Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Memories of FPO

We have been gone from Virginia for almost 2 weeks. Life has been very busy with visiting friends and family. It has been a sweet time. I wanted to make one more post about our time at FPO to share some random memories. Hope you enjoy!

First let me introduce you to sweet baby Hadassah! She stole our heart from the first day we saw her. That was when we went to Orlando for our Appointment Service in September. From that day Meghan began praying that we would be together in the same Quad (our little house that 2 families, 2 couples and one single young man all lived together in) at FPO. God answered her prayer. All 5 members of the McDaniel family fought over who would hold her every moment she was awake! She was absolutely the sweetest baby ever!! Can you tell I miss her?

Here are the girls giving Hadassah a bath. (They participated with her momma almost every night.)

Lilly giving Haddy a bottle at bedtime one night. (Perfect little mother, isn't she?!)
 Me, putting her PJs on her one night.
Here the girls are in the dining room for breakfast one day.
 Here they are at the school with their teachers. I forgot to get Mr. Ben -- Lilly's other teacher :(
 The night the top bunk fell on Lilly with Emma on top!!! No one was seriously hurt!
 The girls creating purses in the sewing room.
 Mozambican art...
Our precious FPO family. We lived in one house, composed of 5 little apartments and one living room for almost 9 weeks. They were a huge blessing to our family. We can wait to see all of you again in Zambia in April!

Training is we go! We cannot wait to get to the field and begin learning the language and the culture of our people! Thank you for praying for us. You are a blessing!


Lottie 5K

Early in our time in Virginia, one of our colleges decided to put together a 5K that would be scheduled toward the end of our time there. He gave out a "Couch to 5K" plan to those with no running history and encouraged anyone wanting to participate to begin training.  Lee and Meghan quickly started the program to get ready. They had great father/daughter time every other day as they ran together.

As the week approached Emma decided that she wanted to participate, too. Then the day of the run, Lilly did not want to be left out. So, all of them ended up running!

Here they are suited up and ready to run.
Here they are suited up and ready to run!
Lilly and her friend on the starting line.
Lee and Meg going strong.
Emma surprising us with her non-training self.
Lilly and a different friend holding hands while running....she wouldn't leave him behind :)
Lee and Meg running the whole thing!!!
Emma was the next to cross the finish line!
Then, Lilly makes it across!
All of our house-mates exhausted after their run!! Great Job guys!!!
I was so proud of my family for their hard work!!!


Wednesday, December 7, 2011

A New Kind of Worship

In the lives of all of us here, corporate worship is a central part of our faith. This looks different for all of us. Some of us came from small congregations of less than 100 and some of us came from mega churches. Yet, "church" for us is similar. That is all about to change. 

Every Sunday night, a different affinity group prepares a worship in the styles and languages of that area of the world. It is a very special time for us to share in each other's culture. We try to mimic the culture of the body of Christ in that setting. We even try to wear clothing appropriate for that culture.

No interpreting is allowed. All songs, all scripture readings, all prayers are in the native language of the people. Then, there is a short sermon or teaching in a native language.

The first night it was very funny. We looked at each other and laughed because we did not know what we were singing or what was being said.

This is very helpful for the McDaniel family, though. When we step off the plane we will not hear any English. When we go to the market, we will not hear English. When we go to church of Sunday, we will not hear English. Our ears need to be used to hearing other languages and our hearts need to know what it feels like to not understand what people are saying or singing. This is good preparation for that.

The best night for us was when we had Sub-Saharan Africa worship. Enjoy some of our photos!
All dressed in our African clothes.
Lilly brought her baby along and her drum. 
My sweet friend Shandra and baby Hadassa
Drum lessons
Emma trying to get the rhythm!

Girls not knowing what to think of the languages that they are hearing

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Thank you Lottie Moon!

Here the girls stand beside the tiny, famous, feisty Southern Baptist Missionary named Lottie Moon. (Yes, she was actually that size in real life!)
Lottie worked as a missionary to China in the 1800s. During her years of service to the Chinese people she sent many letters home urging the church to support foreign missions in a greater way. In 1918 an annual offering was named after Lottie. Every penny given to the Lottie Moon Christmas offering goes to support IMB missionaries. I think that would make Lottie proud! Today over 5,000 missionaries are serving on foreign soil to reach the world with the Gospel. This year our family is part of that number. How will you give this year?

Want to know more about the Lottie Moon Christmas offering? or the International Mission Board? Click the link below.

Friday, November 25, 2011

Trip to Washington DC

Our whole group (94 men, women, and children) loaded onto buses early this morning headed to our Nation's Capital. This was not just a day of sight seeing. We were given several assignments for our time in the city. We were to find a restaurant from our new country, do different types of observing and interacting internationals as well as navigate the subway. It was a lot of fun! 
One of the first things we did was find this awesome Portuguese/Mozambican restaurant. It is called Nando's Peri-Peri. It was so delicious! The story goes that during the 15th and 16th century Portuguese explorers set up a port on the coast of what is now the African country of Mozambique. When they did the indigenous Africans introduced them to the African Bird's Eye Chili. The locals called their little fiery chili pepper Pili-Pili. Peri-Peri was as close as the explorers could get. This is a pepper still used in Mozambique today (or so I understand). Nando's also had what they called "Portuguese rolls". We understand that this is the main food in Mozambique and that there is a bakery next to the Mission house in Napula. If they taste like what we had at Nando's....which I hardly believe is mid-section is in trouble!
Here we are in front of Nando's.
The girls really liked it too!
Here we are navigating the Metro.
One of the coolest things we did was to find the Mozambican Embassy. Sadly they were closed for the holiday. We prayed on the steps and had some pictures made. I am sure that whoever watches their surveillance tapes will wonder what those crazy Americans were doing!
Lilly enjoying hot Krispy-Kreme doughnuts in front of the White House.
And Emma feeding the pigeons....
Great fun!