Monday, March 18, 2013

Nice Start to the Week Off

This is a cane of sugar. This is what it looks like fresh off the plantation before they process into what we know as a bag of sugar. One of the guys at church (Lilian's dad) brought some in last week, and they told me to just chew on the inside part, but not swallow it. "Samoan candy," they said. ;-) Richard gnawed right into his with this teeth peeling the edge off like a beaver or something. "Uh... yeah, I'm not trying that with my teeth. Waiting til I get home and have a knife," I thought. Tasted a little sweet and was a fun experience.

Friday morning we grabbed some breakfast at DDW cafe in Utulei. Hannah's had some of her country fried potatoes with a Coke. Here I go with my food photos again. I thought these looked nice in black and white. I'm really into my "creative" photography lately.

I had my short stack of pancakes with some coffee. I LOVE this photo. So many nice layers and shapes. Remember last time I said I was definitely ordering coffee as it is chillier in this place. Not too bad today, but it was nice to enjoy three cups of coffee as we chatted. I'm also all about the black coffee lately when I've been having it out and about. No cream at all. :-) (I used to put in a little.)

Right next door the Samoan Day competition was taking place. This was one reason we decided to head into town. I knew a bunch of seniors had been practicing for it for a few weeks at school, and I was curious to see what it all entailed. Each school took their turn doing some traditional Samoan stuff. One guy got up and said a bunch of words in Samoan, they sang some songs, while one guy danced, the guy came back and spoke more, and then a small group did a Siva Samoa (the traditional dance). I'm glad we checked it out. I saw three performances before we headed out. The photos here all represent the school where I teach.

One reason we decided to leave was we didn't want to be around if fights broke out. Administration warned us, a few boys were having a little spattle at one point during one of the performances, and I was also told that one of the teachers had been injured from student fighting at a basketball game recently. Tafuna has been bad with the fighting lately. Our last day of Mid-terms we came in to a long list of names of students to send straight to the office as they had been fighting after school the day before. Oye. Plus, all of the performances were rather similar from my perspective. The music was different, and they each had their own flavor; yet, all the speaking was done in Samoan so I had no clue. Good experience, still.

Did a few things around home, then, and had fancy looking PB&J with a side of kiwi for dinner.

I cooked up some no-bake cookies that I wanted to take to the pot luck at church on Sunday. I've told a few of the boys about my cookies before, and many didn't seem to understand how we could have a cookie that didn't require an oven. Turned out to be a great idea. A bunch of the ladies were asking me about them. Guess I made a good batch ;-)

I spent some time looking up some recipes, as I find myself wanting to try a few things now that we actually have a kitchen. Decided to make a little baked apple that we shared while deciding to watch Beauty and the Beast for the night. Love the classics and food adventures.

Saturday morning I had the urge to go grab some pancakes at Matai Restaurant, so we got on a bus. Original plan was to try the Matai Restaurant II (which is in Nu'uuli rather than Fagatago), but we missed it going by on the bus. Oh well, town it is. Had just gotten off the bus and walked into the restaurant when my phone rings. "Why is Pastor Scot calling me at 9:30am on a Saturday? That's odd." He needs a babysitter as Jenna has a nice cut, and they wanted to take her in to have it checked. I told him I would get back on a bus and be there ASAP, which they really appreciated. At first they said they would try to figure something else out, but I told him it wasn't a big deal. He and Katie very much appreciated it.

So, that resulted in me spending 5 hours of my day with the Daku boys, Jenna's brothers. 5 year old Scot Jeffrey and 1 month old Andrew Paul. Been a while since I've been around a little one like this. He's a really good little boy. Only fussed for maybe 15 minutes after he ate and I changed his diaper. Otherwise slept most of the time. He looked really cute taking a nap (this is how he was when I arrived at their house), and I couldn't help but take some photos.

I LOVE this one. I haven't really taken photos of little babies. Rather fun. I could definitely do a little photography work on the side wherever I end up. Maybe soem friends will let me.

Jeffrey and I had some fun taking random photos of stuffed animals and a few other things. Jeffrey was also really well behaved for me. This is the third time I have now babysat at the Daku house, and it's been mostly smooth sailing. I must be good. haha

Jeffrey really wanted to work on some puzzles, and I love puzzles. So, that was fun. Andrew also seemed to enjoy it when I let him on the floor and he watched a bit before falling back asleep.

The beautiful work Jeffrey and I did. He was really excited to surprise his mom with them when she returned with his dad and Jenna.

I caught this photo of the Daku brothers. I was really excited about this photo and those of Andrew taking his nap in his parents' bed, and I had to let Katie have a peek. She really enjoyed them, and I am giving her the files this week.

Made me think of this photo we have of Sheldon and me.

Here is Jenna after coming back home. Wasn't a deep enough cut that it needed stitches. Apparently her brother somehow managed to cut her with a knife. I didn't really ask for the whole story. Katie and Pastor Scot had enough on their mind trying to catch up on their day after they returned home. The things siblings accidentally do to each other sometimes. My brother and I definitely have some stories. Here she is, the brave trooper they had to hold down as they put the butterfly tape on it at the hospital. Pastor Scot said she is quite strong. Go Jenna! haha :-)

Hannah cooked a little green bean and pasta casserole, we decided to hit up the Koko Bean for an oatmeal bar to share, some iced tea, and classy conversation. Lucked out and a bus came by at 6:30 the moment we got out onto the road. We also scored a ride home right away with a nice guy heading our way. One thing I'm going to miss about this place is all the little rides. It will be weird going back knowing I can't just "take rides from strangers". Perfectly okay here and not creepy (most of the time haha). Then, we watched The Little Mermaid. (May have decided we're watching a nice kids movie each night this week.

Sunday was Family Sunday at Vai O Le Ola Baptist Church, and Pastor Scot had asked if I would help take the family photos. This is something he has done in the past and then orders a nice copy for each family. Here is Pastor Scot, Katie, and the kids. I also have all the other church families. It was fun to do a litte "family portrait" work.

This is Filos. She goes to Samoana High School and says she is really going to miss me when I leave. I told her I'm really good at keeping in touch. She's a great girl.

A pastor from a small church in San Diego, CA had met Pastor Scot's parents a few years ago and decided to make a trip to Fiji and American Samoa to spend a little time at the churches where Pastor Scot and his brother (in Fiji) currently serve as missionaries. Pastor Christianson shared some nice messages. I actually met him briefly the day before as he stopped by the house with some of the church boys while I was babysitting for a few things.

After regular morning services with Pastor Christianson preaching, we had a to'onai (Samoan Sunday lunch) for Family Sunday. Another pot luck style one. Remember I brought no-bake cookies. Here is my plate :-) Giant scoop of rice. I didn't scoop that one by myself. haha

 Some beautiful and delicious cabbage salad. Mmmm.

I think they called this ulu. Breadfruit with some coconut milk sauce. I have had the breadfruit cooked in an umu before but having the sauce on it was new, and I think I liked that a little better. A little bit of breadfruit, and I am good. Not too much. It's a starch here. I should have taken a photo of it without the sauce on it... maybe next time. There are plenty of breadfruit trees around here, and it is one of the traditional Samoan foods.

I also grabbed a photo with my friend Lilian. We sit together almost every church service. She is about my age, and we have plans to meet for lunch this Thursday. I also help her count up the offerings after church, as she serves as the church's treasurer. She and her mom are the secretaries, sort of like my mom and I were/are at Trinity in Newman Grove.

Then, with the special stuff, they decided to have the second church service right after lunch (so started up around 2:15pm) rather than coming back in later for the evening service. Made it home a little after 4, so spent about 7 hours straight with my church friends today.

Finished up our Sunday by watching The Sandlot. My week off is going well so far, as you can see. Some things were unexpected, but I have a feeling this week will be over before I know it. You can likely anticipate at least two more posts this week, as I have some adventures planned. Hope you all have a great week and enjoy some of my photos and stories!

1 comment:

  1. I have always loved that picture of you and Shel. Yummy looking food as usual. :). Too bad those kids have to insist on fighting. :(