October 1st is seniors day here in Kyrgyzstan, a very special day. We are planing a big celebration for the seniors we know in and around Tokmok.. Many of them have no family left and would otherwise be alone for the day.
We have made reservations for 100 seniors at a local restaurant. Many will have never been to a restaurant before. we will also give them all a gift bag of produce including a small bottle of honey, and produce from the farm.
I am looking for some sponsors that would like to help with this special day. Just $5 will give a senior a day that they will remember. lets make it happen.
Thursday, September 14, 2017
We have come across a very large need here with one of the orphanages we work with, so we are doing what we can to help .. we are having a Veggie-athon . let me explain .
Swetly put orphanage is one of the best in the country hands down. They focus mainly on street kids in the city as young as 4 years old. The work very hard to find and reunite them with their families. those that they are not able to reunite they work with to provide life skills training as well as a trade so they have a future. along with parties and celebrations we have provided vitamins to them and sponsored operations and dental work for the kids.
a couple years ago the long turn support of a major sponsor came to a scheduled end. at the same time the director who was well past retirement had some health issues and retired . Things have been shaky for them since then, but the great workers there remain dedicated to the great care of the kids .
Here is the real kicker , the staff is about 3 months behind on their pay that the director is 6 months behind. We have come to know these workers over the years and care for them.. their love for the kids is evident buy them continuing to work with out pay.
We don't have a lot of non designated funds available so we have been wondering what we can do to help. Tomorrow the director and some of the kids will be coming out to tour the farm. We have decided to set up a Veggie-athon. Here is the way it works. We have taken a days harvest from the farm and will be setting up a produce stand in Tokmok with it. We are now looking for individual sponsors that are willing to match what we raise up to a specified amount $50, $100, $250 what ever amount you feel led to support.
Now let me show you what we picked today .. lets start with close to 400 lbs of beautiful peppers , hot and sweet,
about 500 lbs of tomatoes,
350 lbs of squash,
To that we added cabbages, pumpkins, and around 600 lbs of beats.
Whats amazing is that tomorrow you could walk through the gardens and not even know that we harvested today. But what is even more amazing is the opportunity that we have to support and encourage some amazing orphanage workers who desperately need our help.
Saturday, September 09, 2017
9 in the hostel, 8 in the guest house, 3 at the yurts and 2 campers. lots of excitement around the farm. For breakfast we made french toast and sausages. One of the guests was excited to try fresh eggs for the first time, so I went out and grabbed a few peppers from the garden to slice and use as rings around the eggs .. I got about 25 rings from three peppers .
"Be not forgetful to entertain strangers: for thereby some have entertained angels unawares."
We got the new outhouse up at the second yurt . Nuric dug the hole for reasons we will not get into, hahaha . the design turned out great .
We have continued to visit some of the families we have connections with .. School supplies and vitamins are our focus this round.
Today we had 20 beds to make and 20 sets of sheets to wash , along with towels and everything that goes along with that many guests. After everyone checked out and paid we sat down with Sibera to discuss her school tuition. then where able to give her the funds to pay it. It was a really good lesson for them to see the connection between guests at the guest house, all the work involved and the benefits of that work, In this case her tuition was paid. I want them to never think that the guest house is a "Business " that we are running on the side to make some money and have free labor, but that this is a great way for the farm to work toward self sustainability and with it a better standard of living for every one. They love the extra food when guests are there , they love the activities like the horseback riding and picnics, and this week they loved when the guests brought them all to the hot springs, and then today , Siberia got her years tuition covered .. and from the guest side of things It is so great for them to be instantly part of a big family.
Last night some of the guests shared there experience .. They had spent a few days at the farm then went on a sight seeing tour of Kyrgyzstan .. they absolutely loved the beauty and everything they saw, but when it came to supper time they said they looked around at all the other tourists and they were siting all proper like at there individual tables and eating there restaurant style meals, and they said that they started to feel sorry for them because they were not experiencing the joy and fellowship of the family table that they were a part of at the farm.. On their way back to the farm, when they reached the Tokmok sign they said " Oh good we are almost home" they told me that they could never have imagined how in just a few days they would feel so at home on the farm...
Wednesday, September 06, 2017
Busy day out at the farm today.
It was all hands on deck to make the tomato sauce. Everyone was busy but it was nice to see all the smiles and how content every one is.
flower gardens are doing great .. We are ready to start harvesting the seed pods for planting in the green house next spring .
The new piano arrived and was carried up into the house today.
We have started building the new outhouse for the second yurt. It is designed to have the same lines as a yurt.
Saturday, September 02, 2017
As we are in full swing of back to school shopping for kids, we came across this old photo from when we first started doing this. who would have ever known then were life would have lead these two boys who we still have contact with..
It makes me think and wonder what the furure will hold for all the kids that we are helping out get ready for school this year .
Last week we got Kolya and Marat moved back to Bishkek and ready for school .. we took them out for a nice dinner with Bekah who is also going back to school .. this time as a teacher
One of our friends in Millbrook Ontario makes beautiful sweater sets for our kids .. Dustan loves his.
As we are rearranging things, we have sent a load of goats off to market. we still have 5 back at the main farm, but we are trying to make things a little easier for our workers at the ranch and the goats just don't like to behave them selves and tend to lead the sheep astray.
Nick said it was time to thin out the beats a bit. I thought that would leave us with a bunch of little beats, I said "don't through them out even though they are small, I can make pickled beats with them." I had to laugh when I saw the what hey came back in fro the field with .. We are going to have to get busy pickling.
We have had a lot of kids need help with back to school this year. We still have another 340 kids that could use help from two different orphanages .. that is almost $2000 so I have not even considered that at this time as we simply don't have the funds, but if someone out there wants to take that on we would be pleased to facilitate it .
Monday, August 21, 2017
|Breakfast at the yurt camp|
Last night we had the yurt all set up and ready for the kids from one of the orphanages. They got in late after a big day in Bishkek.
|some of the kids settling in for the night|
|after breakfast they all went for a walk in the mountains|
|the first craft was a foam boat|
|everyone made one and decorated it|
|then went to the water trough to try them out|
next up was a game of frisby Kuk-baru a knock off of the goat pull game but no horses and frisbys instead
|lots of fun and burned off a little more energy|
|the next craft consisted of 15 little items that the kids put in a bottle with seeds, then on the lid they tied a list of the items to find .. the cool thing is that the list is in Kyrgyz Russian and English|
|it kept the kids busy for a long time|
|then for lunch we had hotdogs on the fire|
|at the same time we had the horses for horse back rides ..|
|I only had 10 hot dog sticks made u so we were busy restocking them, and the horses kept the pressure off the food|
|I think Yuri had about eight of them|
|After the horses and lunch Vladic did some allusions for the kids|
|then it was back inside for another craft|
|It was nice to see Nuric take such interest in his|
|everyone loved this soo much|
|Next we took the kids fishing to catch supper|
|every one caught a fish|
|We have gotten so much use from the Berkeley fishing equipment that was donated to us by Berkeley last year|
|then it was back to the farm to have a shore lunch and to pick corn|
|Isar was the cook today .. He did a great job|
|then sat down and ate with the kids .|
|This is the only playground in the village ,and the kids loved it , It was neat to see word spread and kids come running out to see .|