Friday, January 18, 2013

Fun on Grandpa's Shamba!

Hey Kids,

Well, I just peeked over the fence at your grandparents house and guess what I saw? There was quite a ruckus going on. I saw kids running around with sunflowers, that’s ‘alizeti’ in Kiswahili, on their heads.

That’s when all the kids decided to play with the sunflowers. They were so funny! Grandpa and Grandma sat on the porch and laughed and laughed. It was so much fun!

Now Kuja, the german shepherd guard dog and the best pet in the world, did not want to be left out of the fun. So he chased them around until he got a hold of one for himself. Well almost. Lynn would not let go so they played tug of war. 

Looks like Kuja won.

Grandpa stuck one up to his ear because he thought it would help him to hear better… didn’t.

Then I went around to the back yard and saw Mr. Patrick feeding the ‘kuku’. That’s Kiswahili for chicken. He doesn’t just feed them and walk away. He sits down on the ground and feeds them by hand. 

They really love him so they make the best eggs in whole world! I never saw such beautiful, golden eggs in my whole life! Your grandma cooks them up every morning for grandpa. He eats them all up! He is getting very healthy eating all the good organic food here in Kenya.

I peeked into the garage. Humm… looks like they’re using the garage as a barn. I saw the biggest, fattest hen I ever, just sitting on her eggs, that’s ‘mayai’, when suddenly little chicks hatched out! They are so cute!

Mr. Patrick not only raises chickens but lots of ‘mboga’, that’s vegetables. Like tomatoes, nyanya, carrots, karoti, Kale, skuma wiki and spinach. There’s no Kiswahili word for spinach. They just call it “spinach”. There are hundreds of green tomatoes in his ‘shamba’. ‘Shamba’ is the Kiswahili word for ‘farm’.  There will be more food than grandpa and grandma and even Patrick’s family of 7 can eat. So he will sell them to the neighbors to buy food for his family

Mr. Patrick’s wife is Ms. Christine. She helped your grandma cut down the sunflowers, ‘alizeti’, and dry the seeds. When they dried the seeds and popped them out they needed threshing. 

So Flora got a basket that one of the Kenyan ladies gave to your grandma. She tossed the seeds up in the air so the wind would blow away the chaff. 

Now they are nice and clean and ready to toast and eat. Ummmmmm! Maybe you can grow some sunflowers next summer.

Guess I better get back to my family now. Zenia is calling me. Until next time… 

         Kwaherini! That’s “Bye ya’ll” in kiswahil.

See if you can learn these words:
·        Kiswahili – the language of Swahili
·        Sunflower – alizeti
·        Chicken – Kuku
·        Eggs - mayai
·        Farm – shamba
·        Vegetables - mboga
·        Tomato – nyanya; By the way, nyanya is also the word for ‘grandma’ isn’t that funny?
·        Carrot – karoti
·        Kale – skuma wiki; that’s one of the most favorite foods in Kenya.


  1. That's cute! I read it to my little ones. Rissa loved the picture of the chicks! I think Aidyn remembers Abba, when he saw his picture he got excited and started saying about "papa!" I hope all is well there, we miss you guys.


  2. Aww Kuja is soo big. Thx for posting pictures:)

  3. Very cute story!! Made me miss you all and Parick and Christine's family even more. Love you all! Thanks for writing. Maybe I will have my new grandbaby call me "tomatoe" in Kiswahili . :)

  4. You do such great stories and pictures. Thanks so much. Gonna read this to the grandchildren today. Love and miss ya.

  5. Haha!! I love the pictures of Abba being silly with the sunflowers!