Americans in Africa: French Toast with Beans ~ Weekly Report

What does your ideal “week off” look like?

A nap almost every afternoon? Reading a book? (or two or three?) Mine, too.

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South Africa’s schools had this week off, so we did the same. We were ready for a break after having finished eight straight weeks of school. (Yay, us!)

I would not say that this has been an “ideal” week off, but I did get a lot done! My main accomplishment was to make homemade lip balm–my newest business venture in order to help build our church structure. I made at least 200 little pots of all-natural, health-for-your-lips goo, and they look beautiful. With my husband’s help, we made some labels as well. Now we just need to figure out a good price and hope they sell well!

Here's Caleb watering a tree at our church stand. You can see our recently built outdoor toilets, complete with pink and blue doors, in the background.

Here’s Caleb watering a tree at our church stand. You can see our recently built outdoor toilets, complete with pink and blue doors, in the background.

We decided to call them “Building Balm.” I thought that was a good play on words–Build your lips, build a church…  I do feel relieved to have gone through the learning curve. I’ve been planning to do this for a year, and now I finally am! It was very easy to do, though a little painstaking during the pouring, cleaning, and labeling processes. I have decided that for now, I will do the cooking and pouring; but I will recruit church members to do the cleaning and labeling.

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On Monday we went to town to shop and have a picnic lunch on a mountain top. We got back late and entertained three unexpected guests. Dinner was hilariously incongruous. Because of our guests, I had no time to make what I’d planned, so I began preparing French toast. That’s when our third guest showed up– “kokwana,” our grandmother here. Her timing is amazing…

Kokwana is unstoppingly kind to us. For all of our misunderstandings, she is special.

Kokwana is unstoppingly kind to us. For all of our misunderstandings, she is special.

We were exhausted and tried to communicate that maybe we could visit with her another time? “Open the gate,” she responded. She was slightly irritated and tried to communicate that maybe we should have been home that day, or at least left the gate open? She sometimes cooks a traditional dish for us (we never know what day or hour); and if we happen to be away, she simply hides the dish in a bush and shows us when we return. But because of our recent burglary, we have begun locking the gate.

She sat down to eat with us with the dish she had brought–boiled beans in a peanut sauce. I told the kids a bit impatiently to say they liked it whether or not they truly did. I do! So I ate, with loud appreciation, three helpings right along with my French toast, and perhaps seeing the humor in our meal helped me through a tiresome moment.

I missed my maid this week as I busily hung up several loads of clothing Tuesday morning. The afternoon somehow disappeared in several little moments of knocks on the door and village visitors. That caused me to translate my children’s lesson for Sunday late; I managed to send it off for Tsonga proofing late Wednesday evening after supper.

Other triumphs this week include switching three children’s wardrobes to the next size and packing away the old clothes and…planning presents! Every child in this house celebrates a birthday in April, so I’m gearing up! Two of mine share a birthday this weekend; you can read my fun birth story here if you like that kind of stuff. This week, I wrapped most of the gifts for the whole month. 🙂

Birthday boys!

Birthday boys!

The only thing that didn’t get done on my list for this week was blogging. But that’s no blog deal, right? (I know, what a groaner!)

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About Amy

I'm Amy, a missionary wife and mother of four children, blogging about our lives and perspectives on culture in South Africa.
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2 Responses to Americans in Africa: French Toast with Beans ~ Weekly Report

  1. Well, I like beans and french toast, so it sounds good to me! Sounds like you need to get another maid! And Happy Birthday, one and all! Sounds like you had fun!

  2. Pingback: The Downside to the Perfect Mom - The Daily Citron

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