Thursday, July 23, 2009

My little cousin Jared got married!

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Well, he's not so little anymore!  This is him with his fiance Nicole, two nights before the wedding.

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There was lots of family there, here I am with my cousin Mark.

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And my cousin Maureen, mother of the groom.

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Me and my cousin Donnie.

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My Auntie Norma!  I can't believe I didn't get a photo with her :(

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Me and Jared, one of my favorite people in the world!


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Jared and his lovely bride, Nicole.

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Off to begin their new lives together!

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The quintessential wedding shot.  Click on it to make it larger and see the cute kids on the left.  It looks like Judah is proposing!

After seeing this place I thought, I'd like to marry someone from Washington so I can get married at the same place!  It was stunning!

I'm so thankful for this opportunity to celebrate with my family the marriage of Jared and Nicole, two godly, loving, caring young people who are so blessed to have been able to join their lives together!

Mazel Tov!

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Going shopping!

Where do YOU go when you need a few fixings for salad for 35 people?  Albertson's, Safeway, Winn-Dixie, Publix??

We go to the local market, about half a mile or so, more or less, up the road from our center.  You can buy just about anything at the market, and for usually cheaper then the grocery store in town, our Shop Rite.

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On this day, in addition to salad stuff, we went to buy three new "steras," mats for the kids to sit on.  We have to buy these every month or two as they get worn out.  Let's face it - the kids pick the strings apart that are holding the mat together! 

I wanted the boys to check to see that the quality was good so the vendor had to open them up for the boys approval.  I don't think they know a good stera from a bad one but they gave these two thumbs up!

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"Who's that man in the photo with the boys?" you ask?  That's Joao Macamo who is WAY too big for our dorm but he is developmentally delayed and so we're just not confident to release him into the bigger center yet.  He still gets a lot of care and supervision in our dorm that he won't get in the older boys' dorms.  So, we have 28 little ones and one BIG boy!

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This walk was our Afternoon Program for the week, during which they always get a snack so the boys decided on a little packet of crisps (just going with the flow - the British version is what came to mind, honestly!).  This enterprising young boy is selling them from a plastic bag around his neck, along with some toothpaste!  But we didn't need any toothpaste. 

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(I had to ask permission to take all these photos, which he gave, but apparently didn't want to be IN the shot as he kept his head down the whole time!)

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On to the salad stuff!  We bought our tomatoes and onions from this lady, who was surprisingly willing to be in the photo.  We bought our lettuce a little closer to home.  Again, I wanted the boys to pick out the best tomatoes, etc., which they made a grand show of but I don't think they REALLY knew what to look for!

Sticker shock alert:  I am in the US now and wanted to buy salad fixings for my birthday dinner.  I COULD NOT pay $2.99 for a tiny bundle of red leaf lettuce!  Nor could I pay $2.99 for the bagged stuff either.  When we bought our salad stuff, I paid .75 CENTS for a whole shopping bag full of green leaf lettuce!  In fact, I bought too much and there was enough for TWO salads for 35 people!

We had a fun time going to the market.  I wish I could take photos freely to give you the scope of it.  When I look at these photos, it looks perfectly normal, like home in fact.  I can picture how big it is, how I can buy oil in little plastic bags if I don't have the money to buy a whole bottle, can even taste the little donuty things the ladies walk around and sell.  Yummy!

Hope you've enjoyed this trip to the market with us!


Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Happy Birthday To Me!

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A week late that is, I'm so slow updating my blog when I'm in the U S of A!  Don't know why, you'd think I'd have loads of free time for stuff like this.  But I get distracted by the library!  And movies.  And phone calls to friends.  And making cake.  Speaking of . . . .

I made myself my very first double-decker cake, a vanilla buttermilk coconut concoction that was so yummy!

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Can you guess how old I am by that odd assortment of candles?

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And you thought I didn't look a day over 41!

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Here's my mom's cool neighbor Marla who hosted my little birthday dinner at her house.

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Making a wish . . .

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Did it!

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Doesn't that look yummy?  I kinda wish I could have some right now but we ate it all. 

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That was my huge piece.  Yep, I ate all of it!

Triple sifted flour - that's the secret!

Sunday, July 05, 2009

Proud as Peacocks!

Room 3 had an absolute blast during the Afternoon Program last week, learning to spell their names with Playdough! Some got a little help but most of them did this all by themselves.

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I love their proud little faces and that obvious sense of accomplishment! Way to go boys!