What I Learned in June (2016 edition)

I really needed this slow month.  Truthfully I probably read too many books this month.  On the other hand, I didn’t really have a lot that I had to do besides getting to know people on our new team. It has been a blessing to have time to rest and regroup.  I don’t think I realized how exhausted I was until I felt truly rested.  I am still working on getting a full night’s sleep but I have seen progress.  Being close to the ocean has been refreshing as I walk up and down the road or on the beach which leads me to my lessons for the month of June as I link up with Emily and other bloggers at Chatting at the Sky in what we learned.

1.   Getting 10,000 steps is harder than I thought.

While we were in the states, my mother in law gave me a fit bit.  I have been slightly obsessed with trying to get in my steps.  It has been good motivation for me to keep moving but walking/running 10,000 steps takes time and energy.  Some days it is easier than others. Over all though, I am feeling stronger and healthier even if I don’t hit that 10,000 step goal every day.  As I get more energy, I do find myself dancing to the music Big D has playing in the house.  I also don’t feel exhausted each afternoon.  For me, that is progress.

2.   New Favorite Sodas

I am finding that I do better when I stay away from caffeine.   So it was refreshing to find these fun sodas that are caffeine free.

My favorite flavors are Cassis and Fresh Citrus.  My husband and Big D favor the bitter lemon or ginger ale.   Cassis has a berry flavor to it.  The soft drinks come from the Netherlands but are very popular here-the bitter lemon especially.  They are about 70 cents a can which helps us limit them to a few a week.

On another note, we have always liked Lemon Fanta so we decided to try Annas Fanta in the blue can.  It is basically pineapple soda.  We like pineapple but maybe not that much.   I am also grateful that I don’t care for the Coke here.   It makes me less tempted to buy it and drink it.

3.   The word “plunger” could mean different things to different people.

What picture came to your mind when I wrote “plunger”?  Well a neighbor asked my friend to borrow her plunger.  So my friend brought over her plunger.  You know the thing you use to unclog toilets.  But the neighbor meant for my friend to bring over her French Press.  In Australia, they call a French Press- a plunger.  

What do you call a French Press?  What do you think of when you hear the word “plunger’? It was a good reminder as we communicate that we might be hearing the words but not fully understanding the meaning but to keep at it.  The incident above ended up giving us ladies at the bible study a chance to laugh together.

  4.   The Best Way to Connect with People is to Invite Them Over.

These last few weeks I am taking Kristen Strong’s advice to Open up, Show up, and Lift Up.   It has been fun having over guests and hearing their stories.   The only challenge is that I am limited on my cooking supplies until our shipment comes.  On Sunday, I used one pan at least four different times as I was cooking a meal for 9 people.  

Thankfully, I was able to do some of the cooking in stages.  My pans were just big enough to handle what we needed to do, and my friend didn’t mind bringing 3 extra forks since I only had 6 forks.  Having company is also a good excuse to make dessert.  For our first guests, we tried out  Cutler's Chocolate Frosted Peanut Butter Cookies from The Girl Who Ate Everything.  I did use half the amount of chips and frosting and they still were delicious and rich.  For our Sunday guests, Big D and I made two pies-chocolate and Banana crème.  Big D is better than I am at stirring patiently as the pudding thickens. 

5.   The effects of Ebola are still present in Africa.

We live in a country that was affected by Ebola.   The country is recovering but there is still much fear and ignorance when it comes to those who were Ebola survivors.  I would have thought the survivors would be perceived as brave and strong.  Instead many of them are ostracized and have trouble returning to normal life. Some people are afraid thinking they might get Ebola from them.  The survivors also have to deal with medical issues from Ebola.  Others have taken in children of those who died from Ebola or need help finding work and a way to support their family.

Once a crisis is out of the news, it is often out of sight, out of mind.  For me this was a good reminder to keep praying long after the main crisis has passed.  Recovery and healing take time.

Here is a good article telling the stories of 13 survivors of Ebola.

6. Last but not least, I found out I am part of the launch team for Stacey Thacker's new book Fresh Out of Amazing.

I am looking forward to reading this book in the next week or so and sharing with you about it.  Couldn't we all use some amazing in our life? 

On her website she is also offering 5 Prayers for When You are Fresh Out of Amazing.

What did you learn this month?  


Christe said…
Love reading your posts, and I love hearing what the Lord is doing in you in Liberia. I'm particularly blessed to see refreshment on your dear face. Love you, sweet friend.

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