Monday, June 29, 2009

Tok Pisin

You may have heard us say that there are over 800 distinct languages here in Papua New Guinea.  Many people speak a common trade language called Tok Pisin.  It has become more and more popular here especially when a couple gets married that are from different clans.  


During our time in the village we had to speak Tok Pisin every day so we became better at it.  At first our kids tried speaking English with a tok pisin accent but that didn’t work.  Daniel picked it up the best and after several weeks he woke us up talking in his sleep in tok pisin.


We are slowly becoming more proficient in it.  Here are some examples of words:


Wanbel  - agree

Bel kros – angry (feeling angry inside)

Bel isi – peace (feeling at ease inside)

Apinun – afternoon greeting

Pikinini – child

Waspapa – a man that looks out for you – watches over you

Em I wanim samting – What is it?

Mi no save Kakai buai – I don’t eat betel nut  (kai kai = eat and save = to know)

Yu mekim wanim samting – What are you doing?



Wednesday, June 24, 2009

An MK designs Barbie clothes

Rachel asked for a coffee filter and I handed one to her not thinking much of it.  Later lo and behold there’s Barbie sporting a felt scrap top, a hair band belt and stylin’ in a coffee filter skirt.  Rachel is very creative and that’s a plus here in PNG.

Monday, June 22, 2009


Strawberries grow year round here in the Highlands of PNG and the guy who mows our yard (Apa) grows and sells lots of them.  We really like Apa and buy lots of strawberries from him.  He only sells the biggest and the best ones.  We pay about 10 Kina (3 dollars) for a 2 liter bowl. Each week we buy anywhere from two liters to 14;  the kids eat them fresh and frozen.


Apa is the one in the baseball cap.


Thursday, June 18, 2009


Friends of ours sent us some sermon CDs from our church back in Renton a couple of months ago.  One sermon was on contentment.  We have been learning to be content with what we have here.  Material things we have here is just a fraction of what we had back in the US but is way more that any PNG family we have seen.  Most of the PNG kids have no toys or they learn to make them out of simple things like an old wheel attached to the end of a stick.


When the truck dropped us off for our 5 weeks of village living we thought we were bringing the bare essentials.  When we were unloading box after box we were soon very embarrassed when we realized that what we brought was more than the sum of what everyone in the village owned. 


Philippians 4:12-13  “I have learned what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty.  I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want.  I can do everything through him who gives me strength.”


Saturday, June 13, 2009

New Testament checking party

Part of my job (Laura) is checking each New Testament for errors just before it is sent to the printer.  A translation team labors for years to translate the scriptures into the language of the people group they are working with.  Finally their work is ready to be typeset and formatted so that it can be sent off to the printer.  My co-worker does the typesetting and then it is time for me to assemble a team of volunteers to come in for a morning and check each page.  We look out for errors in page sequencing, table of contents, topical index, spacing, copyrights, etc.  It’s exciting to be a part of the final stages of getting the scriptures into waiting hands. 

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Things to do when you don't have TV

Daniel has learned how to make stop motion videos and has been really enjoying it.

Before too long he will be taller than Laura.

Monday, June 8, 2009

Down to the play

Today (Monday, June 8th) is the queen’s birthday and since PNG is a commonwealth country we have this day off work.  We decided to go to the river and play.  We took this chance to wash the truck and do a little swimming and playing in the water. 


There is a village across the river and we saw several people wading across.  Some would roll up their pants and carry their shoes with them so they wouldn’t get wet.


On our way back home (about 1 ½ miles) we saw a couple men carrying bundles of kunai grass.  They use it to make roofs on their houses.  We saw a boy pushing an old tire with sticks.  Many of the kids don’t have store bought toys so they make their own. 

Sunday, June 7, 2009


One thing that we have learned in our time here is to be flexible.  The motto for PNG is “The Land of the Unexpected”.  Laura was asked to fill in for the 1st grade art class but she was busy so I (Paul) volunteered.  It just so happened that this was Michael’s class. 


I was pleasantly surprised at how well behaved the kids were. 


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