Monday, December 13, 2010

Down Side of Winter

The good feeling about snow and winter dissipates pretty quick when you see this -40 sign outside your window.

Not to be too dramatic, but technically it's still fall.

Even the Mongolians say the real cold is still to a week or so away.
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Working against the weather

Maggie and Lydia thought we needed a trail around the yard to keep the middle all nice, white and untracked.
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Winter Wonderland

Lydia waves while wading through and shovelling still-falling snow. The flakes were big and piled up quickly. I'd say we had at least 8 inches here.Posted by Picasa

Monday, November 15, 2010


One of those was one where nothing much encouraging and noteworthy happened until dinner.

Through a near-miracle chain of events, certainly an act of God, we were able to have T-bone steaks on the grill and table tonight.

About dinner time, the neighbor dropped in, locked out of her house. So Clara invited her to have dinner with us.

This neighbor is one who is learning English and joined in conversation a time or two at the table. I think instant mashed potatoes may have been a first for her too.

Then she said 'I can't eat this', in Mongolian. I was surprised because I thought she said she can't eat meat. Then I thought maybe she meant she doesn't eat beef, as most Mongolians eat more mutton than beef. Then she said something like 'it's lacking' in Mongolian. And I was aghast again, thinking she didn't get a big enough piece. But Renee understood the term to mean 'undercooked'.

I guess since the meat on the t-bone was pink, it was not edible to her.

On reflection it makes sense for Mongols to be used to eating brown meat only, because they mostly always boil it. Grilling it to a nice medium rare pink and juicy and to us perfection, to them must seem a bit barbaric. But from our perspective, it pure glory from God.

Thank God for T-bone steak!
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Sunday, November 14, 2010

Fall in Mongolia is usually celebrated at the end of October.
and is mostly observed by the preschools. Some teachers
make a big fruit salad with their students in class. Johanna's
class opted to have the mothers fix some fancy salads with
the local veggies--carrots, turnips, beets and potatoes.
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Johanna's preschool class also celebrated with a Fall Festival.
In fact, her class won first prize in the school for their
presentation, preparations, and decorations! Here they are
reciting a poem about fall:)
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Clara's preschool class celebrates Fall. She herself has become
a tomato, with other students dressed as turnips, carrots and
grandmother and grandfather farmer! Otgoo, a teacher which
Lydia, Johanna and now Clara have enjoyed is in the background.
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Wednesday, October 20, 2010

October Fun

The girls and their friends enjoy pumpkin carving.
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Sunday, October 10, 2010

Haystack Horizons

There was hours of fun to be had between the pup and the
haystack. Soaking in Indian Summer--today, a little over
one week later, we have had several days of snow!
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Smiles all around

Maggie, Lydia, and Johanna have been waiting and counting
the days for Clara's celebration! The excitement is contagious.
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Clara turns three!

Clara celebrates her third birthday with her friend Mendee
from preschool.
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Puppies! Puppies!

Lydia holds up the latest visitor at our house. The school yard seems to be abundant with these furry friends but they are transient visitors!
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Tuesday, October 05, 2010

House Call

My phone rang tonight. It was my neighbor. “Have you ever given someone a shot?” he asked.

“No, I haven’t seen your son”, I replied. (Understanding Mongolian is hard enough in person. By phone, the gap between what was said and understood can be even wider.)

“Can you give me a shot?”, he said more simply. “Yes”, I said before thinking about it too much. “Come on over”, he said, and hung up the phone.

On the way over our shared back yard fence I pondered my answer: “I’ve given lots of shots to horses and a few to cows…I used to give my self allergy shots, so I’m able.”

I walk into his house. People are watching TV in the front room. They ask if I can give an intravenous injection. I start to feel creepy. What if there are narcotics here?

The man of the house is laying on his bed in the other room watching his own TV. “What’s the matter, friend?” I ask.

“Allergies,” he says flatly. “Here in my nose”. “Sometimes it’s plugged or runs, sometimes it’s okay” he explains.

“So where’s the medicine?” I ask. He motions. I pick it up. On glass viles is written in Mongolian letters the name “Dexamethazone”. The name comes rushing back to my memories from working at my father’s veterinary clinic. “We used to give this to horses as an anti-inflammatory and pain reducer,” I announce suppressing shock and surprise.

His wife walks in. She picks up a bag of IV fluids. “You’re supposed to put the medicine in here”, she explains. The man of the house chimes in “it’s supposed to go in this vein here,” touching the back of his hand.

“I’m not doing this!” I exclaim. “I’ve never given IV shots to anyone. Isn’t there a nurse that lives right across the street? If we have allergies we just take pills, you want some?” I ask. So I go fetch the nurse, and send Renee over with a bottle of Benadryl.

Thursday, September 02, 2010

First Day of School Friends

Lydia and Maggie's friends came by to walk to school together for the first day of school.
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Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Our TEAM from Bellevue Alliance

Chuck, Corey, and Zach lived through lots of cold showers and greasy Mongolian food in their 8 day stay in Bulgan. They remained healthy and forged new frienships along the way. Here they are with some of their students after a hike up slope of a dormant volcano, which is a destination for tourists. It was a good way to celebrate our week of Bible English Sports Training. God bless them all.
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Stand and Deliver

Chuck the coach cues his team as they recite what they've learned.
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BEST Students and Teachers

This year's English camp had the blessing of three fine English teachers from Bellevue, Ohio. Zach and Corey are themselves students, but served here as capable teachers, friends and conversation partners for our neighbor kids.

Chuck, who is a high school teacher and coach, brought these young men around the world to be a blessing to us and our neighborhood.

Because they came we got to know our neighbors more, some whom we had never met. And God got glory in new friendships, and in Mongolian children learning Bible verses and honing their English and sports skills.
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Bible English Sports Training

This years' English camp expanded to include Bible and Sports. Mornings were spend learning English and Bible. Afternoons were spent playing soccer, football, and basketball.

BEST week ended in a presention to their parents of all they had learned. We used our porch as a stage for them to sing and recite what they'd learned. Here they are reciting Mathew 24:14. "And this gospel of the kingdom will preached in the whole world, as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come."
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Chuck and class

Chuck's class here had several advanced students who memorized whole passages of scripture and dialogues. Here they are leaning something of an American institution: Marshmallows.

I guess all that time as a High School Teacher and Soccer coach pays dividends in creative approaches to teaching.
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Corey and class

This was his star pupil Ernie. He earned a starring role in the presentation of scripture and songs for all the parents of participating kids.
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Zach and Class

This was one of the most challenging groups of kids, because their english level was as low as their energy level was high. Zach proved up to the challenge and transfered all that energy into English phrases, some of which were scripture. It all translates into glory for God.
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