It was a long over due trip to the farm, but we finally made it. We walked around the farm a bit kind of like a homing pigeon circling as it gets its bearings.
I was impressed with the job that Vlady did on the out door kitchen . He out did himself with some great mettle work. It looks great. Over at the green house I was pleased to see how good the sweet potatoes did . This batch we were growing was for the tops that we will be using to plant a large patch in the garden next spring .. but it was nice to see that they grew, and
they taste great , the plants in this photo was from one branch that we had planted in a grain sack. The interesting thing is that a sweet potato is not actually a potato , it is the tuber on the route of a morning glory plant. They do not flower as much as a common version of morning glory plant though. We did grow the flowering morning glories as well over in Julies rock garden. I am kind of curious what I will find in the fall when I dig up one of these .
It was grate to see everyone again , apart from a few of the kids that are in school . We had a nice lunch before we headed back home to work on the schedule and planes for the team that will be arriving on Sunday afternoon.
It is that time of year again, the snow is a little lower on the mountains every day. Typically between the farm and families we help out we give out between 50 and 100 tons of coal and 8 to 10 tons of fire wood for starting fires. We also set up depots around the valley where we can give out coal from in emergency cases through out the winter. The last couple years we have had great support from a small church in Norwood Ontario . They have a program called Givetober. The church identifies areas that they want to support and for the month they raise funds to help out. It is our hope to cover about 50% of our coal expenses from this one campaign. If you would like to help us as well, I am sure that many families would be very appreciative. Below is a video that was played in church this morning to shine some light onto this need.
I know that I am supposed to take it easy, so I will do my best. fortunately we have some good strong hard working boys on the farm as well as a team coming from Nashville. We will land in Kyrgyzstan on the 9th, by that time the 50 tons of coal we have spoken for will start to arrive.
Olga was hard at it for Seniors day this year. She told me that they were all so happy and blessed that she came that many of them just started to cry. It was such a blessing for them . Thank you to everyone that had a party in this. Below are just a few of the pictures from the day.
Over the last couple months I have been told many times to take it easy. While our summer was "interrupted" by my health issues, we did manage to speak at eight different churches, and even catered a wedding , along with planing and organizing a team to the farm along with many other guests through out the summer.
What I have noticed is that my multi tasking skills are a bit limited .. It seems to take everything out of me to "take it easy " and accomplish a task at the same time. So here is my problem. With everything that has gone on, Seniors day has completely slipped my mind. Seniors day is a very big event in Kyrgyzstan. It you are a senior that does not have family, and is living on the edge , it can be a real reminder to them of their situation. But when we show up with a little blessing for them, it can bring such joy.
But this year I forgot !.. Olga just reminded me and said "What are we going to do this year for seniors day ?" It will be a bit of a scramble this year, especially since I did not do any fundraising for this yet. So I guess we will see what donations come in the next 24 hours and go from there. I would like to raise at least $500 for this. I think other years we have spent about $1000. If you would be able to help us with this in any amount, it would be greatly appreciated.
A friend told me about a seat cushion he uses that was on sale at Canadian Tire, so we picked one up . So now that I have my saddle we will be good to go. We will head out tomorrow, and stop and see my brother up north on our way to Espanola .
Last weekend Julie and I had a couple days up at the lake in Quebec. It is always a restful time for us, and I knew I would soon start doing things I shouldn't if I stayed home much longer . So we stuck a mattress in the back of the van and I slept as Julie drove... I could get to like that way of traveling. We will have to try it again this weekend as we head for Espanola to catch up with the team and hear more of the incredible things that they did while at the farm.
Right until the end, they worked hard. The last couple days was full of canning and renovations on the boys house .
On their last day they took the kids fishing .. Here you can see Nuric with his lunker , Its great to see Akbar on the right . This was only his second full day with us, so it was awesome to have such an outgoing team there to make him feel at home .
Yesterday I had an appointment with the Urologist. The biopsy has come back clear, and everything is healing as it should . He has given me the go ahead to fly in a couple weeks, I will have to take it easy and not push it to much, so it will be a little shorter trip, but we are so thrilled to have the go ahead. We came home from the Dr and sat down and booked our flight . We will be departing on Oct 7, and leaving KG on the 19th. of November.
It was three years ago that this team from Espanola made headlines literally around the world , TV, Radio newspapers and internet was a buzz about how a group of foreigners came inn to a small city in Kyrgyzstan and rebuilt a home / life of a pensioner who had lost everything in a fire, including her son.
They even brought with them needed fire fighter outfits for the local fire department. They fire department did not have these before this so they were not able to enter the burning house to save her son.
Nadia was so pleased when her home was restored.
Now here we are three years later , and tragedy struck again. This time a young widowed mom with three kids ... they lost everything. Through Sergey, we were able to begin helping right away with some basic needs , and this time word spread and un like with Nadia, people started pitching in and helping them to rebuild their home. I think that when we give people examples of what is possible we can make an actual long term difference.
With the house rebuilt, and school starting , the team arrived just in time to take the kids back to school shopping, These kids had nothing , but this day they had a fresh outlook on life and could return to school with everything they needed.
Now here is the God part ... Exceedingly and abundantly more then we could ask or imagine. Thats right, this is the part that I watch for and love the best. Never would this mother have asked or imagined that the team would return a week later and take them shopping for new furniture for their newly rebuilt home .. And throw in an automatic washing machine as well ... what an incredible thing that is ... something many would only dream about.
After shopping the team brought the family out for a nice meal ... what a great time to introduce them to a special guest ... Remember Nadia the fire grandmother from three years ago.
She sure remembered the team ..
Now I was not there, but I can just here her in my head "Why did you not come and see me sooner " hahahaha
So back at the farm, in the boys house the team has been working with Koder in their spare time , hahah . They are building a small kitchenette that will also have the washing machine, making more room in the bathroom for the boys new shower.
In one of the big rooms , they did some renovations as well. Its kind of funny actually , This room had a relay cheep linoleum floor . One day we sent one of our boys over to wash the floors ( with our supervision ) .. when we went over to check on him, he had pulled up the floors and had them outside on the lawn and was washing them with a garden hose ... needless to say they have just had carpets over the cement floor since then .
Then last year we put down a new wood floor in the cow barn son they would be warm in the winter.. From that moment on Nuric was offended that the cows could have a wood floor and he had to have a cement floor. Well Nuric got the ear of the team and while they were renovating the boys house, they put down a wooden floor and then a good quality linoleum on top of that. Then here is the exceedingly and abundantly more part... they bought them a new couch.
If you have been watching this team over the last week, you will see so much that they have been able to do .. Some of the funds have come from some of you, but the vast majority of the funds they have raised themselves with the help of the Light House in Espanola . For months they have been working on the schedule and raising the funds for each specific need . Focusing on how they can be the most effective and how they can bring the greatest long term benefit to everything they do. It is a lot of work and planing , but man oh man have they every accomplished what they have set out to do... and they are not done yet !