* Grocery Shopping

Today we have to go grocery shopping.  Need to get some things for supper tonight.  We'll go to the wet market in Antipolo and to some of the grocery stores nearby.  There is lots to choose from, so I hope you're ready!  First we'll shop for our meat.

You can buy your fish from Hypermarket, or..........

Shopwise, or......

Antipolo Wet Market.

Some varieties of fish...

and other seafood.

You can also choose from a wide selection of beef, pork or chicken.

Chicken heads or feet anyone? 
(The Filipinos, with their sense of humor, call these the helmet and adidas!)

If we are cooking a Filipino meal (breakfast, lunch or supper) we have to have rice.
Do you know which kind to get?!  And you thought rice was rice was rice!

Now for some veggies and maybe some fruit for dessert. 

One thing we have learned here is that there is an endless and amazing variety of fruits and vegetables in God's creation.  So many things we never heard of.  Here is a short list of some of the names. 

Fruits: Atis, Dalandon, Durian, Guava, Guyabank, Jackfruit, Lanzones, Makopa, Papaya, Pomelo, Rambutan, Santol.  Just the bananas alone present a big variety -- saba, cavendish, senorita, etc.  Some of them can be fried and then carmelized with brown sugar.  Yum!  Some can be boiled.  Some are eaten as they are.  (Hmmm.  I wonder which ones make the best peanut butter and banana sandwiches.......)

Veggies:  Ampalaya, Alogbati, Eggplant, Kangkong, Okra, Pechay, Sayote. 

I'm sure there are many more we haven't learned about yet.  Some  of the names are familiar, but not real common to North America.  You can also get the common everyday veggies here -- corn, beans, broccoli, cauliflower, lettuce, onions, potatoes, tomatoes, peppers, cabbage, etc.

So have you figured out your menu for tonight yet?

* Farm Animals

We were in the All of Grace PR Fellowship in Gabaldon this past weekend.  We enjoyed our time with God's people there again - both in worship, and during lunch together.

Here are a few pictures of some of the farm animals we see along the way.  Nothing too unusual or unfamiliar, but a nice part of the pastoral scenery.




Maraming Pato





  Batang Kalabaw

* Hanko's Visit


Sharon's parents were able to visit once again (they were also here in March) for a week before they went to Singapore, where Dad will be working for 6 weeks.  We are so thankful to have had these times with them!  We had a nice relaxing week.
At the Mall of Asia

We were able to go see the biggest Mall in Asia.  They have an ice skating rink, bowling alleys, endless restaurants and shops.  There is also a nice view from the mall over Manila Bay.  Okay, maybe the ride home wasn't so relaxing.  It took us 2 1/2 hours -- a trip that had taken us just 40 minutes a few days before when coming from the airport.  It's all a matter of timing, and I guess we timed this one wrong!  But it's all part of the Manila experience.

Antipolo Market

One day we took a stroll through Antipolo's wet and dry market.  Lots of interesting things to see.  They have everything for sale from household goods, to flowers, to jewelry and clothes, to cellphones, to veggies and meat - anything you could possibly want or need.  We attracted a bit of attention and had a group of children following us.  I think they were fascinated by the tall white men.  And maybe by something else ....... we heard two of the little girls saying "Pinnochio" over and over.  ;-)   That Dutch blood shows itself in more ways than one!

We also had a chance to go to the American Cemetery in Manila, where 17,000 American soldiers from WWII are buried, and where there is a memorial to another 33,000 MIAs.  The Smits were able to come along with us that day with their two youngest children.  The rest were in school.  So for a few hours we were on American soil!

A Distant Relative


A Visit to the Comfort Room

Some kids we saw playing by the road 
1 skateboard + 6 kids = FUN!

Sunday was the highlight of their visit with the opportunity to worship with the First Reformed Church in Bulacan in the morning (see previous blog), and then the Berean PRC in the afternoon.  God's sovereign electing grace - choosing a few out of many - is an amazing and humbling truth.

* FRCB 8th Anniversary

This past Sunday we attended the a.m. service of the First Reformed Church of Bulacan (where we normally go on the 1st and 3rd Sundays of the month).  Sharon's parents (Prof. and Mrs. Hanko) are here for a week on their way to Singapore, so they were able to come along and to meet one of the congregations we regularly visit.  We left home at 6:15 a.m. for their 8:00 a.m. worship service.  Pastor John Flores preached a sermon on Jeremiah 6:16, making application to Reformation Day as well as to the church's 8th anniversary as a Reformed congregation.  The sermon was in Tagalog, but we were provided with an English outline, which enabled us (at least Sharon and me) to follow along and to catch quite a bit of the Tagalog.

FRCB's 8th Anniversary Banner

Members of the FRCB Gather for Worship

Prof. Hanko Expressing Congratulations

Hankos Chatting with Pastor John Flores

A Delicious Lunch (Tanghalian) 

Men's Discussion after Lunch 

The Ladies Visiting while Men have their Meeting 

Picture with the Consistory of FRCB 

Congregation Group Picture

As Prof. Hanko said, it was a joy to meet this small group of Reformed believers in the middle of Manila's millions, and to experience first hand what it means to belong to the universal body of Christ.  We thoroughly enjoyed our time of worship and fellowship.