Friday, December 21, 2007

..Happy Christmas...

...As Christmas draws nearer, it gets hotter and drier here but all excited with Christmas season and Rach and ant coming to visit for Christmas and New Year. Thought i would put a pic of the sun for those ones of you who haven't seen it for a while! plenty of it here, so we thought nwe should share some. New Hope is very peaceful at the moment as lots of the children have gone home to relatives for a couple of weeks, but still there are quite a few remaining who have nowhere to go....we wnnt with a few of the remaining boys from Calvary family and we took them out for Christmas dinner (rice, beans, matoke, and sodas!!) very nice and joel went for Cassava and loved it....a slightly different type of christmas dinner but we all enjoyed it.
..Joel and anya very excited about enjoying Christmas with their new brother, going to be fun!! (this saturday we are signing papers for legal guardianship of Silas, next stage of the adoption process)
We wish you all a happy christmas and new year......(have a good one)

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

the 3 C's...

..computers don't you just love them?? you suddenly realise how dependent you are on them when they go wrong....well that is what has happened to ours, for some reason half the screen has gone hay wire and you can't see anything..lovely, just need to find a dell dealer..? no problem, but at least it is only 1/2 the screen so can carry on a little bit, gr8 timin g..which leads me to another C..Christmas, i love it..and i am starting to get used to Christmas being with heat and dust (i think) the other day we celebrated a British Christmas dinner with a few Brits...and even brussel sprouts, which some kind person bought out for us..Silas loved them...i think 1st time he tried anything quite like them and yes we had crackers too (thats the 3rd C)

Monday, December 03, 2007

..P5 trip was a day we had arranged to take our P5's (aged 9-12yrs) on a trip to the city and experience something very different to what they are used too. A person who sponsors the class had put aside some money so they could all have a trip to enjoy the end of the school year.
we thought we would take them to the wildlife centre at entebbe..At the moment it is very hot and dry, probably as hot and dry as we have we drive on our mud roads, you hope there is not another vehicle about, but we seemed to be on the road on its busiest!! its when the lorries pass and behind them a dust cloud so thick that you have too stop because your visibility is down to a few feet!! It makes driving interesting to say the least!! Well the children loved seeing the animals, but the greatest excitement was seeing lake victoria, as most of the children have never seen such a big expanse of made it more exciting for me because i again realise how amazing lake victoria is and because i see quite often you become very "bored" with it so seeing the children so excited helped us get a good day had by all, and finished with chips and sodas!!

Sunday, November 25, 2007

stuck in the mud

The last couple of days, we have had loads of rain, so everywhere is wet and muddy and some of the roads are difficult to pass. Tonight we were out and getting there was tricky so we thought we would come back another(safer!) way, well it all started very well and no problems....until we hit a straight bit of road, and then we gracefully slid in to a ditch, with our front tyres nicely was 8pm and so dark and no street lights in the bush!! the night sky was impressive though! as we waited for dave to come and help, another friend who was passing also helpp
ed push us out, it did give all the locals a good laugh..we decided it would be better if kathyrn drove the rest of the way home!!

Wednesday, November 21, 2007 kids!!!

......hello again. kathryn and emma went to a very lovely waterfall - with impressive rainbow effects.
the queen is here!!! Did you know? All of Uganda is very very excited and roads are being closed down as if no one else needs to do anything - a bit tricky as we need to get to the airport on saturday. Well - we will see - ..........I read in the paper today that a fleet of dogs have been hired to 'bite'?! any demonstrators who might interrupt where the queen needs to go.
Hope England survives being queenless!

Sunday, November 18, 2007

a normal sunday.....

..........except for the fact that Emma (Hawley) is here which has added sweetness and joy to the day. Joel is particularly excited because Emma brought him socks! We lent out the car for someone to be taken to the hospital and it has just been returned with no wing mirror and the back brake lights smashed - oops! - luckily we like the person we lent it to. We both fielded 80 children during church......Steve did the running around screaming part and I did the sensible bit (some things never change!).
The biggest thing of note today is that this is the first time that I have ever written on the blog...i am now going to try and attach a picture??!

Wednesday, October 31, 2007


....This last week has been a very tough week for us all here at New Hope. On Wednesday Emma suddenly died while at University, he suffered a blood clot. It was all very sudden and very unexpected. He was 20 years old and just started university. Over the last year i had got to know him fairly well as he was part of the investment year programme, i always enjoyed his sense of humour and his commitment to what he was doing and his concern for other people. i also enjoyed teaching him to drive and we had lots of laughs together but he was a keen and enthusiastic learner. at his burial it was great to hear so many good things said about him, and in his short life he affected many people and lived a full 20 years and as someone said packed more into those 20 years than others do in 70+ years. Emma's dad, Joseph at the burial said that he believed that God had lent him Emma for these last 20 years, which i liked, and even though it is difficult to understand/make sense of, we still believe that God is good and in control. I appreciate the opportunity of getting to know Emma over the last year.....

Monday, October 22, 2007

.."we are family!!"

..As sister sledge would say, We are family and what a classic song... come on lets all sing the chorus...We are family....ok very good. Life here at New hope is all about family and bringing and demonstrating family to children and young people who until they come here have no family, it is a privilege and challenge. This Sunday at church we were celebrating family. and we celebrated a wedding, 10 young people from New hope who have graduated from Uni and other institutions as well as dedicating the new babies who have arrived this year, there were 8 of them!! (we have had 4 babies arrive this month alone whose mothers have either died or abandoned them. The whole day was a great celebration culminating in having lunch together and then a footy match!! What a day and it is great to be a part of such a big family of all ages, colours and nations.

Sunday, October 14, 2007

.....they think it's all over...

..Well i made it, (just!!), when we woke the sun was already up and out and hot and so when the run started at 8am, it was already warm. The run started at the pace of a sprint but Isaac and i managed to go nice and least the start was enjoyable but the rest, confirmed to me once again why i don't like running, just hurts too much! Issac stayed with me up to about 12 kms and then i let him run on as he is only 16 and i think i was too slow for him but i so appreciated his support...the last few kms were tough with some horrible hills (survived by walking them!) the joy/satisfaction/relief to see the finish line , indescribable!!
Later there was a satisfaction of finishing...would i do it again???.....well i am thinking of the doing the Kampala 10Km...must be mad, obviously a sucker for punishment!!
It was all worth it in the end as i had trifle for dinner!!

Monday, October 08, 2007

...5 days to go!!!

..What about the run i hear you cry..a pic of me wondering what was i thinking!!?? training still happening, even at 6am this morning, can you imagine..must be very serious or desperate. 10 miles still seems like so far, but hey you can only try..remember we are trying to raise money for Kiwoko Hospital, it is our local hospital and does a great job in this area reaching out in to the community. I do have sponsor forms here, so please feel free to donate...
..i was listening to the radio the other day whe an advert came on about the Kampala marathon and fun run and i thought hey i should do that..(the fun run, 10kms, not the marathon!!) how times have changed...Kathryn does ask after each training run, did you enjoy it?? and i am consistent with my answers...NO!!

..Mickey Mouse

..It's the closest we are going to get to Disney land here in Uganda and it is called Didi's world! It is based in Kampala, so we thought lets go and have some we went one saturday morning and arrived at 10am. As we drove in to the car park, it was worryingly devoid of any other cars, must be closed we thought but no, we were just first there.
For the next 2 hours we were the only people in the park and one of the attendants followed us around and turned on each ride just for us, when we wanted to go on!! It was like having your own amusement park. the best part of the day was the bumper cars, where you actually allowed to bump into each other, head on as well, now thats what you call fun!!

Sunday, September 16, 2007

..the youth group here we have called 12:30 @ 4!! will leave you to wonder why, if you don't know...well once a month we are going in to the local community. This month we went to an old ladies house to repair her house, a mud house, we were going to repair one wall and fix the iron sheet roof. I suprizingly was the foreman, and knowing a thing or two about mud houses!!! i asked someone who knew what they were doing. The best about mud houses is mixing the mud with your feet, now people pay big money for mud treatment and you can come here and have it for nothing!!
After an afternoon of mixing and putting on mud and iron sheets, we all had a great time and the old lady was very happy and it was gr8 for us as a group to reach out to some one else.
..Lots of rain here at the moment, and we are very grateful to be living in a brick house but very aware of those people who live in mud houses, which can easily be ruined by so much rain as well as crops...
for those interested?? the run is on the 13th october, still training, even though bed was a better option today!!

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

....monkey business

..well the norridges and team are here for a few days, they seem to be enjoying Africa!! i think they were all a little disappointed there was some rain and not wall to wall sunshine. it is fun having a team as you get to look at life here thro the eyes of new people because things become very normal so quickly, so roads which are more pot hole than road, local butchers with meat hanging outside, getting used to waiting, cutting the grass without a lawn mower, power off and water running out, cold showers...all good experiences, they are all doing very well....
..running, still 5 days a week (even though haven't been today!!) October 13thb is the we are on the countdown!! ...we run at 6.45, in the morning!!!! i know....

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

..had lots of rain recently and i am obviously getting used to the weather because even i have been a little chilly!! it's now 10:52pm and i keeping track of the football scores thro the computer, little sad really, especially as chelsea are losing at half time, to reading!! everyone else is in bed fast asleep, which i should be really....but what can you do?? the youth group i do here is fun and this weekend we went into one of the local villages, don't make me spell it, i can't even say it!! i know it began with a K!! to help a man who has leprosy to clear hs compound and to prepare some potato mounds, very simple, but hopefully something that will have been helpful and great for the young people here to give and not always be receiving!! could have done with a strimmer and not just a slasher!!

Thursday, August 02, 2007

...back to school

do you remember that "happy" feeling of going back to school?? new geometry set, which would be lost in a few days and what were all the bits for anyway??(wonder why i've got underlining on?? how is it on??
anyway back to the plot..the most exciting was a new class/desk etc... so Joel and anya were most excited about moving up a class!!..which they did and one way of showing it was to move desks, so they are now sitting in different places in the classroom!! both are glad to be back and i think their teacher is as well!!?

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

..we love July..

July is such a cool month here in the brown house hold, with birthdays, Joel & Anya's and our anniversary (15yrs), i know we don't look old enough...well for a celebration we thought lets go for a swim, which we did but the weather had other ideas and decided to rain on us, at least it is warm rain...but our kids being true english kids thought we've paid for this so we are swimming and they did...i'm sorry to say i wimped out just a little too cold and wet for me, yes even here in Africa!!
...still running, i know i can hardly believe it too, but i'm certainly being stretched by my new training partner, and we get lots of strange looks from Ugandan children going to school thinking what is that crazy Mzungu (Iwhite person) doing?? sometimes i'm in full agreement with them.....

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

..what was i thinking??

..Have you ever opened your mouth and said or agreed to something and wondered why did i say that? what was i thinking? well that has happened to me the other day. we had some friends over from Kiwoko hospital who said they had a sponsored run to raise money for the hospital which serves the local community here. Well big mouth here said "i'd like to do that" grerat they said, here's a sponser form...."oh by the way, how far is the run i ask (little too late!!)... Only 10 miles they said!!!!! 10 miles, what in one go i exclaim.
So now i'm committed to the cause, and anyone who knows me, knows i hate running. over the last couple of weeks i had a training partner who has now gone! the pic is some of our serious training. The run is in september, will keep you up to date on progress, and anyone interested in sponsoring let me know....10 miles here we come....

Friday, June 29, 2007 how we laughed!!

..staying on the animal theme, sitting on my vertandah the other day minding my own business, someone asked if they could use my camera...seeing a dead snake, i thought, it would make a good picture. he dropped the snake on to the verandah at which point the seemingly dead snake suddenly became a very much alive snake!! it is safe to say we have never moved so quick...thankfully it was a little wet so the snake struggled for traction!! i asked matter of factlly what type of snake it was,...oh it's only a cobra!!!AAAAHHHH, what are you doing dropping it on our verandah!!! joel and kathryn seemed to enjoy it more than me though and relished getting as close as they could.
ooo how we laughed.....!!

Monday, June 18, 2007


.. people here think we are a bit crazy!! and we have confirmed it by deciding to have a cat as a pet. The notion of having an animal which is of not much use, other than..(any suggested answers gratefully received!) is a bizarre concept. Our cat called "lola" has been with us for just over a month and fits in well as she is bonkers. she likes to charge around the house in the middle of the night running over beds and up mosquito nets, safe to say i'm more keen on having a cat than Kathryn!!

Saturday, June 02, 2007


.a bit of rain this week, and when that happens we are desperate not to waste any!! hence the pic of yours truly trying to be helpful, in the end i just got very wet!!

lots of excitement here today (2/6/07) as Uganda Cranes take on Nigeria(football) in a key africa nations qualifier. There's real talk and hope of uganda winning?! we will see, at least it's an excuse to watch football and eat cake.

As there has been an overwhelming desire for more pics of me!! thought i would let you have 2 today, what a treat! (don't know who for!?)

Wednesday, May 23, 2007


Hi again, 2 in a day, this is to say we were of course very excited by the visit of a team last month from derby, and we had such a good time we had no time to write anything on the blog!! as calvary family are here at the mo. they all say hi and especially to hannah and hannah (nice pic!?) the babies also say hi and thanks for painting our house they are very chuffed, the team made an impression and we are looking forward to their return!!?

it was great to have a lot of famaliar faces and accents and was so normal and of course they bought out essentials such as angel delight, marmite and trifle mix, YUM!!

tried marmite on some of the young people here but suprisingly didn't go down very well??

why is that??

.nice to meet you.

Hello everyone, all well? now handing over to Moses......
hi this is kisakye moses from new hope Uganda.
it has been a blessing to meet the Browns
they are really hard working people,kind,loving
I really thank God for them.

goes to the Browns

I really believe God is blessing the work of your



Tuesday, May 15, 2007

..for those with taste!

hi there, for those who requested it, yes some did, just read the comments!! i know it's difficult to believe.....but here it is, a picture of me!! sorry for the majority who didn't want it! you can't please all the people all the time!!
all well here, kids doing well and enjoying school, still not much rain, or not enough at least! found a tortoise today..but it escaped..i thought they were meant to be slow, but one minute he was here and the next minute he was gone!! but the zoo continues to grow with a spiky and hairy caterpillar living on our porch.
for those utd readers, just to remind you not to get to used to the premier trophy, we'll have it back next year and of course the fa cup this year! any comments??
sorry the computer won't let me put my pic on!! is this a conspiracy or what?

Sunday, April 29, 2007 must be...

Today is HOT, HOT, thought it was meant to be the rainy season, hence cooler!! but not much rain at all?? all well here. Joel and Anya doing well, anya had her 1st sleepover in africa and did well, and enjoyed it and so there will be more to follow!! Joel is teaching himself new footy skills each day and now often confuses his dad (not hard i hear you say, very true!) the pic, is a slice of life in our garden on a weekend afternoon, young people hanging around and playing, i think anya and stella are working out what to do with the skipping rope? School has finished for holidays so next few weeks will lots of youth activities/games/competitions, should be fun....

Saturday, April 14, 2007

..aah, how cute

Hello there!! as there as been such demand for pics of joel and anya, here they are!! now there seems to be a worrying lack of demands for pictures of me (steve), now why would that be?? all ok here, still really waiting for the rains to come, still getting used to whole idea/concept of celebrating arrival of rain.

The other day i got stopped by the police and i was starting to worry about what serious traffic offence i had committed. The policeman approached looking very serious and stern and we were prepared for the worst.. he asked where i had come from and going to and then commented on how dirty my car was!!! i couldn't argue with him there and he asked me to make sure i cleaned when i got back home and then he let me go!! while driving off i realised i had just been stopped for having a dirty car!!! it's amazing i haven't been stopped more times!!

Tuesday, March 27, 2007 can you tell..

Hi there, sorry about this but we are back on the chameleon theme.... how do you know which one is male or female?? answers gladly received!! we now have 2 in our ivy bush thing? so maybe baby chameleons to come?? question? how do chameleons have babies?? some say they explode out females stomach and wander off? any ideas??
here is a picture for those concerned about the lack of pictures of anya!! wse have had afew days at the pool, very nice and incredibly hot, and yes you guessed it, sunburn followed!! surely though it's all worth it for a tan?? or is that just me.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

..lunch time

sitting on the porch the other day, when i happened to look up an this is what i saw!! it's enough to put you off your lunch, over the next 20 mins we watched as the chameleon slowly swallowed it whole, the thing was as big as him!! when he had finished you could clearly see the gecko in it's stomach, nice!!....well we might be on wireless but it won't let me upload any pics, soory about that, you will just have to imagine the image!!

Thursday, March 01, 2007

..against the clock..

..these internet cafe places are tense places to be, so much for having a relaxing time reading and writing emails!! i can't help myself but look at the ticking clock as the minutes count down to zero! i get all tense and everything seems to be on a go slow, except the ticking clock. my mind goes blank and i can't think what to say or what i need to do on the net and still the clock tick down with no it just me? or are their others out there?
this weekend at new hope we could be (hopefully) be wireless!!!! wow, no more walking up to the office to plug in!! so maybe this wekend we could be communicating like mad, we will see. they have been building it all week and it is a very impressive set up just looks very complecated if it goes wrong!
anyway here's to the 21st century!! and there goes my ticking clock!!......

Monday, February 19, 2007

...the earth moved!!

At 5.30am this morning, was woken up by the whole house shaking and moving!! an earth tremor, which was very exciting and thankfully no injuries and of course joel and anya didn't blink and stayed fast asleep!!
the pic is of anya who was a bridesmaid 2 weeks ago, she did so well and as you can see was concentrating very hard on her walking, there is a certain style of wedding walking here in uganda!!
HOT weather here at the moment and no rain!! and therefore lots of dust!!
sorry picture doesn't want to appear! maybe next time

Tuesday, February 13, 2007 eggs bounce??

Hi everyone!! well do eggs bounce?? one game we played last week was dropping eggs from a water tower and seeing if any survived!! well 2 did at least, with one being wrapped in a passion fruit, within a balloon, in a sock

and in a bag!! very creative... for those who know them we pick up glen and wendy tomorrow, which is very exciting.

so good books to recommend please, suggestions very welcome!! and of course films.....

Thursday, February 08, 2007

Hi everyone, busy week here, with a youth week with the P7's. it's been quite a laugh and as you see lots of silly games!! don't know who has enjoyed them most, me or the young people!! the game they are playing was a relay we thought up with as many bizarre items they have to carry as possible!!??
i hear there is snow in the uk, thanks to those who sent the pics, here it is hot and once again i got sun burnt!!, will i ever learn to put on sun tan lotion?? well that's what kathryn keeps asking.

Monday, January 29, 2007


Afternoon!! amasing what you can carry on the back of a bike!! and of course on pretty terrible roads!! good weekend here, what did we do?? good question but i do know it was good! weather for those weather fans is hot and dry!! even though there still seems to be rain, even though it is the dry season. i think people are obsessed with the weather as us brits. and like us really haved no idea what it's going to do next!

Thursday, January 25, 2007

Public Service Announcement

Sorry to break in to the browns blog, but this is just a quick admin post for all you readers out there! No doubt many of you phone abroad and more relevantly some may even phone the Browns! We have been using TeleDiscount which is pretty good. But today i got a link through to a site that will find the cheapest of the many sites out there that do cheap international calling so I decided to pass on the information. For example, telediscount calls from UK landline to Uganda mobile was 8p per minute, and this website showed one that was 5p per minute.

So check out:

Money Saving Expert Call Checker

If you, like me, are on NTL you may want to check that the quoted prices are the same as they are one BT. You can do that by looking up the Non-geographic number definitions here and then cross checking with the tariff guide for that classification here.

And that is the end of this public service announcement!

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

...the long silence....

Hooray we are back!! sorry for the silence but i had forgotten usernames and passwords which are both fairly important to this whole process!! blogger have just changed things and everyone knows..change is not a good thing!! and when computers are involved and me, there is always trouble.

anyway just wanted to say hi and we haven't forgotten you and hopefully you haven't forgotten us!!

oh by the way, here is the dolls house made at christmas, wouldn't pass any building regs but anya's happy!!