Tuesday, October 14, 2014

It is warming up!!

Tour of the Supply Depot

Tour of our Home (away from home)

This is the most sophisticated thing they have here.  
It traffic robot that spins and twirls and tells you when to stop and go.
Most of the people obey this traffic light.
The green light is on his hands.

I thought that I would show you some more pictures from around town as we are out driving.

If you want fresh chicken, this is how you buy it.
When you see how they package the chicken in the stores, this isn't all bad.
Some of the stores have frozen chicken but it is not packaged it is just frozen in a bin and you choose which pieces you want.  I would think they get freezer burnt but maybe they sell too quickly.
I don't buy chicken like that.
Some stores do have them packaged in plastic bags that are not very strong and get holes in them but that is the best they have here.

I took this to show you the mattress. 
You can see that they just fold them in half and carry them off.
What kind of mattress at home would you be able to fold in half?

This was the sight by the road while we were traveling to another city.
It is amazing to think that people live in these homes.
We are so blessed in America!

This is a Jacaranda tree.  They are all over and bring such beauty to a street.
The colour is absolutely beautiful!!
I remember these from pictures my Mom and Dad had from their mission to South Africa.

This is how they sometimes travel in the back of a truck.
We see this everywhere.

As we went to church one Sunday we saw these women gathered at a water tap 
which is in the corner of the church yard.
They come here with containers to get their water.
This is water that is provided freely by the church.

After church is a great time to have fun with the children.
It is amazing how many of the children take care of their younger siblings.  
The families are very large here, many with 12 or so children.
This little boy was anxious to have his picture taken.

These children were quick to line up for their picture.
Some of the children are dressed so well.
Often they wear very fancy clothes on Sunday.

I thought this little girl was darling!!
I love her hair.  It is probably a wig.
Notice how her hair is braided in zig-zags with the beads at each corner.

After I took the little girl's picture her father came over and asked if I would take a picture of the whole family.
Notice the little boy in a touque!  They laughed when Elder Draper said he 
looked like Père Noel.  It is a hot day but they don't seem to feel it.

These little boys followed me all over getting their pictures taken time and time again.
They had so much fun posing and then laughing at the pictures.
Look how perfect their skin is.

She was so polite and patient waiting for her turn.
What a beautiful girl!

She was a little shy for her picture. 

I had to get a good picture of this little sweetheart.
I thought her hair was so fun and her skin is perfect!

This little boy had been crying until I took his picture. He thought it was pretty great.

This boy is in another picture but he got his sister to come for another shot.

We witnessed the accident.
He got a little too close to the truck and just kept going, even though he inched forward slowly.
He took the light right off his vehicle.
No one stopped or got out of their vehicles.  
They just took it in stride and went on their way.

This is another street scene but I loved the red and yellow dress that the lady is wearing.
Most women are dressed very well on Sundays.
It would be nice if we did that in Canada.
Whether they go to church or not, they dress for the Sabbath day.
It is wonderful to drive down the streets and see all the fancy clothing.
When people here get something new, they leave the price tag on it or a label to show it is new.
Most clothing they buy is 2nd-hand clothing.

This is driving on a busy road with lots of traffic.  
The police man is standing to the side because he may get hit if he stands in the middle of the traffic like they usually do.
It's good to be cautious!!

This is a common sight.
You hope they don't trip with that load.
I wonder how good they are after they've been in the sun all day.

These Sister Missionaries had a great baptism one Sunday.
They taught all these people.  It was a wonderful baptism.
They need to know that you can bend your knees when you go down into the water.
They just fall straight back and then the person baptizing them has to struggle to get them back out of the water.

She is a darling little girl!!  So sweet and quiet.
She was happy that I saw her to take her picture because she was too shy to ask for one.

These children lined the banks of the river on Sunday and had a fun day playing in the water.
The women were also there washing their clothes along the bank.
There was lots of children.  These are just a few.

When the sun sets in the evening it is a bright red from all the smoke in the air.
It doesn't show very well in pictures but I thought this was a beautiful sun anyway.

Here is another picture showing the interesting flow of traffic.
This was a 2-way street but at the moment everyone was going one way only.
When someone comes along the other way then people just move over to make room.
It is just how it is done.
The van crossing in the middle at an intersection just inches out until someone stops.
There are very few traffic lights and most of the time no one pays attention to them anyway.
It's amazing there aren't more accidents.

I love seeing the big loads that the women carry on their heads.
This is a package of clothing that she is taking to where she will sell them.

A Hotel in town.
Not a 5 star hotel to be sure.
Some of the hotels we would rate at a -2 or -3 star.

This woman is carrying empty water bottles.
If you can see she has the one bag at the back with the length going  from side to side.
The bag in the front has the long side going from front to back.
It is quite the load.

This little girl with her 2 sisters became good friends with me the 2nd Sunday we were here.
She is the one in the red shirt.  She stood by my side for a long time with her head resting on my arm.
How can you not love children?  I put my arm around her and she just snuggled in.
Then in Sacrament meeting every time I looked her way she was looking at me.
She melted my heart!!!

I had to get the shot of that darling little boy in his suit.  
Notice his shoes.  They are cowboy boots.
How awesome is that?

This young man had his best trousers on for church.
I was so impressed with the neat patching that his mother had done in bright colours.
You wouldn't see this at home but he was dressed in his best for church.
You can't ask for more than that.
I love their love for the Gospel and how they are doing the best with what they have.

This is a street to drive down.  It's pretty hard to squeeze through in some places.
The church building is on the street.

These women were waiting outside with their children for church to start.
They are having a good time together.
These people are a happy people.

As we drove up to the parking lot these children raced to open the gate for us to drive in.
They are all so willing to be helpful, and they are pleased for you to notice.

I was having more fun with children after church another day.
They all crowd in quickly when they see the camera.

They are all so beautiful.
The little boy in front got his picture taken many times that day.
He was lots of fun and had many poses.

I got this shot of a couple of children just walking past the church gate.
They wear what they have and she probably doesn't have anything else.
You see all sorts of things going from neighbourhood to neighbourhood.

Note that same little fellow in blue.  He is having so much fun.  
This are his brother and  his sister.
For some reason they kept wanting to have their picture taken by the President's car.

Isn't that a precious little face?  How could you not love him?

Choir Practice
The man on the left in brown is the choir leader.
The man with his hand up is a bass but he keeps coming up front to teach the rest of them.

He'll go back to his bass spot and then come up front when he thinks they need his help.
It's a small choir but the volume they get is amazing.
Choirs in Calgary can't sing like that... at least they don't.
No one here is afraid to sing out and they all sing well.

This boy was an onlooker and was pleased when I saw him and took his picture.
Like anywhere, some children are bold and some more reserved.
This boy had a very sweet spirit about him.

Here is Elder Draper and Sister Thomas making friends with the children.

This little girls' father got baptized this Sunday.
Besides him being white, she is taken with the hair on President Thomas' arm.
Men here don't have hairy arms and she just kept touching it for over half an hour.
It was so cute.
Notice that little boy in blue again.

Now her brother is showing some interest too.
We went for a walk up the street to see some things and they held his hands, one on each side, all the time he was walking.

Here's that sweet little boy in blue again.  He's winking at me.  
See his little dimple.  He is such a little cutie!!

Elder Draper is having lots of fun with the children.

This sweet little baby had the sweetest face and lots of hair just left loose.
Look at those big eyes.

This little girl brought her little sister out of church to get a drink from the tap outside.
They stopped to get their picture taken and then they were gone back into church.
I love the little girl's hair.
She wasn't quite sure what to think, you can tell by her expression.
She's beautiful, they both are!

As we went for our walk we saw this man making bricks for a project that was going on behind him.
I'm not sure how long they left the bricks to dry or even if they were ever put into a kiln to fire.
The bricks weren't going to last long because they aren't made out of good clay.
He used just what was there in the street.

Here he has some packed up behind him for use.
The second fellow is lifting the brick out of the form from the bottom.
Then he sat the brick beside him on the ground to his right.  You can see them there.

This was not the work by those men in the last picture 
but this is a sample of some brickwork in the area.

This is an example of people dressing up for the Sabbath.
These little girls were just going up the street to get some water in their containers.
As they saw me they quickly put their buckets down to have their picture taken.
Aren't the sweet?

There are not very many pets here.  
I suppose partly because they can hardly feed their families let alone an animal.
He's a sweet little puppy just checking things out.

This woman is walking down a street that a car would drive down.
I thought the baby on her back was adorable!
Look at all that hair.
Many small children here have extensions.
It's cute.
That is something here that all the women seem to do --- hair.

This was the yard of some homes as we walked down the street.

Sister Thomas has gathered all these children around her just by holding her camera.
They did get their pictures taken.
These are children that live on the block.

This little girl had a great pose even in her torn little shirt.

These are neighbourhood children.
The little girls are dressed to the nines and the little boy in front is wearing a little rag of a shirt.
He had a dirty little face but was so cute!!
He wanted his picture taken so badly.
  It took me a long time to get his picture 
with all the other children pushing in front to have their pictures taken.

The poses they make are so fun!
The little girl in the middle is in a pose in her bright pink dress.
The two little boys in front have the same pose.
They like to copy each other.
Notice the little girl on the left side in the middle that has on a little yellow dress.
She was adorable.

More boys posing and smiling their hardest.

This little guy was waiting for ever to get his picture.
Everyone kept pushing in front.
Their dirty little faces are so precious.

The little girl getting her hair done was sleeping with her head on her mother's lap.
When we asked if we could take her picture the mother woke her up.  
Too bad.  She was so cute sitting there sleeping.

They do their hair so quickly. It only takes her 3 minutes per braid.
This mother was a very friendly woman.
It was fun to visit a little with her.
My French isn't that good yet.

More children at church.
You can really see them posing in this shot.
I'm not sure why they do the posing but it's cute.
As you take the pictures more and more of them 
slide into the side of the picture to get in the shot.

This little girl didn't have smile for me but her hair sure is cute.
It is amazing to see all the patterns they braid into the girl's hair.
I love the little beads they use too.

These two little girls are friends and wanted a picture alone 
but the little boy slid into the picture at the last moment.

I had to take this of the little sleeping baby.  She was beautiful.
This woman approached Elder Draper to talk about going to the temple.
Her husband is not wanting to go.  She served a mission about ten years ago.  She was never able to go to the temple and she wants to go so badly.
Church members can contribute to a fund that helps families and couples go to the temple 
but she is being advised that she can not go alone.  Elder Draper told her that if she had the means she could certainly go by herself and wait for her husband to come around which is what she wants to do.
We suggested she talk with her Stake President.  I hope she gets to the temple soon.

This is a picture of another church close to our church.
It must be so hot in those tin buildings.
Having no doors cools things off some though.

I love the outdoor Baptismal Font.
We attended a baptism here today.
A father and two children were baptized.
What a wonderful day!!

These two Sister Missionaries taught the people who got baptized.
They are so cute.  You can tell they love each other.
They get their dresses made and they wear alike dresses all the time.

This is the man who got baptized on the left and his son and daughter are beside him.
It is his daughter that loved President Thomas' hairy arms.

This is the yard of a home on the side of the road.
People here don't seem to mind garbage being all over.
There are chickens pecking through the garbage.

This is a close up of those chickens.

As you climb the stairs in our house to our living room you have to go outdoors onto the balcony and then through another door to get back inside of the living room.
This is one of the guards in the neighbours yard.  Just taking a little break I guess.
The guards in this yard are always waving to me when I go in and out of the living room.
Everyone is so friendly!

The last picture!!
Look at the eager face of this little fellow.
Aren't his eyes bright?
He is a little Latter-day Saint boy.
You can tell he knows he is a child of God.

Sunday is a hard day for me here because I don't understand the language well and 3 hours is a long time to sit without understanding what is being said.
I try to concentrate and that makes me very tired and I think my brain is going to burst.
Especially in Relief Society it is hard because often the women, not being as educated, speak Swahili.
I understand nothing of that except for the Gospel words they throw in in French because there are no Swahili Gospel words.
But .... Sunday is the only day we really get to associate with the people here and that makes it a good day!!  I am more comfortable trying to communicate with the children.

Living here is an experience of a life-time.  We are so grateful we have this blessing in our lives.
There is much to do in the Congo to help this nation.
The Gospel will make all the difference here as it does everywhere.
We are all Children of God and it is a blessing to be with these people here who are humble and happy!
We miss our family but know they are supporting us as we support them.
We can pray for each other from a distance.
This way we can all share in the blessings of our mission.
May God bless you all!!
Love you!


  1. Bryce and I loved reading about all that you're doing. The children are beautiful! Keep up the good work! Sorry our "signature" says "Mom and Bryce". That's our family blog signature and I can't change it. Sorry.

  2. I seriously want to "squish" all those cute babies!!!

  3. I notice that the choir has a much different ratio of men to women than we usually have here. The children are adorable!! I love the happy faces!!