Thursday, August 15, 2019

"I get by with a little help from my friends."

Well it has been quite a week.  We celebrated our God daughters wedding on Saturday.  I was the caterer for the dinner .. it was a little difficult with a cathator in but if I just took my time and was super organized it all went with out a hitch . 
I did enlist the help of a good friend who came and did the bending and lifting for me ... I am blessed to have guys like him ready to help out . 

I have had some help around the house as well. I had planed to do so much work this last couple weeks  but have been blesses with some help around the house too ... in fact just this morning Aiden helped Jengish cut the grass 

There has been lots of work going on in Kyrgyzstan as well .. Sergey just sent the latest photos of the rebuild of the house that burned.  , if you look at the last post you will see some of the before pictures . 

We have a team coming in a few weeks , and would like to help with back to school stuff as well as getting ready for winter .. blankets etc. as well they will need some furniture ..  Its hard to put a price on what all that will cost, but I am sure what ever comes in will be the perfect amount . 

The farm is doing well .. a couple years ago we planted some apple trees .. They were just sticks that were about 2 feet long .. today they are about 8 feet and covered with apples . 

Tomorrow I will be going into the hospital for a scope and am praying that they are able to fix what ever it is I have going on at that time ..

one last update ..  Our students have arrived safely in Cincinnati.  There was a delay with the last flight and they had to spend 14 hours in the Chicago airport.  Oh the wonders of world travel .. But they finally made it to Cincinnati, and are excited about what the next year will bring .. Thank you to everyone who has been supporting our tuition and scholarship fund . The difference in the lives of these kids will be seen for a life time .

Monday, August 05, 2019

forced to slow down .

The last couple weeks Julie and I have been back on the road bringing updates to friends and supporters.

It was great to see everyone.  We had a little glitch right at the end of the trip and John ended up into emergency with a badder blockage.   Tomorrow he will get the catheter removed and we are praying that between the medicine and the time for the bladder to heal that all will be well.   It has forced us to slow down a little bit. . 

Fortunately things have not slowed down at all back in Kyrgyzstan.   

A few weeks ago I shared about a single mom who had lost her home in a fire .  Many people in the village as well as some of you stepped up to help her get the home repaired before winter.   



 now they are starting on the inside .  It is amazing how well things are coming. 

Sergey was to visit them today to see how they are doing .  The mother is starting to worry about school starting soon.  The kids had lost their clothes 
and school supplies.  As well with summer coming to an end she is worried that they do not have bedding and blankets.   We have a bit of money to get the kids enough to start school, and Julie and I will be back at the end of August and we have a team coming a few days later.  If you would like to help with this, we would love to have the funds to be able to bring the team to help her get the house finished and to look after stuff like back to school and maybe some furniture.    

Another project we have been working on is the hospital behind the farm.  With the help of a Rotary grant, we have been putting in new windows. so far we have replaced about 20 windows as well as a new front door that will actually close. 

On the farm we have been very busy with a lot of guests ,  The AirBandB has been keeping everyone very busy.  People from all over the world have visited .. great life skills for the kids and at the same time have been a great help as we try to meet the financial needs on the farm. 

Not all the guests to the farm are paid gigs, in Fact this week we hosted almost 30 people for 5 days for a conference for local families who have adopted kids from within Kyrgyzstan.  We are so blessed that we can offer this help to them . The farm also  provided all the meals for the conference.  Thank you to those who have supported this .

We are also preparing for another team of social workers from Bishkek . they have helped with our kids on several occasions , and we would love to host them at the kashar for a few days.  We have started a fund and we already have one group that has started a monthly support that allows us to do this type of thing. As this fund support grows we hope to be able to provide the farm and kashar to a lot more worthy groups and orphanages. 

On the farm we are now into full swing in the garden .  This week it is plumbs, tomatoes, peppers, and several different kinds of squash that we have been picking and delivering to orphanages and hospitals, as well as other private children's homes.  When the team comes in a few weeks we will have a chance to catch up a but with the canning. 

This time every year is always a little stressful.  School will start up in a few weeks and we have a lot of expenses between the tuition and the school supplies.  But we are certain that education is a real KEY TO SUCCESS. 

We are 1/4 of the way to meeting our goal and we have three weeks left before we need to start paying tuition's... Gulp.  Things are getting a little urgent with this need .  Please consider helping us with this.  It will make such a difference in the future of those we are helping.

Tuesday, July 16, 2019

Its about the Relationship

Although our friend Vlad does everything that a general manager or In Country Director does, He was given the job title of Youth Worker ! 
We could call him a Farm manager , or a guest house operator, But first and for most he is a youth worker! Project coordinator, or Business manager would be a good title, but he is our Youth worker . 

There are so many other job titles that we could come up with that would all reflect what his responsibilities are, but we don't ever what to loose sight of what we are about at the farm.  Its about the kids we work with .  We don't need the best gardens, or the most cows or the perfect guest experiences if we do not have our priorities in line .. We are called to care for, teach and mentor the kids that have no one else, and to bring them into a family that they know they are a part of. 
There is so much going on right now on the farm .. fields being watered, vegetables being harvested, guests arriving, vehicles being repaired, crises response with families in need, kids of to summer camps .. All are important , but none more so then taking the time to spend with the kids one on one in meaningful interaction.   

Yesterday Vlad and Russian went for a hike into the mountains to the lost lake.  Its about a 6 to 8 hour journey. Common goal and a beautiful outcome at the end.  Yesterday for Ruslan, it was reaffirmed that he is special, and he is part of something bigger then just him.   Thank you Vlad for taking the time to work on the relationship.

Monday, July 15, 2019

Wedding update

A few weeks ago, Bekah and Azamat got married in Kyrgyzstan.  It all happened in a bit of a whirlwind. So the general response has been "What Bekah is Married ?"   So here is the story.  Bekah and Azamat had been planing to come to Canada for over a year to take some continuing education, and where planing to get married while they were here.  Unfortunately they had visa difficulties so that did not work out.  They still had future plans to make it to Canada for a wedding.  Bekah really wanted her brother Ben to marry them.  Then fast forward to this spring, Benjamin and his family were coming to Kyrgyzstan for a visit, and a couple weeks before they got there, Bekah and Azamat got the idea that this might be a good time to get married .   

The wedding itself was up in the mountains and the reception was in at a very cool restaurant made up of beautiful yurts almost like a pioneer village , but very fancy.   So as we were all driving up into the mountain for the wedding, the sky started to darken and rain was threatening.  No problem, we just turned of on the next mountain trail and got out and had the service right there ..  

It was absolutely beautiful.  No one can decorate for a wedding like God. The mountains behind them and the valley before them made for the most perfect setting for the wedding.  We had a small group, about 20 of us gathered, and a bag of umbrella's on the ready, fortunately the rains held off and they were not needed.  After the service we drove back down to the base of the mountain for the reception.  

 Once we got to the yurts, other family and friends joined us for the celebration.  What a wonderful location to spend time together. 

Unfortunately ,  Granddad Bruce had passed away just a couple days before and we had to pack and go to get back in time for the funeral, so we did not get to spend as much time celebrating as would have been nice, and I was not able to get to much posting for those family, friends and supporters that have known Bekah for so long.   

Since that time I have had people contacting us asking how they could get greetings and a gift to them for this special occasion, and in particular what they might need .  I talked to Bekah about this, and they are all set in their new apartment, But  they are heading on their Honeymoon in another week.  It all happened so fast that they could not book off work right away and get that part of things organized.  She said that the last gift I sent will go towards that, and any others would be great to use on the honeymoon as well.  There was a bit of apprehension for her because she felt a bit funny feeling like she was asking for wedding gifts.  But thats what you do before a wedding .. let people know what you would like.  So it was decided that she would  have a couple options.   If some one wanted to send a small gift but would rather other then their honeymoon,

  There is someone that is Very dear to her.  Melody has been a good friend and like a little sister to Bekah for about 10 years now, and in fact they have had supper together once a week for the last couple years .  Melody has been excepted to a fantastic private school in Cincinnati Ohio.  This is such a blessing as she has so smart and a great student but has faced terrible bullying buy her teachers in the past because of her beliefs.   So as a second option she would be happy with donations to the scholarship fund, starting with the rest of Melody's expenses .. If you would like to send a little something you can donate at this link as well you will be given an opportunity  to "add a note" where you can send them personalized greetings.  and they will be sure to get them.  

( please note that Wedding gifts will be greatly appreciated, but we will only be able to offer tax receipts for the scholarship fund. ) 

Friday, July 05, 2019

"He was from here, and He made it !"

Its so wonderful for me to witness the kids growing up and maturing on the farm, and to see the produce that they are harvesting is amazing.  It is still so early in the season, but with the green house we were able to get a head start on many of the crops.

What is more wonderful is to see our kids return to the orphanages that they grew up in and bring fresh produce to the kids there.  The fruits of their hard labors returning to the only home some of them knew.  Its great for the kids at the orphanage as well, to say " He was from here, and he made it."  Its not like that typically.  The statistics are something like 80% will be in prison, prostitution, slavery or dead in the first year of leaving the orphanage.  But with just a little encouragement and someone in their court,  For many, things ca be turned around.  Yes we have seen some that no mater how hard we have tried, their futures were set a long time ago, ( and we still hope and pray for change ) but for the vast majority,  life is good !
one mornings harvest at the farm 

Dustan picking peas 

Squash and spaghetti plants

Yellow squash and zucchini 

Not all reports that come in are good ones .  I just received word about a single mom with three kids .. No family, and she lost everything, including her documents in a house fire.  Who? What? When? Where? and Why? and of course How much ?  All questions that we will have to look into, but for now , my heart still breaks for them.  We will share more when we can figure out how we can best help.