29 July 2011

Finishing Strong

We can't believe we will be home in less than a week.  These last couple weeks have flown by and I feel like we have done so much travelling we could have covered the entire continent of Africa.  We made the journey down to Ivory Coast (15 hours in a van with 9 people). There was a leadership retreat for the church leaders in Ivory Coast that we were able to be a part of.  These people had just come out of over 10 years of crisis, so it was a time of refreshing for them.  Great people, awesome experience.

 We also got to visit and observe at the clinic/lab that serves the people of Abengouru, Ivory Coast.  They have a great HIV/AIDS program going on there...the people that work here are amazing!

We also had our first overnight village stay in an area that a church plant was going to be happening.  We are so glad we got to make it down to Ivory Coast to see all that has been going on, admist the crisis.

So today we head to Dano for a team retreat...it should be a lot of fun to see everyone again.  Then we head to Ouaga on Monday and fly out Tuesday night.  See you all soon!!  Thanks for your prayers throughout this trip.

16 July 2011


On the farm with the farm manager Cheq.  We planted a natural fence to replace the wood posts here.  The farm is named "Hereforo" meaning "Peace Farm"

We were able to take a few hours and visit the Sindu Peaks.  It was about an hour hike through the beautiful peaks behind us.  We were put in a group with 5 young, very western looking Burkinabe.  They asked us if we knew their friend who lived in NYC:)  I had to smile.

After the hike we waited under a little hut for our ride.  We saw these girls walk by and greeted them in our Dioula so they came and sat with us.  They were amazed that our fingers, toes, and ears worked and looked just like theirs.  They'd touch our hair and giggle. I think we stand out here a bit. 

So apparently Cheik loves to cook up caterpillars and he wanted to give us a taste.  He popped off the heads, cleaned out the goop, and fried them with some onions.   

Note:  I, Lori, did not eat caterpillars but Landon dove right in.  Maybe this could answer the riddle to his digestion problems.  We ate this around a campfire that Landon built.  Campfires on the farm were so much fun! 

Waiting for our teammates to arrive at the farm for the team meeting and worship.

Babukari, the other farm manager's wife and daughter.  Landon learned the traditional Muslim washing and prayer from Babukari.  The two farm managers and Andrew pray each morning before work.  Landon was able to join them.  Cheik and Andrew pray in the name of Jesus but still use the traditional Muslim motions.  It was hard for Cheik to leave those behind when he started following Christ. 

This is the nursery we worked in.  In just a few short days, the seeds we planted had already started sprouting.  It was also nice and shady under this tree so it was pleasant to work back here!

Cheik killed this "viper" the day we were leaving the farm.  It was rather small compared to some of the others we had seen.  He and Babukari were quite skilled at killing those little buggars.  Thank goodness they knew what they were doing.

The dreaded toilet.  While it may not appear to be so bad from the picture, it did not always have the best smell and was always infested with flies.  The blue bucket we would take into the house at night and we could relieve ourselves in that so we didn't have to trek out here after dark.  
So we are now in Banfora for the last leg of our journey.  It has been so exciting to see God moving here in Burkina.  At a short stop for a meal at a hotel, Landon was reading his Bible when one of the employees came up to him.  Emmanuel, the worker, asked Landon if he could have his Bible...he had wanted one in English but they are hard to come by here in Burkina.  Landon eagerly handed it over, and Emmanuel said, "When you give someone the gift of the Word of God, you give them everything." That pretty much sums it all up.


12 July 2011

Life on the Farm

Life on the farm has been great and difficult at the same time.  I (Lori) wouldn't consider myself high maintenance but not having electricity has challenged me to say the least:) Pretty sure using the composting toilets has been the hardest part for me!  We have been living with the G family and they are so much fun!!  They recently just moved to the farm back in May and so it has been an adjustment for them as well.  They have 2 paid farm managers who live on the property.  The farm managers are from 2 of the local villages.  They are learning some new farming techniques that they can then teach their home villages.  One of the farm managers had been seeking Jesus for some time and within the past few years became a Christ follower after observing the G Family while living on their property.  He is the minority is this community.
So we have done quite a bit of planting while we have been on the farm.  We have worked in the nursery and planted beans, corn, and living fences.  We built a chicken coop with scraps of wood and have done a few village visits.  Yesterday we were able to go to one of the farm manager's villages.  The guys went and worked in the corn field while the women gave a Nutrition lesson on Hygiene and told a Bible story.  It was awesome to be a part of.  Once again the village fed us a meal (this time with no utensils) and we headed back to the village of Kangoura.
It is officially becoming rainy season, as it has rained and been overcast for several days straight now.  The temps are dropping finally and the roads become very sketchy as the rain erodes what is considered to be the road.  Life on the farm has brought interesting critters our way, including a spider called "Horse of the Scorpions" because it is big enough to carry scorpions.  There are also many snakes and fortunately we have only seen the ones that have been killed.  I prefer to keep it that way for the next few days!!  We also had quite the adventure in the kitchen with several mice.  Several of us (including Landon) were screaming and hollering as the cat hunted these mice.  We had to laugh when we noticed the farm managers wife standing outside the kitchen door wondering what these white people were doing:)
Hope everything is going well back home.  We will be back before we know it.