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Monday, July 30, 2012

July 26, 2012

Tonight as I’m writing, I’m baking some banana cup cakes for the RS activity up at Ilima tomorrow.  The sisters want to learn to make banana cupcakes and maybe even sell them in the market.  Two branches have a gecko oven and they cook with charcoal. They have a lot of banana’s and eggs so tomorrow we will meet, mix, bake and eat.  I’m making some to take so that they can all have one at the same time.  Sister Broadbent shared with me some simple booklets on family health, so we plan to pass them out and have some discussion on some simple first aid and also how to treat coughs and fevers.  Sister Elizabeth (we call her little Elizabeth ) is home from Nairobi with her new daughter Stella so of course we will have to stop by and see her as well.

Family visits don’t come around fast enough for me.  We started with Mitini, and wow what a steep rigorous mountain we had to tackle.   We had about 20 people follow us down the mountain and Bruce and I were the only ones that took a (slight) tumble.   It was a beautiful view and we had a over 35 people.  It was a great visit.  We sang and many shared their testimonies.  After Juice and bread, we headed back up the mountain.  It took us 30 minutes of steady climbing but the weather was coolish and that really helped.   Thursday we visited three families and the climb wasn’t quite as steep.  I feel bad we miss all the children who are in school but it seems nice to visit with the members and share a spiritual thought.

Elder and Sister Lurf leave in 6 days and a new couple come in Saturday to replace them.  Bruce and I are the couple who have been here in the apartments the longest now.

Family visits in Mitini

Brother Anthony with his glasses and tennis shoes just always warms my heart.  His testimony is very strong
Mareen is a new member and her husband is an investigator of the church.
Sister Elizabeth loves to lead the music on Sundays at Mitini.

Family Visit in Kyambeke
 Family Visit in Kyambeke took us to Puis and Lucy.They teach us as much as we share with them

Lillian wants to know when we will visit her home.

  Children all over the world love to play in the mud and pretend.

Jacinta's getting a new house built.

 Little Elizabeth's new baby "Stella"
Jacinta and Elizabeth's Mother-in-law Monica, in front of her home. Families live very close to each other.

Sunday, July 22, 2012

July 22, 2012

To catch up on sum of our activities; Last week on Tuesday we attended Zone conference.  Although wedidn’t want to miss our Kilili Branch day, it truly was a spiritual feast and we were so glad we went.  I think we needed that spark.  The testimonies of the young missionaries are so powerful. Just loved it.   We had an opportunity to meet with three of the Kenya pioneer church members that Friday at the mission home and we talked for three hours and settled some conflicting stories and views.   We hurried home to update and change some of the history that had been written.  I’d still like to talk with two other members but not sure how that will happen. I just want it to be as correct as possible. 
We went to the “Ray of Hope Clinic” (where 30-40 babies a born a month to impoverished mothers), delivering blankets and hygiene kits,  attended two baptisms, 1 funeral, and two new baby visits.  These events just add frosting to our weekly branch classes. 

The “Family Class” seems to be encouraging family night success.  We have been getting great responses from the members.  When asked, “Whatchanges have you seen in your family since you started having FHE?”  a father raised his hand and told us that his children no longer feared him and he is now more a part of their lives.  Bruce and I noticed that having family counsel(family business) during FHE was a new concept that they liked.   It has been so rewarding to teach and share with them. 

It’s Sunday evening, after making the trip to the Hills 6 days straight we are ready for “P” Day tomorrow. Bruce the driver, is amazing.
It's bean harvest time in Kilunga Hills. These ladies work so hard. 
I'd like to introduce you to "Sharon Ndinda Boneface" isn't she beautiful? I felt very honored.
This is her family and her home.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Riruta Chapel

Elder and Sister Harris (their second mission to Kenya as Humanitarian Couple),
took us to the Riruta Chapel.  It is beautiful, has a place where the members can
plant food, water bore-hole and the grounds are keep so nice.  Not all the churches
are this nice.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012


This good Sister 60 years old, found this child as a (hours old) newborn left by the birth mother at the railroad tracks. He is legally theirs now and being raised with their grandchildren. 
On Friday I had a real blessing.  I was able to meet with Thomas Kasue, Paul Mweto, and David Mwanziu who are early converts in Nairobi. We talked for three hours and shared much. 
Fresh roses sold along the road, 20 for $2.50
Sister missionaries love to look cute and love their picture taken

Tuesday, July 17, 2012


Our people grow their beans, pull the vine and dry the pods, beat the pods, sift, and then bag the hard red beans. It is very hard work and a long process. 
Sister Phylis Morris has a beautiful orange orchard. (even ripe they are quite green)

Monday, July 16, 2012

Hope Clinic

We were invited to go to the Hope Clinic where they deliver 30-40 babies a month for impoverished mothers. It was part of an apartment building, very cramped quarters but clean. No anaeshesia, no doctor, and no delivery room. 
 We brought hygiene kits and baby blankets (one box said Rexburg Idaho).   Three mothers were in labor.

Friday, July 13, 2012

Bruce bought a ponga knife and this happy worker wanted to sharpen it for him (not for free). Then he asked Bruce if he could give Bruce a blessing and he took off is hat, raised one arm and said a prayer.  He said now we are friends.
 Each morning many people are walking along side the road, some waiting for a Matatu/small bus some walking to work.  They stop at these little dukas/shops and buy food and there are NO garbage cans.  These pictures are for my sister Karla who asked if Nairobi was clean. 

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

July 1-9, 2012

Bruce’s Entry: The weather is still cool and damp. Many people are sick. We have given many rides to the dispensaries and to the hospital. Even some have had to come into Nairobi for medical attention.  It is so sad as they don’t have proper medical help available out in the Hills and do not have money to pay. 
We have a man that wants us to buy property and live out in the Hills with them permanently. We have told him no before that we have to go home to be released from our mission. He says come back to live. We say no we would miss family and friends. So now he would like us to just rent a place to live until we leave for home. It feels good to be wanted. 
Yesterday we went to a baptism of a man whose parents are going to the temple. He is their oldest son about 50 years but looks to be 70 years old. Anyway they were so happy to see him join the church. I think he is their first of their children to join the church. He has a good testimony of the gospel but not any of his family members came to his baptism. Today Sunday we also attended a baptism for four children of the Kyambeke branch.
We also went and visited a new mother and her new baby. Sharon gave them some of the diapers Grandma Hall had made. They call them napkins the new mother was so happy for the gift. This was her seventh child. Many times when we go to the homes we don't go inside but just sit outside with them but yesterday the father wanted us to come in. The homes are so tiny and humble just mostly dirt floors with rusty tin roofs. The children get so excited to have company. Even the neighboring children and adults come over.  While we were visiting a little girl came and sat by me then just kept rubbing my arm. I think they like the feel of the hair on my arm because their skin is so smooth.
We have actually been to each home from the story of the three little pigs. A home made from grass here (a straw home), sticks and mud home and a brick home (bricks they make from mud and baked). Yesterday the Kyambeke Branch had a project to go help a lady whose house was falling down. They had to go fetch water and carry it to her place. Then they mixed up mud and patched up her walls. I think they also did a bit of roof work because they had some men there. If it would have been wall repair she needed then probably only women would have gone to help. The mother and son and the grandmother had all been sleeping outside on the ground.  We could not go because we were at a baptism for another branch.

Enjoy your week in the land of plenty. It may run out but I hope not. Love Dad
 Elder Sarlo from Farr West baptized Peter who is the first born of Mary and William.
Veronica and George with their seven children
Bruce teaching the children "Here is the church, here is the steeple"

Missionary work going forth with power
Eric shows off his fathers carving of two Masai Men

Monday, July 9, 2012

July 9, 2012

41 Great Years of Growing Together
Today we have been married 41 Years and we love each other more than we thought we ever could.  Bruce asked me if he could get me something for a gift and I told him he was my gift.  Here in Africa he is the driver, the organizer, the realist (which I need) and he ties up all my looooooose ends, plus he makes me laugh.   I think one of our greatest strengths has been saying prayers together every night since the day we  married.  We are so blessed to have a wonderful family, the gospel, and to be serving in Kenya at this time.  Brucer, I love you.

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

June 30, 2012

 We are happy to welcome a new month but it will be a colder month here in Kenya as this is their winter. The degrees do not vary a lot but it does cause us to get out the small heater and warm up our bedroom before we go to bed. When we go out to the hills we just wear more layers. We are doing well, love our branches and are continuing to progress on our histories that we have collected.

We had family visits this week, again my favorite. We were able to visit three families in Kilili, two in Kyambeke and a large group of Thirty-five members in Mitini. We had regular classes at Ilima this week.

We had a special treat when we went to see Florence and Mithias. It was a far distance to get there but well worth it. When we arrived at their compound the parents greeted us and we were surprised to see eight of their nine children at home. They had asked for special permission to be excused from school for the day (The oldest son is in Nairobi trying to find work). They told us that we were the first missionaries to come to their home and they were so happy. We had a fun visit and read some scriptures and after a prayer and a blessing they announced that there was a meal prepared for us. They had made a very precious sacrifice and killed a chicken, made soup, rice, hot milk, and a banana fresh from their tree outside the house. The older daughter's had prepared the meal and they would not eat until we started to eat. There was such a strong spirit and it was very humbling. I know we say this all the time but it was a very special memory. The father walked down with us to the small market where he has a shoe shop. He was very pleased to show it to us.

While I was getting our pictures developed at the Fuji Shop (I was the only customer) I was able to talk to the shop manager, Finally about the church. I showed him the new "For the Strength of Youth" booklet and we talked as I turned the pages. He just melted and was so focused. Then he asked me if he could have a copy and of course I gave it to him. He then showed me a picture of his daughter and his wife and told me he wanted to share this with his wife. Bruce said when he walked into the shop he could feel the good spirit that was there. They are so ready for the gospel blessings. I hope that I can share more with him another day.

Florence and Mathias homestead and beautiful family 

The daughters prepared the meal including killing and cooking the chicken

Isn't this a great group?  Mitini is such a large branch that we visit in areas and we love to be with them.
Biota and her husband(the older couple) live in a polygamist relationship and can't be baptised but never miss a Sunday. 
Their son Daniel and wife Rose have eleven children.  Families live in groups with separate compounds.  The sons wife joins his family group or area.
Bruce drawing in the dirt explaining a Book of Mormon story to Sister Beatrice who is a young widow with five children.
Sister Elizabeth from Kilili has five children.  She has been blessed with enough money for school fees for second session but is not sure if there will be money for the third session.