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The Changalas

Jennychangala.com

Dear followers, I am continuing my blogging on jennychangala.com. Go there to keep following our life and living in Lusaka, Zambia. A lot of building, diy and decoration as for now!

 

Thank you!

/Jenny

Back in the gym again!

After a way too long break I am back at the gym and in my fitness mode again. The beginning of 2016 was a bit rough on me and life in general but have a good feeling for the next quarter. We love life here in Zambia and have adjusted and gotten used to most of it. Mayani is working on site three weeks at a time and is only home one long weekend per month. Alice loves her school and Sylvia is happy at home. Me I am working a bit at the Swedish School with administration and still wondering what I should do when I grow up. Maybe the next few months will give me an answer. But for now happy that I am back in the track!

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Powerwalk with Mwambe in our area.

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Morning yoga on the veranda.

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Lunch walk around longacres by work.

Let’s go!
/Jenny

Lake Kariba and Siavonga

Last Sunday my parents arrived in Lusaka! After seven months we met again and the kids where so happy. Have had a nice but very busy week in Lusaka and Mayani have been working very long days so that we had booked a weekend trip this weekend was a lucky shot. We are in Siavonga by Lake Kariba. The lake is built as a cooperation between Zambia, Zimbabwe and Botswana and gives Zambia alot of its electricity. This year it is at its lowest level ever which is a big reason to all the load shedding we are experiencing. Still this is a beautiful place and we have a relaxing time. It is around 33 degrees and we live in a villa with a private pool. The road here was like driving in the alps and they call Siavonga the Zambian Riviera. Nice way to preparing for Christmas!

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Sylvia 2 years!

Happy birthday my dear little girl! Can really not believe that it is already two years since you came into our life under very stressful circumstances. You have never ever shown any signs though of being affected by that. Born 4 weeks early and left with your very proud grand mother after only 48 hours while I got treatment on another hospital. You are strong, funny, very stubborn, you know what you like and you are difficult to fool. You are eager to learn and see the world. And maybe thats why you so easily have adapted to your new but natural home in Zambia. Happy second birthday Sylvia Ivwananji Changala Davidson!

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Thoughts about moving far, far away

It has been long now since I reported from our life here in Zambia. It it not because nothing has happened, more that a lot is happening. Mayani started working at ELTEL in the beginning of September and since that day time has been moving like Mosi-o-tunya in rain season. He has long days since trafic takes almost an hour or more sometimes and he also works on Saturdays (hello back to the 50ies!!). He likes it already though and is learning a lot. The project ELTEL is doing, and that Mayani now is a part of, is connecting the whole of west and north west Zambia to the national grid. Up to now they have been without electricity or being connected to big generators. This will mean that locals can get national Zesco power but also that businesses can start developing in a whole other way than how it has been up til now.   image

When moving far away from what you are used to and what you know there is many phases to go through. The last couple of weeks I have been struggling a bit with the ìs this shit for real now?- emotions and who am I here?- questionsThat it is for real I am sure off, Mayani started working and we have some kind of every day routines in a way that the months before did not have. And I guess that leads to those emotions to dare to believe that we are really doing this. Not planning, thinking or wondering if we can do it, we are living it! And I have not been thinking about it like something we achieved yet, there is still too much that is not smooth enough for me to relax and celebrate a victory or to be satisfied. Hence the other questions, who am I here? When moving to another society there is so many things going on inside and now is when I start to realize that I still am me. I can adjust and get used to a lot of things but there is a core of me that I can not and do not want to change. So enlightened in what I need, what I believe in and how I want to live I feel stronger than before realizing what was going on inside me.

The girls are good. They are getting used much quicker than me, especially Sylvia, she would not like going back living in an apartment and needing to put on clothes for the cold all the time. Alice struggles a bit more. She started to have night mares all of a sudden and coming home with some stories I really did not approve of from school so right now we are back to home schooling while looking for another school. We are trying to find something at least a bit closer to what she is used to from Sweden.

wpid-wp-1445885182978.jpg wpid-wp-1445885191186.jpg Sisters spending time together.imageSylvia helping her dad and refusing to put clothes or shoes on.

imageOur old school map is still teaching kids on how Africa looks and how far Sweden is.

imageSylvia and Mayani celebration Independence day.

imageSun going down over Lusaka city. The magic light.

/Jenny

Every day life kinds of stuff

Alice first term at Chudleigh House school here in Lusaka, Zambia is soon coming to an end. They have their last day tomorrow. I am impressed of Alice and the way she has handled the transition into a whole new environment. School is very different here and gas been good for her in many ways but there is also a lot of things that is a challenge. English is not one of them, she is now fluent in English and does well on the tests. Yes, tests, they have tests and grades already which is one of the big differences. She doesn’t seem to think so much about it though. She just does them and is happy when she comes home with 100 procent.

Otherwise we are in a period of waiting. Mayani is waiting for a start day on a job he got offered but he doesn’t want to believe it until he finally starts. Me I am waiting for him to start working and to get some projects of my own. Have decided to continue with studying again and feel like it will give me alot if opportunities here in Zambia. Want to finish a Master in public health this time. 🙂 While waiting we are trying to not spend money and spend alot of time with friends and family. Not bad either!

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Here we are eating dinner with friends and extended family. Not seldom we are this many at the table.

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Alice and Sylvia with their friends just outside our gate.

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Mayani cooking in our outdoor kitchen. Works as barbecue, stove and oven. He even managed to bake Hönökaka.

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Mum resting in the sunset.

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Polished concrete floors are dangerous for the kids. Mayani has told the maid (yes we have a maid now) to stop polishing them.

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Enjoying a cappuccino at Levy Junction mall.

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Sylvia and the Bee outside the mall.

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Construction of a new road going on in our area. They are soon done. August is a very dusty month. There was once a Zambian lady that told me to not go places because if the dust and I found her very silly, now I am starting to grasp where those comments came from.

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Happy kids going to buy bubble gum! Florence, Sylvia, Alice and Moses. Cousins and the constant noises in this home and in my head!

Don’t forget to follow us on Instagram. Look for jchangala.

/Jenny

Stories from Kwamwena

We have a long weekend here in Zambia celebrating heroes and unity day. This means a four day holiday off from school for the kids. And they have really had time off playing like crazy at our house and around in the area where we live. Took some photos to share with you. The kids like to walk down to the farm that we live just close by and play in the sand that is there.

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Some crayons and the gate got a new look! Tomorrow back to school again.
/Jenny

Load shedding and flu season

Time moves very quick even here in Lusaka. So quick that I hardly find time to blog. My Nexus phone is now working though and it is easier to blog from. Am trying MTN as a internet provider on this one and will compare if it is better than Airtel. The whole internet and mobile data provider is a story in itself that I am not gonna drag you into, but lets say it is not as convenient and price worthy as in Sweden.

We have also experienced that there is a flu season even here and even if it is warm as Swedish summer with 22-26 degrees during day with strong sun and around 10-14 in the night we have still gotten sick. Alice and Sylvia last weekend and now me and today Mayani woke up with a flu. We are trying to be less busy so we all rest more. Even going to shop food here can feel like a huge project! Well, we have left papers for me on immigration and Mayani has left applications on all places he can come up with but no job yet. We are keeping fingers crossed and trying to take care of each other while waiting.

More news are the resent start of load shedding from Zambias electricity provider Zesco. Last two weeks they have cut electricity between 6-8 hours per day! They are suppose to follow a schedule but so far it is very irregular. Which means we don’t know when we have electricity or not. We feel lucky that we decided to buy a gas stove but dark nights and having the fridge off for so long is not so fun. People seemed used though and don’t get very bothered by it. For us it is completely new and very annoying!

Down some photos from the last weeks.

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Me sick but trying to get some sun before it goes down around 18 hrs.

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Kids enjoying at a restaurant with a kids play corner.

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New drawer found its spot in the hallway under the printasquare poster.

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I planted some pelargone to start competing with my mother! 🙂

/Jenny

Actual winter

Today it is actual winter. Colder than I thought it would ever be here in Zambia. Good thing is it only last for some days. Not months like in Sweden. Otherwise we are settling in quite well. Alice has started a school near by our home and she seams to like it. She has been performing with her ballet class at the mall and they did so well. Sylvia is adapting in her own crazy way. She has had three colds and malaria already but now she has recovered and seems to be well. She is happy all the time anyways and loves the fact that we are in a house where she can run back and forth all the time. Mayani is still looking for jobs, he is leaving papers anywhere and everybody else seems very sure that he soon will get a job. He spends all other time to fix aroumd the house and things are surely going forward. Soon time for an update on the house again. We are planning to put flat stones around the house as the next big project and that will make a huge difference.  Me am getting in to life her too, finding friends and things to do. Follow us more on Instagram where I am jchangala where I almost daily put photos from our every day life! 

Alice in her uniform outside her school   Alice and her ballet group ready for performance 

Regular craziness from the Changala kids!
Love/ Jenny

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