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Greetings from Mae Ai

June 26, 2012

Sorry we haven’t been able to update very much (as in no posts for the past 8 days…). We’ve had long days and sketchy internet. But as you saw from Owen’s post, the Northwest University team also has a blog that Joyce has been able to update more regularly. You should check it out to catch up a bit from the past week.

A short summary, though, from our time since our last post:

We finished up at Lighthouse Children’s Home on Wednesday (6/20) and said our goodbyes (but not forever). The boy and girls’ rooms look great and Hilary had fun designing stencils and decorating the outside of the buildings.

Thursday was our fun, touristy day. We rode an elephant at the Mae Sa Elephant Camp (video will be posted once we are back in Chiang Mai!!) and also visited some neat artisan shops in the area. (Baan Celadon pottery/ceramics, traditional silver workshop, and Thai silk workshop.) It was really good, really necessary, to take time to rest and relax. It was also a great day of team bonding. A few highlights from the day include Hilary playing darts against an elephant [and losing ;)] and the first real rainstorm [which we obviously danced in].

Friday and Saturday we spent at Horizon Village: a resort outside of Chiang Mai. 26 children who live in two different children’s homes (Lighthouse Children’s Home and those who live with missionaries Joey and Narlan) joined us for a mini-summer camp! None of the children (who are all hilltribe) had never stayed at a hotel or swam in a pool before. It was SUCH a blessing to be able to spend so much time playing and fellowshipping with the kids and the caretakers. We really had a chance to go deep: we were able to learn ALL their names, build friendships, teach each other jokes/game… We each have so many stories of particular kids that we connected with. One of the highlights of the weekend was a resort-wide scavenger hunt! It was so fun to watch each team (headed up by a few team members and flanked by five enthusiastic kids) create their team cheer and race around the resort (which was like a nature park) on bicycles. Abby’s team, “Bunnies”, won “best cheer”, and Alison’s team, “Lions”, won overall–by a 6 point lead! It was a really sad goodbye after we had church together Sunday morning. Lots of tears and smiles. :’)

Sunday we traveled to Mae Ai to visit Faith Village. We’ve spent the past few days getting to know the kids and the children’s home. We were able to sit and listen to the story of David and Paula (leaders of Faith Village). It was quite an incredible story (you would not believe how incredible this couple/family is!) and set the stage for our visit with the kids. When we get back to Chiang Mai, we will recap more. 🙂

Thanks for your continued prayers! Please keep praying for health (a lot of us are under the weather) and continual strength. Please also keep praying for the homes/friends we’ve been visiting: pray for provision, for protection, for continual wisdom and joy as they raise these kids. 🙂

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