annie, get your gun

Friday: my first puddle-jumper…
I flew to Phoenix in the morning and met the other interns before our puddle-jumper flight to Flagstaff. It was the smallest plane I’d ever been on (besides my uncle’s two-seater that he let me kind of fly). We met Kristy who was sent to help us get situated and hopefully teach me how to cook for large numbers of people.
sidenote: if anyone remembers the section at the old COSI where you fake-cooked from the pioneer days, yeah, cooking here is just like that, only with real food and for 50 people. I should have a picture posted for you soon
Anyways, after we met Kristy and gathered some groceries, we headed out to the reservation. This place is beautiful. There are so many mountains and with the red dirt and clear blue skies it was such a wonderful change from the flat Midwest that I’m used to seeing.
We met a good portion of the Tate family on Friday as well. Grandpa Roy and Grandma Suzie greeted us. They have 8 children, all of who live on the same road with their respective families. Their daughter Sarah is married to the pastor of the church and we met her and her family who we will be working close with as well.
We came back to the house and the church property, had a late dinner and went to bed early since we had all been up since 4 or 5 in the morning.

Saturday: get your gun…
We had the morning to ourselves but that probably won’t happen often. By lunchtime we had half of the family running through our small intern house fixing some of the plumbing and hanging out with us. We sat down and met with Pastor James and Sarah about some logistics and spent time sitting and talking with the family.
Relationships are key with the Navajo. Time is flexible and they love to sit around and talk with everyone. So that’s exactly what we did. And then the boys decided to take us on a little adventure.
In this family’s “backyard” is a canyon that they know like the back of their hand. It’s not that far away, but you have to do some serious off-roading to get there. So here we are, in the back of a truck, driving next to this serious canyon. (mom, you wouldn’t have made it, there were times when I couldn’t look). The canyon was beautiful. There’s a part that hangs over a 3000 foot drop that they call the egg shell. It’s a good thing they didn’t tell me where I was until I was on top of it.
We then hiked up a little mountain thing to get a better view of the canyon and this is where I experienced a first in my life. I shot two guns off into the canyon. One kicked a little and that’s the video that will hopefully work on this page. The other pictures are mostly from the canyon on Saturday. We finished the evening with a very late BBQ with the Tate family, which was, once again, amazing. They are so full of life and can always make me laugh.

Sunday: rock band
Church followed by a family picnic. Seriously, can this get any better? Navajo fry bread and Jeremy’s amazing grilling abilities left me stuffed after a Sunday lunch with the Tates. I love them more and more every day.
Pastor James took us to see some of the construction projects today (which was good for me because I won’t be leaving the church much with Kids Club and my LARGE cooking responsibilities). I had to remind myself to walk into these sites with an open mind. They simply live differently and we are here to completely help and not judge at all. At times, it’s like being in another country because they ALL speak Navajo. So if they don’t want us to hear what they’re saying, they’ll talk in Navajo around us. It’s really interesting though, because it helps us rely on them. We are so not in control here. We need these people, and it’s humbling, but I’m so grateful for their presence and complete involvement.
Anyways, Sunday night consisted of us sitting around with the boys and being amazed by their Rock Band abilities. These kids are good, and they put me to shame when I attempted to play the drums. (I only failed once!)

Monday: the grill
I think it took us 6 or so hours to clean up the camp and it took a while to clean this grill to get it ready for the team coming Thursday. We also sorted the food pantry and semi-organized what we had so that cooking can be more efficient for me as I attempt to feed 50 people every night. I’m excited though, just pray that I don’t burn anything.

Tuesday: black widow spiders
We finished up some cleaning projects and organizational things. And as we were cleaning the outdoor showers, Kristy found a black widow spider in the corner and I watched her kill it. (I’m so not to the point where I can kill deadly animals myself). We’ve been briefed on how to recognize the things that need to be killed around here, like black widow spiders, scorpions, and rattlesnakes (for that, you call one of the local teenage boys and watch them kill it with a shovel… but they taught us how to walk/run away!).
The family took us to Navajo park where there are some cave-dwellings you can view from afar (again, mom, the height thing would kill you!) And then we went up into Utah to see Monument Valley during the sunset, and it was beautiful. Everything seems so majestic out here and we are all amazed (especially since we’re from the mostly flat Midwest).

Wednesday: the grocery bill
We’re in Page today (an hour from the rez), getting on the internet because we don’t have it where we are and doing our grocery shopping for the upcoming week with a team. It’s completely overwhelming, knowing I have to buy 600 slices of bread plus all of the other crazy numbers of things it takes to feed 45-50 people for a week. I still can’t wrap my head around the numbers and the amount this grocery bill is going to be…

In other news, my fears have faded tremendously. I’m probably less nervous than I should be, especially with our first team coming tomorrow. But God has granted me an extreme kind of peace and I want to thank everyone that has been praying for me and this summer. I’ve already seen his hand in placing me here, with these other two interns (who are amazing, by the way!) and with this incredibly relational and wonderful family (think the Starkey/Aurand clan times 6). He is so good and now I’m simply excited about being here and serving for God’s glory.

In case you want to send me anything, here’s the address.
Margie Termeer
Hc 70 Box 3
PMB Box 5086
Tonalea, AZ 86044

I love you all, and I really do miss everyone. But it’s so comforting knowing that this is where I’m supposed to be.


Sarah said...

Sounds just wonderful, Marge. God certainly knew what He was doing :) And I'm glad you're loving the AZ landscape--it's so gorgeous, and I'm a teensy bit jealous that you get to drink it in for the summer!
Love you so much.

The Alamos said...

Margie....we are so proud of you and excited to hear all about your adventures. You humble us and teach us and we love seeing God glorified in your life!

Matt said...

Love you!

Sheri said...

Hey, our family has been to Page and to Monument Valley as well. It's neat to know where you are.

Christi said...

marge Your such a beast!! I love reading about your adventures and thanks for your address.. I'll be sending something your way real soon. Love you

Bonzo said...

ET phone home!

Bonzo said...

got your phone message - it's VBS week and dad is at the Clippers game tonight with Donnie and Uncle Dick eating sliders... can't wait to talk to you and hear all about your first group. love you very much!