Saturday, September 5, 2009

Laughter Feels Good

Sitting Up in the Tub -- WOOHOO!

Pete loved sitting up in his new tub for the first time. He liked patting his hand on the bouncy side of the tub as much as the water. He hardly noticed it was bathtime actually. He was fascinated watching his hand bounce off the tub every time he hit it!

We could hardly believe it when Pete grabbed this little cup and just started swigging away at the water. He really likes it and is learrning so many new things he can do on his own.

Pete could swing in this swing for hours if we would let him. He holds onto those yellow ropes for dear life. He actually cried the other day when I took him out -- it was sad and really cute all at the same time. He just enjoys life most all the time.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Swimming and Sitting Up!

Pete love chewing on this yellow ring, as much as being in the water!
Hey, you caught me sitting up, even if it was for only 10 seconds.

Pete flashes those big blue eyes at most everybody and melts their hearts.

My birthday package finally arrived two months late, but we celebrated anyway!

We have too much fun together and it gets better everyday!
These are just a few pictures from our day to day life here. Pete went to his first swimming party for Tess's 1st Birthday Party! It sure was fun and we were all surprised that he never wanted out of the cool swimming pool. It was too chilly for the adults, but the kids ate it up! Also, as you can tell Pete has started sitting up for moments at a time and it is really fun. He has had a lot more fall overs than long moments of sitting up, but he keeps on trying and never cries about it. He is a joy to our lives and it has been a joy to us too, to see how many people he shares the same happiness with. He makes so many people smile and our friends all enjoy moments holding him and he loves to snuggle with new faces and hold thier faces. What a WONDERFUL time of life!

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Holding My Head Up

Pete is really starting to have fun on his belly. When he figured out how to really hold his head up, it was like he was discovering the world for the first time all over again! You could see the fascination and wow in his eyes as he looked around. He has started to grab for toys and pull them to himself to play with. He rolls over well, except when he is really tired! And he is almost able to roll from back to belly too. He has figured out lots of things on his little exer-saucer seat in the picture above. He is a content and happy little guy and we have so much fun with him. We had a great 4th of July too and we found some red, white and blue in his wardrobe, but you have to look closely for the red converse shoes!

Friday, July 10, 2009

Mount Karisimbi - 14,787 ft.

Four of us guys, missionaries in Rwanda, decided a couple months ago to hike Rwanda's tallest peak - Karisimbi. This mountain is part of the Virunga mountains which are extinct volancos. Karisimbi is sometimes snowcapped, thus it's Kinyarwandan name referring to snow. So, we've been training off and on in preparation of our trip.
We started the summit on Wed., July 8th at 7,200 ft. and hiked to base camp which took us about 5hrs. Already we were pretty tired since we carried up all our gear - 26 to 30 lbs for each pack. It was also neat to have about a half dozen Rwandan soldiers with us. They carried AK-47's and one guy had a bazooka. They were protecting their borders but also us from cape bufallo, gorillas, and guerillas. We didn't see any of these three.
The next morning we left at 5:30am with temperatures around 35 degrees. The one pictuture shows us hiking up above tree line. We summited Karisimbi - 14,787 ft - around 9am. It was beautiful. You could see neighboring Congo just yards away with Mt. Mikeno looking back at us (this is the mt. behind us in the last picture). We sat up at the top for about a half hour, singing thanks to the Lord for His Creation. Afterwards, we headed down and out. Rwandan is such a magnificent country. We saw such beautiful scenery, from moss covered trees that were ancient to trees that looked like they were from a Dr. Seuss book.
For my friends and family: Drew Custer: notice my coat and Jordan Clark: my Jacko hiking pole. Both are going strong. And Haley, I'm wearing the hat you and Joe bought me for Christmas. I look good.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Trip to Uganda

We recently went to Uganda last week. It was a whirlwind trip seeing missionary friends in Mbarara, Kampala, and Jinja. Rebecca lived and worked in Jinja for 2 1/2 years and so Pete and I got to see her old stomping grounds. We visited the church in Wankonge and the Christians there were excited to meet little Pete.
Pete also made a new friend. The Bogles, missionaries in Jinja, have a little boy Adam. He liked Pete's bumbo so much that he had his parents get his old one from the attic so they could sit together. They were a cute pair.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Pete's Favorite Toys

Here is Pete with his favorite giraffe. We have switched its name from Sophia to Stella. Thanks for the wonderful toy, Grandma Stella. He also really likes his ball. It is easy for him to grab and put in his mouth.

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Grabbing Things & Care Packages

Pete has made some big steps this week. He has started to realize that he can grab things, bring them to his mouth and throw them down. He really works hard at focusing on objects and putting his little hands together to grab them. He also moved out of 0-3 month clothes this week and as you can see from the picture above, he is quite happy about it! He loves sitting in his Bumbo seat and looking all around. Also, as you can see from the pictures, Pete has gotten his Daddy's blue eyes. They are so pretty. Pete also loves reading books and he usually really studies the pages and can already read a few words, we think!! Okay, not yet, but he's well on his way!!
We got our first care package mail this week. We got Reeses pieces, gum, Crystal Light, fruit snacks and Tootsie Rolls, as you can see. Mail from America is a wonderful thing, no matter what it is, it is such an encouragement to us. Thank you to everyone who has dropped things, big or small, in the mail for us. They lift our spirits in so many ways.

Friday, May 15, 2009

Don't Worry...Warm Baths are the Norm!

Thank you to everyone who has been so concerned about Pete. We have possibly recieved more feedback from our last blog posting than any other. Everyone has been so worried about little Pete and his crazy parents who give him cold baths! Just to put everyones mind at ease, it wasn't really cold, just lukewarm cause the power was out. He usually does have warm baths and I certainly could heat water on the stove if necessary. Pete just doesn't like getting out of any bath, warm or not, cause he would rather be all bundled up!
We are attaching another picture after a usual happy bath time. Also, he got to wear a little hand me down hat from our cousins. He will not be doing any hunting anytime soon, but thought we should pose for a picture before we outgrow the hat.
Pete finally has a room all his own at 3 months old. The picture above is part of his little room, simple and comfortable. He sleeps great in his room and seems to love sleeping in Africa. He sleeps from 8:30ish to 6:30ish each night.
And the picture of the banana tree is in our front yard. We are waiting for it to ripen, they should be delicious. We wish you all could be here to enjoy a tasty one with us. Take care and God bless.

Friday, May 8, 2009

Heads Up!

Pete is getting so big and strong. He is really liking to sit up and look all around. He also loves to flex his legs and "stand up" while we hold him. But as you can tell, there is one thing he doesn't like....and that is a cold bath. Without a water heater, his bath time is not always so fun. Sometimes we can get the water warmer than others, but this time, even the Cookie Monster towel couldn't bring a smile to Pete's chilled little body!! He loves singing, rhymes, reading books, sleeping, drinking milk and Rwanda!

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Happy Boy

Pete is sporting a Longhorn's shirt with a smile.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Akagera Park

The guys in the missionary community here took a camping trip last week. 14 of us piled into two land cruisers and traveled 2.5 hrs to the eastern part of Rwanda to a game park called Akagera. Above are some animals we saw. Hard to believe we saw the following animals just a short distance away: elephants, hippos, crocs, giraffes, cape buffalo, warthogs, impalas, baboons, water bucks, elands, roan antelope, reed bucks, topi's, green mamba, crested cranes, and other various birds. Great times. We camped out in tents and heard hippos talking to each other all night. We even heard a hyena howling, too. This was a great time of bonding and getting to know each other. Praise God for His unique and wonderful Creation.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Our First House!

Hello all. We are in Rwanda. Hopefully you have seen our newest newsletter for April that we just sent out. Above are a couple of pics from our trip. Pete had to wear his own special seat belt while sitting on Rebecca's lap. He seemed to enjoy it alright! He looks sharp in his red long johns. When we got off the plane in Rwanda, we saw this sign from our teammates. You can tell who they were more interested in seeing... not me but Pete!! And rightly so, I guess.
As the title above states, we just signed an agreement to rent our first house. We signed the documents today and paid for the first three months rent. We did this in order for the owner to have money to make the needed repairs to our home before we move in (hoping May 1). Then on the day we move in, we pay another three months rent upfront. Things work a little diffently in Rwanda!! Our landlord is a major in the Rwandan military and seems very likable. We feel very blessed by God with our new home. It is very close to the Shelbys and about an 8-10 min. drive from the rest of our crew. The last picture is our front yard. And there is room for visitors so please come see us!!