Thursday, May 31, 2012

Day 2 resting: Horses

The morning we were leaving, we took advantage of our "free" 20 minute horse ride, which must have included the fitting of helmets and the saddling of horses, because the kids were only on them about 10 minutes.  Ahhh, Uganda!

Some of you saw these on the newsletter, and I'm sure you were thinking, "How did they allow them to ride horses in open-toed shoes?  Better yet, Flip flops?!"


The journey they took was so short, I could follow them around, pretty easily.

Like I said...10 minutes.

Their horses back in their stalls....

 The enjoyed it so much, but I wish it could have been a more "real" experience.  I'm going to have to talk J. Rutledge  or someone into saddling up some horses for these kids when we get back to Texas.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Day 1 Resting: Lake

Our sweet children fell so in love with the Fusion team that the goodbye was a hard moment for them (and me).

So...while we waited for our next team of two to come in, we took a small overnight vacation to Lake Victoria.  It was a great get-away, and a chance to get our minds off the sadness.

Looks like it's working

We went with some friends, and this is their daughter posing with our 3.


Beautiful Sunset


This fisherman is paddling with a shovel that he's been using to fill his boat with dirt.

Would any of you walk on top of this tent?

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Spring & Fusion


Spring and Winter have arrived.  

That means the rains have started, but it's also the coldest part of the year.  Weird, huh?


There is new birth everywhere, including these twin goats that hang out on our road.

Apparently, their cuteness is irresistible. 

Caleb is still injuring himself every chance he can get.  I think he enjoys it.

I think the cooler weather got the kids in the mood for a sleepover.  I just don't understand why they would all three want to sleep on ONE mattress, but they had a good time, and this wasn't the last one.

I have been remiss in not posting pictures of Fusion.  Let me introduce you to them (now that they are gone....sorry)

 The four girls:  (L to R)  Leigha, Dara, Casey, and Abbie



Leigha's 20th birthday (minus Brett who was sick with malaria and not feeling well)

We spent the most time with the girls because they were in Arua more.  Brandon and James spent a month in Congo; and Joe, Will, Brett, and Blake spent a month in different parts of South Sudan.

 This one below was taken their first week here in January.

We took this one below the last day before getting on the bus to go eat and head to the airport at the end of their four months.

L to R:  Will, James, Doug, Leigha, Joe, Karis, Dara, Caleb, Brett, Casey, Kylie, Blake, Abbie, Brandon, and Kat

Facial and head hair, weight, likes and dislikes changed over these short months.  They were adventurous and tried many things, caught (and sometimes ate) many different types of animals, learned to cook, walked hundreds of miles, sat for hours with nationals, hosted a goat roast for about 50 people, learned how to find true strength in the Lord, and grew tremendously.

At the end of our time together, Doug asked, "I already know the answer to this question, but did any of you grow over the last four months?"

There was some silence, and then our Karis said, "I'd say I definitely grew about half an inch."

Our last dinner together on the beach of Lake Victoria.

Bye Fusion.  We won't forget your time here and the joy you brought to us and to many people in Arua.

Saturday, May 26, 2012


 We were recently at a friend's house who has a very large solar power system. 

She had nightlights plugged into her walls. 

Because her system is so large, that kind of constant power drain will not affect her system.

It's only been two years since we lived in a house with nightlights, but when Kylie saw them at this friend's house, she said, "What are those?"

I said, "Those are nightlights.  Do you not remember them?"

She said she didn't.

Here is OUR version of nightlights.

My dad sent me some yard lights from America, and every morning we take them outside to charge them.


In case you have forgotten, this is a picture of the solar panels on our house, which "get the sun" (technical, right?) and charge the batteries that you see below.

This is a plug in my kitchen, and the light on the left comes on when the town power is on.  This is the only way we know that we can turn on our hot water heaters.  Our solar system is not strong enough to have "heating elements" hooked up to it like hot water heaters, irons, toasters, etc.

Back to the nightlights.  

During the afternoon, we turn the "nightlights" to the West to catch the end of the sun for the day.  

One broke but it still works.  

These lights go in each bathroom, one in the hall, and one in the kids' room.  It's a perfect solution for us, and therefore, Kylie doesn't remember what a nightlight is.

A couple of more funnies that you might appreciate:

* My children collect coins and bills from all the countries that we visit, and I recently saw U.S. coins in their foreign currency collection.

* A friend here told me that her father was sick.  I said, "What is wrong with him?"
She said, "They said he's dog sick (rabies), but I don't think so because he has not been biting with the dog."

(Some things are definitely lost in translation.)


Well, it's been awhile.

I'm going to do a quick catch up for you (in pictures mostly) since Easter.

 It will be easier than trying to catch up in words.

 Well, I tried to take an official "Easter" picture, but with Caleb, things are just...interesting.

Here he is imitating his sisters' posing.

Then he decided to show his true colors.

Still being Caleb...

 Sadly, when he tried to just smile, he couldn't get it right.

Then the girls wanted their picture with Aslan
 I'm not a cat person, so this affection for the "rat killer" is amazing to me.  Aslan is pretty much just a rat trap/deterrent  for me, but I'm glad the kids like him SO much.

I'm being serious!  If you only knew how many times a day they tell me, "I love my kitty."

Later in the day, Kylie and I went with Abbie and Casey (two of the Fusion girls) to join a family celebrating Easter on a hilltop in Arua.

This is Dean
This is Agenda
Betty and Abbie with a beautiful background
Kylie and Casey
Dusk in Arua

And then, of course, I've told you about the Easter Monday goat roast we attended.
Here are the proud cooks with their "dish."