Thursday, July 26, 2012

Growing Chickens in Africa

Food here is expensive, especially protein. At our little grocery store we can purchase whole chickens in the freezer section, similar to what you would buy in the states. They weigh about 2.5 lb (the whole bird). and cost about $6-7. This hardly feeds our family for one meal. (And, we are about to add a precious young lady to our table every meal.) So, Lee began to think of some type of solution to our protein problem.

He decided to put his knowledge of poultry farming and his agricultural education degree from Auburn to work and raise some chickens himself. 

The first problem he encountered was finding these 1 or 2 day old chicks. They are not available in Quelimane. So, on a trip to Nampula about 2 months ago he purchased 40 chicks and brought them home in a footlocker.

So tiny and cute!
Lilly and Emma quickly started to name them and pet them.
Lee said over and over, "Don't pet them and don't name them.
They are for eating. Don't get attached"
One-by-one the girls put them into their new home.

The weeks passed. Emma and Lee worked hard to feed and water them multiple times a day. The little cute chicks grew and grew into fine looking birds, perfect for eating! And we didn't lose a ONE!

Here they are now
One of the bigger ones weighed in at about 4.5 lb.
He was the first one to make it to the table!
So, the day came to kill the first bird. Our precious houseworker, Pascoa, had no problem with the task. She has prepared many chickens in her time.

Here they are getting ready to move the chosen one to the room at the back of our property
for seclusion so he wouldn't eat breakfast :)

Lee put it in there and Lilly and Emma wanted a peak. 
 The girls really didn't want to see the actually killing, but wanted to participate in the other stuff. So, after Pascoa did her thing with the big knife, she brought it in and the girls joined her.

Bird ready to prepare
Emma working on the feathers
Pascoa finishing the feathers
Meghan.....not so fond of this process
Poor guy
What a nice looking chicken!!
It sure beats what we have been eating.
All of the nationals that saw it that day couldn't believe how large it was.

Little Odie....waiting for something to drop!
In the end, Lee and I weighed the pieces (breasts, legs, wings, and thighs) and it totaled 2.2 lb. Pascoa took home EVERYTHING else to eat, except the toenails and gizzard (head, feet, back, heart, liver, intestines, stomach, skin, etc.).

39 more to go!


Turning 40 in Africa

Eventually everyone gets there if God allows. For me, it happened last week. I turned 40! I wasn't looking forward to it and I am still not happy about it, but it was fun! Here are some pictures of how we all celebrated....

There is a new couple that recently arrived in Quelimane for language study.
April's birthday was on the 18th so we celebrated together that night at the Dina's house.
We had cake AND ice cream. It was so very yummy!!!
Then, we played "Minute-To-Win-It" games.
Here Sally and I are going at it in the stack the dice game.
She beat me :(
This is Lee beating Lilly at keeping the balloons up for 1 minute.
What kind of Dad does that?!?
This is Jessica and I getting ready to play a game where you pick up paper tubes with your mouth.
She beat me :(
(It really wasn't a winning night for me.)
Lee and Lilly doing the shoe toss
Then, on Saturday, my birthday day, our family headed to the beach!
Here are all of the young boys that run to your car when you arrive 
or leave to sell you necklaces.
Down at the water we quickly drew a crowd. 
Cutie Pie!
Making a giant crocodile with the hoe from our garden
This is the crowd later in the day......
After you look at the girls.....look at that blue air polluting here!!

These girls wanted to sit by Meghan and me.
(It really didn't bother me....but Meghan was about to come unglued!)
You can tell that they are Muslim by their head scarves.
This is the norm along the coast of Mozambique. 
Is there a message in this bottle??
Going back home I had to take pictures of the homes in this area.
They can barely be called houses. You can see right through this one!
I wonder what is it like during the rainy season!?
You can't tell very well in this picture, but these are both houses and they are so very tiny!
And, they are literally made out straw!
That evening we had a great meal at home
and I received some gifts from my family.

Turning 40 wasn't so bad. I hear that I even have more gifts in the mail. Yippy!!