Skies Over Vancouver, Skies Over You




Hello friends,

It's hard to believe but the summer here is almost over.

I captured these beauties in the early morning hours of Monday, August 5, 2019. 

Taken at night at the community garden plots on August 8, 2019.

Just a brief note about the Kenyan missions.  Ernest, the young man who was run over in Kenya (see side bar photos) is recovering well at home. He is escorted to the hospital each week for a check up to make sure everything is going well. The metal contraption (its name escapes me) has been removed. He now wears a cast and gets around with crutches and a wheelchair.

Ernest is discharged from hospital.

Here he is a few weeks later after the medical device was removed from his leg.
Thank you so much to the two friends who helped with his hospital bill.


Night descends quickly but still lots of people sitting in the park.

~~~~

In sadder news, my friend Eunice has been in hospital for going on 6 months in a city called Nakuru, Kenya.  This city is about 3 hours away from her home and she is at this hospital because she requires more more specialized care.  But she really hasn't been doing well for most of the 6 months.  The family has been told to remove her from hospital due to significant unpaid bill but before she can be transported she needs to get a bit stronger.  The bill must be paid before they will allow her to be moved  (a catch 22 situation).
The family is hoping to move her back to her home town and is trying to arrange hospice care there.
Hospice care will take more funds but if she has to be hospitalized in the public hospital much of the cost should be covered by health insurance. We'll have to wait and see how this all plays out because very little is ever straight forward in Kenya.
Kindly keep this need and this family in prayer.
I believe in answers to prayer.


 
 
It's a miracle to know the same sky that covers me here at home covers the people where you are and moreover covers the people in Kenya. Such an awesome thought.

~~~~ 


Joining in with 
Skywatch Friday this week. 
I hope you all have a wonderful weekend.



A Productive July Ends

It's been a busy week so far. Nothing terribly exciting happening but all is satisfying.

First up I delivered half of my personal library to a local care home. The recreational advisor saw my advertisement on the local Freecycle and said he would take all the books. So that was a God send since most takers just want a fictional book or two. A great many of the books I donated history books and reference books of all kinds (cooking, gardening, travel, self help and health books, how to books and cookbooks and a great many other topics).  The recreational person I dealt with told me they will sell books to benefit the seniors in their care. I do hope that they will have good success with the sales.



Reading continues with a few good books in my pile each week. My recent reads were The Paris Seamstress, Rebel Queen and The Next Person You Meet in Heaven.  They were all good books and I've listed them in the order of enjoyment in case you are interested.  Right now I'm reading a few books on fashion: Gok Wan's Work Your Wardrobe  and The Way She Wears It  by Dallas Shaw.  I'm relearning a lot of what I once knew and it is good to have a refresher.  Most of my newer reads are borrowed from the library so that I'm not spending the money and adding to my clutter at home.




One of my errands on Monday was to go the beautiful Granville Island. This is a very popular spot with tourists and locals alike but I wasn't there to stroll around and enjoy. I stopped at a store called Ten Thousand Villages to pick up a parcel of small items I ordered on line and asked to be delivered to the store front. It saved about $ 10.00 Canadian on shipping charges which is a lot considering the parcel was very small. If I had heavier things or larger things on order, then paying the shipping charges would be a good idea.  In fact, in my previous order with this company I had the parcel shipped to my local post office.

I'm very pleased with the quality of the products I've purchased from this place so far. I also like that the products are purchased from various countries abroad at fair trade prices. If you'd like to check it out please do because you would be benefiting artisans from developing nations.   If you want to check out the store, please check here.

Some of you might wonder why I am buying things when I am doing major decluttering.  One reason is I like to shop for gift ideas for Christmas and birthdays throughout the year.  This helps spread the cost over many months.

The other reason is that though I have too much stuff, one area where I am lacking is accessories, especially necklaces and earrings which help to stretch one's wardrobe into numerous outfits.

I keep an eye out for things I can purchase at a good price and that will coordinate with my wardrobe, current and planned.  Since I've already donated many clothing items  I will need to supplement my wardrobe in future.  But I don't need anything for awhile and can make do with what I have.  I also have plans to sew some things with the fabric I purchased in Kenya earlier in the year.  I will buy some coordinating fabric here in town to try and extend my wardrobe options that way too. So I can hold off buying new clothing until I know for sure what I really need.  

Last time I wrote about my knees I mentioned that I need to get updated x-rays.  I finally made it early in the week for the x-rays on both knees.  I expect soon to be referred to the center that educates arthritis patients to better manage their symptoms and assess them as to whether they need surgery.

Other than that I've been busy with the usual household things and a bit of shopping for a new wall clock,  yarn and food for the house.

While relaxing in the evening I'm knitting dishcloths for Christmas gifts. It's really the main that I knit and I have built up a little stash.  I enjoy knitting these simple cloths and it helps me feel like I'm doing something constructive while I relax.

I went to the community garden and snipped off some beautiful sunflowers to place at home. I noticed there were some ants in them so I had to get those out before I brought the flowers indoors.

I also snipped some salad greens and brought home. I made a simple green salad tonight with hamburgers on buns for dinner.


The container garden is holding up well. The rest of the garden doesn't look so great and I'm not really sure why. Probably a combination of over watering at times and under watering at other times.

Right now though there are workers out there and so they don't take care how they throw things around. After their work of power washing and painting walls is done I think my garden will be largely finished for this summer. If I have time I may plant some thing from seed just to see if it comes up and blossoms before we get too far into Fall weather.



Geraniums are a favourite in my garden.




I'll continue being busy at home for a few weeks with plans to see a movie or two with a friend and visit with an out of town friend who should be arriving soon.  My house guests won't start arriving until the end the month. Until then I have a lot to keep me busy. That's my update for now. I hope you are all enjoying yourselves wherever you are in the world.



Joining in with Skywatch Friday.

End of July

Hello friends,

The week goes so quickly and Friday is upon us again.

I'm still in summer mode but I'm not doing what people normally do with their summers. I'm not sitting relaxing in my garden or going to the beach or going to concerts. Instead I am doing a major household purge.


After years of purging a few things here and there of my late mom's things, my clothing, and knick knacks, I started purging some of my own papers. Before I knew it it got me into purging my books and wanting to change the furniture around. Why did I start on that?! I was supposed to be purging my papers. I think I was looking for a distraction as I don't like to get into my papers. There is just so much of it to go through.  I also find I can't focus on papers when there are other things that are also needing to be sorted.

I read Marie Kondo's book on the Magic of Tidying Up last year. She sets out a certain order of discarding and sorting which has come to be known as the KonMari Method which has taken off by storm.  I don't exactly follow the method or the order of decluttering but I did learn a few things from the method.  As for the order of decluttering (as depicted in the chart below), I like to tackle different areas as the motivation strikes me. I like to mix things up a bit and do a little of this and a little of that and tidy and clean and reorganize along the way. So many organizing gurus on You Tube run out and buy all kinds of containers to store stuff.  I've learned over the years that this might make things tidy but it only hides the clutter, it doesn't eliminate it.  At some point you will need to deal with it.



In the chart above, book sorting comes before paper sorting. So I guess I am following that rule.  Clothing is the first item to be sorted. I did actually sort a lot of clothing over the past few years, not just mine but my mother's as well and fabrics and so on. It is an ongoing process because I also bought a lot of clothing having gained and lost 50 pounds over the years.

But in between clothing and books I sorted and discarded a lot of miscellany to try and create more "breathing" space. It sounds like I am, or was, a hoarder but I am not. I just have a lot of stuff and I like my stuff to be contained and orderly.  I like everything in it's place but my place is too small for my stuff. That means I have too much of it. I can blame cooking from scratch, shopping for food sales and any other kind of sales (I love a good bargain), craft hobby, sewing hobby & reading hobby.  Now I am at that point in my life where I want a lot less stuff. That is hard when you like to read and do crafts of all kinds and when you were taught to save things for a rainy day or because they might be useful.  It also requires discipline to buy only what one needs when they need it. I will find a way to try and continue with all my interests and do it with less stuff.




Anyway, back to the books.  I've managed to "discard" 10-12 very large shopping bags. I was shocked to discover how many books there were.  It doesn't look like quite so many when they are neatly on the bookshelves.  Fortunately, my local hospital is going to take all of my cast off books but I have to deliver them. I'm hoping to do that on Monday. They  plan to sell the books to raise a bit of money for the work they do with seniors. So it's for a great cause.



In between cleaning and moving bookshelves and deciding which books to give away, I've also purged and cleaned the hallway coat closet. Generally I post giveaways on Freecycle and there are a few women in the community who always ask for my clothing which means they come and get it.  It is always much better to let someone else have use of something that is still in good condition than to put it in the garbage. Friday (today) I will vacuum and get back to paperwork which I'll work on throughout the weekend.

While all this work is going on inside, the exterior walls of my building are also being washed and painted. This should be done not later than the middle of August.  Everything on the patio has had to be moved in preparation. In  the meantime the patio pavers finally got a good washing. They really needed it as they were not washed last year

I have a guest coming in late August and another one in early September so they will find things looking a lot different. Not only that I will be able to enjoy visiting with them in my decluttered home.



They always say when you really declutter you start experiencing shifts in your life. Right now the shift I am experiencing is more freedom of mind and a growing sense of peace and joy in getting rid of a burden.
 


It's hard to believe in another few weeks we will definitely be in back to school mode and back to cooler weather and all the things that come with it. I always look forward to the Fall months when I no longer feel the heat of summer.

All the photos were taken in the month of July 2019 on various days except for the last photo which was taken in June ( I haven't had much time for photo taking). They are all taken between 4 a.m. and 6 a.m.  I've started to notice these past few days the sun is coming up a bit later. Have you noticed that where you live?

I hope you are all doing well and enjoying the last days of summer.  Of course some of you are going through winter season. In that case, I hope it warms up for you soon. I know winter can be quite chilly and rainy in a place like New Zealand.



 Thank you for stopping by to visit.

Joining in with Skywatch Friday.

Skywatch Friday & a Bit More

Hi everyone,

I hope you are all doing well.

I'm popping in to see how everyone is doing. I've been on a wonderful break. I've been enjoying a much slower, relaxed pace of life. I'm not doing anything unique or exciting just enjoying the usual things I do at a slower pace.  Rain started about a week ago and we've been getting a bit each day which is wonderful as it is good for the earth, good for the dams and good for the gardens and natural life. Today (Friday) it was back to very hot weather.



From my patio garden


Amongst other things I've been busy shopping for and preparing for various friends' birthdays and looking forward and planning and shopping for the prezzies I need to get organized for Christmas. I've also continued reading and currently reading books 33 and 34



I also joined a fashion book club where the leader suggests books to read, then we experiment and share the results.  I haven't done any experimenting yet as  the first step is to read the books. I'm not sure I'll have a lot of time or interest in this but I do like to see what others are wearing and it is a nice diversion from the daily grind.

I've been watching a lot of You Tube videos and learned about the Trim Healthy Mama cookbook from some American ladies who vlog. I'd never heard of this plan or cookbooks before but have now ordered them from the library and think I'll be trying a lot of the recipes in at least one of the books. Do any of you follow this plan? People who follow it consistently seem to get great health and weight loss results. I'm afraid I'm not too good at consistency in following plans. I just try to learn healthier ways of cooking and eating and have decided to purchase their most recent recipe book.

I wrote last time how I had been having so many problems with my knees. I have been popping a lot of OTC painkillers, various health supplements (Turmeric, glucosamine and a host of other daily vitamins). I still have to go for my updated x-ray before I am referred to an arthritic program but I am happy to report that the pain levels have been more bearable this past few days.  I continue to walk almost daily and get on the whole body vibration machine for about 10 minutes daily.

Meeting with friends has proved to be a bit more challenging as several have been ill, a hazard it seems of growing older. I always feel great when I get a chance to sit and meet with friends I haven't seen in awhile and I have been able to meet with a few. I hope to get to meet a few more in the next few weeks so I can have a clear slate before company arrives.

My family had a scare a few days ago when one of my brothers almost met his end after a freak accident in his driveway. Thankfully he is fine. After the accident he was trying to rest in his house when he started experiencing chest pains. He went to hospital and they checked his heart and his head as he had smacked his head when thrown from the vehicle when it stopped on the roadway.  The doctors pronounced him okay and after a couple days recovery at home he told me he was very bored and wanted to go to work the next day. He is very grateful that his injuries were not worse and that it wasn't yet lights out for him. So much can change in an instant and we his loved ones and friends are grateful that things were not much worse.

One of the many geraniums from my patio garden

Updates on Missions in Africa

In my last post I wrote about Levi the Engineering student I had been helping in Kenya. He is now in India and getting registered for all his classes.  The entire process of registration and running from building to building when he isn't familiar with the place is somewhat overwhelming.  But he is a determined fellow so he will no doubt see it through.

Ernest is recovering at home though he has lost an alarming amount of weight and he was already very thin. We are trying to help him with funds to buy more produce and food in general as he has only been drinking milk and eating ugali.  Ugali is a  type of thick corn flour mush eaten by virtually everyone in Kenya but it isn't very nutritious.

Eunice is still in hospital and needs prayers as her condition has been weak for some time though somehow she manages to hang in there.

There is no update about Alvin.  For now he continues his participation in the boys choir, his church activities and meeting with various friends.

Carolly is finishing his last week of medical internship and will be graduating in the Fall since he has already passed his medical examination. Well done, Carolly! We are hopeful that one of the Kenyan hospitals will snap him up and give him a paid post as a doctor very soon.

I no longer sponsor Kevin in Uganda.  The community he lives in is graduating from the program. It means they will be able to develop their own businesses for self sufficiency and grow their own food as well as pump their own water.  Hurrah!  The remaining 3 boys I sponsor in Kenya and Ethiopia are all doing well.

Petunia from my garden


I'll be continuing my summer break though may pop in here from time to time (and continue to visit as many vlogs as I can)  and  especially when I want to share a photo or two.
In meantime I will continue reading, tending to my gardens, knitting and decluttering.

Joining in with Skywatch Friday this week.

I appreciate your visit, your comments and your blogging friendship.

Enjoy!

An Update

Hi friends,

 I haven't posted in awhile and there are a few updates and a short announcement.

Today was overcast and it rained a bit late in the day. It is supposed to rain a bit for several days this week. Not much rain but I hope it all adds up to enough to give the garden a good watering.

Sunday late evenings after dinner seem to be baking days for me, at least when it isn't hot outside.

I made date squares for the very first time as I had a small package of dates I've been wanting to use. I never used to like date squares but these days I don't mind them. I also made a batch of bannock bread to use up some milk which had passed it best by date.  I should have warmed the milk a bit first because it made the dough very cold. In the end though it tasted quite fine and took the edge off the hunger I was feeling despite having eaten dinner (marinated chicken, steamed rice and green salad).

The photo of the date squares isn't very good but oh my the square I had was very delicious. It must be all that sugar and butter. I know I won't be making these on a regular basis due to these two ingredients.  I'll be wrapping some up in wrapping paper and tin foil to take to a friend for her family. If I have another one or two that will be plenty and I will have saved myself from spending so much money on buying date squares. 

I calculated that this small pan of squares would have cost at least $18 Canadian if purchased in the supermarket here which usually sells 3-4 squares to a package. If purchased in individual squares at the cafe, the 12 squares would have cost 2 or 3x that.

I didn't calculate the cost of making the squares since I didn't go out and purchase anything to bake them  so I'm guesstimating the approximate cost of ingredients (only the amounts used and not the amount for the package of each item):  flour ($1),  sugar (25 cents), butter (60 cents), dates ($3), oatmeal (75 cents and shredded coconut (40 cents) for a grand total of $6.00 (Canadian). I used a recipe called Newfoundland Date Squares which you can find here.


I also made bannock bread.  Once it is baked and cooled, I  pack it away otherwise it gets dried out.  Bannock bread like this must be eaten within a day or two. It's best with butter, jam or cheese (Cheese Whiz is good too). I don't really follow a recipe. I make it often so it is by "feel" but here is a recipe to something similar. I make it in the slab but once I put the slab on a baking sheet I cut  the dough into squares with a sharp knife and prick it.  When it comes out of the oven it is already portioned out. I remember some ladies used to make a huge slab every day for their families rather than baked loaves. They didn't bother to cut it before baking. Everyone just tore pieces off at the dining room table or they would slice it into squares after baked and cooled.

Bannock bread

The root canal on one tooth was finished and I completed the antibiotics. It seemed like the tooth was quite badly infected and I know when they cleaned out the temporary cotton before finalizing the root canal there was still a lot of pain. They gave me extra freezing and they put some liquid antibacterial medicine which went down my throat and was burning. Right now there doesn't seem to be any real pain which is a relief as there had been slight pain for several days. I guess the tooth and gums needed time to heal. Anyway long story short is that I had to pay out of pocket due to the work needing to be done on emergency basis. Now I am hoping the insurance will reimburse me for most of the work. In the meantime I'm waiting for pre-approval for another major bit of tooth work. Even if they approve it I already know they won't cover much of it because my annual limit is almost exceeded with a bit of cleaning and the root canal.

Believe it or not I know some ladies that want to get dentures just to avoid pain and problems and future expense but I'm not at that point. My late mom had so many problems with partial dentures and if that were to happen to me it really isn't avoiding any future issues at all.

In Kenya, Ernest is slowly recovering at home. He will be in recovery mode for quite some time yet. I am still trying to raise the last $60 Canadian dollars or so to clear the hospital bill. I thank anyone reading this who has prayed for this need to be met, shared it on social media or given directly. You are all much appreciated and you know who you are. May God bless you also in your time of need.

Another friend is still in hospital about 3 hours from her home. She has been there for going on 3 months. I honestly don't know if she will improve as she has been in and out of ICU a few times but we continue to pray for her and I continue to try and meet the medical costs and to encourage her family as best I can.

I am letting one of my sponsored boys go. He is my most recently sponsored boy who lives in Uganda. His name is Kevin and I'm delighted to learn that his community will be graduating. I sponsor him through Food for the Hungry and the organization works intensively with communities for a10 year period during which time the community learns to be self sufficient. It will be an awesome time of celebration soon not just for Kevin and his family but also for the rest of the community they live in.

The other boys I sponsor in Kenya and Ethiopia are doing well.  John will turn 16 years old this month and is getting very close to graduating from the program.  He will be finished in 2 years and then he will be out of the program and I will be unable to communicate with him further but  I pray for and have hope and trust in his future. The other two boys, Ian from Kenya and Wondimu from Ethiopia are still several years away from finishing the program. I sponsor these three boys through Compassion International's Canadian office and have very much enjoyed working through this organization to help them.


We have started a short spell of rain this week. I hope it rains a lot for the gardens


Levi, one of the young university graduates I helped a bit during his last two yeara of university will be going to India next month. He is on a full scholarship to complete his Masters degree in Engineering over the next 2 years. While this is very exciting he first has to raise transitional funds and if he is successful he will leave for India in approximately 2 weeks.  

Alvin is another young graduate I have been helping. He graduated a year and a half ago and was hoping to do another year at his alma mater. It all fell through even though he was registered and paid the tuition.  We are now hoping he can continue studies in Canada but we need to get a scholarship for him. In the meantime he is keeping busy singing in the internationally renowned Kenyan Boys Choir.  After many months in the recording studio the choir has recently completed their latest album.  Soon they will be marketing it for sale. He also keeps very busy with church and helping his family in addition to looking for employment.  If he is able to come to Canada  to study it would greatly help him with future job prospects.

Last, but not least, is Carolly. He has been studying to become a medical doctor. Just yesterday he learned he has passed his examinations. He now has one 3 week internship in Ear, Nose and Throat department and after that he awaits graduation in November. I think Carolly will be snapped up by one of the Kenyan hospitals since the country is in need of doctors. That would be wonderful for him and his extended family.


I'm currently completing my 28th book of the year and will soon be reading Stern Men by Elizabeth Gilbert and The Red Notebook by Antoine Laurain. I had a modest goal of 25 books which I've now surpassed. From now until the end of 2019,  I will only be reading for sheer pleasure and not only to achieve a goal. 
I may just not read anything for a few months and spend time in other pursuits.

So many things take up time besides housekeeping and other tasks. I've been participating in various free on line webinars, spending time in prayerful study, keeping up with a few friends and family members, making future plans and going to appointments which at times seem never ending.  I asked the doctor about possible knee surgery but apparently I  go to a program first where they teach about pain management and other relevant things. I believe they also assess whether and when I need surgery. 
I don't mind going because we have a waiting list for various kinds of surgeries here and I want to be in the queue. One thing that has been bothering me is the idea that I might wait too long and then end up being a long time on a waiting list if I don't do something to get myself on a list somewhere.  I'm not 100% sure if it really helps but at least I feel like I'm doing something positive.  In the meantime I also help myself by taking my supplements, walking and a bit of other exercise.

  At the end of summer I will have a family visitor and so I'm thinking about what we will do over the week, the menu and so on.  I was also expecting a cousin to make her annual visit soon.  I spoke with her last week and she won't be coming this year.  Her daughter decided to move to the city where she lives.  They are now living together until her daughter gets settled and so she has been busy showing her around the city and getting her familiar with everything.





~~~~~~~~~~~
I'm thinking of taking time away from blogging to relax and enjoy a slower pace over the summer.

 It has been a long time since I took a real blogging break and I've never taken a summer break from blogging. 
Summer always passes by so quickly and so I want to try and enjoy it this year.
  I'm not sure exactly when I'll start the break.  I was hoping to finalize my travel posts (Paris and Nairobi) first but not sure I will get to it.
Just in case you don't see me for awhile you will know that I've decided to go on break.
 🏖️  ☀️  🍹  🏝️

Until then enjoy your summer or your winter wherever you are in the world.

After the Pain

Hello everyone,

Since my last post I have suffered a lot of pain. After taking so many painkillers I decided to call the dental office and let them know I needed to get in sooner than my scheduled appointment. I had been on wait list but had not received a call. A few people commented on my last post that their dental offices have space for emergencies. I guess I didn't consider my situation an emergency because I didn't realize that the tooth giving me a problem still had roots.

Long story short, I did go in a few days earlier to the dentist and it was discovered that I had an abscess which needed to be cleaned out right away. Since then I only had a bit of pain after the freezing came out. I've now got antibiotics and pain killers to use as needed. I return Monday for the work to be completed. I'm not sure yet about other work as there is another major piece of work that needs doing under a bridge which now needs to come out and hopefully redone. When I saw the dentist a few months ago he thought he could work around it so I'm not sure why he says something different now. Maybe the x-rays tell the story but the affected tooth has no roots. So I'll wait and see. The main priority was getting rid of the tooth pain and is more or less gone. Thank goodness!

~~~~~

These sky photos were taken around 5 a.m. from my patio

Sunrise June 9, 2019

Sunrise June 9, 2019

Sunrise June 9, 2019


These plants are all from my patio garden

Geranium in a pot.

Catmint (not cat nip)
Remember the pansies were almost dead before I potted them but they are doing very well now.

Pink petunias

Basil

I've been taking a 1 mile walk each day in my neighbourhood (running errands, going to appointments and to the community garden plot), I spend 10 minutes a day, sometimes 20 minutes on the whole body vibration (WBV) machine, I take supplements for arthritis and try to eat more greens.  The knee pain has greatly reduced but is still there in the background if you will. I will continue with my regimes and next time I see the doctor I will ask for a referral to the arthritis specialist to discuss what my options are.  There can be quite a long wait for knee replacements where I live but they assess each person to see whether you should go on a priority list.

On my last post Yoko commented that I must strengthen the thigh muscles to help the knee pain. I remember when I was getting physiotherapy for the knee I was given some exercises to strengthen the muscles around the knee so I will start doing those again. The WBV machine also increases muscle mass in my legs so that helps.   The knee pain returns when I haven't been using WBV. There have actually been studies showing that WBV is good for arthritis sufferers (if you get the right kind of WBV machine) and I did experience great relief for several years after first being afflicted by arthritis many years ago.  My situation was much worse back then and I was eventually able to walk pain free after a lot of rehabilitation (as described above) and supplements.

I continue to keep very busy with the missions in Kenya. Right now I'm trying to help Eunice and her family who are dealing with life and death issues and the heavy financial burden.  Some of you may remember that Eunice  suffers from a blood issue. Either the blood is clotting and causing sudden hospitalization or she needs a lot of blood transfusions. I fear that she cannot go on much longer as she has already been through so much but God only knows for sure.

The main source of need is to pay for blood at a cost of 3000 Kenyan shillings per pint ($40 Canadian/$30 American) and she needs blood every other day. It gets expensive.  Her family has been getting relatives to travel in from several hours away to donate blood to try and reduce the costs but even this is a hardship because most of them are very poverty stricken and its hardship to spend on the transport and try and eat a bit on the journey to hospital and back. Kindly keep this woman and her family in prayer as the hospital she has been in for some time is several hours away from her home. The specialized kind of care she needs isn't available where she lives.

Ernest Ruto has gone home from hospital but there is still an outstanding balance of about $180 Canadian owing to the Kericho District Hospital. It's important to clear the bill not only because the money is owed but because it is the least expensive hospital option in Kericho Town and if the bill is not paid Ernest will have a hard time to get future medical assistance. I thank God for those who helped get this man home to recover. He is far happier to be recovering at home. Another benefit is that the hospital bill is not increasing since Ernest is no longer occupying a bed.


About a month or so ago I finished the last crochet blanket I was working on. I let it sit around for weeks as I just couldn't seem to get to tieing off the ends and taking a photo.


Finally I put all the loose threads to the back so I could take a photo of the blanket. I spread it out on the grass at the park because it is too large to get a good photo at home.  It is a twin size blanket so I also can't get a good photo of it on the sofa or on a larger bed.  Since I took the photo I have finally woven in and tied up all the loose ends at the back. I just need to prepare the blanket for mailing to my aunt so she can take it to my uncle.  I do hope it won't go missing at the care home where he lives as I've learned that things often get stolen in care homes.  That reminds me that I need to put a name label on the blanket before I mail it. It might help a bit.

I had the service man from the telecommunications company here to upgrade the modem and digital and PVR boxes. The equipment I had was first generation stuff from about 10 years ago and it really needed to be upgraded. What a difference it has made too. I no longer have such long delays and pauses when I use the remote controls. I also now only have to use one remote control rather than 2 and the speed of everything is much better even though I'm still on relatively low internet speed.  I've been waiting for years to get the fastest internet speed and it has been available now for awhile. But sadly the strata council and the telecommunications representative had an issue which led to a stand off and the end result is we cannot get the high speed internet right now.   So the upgrades are a God send and really correct the main issues I've been having. The service man will return in a few weeks to do one more thing which will allow me to have more streaming capability in the apartment. When you have guests or roommates it is much better to have more than 2 streams at a time to use for HD television (2 for watching in different rooms and one for recording). I am probably not explaining things properly but some of you may know what I'm trying to say, lol.

Other that that I've finally got things handled with the new financial advisor and I've made a few financial decision which I had put off for some time while I deliberated about finding a new advisor. I'm pleased with the progress I've made and will be doing more analysis and tweaking over the coming months.  I asked my new advisor if there were any incentives available for making the switch and I was given a choice of gift cards in the amount of $100. It was a bit disappointing since they give $300 for new bank accounts but I am still happy to have something. If I didn't ask I wouldn't get.  I chose a gift card for movies as that is one thing I like to attend throughout the year but I don't like paying today's prices.

Weather here has been very hot. It is usually me complaining about the heat but as I walk down the street my neighbours and some times complete strangers complain to me about the heat. Usually people just love hot weather but it seems this year those that don't are a bit more vocal. I am sure we are off to another dry summer and I just hope we get a few good rainfalls here and there. In May we only had 30.5 mm of rain which is just barely over 1 inch and well below the norm.

Every day or every other day I water my small balcony garden and go to the community plot to water that too. The community plot I have has a mish mash of plants because there are things coming up that were planted by the previous tenant.  I don't want to pull anything out until I can see what is growing. My lettuce, sunflowers and beans seem to be doing well. I didn't have poles for the beans when I planted so now need to get some up pronto so I purchased some 5 foot high bamboo poles. I didn't have time to go searching for alternatives and just bought these in a package of 25 at a store in my neighbourhood.  In future I hope to have some good enough photos to share of the little plot.




Thanks for reading. I hope you will come again.

Status Update

Hello everyone,

I hope you are enjoying the beginning of June so far.

I have been kept busy with the usual: gardening, doctor appointments, family, changing financial advisors, dealing with estate matters and other legal issues, catching up with friends and reading.

It has been a bit hot this week but not for overly long.  Thank goodness. Tomorrow we are supposed to have a bit of rain. I hope we get a good amount to help the gardens along.

Right now I'm suffering from a lot of inflammation. I have both a tooth infection, resulting in headaches and knee pain. The pain is almost constant and for the first time ever I've had to take Tylenol for pain. I've also started to seriously contemplate knee surgery or least speaking to the doctor about it.  To try and help myself  I've been back on the whole body vibration machine,  taking daily walks and various supplements.  In the last 2 days the knee pain has eased a lot.

I scheduled a dental appointment but due to some issues with the front desk staff at the office there have been delays in getting insurance approvals for the dental work.  My appointment is almost 2 weeks away and I've asked to be on the wait list. In the meantime I'm trying to do pain management. I don't expect to be on line much due to it being hard to concentrate with toothaches and headaches.

On a brighter note, I was able to volunteer to raise awareness of Compassion Canada. There were about 140 of us who went to the Pacific Coliseum where Hillsong United of Australia was playing to a sold out crowd. Our volunteer efforts consisted of handing out child information package and collecting completed applications.  Afterwards many of us stayed to listen to the concert.  Of course we were not allowed into the areas where people paid for their tickets and we had to be respectful of security staff who were very sensitive about it all. Each volunteer received a free Hillsong CD and a Compassion T-shirt which was nice. Many of the songs sung in the concert are from the new CD.  I really enjoyed the worship experience and many of those in attendance said the sinner's prayer at the invitation by the band leader.  I pray that these dear ones would be able to grow in their faith as the days and weeks go on.

Update: I received an update from Compassion staff on June 5th. The total volunteer count was 187 people. Two hundred ninety three children received new sponsors.  There is potential for an additional 93 sponsors because that is how many child information packages were handed out but have yet to be turned in.  That's so awesome.

Orientation Leader

Band Rehearsal

Volunteers enjoying the Orientation Leader's sense of humour.

Hillsong United concert underway.


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In Other News

Ernest in Kenya has gone home to recover from recent leg surgery however he will have a long recovery ahead.
So far we still need $180 Canadian to clear the hospital bill and a bit more to cover transport back and forth (a vehicle needs to be hired) medicines and doctor follow up care and possibly some medical supplies.
For further information kindly click on the top left of this blog.

If you are able to help with a donation  you can make it
via 

To send money you need an email address.
You can click here for it.

Otherwise, please consider sharing this fundraiser within your circles.

Thank you and have a wonderful week or two while I'm off recovering.
I will try to visit your blogs here and there.
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Friday Sky Just Before Friday Sunrise & A Missions Report

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