Tuesday, April 28, 2009

More Graduation Stuff

A couple more graduation photos. Our main speaker after being "welcomed."
The graduation procession. It's not a great photo, but C. looked so cute in front I couldn't resist.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Beginning Of Vacation Season

I always get blue during summer vacation in India. The mass exile of people returning to their home places has already begun and I face a lonely month of May.

I'm a people person. I get energized living in my little community and now most everyone is leaving. Hummm. Except us. We have plans to be in the USA during July - September of this year so we're not going anywhere on vacation. Of course, my girls are out of school and my house is continuously filled with children (why don't they go anywhere????) Today was like the first real day of vacation, I've got to develop some kind of discipline/schedule for sure.

O. is not here. He went to his cousin's wedding in Rajasthan. He also took with him his older sister Shekha, who has suffered from TB for years. She completed the full course of TB meds last year but this past Friday (during C.'s birthday party and before the wedding, all on the same day , you know) she had another relapse. She's been getting sicker and sicker this past month or so. O.'s in Rajasthan with her now deciding whether to admit her in a hospital there or to do it here. Her four children are with me. Pray for them all.

I think I'll start teaching everyone reading tomorrow.

Graduation Photos 1

I got the pictures from the photographer from our Graduation/Conference last month. Here's one to start with.
Graduates lined up ready to make their procession before the graduation ceremonies.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Phoebe Got Married

This is the only picture I have of Phoebe getting ready. Her aunt is pinning on her saree. The rest of the photos will come from the photographers eventually.
The wedding was lovely, what I noticed of it at least. I was in charge of getting the flower garlands for the bride and groom for the ceremony. I was in charge of a lot of things. I forgot the garlands, that is, until the groom leaned over right before he was to walk in and said, "Did you get the garlands?" Ahhh. Well, I sent my driver, (yes I have one) and said, I don't care how you do it but I need two wedding garlands pronto (or something along those lines.) I was somewhat distracted during the ceremony waiting for the garlands to arrive, but arrive they did, mere moments before they were due. Whew.

Everything else was great, even the food.

There had been some family disturbances earlier in the groom's family and some other minor things, so I know that I and others were praying for a peaceful wedding day, and it was. It was all that I could have wished it to be, thank the Lord.

However, the prayers must have stopped on Friday because on Saturday afternoon while O. and I were sleeping (read passed out*) in bed the grooms brother-in-law came to our house to inform us that there was a big fight at the groom's sister's house over lunch and all the groom's family had packed their bags and were leaving.

We called everyone to our house and it was just the smallest thing. The groom's other brother-in-law, who lives in our city works with us, does not like Phoebe for some reason and from the time Phoebe came into their house on Saturday he wouldn't enter the house. He had been against the marriage from the beginning, although we don't know why. It's his wife's brother who got married to Phoebe, not even his own flesh and blood... Yes, it makes no sense.

It all got worked out in the end and everyone apologized to everyone else. So alls well that ends well...

*I was so tired Saturday after C.'s birthday party and the wedding on Friday that I was dizzy and felt like throwing up all day from sheer exhaustion. Oh well, now it's Sunday and I'm just fine.

C.'s 6th

Beautiful C. on her 6th birthday (April 24th).
In the evening of that same day before Phoebe's wedding. (In another pink dress...) The girl loves to pose for a picture.
I also promised her that I would take her to the beauty parlor to get her hair straightened for her birthday. So after her "Kid Party" in the morning we went for straightening. As you can see in this photo from the evening, her very curly hair didn't get too straight and it just curled back up in the heat, but she was immeasurably happy about that "straight" hair all day long.

*When I told her she couldn't wash her hair after it was straightened because it would get curly again she said to me, "I'll never wash my hair again."

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Samuel Weds Fibi

Friday, April 24th is C.'s birthday AND Phoebe's* wedding. Phoebe has lived with me for the last four years since her mother died and she's finally marrying her long time love, Samuel, on Friday.

It's been a busy week. It's why I've not been around.

* Phoebe always spells her name "Fibi" in English.

Friday, April 17, 2009

The Old Favorites

As you'll see in the next post, "Nursing Reading" - I've been reading a lot, but I lack reading material. So, I've (happily) resorted to reading old favorites to pass the hours spent everyday nursing my baby. Here is what I've Reread recently:

Ogre Ogre by Piers Anthony. This is most definitely an OLD favorite. I think I read it for the first time twenty years ago - at the very least. Since then it's been read by me 4-5 times. The tale of Smash the Ogre and his six female friends on a journey through Xanth... I enjoy this one today as much as I did twenty years ago.

Still Life With Crows* by Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child. This is the novel that introduced me to (-sigh-) Special Agent Pendergast. Preston and Child, probably most famous for their book, Relic, introduced Special Agent Pendergast as a main protagonist in Cabinet of Curiosities which procedes Still Life With Crows chronologically, but I read SLWC first and of all the Pendergast novels, it remains, by far, my favorite. Another Sigh.

These Old Shades by Georgette Heyer. I love Georgette Heyer's writing, it contains the wittiest dialog I have ever read - anywhere. Other than the fact that I have no idea why this book is titled "These Old Shades" it is my most favorite of all the Heyer books I've read. A romance between red headed French Leonie and the Duke of Avon... I think Heyer really liked these characters too because, as far as I know it the only book of hers with something like a sequel. TOS was published in 1926 and then in 1932 Devil's Cub was published and features Leonie & the Duke's son as main character and all the main characters of TOS make appearances as well. I finished rereading Devil's Cub today and it was like visiting old friends.

If you (are a woman and) have never read Georgette Heyer, try her you might like her. But her books are mighty hard to find...

Well, I'm going in reverse and starting Cabinet of Curiosities (for the 2nd time) today. A package from the US arrived at the local post office and I'll pick it up tomorrow. I think it contains a book for me, an Elizabeth Peter's novel, but I cannot remember the title. Monday I'm going to a big city that has a big bookstore - I already made my list of books to look for.

Old favorites are great, new favorites are even better...

* This one is graphic, not for the faint hearted. Don't say I didn't warn you.

Nursing Reading

I've always read a lot while I've nursed my children. Unfortunately, I don't have a lot of access to English books where I live so I've been rereading a bunch of old favorites lately.

In the midst of that I did get four (previously unread) books that I ordered with a Christmas CG which were:
Sweet Revenge by Diane Mott Davidson
The Final Warning by James Patterson
Pigs in the Parlor by Frank & Ida Mae Hammond
And another book that was just so good I can't even remember what it was. Maybe there was no 4th book. Don't blame me, I have four children.

Sweet Revenge was much like all the rest of D.M.D's Goldy the caterer books. They've kind of become predictable. I liked them better when they had the recipes interspersed throughout the novel.

The Final Warning. What can I even say. Mr. Patterson, I love your Max and the other bird children books. But did you have to forsake a PLOT in your effort to promote your "Save the Environment" propaganda? Snif. I expected more from you, this novel was a cheap trick. (shaking head) And I do want to save the environment!

Pigs in the Parlor is a book about deliverance from demons. No really, it's not a novel, that's seriously what it's about. I found it informative and helpful.

These are the newest books I've read while nursing.

Somebody Must Have Prayed

Remember when I put up a post about my slow computer a few days ago?

Well, last night my computer guy just called and came over out of the blue and fixed my computer's fan (which made a horribly annoying noise for the last 2+ years.) While doing that he saw how slow my computer was and did something about it.

Hey, whoever prayed for my computer - Thanks!

Happenings Of The Last Week

I considered writing "Odd Happenings ... Week" in the Title, but changed my mind when I realized that this past week hasn't been any "odder" than any other week in my life.

We've continued to have some little trouble with the "neighbors." A couple guys threatened O. on Saturday night. O. then attempted to lodge a complaint at the police station and spent most of Sunday and Monday working on that - basically sitting at the police station waiting to meet the head guy. Nothing happened and one of our co-workers later described the time spent at the police station as them sitting "like dogs."

After a prayer meeting on Monday O. got the brilliant idea to send me to the police station to lodge a complaint from my side. I wasn't really for this idea since I didn't consider our situation to be quite so dire and me lodging a complaint (as an American) holds a lot of weight. I would rather have waited to play this card until a much more dire situation presents itself.

But, O. really wanted me to do it, so I did.

P. (the 6-week old) and I went down to the police station late afternoon Monday and were hustled immediately into an office (they unceremoniously kicked the other people who were in there out so we could go in). I submitted my complaint, had a copy of it stamped to prove that the copy I gave had been received and then went home. O.'s been much less stressed out since then.

A foreign woman and a small baby (out in the heat of the day) get real high preference in India.

Then early yesterday morning (3:20AM to be exact) I got a phone call that one of the members of our staff had delivered her baby. I picked up the phone and this was my conversation:

Me: Hello
The husband: Madam, it's a boy.

Not real vocal that one.

The baby did have to be rushed to another hospital because he had passed stool while being born and had swallowed enough of it to have difficulty breathing. I talked to the doctor at the hospital where he is admitted and she says he'll have to stay for 4-5 days, which is a major bummer. The mom was released from the hospital yesterday, she's doing great.

I spent a bunch of time shuffling between hospitals yesterday with three of my children. I only forgot P. once, which is good for me.

E. & C. are, as of today, officially on summer vacation. Whaaaa.

Like Me

My brother Dan saw the picture of P. in the next post and commented to my mom:

"It looks like Bec."

Thanks, D., It does look like me.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Sweet P.

I love this picture because P. looks exactly like what she looks like.

I've Obviously Lost it

Once, long ago, I took E. & C. (the older 2 daughters) to a simultaneous doctors appt. where they both got vaccinated. I thought to myself afterwards, Never Again.

Yesterday I took P. & G. (the younger 2 daughters) to the doctor for vaccinations - together. This apparently always seems like a good idea to me.

Two very unhappy, feverish and in pain children under the age of 2 later, I'm recalling my earlier self-advice; one day too late. One day too late. Arg.

Sleeping Girls

Both G. & P. were sleeping together and were so cute I took a picture, but P. woke up too soon.
Four sisters asleep in a row.

Easter 2009

Yes, the requisite Easter Dress photo for Grammy. Plus this is the first published photo of all four of my girls together.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Slow Internet

My Internet has gotten almost unbearably slow. For this reason I am often loath to even turn on the computer, hence the lack of blogging.

I have put in an application for a better, faster Internet service, hopefully, that will get connected soon.

Chatterpal Singh

This pastor was called to work among Hindu Sadhus and chose to dress as they did in order to relate better to them.

Passing Of A Sadhu

We got the sad news early this morning that one of the pastors who works under our ministry died last night.

While O. was away in South India he heard that this man was seriously ill and currently in the southernmost state of Kerala. (This pastor is from the Northern state of UP, so he was really far from home.) We all had been praying, but when O. got home last night he said that from what he had been hearing, it didn't look like the man would make it. We got the news around 6:30AM that he had passed away in the night. Apparently, it was typhoid, or a typhoid related shutdown of his organs or something.

You can pray for his family. His name was Chatterpal Singh and he was married with 3 grown daughters.

Tuesday, April 07, 2009

Hotel O

We do stay busy around here. Not just that we have lots of guests coming and going, but I've been especially busy with E. & C. the last few days because they are in the midst of final exams. The Indian school year ends this month. By next week we'll be into summer vacation. Arg.

I'm also trying to get my consular appointment for P.'s passport, US birth certificate, and SS #. We should be heading to Bombay to take care of that in May. (Our little vacation...)

Actually, we're planning to be in the US from mid-July to mid-Sept. This is kind of a pre-notice about that. You can keep it in mind.

This is also a strange free flowing blog post without much of a main point although I think was going to write about the various guests that stay in our house.

Last week we had an interesting crew that just showed up. Well, we had a little notice that some people would be coming but not much. It turns out that one of the guests is the writer of Christian worship songs in Hindi and that he's written at least three songs that we sing all the time. Like, Christians all over India (who worship in Hindi) sing all the time. Somewhat exciting. The Christian community in India is pretty close knit I guess, yet, although there are only 2-4% Christians in the entire country - when you're talking 2-4% of over a billion people, that's still a lot of people...

Wednesday, April 01, 2009

P. Over The Shoulder

Here's my little elf in an over the shoulder shot. They're just so cute that way.

About The Graduation, Etc... I Ain't Foolin'

I’m still trying to catch up on my sleep from the busy weekend.

Our Bible students graduated in a ceremony on Saturday, March 28th. I think it went really well. After that, Sunday and Monday were filled with many meetings and times of fellowship. It was a tight schedule and it was made even more difficult by lugging a 28 day old baby around with me, but she was a trooper – so was I.

It was good to spend time with our pastors, although I wished they could have been a little more involved in the programs. I thank the Lord no one got sick, there were very few accidents – other than something caught on fire in one of the rooms at the conference center and one of our older Karuna Home children slipped while carrying hot water and had to go to the hospital burn unit at 10:30 on Sunday night. He’s OK, burn on his chest.

I also came home hot and tired with several guests on Saturday night after the graduation to find my electricity was out. Sigh.

All in all, it was an excellent time, thanks for your prayers.

I will put up more pictures once I get them from the photographer (which could be after a long time…)

A Picture

We had a photographer at our graduation ceremonies and the pastor's conference this past weekend, so I won't get those pictures in my hand (or computer) for a while, but I took this picture from a friend of mine.

During the graduation they put garlands on us, and Richard Howell (our main speaker) prayed for O. and me. We started our ministry in 1999, so this is our 10th year.