March 7, 2013 by Eddie | 0 comments | 14,382 Views

Our friends in Nairobi helped us find a safari guide (Apollo), and we set off on our journey south across the Rift Valley to the majestic Masai Mara which borders the Serengeti in Tanzania, (properly pronounced Tan-ZAN-ia).



After a few hours in Apollo’s matatu, we pulled off the main tarmac onto the bumpiest road we’ve ever been on.  My head hit the ceiling at least twice before Apollo figured out that he had to slow down a bit.  35km later, we reached the Mara Safari Club, a watery respite in the dry climate.  It sits on an oxbow in the Mara River, and includes a wildlife sanctuary as its property.  It also features a number of Hippo families that are quite the rowdy bunch in the day AND night.


Our tent-room

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Adventures in Nairobi

February 28, 2013 by Mary Beth | 0 comments | 11,093 Views

Thursday, February 21st was a very full day for us. A driver named Joseph took us many places around the city, while patiently and jovially answering all of my questions about weather, politics, infrastructure, his family, and general life in Kenya. First, Joseph took us to The David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust: a haven for orphaned baby elephants and endangered black rhino. We watched for an hour as a total of 20 baby elephants were bottle-fed milk and then were allowed to play with the staff and each other, fetching sticks, kicking a soccer ball, and wrestling in the mud pools.


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Jeddah, then Nairobi

February 20, 2013 by Mary Beth | 0 comments | 11,135 Views

The 12-hour flight to Jeddah, Saudia Arabia seemed to fly by (pun intended), but for the 20-hour layover in a bustling airport that never sleeps, time seemed to stand still. We watched as hundreds of people prayed, kneeling next to a trash can, bowing their faces to ground as the loud speaker blared announcements of boarding flights. The sunrise was a gift, a beautiful pink-orange promise of progress, as we ate breakfast in the cafe and read about Kenyan safaris and Asian adventures to come.

Jeddah Airport
Sleeping in Jeddah. Yes, we both fit in there.

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Here we go!

February 14, 2013 by Eddie | 0 comments | 11,213 Views

We are at JFK, awaiting our departure! We are pretty excited, and focused on the trip and the humbling opportunity we’ve been given.

Thank you all for your unending support of us and our trip, and look forward to much more soon.


Indiegogo Campaign

November 11, 2012 by Eddie | 0 comments | 11,506 Views

Dear friends and family,

We know we”ve been talking about our volunteer trip to Kenya for so long, and you”ve been lovingly listening to all the details as we”ve been developing the trip. We wanted to share with you where we are now!

We have started an online fund-raising campaign to raise money for our volunteer trip to Kenya, and to help complete the projects there. The website for the campaign is:

You”ll be able to watch a video we made on that website explaining more about the project, but in short, our in-country goals are these:
1. Build a teacher-housing complex. This has been a huge request and will eliminate their need to spend their own money and time paying taxis to take them to and from the school and their homes
2. Ready the school to have power brought from the nearby village. This complete project is a huge cost, not covered by the campaign, but a huge start to raising the funds and moving the school closer to having power
3. Update some necessaries on the school”s farm
4. Help with teacher salaries and school supplies for the children
5. Leave them with all the money left over to save for the power project and update and/or finish the projects we are starting.

What we are asking from you:
1. Visit the site and consider donating
2. Share this email on a bulletin board at your church — in the year or so that we have been planning this trip, we”ve met many people along the way (at different CS churches, at Summer Session at Principia, at Family Camp, etc) who said they would love to support Petals, and now that we have a campaign, we”re not sure how to get in touch with all those people. So please, help us get the word out!
3. Consider sharing this email with your friends and family, on your social media pages, or with people in your workplace
4. Consider having something you are already doing as a fund-raiser (concert, bake sale, garage sale, etc.)
5. If you have ideas about how to promote a campaign or fund-raise successfully, please let us know what more we could be doing!

Thank you very much, from the bottom of our hearts, for anything you can do to support us – financial support, moral support, spiritual support, etc. We really appreciate you!

Eddie & Mary Beth