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Showing posts from May, 2010

Pumpelly baby #4

I've realized from some e-mails and comments, that I have not officially made it clear that YES, baby #4 is on the way! I put it in our monthly prayer letter, but many of you are not on that e-mail list. If you aren't and would like to be, please e-mail me at pumpellys@gmail.com and I'll add you!

So yes, baby #4 (and I'm reasonably certain the LAST) is on the way. I'm due Nov 12th, so I'm about 15 weeks and already far too big for my liking (I have an outtie already!). But I'm feeling fine and the kids are excited and hoping for a girl.

Everyone has been asking about delivery plans, so I'll tell you what I know right now. A month before I'm due I'll fly down to South Africa where the medical care is top-notch. I have no concerns at all about delivering there. Chad and the kids will follow closer to the due date. I am preparing myself for a C-section again, since Anya was born that way for being breech (even though the boys were both born naturall…

Hiking the hills

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We like to get out on the weekends, let the kids get some exercise. Malawi has some great hiking areas. One not too far from us is called Bunda rock. We'd heard that people go up to the top all the time, often spending the night and praying. "It's an easy hike" we were told. So we packed up the kids, the rock-climbing gear to let the kids practice rapelling, and lunch, and headed out. We obviously did not get enough information before we left, because Bunda rock is actually lots of tall rocks with lots of places to climb with lots of local villages surrounding it! We did out best, but clearly picked the wrong place to start climbing!

Chad was loaded down with ropes and lunch, Miriam had Isaac strapped to her back, and Anya and Ethan quickly got tired of the 40 children (yes, we counted, and there were literally 40) who attached themselves to us and followed us everywhere, pulling Anya's blond hair and laughing at Ethan. As they laughed, Ethan got grumpier, and the…

The strangest sight

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Last Sunday we were driving to church when Anya pointed out a very strange sighting--a man in nothing but boxers standing outside watering his driveway (to keep the dust down). Not the kind of thing we see everyday. Now, if only that was the strangest thing we'd seen that week...

the day before we had gone to a national monument to walk through the botanical gardens surrounding it. As we were minding our own business, a bus drove up and off-loaded a group of nuns. They arranged themselves on the steps of the monument, and it became clear they were about to shoot a music video! Strange enough, huh? So we watched them sing their songs and do their choreographed swaying that is so common here. But then they were ready to do their second song, and of COURSE a costume change is in order, right? You can't shoot two videos with them wearing the same clothes! So the whole group of them stripped their tops off and changed shirts...right there on the steps of the monument, in the middle …

Photos from Anya's village stay

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I know this is late, but we've finally got a faster connection (by our standards, mind you!) at the mission office. I thought you might enjoy seeing some photos from the village. 1. our host family's house (he's the village chief's last-born son)

2. Anya playing ball with all the kids

3. the village

4. the children getting water (used for bathing, cooking, and drinking

In Whom do we trust?

In the old days of mission-work, missions used to use our abundant financial resources to fund this and pay for that, and subsidize everything. We thought we were doing good, helping our brothers and sisters, spreading equality and opportunity...

Only what we didn't realize is that, instead, we were creating dependency of the local churches on our resources. Think of the stereotyped "welfare mentality" and multiply it by 100. We created the motto, "In the missionaries we trust" because whenever there was a need, we met it. No one had to pray to God or trust in His provisions--they just had to ask the missionary or the volunteer team! Churches didn't reach their neighbors because that's what the missionaries did. They didn't plant new churches, because they couldn't afford to build them a new building and put a roof on it like the missionaries had done for them. They didn't hold training seminars for church leaders because they couldn't pa…

The saga of Blackboots continues...

So the guy came and got the goat, lovingly named Blackboots by Anya, and we managed to send him off with no tears shed from the kids. Story over, or so we thought. As we were driving out of the gate on Thursday, who should ride up but Blackboots, securely tied to the man's bicycle. Chad leaned out the window, told him we could not deal with a goat on any day but Friday, and off we drove. Imagine our surprise when we arrived home later that day and found none other than Blackboots penned up in our back yard again! To appease the kids' cries, we secured the gates and unchained Jake, the Rottweiler, to see if we could get him to 'adjust' to a new creature. All seemed to be going well so Chad went off for his afternoon lecture while I settled into grading the first exams. All of a sudden I hear the most horrible bleating, children screaming, and then our houseworker yelling. I start to run outside, then realize what must have happened, and I ran back for a weapon. All I co…