Saturday, November 22, 2008

Visitors and Turkey Hunting!

Hello! We know, it's been too long since our last update and we're very sorry! So, we thought we'd take a moment now to update you on a few highlights of this last week!
Visitors from Lubbock!
This last week brought a wonderful treat our way from the states. Our good friends and mentors from Lubbock, Jay and Sherry Jarboe, came to Kharkov for a 3 day visit on their way to Germany. They were able to stay at our apartment, then hang out with the whole team during the day. It was such a good visit! We were truly blessed and encouraged by their presence here. Each family took a day to have everyone over for a meal, plus each family was able to have alone time visiting with the Jarboes about how things are going, etc. The Jarboes worked in Mexico City for many years doing mission work there, so they were familiar with what we would/might be experiencing and were able to really spur us on. They have also been working with all of us since before our team formed, so they have an intimate knowledge of who we are. During their stay, we were also able to get out and see a couple sites in Kharkov, but in doing this, we realized we really don't know that many places to take people to yet! We've only been here a little over a month, so we barely know the sites ourselves! Guess we have some homework to do before our next visitors come! :) The first two pictures are of the guys and girls at the statue of Lenin. This one to the left shows Sherry reading to Malachi and Canaan. Both Jay and Sherry were wonderful with the kids, becoming their adopted grandparents for the time they were here!
Turkey Hunting
Well, like many of you, we are also currently trying to prepare for the holidays just around the corner! Thanksgiving is next week and we are all really excited about having our first one here in Kharkov. We really do have so much to be thankful for and are excited to spend it together as a team, even though we're all apart from our families. In preparation for the day of feasting, we've been shopping (for spices, bran, turkey, etc.)! David and I happened to see a turkey in the grocery store near our house about a week ago. Neither of our teammates believed us when we tried to convey the size of this big bird, and two days later it was gone. The Hindmans questioned whether it was actually a turkey because they seem to be so rare here and asked, "Are you sure it was a turkey, not just a big chicken?" David's response to that was "It was either a big turkey or a small emu!" Since that first spotting, we've been keeping our eyes open for another. Today, Lucy and I ventured out for the pure purpose of finding a turkey. We also picked a rainy day to do this, so that made it even more interesting! We were successful-- sort of. The same store David and I had seen the first turkey at had another... and it was big, just like the first one we saw. Too big, in fact! This time, however, we looked at the price tag and weight. This fowl weighed 14.7 kg (about 32 lbs!) and was going to cost about $65USD. First, we weren't sure if we could justify all that money put into one turkey. But, it was also so big it would only fit in Rob and Denyce's freezer and they would have to clear out everything else to make it fit. Then we had to consider whether our ovens were big enough to cook it in... and that didn't seem very likely. So, we did find a turkey... just didn't find the "right" turkey. All the other stores didn't have any and we weren't even able to find turkey parts. We'll keep our eyes peeled the rest of the week, but a small chicken might be the main course this Thanksgiving! We were blessed by another missionary couple we know here who kindly cooked and pureed some pumpkin for us to use. Since we cannot find canned pumpkin here, we were going to have to do this chore ourselves, but they saved us a lot of work! We're still searching for bran and have found the majority of the spices, but are still looking for a few. Shopping can be complicated when you have to translate everything from Ukrainian. (Yes, for those of you who are wondering about that, we are learning Russian because it is what everyone speaks here, but all the signs, items in the grocery store, etc. are in Ukrainian... it just makes it more of a challenge!)
Regardless of what we find or do not find, we will have a great Thanksgiving together next week and we're excited about it!!


Larissa Smith said...

I know exactly what you mean! We've navigated several stores here and have located several goodies, but we know there are some flavors that we just won't be able to duplicate and will certainly miss! We'll probably be having chicken, too, but that's ok.

We can do it!

Kris said...

Do you guys have a meat market, cause that's where we got ours when we lived in Ukraine. Of course, you have to ask for it, and you also need to make sure that the head is connected so that you know it's a turkey and not some other kind of bird that they just put with a turkey head. :) Happy hunting...or enjoy your chicken.

Mike and Lucy said...

I like the pictures of us together...both, this and your facebook one. I WANT THEM!!

Timbra said...

ah the turkey hunt. . .. sounds very funny and exciting. fiji did not have turkey, well, they did at random times of year, but i was never able to locate one for thanksgiving, so it was chicken for us. . . . i know you'll all have a wonderful thanksgiving and probably discover some new favorite tgiving day traditions that you'll miss whenever you are not in Ukraine someday.