Monday, February 27, 2017

Goodbye to Jacey!

We said goodbye to our sweet Jacey on Sunday! This 19 year old came ALONE just 3 months after graduating from high school to serve selflessly for 6 months at New Day! In these 6 months, she led a Nursery Class for our little ones, taught Kindergarten, decorated birthday cakes, went out into villages, visited different churches, helped with 6 volunteer teams, made countless trips to the clinic with our little ones, taught Sunday School with 70 kids numerous times, got malaria, ate loads of nshima, dried thousands of plates, carried babies on her back for hours, led a weekly music class with 12 kids under the age of 7, worked out with us every morning at 5:30am, and became a really great friend. Most importantly, she showed the kids at New Day what it means to follow Christ no matter where He calls you. We love you and we will miss you Jacey!

Cindy, Edna, and Gertrude

Edna's toothy grin!

Three Men and a Lady

Jacey & David

Jacey spent tons of time with Justin & Emma


Jacey & Laston (formerly Raston, now known as Laston, per his birth records!)

That smile!

Luumuno the Turkey

We'll miss you!

Friday, February 24, 2017

Life Lately...

Wow. I opened my blog and realized I hadn't posted in 10 days! Sorry about that! We have been up to the usual here, with tons of rain (huge storm now as I'm typing, and the kids are rushing out of the house to get to school without getting soaked...because we don't own ANY umbrellas....#imcheap #savemymoneyforvacation)! We have had some trials these last 9 days, but we know God is going to get us through it all. He reminded us of that today as we will be receiving in just a few hours (assuming they can cross the bridge!!) a new member of the New Day family! His name is Chipego ("gift"), and what a gift he will be! He is a 5 year old double orphan who was living with his grandmother in Macha. And his birthday is the same day as mine. And our Precious. :)

Chipego will be living in the house with Mama Cecilia and Baby Luyando!

Uncle Mulenga trying to say hi!

A little peek...

That face...can't wait to see his smile!

Loved watching the kids swarm the truck to say hi!!

We also had our February Monthly Birthday Party! It was a little strange as we only had Kefbert, who turned 8 on February 11th, and Mweene, who turned 10 on February 14th, to celebrate! Aunt Mirriam is attending school about an hour away to get her teaching diploma, so she is gone for 3 months at a time, so we didn't get to celebrate her!

Awesome Spiderman net cake for Kef!

And yet ANOTHER Superman cake...he's popular this year!

Mama Liz got soaked too since she tried to skip out of her birthday in January!

Let's see...we also had a Teacher's Workshop led by Laurie that was REALLY good! It was a great reminder to make the "Christian Worldview" the primary goal of our teaching, not necessarily the material. Great reminder to connect my lessons to Jesus and not worry so much about 5 digit multiplication. And I won M&Ms, so that was good. ;)

We played a game where you had to pat the person next to you on the back and say "Ha" without smiling! Dad won...

Carolyn was in the final two!

Laurie did a great job!

We took turns giving presentations related to connecting our subject matter to Christ.

It seems like most of my life these days revolves around the classroom, so here are a few pictures from school!

In Reading class, we are reading a novel called The Puppy Place, with lots of new vocab for the kids (ie. animal shelter). They had a birthday party there and ate a bone-shaped cake, so I brought one in to show the kids!

I made them sing "Happy Birthday" first!

Every other Friday, I teach Creative Writing to the 1st-3rd grades. We have been doing stories on ants this term, so today's story was about a huge picnic, with potato chips as the featured item. I'll take any excuse to bring food to school!!

And some other randomness!

Blu gave Teacher Carolyn a light bulb (and changed it) and got a dirt pudding in return! #spoiled

Nurse Carol subbed for Laurie some this week and one morning I looked out to see them doing jumping jacks at the flagpole - you never know at New Day!

Cute little Raston!

Deb getting some love from Stanley!

Football practice - every day at 5pm at the Tidwell House!

Jacey's parents, Jay & Cindy, have been here for the last week. They leave (with our Jacey!) on Sunday! :(

Mom gained a new Science class this week, and it sounds like they are having lots of fun from next door!

Dad also picked up THREE new classes this week - lots of Science (blood pressure!) and Bible for him!

Fun with my girl on a Saturday night!

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Our Epic Valentine's Day!

We had an epic Valentine's Day celebration last night! On February 1st, I started leaving a heart on the door of each of my kids' rooms every day for them to find that gave one reason why I love them. (Thank you pinterest for this idea!) The kids LOVED it way more than I thought they would, and they ran to their rooms every day after school to find their heart! A few days ago, I attached personalized invitations to a formal Valentine's feast for Valentine's night. They were all so excited! (I was grateful I had a chance to go to Lusaka in late January to get my feast groceries, or it'd be slim pickings from Choma!)

We hung this sign on the door...Not to complain (ok, maybe a little), but people are knocking on our door from about 6am to 8pm or later almost every single night. This sign deterred them for 2 hours!

At 5pm, everyone started getting dressed and arriving! Samosas were waiting for them on the table as appetizers!

They clean up nice!

Cason's face!

We're cute. :)


Caedmon arrives!

Mama's boy!

Cambree looked gorgeous!

Daddy's girl!

We like to dress up!

Cason arrived first! (And ate the most samosas!)

He's a mess!

We set the table with china, roses from our yard, and the kids' Valentine's gifts!

We had Beef Wellington, Marscapone whipped potatoes, steamed green beans, and red velvet parfaits!

We spent the evening listening to 90s country and dancing!

We poured sweat, but it was such a fun night! My family were great sports dressing fancy and eating "fancy" food! This picture is from our first Valentine's Day - 1999 in Lake Brownwood! Who would have thought that 18 years later, we'd be celebrating in Zambia with our 3 kids?!