Thursday, January 14, 2010


I hate how long it's been since I've updated this space. It's not for lack of things to share, nor for a lack of time necessarily, but rather for lack of an ability to sift through all that I'm experiencing and filter out what might be interesting or beneficial to share. So much of the reality of my experience in recent years revolves around words - reading and writing for class, writing for work, choosing each phrase so carefully according to whatever medium I'm in. I put on one hat for my academic writing (which sadly has been almost non-existent this semester), another for work and professional blogging, and yet another for emails and correspondence with those at home. In the past two months or so I've had a lot of trouble identifying and segmenting each of these voices, and I've struggled to live up to the opportunities on all fronts that I've been blessed with. I offer this by way of an explanation of why this page remains out of date, and perhaps a request for prayers/encouragement that I might tap into both the analytical and creative regions of my brain that I need access to in order to finish off the semester and continue the professional work that is financially supporting my time here.

That said, let me provide a brief update of what's been going on and a promise for the posting of some awesome pictures (both mine and those taken by my dear friend Nicole on her recent trip here) soon. First off, I'm in the final three weeks of classes, then go into exams which will complete my coursework for my degree here. I'm not gonna lie, I'm pretty darn behind and really struggling to keep my nose in the books and not out in the world around me. But I know if I can get through these final weeks, the next phase will be very exciting as I move into my project paper full time. I am hoping to do a case study of an ethical wholesale manufacturing business in Kampala, Uganda - but right now am not hearing back from them (or finding the right contact) to move forward - so could use some prayers in that regard as well! I'm gaining energy and encouragement from continued involvement with the boys home in Nakuru, as well as the older boys who are "SO MUCH MORE THAN EXCITED" (direct quote) that the three computers Shirley McNiel of Imprinted Memories and a member of my sponsor Rotary Club of Orange, have finally arrived here in Kenya. I'll be meeting with them tomorrow to make the delivery, along with some great tutorial software that family friend Jo-L Hendrickson of Individual Software sent. Though she doesn't know it yet, I'm hoping my friend Catherine Hawley will share some of her financial planning wisdom with these boys in helping them set up a business and fundraising plan while she's here next month (note my progress on New Year's resolution #54, do not over-commit myself, delegate instead :).

I will also be speaking at the Karen Rotary Club in a week and a half to share how local clubs here in Kenya can start to take advantage of the Ambassadorial Scholarship for local students, as well as an idea for a larger scholarship fund/program I am hoping to start with a dear friend (and local Rotarian), Kevin Mududa. I'm hoping I graduate first - but I like having the opportunity to share my ideas to help get the ball rolling on the project.

Perhaps most importantly, I'm spending lots of time with Maureen as she prepares for her due date next month. A number of the most important women in my life have been sending funds and collecting donations of all sorts to help me help Maureen get ready for her baby. Talk about a fish out of water - I have no experience with pregnancy or motherhood and yet I find myself trying to counsel Maureen on what to expect in this final month. She is stronger than she knows, and as scared as she might be I know her daughter is going to be a lucky little girl to call her mama. I am humbled by this opportunity to walk with her during this time, and beyond grateful for the many people who are helping as well.

Signing off for now with the people of Haiti in my thoughts and prayers...