Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Sick kid - my worst thing!

The boys were the only ones who really had anything particular needing doing this morning: they had to walk down to the AVES centre where they collected a packet of chips, jungle energy bar and ₤1 from Jennifer, via Harry who works at the centre. On Sunday at church she said she had something for them, and would drop it off on Monday if she was coming to town, which she actually did happen to do but had forgotten to bring the goodies with her. Thus it was that at exactly 8.36 am this morning, two little boys could be seen running down the road with a very set goal in mind. That of course made the morning drag for them as I said they could eat their stuff for tenzees. Aaron carried his chips around with him, asking every ten minutes what the time is now…we were all VERY relieved when 10 o’clock finally rolled on.

Aaron was quite unexpectedly sick in the early hours of Monday morning – around midnight Sunday night, actually. I woke up when I heard him crying as he walked to the bathroom, and trailed him to stand by while he emptied the rest of the contents of his stomach into the toilet. The first part had already been expelled on his bed – all over his pillows, duvet, and right down to the mattress. What a mess, and what a smell. He couldn’t sleep on his own bed for the rest of the night, obviously, so I set him up on the floor in our room. His nose was bothering him though, which is to be expected after you’ve had curdled juice and cheese snackwiches hurtling through it, but even after blowing it and blowing it there was stuff in it. He was making such a noise with his breathing that I lay awake for an hour, until Nick suggested putting him into the guest room. This I did, but then he came back into our room crying that he was all alone, so I lay on the double bed with him for a while until he was happy and said I could go back to bed. He was absolutely fine after that, although looked a little tired yesterday. It must just have been a bug which was quickly in and quickly out.

Monday, April 28, 2008

Opening of Knollcombes

Nick is on the mend – he is improving slightly each day. Today he is walking around fairly well, and can sit for short periods. He still struggles to get on and off the bed or couch, but it’s good to see the progress anyway.

We had our combined service and reopening of the Knollcombes chapel today. The governor led the service and preached, with Jean playing the organ. It’s wonderful that Nick can call on someone so capable to fill the gap. The service was being recorded for radio broadcast later in the day. The singing was full-bodied but hopelessly out of time with the organ, such that Andrew had to try conduct – I don’t think he’s an experienced choirmaster though because he looked like a giant pendulum trying to urge the errantly dawdling hands of a clock to keep pace. Aaron dozed during the message with his head back and mouth open and everything – probably not a very encouraging sign for a preacher, but since he’s only five it’s forgivable. The message was very good, from Philippians 2:12-13 about working out your own salvation. He was very clear that we don’t earn our salvation, but that once we are saved, we must look like it! People cleared off pretty quickly after the service. Nick was glad to have us home again (I think) as he had just been lying around listening to music and playing guitar. There’s only so much you can do on your back! (The photo was taken before the service, when not many people had arrived yet – there was actually quite a good attendance).

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Ouch, oh, aaaargghhhh

Now here’s a lovely story about the latest news in the Clevely family. It starts yesterday morning, but let me set the scene. 8 am, we’re all ready to head off to Knollcombes for a morning of work at the chapel. Nick was keen to get a handrail cemented in, and I was planning on polishing pews. Nick was just getting some buckets of sand into the car and I was inside putting in a few pieces of the global puzzle I had going on the diningroom table, when Caleb comes rushing in declaring an emergency. “Dad’s lying in the road and can’t get up”, he says. I go running outside to see my poor husband sitting on the side of the road up by the school yard, the blue bucket next to him. He had been half dragging, half carrying it towards the car, but decided it was taking too long so picked it up and turned…which threw his back out, causing him to crumple to the ground! He was totally unable to move because of the pain, but after half-sitting on the road for a few minutes, with me hovering over him looking very worried and cars going by with staring passengers, he decided to try move himself into the church, which he did by slowly and painfully shuffling and moving, until he had gotten himself into the vestry where he lay flat on his back for the next hour. Not being much I could do for him, I went off to Knollcombes anyway, as the boys were all geared up and would have been disappointed at the sudden cancellation of plans. There wasn’t too much I could really do at the chapel, as some of the pews still needed sanding, so I was home again after an hour. By this time Nick had started crawling up the aisle of the church, so I stood by watching helplessly again as he made his way up. Once he was at the stairs at the front he managed to pull himself into a standing position, and slowly walked the rest of the way home, as far as the lounge where he manoeuvred himself onto a couch, and that’s where he stayed for the rest of the day. He was undecided whether he would spend the night on the couch in the lounge or in bed, but opted for the latter which I was glad about. It took him about ten minutes to get up the stairs in the house. He slept reasonably well, although every time he had to roll over it was painful.

Today he is slightly improved, but still mostly immobile. He spent the morning on the bed and the afternoon on the couch. He can’t even get to the hospital to see about his back as it’s too sore to move around so much at present, so perhaps he’ll go on Monday. Yesterday morning, realizing that he wouldn’t be going anywhere in a hurry, he phoned the governor to arrange for him to preach tomorrow, so that’s taken care of. It’s a real shame that Nick has to miss the opening of Knollcombes though, especially after all the work he’s put into it.

This morning I had to finish off the curtains, then do some quick prep for Good News Club as I was doing the teaching. When my Nick isn’t there I have to lead the worship too which I don’t really like doing, but I didn’t really have a choice in the matter! The kids were fairly subdued today, and afterwards during the playtime a couple of the girls made ‘get well soon’ cards for Nick, which they wanted to deliver. A lot of the girls came home here to ‘have a look at him’ – he must have felt like a real freak show!

We had chicken legs and mealies for supper tonight, which were delicious. The boys managed to eat them off the cob, although Caleb didn’t enjoy his very much. Aaron ate with gusto, and I told them about the mealies we used to eat from Grampa’s vegetable garden at 6 Protea Road! I smiled to myself when we were instructing the boys to eat the corn off the cob in rows, systematically, as this is what my dad used to tell us and we didn’t appreciate the advice!

Friday, April 25, 2008

What we did today

During the morning I made an awful pot of celery, potato and pumpkin soup, which is almost inedible, and a batch of coffee kisses which flopped in the oven, rendering my careful piping of the batter into one flat biscuit. Not a very successful morning of domesticity. After lunch I watched a DVD with the boys (Ratatouille – doesn’t Pixar always do fantastic movies?!). I had to go up the road to fetch a piece of red velvet curtain from someone, which I need to altar to fit at Knollcombes – there is an archway behind the pulpit where the curtain will be hung. Nick had a session with the lay preachers in our house from 5 pm, so I was carefully concealed upstairs and the boys were playing outside, too far away to be a noise. We ate our supper very quietly in the diningroom! At 7.30 Nick had a bible study at Half Tree Hollow, but he was home again by about 7.50, as only four people had arrived and they couldn’t get into the Guide Hall where they meet.

Caleb cut his finger on his little craft blade yesterday while playing with playdough, while I was out in town. Nick tended to him by putting on a plaster, although more for comfort’s sake. Today, Caleb was complaining that it was very sore, and ‘is there any medicine for the pain?’ I thought I should see what lay under the plaster, but oh, the tears when I tried to get the plaster off. Caleb doesn’t cry very often, so when he does, we really take note! I tried cutting the plaster off, but dear one was very worried about me cutting his finger, and I couldn’t pull it off because the edge of it was over the wound. Eventually I had to take him to Nick, who showed no mercy in pulling it off. We couldn’t even see the little cut underneath, but his skin had gone all manky – wrinkly and pale. He cried about it all for a good ten minutes after that, but it didn’t really take him long into the afternoon to feel better about it. There were no more complaints for the rest of the day. Funny how things like that can be so traumatic!

Wednesday, April 23, 2008


Yesterday it was overcast all day which felt strange, and it was also a public holiday so everything was very quiet. We had a good day of school holiday. I did a bit of weeding while I was waiting for the washing to come out, with the boys helping…we seem to have some tomato plants growing again, as well as a pumpkin plant – the pumpkin seeds must have been lying dormant for quite some time, as we’ve certainly never planted them! Of course we’ve left those untouched, to see if they will bear anything (like tomatoes and pumpkins, preferably).

Nick spent most of today out at Knollcombes again, putting in a few more stone steps. Honestly, I never knew my husband was such a handy-man/builder, but perhaps it’s genetic after all! Two JWs came to visit today. One of the ladies has been before, and the other lady is the late head-honcho’s wife. After giving them a glass of juice, I left them to it. Nick spoke with them for a long time, but of course they don’t listen to reason, logic, doctrine or the bible.

Monday, April 21, 2008

Family time

Nick was out at Knollcombes all day yesterday, so it was a bit of a lonely day. The boys and I walked down to town and back, and then watched a DVD in the afternoon. Nick said the chapel is looking good though, and he’s especially pleased with the work he’s done on putting some steps in the slippery, muddy path that leads from the road down to the chapel. It seems likely that they’ll have another work party next Saturday, before the combined service on the 27th.

Today was splendiferous. After Nick came home from church, we had lunch of pork stir-fry with veggies which the boys disliked, then pudding, and then we all went to sit outside under the shade of the bamboo, on our camp chairs. Nick and I were chatting, and the boys were there just listening or drawing, and then Nick tackled one of Caleb’s new model airplane kits. He and Caleb worked on it for a long time. Aaron and I went inside briefly to throw together a box-mix of choc-chip cookies, then went outside again. We had our delicious cookies outside with tea/coffee/juice, and then Nick carried on with the model while I sorted some photos of Caleb. Eventually at about 5 pm we all came inside! We were out there the whole afternoon, all together, and it was fabulous. All the work on the braai and roof has been done by Nick’s own hands.

Friday, April 18, 2008

Best birthday ever

It’s been a great day for Caleb today, celebrating his 7th birthday. The day kicked off at about 6.20 when the boys were awake and ready to open presents. We went downstairs at about 6.45 for the traditional present-hunt, and then the frenzy of opening, ably assisted by Aaron. After (during) breakfast Nick built Lego while Caleb played with a Transformer. We bought the Transformer two years ago from the UK via Scilla, but thought it would have been too difficult for him at the time, so it’s been sitting on top of our cupboard since then! We headed off to Rosemary Plain for our tenzees, although by then it had started drizzling a bit, so we took cover under the bus shelter, just in time to avoid a heavier downpour. Since being in the graffiti-ridden shelter wasn’t very conducive to picnicking, we didn’t stay very long, but managed to fit in the scheduled family photo. Back home I put together a meccano-style car while the boys played, and then we pottered about until lunch. Caleb decided that we would have lunch at Sally’s instead of Donny’s, as it was hot and sunny in Jamestown again. During the afternoon Nick went off to Knollcombes to get some work done in the chapel – we’re hoping to have a combined service there next Sunday, sort of an official reopening after the big job of maintenance there. Still a lot of work to be done though, after the new roof has been finished and the interior painted. They need to paint the concrete floor, wash windows, etc etc.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

On holiday (AGAIN!)

We had our last day of school today, finishing off the book ‘Mountain Born’. It didn’t feel like we really needed a holiday at this point, so it wasn’t a huge relief when school ended, but it’s nice to know that we have a bit of a break anyway. School was good today. The boys had to do a little drill worksheet, drilling the addition facts 1-9, which they both whipped through in about two minutes, I think both with full marks. A couple of weeks ago Aaron would have taken at least 10 minutes over this with a lot of sighing as well, so it’s really encouraging to see the progress and improvement.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Soup on the fly

I made a big pot of vegetable soup today, although added bacon because I felt sorry for my non-vegetarian family. It was delicious, but the boys really sighed their way through it. I found celery and pumpkin in The Star this week, which were a real winner with me. Nick asked if I could please moosh the pumpkin next time. He managed to do it on the fly, as the big chunks were more than he could brave! Aaron liked the pumpkin but not the celery or onions, and Caleb didn’t like any part of it except the bread that went with it. He even battled with the potatoes. He almost cried his way through it, but in the end the both managed to clean their bowls so were rewarded with milkshakes for pudding. They spent some time playing in the dirt outside during the afternoon, getting so dirty, but loving it – I wonder if moms of girls have such dirty children, or if its just a boy thing?

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Chocolates from the Dentist and heresy from the Anglicans

I took Caleb to the dental hygienist today for his long-awaited and twice-postponed fissure sealant. I suspect he was a bit apprehensive, not knowing what to expect, and as usual his eyes watered and he was wary of having things in his mouth, but he coped superbly. I was with him the whole time, only popping out briefly to check on Aaron in the waiting room, who had begged to come with us, and who had been left to his own devices while we were busy (he was conscientiously looking at the pamphlets on how to care for your dentures and so on). Caleb needed some reminders to open his mouth wide, but really it was such a short procedure that he didn’t battle. As we were leaving, the dentist who worked on my tooth saw us and told us to wait, and came back with two bar-ones for the boys which he just ‘happened to find’ in his bag. He told us not to tell anyone the dentist had given them to us! Ha ha…

School this morning was pretty good – it must have been, because the boys gave me a ‘good girl’ sticker for my big chunk of patience. (*Groan*, I just see that I’m still wearing it…after going to the dentist and town!!)

I had six girls for our group yesterday, and they mostly arrived on time, too. We had our best session yet. I read to them the chapter from my book, which usually isn’t all that relevant for them, but sparked off some discussion. We spoke about things that are pure, lovely, noble, excellent etc that they should be filling their heads with, and then on a tangent they told me what the Anglican minister teaches them when he comes to do his weekly lesson with them. Apparently Jesus isn’t the Son of God, but Joseph’s son, and God and Jesus want the devil to be their friend but the devil hates them. What utter nonsense! I set them straight on both counts, and warned them that just because he is a minister, they mustn’t believe everything he says, rather testing his teachings against the bibles. When I told Nick later, he was quite angry about it – there is so much heresy coming at these kids from the church’s direction, which is as bad as the apathy they get from their families. But, I felt it was a very positive meeting with them, and they are certainly enjoying it. It was especially great that they gave input. Not that they are usually quiet girls…on the contrary, but I think the mindset is that they simply wait to be taught instead of thinking and interacting.

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Chopper at work

During the afternoon we went to the pool, and there were a few extra people around who had come to see the new helicopter in action. Today was the first day that it was actually doing work, and also the first day we saw it. It’s very loud, even from our house it sounded noisy.

Saturday, April 12, 2008

Ticked off (the to-do list)

As I sit here in Nick’s office typing this, I’m feeling very satisfied with the completion of the work in here! I started the painting yesterday afternoon, but couldn’t paint the sea-facing window panes because the sun was shining directly in, so had to finish early this morning before GNC. After GNC I cleaned the windows, scraping away excess paint etc, and even had to get onto the porch roof to be able to properly clean the outside of that window! Then while we were watching a DVD this afternoon I brasso’d the brass arm-thingies that keep the windows open. They didn’t come up perfectly clean, but there are bits of it that are shiny and look pretty good, especially now at night. Once all the cleaning and vacuuming was done, I hung the blinds.
I took scissors to my hair this morning, being rather tired of the way I have to make such an effort to blow-dry it in order for it to hang properly, and cut off the lower two inches all around. I now have a short bob again, and I really like it. Nick’s comments have not been positive – in fact, the only thing he’s said is “why did you cut your hair?” Oh well.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Making and spending dough

Today has been what I would call a successful day. The first thing I did was to rather apprehensively get a loaf of bread baking. The boys nearly had their heads right in the machine, trying to see what was going on, so I had to shoo them out the kitchen eventually so I could concentrate on what to do. It turned out to be a very simple process after all – I had to just put the ingredients in (order is very important – liquids first, then flour, and yeast right on top), select the program, select the crust colour, and then press start. Three hours and forty minutes later, the loaf was baked. The bread machine mixes the ingredients, kneads the dough, lets it stand, kneads it again, lets it stand again, and then bakes it. I kept an eye on it during school, as there is a viewing window which is quite handy. School was good – no hiccups. I administered a test in maths, which the boys both did very well in. Aaron rather ingeniously used his ruler as a number line for one problem! I didn’t mind though – at least he used his initiative. I don’t normally get begged to read another chapter in history, but the boys are so interested in the discovery of Tut’s tomb that they wanted me to go on! I didn’t though. We were finished shortly after 12, but which time the bread had cooled down sufficiently to slice it. It was amazing. Cooked through quite properly, with a wonderfully crispy crust. I used wholemeal flour, so it was healthy too. We had single-slice open sandwiches with melted in margarine and grated cheese. Wow! Of course I had to photograph it…

The afternoon was good too. After washing up and tidying the kitchen, I settled into my room for a tidy-up. I had lots of sorting, organizing, and cleaning to do. I had to go to town for a few things, and both boys came with me. I wanted to see if I could find anything in the corner shop as a farewell gift for Scilla, and everything is now 75% off. The boys had taken some pocket money with them, and we were all surprised to find some little Bionicle spiders at the shop, which were 15p each. They’re proper Lego, just very little, so that was an excellent price. Then it was on to the Emporium where I needed paint for Nick’s office. I found a tin, only one tin, of the paint I wanted, and it was reduced too, so that was another success.

The schoolroom is coming along quite well. The chap doing the plumbing was in today to install the water heater, which is now done, and there was someone else doing electrical stuff, installing plug points and things. Steve has tiled as far as he can for now, and they’ve painted a small section of the schoolroom in a creamy colour, just one coat, which looks so good. The ship came back today from its UK voyage, and we wait to see whether the flat-pack kitchen units they ordered have arrived.

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

New kitchen gadget

The first thing I had to do this morning was to renew my medical insurance. It actually expired yesterday, but I forgot about it and got there too late, so I thought that I’d better not have any medical emergencies between now and then, and that I’d better attend to it post haste! I was there just before nine and they were already open, and it was just a matter of paying over the necessary amount to cover me for the next three months. They have all the details on the computer. I was home in time to start school at the usual time, and we whipped through the work in the early session quite quickly, finishing well before 10. That left us time to look at photos of the boys’ births – all the gory c-section pictures, which they wanted to see. I’m looking forward to sorting all the photos into chronological order, so that I can start scrapping in June! I acquired a bread-maker last night from Scilla, who had originally brought it to the island for Vilma. Scilla asked to borrow it while Vincent and Vilma are away, and Vilma left instructions that it was to be left at the manse when Scilla leaves (which she is doing on Saturday), apparently on a permanent basis as Vilma doesn’t use it much. I spent most of the afternoon working on the blinds for Nick’s office. Before I hang them though, I have to paint the window panes and pelmets, as well as Nick’s door which still says “I love you” on the back.

Aaron whispered in my ear today, during the reading of the bibleless peoples all over the world, that he is going to be the missionary who will translate bibles into the languages they need. Lately he is constantly providing analogies of what sin is like, usually quite well. I’m glad that he is thinking in that direction!

Tuesday, April 08, 2008

CD completed!

Nick finally finished work on Tammy’s CD some time today. The whole thing is very well done - Nick did an excellent job with the guitar, drums, bass, backing vocals, and overall engineering of the album. Now that it’s finally out of the way, I should have him home on Saturday afternoons again! That will be super. School today was fine – we had a peek at homonyms, which the boys caught on to quickly. They had to distinguish between to, too, and two, which they didn’t struggle much with. In history today we started a new book about Tutankhamen, who was only 18 when he died, and about his tomb, and embalming, and during the week we will read about the discovery of his tomb and the treasures. I’m really enjoying it, myself! The boys and I visited my old lady, Caroline, who commented that she hasn’t seen me since we’ve been back – very bad of me! I took both boys to town, for a change, just to get a few grocery items. It was unusual for Caleb to want to come with us as he’s normally such a homebody. The boys helped to carry the bags of purchases. Supper tonight was macaroni cheese, except that I used tuna instead of bacon, and colourful pasta shapes instead of macaroni. So actually it was nothing like macaroni cheese, it was more like a tuna pasta casserole.

Monday, April 07, 2008

Long school morning

I cancelled my beading with Lorna this afternoon, because by lunchtime we hadn’t finished school yet – so instead of rushing through everything, getting there late, and rushing home again for the girls’ group, I decided just to skip it. School just took a very long time this morning. I think we started slightly late, and then there were a couple of things that took longer than normal. Aaron had a few problems with his maths which needed explaining, and took a long time reading some words in another book. Caleb just goes on ahead with his maths – he reads the instruction himself, and just gets on with what needs doing. Anyway, we had lunch, then built some Lego, then carried on with the last two books. In history studies we’re taking a look at ancient Egypt, which has been very interesting. We’re coming at it from a few different angles in different books, which gives a good oversight. We started a new read-aloud called “Mountain Born”, the first chapter of which introduced a new-born lamb that seemed to be dead, but which was resuscitated and is now a little boy’s pet on their farm. The boys are enjoying it so far. We finally finished school for the day at 1.50, which I think is a record lateness. I had a bit of time to scrap, and then had my girls’ group at 4. I had four of them this week, mostly arriving quite late, but it was fun anyway. I’ve challenged them to do a ‘blessed list’ – listing everything in their lives that they are thankful for. I also have to do it.

Sunday, April 06, 2008

Pompoms, fish and helicopter

It’s been hot again today, although we had a few patches of cloud cover during the day and even a short shower of rain this morning. During the morning I helped Aaron to finish his pompom, and then got Caleb started on one. Caleb did very well with it, successfully winding the wool round and round the cardboard circles, and then I cut and tied it. He also did a bit more knitting, but kept on snarling it and dropping stitches, so I advised him to give it up for now, which he was glad to do. In the afternoon we went to the docks, Donny’s side, to feed the fish – just for a change of scenery and to get out the house for a little while. It was great. The tide was pretty low so we could clamber over the rocks, and we saw a school of very large rockfish at the water’s edge. We had some juice and biscuits there, and then also sat on a bench outside Donny’s, in the shade, where we could watch the ship belonging to the French people who are doing the rock stabilising, being offloaded. The crane was working quite quickly to get sheets of fencing off the barge and onto the wharf. They have also brought over a little one-man helicopter, which we have not yet seen.

Church tonight was very good – Nick preached about miracles, and why we don’t see them anymore. His main point was that miracles highlighted a turning point in the history of the church – like when the apostles were planting churches, or when Jesus was ministering. They had already tapered off by the time Hebrews was written, about 70AD. Very interesting.

VIP guests

We had a fabulous visit last night with the governor and Mrs. They arrived shortly after 7 pm, by which time supper was completely ready and waiting. We ate straight away – after some panic about what to make for supper, I settled on lasagna, with stir-fried vegetables and garlic bread (ordinarily I would have had salad, but I only had green tomatoes on hand). Conversation flowed freely on varied topics including government and councillors, theology, stories of how we met our spouses and so on. I had a busy afternoon in preparation, evening going so far as to make chocolate leaves to decorate the nougatina meringue, the recipe for which I procured from a magazine.

Today we hired ‘Gummi Bears’ for the boys. It took Nick and me back to our childhood – we could still remember the theme song! Caleb wanted to learn how to knit after that, so I showed him and he managed a few rows by himself, but he would need a lot more practice if he were to become proficient! At the same time I got Aaron making a pompom, and then Nick wanted a haircut. In between other things I finished the ironing, and then this afternoon Nick has been at Tammy – this will be their last Saturday afternoon working on the album, as it has to be finished this week.

Saturday, April 05, 2008

School stuff again

We had a ‘fun Friday’ in school today. During the week we’ve been reading a book called “Gooney Bird Greene”, about an eccentric little girl who dresses most unusually and likes to be smack in the middle of everything. Each day she went to school and told an absolutely true story to the class about something that had happened to her. For example, one morning she was late because she had to direct an orchestra. As it happened, she was on her way to school when a big red and white bus drove by, and the bus driver stopped and asked if she knew the way to the town hall, as he was driving the symphony orchestra there and didn’t know the way. She got on the bus and told the driver where to go, thus directing the orchestra! Very cleverly written. Anyway, yesterday afternoon I declared that we would all come to school today dressed up in a GBG style. Caleb came with an extra pair of underpants over his shorts, Aaron had two scarves wrapped around his neck, and I wore on odd combination of clothing! We started off the day with finishing the book, then did everything else more or less backwards, finishing the day with our science. It felt very peculiar, but was nice for a change.

Yesterday morning I sent the boys outside to write on the kitchen window with a window chalk I found in the shops. It’s nice stuff, like special paint for windows which is applied with a sponge tip applicator. I thought it would be fun, but the boys didn’t really. Caleb got it all over himself and couldn’t get the right amount of liquid chalk to come out, so it ended up running down the window in a long blob. Aaron managed better, but I guess when Caleb gave up he did too.

Thursday, April 03, 2008

Burning it in

This evening we had the inaugural BBQ on Nick’s new creation. He really wanted to test it before doing any more work on it, to see if the height of the brickwork was right for where the grill would rest, for the coals to be close enough to the meat. The boys were very excited at the prospect of a braai, and so from about 3 pm they wanted to start ‘setting up’. I said they could take the camping chairs up to the top section, but that wasn’t enough. They wanted to make paper chains too, to decorate the area. I cut some strips of paper for them and gave them staplers, and they got busy. Nick was home from his guitar lesson by about 4.30, and got started with making the fire shortly thereafter. The boys were very helpful in whatever way they could be, really wanting to get involved. It was fun to sit outside there while the meat was cooking. We served up from inside and then ate outside on our laps. A bit messy, especially where the boys were concerned, but very successful otherwise. Just shows how unused to regular braais we are, where it was pretty much a weekly occurrence when we lived in sunny SA!

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

April Fool!

The first item on the news this morning was that the Wirebird, St Helena’s national bird, is actually not called the Wirebird, but its original name has been mispronounced for many years due to the way that Saints pronounce their w’s and v’s, swapping them around. This phonetic oddity causes ‘towel’ for example, to be ‘tovel’, and ‘Vilma’, ‘Wilma’. The Wirebird, then, was actually originally called the “Viabird”, named because of the indirect way in which it gets from one place to another. :-)

Because it was April Fool’s Day today, the boys wanted to do something special in school. I agreed that we could skip Maths and rather watch some Mathtacular, which they love and I’m sure they learn a lot from it. Perhaps we should have more days of missed maths, but I’m afraid that we might run out of school days before we run out of worksheets then!

In Bible Study, Nick’s been dealing with the portions in 1 Peter about elders and leaders and that, and it’s been very interesting to hear people’s opinions on matters pertaining to the pastor, and their expectations. We had a power cut (very unusual for us) from about 6.45 until 8.15 during the evening. We managed fine though with candles and torches for the worship time and half the teaching, but it would have been very difficult to do the tea without light!

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

Girls' Group

I had my second meeting of the girls’ group this afternoon, for which only two girls arrived. I was pleased though, as they are the more serious two of the group regarding Christianity. It was a good opportunity to speak a bit more deeply, and one of the girls, who already seems to have a good grasp of the gospel, wanted to pray the ‘sinners’ prayer’ to make it official. I’m delighted, and am praying that these girls will be rooted in the Word, and grounded in their faith.