Thursday, November 22, 2012

So very thankful . . .

We go through our days . . .well, just stop there. Often we robotically "go through" our days. With all the components present, The Routine, The Expectations, The Knowing There Will Be Unknowns, we jump in and get going through. And at the end? Is there a stop to ponder about it or only a longing for sleep stores in order to have enough stamina to "go through" the next one? Admittedly, this is not always the case, but it is not foreign to any of us.

  I started out from our veranda and onto the path in front of our house this week on my way to the house of a friend for a meeting. The air was warm and sweet and suddenly I was struck with the thought that I should savor the moment. So, my ears focused on the birdsong, my skin received the warm sunshine, the rich GREEN of the green leaves and the brightness of the flowers stood in sharp contrast to the striking blue of the sky. And I became aware that the sleeves on my shirt were short and there was no jacket required, in a few short weeks my arms will not weather being so uncovered. And so I realized afresh that the day, the warm, sunny day, was a gift and I fully soaked in the unique ability to be overtly thankful! Yes, the unique ability to deeply recognize God's gifts and give thanks is expressly ours as human beings.

As I write, it is the day after Thanksgiving. We celebrated it in grand style here in the bush. It started early in the morning with call of the turkeys registering loud and clear across the compound from our storage room where they had stayed the night. Within two hours the calls were heard no more and their journey to the oven had begun.  Yum.Yum.
Ivan and Perez headed the slaughter,  but had many enthusiastic assistants in Toby, Acacia, Kevin, Sam and numerous primary school students who stopped by to watch!

plucking off the feathers . . . 

Two turkeys . . . double header

Acacia, Kevin and Toby made, colored and cut out leaves for decorating the Institute Hall where we Americans held our annual Thanksgiving potluck dinner.

In the afternoon there was a game of football (Toby was on the winning team, sorry to Kevin, Sam and Geoff).  In the evening we gathered together and Keith McFarland and Jennie Dangers read the history of the Thanksgiving meal. As we ate together we shared our thanksgivings with those at the table. It was a great night!

Last Sunday night we hosted a pizza party with our former neighbors, The Muwanguzi family. When we shared the same duplex, Anthony and Alice would come over and help me cook and they especially liked pizza!  It runs in the family apparently, because their dad, Uncle Tony, was expert at showing up "randomly" on pizza night. On those nights, he rarely passed up the offer to taste and we couldn't pass up an opportunity to share pizza with them before we go on home assignment to the U.S. in a couple of weeks. 
The kids played charades after dinner. There is ALWAYS TOO MUCH laughter when we're together!!!
Aunt Sarah, Uncle Tony, Geoff and I amazingly held a very enjoyable conversation only a few feet from where the kids were yuck yucking with their charades game.
Uncle Simon and his kids!  He is very faithful to take his kids on an early evening ride. As the family grows (this picture lacks some children!),  he may have to invest in a side car!!!!!
We finished up our school year recently (we followed the Ugandan calendar this year) and we completed our efforts with a certificate ceremony! Our kids worked very hard this year and we are very proud of them.
Ooooooooo the sheer excitement of life!!!
Holy the Goat had a baby girl last week and has brought a new dimension of joy to our growing farm! We've named her Chili, which is short for Kilabo (gift in Luganda).

Blessings to you and yours as we immerse ourselves in the holiday season and celebrate life abundant!!!!!


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