Sunday, August 5, 2018

Traveling Home...

We are currently in the Singapore Airport using their free Internet access. The first leg of our trip is down, 2 more to go.

The last day in Batambang was memorable. Our hosts were so hospitable. They would give us water, and even when we would show them our water, they would say, "These are cold." We were also given snacks in the morning and afternoon. We felt very appreciated. The students even performed a traditional Khmer dance - in costume. When we were leaving, all the students were sorry to see us go and it was bittersweet for us.

When we arrived in Siem Reap, we were welcomed, rested, and then while we ate, there was a torrential downpour. It was fun to listen to and watch - especially since we were under roof. :) We had one more chance to haggle at the market followed by ice cream at the Blue Pumpkin.

We have all been healthy and have been sleeping well (though we are looking forward to sleeping in our own bed soon). Thank you for the comments you have left. It has been encouraging to us.

This morning we attended The Alliance church in Siem Reap and listened to worship and the message in Khmer.  Karen and Carl were asked to share there testimonies during the service.  It was such an amazing experience for us all. Singing in English and Khmer and listening to the sermon in Khmer while someone was translating gives us a tiny glimpse of what heaven will be like. However, we will understand each other, not needing translation...

After coffee and lunch following the church, it was time to head to the airport.

We are now on our way to terminal 2 in Changi airport, Singapore, where we walk past living orchids almost every 50 - 100 feet. We were even treated to a butterfly garden in the airport. We feel God's peace surrounding us throughout our trip.

Looking forward to seeing you all soon.

Thursday, August 2, 2018

Batambang - Day ONE

Our first day in Bantambang is a resounding success. Our students range from 11 to 41, but the average is probably 14ish. This group seems to be younger and their experience with English is not as advanced as the group in Poipet. They are all a joy to be with. Our hosts are very hospitable and have welcomed us with open arms. We started today with the students dancing for us. One group of students choreographed a couple songs while a second group performed a traditional Khmer dance.

During our teaching time we mixing both English and Khmer. It is a joy for all of us to learn together (and laugh we ... or at ... each other).

Thank you all for your comments and prayers! We are encouraged and lifted up with your comments, knowing you are thinking of us and praying for us!

Wednesday, August 1, 2018

Language Exchange Poipet Day 3

Today was our final day in Poipet building relationships with the students. The blue and green teams faced off in a final "freshie showdown" - a talent show of sorts. After the judges decided both teams tied, it was time for another competition. Our teams were each given a funky smelling new fruit to try called durian. The first to finish eating all the fruit was the green team! In addition to all the competitions, we sang, Karen shared her testimony, and we had final lessons in teaching English and learning Khmer.

Today was filled with mixed emotions. We were happy to have made so many strong connections with the students but we were also sad to have to say goodbye! We were thankful for some time to rest on the three hour ride to our new location for Language Exchange outside of Battambang City.

Greetings from the team to our families...

Karen - Mike, Tyler, Ezra, and Baby S - I miss you all so much! I can't wait to see you and share all my experiences with you. Tyler and Ezra, I introduced the Floss to Cambodia :) Mike, thank you for encouraging me to go and I hope all is going well with the boys. I love you all and will see you soon!

Randy - Anita (hon), Miss you !, doing fine! So much to tell you about when I get home. Hope things are going well there. We'll talk more as soon as possible. Continue to pray for our teaching and learning ministry. It's been great experiencing the culture here and the people.

Kelly - Dean, Alysha, Aaron and Alanna. Love you guys and miss you!  Hope you are all doing well.  I cannot wait to share with you all that God is doing.  Thanks for all your prayers and support back home.  I love you all!!!

Diane-  Family and friends... The Khmer are incredible people; they are more like Jesus than they know. They truly have servants hearts. We have been overwhelmingly welcomed since our arrival. Carolyn - I pray you are feel God's love and that your persuasion speech went well. Goodnight. Sweet dreams. I love you! xoxo

Scott- Lorelei, Marisa, Benji and Leanne, I am enjoying your cards (Lorelei and Leanne), they are very encouraging! Thank you! We are struggling with Khmer, but are learning and the students are very encouraging when we say things correctly. Love you and will see you soon!

Carl- Linnea, Laura Leigh, Andrew, Christopher, and Mathias!  I miss you all so much and I think about you often.  I have seen some great things and I have met some amazing people.  The Khmer people love seeing the white people!  We have taught English and have learned Khmer everyday and it has been challenging and rewarding!  In between lessons we sing and dance...the only dance move I know is the dab so I have stuck with that.  Love you all and see you in a few days!

We would love to hear from you - when we blog, we check for comments, so please feel free to leave some! Thanks for all your prayers. God has been doing amazing things in and through us, but we are not done yet.

Monday, July 30, 2018

Language Exchange Poipet - Day 1

Today was our first day of Language Exchange in Poipet. There are about 25 students that were divided into two teams - the green team led by Carl, Randy, and Karen, and the blue team lead by Scott, Kelly, and Diane.

We started as a big group with introductions. We sang songs, heard Kelly's testimony, and there was some healthy competition (2 students and a teacher from each team had to drink a bottle of water and the first team done won). Then we split into our teams and taught the students common phrases in English, such as "Good Morning. Good Afternoon," etc. After the English, the Cambodians had the opportunity to be the teachers and teach us Khmer. That was challenging.

One activity we engaged in is playing telephone, where a Cambodian whispered a Khmer phrase into the ear of the first person in line. That person had to repeat the phrase to the next person and so on. That was fine until it hit us, the foreigners. We had a hard time repeating the phrases.

After an hour for lunch, we again met as a whole group, singing songs, hearing Randy's testimony, and again engaged in healthy competition (this time 2 students and a teacher had to each 2 french baguettes - blue won). We again split into our teams for teaching both English and Khmer.

On Wednesday, each team must present a show. So we worked on that a little during our teaching time. The students are excited to see us again tomorrow and we are excited to see them as well.

Saturday, July 28, 2018

Cambodia Day 1 and 2

Day one was spent catching up on sleep and fighting jet lag.  A visit to Buddhist Temple ruins in Siem Reap helped us to understand the spiritual darkness in which the Khmer people live.  Even now in Poipet we are hearing monks praying over a loud speaker, blessing a new temple.

Saturday morning was spent in orientation for the language exchange camp that starts on Monday.  Saturday afternoon was spent traveling from Siem Reap to Poipet by bus where we are currently writing this blog post.

We have been able to enjoy some home cooked meals by Hin, Pastor Pearum's wife.  The venture in to this new food has treated us well so far and we are enjoying the building of relationships with our brothers and sisters here in Cambodia.

The team continues to grow closer, encouraging each other as we share this new experience together.  Please continue praying for health and stamina!  Please also pray for Scott as he prepares for and then preaches at church on Sunday.

Thursday, July 26, 2018

We've Arrived!!

Just wanted everyone who has been praying for us to know that WE MADE IT SAFELY! Thanks for your prayers. We look forward to a trip full of great ministry and growth!

Wednesday, July 25, 2018

In Transit

We had a delightful experience flying from San Francisco to Singapore, even though the flight was long. All of us were able to sleep a little bit and are currently in transit in Hong Kong. Everyone is doing well. We will update you as often as possible. Thanks for your prayers!