A Day In the Life

I was just moaning and groaning to my mother in law that I’ve been feeling lacking in the new blog material department. I feel like it’s either all about being pregnant, or all about being Olivia’s mom. Not much new and exciting going on here, or at least it doesn’t feel like there’s much to tell. I think it happens when you live in one place for long enough, it just becomes routine. And then it hit me, that idea of routine. I don’t know that I’ve ever told you what an average day looks like for us here. So, why not now?

A Day In the Life of the Rolling Family In Haiti (Ta da!)

5:40 am – Alarm goes off. Chris bounds out of bed and flicks on the light to torture his poor wife. Me, the poor wife, is not a bound out of bed type of person. We take turns doing our bathroom dance around each other. Pretty much my morning routine consists of a quick shower to wake up, brushing my teeth, combing my hair, and throwing on clothes.

5:50 am – If its a delivery day Chris will load up the cooler with ice packs and pop, and the big Igloo water cooler with ice and water for the workers to take out for the day. I gather installation forms.

If it’s just a day where we send out people on follow up I get their filter follow up forms ready and get small containers of ice and water ready to send out.

5:55 am – We head down to the work yard to pray with the workers. This is something they started almost two years ago on their own, and then told us we were welcome to join them :) I love that.

As I’m walking over I’m checking off, on my trusty clip board, who is on time. A couple years ago the workers themselves decided that anyone not on time loses a half hour of pay. We mark it off and compare it to the time sheet they submit every two weeks.

6:00 am – We gather in a circle, hold hands, and Fritzner leads us all to prayer. Usually everyone prays on their own, with most people praying out loud as they feel comfortable.

6:05 am – Chris goes through the work designation for the day. Melix, our new supervisor, has taken over figuring out who is doing what, but confers with Chris in the morning and they make any adjustments needed. Chris then shares the jobs for the day and everyone breaks up to get to work.

6:10 am – I head back to the house to start making breakfast and to see if Olivia is awake. I would like to mention that I am not really a morning person. I am one of those people that can be up and around, but needing to talk to people and be “on” right away is not my strong suit. I know some of you are thinking, why not just get up earlier? Do I need to say it? Okay, I will. 5:40 am. It doesn’t get much earlier than that.

If Liv is up, she pretty much goes on auto pilot and gets herself dressed. Love that. She loves picking out her clothes for the day, so it’s a win-win.

6:45 am ish – Breakfast is done. If it’s Monday or Thursday Yonese has arrived for work and is starting to get the dishes washed and things going in the house. We head to our computers and start hacking through emails. I usually like to do this with a cup of coffee, and I indulge in reading my blogs etc. Again, not a speedy wake up person!

This is also the time where I throw a load of wash on because the generator has been turned on, which means the water pump can be turned on and I won’t have to wait 30 minutes for the washing machine to fill. I am NOT complaining. I have a washing machine. After several years of not having one, this is one “first world” thing that I appreciate a lot. It’s just nice when I can get clothes on the line in the morning, especially in the rainy season when rain can hit late afternoon and it’s much more humid so things take longer to dry. We have a full solar system, but usually the panels don’t start charging the batteries until almost 8 am because of the way the sun rises, so we run the generator first thing in the morning to give the batteries a boost and so we can run the water pump and start washing sand and doing other work like welding right away.

7 am – 12 pm – During this time anything can happen. I usually spend most of this at my computer hacking through whatever work I need to do that day. Filter forms entered into the data base, emailing people, accounting, entertaining my kid, hanging my laundry, telling my kid to stay out of something, getting class materials ready if we have a class coming up, preparing payroll, etc. Really, anything can be on the agenda.

The work day ends at 2:30 pm, so anytime from 6 am to 2:30 pm we will have workers coming up to our apartment for various things. It might be keys to move the trucks, money to go buy supplies, toilet paper, photo copies, tools, meds for headaches or fever (very common request)… you name it.

12 pm ish – Eat lunch. Usually I intentionally make a bit more at dinner so we have left overs. If we’re talking about Olivia, she pretty much eats all day long. Seriously, all day long. Gets up in the morning and from then on it’s a constant stream of putting food in her, which is ironic considering her weight hits the 10th percentile. I guess you need to be stationary to pack on the lard.

Afternoon – More of the same.

If we have people stopping by to see the mission/what we do, they usually arrive in the afternoon. Showing them around involves one of us walking them through the filter yard, showing them the filters, explaining how they work etc. I’ve been told I’m a very good tour guide. It’s good to know these things in the event that I ever need to make a career change. “And on your right you’ll see…”

2:30 pm – Work day ends. Right now because of daylight we start at 6 am and end at 2:30 pm. In the summer months when the days are longer we start at 5:30 am and end at 2 pm. Why the early hours? Because the afternoons are hot.

2:30-5:30 pm – We find things to amuse ourselves. Chris and I are avid readers, so there is usually reading involved. Maybe watch a movie. Do something as a family. Just depends on the day. Really, life is not that exciting in the afternoons. That and it’s usually warm and warm weather does not lead to a surge in energy for most people. And, right now, I by afternoon I have fat feet and need to put them up.

6:00 pm – Eat dinner sometime in here.

6:30-7:00 pm – Olivia gets her bath and we do our bed time routine – a story and song and snuggle, then she gets tucked in for the night. She’s really pretty great at going to bed.

6:00-8:00 pm – Usually sometime in here our follow up and delivery people that have been out return. They put in very long days. When they get back they drop off the coolers, keys and filter forms, and we go over the day with them. They are always tired, but I love that often they are still joyful because they know they’ve put in a good days work and are helping people.

9:00 pm ish – We hit the hay. We are only in our 30’s and we go to bed around 9 pm. Then again, we’re up early and have a very active toddler. Nuf said.

So, that’s an average day for us!

~Leslie

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About Leslie

I'm Leslie. Wife. Mother. Missionary. In the day to day my husband and I are responsible for running Clean Water for Haiti, a humanitarian mission that builds and distributes water filters to Haitian families. Living in Haiti full time provides lots of stories, and as I tell my husband, our grandkids probably won't believe most of them. Maybe writing them down will give me some credibility.

One thought on “A Day In the Life

  1. Thanks for sharing; it gives a good insight to your typical Haitan day. And I love how you and your workers are so committed to God and the work you do for their people. Be encouraged, you are doing a great work for the Haitan people!

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