Easter Weekend 2013

April 2, 2013 § Leave a comment

We had a lovely Easter and 4 day holiday weekend. We went out to the mall almost every day so that Nathaniel could practice walking. Although the mall isn’t my husband’s favorite, it is the perfect place for Nathaniel to practice walking on a big flat open surface.




He even got to drive his favorite little electric “motocar” as a treat. He always says he wants the “jumping castle” then changes his mind at the last-minute when he see this beauty.



We had a lovely Easter church service at our home church where we had a Passover seder celebration and enjoyed lovely food with our dearest friends (and their guests) in Lusaka. The kids with special needs ran around and had a nice time finding Easter eggs hidden around the yard. The older typical developing kids helped them out. It was a nice pairing.


Nathaniel was so excited his chewy tube fell out of his mouth!


His friend Isaac helped his find his eggs. Mama wasn’t needed.


Joab and Andrew quickly tired of looking for eggs and took a minute to rest.


Now that Sam is 18, he was WAY too busy texting and calling on his pretend phone to busy himself with an egg hunt.Easter-Weekend10


In the busyness of the day (I cooked 25 home-made latkes and made a big green salad. Latkes are way more work than you think.) we neglected to get a picture together even though we all looked great. I’m hoping you can imagine how handsome and pretty we looked. Higgins included. We are sending our love back to our family and friends at home!



Painting Class: Rest for the Mind and Conversation for the Soul

March 15, 2013 § Leave a comment

Thanks, everyone, for the great conversation about raising money for development yesterday. I loved hearing your unique perspectives and enjoyed the dialogue about the topic. Check it out HERE if you missed it.

Since dealing with my health challenges from last year, I decided to pick up a new hobby of painting. In the midst of dealing with some intense emotions and physical pain, I needed an outlet to focus on and dedicate my time. Coincidentally enough, I found a free painting group at a local cafe and have grown to love my weekly time of painting with these women (there are men in the group also but we tend to segregate).


My first attempt at faces…don’t laugh!

We started off with drawing to learn the basics of contrasts and how to observe correctly. Finally, we moved on to painting last month. I started with acrylics but want to eventually try my hand at oils. « Read the rest of this entry »

My Role as a Woman (in Honor of International Women’s Day)

March 8, 2013 § 5 Comments

Today we celebrate International Women’s Day as a national public holiday here in Zambia.

Since becoming a mother last June, I have been contemplating my role as woman and what that means for my identity, my family, and my work.

Growing up, my Dad was the sole breadwinner and my Mom worked to take care of our home. She home-schooled my brother and I through high school. I’m forever grateful to both my parents for their sacrifices for my education, well-being, and spiritual upbringing.

I had my own ideas about what being a woman would look like, which in my mind was the same as being a mother. « Read the rest of this entry »

What’s on my RSS (blog) feed reader?

February 18, 2013 § 5 Comments

In my spare time (which is sparser these days with a child in the house), I enjoy looking at other people’s blogs. They are all women authors and I love the ideas, creativity, and the reality of life that people are willing to share. I also appreciate the variety of philosophies and points of view. Some of the blogs are funny, some are serious, some are pretty, some are raw but all are inspiring. Some of the authors I have become friends with in real life and others feel like friends when I sit down to read what they have written.

Here are some of my favorites:

  • Bakers Dozen and Apollo XIV – Renee blogs about her “big family” life in the Bellingham, Washington area with fourteen children. Her and her husband have adopted both domestically and internationally and also have biological children. Her last child, Apollo, has had enormous medical complications resulting from his now-repaired double aortic arch. Renee is also a great birth, family, and newborn photographer and her photos make the blog very pretty to look at.
  • Enjoying the Small Things – Kelle Hampton (author of Bloom and Florida photographer) writes about her life with her children and stopping to enjoy the small things. Nella, her second child, was unexpectedly born with Down Syndrome. Kelle is an excellent writer and is very inspiring to read about her journey in special needs parenting.
  • Jones Design Company – Emily blogs about crafts, designs, and making things pretty. She also shares about her children and family life in rural Washington. Great tutorials and many free downloads.
  • Livesay [Haiti] Weblog – The Livesay family writes about their family and experiences living as missionaries in Haiti. They run a maternal health home for poor women in order to prevent an orphan crisis. Well written posts and very thought-provoking.
  • Rage Against the Minivan – Kristen blogs about a variety of topics, including politics, adoption (2 of her children are adopted), racial issues, family issues, entertainment, and multiple types of charity work. Her writing is raw and sarcastic at times. Great links to other blogs and articles on the web as well through her “That’s what she said” series.
  • Sister Haiti {Mama Uganda} – Salem writes about her adopted special needs children. She is a great advocate for more people to adopt children with special needs and is very articulate with the way she writes. Seeing videos of her kids and reading her blog series, “The New Faces of International Adoption” was one of the deciding factors for us in adopting Nathaniel.
  • So That He Might Increase – my friend Beth blogs about her life as a missionary in Lusaka, Zambia with her son Joab who has an undiagnosed sensory disorder resembling autism. She is witty, thoughtful, and fun. I love that she shares about the other parts of her life, not just her ministry.
  • Soule Mama – Amanda blogs about their dreamy little farm and country life in rural Maine. She is a beautiful photographer and can make anything look pretty and artistic. She is an avid knitter and is learning to spin wool from her own sheep. She lives close to the earth and is a Mama and teacher to her 5 children living side by side in a “unschooling” environment.

Do you have any favorites? Please share!


{Wordless Wednesday} Chikondi (love)

May 23, 2012 § Leave a comment

Photo courtesy of David Robert Menenberg


February 3, 2012 § Leave a comment

I’m off to visit a friend in the Peace Corps who is living in a small village in Malawi. It should be an adventure – long hours on the bus, no running water or electricity, and everything that is village life. Will be back in this space after I return!

Welcome to Zambia, Kelly and Elizabeth!

December 6, 2011 § 2 Comments

Greetings with an old and dear friend

We have been delighted to host some dear friends from Seattle. My dear old friend and room mate Kelly arrived yesterday!! It was such a blessing to see her on the African continent after a long period of time. We are also joined by Elizabeth, who is doing the Peace Corps in Malawi and took a 14+ hour bus ride to get to Lusaka with only 2 bathroom stops to get here (!!). Elizabeth was a friend and mentor to Kelly and I in nursing school and at the City Church in Seattle. It’s very cool to all be reunited as nurses in Africa together.

Kells and I

Kelly came here after a week in Italy visiting another friend and had to adjust to yet another culture in less than 2 weeks time. Elizabeth has been shocked in a different way at how developed Zambia is compared to her village and city of Lilongwe in Malawi. Yes, Zambia is “Africa light” but I love it her and am proud to show off my city to my friends. So I baptized them properly into Lusaka life with a full day.

Quintessentially us

The ladies and I got dressed up in chitenges for our journey via minibus into the downtown shopping district of Lusaka. Many people complimented (and commented) about us mzungus dressed up in chitenges. It’s about $1.00 to ride into town on the minibus. But the lines only run east and west so you have to ride all the way into “town” at the central station and switch buses to go north and south. We shopped at Kamwala, which is known as the shopping district of Lusaka where most of the shops with local and imported goods are sold.

All dressed up in chitenges

Oh and in case you were wondering about our quilts, here is one! They are made by a local community based organization and are constructed from chitenge fabric as well. I hope President Bush liked them! 😉

Enjoying her Presidential Quilt




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