Wednesday, September 30, 2015


For Mihklipäeva (St. Michael's Day) access to the Estonian Open Air Museum was free, and there were many activities taking place. We enjoyed a delicious authentic Estonian meal at the pub, then visited many of the historic houses on the grounds, finishing with a church service in the historic Sutlepa Chapel on the museum grounds. It was a beautiful day to be outside in Estonia!
In the bedroom of one of the farmhouses was this wonderful pillow cover: maga hästi--sleep well.

We found St. Michael's daises outside of one farmhouse. 

Peter using an old grinding stone.

There were also large windmills from the Estonian countryside.

Peter made a toy from acorns and other items from nature.

We also had the chance to swing!

Tuesday, September 08, 2015

Tim's Birthday

Today is my birthday (Tim), and it was a marvelous day full of flowers, many greetings, thoughtful gifts, delicious meals and time spent with friends. (I also did work at the corps, but that wasn't quiet as exciting.)

From the time I came into the office I was greeted with flowers and wishes of palju õnne. At lunch time, Sirje and some of the volunteers treated us to a delicious lunch and cake. In the evening, I was joined by many of the young people from my old teen group--now a young adult group! It was fun spending time together eating pizza, vahukoor kringle and chocolate stritsel. We had a great game of Phase 10, and I actually won in the last minute!

It was a really meaningful way to spend my birthday, and a wonderful reminder of how blessed I am. I am so grateful to Evelyn for planning such a great day!

Here are some pictures. For more, you can see my Facebook page here.

Tuesday, September 01, 2015

Today We Begin!

               Today we officially begin as the corps officers of the Tallinn Kopli Corps. We are excited to see what God has planned for the corps!
               The past 3+ weeks that we have been in Estonia have been spent getting settled in here. We have a wonderful three-room apartment in the city center that is near grocery stores and public transportation; the corps is only a five-minute tram ride from where we live. The apartment was partially furnished, so we spent time finding what we needed to fill in the gaps. We were able to fully outfit Peter’s room with a bunk bed, dresser, desk and wardrobe that make it feel like it is really his own space.
Peter's room before his furniture arrived.
               Our shipment of personal items arrived today. It is hard to believe that it took only four weeks for it to  travel all the way from New York to us here in Estonia. Our spare time will be spent unpacking for a while!
               Our initial plan for Peter to attend a school here fell through unexpectedly, and so he will be a homeschooler once again. (He attended school last year for the first time.) When we packed our shipment, we included our homeschooling books and material to use as a supplement for his schooling (as well as to have some good English-language books to read!), and this has turned out to be a real gift from God. Peter has handled the change in plans well and is actually excited about it. He even said, “I’m not going to be a lazy homeschooler like I used to be! After going to school last year, I know what I need to do.” (Thank you, Mrs. Duron!)
               He is already making friends here. During our first week he attended an English-language church day camp and met two American boys (the father of one is the pastor of the church); they got along wonderfully! The next week he attended a Salvation Army children's camp in Loksa, and got to know some of the Estonian-speaking and Russian-speaking kids from other corps. Overall, he has made the transition to living here quite well.

Peter with some of his new friends at Loksa. He's in the center with the Superman sweatjacket.
               We are still awaiting the final approval of our residence permits. Like so many things in government, after submitting the paperwork they always seemed to need something more. But we believe they finally have everything they want from us and we are just awaiting our Estonian ID cards, which will allow us to open a bank account, have access to public transit in Tallinn for free (!), and manage a lot of the other details of everyday life here.
Kinder Surprise and Kinder Joy are just two of the treats Peter is getting reacquainted with.
               We have also had the chance to reconnect with many old friends, visit familiar places, savor delicious Estonian food and enjoy the beautiful Estonian summer.
               This is just a quick snapshot of the past few weeks. We will be sure to add more in the days ahead. We ask for your prayers as we begin our ministry at the Tallinn Kopli Corps, that God will guide us to His plan for the work here and that we can be faithful in serving here.