Skip to main content


It's a good thing doing laundry is my favorite chore, because I do plenty of it!

As you've probably already figured out, Niger is a very dusty country. Curtains need to be washed frequently. So, whenever somebody moves out of a house or an apartment and before the next residents move in, we need to wash curtains. Same with bed spreads. We often need to do slip covers on furniture, too. And flights out of Niger always leave late at night, so the people usually end up leaving dirty sheets on their bed and a towel and washcloth that need to be washed.As you can see by this pile of laundry, I wash a lot of curtains, sheets, and towels! Good thing it's my favorite chore!

The trouble is, for the past 16 years I've had my laundry done by hand. There was usually no problem keeping up with it. Until I took over this job! It didn't take me long to figure out I wasn't going to survive without a washing machine. So I bought one for the short-term furnishings coordinator to use. I figured that even if the next person has her own machine, she could use two: one for herself and one for the short-termers' laundry.This is a small Italian model. It's amazing how much laundry you can pack into this little machine. It is also very water efficient. When you look in the door at the laundry swishing around inside, you can hardly see any water. Yet it does a great job at getting the clothes clean. The only problem with it is that it takes a LONG time for a cycle to finish.

Meanwhile, while I'm doing curtains, sheets, and towels, our own laundry piles up! I think I've only seen the bottom of our own laundry basket once in the past month!All of this laundry has to be hung out on a line. I hang some of it out and my house helper hangs out a lot of it. I can't do laundry every day since I share the line with our neighbor. Normally laundry dries very quickly here, but since this is the rainy season, things just haven't been drying. We've had a LOT of rain (good thing) and the humidity is regularly between 60 and 80%. So, it often ends up draped over chairs and hanging from bookshelves in our living room. With the ceiling fans turned on, it actually dries faster than it does outside.It's a good thing doing laundry is my favorite chore!


Esther said…
Hi there Nancy! Of all the jobs to do in the house, cleaning the floors is probably the least inspirational in my view, thanks to the dust! I love doing the laundry but our machine has to be filled manually and so the whole process takes for ever. But I am so grateful for having a washing machine in the first place and not have to wash by hands!

Dusty Penguin said…
Grrr...drying clothes in rainy season is bad with a normal amount of laundry!!! You must feel like you never get done! Thanks for another interesting post.

Popular posts from this blog

Practice Hospitality

My mother-in-law, Jean, is an amazing person with many gifts.  One of the first things I noticed about her when I was but a young bride, was her gift of hospitality.  It was nothing for her to invite a large group of people over, make each one feel welcome, cook a big meal,and seemingly do it without stressing herself out.  I don't know if hospitality just came naturally to her or if she learned it.  In this picture you can see Jean throwing a party for a class she taught in Nigeria.  

I believe that for me it has been a learned skill.  My parents were hospitable and it wasn't unusual for us to have guests over (though usually not as many at a time as my mother-in-law would do!).  But when I started living on my own, I had to learn hospitality.  The first time I invited somebody over for a meal, the lid got stuck on the pot of vegetables, I put too much salt or soda or something in the muffins, and I forgot to serve milk and sugar with the hot drinks.  I've gotten much bett…

2016 in Review

Let's take a look at the year 2016.

January's big events were the dedication of the Tamajaq New Testament, our annual Spiritual Life Conference, helping friends find a house, a trip to visit missionaries in the bush, attended a big wedding, and celebrated John's birthday. It was a pretty busy month.  My January picture is from our trip to the bush and shows baobab trees.  

February was a little less crazy.  John started taking moolo lessons.  February is the time of year when the fresh fruits and veggies are in season so I did a lot of work to freeze veggies for the hot months ahead.  This picture isn't terribly exciting, but a year after the church burnings this church we helped plant back in 1989 finally had a new ceiling and a fresh coat of paint.

In March we attended another big wedding, froze more veggies, celebrated Easter, and visited a church in another town.  John and I have visited a lot of churches in the past three years as he has done research for his doctora…

Meat Roll-ups

Tonight I made meat roll-ups.  And I got to use some ingredients that made food prep much easier than normal!  I did make two batches of rolls so that John could have a lactose-free meal.

The first thing to do is to brown some hamburger.  With the main batch I stirred a tin of mushroom soup into the browned meat.  For John's batch, I stirred in flour, some almond milk, and seasonings just enough to moisten it, but not to make it really runny.  In Niger, I would make it the second way since we don't have tinned soup.

Next I made a batch of biscuit dough using Bisquick.  Of course, in Niger, I have to make the biscuit dough from scratch.  I mixed it up with the almond milk.  Once the dough is rolled out in a strip, spread the meat mixture on it.  Roll it up like you would cinnamon rolls and cut into slices.  Lay the slices on a cookie sheet and cook in a 350 oven for about 20 minutes.

While they're baking, I browned fresh mushrooms in butter (in Niger I would use tinned mushroo…