Showing posts from May, 2012

New Pictures

Things have been a little quiet around here the last few days. After a very fun day at the Rhino and Lion Park on Tuesday, Tyson and I both ended up with the stomach flu on Wednesday and Thursday. Darin was gone a good part of the day on Thursday, so we were so thankful that Grandma Karen was around to take care of things around the house! On Friday we went to Mama Cathrine's for a bit and then went out for Roman's Pizza at Jubilee Mall. Israel said it tasted like Pizza Ranch, which is a pretty big compliment! Today we went to church with Mama Joye in Hammanskraal and then went out to dinner at Tamboti Lodge. Tomorrow morning we are heading out to the Haartbeespoort Dam and Chameleon Village to do some shopping.  In other news, we uploaded A LOT of pictures from April and May into our Picasa albums. There is a link at the top of the blog, so go check them out!

Recap of the last few days

On Friday, we woke up, the kids swam in the freezing water, the adults packed up our stuff, got in the car, and made our way back home by around 4 in the afternoon. Darin, Karen and Israel headed right across the road to see the kids. On Saturday we did a lot of laundry, spent some more time across the road and just recovered from our busy week! On Sunday we went to Eastside for church, grabbed McDonalds for lunch, then went to another church for a meeting regarding Mama Cathrine. We thought the meeting would last about an hour, but it ended up lasting quite a bit longer than that. Thank goodness for Grandma Karen and a big playground! We got home and spent some more time across the road with the kids. On Monday, we had another quiet day. I spent the morning across the road by myself, and then Karen and I went back for a few hours in the afternoon/evening. From what I've been told, the kids played, watched movies and played some more. Very thankful for a husband

Kruger Park, part 2

Thursday morning: We headed back to Kruger today. We decided not to force ourselves to get up before the sun and started our day at a more leisurely pace. We made pancakes for breakfast, had coffee, and the kids played outside for a bit before we packed up the car and headed out around 9:30. We started our day a little farther north at the Paul Kruger Gate. Before even going through the gate we saw a huge herd of buffalo. This was the first time we had ever seen them in the wild, so our day was off to a great start. We saw a few lone elephants, impala and baboons. Then we hit a dry spell. We were hoping to make it to the Orpen Dam for lunch, but the kids were getting more and more hungry and thirsty, so we made plans to stop sooner. Unfortunately, many of the places we wanted to stop at had Do Not Enter signs posted, so we had to keep on driving. We finally stopped around 12:30 at Tshokwane, which was only half closed. We tried to eat a fast lunch, but the kids were overly interested

Zip Lines and the Shangaan

Wednesday morning/early afternoon: We started out a little later this morning and headed out around 8 instead of before 6, which was a bit more manageable. We headed towards the Blyde River area, which should sound familiar as we were in the same area with my parents back in October. Our first stop was the Pinnacle. I was just as unenthusiastic about my kids standing near a ledge with no railing as I was the last time we were there. We piled back in the car and headed to God’s Window. It was about 30 degrees cooler than it had been in October, which gave us all a bit more energy to keep going up the stairs until we reached the rainforest. It was well worth the walk! The whole landscape changed as we kept walking higher and the trees and greenery were lusher. The kids had a fun time climbing on rocks and walking over wooden foot bridges. The view from the top was amazing! We hiked back down, piled in the car again and headed to Bourke’s Luck Potholes. This is a great place to

Lion, Lion, Lion versus Cheetah

I am not sure where my kids heard that little Lion/Cheetah song, but I often find it running through my head. Today as we drove through Kruger Park it was going through my head more often than usual, but I’ll get to that later. Monday: We left our house just after 9, which was right on schedule. Squeezing 6 people and luggage into our 5 seater car was not as difficult as we thought. We stopped at a gas station for a picnic lunch. The gas station had a lot behind it with rhino, buffalo, eland, emus and ostriches. It was a nice little bonus. Grandma Karen started up a conversation with another American and it turns out that she and her husband live in Pretoria and have been going to the same church that volunteers with Mama Cathrine. It is such a small world! We drove up to Sabaan Lodge, near Hazyview, yesterday afternoon. We are surrounded by a banana plantation, which is kind of a nice extra. There is a big play area and pool for the kids and our cottage is clean and plenty b

Don't forget...

If you want to send the kids a birthday card, make sure you use the right postage! I'm told that it is currently 98 cents to send mail from the US to South Africa. 

The Birthdays are Coming! The Birthdays are Coming!

June is quickly approaching and we will soon have an 8 and 6 year old in the house! Last year our kids were blessed by an outpouring of birthday greetings from family and friends that we had collected and brought with us to South Africa. This year I am a little off my game and forgot to do some advanced planning. Darin's mom is here now, so it's too late to have people send cards to her to pack up and bring along. Instead, I am going to ask that if anyone wants to bring a little birthday joy to a special birthday girl and boy (I just had to make it rhyme) would you please be so kind as to send a card/s directly to us in South Africa?  The kids birthdays are on June 16 (Tyson) and June 18 (Jori), so to make sure the cards get here in time it would be best to send them within the next week or so. Our mailing address is as follows: Tyson and/or Jori Fey c/o The Hardings PO Box 2642 Hammanskraal 0400 South Africa Thanks for your help! 

Welcome to our guests and kid reports

Last night we picked up Darin's mom and brother from the airport. We were so excited to see Grandma Karen and Israel walk through the sliding doors. Tyson ran and jumped right into Grandma Karen's arms and then he and Israel held hands all the way out to our car. Jori turned into a total chatterbox and was pointing out "amazing" things and acting like a total goofball. It was an interesting ride home. We let the kids stay up a lot later than usual, until Jori was crying and Tyson's eyes were red with tiredness. The rest of us were talking til 10, and then it was time for bed. Karen and Israel are still in bed (it's only 7:20, and I'd be in bed too if my kids knew how to shut doors quietly!) and we hope that they both slept well last night and are ready for fun on this sunny Thursday. Here are the reports the kids wrote about Mystic Monkeys. Enjoy!  Tyson's report We saw all different kinds of monkeys one kind eats bats. We saw chimps they were wild

Another creature filled week

Some weeks around here seem to revolve around mammals, reptiles and insects more than others. This was one of those weeks. We’ve been seeing the giraffe around here again. On Saturday, Darin and I went out to turn off the water pump and there was a huge giraffe standing just outside of the fence, silently staring down at us. We just stood there looking up at him, then watched him walk off. He took up a location between some trees, but from our bedroom window we had the perfect view of him. He just stayed in that one place for about 30 minutes, standing tall, sometimes looking right towards us and otherwise focusing on something out of our line of sight. We went on a game drive earlier in the week and saw a baby waterbuck. It was our first time seeing such a little one! We also saw this big guy standing right on the road we were planning to drive down. We just stuck the car in neutral, rolled a safe distance forward and watched until he went into the tall grass. On Thurs

Sax-y and I know it

Last night we went to cell at the Strecker's house. They will be moving back to Austria in June, and are busy packing up and giving things away. Tyson and I were already in the car when Jori and Darin finally came out. Jori had on a little jacket that her friend Aliya had outgrown. We hadn't gone too far down the road when Jori said "This coat feels a little saxy." Darin and I looked at each other and then asked her to repeat herself. "It feels a little saxy", she said again. I asked her what "saxy" meant and she said "You know, it's kind of like it feels jealous". I asked if she meant that other people would feel jealous of her wearing it, but she said "No, it just feels jealous". Tyson then chimed in "She means sexy", which we already knew, but having her describe something as "saxy" and "jealous" was much more entertaining. She just went and put her new jacket on and I ask

Two Terrific Reports from Two Terrific Kids

Does that title show how biased I am towards my children? Well, I am and I will freely admit it. They may drive me nuts and occasionally make me want to pull my hair out, but they also amaze me each day with their creativity, imagination and love of life. They also make me laugh about a million times a day, which is the icing on the cake. In my mind, they are pretty awesome. Here are some reports that will give a little glimpse of that awesomeness! Tyson's report I went to another O.M. thing they talk about countrys which were Thailand, Nepal, Albania, Japan and Sudan. I went with 3 of my friends Caden, Ben and Beau. They had a war in Sudan. If people are Christian in Sudan they get thrown into jail or get killed.  Their was a tsunami last year in Japan. In Japan there are wrestlers that are funny because they show the 2 sides of their butts. Pray for the Christians there aren't many. In Nepal they pray to 33,000,000 gods. And they put a red dot on my forehe

Fritter Fry

I'm adding something new to the list of things I've done once and don't plan to do again; fry banana fritters in oil. I think I'll be sticking to baked goods from now on and leave the frying to the professionals. I had some bananas that needed to be used up and my original plan was to make banana bread. Instead I took out my handy Wycliffe cookbook and saw a recipe for banana fritters and I thought, "Those sound good". Note to self-learn to stick to your original plans, especially when you are hungry and just want a sweet treat to eat. Making the batter was easy enough. I even whipped egg whites for the first time ever and folded them into the rest of the batter. Go me. I put my oil on to heat up and I tested a little bit of batter and it all seemed ready. Being a frying novice, I didn't know how long the fritters had to stay in, so I was trying to judge it by the color. That proved to be my downfall. I fried up all the fritters and they we