Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Trip of a lifetime

Hello to all! I wanted to invite you all on a trip of a lifetime. Jeremy and I are currently putting a trip together to go to Haiti in June. As long as we get enough of a group to go we will both be going on this trip. The orphanage is beginning some remodeling and adding on to their school. There will be a group going in May that will start the remodel and we will follow up in June to finish it. It would consist of a lot of painting and possibly a little construction work. We would stay about a week. The cost is only $1200 a person and that would cover your flight, room, food, transportation, water, etc. Basically everything would be paid for in that $1200. You might want to take a little cash on hand, but shouldn't need much since this would be a work trip, most of our time would be spent at the Orphanage. Jeremy and I are hoping to take some of you with us to share this awesome experience with those that are close to us. Please prayerfully consider this and let me know if you have any questions.

Love you all!!!

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Three Angels Video.....


If you go to the address above you can watch a video and it shows a clip of when Noah and I met for the first time. It is part of a documentary being prepared for Three Angels to first, help create awareness and second, help with fundraising efforts. I think you will enjoy it!

Monday, April 03, 2006

Let's Try Again!

Well, I don't remember what I was going to post the last time, but let's try again. I will try to remember more things from my trip.

There were 8 of us that arrived together and then one more joined us on Friday. It was a great group of people. Of course Mom and I, then two of the directors, Gail and Gretchen, which have really given up major parts of their life to take care of Haitian children. Two others were Bob and Fiona, which were meeting the two children they are adopting. They were a sweet couple and I look forward to keeping in contact with them as they begin their process. Carie, didn't know exactly why she was going, but had decided to go at the last minute and after being there realized what God had in store for her. She met 3 children that they are going to try to adopt. They are currently on a prayer hold. Frank joined us on Friday. He is an actor/videographer and is doing a documentary for Three Angels to help raise more support for their ministry. He was hilarious. Finally there was Angela, she is an amazing young girl, who has committed to living at the O for at least 6 months. She has a degree in education and is planning activities with the children to help them develop even more. They hope that the nannies will pick up on what she does and the activities will continue after she is gone. We enjoyed everyone. I couldn't have asked for a better group to be with.

On Thursday after arriving we spent a lot of time upstairs in the nursery. They typically keep the kids under two upstairs and the over two downstairs. So after Noah and I met, when he was asleep we decided to go upstairs and see what it was like up there. The nannies were all saying, "Ahh, Wilber' domi" (Ahh, Wilbert's sleeping). They kept asking me if I wanted to lay him down, but I said I was fine, and held him until he woke up. The kids upstairs were amazing. Many of the children at the O are under 2 so the nursery is a busy place. Several of the older kids followed us up there and we sat in the floor and played with them all for quite sometime. Gail pointed out that all the nannies were watching us and she said it was good for them to see us playing with the kids. Lots of times the parents come to visit their children, but don't spend time at the O, they come pick up their child and take them to the hotel. We actually loved being at the O and I think the kids all enjoyed us being there. Before dark(it's always good to be where you need to be before dark, for safety purposes) we headed to St. Joseph's to get settled in and rest before dinner. Dinner, by the way was wonderful. The food at St. Joseph's was delicious, we were fed breakfast and dinner there and it was fabulous. So much for weight loss. LOL!!!

Friday was parents day and my was it a happening place. This is the day parents are invited to come to the O and see their children or check to see if any pictures and updates were sent of those that have already come to the states. It was very interesting. These parents love their kids and many of them were running around playing with them or just sat holding them. It was great to see! We spent most of the day at the O playing. When we arrived at the O we headed to the backyard, which is where the Christian school is. We could hear the children singing, some in English and some in Creole, it was beautiful. The headmaster invited us to the front of the classroom to address the kids. He translated as we spoke, Mom and I couldn't help but cry as we told them how beautiful their singing was and how much we loved being there with them. They were quite intrigued by us (they don't see Caucasians very often) and the teachers kept having to turn their little heads around.

As we left the school and headed back to the O, Noah's little clan was standing at the bars of the windows yelling, "Weebear, weebear." Like, he's back!! Every time they yelled he would say, "eh" I wish I would have had the video camera on, it was the sweetest thing. I will never forget those little voices. The little ones, like that, probably never know when somebody leaves if they will be back or not, but every time we came back they were so excited to see their, "Weebear".

Friday night we sat on the balcony at St. Joseph's. It is beautiful up there and we talked about how there are no televisions or computers or any other distractions and time seems slower. We sat and talked for a long time and just listened to the sounds of the city. I loved those times, we had so much fun. It's sad that we let television steal so much of our time. Time that could be spent, laughing and talking and listening to the sounds God gave us to enjoy, like our children's voices & laughter or the sound of our loved ones talking about their day or just the sounds of earth. I think we miss a lot because of the distractions we allow. Just a thought.

Saturday was another great day. We took the some of the girls from the O and Noah, of course, to an Italian restaurant. It was a great little restaurant, that was sort of in a basement behind another restaurant. We walked through one place, back outside, down a ramp and down a few stairs to this restaurant, but the food was awesome. Probably the best Italian I have had. Who would have thought I would have to go to Haiti to have some good Italian. The kids were great. We sat and waited for our food for quite sometime, much longer than we would have in the states. We actually laughed and said, you know if we were home we probably would be complaining by now or maybe already left, but it was different there. We just enjoyed our company and waited. The kids were so good. They all sat and talked to each other and looked around. They were amazed by a big screen TV that was on across the room. They have a TV at the O but rarely have electricity so this was a novelty to them. We also went to the street market for as long as we could. Americans are a rare thing there so you pretty quickly draw a crowd, especially once you buy something. Haitians believe all Americans are rich, so they begin to swarm around right away, just in hopes that we would buy something they had for sale. It wasn't long until, Jimmy(our bodyguard for the day) said Ok, it's time to go, NOW. We loaded in the Van but before we could even leave they had circled the Van and were trying to sell us stuff through the windows. We finally managed to leave and headed back to the O.

Noah played with his little buddies some on Saturday. It was sweet to see him having a good time with them. Friday he never left my side so it was great to see him playing. They had their own little car wash going, with a sippie cup and a toy car. Remember imaginations.... I think that was before TV and Video games. LOL!!!

Sunday was a beautiful day! We headed up the mountain to a resort. Gail had met the Owner/Manager on the plane after her last visit. She had invited us to bring some of the kids up for a day. It was awesome! They had a little party set up for the kids. They got to ride horses, jump on a trampoline, play on some playground equipment and afterwards ate hot dogs and french fries. They gave them each a toy and they truly had a great time. This was quite a day for many of them. Some have rarely been away from the orphanage, let alone get to do something like this. I wish you all could have seen the joy on their faces, well except Noah's, the horses freaked him out. To him they were the biggest, "Wa Wa" he had ever seen. Wa Wa(King) is the dog at the O and most of the kids are afraid of him even though he is a sweet dog. He is just big and when he tries to play with them, they think he is going to eat them. I think every animal we saw, Noah would say, "Wa Wa". I think I spent most of the day saying, "le sava" (it's okay).

Thanks to a God of protection we made it safely up and back down the mountain. And I really mean thanks to God, it was quite a trip. The roads are not the same as we have here. In fact in the states this road would have been considered, "off roading". Yet we had 19 people in a small 15 passenger van heading up this "road" to a resort. By small 15 passenger van I mean small. It was kind of like squeezing 15 seats into a mini-van. In two rows the third seat folded down and over so you could get to the back row. And leg room, what's that. Even my Mom who's all of 5 feet tall had no room for her legs. LOL!! It was quite a vehicle. My Expedition seemed huge when I got home. We were very tired when we got back to St. Joseph's we all showered, by shower I mean stood in a shower with a nozzle of cold water at our knees, a bucket and a tin cup. LOL!! I didn't realize how awesome warm showers are. The rest of the evening we hung out at St. Joseph's and I began to realize the end was drawing near. I tried not to think about it, but I knew it was approaching and although time seemed slower, the end was coming quickly.

Monday we stayed at the O and talked about possible improvements and played with the kids. We headed back to St. Joseph's in time to watch the boys dance practice. Some of them drum and some dance. It was pretty amazing. They range from as young as 5 to 20 and spent 2 straight hours practicing. They travel around different places and perform, so it's very important to them. I'm not sure if I have even told you what St. Joseph's is. Encase I haven't it's a boys home. Michael has lived there for over 20 years now. It started out as just a 2 story home, but now it is 7 stories, they added 3 stories up and 2 down the hill and they run the guest house. There are probably 20 boys that live there as a family. They were some of the most respectful and sweet boys I have met. I could have brought some of them home as well.

Monday evening was nice and relaxing. After dinner Mom and I packed our bags so in the morning we could just spend time with Noah. He played in the room while we packed. This night he actually pointed at Jeremy's picture and said, PaPa. I was so proud! Later we headed up to the balcony with Carie, Frank and Bella Mia(one of the girls Carie is planning to adopt, she is 4) Noah fell asleep pretty quickly and Bella Mia sang to us, This is the day the Lord has made, Joy down in my heart and We wish you a Merry Christmas(my personal favorite). I love to hear them sing these songs with their little accents. Sweet, sweet, sweet!!!! I stayed up as long as I could that night, because I knew when I went to bed it was over. When I got up it we would only have enough time to eat breakfast and head to the O for our cab to pick us up.

As I said before leaving on Tuesday was hard. I sobbed as our plane left Port au Prince. However I am so thankful for this trip. I know it was God ordained!! He orchestrated every moment and it was awesome. Now we wait for Noah to be released from IBESR(Haiti Social Services) and then he can come home. We truly believe we will find favor and he will be home soon. Thanks again for all of your prayers, although some days are hard, I am doing much better. Thankfully, the sorrow may last night for the night but His joy comes in the morning!!!!! I know morning is coming and the joy of having Noah home will be here soon!!!

Love to you all!!!