5.9 @25

We’re pretty used to little earthquakes by now, some weeks we’ll have two or three within the week! Sometimes we just feel a sharp jolt or two, sometimes the house just gently rocks back and forth a bit. Sometimes we all feel them, some just a few us even notice. But not the one on Saturday!! Joey was at the Husas finishing up a game with the Husas and our visiting translation consultant, Linda. I (Brooke) had just brought the kids home to put them to bed. The house started shaking and rolling, and this time, it just didn’t stop! Instead of dying away, it got stronger! Solomon and I were upstairs, and when we started hearing things falling off the shelves we huddled down in a sheltered spot. We know stairways are one of the most dangerous spots in a house, so we didn’t try to go down. Shiloh and Marietta were on the back porch locking a bunny into it’s cage, and they ran out of the house to our meeting spot in the yard. At the Husas they grabbed Skyler and all evacuated too.

It did finally stop, and everybody was ok. Only 5 or 6 things actually fell, and nothing even broke. It sure succeeded in shaking us up a bit, though! 🙂 No way the kids wanted to climb into bed and go to sleep after that, so we read for a while till everyone’s heart rate went back down and they got sleepy again. When Linda left on Monday, she looked up online to find the information regarding the earthquake, and sent us this info. It was a 5.9 (we’ve had worse around here) but the epicenter of the earthquake was only about 25 miles away!.

Shooken up,
Joey and Brooke etc.

Hi, Family!

It’s a beautiful rainy evening here in Mibu.  We are all busy getting ready for the Bible translation consultant who will be flying in and spending the weekend with us.  Shannon and I will be getting her guestroom ready, and have already put together a meal schedule.  Usually the consultants who come in like us to all eat suppers together so that we can talk about things afterwards, and everyone is there to hear their “words of wisdom.”  🙂  We don’t mind, we usually cook and eat supper together at least once a week, and either sit around and talk afterwards or play games or watch a movie or something.  Shannon and I decided that with Angie gone for now, it’s time for Shiloh to take her place in getting the guestroom ready for guests with us.  We have the preparations divided up into three main jobs, so the work is split up when people come in.  Many hands make light work!!  🙂

Marietta (Jr.) has recently developed a great love for guacamole!  There are quite a few huge avocado trees in this area, owned by different families,  but when the avocados are ripe, there are hundreds (per tree!) and much too much for any one family to consume.  It seems to be the avocado time of year again, and when I told a Mibu friend that I would buy a few avocados (I think I remember mentioning, like, 3) she had her husband carry up 25 of them!!  I went ahead and bought 10 of them.  They only cost about 10 cents each.  I just couldn’t see eating more than that in a week… lol.  Well, Marietta mixed them with salsa, and by yesterday we managed to eat 8 of the 10 avocados!  We don’t have any tortilla chips around here (it’s not South America!!) so we eat it with saltine type crackers, but it still works.  🙂

Shiloh has had a tough week, but she also has been showing some good maturity through it.  Her goat, Leah, had a baby two days ago.  It’s the first baby goat we’ve had.  Leah seemed to be rejecting it, so Shiloh took it in and slept by it downstairs, and has been milking the mom to feed the baby.  She spent basically all of two days taking care of it, and boy was it the cutest thing.  But without it’s mom, we just couldn’t make it work.  Last night it died while she stroked it’s head and cried.  Tough stuff… but she is doing well, though of course, is very sad.  I must say, I am proud of her.

Solomon organized the game cupboard for me today.  They don’t get paid for their regular chores, but they do for extra ones, and this was extra.  Boy, did it need some attention, though!  We play games all the time, so everything is constantly being taken out and shoved back in.  He did a great job, and I added the payment to his list.  They have all been saving up for different things.  Mostly things from America, since any toys bought here tend to fall apart, sometimes before you can even get them home!!  It’s too hard to have enough US currency around to pay them in, so I have taken to just keeping it on a list on my desk.  Not quite as fun as holding those quarters in your hand, but it works.  🙂

With all that’s been going on around here the last few days, with the goats and all (and did I mention that one of the bunnies also had babies on the porch, and one of the chicken’s hatched a chick?) we’ve barely been getting in school the last few days, with everyone helping with the little goat, but now we’re back at it.  I am so thankful that Shannon is still teaching the kids math!!  It’s such a help!  And the half an hour each day with a quiet house keeps me sane!  🙂 I don’t know what we’ll do when they go to Australia in September to have their baby!  They are about 4 months along or so now. We have a few months to figure it out before then.  They went home to Arizona to have their last baby, but it takes so much longer because of visas etc. to go to the US that they are going to do the cheaper, shorter trip and just go where everyone here goes for bigger medical stuff, to Cairns, Australia.  Joey and Marietta went through Cairns (pronounced “cans”, as we have learned!) on their way to the US last fall, and we are looking forward to spending some time there, ourselves, sometime.

Well, I’m late on dinner and must get it going.  The kids grow inches each time they sleep, it seems, so maybe their oft-heard cries of “I’m starving!” really have something to it.  But probably not.  🙂
Love you all,
More later,

Brooke
for all of us

Benny

I poked my head in at Benny’s hut the other day and found him home and wanting to chat.  We weren’t talking long when he told me that he wants to be baptized.  Many of the Mibus were baptized awhile back, but Benny is the Mibus’ representative to the government and so is often away, like when the first wave of baptisms happened here.  When I asked Benny if he would share with me why he wanted to be baptized, I was truly blessed to hear this testimony from him.

Benny told me how he used to wonder about how he would get to heaven.  He said, “I knew I was sinful, and I often went against what I knew to be right.  I tried to earn favor with God by giving money and even by sacrificing pigs.  I learned that Jesus died for us and rose again, and in His doing that, God forgives us.  I still sin, but in spite of that, God looks at me as righteous because He does not look at me or my sins, but He looks at Jesus and calls me righteous for what He sees in Jesus.  I want to do what is commanded and be baptized.  That’s all.”  I didn’t even try to keep the grin off my face.  What a joy to call Benny a brother.

Thank you for your prayers.  God hears!

For His Glory,
Joey and Brooke Tartaglia
Mibu, PNG