Thursday, October 30, 2008

Test Results

The blood test result to check my immunity against rubella came back today. It was negative. The doctor said that seemed strange because my last MMR vaccination was in June 2006. He also said that we need to remember that we are in REAL Africa and they could have made a mistake. Also, the test for one of the children who was diagnosed with rubella came back and no virus was found in her blood. So perhaps a mistake again? Who knows? GOD does and I have to trust Him and be wise at the same time. We have been a little reclusive the last couple of days and shall continue to do so, to be on the safe side. We do still really value your prayers on behalf of this precious Biedebach baby.

On a lighter note: I try and carry my camera wherever I go and just had to take a picture of the lab sign. Only in Africa :) Africa, we love you!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008


Please pray for me. There is a possibility that I have been in contact with people who have the Rubella(German Measles) virus here in Malawi. That is not a good thing for any pregnant woman in her first trimester. Today, I went to have an IGG test done which will check my immunity. Please pray that the test comes back positive. Pray that I would consider this trial, pure joy and that I would trust wholly in the God Who is sovereign and in complete control of every detail of our lives and most certainly in the miraculous development of this tiny baby of mine. Your prayers are appreciated. I shall keep you posted.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Growing Grass...

This is our backyard. Some will remember previous pictures from earlier posts with what looked like a desert for a yard. Now it's desert with a touch of green. Stay tuned...God is so amazing-it's been exciting for us just to watch the grass grow.

Grass planting is quite a process in Malawi. First the ground has to be watered for weeks beforehand. The ground is very hard, because it's so hot and so the watering helps to moisten and soften the soil. Then little furrows have to be dug by hand and then the arduous task of planting grass runners begins. Brian hired some of his Homiletics' students for a couple of Saturdays to plant the grass. Once the rains start, usually November through March, then the grass will grow really fast!

Saturday, October 18, 2008

At the Playground

The wooden thatched treehouse at the playground.

Benjamin climbing the wooden treehouse. Take note of the green fruit pod things on the ground near him. More to follow...

This is the playground at the African Bible College Christian Academy. They have some great playground equipment, probably the best in Malawi. Ami is on the new bike track which was poured before the school year started in September.

Dad pushing all three kids!

This is Ami in action trying to get her dad back with those green fruit pods things. At first, when these 'things' were hitting Ami and Bradley, they didn't know where they were coming from. "Must be raining green fruit pod things". Once they found out who the culprit was, the war was on.

Biedebach Boys

Benjamin likes to walk along this raised bench, but of course, Dad is nearby just in case.

That frangipani is in bloom

These are some of the beautiful frangipani trees that are on the campus that we live on.
Yellow golden colour.

Pink with orange centre.

Just a cute boy!

This is the tree Bradley likes to climb.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

"En dan is daar vier"

On Monday, a friend and I went out to celebrate our recent birthdays. Brian watched the kids. We were gone for three hours. It was wonderful for us. The kids had fun playing with dad. Ami apparently learned how to swing a baseball bat and did really well.

While we were out, I also managed to organize a little birthday gift for Brian. I decided to give it to him early, because I couldn't wait to give it to him on November 7th.

He opened the gift bag and took out the candy bar and wasn't overly excited. I told him to look at the candy bar very closely. Taped to it was a skinny Malawian pregnancy test, that had two definite lines across it.

His face was priceless, shock and exuberance all in one! What fun to be able to share this awesome news with the kids too. Ami is over the moon. Bradley doesn't think it can be true, because Mommy doesn't have a big tummy (well there is a medium tummy, but that's because of having kiddos like him :) Benjamin just says, "Baby, baby!" and has no clue.

Praise the Lord for the blessing of another child. We shall see a doctor in South Africa over the holidays. We have planned to go down to SA for Christmas and to attend our friends' wedding(Beth and Sybrand).

Go ahead...translate the title.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Stacy Moore's RECIPE

Natalie, this is for you and all the other moms who need a great cake recipe for birthdays. Stacy, THANK YOU for your contribution. I received several compliments on the cake.

3/4 cups butter
2 cups sugar
4 eggs
3/4 c. sour cream
1/2 tsp. lemon zest
1/2 tsp. orange zest
1/2 tsp. vanilla
2 cups flour (all purpose)
1/4 c. corn starch
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. baking soda

1. Cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy
2. Sift the dries in a separate bowl. Set aside.
3. Add eggs, one at a time, then sour cream, zest and vanilla (into the butter/sugar mixture).
4. Add the dries. Mix until just combined. Pour batter into 2-8" cake rounds, lined with parchment paper and sprayed with pan spray, and bake at 350 degrees for approx. 25 minutes, until the top of the cake is nice and golden and the middle is set. Check for done-ness by inserting a toothpick. The middle should come out clean.

I made a regular butter frosting with a little orange juice instead of milk and it was delish!


B-rad is three.

Bradley's birthday is October 8th, but the dual party was Oct 3rd. He's a little confused with all the fuss and candle blowing, but has enjoyed it nonetheless. Bradley is our joker and best face maker too. He has a real fun laugh. We are so thankful for him.

Bradley's second birthday in Malawi.

We have a similar picture of Brian's mom standing with arms outstretched "just in case".

Bradley's first birthday at Grandpa Mark and Babushka's in Long Beach, California. Here he is sitting on the traditional Biedebach Family First Birthday Table that Grandpa Mark sat on and that Brian, Sharon and John(Brian's siblings) all sat on too.

Born in Johannesburg, South Africa. One day old!

The Party!

The birthday cakes. We have had cake for a whole week now!

Praying before opening their gifts, thanking God for the greatest gift, Jesus Christ.

Ami and Bradley were spoiled. Most of the kids who came to their party are neighbours of ours on the African Bible College campus.

We had a jumping castle with a huge slide. The kids loved it! It's a good thing we have a doctor on the campus.

Swords are great gifts.

Benjamin joined in the fun too.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008


Arrived here on October 3rd for an 8 day visit to spy out the land. They are checking out housing and vehicles...AND getting used to 'chopper chopper' spiders!

We are so amazed at how the Lord works! Here is the short story... Matt Floreen worked as an intern alongside Brian at Grace Christian Church in South Africa from Jan 2005 -2006. Matt returned to LA and continued to pray about his desire to serve the Lord in full-time missions. He also married the love of his life, Rachel and now the Lord is making it possible for them to work alongside us here in Malawi to strengthen International Bible Fellowship Church. Matt will assume the position of Administration Pastor and Rachel who has a Master's Degree in Biblical Counseling will be involved with Women's Ministry. We LOVE you Floreens! Matt and Rachel will join us, Lord willing in March 2009. Please take time to check out their fanatstic blog.

Midnight Mission...

We decided to have a combined party for Ami and Bradley since their birthdays are quite close together. A friend of ours, Stacy Moore, gave me this wonderful cake recipe and then we tried to make an "Ami" cake and a "Bradley" cake to celebrate the day.

I started decorating the cakes at around 7:30pm on my own...

When Brian came home around 8:45pm, I roped him into helping me...

We eventually finished...

at 12 midnight!

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Morning celebration!

In our household, we like to celebrate birthdays with singing, candle blowing and opening of presents early in the morning. If the family member whose birthday it is, is an early riser, then that member is required to stay in bed and wait patiently for the "Happy Birthday" melody. The kids get so excited! Needless to say, mom and dad do too :)

Bradley gave Ami some real, real, real nail polish. She was so happy.

We did try and explain to Ami that birthdays are not just about receiving gifts. We, as parents, are thankful for the gift that God has given to us in her. She needs to be thankful for each day that she has been given to live and live each day for her Maker.


Brian has just had what he thinks is malaria. He wasn't feeling well last week and went to see the doctor. The malaria test came back negative, but all the signs and symptoms were there. Extremely high fevers, chills, headaches, body sweats that leave the bed linen drenched, vomiting, loss of appetite and exhaustion.

Apparently, the Malawi government says before you can rule malaria out you need to have six tests come back negative. It was horrible to see him like that, but it was good to explain to the kids that we need to look for things to be thankful for in trials like these and to remember that God is in complete control. "My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience." James 1:2

Anyway, the doctor put him onto Coartem straight away and he is doing better. Praise the Lord for answering our prayers and thank you to those who were praying for him. He is still tired, but was sweet enough to take me out for a bite to eat for my birthday last night. What a darl!