Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Big Sam Update

Well, you know that Yaw & Ezekiel have left for college, but I haven’t updated you on Big Sam! Here is Sam with his host family….The Gerlach’s:

Sam started school at Des Moines Christian as a sophomore this August. It’s funny because when we first started getting Sam’s student visa Jake and I had started calling him Big Sam so that we wouldn’t get him confused with Samuel, who we are adopting, and Sam who is living with us now. Well, Peprah tells us that at school this name has stuck and everyone calls him Big Sam! He even changed his profile name on his facebook to say Big Sam! Love it! I had Big Sam’s host mom send me some pictures of their summer fun, because they did so many cool things to introduce Big Sam to the mid-west life! I think you will agree once you see these….

Family vacation in Branson, MO......

Welcome to America right?!?!?! So fun! Big Sam traveled with us and the Kingdom Hoops teams this summer as well….

Here is Sam with his two American brothers….Nathan and Nick…..

Nathan is going into 8th grade at Des Moines Christian and Nick is in 10th, so he and Sam are in the same class.

Tami (Sam’s host mom) is a WONDERFUL cook, I can attest to that, but she has also wanted to learn how to cook some African dishes. And Sam knows how to cook some dishes off-hand, so he has been able to make a few things of his own!

Sam has also recently started the Kosama 10-week body training course to get prepared for the upcoming school basketball season. I believe DMC actually has a sort of partnership with one of the Kosama training facilities in Des Moines in which their athletes can participate. One thing that Jake has learned about basketball athletes in Ghana is that they are extremely athletic, but in the beginning they need a lot of skill development help. In fact, we found out a few months ago that Sam picked up a basketball for the first time only 2 years ago!!!!!! Prior to coming here, he has not had any skill instruction – everything he knows was self-taught on the Ghana courts. Due to the Iowa High School Basketball rules, Sam will have to sit out of sports for 90 school days, just as Yaw did. But, he will still be able to practice with the teams….he just won’t be able to play in games until January.

Other than that, Sam has been going to the DMC football games on Friday nights, attending fall skill development sessions at the Kingdom Hoops facility, and keeping up with school work. Per Sam’s host-dad, he has adapted very well to American food. So far he’s eating everything except broccoli, sausage, twice baked potatoes, and spicy chicken. He also apparently has a sweet tooth….loves chocolate malts and chocolate brownies. Don’t we all!

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