December 2010

Newsletter December 2010

“Let there be light”!   Yes, we now have lights, a big thanks to Paul Maloney of Praecavemus Foundation.  Not only is the orphanage lit up but also my house.  I have lived 5 years and 4 months with candles as my source of light along with my camping head-lamp.  What a difference a ceiling light makes.  I am thrilled!

Our Christmas was great!  After 3 hours of church, all in Kiswahili (UGH!), we headed back to my house to prepare a feast.  We had rice pilau with beef (a traditional food), spinach, carrots and chicken (we butchered two of my kukus). This was topped off with carrot cake that I had taught the girls to make.

About 11 were fed at my home, mostly orphans ages 11 to 23.  It was fun.  Then it rained, so we played cards.

The shamba (our 4 acres) was cultivated by the high school students that are being sponsored by many of you.  We have only half done as it is all by hand using a jimbe.  Check out the pictures. We hope to finish by next week, then we only have to cultivate one more time.  Two and a half acres are potatoes and 1 ½ acres of corn.  My job was to walk the rows and pick off the flowers which helps the potato plants gain strength.

I remember thinking some time ago how lovely the ferns are growing in the fields. Well, after pulling thousands of them out by hand, I now hate them.  Also, I always thought the potato flowers were so pretty, but now I dislike them, too. My hands are so stained and rough….they look like typical Tanzanian mama’s hands from working in the fields.  (Sometimes I think I am just too old for this kind of hard labor and frustration.)

We have lots of cleaning to do in the orphanage  buildings, and I want the sponsored students to help with that work this week or early January.  Most of them return to school around the 10th of January.

My hope is that all of you had a wonderful Christmas.  I missed my family in the U.S. but kept busy here so as not to feel sorry for myself.  Many happy and healthy blessings to all of you in 2011.

Peace and love,

Bibi Kay

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