Saturday, May 15, 2010

Diving In Again

High Dive
High Dive

Oh my goodness! Has it really been 7 months since I last updated you on our "treks" in Indonesia and Malaysia? I feel a bit like this little boy on top of the high diving board...a little bit of fear as I attempt to "dive" back in to the blogging world. Please forgive me; it was quite the adjustment for David and I as we began homeschooling again this year; as well as, helping Stan set up basically a new program here in Banda. Right around the time I had posted our last blog, that was when our staff families began arriving on the program and we had several houses to renovate and get ready for them.

So, where do I begin again? I will just start from our 1st Annual MAF-Aceh Family Conference and then attempt to move on from there.

Saturday, October 31, 2009

A Weekend with the Boys

This last weekend, Ben and Nathan had a "long weekend" break and so we brought them home for 4 days. This picture is after we picked them up at the airport and then took them straight over to our new hangar. David definitely looks pleased to have them home.

We took the boys out to Pulau Weh for 2 days of diving and snorkeling. This island is just a 45 minute ferry ride from Banda Aceh and is so peaceful and absolutely beautiful.
The day we got back to Banda, we got cleaned up and then headed out again to our swim hole that we found at the base of a mountain cliff. We definitely had a great time having them home for this brief time and are looking forward to their coming home for Christmas.

Some Catching Up

Oh dear! It has been over a month since I've updated all of you on our lives here in Aceh. So many things have been going on and it only got busier for us; however, my main reason for not being able to update our blog is that we've had quite a bit of problems with our Internet service. It has been almost impossible to do anything other than do email and check Facebook. To do any uploading or downloading has been difficult. However, we think we have fixed the problem now and I will be posting like crazy now to get you up to date!

In my previous post you can
see we began our hangar renovations and now I have some pictures to show you of the most recent "happenings" with the hangar.

These are the doors that Stan and Chris Uganecz made after tearing out the old, and too narrow of doors. Each door is 5 meters by 9 meters. It took 30 guys to pick up each one and place it into its track. They work "slick"!

About 2/3rds of the way back, we are building offices, part's room, maintenance room, break room, etc. Behind this, we still have plenty of room for storage AND there are still 3 badminton courts back there.

Another look at the office space going up.

The Caravan's first major inspection UNDER a roof! Thank you, Lord!

Keith Parker and Stan working on the engine of the Caravan in our new hangar.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Hangar Happenings!

Since landing here in Banda Aceh, life has been CRAZY!! However, I can honestly say that it has been good. The Lord has truly been doing wonderful things here and it is great to be a part of His plan. Our biggest goal after arriving here was to get a hangar contract signed with the Indonesian Air Force out at the airport. This has now happened and I would like to share those pictures with you; from the signing of the contract, parking the Caravan on the apron for the first time, renovating the door to the hangar and to finally being able to park the Caravan inside our newly acquired hangar. Thank you God!

Stan with the Komandant, his legal attache, our attorney AND a signed contract!

Here is a picture of our hangar and the Caravan pulling in to park on the apron for the first time. We are still unable to put the airplane inside due to the doors being too small. However, that will be "fixed" soon.

The Komandant was there for the plane's arrival. Martyn Den Os flew the plane up from Meulaboh.

This is Amber Desist, another one of our pilots, standing quite proudly with her "girl" in front of the hangar.

Not sure if you can really tell how HUGE this facility is but it has a tennis court, volleyball court, and 3 badmitton courts on the inside. Not sure what God's plan is with this facility but we are sure excited to find out.

We hired a team to come in and take out the doors and knock out the walls on the front so that we can park the airplanes on the inside.
And there she is; on the inside, out of the elements, for the first time since she came to Aceh!

Sitting comfortable now. :-)

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Home Sweet Home

Finally, I have a picture of our house. This was taken from the outside of our gate (before we could move in) looking towards the front door. It is a very nice looking house and has a nice layout inside. That is actually quite unusual for houses here. Most of the homes that we looked in before deciding on this one, had quite the "odd" set-up inside.

Even though we are very happy with our new house and feel completely blessed by God; there are still a few things that need some "tweeking". As you can see above, this is a very typical Indonesian bathroom. Well, actually, this one has been "westernized" a little bit, thanks to the prior US Aid tenant (tsunami days). Normally, there would be a squat pot where the toilet is sitting. What I wanted you to see here is what we call a "bak" (said like - bawk). This is NOT a tub and you do NOT crawl inside. All you do is fill it up with water and then stand on the outside and use that little scoop bucket to throw water on yourself...freezing cold water on yourself!! You will also notice that there is no sink in the bathroom. This is a very common thing here in Aceh. We never noticed that so much in Kalimantan. So, as you can see, we will be making a dry shower area where the bak is sitting and probably adding a sink somewhere. We have 2 other bathrooms that will need the same treatment if we would like to have a hot shower and not have to brush our teeth over the toilet.

And here is our kitchen area. It is in much better shape than most of the other homes we looked at. All the others would have to be torn out immediately and rebuilt before we could even move in. We wanted to find a house that we could move in and renovate when time allowed. This is a perfect kitchen for this time. You can't really see it in this picture but the wooden doors are rotting out under the sink. And if you were to stand next to the countertops, they would come to just below your hips (if you are my height). So washing dishes and preparing food can really be hard on the back. The lower area in the counter is for a countertop, 2 burner, propane stove. That is what most Indonesians cook with. We will eventually tear all of these out and rebuild them so that they are at a height where I won't break my back and can use my stove/oven and still have counter space.

If anyone is wondering what to do this fall, you would be welcome to come and help us with these minor, little "tweeks" to our house. I do want to say though, that the Lord has truly blessed us with this house. We could move in immediately and not have to worry about "fixing" things up right away. There are so many other things that have a much higher priority right now and God knew that we needed this house. We are very grateful to Him and very grateful to all of you who have prayed for us these past few months as we have had to make several transitions.

Monday, September 7, 2009

Visiting the Boys at Dalat Int'l School

This past weekend, Stan, David and I had to do a visa run out of the country. We asked that our visa be sent to Penang, Malaysia rather than to Singapore so that we could visit with Ben and Nathan too. We arrived on Thursday and stayed until Sunday morning. It was a wonderful time with the boys and we were successful in getting our visas.

David, Ben, and Nathan all together again.

Nathan running laps around the school for soccer practice. PS: That is the ocean in the background.
I have no idea what Stan and Ben are doing here!

This is more like reality with all 3 of them together. :-)
The following picture is of the three of them watching one of Nathan's roommates play a computer game in the dorm.

Monday, August 31, 2009

Something New for MAF

So when you want to fly with MAF in Banda Aceh, you will now be able to check in at our own counter within the airport!! For those of you who have ever flown with us anywhere else in the world, this is something that you will NOT see. We were so shocked and humored by this, I just had to laugh and then I quickly grabbed my camera so that I could share it with you.

This is Max, one of our national staff members, at our check-in counter in Banda Aceh. Next to us are the check-in counters for AirAsia, Firefly, Garuda Airlines and others. MAF has made it to the "big leagues" now. :-)
A picture of the airport here in Banda Aceh.
PK-MAN, MAF's Caravan in Aceh. This is the plane we flew in when we went to visit the Meulaboh base.