Tuesday, March 11, 2014

{Far Too} Long Overdue...

I'm alive!  {I'm positive you were wondering} ;)

Haven't fallen down Mt. Kilimanjaro (you'd have to climb up it to fall down it though, eh?), haven't been carried away by giant bugs, and haven't been eaten by a lion.  

I have, however, been super busy serving my heart out at Hope International School as the volunteer Jr. High teacher, transitioning our family from a friends' house to our own home, adjusting to life in Tanzania, volunteering in the village on the weekends, and taking the (very) occasional photo shoot.

I admit, I'm quite sad that I haven't been able to do many photo sessions.  I pick up my camera much, much less than I'd prefer, actually.  I'm hoping now that we're settled in I can start getting some more clients and doing more sessions.  Until then, I still snap away for our little family outings, or when we're in the village - and I even have had a couple of family sessions since we've been here!  

Here's a little sampling:

First up: The Helbling family.  
These guys are the founders of the organization we're here with, Global Effect.  It's an honor to partner with them here in Moshi and {I admit} they're some of my favorite people in Moshi. :)


Next Up: The Majengo Village Playground Ministry
We love spending our Saturdays at the playground ministry.  Kids come from over an hour (walking time) away to play at this playground, have fun, see the love of Jesus and learn from his Word.  

Village Churches.
Occasionally we get the opportunity to go to church in the village, help friends lead kids' programs and just minister to the people that don't see many wazungus (that's Kiswahili for white people). :)
It's always a joy to see the passion these believers have, and to be able to pour into them.

And then theres the Loudermilk Family.
I feel a special bond with these great people - we arrived here for our 1 month stay the day after they arrived here for good.  We shared living space with them for their first three weeks on the mission field.  They're from Iowa, so we have that midwestern thang going on, dontchya' know. :)  And also our two toddlers get along swimmingly.
They've recently adopted a sweet little infant and are in process of adopting a toddler… I smell another family session coming on! ;)

And I can't leave out our excursions…. so much beauty it's a privilege to be able to get out and see Africa.  The organization we volunteer for doesn't pay us a salary, but does take us on fun, cheap excursions as a 'thank you' - and we are SO incredibly thankful!  Here are a few shots from our adventures:

Lake Chalah Camping Trip

It was a grueling hike down that cliff face for a swim - especially with O on back - but it was totally worth it to say that we swam in a crater-lake! 

Pangani Camping Trip
Looking for seashells with a couple of his favorites during low tide
Don't worry about raccoons at the campsite - it's these guys you have to watch for!
This shot is straight out of the camera (minus the watermark).  Our last morning on the Indian Ocean.
These are from my iPhone, which was in a Dandy Case - was a bit too nervous to take Chuck (my DSLR) on the boat for the snorkeling trip :)

See the two red starfish?
This is the actual sail on the boat - no filter or edits!

Cool blue coral


It was super, duper windy - hence Owen's face :) But he was very excited to hold the starfish!
So there's a snip-it into what's been happening lately… and now that it's taken, literally, 2 hours to upload all these (low-resolution) photos, I'm remembering why I procrastinated an update.  And I've learned my lesson: update more often and have less photos to post at once and not spend 6 hours writing one blog.  

The End.   :)

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