Thursday, May 19, 2016

Mangoes in May

May 16, 2016

I love the month of May.  I love flowers blooming, trees budding, celebration of Mother’s Day, mangoes in abundance, memories of our wedding day.  Everything is quite green here at Nyankunde!  Sunsets are stunning through the rainy season cloud formations.  I am reminded again that we live in the beautiful place and of the many things God has blessed us with.
Celebrated our 6th wedding anniversary this May

Malaria Season & An Unusual Case
Malaria season has completely EXPLODED!  Our pediatric service has over 70 patients at the moment.  It is a challenge to see every child every day.  Most of the children are recovering nicely, but some are not and it is really necessary to see even the straightforward cases.  I am thankful for the help of Dr. Patrick LaRochelle who is a med/peds doctor who is helping with the increased patient load.  He was looking to be more involved in pediatrics and now he has his wish! 

I continue to be amazed at the interesting cases and complicated pathology we see everyday.  I am caring for a young boy with a complicated heart condition called Ebstein’s anomaly (malformed tricuspid valve) that results in very small ventricles.Over time children experience profound symptoms of heart failure.  This young boy also happens to have signs of abdominal tuberculosis with a huge abdomen such that he looks 9-months pregnant.  On admission he was having a lot of abdominal pain and difficulty eating.  He essentially was not able to walk due to his large abdomen.  Now he is able to eat, is gaining weight, and is not having abdominal pain.  We are really hoping for good recovery and for him to return home soon.  He will have to live with his symptoms of heart failure, given the risks of cardiac surgery which are far too great.  Pray for his recovery.

Running on Solar Electricity
In rainy season we test our solar system capacity to the limit.  We are at the limit!  Warren is quite adept at finding solutions to our power shortages.  I appreciate how handy he is and am learning a lot myself.  Our home shares electricity with the guesthouse next door and facilitates a VSAT for three households so it really is important that we have consistent power.  The hospital recently installed 20 new solar batteries, gifted by a church in Switzerland.  This should significantly improve our power problems.  In the US most of us simply switch on the light switch and don’t give a thought to how many watts we are using.  A few years ago Warren was shocked at how many Christmas lights I had installed on our Christmas tree (exceeding 1200 watts).  It was the equivalent of running a high-powered mixer for hours.  In Congo we use low wattage bulbs and try to conserve appliance use as much as possible (..I still have low wattage Christmas tree).

Emmanuel Minute
Emmanuel continues to advance in his language skills.  I think he understands much more than he speaks in English, French, and Swahili.  Now when we look at books he points out the sun, moon, bears, bunnies, water, twiga (giraffe), tembo (elephant), simba (lion), babies, mommas, daddies, fish.  It is quite entertaining.  We sing a lot of songs to learn words.  It will be really interesting which language he masters first and then how he will choose to use the other languages surrounding him.  We are really enjoying this chapter of parenting.  I will keep working on “I love you Momma.”

I am often reminded that every day is a gift.  Sometimes simply preparing food for the evening and taking care of Emmanuel can be time consuming.  It can feel like  a stretch to get everything done and the laundry put away.  Yet despite the busy work, having a child forces you to take a step back and smell the roses.  Some days Emmanuel literally pulls up my meticulously planted herbs to smell them.  I can’t get too upset with him when I see his cute grin.  I love that he is discovering his world, even my herbs!

Projects & Ministry Support
We have a lot of projects going on around the house and guesthouse.  We are completing a foundation behind our house to be used as a play area and gazebo.  We plan to plant additional fruit trees and flowers in the surrounding lawn.  We are planning to design a nice outdoor wooden table with stools.  One of Warren’s gifts is adapting his environment for greater functionality.  I love this and am a direct beneficiary. 

If you would like to be a ministry partner, we would love to hear from you.  We anticipate some significant costs to replace a set of solar batteries in addition to a recently repaired water line to the   These are all necessary maintenance costs to continue living here.  We are hoping to raise funds to buy a vehicle over the course of 2016.  We continue to pray about these things and let our support base know.  You can contact us at: or through Christian Health Service Corps at:

Blessings and love,

Lindsey (Warren & Emmanuel)
Bridges are a huge problem, trucks actually go through!
Emmanuel with Lukas Folmer

1 comment:

  1. Congratulations on six years of marriage! We're enjoying mangos here, too. Lots of smoothies :)