Material Woman

*title derived from a nickname a very eccentric staff member at our hotel in Zanzibar unceremoniously bestowed upon me. But now very fitting in light of my new job title.

Hello Blog Followers! Aka my mommy! 🙂

Read along for an overdue life update from the past few months.

This month I am liaising with suppliers in Kampala, making urgent orders for a big jewelry deal in the works for Akola Project. This time last year I was creating content and working with partners to promote AIDS Walk New York in the big city. The year before that I was house hunting in Northern Uganda for my new boss’ arrival and planning a quarterly retreat for all International Justice Mission Gulu staff. The year before THAT I was holed up in my parents’ house finishing my undergraduate Art History thesis and preparing for my impending “10-12 month” move to Uganda, wondering what it would be like! God guides and covers me and I’m thankful for the opportunity to adapt and learn. Wonder what a year from now will hold… 🙂

End of 2015

In November my parents came to Uganda! It was seriously the best time and I could spend a whole blog post talking about it. Check my mom’s FB or my Insta for pics but I’ll sum up with this: my two worlds, homes and families colliding was better than I imagined. Getting to introduce them to so many orgs, places, and people that have shaped me for the past three (!) years was so special. Now, just gotta get Logan out here… Thanksgiving plz.

I journeyed home for Christmas and spent three lovely weeks in Texas and Tennessee soaking up time with friends and family. I AM SO GRATEFUL for all of you endlessly and without condition welcoming me back home, time and again. Texas is and always will be home.

Work

Upon returning to Uganda, we had a staffing change which opened a position. I am Akola’s new Material and Procurement Manager! This job switch came quickly and urgently — I rose to the challenge and am still learning a LOT (and hopefully not making too many mistakes). I’ve only had a few official weeks in my role and am also busy preparing for my new supervisor to arrive in April. It’s an exciting time for Akola’s business team as we are streamlining and growing our impact. The places to find me these days at work are: in the supply closet managing inventory, in the underbelly of Kampala at an Ankole cowhorn workshop liaising with artisans for orders, or on the phone with people all over East Africa sourcing materials!

Zanzibar Holiday

Due to staffing scheduling over the holidays, I had a leftover unused Christmas week of leave. Our whole team was exiting to Kisumu, Kenya during Uganda’s election weeks. Me and a few coworkers traveled onwards to Nairobi–Kendwa, Zanzibar–Stonetown, Zanzibar–Dar es Salaam, Tanzania–back to Nairobi for a few days of work on the tail end.

Pictures cannot do this place justice. My favorite day was spent snorkeling, boating out to remote untouched islands, eating fresh coconut, playing with starfish and huge (non-stinging) jellyfish. My favorite thing was devouring the best seafood for a whole week straight. I also loved getting to expand my East Africa knowledge! Maybe Rwanda next??

Upcoming…

  • Taylor Daye Havins, my dearest college bestie, comes to Uganda in TWO WEEKS. YES.
  • I start classes for my master’s NEXT MONTH. YES/NO/HELP.
  • I just moved into my own place and am loving homemaking/nesting! Haven’t had a place truly my own since my university apartment.
  • Trip to USA in June! I will be in DFW, LA, and NY. Hit me up and let’s hang out.

Enjoy all the pics… and thanks for reading, as always.

Sending love from blazin’ hot dry season Uganda,

xx LB

 

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