Saturday, August 29, 2009


Im generally not a fan...and if possible would do anything to NOT iron when I lived in the states...

but's a different story...

not just because I hand wash my clothes and want to look "smart" with a nicely ironed shirt

BUT rather...I iron out of necessity...

You see we have mango flies here and apparently they love to deposit little surprises into your clothes while they dry...

Those little surprises...if not ironed away...burrow into your skin and lay eggs...


Yes...even my socks!

Thursday, August 27, 2009

What did you say???

Apparently I am pretty funny when I speak Lugandan...not because I can only say a few short words and phrases BUT because I cant hear some of the sounds that make up the words...

The problem with that...well...when you have a tonal language and you miss a tone you change the meaning of what you say COMPLETELY!

My too mistakes this week...

Water vs Poop
Moon vs Prostitute
Very much vs the "a" word was bad...

"Can I have a glass of water?" turned into "Can I have a glass of poop?"


"The moon looks nice tonight" turned into "The prostitute looks nice tonight"


"Thank you very much" turned into "Thanks "a@*" Which is a put down rather than a complement...

Pray for my poor ears and mouth! One that I will hear the difference between the words, but two that I will actually get my tongue to make those sounds!

I sure am glad there is grace here at New Hope!

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

A Tale of the Baganda...

"I'm pregnant" exclaimed Mama Jane


This whole language barrier thing brings Mama Jane, Auntie Florence and I some really good laughs!

What made it funny...well Mama Jane is 48 years old and is a the possibility of her actually being pregnant was next to impossible!

Just a few days before, Mama Jane had also proclaimed that she was too "cold" to have her toes painted...after a little translating, what she really meant was that she was too "old"...

But I digress..

The proclamation was too much for any of us to bear and we all laughed until we cried, even Mama Jane... poor Auntie Florence was doing Lamaze breathing to try and catch her breath and I was holding my stomach which started to hurt from all the laughter!

Once we finally got control of ourselves we began to get some clarification on the statement...

What happened...

Well Mama Jane saw that I had ring worm on the back of my arm and so she was trying to tell me that the Baganda believe that when you have that your arm it means that either your mother or sister is pregnant.

Being that I call her "Momma" and she calls me her "daughter" she was trying to tell me that my mother might be pregnant..

Ahh the tales of generations past...obviously NOT rooted in any truth BUT they sure do make for a good time of laughter between friends!

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Homework Fun with a P7 English Book!

So instead of the USA version of “See spot run”, Ugandan English books tell a different tale…one of a mosquito rather than a dog!

I came across this in the family group…as the children piled up their school books before dinner.

The P-7 (similar to about 6th or 7th grade in the states) English book was on top and so naturally I took a look…the first thing I came across was this story and I couldn’t stop laughing…it was HILARIOUS… so now…I share it with you…enjoy!

Mr. Mosquito: Good Morning Miss Ear

Miss Ear: Oh Good Morning Mr. Mosquito!

Mr. Mosquito: Miss Ear, may you please sit down with me on that bench? There is ah….ah…

Miss Ear: Why? Is there something serious?

Mr. Mosquito: I don’t know how to say it, but….I want….ah…to ask you something.

Miss Ear: Okay! Let’s sit down and hear it!

Mr. Mosquito: You see Miss, I have spent many nights without sleep.

Miss Ear: Why? Didn’t you have enough food in the bodies of your victims?

Mr. Mosquito: Yes, I had enough but…but…ah…

Miss Ear: But What?!

Mr. Mosquito: You have been a good friend to me Miss Ear, will you…

Miss Ear: Marry Me! You! Me! I can’t marry such a tiny person like you. Look at your thin legs! You look as if you will die any time from now. I am sorry. I can’t marry you and be a widow tomorrow!

Mr. Mosquito: Is your answer final Miss Ear?

Miss Ear: (as she stands up and starts walking away) It’s final my friend. Good bye.

Since that day, Mr. Mosquito visits Miss Ear daily (especially at night) to remind her that he is still alive despite the tiny legs and tiny stomach.

I hope I am not the only one that finds this funny!
An ear with legs?
A marriage proposal by a mosquito?!
And well…the cause of our bites at night being a reminder of a love that never was!!

Hats off to whoever wrote this…thanks for the entertainment and the laughs!

Who knew helping kids with homework could be so fun!

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Introducing the "Obama"

For the last two months I have been quite confused as I see signs for the "Obama" on neighborhood salons.

What is "the Obama" I wondered to myself...

So yesterday I finally found out. Auntie Mary asked Auntie Blessing to take out her weave and so of course I had to be there to assist :)

In the course of its removal she told us that when she went to Kenya she was going to go and get an Obama.

Well I couldn't pass up the opportunity to finally figure it out so I asked..."What exactly is an Obama??"

Apparently it is a style of plating (braiding) for women's hair.

Who knew!

When Auntie Mary gets back I will post a picture :)

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

A Long Road to Hope...

I just finished reading "A long Road to Hope" which is the story of New Hope Uganda...

If you want an idea of where I am and who I'm with for these first 5 months I would 100% recommend you read it. It gives some history of the area that I am in, along with how the school was started and what it looks like today.

Im not sure if it is available on Amazon but you can order it directly from


Sunday, August 16, 2009

Post dated Posts...

So I was chatting with someone this week and we decided that a disclaimer for my blog would be a GREAT topic...

So here it top blog secret :)

I acquire SO many great blog posts living here in Uganda that most days I could probably type 3 or 4 separate blogs on the same day...the problem with that is...who wants to read 4 blog posts on one day??

SO...blogger has this amazing function...its called "Post dating"

I can type 10 blogs in the middle of a sleepless night and then set them to post every 4 me about a month worth of blogs without having to log in every few days and post another blog.

That being said...if you send me an "urgent email" and I haven't responded BUT something posted on my blog...don't think I ignored your reality I probably haven't even logged onto the Internet that day...

Ahh the joys of technology!!

Happy blog reading!!

Saturday, August 15, 2009

A 29 Year Old Discovery...

What exactly did I discover??

My new friend Blessing, who is in the institute with me, was born on Dec 1, 1980
My next door neighbor Josh, who works at New Hope, was born on Dec 2, 1980
And I was born on Dec 5, 1980...

One was born in Rwanda
One in Utah
And one in California

What an amazing celebration we will have come December as the 3 of us all celebrate our 29th birthdays together! I can't wait!

Thursday, August 13, 2009


No I am not launching anything BUT Cornerstone Simi did!

The new Global missions website is now available for all and let me say...its AWESOME!

Great Job to Jim and all the guys at Clover for your hard work on it!

Check it out...

Sandra frog hunting buddy is moving tomorrow.

She is in S3 (probably similar to 8th or 9th grade). We have bonded over the last 6 weeks and I enjoy her visits to my house and time with her.

About 4 weeks ago she ran up to me with such an excited look on her face, "Guess what Auntie?! It was one of my best days today!"

Well naturally I asked why. Her mother had phoned the school that morning saying that she would be visiting the following day. Sandra hasn't seen her mother for years. It has been so long that she now has 3 other siblings that she has never met. Her father is in prison and so she lives here at New Hope and is a part of Ebenezer Family.

Sandra's smile was so big. She could barely contain it. She was focused on looking her best for her mother's arrival and was so excited to finally meet the siblings she now had.

The next day, I rushed over to Sandra's house before devotions to find out how her meeting went. The smile was gone. Her mother had never shown up.

A few more weeks went by and still Sandra hadn't heard a peep. That is until about 2 weeks ago. Her mother finally showed up with her other children. Sandra was so excited. She retold me how she skipped school that day because she had received word her mother would be there. She said her siblings looked just like her and that her mother was proud of her.

I of course, was not all that excited. But I kept the feelings to myself and celebrated with Sandra. At the end of our conversation Sandra said..."Guess what?"


Sandra's mom has now decided that she wants Sandra to live with her and her siblings. Sandra had just 2 weeks to prepare to leave the only home and school she has known here at New Hope. I had my doubts, but again, Sandra was nothing but excited.

I told her to keep in touch. I told her I would miss her and that I loved her very much.

Tonight Sandra stopped by to give me a hug. She leaves tomorrow morning before dawn.
My heart tells me that this is probably not the right move for Sandra. But Sandra's heart is eager to have that ideal "family" that she has never had before.

Please pray for her. Please pray for the situation she is walking into. Please pray for her safety. Please pray that her mother will provide her the school fees she will need for her new school.

Monday, August 10, 2009

She's SOOO Cute!

Honor, or Nana, as we call her, is a 1 1/2 year old and she is SOOOOO cute!

Her mom and I have struck up a friendship and so Nana is often at my house taking a nap while her mom and I chat.

Today, being Friday, was a day of beauty for us girls. We painted our nails and toes and well of course, what 1 1/2 year old wants to sleep when there are toes being painted!

So Nana now has pink fingers and pink toes! It's so cute!

Her mom was telling us that even at 1 1/2 Nana is quite into style. She loves pink and loves to have her hair braided.

I made a comment about how cute she looked with the little gold studs in her ears as well.

That comment brought me to a whole new understanding on Ugandan worldview...

You see Ronnie and Blessing (her parents) didn't pierce her ears for beauty or cuteness. They didn't even pierce them to identify her as a girl. They pierced them for her safety!

Safety?? Huh?!

Yeah..thats what I was thinking, but Blessing explained it to me...

You see, kidnapping little children and offering them as child sacrifices is still an issue here BUT children with imperfections (which include holes in their ears) are not considered a holy sacrifice to the gods and therefore, are less of a target for these kidnappers.

Can you believe it! It still shocks me as I type this and when I heard it, it made me want to run around with a needle and start poking every ear of every little kid I could see...

How sick our world is without Jesus for He was our perfect sacrifice, once and for all.

Saturday, August 8, 2009


I LOVE Chappati!

It truly is one of my favorite foods here and so today I joined in with the kitchen staff to make one of my favs :)

I was in charge of rolling the dough into small rounds while Zam Zam was in charge of rolling it out.

Auntie Florence was our official Chappati fryer...but she did let me fry one...and NO...I didn't mess it up!!

It was a great lunch!!
And yes...this is our kitchen!
No oven, microwave or dishwasher here...just several charcoal stoves also known as cigearies in an outdoor kitchen
(and no...that is probably NOT the right spelling of cigearies but that's how it sounds in my mind anyway :)

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Institute Learning - Part 1

So all know I am in the New Hope Uganda Institute class for my first 5 months in Uganda and wow...I wish everyone could go through this training.

The first day they told us "welcome to the journey of relationships and transformation"

I wasn't quite sure what they meant by that but I am so amazed at what God is doing in this place with these 22 people He has ordained to be together for these next few months...we have Rwandans, Kenyans, Ugandans (Teso, Langi, Baganda, Atiso), Americans, British, and a MK from Costa amazing!

So I will start you off slow...well...maybe not slow...the last few weeks we have been chewing on the topic of worldview...and how our societies shape and mold our belief systems...

I will share more on this in another blog post BUT the one that hit me was the way that technology and media shape us.

Have you ever thought about that??? I know it is something I have thought about...The fact that I grab my PC or my phone to fill empty time rather than visit with a friend face-to-face or read the bible...

Did you know that the information culture that we live in is in overload mode?? Did you know that this technology that we have all bought into gives to us but also takes so much away from us??

Did you know that while it gives us an opportunity to access info that we would have otherwise never been able to access before, it also takes away our time and our relationships with others. That it has replaced the need for real living and breathing people and made us a people that just need Internet dates and Internet friends?

Did you know that it is scientifically proven that our brains actually retain less knowledge than they did in the past because we have the ability to "look it up later"...


Did you know...and get this...that we can be SLAVES to our technology!? No...I didn't say that our technology is our slave, I said that we are its slave...

Don't believe me??

How often do you check your phone? Do you feel empty if it's not in your pocket? Can you go anywhere without it? Do you answer it every time it rings?

Still don't believe me??

What about the technology of heating water? Or the technology of electricity? Or a toilet? Or plumbing? What about the technology of a wheel? Of a car?

Not slave to it??

Are you sure?

Could you sell everything and move to Papua New Guinea or Uganda or any other developing country and live without plumbing? Without a hot shower? Without a car? Without electricity? Without a toilet to sit on?

Or are you enslaved to those technologies that make your life more "comfy"?

That hit! I have heard that so many times! I have heard some people say they won't even come visit a place like Uganda because they can't bring their blow-dryer or because they refuse to use a pit-latrine!

How many countries are closed to you when you are so enslaved to comfort technology that you can't visit them because they don't have X, Y or Z?

Think about it...who are you slave to?

It's a tough question...and one that I am not exempt from asking of myself everyday.

It's a of transformation...and's hard to let God transform you, conform you, change you from the inside out...but think of how much sweeter life will be on the other side...

So yes...I am being transformed...and you...yes you...get to take the ride with me as I blog about those hard things I am learning.

Open your mind, enjoy...and be transformed!