christmas cards or pictures

Hey, we have some friends coming over next week, so if any of you have some extra Christmas cards you want us to have =), send them to

Phil Yoders,

5162  Hwy. 48 N.

Cumberland Furnace, Tn.   37051

asap! They are leaving the 1st or 2nd of Feb. We would love to have your picture on our wall! =)

Melody for the Helmuths

Classes and Christmas

When I last wrote we had just started teaching English again (six weeks ago:). That has been a bit of a roller coaster. In the morning classes we started out with two classes I had all the students who didn’t know very much and Micheal had the same students that he had before vacation. Some of which know quite a bit. It started out that I had four little girls in my class. This was a small class but I was having fun with them. I could easily teach them the alphabet, some conversation, and still have time to play some games before the hour was up. As the next couple weeks passed however, I slowly kept getting more students till I was consistently having 10 students. So I told them that anybody above the ten that I had could come, but they wouldn’t get a book unless one of the others didn’t come. This was working pretty good until we told them that we were going to have a Christmas Party. Soon after we told them this, I had up to 25 students. It was to the point I couldn’t really teach them much of anything, but now that the party is over with the students are dwindling down to more manageable numbers.

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The first four students.

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Some of the many I ended up with.

In the afternoon class I had the opposite happen. When we started I had 20 students so we narrowed them out by grades. When we said that those in third grade or less couldn’t come I had 10-12 students, which is about the right amount. So I was teaching those, but of the 12 I could tell there was only 3-4 that really wanted to learn. The rest just came for the fun. Over the next two months the less dedicated dropped out till now I am down to a consistent class size of 4 with 1-2 others that come occasionally. Some of these really weren’t even trying to learn till I really started giving them a hard time. I showed them the attendance sheet and told them see, the two that have come the most are the ones that have learned. I asked the others if they really wanted to learn or only came for the fun. They all sheepishly looked at each other and said they wanted to learn. I must admit, since then, they have been putting a lot more effort into learning.

Some of the board (James Mullet, and Delbert Kline), and Chandra (school teacher for American staff) arrived here on the tenth. We had decided that Chandra would be living with Eltons so she moved in with them right away and started getting settled there.

We enjoyed having the board around even though this meant a lot of meetings. We especially enjoyed the Friday evening when they made supper for everybody. This included the Khmer staff and families. After a delicious American supper, they, the board, had some early Christmas gifts for everybody:) Then we watched the CAM Open House Slides. It was interesting watching the Khmer people realize that there are places that are far poorer than here.

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It even looked like a Christmas Party.

One day while the board was still here, I planted a bunch of pepper seeds to add to my collection of vegetables. This time they came up. So far I have tomatoes and peppers, but I have plans to plant some corn and okra too.

On Monday the 19th the board started back to US. Then on Tuesday, we moved all of the school desks and books from our house over to the school house and tried to help Chandra set up desks ect. in the classroom. The next day they started school at the school house. For the first couple days Jody went over to help Chandra out, but since things are getting into a routine over there, she hasn’t been. I was especially glad that we finally had a school teacher because now I don’t need to teach English then try to come home and answer questions and grade yet.

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We needed Mom’s sewing desk as a teachers desk at the school. So Dad bought one piece of plywood and made a new one with only hand tools. 🙂 This one is better than the old one.

That brings us up to the 23rd, two days before Christmas. Things still didn’t slow down since we had a Christmas party to get ready for. So Friday, Michael and I went and got a set of speakers for the party (last year one of the complaints was that they couldn’t hear). While we were doing that, Dad was buying soap, toothpaste, toothbrushes, and candy to put in bags as a small gift to give to whoever wanted it. Friday evening everybody got together for homemade ice-cream. After eating everybody pitched in to help put together the little gift bags. It took close to an hour and a half to put together 350 of the gifts. These would be handed out to everybody along with the 25 Bible Stories and the Torch of Truth magazines that we have translated into Khmer.

On Saturday everybody in our family, worked on getting things ready for the party. Washing bowls, buying ingredients for chili soup, grinding up 20 kg of chicken was only a small part of what happened.

Then came the big day…Christmas morning was busy loading up trucks to get everything needed out to Bakong. Around lunch time we got out there and started getting set up. While some people worked on chili soup, others worked on getting tables and chairs set up. Soon some Khmer friends showed up and helped out. We also had 600 loaves of bread to cut, with everybody pitching in everything got done in time.

As we were doing this, people were slowly dribbling in. Not everybody expected was there at three thirty. So we put off starting till around four o’clock. We had a few special songs, then Michael and I did a flannel graph of Jesus’ Birth with Sen translating. The most important part of the program was Elton preaching, since the reason that we have the party is so that we can share the gospel. After the program was over everybody got to eat some chili soup and bread. I was blessed with how all the Khmer people pitched in to help whenever there was a need. While the Christmas Party was a lot of work, we had a lot of fun too. Altogether we had around 385 people that were there that evening.

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From where the work was done to where the party was being held.

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Two little friends who didn’t want me to put them down.

On Monday our family was sitting around the supper table talking about the gift exchange that we were planning to do that evening. Carissa and Forrest were saying that Alaina had told them whose name Mom had. When Mom looked over at Alaina she piped up, “But I’m not going to tell Heather,” which was who Mom had…:)

Well, I should run the last English class before a two week break awaits me.

Until next time.

Luke For the Helmuths

Vacation

For the past month and a half we haven’t been teaching English (We started teaching again on Monday). We decided to take a break at the same time that they have summer vacation since the attendance last year over this time really dropped. Then at the beginning of November when the school started up again, we were busy. So we had a long vacation…Maybe too long?

Most of October, we as English teachers didn’t have much going. Micheal and Jody worked on getting lessons together so that they have something to go off of when we started teaching again. I didn’t because I didn’t know what level of students I would be teaching. Instead I worked on getting it cleaned up around the house and school. Each of us English teachers also had some missionary kids to teach…Micheal is/was teaching two of his children, Jody had Forrest, and I had Heather and Carissa.

There was some other things that happened over this time. Ryan went SC for a month long visit. While he was there, he did some things like renewing his driving license, working with Johnathon, and hanging out with cousins. While he was gone, I started some plants to put in a garden. I planted a lot of pepper seeds and some tomato seeds, but only the tomatoes came up (of course it had to be something that I don’t really like). Maybe when the board comes, they’ll bring some more pepper seeds so I can try again.

At the end of October we started to get some company, Jody had two friends from home that came for a week. While they were still here, a friend of a friend stayed at our place for three days. He generously payed for my pass to Angkor Watt so I could go with him one day, that was fun, even though we got up an hour before sunrise.

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Angkor Watt at sunrise.

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Lotus flowers and incense sticks. This lady was going into one of the temples to do her “worship.”

Jody’s freinds left the night of Nov. 4th. The same night they left there was a new family that came to the mission. Elton Yoders from Ohio. We have been enjoying getting to know them and the family. Two days later Lori came!!! She had traveled down to South Carolina for a week. Then flew from there to here with Ryan.

It was really good having Lori around and Ryan back making the family complete for a while. Most of the first week we didn’t do much that was unusual. The boys kept drilling as usual and we’d hang out in the evenings. On Friday, the boys took off work and our family went out to the lake with our friends that live there. We had a lot of fun trying to find rats and swimming. Ryan had built a boat out of PVC that we took out. We pulled it behind one of the boats as a type of floating ski. On the way back to the truck that evening there was a beautiful sunset.

 

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Checking other peoples nets to see how many fish they caught.

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The children there love any attention, and especially Dad’s.

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Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday was the water festival here in Seim Reap. All three days town was full of people. On Monday, Michael and I worked on changing out the desk tops at the school. Dad and Elton helped out too after they were finished assessing wells. That evening our family went to watch the races. We got there in time to see the crowds and the last race. Then there was a parade with all the boats in the races.

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The last race of the day.

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There was a lot of water fighting going on in the parade.

Tuesday evening our family headed down to Sihanoukville (a town on the beach) for two days. We had a lot of fun there even though it was really short. Then Friday we spent all day sitting in a van heading back.

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My AMAZING Parents.

 

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We took family pics for Christmas Cards that some of you might get some time…This was just an informal shot though.

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Saturday we wrapped up some things that Lori wanted to get done while she was here. Then Sunday afternoon she left for Canada again:(…

This Monday we started school so maybe you will hear about that in the next blog…

Luke for the Helmuths

P.S. Even if I only write about the highlights and good times, that is not all that we do…Each of us still has work that we do, but I have a hard time trying to get that to sound interesting. 🙂

Fishing!

Sometimes it is really hard to think of something new/interesting to write on the blog, but this time it was really easy. Last week Dallas and I got the chance to go fishing with some of our friends from Kompong Phluk, the fishing village where we have done a lot of wells this past year. Right when we started drilling there the people were very closed to us, and also to the 3 Christian families living there. Now they seem to be a lot more open, and the Christians there are some good friends of ours.

Kompong Phluk is located on the Tonle Sap Lake. The Tonle Sap is a fresh water lake right in the middle of Cambodia. It is interesting for several reasons. First of all is the size, it is huge in dry season (1,000 square miles), but that is nothing compared to rainy season when it increases to around 6,200 square miles. Second is the depth, during dry season the average depth is 3 feet. During rainy season it can rise around 30 feet. The third thing is that there are at least 150 species identified in this lake! One more interesting fact is that the river that drains the lake part of the year reverses and fills it part of the year. You can read about the how and why online. You can find a lot of pictures of this village online if you google the name of the village…

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Kompong Phluk.

The fishing season just opened two or three weeks ago, so the people there are busy trying to catch as many fish as they can before the season closes.  The season lasts for around 2-3 months, but the fish they catch in this time slot is their main source of income for the year so they really go for it. All of us boys, wanted to go with them fishing to see how they do it, and Dallas and I got the chance to go with them last week on Thursday.

On Thursday morning, I told Frank to ask them when would be a good day to go with them. Thursday afternoon at about 3:30 Frank told me that they thought that it would work really well to go out that evening and go with them the next morning. I rushed home packed some stuff into a backpack and rushed to the river for the boat ride down to the village. Even so it was dark by the time that we got there. After siting around and talking  for a while, we decided it was time to go to bed since we would be getting up at around 4:00 A.M. to go fishing.

I had gone swimming for a couple hours that day and was really tired. Since it wasn’t to hot I figured it would be really easy to get to sleep, but I was wrong. I don’t think I slept more than 2 hours that night, mainly because of the noise. All night long there was something going on. For a while, there was people getting home on their little boats. Their boats are very loud because they take the muffler off to make so the engine is a bit stronger. After most of the people were home you could babies crying and the occasional argument from the surrounding houses. Around 11:00 o’clock the big boats started going down the river as the first groups of fishermen headed out to the lake to get an early/late start. This kept up until around 12:00 when all of a sudden it started pouring rain. The rain made enough racket on the tin roof to keep me awake. Once  the rain stopped, the fishermen started going out to the lake again. On top of this every time that Dallas moved the house would shake a bit…All said it was a very long night.

That morning at 4:00 we got up and loaded up the nets on the the boat. Let me describe the nets a bit. They are gill nets, that come in sections or “hands” that are ten meters long and one and a half meters wide. There is a thin rope threaded through the top and the bottom of the net so that you can handle the nets, because the nets themselves are super thin and would tear with only a little bit of pressure. They tie 30 hands together with a little bit of space between each hand to make one stack. So one stack is over 300 yards long. Every 5 yards or 10 yards there’s a float tied to the top of the net to make so it  floats. On the bottom there are weights to make so the nets would stretch out nicely.

Soon Nak showed up and we headed out. Dallas was with Nak and his wife, and I was with Goy and his daughter Srey Neak. It was close to a 30 minute boat ride out to where we were going. It was relaxing heading out. There was clouds all around us, but right over head was a patch of clear skies with a bunch of stars. It just a little chilly (probably 77*). When we got close to where we where going, Nak and Goy headed to different parts of the lake to drop the nets.

When we got close to where Goy wanted to drop his nets, he turned off the boat and helped Srey Neak get things set up to get started. On the one end of the net they tied a float that had a flag on it, and to the bottom of this they tied an anchor to keep the nets from moving when we started dropping the nets. After the net anchor was set Goy started the boat and let it idle along. This pulled the neatly folded nets off the boat.  He was steering the boat and making sure the bottom of the net didn’t get flipped over the top of the net at the same time. While he was doing this, Srey Neak was making sure the stack of nets didn’t get tangled up so that the net could would pull off easily. When the first stack of nets was almost all dropped she found the end of the first stack tied it to the beginning of the second stack. They made it look really easy, but twice we had stop to pull some of the nets back onto the boat to get the placement correct. I was very suprised that there was already quite a few fish in the net in the 15-20 seconds in the water. The third stack they dropped at a different place, but did it the same way. All this time, I was going from the one place to another trying to stay out of the way.

By the time the nets were all dropped it was daylight. After a bit, Goy drove back along the nets making sure that the nets were placed right. At one place, we had to tie the net back together because another boat had driven over it and the propeller hand cut the net, but that was the only problem.

After the nets are dropped, they need to sit for at least 2 hours to give the fish time to get caught. While we were waithing for this, we headed over to where Nak was and had a bit of a snack to tide us over till breakfast. After sitting and talking with them for a while we headed back to pull the nets. We started at the end of nets that was furthest from home so that we’d be working our way closer.

Pulling the nets is the work part of fishing. You need two people to do it. One person pulls on the top of the net and the other person pulls the bottom of the net. This pulls the boat along while picking up the net. While you are pulling, you try to stack the net neatly enough that when it comes time to clean it the net isn’t all tangled up. You also pick the sticks and trash out of the net.

For the first string of nets, I watched as Goy and Srey Neak pulled the nets in, trying to watch how they did it. On the second and third strings which were tied together, Srey Neak and I pulled the nets onto the boat while Goy paddled the boat along. This made so that the pulling wasn’t quite so hard. It was a bit tricky getting it right. You had to pull at the same speed as the other person so that the net stayed stretched correctly. It wasn’t hard work but pulling all the nets in took close to two hours. Once the nets were all on the boat,  we headed back to the house to eat breakfast and clean the nets.

There are two ways to clean the nets, you can either do it by hand or you can use a machine. To clean the nets by hand, you park the boat next to a hut or room that is completely screened in. The screen on the bottom is usually in the water so that the fish can fall into water staying fresh longer. You pull the net through the room and hit the net with loops of nylon rope, which knocks the fish out of the net. Or you can use the machine which has 4 pieces of hose connected to two wheels. When it spins it hits the net as you pull the net over it. The problem with using a machine is that sometimes the net gets tangled on hoses, but it’s a lot easier than doing it by hand.

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You can kind of see the screened room.

After the nets are all cleaned, somebody will come to buy the fish. They scoop the fish into baskets. Each basket is then weighed, because this type of fish is sold by the Kilogram. Then the fish are poured into a cooler with ice. The day that we went along, the boat that I helped on caught 111 kg (244 lbs.) of fish!

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It probably took 8 hours from the time we started dropping the nets till we were finished cleaning them. Goy said that sometimes they can do the process twice in one day.

Sorry I didn’t take my camera along to get pictures of the entire process. Well this is all for this time…

Luke for the Helmuths

 

 

Schools Starting and Stopping

The title might be a little deceptive, but it is true. Only it is two different schools instead of only one…

We (the English teachers) had decided a while ago that we were going to either slow down or stop having English classes when the Khmer school takes their summer vacation. The children’s attendance usually slacks way off when their school isn’t going, and some of the teachers were getting burned out from planning lessons. The teaching isn’t that bad they’d say, but planning the lessons is just work. I was the lucky teacher that had the students that still didn’t know the ABCs and therefore took very little lesson planning. So I was pushing to keep having some classes, especially since I really didn’t know what else I’d do during the day.

Around three weeks ago, my tune really changed. My sibling’s school books arrived at the post office, and less then a week later we started school. I got drafted in to being the teacher for the Dallas, Heather, Carissa, and Forrest until we can get a teacher to come over and take the job. That first week was hectic. I was trying to organize the school books, find all the answer keys, and set up lesson plans while still teaching two English classes. It might not have been to bad if I hadn’t procrastinated so long. I was going to do it on Saturday and Monday since we wanted to start school on Tuesday, but Saturday was one of a long list of busy Saturdays. So that left Monday to do the work I had planned for two days. I found out in a hurry that i should have planned at least three days, but eventually got most of the job done. Tuesday the 16th we started school (we wanted to start early enough that we can take a furlough in early may of next year). That morning from 8:00 to 8:30 I was so busy telling the three oldest what I had planned, that a very excited first grader didn’t even get to start school before I left to teach English. Within the first week, I saw that it wasn’t going to work to try to get the three oldest started and teach a first grader before school. So I asked Jody if she would mind teaching Forrest. She is going to teach him until the new teacher comes for which I am very grateful. 🙂

During this time, we kept discussing what we wanted to do with the English classes. We finally decided that we would stop teaching English for 2-3 months, but we would go out every Friday to do more of a Kid’s Club.  Last week, we told them a Bible story and played games with them. While the attendance wasn’t just amazing, it was better than I expected it might be. We’ll see what happens with it as we go on from here.

The last Friday that we taught English we took out hot dogs and brownies and spent the evening with the children. Most of our regulars came. I think there was around 80 total.

Do you remember the string of busy Saturdays that I mentioned. The last 7 or 8 weeks we have had something come up. Whether it was helping people do modifications to their houses, help move a church, or natives wanting to come visit our house. We have been extremely busy. It was bad enough that one of the guys that works for us said,”The day that we usually rest is busier than the days we work.”

This past week and a half we had a team from Mountain View Nursing Home here. One of the main things they helped us do was build a bathroom for the school/church in Bakong. We still don’t have it completely finished, but they definitely helped us a lot. The girls also helped with cleaning and baking around the house. While we gave them a lot of work to do, we also had a lot of fun. Volleyball, Scotland Yard, and making bamboo firecrackers (for lack of a better term) were among the highlights for fun. We also took them to the floating village which was probably more of a highlight for them than me, but it was still fun.

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The bamboo “firecracker/cannons”:)

Until next time, Luke for the Helmuths!

Birthdays, Thieves, and Accidents!

This past month has been really eventful. Birthdays, thieves, and accidents all took a part in making it that way.

There are other things that made this month  interesting  like switching up classes at school. Before this past month, I have always been teaching students that knew the alphabet really well and had a decent vocabulary, but this past month we decided that it was time for a change. Micheal had 20-25 students in the morning that were clearly at two different levels. There were some who could read easy words well and carry on simple conversations, and there was also the ones who didn’t know all the alphabet, and almost no English words. I had 4-6 students who could read very well, but struggled a little with conversation. Jody on the other hand had 2-5 students who could read fairly well and did very well with talking what English they knew.IMG_8850-1

As you can see the classes were very lopsided, because of this we decided to mix things up a bit. We mixed my class with Jody’s, and I took the half of Micheal’s students who didn’t know anything. So for the past month I have been trying to teach ABC’s and work on the students vocabulary. It seems to be going ok, but I guess we’ll see. We also mixed up the afternoon classes a bit, but it wasn’t as drastic a change as it was for the morning class.

In July, two of our family has Birthdays. Forrest turned six on the 1st, and Carissa turned 10 on the 13th. We didn’t do much for their Birthdays, but Heather made them each a cake, and Mom made them whatever they wanted for supper.

One day this month Mom, Carissa, and Forrest were in the kitchen playing dominoes. Forrest went to get something in one of the other rooms, but when he went to open the solid glass door to the kitchen it wouldn’t open. He thought it just needed a bit more of a push, when Crash the whole door came tumbling down around him. One of the pieces hit him in the back of the head making two parallel cuts. It ended up not being all that bad but it scared every body for a bit. We were all very thankful that it wasn’t worse. IMG_9089-1IMG_9091-1

One morning last week, Dad called up the stairs wondering where I had parked the moto the night before. I told him that I had parked it where we always parked it. He called back that it wasn’t there. We boys started looking around and noticed that some small logs that i had put in front of the one gate that we never use were moved around. When we went over and looked, we found the lock laying on the ground below the gate. Apparently they climbed over the gate and broke the lock with a hammer. Later we found out that the one neighbor lady had seen a truck sitting there with two men standing by the gate, but was to scared to yell. Long and short of the matter is, We now have one less Dream (moto) than we used to.

Yesterday as we were coming home from school we had a fender bender accident. We came through the traffic light turning left with 2 seconds left on the green (here they give you a second count down). When we came to the middle of the intersection Michael noticed that there was pedestrians crossing the street we were pulling in to. So we braked to a stop, just when we had good and stopped there was a crash and the car shook a bit. Here a moto had tried to make it through the intersection on yellow to red and didn’t see us stop. Nobody was hurt at all, but the brake light on the Visto is broken a little.

Ryan and Austin also had an accident yesterday. He was driving the moto and a lady pulled out in front of him. He was going around a curve already so he couldn’t swerve to much, but he had seen it coming in time to slow down quite a bit. He hit the ladies back tire just enough to lay his bike over. The lady wobbled a bit, but stayed up. Ryan slid down the road a bit on his backpack, which he was wearing in the front because Austin was riding. Austin stepped off when the bike went down, and ran down the road a bit to slow down. Ryan had a few minor scratches and Austin was perfectly fine. We are very thankful that it wasn’t worse. I am surprised that I don’t see things like this happen more often with the traffic the way it is.

Another thing that has changed in the past month or two is that it switched from dry season to rainy season. While rainy season is not near like I thought it would be when we first came, it still rains a lot. Some of the nicest thing about rainy season is that everything turns from a brownish-red to green, and the actual temperatures are much cooler (in the nineties) even if the real feel with humidity is often in the triple digits. The fields all have grass and the trees have the dust washed off.

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When it really rains hard, our yard becomes a miniature pond.

Twice this month when it rained it poured. (Did you know that the saying when it rains it pours is a Mortons salt slogan? We really like to use Mortons salt durning rainy season cause the other stuff doesn’t pour.) The first time we had 3.65 inches in around two hours, and the second time it rained 2.5 inches in less than an hour. When it rains that much that fast it causes some flooding on the road in town because the drains can’t keep up. Some of the worst roads have had over a foot of water on them for a while, but it will go down again once the rain slows. IMAG0084-1IMAG0090-1

The disadvantage of the rain for me is that it is really hard to teach English if it rains very hard. The students get very distracted, and it is really hard to hear or be heard, because of the tin roof. The rain also blows into the open sides of the classroom. About the only thing you can do is postpone class until the rain slows down. We are very thankful that this year we have pavers for the floor. Last year we had major problems with the desks sinking.:( While heavy rain does make class more difficult most of the children love playing in the rain. The older ones especially like playing soccer while it is raining. The other thing that isn’t very nice about the rain is driving moto when you forget your rain coat. It makes for some very cold rides:)IMAG0086-1

And here are a few random pics from the past months.

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Here is a jumping spider for all you nature lovers;)

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Another Jumping Spider. Both of these are smaller than a penny including the legs.

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Random Butterfly

 

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Show Off???

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Alaina saw I had the camera pointed at her. She was on the way to a smile but I caught this expression before the smile showed.

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This is part of the one fishing village that we drilled in quite a bit.

Well that’s all until next time.

Luke for the Helmuths

 

 

A Quick Update

Things have been moving right along since May. There was a bit of a boring stretch where i forgot all about the blog before that, but all of a sudden it was so full that i didn’t have time to write on the blog when i did think about it.

First of all, my cousin Tony came for four days. He was in Asia for a mission trip and extended his stay a bit to come see us:) We had fun showing him what we do around here and take him to some of the local tourist attractions.IMG_7914-1IMG_7922-1IMG_8086-1IMG_8127-1IMG_8201-1

Two days after Tony got here, an IGO group came through and they taught both mine and Jody’s classes for a couple days. That was especially nice over the time that Tony was here so we had free time to hang out with him. The one big project we did with the IGO group was add a kitchen to Sen’s house.

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If you don’t have a ladder use a table!

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We took turns cutting so Matt doesn’t get all the credit! 😉

Before Tony left, we took him and the IGO group rat hunting. This time we went on land instead of out on the lake. It was roughly the same area as we went before, but the lake has gone down so much that the area was dry. Well kind of…It had rained the day before we went and it was very muddy. Those of us wearing flip flops had a hard time of it. You could only go so far before you had to stop and get the mud off the bottom. It was still a lot of fun tramping all over the fields. At first we found a lot of half wild buffalo, a few snakes and only a few rats, but around midnight while we were driving home we saw rats run across the road. If the rat was close enough, we jumped off the truck and chased it down. This was a lot more exciting. We continued this plan of attack until the rain chased us home.

Soon after IGO left, Mom and Dad went back to US for a week and a half. Dad needed to go to some Salt meetings with CAM, and some of Mom’s sisters took the opportunity come up and see her. All of us children stayed home, it went surprisingly well actually. I was especially thankful that Jody was around. She did a lions share of the work that mom usually does.

While Mom and Dad were in US, Jasmine left to go back to Canada on the 5th. The sad part is that there are no definite return plans. Before she left, we had some really good times like playing hide and go seek throughout the compound with all the lights out. There are some really good hiding spots around. The last round we played Dallas was it and us boys hid for 45 min before we let him find us, and he had a light to look with.

Mom and Dad made it back on the 9th, then on the 13th Matts family left to live back stateside for at least a year…So needless to say things are really changing around here. The fewer staff means that the jobs get spread to different people making things busier, but honestly it’s not as bad as i thought it would be. Maybe I’ll be singing a different tune on sunday when it is only our family, Micheals, and Veasna around. Then we will really miss everybody that left.

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They say a picture is worth a thousand words well this look says it all. 😦

Well like I said this was just a quick update so until next time Luke for the Helmuths.