Sunday, October 15, 2017

Elder Rasmussen Singing -- All in one video instead of three

I again videoed Elder Rasmussen singing Consider the Lilies,  but this time I did one video instead of three and Elder Torrie was able to make it small enough to attach to this blog.  (The reason I did it in three last time was because I can only upload so many MB's at a time).  Making it smaller decreases the quality of the picture but the sound is still good.  So even though I know many of you have looked at a previous post of Elder Rasmussen singing, now you can see it in one video instead of three.  This is also for Sister Msane who absolutely loves that song and she loves the way Elder Rasmussen sings it.

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Saturday, October 14, 2017

Nairobi National Park -- Mama Rhino and Her Baby

This is the last post about our visit to the Nairobi National Park with Elder Johnson.  It was definitely a day to remember.

We were thrilled to see a mother White Rhino and her baby so close up.  And then a bit later we saw another mother and baby and then in the distance another.  Five rhinos all in one place!!  Very exciting!

You can see the tall buildings of downtown Nairobi.  Interesting that there's city on three sides of the park.  







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Nairobi National Park: Never Too Many Pictures of Zebras!

Zebras are still my favorite animals.  I can look at them for a very long time. And I can take another hundred pictures of them and never get tired.  We found a large watering place where hundreds of zebras, wildebeests, impalas, hartebeests, and buffalo were coming to water.  Fascinating to watch them coming and going and basking in the cool water.

Following are a FEW more pictures of zebras and then some video of the zebras and others at the watering hole.  It was hard to get a panorama shot of all the animals at the water so it doesn't really show what it was like.  So amazing to see God's creations up close.  (I still think God definitely has a sense of humor and for sure he is creative -- all the different animals are quite amazing!)

There's an especially intriguing video of a zebra rolling on to its back.  Who would guess there's a stripe down its belly?  Sorry for the blurry videos at times.  I thought I was moving slowly but I guess I wasn't.  Also, some of the videos were too large so LeRon had to make them smaller which decreased the quality.  Oh well.  Still love those zebras!










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Nairobi National Park -- Antelopes and Cousins



This cute little "Bambi deer" is actually a Mountain Reedbuck.  It is tiny.  It has a shaggy body and a less shaggy and different colored neck.

Mountain Reedbuck is staring right at us.  So cute.  You can tell it's not a dik-dik because it doesn't have white around its eyes.  Click to enlarge.


This is a great view of the hartebeest's horns.  They look like the beginnings of a heart, hence the name.  The back is sloped like the Topis we saw in Masai Mara.



African Buffalo definitely look different than American Buffalo but they still look like cattle to me.

We didn't see many Thomson's Gazelles this time.  They are such dainty creatures with straight horns and a black stripe on the side.

The Thomson Gazelle doesn't have an "M" on the back like the Impala has.

Lots of Impalas today, with the curvy horns and the M on the behind.

Impala does don't have horns.


Lots of hartebeests today.  We also saw an Eland but I never got a photo of it.

A good view of the hartebeest's horns and the way they grow out of the head.


The misty day turned into a nice sunny day.  Perfect for watching the wildlife.

We saw a few giraffes and they all look alike.  Graceful, definitely.

The wildebeests here in the Nairobi park look different than the ones we saw in Ngorongoro Crater.  Still so ugly they're cute.
The Wildebeest in the crater had so much hair on their faces that you couldn't see their eyes.  Not sure why these are different.  Does anyone know?  Of course you haven't yet seen pictures from the Crater.
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Nairobi National Park: Cats and Dogs

This was a day for families. . . the ostriches, the jackals, the rhinos, and then as we were leaving, we saw several lions lounging under a tree.  It's been a great day!


Cute little family of black-backed jackals.  The mother ran away.  I thought she would stay to protect her young.  Oh well.  the babies weren't even scared of us.  They went back and forth under the road through a culvert.  So cute!  Wished I could have picked one up and cuddled it.

Jackal pups by their den, which was a culvert under the road.  Look at the video below.  So cute.

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A family of lions (minus the dad) was lounging under a tree.  Look at the tree -- there's a lion stretched up as if she is going to climb it.  That would have been fun to see.  The lion in the video below is the one that is climbing the tree.

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Nairobi National Park: My Favorite Birds . . . and Others Not So Favorite!

The Crested Crane is the national bird of Uganda.  When our little Faye saw this picture, she said, "A Ugandan Crane!"  Faye's mother is Ugandan and her father is British.

I'm not sure what the birds are with the Crested Cranes.  Some kind of water bird, obviously.  Does anyone know?

This is my favorite picture of the cranes with their lovely crests and the reflection in the water.  Click to enlarge.

A Crowned Plover

An ostrich family walking toward us on the road.  Three babies and a mom and a dad.  This was definitely our day for families.  Later we will see a jackal family and rhino babies.

How in the world do these tiny things grow up to be such BIG birds?

LeRon calls this a "father and sons outing."  The mother went the other way for some reason.  Check out the videos below.
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I was so excited to see a secretary bird.  The quills on its head look like the pens that a secretary uses.  We first saw several of this birds in the Ngorongoro Crater.  (I have yet to post those amazing pictures.  Also a video of the secretary bird walking through the tall grass.)

Close-up of the secretary bird.

Now a vulture party.  These vultures had been feasting on a large dead animal.

I took some video of the vultures flying away but I was too zoomed in so it was blurry.  Their wing spans are LONG!  And the flapping sound is interesting.  Maybe I'll put a video on just so you can hear the flapping.

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Today was a Good Day

Today, as I went through some of my photos, I got excited about the pictures we took at the Nairobi National Park when we went there with Elder Johnson, the senior missionary who is the doctor for the Africa South East Area.  Sister Msane asked us to take him there and we jumped at the chance.  Elder Johnson loves the wildlife as much as we do.  The pictures will be coming up in a later post. . . .  crested cranes, baby ostriches, baby rhino and mom, a secretary bird, baby jackals.  Every time we go, we see different things.  This time we saw hundreds of zebras, wildebeests, hartebeests, and buffalo drinking from a big watering hole.  We just sat and watched them as they came and went.

But first, I want to tell you about our visit today to Tamambo's, the gorgeous outdoor restaurant in the Karen Blixen Estate.  We haven't been there for quite a long while.  The waiters all recognized us with our mission attire and our name tags.  One said that he still has the gospel pamphlet we gave him a long time ago.  He keeps it with his Bible and reads it during his daily Bible study.  How cool is that?  So I gave him a brochure about our church teachings on The Family.  He was thrilled to receive it and soon another waiter came and asked if he could have one too.  There's not too many restaurants in the West where waiters ask you for church publications!  So cool to be on a mission here in Africa.  Personally, I think the West's time is over and now it is Africa's time for the gospel to spread.  The people are so willing and yearning to talk about Jesus Christ.  I always tell them that it's always good to learn more good things and they agree.  So refreshing!

This is the first Pday Saturday in a long time that we could just relax . . . and do the laundry and clean the house and go through my pictures and go out to eat at Tamambo's and visit with our neighbors.  It was a good day!

Had to look at Eric Mathenge's paintings again.  Couldn't resist a few more.  After all, we won't be back for a few years!  He's going to paint a leopard for us.

A little fishy swimming in the lily pond at Tamambo's.

Pretty Lily pond

Doesn't Pooja look cute in her Indian attire?  She's my Indian daughter.  I love her a lot.

More wonderful Kenyan neighbors.  Rachel with Joseph and Benjamin.  Nice Bible names!  These people, like so many in our compound, are very educated, friendly, and just plain good people.

Elder Torrie (who is definitely looking older, don't you think?  In fact, without my glasses on, he looks a lot like Anatole from Ukraine!!)  Elder Torrie and Elder Johnson after our 4 hours in the Nairobi Park.  It was a great 4 hours!  You'll see some very cool pictures in another post.

Now we're back at the mission home after our morning in the park.  We got back right at 10:30 which is when Sister Msane said we had to be back.  Here we are with Elizabeth, the mission home caretaker.  We will miss her.


The Three Muskateers had a great morning at the park (6:30 to 10:30 a.m.) -- Elder Johnson, Sister Torrie, Elder Torrie