Monthly Archives: February 2013

Thursday, February 28, 2013

W’apɔw mu ɛ? 

Joe took the kids to school. Then, he went to get the Fante teacher.

Today, we learned how to make verbs negative. They use a double negative in Fante. Two m‘s or or two n‘s are added to the front of a verb to make it negative. You just have to memorize which verbs take m and which ones take n. If you are saying not to do something, then mma is added before the negative verb. It just gets deeper and deeper!

After class, I rode into town with Joe and Teacher Adoko. Our first stop was the electric company to ask about the transformer by the church. Teacher Adoko knew one of the men who worked in there; they told him that the truck that they had been waiting on had arrived last night and that they would “by all means” get to the transformer today.

We took Teacher Adoko to an office; then, we ate lunch and did our grocery shopping. Joe brought me and the groceries home. Then, he went to get the kids from school.

They stopped at the church on the way home to see if the electric company had come. They had not come. Joe called them, and they denied saying that they were going to try to work on it today. Joe called Teacher Adoko, and he said that he was going to take action. He is on the radio a few different times throughout the week. Joe tried to call the power company again. They answered the phone, but as soon as they heard that it was him, they set the phone down and walked away from it. Joe is going to go back to the office tomorrow and talk to someone higher up than the people we talked to today. It is in a poor part of town, and they are in no hurry to fix it; if it were the general director of the electric company living there, they would have had it fixed immediately. That is what is upsetting.

All three kids were in the office today. What a day! Bonnie was in trouble for talking. Danny was in trouble for standing up when the teacher had already told him to stay seated. Gilbert said that his whole class had to go to the office for talking, but he and two others weren’t talking this time.

Brother Davis brought some candy for the kids. Yesterday, he gave them M & Ms. Today, he found some Skittles that he had forgotten about. When Bonnie saw those Skittles, she said, “Mom, I’ve been wishing for those, and my wish came through.”

Pray for Justin, the older Nixon boy (our neighbors down the hill). He broke his arm last week. He was riding his bike down the hill and fell off. The boys saw it happen. They said that he flew off like a bird. He will have to have surgery on Monday.

Our power went off at 6:20 this evening for our next twelve-hour load shedding shift.

Nantsew yie!

Joe, Laura, Gilbert, Danny, and Bonnie

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

W’apɔw mu ɛ? 

It has been another whirlwind day here in the Consford household. One phase of the electricity was off when I got up to make lunches and breakfast; it happened to be the kitchen light phase. So, I found a flashlight and lit a candle. Just as I finished getting breakfast ready, the power went off for our twelve-hour-off shift. After the power had been off for about five hours, it came back on; we got some bonus hours today! We won’t complain!!

Joe took the kids to school and then went to get the Fante teacher. The Fante teacher called and said, “Pick me up at the clinic.” Before Joe could ask which clinic, the teacher’s phone battery died. There are hundreds of “clinics.” So, Joe started asking people in the teacher’s neighborhood if they knew of a clinic nearby. Someone pointed him in the right direction. As he pulled up, the teacher was standing out front waiting. Our teacher is also an assemblyman, similar to a city councilman. He has been trying to get the funds donated for the clinic in his neighborhood to be able to get a generator. The other assemblymen told him that his goals were always too lofty and that he would never be able to get the generator. This morning, a brand new 30 KVA generator arrived at the clinic to be installed. That is a big generator! Ours is a 5 KVA. Joe said that all the way to our house and all the way back to the clinic after our lesson, Teacher Adoko was on the phone calling all of the other assemblymen to come check out the new generator. Where there is a will, there is a way!

Today, our conversation in Fante class was about telling the truth, telling someone they were lying, etc. Then, we learned how to make words plural. After that, we did some lists of words – tools that a fishermen uses, tools that a farmer uses, etc.

After Joe left to take Teacher Adoko into town, Brother Davis and Evans arrived. They sat outside under the gazebo until Joe got back. Brother Davis took us all out to lunch.

From there, we made a couple of stops in town before heading to the school to pick up our children. They are always so excited when I come with Joe to the school. Before we got out of the car, Joe said, “Are you ready to be called Danny’s mother or Bonnie’s mother?” As soon as we stepped out of the car, that was all I heard for the next few minutes. A few of the kids came to touch my arm to see if my skin was the same as our kids’ skin, I guess.

After we got home, Joe had to go unlock the church so that the lady who cleans could clean the church. When he got there, a bunch of kids were in the church yard playing soccer. When Sammy saw Joe, he took off running. Joe soon found out why. The ball that the children were using was one of our balls that Sammy had stolen from the house. He caught up with Sammy and took Sammy to his dad. It was not the first time that he has stolen something. As soon as Sammy saw his dad, he took off running. Joe talked to his dad and explained what had happened. He also had to tell Sammy that he can’t come out to the house any more. After all of that, Joe went to buy some new locks for the gates at the church. He did all of his purchasing in Fante. He was buying the locks from two boys. When he finished his purchases, they turned to tell their mothers that Joe spoke Fante. Then, the mothers started talking to Joe. They wanted to know how he had learned Fante. When he told them that Teacher Adoko was teaching us, they did a little happy dance. People are so funny!

The power has been off at the church since last Friday. There has been an ongoing problem with the transformer near the church. When Joe called the power company, they said that they only have one truck that works on transformers, and the driver is in Accra. Joe is going to go to the office tomorrow to see if he can get someone to come and fix that transformer.

So, we had another evening service by candlelight. We were melting; the preacher (Joe) was short-winded tonight. It is interesting to play the clarinet by candlelight. A couple times, the wind blew in the window and almost blew my candles out, but I persevered and conquered! : )

Nantsew yie!

Joe, Laura, Gilbert, Danny, and Bonnie

Joe's Podcast Icon

Joe’s Podcast Episode #012

Announcement for this week!

On Friday, March 1, 2013, we will post our first interview on MissionaryOnFire.com!  The inagural guest is, Frank Drown, who was a co-worker with Nate Saint, Jim Elliot, Roger Youdairan, Ed McCully, and Pete Flemming, is our first guest! Frank is a nonagenarian! He went to the mission field in 1944! We can learn a great deal from this wise old veteran with a heart burdened for lost souls! He truly is a Missionary On Fire!

This week we have two questions!

The first question is from my niece Rachael Brignall in Ft. MacMurry,Alberta, Canada.  She asks if there is a Bible in Fante.

The second question is from my cousin and she asks about some old stories that we used to listen to on the record player!

Have a great week, and God bless!

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

W’apɔw mu ɛ? 

I am back among the living. I feel much better today than I have felt for several days.

We are back to extreme load shedding. Our power was off all day on Sunday and was off all night last night. Our new schedule is twelve hours off, twenty-four hours on, twelve hours off, etc. This morning, just after the power came back on, Gilbert said, “Mom, people in Ghana must not care about the lights because if they did, they would talk to the President or something!” Joe was talking yesterday about how people in the States would not put up with all of the power outages here and that something would be done about it. Gilbert was listening. : )

Joe took the kids to school. Then, he picked up the Fante teacher. Last week, I had given the Fante teacher a copy of the notes and lessons that I had typed so far. Today, he brought them back. He had them bound in a spiral bound book complete with title page and dedication page. He had dedicated it to our family; it said that he would always remember us. He put each of our names and “a.k.a.” followed by our Fante name. He was so proud of his book! It is far from complete; I have typed fifteen lessons out of sixty-six. He brought it back with the corrections that needed to be made. I am typing some of the lessons from an old book that is out of print, and in some places, it is faded and very hard to read. My most popular mistake was typing “e” instead of “ɛ;” that comes from an English brain typing Fante lessons. : )

Joe had a busy day. He took the Aarons’ vehicle to get an oil change. Then, he went to get the AC in their vehicle charged up. After a run in with the electrician who was trying to cheat him, they came to an agreement. Joe also had a welder come out to the house to build an exhaust pipe for the generator. Martin helped Joe run all of his errands.

Brother Davis arrives tomorrow and will be staying out in the guest room. We did not want the exhaust from the generator to do him in. He will be holding special meetings at Brother Evans’ church in Inchaban, but there were not any affordable places to stay out that way that were available right now.

After Joe brought the kids home from school, it was time to go pick up the Aarons’ vehicle. He took the kids with him and Martin. When they got back, Gilbert said, “Mom, we had a brand new friend, and he jumped in the sewer ditch.” I could not stop laughing. Apparently, they made friends with someone as they were standing there waiting. The boy was quite a bit older than Gilbert and was clad only in underwear. As they were getting in the vehicle to leave, the boy jumped into the sewer ditch.

I had supper ready when they got home. After supper, Joe took Martin home. I got the kids started on their homework. All of the kids were tired tonight and were asleep as soon as their heads hit the pillows.

Nantsew yie!

Joe, Laura, Gilbert, Danny, and Bonnie

Monday, February 25, 2013

W’apɔw mu ɛ?

It was back to school today for Danny! He was not too sure he wanted to get up and hit the books again, but he did fine.

On Mondays, I generally work on my podcast stuff and get some things done in the office. Today it seemed that I had all kinds of things trying to get in my way. I was able to get my stuff done, but it just took a lot longer than usual.

Martin called, and he had been discharged from the hospital. I went and picked him up. He had been given an injection next to each eye, and he was in pain. I got him a pair of sunglasses and then took him home.

I came home and ate lunch with Laura. That cough, cold, and ear ache are still bothering her. We have a guest coming to stay in our guest house this week, and Laura always stresses when company comes. I told her not to stress and just do what she feels like doing and to get better.

The kids and the hawk had another go around today. The guard had no idea what was going on; he just heard the kids screaming. He thought it was a snake or something, and he came running. But he was looking down for a snake, and the attack was an aerial attack! I was watching and saw the hawk coming from behind the guard. It was so fast I could not warn him. The hawk just swooped right past his head. I think I saw a black man get a little green around the gills. Then, he knew the kids were not running around waving sticks in the air for no reason. Has anyone ever had a problem with nesting hawks swooping at their kids? I like the hawks because I frequently see them flying to their nest with either a rat or a snake in their talons.

Tonight we were helping the kids with their homework. The power has been off at school almost every day this month. They have been doing a lot of seat work, and today they started teaching Gilbert’s class to read Fante. He was so proud! I am sure we are going to be learning from him real soon!

Nantsew yie!

Joe, Laura, Gilbert, Danny, and Bonnie

Sunday, February 24, 2013

W’apɔw mu ɛ? 

Well, another Sunday is in the books! I was the one man band today. So many people were sick with colds, malaria, and other ailments. Laura and the kids stayed home this morning. Danny did not complain any at all today. Lo has no voice, but the medication seems to be taking hold of the situation.

There were about 75 people at church this morning. There were 46 children, and they were super wound up. I think the full moon effect was in full swing. I taught Sunday School to everyone. The story today was about Naboth’s Vineyard. I acted out the part where Ahab pouted, and the kids were all enjoying that.

The man who teaches the older kids in Junior Church had all 46 kids for the second hour. After church, he was sure glad that Laura teaches those younger kids every week.

Yesterday, my friend Martin was cutting some vines down at his house. They are a strange kind of vine that has very few leaves. The vine has a thick sap that flows when it is cut. Martin did not think about eye protection, and that thick sap got in his eyes. It is very toxic! He was rolling around on the floor in pain. If you know Martin, you know that he must have been hurting. He went to the hospital, and he is just waiting to see the eye specialist. They have admitted him. The hospitals here do not serve meals or even provide drinking water or the medications. You have to have someone do those things for you. Martin’s family had traveled, and he was there at the hospital all alone. I went and got him some food, water, 7up, and medications. Now the swelling has gone down, and he is just very tired. Please pray for him!

I got back home from the hospital this afternoon just in time to go back to church. I got to church and cleaned the bathrooms and did some other chores at the church; then, it was time to start. No one was there! I sang the opening hymn, prayed, sang another hymn, and had started to give the announcements before anyone showed up. Four children came in, two of them clad only in their underwear! On Sunday nights, we always have a time to give testimonies; it was just me, one little girl, a little boy who I have never seen before, and two would-be-nudists. I went ahead and gave a testimony about how glad I was that I could serve the Lord in a place where I could consider it normal to have kids show up to church in their underwear! Just about that time, all of the adults who are not sick showed up. I was going to preach to the four kids even if the adults did not show up.

Nantsew yie!

Joe, Laura, Gilbert, Danny, and Bonnie

Saturday, February 23, 2013

W’apɔw mu ɛ?

I think Laura and Danny are both improving very nicely! Don’t get me wrong; they still feel miserable at times, but they are much better than yesterday. Thank you all for your prayers!

This morning, Gilbert and Danny got the great idea to go bird hunting. They got their slingshots and headed over to where a hawk had built her nest. There are baby hawks in that nest, and the mom is cranky. There are however lots of weaver birds in that tree, and the boys were shooting at the weaver birds. The mama hawk took offense to their bad marksmanship. I looked out in the yard, and the hawk was swooping at the boys, and they were running around the yard screaming. The dog was barking, and it looked like a three ring circus. I told the boys that they should always look beyond their target to see if they were going to offend someone bigger than them. Now anytime they go outside, the hawk swoops at them! They are going to have to make their peace with the hawks.

I woke up this morning with a terrible headache. It has finally let up though. I went to the church this morning, and I talked to people as I was headed to church, but everyone was sick and no one showed up for visitation. They did call and tell me that they were not going to come.

I went into town and got some medication for Laura and Danny, and then I came home. We all were done in by lunch time. We ate lunch and took a nap.

The kids slept for about two hours, and then they wanted to play. We went outside and shot the pellet gun for a while. I would aim and let Bonnie shot. She kept telling the boys that she beat them in the contest. They were crying foul!

We had our first ever “School of the Prophets” tonight. We have several young men around this area that are surrendered to preach, and they just need some practice. So, I decided to have a time when these young guys could have a chance to preach and invite their lost family and friends to come and hear some good Gospel preaching. We had a great time! I think that this is just going to take some time to catch on. We had about fifteen people show up, and only one young man wanted to preach, but he did a fine job. I think next time we are going to have more preachers, barring any of the health problems that we had today. I really wanted to cancel because of how bad I felt, but the show must go on.

Tomorrow should be interesting at church with Laura sick. Pray for me as I will be the one man band tomorrow!

Nantsew yie!

Joe, Laura, Gilbert, Danny, and Bonnie

P.S. Don’t forget to check out Laura’s “Sunny-Side-Up Saturdays” article on Baptist Missionary Women!


lo zps696abed7 Saturday, February 23, 2013

Friday, February 22, 2013

W’apɔw mu ɛ?

Danny is continuing to improve! Praise the Lord! He is still having problems with asthma, and the medications are upsetting his stomach, but at least he can breathe. Laura is now coming down with at ear infection and sore throat stuff. I sent her off to bed! Danny is still coming down from his breathing treatment high. He just can’t sit still long enough to go to sleep after doing his breathing treatments.

Today has been so hot! The sun has been extremely bright today, and it has been one of those days where you can get sunburned very quickly.  The power was off all day at school.  Gilbert’s classroom is on the third floor of the school building, and there is no ceiling in that room.  He said that they did Bible outside today so that they could cool off.  He was sunburnt.

Speaking of it being hot, the power is off. Load shedding again! Praise the Lord for generators! We have all been sitting under our own ceiling fan this evening. It is too hot to even get close to another person.

We got to school today with no problem! For some reason, I consider that to be a big accomplishment. The road construction has actually improved our drive time to school by about five minutes. They have scraped the pavement off of the road (where there was any pavement to be scraped), and now we don’t have as many potholes to dodge!

Danny has been watching Swiss Family Robinson over and over. At least that has kept him occupied and half way still. Today he realized something! “Dad, did you hear that! Listen to this part! Those dogs are not the captain; they were the captain’s dogs!” I guess all the previous times he watched that movie, he thought that the dogs were the captain of the ship that was shipwrecked! HA!

Then, we watched “Operation Dumbo Drop!” That may have been a poor choice of movies to keep Danny still and quiet. When they were dropping ol‘ Dumbo from the plane, Danny was screaming at the top of his voice, “OH NO GUMBO DROP IS GOING TO DIE!” Yes, I did mean to type Gumbo! We never did convince him that he was saying it wrong.

Danny and I also played several games of Kerplunk! Danny likes to make up rules as you go along. Maybe he has taken that from his name-sake, Pastor Danny Dodson! I was laughing so hard, and he was saying, “See, I won again!”

Bonnie has been in a very good mood lately. That helps me tremendously when everyone is sick. She had me laughing all evening. On the way home from school lately, she has been “teaching” the kids in the car to sing the Ghanaian national anthem. That will keep a person in stitches for hours!

Nantsew yie!

Joe, Laura, Gilbert, Danny, and Bonnie

Thursday, February 21, 2013

W’apɔw mu ɛ? 

Danny has decided today that being sick isn’t any fun. The first couple days, he thought it was great to miss school. Today, he decided that he was missing out on too much by being sick. He said, “I don’t want to be sick any more, Mom!” His breathing continues to improve as long as he does not move around too much. He has an ear infection which is affecting his balance. He has had several great falls.

I seem to be coming down with a sore throat and an earache now. We like to share! : )

The Fante teacher had to go somewhere today. Joe ran some errands in town and then came back home. He picked up a package at the post office. When the man opened it, he saw some crayons and markers and said that it was for educational purposes and was non-taxable. When I was emptying the box, I told Joe that I loved that educational Velveeta and pepperoni! : )

Danny was moving things around on my sewing table yesterday and found some pieces of Gilbert’s old blue jeans that we were going to use to make a Three Musketeer cape. I was working on Fante lessons yesterday; so, I had told him that maybe we could work on it on Thursday. First thing this morning, Danny said, “Mom, don’t forget about the Musketeer cape.” One phase of the electricity was off. I told him that we could get the pieces pinned together and if the phase came back on, I would make it. After I got it all pinned together, the phase came back on. It ended up being more of a tunic than a cape because we did not have enough fabric to do a cape. But, he thought it was great. He made some badges out of paper that he wanted to attach to the cape. So, I sewed them on. Now, the only problem is that there is only one cape. I told the boys that they would have to share it. Bonnie was also upset because I did not make anything for her. I have some skirts that I need to add some fabric to because they are too short; I told her that maybe I could work on those tomorrow. I had not done any sewing since Christmas time. It is difficult to fit everything in.

Joe was teasing Danny yesterday about steak. I was asking Danny if he felt up to eating egg salad for lunch. Joe said, “Or would you rather have steak?” Danny said that he would take a steak. The only problem was that we didn’t have any steak. Bonnie said, “Well, you can just make them, Mom. We had some for Christmas.” I explained to her that you have to buy the meat in order to make it. Tonight, Joe grilled steaks, potatoes, and garlic bread for supper and let me take it easy. They did not have the imported steaks today; the meat from here is a little on the tough side because they do not age their meat. But, we cut it into small pieces and did a lot of chewing. It had a good flavor even if it was a little tough.

The kids attempted to play a game tonight. Danny was just not feeling up to it; he cried over every little thing and said, “If you want to tell on me, I just won’t play.” I hope he feels better soon! Gilbert has the sniffles and a cough; hopefully, he just has a cold.

Nantsew yie!

Joe, Laura, Gilbert, Danny, and Bonnie

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

W’apɔw mu ɛ? 

Danny was up at 3:00 this morning having a hard time breathing again. Joe got up with him and gave him medicine and a breathing treatment. The medicines keep Danny awake. He stayed awake until 1:00 this afternoon. He took a two hour nap. His breathing is much improved over yesterday. He feels okay for a while; then, he starts to feel puny again. His stomach has been bothering him too due to the medicine and lack of appetite. This evening was the first time he was actually hungry in the past couple days. He is on the mend. Gilbert was hoping that Danny would be going back to school tomorrow, but I dashed his hopes when I told him that Danny is doing better than he was but he isn’t completely better yet. Gilbert said, “Oh, that’s three whole days without Danny!”

We did not have the Fante teacher come today. Joe was tired from his 3:00 A.M. shift with Danny. This morning, we still were not sure if we would need to take Danny to the doctor or not. So, we cancelled our lesson for today.

I got a couple Fante lessons typed in between playing Backgammon and Tic-Tac-Toe with Danny. He would play a game and then rest a spell.

Bonnie had a story to tell when she got home from school today. The past few days, I have been sending a little candy cane in the kids’ lunches. Someone sent candy canes in a package. During lunch today, Flora picked up Bonnie’s candy cane and dropped it in Bonnie’s water bottle. The teacher took Flora and the water bottle to the office. Flora got in trouble and then brought the water bottle back to Bonnie. Bonnie had to explain why she had pink water.

I kept the kids at home tonight, and Joe went on to church. There were five in attendance.

Nantsew yie!

Joe, Laura, Gilbert, Danny, and Bonnie