Thursday, February 19, 2009

In Tropical Bali or Let’s Say the Sahara Desert

Do you know that there is no calcium in milk in this part of India?  Isn’t that the strangest thing you’ve ever heard?  I don’t have hard facts on this, but everybody here says so.  I guess the soil here is so depleted that the food the cows eat does not give (you already can guess that there are very few part in my brain that work in the scientific capacity) the milk they produce any calcium.  The fact of the matter is that on every block here you see a cow eating out of a dumpster, leads me to believe that the nutrient deficiency just may be true.  I also don’t know a lot about the calcium content in the milk back in the states...  is the milk fortified in the states?  i never in my life have thought about milk so much.   moving right along.

Another week has almost passed here.  Ani had her first swimming lesson at school.  Hebron has an outdoor pool that is not heated, except by the sun.  In tropical Bali or let’s say the Sahara Desert (the desert would be lacking a bit of water, so I guess there would be no pool), anyway, in those places outdoor pools are fantastic.  But the temperature still dips below 50 degrees here at night and really only makes it to the mid-70’s during the day.  So we can all guess it’s a bit chilly.  She had swimming around 3 in the afternoon and when she came home at 4:15, her lips were still blue...  Part of me thinks it’s child endangerment, part of me thinks it’s fantastic.

I need you all to know that we have a stove.  To make a long story short, when our stove arrived 2 weeks ago, it was dropped on one of the corners - lovely.  So we had to wait a few weeks to get the part, blah, blah, blah.  Well, yesterday a man arrived on a motorcycle with literally half of the new stove on the back.  He came at 1:30 p.m. and left right before 7:00.  He was working hard the whole time.  I am not quite convinced that the “fixed” oven part actually works yet, but we are getting there.  

So far I have written about milk, swimming and stoves.  Are you wondering if there will be any substance in this blog entry?  Let me dig a little deeper.  On Wednesday, I went to a mom’s book study group.  Out of the seven women, there were five countries represented - Germany, Finland, Ireland, USA & India.  Isn’t that fantastic?  I have really loved connecting w/ all these moms.  There are lots of ages of kids, different backgrounds, and spiritual upbringing represented - which makes for really rich conversation.  

Jovie, she is a bit under the radar these days, but she really is fantastic.  We are going to add some pictures of her in this entry.  She is just over 6 months now.  She has started eating solids and can pound it like her brother.  I need to buy a food processor so she can have things beside oatmeal and bananas (she’s a bit stopped up over the excessive bananas).  I am going to the market tomorrow and I will be piling up the apples.  Okay, funny story about the market and apples.  So, I was at the apple guy last week, and I asked him where the apples are from.  He said Kashmir.  And then I said, why can’t they grow apples in India?  He looked at me with a mix of puzzle and are-you-joking in his eyes and said, Kashmir is in India...   I was never one for geography...

Jayson is preparing this week for next week’s Freedom Firm retreat.  He’s in charge of seeing that it all happens smoothly.  It’s great to dive in here.  I am glad the retreat falls so shortly after we arrived so that we can meet all the staff (half of the staff is in the operational office near Mumbai) and really get a pulse on what is happening.  

I will leave you with this.  Since you all had so many insights related to my cooking woes two weeks ago, if you know anything about baking above 6,000 ft., tell me your secrets. 


Jennifer Swanson said...

Ooh, geography! Tell your apple guy to get you some cashmere next time he's in Kashmir (really). Then in your free time you can spin it into yarn and knit me a sweater. *giggle* Love the pics and monologue.

Erin Kutnow said...

Jayson and Tarrah~

I just wanted to let you guys know that WE are reading the blog and enjoying every word!! =) Tarrah, you mentioned if folks were wondering if you were ever going to get to anything of substance in your post. I am coming to realize that all of the randomness and mundane details (like calcium-free milk??, freakin cold swimming pools and the like) end up being the raw materials of the greatest substance of life. God is really into those things, you know? He's really into you guys as well! =) Bless you this day.

Sarah said...

tarrah, you really could be the next pioneer woman. you are very funny.

Julie Frizzell said... COULD be the next pioneer woman.

i thought i saw that guy with the stove on the back of his glad he made it there. =)

love you...

Chris said...

Tarrah and Jayson,

I love reading your blog. I also think all of it is substance. I love hearing all the seemingly insignificant parts of your life. That's what keeps us close to you and it gives us a picture of your life there. I love your sense of humor too.

The picture of Jovi in the bathtub is adorable!!!!!

Adam said...

It's so interesting to hear a new resident describe India! We're thankful for your willingness to go and enjoy reading your thoughts...keep'em coming.

Cousin Trish said...

Hey guys, What a wonderful bunch of letters you have written. Boy those kids are sure beautiful. Tarrah I am not the only writer in the family. You have a way of words my sweet cousin. Thank you for including us in your updates. I will keep in touch with all of you as well. It is hard being away from family we know that from experience. Your family is incredible to be taking on this huge adventure in this lifetime. You will INDEED touch many lives with your work. Take care of eachother always and know that I think about all of you everyday and I too will keep a spot special for just you guys in my heart and prayers for safety while you are away on your journey. As far as the cooking above 6000 degrees......You are on your own girlfriend.....:)
Love and Peace back atcha,
Cousin Trish

Katrina McIntosh said...

HI! I love reading your blogs! I know internet has been a little issue, but if/when it is working go to There are hints on adjusting recipes and lots of other things. I hope that helps!