Thursday, June 27, 2013

CP1 field trip

If we were staying in France Marianna would be in "CP1" next year so the teacher's have been preparing the kids for the big change. It's kind of like kindergarten in the US, they just break up the ages a bit different. Daniel went with them on the trip/picnic so he snapped a few pics.
She loves to climb and is pretty good at it!
There were goats!
Marianna hangs out with pretty much everybody, but her besties are other kids that speak other languages too (not english, but Arabic:)

She's getting so big!
Daniel spent hours entertaining the boys in her class by playing soccer with them.  The moms on the trip chilled while Daniel was "super papa!":)  She had fun!

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Recipes links to try (and general menu plan for this week)

I have been in the habit lately of buying gobs of yummy produce at the farmer's market here in smalltown France and then working meals around that.  We keep the other basics in stock too when Daniel makes his weekly trips to the mega-grocers, but my menus really depend on what's in season right now at the Saturday market.  This "method" makes using everything up in time a bit dicey, but we seem to be eating lots of veggies and fruits and other good things so I think its all good for now.  We'll be eating a lot of zucchini this week because its just starting to come in locally here.  Here are some recipes I'll be making over the course of the week:

Chicken Enchilada Boats (using hollowed out doing this to make pizza boats so this sounds great!)  and Cilantro rice (got fresh cilantro at the market too!)

Burgers and Zucchini Tots ('ll probably make sweet potato fries too since I have lots in the pantry)

Lemon Zucchini Bread using a mix of rice flour and whole wheat for desserts

Last week I made these vanilla cupcakes...because they are full of zucchini and eggs!  I thought they were too sweet, but then again I was thinking "muffin" but they are called cupcakes.  I will reduce the honey next time I make them.

Marianna had a mini field trip today and needed to pack a picnic.  Daniel went with her so I made them a healthy treat:  Peanut Butter Banana Cookies (they are almost an energy bar, no sweetener (besides bananas), gluten...just pretty good stuff) and they are yummy and filling. 

I have a big pot of homemade chicken broth (we had roast chicken, veggies and potatoes last night) so I'll be making crockpot soup sometime this week, not sure what kind, but definitely with homemade bread...I've come to love my bread machine!

My favorite drinks now that the weather is finally more summer like here?  Orange vanilla water (just orange slices and vanilla extract in a pitcher in the good.  That along with kombucha tea:)

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Saying goodbye stinks (but picnics are fun:)

We've had a a busy week...adjusting to the heat, saying goodbye to great friends heading back to the US for more training, selling furniture along with the normal language learning, parenting, packing, planning, organizing that moving to another country brings! So here is a little glimpse into a highlight from last week...our goodbye picnic to a family we love but won't see for a very long time (at best):

Girls just wanna have fun! There is a disproportionate number of MK girls here with their families right now! I can't remember how many right now, but its something like 4 boy kiddos to 15 girls or something like that! They have SO much fun together. As you might imagine it is a special treat when the kids get to see other english speaking kids. Doesn't matter that they come from all over and don't know eachother super well...they speak the same heart language and that is good enough to be a friend.
Louis, the charmer made a friend with a "big girl".  He is just cute enough and little enough to be able to hang out with the chicks:).  Hoping to turn one of our friends' pre-teen girls into a baby-sitter soon...mwahahaha!
Deep in picnic conversation:  french friends mixed in with American ones. 
A good friend having an animated conversation with one of our favorite french profs.
Cuter than cute A girl from the family that just left plopped down on our picnic blanket when we left and swiped our cherry tomatoes.  She was too cute to stop:)
Two of the great couples studying here (one who just left)
Louis with a big girl, getting a hand
Part of the group (there I am at left...hi!) surrounded by friends...happy:)

My precious goof-balls, hamming it up
The best part...the food.  Complete with 2 claudia Cakes!  Yay!

Our silly friends, striking a pose (I knew you'd want me to post this one guys:)

Neighbors and friends, now going our separate ways (us to Senegal, them to PNG)

Happy times mixed with sad ones...the way it often goes for us.  We are thankful for those God has put in our path, even if just for a time. 

Friday, June 7, 2013

More Cake with Claudia (never can get enough)

We had a get-together chez nous with Claudia our french friend and the "missionary to missionaries". She was once in the position we were...knowing no one and not knowing the language so she makes a special effort to reach out. Even before someone knows how to say "how are you?" in french she will try to encourage you and befriend you. She did so with us and many others and is still out-giving us by bringing us cake! We will definitely miss her when we leave.

Monday, June 3, 2013

Chillin' at the (beautiful) park

At our latest family photo shoot, video session (you do a lot of that when you are a missionary!) the kids had a chance to run around and enjoy the gorgeous park that we will miss dearly when we leave here. Following are some of their "adventurings":