I don’t know any other way to start this blog, other than to apologize twenty times over for not writing you all in so long. I promise it wasn’t because I didn’t want to. I have missed it! I started this blog 4 days ago. So, it is a little behind, but nonetheless still information on whats going on at HATS. So, here it is:
With Karen leaving in a little more than a week, I have been trying to get my current job done. I have been organizing all her pictures and files on her computer. The problem is that she is taking her computer with her when she leaves. Lots to be done! I have also done Children’s Church the last 2 weeks, which is mostly the reason I didn’t get a blog written last week. I become slightly obsessed with it when I am planning! I just love it!
Karen’s office painting is complete and looks incredible. Karen said that her and Theresa painted it quickly when they moved in and were planning on painting it again two weeks later the way they wanted it, but that was over 6 years ago. 🙂
Seth has done more things than I think I can count. My favorite task this week was the tooth brush holders he made. He made little holders for each kid to put their brush in. He made soccer balls for the boys and dresses for the girls. They turned out so good!! And yes, I have already told him that we will probably need those for our kids’ bathroom one day too!
|Boys’ toothbrush holders|
|And the Girls’|
Another project he did was a TV cabinet. The TV room got moved to Kay Timbrmart’s gallery. The TV needed a protective shell from the kids, so Seth made a TV cabinet. He didn’t make any regular TV cabinet, no, not Seth. He made it into a movie theater. It was created to look like our home town theater, the Orpheum, in Hillsboro, IL. Seth and I love to go there. We can get popcorn, soda, and a movie for $6 a person! They also have sofas in the theater. Truly a gift from God, our town needed something like that and the family that runs it is AWESOME! The cabinet turned out fantastic! Seth loves being creative when building and, in the end, he always surprises me with the beauty of the finished project.
|The Kids are Very Excited for the New TV Cabinet|
Since Seth moved the TV over, they have watched many movie there and last Sunday we even showed them “Planet Earth” after our Children’s Church lesson on God being incomprehensible.
|Planet Earth Showing|
His other tasks include putting screens on the bath house window to keep out mosquitoes, fixing water lines, and my all time favorite a threshold for our door to keep out the mice. Speaking of mice, we haven’t updated you in a long time! Since we last spoke, Karen bought us some high tech mouse traps in Port. We set up 3 that night. And take a guess at how many were full in the morning? You got it… all three! It slowed down a little after that night on numbers. We soon learned they liked fresh bonbons, not stale! Silly us! 🙂 Anyways, we have now caught 12 mice. Things are looking up to finally having the house to just Seth and I. 🙂
As for the children, they have been as busy as ever. Now that the school is out, they have been just soaking in the rays. I mean REALLY soaking in the rays. They are always told to be careful not to spend too much time in the sun during the midday because it will wear them out, but they are just too excited with their new swing set. The past few days they have been out there for hours on end! One day Seth and I were out trying to fix a piece on the swing set. Within about 5 minutes of being out there, we were sweating profusely and had a sun burn. I don’t know how they do it! 🙂
Another recent development is that two new sounds have begun to appear. One occurs about 7:00 am and includes random bursts of yells and screams. They have set up a soccer field next door. For the past 5 days, we have been hearing these noises as one team scores a goal. The boys from day one were very interested and of course wanted to go. They have been over several times now and really enjoy that a soccer field is so close. The other noise caught me very off guard. Seth and I were sitting down after coming in from outside. The day was starting to dwindle and about this time in the evening the generator would click one to provide us with light and a microwave to heat up food. 🙂 But, instead, all of the sudden, the lights came on and there was a low humming noise. No loud generator. I thought “Electricity without a generator, the humming noise is angels’ wings, God must be doing a miracle!” He sure was, Haitian power had arrived, sadly no angels, though!! Let me preface that we had not had Haitian power for almost two weeks and when we do get it, it is known for leaving again in five minutes. At max, we have it for a total of 3 hours every several days. Lets rewind to how we didn’t have it for almost two weeks. We have been having trouble with our generator recently and one of those times was during the two weeks without any Haitian power. Our generator had bit the dust once again and with no Haitian power to charge our batteries, we all went into survivor mode. 🙂 We had to ration our power which meant for two nights we didn’t have a fan. I think God thought it was funny because those two nights happened to be the only two nights it didn’t rain in about 4 weeks. Funny, really funny! 🙂 But, as of right now we have had Haitian power for over 45 hours straight… and its still going. Man. God is good. We did lose it for a few minutes this morning. Seth and I quickly switched over to our inverter to use the internet and within seconds it started beeping to let us know it didn’t have charge. Oh, when some things go well, others don’t! haha. 🙂
The boys have had quite the treat these past few days, I already mentioned the soccer games, but they also got to do something else they have been longing to do! I have several paint jobs on my list of things to do, one being to paint the boys bathroom. I wasn’t necessarily excited about doing it. 🙂 You see it is a bathroom used by boys and cleaned by the boys. I must say that they do do a really great job cleaning it, but I still cringe at the idea of laying down on that floor to trim the wall like Seth and I did in Karen’s office. So, Karen thought up a brilliant plan. She said the boys could paint their bathroom, with one stipulation. They must clean it really well first, scrub with toothbrushes and all! The boys were pumped out of their mind to paint, but a little less than excited to clean. However, they agreed and did a phenomenal job!!!
|Vladimy Making a Straight Line|
|Moise is Pumped to Paint|
You all know that all of our kids our cute, but all of us here at HATS have been extremely interested in one little being lately. Anne has started walking. I don’t mean a few steps anymore. She is always walking now! Since most of you may not be down here again until she is a walking pro here is a little video of her wobbly legs, smiling face accomplishment!
We had a very exciting night last night. We pulled out the grill, threw on some charcoal, and had a cookout! Seth, the boys, and I found some sticks and carved off the ends for hotdog sticks, Karen thawed the hotdogs, and Antwa heated up the grill. The kids loved it. They got to roast their own hotdogs and choose their own toppings. They were even more excited when Karen announced their were cookies! It was a blast. And as we all guessed they loved the hotdogs. What kid doesn’t? 🙂
|Jessie and Antwa Helping Mirlande|
|Sticks Around the Fire|
|Jofky, Judel, and Deiunel Roast Their Hotdogs|
|The Kids Dying to Get Their Hotdog|
|Ti Luc and Karen at the Cookout|
|Anne with Her Messy Mouth|
Karen did a video for Sportsgrants, the group that is fundraising for the construction of the school office and library being built and a few other needed construction tasks. She did a fantastic job. However, the process was a bit rough. They tried to set up a skype date probably 3 different times, but we kept having a storm come in and we would lose all internet connectivity. One day we had very little clouds, but we didn’t have good enough internet to do a group call with three other people. We finally decided to just tape it on Seth and I’s computer and send it out. Once the video was filmed, we tried to send it through yousendit.com, however our internet was too slow. We then did dropbox, where we reached an all-time high uploading time. Seth and I have uploaded stuff to dropbox here before and we have seen some horrific times, like 76 hours or 6 days, because our internet is slow and in-and-out. But with this video, we hit a new winner when it comes to uploading times. 63 days!!! Check out the picture for proof. The video got to them, after 2 full days of uploading, and will soon be edited and put up on our blog for everyone to see!
Seth has been baking away lately. We always tried to make bread every few weeks at home. It is just something Seth really loves to do. He made croissants a few weeks ago and is making bagels for a second time today, a revised version (the others were great too, just not the right texture). They are smelling great! Any one want to fly down and have one? 🙂
So, I guess a little information about me. I was born in Kankakee, IL (try saying it, pretty tough. huh?). We moved to Litchfield, IL when I was 4 and to Hillsboro when I was 6. My childhood was a lot like Seth’s. Since I grew up in the country and small towns, we were always creating fun. Jamie, my sister who is 2 years younger than me, and I were always creating our own fun. When we lived in the country, we would fill up our wagon with water and ride down the hill pretending it was a new roller-coaster ride. (I may still have to invent that one day) Jamie and I also had a fetish with Barbies. We would ask for them for every birthday, Christmas, Easter, etc. since we were 3 until we were in junior high. Every time we got money, we would buy them and new clothes for them. We were crazy about them. Jamie and I would play for hours on end, we would take them everywhere with us!
Funny Story- Towards the end of our Barbie run, we had probably close to 200 Barbies, tons of clothes, 6 cars or so. Our whole lives went to Barbies :). Anyways, we decided we needed to give them away and move on. We wanted to help out the church with their yard sale, so we decided to donate them for the church to sale, but not after preparing them. We spend days preparing their hair, matching dresses with each Barbie, making sure each one had matching pairs of shoes, and a few accessories. Each one was separately bagged nice and neatly. The day of the yard sale came and Jamie and I decided we would go up just to see what little girls bought our Barbies. When we arrived, to our dismay, the Barbies were out of their bags in one bucket for a single price and all their clothes and accessories were in a basket that said free. I think Jamie and I had to restrain each other from doing a drive-by: grabbing all of it and riding off on our bikes!
Anyways, I love what the small town culture taught me: how to be creative and invent fun, how to survive on what you have a be happy, how to find a cheap deal, and how to truly cherish family time. We always took fun vacations, but most of my time when I was little was consumed with sports and groups. I loved being involved. My mom had to be crazy or just love us a ton because when I was in Junior high I played regular league and traveling team soccer, regular league and traveling team softball, school volleyball, school and traveling league basketball, school track, I took dance classes and tennis lessons, and I was in Girl Scouts. All the way through high school and college I was crazy busy! I continued to take on things, leading bible studies, Key Club, FCA, I played tennis in college, jobs, baby-sitting, not to mention I am a slight perfectionist when it comes to school! 🙂 All the way up to this point in my life, I had had God and would go in and out of truly seeking Him. An addition to all this was this man named Seth.
Funny Story- Seth and I are 5 1/2 years apart. We were introduced at church when he first started coming his junior year of high school. At this time, I was in 5th grade, already knew who we has, and had the BIGGEST crush on him. Somehow I had gotten a picture of him and always carried it around in my billfold. (I know..pathetic :)) When I was in 5th grade, I told my mom jokingly that one day I would marry Seth Huber, and well it all became history. 🙂 Anyways, once I was in high school, we had a high school/ college sunday school that Seth and I were both in. The summer before my senior year of high school, our sunday school class hung out a lot and Seth and I slowly started dating. The thing was that I was 17 and in high school and Seth was 23 and out of college. (I know what you are thinking, yes, both of our parents were completely fine with it. :))
OK, back to the normal story, over the years of dating Seth, I let him, like everything else in my life: my need to do well in school, my love for kids, and my obsession with being busy, become gods in my life. I needed to have their approval. I needed to do well in all things, at all times and I needed them to be God to me, even though they couldn’t. During this time, in my life I went through some tough spots that I had an extremely hard time trusting God because none of my other securities were there. I eventually had to learn that everything in this life means nothing without God in it. I had to let them go and give them to God. I had to realize that all the other things were just extreme blessings that I could do without and as Paul says are even considered trash compared to knowing God. (Philippians 3:8) Thankfully I stumbled upon two life changing studies. One was Experiencing God by Henry Blackaby. One thing that really stood out was a story. I don’t have that study here with me, but I am pretty sure it is a story about Henry Blackaby. Henry had a wive and five kids at home and felt called to overseas missions. He knew that it was God’s will. When he had decided he was going, others said “How can you leave your family!? It can’t be God’s will. You need to raise up your children and be there for your wife!” But, he said the fact that he knew for sure that it was God’s will made it even more urgent for him to leave. He knew that if he left his family they would be cared for even better than he could ever care for them and that they would be protected even more than he ever could protect them. It was such a testament to me. He would place all his concerns, even his family in God’s hand to serve Him more fully. So, I let it all go. It is all in the hands of the Lord. The other was Crazy Love by Francis Chan. It is a book about how God, “the creator of the universe, loves us and doesn’t want our begrudging leftovers or our good intentions- he wants us, our hearts, our souls, and our minds.” After letting all go, I needed to seek Him fully, not just give Him my leftovers in time and devotion. And how I found myself here in Haiti? Good question. Actually kind of like Henry Blackaby’s story. 🙂 Seth and I had a really neat house, I had just graduated college, and like Henry, I had people at home that thought we needed to be around to lead to and build up in Christ. But, we knew it was God’s will for us to be here, so off we went! We later read this, while here in Haiti:
My Utmost For His Highest
“If when God said “Go,” you stayed because you were so concerned about your people at home, you robbed them of the teaching and preaching of Jesus Christ Himself. As long as you would not obey, you were in the way.”
Seth and I are beyond happy that we obeyed and followed God’s call and that we can trust that God is teaching and preaching Himself to our friends and family far better than we ever could. Is there anything you need to let go of and let God fully work in?
|JJ and Moise’s Houses|
|The Kids Amazed with a Plane Flying Overhead|
|Leica, Karena, Josie, and Dieunel.|
|Sandra Sitting up by Herself|
|Jofky being a Ham|
|Anne, of course, with Something in Her Mouth|