... ;)  Maybe after church today, if the sun is still out, Chris and I will drive up to get pictures of where the slide started.  So stay tuned...

Here are the links to the other posts about the landslide: