Phone with a tiny organic corner at Pak Ngeum District Exhibition 2016.
It was the first day of home-made products exhibition in Pak Nguem District of Vientiane which was presided over by the district governor, Mr. Vongdeun and his delegates. This year had more shops than previous year.
We, Housewife group were invited. We had our own products as usual such as dishwashing detergent, hand washing soap, roselle, mung bean, and tamarind yam. Our mother brought some organic banana to sell as well.
As I know in rural area of Laos not many people care much about quality of the food products which was the main cause of health issues. people more likely think about what to fill in their belly to survive so organic products do not gain popularity as it should be. the health of people in this area are in concerned situation. The bad health often cause by bad food and bad living condition. anyway, hopfully one day people will not turn their back to healthy products for their own sake as we see nowsaday.
Local woman group uses water color to bring them to present moment.
Normally villagers spend time gardening and collecting firewood for rain season particularly woman has to work double to guarantee her family has enough food for each day and to make sure their kids go to school with everyday. these rountine activities likely take away her creativity, too busy to come back to her own breathe and take care of her own mind. but today they are provided with water color and a piece of paper to play. what they have to remember is No control, No expectation and Be open-minded. but to play, release, relax and enjoy with the flow of the color streams and its colorfulness.
All of them is done well even though this is their first time (but hopefully not gonna be only time for them to play). they could mix the color very well. the pictures do not have clear boundary and isolated from other colors. what we guessed is that it got influenced from their daily life activities, their friendship with neighbors and their connection with gardening. no selfness between all these things, all is one.
when they are asked about their feeling, most of them are hesitated to answer and not sure how their feelings are. but one said she is pretty sure coming back to herself is joyful and what she need when she is tired from working.
everyone expresses wanting to do the activity again next time.
Thank you so much for our mentor and supporter p’ Nitaya Kij
Children divided proportionally the dishwashing liquid among themselve after they had made it.
Education for children should not be limited only in the square classroom children who will be the backbone of the country. Real learning should be every where even at home, parents are not supposed to leave all the child’s learning ground at school alone which currently many parents practice it.
At our farm we basically produce our own stuffs for household uses including dishwashing liquid which we use it everyday to wash our dishes after eating. so we shared this experience with children. we just showed them its formula and then let them do all the measurement and stiring all the ingredients.
Measurement and stiring parts are important; for measurement, children can practice their mathematic skills and for stiring, children can learn to be patient and calm otherwise their stiring would not succeed and the liquid itself would be all bubble.
Children not only learn about self-reliance but also learn how to live and work in the team. some children when living and working with mates have difficulties because they do not trust and open-minded enough to receive new things (It’s dependent how they are raised and environment) but when they got opportunities to live and work with mates more and more those children learn to adapt and some totally change. Let’s have a look at more pictures.. oh after they finished making the detergent they helped each other to cook and had lunch together..Let’s go now
everyone has to take turn
dividing time with every eyes on the ball
boy took his turn to stiring
Nong patiently stired the liquid in the bucket
Shab Shab lunch together with papaya salad, fish soup and sticky rice
This time sharing with you how we as home-made products people participated in district level organic exhibition, Pak Ngem Vientiane Capital Laos from 6-8 of March 2015.
Normally our group always meet once a month to catch up and share the experiences of home product and self-experiment. but this month of meeting excited everyone as we were accepted to display our products at the exhibition and it was district level so it has been our long dream though to pursuit and declare our group to public as well as the governor office. at this point we succeeded because the governor himself bought a couple of hand washing gel from us. anyway, from starting, everyone was available freeing from routine agricultural activity, So we sat in circle to brainstorm what products are our outstanding and would be long term attractive to customers… Finally there were 7 products we came up with and enabled to make them. and our packaging looks coolly eyes-catching even though none of us ever did design it!!! Let’s have a look at photos>>
Stir tamarind facemask av
Tinying Fang tea
Tinying Fang tea
Packaging for roselle tea
Packaging for Charcoal face mask
Making poster explaining the group
refine ashes water
squeeze tamarind and honey
At the exhibition, we Not only sell our products but also entertained customers by playing games and invited them to join in. so much fun there with kids and every housewife laughed out loud a lot.
mung bean facescrub
dish washing gel
hand washing gel
Lae gave introduction of the group
two sisters acted hard
sign of the exhibition
tea and stuffs
our junior crew
Photo of the governors
One of our team handed products to governor
our boost display
Photo of infront
Miranda, Jacquelyn and Phone (Left to right)
Yesterday 30th of Dec 2014 Pommalok once again received one of our everlasting mentors who has been working in Laos more than 30 years before Lao Independence Day in 1975. Jacquelyn Chagnon and her daughter Miranda Rumpf travel back and forth between USA and Laos since Quaker social justice organization stopped services in Lao Land.
Eventually it was first time for Miranda, who graduated from Special Education at the University of Central Missouri and now becomes a teacher, lands at farm. With different joyful activities ready for her to get hands on, One of them was directly collecting vegetables from garden beds which hardly practice in her home town. Then brought all the collected vegetables cook in the earthen fire stove which was very excited her whole day long.
We as the farmers are always happy to have Jacquelyn’s visit because every time she drops by. it kinda makes fires on us to be firmly on the path we have been taking.
Zack’s father showed how to make bamboo basket
Old man with his bamboo handicraft
Lunch under thatch roof
Group photo with all visitors
Jacqui and Phone collected veggies for lunch
Jacqui & Phone in the garden
Phone made fires for her father in law
Sunset on Sanxai Plateau (photo by Sandra McCullough)
Night moon on Sanxai Plateau.
Awakening in the middle of coldest, windiest and highest of Sanxai Plateau, Attapue deep south of Laos, conciousely realize that i would probably repeat the same routine again like old days. On the other hand, feel like i am not myself, aimless, leave my sick father behind, and every night dream of coming home. At certain point if i could do something peacefully and purposely would bring my spirit to its blossom. With full awareness, my present shoes extremely contradict to what i have been cultivated from Lao Buddhist culture. I strongly believe there’s not only me questioning about life. Even though i have learnt that Life Is Impermanence and should not certainly expect anything out of it.
In the Tibetan Book of Living and dying said:
“Planning for the future is like going fishing in a dry gulch; Nothing ever works out as you wanted, so give up all your schemes and ambitions. If you have got to think about something— Make it the uncertainty of the hour of your death …”
In the end of the day, i could only remind of myself that nothing in this earth suffers me much more than my own ignorance and expectation. Therefore I am not afraid to practice freedom and Not let my mind suffers because of the outsider stuffs.
1) I walk down the street.
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk
I fall in.
I am lost… I am hopeless.
It isn’t my fault
It takes forever to find a way out
2) I walk down the same street
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.
I pretend I don’t see it.
I fall in again.
I can’t believe I’m in the same place.
But it isn’t my fault.
It still takes a long time to get out
3) I walk down the same street
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk
I see it is there.
I still fall in … it’s a habit
My eyes are open
I know where I am
It is my fault.
I get out immediately.
4) I walk down the same street
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk
I walk around it.
5) I walk down another street.
Once there was a group of Australian interns who’s about to graduate in becoming teachers in five months ahead. Their visiting to Laos was a part of culture exchanging programme sponsored by Australian Helping Hands. Our place was one of their destination journey to live and learn about Lao organically self-sufficient family as well as the simple lifestyle living closely with nature. During their visit was the time of yearly rice harvest so everyone could not stop going into the rice paddy field to feel a soften wind blow and getting their hands on the rice straw. Meanwhile we have many different challenges for them especially the money bridge which is the only two bamboo across the river with a handlebar. Other activity given a great joy to the guests was to learn about how to get the mung bean out of its cover by very local grounded method and using bamboo sheet handicraft for rice selection. This activity was skillfully practiced by all Lao housewives in the former time. Finally we ended the activity with having guests visit the local school meeting with children and built a small lovely theathre performance stage for the school to run the after school activities.