Monthly Archives: August 2010

We’re still alive…

OK, it’s been a while!  We’re still alive and kicking, but it has been a very busy time getting moved into our new house, not to mention getting our visas and such taken care of.  At the moment, we’re back in Singapore finally getting our work visas!  So, you can expect some new posts coming up soon, once we get back home later next week.

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Vacation

Our time in Thailand was a huge huge blessing. We had a blast seeing friends, swimming, going to the night market, enjoying eating lots of really good Western food, and of course the other things I’ve already posted about.  It really was a wonderful and hugely refreshing time for our family and a much needed time of rest after our busy year of language learning.  And in-between all that we had some really productive and encouraging meetings with our arts supervisor also! After almost two weeks there in Chiang Mai, we went to Singapore. We spent a little over two weeks there, with one week free and one week attending the Global Consultation on Music and Missions.  I didn’t take nearly as many pictures in Singapore, probably because everything there is so western and looked so “normal”. We did, of course, get some really cute pictures of Elizabeth during our travels. So this post will be dedicated to pictures of our little girl!

Elizabeth and her Daddy!

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Elizabeth and Mommy enjoying the rain mister at the flower market in Chiang Mai.

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Driving the “jeep” in the Outback section of the Singapore zoo. She would sit there and say “vroom – vroom!”

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Trying out a pouty face on Matt.

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And Matt laughing at her!

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At the Botanic Gardens in Singapore. When did my baby get so big?

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Dancing and jumping are her two favorite things to do!

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Silly fish-face!

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My precious little girl!

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Since we came back to Indonesia, we have been staying in another ex-pat’s house while they are gone as we looked for a house and fix a few things before we move in. Elizabeth doesn’t have very many toys here, so sometimes we get really creative in how we play! One evening, she insisted that she needed to wear her motorbike helmet to ride her little toy car around the house :).

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Here she is, again on her toy car, all ready to go shopping with her cool shades and fancy purse!

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I think I have a girly-girl on my hands :). Like mother like daughter!

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Thai Dancing

A few days later, we went to a dinner with our arts supervisor that featured traditional Thai dancing. This type of dancing is something that I have always wanted to see, and it was just thrilling! Elizabeth was mesmerized and sat through the entire 2-hour performance without once wanting to get up and run around (shocking!). I wanted to share a few pictures of some of the amazing things that we saw.

Right outside there were these elephant statues, and Elizabeth is VERY into animals right now, so we had her stand in front of it and told her to smile for the camera. We actually got a few cute pictures (usually when we ask her to smile we get more of a grimace)!

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And this picture is just so cute I had to include it :).

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The dancing was at the very beautiful cultural center.

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And outside there were women sitting and carving different fruits into very ornate patterns. It really was too pretty to eat!

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Okay, now to get to the dancing. Thai dance is very much about the hand movements and positions of the fingers (arched back really far). I don’t understand it all, but there are specific movements that have specific meanings, and that’s how they tell stories through their actions while they dance. Here are some of the best pictures (sorry if they are a little blurry – the dancers wouldn’t stay still for me to take their picture!).

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Here’s a better picture of the fingers. The girls start dancing this way very young, and work from when they’re little to be able to bend their fingers back like this.

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The men did this very fast, very loud dance with drums. I know the picture is blurry, but that’s kind of what it looked like in real life too!

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The hero and heroine of a traditional story.

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Elizabeth was also mesmerized by her jasmine necklace. They smelled really really good! In fact, all of Thailand smelled really good from all the beautiful flowers there.

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This guy was amazing. He took all these knives, demonstrated how sharp they were, and then proceeded to place and balance them on different parts of his body and move around. He even had a knife between his toes!

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Someday I would love to learn how to do this type of dance, or at least understand it better (but I think I’ll skip the knife dance). It was so beautiful and so unique to Thai culture. We were so thankful for the opportunity to see it!

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Much Delayed…

So I guess that we’re really bad at blogging through transitions, which might get really tricky since most of our lives are just one big transition :). Sorry that it’s been so long!  Right now, we are in our new home here in Central Sulawesi, Indonesia.  But, let me back up a little bit.  We did have a really good summer travelling in Thailand and Singapore and here are a few highlights from our trip.  I’m going to split everything we did into several different posts so that none of them end up being too ridiculously long.

With our friends Chris and Becca, we hiked up to see a waterfall near Chiang Mai, Thailand. Of course the guys had to climb as high as they possibly could (somewhat safely).

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Here we are exploring the same waterfall a little further down where the kids could actually touch the water.

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After that we went to see a Buddhist temple. It was quite a sight, and I have never seen anything that ornately decorated with gold before in my life. We took a ton of pictures and here are a few of the best.  While things like this are very interesting to see for their artistic characteristics, they are also a poignant spiritual reminder.

An interesting music ensemble:

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Daddy and Elizabeth looking at the interesting things.

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Lots of different Buddhas – some of gold, and one of solid jade.

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Like I said, almost everything was covered in gold! (even the scaffolding that they were using to do some repairs/restoration had been coated with gold paint)

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The temple was very high up on a mountain. Here is a view looking at the temple from the back.

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And a view from the temple looking out over Chiang Mai.

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Here are the steps we had to climb to get up to the temple. Being at altitude didn’t help me (Kara) much. I was so out of breath about half-way up! I really need to get in shape :).

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It was a really fun day and a very interesting learning experience about Thai culture.  Thanks Chris and Becca for showing us around!

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