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a new awning made of leaves

September 6, 2016

Our landlord made a new awning for our kitchen window.

Here’s the old awning. It kept our clean dishes mostly dry, but it was pretty worn out and let some rain in.

A few days ago, he asked to use our kitchen knife. He then cut up fronds of a large palm tree. He removed the spiny edges of the leaves and did other prep work before I got the camera. They were giant leaves of a giant tree called true sago palm (Metroxylon sagu), an amazing, multi-purpose tree.

Then he folded the pieces of leaves and lined them up on a large stick that he had cut from another plant.

Next, he secured the row of fronds by sewing them together. Usually people use part of a certain vine as the “thread” to sew the leaves together, but here he used plastic packaging straps he salvaged from something.

Closer-up of him sewing:

In the next picture, he’s using a stack of leaves by his left elbow to sew together a second panel of leaves.

Once he had sewn several of these leaf panels, he removed the old leaf panels from above the window. Then he nailed the new panels, one by one, to the frame of our window.

In the picture below, he has nailed on all of the panels and is now nailing on a strip of wood to secure the top panel.

You can see the new awning compared with an old awning over another part of the kitchen. In about a week, the green leaves will dry to a light brown.

By lunch time, the new awning was in place. Standing inside the kitchen looking out, we can see that the panels are tied to the wood frame with vines cut from the jungle.

It keeps all of the rain off of our clean dishes. We’re glad to have a good landlord. John pointed out that Ecclesiastes 10:18 makes more sense now: “Laziness leads to a sagging roof; idleness leads to a leaky house” (NLT).


[tags: palm trees, nature, tropical construction]

5 Comments leave one →
  1. Mom permalink
    September 6, 2016 8:57 am

    Ah, a fresh new outlook!

  2. Tammy Hodel permalink
    September 8, 2016 9:42 pm

    Wow, this is just so cool to read and look at the pictures! Loved the verse at the bottom! What a word picture!

  3. Don & Michele Hardie, Maplewood Reformed Church permalink
    September 10, 2016 8:43 pm

    Hi, Lori. Loved reading your post and seeing the photos. So cool! Thanks again for “opening another window for us to peek into your world”. Praying God’s continued blessings upon you and your family, and the work that you are doing there to share God’s love and word with the people you live with.

  4. September 24, 2016 12:47 am

    Nice work! Did your landlord teach John to sew up the leaves for a DYI next time?

  5. Elizabeth Leman permalink
    October 1, 2016 8:14 am

    Very cool! What a difference!

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