Pic 1: Delayed take-off due to storms Pic 2: Grace & Noah watching the storm from our impromptu home for the night. Pic 3: Trying to check our 25kg BBQ in at Bali airport

Here we are again. It’s May 2015 and we’re back to our beloved Rote.

We got off to a slow start this year… I mean literally… We couldn’t even get off the ground in Sydney! After 1 cancelled flight and miraculous provision of the last available hotel room in Sydney (which happened to be right at the airport) we were re-booked onto a Garuda flight the next day, which also had difficulty due to the HUGE Sydney storms. Eventually we were off the ground and on our way. Exciting…. To say the least!

Call us dreamers, but this year we have way more to do in a lot less time. We have a kitchen/dining room/training pavilion to complete and fit-out. Plus we have the goal to build our next family-sized hut… Remembering that things move slower here as most all the work is done by hand. And we have less than 4 months to do it all!

We hit the ground running in Bali and were excited to get hold of a quality, all stainless BBQ to bring across with us for the kitchen…. Here is a picture of us being denied checking it in… Can’t understand why? It was only 52kg! Yes… dreaming again! It was worth a try! We have it here now, along with our truck load of required building materials and timber brought across by ferry from Kupang.

Horse Feast montage

We were all so excited to arrive in Rote. Matt was especially enthusiastic, accidentally kissing one of the local guys when he put his face up to Matts to welcome him back! You need to understand, culture here is to rub or touch noses, kind of like having a ‘sniff’… but definitely NOT lips to skin ha ha ha. Pakistan . Matt got so carried away he forgot which country he was in!

Progress is moving steadily despite a number of ‘holidays’ where basically the whole village shuts down and no one works. There are lots of ‘holidays’ here and various days of celebration, but one of these was extremely sad. Just 1 week after we arrived, the family that lives just across the road from us, lost their 1 month old baby. Unfortunately it happens all too often here in Rote.

The things we take for granted in Oz! We have strong, healthy bodies that fight sickness and disease plus access to doctors and good medical care… most of the world does not have this privilege!

We love this place, we love the people and we are so happy to be back here, doing what we love most! Oh, to make a difference! Our dream!

Bye for now.
From the ‘family of dreamers!’ (Thistlewaites)

Where to Start…

It’s Saturday afternoon here as I sit and think about how I can tell all that has gone on over the past couple of weeks in a few short paragraphs! I am surrounded by a buzz of activity, the sounds of hammering, sawing and playful laughter… Again, feeling blessed to be part of this beautiful community.

With so many projects that need doing, the greatest dilemma has been figuring out what needs to be done first! And with so many projects on the boil we decided the best thing to do was a ‘picture blog’ to update you on all that is going on.

Blog 2 Pic CollagesSo many projects accomplished – Makeshift kitchen, table and sleeping area, shed, fence, pillars, gates (front and back), a surfboard rack, transport (Jayden got ‘the bomb’ running), water pumps, piping, running water and a flushing toilet. Yippee!

In the meantime, in between homeschooling, we’ve got to hang out with Benny, Defi and their 18 children at the Rote Children’s Home, been thrown in the deep end teaching in kids church, visited the medical clinic and given medical provisions that were kindly donated by Excite Safety Training and Accidental Health and Safety, visited the local school with supplies kindly donated by Stanwell Park Public school and enjoyed a couple of soccer games (Oenggaut, the village we live in, v’s Nemberala, the village down the road). We’ve been delighted AND scared at times with creatures great and small! Scorpians, centipedes, red ants, a snake, goats, dogs, pigs, crabs and horses! Noah reckons if he was a pig living here he would pray that he could run very fast!! (This after seeing a pig being caught for a feast!)

After a hard days work it is always amazing to walk down the beach, look around and realise that I am the only one on it!!!

From ‘paradise’ at its best!
Nat, Matt, Jayden, Molly, Grace and Noah x


A Wise Man Once Told Me…

imageHonestly, these past few weeks have felt similar to what I imagine stepping off a cliff blind folded would be like!!

Not only have we been caught, but placed and confirmed into calling and purpose and destiny! As we sit on this slow ferry with a 10 tonne truck tucked away below packed with all our gear and building materials for our first family hut…. I get the  feeling that this is a Holy moment!!

A wise man said to me a couple of weeks ago in the midst of my panic, “each time we take another step out, MORE FAITH IS REQUIRED.” This is what I have discovered:

More faith required = God’s faithfulness again + His miraculous provision again + I learn in the process!

You know, anything can happen at any time. .. I need to learn to expect the unexpected (in a good way!) In just one day,whilst in Bali, we went from the extreme of seeing burning corpses on the beach during a Hindu cremation to a divine appointment with an amazing family.  We didn’t plan either! Not only has meeting this family impacted our immediate future,  but I believe this relationship will be instrumental for all of us in the years to come!  You just never know what is next!

For those of you who saw Noah last time we returned to Oz, you may be interested to hear that, unbelievably,  his hair is already blonde & we haven’t even hit Rote yet!! Grace is not far behind!!! Well,  that’s it for now from this slow boat. I’m going to soak in this ‘Holy moment’.

Land Ahoy!!!
Nat, Matt, Jayden, Molly, Grace and Noah