Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Our First Burundi Christmas 2010!

Christmas isn't christmas without a little cooking!  So sweet Soeur Malabi, with a heart of gold, came to teach Sister Jameson and me to make "Sweetened Peanuts-African Style!"
For some of the business people in the community and also the workers around our apartment complex, I made up some cookies to share!  I really missed handing out Raspberry Jam to all of our friends and neighbors back at home.  That had been a tradition for 16 years.  It isn't Christmas if you cannot give!
A week before Christmas our new little Bujumbura group had a wonderful Christmas Nativity program written and directed by Sister Jameson!  There were many loose ends as the time came for it to start.  We didn't know how many to expect but as you can see, we had a great group and we were prepared!
 The children played two games and there was much laughter and fun written on their faces!
 Elders Jameson and Frogley helped with some of the speaking parts, but Sister Jameson made sure every child had something to do in the program.  We had about 25 children.
 This is a 12 year old boy, Anicet and his little sister.  He speaks Kirundi but has only missed one Sunday's attendance in 17 weeks.  For this program, he memorized a small speaking part in French!!  It was wonderful and surprising!! His sister placed a wooden character in the nativity scene.
Afterwards, we served Banana Bread and apple juice with sweetened nuts!  We had enough for all of the children and their family members that came!  We even fed the young Elders who, by the way, sang beautiful christmas carols together for all to hear! They are tremendous singers!

Then it was Christmas Eve!  The two missionary couples planned and executed the evening....but then.....we were all there is!!  Our plan was to have a dinner menu of foods from the Holy Land and then have Elder Frogley give a powerpoint presentation on the Holy Land and symbolism of the birth of our Savior! It went without a hitch!

Haroset is a salad that is to remind those partaking of the food, of the blood and flesh that was shed when the pharoah had the people build the pyramids of Egypt. This was Elder Jameson's favorite of the night!

Tabouli salad is a very traditional salad from the Holy Land. This is made with quinoa, tomatoes, cucumbers, onions, garlic, avocados, parsley and mint in a lime sauce. Very delicious!

This was an Israeli Soup which tasted alot like minestrone. M-m-m-m!

We had homemade flat bread and some rolls.  Topped off  with the traditional drink of grape juice!!

It was nice to have each other to share with.  The Jameson's shared that last year they were all alone on Christmas eve in Lubumbashi!

 We then enjoyed Sister Jameson's apple pie and almond macaroon cookies for dessert.
Thank goodness for technology!  Elder Frogley then shared some wonderful insights and sights of the Holy Land!  It was a very meaningful Christmas Eve! Then we just sat and visited for a while!  It was relaxing and wonderful!
It is marvelous each year to remember the condescention and birth of our Savior, Jesus Christ!
On Christmas Day, the two couples hosted a Christ celebration for the eight young Elders.  True to African tradition, time was irrelevant and they were over an hour late!  Could it be because two of them had been held by the police earlier in the morning?  Only the Jameson's could answer that for you!!  Thank goodness, it was all innocent and they did nothing wrong!
So we started with a gift TAKING game and had a good time laughing!

Then Elder Frogley taught the significance of Christ's birth and the typology of Joseph Smith to Jesus Christ. After that, they listened and saw our prophet via video, Thomas S. Monson, speak about, "What shall I give?"
We served a delcious meal.  The Elders were filled up (which is hard to do)! They were generous with their words of gratitude!

They left us smiling as they always do!!  We love them! (oops! Elder Mpoyi is missing! Sorry, Elder Mpoyi!)

Posted by PicasaThe last few hours of Christmas Day were just the two of us!! But Christmas is NOT complete without FAMILY!!! Again, thank goodness for technology! That evening, we were able to speak with our Full-time missionary son who is serving in Seattle Washington.  Then we were able to talk with each of our other children and most of our other amazing family members. For us, it was like giving food to two starving people.  Talking to them was nourishing, satisfying and delicious, too! We are thankful for our first very unique African Christmas 2010!

Monday, December 20, 2010

Our 3rd P-Day in Bujumbura!

Bujumbura is really a plant paradise!  With all of the rain and with it's location just three degrees below the equator, as we left on our preparation day activity, I snapped several shots of just beautiful plants.  They are limitless!!!

You never know what you will see here in this city!  So I just took photos along our journey for the day!  I don't know if you can see the sweat down this man's back but those logs were really heavy!

This is a common sight here.  Religious clothing of all kinds are on display.  

When it gets hot, the umbrellas come out.  If you notice, both of the front women have babies tied on them under their penias  (large cloth tied around their middles).  You can see the baby's head easily on the woman on the right.  The woman going the other direction on the left has only a little baby foot showing on her right hip! 

The unemployment rate is extremely high!  Seeing men just sitting around in groups is sadly a common scene!

This woman is hiring a moto-taxi man to take her to a wedding!!!  As you can see, she is all dressed up for the festive occasion!!  These motorcycle taxis are very, very numerous. They weave in and out of traffic so quickly and without restraint.  Elder Frogley says, "They are like flies.  They are everywhere and come out of nowhere!!"

Everything goes on the head!

This woman was just walking by!  Do you see the deep gutter behind her?  These gutters are such a blessing!  They are very deep and catch the huge amounts of water when the skies open up here and drench the land!

This women just walked down from a village to get supplies.  They walk long distances.  You can see another baby!

I missed the woman that should have been in this photo!  But I did catch her goods.  She had spread cut, dried grass first on the ground and then she carefully laid out her little silver fish to dry in the sun!  They sell these little fish in almost every market!  They are eated bones and all!!

This adds new meaning to a head shot!! I had never seen an umbrella held up over the load on their heads before but it makes sense.

At this season, you see young men all over trying to sell their artificial Christmas trees! There are no real ones!! But then, pine trees don't grow here!

Bicyclists are everywhere with their goods.  These two have an entire bedroom set with them!!

Many intersections are very busy like this one! The light blue tricycle had a handicapped woman pedaling with her arms and her two sons (one pushing and one in the yellow shirt riding).    There are many people in need!!

As the day got hotter, more umbrellas came out!!

We finally arrived for lunch at the Hotel du Lac ( Lake) Tanganyika

These are not plastic!!  These are the actual blossoms that are over a foot long!!

This photo I took right from our table in the outside restaurant!  Beautiful setting!  You can see Lake Tanganyika in the background and then the two crowned-crains on the grassy area. The sandy beach surrounds the area. Can you see what an oasis this is to come to?

The Crowned Crains came right up to where we were, looking for food, of course!  But they kept their distance and did not disturb us.  Well-mannered! They are the National Bird of Burundi!

This was a big splurge of a lunch to celebrate my birthday!! Thanks, Honey!!

We were also celebrating the 41st Wedding Anniversary of Elder and Sister Jameson!!

After we enjoyed lunch, we walked out on the beach to enjoy the surf!  It was breezy and it felt wonderful!! 

Relief from the heat and humidity is always a blessing!!!

Elder Frogley even rolled up his pant legs to wade out just as a fisherman came by! The fishermen's main catches of this lake are Sangala and El Capitan.  Our stay for a couple of hours made us feel like we were on some remote island!

Then reality hit, as we came back out!  This woman is carrying cassava root in her basket which is one of the main foods of the natives here!   As I gazed upon this woman, I was reminded that she in the pre-mortal life was one of those valiant souls who had raised her hand to indicate that she, too, would follow the Savior's plan and come to this earth for a mortal experience., as each soul on this planet did or we would not be here.  That she, too, would agree to be tried and tested .  She now needs an opportunity to be reminded of her valiancy and of who she is and why she is here on this earth.  She, too, is a beloved daughter of our Father in Heaven.

Like I said before, you just never know what you will see! This man reminded me of the valiant spirit that drives survival and the need to provide for the ones we love!  The love of Christ lies deeply within each soul! This man, too, is beloved of our Savior!

Thank you for sharing our P-Day activity with us!! Spending time in the beauties that our Father in Heaven has provided for our joy is refreshing! In fact, about 4 weeks ago, while driving on this beach road headed to do some mission errands, Elder Frogley and a visiting authority saw 2 hippos right here on this beach.  They had their cameras ready on the way back, but the hippos were gone!  We surely did enjoy our day and would love to have had you along with us in reality!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

African Animals with French Pronunciations (for our granchildren!)

This is an African Bird that is one of my favorites.  These birds are native to Burundi!  We had one get caught in our stairwell and Papa rescued it and safely released it.  In English or French, it is called an African Hoopoe.

The following photos have the American spelling, the French spelling, and in parenthesis (the french pronunciation or at least close to it).  Good luck on your pronunciations and HAVE FUN!

There are many, many animals in Africa! We just thought that while our granchildren are on Christmas break that they might have fun trying to learn to pronounce the names of some of the animals in           French.  Hints: Remember to almost swallow your r's! When it says "le" before the animal name, it is pronounced like look without the k!          
Iguana - Iguane - (eegwan)

Antelope - Antilope - (on-tee-lowp)

Frog - Grenouille - (gru-noo-ee)
Cheetah - guepar - (gaypar)
Camel - le chameau - (le shah-MOH)

Gorilla - le gorille - (le go-REE)

Zebra- Zebre - (zei-br)

Lion - le lion - (le lee-OHN)

Wildebeest - Gnou - (g-noo)

Monkey - le singe - (le sehnzh)

Giraffe - la girafe - (law zhee-RAHF)

The elephant - l'elephant - (lay-lay-FAHN)

Leopard - leopard - (lay-o-par)

Jackal - chacal - (shac-ALL)

Hippopotamus - l'hippopotame - (lee-poh-poh-TAHM)

Butterfly - la Papillon - (law pap-ee-owe)

Rhinoceros - le rhinoceros - ( le  ree-no-say-RAHSS)

The Animals called the missionaries. Les animaux appelle les missionionaire!(lay zan-ee-MOH ah-pell lay mee-see-oh-nayr)!

For more fun.....ecrivez les mots en francais!