Thursday, August 26, 2010

Day 44 (Traveling Home)

Well, I arrive in Amsterdam about an hour ago. Since being here, I took a bathroom break; however, I haven’t found a shower, but I’ve found a pretty relaxing place to sit by the fake fire. I’m actually sitting across from the “junior Jet Lounge” it’s where the unaccompanied minors go, kinda crazy when you think about the move.
Let’s see…some things to talk about. I haven’t showered in 24hrs. and I’ve played with Elephants and giraffes. My stomach feels funny but I think I have somewhat of a fear of flying.
The guy who sat next to me on my flight was named Momounsam he is on his way to Germany. He is big in the jewelry business and comes from Gambia. He was very friendly. Almost too friendly as he kept wanting to talk and I just wanted to sleep. After a bit I was finally able to sleep. With the help of some sleep medicine, I slept pretty good; however, I don’t think it was quite long enough. Another few interesting facts: there is a museum in this airport, and a place that teaches about alcohol.
Well I’m quite thirsty, so I think I’m gonna load everything up and go a more then like expensive bottle of water.
Well, I didn’t find anything to drink instead I kinda fell asleep. Once when I woke up there was another guy sleeping in the same pod I was sleeping in. I woke up around 8:40 and was feeling quite well. I walked down to a store and bought a plug (I have no clue how much I spent on it) then I found an outlet but it apparently doesn’t work. Ina bit I’m gonna search for another one hopefully. Right now I’m listening to a British kid play the piano and watching people get massages. Airports although boring when you’re alone are also very interesting! Well I’m really thirst so I’m really gonna find something to drink!

Day 42

It was another slower morning, but it got busy. We hung out awhile drinking coffee and talking. Around 10 we began cleaning out the closet in Sean’s room. We sorted out items for Naomi’s Village and packed the away. We then unloaded the bookshelves and loaded up the car. We drove over to the new house and unloaded our first load. We returned and finished cleaning out Sean’s room and then moved to the hall closet. After moving that load, we stopped for dinner. We made some more mini pizzas with Canadian bacon on them. The afternoon was quite slow and uneventful. We had planned to go down to the IDP Camp, but the guys went into Nairobi and didn’t get back until late.
Once they returned they immediately went to work on the house putting up the tongue and groove ceiling in the living room. The women got busy in the kitchen. We made Mexican spaghetti and cream cheese roll-ups. For dessert, we had pecan pie and chocolate chip pie.
While the second pie was in the oven, we went over to see how things were going. It was just getting started but they seemed to know what they were doing. We told them that dinner was ready and to come when they were ready. About an hour later, we all ate dinner. It was quick as the guys wanted to get back to work.
The women made some more coffee and just chatted through the rest of the evening. Around 11 the guys all returned. Jillian, Sean and I had our normal evening chat, and then went to bed around 1.

Day 41

Today was Bob and Julie’s anniversary. We didn’t do anything this morning as Rachel was finishing up packing. Around 12 we walked up to tell her goodbye—it was quite sad. We then walked over to Mama Chiku’s for lunch as Bob and Julie were taking them to the airport and left around 1:30. After lunch we came home for awhile then decided to go for a walk. On our walk, we saw a whole family of Baboons.
When we returned home I finished doing some laundry while Jillian and Emily baked a cake. Once they were finished, I made pizza sauce for our mini pizzas and cooked the meat.
After all was prepared we (Sean, Jillian, Emily and I) all ate some wonderfulness. Jillian taught us the game of mau and we played for hours. We then decided to watch the Little Giants. We just got done chatting so goodnight.

Day 40

Today, we all slept in again. We didn’t have much to do during the day as Rachel, Teri, and Brayden were preparing to leave. Julie still wasn’t feeling the greatest, but she was feeling better. Around lunch time, we went up to Rachel’s so we could get some things at the duka with them. We were going to eat at momma chiku’s but she was closed. We decided to eat at the hospital instead.
After eating, we walked down to the house and began popping popcorn for the movie at the IDP Camp. We began shortly after 1 and finished around 3:30. Everyone decided to take a nap. I wasn’t tired so I read and worked on pictures.
At 5:00 we loaded up and headed to the IDP Camp for dinner. Doreen fed us chapatti, beans, and chicken-I had the whole rib cage on my plate. Once it was dark we started the movie (Madagascar 2). Sylvia, Cecilia, Miriam, and Sheila (pronounced Shayla) immediately found me & we all cuddled to keep warm. About ½ way through we passed out the popcorn and showed a movie with pictures of people at the ICP Camp. After the movie it was time to leave and when we arrived home, we chatted awhile before retiring to bed.

Day 39

Today was Sunday. We all slept in and were going to go to Nairobi for a Day of relaxation. However when we woke up, Julie wasn’t feeling well, so we all just hung out. We spent about 2 hours watching hilarious youtube videos. We ate some lunch and talked for awhile. After eating, again my kidneys weren’t feeling so hot, so Jillian made me lay on the couch while she and Sean did the dishes.
Once they were finished we all gathered in the living room around the computer to watch Invictus. It was a pretty good movie, but the medicine I took to take away the pain made me quite sleepy so I took a snooze in the middle of it.
Once the movie was over we decided we needed to get out of the house. So we went for a walk, on our way to RVA we stopped to see Rachel and Dan. Rachel decided she needed to get out of the house as well and so she and Teri came along for a walk. It took us a little longer than normal to walk the guard’s trail, but we weren’t in a hurry and just wanted to get some fresh air.
After our walk, we discussed dinner plans with Dan and decided we would go back up to their house since Julie wasn’t feeling much better. Dan made pasta with alfredo sauce and we had leftover veggies and chips from last night. We all had some coffee and sat around the fire while Dan’s homemade brownies were in the oven.
Shortly after 10 we all walked back down to our house and chatted while checking email. I’m off to bed now!

Day 38

Well I woke up this morning feeling better. We didn’t have anything really to do today, so we slept in and relaxed all morning. We Julie cooked for quite awhile, and I helped her make homemade corn tortillas. It took a lot of work and a little perfecting until we finally figured it out. Around 11, Rachel called and Teri, Sean, Jillian and I walked up to the duka and market. We got some items that we needed for our big dinner tonight, and we also did some fun shopping. I got some pretty cool gifts for my sisters and my mom. Some beaded earrings and a necklace, and an ebony nativity for my mom! It took so good bargaining skills from Jillian for me to get the nativity.
After all the shopping was done, we returned home, and Jillian and Sean went to see how the men were doing. While we were at the duka we found out Doreen could no longer come to the dinner we were planning for her and Joseph. Jillian and Sean still wanted to go with the men to Naivasha and hang out, so they did. By this time, I wasn’t feeling the greatest again, so Emily and I watched Cheaper by the Dozen 2 and just chilled out until it was time to head up to the Bransfords for dinner.
Even though Doreen and Joseph and their families couldn’t come, we still had lots of food and a wonderful time of fellowship. After dinner we all headed up to RVA for a bonfire. It was quite fun!
Once returning home late, we (Sean, Jillian and I) all stayed up and chatted until about 1 and then headed to bed.

Day 37

Well I thought today was gonna be a good day. It started out good anyway. At 7:45 am Sean and I got up to go for a run around Moffat field. We returned home around 8:15 and I was feeling pretty good. I showered, ate some breakfast, and had a really good quiet time. At 10:00 we all piled in the car and headed down to spend the day at the IDP Camp.
We all sat around and talked, while we drank some tea/hot chocolate. Around 11:30 my right kidney began to hurt. Julie hadn’t been feeling good all morning either, so we sat and tried to relax while the others learned how to make chapatti. Dorcus was also with us and she made the rest of lunch while Doreen made the chapatti.
We ate and then walked down to see the addition to the chicken project. Still not feeling well, we walked back to Doreen’s for some more tea. After tea, Doreen took Rachel, Teri, Jillian, and Sean to the school so Rachel could get some more pictures for a video she plans to make.
Just after 4 the guys arrived to take us home. By this point, I was pretty miserable. We arrived home, and Emily made me some Lemonade. I then laid in bed for awhile while everyone else showered. I wasn’t feeling much better, but I thought maybe a shower would help. Sadly it didn’t so I returned to my bed.
After awhile, Katie arrived and came in and prayed for me and suggested getting some strong Tylenol from the Hospital. By this point, I was in some pain.

Day 35

Today was the day of the referendum, so it was a holiday and we were encouraged not to go anywhere.
Julie and I got up around 8:30 and did a turbo jam workout. After turbo jam, Sean and I went for a run/walk around RVA. On our way back to the house, we decided to go check out the new place Bob and Julie were moving too. The guys were all there working on installing the cabinets.
When we returned we all just hung out, ate a light lunch and then Sean and I took a nap in the living room.
After waking up we helped Julie in the kitchen prepare dinner to take up to the McMillans. Around 3:30 we all loaded the car and went up to hang out. The guys all worked on a car, shot a potato gun and grilled. Jillian and I had another wonderful conversation on the swing outside and took in the beautiful weather. Later, Rachel, Teri and I fried chicken wings. After all the food was prepared we ate and had lots of fun!
After dessert and coffee, we played catchphrase and played with their new pet (rock high rex) crazy train. The little guy was absolutely adorable.
Around 9:30 we called it a night and came home. Jillian, Sean and I all checked email, hung out and are now going to bed.

Day 34

Today, was a busy day. Around 9:30 Julie, Jullian, Emily, and I all headed to Limuru to the Brackenhurst. It is a missionary retreat center. There we bought internet time and spent a few hours uploading things and checking emails. Around 12:30 we had lunch there. It was quite tasty. At 1:30 we packed up and headed back to Kijabe, arriving home at 2:30.
At 3:00 Sean and I walked up to the Dentist to get out teeth cleaned. It was quite interesting. I was a little nervous, but the Kenyan hygienist did a fantastic job. And it only cost me 1300ksh or $16.25.
After our dentist appt we began working on dinner plans. We made lasagna and garlic bread, green beans, and something else. Jillian also made 2 pies (pecan and banana cream).
After dinner, we sat around and talked as usual. It was a tough night for Jillian and she and Sean and I had a really long, but extremely good! We started to watch “the big bang theory” but never finished one episode because of the conversation.
We didn’t go to bed until 1:00 but it was well worth it!

Day 33

Today I got up at 8:30 and showered as with so many people in the house we are on a tight bathroom schedule. At 9:30-10:00 we headed down to show everyone Naomi’s Village. After an Hour there we headed into Naivasha to get money, exchange shows, and eat dinner. We had some amazing Indian food at a gas station restaurant.
After lunch and potty breaks we went to see Doreen at the IDP Camp (she called last night telling us she missed us). She made us hot cocoa and again poured out her heart to us and what God was teaching her. Many tears were shed yet again.
Around 5 we left and began preparing for supper. Tonight was Korean pancakes, fried okra, chips and queso. We all chatted as usual and then played a game of settlers. Sean with my gracious help won. After that Jillian needed to work through some tough things so we chatted to solve some of the issues.
Now its super late and tomorrow will be busy.

Day 32

Today we got up around 7:30 packed and ate breakfast. At 9:00 we loaded up and headed back to Kijabe. Again we stopped at a little souvenir shop to go to the bathroom in Narok. We then headed the rest of the way home arriving shortly before 2.
Once we arrived Bob and Julie of course wanted to know how it was, so sean and I gladly informed them of the wonderful adventure. We hadn’t eaten and were a bit hungry so we ate some leftover pizza. Around 4 Sean and I headed up to RVA to play some BB. He totally kicked my butt when we played 1 on 1, but I kicked his in horse!
We then walked home and began helping Julie with dinner as 2 new people were arriving. (Jillian and Brandon)
Around 5:30-6:00 they arrived. At about 7 the Dickerson’s came over and we all ate and chatted for quite some time. At 8:30 the Dickerson’s took Brandon to where they were staying to get him settled. We then had a great conversation with Jillian before Bob & Julie went to watch Dexter.
The rest of us then decided to play apples to apples until we were tired and we all headed to bed.

Day 31

Today we got a wakeup call around 6:30 (A wake up call is a Kenyan coming to your tent and rattling the zipper while saying good morning). Sean also threw in a couple of wake up calls even though we were awake. We went to breakfast and left on our 2nd safari at 7:30am. We saw so much this morning!
Around 10 while driving, I fell asleep for a bit. I hadn’t slept good at all last night and was very tired. However, I didn’t miss the cheetah feeding her cubs or the lion who had just killed a wildebeest. Around 12 we headed back to camp for lunch. And after lunch Katie and I took naps.
At 4:00 we went back out on safari. We were on a mission for a leopard-which we didn’t find, but we saw some great elephants.
After safari, we came back and got ready for dinner. Tonight’s entertainment was a Kenyan sort of mariachi band. We are now getting ready for bed as morning will come awfully early.

Day 30

Well I got up at 7:00am and showered and finished packing. At 8:00 Benson our driver arrived. We loaded everything and were off. About 2 hours into the drive we stopped in Narok and went to the bathroom at a gas station. It was quite an experience. We then traveled the next 2 hours of our trip. I fell asleep during this part.
Just after 12 we arrived at the Fig Tree Camp. We check in and were shown our tents. Then we went to lunch. There were some pretty interesting things at the buffet, but they were good. After lunch we went and hung out at the pool. Braden and Dan swam while the rest of us watched. We then went into the bar to get drinks and hang out before our safari.
At 4:00 we headed out on our first safari. We of course saw zebras and wildebeest, but one of the first things we saw was a lion eating a wildebeest. Not far from there were some lion cubs. We saw many more cool things which I can’t quite remember however I do remember the gorgeous sunset!
After returning we showered and went to dinner. The entertainment of the evening was some massai doing a song and showering their jumping skills (I was told this is how they attract women). We then all returned to our tents and hung out before turning in.

Day 29

This morning we all just hung out. At 12:00 Dan, Rachel, Teri, Bob, Julie, Sean, and I all headed to get money for our safari so we could pay our travel agent. First we went to the ABC Shopping Center and got out the money. Then we traveled to the Junction Shopping Center. While there we ate some Indian food. I had chicken tikka jerra masala. It was chicken chunks in a really yummy sauce. After eating we gathered the money to pay Suzanne.
When all of that was complete, we headed to the Nakamott-it’s basically a walmart. It has everything from clothes, to appliances, to groceries. After all the shopping was done we headed back home. Since we had a late lunch we had leftovers for dinner.
We decided we wanted to watch a movie and chose Monty Python and the Holy Grail. We also had popcorn.
I just finished packing for Safari and now it’s time for bed.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Day 28

Today we headed back down to the IDP Camp. WE arrived at the school around 12. Sammy Camou, and Alex all came as well. Sammy is the guy who helped build and fund the school.
After a bit of talking with all of them, we went into the classroom. We brought them a story book of Noah's Ark which I read tot he children while Doreen and then Sammy translated. Soon it was time for the children to go so we all sad our goodbyes.
Today, we brought lunch for everyone. We brought somosas and chapatti from Mama Chiku's and sodas from the duka. We ate and chatted at the school for quite sometime. Then we discussed the price for building the school a kitchen and how much it would cost to fee one child a day. AFter many calculations, it came out to be $2.50 to feed one child. For many of these children, it will be their only meal or at least their only nutritious meal.
Around 2:30-3 we headed back up the mountain. It was quite the adventure today as we had the green hornet. Julie had driven it down a couple times before, but never back up. There were many bumps along the way, but she did excellent!
When we arrived home, the men weren't back yet, and neither was Sean, who'd spent the day in the hospital observing some very interesting surgeries. Julie had some errands to run so I went with her. On our walk we Ran into Lorrie and Kim and we chatted for quite some time. While we were chatting Sean who was on his way home stopped to talk as well. Soon we were on our way again. AFter solving some of the errand problem we went down to the new house Bob and Julie will be living in. The wall had been knocked down and it was looking good!
When we arrived back home, Sean, Emily and I played a game of settlers. Sean won tonight. Then I talked to my mom for about 30 mins. on skype. It was so good to hear her voice and chat with her about life. Soon it was dinner time. Tonight was chicken curry and beef curry. It was yummy as usual!
After dinner tonight Bob and Julie told stories about their grandparents. They have some funny stories!

Day 27

Today around 10:30 all the women drove down to the school. When we arrived Doreen was teaching but ushered us in to watch. While we were there they learned about Noah, and many attributes of God. After their Bible time they reviewed some math. What’s crazy was how well behaved the children were especially since there were 50 kindergarteners/1st graders. School dismissed at 12:30 and we walked back to Doreen’s tent. We were only going to have tea, but she insisted on feeding us. She made some wonderful beans and rice and we ate around 3. We had planned to leave at 1:30 but often things change. And today it was a good change. While Doreen was cooking she shared many words of encouragement with us. She shared again how important prayer is and how we need to boldly ask God for what we want/need even though he knows. She shared that when we have nothing left “were I end, He begins” and he will provide. She shared how we have to pray with the right heart and used Jesus praying for the cup to be taken from him but then realizing that it was something he had to do, so even though we didn’t get left as planned-God had other intentions for us.
Around 4 we headed back home. When we arrived we decided to sort supplies teams had brought over. I counted and organized 372 toothbrushes while the others sorted men’s, woman’s & children’s clothes and shoes.
After all was done we began working on supper we made quesadillas and queso. Sean and I slaved over the stove frying chips and bacon while the other chatted.
After supper we played mafia and then everyone left.

Day 26

It was another relaxing day. Around 10:30 all the women, kids and Sean headed to the Naivasha country Club for an afternoon of R&R.
When we arrived we walked down to the lake to see if we couldn’t spot any hippos, but they weren’t around. We then ordered dinner, which speedy service is not a Kenyan thing and about 2 hours later we got our food. After eating, coffee, and researching flea bites we headed back home.
Once home we hung out and prepared for dinner. I made scones (craisin & white chocolate chip) while Julie made Keish. Sean helped a little, but kept trying to steal my thunder in saying he helped make them.
Everyone came over to eat and we had a blast. After doing dishes we played a game of scene it. It was really difficult. Sean and Will ended up winning.
Now it’s time for bed!

Day 25

Today we headed to the lunga lunga slums to church. We left around 8:30 am as church stated at 10 and we had to drive to Nairobi. It was a typical drive into town and when we arrived we parked our cars outside the slum behind a tin sheet fence.
We then called Pastor Jeffery to come and get us. We then walked through the slum. Its so hard to explain. There were tiny walkways with tiny shops and houses made of iron sheets that lined the path tons of people everywhere. Bottles, trash, soles of shoes, mud, pee, poop on the path.
As we walked children peeked their heads out their little doors to say mzungu how is you. The first place Pastor Jeffery took us was the original church build. It was tiny. It seriously couldn’t have been any bigger than my living room. It is now Jeffery’s office as they have moved to a larger building.
When we arrived they were doing a song and we were soon introduced. They continued to do several songs allowing all age groups to show a dance to a song. This went on for about an hour and a half. Katie and I then did a song for them-we both sang while I played piano and Katie played guitar. There were a few more songs and then Pastor Jeffery had Bob give a mini sermon. Finally we got to the sermon. Jeffery preached the story of Joshua and the Battle of Jericho. He preached for a good hour to hour and a half.
Once the sermon was done, Bob prayed over a “freshly born” set of twins (inside joke with Sean). Another song was sung and we said our goodbyes. It was 2:30 before we left.
We then drove to the Java house for lunch. It was definitely a culture shock, but it was good food and great fellowship.
Our drive home was fairly typical except for a bit of fish tailing in the green hornet thanks to Dan. Once arriving safely at home, we went and played some soccer up at RVA. Then we went back to the house and played settler in which Sean and I dominated.
We had chips and different dips for dinner. I then checked emails. I got to talked with my momma for quite awhile before heading to bed.

Day 24

Today, I got to sleep in again! Yay! I got up around 9 and honestly just hung out with everyone, lounging around in p.j.’s. Not a lot happened this morning as the LOI team left and Bob, Julie, Rachel, and Dan were planning on going to Nairobi in the afternoon. Rachel’s mom flew in today so they were going to pick her up.
Around 12 the adults left, and Sean and I were left with the 3 kiddos. For lunch we went to Mama Chiku’s . Sean and I ate some samosas, while the three kids had mandazi’s with a fried egg on top. After eating we walked to RVA and played some soccer. I attempted for awhile, and then gave up-soccer is not my talent.
After we were tired of that, we headed home and watched the movie Raising Arizona. It was quite funny. However, I was a bit sleepy and feel asleep towards the end.
When the movie was over, it was time to get ready for dinner. We made ravioli and had salad for supper. It was quite delicious! The amazing dump cake was for dessert again :D
Katie came over and ate with us and then taught us how to play the game settlers. It was a very fun game mostly because it’s the first game I’ve won since being here. It took us quite awhile to play and we had just finished when all the parents returned home.
Tonight after the kids and everyone headed to bed, Sean asked me my testimony. I gladly told him, and then asked if he’d share his. He said maybe that would be my story. One day while putting in windows I asked him to tell me a story just to try to get some conversation flowing, but I’ve yet to hear one…so its kind of a running joke with us! Hopefully, I will hear his testimony soon!
Well tomorrow we are headed to the slum church and I guess it will be quite exhausting, so I’m off to bed!

Day 23

Today was a typically busy morning. Around 9:30 we all loaded up & headed to crescent Island-another walking safari. Today we saw: water buck, wildebeests, zebras, impalas, tom gazelle, giraffe, and a hippo. We spent about 2 hours walking around the “island” being with the animals. At 1:00 we left and headed home.
When we arrived, Julie, Rachel, Sean, Emily and I all got busy popping popcorn for the movie. At 5 we headed down to Doreen’s to eat before showing the movie. It was amazing to me how she fed all 30+ of us tonight. After eating Joseph told us his story from the clashes and then we went to watch the Lion King. Emily and Faith started out by snuggling with me and sson Ruth was in my lap fast asleep. After intermission for popcorn break, Ruth’s mom, another woman & Ann were all boxing me in-I couldn’t move, but it was totally amazing. Soon the movie was over and everyone loved it. Everyone left, but Faith stayed right by my side until I climbed into the car.
Now it is time for bed after a very fun exhausting day.
During intermission I was sitting holding Ruth, when Ann comes up behind me and covers my eyes & says guess who. I had no idea so I started guessing the typical names, Ruth, Naomi, Esther. She finally told me she was Ann and introduced herself. The funny thing is I’d never met her before and while she had my eyes covered the other 2 women moved in to my space.

Day 22

Around 9:30am we were picked up to go do some work at the orphanage. However, we really didn’t leave then. All I know is we headed down the Mountain, went to Maai Mahiu and got supplies and made it to the orphanage at lunch time. After a small bit to eat we finished painting the windows that were in.
After this task was completed we began building the driveway. All of the debris from the chipping of the stones was shoveled into wheelbarrows and haled to make the Road.
Around 4 work came to a stop because some people had to walk back up the Mountain.
Tonight Tim, Mike, & his family came over for dinner. It was curry night! After our meal everyone but Bob, Julie, Mike, and Tim headed over to the ENT house to have a worship night. It was pretty cool. Around 10 we came back home, but they were still meeting. Sean & I decided to watch “Waiting for Guffman” a movie Bob & Julie recommended. It was ok but not my fave. After the movie the meeting was still happening so I got online and checked email and chatted with my mom. At midnight they were done and we all were able to go to bed!

Day 21

Today was a sleep in day. Many hard, frustrating & sad events happened last night, which made it quite late. We all hung out at the house this morning while the LOI team went down to the orphanage to sort out Ernie’s tools from Naomi’s Village’s. Today is Julie’s Birthday so around 9:30 this morning, Rachel, Sean, and I walked up to the market and duka to get her some flowers. After finding some beautiful colorful roses we went to Mama Chiku’s hotel for some chai. After tea time, we walked passed all the other little shops here in Kijabe. We also made cookies this a.m.
After lunch around 2 we headed down to the orphanage to take people to the IDP Camp. The team was not done cleaning things up, so I had to stay so I could walk the team over. Around 4 everything was done and we walked to the IDP Camp where we had chai & cookies. Soon it was time to go.
Tonight, since it was Julie’s b-day Dan, Rachel, and I did all the cooking. We had Nachos, which were fabulous and brownies.
After dinner Emily, Katie, Dan & I all jammed out with some worship tunes. It was again a late night filled with laughter & celebration.

Day 20

Today we woke up around 7 am and headed down to get people at the ENT house around 7:20. After loading up the cars we drove down to the Village to do some more work. Julie and I painted lots of window this morning. Around 10 we stopped for chai time and had a little snack then went back to priming the windows. We all shared in some great conversations while we worked. Around 12 we all took a break for lunch. At that time Julie had spoke with Bob and He and Sean needed to be picked up, they had been doing clinic all morning. Julie didn’t want to go alone so I rode with her. We again shared in great conversations of what God had been doing in our lives & how the culture was & how they needed to be loved.
We picked up the guys and Rachel & Dan & Brayden & headed down the mountain. We arrived down there around 3 and went immediately back to finishing up the windows but soon ran out of pain. So instead of starting a new job, we cleaned up to get ready for a dinner Ernie was cooking.
Shortly after 5 we all gathered around the fire pit, prayed and ate some Nyoma Choma-or goat meat. It was actually pretty good except for the fact that half of my plate was fat. Sean’s was all fat.
After socializing with Mary who told me she wanted to be able to fee her children, who are 6 & 2, and about her husband not being around, and that he didn’t treat her well and then it was time to leave.
Since we didn’t have much to eat down at the Village we ate at the ENT house with everyone. After some good chatting we walked home.

Day 19 (7-19-10)

Today didn’t go quite as we had planned but that’s ok cause God had another plan! We were supposed to get up & be ready to walk down to Naomi’s at 6:30am to lead some of the group; however, when we woke up it was raining. Rain was much needed here & we were very grateful. It however made it to dangerous to walk down so Emily, Sean & I all stayed behind along with a few of the LOI team. We weren’t sure when they would be back, and I wasn’t tired so I stayed up with Emily. Sean went back to bed for about an hour or so. Soon we heard from Bob that they’d be back around 9:45am so we let everyone know. During my free time this a.m. I was able to talk with my Mom, Becca, and Micah. The conversation Micah & I had was absolutely planned out by God. Both of us had been convicted to be in prayer for the same thing & it was wonderful to discuss our concerns. After finishing those convos & helping Julie pack lunch etc. Bob arrived to pick us up. With cars full we headed down the mountain.
When we arrived we were put to work. Sean & I first started to put window panes in the windows which was easy at first. All we had to do was put a bit of clay stuff in the corners put the glass in and then put clay all around the edges. Easy enough we thought. Then we learned we had to smooth it. We tried and tried walked away and observed the pro & tried and tried again. It took all morning for us to do 1 window and after lunch we finally or so we though had figured it out. We finished our window and decided we weren’t good at that task, so we moved onto priming the windows for the rest of the afternoon. It was lots of fun being hands on down there today. Around 5 we packed up and headed back home. Tonight we had Korean pancakes…yummy, veggie stir fry with a peanut butter flavor, and rice and beef. It was very good. We all hung out and chatted for some time. After everyone left & bob and Julie went to watch CSI, Sean & I really weren’t tired-not sure why so we played war which I dominated and chatted about life.
I am now going to bed. Tomorrow should be another fun day!

Day 18

Today we slept in. We didn’t go to church, because the LOI team came in-they were late & we probably could have but oh well.
When they arrived we did some quick introductions and headed back to the Mendonsa’s to eat a quick lunch.
Around 2 we walked back to the ENT house and picked up some folks and walked down the mountain to Naomi’s Village to give them the typical tour (the rest very few road down). We then went to the IDP camp. They met everybody today! While there my little friend Ester who is always carrying around her baby brother Joseph greeted me. I took Joseph from her after handing out bracelets and playing for awhile so that she could play. It was but 5 mins and he was asleep in my arms. While he slept I carried him to Joseph’s tent and around to other places. (Yesterday Ruth fell asleep in my arms). Soon it was time to go and Joseph was still sleeping. I gave him back to Ethers & he stated crying-it broke my heart. We then came back up the mountain. Tonight the green car ran out of gas and some had to walk but that’s another story for a different time. We had Mexican spaghetti tonight and great conversations. Now it is time to sleep!

Day 17

Today, we went down to the IDP Camp. There was a medical clinic happening at the school so we visited there a bit, and then played with the children. We gave the children stickers and taught them a song. We painted hundreds of toenails and finger nails. Soon Doreen was escorting us to her tent for lunch. We ate lots of beans & chapatti. After lunch and some teach me hot chocolate we handed out shoes to all the children that Dan & Rachel had bought uniforms for. While this was going on Bob notice one girl (Esther) who was standing in the send row. She has some very obvious mental problems, yet she seemed to know she wasn’t going to get a pair of shows. Bob couldn’t help but to ask if we couldn’t give her a pair of shoes. Bob couldn’t help but to ask if we couldn’t give her a pair as she was already depraved from going to school. Bob brought her into the tent & grabbed a pair of shoes to help her try on. They fit perfectly and when Bob gave them to her she was so happy. She had to put them back in the plastic bag and she left with a huge smile and clutching her shoes. After all the shoes were passed out we headed home.. We had a wonderful meal of left overs, but before that Emily & Will took Sean & I on a little adventure to a cave. It was true hiking down to the cave, but it was quite fun. We then went and played at the RVA’s elementary (Tiche) playground which was a blast. After some fun outdoors we came in for a game of yahtzee. Emily & Will then headed to bed and Sean and I watched Zombieland before heading to bed.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Day 16

Today was a wonderfully exciting day! It was a free day. Will, Emily, & Julie just finished school, and Bob finished his fulltime work at Cure, so they all needed a day just to celebrate and relax.
Around 10:15 we all gathered at the Mendonsa’s and headed to Naivasha. It’s about an hour west of Kijabe. We headed to Simba Lodge—a more touristy place. All afternoon we hung out by the pool. Sean, Emily, Braden, Will and I played spoons (using silly bands instead), liar, and more fun card games. We ate lunch and the kids and Dan swam in the pool. After lunch around 4:30ish we decided to walk down to Lake Naivasha where the hippos were. Along the way we saw Zebras, waterbuck and giraffes. It was absolutely gorgeous!! We then headed back-I took a nap in the car-not sure how as I was squashed between Dan & Sean, but it was all good! We had a low key night and went to bed kind of early.

Day 15

It was a great morning! I got up around 8 and started to get ready for the day. Around 9:30 Rachel and Aly came to get me so we could walk down to the school. We took our time as we knew it would be a long day down at the IDP Camp. We arrived at Naomi’s Village around 11 and some of the ladies there insisted that we have porridge and chapatti. I had a bit of trouble getting the porridge down…it was quick sandy tasting, but I did it-the whole cup! When we arrived at the school, we were immediately put to work. Rachel and Aly began to grade papers while Doreen and I chatted. Then we made signs for the Medical Clinic that we will be helping with on Saturday. After school, we walked back to Doreen’s tent and she made us some catheri. We then hung out for quite some time and soon Bob, Julie, and Sean came to pick us up. We stayed and handed our bracelets and jolly ranchers and the rest of the crew had some tea. We arrived home awhile ago and I showered because I was covered in dirt from head to toe. Julie is now cooking something that smells absolutely delightful!

Day 14

Today was pretty much a typical day here in Kijabe, except Sean came. Bob was at his last clinic this morning and Julie had class today. Stephen and I were the only ones here! Around 10 am we heard a beep of a horn and Sean had arrived. Stephen helped him carry his stuff in and then he introduced me to him. I was getting ready to do my bible study in the living room when Sean came out. We talked for awhile, and Bob soon arrived. Not long after Bob’s return Julie also walked through the door. We all chatted for awhile. Bob said he had a few more patients to see so he took Sean with him. Around 12:30ish everyone had returned and we has some left over spaghetti before heading down to do the normal first day visits.
We arrived at Naomi’s village when everyone was at lunch so not much was happening. We left Dan and Bob there to work and we went to the IDP Camp to let Sean experience that. While there we walked down to the school because Julie hadn’t seen it before. While there we met up again with Sammy. There was some construction going on there and many children to play with! After some time there we went to check on Joseph as he wasn’t feeling well. Doreen made everyone chai and today she made me hot chocolate, it was absolutely delicious! After some time socializing with all of them we had to go so we could pick up the guys.
We grabbed the guys and headed back up the mountain. Before returning home we stopped at the new house that Bob and Julie will be moving into around Aug 15th. They are adding onto the house that is there and even though its smaller, it will be beautiful! Now we are home getting ready to prepare some wonderful dinner. It’s Mexican food tonight…yay! :D

Day 13

This morning was another just relaxing, hang out and chat morning. Julie taught until 10:30, Bob had clinic and Dan had some meetings. We planned to leave around 11:00am to go to Nairobi because Dan & Rachel needed to renew their visas. With everything that was going on this morning, we didn’t get left until after 1:00.
We drove to Nairobi and found the place where they needed to get their visas renewed. It was quite funny trying to get out of the road where we dropped them. It seemed to be a one way road, except the only way out was through a do not enter sign. Finally we got out and headed to the Intercontinental. It is a hotel with multiple restaurants in it. Since we hadn’t had lunch yet we decided to park and eat there.
Not long after we got there, Bob called Dan to let him know that plan. Dan informed Bob that they were almost done. We found a table or rather a few and sat down. Not more than 10 min later Dan, Rachel, and Braden showed up. We ordered our drinks and soon ordered some food. It was a cute little place. It was very relaxing and it was easy to forget that you were in Nairobi in Africa! We got our food, which was excellent and just relaxed there by the pool. It didn’t seem like much time had passed but we soon realized it was almost 5:00pm
With our bellies fully and no visas, (they were told they had to have two passport photos) we piled back into the car for our drive back home. Not long ago we arrived back home. We’ve just been hanging out and will soon be eating dinner.

Day 12

Today was somewhat of a quieter day. Ok not really! It started of quiet. Aly had her Swahili lesson this morning and I slept in and read. We had a late breakfast and then walked up to the Duka (store) to get some things we had needed. While there Aly was going to register her cell phone, but the lady that worked there said she needed her passport. So we walked back down to our house, and decided to walk back up just to take care of it. She registered he phone, and decided to walk to Rachel’s to get some paperwork she needed for registering her modem.
When we arrived at Rachel’s she made Aly some tea and me some crystal light. We chatted for some time. We even got to see Braden’s awesome tent he made in his room! We made plans to go on a walk later and then decided to go back home and make some lunch. While at home for lunch after a couple hours had passed and we were preparing for our walk, we discovered something quite disgusting!
Aly went to do some crunches on her bed, and she noticed something crawling on her bed. Thankfully Rachel arrived a few minutes later, and she informed us they were termites! We made some calls to Julie and Bob to inform them of the situation. Bob and Dan were in Maai Mahui and were going to pick up some termite spray. Because we couldn’t really do anything else we decided to go on our walk around RVA.
When we returned they guys had put some termite stuff on our door step, however, there weren’t any instructions so we couldn’t do anything with it. We decided to walk to Dan and Rachel’s and then see if we could get the car to move our stuff out. Dan, Aly and I walked over to the Mendonsa’s and Julie decided she wanted to see the termites so she came back to our house.
Aly and I quickly packed our things and we were off to our new homes. Aly is now staying with Dan & Rachel and I am staying with Bob and Julie!
Tonight I helped Julie make spaghetti and garlic bread. Dan made fried egg plant and zucchini. We also had cake and ice cream tonight, because Emily was the top English and Geography student in her class!!!!

Day 11

Well today we got up and met at the Mendonsa’s to head to the IDP Camp for church. On our way to church we took Pastor Peter to see Naomi’s Village. While there we prayed over the building and for the children that would soon be living there. Then we headed to the IDP Camp. When we arrived it didn’t take long for a group of people to show up. After watching the children jump rope for awhile, it was time for church. All of the IDP Camp Men and Women sat on the ground. Some of our people sat on the two benches that they had while the rest of us sat on the ground surrounded by children.
Pastor Peter asked that they do a worship song, so Doreen lead them in a couple. It was pretty awesome! Then Peter began preaching on Isaiah 54. It was quite interesting at times. Peter Preached in English and Joseph translated into kikuyu.
After church was over we quickly went to Doreen’s tent to have chai and mendazies. We couldn’t stay long as Emily had to be back up in Kijabe to help set up for her band concert.
Once Aly and I returned home from church we decided it was a good afternoon for a nap…and that is just what we did. After waking up from our nap and making some food we chatted for quite awhile. Then we walked down the road for Bob and Julie to pick us up for Emily’s concert at 7. It was fantastic. The Jr. High band was quite talented and I was completely blown away by the High School Band. The concert also included the choir performing their program they did while on choir tour. It was entitled “I Believe.” It was also very good!
After the concert was over we hurried to the gym where they were showing the FIFA World Cup (Soccer). It was a pretty good game until no one had made a goal and they had to go into overtime, and then the ref started making some bad calls. But what do I know about soccer.
It was around 12:15am when Aly and I returned home. When we walked into our house, there was a big surprise. A big moth had decided to let himself in through the pane less window in our bathroom—that's a whole different story. Well Aly and I couldn’t sleep with it flying around our house, so she found a plastic bowl and I found some cardboard and we caught him and threw him outside. However, in the process of locking out door (there’s a metal gate type door you lock first) he flew back in to the same spot he was in previously. So this time Aly found a plastic pitcher and again I found some more cardboard. This time I was ready to shut the doors, and Aly chucked the container out the door. This time we succeeded!
After that we were quite tired, and headed to bed!

Day 10

Wow, I don’t even know where to begin I’m so exhausted. This morning we met Rachel and Dan at their house to walk down to the school and IDP Camp. Dan had a meeting down there with Izzo and Sammy, some Kenyan men who have been funding the school. Like I said in one of my other post, it takes about an hour and a half to walk down there. However, we stopped several times to chat with people along the way. We finally arrived at the school where we greeted Doreen and were introduced to Sammy. There was also a team who was busy at work building two more classrooms and a Library, a well, and some more choos (outhouses). Aly and I immediately were smarmed with kids and began loving on them. Not long after we had been there, Princess Munbi (moonbee) arrived and needed all my attention.
I can’t remember if I told you about how she’s earned this name or not so I will now. Julie has known Munbi for quite some time. Munbi’s personality is that she has to have a whole person to herself. She will pull the other children’s hands off your hand so that she can be with you. Another thing she does is, if you are holding her and she wants to touch someone else, she will extend her hand to them allowing them to touch her. All of these things have caused Julie to call her Princess Munbi.
After all was settled with Dan, Rachel, Doreen, and Sammy, we went to Doreen’s tent and she fixed us some lunch. It has been really hard for me to stomach the food here, and I don’t get hungry hardly at all. Anyway that’s not important. After a little bit of socializing, we explained to Doreen that we had to walk all the way back up the mountain, so we needed to leave.
And so our journey back up the mountain began. Again there were many stops along the way, one at Naomi’s Village, and one at David’s house to discuss water. He has brought a fresh water pipeline down the mountain to his chamba and Dan has been trying to get paperwork settle to bring the water down to Naomi’s Village and has been have quite a difficult time. Soon some plans of some sort were made and we were off walking again.
Walking back up was so beautiful, but also very difficult and quite the work out! Dan and Rachel have estimated that it is about 4 miles one way, so to walk 8 miles and carry children all over is exhausting! It was a very fun day in all!

Day 9

Today was a relaxed day! Aly had her Swahili lesson this morning at our house. While she did that I did a bit of emailing etc. and Bible study. Shortly after Edward, the Swahili teacher, left Dan & Rachel came over to check out our stove. Our stove was supposed to be fixed, but we still smell a lot of gas when we turn on the tank. Dan said that it hadn’t been fixed and it needs a new regulator so he’s going to find one for us. We visited with them for quite some time about the quirks of this house and the renovations that will be taking place shortly. After Dan & Rachel get back from a trip to the States they will be living in this house. They aren’t quite sure how it will work, but it will be an adventure. Their son Braden is really excited about it though. He says it’s like living outdoors, and boy is he right!
Much of what we had talked about, with Dan & Rachel, lead Aly and I into a deep discussion about life around here. It is very different culturally, and what we’ve found is that if you bring American culture into things it is way harder to get involved with the people here. The people here know how to love by the amount of time they spend with each other. And when asked how life is, it is important to ask about their family. Life here is a community event; it’s not individualistic like in America. After about a very deep, very spiritual discussion, Aly and I had lunch. I then went back up stairs and continued to spend time with God reading and praying. Soon I became tired, which is a normal occurrence around 2-3 o’clock, as I believe my body hasn’t completely changed time zones yet, so I rested my eyes.
Around 3:30 Rachel called and wanted to know if we wouldn’t want to go for a walk with her on the guard’s trail around RVA. We gladly agreed as we had been in the house all day. The first portion of our walk was a gradual incline up the mountain. About 30 min into our walk we came across “killer hill” and let me tell you, it kills every muscle in your body! Not to mention the fact that you just can't breath! Once over that it was all downhill from there. It was quite refreshing to be physically challenged and have great conversation! We learned a lot about Rachel and her background, as well as passions and where she sees their life in the next couple months. Even after we had finished our walk, we chatted outside our house for another good 45 min about her ministry here and thanking her for the way in which she has connected with these people!
Aly and I were both starving when we got back so we made a snack, and again just spent time chatting about our lives and the interesting body issues (me kidney stones, her chrones like symptoms) and just where we’ve been and what we can and can’t eat.
We are now preparing to head to Dan & Rachel’s for dinner tonight! I can’t wait! Dan’s food is absolutely wonderful!!!!

Day 8

Day 8
Another busy day here in Kenya! Today we met Ben and Aubrey, a couple who is fact finding. What I mean is Ben is here to see what the needs are as he and his wife feel called to ministry. Bob and Julie took us all to Comfort the Children (CTC) first. CTC is a basically a school for disable children in the area. While the children are being schooled and doing physical therapy activities their mothers are given a job sort of to help them pay for the education. The mothers spend their day sewing. They make bags with the CTC logo on them and this becomes sort of a fundraiser for the organization. They have also begun to sew school uniforms and other necessities.
After visiting there for about an hour, hearing and seeing what the ministry was all about, we took them to Naomi’s Village. There I’m not sure what Ben and Aubrey all saw or were told as Aly and I were swept away by all of the women. Because we have such a great relationship with the women there, they were not afraid to put us to work. We gladly helped them by carrying roofing tiles to the second floor of the boy’s wing; however, we were not as fashionable as they were. All the women of course carried them on their heads where as Aly and I carried them like we normally would. Please not that they had pieces of cardboard and stocking caps to cushion their noggins and we did not! We spent probably 20-30 mins doing this and then it was time to leave, so we said our goodbyes and were on our way.
We then made our way back down to the IDP Camp just to show them around a bit. There wasn’t as much action there as usual because all the children were in school. After visiting these places we again headed back up the mountain.
Aly and I were dropped at home, and we made lunch. Then about an hour later, walked to the Mendonsa’s to plug in our computers and catch our next ride.
This outing was with Dan and Rachel. They have been working on getting shoes for about 159 kids at the IDP camp and needed to place the order in Naivasha. We were able to go along with them, which was good for Rachel who still had a lot of paperwork that needed to be completed before making the order. We gladly helped her tally and convert shoe sizes. After placing the order with Josephine, we went to the store to pick up a few more needed items.
We have just returned from that outing and Bob made us eat at his house before returning to our place for the evening. I’m not sure of any sort of plan for tomorrow, but there usually isn’t a dull moment here!

Day 7 (July 7, 2010)

Day 7
Well, I’ve been here a week now, and I’m slowly starting to get the hang of life here. I’ve already learned a lot culturally, and spiritually. God is definitely helping me understand some things He’s been trying to teach me for weeks and even years. One of those things is authentic faith and how it comes by not just knowing the Word, but by living it and making every action line up with what He’s taught. He’s also helping me to trust Him. In America, it seemed as if I had this one down, but fly me half way across the world in a place I can’t even understand the people and trust becomes a whole new scenario. The funny thing is, it all began the moment I stepped foot on my first airplane, and it kept building and continues to build. God has also shown me through the scriptures that I’ve been reading just how important trust is. A great hope that I’m holding onto is the story of Job. He trusted God so much, and God knew that He did. He allowed Satan to take everything from Job, but He told Satan, “but on the man himself do not lay a finger.” And in response to this Job didn’t become angry or upset, “he fell to the ground in worship.” Again Job’s trust and faith is seen when God allows Satan to make him ill, but God again says, “but you must spare his life.” Job’s reply to his wife is this, “shall we accept good from God and not trouble?” Job knows that God will protect him and doesn’t turn away from him!
There are many other things that God has helped me realized that I need to continue to strive in doing. I am very thankful for the way in which I’ve been raised, because many of these things He’s teaching me were initiated in my childhood.
Today was an errand day. We carried our laundry over to the Mendonsa’s this morning, so Stephan, their house helper, could wash it for us. Around 10:00am we left for Nairobi. Tim and Dee Dee were headed to Lamou and had to be taken to the airport. So once we dropped them off, we went to one of the malls to go grocery shopping, eat lunch, and do some banking. After all of that was completed we headed back to Kijabe, where Aly and I spent the later part of the afternoon reading. Our gas stove is now fix (kind of) so we cooked here tonight and are now just hanging out before going to bed!