Sunday, January 3, 2016

December 31, 2015 and January 1, 2016 - New Years Eve and New Years Day

December 31 - We worked in the office as a normal work day. Then at 5:30 p.m. all of us here in the Office Compound went to a Chinese Restaurant for dinner. The others have eaten at this restaurant previously. However, about the time we arrived in the Congo the restaurant closed its doors so they could move to a new building. President Thomas had been checking every so often to see if they were open for business. Finally, they are now open so we are going there for our New Years Eve Dinner.

Several dishes were ordered: sweet and sour chicken, Kung Foo Chicken, a cabbage dish, another assortment of vegetables dish and three bowls of rice. They brought regular white rice, ham fried rice, and then a seafood rice. It was all very good. We enjoyed it very much. The atmosphere was nice even though the service was a little slow. We all were able to sit around one large round table.

There were several small groups of Chinese people who came into the restaurant, placed an order at the bar area and then went through a doorway to another room. A couple of Congolese people came in, sat down, and then left without ordering. We determined later that there must have been a private Chinese party going on that night. We are not sure exactly why they let us in and no one else.

We did not wait up for the New Year to come in. We went to bed around ten o clock.

January 1, 2016 - The New Year is here. Time to work on new goals or revisit old goals not achieved. I spent some time today organizing some French materials to study.

Our assignment for our New Years Day Brunch was muffins. We chose the brown sugar muffin recipe to try. Sister Davis left muffin tins and papers so we were all set. The oven cooperated and the muffins cooked just right. Everyone commented on how good they were and wanted the recipe. Rachael had emailed the recipes she had typed so they were emailed as a Christmas present to all the sisters here. Sister Vance and Mikesell cooked eggs, Sister Thomas had bacon and ham. Sister Cook arranged a fruit plate, and Elder Draper made hash browns. It all tasted very good. We sat and visited for a total of three hours over brunch.

Pears, mango, pineapple fruit plate complete with the red hibiscus flowers for presentation

Omlette, Watermelon, fruit plate

Elder Draper├Ęs hash browns

Brown Sugar Muffins

Omlette

Bacon and Ham

Table loaded with delicious food

Sister Draper, Sister Thomas, Sister Vance

Sister Vance, President Thomas, Elder Draper, Elder Peterson

Sister Draper, Sister Cook, Sister Thomas

Sister Vance, the ham, checking out the bacon. Sister Thomas in the background

Elder Peterson helping himself to some yummy eggs

Elder & Sister Mikesell, Sister Vance, Sister Cook, Elder Peterson

Elder Peterson, Sister Thomas, President Thomas, Sister Draper, Elder Draper

I had cooked some squash a couple of days ago so today I used it in place of pumpkin and tried Grandma Petersons Pumpkin Brownies. They turned out pretty good, but next time I will cook it a little longer.

Since I was in a cooking mood, I baked some chicken. The recipe book had a broccoli-chicken cassarole I thought we would try. The cream of chicken soup had to be made from scratch. Then it called for uncooked rice. Against my better judgment I followed the recipe. After the half hour in the oven it was not cooked. So I added some water, stirred it around, and put it back in the oven for a while. In the end we had Congolese style broccoli chicken cassarole. It tasted good. We have plenty of leftovers for another time or two.

For any of you who were worried we were not eating very well--stop worrying!!


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