Edited: Due to migrating the blog in 2016, the original pictures are no longer available.

Beate here again with Vivienne. You have no idea (okay, some of you do 🙂 ) how wonderful it is to be greeted by so many loving children with hugs, hugs and more hugs. We shared a wonderful start to the glorious morning in devotions. We sang, clapped, and prayed, filling our hearts and souls with positive energy and love.

Karen made a lovely cake for the kids. It only took her 2 hours to mix it with all of her many, many, interruptions. I’m used to seeing her go like a whirlwind, but Vivienne has never experienced KAREN….momma, DG (boss), electrician, plumber, propane getter, accountant, nurse, water pump lady, security guard checker, teacher, translator, Indy 500 driver (in Haiti that’s what you need to have for the crazy driving) and that’s just within a few hours! Go Karen Go….You Rock! Actually, you are THE ROCK to this place. I cannot express to you how amazed I am each time I come. Vivienne has never seen a woman do so much and know so much. We wonder in awe how she does it and how she ever learned to do what she does in this country. The culture is so different to ours, and yet she manages like a pro. I would be so scared to do what she does. Vivienne and I have often asked ourselves, as I know many of you have, would we ever be able to leave everything we owned behind and come to help others as Karen did? No, I think that Karen is 1 in a million, and that is why we all need to help people like Karen who devote their lives to help others. It’s the very least we can do.

Canada Day is also a time to celebrate our wonderful country (yes, we have it good, real good). So, the kids decorated the compound with flags, and more flags.

We wore our Canada hats, sang O’Canada and played some crazy games.

We had a Canada tatoo parlour.

Children and employees loved playing the squeeze the sponge relay (over and over and over again).

Of course our national game: hockey.  I have discovered that Vivienne is quite the athlete, and the kids love it. She shoots, she scores even from her net to my net….hhhmmmmpf. Good thing that I’m not competitive!

We also had a chance to drive into St. Marc with Karen and security man extraordinaire Richard.  If I’m ever going to drive in Haiti, I will definitely have to learn how to back up a truck filled with 6 propane trucks with motorcycles and trucks flying everywhere, and people coming up from all sides. Karen is one heck of a driver. We did some grocery shopping in a store which had pretty much everything one needs except for rope to secure the propane tanks. So off we went to another store which did not have rope, and finally Richard found one in the market for us. Whew…the tanks were a bit too dangerous to drive around without having them safely tied up. Vivienne has already started a list of things we will need to bring down next year.

Our wonderful day ended with the hockey game, and the little ones ended up staying past their bedtime…but joy oh joy, we had enough water to have a quick shower. The baby wipes were just not cutting it anymore! Ahhh, the simple, yet valuable pleasures in life. Each year, I have my grade 8 science class experience what it is like to carry a big bucket of water around our school yard (which has an 800 meter circuit). I try to have them feel and think like millions of children who have to lug heavy jugs of water from a local well to their homes.  Many have to walk several kilometers to access safe drinking water. As we drove back from St. Marc we saw exactly that…children walking to the wells with empty cans, and walking back to their homes with the heavy burden so necessary to survive. So to the kids who are reading this blog (and the adults), please be thankful for what you have, and please next time you take a drink of water, stop and think about someone your age who is right at that moment carrying a very heavy bucket back to their humble home.

Good night all…lots of love

~Beate and Vivienne