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Saturday, August 27, 2011

New Post From Haiti


I got a new update from Kevin last night:





Today was more of the same, although, we did have the pleasure of having Ernst as our volunteer coordinator today. We sifted more river sand for the masons, took down the wood frames around the house, disasembled them, removed all the nails and stacked the wood at the volunteer house to be used on the next house. We were allowed to use Owen's favorite three wheel motorcycle/truck thing today so we buzzed around town moving the wood, bags of cement, bringing water from the pump back to the drum at the work site and of course moving the team back and forth to the work site. People on the side of the road really stare and turn their heads when a "blan" (white foreigner) is riding a Haitian vehicle around the streets. The looks I was getting were actually quite comical. Niecie had prepared some VBS materials for the trip so her, Owen, Lloyd and Isaiah headed over to Siloe School and had about 30 kids show up for the program. One of the things the kids received was a whistle and while we were eating dinner, we could hear whistles being blown in the distance from several different directions. The neighborhood kids are great and are always eager to participate in almost anything even if it's just throwing a ball around in the street. I can't believe tomorrow is our last day to work and it's only a half work day at that. Tomorrow afternoon may be another beach day but that has yet to be determined.













removing nails from lumber that was used for the wall frames




Marcelle and Niecie with some of the neighborhood girls 






sifting more sand for the masons




Friday, August 26, 2011


This is Kevin's new update:





This is a day late because our internet/wi-fi was out yesterday. Not much of a story to tell as it rained, rained and rained some more. We started work on the masonry part of the house and not long after found ourselves seeking shelter from the down pour in a nearby house that was under construction. We waited out the worst of it and made a dash back to the house. After lunch it stopped raining so we decided to try and work some more, however, the clouds did not comply and we were back at the house for the rest of the day. The power was off and on all evening and night. It rained throughout the night but we woke up to clear skies today. This morning we returned to the work site and made some good progress on finishing the walls. It is quite hot and very humid today so we are currently enjoying a needed lunch break. Since the internet is up, I decided to do a mid-day post in case it goes out tonight.


 







Lloyd and I mixing up some mortar







Owen, Niecie, Isaiah sifting sand







Marcelle, Isaiah and Niecie sifting more sand







making some progress on the house






Tuesday, August 23, 2011

New Haiti Updates!!

I'm sorry I am one day behind in posting but here are the pictures and emails from Kevin.


MONDAY:


Today was a little slower paced than we were expecting. We made some more wall baskets and then went to the site of a rubble home that we will be completing. It was put up and filled by the team before us. We sifted the sand for the crepisage (stucco) wall coating that is suppose to go on tomorrow. One thing you realize and have to come to terms with real quick while you are here is that you are now on "Haiti time" and things don't always happen on schedule and in fact may not happen at all. We also got rained out for most of the afternoon. We have heard about a tropical storm that may be headed our way but have not had any changes in the weather yet. We are rolling with the punches and in fact, the slower work pace and the extra down time gave us a chance to spend some time with friends and we made some new ones. Owen and I went out in the street in front of our place to throw the football around and before you know it, there were about six kids who joined in. Then more showed up on bikes and they let Owen ride too. Then the riding turned into racing up and down the street to see if anyone could beat Owen. (Owen was undefeated). It was a great time hanging out, talking and playing.


TUESDAY:


Today started with the team loading rubble from a pile in the street into a small dump truck. The rubble was then transported and dumped at the site of a rubble house to be used in filing the walls. It was tough work in itself (the rubble has been sitting for a while and is quite compacted) and today was hot so we made what seemed like slow progress. We broke for lunch and the rain started again. It rained off and on all afternoon/evening, in fact it is raining as I am typing this. We didn't do anymore work today but we did use breaks in the weather to visit the school site again, passed the football around, Niecie and Lloyd played jump rope with some of the neighboring kids. One of the boys that Owen had ridden bikes with yesterday showed up again. He was yelling "Owen" from way down the street as he was riding toward us. His bicycle was in desperate need of some repairs so I scrounged up whatever wrenches I could find at the house and gave his bike a quick tune-up. He was so grateful and excited that he didn't have to stop every few feet to put his chain back on anymore. He attends a Catholic school in Port au Prince and is in Grand Goave visiting his grand parents. He spoke proper French only and was so desperate to communicate with Owen. Daniel showed up and was able to translate for them. They were playing like they were old friends. He wanted his grand parents to meet Owen so we walked a few blocks to their house and introduced Owen. The two boys rode there bikes around for a while and Owen showed him how to jump over the piles of rubble in the street. All in all today was another good day, even if work is being somewhat delayed.






the team after breakfast in our outdoor dining room


























-Owen sitting on the motorcycle/cart thing he is facinated  with. Alex let him ride it around and last night he actually drove some of us









-Me and Owen loading up some rubble to be transported to a home site.





















Monday, August 22, 2011

Hurricane

Hi everyone. Shame wanted me to post about the hurricane that is off the coast of Haiti. Weather patterns indicate that the hurricane will not touch down in Haiti and is far from the Grand Goave area where our Haiti team from PFB and Elm Grove Baptist are currently. Just to give you peace of mind that all should be just fine. Kevin will probably send me an update email tonight and as soon as I get it I will post it.

Haiti Team Sunday August 22, 2011

Kevin wrote this evening and you would not belive it but Owen figured out how to make his I-touch text from Haiti for free!!! It was so much fun texting him tonight. Below is the email from Kevin and it sounds like they are loving it and all is well. I will let you read and look at the pictures but I, again, am thrilled they are doing so well!!!




Kevin's email:




Wow today went by fast, I thought I would have time this afternoon to get on here but we stayed late at the beach. We went to church and saw lots of old friends and hung out with them after for a while. Went back to the house, ate lunch and then loaded in the tap-tap for the ride to the beach. We went to a different area of the beach that was real nice with palapas to sit under and chairs. Everyone swam some and then Maxie and Dave (a guy from conscience) showed up with snorkeling stuff and a football. Owen, Maxie and Ernst were gone the rest of the day.... I had to walk way down the beach to get them out of the water when it was time to leave. They had a blast and I guess there is some decent snorkeling here too. The tap-tap driver was real cool and spoke decent english...he was asking Owen if he wanted to stay in Haiti and teasing him about being a fish. We rode back to the house, ate dinner, played some cards, did our devotional time, showered and thats a day. While we were playing cards, Ernst, Niecie and Owen were sitting on the roof of the house. Then Dave showed up on the little motorcycle/taxi thing they have here and took them all for a ride around the town. Owen thought that was so cool. He figured out how to text on his i-touch and I think he is texting you right now.


Tomorrow begins our six day week of hard work so I'm going to get in bed because our day starts at 5:30!!!




owen trying to balance a basket on his head



getting on the tap-tap for our trip to the beach





marcelle so happy to be on the beach in haiti





Lloyd enjoying the warm water




Marcell, Owen and Ernst enjoying themselves


Saturday, August 20, 2011

Haiti Team Made It!!!!!

Hi all the PFB people. I am updating the blog while our Haiti team is in Haiti. My husband is sending me pictures and updates each day so I am sorry that the pictures and info has a lot about my husband and son, but I am just copying the info from my blog to this blog. So the following is taken directly from my blog www.tomiawithlove.blogspot.com.


YAAAAA!!!! They made it safely and the best part is the WIFI in the house they are staying in works!!! I am going to cut and past what Kevin said in his email but I am sitting here with the biggest smile on my face right now knowing they are doing so well, especially Owen. I am just thrilled to say the least!!! Here is the email from Kevin:


We made it here just fine, traffic out of port was insane and took a long time.....however, we were picked up in an AIR CONDITIONED van!!! no riding in the back of the truck!!! Owen was super tired but wide-eyed for most of the drive. He is loving it here, the food, the people, the sleeping arrangements, the house, the work, all of it. He took a bunch of pictures on the drive but they were all pretty bad except for a few (lots of blurry ones and lots of van door post pics).

We did a little work on wall baskets today in the vacant lot next to the CI house but Saturday is traditionally a half work day so we are relaxing now. We walked around a little yesterday and caught up with most everyone. Maxie was so excited to see me. He has been going to an English class taught by Nixon and he is excelling (of course). He is quite conversational now and we have very much enjoyed being able to talk to each other. He passed with straight A's last year and was very excited and thankful when I told him I brought money to pay for next year. He is going into 8th grade and has 5 more years to finish. He wants to be an engineer if he can get to college. The children and adults are so interested in Owen, everywhere we go they stare at him and some children come up, grab his hand and ask him to come play with them (Ernst translated that part). Owen doesn't seem to mind and no one has been aggressive or anything.

There is a girl named Sarah that is doing a 9 month internship here with CI. She is from Surrey, BC. She lives about a mile from where my house was in Delta!! too funny.



I will try and send some of the pictures now too,












A wonderful church from Louisiana has partnered with our church a few times and this time there are 3 people from their church- 2 of them have been there before with Kevin. Great group!!!!













Working hard













Cutting the baskets that make the walls of the rubble house. They basically make walls with that wire on the ground and then line it with chicken wire and then fill the baskets with rubble from the house that fell down. Totally cool homes-- you can read about them here-http://haitireplacementhomes.org/













Owen is my worker man!!! He is the hardest working kid around!!













Building the walls. They use to build the homes and had a difficult time attaching some pieces or something like that. Last trip down there Kevin was able to develop a way to bend the wire that GREATLY improved the way the homes were build. They named the wire the KEVWIRE and if you go onto he site I gave you the link for before, under terms, they have that wire listed as KEVWIRE and a brief explanation about Kevin-- too funny!!!













This is the bunk house where they are staying. It is in the back yard of the main home where they relax and eat meals.













The bunk house













Owen sitting in front of the rubble house that Kevin completed last October when they were there.













Taking a break-- It's crazy hot so you have to rest and drink a ton of water or you will have problems.













I love this picture. It is all the kids we grew to love when we were there. The first kid in the burgundy is Maxi who was the kid we just fell in love with. We sponsor him with my friend Laura through the church school there which is a way better school than what is available to him. Then there is Owen then little Kevin who my Kevin had a great relationship with (remember slap hands-- that's little Kevin) and then Jean Paul who we also fell in love with. I cant believe Owen is sitting and working with all of them-- too cool!!!!













Lining the walls with chicken wire.








I am so thankful they are doing so well. More updates to come soon. 

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Cathedrals, Kids camp, & Crosses











On our way to Lithuania we had a long lay over in Frankfurt, Germany (about 7 hours). We were somewhat intimidated about leaving the airport to explore Franfurt, but we did anyway. We stumbled upon some really amazing historical sights including Bartholomew's Cathedral built in the 1300's. We paid 3 Euros each & climbed the 328 steps to the top.



Upon Arriving in Lithuania we slept off our jet lag as best we could and started into camp the next day. This was a church-wide family camp for city church. Laura & I oversaw the kids camp with the help of many hard-working Lithuanian teenagers. The schedule included games, singing, crafts, and story time in which we covered the story of Joseph during the four days of camp with a Gospel message at the end.

The kids answer questions for candy after story time


Playing 'amoeba' during game time

Craft time making crowns after hearing of Joseph's rise to the top in Egypt

Campers and leaders on the last day of camp. We had about 25-30 kids. Parents & the church expressed gratitude for the opportunity for their kids to have this experience, which we were told is huge in a culture that does not usually express such gratitude.

Garrett & Sophi Gilliland leading morning worship in Lithuanian. City church loves to spend this kind of time in worship.
These are some of the Lithuanian youth Garrett & Sophi minister to. Here they are celebrating 4th of July with the Americans.

After camp was over we spent the day sight-seeing with Garrett & Sophi. Here we are at the Hill of Crosses. The site celebrates Lithuanian resilience in the face of oppression from czars and soviet rule. Oppressors did not allow Lithuanians to bury their dead of put of these crosses, but they persisted and now there much be a billion crosses on this hill.


Our prayers are being answered that we would be an encouragement to the Gilliland family. This is a difficult place and culture to live in for any extended period of time with a lot of spiritual darkness. Our being able to spend this time with them is very valuable for them and us- and for the work of God's kingdom that they are participating in.








































Thursday, June 30, 2011

Lithuania Team Update

Sean and Laura McCarty arrived safely in Lithuania and promptly started work at a kids camp. The McCarty's are working with Garrett and Sophi Gilliland and the ministry of City Church in Klaipeda.