“Hayibo!” (pronounced Eye-Bo) is a common phrase around GGA which means some combination of:

“I can’t believe you just did that!”


“Have you lost your mind?”

“I don’t think so mister/missy!”

“No way, Jose!”

All that to say, if I were in your shoes I’d be thinking “Hayibo! When are they ever going to update that darn blog?” To answer with another common South African phrase: “now now.” Which, could not mean NOW now, but in your case it does.

We have some big updates, and I am going to be working on getting some these fully documented with pictures and longer posts, but for now I’ll hit the highlights.

  • May/June- May and June were difficult months honestly. We started really losing long term volunteers as their time was up. This meant a lot of long work for the rest of us during the coldest part of winter. Winter was hard on everyone because the kids couldn’t play outside as much (and we didn’t have enough volunteers to organize physical activity) and so they were g-r-u-m-p-y. If 50 kids are in a bad mood, chances are you aren’t going to be having the best time of your life either. Also, Trey and I are wimps when it comes to cold….and it was cold.
  • July! July was awesome and much needed relief from May and June. We started out with an awesome group from the UNT Wesley in Denton. They hosted a VBS for the kids during the holidays and Trey and I got to have great fellowship with some native English Speaking Christians. Hooray! Trey’s parents came and visited us for two weeks (trip update to follow) and it was just so nice to see them and explore South Africa together. I got miserably, awfully sick with an upper respiratory infection on our trip and was really bummed to feel like a zombie until about two days before they left. I wanted a do-over :). We love our parents, and that trip just reminded us how lucky we are to have awesome family.
  • July still! If that wasn’t enough, my sister came to see us two days after the Reynolds parents left. We spent a relaxing and normal week here at GGA (and I made her help with homework), before heading to Cape Town for a week. Sister Time is good and we got to watch the Olympics in addition to seeing awesome Cape Town–trip update to follow also.
  • August. We have settled back into life here at GGA. We are starting to get new volunteers, as well as some familiar repeat volunteers coming back to help too. It is getting warmer and the kids have been delightful :). We love those munchkins….even when they are grumpy. But we enjoy them more when they are lovely and nice.
  • Our Sam dog had a biopsy on a tumor in his neck on Monday. We were very worried about it, but noticed it right off and took him to the vet immediately. The vet said she did not think it was cancerous after looking at it under the microscope, but she isn’t a pathologist and we have to wait a few days to find out for sure. Hopefully it isn’t anything serious and we can get it taken care of easily.
  • We’ve decided we are coming back to the motherland in October and have our flights booked for October 5th. Now that it is only about a month away I’m equal parts weepy at the thought of leaving my kiddos and ecstatic about seeing family/friends and sleeping in my bed!! And taking a bath…And Tex-Mex…and so on and so forth. But, man it is going to be hard to leave these babies. I know from my previous trips that it won’t be long that i’m longing to see them again. Always torn between two places it seems..

We made the decision to come home in October for many reasons. Trey has worked so hard while we have been here SO that we could still be here financially. He had to change jobs in March and since then has been working 9-5 Texas hours, but with a 7 hour time difference. My hubby is worn out, and I can’t blame him at all. It was a hard decision for us, as we were seriously considering extending our stay. But then this happened:

That’s right! Little baby Reynolds will be joining us sometime mid-February. We are so excited and everything is going great! I was pretty sick for July and the first part of August—like got “motion sick” on a stationary metal playground car because the kids were shaking it pretty sick–but feeling awesome now. Just in time to travel for 24 hours on an airplane :)

**South Africa does not believe in gender neutral baby shoes, or shoe-ing a child less than walking age. Therefore the large-ish, blue shoes. What can you do, though?**

*** And yes, Trey is sporting awesome American Flag Chuck Taylor’s. When I bought those I said “I bet you don’t sell too many of these."  And the response was "They are seasonal shoes.” Haha, really??***