Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Every Sunday and Wednesday night, the missionary team here has worship night.  "God of this City" has become one of our favorite songs (though we change the words to "God of this Village").  For those of you who have not heard the song before, it is powerful.  The words go like this:

You're the God of this village
You're the King of these people
You're the Lord of this nation
You are

You're the light in this darkness
You're the hope to the hopeless
You're the peace to the restless
You are

We as a team continually claim the people of Catel (and Guinea Bissau) for God.  It's absolutely exciting to see how God is working, despite the spiritual darkness that many people are in.

Here are some of the beautiful faces I'm talking about.  These were taken after a Bible Study that me and some local women do at one of the jambakus's (witch doctor)  houses.

Until later!


Pig Project!

Thank you to everyone who has been asking about, giving to, and spreading the word about the Pig Project!  For those of you who have absolutely no idea what I'm talking about... I'm about to tell you.

I am working with three Catel locals to help them each develop a pig project.  They make their own cement bricks for the barn, build the barn from the ground up, and are supplied with 5 pigs of an improved variety (4 females and one male).  Pigs have a huge market here in Guinea Bissau from parties to ceremonies, so the business is looking to be pretty profitable. 

I think in the future, I will introduce you to each of the guys who have a pig project, but for today, I'll just give you a taste of things to come...

Lona is the closest one to being finished.  Here are some pictures of his barn.
It's still lacking a roof.... that will come.

The big holes that you see there will become doors/gates.

 Each barn has 6 pens - I cannot wait to see those pens full!

While we're on the subject of agriculture, I thought I'd show you what my demo plot looks like now.

All those little plants in the foreground are little okra plants that are producing lots.  I have mulched with dried rice grass.  Look at that!  My demo plot is so photogenic!

I had to include this picture also.  I am quite proud of my baby tomato plants!  Recently, I made them  the jungle gyms that are featured in the picture (also known as tomato cages).

Stay tuned!  More to come - I'm on a good roll with the internet today.


Sunday, January 6, 2013

Snapshots of Christmas

I would much rather give you a whole bunch of pictures (with minimal commentary) of what Christmas was like and have you imagine the rest.  The next newsletter coming out has to do with the holidays as well.  As I write this rather belated post, I am hoping that you all had a most splendid Christmas!  ~ A

Tessa and I are all decked out in our Christmas outfits (this is not our house by the way).  A friend of ours was operating a photobooth type thing for people to take their Christmas pictures.

I spent Christmas lunch with my friends Mai and Aminata from church.  We had a very yummy rice dish.  There was lots of food.

Some of the beautiful people I spent my Christmas with.

Totally a candid shot.  I love it!

Andrew with some of my friend Di's nephews (Part II of Christmas Day)

Di's mother-in-law carrying water from the well.  For this family, Christmas is like any other ordinary day.

This picture was a complete accident, and I wish it had captured more of Di's face, but... I was encouraged to post it anyways.

Di's niece Lusiana (loo-JYA-na).  Super cute.

Di's husband Bryma with his nephews.

And that about rounds up my Christmas day!  Stay tuned for the newsletter coming out within the next few weeks. If you have been reading the blog, but are not on the newsletter list (and would like to be), send your contact information (name and email) to sothatafricamayknow@gmail.com.  

Merry (belated) Christmas!

Snow in Africa

You know, sometimes it's just fun to revert back to childhood activities... like making paper snowflakes!  Tessa and I decided one hot, slow, Saturday afternoon to sit down to Christmas music and make paper snowflakes.  Our white kitchen now has a little decoration.  Beryl (the head hauncho who lives here) even said that we could keep them up all year round.  Whoopee!

Me with my first snowflake!

Tessa and her first snowflake!

Tessa and Erin (oh! and Leo) in our kitchen with the finished product.  Unfortunately, this picture does not do justice.  We were quite proud of ourselves. :)  Now, every time one of our friends come in, we get to explain what snow is.  Somehow "below 0 degrees Celsius" doesn't compute in this tropic-like climate.


When you are kept awake by something else in your room (not a someone), you are always anxious to see what it is.  One morning, we found a rat in our room.  It seemed to like the mint mentos that someone had sent in one of the girls' packages.  

Thankfully, the boys were home (they normally live in a more remote village about an hour away from us), and they helped us tear our room apart in search of the rat.  I actually think they were having fun.

 They were even so kind as to sweep our entire room for us!

We almost caught it!  It was right there!  Too bad it got away.  The boys made us a giant rat trap to make up for it.  Thanks boys (I mean MEN) for saving some damsels in distress!