Saturday, March 23, 2013

Grateful for Prayer and Answers

It was a long, rough day.  I got up at 4:30 am to get coffee made and a light breakfast on the table.  We were out the door around 5:30 am and got to the boat before 6.  Ice and crates had to be loaded on to the boat as well as other equipment.

We got to the island by 8:00 am and work started right away.  Everyone worked hard and long with a stop for lunch around 1 in the afternoon and then back to work until all the fish were cleaned and ready to go at around 4:30 pm.  Everyone got in a little rest on the trip back only to have to unload the boat in the dark when we arrived a little after 6.  2000 tilapia were brought in this Friday from the floating cages at the island.

Many of my prayers for the venture were answered in a positive way:  safety, good weather, happy workers and a good harvest.

Thank you, Lord, for all your blessings on this day.

This is just what I did on the way home from the island on Friday.  I just sat back and watched the water go by on our way home and enjoyed the fact that the week was done, the fish haul was over and we all lived to tell about it...

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Sweet Homemade Pickles

Good pickles are hard to come by in Northeastern Brazil.  Sometimes we can find some little sour gherkins in one particular store in the big city, sometimes not.  Just finding good cucumbers to make pickles is trick. The best cucumbers are called Japanese cucumbers.  They are long and skinny without too many seeds.  

 Last week on a trip to town, my dear man found some great cucumbers at a little chic veggie store where I like to go in the big city.  So it was time to make more pickles.  Sadly I knew when my sweetie called to ask about the cucumbers that my pickling spices from the US of A were all gone.

I got online and looked for "make your own pickling spice" to see what sort of stuff really goes in those mixes.  I bought what I could and added a few things I thought sounded good.  Voila!  The pickles were approved by all and smell great.  Now, if I could just remember what I threw in that pot!

Here's what spices really went in:

whole cloves
broken cinnamon stick
bay leaves

Having little tastes of home {USA} is important even for macho MK boys who think they are 100% Brazilian but really aren't!

Saturday, March 9, 2013

Oh the Joys of Motherhood

I saw a crazy post on facebook just like this and reworked it for me in my situation.  All three of my boys were born in Brazil...

First born


 1st baby:  I left my appointment when the doctor confirmed my pregnancy and went straight to the                 maternity clothes shop.  (This was in NC before the birth of my first. Lost two pregnancies before coming to Brazil.)
 2nd baby: I wore regular clothes for as long as possible.
 3rd baby: Some of my maternity clothes WERE my regular clothes.

Preparing for the Birth:
 1st baby: I read everything I could about natural birth and breastfeeding.
 2nd baby: I was so busy with the toddler at my feet that I didn't much of any thing.
 3rd baby: I was just ready to get that baby out and spend some quiet time in the hospital for a few days.

The Layette:
 1st baby: I pre-washed newborn clothes, color coordinated them, and folded them all neatly and sewed up  all kinds of stuff for the crib.
 2nd baby: I checked to make sure that the clothes were clean and bought a few new things.
 3rd baby: Boys in Brazil don’t need much, do they?

 1st baby: At the first sign of distress--a whimper, a frown—I  picked up the baby.
 2nd baby: I picked the baby up when his crying threatened to wake the firstborn.
 3rd baby: I convinced the other boys to sit with the baby on the couch and let him watch cartoons.

 1st baby: I changed the baby's diaper every hour, whether they needed it or not.
 2nd baby: I changed  their diaper every two to three hours,only if needed.
 3rd baby: I changed diapers when the other two said – “Look, Mama!”  or “Ooo, stinky.”

Going Out:
 1st baby: The first time we left the baby with a sitter, I called home five times.
 2nd baby: Just before we walked out the door, I remembered to leave a number where we can be reached.
 3rd baby: I left instructions for the sitter to call only if she sees blood.

 At Home:
 1st baby: I spent  a good bit of every day just gazing at the baby.
 2nd baby: I spent a bit of everyday watching to be sure the older child wasn't squeezing, poking, or hitting  the baby.
 3rd baby: I spent a little bit of every day hiding from all the children.

Swallowing Things:
 1st child: When first child swallowed a small plastic button, I called a doctor and got ready to rush the child  to the hospital.  (Doctor said don’t go.)
 2nd child: When second child swallowed something, I knew what to do.
 3rd child: When third child swallowed something, I wasn’t the least bit worried.

Second boy watching tv with little one

Friday, March 8, 2013

MK Growing Up

Seems my life is changing every moment with the growth of my boys.  Just a few years ago I wondered how I would get all the cloth diapers washed each day.  Now I wonder where my boys are and where they are going.  All my priorities seem to have been thrown into a salad bowl and gently tossed - with seasoning!

Thank goodness years ago as I washed all those diapers, I prayed over each one.  I prayed as I as washed, as I hung them out to dry and as I carefully folded each one, and as I pinned them on sweet little rear ends.  I prayed as they were little that God would use each one in His service and specifically on a foreign field.  This year I'm beginning to see the fruit of all that prayer time over all those diapers.  {By the way, each of my boys was nursed to about two years of age and cloth diapered.  Often wearing nothing but in the warm days of Brazil.}

Warrior William
Our oldest boy made the decision after the missions emphasis of the Carnaval retreat on the island to join up with a group from our area going to minister in Mozambique for two weeks this summer.  It's an exciting time to see him reaching out for what God would have of him and of his life.  It's also oddly bittersweet as I deal with my own emotions of "can I let him go," "what if he wants to go there forever," and like passing thoughts.

January 2013
So now I'm praying over levi jeans and wrangler dress pants and dickies work shorts... and wondering where my boy will go next!  If Byron "William" Atha, III does decide to go into full time Christian service he will be a third generation missionary.  Fittingly he was named for his grandfather, Byron William Atha, who served in the state of Para, Brazil in the 1980's and for his father, Byron William Atha, II, who is serving still today {with me!} here in Sobradinho, Bahia, Brazil.

If you'd like more info about William's Mozambique project, leave a comment and I'll send you the pdf file we sent out to a few churches with his testimony and info about the trip.

Crazy Experience

And whoever gives one of these little ones only a cup of cold water in the name of a disciple, assuredly, I say to you,  he shall by no ...