TCK love

TCK love

I’ve been thinking a lot about TCK’s lately… third culture kids.  You may or may not be familiar with that terminology or what in the world it means.  Essentially TCK’s are those kids that grow up in a culture other than their parents home culture (or first culture).  Therefore they typically don’t truly identify themselves with their parents culture but they don’t truly identify themselves with their host...

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Glory School: A micro-loan project

Glory School: A micro-loan project

When 1+1+1= 42… Forty-two is the number of boys and girls that are now receiving a preschool and early elementary school education after a father and his two adult daughters each took out a $95 loan and then combined them to open the Glory School.   Forty-two kids who no longer need to walk 2 hours to go to school in town.  Their favorite subjects?  Math, reading, writing and of course PE… which includes playing soccer and using...

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Unchartered Territory…

Unchartered Territory…

I have so many blog posts swirling around in my head that I may start to get dizzy.  I’m always inspired to write when I’m here but don’t always get the time to do so.  I’ve got some fun things to share, some stories to share, some people to introduce you to, and unfortunately  some sad things to share about life and so many of the injustices around us. This time though I’m going to share with you about the...

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Life in Olongapo

Life in Olongapo

  We’re on the eve of our departure from the Philippines.  It’s been a blessed 6+ weeks here as we experienced a new culture and new way of life.  Though we’ve written other blog posts about certain aspects of our time here, here’s a larger recap and closer look at our life in Olongapo, Philippines. Bennett Road… our street in Olongapo And our humble little abode The Mercy In Action birth center directly across the street...

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Puzzle Time

Puzzle Time

A few days a week, after school is over and kids are awake from naps or rest time, our kids play with a regular group of 6-7 Malagasy kids.  It is awesome!  It brings joy all around– to our kids, the Malagasy kids, and to us.  Usually they play games like prison tag, kick-the-can and soccer.  They push each other on the tire swing and the girls braid one another’s hair.  Their play language is Malagasy with our girls trying to teach...

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Christmas Preparations

Christmas Preparations

Christmas in Madagascar is… well, I’ll just say a little different than in the States.  It’s hot, it’s humid, there isn’t the Christmas music playing in the stores since before Thanksgiving.  There isn’t the buzz to go shopping and spend loads of money on Christmas presents.  There isn’t Christmas lights on the houses and beautifully lit and decorated Christmas trees in the windows.  There isn’t a bunch of holiday...

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Life’s Joys!

Life’s Joys!

There is something amazing about seeing my children being cared for by the friends of my youth.  In truth, it is a dream come true.  I love watching my children experience the world of Madagascar that I grew up in, a world one would not appear to fit into and yet where one is welcomed without hesitation. Take for instance, Isabella riding on the back of Armand’s bicycle through the slums of Mahajanga with full confidence that Armand will...

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Unsung Heroes (part II)

Unsung Heroes (part II)

Last month, we started part I in a series entitled “Unsung Heroes”; a tribute to all the Malagasy people who work so hard, day after day, to eek out a living in order to care for their family the best they can. Just outside of Antsirabe lies a small wet valley where 7 families work long, hard, dirty days making bricks.  Bricks are used, especially on the high plateau for houses, buildings and walls. Men, women and children are working, they...

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Trilingual

Trilingual

We hope and pray, that one day, our 3 kids will be trilingual like their daddy.  As they play with Malagasy friends they’re picking up Malagasy and as they attend French School, they’ll soon be speaking French. In the picture above, our five-year-old drew a picture of a recent weekend trip to the beach English:        Beach French:         La plage Malagasy:     Ranomasina It looks like we’re on our way… Like it? Share...

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French School

French School

The kids just completed their second week at the French School here in Mahajanga.  Isabella entered Grande Section, the French equivalent to kindergarten and attends 5 days a week.  Eliana started Petite Section, or preschool and attends 3 mornings a week.  Now brace yourself… school STARTS at 7:15am! In and of itself, French School provides an opportunity for culture shock all over again, not necessarily in a bad way, but in a...

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Field Trip to the School for the Visually Impaired

Field Trip to the School for the Visually Impaired

Yesterday our Malagasy class took a field trip to a school for visually impaired children.  The purpose of such field trips is to not only to be able to listen and speak in Malagasy but also to raise our cultural awareness.  I love these field trips and find them absolutely fascinating.  This school is the largest center on the island of Madagascar.  It was started in 1924 and moved to it’s current location in the town of Antsirabe in...

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Easter Surprises

Easter Surprises

As Easter approached this year, I realized I was disappointed in that we weren’t going to give the kids the Easter festivities that they’re accustomed to… church would look different, Easter with family would look different, and the Easter egg hunt would look different.  I grieved at the loss of these but didn’t speak of the disappointment of the absence of the plastic eggs filled with candy, the fake green easter grass and the...

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Of Birthdays and Modern Technology

Of Birthdays and Modern Technology

We recently celebrated our second daughter, Eliana’s 3rd birthday.  It is during times like this that we are so incredibly thankful for modern technology and the ways that it has the capacity to bring families together who are literally on opposite sides of the globe.  During our celebration, we skyped with “grammy” and “grampy”, who despite being a 10-hour time difference, joined in the festivities with their own party hats,...

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Special Guests & Birthday Celebrations

Special Guests & Birthday Celebrations

    Our long-time good friend and main ministry partner, Josy, left his wife home with their 3 kids and made the 15 hour drive to spend a few days with us and our 3 kids.  It was fantastic!!  We learned something new with our time together…. kids are kids wherever they are and whatever culture they’re from.  Josy felt like he was transplanted back into the chaos of the three small children that he left behind and that chaos was...

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Sekoly

Sekoly is “school” in Malagasy and is what transpires four days a week for the three older kids on our team; Isabella (4), Oliver (3), and Eliana (2).  Sekoly coincides with Malagasy language lessons for the parents, however it’s a very different education for these little ones.  Jamie is their exuberant teacher and as a result, sekoly days are full of explorations and adventures, singing, learning Malagasy words, as well...

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