In life we meet times where things remain the same for weeks on end, and other times where life is in tumult of newness. Four weeks into our adventure of living in South Africa, we are definitely in a tumult stage! The children are loving the dog, Amber, where we are staying in central Stellenbosch. We are upstairs in a furnished flat and need to open two gates to get to the yard pictured above. Amber is the sweetest and most child-friendly dog you can imagine.
We're also very grateful for the parks within walking distance of our "home".
We have had some incredibly summery weather as well as some cold days.
All three children like to climb trees at the river park . . .
Ride choo choo . . .
Watch the river . . .
For the first three weeks I was solely walking with them during the day, going for two trips a day to local parks. We were grateful that when Dave was home on evenings and weekends we could travel in the hire car his work provided. Now we have bought the great car pictured above. It was great that it cost less than we had planned to spend, because the house we've bought is going to cost more than we were planning to spend :)! Our new car has room for grandparents or other children, with seven seats. It is a nine year old Volvo. I am taking the children to homeschool activities in it now term has started, and we are currently within walking distance of Dave's work. When we buy our house and move further away, Dave will car pool some days so I can use it.
Dr David Drew is pictured here outside his giant office. Its a good thing he has some space to be quiet there, because it sure is busy when he gets home! Work is also very busy though as he tries to get used to lecturing students as well as continuing research.
Education continues apace and we had a week of child-led volcano obession. It culminated in buying a volcano making kit at the homeschool entrepeneur day. The river park was the location of the explosion, made up of food colouring, bicarb soda and spirit vinegar.
We've seen so many blessings in these first weeks, but also a lot of strain as we've had to get over jet lag, parent disorientated children, navigate new places & shops & laws, deal with homesickness, and make huge decisions, all at the same time. Dave was working on scientific projects up until the week we left, and started his new work only a few days after we arrived.
We've found plugging into church life immediately invaluable. Besides being a child of God, nothing beats being part or the family of God and having that familiar shared focus with Christians all over the world. Going to church even when we felt dreadful has had big benefits for us. Its also been great to meet up with relatives here, and have dinner with work collegues.
As always, being thankful helps so here's a little thank you list from our day today:
- Still awake when Mercy had a night terror so didn't get wrenched out of bed
- Mercy loving to throw a ball to Max, Dave's uncle's dog.
- A big green space with children's climbing frame within walking distance of the house we are buying
- Tumble drier keeps our few clothes rotating nicely!
- Meeting a lady at church who had great faith in the face her child being born ill and passing away at the age of one
- Mercy throwing a ball with some people we met at church
- William laughing at the dogs
- Nate getting dressed without being asked
- William saying "thank you Jesus" when he picked up a piece of apple