This blog is a bit schizophren…  actually I had a Psych professor who hated when people would misuse this diagnosis to describe things.  So, I should more accurately say that this blog has “multiple personality disorder.”  Or maybe just your run of the mill identity crisis.  

This blog is part mommy blog, part aid blog. 

Or (as one of my favorite aid bloggers might say) part “self-indulgent mommy blog, full of narcissistic chatter” and part (as someone else I know might say) part “bullhorn of self-righteousness.”   It’s the worst of both worlds!  

OK.  I should turn serious here in case you actually want some information.   

I live in Western Kenya, and my husband and I work on for an organization that does research on development interventions – those programs that intend to make peoples lives better – to see how well they are doing that.  So, some of my postings are inevitably about that.  

But we also have a child (and one on the way).  Not necessarily an earth-shattering pronouncement, but we are the only expats in our town who have children.  Caleb is the only mzungu (foreign/white) child for miles in any direction and enjoys (is being ruined by?) this celebrity status. So, some of my postings are also about that.

The blog is about being an unusual breed of expat.  We're not missionaries motivated by faith.  We're not embassy workers cloistured in capital cites.  We're not young unattached adventure-seekers starting their career as underpaid aid workers.  We occupy a space somewhere in between all of that.

It's about looking at what we left in the US and feeling like we live a relatively simple life.  And then looking at our neighbors and feeling embarrassed by our riches.

It's about figuring out to raise Caleb without playgrounds and play dates. Without easy access to grandparents and Cheerios.

It's about trying to become more than an curiosity to people here, and trying to seem less far away to people we love back home. 

** If you're itching for more Mama Mzungu musings, you can find me at the Huffington Post, Brain, ChildWorld Moms Blog, Incluture Parent, EthnotravelerNomad Parents and BlogHer.

-- Hi all!  Note:  This is seriously out of date.  The child "on the way" is now sitting up and smiling and more "on his way" to walking.  We've moved to a larger city, and I'm now working VERY part time from home.  And it has turned out to be a lot more cross-cultural mommy blog than aid blog, but I can't figure out how to change my banner tagline.


  1. Sounds like your are doing it right! All the best to you!

  2. Just wanted to tell you that I really enjoy reading your blog!

  3. So interesting - I just finished Half the Sky, the book that Nick Kristof wrote with his wife - and I'm thinking a lot about "aid" and how it works (or doesn't). We're doing a white-people-go-to-Kenya trip in July: safari, more money than we should've quite spent, etc - and I'm thinking about how to engage my kids slightly deeper than just "oooh look an elephant." thinking about some of the direct-to-the-people programs that Kristof writes about, thinking about animal preserves, thinking about - don't laugh - organizations that help kids using soccer as an incentive/organizing principle (my kids are soccer freaks). Anyway. Love your blog & the small peeks we get into your world.

  4. I've just found your blog through your post at InCultureParent and am looking forward to reading more. We are also an "unusual breed of expat." Our family of four live in a wildlife reserve in Malawi - my husband works in conservation and I used to but now I am home with the kids. They are also the only muzungu children for miles around. Will be interesting to find out what the similarities and differences in our experiences are.

  5. I've read a few of your posts and I love them. I'll be reading more soon. I just wrote a post about Kenya mom bloggers and linked to your blog. Here is the post...http://www.modernmomhq.com/2015/07/kenyan-mom-bloggers.html