29 September 2013

a vegetable, a really cool girl & a super hero

The Academy has "Spirit Day" every so often.  Miss Sarah Dunn, our high school History & English teacher (as well as the leader of the Ukelele Club), says it beautifully:

"Around here we have a little tradition.  It’s called “Spirit Day.”  Every quarter, a day is chosen on which all students and teachers are obliged to show their immense enthusiasm for Education and Community and Creative Expression (within the bounds of propriety, of course) by dressing up according to a chosen theme.  Using available resources, you create the best costume you can and come to school dressed in said costume on the chosen day.  Then, during school devotions (8:00 to 8:25, give or take), you show off your costume to a roomful of impressed students and parents.  We take pictures, congratulate each other on our collective creativity and devastating sense of style, and then get on with our day.  Nursery and Preschool students are most heartily welcome to join us, although we are gathering a little earlier than you may be accustomed to coming to school.  And yes, you read that right—parents are definitely invited to come and be impressed by the creativity and enthusiasm of our marvelous Academy.  Feel free to ‘ooh’ and ‘aah’.  Take pictures.  Applaud our fine accomplishments in haberdashery."

So this past Friday was the first "Spirit Day" of the school year.  The theme was "My Favourite Character."  Students and teachers came dressed as (you may have guessed it!) their favourite character....thought you might like to see the Cash Kids' selections.  

Bob the Tomato
She had a green sprout of hair...but you can't really tell
Mrs. Herma was dressed as one of the bears that she is holding...her mom makes them and sends them to the patients on board.  
 Lesley Burke from Bridge to Terabithia
Caroline is third from the left - she also has hair coloring...red streaks (but other than that looked liked her normal self).  The rest of Grade 2 was comprised of (from left to right) a Pokemon trainer, Mario, Mary (mother of Jesus), a Spy Kid, Jack Sparrow and someone from Singing in the Rain
 Captain America
Grade 3: Darth Maul, Captain America & the tree from "Chicka Chicka Boom Boom" (well done, Mrs. Denise!)
 The Teachers
all sorts of creative characters here....
Wonder what character YOU would be if you had to dress up?  Who's your favorite?   Nick says he would be the professor from the Narnia series or Tevya from Fiddler on the Roof.  I would be April Ludgate from Parks and Recreation...or maybe not  (she's not my all time favorite character...just what came to mind and would be "do-able" for me...I don't always handle dressing up very well...but that may be another blog post for another day).

Surely there will be more to come

24 September 2013

Eating Caterpillars.

She ate a caterpillar.


Steve: "Hey, Caroline. Do you want a caterpillar?"
Caroline: "Sure."

That girl ate the head off of a fried caterpillar - with no hesitation.  People say Caroline and I (dianna) are alot alike...not in this respect.

The rest of the story (in my best Paul Harvey voice):

She ate the head off of it but didn't care for it - she said it tasted too smoky and burnt and she gave the rest of it back to me.  For some reason I couldn't just "throw it away" -- so I put the rest of the fried caterpillar into the zip lock bag of nuts and raisins...

Later that day...I was sitting on our couch reading and decided I wanted a snack.  I grabbed the bag of nuts and raisins (you know what's coming, don't you?).  I'm usually pretty particular in my eating of snacks (especially in the case of something similar to trailmix) - I put together nice combinations of 2 nuts and a few raisins...or just raisins....or one of each kind of nut...for whatever reason, on this particular occasion, I was just eating it without looking...

All of a sudden there's a smoky taste in my mouth....and the realization washes over me....I'm eating a fried caterpillar.

GROSS!!!   I got to the trashcan and spit it out as quickly as I could (though I think some had already gone down at that point)...then brushed my teeth...then gargled with mouth wash...then ate half a bag of skittles.

I know it was mental...but I just couldn't handle it.

Guess I can't use "eaten a caterpillar" in my next game of "Never have I ever...."

Surely there will be more to come.

22 September 2013

breaking up. dianna's side of the story.

This isn't relevant to much of anything....just felt the need to make this public information.  

Blogger is my friend (most of the time).  Mailchimp is not my friend (we were on friendly terms before...but not anymore).  I'm kind of kidding...but not really. I know MailChimp has worked for many...but it's just not working for me. 

We've been doing monthly e-newsletters for a while now...honestly, it's one of those things we kind of felt like we "should" do -- people serving overseas send a monthly e-newsletter (right?!  maybe.  maybe not).  But everytime I've worked on them, I've ended up very, very frustrated -- the problem is probably partly me (one of those "picnic" issues "Problem In Chair, Not In Computer")(thanks to Susan Barnes for teaching me that one).  The problem is also partly due to lack of fast internet (ie - lack of patience on my part)....and slow uploads and such.  Another problem is that I always wondered what the "point" of our monthly e-newsletters was...to me it felt like I just repeating things that had already been shared on the blog or I was just directing people to our blog (cause that's the best way to keep up with what's going on with us anyway!)

As of today, it's official.  Mailchimp and I are breaking up. The space to "sign up for our e-updates" will be removed (with joy).  I'll throw away my box of Mailchimp memorabilia (just kidding...that doesn't exist).  I will say this:  if any of you want to date Mailchimp, I would still highly recommend it.  It really wasn't Mailchimp, it was me.

Just felt the need to make that public.

We'll still send out some emails - maybe even more regularly than we have.  They just won't have fabulous formatting (and I won't be able to track who opened them...)(I didn't need to know that anyway!).  If you want to receive those, let me know (send us an email cashcrewship@gmail.com and I'll add you to the list).

If you really want to receive things in your inbox from us, feel free to "follow" our blog ("join this site")-- you should get notification when new content is added.

Whatever it looks like...we hope that the glimpses you get of the goings-on of the Cash Family will somehow bless, encourage, strengthen and remind you that you are a part of what the Lord is doing off the coast of Congo onboard the Africa Mercy!

Surely there will be more to come (hopefully more meaningful and relevant content than this particular post).

16 September 2013


It's hard to know what to share sometimes....sometimes it seems that there might not be much of anything to share...sometimes there's too much to share and it's hard to choose...sometimes it seems that everyone else has already shared it better than we could ever hope to share it....

Today, we'll share a few pictures....a few stories...a few names....bits and pieces from here and there.. glimpses of the things going on in this metal box floating off the coast of Africa that we call home...just a taste of the miracles God is working on this vessel called the Africa Mercy.

 Emmanoel (click his name, read his story)


Ebenezer (click his name, read his story)

Dr. Mark, Dr. Gary, Dr. David

From a Mercy Ships crewmember: "The tumor that Grace carried for nine years is gone. Even under bandages, the change is drastic. I told her about the overwhelming support her photo had received from thousands of Mercy Ships supporters around the world – she and her mother could not believe it. As one crewmember said today, “Grace is the most popular 17-year-old we know.” And for good reason – she’s incredible. Now recovery begins, so keep those prayers coming.” 

Yes, please pray for Grace...and Emmanoel...and Ebenezer...and Theresia...and the hundreds of others who will have (and recovery from) surgery in the coming weeks.  Please pray for our surgeons and anesthetists...please pray for the OR nurses and those working in the sterilization room....please pray for nurses in the ICU and in the recovery room...please pray for the Team Leaders and Charge Nurses and Ward Nurses....please pray for all those working in administration roles....please pray for all that goes on in the hospital of the Africa Mercy.  

One other thing to share: if you've not already "liked" Mercy Ships on Facebook, you may want to do that.  There are prayer requests, updates and other interesting things posted there regularly.  

Surely there will be more to come.

11 September 2013

Hospital Open House, round 3

Last week was the Academy Open House, this week there was the Hospital Open House!  It's a fun time to be on the Africa Mercy!  The Hospital Staff does an INCREDIBLE job of sharing what they do with the crew.  This is our third open house and every one has been special and unique - and so much fun!

The Eye Room
"Patients" were given glasses that simulated cataracts 
the Palmer Sisters in their loveliness

A carrot toss.  Complete with real carrots.  
"Patients" walked through a quick version of the entire process that real patients go through - the screening line, the testing, the operation, the recovery
Caroline getting briefed for surgery - by Dr. David Levy, a real Neurosurgeon 
Homework assignment:  google Dr. David Levy

She got the tumor!
This is a drill....this is a drill...this is a drill....not sure what kind of surgery this is...but I do not want to have it. 
Eli learning to cast 
Eli getting a cast
Eli & Mr. Nick (fun fact about Mr. Nick:  he's an EXPERT in the Ponsetti Method of correcting club feet AND a great friend to our family)
Emma getting fit for her ring made from the same material that braces and  splints are made from
Miss Erin & Emma!  2 sweet Georgia Peaches. 
Fun new ring that's going to remind us to pray for the kids doing physical therapy 
Miss Moriah & Caroline all casted up
Half the fun of having a cast is getting it signed
Getting the cast cut off -- Mr. Nick was kind enough to cut all the casts in such a way that they can be put back on...the Cash collection of casts now includes one foot and 2 arms
Radiology/the CT Scanner
Quick ride on the CT scanner 
Fun fact:  this scanner was donated to the ship and was installed during the shipyard time in  Grand Canaria
Another fun fact:  the scanner BARELY fit through the doorways...we were told that it literally made it by less than an inch 
Caroline & Eli agreed that it was the best amusement park ride they'd had in a while. 

Pin the heart on the skeleton
The Lab
Eli working with some machine that tells you something really cool about blood.  
There are so many fun machines and tools in the lab!!
Other fun things/Misc pictures from the evening

The best ice machine on the ship! (and quite possibly in all of Congo!!)
It's not really an AFM Open House without cookies...
Emma ended up in the same place she was during our first open house --  in Miss Stephanie's arms!
It's such a privilege to get to have a hands on experience with our hospital.  We hope it helps our children to understand a little more of what the patients go through while they are here.  And maybe it's part of God planting some seeds in their hearts and lives that will grow into serving Him in a medical field someday...who knows?!  He does (t's fun to think that God already knows the plans that He has for Emma, Caroline & Eli...we're excited to get to watch those unfold...and we're so grateful that you are a part of it all as well!).

The Africa Mercy Hospital...what a special place.  Even now patients are settling in to sleep for the night.  Some are recovering from surgery...some are anticipating the surgery they will have tomorrow.  Our hope and prayer is that all are experiencing the incarnational love of Jesus through the doctors and nurses who are caring for them.  

Surely there will be more to come.   

04 September 2013

Academy Open House

The Academy hosted an "Open House" tonite.  The teachers opened up their classrooms and had different "activities" for crew to participate in -- the activities included a science experiment showing the importance of wearing your seatbelt in the Landrovers, timed multiplication and addition tests, a "cafe" for practicing your French skills, a race to figure out elements from the periodic table...and lots of other hands-on learning opportunities!

We're grateful that the Academy does this -- it's a great way for the community to see the school (it's off limits to crew other than during these kinds of events) and to get a taste of what our children are doing in school.
Dot painting in the Kindergarten Classroom 

Writing spelling words in shaving cream in 2nd grade
Mr. John (the ship's finance director) taking a timed math test
One of the best parts of Open House.....the cookies. 
Emma writing "rainbow words" in 2nd grade
Miss Cat, the Science teacher, "experimenting" on Caroline.  You can't really tell...Caroline's hair is standing up
Nick working on his hand chimes skillz.  He's learning from Mr. Ray - he and his wife, Nanita, are our in house experts on all things hand chimes (and various other instruments) 
Emma getting her turn with the smart board in 4th Grade

A group of adults trying to figure out a game in the pre-school classroom
This one compliments of Emma
Instacollage...thought it was fun to have the picture of Emma taking a picture of the picture above :)
The Open House was a fantastic way to spend the time between dinner and bedtime.  We are so very grateful for the Academy and ALL that the teachers do for our children and our family.  Please join us in praying for the students and teachers of the Academy...

Surely there will be more to come.