Monday, November 30, 2015

October Update Part 2: Visit to the States!

Hello Friends!
The blog has been very quiet lately because we have been travelling.  And working.  Working a lot, but doing exactly what we came here to do and we love it! I can't believe how quickly the months are ticking by, sorry for the lack of updates, but I'll try to get us caught back up :)

In October, we had the opportunity to travel to the states for my brother Mark's wedding.  Thanks to an incredible team here on the ship, we were able to leave the Ponseti program temporarily in very capable hands so we could have some special time with family for a few weeks.

Autumn is my favourite season, and I haven't seen October in Indiana since 2011- it was so refreshing!

My sister is now a freshman at Purdue University- I'm so glad that her fall break was during our visit so that we had some time together!!

The boys had lots of time playing games with Nick :)

And Mark and Selina's wedding day was beautiful!!!  We were so grateful that we got to be there in person to celebrate with them.  

Selina you are stunning! And we are so glad that we get to have you for a sister!!!

We are so thankful for the time we got to spend just being together with family.  As a bonus, on our last day our flights got changed around and we ended up with one surprise extra day in Indiana.  We surprised the boys when they came home from school and had one more night of games and crafts.  :)

We celebrated an early 8th birthday, too! :)

My parent's pond gets so still in the evening and makes a perfect reflection, it's my favourite time of day.  

More updates coming soon on life here in Madagascar and the Ponseti program, thank you to everyone who keeps up with our journey- we appreciate you!

Sunday, November 1, 2015

October Update Part 1: Madagascar from Above (flight with Mission Aviation Fellowship)

The blog has been really quiet lately, and I'll give a good update in the next post, but I first I wanted to share some photos of Madagascar (I felt like they deserved a post of their own).

Nick and I have been travelling recently, and we had the awesome opportunity to tag along on a flight with Mission Aviation Fellowship (MAF).  MAF is a Christian missionary organization which uses small planes to provide a really wide variety of services, whether it's getting relief sent to difficult to reach places or partnering with other organisations to fly their staff where they need to go.  Madagascar is huge island with some very difficult to reach areas, and so Mercy Ships has partnered with MAF to help get our patient selection team out to less visited areas to look for potential patients.  
It happened that they had a few extra seats on a flight returning from Tamatave to their base in the capitol, which meant we got to skip out on the 8-10 hour bus ride! :) 

Not only did we get to skip out on the winding bus ride through the mountains- we got to see how stunning Madagascar is from above!

Here's a few photos:

We could see the port out the window, and even the Africa Mercy!

Houses in Tamatave...

Rice paddies and rivers just outside the city

We saw lots of mountains with rice paddies, fields and villages tucked between them

Many thanks to our friendly pilot!

Thank you MAF for such a cool experience!