livin’ in africa

So, I have heard from several people that I am slacking in the updates department.

My sisters are calling me weaksauce.

But I supposed ’tis true.

If I have any excuse, it’s because we go, go, go all day…and by the time we bathe the kids, tuck them in, and then bathe ourselves, I am asleep before my head hits the pillow. (by the way, I find immense satisfaction in washing my feet each night…one probably shouldn’t find this much enjoyment in this task…but I dare you to come over here and wash your own dirty feet and tell me that you didn’t like it)

I rarely have time to get on my computer. I might check my email once per day, if at all…which is the antithesis of how I live back home. I kinda like it.

So, on to more important topics (besides my feet)…like what in the world we’ve been doing since arriving.

Lucas jumped right in and joined the team that was here from Atlanta. They went to the remand homes, attended various meetings, held various meetings and visited a few other well-established, well-run ministries to glean insight into how they’re run.

His feet are officially wet.

I spent my time last week preparing the house for life, running errands, trying to keep up with chores (which are far more time-consuming here–Lucas is busy helping with them every minute he isn’t doing SixtyFeet stuff so we can keep our heads above the water), helping Kelsey and Kirby (well, I hope I helped them!), and hosting the team for meals and meetings here at the house.

On Friday, for instance, a last-minute staff meeting was scheduled over lunch, and my patio was the venue. And what does one do when one needs to fix lunch and doesn’t have any appropriate fixin’s? Why, have your gate guard take you down to the local market and buy ingredients for beans-n-rice, of course.

I bought enough stuff to fix a large pot of beans and rice, along with fruit for dessert to feed 5 men, 4 children and myself. I spent about $7.

I was pretty impressed with myself. I wish I could get everything at the market.  Not everything here in Uganda is as cheap as it is back home.  It’s crazy how living here can be so cheap in some areas and so crazy expensive in others.

Yesterday the whole crew (the Atlanta team, the interns and our family) made our way to Bwerenga to Mama Catherine and Pastor Ernest’s house.

Our kids made fast friends with the children there.

Joseph and Aaron (Faith and Boaz’s oldest child) became good buddies.

They spent the day chasing chickens around the yard, harassing the puppy, wielding their “swords” and running through dirt.

This picture should be a good indicator as to just how much fun he had yesterday.

I hope this all comes out in the washing machine.

Pastor Ernest and Boaz took us on a hike around the new property where the first SixtyFeet house is to be built. It’s a stunning two-acre plot, with views of Lake Victoria.

The property is covered in mango trees…

coffee trees, avocado trees…

and jackfruit trees.

If you don’t know what jackfruit is, I shall tell you. It looks like a lumpy lime-green rugby ball. And they’re big…like a big ol’ watermelon. They are super sweet and taste like a cross between a mango and cantaloupe. It sounds yummy, but I’m not a big jackfruit fan. Maybe I’ll learn to love it.

Mama Catherine, Faith and Ruth, in their typical fashion, fixed a Ugandan feast for us. Those ladies can cook!

Then a group of us hiked down the hill on the mile-long trail to the lake (Victoria’s, that is).

I’m pretty sure Joseph got the dirtiest. I think he would have jumped in to swim had we let him.

Needless to say, a day at Ernest and Catherine’s is a day well spent.

Faith runs a preschool there at their church. She has asked me to come and teach classes on Fridays.

Ohmuword.

I don’t think she understands how under qualified I am to teach preschoolers. I hope I don’t dumb them down.

And if that’s not a scary enough concept, check out this picture below of the giant spider that was hanging out over the entrance to the preschool.

Of course, it’s poisonous. And of course, Pastor Ernest reached up there with a stick, pulled the creepy thing down, TOOK THE WEB IN HIS BARE HANDS TO EXPOSE THE SPIDER FOR US, and held it out for us to see.

Ernest clearly has a grasp on God’s sovereignty and trusts that he won’t die a moment sooner than he’s supposed to.

You couldn’t have paid me enough to touch that thing. I had to use my zoom lens to get that picture…I stayed far, far away.

As for this next week, Lucas will be going to more remand homes and assisting the interns in their duties. Our friends, the Ferrells, will be arriving on Tuesday night and will be moving into our house with us. They’re doing the same sort of thing that we’re doing this summer (bringing their whole fam to work for SixtyFeet for several weeks), except they’ll be staying through the end of July. We’re excited for them to get here!

I’ll write again soon. I hope to share more details of our work here.

Also, we have two monkeys living in our trees in our yard, and several pet geckos roaming on our walls.

It’s literally a zoo here.

Angela Davis - June 3, 2012 - 11:31 am

Love this post!! I but know things are CRAZY there but if you happen to take a pic of our sweet Dennis will you post it for us?? We are working on our next letter for him this weekend. Thanks, Angela ;)

Lacy - June 3, 2012 - 1:08 pm

Love the update! I love how kids can form such quick everlasting bonds. The pictures capture their new friendships so well. Can’t wait to hear more about teaching bible classes to sweet preschoolers.

beck - June 3, 2012 - 3:12 pm

AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAH. That SPIDER. *shudder*

The rest of the post was awesome, of course. =)

Tracey - June 3, 2012 - 5:17 pm

I wish I was there with you!!!

Do M and J remember the language?? Did they start conversing with everyone right away??

Are A and J just loving it?? Do the kids wonder why their hair is so blond!?

I wish I was there with you!!!!

Eat lots of Awk-A-Vados for me!!!

Love to all –
Trace

Shannon - June 3, 2012 - 6:32 pm

Thank You!!!! Now that is an update. Keep them coming. Totally wish I was there with you.

Anna - June 4, 2012 - 12:17 pm

Thanks for the update. Been thinkin’ about ya! Spiders AWAAAAAY!! ;)

Mat - June 4, 2012 - 6:03 pm

Thx for updating Colleen! So great to hear about what you guys are doing. Praying for you and all that fun stuff. Give Lucas a good game for me!

Jess - June 5, 2012 - 2:33 pm

Jackfruit- gag me a maggot! When we traveled to Uganda for a missions trip, we had to ride around in the bush with several in the car. The smell was enough to almost make me vomit! I’d stick to the mangoes too!

Amie - June 6, 2012 - 5:46 am

DUUUUUUDE!!! So good to see your purdy little face… and your big ol’ beautiful family!!! The pictures of your kids with all the kids.. holding hands.. playing… ministering to them with their hearts.. GIIIIIRL!!!!! You. done. Good!!! So proud of you! So thankful for you! So wanna be there with you!

I changed my mind. don’t come home. Stay there and love. Just keep login’.

And then… COME HOME!!!!

Miss you!! Love you!!

BIG BIG BIG BIG GIGANTIC HUGS!!!

Amie

Joy - June 7, 2012 - 2:25 am

I’m lovin’ me some Jobe family right about now!!! So sad I won’t be there to frolic with the kids and eat rice’n'beans on your porch. Miss you, girl. Give UG my love.

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