Monday, May 25, 2009


Here in Niger it is the magic word! We had a beautiful, steady rainstorm on Saturday night; the first we have had this year. There is nothing more soothing than listening to rain on a metal roof, especially as the rain is always accompanied by a significant drop in temperature. I was watching a movie and had to pause it because the rain was so loud! Can't complain about that interuption! Ian was out in a village with a group from church showing the Jesus film. The rain passed through the village before they arrived and though they saw the lightening from afar, all was clear for their evening showing. The rain finally came down in buckets as he was dropping the last few people off at their homes here in Niamey. God had that timed just right! I don't have any pictures or any fancy stories about the rain for this post, I just wanted to share our joy at its arrival! Pray that it will come consistently allowing crops to grow and flourish this year in West Africa.

Friday, May 22, 2009

Don't mess with them bad girls!

Below, Heidi and Kay dressed for success... I might add that Heidi specifically picked out her sneakers while we were in the US on the basis of whether or not they would be good for Mission Impossible! As you can tell it is a much anticipated activity in our house. This is the first year Kay got to participate. They both came home EXTREEEEEEEEMELY dirty and very tired. This blog is slightly out of order as it happened the night BEFORE our cousins arrived. I was waiting to post it however, until Heidi could tell you all about the even in her own words. So without further ado, I will let Heidi tell you about it.
Mission Impossible is a game that the whole school plays. The little kids like that because we don't get to play with the big kids very often. The director says that the whole point of the game is to have fun. We, the kids, think that the whole point of the game is to stay up late, play with the big kids, play with our friends that we only see at school, win the game, and to go outside after dark which we are never allowed to do other wise. At home you are supposed to get dressed in the darkest clothing possible. You are also suppose to get your skin as dark as possible with sand, charcoal, face paint, ...etc. One high school boy even sprayed a bottle of spray paint on himself!
Everyone meets at the school dining hall at dusk were they explain the rules and divide everyone into two teams. The game takes place over the entire school grounds which has a wall around it. The object of the game is to get as many points as possible for your team before the horn blows. First each team tries to find their hidden pick up station where you pick up "microfilm" (a piece of paper) that is worth points, and their hidden drop off station where you drop off the pieces of paper to get your points. Throughout the compound there are "bombs" hidden. You can take these to the drop off stations too for lots of points. The hard part of the game is that the staff and other grown ups are out there with balls trying to catch you and take away your "life"(bracelet) and your papers. if they hit/capture you, you have to go back to the dining hall and get a new "life" and start all over.
This year my team won by only one point! They say this is the first time that has happened! it was lots of fun!

Sunday, May 17, 2009


Our kids have been counting the days until their cousins are back in country with us. They arrived in the wee hours of Saturday morning. Finally we couldn't resist going and waking them up before we ate lunch. After letting them settle in a little bit, they came over for supper last night. The kids had a ball together, literally(!!) complete with dress ups and Brynn coaching Tom on how the Prince (Tom) was supposed to dance with Cinderella (Brynn). If you are wanting your own coaching on this enchanting subject, you will have to ask Brynn for the finer details, but I gathered it was all about one of Cinderella's hands swishing the skirt around and the Prince holding her waist during the dance... Last time they arrived for their first term, I took a hysterical picture of all the Niamey cousins in dress ups, so since they were already appropriately attired, I couldn't resist repeating the picture theme. It is so nice to have family back with us again especially as so much of the rest of our mission "family" will be leaving soon for vacations or home assignment times! Welcome Back Kevin and Krista! :)

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Hair today, gone tomorrow

Well, hot season has arrived, so all of us but Heidi got the chop. Heidi is hanging on to her long, hot tresses. Tom and Ian just got the normal-for-them buzz. Kay wins the cutest haircut and most dramatic haircut award. Her hair was most of the way down her back, but, inspired by several short hair cuts in her class, she let the hair dresser cut it all off! It looks so great! The picture really doesn't do it justice. Her face is so petite, that having lots of long hair really overwhelmed it. Now we should have faster morning and evening routines and less hair shedding in the house.
As a side note, only in Niger do you go to get your hair cut and have the electricity cut off... we were SO sweaty by the time we left that all our hair that had been on our heads, stuck to us! UGH!

Friday, May 1, 2009

The King's Fair

Sahel Academy's student council does a really great job planning fun things for the student body and community to do. Last night was one of this year's big events: a medieval fair! As usual, stuco went all out with decorations, turning the campus into a real fairground complete with ramparts and walls. We paid our "taxes" and enjoyed a feast as well as attended a play, enjoyed the jester and had fun at numerous booths. Among other things, our two princesses and one dragon slew several other dragons (they were not related!), stormed a castle, rode the king's steed, passed the requirements for being crowned princesses, looted treasure chests, and participated in water torture. I was disappointed that Tom didn't win an award in the fashion show for his dragon costume, until I learned the prizes were live chickens! Phew! We dodged a bullet or should I say a sword!? Much fun was had by all! Included here are pictures of Heidi the Princess and her classmate, Sara, Tom the dragon and his friend Ethan the knight. They had fun in combat. (Note Tom's fire-y breath!) Kay is pictured "slaying" the dragon (with darts). Heidi gloating over Dad in the stocks. Tom has spent the day today killing off ants with his newly acquired sword. He still insists he is a dragon though, not a knight. I guess the sword is loot from one of the knights he defeated in combat?