well, once again, i'm slacking on the blogging, but i think this should make up for it, and hopefully give you an idea about all that we've been up to lately!


it's that time of year! the monsoons have officially begun and the weather is getting wet and cool. feels great when you're sitting inside like i am right now...

...but it's not quite as fun when you're out and about!

as you can see, my friend Merrilea and i had to get creative with me trying to hold the umbrella over us as she drove the motorbike! gotta love monsoons!


before i dive into all the pics from our summer volunteers, here are a couple of the fun things we've done in between all the madness:

we didn't actually see Ninja Turtles, but a big group of us went to see spiderman 3 and then had a lot of fun goofing off with the Ninja Turtle stuff at McDonalds.

i really love the folks who have become my "family" here, and i especially love it when we can all get together and just have fun. right before the volunteers arrived, we had a night of games and singing and just enjoying being together. it was awesome.

we also took some time out to go bowling with Ally and Alisa, which was great, even thought the lanes were kind of messed up and the pins kept falling over on their own!

the ride home after bowling was quite an adventure--this is the first time i've ridden with 5 adults in a rickshaw! (imagine 5 people in the back of a closed in golf cart!)

Ally was brave and managed to squeeze into the little shelf area in the back!

these two pics...well, what can i say...we're pretty goofy at times!

right before our teams arrived, a couple who's working with students up north, Brian and Leslie, came down to visit us and see some of the stuff we're doing here. it was a blast, and as you can see, they're pretty fun people! this is brian posing next to one of those really goofy little cars.

this is a hillarious pic of Leslie and Joy, one of our volunteers, riding on a camel.

like last summer, we had 2 short term (2 week) teams come in may and june, and it was quite an adventure. the students did an amazing job and even though there were plenty of glitches and surpises along the way, everybody had a lot of fun.

this is a pic of the team from Georgia during orientation at our house. there were 8 people total on this team, and 1 of the guys, josh, also came last year.

after a long day of orientation, we all headed down to the Coffee Jar for a snack and coffee break!

one of the big things the GA team helped with was the Open Forum Discussion we hosted at a hotel here. the topic was relationships and we had a panel that answered questions and interacted with the audience. the evening was really fun and we met a lot of new people.

this is Rini, a student here, talking to some friends after the forum.

Kevin, Ajay, Ahbishek, and Stoffer enjoying snacks after the forum.

while the team was here, we also went to our friend Ruth's house for her parent's 25th aniversary party. it was quite a big event and a very fun evening.

at the end of their time here, the GA team hosted a party for all the new friends they'd made. we had snacks, played games, shared stories, and enjoyed watching the team (esp Matt and Marty here) put on some goofy skits.

after the GA team left, i headed to Delhi to meet 2 of our 6 week summer volunteers. i got to see a lot of friends while i was there, including my friend carolyn! she came from louisiana spend the summer in north india, and it was great to get to see her.

our 6 week summer volunteers have been amazing! this is josh and laura who came from mississippi.

this is a shot of josh from mississippi, along with our other 2 6 week vols, josh and richard. they both were on the Georgia team and stayed on after the team left. this pic is from when we went out to eat for a team meeting and talked them into singing at open mic night at the restaurant. their rendition of "my girl" was hilarious!

around the time i got back from Delhi, our second team arrived from Birmingham AL. there were 12 of them in all, and 2 returned from last year, so it was great to see some old friends.

we did orientation for the AL team on the 4th of June, and that afternoon after they left, we had an unwelcome guest appear at our house--a mouse! i called joel and kenneth to come and rescue us--here you can see them trying to find him by lifting up the washing machine!

that night, after the mouse episode, my roommates and some other friends suprised me at midnight with cake for my birthday! this is a pic of me and nafisa, our friend's daughter. even though it was really late, she was very excited about wishing me happy birthday!

here's my AMAZING carrot cake, made by Lisa, our friend who owns the Coffee JAr with her husband Cini and does all the baking

as is the tradition here, my roommates cut me a piece of cake and then smeared it all over my face!

i tried to fight back, but there were too many of them!

here i am, covered in cake, and it sure was good!!!

as you can see, i finally managed to get Preeti with some of the icing!

here's a pic of all of us girls after all the cake smearing, etc.

the next day, i had a big birthday party in the basement of coffee jar. here's a shot of laura and preeti getting ready for the party by putting up pics that my mom sent of me growing up. embarrasing but fun!

everybody had a lot of fun playing games and just hanging out.

Nassem from Iran and Maggie from the AL team

Rini, Fatemah, baby Sophy and Alisa

my 2nd birthday cake--chocolate chip!!!

me blowing out the candles

as soon as the cake was cut, Deepali moved in to attack me with a piece!

but i made sure and got her with some icing too!

i wanted to do something special for all my friends to show them how much i appreciated them, so i made a cd for everyone who came to the party. one of the songs on it was written by josh, so i got him to play it at the party.

an Iranian tradition is to take pics with the people who give you presents as you open their gifts. this is me with Kenneth, Sahil, Ruth, Kevin and Ahbishek--they gave me a cool french press because they know how much i love coffee!

me and Nassem

not long after my birthday, i had LASIK surgery so now i am glasses free! my vision isn't perfect yet, but my eyes are adjusting and i can see much better than before, which is amazing.

about a week later, our friend Lindsey from Delhi came down. she works with the student volunteers who spend the summer in different parts of south asia. this is a goofy pic of her, but the reason i took it is because the guy on the right in the back has the most crazy hair style!

near the end of their time here, the AL team also hosted a party for all their friends. this is some of the guys goofing off: Ahbishek, Kevin, Pete, Tim, Richard, Josh and Trey

Kenneth, Maggie, Kristina, Laura, Nassem, Rini, Mahanaz, Preeti

Lindsey, Candace, Janell, Kellie, Preeti

Josh, me, Nassem, Brian, Kristina, Mahanaz, Maggie

everybody getting ready to watch the skits

last year, the AL team did some hilarious skits, so everyone had high expectations for this year. as you can see from this picture, they did not let us down!

at the end we all took a group pic

well, if you made it this far, you now have a taste of what's been going on here these past few months! the teams are gone, but our summer long volunteers, josh, josh, richard and laura, will be here until the middle of july. it's sure to be a busy few weeks, especially since alisha and i are heading to thailand wednesday night for a conference, so it may be a while before i blog again... :)

2 shout outs!:

E-Rob said...

I love the picture of you trying to fight back with the icing. Preeti looks crazy, and it makes it look like a wild fight!

jrob said...

Great pic of Preeti's hair flying about.