Milk (and Why I’ve Been M.I.A.)

Hi!  So sorry for the brief blogging hiatus.

I’ve been sick.

With Giardia.

Which is an intestinal parasite.

Which I don’t recommend as a weight loss program (Seriously, it’s awful.), but it does work.

 Anyway, I’m feeling better now!  Yay! 

So, on to the real topic: Milk!

We basically have two choices for milk here: UHT or powdered.

UHT stands for Ultra High Temperature.  This means that instead of standard pasteurization, where milk is heated to 72 degrees C for 15 minutes, it is instead heated to 135 degrees C for one or two seconds. 

This hot, fast heat some how allows the milk to be stored unrefrigerated.  So, it can last a loooooong time and is cheaper to ship because it doesn’t require a refrigerated container and therefore it is also cheaper to buy.

Phew.  That’s more than you ever wanted to know isn’t it? 

Here’s what you do want to know: it does not taste the same as pasteurized milk that we all know and love in the U.S. 

So, I use it for cooking and sometimes on cereal, but no glass of milk with cookies for us.

Powdered milk.  Well, you’re probably familiar with that if you’ve ever gone camping.  At least if you’ve ever gone camping with my parents.

It is made by evaporating milk until it becomes a powder.

And then later you can add water and it becomes milk again.

It also does not taste the same as the pasteurized milk we all know and love in the U.S.

So, I use it to make yogurt mostly.  Or to thicken up cream sauces.

And when I was younger I put it on cereal when we were camping, because who cares what the milk tastes like when mom and dad are letting you eat Lucky Charms, am I right??

P.S.-Milk was not the cause of my intestinal parasite.

P.P.S.-I learned how to spell “pasteurized” in the writing of this post. :)

P.P.P.S-I just spell checked it to make sure I spelled it right.  I did.

Package Week

This never happens.

Never ever.

Until now.

We received FOUR packages from America within one week!


We must be doing something right!

I cannot tell you how exciting it is to receive packages from America.  Not only because of the stuff they contain, but because of the love we feel from the people who have sent them!  It costs a lot to send macaroni half way around the world!!

So, to recieve FOUR in one week, well…we feel super loved!

And our tummies are happy.

This is the contents of just one of the packages.  (Thanks GCC youth!  You guys are awesome!)

We are so spoiled.  :)

Sekolah Harapan

Sekolah Harapan (Hope School) was started a number of years ago here in Papua by an MAFer who had a desire to see interior kids recieve a good education.  Without schools in many of the interior villages, the kids who live there have no hope for an education and therefore no way out of village life.  Parents will bring their kids to the school asking the administrators to allow their kids to be educated there so they can “become human.”  (there is a lie that is commonly circulated in Indonesian that the people who live in remote tribal villages are not human).

Now Sekolah Harapan, which now operates independently from MAF, although a few MAFers still work there, has 48 students in grades K-3.  Next year they will add grade 4, the year after grade 5.  This way they can grow slowly with the needs of the students.  The interior kids who come to attend the school live in dorm type housing with dorm parents.  And there are also several local Sentani kids that attend.

School had already ended the day that we were there to see the facilities, but I hope to go back someday to meet some of the kids!

Some of the kids’ artwork.

It’s so exciting to see places like Sekolah Harapan that are giving the Papuan people a hope for the future!

Best. Pineapple. Ever.

…from Kiwi with love.

Kiwi is a village where Nathan frequently lands.  They always give him pineapples.

Consequently, we are spoiled by delicious pineapples and will never be able to eat a pineapple in America again.

So, you could come visit us so you too can be spoiled and never want to eat pineapples from America again.

Plus it’s beautiful here.

Plus we’d love to see you.

Beachy Keen

This past weekend we went to the beach!

And I swallowed a lot of salt water, which was super good for my sore throat, but it also made me super thirsty.

Anyway, this beach, which we call “Inside Beach,” but I have no idea what it’s proper name is, is about a 45 minute car ride and then a 30 minute boat ride from Sentani.  Incidentally, when Gen. MacArthur showed up in Papua with his crew during WWII, this is where they first landed!

There are several beaches in the area, but so far, this is the only one Nathan and I have been to.  And we’ve only been twice.  Which is really a shame because it’s beautiful and relaxing!

There are little huts, or pondoks like this all along the beach where you can set up for the day.

I promised my mom-in-law that I would put up a picture with me in it!  I rarely have pictures of myself because usually I’m the one behind the camera.  This is April, Heather and me with the Starfish that April collected while snokeling!

And since I’m putting up a picture of myself, I’m also putting up a picture of Nathan.  Because he’s cute and I like him. 

 (Happy Valentine’s Day honey!)

Someone hung thing swing-thing from one of the palm trees hanging over the water.  I was too scared to go on it.  And then April’s daughter, who is three, told me that it wasn’t to scary for her or her five year old brother, who had already swung on it.

Sigh, shown up by a three-year old.

Next time I’ll go on it….next time.

“In the village…

…the peaceful village, the lion sleeps tonight.  In the village the peaceful village the lion sleeps tonight.  Oo weeeeee……wee…um…um…oh….wayyyyy”

Ok, there aren’t really lions in this village, but the song is stuck in my head :)

Last week, when Nathan was out flying, he got fogged in at Pamek, one of the lion-less villages that he flies to.

With a little extra time on the ground, he got a chance to take some pictures!

The fog rolls in…

Nathan delivered food and other supplies to the villagers.

And the fog lifted just long enough so that he could get out of the village and back home to his beautiful wife 😉

(By the way, I just googled the lyrics to The Lion Sleeps Tonight and it turns out the lion only sleeps near the village.  Even so, I don’t believe there were any lions near this village either.  I’m sorry for the confusion.)

How to Use a Dual-Tub Washing Machine

Step One: Break the automatic washing machine.  (I didn’t do this on purpose, obviously, but the fact is that it’s broken.) 

Step Two: Call the Maytag repair man since it seems like he’s always bored. 

Step Three:  Realize that you live in Indonesia and there is no Maytag repair man.

Step Four: Ask the awesome hangar guys to bring the dual tub machine out from storage in the hangar (MAF has a variety of things we can use while living in the guesthouse, including washing machines).

Step Five:  Clean dust/poop off of machine that has accumulated after months of storage in the hangar.

Step Six:  Ready to wash clothes!  Place clothes and laundry soap in the wash/rinse side of the machine.

Step Seven: Set the Wash/Drain Selector to Wash/Rinse.

Step Eight: Turn on water at the faucet and wait for tub to fill.

Step Nine:  Set the Wash Timer to desired wash time.

Step Ten:  Go inside and do dishes until wash cycle is complete.

Step Eleven: Return to machine and set Wash/Drain Selector to drain and allow water to drain out into pipe in the floor.

Step Twelve: Set Wash/Drain Selector back to wash/rinse.

Step Thirteen: Turn water on at faucet and allow tub to fill again.

Step Fourteen: Set Wash Timer to desired rinse time.

Step Fifteen: Go inside and finish doing dishes.

Step Sixteen: Return to machine and set Wash/Drain Selector back to drain and allow water to drain out into pipe in the floor.

Step Eighteen:  Move clothes to the spin side of the machine.

Step Nineteen: Set Spin Timer to desired length of spin time.

Step Twenty: Go inside and have a cup of coffee.

Step Twenty one: Return to machine, remove clothes from the spin side of the machine.

(Steps 18-21 may needs to be repeated because the spin side of the machine is significantly smaller than the wash/rinse side of the machine and sometimes the clothes won’t all fit on the spin side.)

Step Twenty two: Hang clothes on clothesline.

Repeat Steps 6-22 for remaining loads of laundry.

**editors note: After rereading this post, I realize that I forgot Step Seventeen.  Oops.  But I’m not going to fix it.  So, let’s pretend that Seventeen, in this case, is like the thirteenth floor of buildings in America…it doesn’t exist!)

Ants, and Cecaks, and Mosquitoes, Oh My!

(and cockroaches, and spiders and mice…)

The bug/critter situation.

It’s one thing that I’ve made my peace with.  It’s just part of life here.

There will always be ants in my kitchen and cecaks (geckos) pooping on my counter tops and mosquitoes carrying malaria and dengue fever looking to bite me.

(and cockroaches being gross and nuclear bomb resistant (did anyone else think that cockroaches could almost be slightly cute after watching Wall-E? ………………Hello?  No?  Just me?  Ok, nevermind.)  and spiders jumping out at me while I do dishes (literally, they jump!) and mice pooping on my counter tops (yes, it’s true.  There is a lot of poop on my counter tops))  (That was a lot of parentheses in one sentence.  I’m a little parenthese happy.)

For a long time I tried to fight off the ants and the cecaks by setting out ant poison and cecak traps.  But then the ants retaliated and started biting me.  Ant bites hurt!  But I swear they know, because when I stopped with the ant poison they stopped with the biting!  And I have yet to actually catch at cecak, but I’m ok with that because they eat virus/parasite carrying mosquitoes.  Mosquitoes, well we wear a lot of bug repellent and pray that we don’t get sick!

And the cockroaches and spiders and mice?  Well, I’ve given up the fight.  Because it’s never ending!

So now we cohabitate peacefully (as long as they stay out of my bed!)

But be forewarned, if you come to visit us, which you should because it’s beautiful here and we would love to see you, there will be ants and cecaks and mosquitoes, oh my!