Sunday, February 27, 2011

Preservatives please!

Honestly, there isn't much I miss from the states...I don't miss the Santa Ana winds, or the SFV wild fires. I don't miss the 405 freeway, the work-a-holic mentality, or the individualistic society...

What do I miss then? I hate to say it, but I miss preservatives! haha! Is that weird?! Of course I miss friends and family left behind, but when people ask me what I want them to send me as gifts, my mind always runs to those foods I love but can't get here in UG...

My favorite preservatives, you ask?

Dried Cheese Tortellini & Raviolis...
Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups
White Chocolate Chips
Dark Chocolate Covered Espresso beans
Beef Jerky
and Powdered Coffee Creamer

So there you have insight into me and my preservative secrets!

Maybe someday these favs will make into a store nearest me...(hint, hint)...if you are a store owner in UG and want tips on what to import...I promise to buy these items from long as you don't try and charge me $45 for something that should only cost $3...

Thursday, February 24, 2011

I'm used???

Being that I have been in UG for almost 2 years now, I have to say that I am used to most things here...I think that is why blogging has been difficult lately because everything I think to write about seems so boring...I realize though, that what is normal life to me may not be for you and so the other day when I woke up, I took a picture of something I don't think I will ever completely get used to...

What is it you say...?

A large, and I do mean large, flying cockroach...

Now, I am too much of a chicken to try and take a picture of one that is alive and flying towards my head...but when it is laying upside down in my bedroom I seem to find a little more courage...

The first picture I took though, just looked like a dead cockroach and didn't portray just how big this thing was, so I mustered up a little more courage and put my pointer finger next to you can see, it is just as long as my finger and fatter...and no, I don't have small hands or short, skinny fingers...

And yes, this is officially my arch-enemy here in UG!!

Now, I am know you are thinking..."wow...look at Lena, having great courage (or you are saying...doesn't she have anything better to do then take pictures of dead bugs)", but either way, let me be completely honest and tell you that when I tried to sweep it outside with a broom and it tried to fight for its life by fluttering toward me, I lost all my courage and ended up screaming like a little girl...

So much for courage!!!

Oh well!

Sunday, February 20, 2011

PJ Jeans??

I think I am outside of the fashion circle...

A few weeks ago one of my FB friends wrote on her FB status that she wanted some "Pajama Jeans" and I have to say...I had no point of reference to what she was talking about and why 16 people had hit the "like" button...

After a short internet search I was back up to speed, but I couldn't help to think what it would be like if I was a missionary back in the day when there was no FB, no internet searches, etc...

I know that when I go back for a visit in the US, there will be new slang, new fashion, new marriages, new babies and new places that I know nothing about...but I do know that with FB and the internet, at least I wont be tooooo weird...after all, I have a head start...I know what PJ Jeans are now, right?!

haha! here's too life and the impossibility of freeze framing it...I'm glad that things always change...

Imagine how boring it would be if every day was exactly the same as the day before!

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

I don't hate visitors...

One of my friends has a picture on the side of her blog that says: "I don't hate comments" and I remember when she first put it on her blog more people actually left her, let me see if her theory works for me too...

"I don't hate visitors!!"

I don't really know why, but for the last few months I have really been longing to see someone I knew from the US...a friend from LA, a family member, a church acquaintance...anyone who I knew in the states actually...I'm not so sure why I have this "I need a visitor" itch, but maybe its because I have been here awhile and since being here most, if not all of my fellow missionaries have had people from their lives back home come to see them...and me...well, not so much! I'm thinking "the itch" also has something to do with me wanting at least someone from my old life, to have a small picture of what my new life looks like and where I am everyday...

SOOO if any of you have a tiny little voice in the back of your head saying "Go somewhere in the world and visit a friend", let me say, that "friend" maybe me and that place maybe Uganda...

Just a thought :)

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Okola ki buli lunaku?

Nzuukuka buli lunaku ne nsenya amannyo.
Bwe maliriza nnaaba omubiri ne ngambala engoye.
Oluvannyuma nsaba ne nsoma baibuli.
Bwe maliriza nvuga e'motoka ngenda ku ssomero mu CLC ne nyiga oluganda ne Simon.
Oluvannyuma negezamu oluganda ne mikwano gyange.
Bwe maliriza ngenda awaka ne kwebaka.
Nsaba njiga okugamba oluganda mangu mangu!


So if you haven't noticed...I am practicing my luganda on you! HAHA...the great thing about practicing on you, my reading audience, is that most of you don't speak luganda so if this is COMPLETELY have no idea and you still think I am great luganda speaker :) In turn boosting my confidence in trying to speak...haha!

But if you are reading this and you do speak luganda, please let me know how I did...I am sure its got some flaws...BUT feel free to send me corrections, or even questions in luganda so I can try to respond to you!

For all you non-luganda is the rough translation of what I wrote (or tried to write):

Title: What do you do every day?

"I wake up every day and brush my teeth.
When I am finished, I bathe and get dressed.
Then, I pray and read my bible, when I finish, I go to my school (CLC) in my car and I learn Luganda with Simon. Later I practice luganda with my friends.
When I am finished, I go home and sleep.
I pray I will learn to speak luganda soon!"

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Extra Expenses...

First let me thank ALL of you who contribute to keeping me in Uganda each month!!! I am sooo very blessed to have all of your support, both through prayers and finances!!

That being said, if you are interested in giving this year above and beyond what you currently do, or if you want to give a special one time gift, I would be grateful!

This year, with our school move and my full time language studies, I have two new expenses that I did not originally plan for...

1.) Language School...while it is something that I am enjoying tremendously, it is an added expense (approx. $300 each month) that has been a challenge to pay for.

2.) Land...My long term plan for staying in UG, is to be able to purchase land near our new campus and build a small apartment complex...this will allow me to eventually live closer to the campus, provide extra housing in the area for our growing staff and student population, as well as help provide extra funds that can subsidize my fundraising in the future. ( The land is approx $15k per acre in the area I am looking)

So, if you would like to contribute to either of these...visit and click "new donor", Once you do that, you will find my name / acct and provide the needed information to set up a financial gift.

Thank you again for all of your support and love!!! I can not thank you enough!

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Do you cook in your kitchen??

haha...okay, yes, I admit, I am not betty crocker and my ideal night is not making some exotic meal but I have to say, I love learning about Ugandan culture!!

So here...Wives are expected to cook and serve their husbands...that is not what strikes me though...what strikes me is how the language reinforces the idea of what a marriage should look like...

What do I mean??

Well...the verb to cook is: Oku-fumba

If I am cooking I say: Nfumba

If I am not cooking, I say: Sikufumba

Now do you want to know the word for married???

It is: Mufumbo

If I am married I just say I am: Mufumbo

and if I am not married, I say Simufumbo

See the similarity??

Its like saying, no I'm not cooking, and no I'm not married...Now that is one to smile about...the thing that made me laugh though is the conversation I had about this with my language teacher...

It went kinda like this:

"So if you are married, you can cook in the kitchen and you can cook other places too"

Hats of Betty Crocker and Martha Stewart then, if you aren't already married you would make two really great African wives!

Thursday, February 3, 2011

7 Candidates and 2 Weeks...

On 18th Feb, Uganda will hold its presidential elections....this election is the biggest yet, with 7 presidential candidates from 7 different political parties.

I have to say, I am curious how this election will turn out. Our current president, Museveni, has held office since 1986. In 2005, he changed the election laws that bound him to run only 2 terms, and this election, will decide if he runs for his 4th term as president. He has slowly been losing power with each election, going from a 75% in 2001 to a 53% win in 2006...Yet with the elections upcoming, people are not so sure much will change after all, Museveni's party definitely has the most resources and the biggest influence.

The prayer of all here is that the elections will be peaceful and so far we haven't had much trouble occurring.

Please keep us, the elections and Uganda in your prayers during this time!