Remodeling as mission work?

Can remodeling be work for a missionary?  Well sometimes it just may be as you have to prepare housing for arriving missionaries.  Over the month of May we oversaw the repairs and some remodeling of a house for Paul & Sheryl Noren and the duplex apartment for Marta Klein.  This involved traveling the 50 miles to Karawa 5 times, giving directions to carpenters and plumbers and painters.  The first job was to clean the entire houses well.  Then we oversaw getting them painted.  There is no local hardware store where you can have paint mixed to your color preference.  Mixing paint here consists of getting a tint, like yellow, blue, green or brown, and putting in small quantities until you get the color you want.  Thankfully most the rooms were going to be a simple off-white which we did with 3 capfulls of the brown paint in one 5 gallon bucket of latex.

We also designed the furniture for Norens house as it was bare.  Two sets of carpenters started working on a couch, love seat, LR chairs, DR chairs, table and bed frame for an airbed.  We decide how high and deep for the seats, how high for the armrests and on and on.  We had them cane the seats of all the chairs and the backs of the LR furniture.  They did a very nice job.  (sorry no pics of that)

before & after remodeling plus the "new" cabinet next to the stove & window

More of the remodeling work was in the kitchens.  There was old formica in Norens which we took off the plywood.  Then we poured a 1-1’2” layer of cement and laid ceramic tile.  Marta’s kitchen took more work.  Pete had a carpenter split one long cabinet into two sections.  Then he used ½” plywood from the crate around the new refrigerator, remember no Home Depot nearby, for a new top.  On that surface we poured concrete and laid ceramic tile.  The objective of splitting the cabinet was to move one section close to the window for more light and to the stove for a work space.  This allowed him to move the fridge across the room where it would not block the light.  The carpenter working with him repaired the rotting parts of the cabinet for the kitchen sink which we then tiled also.  Add to this a light yellow paint and she has a new kitchen.  And, Cindy and Marta worked very hard scraping, chipping and at times chiseling the OLD vinyl tile of the kitchen floor.  It was LOTS of work, but also fun.

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One Response to “Remodeling as mission work?”

  1. Laurie Carlson says:

    I just read your email letter. We will be praying for you and your much needed rest when you return to the USA. So many times the needs around threaten to overwhelm us as well. It seems like our efforts are like spitting into the ocean.
    It is akin to offering our loaves and fishes to the Lord. It is only HE who can meet the needs. Press on dear friends.

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