Wednesday, October 28, 2009

House Update

It's funny.  Two months ago, before we started working on the house, our landlord and contractor both said that the house would be ready to move into in 10 days.  Now, we knew that that would never happen, but we did think it would be ready for us to move into before we left for Dar to have Baylor.  And now, two months later, the house continues to be needing lots of work.  But that's ok with us.  We weren't real thrilled with the idea of moving in and then immediately leaving anyway.  And now we don't have to worry about that.  We are worrying a little about whether or not things will actually get done while we're gone.  Fortunately, we have Carson and Calvin around to keep an eye on things.  Right now, they're painting the bars of the windows.  When they're done with that, they'll paint the rest of the house, finish the electricity, install the windows and hopefully, that'll be it!  With the inside anyway.  They'll paint the outside of the house and build the water tower (to hold our water tank) after we get back.  But the house is actually starting to really look like a place people will live.  This is our kitchen. 

You've probably noticed that it's all concrete.  The whole house is all concrete, like most houses here.  It's the cheapest and sturdiest way to build.  The sink's already been put in down there at the end, and the oven will go underneath the window on the left.  The fridge will actually go in a storeroom off to the right.  And the room is not actually slanted--I'm just a bad photographer. I'll eventually post a picture of the completed kitchen for you to compare, but it'll probably be a while because we're leaving Geita tomorrow to start making our way towards Dar.  Just 3 1/2 weeks left (hopefully...)!

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Meet Gus

Having a guard dog in Africa is a necessity.  Theft is often a big problem here, and most Africans don't like dogs, so just having one in the yard is a big deterrent.  Perhaps our little puppy is not so formidable right now, but he's a german shepherd/rotweiler mix, so one day he should at least look scary.  We got Gus from a family on the Mwanza team who just had puppies and the McNeals and Groens picked up a couple of his sisters for themselves as well. We're hoping that Gus will be a nice friendly dog to all except people attempting to break into our house in the wee hours of the morning...not that we're really expecting that to happen--just a precaution. Also, I hope that this picture of me at 35 weeks convinces some of you scoffers out there that I really do look pregnant.  

Friday, October 16, 2009

Temporary Abode Number...

Over the last year or so, we've lived in so many different places I've lost count.  I'm sure I could actually figure it out, but that would take more effort than I'm willing to put into it at the current moment.  

Last weekend we were happy to have the Groen Family join us in Geita.  When we moved to Geita 6 weeks ago, they stayed in Mwanza to work on some paperwork and other legalities for the orphanage they're starting.  The Groens had previously arranged to rent a house in Geita, and that is what the McNeals and we have been living in while waiting for our own houses to be ready.  Now that the Groens have moved in, we decided 9 people in a house with one bathroom was a little much, so Brett and I moved into the little detached guest house/room next door.  We'll only be here a few weeks, and it definitely makes it easier on everyone to have a little extra space.  We have our own bathroom (no hot water, though) and Brett created a little kitchen for us to use.  I give him an award for excellent use of paint cans and plywood.  For about 200 square feet, it's actually quite functional.

For those of you who didn't already know, you can probably tell from the above picture that Holly is also pregnant, due at then end of February.  And for those of you who have held the theory that missionaries in Geita can't produce male children (there are 6 girls with 2 more on the way, 0 boys), Holly and Carson defy you.  They found out recently that they are, in fact, having a boy.  I feel kind of bad for the kid, as he'll be the only little boy around for a while, at least.  But it's good, because I have a feeling the people of Geita might have started to think it a little strange that all of us only have little girls. Plus, he'll probably be the manliest kid in the world, as all the men on our team will fight over him for doing manly activities, such as rock climbing, wrestling, and lighting things on fire.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

1st Annual Rock City Marathon

Sunday was the 1st Annual Rock City Marathon in Mwanza.  Brett, being Brett, decided to run it. After doing a bit of research on the internet to get more information, he discovered that it was not, in fact, a marathon, but only a half marathon.  However, it didn't seem like the race organizers were aware of that.  I believe the website said something like, "the standard marathon distance of 21k."  Hmmm.... Nonetheless, Brett got there about 6am Sunday morning (it had to be really early because they didn't block off any roads), paid his $2 entry fee, and ran the race.  He placed 3rd in the white person category!  Seriously.  He said he felt like it was a little bit shorter than it should've been, so later we drove off the course and it was actually about a mile short of being a half marathon.  Some of the other guys here ran the 5k race and they marked it off as only 4k.  I would be pretty happy with a shorter race anyway.  Also, if they wanted to know their times, they had to keep up with it themselves. All in all, a successful run for everyone.  Though Brett did say people along the road kept asking him why he was running so slow.  

In other news, I had a doctor's appointment on Monday and was happy to find out that Baylor is quite the healthy one.  She's catching up on her size to where she's only a few days behind what she should be instead of week or a week-and-a-half behind like she was at 22 weeks.  She's just a late bloomer.  Happy to continue kicking Mom in the ribs for a little while longer. 

And we now have a permanent post office address for anyone who was waiting on the edge of their seats to send us fun treats.  
                                                            Brett and Christie Harrison
                                                            Kanisa La Kristo
                                                            PO Box 1420
                                                            Mwanza, Tanzania

We can't get a po box in geita for the time being, as there are none available, and anyway, the postal situation in Mwanza is better anyway. We figure someone from our team will be out there at least once a month and can grab all the mail for everyone, so it's just a better deal. Happy mailing.