Ending 2017, Starting 2018

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Food, Christmas play, Lip syncing, goat heads...and forgetting to send an update

An actual family photo (October 2017, Caleb is visibly¬†taller now ūüôĄ)

So quite honestly, I started on this newsletter back in January to give on update of the last few months of 2017 but then life kept getting in the way .  The last few months of 2017 were fun, but very busy with guests. Our guests included a friend from college, friends from Arusha, Tanzania; another missionary family from Dar es Salaam adopting a child from Neema House, and Cheryl's parents, sister, & nephew! Then to start January we had a couple come in to work with all of the Geita Team then we had two students from Harding University arrive to start a 3 month field placement (and a guy biking around the world who ate about the same amount of food as our whole family ).  I'm kinda tired just writing that last paragraph... 
The boys participated in a homeschool co-op based in Mwanza which required bi-weekly trips across Lake Victoria via a ferry. We are glad they enjoyed co-op but we decided to take a break to start 2018 as the trip to Mwanza is a solid 3 hour trip (one-way), it just makes for a long day. Their co-op put on a Christmas play which was very cool for the boys to be a part of! Here's Ashser as a wiseman, Caleb was King Herod, Isaac was a shepherd, Levi was a shepherd, solider, and sheep (he's multi-talented).
The boys' old school at the gold mine put on another lip syncing contest which Caleb did with Rayna (from the Bailey family, our teammates here). They did a great job and won for Best Duo! There was a fundraiser for Neema House at the gold mine also which was fun and they raised $1,600. 
We finally completed construction on the new baby home at Neema House in December and it has truly been a blessing. We also had our annual Christmas party at Neema House for our staff and the kids. We make some American foods each year for our staff to try. This year we made salsa and guacamole plus we served ice cream floats. The guacamole and floats were a big hit!
Oh yeah, the Christmas party also featured fresh goat...
We had Christmas with Cheryl's parents and delivered the boxes for each of the Neema House children on Christmas morning, which is always fun. Thank you to all of you that prepare a Christmas box for these kids, they love them! We also had a New Year's celebration with our team and some other friends from Mwanza. 

)This is just Levi keeping his face from getting too hot while roasting marshmallows )
We started 2018 with a few guests, including two Social Work students from Harding University completing their field placement with Neema House. They experienced a lot of different things while visiting hospitals, villages, helping complete some long-desired projects on top of the cross-cultural experiences.  It is the first international field placement and we are excited about the opportunity to welcome more students in the future.
We celebrated 3 birthdays (Scott, Asher, & Isaac) over the past few months and we celebrated with Michela, one of our Harding students. 
With our Harding guests, we didn't take any trips over the past few months and focused on work and homeschool. Scott did go to the annual men's retreat in February and Cheryl is in Kenya now for the women's retreat. These are great breaks away with other missionaries in East Africa. 

Below are just a few more highlights..
 
We worship with our team every week and sometimes we can visit this waterfall on the gold mine property. 
In TZ, you just weld stuff back together when it breaks...
The boys made matzah with the rest of the team kids in preparation of our Seder meal to celebrate Passover/Easter with our team. It was a great night together!
Here is the most recent quarterly report. Neema House had a busy quarter including adoptions, reunifications, new children, school room improvements and more. (click image to view) 
Thank you so much for your ongoing support of our family! Your support and prayers make it possible for us to continue our work in Geita. We love people checking in via text, email, and Facebook. 

Blessings,
Scott, Cheryl, Caleb, Levi, Isaac, & Asher
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