Saturday, May 29, 2010


I’m writing to you from a friend’s home. We moved last week, without any real problems, but settling in is a long, slow process. The day after we moved, they were changing out the main pipes in our new building, and that dragged out for a few days. They also broke our toilet in the process, so pretty much our whole week has been spent with plumbers coming and going, and plumbing in various stages of disrepair. As of yesterday, we have a fully working toilet and washroom, though! It’s still a little leaky in one spot, but everything seems to be working.

Oh, the funniest part was that one day, Will had asked a certain plumber to come install the new toilet. They were calling back and forth, and the plumber was just next door. He was done with what he had been doing there. . . but the owner of the apartment where he was working had gone out and locked him in! So, even though the plumber was ready and willing to work, we still had to wait.

All the space we have now is just wonderful! I’m trying not to dread already when we’ll have to move back to a normal sized apartment. I didn’t even realize how crowded we were and how much we constantly tripped over each other until now, when we’re not. It is a little awkward since we’ve never lived in an unfurnished apartment before. Most of our belongings are just sitting around in boxes and piles, since we don’t have anywhere to put them. At least there’s room for them, though!

There are tons of children in this building and neighborhood. Trying to get to know them and sort out who is who is almost a full time job for me! One morning after we had come in, I realized there was an extra wandering around our apartment. We didn’t lock the door after us, so he came in looking for Jaan.

I’ve already met two families with three children each! One of them is actually the family of the pastor of the charismatic church, so we have something in common right off. And maybe the mother of the other “large” family is about as desperate for friends as I am? She asked if I had breastfed our children and started telling me her nursing problems and asking for advice, before we even knew each other’s names.

Yesterday Jaan and I had our last day of school for the year. I had been saying that after school was out, we’d start going swimming, so today was the big day: the opening of the swimming season! Unfortunately, the weather wasn’t quite right for that, but we went anyway and had a great time.

That’s all for now. Please continue to be patient with us about internet and email! We don’t have internet at home yet. And now a random collection of recent photos…

The kitten on moving day

First night in the new apartment
Jaan didn’t fit into the picture, but his feet are there, under the kitten.

Wildflower bouquet
Asya didn’t understand that we were trimming the ends of the stems. She carefully cut the top off of each.

Raia's bouquet

Napping in a nice, warm spot

Pentecost: the birthday of the church

Watching a thunderstorm (one of many in recent days!)

Ice cream at the beach this morning

“It’s not cold, Mama!” (Then why are you turning blue?)

Watching a pheasant on the way back

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Moving Day!

We're moving tomorrow! (I think.) We've planned to and had to put it off several times already, but I think tomorrow is really the day. Please pray for us as we move, and settle in, and get to know our neighbors.

We won't have a phone line or a way to hook up internet for a while. We do have some ideas to try, but it could take a while. So, please keep writing to us, but don't expect quick answers. There are internet clubs all around, and we'll try to check email and update here, but no promises about how often.

Bye for now!

Monday, May 17, 2010

What a beautiful day!

I had such a happy, thankful day today! We needed caterpillar food this morning, so Raia and Asya and I set out to get it, and our day turned into a perfect “Girls Day.”

holy experience

A few of the gifts God gave me today:

438. Wildflowers just starting to bloom

439. Green!

440. Discoveries: "So that's why Tigger doesn't like them!"

441. Clouds of blue butterflies, fun when they land on bare little toes!

442. Little buddy, along for the ride
443. Wonderful, beautiful weather
445. A dedushka walking by, giving the girls some of the first strawberries from his garden
446. Sisters enjoying each other
447. Creative, interesting arrangements of wildflowers and leaves
448. All the work that went into making those arrangements
449. Very quiet nap time, after all the walking
450. Tea, tea and more tea. . .
451. In pretty cups!
452. "Mama, let's do crafts together!"
453. Little helpers, cleaning up
454. The golden light of the evening
455. All the work that "the boys" did, while we girls were having fun!

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Happy "Great Commission Day"!

Today is the Day of Ascension! Or, as I saw on another blog, it's "Great Commission Day." This year it's raining outside, so there wasn't any mountain climbing. We celebrated indoors, though.

Jaan's hands were busy.

The girls made clouds.

Then they performed the story for us.

Since we've counted out forty days of Easter, they made a chain to show the ten more to Pentecost. It was especially fun to see Asya really understanding what's going on this year, and I love hearing the older two explain everything to her.

I'll still say this:

Thursday, May 06, 2010

Moving update

We were starting to plan on moving this Saturday, but Will bumped into our current landlord yesterday, and he said that they're not ready to move in here yet. So, we don't have to be out right away. Now we'll probably move next Saturday.

Will's putting in a lot of time painting and fixing up the new apartment. Of course, we could move in (and live) without that, but since we have the chance to do it, he is. It's fun! We'll have a really pretty kitchen, for sure, and I think the living room will be quite nice, too. Well, the whole apartment is nice, because it's so big, but what Will is doing really adds to those parts of it.

Our new little kitty is already living there, and I've included a few random photos of him.

Tuesday, May 04, 2010

Sweetness II?

Jaan was outside, playing by himself today. A man walked by and gave him a kitten. He says that he tried to protest, but "the man was so big." So, the long and short of it is that we now have a cat. It's sleeping in the bathtub tonight, in an effort to keep fleas from overrunning this apartment in the last few days that we're here. Tomorrow I'll get something to kill them off, and I'll take the kitten to its new home on the balcony of our new apartment.

Raia brought it flowers.

You'll probably hear more about the kitten later. Right now I need to get to bed!

Monday, May 03, 2010

Apartment thanks

holy experience

456. Big apartment for us to enjoy
457. Friends, helping to clean that apartment: Oksana
458. Lena
459. Katya and Slavik
460. Lyuda (and Baby!)
461. Kostya
462. Sasha
463. Yana
464. Alina
465. Vera

Sunday, May 02, 2010

Sunday school review

Today my beloved little Sunday school finished our curriculum. To review what we've learned, each child got to "retell" one of the stories, using the flannel board figures. Well, I told the stories, and they showed them. Little David even did one. I'd tell a bit, then say, "Is that right, David?" And he'd babble out some long, involved addition to what I said; only he could understand it, though.

Then they painted picture frames. I'll put our class picture in them, and give them back next week. And then outside on this beautiful day, to draw with chalk!

Now Alina and I will come up with three lessons on our own. At the end of the month Slavic will be moving to his village for the summer, so then we'll take a break until he comes back. (None of the other children come regularly enough.) We've had so much fun together!

(We couldn't get David into our class photo, but here he is with the chalk.)

Saturday, May 01, 2010