Tuesday, December 23, 2014

2014 Christmas Letter

December 2014
To all our dear Family and Friends,
Merry Christmas! We’re SO blessed to be home to spend the holidays with family again this year!  Every year, God leads us to a different situation in which to serve and, this year, we spent almost 7 months at Nazarene Theological Seminary outside of Brisbane, Queensland, Australia! 
We flew Down Under in early February, and started work just before 2014 Semester 1 began, after several emails and Skype sessions to determine some of the details of our assignment.  We quickly settled into a suite in one of the dorms (a bedroom and a kitchen separated by a bathroom).  The campus is “in the bush” (wooded) and “chockers” with (full of) wildlife, especially wallabies!  We could see wallabies every day, as we’d walk round the campus after work.  Found a koala too! We were wakened each day by kookaburras, curlews, magpies, and crows.  And we soon fell in love with the Aussies’ accent and their quirky colloquialisms.  The weather was wonderful as well; the suburb of Thornlands is coastal and has a sub-tropical climate!

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Aussie language lesson

The Aussies’ language is SO interesting! Of course, it’s English and we’re grateful that we can recognize a good deal of it. But, after a couple of months of tuning our ears to the Aussie accent, we’ve only begun to understand the differences in everyday terms! And, yes, they do actually say, “G’day, mate!”

Tah = thanks
Bench = kitchen counter
Morning Tea = coffee/tea break
Tea or Afternoon Tea = supper in the evening
“How ya going?” = How are you?
“Fair dinkum?” = Are you telling the truth?
Lounge room = living room
Lounge = couch

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Settling in...

Living on a small college campus is SO interesting! We have work routines, of course, working 8AM to 5PM, but there’s a built-in social system, living in “the same neighborhood” as the other staff. And then, there’s the element of enjoying “the bush”, the wooded 28 acres of the campus.

On Mondays, we often have a staff meeting to bring everyone up-to-date with classes, IT concerns, accreditation processes, and other information.

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Adjusting Down under.

When we’d been in Australia about a week, we borrowed the college van and, using a street directory, we drove to Wellington Point, where there’s a large park at the beach.  It was a crowded Sunday afternoon and, after we finally found a spot, Dan parked parallel – accomplished with ease on the left side of the street after having driven on the left side of all the roads!  

NTC – first week

Close neighbors here. The Wallabies.
We see them most every day.
We could only imagine what a relief the warm, sub-tropical climate of Australia would feel like after the 2014 winter in the Midwest in the States– and it’s wonderful!  Bruce and Jacquie Allder picked us up early on Saturday, February 8, at the international airport in Brisbane after a long (but not uncomfortable) flight from Los Angeles.  Bruce is the Principal of Nazarene Theological College where we’ll be working. Getting acquainted, we all enjoyed our ride to the college.  After lugging our suitcases up to our second floor dorm suite, we began unpacking into the closets and drawers. We found that our kitchen was stocked with plenty for a few days’ “brekkies” (breakfasts). We were showered and almost completely unpacked 2 hours later, so we walked to the Allders’ home for a drive to lunch and around this part of Brisbane’s suburbs. Not unlike the States, there are numerous shopping areas with lots of restaurants.  Unlike the States, there are lots of round-abouts at intersections; those will take some practice, especially negotiating from the left side of the road!

Friday, January 24, 2014

Christmas letter 2013

To all our dear Family and Friends,

It has been a couple of years since our last letter. Briefly, we have been serving in South America specifically Argentina for the last two years, living near Buenos Aries over the US winters and working from our home in St Louis in the summer.

The year 2013 began for us with firecrackers in Argentina!  Argentines really celebrate Christmas Eve and New Year with a bang! We were serving as volunteers in the Nazarene Church’s South America Regional Office using our business experience with financial and office and computer work.  It was summer then, in the southern hemisphere, and we took advantage of the compound’s pool whenever we could.