Friday, October 31, 2008

Makin' Good Use

Katrina picked up some tables from our house tonight. She brought along some helpers. This is what the back of her car looked like.

Good job!!

Katrina tells us her family ate out or ate sandwiches most of the time in the US. Here's there's not quite as many choices for eating out. And there are a lot fewer mixes to cook with. So she is cooking regularly and for up to 10-12 people at a time.

Here's her first apple pie. Good job, Katrina!!

Gift that Keeps on Giving

A few years back a church in Georgia made a donation to give us an air hockey table for the kids who come to our house to play on. It was really popular at first but most lost interest after awhile.

However from time to time, like the last couple of weeks it gets another work out like in these pictures last weekend. It's fall break here. The kids want something different to do. They come to our house. . . and play air hockey. Thank you, friends!

Monday, October 27, 2008


By the unusual briskness of their movements,
By the strain to control their voices,
By the tightness of the expression
By the flushed face
By the afterglow of tears
By the gush of bitter words
By the retreat into silence

We know they are upset.
We see the pain.
We try to find a bridge.

The relationship is still broken.

Please pray for these two teens who are struggling.

It influences them, their spiritual lives. It influences our children and others around them. It influences the atmosphere of services.

Please pray.


For the first time since we've been overseas, it looks like we have suceeded. We faxed our vote to Indiana this morning.

We believe that America needs to turn back to God.

We believe it is crucial to vote for those leaders who more closely follow biblical principles.

America is becoming more divided between those who call "evil-good" and those who stand by the Bible.

It's time to stand--with our vote, with our prayers and with our lives.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Katrina Got a Car!

Yes, I'll do it this time. I'll write about the same identical topic that is on my co-worker's blog. The biggest reason is that this took up a major part of our week, outside of school.

Monday we went to Nikolaev to the bank to get some wired funds. There was a hold-up. A paper had to be written that indicated the funds were for personal use, not investment. AND it had to be proven that Katrina was actually living in Ukraine. That is the subject of her fifteen step blog. The bank was supposed to call us.

We were getting ready to head out to the village on Tuesday. Instead our Ukrainian friends advised us to return to Nikolaev to the bank. It's a good thing we did. Another hold-up. A date in the paper we wrote was wrong so it had to be re-written.

Wednesday we finally got the funds from the transfer and some dollars from another account.

Thursday we went back to Nikolaev to get more dollars. (There's a limit to how much can be withdrawn in a day.)

Friday we headed to Odessa to meet with the seller. After waiting from about noon until 4 pm for the seller to do his paperwork, to get the car out of his name, everyone was getting tired of waiting. Allona and Vova were restless and almost wishing they hadn't come. Katrina and Seth were talked out. I had done all the sudoku I could ever wish to do at one time. Alyosha, the Ukrainian with us had taken two or three naps and was tired of sleeping. We watched others.

These fellows finished their business, got into the car started it, took time to smoke. It died or they turned it off. They ended up pushing the car out of the lot of the Ukrainian "license branch."

The owner of this big yellow jeep got stuck inside. It took him a bunch of tries to get the door open. We debated about going to help him from the outside.

Finally the moment came. Katrina paid for the car and got the keys! As she came back to the car playing with the alarm system and electric locks, she had a broad smile on her face. I tried to get a picture. Here's what I got: Alyosha doing an ecstatic jig, the seller and Dave showing off the temporary license plates!

At last she's behind the wheel ready to head back home.

On the way home, in the middle of the thriving metropolis, we spotted this donkey. The owner was excited when I tried to get a picture. "It's great advertising!! Come ride it sometime!"

Other than the car activity, we've been working with people and . . .

Dave got one section of the fence up. Seth worked on spackling in his room. Dave finished the wallboard in the closet.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Funny and Sad

A REAL missionary out in the wilds of Osikova without running water or drains to empty the water finds a way to brush her teeth. No cups being handy, she picked up a disposable plate, poured water in it and . . . !

A magnificent building is being raised on Kyiv's bypass. Here is the sign advertising the German company's project. The temple of the Church of Christ of the Latter Day Saints.

And what are we doing?

Sunday, October 19, 2008

The Monday After

In case you're wondering why no new blogs have shown up this past week, we packed two weeks into one!! HA!! and there was no time for blogging!.

Last Saturday we went to the village for a service and then came home to begin fixing food for our stay in Osikova because we knew we would be "running" there.

Sunday was a normal busy Sunday with kids staying-- about 21. Here's a couple pics from the game in Kids' Klub.

The task was to unfold the chair, sit in it, take sunglasses out of their "jar," put them on and blow a whistle, relay-race style.

She was too tickled to blow the whistle

Monday morning when we got all the blankets, clothes, food and items for Jason and Joanna packed, we headed for Kyiv in both vans. Dave drove the Mazda. I drove the VW. We agreed to meet at different stops along the way so we would be in the area if something happened to either vehicle but wouldn't be trying to pass in dangerous places.

Tuesday we managed to get the documents that gave Jason and Joanna the legal right to drive the Mazda and Katrina the right to drive the VW. We got stuck in a traffic jam and that took up all of our day, except for stopping by one store, on the way to meet Jason and Joanna at the airport. We met them, came back to Osikova, fixed supper and after talking, hit the hay!

Wednesday when we saw they were up at 6:30, we quickly got up and got dressed and headed out to shop for tools,appliances, groceries etc. We shopped until the guys were saying "I'm starving!!" and Joanna said, "I'm ready for our list to be finished!"--four hours before we finished it! With the van loaded to the point that the passengers barely were able to get in and out, we headed back to Osikova. After we unloaded there, we ate a quick supper, visited another couple in Osikova and then began the 6-7 hour drive back to Nova Odessa, arriving at 3:30 am. (Katrina's blog has pictures of her side of this.)

Thursday we went shopping for groceries for Sunday.

Friday we had school until 2 pm and then we started cooking for Sunday until around 10 pm.

Saturday we went to Odessa where Katrina found a car! We've been rejoicing in that fact ever since! : )

We got back home and worked on cooking and cleaning for Sunday.

Sunday was "Harvest Sunday." We prepared for around fifty people, lots and lots of food. We ate in our courtyard because there wasn't room for us anywhere else. There were around 35 people if we counted correctly. (Katrina's blog has pictures of her side of this.) We had Sunday morning service, a program where many had either a song or a poem. I tried to do a chalk talk in Russian (for the first time since I did them for VBS at Independence).
Lunch was served at 1 pm. Here's one of the eight fall centerpieces we did for the tables.

We had Kids' Klub a bit later than normal. A new girl came! After Kids' Klub, Seth, Marina, Nelya, Allona and Vova worked on the dishes for at least two hours maybe, three.

I owe them!!!

Now it's Monday and time to get started on a new week. We need to help Katrina with the paperwork on the car. We need to get a full week of school in. We need to catch up on washing and continue our other chores, fence-building, etc. Talk to you later.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

This, that and the other

We've been busy this week. Here Dave is working on the add-on to our fence.

Katrina studies ads for used cars.

Seth is finishing up our summer project in his room. We have just the closets to finish off and paint.

Sewing the binding on the quilt I started in 2004.

The quilt is f-i-i-nally finished, very imperfect but a combination of items that represent us. The handkerchiefs are Dave's trademark. I live in denim. The wording at the lighthouse came from a plaque at Joanna's house, "the Light of the world knows NO power failure."

A sample of God's glory in the middle of a city.

After a field has had sunflowers in it one year, the next year they grow up wild. Dave gathered these beautiful strays for me.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008



This family came in Saturday evening in order to be at the services on Sunday.

Danik is concentrating on learning his verse.

The ingenious craft that Katrina came up with for the day
Some of our neighbor children playing before the beginning of service

Going into the Byways

Dave got this shirt out to illustrate a message on having on the white wedding garments for the marriage supper of the Lamb on Sunday. I had watched him in service and thought that he had a stain on it that somehow I had missed. It's not a stain; the fabric has been rubbed thin by his seatbelt.

Smart Dog

Our friendly guard dog still escaped. When we checked on him in the middle of the night we could hear loud barking in the distance, where he was "hanging out" with his friends.

This is his route of escape. He put his paws on the back of the high wall and scrambled/pulled himself up, stepped down quickly to the lower wall, skimmed across the wire fence and voila! freedom.

So it's back to the drawing board. We need better security. Please pray that God will show us what to do.

We Love Him

Dedicated to you mothers and fathers who are taking pictures of your toddler's antics.

No, he's not a toddler dragging clothes out of the dryer and container lids out of the cupboard. He's a boy, mischievous, full of fun--all boy. Cars totally fascinate him. I seriously considered buying him a car alphabet book several years ago to help him learn the alphabet better. Even though he will celebrate his twelfth birthday in December, he wants his vehicles to have all the extras. His bicycle sometimes carries extra "antennas". Our white vans sprout antennas of thin green branches around the windshield and back door.

He also digs a pothole in right in front of our gate. (We fight to avoid all the potholes we can because we so very often have to replace front end parts on our vehicles.)

He's full of questions about how things work. We gave him the nickname Voprosovitch--son of questions.

He just defined the shape of celery leaves as having the shape of the Renault emblem.

He likes to make people laugh. When he's not trying to purposely make them laugh, he is pretty funny.

Yesterday's had us laughing really hard. He and Seth were involved in a brotherly tussle. We heard him say, "Seth, you're going down! I mean down! uh-- oh-- oh-- (his voice raises in pitch) up-- Seth, you're going up!!"

In the evening, we played the game, Guesstures. Vova got more points than any of the rest of us, acting out words like "stop, behind and stove." After we finished, Dave was glancing through the choices that he had just had. "Vova, here's the word intelligent. Why didn't you act it out?"

His reply, very understandable but funny considering the word. "I didn't know how!"

Friday, October 3, 2008


This dog was supposed to help with security. The problem was that he jumped the walls and slipped out through the cracks and irritated the neighbors. We had to keep him on a chain to keep him alive.

It's been an item for the to-do list for awhile.

Dave added height to probably thirty yards of the wall. And he put a semi-movable gate at the gap between our property and the neighbors.'

Now Gabriel (our angel guardian) can run free within the walls. And greet any intruder with a playfully wagging tail!!