Saturday, July 19, 2014

wall craft

Thanks to my Tia who sent a fun piece of string to help decorate my bedroom wall.

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

AmeriZam Birthday Bash

In celebration of Sara's birthday, we decided to invite a bunch of friends over for a pizza party!

If you're from the States, it probably sounds pretty normal for a couple twenty-something gals to invite a few twenty-somethings friends over for an evening of pizza, cake, a party game, and a World Cup semi-final game.

If you're from Zambia, you know that nothing in the above sentence is "normal."  


-not the pizza
(though many Zambians do enjoy pizza when they have opportunity to try it)
-not the cake
(chocolate with green mint icing and melted chocolate on top- are you kidding?)
-not the party game
(Say Anything)

well... I guess the World Cup semi-final is sort of normal-- 
except the fact that girls don't go outside the house after dark (18:00)
and the game started at 22:00 local time...
and we don't have a TV (just thought I'd mention that while I'm on the topic of abnormal!)

Of course we had a wonderful evening with our friends. 
I must confess that in some respects it's fun to be the person on the "other side" of cultural barriers every once-in-a-while. Usually, I'm the one who can't pronounce this-or-that word, or has never tried this or that well-loved food... 

Not only were Sara and I the only partiers who knew what pepperoni was, we were also the only two who had previously eaten pepperoni, as well as the sole group members who could properly pronounce the word "pepperoni."

Good times :)

ps- In case you were wondering, yes.
Yes, I find it slightly disturbing that I actually enjoy the flavor of something that started out as meat but that is now shelf stable and can fly across the ocean in a suitcase and still be edible... hum...
guess it's all in the definitely of "edible" (right, Logan??!)...

Tuesday, July 15, 2014



minty white
(looked terrible, just for the record...)


Week by week our kitchen is getting closer to it's freshened-up state...
Stay tuned to see the final product.

stacks of green cabinet doors to the left on the floor in the dining room...

Monday, July 14, 2014

Party Time

With a handful of important events to celebrate recently--American Independence Day, Canada Day, Heroes Day & Unity Day (national Zambian holidays), and Sara's birthday-- we decided a picnic/potluck/braai was in order. It felt so American, and yet so Zambian, the perfect mix of sunshine, food, and friends :)

a Western celebration demands a cake...

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Masuku Lodge (take II)

You may remember my personal retreat to Masuku Lodge last year in May—a few days of much loved quiet, reflection, nature, prayer, and rejuvenation.

our private chalet

Last week, Amos ferried Sara and I out to Masuku. You’d never guess we were less than 30kms from home out there where cell service is available at just one small table in the main lodge. Masuku Lodge is a little Zambian haven of beauty, birds, and solitude. In the words of some good friends (Thanks, Chris and Marlys, for introducing me to Masuku): “The delightful thatch chalets and beautiful main lodge naturally elicit a contented sigh, and one begins to feel months of stress peel away about as soon as you arrive.”

Sara and I packed our pjs, day planners, and a basket of coffee grounds, carrot sticks, and Earl Grey tea. On the way, we stopped in Choma to complete the remaining weekly errands. It was an especially hectic day in town—people and vehicles EVERYWHERE, queues for everything: lunch, petrol, a parking spot, the ATM...

Once at Masuku, we entered another world. We really had no absolute plans, nothing we had to accomplish during our visit. We just relaxed. Every once in a while we chatted and jotted notes our date books as we discussed plans, ideas, and goals for the next several months. One afternoon, I crawled under my duvet (it’s winter here, remember) and listened to a dramatized version of the life of Hannah Moore. Sara read World War Z.

We drank tea, sat in the sun, prayed and processed, made lists (and lists and more lists. honest. What else is a holiday for??), and wandered out to the dam—where we saw zebra, cattle, sable, a monitor lizard, and lots of birds. We dined at a massive table, met new friends, and even watched an evening of World Cup matches. At night, we marveled at the incredible star-scape as we shivered our way from the cozy fireplace in the main lounge back to our private chalet.

the lounge in the main house

Our time at Masuku was a blessed.


And… then we left Masuku for the real world… the one where we had 14 guests arriving that night (and we needed to prep the guesthouse rooms from the last guests), the one where we tried to contact our afternoon visitors but the cell service- as usual- was so spotty we weren’t sure the message went through, the one where we drove the opposite direction out into the bush again to accept a last-minute lunch invite (to which we were late), the one where we stopped along the road to buy a massive bag of oranges (what was I thinking?!), the one where we came back home and started writing all those emails and messaging all those people in response to all those things we’d ignored the past couple days…

That world.

notice the zebra!

Friday, July 11, 2014


my room in Sesheke

Complete with a pair of reusable tropicals on a mat beside the bed...