Thursday, November 29, 2007


Candace has officially graduated my vaccination school and is now vaccinating away! We did our second round of Hepatitis B these last two days and managed to vaccinate almost 150 kids with just 3 of us...and some teacher helpers. We had a good time through all of it though and I'm thankful for the vaccines that were donated and all the hands to help!! One more round of Hep B and our kids have their first complete series of vaccines!

Monday, November 26, 2007


This weekend was a full one! The church had their Regocijo Juvenil which is like a big youth event for all the area. It started Thurs night and finished on Sunday night and went so well. Loads of people turned out and it was fun to see everyone.

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Dominican Thanksgiving

We had an amazing Thanksgiving dinner. I think there were 14 of us all together...Dominicans, Americans, Canadians, Haitians (baby Jonathan!). It was fun to see the Dominicans trying lots of foods for the first time like apple pie and cranberry sauce and stuffing. It was also great to eat such familiar "home" food. I'm very thankful for the family of friends I have been placed with here!

Monday, November 19, 2007


Thanksgiving is going to be Tuesday for us! There are lots of events happening this week so we had to push the celebrations forward a few days. Today we made apple pies and then tonight the turkey got worked on. We got rid of the guts and the neck (how disgusting is that part!). I can't actually remember laughing so hard in a long time! We did it by candlelight as well as the lights were out, which added to the fun. You never quite knew what you were pulling out of that thing!
To get our turkey we had to go on an adventure to Santiago which is a bit over an hour away. We bought our $30 turkey weighing in at 15 lbs (yah, $2/lb!) and a ham too. We plan on having the full Thanksgiving spread tomorrow, minus pumpkin pie. We went to the 2 biggest grocery stores in Santiago and struck out. We tried at the 2 stores in this area and again, no canned pumpkin. One guy I asked told me he didn't have canned pumpkin but upstairs they had decorative pumpkins. I told him thanks, but I couldn't make a pie from that! Anyhow, it's been fun trying to do an American Thanksgiving in the DR! Tomorrow we'll have Americans, Canadians, and Dominicans around our table and I'm really looking forward to it!

Saturday, November 17, 2007


When I was younger I promised I would never drive minivan. Never say never. I now drive a 16+ passenger van daily. Here in the DR, these types of vans are used as public transport, called a guagua. There is a set route and people stand on the side of the road and wait for it to go by. Now one of the joys of driving our guagua is that they flag me down for a ride. Fun. It is pretty much a babe-magnet.
Our guagua is long. Sometimes I have trouble parking. It is blue. The steering wheel is big but it is otherwise easy to drive. Sometimes I just pretend when I'm driving alone that 4 rows of seats don't exist behind me. It will be amazing when teams are here, for that is the reason for our guagua...but we don't have another team until the end of January.
Our guagua has a tape deck. That is one of the highlights because I have tapes. I like to listen to my tapes because they are generally from about the 8th grade and are amusing. Makes me think of old boyfriends and talking with the girls while playing M.A.S.H.
Our guagua has two settings for temperature, cold-colder. There is no heat, just air conditioning. That makes sense though because, after all, this is the Dominican Republic.
I'm thankful for our guagua.

Monday, November 12, 2007


It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas here in the Dominican Republic, and we are LOVING it! Candace and I decorated the house this weekend and brought out all of the Nutcrackers too. Tonight we went to dinner with the Mercy Ships group and were very excited about all the decorations they had. Even though it's still early November and Thanksgiving hasn't even come and gone...Christmas is in full swing here and it's very welcomed!

Dominican Wedding

We got to attend a wedding for friends Milka and Francis on Sunday which was really nice. With only a few variations, it was fairly similar to U.S. weddings and I'm glad we were able to be there and be a part of it all.


Progress continues as we have begun digging and building onto our already in-progress classrooms. We have a bathroom block and 2 classrooms almost finished and have now started digging and laying block for 2 additional classrooms. We are working towards having a 2 story classroom set where we'll have 8 classrooms and 2 sets of bathrooms. Anyhow, it's so exciting/overwhelming/encouraging, to see it all coming together. To trust that we'll be able to handle the changes and growth. I can't wait to meet all these kids!

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Life these days...

So these days have been filled with all sorts of different things. I'll start with the top left photo which is Michelle and me...she is one of the leaders with Mercy Ships, the group that is here for the month. We made a day trip with everyone up to Jarabacoa and stopped along the way for coffee.
So then top right was one of the stupidest things I've done yet. So there is this retreat for the youth of all the churches and these two invited me to ride bikes out to it. I thought it would be tough, but figured I could probably do it. I WANTED TO DIE. Or, actually I thought I was going to. It started raining along the way, a mixed blessing as it was cooling but also then meant wet clothes for awhile.
Then that takes us to the bottom two photos where today we went to Jarabacoa to vaccinate the children at the ANIJA school. We did loads of shots on screaming, crying, fleeing children, but it was very successful thanks to all the help.

Monday, November 05, 2007


Thanks for everyone checking in about how we're doing after the storm. It was a very rainy and windy and wet week, but the north coast was spared most of everything. The south was hit very hard and the rescue efforts are still underway as they find whole villages under mud and water. Dominicans compare this the Hurricane Katrina in the States. Bridges and roads were taken out, rivers rose higher than they ever have; many people are still missing.