Monday, June 2, 2014

A trip through the recent past.

It has been a while with no updates here.

We had another group, we had holy week, we had the Ford arrive, two groups in May...and I have let blogging fall by the wayside.   Sometimes, something has to give.

Let us catch up on the quick then, eh?

Sampedrana....the coffee mission there continues.  More plants being planted...another nursery beginning to plant even more.  With our financial commitments elsewhere, there is only so much we can do each year on this...slowly but surely it is taking root.

Some up on the top of the "hill" will produce this year, and the avocado trees are coming along nicely.  We might plant some more of those in the future.

The road to get there...constantly needs work every year, as a new road that is expected.  We are spending almost $1,000 each year just trying to keep it open with mudslides and such.  One point of it had collapsed so much that it was tricky just for me to walk across.  The rains have begun again...we will see how long our work will last, and seek ways to continue to make that work a little more lasting every year.

Alfonso with just a small portion of the coffee farm....can you tell it is steep?

Walking paths between the coffee will develop once the coffee gets big enough to allow it...for now it just makes for very challenging terrain.

We had a group from SOCC up there in May that helped fertilize much of the plants...they did in one trip what would have taken our workers many, many days to get done.

Las Botijas is going through struggles again.  The coffee side of things continues to grow and mature, but our farm supervisor Gender has left after only a few months.  There were some problems he had personally that became too serious, and they had to leave.

Gustavo is back from Tegucigalpa serving there for a while, probably until the end of the year, overseeing the continuing coffee work.  Getting a pastor and overseeing a new Church work will have to wait for God for the time being.

Speaking of Church....Sampedrana had their 7th anniversary on April 15th, it was a packed house.  They also had eight baptisms in March!  Henry and his family are doing well there, and the Church is growing not just in number but in strength...Henry had a white erase board made (it looks great) to assist with deeper teaching times apart from the sermons on Sunday mornings.

Baptisms here...mean everyone squeezing into a truck and making a real trip out of it for an entire afternoon to go to a river for the services, and then to have fellowship time together.

I am sure the picture taker and a few more people piled into the bed before they were ready to leave though...there is no such thing as a full pickup bed here.

In April we said goodbye to Gretchen, who interned with us for three months and was a huge help all the way around.

She translated and helped with groups, she helped with all the mundane tasks that have to get done between groups, she helped in the clinic...she did it all!

The SFC continues to advance.  Groups are working on the walls, and Carlos is working on the electrical, now to the point where we are putting up the ceiling fans.  To actually get the electrical connection to the clinic we are going to have to buy our own transformer and get it installed...another $2,000 or so we will need to find to proceed soon.  Right now when electricity is needed upstairs it is done via extension cord.

Among the many things groups have been doing, is also helping advance the work on the new milk project property.

Right now that means exterior foundation and wall starts.  Once we get the walls where they are supposed to be, then come the columns for the "basement" and then we would be able to move to the big work for pouring floors and the like.

Suffice it to say...there will be plenty to keep groups busy for the foreseeable future.  As we get donations as well to this project there will be many other things that need done as well...again, all in God's timing.

FAME sent a brigade group again this year, always a huge blessing to us, to the Churches we visit, and of course the many patients we are able to help with medicines, education, some new diagnoses, and lots of prayer.

During the FAME team, Cecilia found a new kitten...and Valerie thought it was cute...and now we have a new kitten in the house.  He was pretty small and weak when they found him, but now is racing around the house like, well, a kitten.  His name...keeping with the Star Trek theme we have going, is Spock.

Soren is here...observing that Spock does indeed have claws, and knows how to use them.

The donation we have to construct in Cantaranas is still paying off...with Sunday school rooms going up.  Recognize the material?  Yes, the same fence and building material the man cave is made from.

Floor will go in, plus a roof/second floor floor (not planning on building anything there for a while, but good to get it done for security and one time expense) and some fencing....the funds will run out eventually before we get everything done, but wow how much we have done already!

Here is the inside of the Church building in Cantaranas, complete with floor.  This was during the FAME brigade.  We had always had in the past to do brigades in a government clinic further away...but with this building, we had plenty of space, and more than plenty patients...we saw 30% more than we thought we could, and still had to turn people away.

Buildings....they can be very useful to God's work.

Here is the 2012 Gray Ford all done and working. It is a very cool truck.

It looks like brand new, and although it took some work and time, we saved $10-15k over what we would have spent otherwise.

The front Ford emblem is now a His Eyes logo.

No plates yet...we have to wait, as the government is a year or so behind in getting plates for cars.  Maybe within three months (we have a permit for that long that we can get renewed) they will come in...but we are not holding our breath.

So, there is yet another construction project going on at the moment.

We do not have enough storage.  We need more space.  We need food storage space for the corn and Kids Against Rice packets we get.

So....we are going to have groups help put up a retaining wall (after we spent a chunk of change on a regular backhoe and hammer backhoe) and set two more containers across from the ones you see on the right of this picture) which, when we have the money to buy those containers, will give us the extra dedicated space we need, and as well in the space in between we can use as a garage for the Fords on the first floor/level, and then in the future build on the second level between the higher containers for whatever we might need then.

So....this is not at all bringing you all up to speed on everything, but close enough I suppose.  The cathartic nature of blogging might bring me back with some greater frequency, we shall see.  Maybe I will even get to the point of sharing a post so serious in nature that pictures will not be included.  Oooooh, try to contain your excitement!

No comments: