Sunday, November 13, 2011

WOW update November 2011

WOW, what a name for a project in Siberia, Windows of Warmth.  This project was not your typical one, but  one that was rather large for us.  We partnered with the local Music/Art school to remodel the front of their school.  The work consisted of replacing the old style windows, many of which were broken, with new three-pane European windows, insulating the front of the building and installing new metal siding (WOW donations were not used for the purchase of siding/insulation with this project, those funds came from another source). This particular school has over 150 students enrolled in its various programs ranging from piano, art and dance lessons to traditional classes on making Buryat clothing.  This was a VERY visible project for our team in the village.  The school is located in the center of town directly across from the library and next door to one of the local clinics.  Please enjoy the pictures and thank you for making this project possible with the many donations that have come in for WOW.  

Kevin with the load of building materials needed

A glimpse of the old windows and front of the building

The window replacement beginning, and the insulation going up.
Notice our OSHA approved ladders...

beginning the siding work...

Making precision cuts on the siding... 
coming to the end of the building...

Everyone busy with the work...

The front of the building, looks modern now....
The street in front of the Music School

Library in front of the music school

Hope you all enjoyed the pictures of our latest project.  Have a GREAT day and thanks for thinking of us...oh by the way it was a little cold today, it was -17 degrees this morning...what can we expect we do live in Siberia.  

Winter is the season in which people try to keep the house as warm as it was in the summer, when they complained about the heat.  ~Author Unknown

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Fall happenings...

There's no way this is the END of October already....OK.. it is the end of the month and we have lots of pictures and some great stories to share!

The beginning of the month took us to the city with our youth group for some rock climbing and time with other youth groups! We left the village early to a beautiful sunny morning and arrived in the city to a cold and rainy day! That didn't stop the trek to the rocks where we met up with another youth group and some students that belong to the local 'extreme club.' Eventually the weather cleared up enough for some of us to climb while the rest of us played games or prepared lunch! In the end, we all agreed it was a great day and we're eager to give it another try...when the weather is warmer and there's no rain!  The following day we went to church then it was off to the local mall to 'hang out'. (A brief pause here, we didn't realize that some of our gals had never seen an escalator...we didn't want to embarrass them so there aren't any pictures. Let's just say we spent a lot of time riding the escalators and the elevator!!Inexpensive fun is easy if you look for it! ) Next stop was a park that still had the rides going..the weather has been awesome! Then it was time to head back home and rest.. :)  All in all, it was a great weekend and the girls are looking forward to our next trip to the city!

 Some of our girls "helping" with lunch.
Kevin helping with the salad!

Throwing the ropes for our climbers.

The only girl from our group to climb...this time that is!


     September and October are also the last months to bring in hay for the winter. Cow, pigs, chicken, geese, and horses are kept in small barns or areas closer to home. The hay helps feed these animals during those very cold winter months! We thought you'd enjoy a picture of folks 'bringing in the hay'. (By the way, there are many folks who still do all of this by hand - a sickle and wooden rakes...amazing to watch!)

                                           Hay being trucked in from the fields...

           Each year seems to bring us 'city folks' a new challenge to living in a village. This year was no exception! We had built the 'barn' for our cows last year.....this year we added a chicken coop to the barn and made room for pigs. (Since the cows were lost last fall and we haven't replaced them yet.) Instead of milk, we'll now have eggs and some nice sides of pork for the winter!!

 Our chickens in their new 'home'.

Getting ready for the pig and her piglets.

      October also brings for us a time of thanksgiving for ALL we've harvested from our gardens. Early on in this work, it was decided not to be 'westernized' if at all possible. That means not celebrating holidays that aren't familiar to the folks here as well as 'our' ideas as to how to celebrate when there are similar holidays. Hence, we have our 'Harvest Sunday' each year to celebrate and give thanks for our gardens and the food that will keep many families from starving throughout the coming winter. As you can, there was 'much' to be thankful for this year. (Some of you may remember our enormous cabbages...this was not a good year for us and many others.) We even had a contest for the biggest of every vegetable brought in....our pumpkin was a winner, weighing in at 22 pounds! Now that will make a fair amount of pies and cookies!!
Therefore pray the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into His harvest.”  Mat 9:38  итак молите Господина жатвы, чтобы выслал делателей на жатву Свою.

First snow!!  Hahahaha ...why are we laughing??? Just spoke with my folks and our youngest son...they both have snow and we didn't get any until three days later.....YA Siberia!!!  OK, so it's the small things that make us smile :)  This could mean only five months of winter instead of the six or seven we usually get!!

Kevin and some friends are finishing up on a community project. They were able to have windows installed and put up siding on the front of our local music/art school. Completion is expected this week so some great pictures will follow. 
    Blessings to ALL
     Kevin & Laura

"If you want a thing done, go-if not, send"...Benjamin Franklin