around our home

A few things to know about the house we call home here in Gulu...

1. We live across from a big, yellow catholic church. Holy Cross Church to be exact. This is significant for a few reasons. One being the fact that every Sunday morning (and a few times a week) we are woken up by the beautiful but very early 5am hymns. The other reason being the fact that Holy Cross is a landmark of sorts. Here in Gulu, no one really has an address. Or at least the kind we're used to. Addresses here sound a lot more like, "go past the first round about, turn left, pass the boda station, and we're the second gate to the left." Or "In town, past the post office and across from coffee hut." Or in our case... "past the prison and across from Holy Cross Church. You know Holy Cross?" It works out really well actually because all the boda drivers know the Church so we can get home easily.

2. The couches in our living room were once comfortable....until the day we realized they make you 20 degrees hotter than you already are and you will definitely get attacked by bug bites if you sit on them. So now we all avoid those huge purple bug infested couches and usually just sit at the dining room table.

3.Our day guard Samuel works at our home Monday - Friday. It's common to have day (and night) guards here if you live on a compound (gated house) because people tend to get curious and robberies do happen. Samuel tends to the garden, he watched the gate if anyone is coming, and keeps our home safe all day. We really love having him around because he is such a kind and funny man! He greets us every single morning and loves hearing about how work was that day. 

4. Life in Africa poses some interesting problems that we've had to fix. For example, that big blue water jug you see on the counter there...thats our water filtration system that we're trying to get used to because the water taste like a mixture of plastic and ocean (it uses sand to filter). yummm. But it's clean water so you learn to deal with it. And the power goes out every other day so we have managed to keep candles and our headlamps always around. Thankfully the gas isnt affected by the power outage so we can always boil water for tea or cook when the powers out. 

5. mosquito nets are a necessity. I forgot to put mine down one night and I woke up with 30 bites on each leg. You're an easy target when youre sleeping at night, so you gotta make sure those nets are up. We even have to spray them with bug spray to add another layer of protection.  

this house has truly been a blessing, and an adventure, to live in. Its funny, amidst the lack of electricity, the chickens running around our yard, the puddles that we find when it rains, and the bug infested couches...i've found a lot of peace in this home. Every morning I get to wake up, make tea, and spend time with God in this house. Conversations and friendships and so much laughter has been shared in this house. Meals have been cooked and lessons have been learned and after all of this you realize that as cheesy as it sounds....It's the people in the house that make it a home, and not all the comforts you once thought. 

So anyway..enough rambling..here is our Gulu home 

Kitchen : tiny fridge and pantry out of sight 
scary purple bug couches
Dining room with our random assortment of chairs. Fun fact : plastic chairs are very popular in gulu
variety of shoes that get extremely dirty in this town!
the essentials: bug spray, sun screen, and books 
I live in the tiny room off the kitchen. (yes, I get to fall asleep to the sound of the fridge running) and here's how the mosquito nets work. All our beds have tall posts on the side that the nets hang off of.
Charissa and Syd with out pup Louie 
Front porch
The guard room where Samuel and our night guard keep their belongings...and Louie (dog) favorite place to hang out haha 
Samuel loves this spot by the tree!
Samuel always snaps his fingers and says, "lou lou....lou lou" these two hang out all day together and we're glad Samuel has someone to keep him company.



  1. love hearing about life in gulu, ames! that picture of samuel and the dog...seriously amazing.

  2. Really enjoyed reading about and seeing how you live in Gulu - especially your mosquito-net covered bed, the big buggy purple couches (ewww!), and your kind guard Samuel.