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Tuesday, February 28, 2012


Hurray! Bruce and I are finally legal. Today we went with Deacons to the Imigration Offices and we got our Passports stamped, we were fingerprinted and we got our work permit. Now we won't go to jail because we aren't aliens anymore

Sunday, February 26, 2012

February 19-26, 2012

This week started with spending the Sabbath at Kyambeke. I was asked to give a message and spoke about trails and their purpose. Monday we had the truck serviced and a new windshield put in. Big trucks splatter our truck with rocks and chip the windshield. We also did the usual with groceries and pictures.

At the Fugi Films shop, Tecla and I are on a first name bases. This is where our children's inheritence is being spent on pictures.

Tuesday we were able to visit the market place and invite people to come to the Family Class at 11:00. Two sisters went with me and after a little missionary work we had 5 join us. Altogether we had 7 investigators and 25 members. After showing the three short Family DVD’s (previously talked about) we had refreshments and the missionaries went around and visited with people. We invited them to come back next Tuesday again for more information about strong families. Wednesday, we repeated the same plan but we had over 70 people including many investigators. We are praying that they will keep coming. After a branch audit and dropping off a chocolate cake for the Elders DDM meeting, we started a wonderful adventure Thursday at Kyambeke. The Elders Quorum President and Sister Lucy assisted us as we traveled around visiting 6 Families. It was such a memorable day. The temperature was mild and there was a cool breeze. The people were happy to see us and shared hot chocolate and bananas/bread. Time past so quickly that we didn’t leave the hills until 4:00. The traffic was terrible by the time we arrived in Nairobi but it was worth it.

Edward and Marys Home. He makes electric guitars in his work-shop.

Mary in her Kitchen.
Florence (the young girl in pink) with her two sisters and mother. She is 21 and preparing to go on a mission.

As we passed by the school, all the children wanted to come out and give the white man a high-five.

Duncan (recently baptised) with his wife, a neigbor lady, and their last child of seven.
Donkeys are very valuable here.
Dad with Edward who is very proud of his house and cows.
Young girls wanting their picture taken. Boys have first priority for education so many girls are left without school.
Maize drying in the homes.
Florence and her mother who is 83. Florence has quite a nice home because her husband works and lives in Nairobi and only comes home occasionally.

Friday allowed us to attend Ilima’s Relief Society and Elders Quorum meeting. There were four speakers, who spoke in Kecomba (spelled wrong) but with the writing on the blackboard we were able to follow along. Tithing, Budget, Food Storage, Water Storage, First Aid/Medicine, and Clothing were all discussed. The members were taking notes and very interested. At the end President wrote: Work harder, Plan better and Store properly. At the end each family was given a metal bank to encourage savings. We are always impressed with Ilima’s efforts towards self-reliance. We wish this could happen with all our Branches. It was sooooo good.

Saturday was spent in Nairobi; an early walk, groceries, made a chicken salad, prepared a talk for Monday Devotional, and worked on the branch books/family histories. We had a potluck dinner at the Pugmire’s that evening.
Karen Blixen (wrote the book 'Out of Africa') Plantation Visit

Sunday, February 19, 2012

February 16-18, 2012

February 16th

Working with the missionaries, we have planned a day to share “ Becoming a Happy and Strong Family” We have asked members to bring someone with them next week and share in a day. We are showing a DVD that was prepared in South Africa by African people. It is beautiful and speaks to all faiths. We will serve refreshments and hope to have a big crowd. We want the villages and communities to know that the Church believes in the family. So will see how it turns out next week.

Friday 17th

was our visiting day in Ilima. We went to Virginia and Wycliffs home and they fed us kithirri. I’m sure I spelled that wrong but it is red beans and dried corn boiled together. It was good but they gave us too much. They do get offended if you don’t eat it all. Bruce hates beans so it was especially hard for him to get it all down but he did it. We also stopped at Peter’s home for a quick visit. On the way out of the Kyambeke market a return missionary Onesmus asked for a ride. A women standing nearby then also asked if she could have a ride. As we left the village, Onesmus started to give her the first discussion he asked Bruce for the Restoration pamphlet. She agreed to attend church with him this Sunday. Many of the members are strong missionaries.

February 18th

We were to have baptisms today but there is no water to fill the font. We are between rainy seasons and it is so dry out in the bush. This is the time where they are digging deep down into the river beds to get any water to use in their house-huts. I will have to say that because of lack of water the people smell very strongly. It is also a time when they are working in the dry shambas and the mosquitoes are very bad. Many are getting malaria and have to go to the dispensary for medication. Because the Baptisms were canceled we were able to go with the Olsen’s and Pugmire’s to the Karen Blixem Museum and Plantation (Out of Africa). We also visited the Elephant Orphanage, although we had been before, it was fun to see others enjoy it. The baby elephants put on quite a show in the mud bath.

These are Bruces friends that we pass on the raod to Mitini. They always wave to him and he takes the lady cardborad boxes.
Until today. . . Rechel hasn't been back to church at Ilima since her husband was release as the Branch President over 7 years ago.
A view of President Onesmus' house with bricks smoking for a new home.
New Missionary Elder Diodoti from Canada with Elder Patten, powerful Elders
Bruce eating kithirri, slice of bread and hot hot chocolate at Virigini and Wycliff's Home.
Wycliffe and Virignia
Wycliffes grandmother and some of her great-grandchildren
A neighbor bringing up some of the maize stocks from the shamba below

Friday, February 17, 2012

February 13-15, 2012

On Monday Feb. 13th we had a special “VALENTIME family home evening” at our apartment. We spent all of our P-Day getting ready, making brownies and hot-fudge sauce, picking up flowers (bought by the husbands), and decorating. I was so excited all day. It was just so fun. Balloons, hearts, candles, and sweet music was the mood as they all came. We had prayer, sang a song and then each of the sisters told how they met their “Man” and what attracted them. Then the husband told five things they loved about their wives and gave them a pretty bouquet of roses. It turned out so wonderful. The dessert was really rich and good. They all seemed to enjoy it so much. One sister said she had never received flowers from her husband before.

Working with the missionaries, we have planned a day to share “ Becoming a Happy and Strong Family” We have asked members to bring someone with them next week and share in a day. We are showing a DVD that was prepared in South Africa by African people. It is beautiful and speaks to all faiths. We will serve refreshments and hope to have a big crowd. We want the villages and communities to know that the Church believes in the family. So will see how it turns out next week.

February 15th

We received great news! Our Elder Raymond from Kilunga Hills was called to be the new AP. He is a great young man and we are so happy for him. We have been passing Elders around out in the hills and Kilili and now we are transporting in the four new Elders. We are excited and hope they come with a lot of fire and energy.

Saturdays baptism with 20 new members ages 15-8
Clothing made by the Ilima Branch Relief Society for needy children in the area. Sister Bird donated the material.

The Kilullnga Hills missionaries saying goodbye to Elder Raymond

Thomas got his mission call

Man making furniture outside an apartment building

Kilili Teacher Training Class

Sunday, February 12, 2012

February 10, 2012

Thomas Davies (Kilili Branch) got his mission call; California, Anaheim. It is very rare that an African male is called to the United States. That is wonderful. His sister is serving in Arizona at the temple grounds. I hope this brings renewed strength to the family, the past Branch President in Kilili. We have had another great week and the temple classes have been especially powerful. There are some couples that are very close to having all their legal papers in preparation to go to the temple. We will try to schedule a date at the Johannesburg Temple soon.

WE LOVE OUR MISSION AREA! What a blessing. Tomorrow we will go to the Mitini Baptisms held at Kyambeke. There are 14 children being baptized. I also received more personal histories to type up so that will keep me busy. We saw another giraffe try to cross the busy road today and finally got a good picture thanks to Elder Kellems and we also saw monkeys.

Finally, a picture of a Giraffe crossing the busy road. Whew! he made it.
President Musembi and Johnathan show us a water dig on his property, but this is done by the women who collect water daily. As the water dries up, they will dig deeper to reach water.
President, has a large shamba and grows many mango, papya, and passion fruit trees.

Monday, February 6, 2012

January 30 - February 5, 2012

A review of our week would start with Monday. After the devotional at the Mission Office, Bruce took me to get my hair cut and I came home and made Lasagna for the dinner Tuesday. Tuesday was our home visits with Kilili. Brother and Sister Kellem’s went with us to check on some of the home-made food dryers that 9 members agreed to build and try drying mango slices. One member showed us his large shamba and trees. We were so fascinated with the graph ting of the fruit trees (mango and passion fruit). They are quite advanced with this and they have developed a hi-bred mango that is very desirable and sells well. We were about to visit a few other families but the truck had a flat. We had plenty of willing helpers however. That evening we said good-bye to the Nevin’s who have been such a strength to this mission and a help to the missionary couples. They just seemed to have all the answers. They will be missed. Wednesday we met at Mitini. The branch President had another bad report about strife in the branch and a member sent us a concerned text on the cell phone. Bruce is so wise and does not over-react but encourages them to respond as Heavenly Father would. The longer we are here it seems the more strife and jealousy we see. So sad, it stifles the progress of the gospel. Kymbeke was our focus for Thursday and we had a fun temple lesson where we role-played a situation and then had them break up into groups to find the answer. It was great to hear them come in and report their opinions and a chance to see what they had learned about Temple blessings. I love those kind of experiences where you just feel the spirit strongly and so do they. Friday we were asked to take the Olsen’s and show them how to get to Dr Dogra’s Office, the hospital, emergency room, and the two chemist shops. The Olsen’s will be the ones to assist the missionaries with any medical needs so this information was important. After, we went to lunch and that was also important, well it is to me. Saturday we had the opportunity to go to Athi River, south of Nairobi. We met with Thomas Kasue, who was an early pioneer of the church. Elder Maxwell and his companion showed us the way to the church. What great Elders. They waited for 2 hours while Thomas shared with us his life history. I just get so excited and I love writing the words and hearing how the gospel was spread through Kenya. When we came home, Sister Pugmire cut Bruce’s hair and I started to type up some of my history notes. At 6:00 we left to have dinner with the couples. Sunday At Kilil today it was wonderful to be there but sad to see how the old branch President and his wife are responding to the recent changes. They have taken it very personal and agreed to come to church but they will not take a calling. They have a daughter on a mission and another son waiting for his call. It has been very hard to watch. We really love all of these people.

New pictures of Thomas Kasue who after being baptised, started church groups in BuraBura, and Athi River. He also was Branch president in Ilima at one time.

Athi-River missionaries with Thomas and a member. Elder Maxwell is one of our long time favorites. He loves banana cake. He and his companion (can you tell I forgot his name) showed us the way to the chapel.

The flat tire that took the help of 6 men.

Kilili's new Branch Presidency

Little Faith was keeping busy in Primary

Doctor Dogra meets the Olsen's