oink. oink. oink.

Throughout the month of May, we built a new house to move some of our pigs into.

With the birth of 15 piglets at the end of April, it’s probably not a huge surprise we needed to make more room.

Here is what it looked like making a new shelter for some of our pigs!

getting the area cleared and leveled
the current pig house is on the right


almost ready to start


pounding the soil and laying out the footprint


Sam decided to use broken bricks to make the floor – this was a great way to save money, we have the bricks and we don’t need to buy stones.

getting ready to pour the concrete


starting to pour concrete


smoothing the concrete


making the feeding/drinking basins


working on the walls


Currently, only 2 of the four “rooms” are being used.  When we are able to purchase more iron sheets, we will cover the rest of it.

Sam giving them some feed


much love!



One of our intentions for holding the raffle for Water is Life was to buy a few water tanks.
Thanks to everyone who participated in our raffle, we have been able to start doing so!

Our original plan for the tanks was one in our compound, one down in the boys’/animals’ compound, and one on the CITY land.

There have been a few set-backs with the one in our house compound, like location and the water we can use.
The most economical and best solution for our house, has been to buy a GIANT tank for our down compound (where the boys and animals stay).  This tank will collect rain water.  We will be able to use the water to bathe, wash clothes and dishes, cook, and feed the animals.

this tank is 8,000L (which is roughly 2,113 gallons)


How do you set up a water tank to collect rain water?
Well, first, you need to build the platform for the tank to sit on.

digging out the area and starting the foundation


concrete is poured


The rain doesn’t just rain into the tank.  We needed to place gutters and collection pipes on the boys’ and animals’ houses.  These flow into the tank.

getting the gutters set up (the tank is to the right of this building)


some of the final connections


Before the tank was set on the platform, they poured sawdust and mixed it with oil, the black oil that is used in vehicles (not clearish cooking oil:).  Apparently the sawdust and oil under the tank help it to last longer.

sawdust before the oil was added


So what does the final product look like?

a new tank and rain-collection system.


Sam estimates, once this tank is full, we can go at least a month or more without other water.  It is between quarter and half-full at the moment.

Sam displaying how high the water was Sunday afternoon 


This is going to be so helpful, especially with the water out so often now.


much love!

she’s got a ticket to ride…

Or, should I say, we’ve got tickets to fly?!?

Maddie and I officially have tickets to get to the States.
We will be arriving at the end of August and staying until the beginning of November.

I am excited (so is Maddie, she just doesn’t know it yet:) to see family and friends, and maybe even meet some new people.
Part of staying in the States for longer than a month, is to hopefully let more people know about what we are doing here in Mukono, Uganda.

with my little travel buddy 


You want to see Maddie and me?
You want to be a part of all CITY Uganda is doing?

Well, there are a few things you can do…
– you can set up a time for us to talk with your small group or a group of your friends
– help pay for our flights (total for both us us, it is $1,556)
– we could also use some help to get things stocked up for the time that I am gone (particularly food, toiletries, and school supplies)

When you click HERE, you can give a tax-deductible donation that will go towards paying for our tickets, stocking up on items, and support the day-to-day operation of CITY Uganda!


much love!

Phoebe and Paco

Finally, the promised car blog!

First of all, thank you to everyone who helped us to buy our car in January 2017.  Her name was Phoebe and she had been a good car; unfortunately, it was costing us more to repair than we originally spent on her.  She was used a lot and loved well.

soon after we bought Phoebe – Sam taking some of our kids to school


bringing grass from the garden to our house for the animals


About the time we were trying to figure out how to make the necessary repairs to Phoebe, a new engine and a new gear box, a mechanic friend brought us someone who was selling a car.

Well, he wasn’t selling just any car, it was a newer (at least a couple of years) and in much better condition, version of our car – A Toyota Land Cruiser: Prado.

the night we brought Paco home


It was a hard, yet easy decision at the same time.
Hard because of the money, but easy because it was so nice.
We were able to trade them our car, and add in some money, then Paco was ours!

Turns out, we didn’t know at the time, but that was our last week with Phoebe.  Less than a week after we sold her and started driving Paco, Phoebe wouldn’t start anymore.

Paco at the CITY land, this past weekend


In order for us to buy Paco, we had to borrow money.  Currently, we do not have any of the money we need to pay the loan back.

Please help us to pay off our loan for Paco!
Including the new battery, recent servicing, and the new fuel pump, we need $4,000.
If you happen to be looking for where to spend your spare change or a way to help internationally, then this may be for you:)
This car is so important and used daily for our growing ministry, CITY Uganda.

Sam and Maddie with Paco


You can go HERE to make a tax-deductible donation today!


much love!

intentions vs. reality

You know the saying about the best-laid plans?
Well, I’d say this blog is like that at times.
Writing my last blog, I fully intended to post one with the story of our car.
Umeme (the power company, here in Uganda) had different ideas, though.

what our fridge looks like currently (well, the doors aren’t open:)


For over a week now we have been without power, with no timeframe of when it will be returning.
Apparently, the transformer we are on has a problem.  The even bigger problem is, Umeme is in no hurry to rectify this situation.

So, the other night, Sam and I made the decision to buy a solar panel.  It is not for the whole house, but it is a temporary fix while we research bigger options.

the solar kit we bought 


This is a pretty cool concept, and useful for many people around here.  With a deposit, you take this box home and someone comes to install it for you.  Then daily or weekly, you pay a little money to finish paying for it (it takes about 1.5 years to finish paying it off).

Now we have five lights inside our house/on the veranda and a way to charge our phones, flashlights, and internet.
Unfortunately, there is no way to charge my computer or run the fridge or TV, but that is really ok!


much love!


*hopefully that car story blog will be coming soon!


Something I’ve been thinking about, and talking about with others lately, is how being self-sustainable doesn’t happen over night.  As much as we want CITY to be self-sustainable, we’re definitely not there yet.

Looking  back to where we were, this time last year, there have been some big changes.

We purchased our truck last year, had to fix it after an accident, and were trying to get more consistent work.  Now, the truck is bringing in money each week (enough to cover paying back our loan for it).

this was post-accident when it was being re-painted!


Last year we were working through land issues.  In the last few months, we have rarely had to buy tomatoes, peppers, sweet potatoes, and cassava.  Although it hasn’t been much, we have been able to sell some tomatoes and green peppers.

before we were able to do anything on CITY land


Can you see the change?
I think you are looking at tomato, bean, and ground nut plants


One year ago, we only had this compound for all of our people and animals to live in.  Now, we have expanded.  Our boys and animals not only have their own area, it is completely walled in and has lights.

some of the latest additions to our farm, born Monday morning
(this picture is when they were less than 12 hours old)


There are a few reason why I share this.  First of all, we couldn’t have made so much progress without the help of others.  Thank you to all who have been praying and supporting all that we are doing with CITY.
Also, we are working hard to pursue this vision God has given us, but we still need help; especially in the area of finances.

A few specific things we need help with right now are:
– Paying back a loan for our car: $3,500*
– Helping to buy tickets for Maddie and I to visit America in the Fall: they will probably be around $1,800-$2,000

playing blocks with my little travel buddy


If you feel lead to help us pay back our car loan, get Maddie and I tickets to America, or with any of the other things we are doing in Uganda, you can click this HERE to give a tax-deductible donation.!


much love!


*I’ll be sharing more about the car soon – with pictures!

choosing joy

Moments are fleeting.
Life is frail.
But, we serve a BIG God.
One who knows the plans He has for us.

So, as much as we try to put God in a box,
however much we try to understand,
trusting Him is the best thing we can do.


Thank you, BB, for being an encouragement; not only in words, but in the faith you walked out on a daily basis.  Your love has touched so many people and changed their lives for the better, me included.  My thoughts and prayers are with your family as they choose the joy you focused on.