If you have been following this blog or chatting with us on Skype, then you know that Doris and her family are now living at the ministry house that we are establishing here in Honduras. What you might not know is what's happening in the very poor neighborhood where her old plastico-casa was. A couple of local women heard from God about the need for the children still living in that part of town. They went and spoke with their pastor, Modesto Pineda, who is a great friend of ours. Now, along with several other women, Pastor Modesto and our family an open spot is going to be used to serve breakfast to the 30 or so kids who are 12 & under in that neighborhood 5 DAYS A WEEK! Originally, the actual location where Doris was camping was going to be used, but a Christian brother that owns apartments in that neighborhood offered, free of charge, the use of one of the apartments to be able to use for preparing and serving the breakfasts. Praise God!
The team of women have raised a portion of the money needed to serve the 600 or so meals a month but some help is still needed to reach the monthly cost of food. The cost is estimated to be around $370 US or 7,000 Lempiras per month. Local support has been raised! But can you help with the other $160 US still needed?? Most of these kids are estimated to be eating only 3 or 4 meals a week. You will be more than doubling their meals and it will be healthy food like eggs, beans, potatoes, cereal, and tortillas.
If you are itching to come visit and help with the work down here, then be prepared to rise early and help cook and see how this is blessing the "least of these". I will be taking many pictures of the work, the kids, the place, the team and the food. Target date to start is the first week of June and will continue until there is no more hunger.
1 Corinthians 1:26-31 (The Message)
Take a good look, friends, at who you were when you got called into this life. I don't see many of "the brightest and the best" among you, not many influential, not many from high-society families. Isn't it obvious that God deliberately chose men and women that the culture overlooks and exploits and abuses, chose these "nobodies" to expose the hollow pretensions of the "somebodies"? That makes it quite clear that none of you can get by with blowing your own horn before God. Everything that we have—right thinking and right living, a clean slate and a fresh start—comes from God by way of Jesus Christ. That's why we have the saying, "If you're going to blow a horn, blow a trumpet for God."
We have a new outdoor stove.
The previous one was old and rusted on the cook-top.
It required a lot of wood to keep it hot-which means a lot of time collecting it.
It also was not vented properly which mean a lot of inhaled smoke most of the time.
Now, it is pretty and new and safe. It uses only a little amount of wood due to the coals inside that heat up and hold the the heat for cooking. These are not like charcoal, it is a stone of sorts. They do not need to be replaced for years. And it is well vented so all the smoke goes up and out!
There were about 200 women who came. There was entertainment and lots of laughing. The food was plentiful, a plate of chicken, rice, potatoes and vegetables all smothered in mayo, I think. I happened to sit at the table furthest away from where the food was served; so, combined with the fact that I do not know enough Spanish yet to follow everything that was being said, I did a lot of people watching.
One thing kinda surprised me. The women would eat some of their dinner and no kidding I could easily see 20 women from where I was pull out a plastic bag from their pockets or purses and then dump the rest in to take home.
Gracias is a really wonderful city and it is located in a beautiful place, but it still is a very poor area in a very poor country. The portion size was what we are used to in the states, way too much for one meal.
And nothing was going to go in the trash, it was all going to be eaten.
I want to make gift bags for the new mommas that live in the mountain towns!!
I have set a goal to get 300 mommas gift bags in 2012.
I had this idea even before moving here, but this week Kevin had the opportunity to visit a place here in Gracias. It is a house that is owned by the current mayor, has security provided by the hospital and the food provided by a local church.
It is a home where a new mommas to be comes to wait to go into labor.
Can you imagine, having a baby, leaving all your family to come to a house for a week or 2 or 3 and to wait to go into labor.
I want to go and be an encouragement and a gift giver! I want to go and share about cloth diapering and breastfeeding and baby wearing. Because I know the blessing all of them have been in my journey of motherhood. I want to be a blessing to them.
Here is what I want in them:
1) 12 flat cloth diapers, 2 covers, 6 pins -flats and pins are cheap here and will save on shipping . Trash is a huge thing in Honduras anyway, but the cost of sposies compounded with seeing dirty diapers just thrown anywhere puts this at the top of my list. Covers are not common here, I see mommas with just a flat pinned on the babies. During the day that is great, but I can only imagine at this point that at night they use sposies or have to change quite a few diapers especially the first few months. I am thinking Flips or Econobums due to fact they are one size.
2) 1 baby blanket (handmade or upcycled)
3) 1 Sling- handmade or upcycled, preferably ring slings because they are easy and adjustable but really any safe well made baby carrier will be a blessing. Mommas take their babies everywhere and I have received a TON of response to my ring sling while walking around. I also want a "how to use safely fact card" in Spanish to go with the carrier.
4) Cloth bag to put the gifts in that can be used for whatever then need. I was thinking if they matched the blankets if they are being hand made it would look really nice when the gift is given. One because they are useful for some many things and second back to the issue of trash. There are plastic bags everywhere!
5) An encouraging note about breastfeeding in Spanish, will look at LLL I am sure they have something!
6) Last but not least, a blessing and a prayer in Spanish, encouraging to a new mom about the new part of life and about seeking God for all things.
Why 2012? Well shipping is an issue. We will be back the end of the year for about 2 weeks and can pick up some items. We also have had an offer extended to us to use part of a large shipping container that will be coming down around December. I want to start strong and take at least the first 300 mommas.
I am going to be sending out emails for just about everywhere I can think of to see what kind of response I can get.
Please let me know if you are willing to help make things, raise money or donate items.
Doris and her children Christian and Gizelle! We are excited to have them all moved in.
Kevin was first introduced to Doris on his trip in January. She and her family were living in a casa plastico = a place in an alley behind some businesses where they put up plastic tarps and some sheet metal.
Kevin was able to find them again a few weeks back and we have spent some time with them over the days following, earning their trust and was able to get them moved into a new fresh start.
They are living in the apartment where all the fruit trees are located.
Christian is 9 years old. He loves futball and playing with his friends. He is active and seems to not let the things of life get in the way of just enjoying being a kid (more on that in a future post).
Gizelle has just turned 14. She has finished escuela basic and is ready to move on to Collegio in June.
Doris is full of the joy of the Lord and is thankful for this new start for her family.
Ok, here is what I started with. Corn, beans, cheese and not black but ripe Platanos (for my American friends, plantains).
So cooking mostly from scratch, I simplify on beans for time with 4 small kids.
I fried the platanos in mantequlla (butter) with garlic and salt them while cooking.
I put the beans and the cheese in the pupusa and attempt to keep them for oozing out.
I have decided the hardest part is getting the right consistency of the corn to water for the dough.
I made a large mess and they turned out very gordo (fat) instead of thin like they Honduras make them. They were ok, no one starved.
It definitely helped have the fresh tomatoes, onion and cilantro on top.
The platanos were good, they would have been excellent with chocolate drizzled on top (assuming I did not cook with the garlic)