We’re going bullet point update style today because I feel like there’s just too much going on to think in paragraphs!
- We’re getting everything ready to head out on our summer vacation in a wee bit, so as usual things start breaking down. Chris has been fighting with our generator. Thank goodness we have the back up one that we ordered almost two years ago that we can hook up on Monday. It means we can put off dealing with whatever the problem is until after we get back when we’re not pressed for time and rested and more clear headed. Little mercies, I tell ya.
- Had a parents meeting at Olivia’s school on Thursday. The school is going to uniforms next year, which I’m happy about. It’ll make mornings easier and mean less of me saying, “Don’t get your good clothes dirty! You need those for school!”. Sigh. Got a cultural experience moment when there was way more discussion about how the kids were to wear their shirts, and what color socks were acceptable, over what quality of education their kids were getting. We see this a lot, and I once had another missionary tell me that their Haitian foster daughter was sent home from school one day because her hair wasn’t done nicely enough. Chris and I are so grateful for the school that Touch Ministries is running, and we’re waaaaayy more concerned about our kids getting into university than whether their shirts are tucked in or not. It’s always interesting to see where the priorities are here, and it’s hard to push against those at times.
- When Olivia was getting measured for her uniforms, the seamstress said, “Cheveaux li led”. Her hair is ugly. As in, not done up all fancy. I struggle with this stuff because Chris and I want to raise Olivia to be a strong, confident woman who knows that her worth is not determined by outward appearances. It’s so hard to be speaking and teaching those things at home, and then have someone from her own birth culture say those types of things in front of her. Yes, I know I didn’t do her hair today, but rather than making a snarky comment about it where you’re trying to point out the fact that I’m not cutting it as the mother of a Haitian child, maybe just don’t say anything because I sure as heck wouldn’t walk into a room and say something like that about your kid. And maybe there’s more to the story, like I have a lot on my plate, and I’m not going to hire someone to do her hair. And that I want her to be okay with wearing her hair naturally, even when EVERYONE around her tells her that it should be chemically treated. Or, the fact that two days later I would be spending over 8 hours putting in butt kicking extensions so she looks fabulous for the next 6 weeks. It’s hard to be graceful in moments like those.
- I’ve been working on getting stuff together for two fundraisers that I’m excited about. One is a dinner being put on by a group from my parents church for the mission. They’re cooking a Haitian meal from recipes I provided, and will be doing an auction of items I’m bringing back from here. The other is a jewelry fundraiser featuring stuff from the Apparent Project, 2nd Story Goods and other stuff I’ve picked up here. Both will be showcasing some of the beautiful things that are being made here in Haiti by Haitians. I’m looking forward to both events and have had fun shopping on behalf of other people! I get to pick everything out, then they get to pay for it :)
- This week is going to be nutty! Later in the week each day looks like a back to back list of things we’re doing, people who are coming over, and places we need to be. Crazy! On top of that Olivia’s school is doing a beach day, and we need to start packing and organizing things.
- It’s getting HOT. The kind of hot where by 2 pm you wonder why you’re cranky and can’t think straight. The only reprieve seems to be taking a mid-afternoon shower to wash off the sticky sweat and clear my head.
- Friday is Staff Day for our last day of work. Everyone will work until 11 am, then at noon we’ll pile in the cars and head out to one of the local resorts for the afternoon and have some fun. We try to do this at least once a year as a staff appreciation. They love it and we all have fun.
- We got Alex a tricycle last week. For weeks he’s been pushing Olivia’s bike around the yard, which was fine, until it fell over and he couldn’t get it back up again. Then there were crying meltdowns and some major frustration. He was SO happy when he got his bike. He doesn’t care that it’s used from the market and pink and purple! He just hops on and foot pushes himself around the yard making motor sounds. Maybe one day he’ll figure out how to use the pedals.
- The generator/pump house out at the new land is DONE. They put the door on and Thony spent two days painting it white this week. It’s cool to go out there and see a building, and the well.
- Chris’ Dragon Fruit flowered last weekend. Tons of new buds coming out too. We’re hoping this time fruit will set, but we’ll see. The plants are still less than two years old and apparently sometimes you don’t get fruit for the first couple of years. The flowers are always gorgeous and amazing.
- Ryan has been building 8 foot cement posts for the last couple of weeks for a project we wanted to do at the new land. Chris and I are trying to think about what we want there as far as landscaping and trees, and where to put things etc so that things are already well established by the time we move. One thing he and Ryan did was to build a small dragon fruit arbor by the work yard. Eventually the vines will cover the top supports and make a shaded area. I loved the idea, but on a bigger scale, so asked if we could build something similar, but closer to where the house will be as part of our landscaping. The idea is that as things fill in we’ll have a nice sitting area underneath. On Friday morning Chris, Ryan and I went out and we decided where it would go, then Ryan dug the holes and I later helped him put most of the posts in the ground. We need to build cross supports on the top, then Chris will plant Dragon Fruit cuttings.
- We made a small fire pit out at the land a few weeks ago one Friday so we could roast marshmallows. All Chris could find were these nasty strawberry flavored things. Seriously, who makes strawberry flavored marshmallows? We wanted to have friends over that hadn’t seen the land yet, so I suggested we use the fire pit and roast hot dogs and I made some homemade marshmallows too. I think we are now marshmallow snobs… They were that good. And, for some reason, homemade ones don’t light on fire. You can brown them and even burn them, but they wouldn’t light up!
Okay, I need to run, but that’s an update from here. Things are going to be crazy this week, so you might not hear from us until we’re back in the US or Canada. Sorry, thus is life here!
Have a great Sunday!