Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Bonne Chance: Good Luck

Wednesday, December 17, 2008 at 4:54pm
Sorry about leaving everyone hanging... I didn't realize we would be without access to internet for such a long time... Last Wednesday, Dec 10, Tim was hanging Christmas lights in the dorm. The rickety old ladder slipped and Tim and ladder went through the living room window. His left hand was sliced very badly. I drove him to the clinic and he received 15 stitches. He should have had at least 40, but the attending nurse disagreed with me.... here we are a week later and his index finger looks not too bad but his middle finger still looks pretty bad. The worst thing was that after they stitched him up they wrapped up his finger with cotton guaze without any ointment, so the next day when he went to get his dressing changed the clotted blood got all ripped open again!!! This time we brought our own ointment and non-stick bandages curtesy of Dr Ace Cheung. That helped a little, Ace is thinking that he should regain use of his fingers, but no hand modeling in his future!!! Right now Tim is in Burkina Faso where he drove some of our dorm kids. Otherwise I would take a picture for you. When we were in the clinic the first time Tim actually asked if I had brought the camera!! Like I was thinking about that when my adrenaline was pumping!! good night! Thank you for your prayers, it looks like he will have frankenstein hands, but that at least he will be able to use them. He is doing pretty good with his right hand now (for those who don't know, Tim is left handed... figures, eh?)

Saturday, November 29, 2008

The Terrible Twos!!

Yes, we have officially entered the Terrible Twos. I remember when my sister's boys were two and I thought, how can they get in to so much trouble?? We had a very mild daughter and now a sweet boy who has turned two and, is it possible?? Yes, he has changed into a hooligan over night!!
His birthday was November 16, we have been teaching him to say "I'm two". and it is all very sweet and lovable, but this is the same boy who threw a glass mug off the coffee table just to see what would happen (it broke into a thousand smithereens... is that really a word? smithereens, that is). He also opened the refrigerator took out a banana and the whole pitcher of orange juice and proceeded to pour it on himself and all over the floor. He put a chair up to the counter and put a stool on top of the chair and tried to climb up the shaky contraption! He jumped on the high jump mattresses that the P.E. dept had out and landed on the soccer goal (and gave himself a black eye--good thing he is a quick healer). He climbed up on the ping pong table and started throwing glass Christmas balls on the tile floor (well, in his defense, they were "balls") and he took baby Jesus out of the manger scene and tried to eat him! (just one little bite)... but he is a happy little guy, most of the time and he loves to give hugs and kisses... his little playmate, Arielle now calls all white boys "Jayson".... yes, he is famous! and TWO!

Hoola, or is it Hula?

We have discovered that our daughter is very tenacious. If there is something she wants to do she will keep at it until it is mastered. I thought that it only applied to whining and nagging until she gets her own way, but it also applies to the Hoola-hoop! Yes, our four year old has mastered the art of hula-hooping!! So I had to get her on video for your enjoyment! Hope this will load up! Sorry, we can't get it loaded up. Tim tried to shrink the pixels of the movie, but because we haven't bought all these fancy programs, we can't save the smaller video. Quick Time allows to do everything except save stuff just so we will have to buy from them. Now what kind of free trial is that? I feel another blog being born right now:)

Monday, November 24, 2008


Ok, first off, so sorry for not updating for an entire month. Shame on us. I guess track and field day really dominated our time. More on that when I get some pictures. I do not have, unfortunately, pictures of this blog. My camera died just as I turned it on. bummer:( Anyway, last Saturday, I got to experience a soccer match like no other I have ever witnessed before. After teaching at KCS for so many years and watching game after game of soccer, I never really got the big deal of how popular of a sport it was to people, until now. Niger was playing Cote D'Ivoire, yes, an arch rival. In part due to the fact that Niger rarely wins and the Ivory Coast almost always wins.

We had been going to the Stadium for the last couple of weeks and had noticed that while we were all running around practicing for our track and field day, there was the national jr. soccer team also practicing. While we rarely mingled, I found out through the ones who could speak french that there was a game Saturday. However, noone could tell me what time and who. Finally, as we were walking out the door after our field day, I asked a man who was sitting near the door what time the game started. He told me, "Seize heure", like duh, man, what planet are you on, everybody knows when the biggest game of the year is to take place! I then asked him how much it would cost thinking it would be like 3-5, 000 francs, but he said with a big smile, "Mais, c'est gratuit. It was FREE! FREE! No way, this could not be. That would never happen in the states. To open the biggest stadium in Niamey(the only stadium) and have all those people come in, it would be a huge money the states. But, that is where things are different...they would rather have thousands of screaming, singing, clapping, and foot stomping fans than make the several thousand dollars they could have made. But, there was a catch. I thought, oh, oh, here it comes. The man said that we had to cheer for Niger, if we cheered for the Ivory Coast, it would cost us 5,000francs. I laughed and promised that I would cheer for them even though some of my kids who come from the Ivory Coast would not promise such loyalty.

Normally, the dorm likes to go the American Recreation center to play softball, swim and eat yummy food, but today, many of the kids were hesitating. I asked them if they would rather go see THE game instead. So, I ended up taking some kids to the rec because softball was just too strong of a force for them, but a few more stayed in the van to go see THE game. Kind of ironic, too, that we had THE GAME here just like in Columbus, Ohio, where another GAME was taking place. I digress.

We pulled into the parking lot with no trouble at all since we were a bit early. We walked into the stadium like any other and found some seats and immediately noticed two things. First, an entire section of the stands taken up by the military of Niger who were just having a great time in entertaining the crowd. They were all singing, dancing, moving, clapping all in unison and it was incredible to watch and listen to. The second thing I noticed was that as the sun was starting its descent behind the stadium, the shadows created shade, of course. The line of people in the seats perfectly followed the line of the shade. Incredible. Of course, us crazy white people? In the sun! Fortunately, that didn't last too long.

At four o'clock when I was told the game would begin, I was ready. Come on ref, lets get this game started, I thought. But, again, unlike the states, the four o'clock time was just posted to get everyone there by 4:30, the actual starting time. But, it was quite comical to watch the two teams warm up, sometimes all together, and sometimes not. The most comical time was watching the officials warm up. I could tell who the field judge was and who was going to be on the sidelines, just by the way they warmed up. They were almost in perfect unison, did the same thing back and forth across the field for most of the time between 4 and 4:30.

The pre game band as they were, was nothing like the marching 100. Those of you who are Buckeyes fans will know who that is. The notes I did hear didn't sound too bad, but I heard like one note before everyone in the stands began to scream wildly as, I can only assume, that their national anthem was being played.

Finally, 4:30 comes and I am getting a bit anxious because I thought that the game would be almost through the first half by now. I told the kids at the rec that I would come get them at 6 so I could watch the start of the other GAME on Armed Forces Network. THE GAME is soccer, I sit back and relax because it is soccer. I have never really enjoyed soccer because of all the scoring, or lack thereof, and the first half proved my point. These guys ran and ran and ran, working so hard to score, but didn't. What a waste, right? yeah, I know, they were just breaking them down for the second half of one score after another. But, we did get to see a bunch of guys carried off the field on stretchers, because the "EmT" squad had to do its job. After they carried them off, then the trainers worked on the players to get them back into the game. Of course, you still had your "flops" trying to draw fouls, as well. There was a lot of play at the opposite end of the field from where we were, but that was ok to see all those plays open up shots on goal that were either not taken quickly enough, or they missed. Niger most definately had the advantage in attempts on goal in the first half. I felt like the superior team was kind of dominated.

The second half rolls around and the crowd is getting a bit restless for a score. We have had several good chances and just could not capitalize. As this seeminglingly endless, scoreless game continued, the only entertainment became who had the biggest fight in the stands due to the people up top throwing things to the people down below, like water bags, bottles, etc.
So, about half way through the second half, it happened. Something worth seeing on the field. A player received a red card and was ejected from the game! Yes, a player from the Ivory Coast said something to the official as the official was going over to check on an injured player from Niger. The official whipped around as if someone had just slapped his face, threw up the red card and then his hand to signal the ejection. That was all right. I felt as if Lou Pinella himself was there! What excitement! As the fans were throwing things at this player as he tried to exit, my attention was not on the game. Oh, for instant replay because in the one moment I looked away from trying to will a goal, it REALLY happened. The team from Niger scored a gooaaaaaalll! I looked up just in time to see the ball leave the players' foot and go into the net.

What happened next was truly sensational. I thought that the people up top had no more water to throw down, but it looked as if a fire department had begun to spray the crowd down from outside the stadium. There were so many water bags and bottles tossed into the air and broken, that the spray from them all created this mist all over the crowd, who, by the way, was going crazy. The celebration from this one score lasted almost to the very end of the game. In fact, just as the crowd caught its collective breath, the game ended, thus sending the crowd into another frenzy. It was an incredible win for Niger! The amazing thing was through all this is that before the game ended, the ball boys began to pick up the water bottles and things from the track and give them back to the people in the stands so they could do it all again! I thought, " what are you doing? Are you crazy?"

Now, to conclude this rather long story of this milestone, leaving the stadium was another whole adventure. If you cannot read any longer, please come back to read about the leaving experience! I will post another story tomorrow with the exciting conclusion on my complete soccer experience! I am not sure that there is anything quite like it anywhere else!

P.S. By the way, I did make it back to the rec center for the second half of the other GAME where there was plenty of least by the Buckeyes! Go Bucks!

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

First Day of School

November 3rd was Mikaylah's first day of school. She was pretty excited. she picked out her dress (the uniforms are not finished yet) and packed her backpack the night before. Ethan, a little boy from her Sunday School class is also starting with Mikaylah, here is a photo of them, it was bright so difficult for Mikaylah to look up!

Well the disappointing thing was that even though all the kids were there and all the teachers were there, they could not legally open school because they were lacking one more paper... so the kids played on the playground for an hour and the other parents and teachers and we prayed for a while, then we went back home. Please pray with us that the authorities will sign the last paper. They are stalling because the pre-school is a Christian pre-school, started by a group of Christian educators. They want the name "evangelique" in their name, so pray that hearts will change and the last paper will be signed. Mikaylah thinks school is easy!! I thought she would be disappointed, but she is just taking it all in stride. We are hoping that school will be able to open in January. At least the uniforms should be done by then!

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

To Glory

As far as family news goes…I was saddened, yet I rejoice to hear that my grandmother, Lila Muck, after almost 97 years of life passed on to glory to be with her Savior. While we celebrate her new life with no physical ailments, we will miss her here on this earth.
It was difficult to be away from family in the (as Mikaylah calls them, "Ohio States") during this time of remembering my grandmother. However my brother sent us a video of her memorial. Thanksgiving will not be the same this year without Grammy. But life here on earth was getting to be a big burden for her so we rejoice that she can enjoy heaven with our saviour.
Aside from that, things have pretty much fallen into a routine. We wake up with the kids, see them off to school, make snacks and bread and supper in the afternoon, dinner, devotions, and see them off to bed. However, in what seems to be a rather mundane day, is just the opposite! This schedule provides us all kinds of opportunities to talk with these kids, which is why we are here.
September was Ramadan, a month of fasting for the Muslims and two of our three African workers. We praise God that one of our workers, Jean, is a born again believer! But, during the month of Ramadan, we were able to strike up several conversations with Ladi and Mariame about why they fast from sunup to sundown.

Our kids continue to amaze us. I have to get on our blog more often because our kids just say the funniest things. Jayson is really starting to talk now. He knows 2 colors…lellow and puple(yellow and purple). John Kwak, one of the boys in the dorm picked some purple flowers and taught Jayson how to say purple and flower. Now, when we ask him to say flower, he says, “purple”. ☺
Mikaylah is getting very excited about starting preschool next month. It was supposed to be starting this month, but due to some complications, they will begin November 3. This is a preschool that has been started by Cornerstone, a group of mostly Nigerien teachers who are passionate about Christian education in Niger. It will be all French (and some Djerma) for her, so please be in prayer for her. I think she will enjoy very much once she gets into it. She has been learning some French from our workers as well. She has become very accustomed to communicating with the people here on campus.

I leave you this month with some more prayer requests.
1. Continued opportunities to talk with our workers about Christ.
2. Language…as always. Once we feel comfortable in French, we will start Djerma or Gormachi to talk better with our workers.
3. Mikaylah’s school which starts November 3rd.
4. Some happenings in the dorm that aren’t fun to deal with. Just pray that God supersedes everything that we do and that He will show His face to some of these kids who really need Him now.
We praise God for each of you and your faithful giving…especially during this whole economic “panic” in the States. Through all of that, I don’t think we have lost one supporter…praise God☺ Please continue to pray for our finances as we try to make ends meet being under supported as we head into 2009. The Canadian dollar has dropped against the US dollar and that takes more support away since about 30% of our support comes from Canada.
If you are considering giving to this ministry of raising up MK’s, you can do so online at and go to the giving section. From there, just follow directions.
We thank God for each of you, for your prayers and support. Have a wonderful week☺

Tim, Janice, Mikaylah and Jayson
For I know the plans that I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future. Jeremiah 29:11
Address in Niamey: Sahel Academy, BP 10065 Niamey, Niger or Mission Evangelique Baptiste, BP 11324, Niamey, Niger

Friday, October 17, 2008


Jayson will be two years old in one month!! Hard to believe in some ways that two years have almost already gone by. We have been a little concerned for his lack of speech. He just learned how to say Papa a few weeks ago and has no sentences except "I go" and "me too" while copying his big sister!! Yesterday we were having lunch with Chris and Diane Marine and Jayson used his default word for what we thought was his attempt to say popsicle.... Aigoba. He usually tries to open the refridgerater and stands there saying "Aigoba, Aigoba" If Mariame, his babysitter is nearby she will give him a popsicle or a piece of cheese or a cookie... Yesterday Chris told us that "Aigoba" is the Dzerma word for "I want it" or "I like it". Poor kid, no wonder he is a late talker, he isn't just processing English, we knew he was surrounded by French because he was only six weeks old when we arrived in Quebec, but we had no idea he was also processing Dzerma, a language Tim and I do NOT know!!

Monday, October 13, 2008


So sorry we haven't been on the blog over a month. Things here in Niamey during September and October go a bit NUTS. That stands for Niamey Universal Tournament of Softball. Yes, for a month and a half, that means that we eat, drink, and sleep with softball. Now, those of you who know me must be thinking that this was a great thing for me. However, there is a lot of work put into all of this from practicing three or more times a week, playing scrimmage games, getting the field ready, organizing teams, etc. We actually had three teams from Sahel Academy this year. I am told that is a record. I was also told that since I am the dorm dad, I had to play and coach and organize, and drive, and ump, etc.(Yes,Peter, that was a run-on sentence!) While I had absolutely no idea of what I was getting myself into, it turned out to be a lot of fun. Two of our teams played in the social division, and my team, in the competitive. On Friday, the 10th of October, we began with a couple of games, but Saturday and Sunday are the big days. While we only had to play 3 games on Saturday, our youngest team had to play 4 games. Now, some of you players out there may be saying, big deal, I have played 7 games in one day before. Don't forget, this was all during the temperatures of right around 100 degrees. I never looked at the temp that day because I didn't want to be depressed.

Anyway, on to the real team, comprised of mostly high school boys, one teacher, the director of the school, and myself. These boys really put it all together when they had to. I saw all of them really grow up as ball players. Their skills improved dramatically during the tournament. There were only 3 other teams there for us to compete against, but all of them were made up of men and women from around Niamey and Ouagadougou. There were some fantastic hitters from the embassy here and from Ouaga. We only had to play 5 total games to win the whole thing. Only once did I ever think we would not win. I told these guys 6 weeks ago that I thought we had all the makings of a champion. They sure made me look good!

We opened the tournament with a fairly easy win on Saturday morning. While that was fun, we really started getting into the drama of a tourny like this one. Our second game, against the Angels from Ouaga, had our guys looking like deer caught in headlights the first two innings. They scored 6 unanswered runs against us. But, as we took the field, we just simply said, one at a time and let's go have some fun with this. We chipped away and won 12-7 at the end. The following game was against the team that we knew best. Two of the boys dads played on this team from the embassy here. They had some Marines on their team with a ton of speed. Well, our worst fears were realized when they beat us 9-4. We had beaten this team before, but our bats just weren't swinging. So, we were #2 behind that team heading into the semi's. As it turns out, we had to play those Angels again. But this time, the boys had some confidence. However, we still fell behind and heading into the last inning, we were down by 5 runs. Sounds impossible, yes, but all I said was that nobody makes an out, we bat all the way around and win this thing. Several hits later, with no outs our boy Phil hit a triple with the bases loaded and the 6th and winning run crossed the plate and we were headed to the final games against the USA embassy team...again. What drama, after that game, you would have thought we were the Cubs who just won the World Series(or one playoff game:)) We had one hour to wait before the final game and our boys were flying high!

Needless to say, the embassy team stood no chance against our guys. Everyone hit this last game and just kept hitting, It was great fun. They only reason why they scored was because of an error and a questionable call, but that still didn't discourage us, we just went out and had a 2 out- three run rally.

We were behind in every game except for the last one. I guess we were a bit of the cardiac kids, and little too much for my old heart, but I am still alive today.

One thing our boys really wanted to do was to allow Jesus to be seen in our play and I think they accomplished just that. They were always encouraging to one another, the other teams and the umps. Way to go Sahel Suns! I thought as the last fly ball was going through the air, I began my celebratory run in from the outfield (before Ryan even caught it) thinking....for all you Reds fans....And this one belongs to the Suns!

Sunday, August 31, 2008

Well, school is off and running. We have been at it for three weeks now. Lots has happened since then besides all these kids eating everything in sight! We have had lots of rain as you can see from some of the kids coming in from a mud fight during one such storm. We have had one case of Malaria the first week of school. Jayson and Mikaylah, of course, love having all their older brothers and sisters around. There is lots of wrestle time on the carpet!
Of course, since Jayson is the youngest in the dorm, he is often the one who is "dressed up". In this picture you see him posing as superman. So, he is trying to make it through the superfriends! And as you can see, Superman has changed a little bit with some of the girls hair things, His pappa is so proud.

We were able to enjoy the newly remodeled kitchen with some of our parents the first night they were all here to drop off their children. It was nice to chat with them all and get to know them as well as their children. It isn't often we get to sit down and just chat with the parents since they generally live several countries away!

The one picture is something that we had envisioned before we even started to build it. We wanted a counter to where the kids could kind of gather together around food, of course, and just talk with each other and get to know one another. That is happening all the time. In fact, so well, we are having some difficulty getting them all to bed at times:-)

We do praise God for each of these kids as all of them have their own very unique personality. They all do things so differently and yet alike. So far, so good...Thank you all for the prayers for us and for the kids in our dorm. We certainly do appreciate them so much.

Sunday, August 10, 2008


I walked into our apartment the other day, and this is what I found! Our son had to find some form of entertainment while mom and dad kept working...and this is what he was doing. When I walked in, he had this really guilty look and then he started to laugh. He was so proud of himself! Jayson did make it to the top of the window before he got frustrated that he couldn't get any higher. bummer. Good for mom and dad though.

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Could it be? renovations #7

Could it be that you are seeing some of the final pics of this whole project? Why yes it is!!!! Here are some of the final pics. You see us trying to hang these doors and they really turned out nicely. While the painters were staining, Chris would work on some electrical or other things while the doors and cabinets dried.

Pictures cannot do it justice as to what the whole room looks like, but believe me when I say, it is 1000 times better!!!:) I know Janice is really excited to work in this new, more spacious, and hopefully cooler kitchen. It has been a long, and tiring summer. I was telling Chris that I hope not ALL our breaks are like this:) But, God has been very good to us to even have the resources to be able to do this. We are so thankful for that. We do still need to put knobs on the doors and things like that, so maybe after the kids are here, I will give you a complete final project and some before and after shots. Thank you for all of you who have kept up with us during this project. I know many of you have been praying that we would get it done before Monday. Now, we have to get all the things moved into this kitchen.
Next time on our blog? Spiderman!

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Kitchen Renovations #6

Here you see the tile being put on the walls for the backsplash. What a difficult process when the tiles are different sizes! We were surprised to find black tile at all, so when we did, we bought it right up thinking that the white tile right next to it was the same tile. We didn't realize until today that they are two different sizes...about an eighth of an inch off which makes it really hard to lay tile in straight. So, we had to do some rethinking on the design, but I think that it will look great once it is finished tomorrow!
Jayson even wanted to help clean up, too. He had to see what machine papa was using and wanted to help. It was only the shop vac as we were busy cleaning up all the sawdust trying to get it ready for the painter.
Diane Marine has even been over to help on these long days. She and her husband have hardly seen each other because of this project, so I think she decided to join in the fun! Actually, she has been a huge help in trying to get this all done before the kids return in less than two weeks!

We find ourselves working all the time on this kitchen now. I mean, literally at least 12 hours a day. Needless to say, we are going through the cokes to keep us going:) Amazing thing is...I have lost weight. oops, off topic again. Anyway, we now have the countertops on and all with formica(sp?). You probably cannot tell from these pictures because we covered them back up for the tile to be put on the walls and the paint and stain to be applied to the walls and cabinets. I did not put pics on of when we got the faceplates on the cabinets. They are really nice, but don't show up well in the pictures. You can see them in some of these pictures. Once they are stained, I think they will stand out more. Ok, that wraps up another edition of the kitchen renovations, 2008....(I hope you are happy Doug)

Thursday, July 17, 2008

4th of July, Niamey style

Many people ask us some peculiar questions at times. One of those we often get, "Is there a 4th of July in Africa?" Now, I pause here for two reasons....1...well of course there is a fourth of July, how would they get from the third to the fifth? 2. Do all countries celebrate America's birth? silly I know, but it just sounds funny to us who live in a culture that has different holidays than the ones to which we are accustomed. I digress. I do want to share some photos of our celebration of the fourth of July. We do try to celebrate our American and Canadian holidays when it is possible. We don't get the days off here, but we do what we can. We started the day by playing a game of softball in the heat of the afternoon...Yes, we are crazy Americans. There is Janice making a diving catch in right field.
About 5:30 in the afternoon, we all went to Brian and Cathy Blisses house for a good ole barbeque. We had some hamburgers and hot dogs and even played some crochet. How American is that? Funny thing was that some of the tenns here had no clue what this silly game was. Others just loved it, it reminded them of their childhood.
Once darkness was upon us, we found some sparklers for the kids to play with. Our kids weren't too sure at first. In fact, Mikaylah refused to touch one until she saw how much fun everyone was having with them, then she joined in. When it first lit up, she would almost drop it out of fear, then she would have some fun as you can see in her pictures.
Jayson was the same way. It was a bit nervous of them, but then wanted to hold it, but where it was burning:) Aside from that, it was a Saturday as usual, or was it Friday? Other activities some did was to pick some great looking Mangos, ride on Rover, the campus turtle, and sit around and eat. We had just a wonderful time. Thank you Blisses for putting that together for us.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Kitchen Renovations #5

Ok, tonight, you are going to be caught up on the renovation project here at our dorm. Things really began to move quickly once the plumber and electrician and others were finished with their part of the project. The first picture is taken right after the painters left. They left this really bright red paint on the walls, but left a bunch of the wall unpainted. Why? you ask?
Because that is where the two stoves will go and one of the sinks! The strip around the kitchen will be tiled, too.Janice really wanted to do the kitchen in coca cola stuff, so that is why the red. Most of it won't even show after we get the cabinets up and the doors on. Janice thought about painting the cabinets black and the doors white with black or red handles...We have had some controversy here because everyone has their own opinion of what is best. Some have even brought magazines with new kitchens in it to show how varnished cabinets look best, but some of the best ones I saw, were painted! So, Janice has gone back and forth. The third picture you will see Janice contemplating what to do...or just checking out the work to be sure we did it right!:)
Here you see me doing something to the wall. I must have been putting in brochette sticks to hang the cabinets. Yes, all you cabinets hangers out there, I said brochette sticks! With these concrete walls, those seems to hold the best to put these wooden sticks in small holes an fasten them in. We are able to hang from the cabinets. Wow! But we don't do that. That makes Janice a bit nervous.

Here, Chris Marine is checking out the levelness of the cabinets to see how straight they hang on the wall. Unfortunately, the walls were nowhere near square, so we had a lot of shimming to do and some creative hanging. The cabinet you see Chris working on was the worst one, I think. Just a word about Chris and Diane Marine...they were the masterminds behind this whole project. When they realized they would be home, in Niger, this whole summer, they thought it would be good to use left over funds from their dorm at ICA and combine those with funds here to do this project. Without them, we would not have been able to do this. God has a great way of putting the right people and circumstances in place when He needs them to be. We are very thankful for all of Chris's work, sweat, and planning of this kitchen. Sorry I do not have a picture of Diane thinking about things and how to do this as well. Hopefully, I can get them in the kitchen when it is all done, so you can see it! THANK YOU CHRIS AND DIANE!!!
And here you see most of the cabinets up on the wall, without doors and stuff like that. Now, the question, stain or paint??? Just thought I would throw that out there to all of you as well.
Well, that about wraps it up. You have come as far as we have. Oh, we do have two or three cabinets to set tomorrow, but most are already done. See you next time on Kitchen renovations, part 6!

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Kitchen Renovations #4

We left you last time with the floor all torn up and the kids playing in the trenches. The first picture here is of the floor ready to be tiled and finished so we could set the cabinets. What you see here is the cement back in the trenches covering the plumbing and gas lines.
Then we move straight up to the ceiling. It was a great thing to get the ceiling back up because we were being eaten by mosquitoes. Very odd way of ceiling tiles, though. You put some quarter sheet plywood up and then put these baggettes up to make it look like they are ceiling tiles. It is impossible to replace just one, though:) Now we can begin to tile the floor to make it completely finished. This is the process that most fasinates me. Of course, a level floor is very important to getting the cabinets set. The first thing we told the guys who laid the tile was that we needed a level floor, So, they brought in the sand, the cement, and the water and began to mix it all. Now, the amazing thing is that they used only a board to level this floor and never once touched a level. They went over and over the floor with this 2 X 4, and to my amazement, the floor is perfectly level. You could put a marble in the middle of the room and it would not go anywhere.

What you are seeing here is the pile of sand and cement as they get ready to lay the floor back in before they lay the tile. When the have the floor ready, they begin to lay the tile. Now, laying tile in a totally empty room is ok, but trying to do it to match an already existing tiled room and hallway, it gets a bit tricky. We didn't have extra tiles, so it was super important for them not to waste any.After they lay the tile on this cement, sand mix, they pour water over the whole floor to drain down into the cement to help set it. They next day, they come in with the grout to finish it all up. When they were all done, you see the final product.Here is Janice posing for the camera on the new floor. Now the room is ready for the cabinets to go in...oops, not quite yet...we still have to paint! Stay tuned!

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Kitchen Renovations #3

Ok, these pictures are pretty self explanatory. From Doug and Chris working on the cabinets, to our kids walking around in the new kitchen in all the trenches. They found it great fun to walk along those like rats in a maze! Now, you may be what did Tim do on these cabinets? ahhhh, good question. I had the most important job of all...the job that all the carpenters I know like the least...the job where they think anyone can do it because they wouldn't let me touch the power tools...besides the sander. Yes, I sanded almost everyone of the boards before it was put together by Doug and Chris. Yes, they would stand around drinking cokes while I continued to sand away. Do you feel sorry for me yet? You shouldn't. It wasn't all that bad. After all, while I was sanding, I found lots of time to think, to pray, and best of all...I couldn't hear what the others were saying about me the whole time:)

Aside from that, you see Mikaylah and Jayson having some fun in the new kitchen, you see the drywell with the cover on and of course a picure of our kids with their Uncle Doug. They really enjoyed him out here and hopefully kept him busy enough so he didn't miss his own son too much.(Grant is one month old now:))