Food and Drink

Planting Potatoes


One of the big reasons for buying land and moving onto it was to be able to plant our own food. Upto this week that has been limited to a few fruit trees and herbs. Now we have planted potatoes! 

I do not know much about growing spuds, but I can learn. First lesson: potato seeds look like tiny potatoes. We dug up the earth and planted those babies. If the rains cooperate with our plans we will harvest quite a bit of potatoes. Not sure how long that will take, but we will keep you updated. 

Most likely we will not plant anything else this year, except maybe more trees and herbs. Come January we will prepare all the land for cultivation. Still it feels good to have seed in the ground. 


Learning to Grow - Tree Tomato


I had never heard of a tree tomato before moving to Kenya back in 2005. They are popular here and can be found all over the place. I do not care for the taste of the fruit, but the children enjoy them. 

We planted one on The Shire and may end up giving it a buddy as well. Unfortunately I have since learned that the tree does not have deep roots and has weak branches. Meaning it does not do well in windy areas, and we have a high windy season there on The Shire. So we will not be investing much time and effort into the tree tomato. 

Learning to Grow - Nasturtium

We want to share some of the process of learning about farming with you guys. Which is why we have started this little video series. Hopefully it will be interesting, informative, and entertaining. Not only will we be sharing about growing actual food, but our personal and spiritual growth as well.

Enjoy video number one:

Learning to Grow - Nasturtium


When we bought The Shire last year I created a five year plan. The biggest goal of this 5 year plan was/is to grow 90% of our own food. Right away I deduced that there was a major flaw in my 5 year plan, I am no farmer.

What I am good at is researching. So I began doing just that. One of my best resources is Ali, team member and an experienced farmer. He has proven to be a valuable and reliable resource time and time again. Ali already has plans for The Shire that will not only help us raise food, but generate income as well.


I also know how to read, amazing I know. So I am buying gardening/farming related books like this one on compost. I have since then been practicing making soil. When we move on The Shire and begin farming in earnest I will create several compost piles, bins, and barrels. The soil has been used to grow corn and beans for almost 2 decades now. It needs some rehabilitation, which is why we did not plant this year. We are giving it a rest. Compost, crop rotations, and resting will be methods we utilise to grow food for the children we care for now and for children we will care for with the added space on The Shire.

Emma and I made this short video showing off the compost pile at the house we rent here in Nakuru.

Right now we are raising money to build a house on The Shire. Please consider helping us. Click on this link to see the campaign page:


Weekly Market Run

Each week we go to the open air market here in Nakuru and purchase veggies, fruit, and a few other staples. Think of ladies sitting on the ground with piles of tomatoes, carrots, potatoes, and everything else in front of them. That is the market. Loud, muddy during the rainy season, dusty in the dry and the best place to buy fruits and vegetables.

If you need to feed 14 kids then you must buy from the market or directly from the farmers. Otherwise you spend even more money.

tuk tuk Leah, who helps with cooking, goes to the market usually on Tuesday mornings. She walks around and buys the best food she can, and then piles it all into a tuktuk. Those are three wheeled contraptions, motorized rickshaws. Vibration machines, as I like to think of them.

They vibrate their way up the hill to our house and Leah then washes all the veggies and fruits.

The fruit usually last only a few hours as the bottomless pits, also known as kids, devour them. The rest will last most of the week.

one weeks produce We spend approximately 46 U.S. dollars a week at the market. Sometimes more, depending on the season and how hungry we are, sometimes less, like when we don’t have the 4,000 KES to send Leah to the market.

Great thing about Kenyan fruits and veggies is that they are organic, or at least mostly organic, and they taste great.