Monday, August 31, 2009

trap and shoot

Michael began after-school soccer last week, with practices on Mondays and Wednesdays.

(The building directly behind the soccer field is the guesthouse where we're living for now.)

Michael is on the yellow team, and in this photo he's in the middle of the action.

It was super-hot out there in the tropical sun on the field today.

But Michael still says that soccer is FUN.
It's especially so since his good friends, Joel, Jadon and Ben are out there, too!

Sunday, August 30, 2009

There are lots of gorgeous flowers here! I went for a walk around the Center a few days ago and here are some of the pictures I took.

It is fun to see so many pretty flowers here in Davao! Our God has created such an amazing world!

~By Amy

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

extra protein

I guess we'll have something other than oatmeal for breakfast today;
after all, they got here first.

Thankfully we can also buy oats in sealed plastic bags!

Saturday, August 22, 2009


Last week in Davao was the festival of Kadayawan.
The festival is a celebration of life; "a thanksgiving for the gifts of nature, the wealth of culture, the bounties of harvest and serenity of living."
Wednesday evening, our family went downtown to People's Park to watch some of the festivities.

People's Park was lovely.

The Kadayawan festival honors Davao’s artistic, cultural and historical heritage.

Each night last week a different indigenous group presented dancing.

The night we went we saw the Kalasikas Cultural Dance Troupe perform.

It was energetic and colorful!

They ended with a breathtaking fire dance.

Thanks to Elise, you can get a glimpse of the dancing we enjoyed!

to market, to market...

Friends took us to the local market and it was fascinating.
Here you can buy almost anything you can imagine.

A rooster perches next to a load of watermelons.

A truck bed full of fresh pineapples

How do you begin to choose which rice to buy?

The selection is much better than that at the local grocery stores.
We were told that the stores actually come to the same market to buy their wares early each morning.

The market is not only for food... shoes anyone?

We'll spare you the butcher photos in the beef and chicken sections of the market, but the fish selection is pretty extensive!
You're also spared the smells of the meat section as vicarious visitors. :o)

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

it's in the bag

Have you ever wondered what happened to those glass soda bottles you used to collect for refunds as a kid? Well, quite a few of them ended up right here in Davao.

Because some store owners want to get the refunds on the bottles they sell, they will pour the sodas you've purchased into plastic bags for take out purposes. Voila! Soda in a bag.

On a hot day in a dry and dusty town, these sodas are incredibly refreshing.

"See the streams of living waters, springing from eternal love,
Well supply thy sons and daughters,
And all fear of want remove:
Who can faint, while such a river
Ever flows their thirst t'assuage?
Safe they feed upon the manna which He gives them when they pray."
from the hymn Glorious Things of Thee Are Spoken

Monday, August 17, 2009

Rhino on the rampage

Last week Michael caught a rhinoceros beetle on our front porch. After doing some research online, Michael provided Rhino with some decaying foliage for atmosphere, and some cane sugar and banana for food.
But Rhino was not content with the situation. Captivity was not his cup of tea. He made a hole in the Saran Wrap and escaped to the hidden recesses of the bookshelf.
So we found a new, more secure home for him in a lidded food container.

Late last night, after all of us had fallen asleep, Rhino executed another escape plan. Mark and Barbara woke to the sound of a crash in the apartment. Thinking that a book had fallen from the top bunk in the children's room, we rolled over to go back to sleep. 
Until we heard the rustling noises.

You guessed it. Rhino was on the rampage.

He had somehow propelled the container right over the edge of the bookshelf to the floor. It landed on the lid, and in his determination, Rhino squeezed through the crack we had cut for ventilation. 

He then made his way to the exit, but he met obstacles along the way. 
Thus the rustling. 
Like good hosts, we got up and saw him out the door.
No more pet rhinoceroses for awhile.

"It was for freedom that Christ set us free; therefore keep standing firm and do not be subject again to a yoke of slavery." Galations 5:1
Oh for similar determination to keep ourselves free from the captivity of sin!

Interesting fact: Rhinoceros beetles are the strongest animals on the planet in relation to their own size. They can lift up to 850 times their own weight.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

a jeepney is never full

A common saying in this part of the world is that a jeepney is never full. We think the one that we saw on the road today came pretty close. 

A jeepney is a cross between a taxi and a bus. Many of them run on regular routes, but no two jeepneys are alike - they each have their own personality! It's a nice way to get to and from one of the local malls where we grocery shop, but I'd wait for one that was not quite so full, thanks!

A typical jeepney ride costs 7 pesos per person - equal to about 14 cents. It's an economical way to travel, and it's fun!

Wednesday, August 12, 2009


Our resident gecko, Lizzo, lives in the CR (that's the nickname for the Comfort Room - otherwise known as a bathroom in the U.S.). We're happy that Lizzo's part of the family - he helps keep the insect population in check!

We think that there are two or three other geckos in the guesthouse with us here, too. They are friendly roommates, and we've grown used to their chirping at all hours.

Monday, August 10, 2009

we've got class!

"My son, keep my words, and treasure my commandments within you. Keep my commandments and live, and my teaching as the apple of your eye."
Prov. 7:1&2

Our 2009/2010 Homeschool class year officially began today (in addition to the daily life lessons we all continue to learn in the school of grace!)
Amy and Elise perform their first experiment in Physical Science while Michael looks on.

Yay! We love it when experiments work!

We're delighted to be back to a measure of normalcy after all the transition we've been through.
Thanks for your prayers for us!

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Back to School!

The school year began this week in Davao, and Amy, Elise and Michael are taking a few classes at the school here at the Center. We'll start our home school year this coming Monday, so I'm finishing up lesson plans and getting schedules in order. We're all looking forward to getting back into a more regular routine!

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

New Friends

Behold how good a thing it is,

And how becoming well,

When those that brethren are delight in unity to dwell!

from the Trinity Psalter Psalm 133:1

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Strong Enough

"O my strength, I will sing praises to You; For God is my stronghold, the God who shows me lovingkindness." Psalm 59:17
Back in mid-May we packed and taped up seven boxes of books, tools, clothing and household items to send ahead of us to Davao. When we sealed up those seven boxes, we reinforced them with strips of tape running in all directions, in hopes that it would help to keep all of our personal belongings safe in their long journey across the ocean. As we worked, I kept thinking of our constant need for God's strong support, surrounding us with the strength and safety that we need.

We're giving thanks today that all seven taped-up boxes arrived here safely. We've been enjoying opening them up to get out items we'll need in the next few weeks - books for school, tools for work, and some personal items that are like a slice of home! The rest of it will go into a storage space here at the center until God provides us with a home that has a little more room.

And just as our boxes were kept safe, so we are kept secure in the strong care of our faithful Lord!