Saturday, December 03, 2016

A trip, a test, and thanksgiving (video)

Agh! We know the audio is bad in this. We're sorry. We are planning to get a better microphone to make these even better for you. We are really enjoying creating these and hope to get better. We hope they are nice for you all to get a good picture of our life here in Tanzania.

Thanks for your prayers and emails!


Saturday, October 29, 2016

A Tanzanian New Testament Dedication

Several days ago Jenneka and I had the opportunity to attend our first New Testament dedication.  It was about a 3-hour drive to a village, a center for one of the languages that our PBT branch is involved in.  It was a very good for us to be reminded of why we are here in Tanzania, and the hopes that we have for one day the language we will be working with.  It was also an honor, as we were seated with the prestigious guests and given respect for being with PBT, who facilitated this project.

Please enjoy the photos below!  Click on any to open a photo-viewer.

The New Testament was presented to the guest of honor, who is a professor and a mother-tongue speaker who has had work published in this language. The mzungu (white person) in the picture below is Yancey Yarick, our branch director as well as the translation adviser for this project.

Several people were invited to speak, including a couple of our teammates, some village leaders and a local mchungaji (pastor).  The lady below is from Faith Comes By Hearing, which records and provides audio scriptures.  She is playing a sample scripture for the people to hear in their language.

Interspersed was traditional dancing and music, and the New Testaments were distributed among the people.

This is a photo of Yancey and the two mother-tongue translators.  The way the mzungu and the people of this tribe pose for photos is quite different!  In PBT translation projects, translators are trained who are native speakers of the language.  We as missionaries act as advisors, bringing translation, linguistic, and biblical expertise to the table.  A better translation is produced through such a partnership.

I really like to take photos of watoto (children). On this day they were very interested in the pomp and excitement, but many seemed to be a bit bored with the whole ceremony. We normally need to be careful taking pictures of people, to always ask permission. During this dedication, though, media was more expected.

Sunday, October 16, 2016

Thursday, September 29, 2016

Monday, September 26, 2016

Monday, September 05, 2016

Bryce National Park: Top 10 Photos

September 5, 2016:

I'm in Minnesota visiting my sister and her family.  The other day we saw the latest Imax national parks movie, in which Bryce Canyon was one of the parks featured (none of the Washington parks were even mentioned: dissed!).  I now am inspired to finally post the Bryce Canyon pictures that I took when we visited there this April!  It's always a challenge to narrow it down, but here are my favorite 10 of those photos.  For the rest, visit the Flickr album here.

Bryce Canyon National Park reaches 9000 feet elevation, and there was still some snow in April

Jenneka, of course, took this photo

The trails were pretty busy, but I liked capturing some activity here, especially the horses.

That's me.  My nephew Ender asked how I climbed this cliff.  Admittedly, I didn't.  It doesn't look like a good idea.

Back at our KOA cabin.  We like KOA cabins.
And a bonus photo.  Horseshoe Bend isn't in Bryce National Park, but I was super excited to finally see it.  It wasn't the right conditions to get a good photo, and I should be using a lens hood to prevent the flare, but it's a stitched panorama of Horseshoe Bend!  I have to share it.

Sunday, August 07, 2016

A Summer Update for you

Looking forward to giving you glimpses like this of our life in Tanzania, very soon!

(My apologies that the video isn't the best, but hopefully as I practice more I'll get better.)


Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Phoenix Air Show: Top 5 photos

May 10, 2016:

The Phoenix Air Show happened to be happening on the same weekend Jenneka and I were in Phoenix visiting our friends Ben and Joanne.  I always loved air shows, having grown up in Yakima, WA, back when there was an annual air show with the Navy's Blue Angels visiting.  In Phoenix here we got to see the Air Force Thunderbirds.  Below are five of my favorites of the photos.  To see the rest of the set on Flickr, go here.

It was difficult to take satisfying photos of the planes on display, because of the great hordes of people, who liked to take shelter under the wings (sounds very biblical!).  These are the tail fins of an F-15 Eagle, which was my favorite plane when I was a kid.
My dad used to fly an F-4 Phantom, which is one of the coolest jets of all time.  I had to get a picture with one.
We were dazzled by the USAF Thunderbirds, who fly F-16s
This pilot was flying horizontally, even though the plane is angled up.  It was amazing skill!
The B-17 Flying Fortress "Sentimental Journey" with a Thunderbirds flyby.

Friday, February 19, 2016

Some pictures from our travels ... and we're back in Seattle!

Feb. 2, 2016:

If you get our newsletters, you heard about our recent travels to Minnesota and Ontario, and back again to Seattle! (We're getting good at travelling and packing hehe)

We loved Christmas in Minnesota (even though we didn't get very much snow)! We celebrated James' birthday with the Walden family too. We were so grateful for time spent with them.

Celebrating James' birthday with homemade blackberry pie

Then we took the Megabus from MN to Detroit (that was an exciting experience! and we made our connections by several miracles). We celebrated my mom's birthday and New Year's with my ever-growing family. See the picture below .. we sure fill up our living room!

New Year's Eve with the Szmiett family side
I was excited to show James around my former home, church, and alma mater in Ottawa, Ontario. However, I realized he doesn't know some important Canadian history so I've since got a book to fill him in :)

Chilling (literally) in Ottawa

Having fun around Parliament Hill

James also got to experience two other important Canadian experiences ... his first hockey game and Roll up the Rim! (For you Americans, it's a contest at Tim Hortons). James won 2 for 2!

It's been a good couple months. Please keep praying for us as we continue to support-raise and prepare to move to Tanzania.

Love from Jenneka

Friday, January 22, 2016

Why does Bible translation take so long?

We often get asked how long we expect it to take to complete a Bible translation.  There are so many factors that it's impossible to say, but we usually suggest 10 years or more.  Even though we have many helps nowadays in the forms of technology and translations in related languages, 10 years might be extremely optimistic.  I found a great post on Wycliffe UK's blog that explains it well, so please check it out!

Why does Bible translation take so long?: A full Bible translation takes a long time to complete, sometimes 30 years or longer, and a New Testament alone can take from 5-20 years to complete. So what is it that takes so long? .…

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