The Hayes Zoo

Our Purpose

- to know God and use our entire lives in service to Him.

- to stand in the gap through prayer, giving and service to viable ministries in Latin America.

- to be transparent helpers of fellow brothers and sisters in Christ, using our resources and skills that through the Holy Spirit, we might encourage and equip those who have less.

- to share a living perspective from Latin America to our churches, friends and family in the states and beyond.

Friday, March 27, 2009

To Market to Market...jiggity jig....

This post is about the little things in life. I doubt seriously there are any spiritual parallels I can draw. It's an attempt at painting you a picture of the basics of our lives. What is this little part? Are you ready? Grocery shopping. Amazingly enough this little 'project' takes up quite a bit of my life as people here continue to want to eat.

Hmmm...a bit of history.

I used to love grocery shopping.

Emphasis on USED to...

I remember beautifully organized (!), colorful (!), spacious (!), clean (!), shiny (!) floors, shelves, and checkout stands. Oh and carts! Big ones with wheels! The aisles and aisles of choices were so fun to peruse. It was like a self challenge to get the most for the least. Which brand was the best buy? Which item was the healthiest choice? Which item did I have a coupon for? I never was very good at that last one...

Fast forward a bit. Here's where I'm trying something new - inputing a slide show/flickr set into a blog post itself. Read on and see if it worked.

Edited to add - it didn't work. I'm still on this after two hours of uploading, crashing, re-uploading, arranging, trying to import....blech. I'm giving up for the moment and publishing. I'll list a link to the photo stream for your viewing entertainment towards the end of the post. Oh and another thing, so far I've only been able to get the slide show to work backwards...not helpful. So if you would, start at the last and work your way to the front. WHERE are there lessons on this stuff??? IN PLAIN ENGLISH????

Rant over. Back to post.

First of all the pantry place:

There is a big store 45 minutes away. Santa Rosa de Copan is our friends and cash town. Our friends, the Wards live there and we time a visit with them with a stop at the ATM (none in Gracias) for cash, and a trip to 20 Menos for pantry items. This is the third world Fred Meyers. The entire store would fit into the veggie section of Freddy's in Battle Ground but still. It has shelves, options, and carts. If I have to stock up on beans, rice, cereal, soap or other things I like to do it there. I'm tired of picking bugs out of my beans and rice.

For most everything else my options these days are mercados. Open air or indoor. On delivery days or not. Busy times or more relaxed ones. Then there are my friends who delivery various veggies to the door, bless their hearts. A bit more pricey but fine for the time being.

"Thank you for the menu. I'll have - open, not, relaxed, and front door service."

Indoor market:

The 'puestos' are basically like a stall where people sell from their 'store front'. The indoor market has a ton of them. The fruit and veggie stands, the tortillas section, the cheese section, the dried goods section. There can be huge variety in price, items, quality and service. Then there are the blankets, tool supplies, clothes, shoes, and general everything else puestos. It sounds very romantic doesn't it? I avoid it at all costs.

Here's why. Imagine if you will the center aisle of a little church (church family are you with me on this??) Now - cram in every kid in the neighborhood; not just from the church mind you, I said the neighborhood. Add in the moms with their bags. Add in the dads with their backpacks. Add in the dogs (!). Yes, I said dogs (!). I won't even describe the dead rat we had to step over once... Now everyone start yelling - happy yelling, sad yelling, babies crying. Moms and Dads?? You yell too. Now do it in Spanish. Someone turn on a boom box full volume please. Now add in ONE white woman w/ bright red hair and a Mexican Spanish accent and you will discover something: THIS is why I don't like the indoor market.

My little brain has so much to take in that adding in all this chaos just sends my heart into defib and my coping skills to the levels of a two-year old. I leave there feeling like a scrambled egg. Romantic it is not.

For me; indoor market = blubbering 35 year old woman. Self talk goes something like this: "Breathe! Breathe!! Breathe!!! You're an adult woman you can go back in there and buy those tomatoes!" "Suck it up! YOU CAN DO IT!!" "More deep breaths - gag - what is that smell??? Okay, so don't breathe through your nose." " Now - what was the conversion?" Got it. "Which verb did they use?" Got it. WHY did they conjugate it that way??" DON'T CARE! "Why am I here in the first place??? Oh - wait. Food. Oh bother."

I admit it. In public. Over the internet people. I've cried over shopping for groceries.

Pride is a very ugly trait I have which I'm sure is why God is somehow using this to shape me into a more Christ-like state. Dang is it painful.

Back to options...

Open air market:

THIS is the one I drive (have my husband drive me) out of my way for. I don't care. It's worth it. There is still some of the pushing and shoving, it's all in Spanish, and I might pay a tad more but 'vale la pena'. Plus their boom box plays Spanish praise music. It helps me retain my sanity, my children can stay in the truck while I dicker for food, and Alan can park within a block radius.

After foraging for fruits and veggies here we walk to the carneceria for meats and cheese. Not to buy that 'fat pig' but some bagged chicken, chorizo, and maybe some beef if it's cheap.

What can we get here? Actually it's surprising to us the limited variety. You would think that in the tropics there would be an abundance of tropical fruits and veggies but honestly - no. Items are trucked in twice a week from the bigger cities. Each week the items are more or less the same but still healthy and seriously, God graces me with enough creativity to not become completely bored with preparing it.

The local list is as follows:

Green Bell Peppers

Beechas (the funny, hairy looking fruit I'm holding in one of the pictures -it's a lot like a grape, after you peel it of course)

**Some of these items are seasonal and we haven't yet been able to figure out the seasons for food around here. I'll let you know when the list shrinks. **

It's fairly amazing to me to think that I can buy 8 mangos for about 10 Lempira ($ .50 USD) and a pineapple for the same but then trying to buy an apple, yes AN apple - YIKES!! $. 60 USD EACH one. We do apples for special occasions now, which is funny coming from apple country. In fact probably why said apples are so incredibly expensive is because they DO come from apple country. The kids find it hilarious that their apples in Honduras have a Washington sticker on them.

Okay - so we've bought a weeks worth (if I was smart) of fruit and some meat to keep the men folk in the family happy and now what? We take it home and clean it. The remaining pictures in the stream are of the home side processing of the food. Most things are covered in various layers of dirt and grime so we wash/rinse first THEN sterilize. Everything goes through this process before it goes in the fridge that way I know that things are clean to grab and eat from there.

There must be something about the inside air at my house and I've learned that if I bring some fruit or veggie thing home and set it on my counter one of two things will happen.

ONE - it will be covered in ants by the next hour.
TWO - it will go bad within one day.

So - moving on...after wash/sterilize cycle we move on to peel, cut, chop, freeze, or refrigerate. This part can take up to or more than two hours. Why? I have no idea - I'm in a time warp apparently. I've tried doing it faster, smarter, yada, yada, yada, but it just takes that long. This is with me being a fairly efficient (type A) person. Each time I'm learning little tricks of the trade, so to speak, but it still is a process. However, afterwards we have a stocked fridge (BLESS THEIR HEARTS FOR THE GIFT), food ready to eat and share, and less mess for the general everyday prep. I can always tell when our 'stock' is getting low - my tupperware drawer gets full.

If I time it right I can make this workout last for one week. One week.

See the pictures here.

We are able to buy milk, eggs, and some other general dry goods in our neighborhoods at pulperias (in-home stores). It is easy. I hand my children cash and a list and off they go, bless their little hearts.

So that folks, is why my love of grocery shopping wanes with each visit.


** A note about the pictures - for future reference - do not ask 11 year old boy to take pictures of you. 1/2 turn out at 'interesting angles' and the other 1/2 are of him being .....e.l.e.v.e.n......but I left them in for grammas and his friends.

My husband, on the other hand, is fabulous. Alan came home to a wife that was willing to go grocery shopping instead of update the blog w/ Flickr. (This should tell you something...) He fixed it. He is just wonderful....

Saturday, March 14, 2009

A borrowed thought.................

Be forewarned: This is a long post. I was wordy and I borrowed words. So get something to drink and get comfortable because if you follow from start to finish - you'll be here a while. :)

The blog world is an interesting place isn't it? A window, if you will, into the lives and thoughts of others. Now, I will be the first to say that it can't and shouldn't replace regular, in person fellowship but for those like me, who find themselves in places where actual one to one relationship with friends is hard to cultivate and encourage due to language and cultural issues, it is like sitting down, visiting with friends while a cool breeze blows over me.

In this world I've found a few friends who I can't wait to meet in person some day. Several are incredibly gifted with words and one of these, Mary Grace, penned a post a few months ago that said so well something I've been looking for, and failing I might add, to express. So off I shot a Facebook message (technology to the rescue once again!) asking permission to use her as a 'guest blogger' so to speak. You should stop in and visit her.

I will add some comments at the end as to why this was so perfect for me when I read it but for the groundwork to be laid, read this first.

Saturday, January 3, 2009


Have you ever been given a gift that was so fabulous, so wonderful, so over the top that it took your breath away? Something that you certainly didn't deserve and didn't ever see yourself calling your own? There's a feeling of utter awe and thankfulness that washes over you when you realize that you're loved that deeply. I can't put my finger on the English word for that kind of emotion, but in Greek it is stergo--the love that only a family can conjure, the love that warms and protects and surpasses logic.

I have been wrapped in stergo for the past few weeks, and I have found myself struggling to unwind its tentacles from my heart and free myself from its nest.

The truth is that I am a person who has a hard time being loved. I can go on and on about how I grew to be this way but really, it's not important. What is important is that I am learning, bit by bit, to accept stergo on the terms it is offered and not super-
impose my own expectations or desires on the bearer of this precious gift.

Especially when the bearer is YAHWEH.

I fully admit that there are times when I have boxes I want God to check. I have a list of wants (not needs) that I selfishly keep hidden in that hard spot at the back of my heart. I sing when God throws me a bone and blesses me with one of them. I pine secretly over the ones He chooses not to satisfy. I strive for contentment at all times and come up short just like everyone else. I can admit that.

But God has this funny habit of blessing me with things that I never asked for. It's stergo in action: Here, Mary Grace, my beloved daughter. Take this. Trust me. You'll like it. Like a child who has learned obedience but not fully soaked in the heart of compliance, I take the gift. I move on. And I always, always learn to love it eventually.

But those first weeks, months and even years can have the pallor of forced optimism written all over them. I am the child posing with the new sweater at Christmas and eyeing the box of Lincoln Logs my brother just opened.

Seven years ago I found myself bathed in this unasked-for stergo. This was in the month immediately after 9/11 and long before I embraced the concept of "the more the merrier" in regards to my family size. I found myself pregnant just a few short months after regaining my equilibrium from an incredibly harsh bout of post-partum depression. The world was falling apart, it seemed ... and so was any sense of balance that I'd ever hoped to have in my life.

People around me congratulated me on the enormity of the blessing I was receiving. Another child! How good was God, they asked, to gift me in this way as the whole
world reeled from the devastation of September 11? It must seem, a woman told me, like God had his finger of healing on me even as everyone else wept.

But I didn't feel it at all. What I wanted--what I had asked for--was a season, just a season, Lord, of quiet. A season of peace. Not this. Not another screaming newborn and months of sadness and a house even more cluttered with the acrruements of infancy.

How did the message get confused? Wasn't I clear in what I wanted? This isn't what I asked for, Lord!

But it's what He gave me, praise God. I wouldn't trade a single second of life with Logan for the peace and quiet I craved all those years ago. The blessing God gave me was far greater and in His mercy and wisdom, He gave me the better thing.

Right now, God is in the process of leading me to the thing that He wants for me yet again. Not the thing I would have chosen. Not even the thing I can see in my future. But the thing that is best. The thing I will look back on and say yes, that was a
blessing. That was stergo.

This thing is a brand-new, nearly 3,200 square foot house.

How a woman can be conflicted over such a gift is a matter of shock for a great many people, but let me assure you that the kind of home I always saw myself raising my family in is smaller by half and older by a century or so. I am not a new house person. I am not a big house person.
I find newly constructed homes in cookie-cutter neighborhoods to be devoid of character, poorly planned for real living (master suite, anyone?) and havoc with green standards in all kinds of unpleasant ways.

Not for me, thanks.

But I am the child who unwrapped the gift of Lindt chocolates when all I really wanted was a Hershey's bar. My cup, it seems, runneth over.

I have no doubt that the possibility of this home is a gift straight from the hand of the Lord. There are many reasons, not the least of which is Mr. Blanding's absolute confidence that God is going to do amazing things to get our family under that as-yet-to-be constructed roof. And I believe him. I'm already seeing it at work; we originally expressed an interest in a 2,500 sq. ft. model and were instead steered to the 3,200 sq. ft. house ... for the same price. We did the finances and came out ahead, somehow--even if we make a measly $10,000 profit on what we paid for our townhome six years ago.

Sounds like my God.

God is using this exercise in blooming where you're planted to grow me in amazingly unexpected ways. First and foremost, I am submitting myself, yet again, to the sovereignty of a God whose plans are far beyond anything I could imagine. Second, I am trying to embrace a blessing I feel more than a little sheepish about. And third, I am wondering over God's vision for my family and my own.

I am waiting on the Lord. Trying not to disparage His gift in the presence of others (a hard one, because I feel incredibly guilty about the notion of even living in a house this big). And waiting for my heart to let the outrageous stergo of a fatherly God seep into my heart.

So please be patient with me as I grow comfortable in the spot I find myself occupying. I never meant to be here. I never meant to be that woman--the one who has a line of beautiful children, a handsome, witty husband, the gas-guzzling SUV and the big house. But here I am. Blooming where I'm planted, and watered with stergo.

Amazing wasn't that?

Do you want to know which part was so huge for me? A bit of background - there was a wonderful family that came down to visit at the end of 2008 and it was such a great time. I can't fully express what their fellowship meant to us. **Side note: NEVER underestimate the ministry of your PRESENCE...** We were blessed with LOTS of laughter, sharing of stories, and playtime; kids and adults. During their visit they mentioned feeling led to bless us; unbelievably with a fridge or a freezer, whichever we needed more. ???WWWWHHHHHAAAAATTTTTT??? That was so over the top, unbelievably out of the range of the possible I couldn't quite grasp it. But yet, here the gift Aaahhhh - now you see why Mary Grace's post means so much.

You see, we'd been living with the little dorm sized fridge we had while in Mexico. It worked there fine - I did have to go to the market every couple of days and store fruit and veggies in cupboards but it worked. Sometimes when the food didn't seem as cold as before we'd just wrap a bungee cord around the door and voilia! Alan even built me a little table to stand it on so that it was taller and I could store fruits and veggies underneath. (you can see the comparison below in the picture w/Alan. That's the little one behind him. :)) Here it wasn't working so well. Going to the market is more complicated, I can't store fruits and veggies on the counters or in cupboards partly due to there not being any of those things in here and partly because the humidity allows things to stay good until about 15 minutes after I bring it through the door. I still haven't figured that one out. A new fridge or freezer wasn't in the budget. It wasn't really even on the radar except a 'hmmmm.....we might need to look at this issue soon...'.

Enter new friends/brothers and sisters in Christ who were wanting to be obedient to what they were told and a God who gives me good things in spite of...what is fair. We are thankful. Amazed. Awed. Every time we go to the market, every time we open the freezer, every time I put ice in my cup that runneth over I have a tangible reminder of the wonderful provision from the Ultimate Provider.

Deep Breath.

However, He wasn't going to let me have just one experience with this. No - He enjoys blessing abundantly. Enter 2nd 'you could blow me over with a leaf' experience. The container arrived after a couple of months of delays. Several things were in that container specifically for our family. Wonderful things from 'home' from grandparents, pictures of friends and family and then a 'little' surprise from two friends in Maine. Did you realize it is entirely possible to send a new house in a box? If you'll back up with me a bit to right after we moved here, I'll explain.

I had been posting pictures here and on our Facebook page (I'm seeing a trend. You??) of our house and asking for advice. You see, my mother is a wonderful decorator but the decorator gene just never trickled down to me. While we lived in the states I could sort of fake my way through it but here....well, how DO you organize things with no closets, shelves, or storage of any kind? (Personally 'decorating' isn't SUPER high on my to-do list. Organization? That's right up there after morning coffee. :) I'd rather shop for organization tools than...well...just about anything. I missed out on the 'shopping' gene too. I organize for fun and relaxation. Seriously.) So I asked that very question. My sweet friends Laurie and Jen, emailed with the words, 'WHAT are those big gaping holes in your kitchen and how big are they (you can see them in the fridge pictures)???? I have some great ideas if you can let me know!" I promptly emailed back and begged for any and all ideas they could spare. This turned into a 'secret plot' to bless the socks off the whiny missionary. All the while they sent taunting little emails dropping hints, yet leaving me completely in the dark as to the extent of their plot.

Back to unload container day. We came home with 6, yes you read that correctly, 6 boxes from said partners in crime. We had a wonderful Christmas in February from our family while I put those boxes in the corner to wait for the perfect time to open what I KNEW was going to be a scary, wonderful, breathtaking gift. I peered at them working at getting myself emotionally ready for this. You can't really 'get yourself emotionally ready' to be blessed beyond measure, I'm learning. I was not disappointed. Not that that could have happened but oh. my. goodness. Drawer assemblies, baskets (like 15 of them!!), rugs, curtains, external closet, magazines, chocolate, coffee, food items for the kids, cute wall decorations...the list goes on.

Honestly, it's taken me this long to be able to blog about it. I'm still coming to grips, if you will, of being on the receiving end of such gifting. Not once, but twice; and this doesn't take into account the special love gifts sent from our families. Interestingly enough, these friends and family have had an incredible part in helping me to function here; as a mom, as a wife, as a person. I have been handed rest of sorts. Rest for my mind and our family. I've struggled with feeling somewhat vain regarding the 'everything works good = happy person' issue but I'm also very aware that God knew we needed this. This confirmation, this encouragement, this love, this STERGO.

Once again I'm going to edit in this paragraph as it is 'so right' in expressing my feelings.

God is using this exercise in blooming where you're planted to grow me in amazingly unexpected ways. First and foremost, I am submitting myself, yet again, to the sovereignty of a God whose plans are far beyond anything I could imagine. Second, I am trying to embrace a blessing I feel more than a little sheepish about. And third, I am wondering over God's vision for my family and my own.

This is an Ebenezer stone that I'm erecting and saying, "Look at what God has done!" in the seemingly simple things on the outside but the really big things for my heart.

With love,


Wednesday, March 11, 2009

My Encouragement this week....

I've been wandering around in my reading lately. I've not been doing as much reading as I have in the past because my mind has been scattered. Processing all the little bits and pieces of life. Some of it personal, some of it geographic, some of it linguistic, some of it cultural...yes, life.

As I was perusing the bookshelves in the living room looking for inspiration I came across a book I've read. My mom actually gave this to my husband years ago and while we enjoyed it right off the bat, it's been sitting on the shelf for a while, sadly collecting dust. A friend shelved for a season as we've discovered new friends, adding to the family of well-loved reads. We've moved it to two different countries though because we knew it was important and might be called upon once again.

The book: Morning & Evening Daily Readings by C.H. Spurgeon.

The date: Evening reading of March 8th

Here is my encouragement -

'She called his name Ben-oni (son of sorrow), but his father called him Benjamin (son of my right hand)' Genesis 35:18

To ever matter there is a bright as well as a dark side. Rachel was overwhelmed with the sorrow of her own travail and death; Jacob, though weeping the mother's loss, could see the mercy of the child's birth. It is well for us if, while the flesh mourns over trials, our faith triumphs in divine faithfulness. Samson's lion yielded honey, and so will our adversities, if rightly considered. The stormy sea feeds multitudes with its fishes; the wild wood blooms with beauteous flowerets; the stormy wind sweeps away the pestilence, and the biting frost loosens the soil. Dark clouds distill bright drops, and black earth grows gay flowers. A vein of good is to be found in every mine of evil. Sad hearts have peculiar skill in discovering the most advantageous point of view from which to gaze upon a trial; if there were only one slough in the world, they would soon be up to their necks in it, and if there were only one lion in the desert they would hear it roar. About us all there is a tinge of this wretched folly, and we are apt, at times, like Jacob, to cry, 'All these things are against me'. Faith's way of walking is to cast all care upon the Lord, and then to anticipate good results from the worst calamities. Like Gideon's men, she does not fret over the broken pitcher, but rejoices that the lamp blazes forth ever more. Out of the rough oyster-shell of difficulty she extracts the rare pearl of honour, and from the deep ocean-caves of distress she uplifts the priceless coral of experience. When her flood of prosperity ebbs, she finds treasures hid in the sands; and when her sun of delight goes down, she turns her telescope of hope to the starry promises of heaven. When death itself appears, faith points to the lights of resurrection beyond the grave, thus making our dying Ben-oni to be our living Benjamin.

Wow - I needed to read this. I needed to hear this. I'm still absorbing it. I want this to be my way of walking. I've always said that EVERTHING can be preparation for something...if I let it. Key phrase, that is. I want to rightly consider all my adversities that they might yield honey.

I hope find yourself encouraged.

Que Dios les bendiga mis hermanos....

Faith-who is turning her telescope of hope to the starry promises of heaven. :)

Monday, March 9, 2009

Photographic Proof...

Trish Sowers posted some fuuuuunnnnyyyy pictures today. Of course my hubby referenced this in the last post - something about rafters at shoulder level for him. You'll have to read it...and then come back here and click on the link for the photographic proof...



Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Miscellaneous goings-on ...

I honestly don’t think I can remember the last time I wrote a blog update – it’s been really handy to just let Faith write them. But then, she only writes the things she sees and feels and does. And so now, 2 of the 3 people who read our blog have asked if all I do is lay around the house in my ******* (Faith says I can't put the word 'underwear' here) and watch TV and drink coca-cola while my wife works; the time, it seems, has come to write something about what I’ve been up to lately.

Yesterday was a trip to San Pedro Sula. This is the second largest city in Honduras, and a four hour drive from here, each way, if you include stopping once at the Texaco in La Entrada and about 5 stops at police checkpoints. Yesterday’s trip was actually a follow-up to the trip last Friday – Friday I drove to San Pedro to pick up four motorcycles for local pastors. The trip was heinous; I left home at 6am and got home after 10pm; the traffic was horrific; I got done only about half the errands I wanted to do while in the city. I had to stop about 5 times on the way home to adjust and re-strap the two motorcycles in the trailer that were trying to tip over, in the dark, amidst two broken motorcycle straps and a broken kick-stand on one motorcycles - around here, after dark, this is best done at someplace well-lit, under the watchful eye of a security guard with a nice, big, fat shotgun, and a six-shooter on his hip. I did save someone’s life on the way home, though – driving along out in the middle of no-where, pitch dark, no houses around, all of a sudden here’s some guy laying in the middle of the road! Curled up in the fetal position right in the middle of the lane. After not running over him, I stopped and got out to check him out. No, not dead. Sleeping. Drunk as a skunk and sleeping like a baby. I half-helped, half-picked him up and moved him out of the road and off the shoulder as far as he would go, amid a cloud of complaining and bickering about my having woke him up. He quickly got irritated and combative, and insisted on laying down again, but not before I got him off into the ditch, saving his soggy self and justifying my existence here for the year.

But I digress. One of the many happy facets of the trip on Friday was that certain paperwork for the motorcycles that had to be signed at the police station in San Pedro didn’t get delivered until 4pm, after the necessary person was unavailable. So, I had to make another trip today to pick up said paperwork. The trip today was much better; after only a half hour waiting at the police station, I found the paperwork signed and ready to go. I even managed to get a few other things done in town, learned a couple new parts of the city and got home before dark. Around here, dark is when the monstrous pot-holes come out and lurk in the shadows.

Sunday morning Allen Sowers and I traveled with a local pastor to a small village about an hour and a half from here to visit a new church plant and see the building they are planning. The church currently meets in the house of one of the members; they squeeze about 50 adults and kids into a room with pure adobe walls and rafters the level of my shoulders. I was truly blessed by being with them for the morning.

A couple weeks ago we spent three days building and installing trusses and purlings for a roof on another church in a nearby village. The walls are completed and they had the lumber already there – more-or-less 3/6’s by 35 feet long. This job turned out pretty well; we had all the village kids there the last two days after school watching, and the building is now ready for the tin roof as soon as they get the rest of the money together. I would guess we’ll be back there in a few weeks helping put the tin on.

A few weeks ago Allen Sowers and I traveled – again – a few hours out into the mountains.
(“Ain’t this place just a geographical oddity!! – A few hours from ev’ywhere!”) Allen was contacted a while back by a humanitarian organization about helping with the design and construction of several cable suspension bridges. We spent two half-days in and around a town called Mapulaca, near the border with El Salvador. The bridges will be pedestrian walk bridges with spans of from 80 to 120 feet long, and will span rivers that are a foot deep - easily wade-able for part of the year, but that then turn into raging torrents for weeks at a time during the rainy season. After throwing a few ideas around and putting new batteries in the calculator and blowing the dust off

the engineering books, we have a design pretty well ironed out. I hope to have finalized drawings finished this week for them, and I think they are planning to start moving forward within the next few weeks.

I have spent several days over the past weeks working on a number of computers that have arrived here in the last couple of shipments from the US. These are donated computers, most in pretty good condition, though a couple have required some inspection and troubleshooting. I have pared up CPUs, monitors, mouse and keyboards to piece together 8 complete computers that we are now in the process of placing with local churches and schools. I delivered two to one of the bi-lingual schools last week, and am in the process of contacting the other school. I also gave one to one local church last week, and then brought it back over the weekend and added a printer to it, finding and loading the driver files off the internet. I am meeting with another pastor today about giving his church one or two computers as well.

Thursday and Friday of this week I am translating for some sort of short-term mission team in the area. I’m still not sure what their focus is; I think I’ve heard they’re doing medical something and something else.

Other than that, not much has been going on. Well, other than trying to get our internet connection back on line, getting the massive hole in our roof fixed and doing the general day-to-day stuff that keeps our truck on the road and food in the frig and the lights on. I guess I’ll hurry up and post this so I can get back to the TV.