Monday, August 30, 2010

Greetings from Nakuru:

The kids and I are spending our first night in the house by ourselves. Tom is in Nairobi for the night. They don’t seem bothered at all. Can’t say that I feel quite the same. I think I’ll end up sleeping in their new bunk beds with them. So glad we got the full size mattress on bottom.

We are still in the process of fighting day to day struggles of getting the house in order; can the electrician come again today, the water still not pumping up to the tanks, building this and that, the fundis (workers) hauling gravel and materials up my driveway with a wheel barrel 20 times a day, trying to figure out what in the world to use for cat litter, I wish I had on video what the “pet” store owner and his customer said to me and the way they looked at me when I asked if they carried cat litter. Long Pause….”You mean where they use the toilet?” “Most people here use soil.” Duh, how stupid am I, of course I should think to just go dig up the yard and put it in a box and that is exactly the same thing as cat littler. Oh well, at least they had a good laugh. The British Lady gave me a scowl and some explanation about you could use grat. Oh, thanks so much. I’ll run to the Grat store and get some right away. And yes, of course I couldn’t help myself but to ask her what grat was? I wont bother explaining because I didn’t understand what she said, I don’t know if it was the british accent or the you’re the stupidest American in the world trying to buy cat litter in Africa tone that kept me from understanding. We were hoping the month of August would have been us adjusting and enjoying our new “set up” home and helping the kids to have fun every day so they don’t miss home too much. But instead it has been a month filled with workers at the house every day trying to fix one thing or another and us running back and forth to town for materials. The crate arrived the day before we left for Mombassa. I’ve had a total of about 3 days to unpack and have managed to unpack maybe 10 boxes. The great idea of how neatly the ikea furniture would pack in the crate is being second guessed as it seems to take poor Tom about 3 hours to put together each piece. The new coffee table and tv stand however are beautiful in my yellow living room and it brought such a surprising joy today to unpack some knick knacks that made the room feel so cozy. Like the coasters we’ve had since we got married, my faith love and joy letters. So even though I’m surrounded by a maze of boxes in every direction I’m thankful for these small gifts of comfort.

I was hoping to be much more plugged into ministry at this point, but I have only had one night of knocking on doors to share the gospel and I think I will be unable to be involved in the girls bible studies for another 2-4 weeks. Even though it’s not what I had hoped, I know I need more time to get our home in order and get my little ones comfortable in school and myself able to somewhat exist here, like maybe go to the grocery store by myself. I keep reminding myself of a missionary story that I randomly read recently (I’m not the avid reader). She had spent all this training and time in nursing school and missionary training and when she got on the field it seemed that all God wanted her to do was hand out water to the children that knocked on her door daily. She felt so wasted until God finally told her, “Are you willing to “just” hand out water for me all day?” She was a nurse and of course had different ideas for what her being a missionary would look like.

The kids are starting school next Monday and I would be so grateful for your prayers: specifically about:

*Their teachers being kind and gentle

*Adjusting to non filtered water

*Adjusting to food that looks different that especially Sydney probably will

not eat. I’m hoping their not forced to eat their lunches or miss privileges if

they don’t. I am fearful of the British system and it’s strictness.

*making new friends quickly. They are desperate for friends and playmates.

Thank you for sharing these prayer requests for the kids with your Sunday school classes or small groups this week.

Some of you have asked about sending care packages. There is a girl coming from Plano September 23rd. She can bring several extra suitcases. I have made a list of the items we wish we would have brought more of and if you would like to pick any of these items up and take them by the church. I have asked Jennifer Jones if she would have a box in her office where they could be dropped off. I have not heard back form Jennifer for sure, but if she doesn’t have room, I’m sure we can start a box somewhere at the church, so that maybe we could just get one person to drop them by Plano, Tom’s mom’s house. If anyone is out of town and would like to mail a wal-mart gift card to someone who might be willing to pick these things up in Dallas so you don’t have to pay for shipping, let me know and I can give you a name and address. Please comment if you think you might pick up a certain item under this note so someone else will know not to get that one and also so I can maybe find someone to make a last minute wal-mart trip if need be. It would be great if these items could be collected by September 13.

The list:

-Stawberry or cherry caugh drops

-Honey-lemon caugh drops

-Quacker strawberries & cream instant oatmeal. 3 or more boxes.

(pack packages out of box in Tupperware)

-Apple sauce, ( large plastic jar or disposable cups)

-(6-10boxes) Pop tarts -brown sugar/cinnamon & strawberry w/ frosting (also

pack in Tupperware if possible)

-Tupperware ( set of 20 or whatever set comes in). Please unpack and pack other soft food items in Tupperware to save room; hand me down tupperware would be great too, doesn’t need to be new. If you just want to donate one container.

-Bandaids, (assorted sizes & some large bandage coverings)

-2 bottles of Childrens pepto bismol chewable tablets

-chewable dramamine


-Sudafed-behind counter kind

-eye drops

-4 Large ziplock bags (freezer)

-4 Sandwich size ziplock bags (freezer)

-Pudding powder boxes ( chocolate, vanilla)

-2-3 Lysol spray

Mosquito repellant

Mosquito repellant

Mosquito repellant

Mosquito repellant

Mosquito repellant


2 Franks hot sauce

4 Rasberry Hazelnut salad dressing

2 Thousand island salad dressing

Sonny bryans barbeque sauce

Any good salsa


Citranella candles

Vanilla candles

Large purple or pink dog collar & leash

Baby shampoo ( purple kind, lavendar)

Loreal 28 day hair color, level 2, dark blonde or light brown. NO Ash, Warm or Golden in the name of the color

If anyone is good friends with a vet, I know these are expensive items so anything to help with fleas/ticks would be appreciated.

Flea collar-dogs over 50 lbs

Frontline (dog tick flea killer) for dogs over 50 lbs

Revolution (flea tick/heartworm medicine from vet). for dogs over 50 lbs

Cat flea/tick medicine

Large Horn from a Mac truck!

Monday, August 2, 2010

Entry #3

I had my first breakdown this week when left to myself in the house for a few hours because Tom was not feeling well.You would have been extremely amused at the fight I had with some shelves and a sewing machine Sunday.. The shelves won.They did not budge no matter how hard I hit them with the 100 year old solid metal sewing machine. Tom was sitting there watching me and calmly said in “Tom manner”, you might need that sewing machine in a few weeks to fix your curtains. :) The next day there were painters and a carpenter at my house. I have a good husband.

The kids are enjoying their new house and yard even though they are anxiously awaiting their bikes and bunk beds to arrive on the crate. Star Wars and Narnia are their huge enchantments right now as they watch as much as we will allow them to on their little portable dvd player in their new BLUE room. They love it. It’s cracking me up that they are perfectly content with their little portable dvd player laying on a twin bed next to each other on their bellies watching. And we thought they needed a TV room in Dallas. So silly, we are. No worries, we’ll have them spoiled and rotten again in no time if the crate ever arrives and their toy room/tv room gets set up. They also are spending a lot of time enacting their star wars and Narnia adventures throughout our yard. It’s very interesting to watch these two worlds of Narnia and Star Wars merge into one.

The tree that fell over the top of the house during the 10 minute hail storm has been removed. The tree cutter guy brought his machete and overlooked the tall ladder and shimmied up the tree with his legs wrapped around it and began cutting. Ropes were tied around the sections that he cut off and tried to be pulled away from the house as they fell to the ground. Only one window was busted during the whole event. Sequinta (our new contractor friend from up the street) has been at the house almost daily solving new problems that occur. He had someone there to replace the window by the afternoon, however because the rains were coming in again, the window pane slipped and broke but was placed gently in to keep water and mosquitos out until he could get another piece the next day. He is trying to find tiles for the roof to replace the broken ones and hopes to have those done next week.

Raegan asks daily when we are returning to Texas. Tonight, we had fried chicken, mashed potatoes, corn, friend okra, macaroni and cheese and black eyed peas for supper. Sydney says, “Mom, this taste like “Texas Corn”. And Raegan says, I wish they had cheese dip and salsa in Africa. Bless his heart, not a day goes by that he doesn’t say he misses Texas or wishes he was in Texas

Ellias was so excited about his new push lawnmower that Tom spent one afternoon this week buying. There are no words to express the amount of time it takes to accomplish the task of buying something, rather it be going to the grocery store, not to mention the hardware store. Tom tried to drop me off and run get gas for the stove to pick up another liter of paint, that we had put in the order for 3 hours earlier. The manager says, “Well, you can take my guy to the paint supply place across town or we might have it ready tomorrow.” Well, sure why not. Can you imagine running the paint guy from Wal-Mart in one town over to the next Wal Mart to get the appropriate base paint and bringing him back and then waiting for him to mixi it! Welcome to Kenya. It was at this point in the day that we decided a bank account could wait another day, Since the first day Tom tried to open an account, they told him even if he had a million dollars he could not open it without 5 letters from different organizations recommending him and confirming who he was. However, the opposite of that is to register a child at school, you just fill out the form. No need for certificates of any kind. We are learning to understand the Kenyan phrase, “Tomorrow is a day.”

Our Family Church lesson this morning was on Joshua and the kids memory verse this week is “Do not fear!” Isaiah 35:4. We re-enacted the Israelites following Joshua (tom) into the promised land and looked for scary giants in the yard. (like the massive bird we saw cross behind some flowers) We took notice of all the beautiful blessings of the promised land like the flowers and the strong trees. We talked to the children about anything they might be scared of and prayed together about their bicycles arriving safely, the crate getting here soon, mommy sleeping better at night and safety in travel to Nairobi tomorrow. I highly recommend the pre-K Sunday school lesson for family church any Sunday, but only if your willing to dress up and act out the story together. Thank you VRBC youth for the idea. They did such a good job at the orphanages getting the students involved acting out the stories instead of just listening to them.

Everywhere I turn God is leading me to study Joshua and this move to Canaan. This journey to the promised land. This following of God. This when he says do something, you go first thing in the morning to do it-whenever your morning is, mine is normally not the same time as the rest of the world.

I am so moved today by what Priscilla (one in a million bible study, says). It’s not enough any more to hear the stories of the saints who have heard the voice of God, seen the miracles of God, experienced the power of God. I want to experience the power of God, hear the voice of God and expect the miracles of God in MY life. My I trust that my his power is mighty enough for my seas to be parted. May I be open and ready to hear when he speaks, and to act when he moves.



Prayer Request:

Raegan missing home and everyone who meant so much to him

Sydney-keeps making strides in her communication and learning

Kerry-patience with new pace of life, for new relationships & friendships to form quickly

Tom-wisdom, new student orientation at Moi and Egerton University

Safety for our team going to Botswania for 2 weeks to help missionaries there start college ministry

Negotiations to buy house and vehicles