Thursday, December 31, 2009

A Culturally Bad Day

I will not explain how the day was culturally bad, it just was. Sometimes things just get on your nerves, like little children constantly knocking on your gate and looking over your wall. Sometimes you wish they would all go away and give you come privacy.

Steve was having a bad day and so decided to use his hands to do some work. We have a carpenter making frames for our windows, so that we can have screens. This will be a blessing, as the Bowman’s house at Christmas was so much cooler than ours. Between 5 and 6 PM we close up all windows and doors as we do not have screens to keep the mosquitoes out. Sometimes we are fine and sometimes we feel like we are going to suffocate. Some of the windows have poorly designed old screens with hole on them. So Steve took them down and hauled them outside. Then, while standing on a chair he decided to get into the porch ceiling and get the bee nest out. The bees were gone, but we don’t want them back. The following pictures are of dead bees (we had been sticking the spraying wand in their hole and killing them) and their combs.

This is what fell when we took a ceiling panel down.

This is looking up into the ceiling.

Christmas 2009

Over the river and through the woods to Grandmother’s house we go. Oh! We didn’t do that this year. We went: Across northern Zambia and through the mud to the Bowman’s house we went!!! The Bowmans are the team leaders of the Northern Evangelist Team, which is our team. We had a great time with their family. They have cows and one just had a calf a few days earlier. So we went to see it.

We were trying to get it back into its pen. Instead of chasing it and trying to
herd it back in, Steve just decided to pick it up.

While there Amy took this picture of us. Consider it our 2009 Christmas photo that would have been in our Christmas cards that we usually send every year. Sorry, but you are not getting one this year. Our newsletter, blog, and facebook are where you will find updates on our lives.

God knew what he was doing when he shut doors to Kaputa and Isoka and opened the door to Mbala for us. I hate driving, especially long trips. From Kasama to Mbala is a 1 ½ hour drive on a tarmac (blacktop) road. To get to the Bowman’s house we drove to Kasama. From Kasama we went west to Luwingu. The road from Kasama to Luwingu is about the same distance from Kasama to Mbala, but it takes about three hours to drive it. It is dirt and mud. The following are some pictures of that road. Tobias got carsick. He was not a happy camper that day. On the drive back I gave Heather and Tobias Dramamine. About an hour into the trip I gave them some more; they were not looking or feeling good.

Nice Tarmac Road can be found near Luwingu and Kasama

Side road while they are making the road new

They are just grading this side road.  We couldn't decide where we should drive.  We did eventually drive over to the middle of the road. 

Here they have pushed back the trees getting ready to build the new road.

This is just the normal Luwingu Road not under construction yet.

There were many water holes to go around.

Then it started raining. 

We will not be complaining about the Great North Road after this trip.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Now we are finally up to date

These last few post have been about the past.  So this one will bring us up to the present.

One week ago Tobias was at the Schaffer's over night.  The big boys decided to go for a bike ride.  On the way back and only a little way from the house, they decided to stop and drink the water out of the water ditch they have.  Filtered water was not that far away.

The very next day Tobais had diarrhea.  He was sick to his stomach.  Often I would just see him lying in bed hugging the bucket.  Basically, we were told to let things run its course.  So we didn't do any reading up on it until Tuesday morning.  We have this lovely flow chart to figure out what he had.  In the end we decided he had Giardia and started him on Flagyl.  He was on it for 5 days.  It helped him to feel better, but the diarrhea is lingering on.  So yesterday morning (Monday) I went back and read up on it again.  I found out it can last for 7 to 14 days and may need a second treatment of medicine.  So we have started the second round of meds.  Hopefully in a week he will be doing much better, I pray.

Keep him in your prayers.

Prayer Retreat

On Monday, November 23rd, after seeing the Doctor, we drove to our Prayer Retreat. It was at the Protea Safari Lodge. It was a very nice place as the pictures will indicate. It was wonderful to relax and just worship God and pray. We were there until Wed.

The rainy season was just starting.  So most everything was still brown.  Thanks to Protea for watering, this place was beautifully green.

This was the path to our room.  The sidewalks lead up to a door that has two hotel rooms or for us we used three rooms.  Heather and Tobias stayed down a room from us.

This place is only about 40 minutes from Lusaka.  It is fenced in and there are animals to go and see.  So we went on a animal drive to see them.


I just call this a beautiful animal.  I don't know my African animals very well.

They did have a lion family in two cages.

The animals on Wed. came right up to the dining room.  This is a flower bed in front of the dining room.  Seth is standing on the floor of the dining room.  One of the worker brought bread out to feed the animals.  This baby was eating out of his hands.


At 40/40 they gave us a bottle of water and told us to drink 4 of theses a day. Well, at our home stay I think we should have drunk 6 or more of them. It was a very hot weekend. They hottest Steve and I have experienced since being here. We spent most of our time outside. Heather and I (Rita) got urinary track infections. Luckily for us Seth was already on an antibiotic for his cold. So we took his medicine too and just got more on Monday morning from the nurse.

I, Rita, had been having diarrhea since being at the Lake in early September. Side note: I just found out last week that they don't filter their water. So every night at dinner I was drinking unfiltered lake water that we were swimming in. Yuck! So that explains my diarrhea. But after our home stay, the antibiotic must have wiped out the good bacteria along with the bad. By Thursday I felt like I had the flu. Then I started running a fever. It acted like malaria. I would have a fever and then it would be normal. I would be freezing and then sweating. We took a malaria test on Friday night, but it said I was fine. After talking to other missionaries I started on the malaria medicine anyways.

On Saturday afternoon we decided to go to the Doctor. He took a malaria test too, still fine. He asked that I come back on Sunday morning when the lab was opened. On Sunday we were back. The lab took blood and a urine sample. I saw a second Dr. Nothing looked out of normal. Then the diarrhea was mentioned. It had drastically changed on Sat. night. The Dr. wanted to know why I didn't say something to the Doc. on Saturday. Well, I have been having this for over two months and everything I read didn't indicate that anything was wrong. So be come back Monday morning with a stool sample.

I had dysentery. I started the medicine and we drove off to prayer retreat. Dysentery can really wipe a person out. I really didn’t feel like I could stand or do much walking. My legs felt like they would give out on me at any moment.

So now I am better and starting to feel like my old self again. Thank you Lord.

40 / 40 at Ibus Gardens

On Monday morning, November 16th, our ride picked us up from the village at 6:30 AM.  The bus, which was air conditioned this time, was leaving the Bush Camp at 8 AM.  We drove back to Lusaka and then about 1 hour north on the Great North Road to Ibus Gardens.  Here we had a three bedroom house with air condition to live in.  We debriefed here.  Tues., Wed., and Thurs. mornings we studied Pilot, which is a way of learning the language.  Steve has used it all this week and is loving it.  I will also be using it starting in January.

Steve and I came away from this a little down in the dumps.  They really stressed that the wife also needs to learn the language.  I know I need to learn it, but how do I fit it into my schedule.  Do we just stop teaching our children school for six months?  They are already behind according to school in the states.  I don't want to do that.  We need help.  We do have our name in at  So we began to pray about this.

Last week Steve's language helper wanted to know if we have some work for his youngest brother who has come to live with him.  His name is Moses.  He has finished high school and does speak English, although not as well as I would like.  I have trained him this week.  On Friday, I wrote out a schedule for him and he did 4 hours of school mostly all by himself.  God is Good

Friday, December 11, 2009

40/40 Village Stay

On November 13th, we packed up our stuff and went to stay with a family in a village.

 We stayed with the Blackwell family. 

Lots of children and adults came to see these white people.

This is the little two room house we lived in for the weekend.

On the left was the outhouse, the right is where you can wash up. 
The door in the middle can be moved to cover either opening. 
Little baby goats like to stick there heads in and drink from your wash water.

This is Lane and Seth in front of their pole barn.
They keep the baby calves in here at night.

Lane and the oxen and ox cart.
They just came back from the well.
They go to the well everyday, but they only fill up this drum three times a week.

This is their kitchen.  It has one door and three very small windows that are only about a foot square.  They cook over a fire on the floor in the very middle of the kitchen.  Dishes are stored on one side and two plows are on the other side of the kitchen.  The kitchen doubles as a chicken coop.  The chickens come inside at night and sleep in the kitchen!  The chickens, I quess, come in and go off to the left side every night.  I also quess that they cannot see very well like us when we come inside into a dark room.  I was sitting on a very low stool just inside the door on the left.  Something bumped into my leg.  The second time it happened I looked down and saw that a chicken was running into me.  The third time the chicken ultered her course and walked right across my feet to get to where she wanted to sleep for the night.

The kids and I helped to shell ground nuts (peanuts) everyday we were there.  On Sunday the wife built the fire up very high in the kitchen and roasted them.  Here we are getting the red skins off of the nut.  We did this by rolling them between our two hands.

Sunday evening we helped to make peanut butter. 

This takes lots of arm muscles.  Zambian women are very strong.  They make nshema everyday and I didn't last very long trying to help.

They wash the dishes outside.  Did you know rubbing dirt on the bottom of the pots gets the black off of it from the fire?  The animals (dogs and chickens) are waiting for left over rice and nshema.  That is all they get to eat.  They have to find their own food.  The chickens do get maze when the lady of the house wants to catch one to eat it.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

The Second Part of 40/40 - Small Town / Villages

After, I don’t know how many days, our stay in Lusaka came to an end. On a Tuesday morning we boarded a bus that was suppose to be air conditioned. We traveled east to Petauke for what was to be a 6 hour trip turned into an 8 hour trip. We learned to say “This is Africa.” Meaning things are not always going to be the way you think they should be or planned on them being.

Here we lived in tents. The kids had one end and we had the other. It poured rain and we stayed dry.

We had to pump our own water to take a shower. If you wanted it heated you put it on the camp fire, but the teapot needed to come back clean at the end of our stay. So the kids had chores. Two of them had to pump our teapots and two buckets full of water before breakfast which was at 7 AM. The water sat in the sun all day getting warm. I didn’t want to scrub a black teapot from the fire. Then it rained. That was the coldest shower I ever took. I folded and heated water for two days. Then it got warm again. We learned that it is pretty much daylight at 5 AM here. So the kids were up and ready to go by 6 am. Lesson: can’t get your kids up in the morning? Move to Africa and live in a tent!!

The men’s shower

The bucket with the shower attachment on it.

We were all given a teapot, bucket, choo bucket (bathroom in the middle of the night), and a tub to do laundry in. Our family was supplied with two each. This picture is of us moving in. We paid local ladies to wash our laundry by hand.

The first few days we took a flat bed truck into town and did our daily assignments there. We actually found a witch doctor and got to talk to him. I prayed most of the time (with my eyes wide open) while the others asked the questions. On that Sunday each family went to a different denomination / cult church.

The next few days we walked to local villages for our assignments or were dropped off in the van.

On a Friday morning after 9 days and nights of camping we packed it all up and headed to our home stays in the villages. That is the next blog.

Friday, November 27, 2009

40 / 40 in Lusaka

Washing Dishes

Air drying Dishes

Public Transportation

I thought I would tell you a little bit about 40/40. I won’t try to catch you up or tell you all. I mostly want to post some pictures that we took.

The first part of 40/40 orientation was in Lusaka at the Seminary. Our family had the privilege of staying at the guest house with two bathrooms in our flat. Everyone at the seminary had two showers and three toilets to share for the women and I think the men had the same. They also shared two wash machines and two dryers while we had our own. So the first 14 days or so we were spoiled.

Most every morning we got on a blue bus and with our helpers went out into an area of the city to do our DFA’s (Daily Field Assignments). We started with just observing, then just sitting with them visiting and getting to know Zambians, to telling them the story of Creation to Christ. These DFA’s were training us to know how to get to know Africans when we get to our area of service.

Three of the pictures are of Heather washing and drying her dishes. We all washed and air dried our dishes. They went through a cold wash and rinse and then a hot wash and rinse. The rinse water had the purple stuff we wash all our fruits and veggies in. Then air drying. This is so we don’t pass on germs and make each other sick. All this and a bug was still passed around. We even had to air dry our hands. They use to have towels to dry hands but not anymore. Every 40/40 they try to figure out what they can do to stop passing the runs and a throw up bug around, so the shared hand towels went.

The picture of the blue bus is what public transportation looks like here in Zambia. The first morning we walked a little way to the main road to catch one and ride it to down town where we transferred to another one in the bus terminal. We were in teams of two with a Zambian helper, but three teams were going to the same area. So we had 6 white women getting on the same bus. The bus drivers started fighting over us. After that our Zambian helpers got the drivers phone number and called them and they came to the Seminary and picked us up and took us all the way to where we were going. The last Saturday we did this no buses showed up. So we walked to the bus stop again. This time the helpers had us wait outside the terminal while two of them went in and got a bus and brought it out. They did a wonderful job of watching out for us and keeping us safe. One other time we were in the terminal on a bus and a guy wanted to steal my purse. He saw how I had a hold of it and so since he couldn’t steal it he got mad and tried to steal my hat. One of the helpers saw this going down and grabbed my hat first. I think white women on public buses cause too much trouble. I don’t think I will be ridding those buses by myself.

Flamboyent Tree

I cannot spell and the internet is too slow. This beautiful tree is one of many at the Guest House in Lusaka. This picture was taken out of a second story window overlooking the playground.

Friday, October 23, 2009


I just thought I would tell all of you out there that follow this blog and are not on facebook to hear the news that my scan was clear! Praise the Lord, nothing is wrong with me! I just have some unexplainable T3 and T4 levels when not on medicine. Now we know that for next year. I should never need a body scan again.

I'm jetting off to Lusaka at 5:30 my time. I'm 6 hours ahead of you in the United State. I will be joining my family for 40/40, where no computers are aloud. Don't expect to hear much is anything from us until Nov. 20th or so.

God bless,

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

40/40 and South Africa

My family has safely arrived in Lusaka, Zambia. 40/40 starts tomorrow. This is an orientation to life in Africa and how to witness to the Zambians.

I am in J'burg, South Africa. I was suppose to have a test on Monday. The technician was asking me all kinds of questions and found out that I don't need this test. Since my thyroid is out and I had cancer in it, and I had a big dose of radio active iodine, then I should be having a body scan. So they ordered a low dose of the iodine and I took that capsule on Tuesday afternoon. Tomorrow morning very early we will drive over to the hospital for a body scan. If all is alright, I will see my Dr. on Friday morning and come home (to Lusaka). If not they will order the big dose and admit me to the hospital for three days of isolation. They still admit you to the hospital for isolation in this country. Then I can go home on Monday.

Pray that the scan is clear, that they find nothing wrong with me.

God bless,
in South Africa

Saturday, October 17, 2009

A Week of Waiting

I have spent the week in Lusaka all by myself. Which means Steve is having to cook, do laundry, and teach the kids there lessons, plus learn Bemba. Pray for him.

On Monday I flew in a Cessna 210 from Kasama Airport to Lusaka. The trip costs the same no matter how many people are in the plane. So the Adairs flew down with me. They needed something that runs their fans at night when there electric goes off from 12 - 6 am. It is very hot where they are. There were two pilots this time. So five adults and two children flew in this six seater. It was scarier - wondering if all that weight in such a little plane was going to get off the ground and stay in the air, but it did.

Once we landed in Lusaka, I was whisked straight away to the laboratory for blood work. The rest of this week has had me hanging out at the guest house in flat 4. I have been having wonderful quiet times - no children running around the house. I have been reading. I have spent more time on the computer than I probably have since setting foot in the country. I have also been eating a very boring diet. Low Iodine. I can't find uniodized salt here. So I have been eating oatmeal, no salt. That is OK, I don't put salt in my oatmeal anyways, but I eat it for breakfast and lunch. I'm getting tired of it. I made a big beef stew, no salt of course, and have been eating it for supper for the past two weeks. There is a cookbook, but when you don't have the salt you need why try cooking different things.

So tomorrow, Sunday, I fly to South Africa for a test on Monday afternoon. This test will show if something is growing in my thyroid area that shouldn't be. I will see the Doctor on Tues. If all is well, I fly home on Wed. On Thursday 40/40 starts. That is an African Orientation, blogging will not happen during that time as we are not allowed to take our computers. So it will be quiet here for about 30 days.

God bless,

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Today, Steve spent most of the day working on one of our toilets. It has a hole for overflow in the top tank. It was overflowing. Steve messed with the float valve and fixed it. This morning it was overflowing again. Steve decided it needed new insides and we just happen to have some sitting out in the pump house. So to work he went. What a job it was. There were no directions inside the package! L He even took off the leaky pipe that goes from the bowl to the tank. Toilets here are not in one piece. He stilled didn’t have all the right parts, but managed to get it put together with only two leaks. The tank is cracked and he has board wedged between the wall and pipe to keep the pipe in the bowl until it dries. This is putting pressure on the crack. I think he went back in and put silicone on the crack. He did just flush if for the first time (7:30 PM) and he went back to playing games with the kids, so it must work or he would be back in there working on it.

This afternoon the electric went off. It has become no big thing; you just wait an hour it usually comes on again. I have spent the day making bread. Henry does make bread, but Steve made French toast this morning for breakfast. I was thinking the bread isn’t going to last the weekend. So I made our favorite oatmeal bread, then our new favorite recipe for sandwich bread and then 2 doz. Rolls. My feet hurt. The electric came on and we used the oven to bake it. A friend of ours bakes the bread on her braai (grill) when there isn’t electric. I haven’t had to try that yet.

When the electric came back on the water pressure didn’t come back, indicating the pump has problems. There are three breakers hooked to it and all were off. Steve turned them on and they popped off again. The culprit: the voltage regular. That is two now that have problems. We buy them to save our appliances from getting messed up and they keep getting messed up. The dryer had the voltage regular burning up twice!! Help! These things are no cheap!!
I think I better go and investigate. Steve is back in the bathroom with tools. That doesn’t sound good, although he isn’t muttering or fussing, so that is good.

God bless,

Second Package has arrived.

Oh! We feel like it is Christmas. Chili powder!!! I just used up the last of what I had, that some nice missionary gave me. A soccer ball. The kids are having fun in the yard playing soccer again. Our other ball died in one month of being here. It was an old one! I, Rita, am trying to get the rocks out of the yard so that hopefully it lasts longer. Thanks for the package Lori.


In this picture Steve is carrying about 50 lbs. of flour and the other bag is 50 lbs. of sugar. Yes we buy in bulk here. We can buy it smaller like we did in the states, but we go through it too fast. We always seem to be running down to the store for more. So I broke down and went for the big bags. The thing is that bag of flour in the picture is our second one we have bought and it is almost empty!!!

Our First Package has arrived

Our first package arrived this week. It was for Lane, since it was his birthday on the 1st of October. It was from a 5th grade Sunday school class in a Church in Alabama. Lane says, “Thank you very much.” He is being very nice and sharing the M & M’s with his siblings. The t-shirt is a great fit with room to grow. Thanks for thinking about us, for praying for us, and for sending us the wonderful treats.


I just thought I would update you on the water. Our Logistics Coordinator –Dwayne and his wife Betty were here for one day. He brought a water tank. He and Steve spent the day digging and putting pipes together. We now have a nice new tank on top of the pump house. The real neat thing is we don’t have to turn things on and off anymore. The tank and the reservoir have float valves that shut off when they are full. If the electric goes off we don’t need to go outside and turn a valve to get water from the tank, it will come from the tank all by itself. They also put in a new pipe all the way from the front wall, now when the water comes the pipe is full. If that makes sense! Before the water only came at a trickle. Thanks Dwayne and Betty for driving 12 hours and helping us out!!

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Interruptions in the life of a Missionary!

Interruptions seem to be something of the norm here. You wish they were not normal, but then we pray that we handle them in the right way, as people are watching: little and big.

Flying to Joberg, South Africa I would say is a major interruption, especially to Steve. He had to teach the children school and still try to study language. He had to cook and keep after the laundry. Our worker Henry does all of the cleaning and does make the bread. I probably need to teach him more. My next trip south is more planned and so I am trying to do cooking on ahead.

On Monday, Sept 28th, our dog discovered a great place to dig in the mud. He was coated and so off he went to our outside laundry area to get washed off. Steve and I took showers too close together and the drain was over flowing. We knew it was clogged, but were ignoring it. Ignoring it really isn’t a problem here unless you are trying to teach your dog to stay out of the garden and not dig everything up!! Basically, all pipes come out of the ground outside the wall of the house and go into the house wall were ever you want them to. All the way around our house is a nice cement drainage ditch. So when the outside drain is clogged it just over flows into this ditch and drains into the garden under the grape arbor. This is where the wash machine drained until we started catching the water in a drum to water the fruit trees. So during a much needed language break, Steve and his language helper investigated. After digging around with a stick, he found a grate and pulled it up and the water went right down. All fixed and didn’t cost a thing.
In the afternoon the dryer quite while I was in the kitchen where I could hear it. It didn’t sound normal. I went to investigate. The voltage stabilizer was smoking. I quickly pulled plugs. Steve just hooked this new stabilizer on a week ago!!!!! Maddening!!!! Our washer will not spin on low voltage. I turn things off and come back an hour later and start it again and it works. Steve doing laundry doesn’t have that much patience. The thing should work. So he hooked it up to a voltage stabilizer. So Steve took a break from language study and unwired the washer and dryer from the stabilizer and wired them back straight into the electric. Some things around here you just cannot plug in, you have to wire them up. So back to square one and this wasn’t cheap. Steve just happened to find this large voltage stabilizer that someone had ordered and never picked up. Finding one this big is hard and we need them for the washer and dryer that are on our create or we might as well not even use them. This electric around here will mess them up.

Today, the washer did quit. The dryer has electric but the washer doesn’t seem to. Steve got out what few tools he has and started taking it apart. It turned out to be a fuse. Problem solved, but an hour has gone by that should have been spent studying.

God bless,
Rita for the Schwarz’ in Mbala, Africa

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Pictures of Potholes

The first picture is looking back at what we think in the worse section of the road. I had labeled it as a "long section - off the road we go". The second picture is a classic pothole. It starts little of course, but left unfixed they just keep getting bigger.

Calf Steve Delivered

Better late than never. Here two pictures of the cows and then the calf that Steve helped to deliver a few weeks ago.

Our Trip back to Lusaka

Our trip to Lusaka went well. We took two days going down, but drove it in 12 hours all in one day coming back. The trip itself can be broken up into nice 200 K segments. Each segment is not exactly 200K but it is close to it.

The first leg of the trip is from Mbala, of course, to Kasama. This section of road is not exactly nice, but it is under construction and suppose to be done by the end of October. It has lots of dirt sections. What was amazing is how much was done to the road in the one week while we were gone.

The second leg of the trip is from Kasama to Mpika. This road is very good. We did hit a few pot holes going too fast. Trying to decide if the black marks really mean a pot hole is coming or not was what we needed to figure out. Finally, Steve decided to believe all black marks and slow down. The thing is this section of road is good so you are flying a little faster and have to slow down faster.

The third leg of this trip is 240K from Mpika to Serenje. It is on the Great North Road and I will discuss it further down in this post.

The fourth leg is from Serenje to Kipiri. Again the road isn’t too bad. You can cruise along at 120 K per hour or faster for those with a lead foot. You do have to stop for police checks.

The fifth leg takes us from Kipiri to Lusaka. On this section of road is all of the speed bumps I mentioned in an earlier post. We kind of forgot all about them, so the first one was quite the experience. I am a back seat driver I will admit. I spend most of my time working at keeping my mouth shut. I find it easier to read a book so I just cannot see what is going on. But here in Africa, Steve drives and watches the road. I do watch the road, but I am also watching for signs that he is missing – like the speed bump signs.

The wild life that we got to enjoy while we are driving or should I say that we hit the brakes for so as we don’t hit them: goats and lots of them, sheep, chickens, dogs, and cows. It seems that if a car is coming the goats all want to cross the road in front of you. Chickens can never make up their minds which way they want to run. Sorry but that is all we have seen so far.

OK for the third leg of the trip. I got out a notepad and took notes. We counted pot holes. Steve helped, but don’t hold us to the number. We counted 210 potholes in this 240K stretch. We also counted what we labeled bad sections of the road. This might have been one big pot hole, or one side of the car was off the road to get around it, or there was more than 5 pot holes clumped together. There were 23 of these. Then there were 7 sections that we totally had to go off of the road. Then there were 4 sections of totally off the road we went but they were really looong sections.

So that was our driving trip, pictures to come in the next post.

God bless,

Friday, August 28, 2009

Veterinarian Skills Put to Use

Last Saturday morning Steve put to use his 8 or 9 years of skills learned working as a veterinarian assistant. Lynn Shaffer wanted us to come over so the kids could play. We were leaving town for a week, so they need play time. I called to see about coming over this afternoon and could we please pick up more cow manure for the garden. We made plans and she informed us of their one cow was in labor and seemed to be having a hard time of it. I told Steve. I called her back to tell her Steve offered to come over and look at her. Then her husband Grant soon called back asking him to come over and have a look.

Steve on the way over is thinking it has been a long time since I have done any of this. If this is the problem – it will not be good. If that is the problem - it will not be good. Hopefully, the calf’s head will just be turned – that would be easy. When he got there, the calf’s front legs were in the canal and sure enough its head was turned.

Lynn called tell me they have a beautiful girl calf and that Steve saved the calf and cow!!! One never knows when some skill you haven’t used in years (15 years to be exact) might become useful. Are any of our life’s experiences ever a waste of time? Not from the Lord’s perspective. Everything that we experience, good or bad, prepares us for a work that God has foreknown since before we were born. Is there a God with an eternal purpose to save the souls of men through His Son Jesus Christ? You better believe it! What a privilege to be just a small part of that purpose. To God be the glory!

God bless from Zambia,
Rita (the beginning) and
Steve (for the ending)

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Church in the Bush!!

Do any of you in the States remember church camp? I think that is what it was called. Where I grew up the area Mennonite (since I was Mennonite) churches gathered at Penn York Camp for Camp Meeting. We spent Friday night and stayed until after Sunday lunch. I remember loving it. I couldn’t wait to go. I even had fun the year my parents did the cooking.

Well, that is what we went to on Sunday. The others came on Wednesday night or Thursday. This was a Baptist Convention meeting. The people look forward to and start planning and saving for this a year ahead of time.

We left Mbala about 9:15 AM Sunday morning. We followed another family up. We only had the six of us in our vehicle. They have lived in Zambia a lot longer, years longer than we have. They had 11 people in their vehicle, plus three dressed chickens and two live ones. The chickens were for help in feeding us. We drove about 45 minutes toward lake Tanganyika and then up into the mountains.

It was a wonderful experience. The kids loved the fact that we drove through a creek to get there – no bridge. They also loved going over bumps and seeing who came close to hitting the roof with their heads. That is until Mommy discovered they didn’t have their seatbelts on.

The people built the church walls, little sleeping houses, and the outhouse all for the meetings. We got there a little too early, especially for the children. When we got there everyone was facing the pulpit area. There was a corning on the back wall were we sat down on two benches that were quickly brought over. Immediately, we the white people were the center of attention. Most of the children watched us the whole time. We got there in time for Sunday School which is in Bemba, so we stayed in the church area. Then there was the preaching – it was in English and translated into Bemba. Then we walked down to a creek to baptize over 30 people, I think. They baptized four at a time. There were 4 pastors down in the water. Then it was back up to the church for the Lord’s Supper. By this time it was 2 PM. We hadn’t had lunch yet and the children had had quite enough of it. By 2:30 a lady from our church here in Mbala had lunch ready for us. We ate the traditional nshima with the rape dip and a tomato and onion dip.

For the trip home we traded Heather for Joel. Then Friday and Charlie (a girl) joined us to. So because we were carrying Schaffer children home, we ended up at their house for a few hours. A wonderful ending (coffee, tea, lemonade (fresh squeezed) and good conversation) to a wonderful day worshipping God in the great outdoors.

Water Lost :(

Sunday morning around 9:30 I discovered the outside faucet was turned on. It had been turned on since before 6 AM. When someone turns a faucet on, if water doesn’t come out, the faucet is most often left on. I have started trying to make it a habit that when I turn the pump on I look to see if any faucets are also turned on.

We have home from church, ate lunch, and started doing dishes when the pump wouldn’t work anymore. Steve went down the checklist of why your pump might not work. Last thing on the list, water too low in reservoir. Sure enough, three hours of water running out onto the ground had drained our reservoir.

We spent all week being very stingy with our water. By Friday it was almost to the top again. On Sunday I finally took a normal shower. I had all week been using a dish pan to conserve water of course.

Water Leaks are an Endless Job

On Saturday, August 8th, Steve decided to work on some leaks. The valve he had been opening and shutting all week to get water when the electric goes off has a leak around it. He shut off the water and went to work. He then drew a diagram, did some measuring and went off to town to visit the hardware store or maybe I should say stores. Since it is a week after the fact I will make it short.

The pipes are very old, let me say, they are VERY OLD. He got the one pipe he wanted off. It was leaking and had six different places that had been fixed. He is going to put a new pipe there in the future. Taking that pipe off made the pipe leading up to the tank leak. I climbed up onto the pump house shed roof and held the pipe steady. But no matter what he tried he couldn’t tighten the pipe where it had come loose nor could he get it to come apart at other joints. So he started turning the other way and the leak became bigger. So then it was how do we save the 250 – 300 gallons of water that is in the tank, before the pipe falls off and the yard gets watered.

We hooked an old hose with many holes that was lying around and started filling the 3 buckets that we have and I started watering the garden. Steve started dumping the water back into the reservoir. Then he got an idea. He unhooked the pipe that put water into the tank from the reservoir and siphoned the tank back into the reservoir.

Water Saved

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

One Water Leak Fixed

One Water Leak Fixed

The pipe in the picture sprung a leak on Sat. Aug. 1st. This pipe gives up water from the tank on the pump house when the electric goes off. Steve to the rescue! He balled up some plumbers tape and stuck it in the hole. Then he wrapped the pipe with plumbers tape. Then he took electrical tape and wrapped it again pulling it tight. Then for good measure he topped it off with duck tape. Hey, whatever works! It doesn’t leak!!!

The Subject is Water Again

This past week the power went off several times. We have had supper ready, but the dishes need to be washed and the kids too!! Our kids have never been this dirty. They get very filthy everyday and I promise you they are not rolling in it, but they sure do look like it. I was talking about water though. So Steve goes out and turns some knobs and we have gravity flowing water from the tank on top of the pump house. The only problem is the water is rusty, as you can see in the above picture. But it is water and we saved the sheets from needing to be washed in the morning.

We Need Water!!!

On around July 29th or 30th we all of a sudden were not getting any water. So we were being very careful. Our water reservoir was getting low. The water reservoir is a round cement looking tank that is in the ground. We still hadn’t filled up the tank that sits on top of the pump house. It holds about 250 – 300 gallons. Saturday morning Steve decided to follow the line where the water comes in and found a valve had been turned off. It is in the front side flower bed out at the road. Some child (could have been one of 14) who has been playing in our yard must have turned it off. Water problem solved.

Sunday, August 9, 2009


Picture: Our Water Reservoir looking a little on the low side.

In the previous blog I talked about our electric. For two nights in a row now it has gone off at around 6PM for an hour or two. Today it is suppose to go off for twelve hours. When the electric goes off, it affects our water. We need electric to run the pump to get water into the house.

Before I go on, I want to say we have it pretty nice here. Fellow missionaries that were in FPO (Field Personnel Orientation) with us and flew over with us do not have it as nice. Their electric has been nonexistent or very low, that the pump cannot pump water. So they have to drive to a source of water and fill cans and haul it to their house. So we have it pretty good.

Our water supply is council water (town water). It comes out of a small lake that is just maybe a mile down the road. So if we half to haul water we wouldn’t have far to go. The water is pumped out of the lake in to water towers just up the hill from us. Water doesn’t run like it does in the States. The water only comes three times aday.

The first few days we were here in Mbala, the water leaks and an extra holding tank were worked on. Henry, our house helper, spent a good part of two days cleaning the tank with a wire brush. Josh and Steve worked on pipes and installed a float in the tank so that it would fill up automatically. Steve likes to do things right – when pipes are installed they shouldn’t leak!!!
He had to settle for small leaks. In a few days though those pipes were not leaking, but many still are.

Both toilets leak water. Steve put this lovely black silicone around the pipe and then tried to tie ligging (looks like intertubes rubber cut in long strips). That is how you fix leaks here. The toilet still leaks and so we found a plastic container to put under the leak so that the floor isn’t wet. The other toilet also has a plastic container to catch the leak. The kitchen sink cold water we just turned off altogether. We get the cold water we need from the bathroom sink. It is how I am getting my exercise at the moment. Must be working I have lost 12 pounds since setting foot in Mbala.

Sunday, August 2, 2009


I thought I would take time to tell you about our electricity. I want to do a post on our water, but I think I need to explain the electricity first. I wasn’t sure if we would have electricity all of the time. I was going off of the Adair’s blog. The Adairs are team members of ours who are on the border of Sudan. Their town only has a generator, which is too small for the town. So the generator gets hot and eventually turned off. We are on the main line. We have electric 24 hours a day, so far. It did go off twice already. The first time was for only maybe an hour. The second time it was off for maybe three hours. No hardships there.

Our electric isn’t stable though. It gets very low. When it is low the lights are more like candles and the fan goes around very slowly. Then all of a sudden it goes high. The lights get bright and the fan starts turning much faster. The refrigerator and the deep freeze are on voltage protectors. They have red, yellow, and a green light on them. If the light is red you know the electric is low. The electric is low a lot. When we first moved in this affected the water pump. We would turn on the faucet and no water would come. So we looked at the voltage protector on the fridge, sure enough the light was red. This was frustrating when you are trying to clean and wash things and move into a house.

Now, we also have voltage stabilizers on the fridge and deep freeze. This helps regulate the electric and they are able to run more often, keeping them colder. When our appliances arrive from the states they will be plugged into three things before they are plugged into the wall. The washing machine will be plugged into a voltage protector which will be plugged into a voltage stabilizer which will be plugged into a step down transformer which will be plugged into the wall. At least that is what we think the order will be.

So, that is our electric.

God bless,

Monday, July 27, 2009

Our Trip from Lusaka to Mbala, Zambia

On July 18th at 5:30 in the morning we started our drive from Lusaka to Mbala. Our temporary vehicle is a Ford Everest. All four kids sat on one bench seat. The back doors just went shut. They get too much bigger and we will not be able to do that again. The back was packed to the ceiling. Plus we were hauling a small trailer which had in it six suitcases and the kids 4 backpacks. Josh and Amy Bowman and their children made the trip with us. Their trailer held two of our suitcases inside of it and two where strapped to the top.

We saw many new and interesting things along the way:

A “Lay By” is like an American Rest Stop on a highway, except there are no bathrooms or vending machines. Sometimes they are marked with a sign and sometimes not. They do have tall elephant grass in which to squat. We have decided that the elephant grass in way cleaner than a restroom and smells much better.

There are many police checks along the way. For the most part we were waved on. Some police checks have gates across the road. The guard just came out and opened the gate for us.

Speed Bumps – they are most anywhere in Lusaka and I know of one here in Mbala. They are not marked well. The paint has long since faded.

Rumble Strips? I am not sure what to call these things. There were signs for them, although I’m not sure there were signs for them all of the time. Some towns do have what I would call rumble strips as you come into town to slow you down. These other rumble strips are like huge speed bumps only there was 10 of them in a row!

Driving at night is dangerous. We use to fuss about the paint or lack of it on the highways around Louisville. Louisville’s painted lines look good now! Driving at night is nerve racking. Even Steve said his heart was pounding. We were following someone so that made it a little easier. At one point Josh got his vehicle totally off of the road. He had followed a car off of the road. We couldn’t see what was happening, but decided we better follow him off of the road too. Here a semi-truck was passing another semi. So the semi was in our lane, and he was flying. More heart pounding was happening after that.

Some roadside etiquette: At first we just thought this guy wanted to turn. Then we decided he didn’t know where he wanted to turn. Now we know it was his road etiquette. When driving down the road and someone is trying to pass you, put on your left turn signal to tell them that it is safe to pass. Put on your right turn signal to indicate it is NOT safe to pass. Also, and we noticed this at night, put on your right turn signal when someone is coming toward you to give them a point of reference. Also, you should use your horn a lot. This is not rude. It tells the person walking or the bike on the side of the road that you are coming.

We passed 24 Jehovah Witness Kingdom Hall signs and 4 Seventh Day Adventist signs on the way up.

Pot holes: I will do another post on just pot holes when we go back to Lusaka in August. The farther north one goes on the Great North Road the less great it becomes. If you see black skid marks on the road – slowdown now – potholes. If you see brown dirt marks up ahead – slow down – pot holes. If you see dirt on both sides of the road instead of grass – slow down – major pot holes – pot holes so bad that the side of the road is better!?!?!

At one potty break on the side of the road eight little children sat watching us the whole time. They hardly moved. Us white people must be interesting to watch.

At one point of the drive we were listening to Point Of Grace. There is one song that Heather Payne sings that we love. She has a wonderful voice. Lane made the comment, “She lets her voice go!” Yes, we had to agree. I wish I could sign like that.

Dad, at one point we thought you might like to have your front porch at one of the major pothole places just to watch the traffic. We changed our minds though, as the dust would be awful.

God bless,
Rita for the Schwarz’s
In Mbala, Zambia

Friday, July 17, 2009

It is Cold here in Africa!

If is winter time here. I think is got to about 72 degrees today. It gets down into the 50's at night. This flower looks like the ones you plant at Christmas in the house.


This morning I went to the grocery store shopping. Heather went with me and we used two carts. I don't have enough to last us until we are back in Lusaka, but we won't stave. There is food in Mbala and we can drive to Kasama to get some, it will just be more expensive and less of a selection. There is already less of a selection here in Lusaka compared to the States.

This afternoon was spent packing. Packing suitcases and better packing the grocery bags. Then it was off to pack the trailers that we will be hauling behind the vehicles. Our vehicle is full. The kids, all four of them, will be sitting on a bench seat made for three. It might be a very long ride.

We will pull out, hopefully, by 5:00 AM in the morning and drive to Kasama. We will be staying with a Journeymen there. We will drive the final two hours to Mbala on Sunday.

Please pray for safe travel. This will be a long drive on Saturday. We have only done short little trips here around town. This morning as I was leaving my parking space at the store I was on the wrong side of the road. At least it was in the parking lot. Plus that middle mirror is suppose to be on my right, instead it is on the left. I have hit the door a few times trying to shift. It is very odd using the mirrors, they don't seem right and it feels like you can't see all that you could see if the steering wheel was on the other side of the car.

Keep Praying,

New Things We Are Learning

When I am wearing jeans, pants, slacks, whatever you want to call them, I say I am wearing pants. Here in Africa that is wrong. They do wear pants here, but pants refers to your underwear. So I am learning to call my jeans - trouser.

That lovely little napkin you put under your fork - it is called a serviette. If you ask where napkins are in a store they would point you to the feminine hygiene products.

Then there are all those line we waited in to get our drivers license last Friday. There were lines to wait in on Tuesday getting our residence cards. Lines are called ques.

Little tidbits to learn.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Africa - Day 4

What a day Friday was. We set out to get our Zambian drivers license. Some missionaries say you really don't need them, your US drivers license works. It sounds like mostly it is used when you are driving in other countries.

First we waiting in line until it was our turn. Blake went in with Kenny (another new missionary) when "next" was called. Blake took in with him our photo copies of our US drivers license and our international drivers license. He came out with four applications to fill out. We filled them out and went right up to window twelve. It had no line. The girl informed us the system was down. We continues to wait. She continues to do everything but work. Finally, she asked to see our papers. We didn't have the form indicating we had a physical from a Doctor. Blake informs her that we didn't need one. We didn't need one because we have US drivers license. That trumps the physical. The guy Blake saw first looked at the papers and told us we had everything we needed. This girl wouldn't budge. She shut down and walked away. We went to her supervisor, who by this time was receiving a text message from her. He said the same thing and offered to get us forms, which he did. Blake then went back to the first guy he saw to get the application form and told him his problem. Blake was not going to give up and go home.

The first guy knew who was working window 12. He went to her and told her she needs to enter our paper work. She refused. He told her that it is her job to do it and then told Blake to stand there until she does. She did it. She really didn't want to work that day. Blake thought she might leave for lunch early and not even come back that afternoon. She still would have been paid. That is just how it is here.

After window 12, we stood in line to get our picture taken. After standing in line for awhile we realized the 5 or so guys standing at the back wall were going in the door where the camera didn't work and crossing over to get their picture taken. What is funny is they spaced it out so that is wouldn't be two obvious. The funny part, they could have stood in line and got in in about the same amount of time as it took them. You are not allowed to smile when you get your picture taken. I had to take off my earrings. Also, over the door was a sign: remove your wig and false hair!!!

After pictures we got in another line to pay. Then we left the building and drove down town to another building, but we remember we needed to back to the Baptist Mission office and get something photo copied so that the mission would have a copy of what we have done so far. So then back down town to get a stamp that we don't need to take the driving test because we have US drivers license. We first stand in line at the wrong building. They send us across the street to another building room 8. We cross over and find a man in a nice bright yellow jacket (police emblem on back) and ask for directions. He takes us to the room.

Here we are told yes we do need to take the driving part of the test. Blake questions this, because new missionaries came in just last week and didn't take it. They reassured us that yes we do need to take it, but it is a short test, very short test. The man that showed us to the room came back and took our paper work, stapled it together with a new paper on top, and then preceded to put a stamp on every paper. Basically, we passed before we even took the test.

So back out to the land rover we went. I was a little worried. I haven't even drove such a vehicle before. Steve started out. He drove us down a few roads and turns. Then Kenny drove only on one straight stretch of road, no turns. Leslie was next. She had the same stretch of road, but I was sure he was going to fail her. After every ones turn he said congratulations you passed. I got out of the back of the vehicle and hadn't heard him say it yet. Plus, he told her to turn the vehicle off and the others didn't have to do that. I was a little worried. I climbed in to find she did pass, but that her husband better give her some practice time to get better.

Side note this is a shame society. So my turn. Thank you so much Daddy! You did a great job teaching me how to drive. Even though I haven't driven stick shift vehicle on a regular basis for over 10 years I haven't lost the touch. I did fine, even driving on the left side of the road and shifting with my left hand. And I didn't turn the windshield wipers on trying to turn my turning signal on. I have done that every time I have driven here, but not during my driving test!
Back to the side note, the guy kept praising me and my abilities to shame Leslie. I felt so bad for her.

The most nerve racking part was I had to drive back to his office, where traffic is thick and so are the people who walk just on the side of the road. After this we went out for lunch. The men went back to the first office in the afternoon to stand in line again and pay again. Not sure why we had to pay as many times as we did. Basically, it was a good day to learn a lot about the culture here in Zambia.


Africa - Day 3

The morning was spent getting work permits. I (Rita) didn't have to leave here to do it. The men went. We met with Mary and learned about the paper work we will need to do to get reimbursed for things and what is reimbursable.

Lunch was with another missionary family. Hamburgers again but it was good. We got to pick there brains and ask lots of questions.

Steve spent the afternoon helping to load a trailer African style of furniture and such for our house in Mbala. We have a house to live in in Mbala, but in a few months we will have to move again. It looks like we will be moving into another house in 4 months. I found out why we had to move. I thought something was wrong with the house, maybe it wasn't up to standards, maybe it was too small. The answer: it is too big. It is 3100 square feet!!! I have never lived in a house that big. The mission board only allowss houses to be 1600 square feet for missionaries to live in.

We had Chinese take out for dinner and played Phase 10.


Africa - Day 2

On Wednesday, Steve followed Blake with our SUV (Ford :( Everest ) to the mechanic. The plan was to get work permits, but that didn't happen. Blake took Steve around town to various shops. We both now have sell phones and our computer has something to stick in the side of it giving us email.

A warning to you all: don't send us any pictures. We will have the email settings set to NOT receive pictures. Life is soooo much slower over here. When we are in Lusaka, we will change the settings. So if you want to email pictures, tell us first and we will send you an email as to when you can.

Now it is Saturday as I am writing this and I have no idea what I did on Wed. I think I did some laundry. I'm sure I spent time with Dawnya. For dinner we grilled hamburgers!!! Yum


I just remembered, Dawnya took me to the closest grocery store to the mission house and we went up and down the isles.

Africa - Day 1

We landed in Lusaka, Zambia at 7:30 in the morning. Several missionary families were there to greet us. Another family arrived on the field with us. These missionary families helped us gather up around 24 suitcases between the two of our families. We loaded up the vehicles and drove to the Baptist Mission.

We spent the first part of the morning visiting. The second part of the morning was spent getting cleaned up and organized. The Baptist Mission is a compound with an office building that has storage underneath it. It has an apartment type building with two stories. Then there are several one story building. So there are several places to stay here. We are in "Kudu". It has two bedrooms, one bath, and a common room. The common room has a kitchen area, table, a little two seater couch, and a cot that Heather is on. So we organized suitcases, so that the ones we don't need can be sitting up right giving us a little bit more room.

At lunch we had a pizza party with the Kimbrough's. I don't know where they got it but it is two for the price of one on Tuesdays. Then Blake took us out driving. He took us to the Seminary and then Steve drove around. I, sleep deprived as I was, also drove around. Blake is good, he makes us think about things. We were wondering about certain buttons in the SUV. We have 4-wheel drive, so after jumping out to the lock the hubs (so we would know how to do it), we realized we didn't have to. So this button had three initials on it. Blake wouldn't tell us what it was for. I finally guessed it was the real window defrost. Blake gave me a high five, like I finally came up with the right answer. I'm pretty gullible with a sleep deprived mind. The button is for the 4-wheel drive. As you can tell from this paragraph I still don't know much about 4-wheel drive.

We had pot-luck for supper in the quest house dinning room with all the missionary's that were in the area. Then we sleep walked to bed.


Friday, July 10, 2009

Flying to Africa

Thanks so much to Uncle Dale and Aunt Marion who went with us to the airport and then drove our van back to my Dad's house. Thank you also to Uncle Eby who drove my Dad's truck to and from the airport. He also knew some back way to go. We all of a sudden popped out of the country and into the city of Philly.

We arrived at the airport kind of early, but we never have flown with our whole family before. We checked in and then got some dinner. Our plane took off at 9:05 headed to London. Heather didn't like the take off. During the flight she was fine. Then landing had her with the bag over her mouth.

We landed in London at 9 in the morning their time. We had a 10 hour lay over. Heather spent around 8 of that in the bathroom over the toilet. At 2pm I became more concerned. She needed to stop this so that she could get on the next plane. There was a pharmacy in the airport. I decided maybe she has a nervous stomach like I did as a teenager. I wanted Mylox, but settled on Milk of Magnesia. She kept it down and went to sleep. I then gave her Dramamen for the next flight.

We boarded the plane on time, but because of weather during the day they were behind. We sat for 1 1/2 hours at the gate. Taking off late some how didn't effect our landing. I believe that we landed on time. I could be wrong though. Heather did some very heavy breathing during take off and landing and did fine.

We were met in customs by a fellow missionary. She had paper work to show them. We still had to pay for tourist visa's, but only the adults. They helped us round up all of the luggage and drove us to the Baptist Mission.

In Africa,

Friday, June 12, 2009

Shot Day Number 3 is over

This momma got four shots today. I will be very happy not to see a needle again for a long time. The poor nurses - I bleed a lot for just getting a shot.

Steve got away with just one shot. The boys only got two shots, Heather had to get three. Tobias had his tetanus in February and I'm not sure why the other two boys only got two. For tetanus you get a booster every ten years and so that is why I thought they didn't get it. Then I was told if you are living overseas then you get the booster every five years. So then I think they should have gotten it.

Oh, well it is over with. I will check the papers when we get them on Monday. The papers are a list of shots we got while here.

Seth and Lane have accepted Jesus as their Savior

Seth prayed to ask Jesus into his heart on Sunday night, his eighth birthday. We have been having a lot of talks about such things since being here. He has been asking a lot of questions.

We have to witness using various ways three times a week here. The Sub-Saharan African Peoples Affinity group has to use Creation to Christ for the past two weeks. Seth has been given that presentation twice by Mommy and Daddy.

On Tuesday, I gave the presentation to Lane. It takes about 15 minutes to do it. At the end Lane said he wanted to ask Jesus into his heart.

We are rejoicing and so are the angels!!

Seth turned 8 years old

On Sunday Seth turned eight. We had a small little party in our quad. We did have cake, but no candles since they are not allowed in the quads. What was really fun was seeing how creative other children can be. He received a card that involved the 5 senses. Smell - perfume, taste - candy taped inside, sight - a lot to read - two journeymen (women) helped, sound - recycled cards that talked, the noise piece was taken out and used in this card, touch.

It was really fun to experience a small and simple birthday. What was best was the kids loved it too! There was no complaining!!

Airport Day

Last Friday the kids had airport day. The teachers had set up an airport in another building to teach them about airports. They made play passports the day before. They had passports, tickets and carry on bags. They were giving a lot of instructions about airports.

They had to stick together in family groups. The two younger classes that didn't have an older sibling were assigned to older children to watch. They were told about watching / hanging onto their bags. Lane lost his. He wasn't watching it and so it was stolen. But he was carrying his ticket and passport in his hand so he still got on the plane.

I want to brag on Tobias and how he has stepped up to the plate in being responsible. One little girl's bag was stolen and her passport and ticket were in it. Since she didn't have either she wasn't allowed to get on the plane. Tobias stayed with her. Actually her and her sister joined my kids and stuck together. Tobias said is she can't get on the plane then he wasn't getting on either. He wasn't going to leave her alone.

The teachers also told the kids what is was going to be like for the parents. That we would be tired. They were told that they shouldn't whine and complain, that it is going to be a tiring process. They even experienced plane delays in their little pretend airport. Some children after airport day were saying they are so glad that they are not parents!!!


On Saturday, June 6th we went to Monticello - Thomas Jefferson's home. We as a family really enjoyed the visit. He loved educating people. He loved variety in his garden.
The first picture - the man was demonstrating basket making. We learned how they get the wood so thin to make the baskets. In the back ground is part of the garden.
Picture #2 - the man was making nails. The garden again is in the back ground.
Picture #3 - the garden is around 2 acres. It is three football fields long. I loved the garden.
Picture #4 - is of the back side of the house. He leveled the mountain top off first, so that he could have views on all four sides.