We live amongst a tribal group known as the Dem who are located in the mountains of Southeast Asia. We are here to learn their language, translate the Bible into their language, and teach them about God. If you would you like to receive our monthly newsletter, send us an email at:

Thursday, June 5, 2014

The merry merry month of May

May 1st found us in the middle of a two and a half day trip to a small town (but the biggest one close to us) 1/2 an hour flight away from our village.  We needed to renew Gideon's passport and a representative from the US embassy made a visit all the way out here to process paperwork for people like us.  It's necessary for both parents to be present so this saved us a lot of time and money. 

Well May 1st happens to be Raquel's birthday.  She got a couple small gifts, one from us and one that a friend had sent in the day before. I can't believe our sweet little baby girl is 8 years old!

We bought some cream puffs from the bakery in town and stuck a candle in one.
On that trip we acquired a goat.  Miss Molly belonged to a friend who had nursed her back to health after being sick but didn't really want her anymore because she was eating the flowers and such.  We had talked about getting a goat for a while and just went for it.  She is very easy to take care of and Raquel loves her and takes good care of her.
On the 3rd it was this little munchkin's birthday.  Love this sweet 4 year old!
Their actual birthday days were pretty low key because we were waiting for the BIG day.  On May 5th my parents flew in to Dem land!  We had been anticipating their arrival for months and it was so exciting to finally have them here and show them all about our life in Dem.

The first night my mom and I decorated cakes for the next day.
and the next day was party time!
We tried out some face paint that had been sitting in a box for a while

the rest of the 10 days that my parents were here were filled with fun times
hiking to different places

Reading books
visiting with the people
playing games...
all sorts
One night we heard singing from a nearby hut and we went over and sat for a while and listened.  The next day a whole group of people came and told us they were going to sing for us again so there was a little concert in front of our house :)
Can you guess what they're doing?   Dylan and Dad are holding boxes on either side of the closet while mom is holding a broom trying to coax a rat out of it's hiding place.  They caught the rat under the box and got it on to the porch, but it ran out too fast for Dylan to kill it with the shovel. 
Dad helped Dylan take off some boards so they could be planed and placed back closer together because they have shrunk quite a bit since they were first put up.
 Mom and Raquel started a tradition of reading by the river in the afternoons while the boys napped.
We had a movie night while they were here too.  Logan has a projector and about once every two weeks or so we show a Planet earth type movie on projected onto a bed sheet outside our house.  
Donkey riding :)
There are hundreds of other pictures but I'll spare you:) We had a wonderful time. Many many fun memories. We are so thankful that they were able to come and visit our little part of the world. It was sad to see them go, especially for Raquel. My dad left first and my mom stayed out in town with us for about another week. After we said goodbye to her at the airport and got in the car Raquel started sobbing and was just devastated for a few days. She's better now and we're working on being thankful for the time that we had together and being content where we are:) 


Dylan built this beautiful island for our kitchen.  I love the extra counter space!
Dylan had bought some wheels in town and made a cart thingy with it.  He had quite the audience.
 When it was finished he gave each kid a ride individually- what a work out!
 Our coworkers, the Stokes, visited for a few days.  They will be building their house here in June.  Eden was able to spend the night one night and have a tea party.  So fun!
 Somebody had shot this bird's wing.  We kept him but he died the next day.
 While in town we had found some marshmallows ( a rare find ) and had a fire one night.  Roman and some of the Dem people got to roast marshmallows for the first time.  They were a hit with everyone! :)
This area used to be covered with a tarp and is the hut that Dylan stayed in for his first three trips into the tribe last year.  Now he's converted it into a green house (I call it Dylan's Secret Garden:) and is very faithful to tend his little plants.
 I make fun of him about it, but I was pretty excited when we had a fresh tomato from his efforts!
 This nasty thing was in our kitchen one night.  Yuck!!!
 One day the helicopter came by unexpectedly.  Some other coworkers in a tribe next to ours don't have an airstrip yet and depend solely on the heli.  They had some things flown into our airstrip and we were storing them at our house until the heli could come and get them. We weren't expecting them when they did come.  It's always a little exciting when a helicopter lands in front of your house :)
 That's all the pictures for April.  I ended up getting malaria and was in bed for a full week.  Nasty stuff.  Dylan was a gem taking care of the kids and still getting study and work done on the house.  Our coworkers also were a huge blessing by helping with meals and bread while I was out of commission.

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

the rest of February

When we finally got back from the capital city we stayed at the guest house for a few days until we flew back home.
One of the other families staying there had a birthday party for their middle school aged son.  They let our kids use their home made slip n slide when they were done.  The kids had a blast (and their fathers did too:)

Raquel does not like to keep pony tails or braids in her hair so we decided to go short.  Our friend Bri did a great job cutting it.
The day we were supposed to fly home the pilot got sick so we had to wait an extra day.  We drove to another city that has a movie theater (the only one on the island I believe) and watched the Turkey movie.  It was pretty silly but the kids had fun.  On the way back we stopped off at what we lovingly refer to as "the garbage beach".
It's actually really sad because it would be a beautiful place, but is just full of trash that people just throw all over the place.  Not a garbage can in sight. On the plus side, in all that garbage each of the kids was able to find a plastic spoon to dig with in the sand.


This crazy huge moth was on our porch one morning

 Dylan is doing language study full time now.  Here he is on his way to the office.  It's up near the top right of the picture.  Behind the trees you can see a little bit of gray.
He and Logan share and office.  The kids and I went up to visit him one day.  The kids were very impressed with the snacks he had up there.  When I asked Gideon if he knew what Daddy did up in his office he said, "Yes, he plays on the computer and eats food."
This red floppy hat was making the rounds.  I thought this little kid looked pretty hilarious in it.  Sometimes the people get really random things like this.  For a long time there was a man who wore a joker hat with the little points on it.  We still call him 'the Joker' when talking about him :).
 The kids love their bouncy donkeys!
 Looking at some new puppies in a hut nearby.
 The Dem people have fire pits in the middle of their round huts. It keeps them warm at night, but is also very smokey.
 Just hangin around

 There are lots of fences to keep pigs out of the gardens and airstrip so to get most places you have to climb make-shift ladders.
 Gideon practicing his archery skills
 /The people are always very generous with their produce.  Even though they haven't had a lot of food the past few months, recently their beans were ready and they shared with us.  Raquel was put to work tipping and tailing (Gideon tried to help too:)
 We set up a rotating babysitting schedule with our coworkers so that each couple can have a 'date' once a month while someone watches their kids.  There aren't a whole lot of entertainment options here, but we took a little walk and went to this beautiful waterfall :)