Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Janurary 2014 Update

January brings beautiful flowers in our yard along with many other things.  This last January marked two full years of living in Africa. Two years ago this month, when we arrived at our new home, and we were greeted by many beautiful flowers like these that bloomed this January.

We started teaching the new session at the evangelism school early in January. 
Just before teaching started, Doug decided it was time to invest in some “wheels.”  After consulting with others around campus, we set out to get our “Toyo.”  It is a cargo-motorcycle.  The front is like a motorcycle and the back is like a trailer. 

Trying to find THREE paths to take it down is quite a challenge.  It is a rough, rough ride, but it has been a huge blessing!  It is a 200cc.  (Most motorcycles are 125cc around Tanzania!
We have been able to take people to and from prayer meeting.  We have been able to ride it to and from classes (3.5 km each way.)  Doug has used it many times to haul various tools to go and fix various issues around campus (solar, electric, etc.)  Doug hauled sawdust for the evangelism school.  He has hauled wood in it.  It has given us a level of freedom that we have really missed the last two years. 
The very next day after we committed to purchasing it, we received notification of a donation that was received for us for almost the exact amount we paid for it!  That was very encouraging to us, also!  God is so, so good.

Teaching at the evangelism school went very well.  The students asked many, many questions.  They are a great group of students.  There are 26 students this session.  Six are from Zanzibar (99% Mus|im population there), four are from the Masai tribe, and two are ladies.  They are learning many new things every day.  They are surprised at how much they didn’t know about nutrition, health in general, and God’s loving plan regarding health and healing.

Doug started teaching health at the agriculture school also.  They don’t have much time to give us, so he was trying to stay flexible and teach whenever an opportunity was given to him.  The times given him were before class or at the very end of the day, and out at the farm units (a distance from our home and the regular teaching locations.)    Carrying a generator and other teaching materials has been much easier with the Toyo than trying to do it by bicycle!

We have had a big influx of people into Kibidula since my last post.  So along with teaching there has been quite a bit of foot traffic around our place.  Sometimes we would have various people over for meals, internet use, along with the normal “adventures.” 

I decided to put our strawberries to use.  We had a bumper crop this year.  It was enough to put some in the freezer!  Last year we had a few handfuls, if that much.  So I was inspired to try to make a Tanzanian version of strawberry shortcake.  It was a hit.  We had several of the student missionaries over.  We had a very simple lentil soup, then we broke out the “good stuff.”  I made cornbread for both the lentils and to act as shortcake.  My cornbread is a bit on the sweet side. 
Then I blended cashews, coconut, water and a bit of sweetener. 
The strawberries were frozen, so I added water and a bit of sweetener to them also.
It was so good.  There were no leftovers. 
Since then we have tried it with peaches, also.  It is still good, but nothing compares to strawberries.

One of the student missionaries has volunteered to teach violin lessons!  We had just purchased two violins from the missionary family that is leaving Kibidula.  I love learning to play the violin.

Since we are home, I have started teaching piano lessons again to several people, also.  It seems that we stay pretty busy.  Piano lessons have now started at the primary school now, also.  I don’t have the flexibility to teach there consistently, so another of the student missionaries is teaching them.  She is using the materials that we got permission to use up there.  So all is going forward with that plan (just a different teacher.)

Some of the students are picking up on the lessons very quickly.  It is exciting to them and to us.
Brianna is also teaching many others violin, including students at the primary school.
The group of student missionaries that are here at this time are very musical.  We often hear beautiful music from flutes, piano, ukulele, guitar and violin. 
We are doing our best to add a little more music to this part of Africa.

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