Well, Hetee's birthday didn't exactly turn out the way I planned, due to some unforeseen last-minute expenses but we had a great time, nonetheless. Since we weren't able to go the retreat we decided to just go to the river and hang out there. We took a blanket and some snacks and talked and lounged around for about 4 hours. The spot we "found" was so nice that we decided to go back tomorrow with the kids and some close friends (leaders from our 12's) from church. We'll be taking tents and spending the night. I made it clear that I would not be doing any cooking while there so I'm taking chicken salad and granola bars. The others will be BBQ-ing mutton. No thank you!
We saw several gers (yurts) with camels out front on the way. I hope they're still there and we can ride them again. The kids love them!
Speaking of the kids, they were so excited about their daddy's birthday. We wrapped his present the night before and, although I urged them that they HAD to keep it a secret, Abi was having such a hard time. She finally spilled the beans but the poor thing didn't even realize it. We had a book for him and she said, "Daddy, you can't have your surprise book now. You will get it tomorrow." Nate and I both yelled, "ABI!" She looked at us as if to say, "What did I do now?" Then proceeded to cry brokenheartedly.
Hetee liked his book. The title of it was "Why I'm Crazy About My Dad". I also gave him a book of quotes and sayings about husbands. I never know what to get him but he said he liked it too.
Later that day, before going to the river, the kids and I made a german chocolate cake from scratch. It was YUMMY! And Hetee really liked it. I made him beef curry for supper, his favorite meal.
After the river and after we ate supper my parents came over to visit and give Hetee his present. Then right as they were leaving some of our g12 members from church came over with another cake. Their present was really funny-- a fake, bling dog chain with a big dollar sign on it. They totally cracked me up!
On to a different subject... My friend Amanda will soon be moving back to Mongolia! She used to live here about 6 years ago, back when I was single, and she was even here for my wedding. She and I used to teach English at the same school. During that time she discovered that being an English teacher was her calling. I just ran like heck. I am NOT a teacher. I think it's because I learn other languages fairly easily and I just don't get people who don't. I hate explaining things over and over again to people who just don't get it. And believe me, there's at least one in every classroom.
I'm getting way off track here...
Amanda just finished up her masters in Teaching English As a Second Language at Wheaton and will now be moving to Ulaan Baatar to work for 4 years (with ELI China) !!! It's a 2-hour car ride to UB but Hetee has promised that I can go whenever I want once she gets here! He really wants me to have friends and he knows how tough and lonely it gets. I think Amanda will probably spend some weekends here in Darkhan, too. We both love baking and dream of one day opening a bakery/coffee shop in Darkhan and employing unwed mothers and street children to work in it. First, I have to find her a Mongolian husband so she can get a green card. Worked for me. hehe
Anyway, it's late and I still have a ton of last-minute things to finish before we leave in the am.
Have a blessed day!