My (Sarah’s) parents were able to come for three weeks this Christmas break!! It was so great having them here for the holidays. They were able to really experience what our lives are like here in PNG and it was great to see their reactions to things. We kept them busy by taking them to the local town, Kainantu, to go to the market. We also went to distribute Bibles to a remote village on top of a nearby mountain, as well as shared a traditional meal called a “Mumu” with a Papua New Guinean friend, Mama Carol and her family. One of the highlights for my Dad and Evan was getting to go to a Bible Dedication on Christmas Eve! But more on that later. One of the highlights for me was just being able to spend time with them and do my new “normal” life with them. My Dad got very experienced doing laundry and hanging it up every day (and taking them down quickly before it rains). My mom also got to cook a lot from scratch and do dishes, which takes up a lot of my time here…so I was SO thankful for that. After Christmas we all took a trip down to Madang on the coast and enjoyed the beach for a couple of days before my parents left. Funny story about going down to Madang-It was the bumpiest ride my parents had EVER experienced…5 hours of it and my mom was wearing her pedometer the whole time which calculated every bump…11,800 bumps later and we were in Madang! Ha. Thats PNG roads for ya.
It was really great having them here to experience PNG and live life with us for 3 weeks. I miss them so much, but I am glad that we got to spend that quality time with them. It will be hard to go back to normal life again! Here are a few pictures from their trip.
Weighing on the scale in order to get on their flight to Ukarumpa!
Our drive out to distribute Bibles
A traditional meal, or “Mumu” steamed under rocks in the ground
They loved their Tim Tams! A chocolate cookie thats especially good with a hot drink.
Mom and I making home made pizza.
We played lots of games!
Mom and her baking on Christmas…Dad couldn’t resist!
Christmas Day selfie!
On the trip down to Madang.
It was great to eat at restaurants and act like tourists!
For the past 6 months Evan and I have been mentoring a band made up of kids in the youth. They perform every week on Sunday nights at the youth church service leading worship for the youth here on Centre. It has been such a great experience to live life with these kids and be able to mentor them as a band. They have grown so much! For example, our drummer Zach who is in 9th grade, just learned how to play the drums last spring, and now he is rockin it! Playing David Crowder country songs and other new worship songs from Chris Tomlin and Rend Collective. We are so very proud of our band.
We want to thank all of you that purchased our new PNG anniversary shirts that our Sending Team was selling this fall! Some of that money went towards throwing both of the bands a Christmas party this year. We had a blast! Evan grilled hamburgers and we watched the movie Elf. You are apart of helping these kids relax after a long week of finals and leading worship this semester!! Thank you!
Merry Christmas from the Halfertys in PNG!
We love you guys and thank you for all of your support!
This year Christmas was a little emotional for Evan and I because of the fact that it will be our last Christmas in the States for a while. The reality of leaving is starting to really sink in. We really enjoyed spending some precious time with our family and friends.
We have a few Christmas traditions that we have come to over the years that we both really enjoy. Including going to our church’s candelight Christmas Eve service, followed by our traditional Korean/Chinese food dinner. One of the things that we are so blessed by is that both my parents and Evan’s parents get along so well. Ever since we
were dating they have done holidays together. So for Christmas Eve Evan’s parents come to my parents house and then on Christmas Day everyone gathers at Evan’s House. Another great memory from this year was that it snowed! I was really praying for snow because I knew in tropical Papua New Guinea, we would not see snow for a while. So what a blessing it was when it began to snow Christmas Day! Another sweet treat was that Justin, Evan’s brother cooked Christmas dinner. He was an awesome cook and it really meant so much to us that he did that. We got so many great gifts, but more importantly just enjoyed being around our family. I hope your Christmas was just as great!
Traditional Korean food and Christmas Eve service.
My mom and I got matching Kindles.
Justin and Evan cooking the Christmas dinner this year!
Evan’s mom, Jane buried under all of her presents.
Evan’s brother Justin and his favorite saying..from us of course.