Eref too saat means it is time for a rest!  We have been here three months and are feeling the weight of responsibility and cultural changes.  So we are going on a trip.  Saturday we are driving with a team that is here to Arbaminch (means 40 Lakes).  We are staying in a little villa until next Thursday.  All by ourselves, with nothing to do….it sounds so dreamy.  And we are already dreaming of all the things we could, but don’t have to do.  You can see pictures of Paradise Lodge here

I think in order to be able to stay on the mission field long term, we have to have a time of rest and rejuvination for ourselves.  When we live 2 football fields away from work and Paul is essentially always on-call it is difficult to get away, even at home.  This is a concept that is so different for Americans (myself included).  In America our private spaces are getting bigger (our cars, our bedroom, our closets, etc, etc) and our public spaces are getting smaller (our living rooms, our backyards…).  We are use to living our private lives where we wake up in the morning, get ready for work, leave out the garage, get into our car and drive to work…and when we get home enter our garage in our car and close the door before ever even getting outside.  And then back into our homes.  I had a missions professor describe this much more elequontly than I just did, but you get the idea…we are very private people.  I noticed this as Paul and I searched for apartments in Dallas a few years ago.  Everything newer had huge bathrooms, bedrooms and closets and the living room and dining room were squisshed into the left over space. 

And although we are in need of a rest and a get away, I am currently enjoying living in this tight community more than our own private lives.  Yesterday morning, I had to go to a meeting and I left Nathan asleep in his crib while I walked to the hospital.  Well, Etagainu (she watches Nathan in the afternoons) saw me and asked where Nathan was.  I told her and she gladly went and checked on him while I was gone.  It was nice to know someone wanted to help. And everyone helps each other so much.  Over and over again, I think of the saying, “It takes a village, to raise a child.”  It is so true!  So I am thankful for my village.

This weekend and next week, Paul and I are looking forward to some time to rest and just play with Nathan and be together.  He has been working so hard since we got here and he really is handling it all very well.  I don’t know how he handles the responsibility, but I try to support him in what ever way I can. (Love you, honey)

Thanks to all of you who pray for us, we need it.  And we are praying for you too; we know America isn’t any easier…it’s just a differnt kind of hard. 

On a different note:  I know all of you who voted for Nathan’s favorite new food are curious…It was Avacado!  He loves them!  I have been wanting him to try it since we got here and they are just now in season.  He eats a whole one before bed every night!  (Now they are smaller avacados than we are used to, if some of my dietitian-portion-control-queens are freaking out.)  But he loves, loves, loves it.  And I was so excited to introduce them to him.  It is so adorable to watch him feed himself, but he only gets to feed himself avacado if it is bath day!)  He also loves the grass and playing outside (as noted by the above picture).  We will have more pictures soon after our Eref too saat and plenty pics outside enjoying the “13 months of sunshine” of Ethiopia.