Monday, March 30, 2015

A rainy Monday.

A rainy Monday afternoon finds us: Cory working on a personality test that needs to go back to Global Partners so that we can return for a new term; Eli working on school and college stuff; Anna singing to zippy praise music while doing school work; and I'm here.

Very thankful for the rain as the area's land needed it. Cory just mentioned yesterday that the recently planted local peanut crop may be in danger of being eaten by bugs before they could sprout if we didn't get rain soon.

A quiet weekend at home included some computer game time between Cory and Eli as well as some video watching Anna wanted to do. I finished my rag rug.

We continue to pray and wait for our referral call. Thankful for many of you letting us know that you continue to pray with us!

Jean Pierre is working on getting some cases of the Konsey II books to churches for distribution of 1 per family.

This week we will focus on school and getting ready for next week's spring break visit from part of Cory's sister's family! They should arrive on Saturday, so will celebrate Easter along with spring break. Only a week so lots to do.

Eli continues to clean out and sort boxes from his room. He finds a bit of time for Legos, always good for the mind.

Today we spent our French class focusing on two French songs that deal with Easter themes.

After we sang each we then worked to translate them into English and then we sang them over in French.

Our professor plays keyboard for the big Port Margot Church and part of the class felt more like voice lessons than French.

His goal is to get us to do special music in front of church. Ha! Really do not see that happening.

But nice to know what the words mean when singing to the Lord.

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Land rehabilitation graden

Cory is renting a garden close to campus to use as a demonstration garden on how to rehabilitate eroded gardens.

 Tuesday afternoon he and the guys headed down to the river area to collect a load of "pengwin", Bromelia penguin.

These spiny plants are the standard garden "living fence" in our area, to protect the garden and keep out livestock.

Notice the sharp, curved spines on the edges of the leaves that randomly point up or down.

Therefore handling the plants takes care and a pole.

The garden owner hired young men to do the fencing, the plants are carried up the path, past a small church, to the garden location.

 Nitrogen fixing ground covers like perennial peanut (side with soil) and tropical kudzu (ruined side) will be planted first to hold the soil and increase fertility.
Most of the subsoil is a soft rock, like a clay based sandstone. It weathers fast into good textured soil and can be broken up with a digging bar or pick.

looking up from the road side to a church
The "good" part of the garden. A variety of fruit trees will be planted where there is enough soil.

Looking back at the church, garden on right of new pengwin fence
The plan for the badly eroded side is to plant a variety of plant that will hold and improve the soil:
  •  nitrogen fixing trees which are good for charcoal, 
  • tropical kudzu which is excellent animal feed, 
  • inca peanut/sacha inche, which grows like kudzu and provides surprisingly good tasting greens to use like spinach and high protein seeds that are toasted and eaten like peanuts.

A variety of other tough plants will also be planted to see how well they do.
Most of the trees will have to wait until the hot dry summer is past to plant them at the beginning of the rainy season.

Monday, March 23, 2015

Back Home

Now for a couple of weeks of 'normal' routine'.......unless the long-awaited adoption referral came which would likely mean a fast trip to Port-au-Prince to the Embassy.

Our school year continues to feel very chopped up and piece-meal but by today's count, only 30 school days remain in our year. If the two-week bonding trip occurs before we leave mid-June for the USA, we will have just enough time to finish up school.

After a week of driving and translating Cory's looking forward to garden / planting time.

After teams, we collect the clothes they leave behind and give them to different pastors, churches or the clinic to share. I sent down a few medical supplies as well as towels and sheets to the clinic as well.

Spring cleaning time right! Working our way through Eli's stuff so that he can send some items back out with Aunt Lori in April after their visit.

We enjoyed visiting Cite Chauvel and seeing the progress on the church yesterday.

Today: school, office, Cory did a garden visit, two loads of laundry, a bit of cleaning and cooking.  

Cory also spent way to much time dealing with a mother goat and her babies that were found eating in the garden by the clinic near newly planted peach palms. The same family's goats caused damage several times in the past (and much damage to neighborhood gardens) so they have been warned many times. After much discussion they paid the fee Cory required but one of the baby goats apparently escaped form the shed they were locked in. The owners wanted payment for the baby goat but the sun had set so the local official was called and he said to look for it in the morning.

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Last Clinic a Grande Rivere

Today no clinics and no bumpy ride to another town as we will all stay in Cap Haitian this morning to attend church.

We will be splitting from the team to visit Cite Chauvel Wesleyan. We will return to the hotel for lunch with the team and then head home.

Tomorrow the team will hold clinic at Madeline before returning to the USA on Tuesday's MFI plane.

Yesterday felt longer and communications and thinking felt harder for me and some of the team.

Don't know if the forth day of travel wore us down or what but I stuggled with  frustration  with several patients.

I know they were also frustrated with me as my diagnosis did not match what they throught they had therefore they did not receive the medications that they wanted.

With mobile clinics one needs to focus on education. Giving advice that can improve lives otherwise the few days of medications will hardly make a different before they return to the same suffering as before.

A few cases were simple enough to treat and they will heal but most cases need some lifestyle modification to make a difference.

Thankfully the Lord gave us several dear older people who were very appreciative of the care and very cute children to smile and brighten our day.

Konsey books sold well. Many people need to see the dentist and reduce the sugar, pop and candy in their diets.

Thanks for the prayers.

Saturday, March 21, 2015

Grande Rivere

Good day yesterday. I think that each day most of us look less forward to the bumpy trip but continue to enjoy the beauty of Haiti and the people.

Saw over 50 yesterday. General items like sore/itchy eyes, muscle and joint pain, no appetite, a few infections, lots of cateracts, stomache pain....

A few uniquie ones like: 'I feel empty when I walk'. A young girl with very limited eye movement. A gentalman with a leg wound, 5 months following a motor cycle burn.

I spoke to the group at the beginning and then Cory followed. By the end of the day I started to see patients who bought one or both of the Konsey books. Very encouraging.

Cory actually sold out of the Konesy II books [had brought fewer with us] so he and Anna went to the warehouse in Cap Haitian where some are stored and picked up a new box.
Same location today. Church visit and plan to head home tomorrow.