Ruka Update

We kicked off last semester with a great meal with Regina Simmons, Director of New Student programs at Rhodes College. We had a wonderful conversation about ways we can better publicize the Ruka amongst our classmates and avenues we can explore to get involved as a community on campus. She brought a wonderful Reese’s pie to dinner—best that I have ever had!

We had a sad end to the semester when we said good-bye to our dear friend Noel Schwartz. Noel is the founder of Peacemakers, the after school program at Caritas, and recently moved to Ashville, North Carolina to be part of an eco-community. We had a lovely meal of white bean chicken chili paired with delicious cornbread made from Paula’s family recipe. We are so sad that Noel is no longer in Memphis but we are keeping in touch! Peacemaker’s will not be the same without her, but it is amazing to see all that she has done with the program and the way she has served the Peacemaker kids and the Binghampton community. This past semester, with the help of the Memphis Theater, the Peacemakers put on a play and performed it for the community. It was great seeing the kids on stage. We are all looking forward to another semester with the kids.

Our dear friend and mentor Noel Schwartz. We will miss her dearly.

Our dear friend and mentor Noel Schwartz. We will miss her dearly.


Before winter break the Ruka also participated in the Angel Tree program sponsored by the Salvation Army. We adopted a 7-year-old boy and bought Christmas presents for him. We got him a few basics, like t-shirts and pants, but we also got him a nerf ball, and cool new video games. We had a fun time shopping for him, and hopefully we helped bring smile to his face Christmas morning.

CHICKEN UPDATE! Lucy and Ethel are doing well. They started laying beautiful brown eggs. Between the two of them we usually get an egg a day. They stopped for a little while when it got really cold, and apparently hens don’t lay as regularly in the winter. The websites we read said chickens are usually killed in the winter and their meat is eaten—we didn’t think that was such a good idea. We have however cooked their eggs for breakfast and they taste richer and fresher than grocery store eggs.  Lucy and Ethel also inspired a new friendship in the neighborhood. Brian, a neighbor over our back fence, also has chickens and was kind enough to feed them during break.

Last semester was wonderful and we are looking forward to a great Spring semester.



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