Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Answering Questions

Addie Talley- "I love reading your posts.... what is the weather/temps like there? What do the locals normally wear? What foods do you normally eat?"

The weather here couldn't be more perfect.  It normally stays between 60-80. It's still overcast  and rainy, but they say we are entering the dry season and it's weird to still be this way in October. I went on a walk today, and it drizzled, but it felt so nice. The ladies here  wear cortes (skirts), fajas (belts), and beautiful hand woven shirts. The cortes are a piece of fabric that get wrapped around you and held up with the faja. Here is a pic of Yeni with her corte and faja.

I don't have any pics of the food I normally eat, but will start taking pics and do a post on food after I've gathered enough. 

Marilyn Reid- "How lovely that they celebrate their children. I enjoy your blog Julia. You are an amazing young lady and I'm wondering how long you are staying there this time? I don't remember reading how long. I'm sure the orphanage is very grateful for all your help. A friend of mine when she was in nursing school about 20 years ago went there to help people who were living in a land fill. She said it was such an eye opener. Keep up the good work."

Thanks Marilyn! At times it's hard, and I really appreciate your comment. And just thank you to everyone who have left me some. The first time I came it was only 1 month, but this time I'm here for 3 months, so a total of 4. I go home on November 30th.

A few days ago I was relaxing with Edy and Katie took this pic without me knowing. Edy's been having some really good days lately with almost no crying at all. I really love cuddle time with him.  

Sunday, October 9, 2016

Día del Niño

October 1st was Kids Day here in Guatemala. It's where all the families come together to just celebrate their kids. Here, we wanted to do something fun for our kids to make them feel extra loved. A lady here who knows about this home gave us 500 quetzales (about $65) to spend for that day. We took the kids on a walk to the park and got ice cream. Then for lunch, we got pizza and soda. They had a blast! 

Monday, October 3, 2016

Happy Birthday Checha!

This past week, we celebrated Checha's 18th birthday. He told us that no one ever celebrated his birthday before, and that this would be his first party. We tried to make it extra special by decorating, and using noise makers (probably a bit too much :) ). I'm so grateful to have been a part of his celebration. 

He loves the Iron Man movies, so Katie decorated his cake with it. I think she did a fantastic job!

We didn't have him blow out the candles, so instead he used a plate to blow them out. He had so much fun waving it around. 

Then of course Daryl had to shove some icing in his face. He didn't mind though. :)

Merlyn and I enjoyed watching the celebration. 

Wednesday, September 28, 2016


Yesterday, at 12:55 I got asked if I wanted to go on one of the village trips at 1:00. I of course said yes! I ran upstairs and quickly changed out of my work clothes. In the hurry of things, I didn't even think to bring a camera. However, one of the girls I went with, Katie, took one photo for me.

The trip that I went on was to Chimaltenango. Before we left our town to go, we stopped at the Bodega, which holds all of the ministries supplies. We loaded up two 40lb bags of food donations, and two big packs of diapers to deliver to the two families we visited. 

The drive took about an hour and a half, mostly on bumpy roads. The things you see while driving in Guatemala, are things you'd never see in the states. Just to name a few:
ladies pushing wheelbarrows (that's what they use to transport things)
ladies balancing baskets on their heads
a bunch of stray dogs, everywhere
stray dogs fighting each other (it's sad to watch)
motorcycles carrying up to four people, all of which aren't wearing helmets
very young children holding onto the backs of their dads on motorcycles, again not wearing helmets
cars playing chicken to the extreme, gives me a heart attack every time.

When we walked into the house, we were greeted with hugs and kisses. (That is how Guatemalans greet one another. Everyday when Anny, Luisa, and Marcilena come to the house they hug/kiss to say hello and goodbye.) They were so happy to see us. Both families were at the same house. One of the families traveled a very long way because they had faith that we would help them and their 4 year old boy with cerebral palsy. We mentioned that we might be able to help get him a wheelchair. When we said that, his mom's face lit up. She's been carrying him strapped to her back for who knows how long, and he's getting pretty big, We took his measurements, and promised that we would be back. 

The other family has a 2 year old boy named Angel with hydrocephalus. You can't see his whole head in this pic, but it's pretty big, and weighed down my arm. He is so cute though, and very bright. His 5 year old brother, I forgot his name, is so careful with him. I can't describe the feeling that came over me though when I saw his mom hold him. You can tell that she loves him so much, and that it hurts her to not be able to do more for him. She was so gentle and loving with him.

One of the ladies in the home offered us a drink (it tasted a little like coffee and a little like tea, not sure what it was) and a little biscuit/cookie/bread thing (not exactly sure how to describe it).  We ate them happily. We visited with them for almost 2 hours. When we said goodbye, they were so thankful and told us how much they loved us. 

The ride home was fun/dangerous/crazy. It was pouring rain, and we drove through some pretty big puddles. I couldn't help but think of my dad who would intentionally drive through puddles to make us kids laugh. He would have loved this!

I'm really happy that I was able to go on this outing, even though it was very last minute. These people didn't have much, but they were so giving and kind. The way that they love their kids is indescribable and it reminded me of God's love for us. I hope to go on more trips while I'm here, but sometimes it's hard because there isn't enough people at the home to help out. Please pray for these families, and the many more that are in need. 

Monday, September 26, 2016

Outside Fun

Today I took some of the kids outside. We had a lot of fun.

I love these three girls: Merlyn (just turned 2), Alison (1), and Olympia (3 in December). They are all in the same size clothing. I love it when they wear matching clothes. They are oh so precious. 

Ruavis really enjoyed being in this swing. He has been struggling with diarrhea for weeks now. It is not fun for us, nor for him. He has been on meds for awhile now to help it, but they don't seem to help. Please pray that he gets better soon and we can find out what's wrong.  

I brought out bubbles and the girls loved them. I love the way Oly would clap her hands and try to pop them. 

Brayan was so focused as he blew the bubbles. 

Oh Yeni, Yeni, Yeni. She makes everyday interesting. She knows the typical routine of the day, and if something isn't going right, she will constantly remind you, especially if it is to brush her teeth. One of my favorite things to do with her is ask her to repeat things. The way she pronounces things are so funny, especially broccoli. She has Noonan syndrome. I've never heard of it before I came here. 

She will not go into the trampoline willingly, but after she is in, she'll jump for a good while. I love you Yeni. 

I know my posts aren't as consistent as I'd like, but things get crazy here, and sometimes I just don't know what to post. If you guys have any questions or ideas of things to post about, please let me know and I'll try and answer them. 

Saturday, September 24, 2016

Crazy Walk

We went on another walk the other day, but this one was a little bit longer, and it included a very big hill.  A total of 19 of us went, and everyone stared when we walked by. 

Here's most of us waiting while Wanda stopped to pick up some snacks. 

Brayan, Anny (one of the Guatemalan nannies), Merlyn, and Olympia

Alejandra loved wearing her hat! 

Humberto with Luisa (the other Guatemalan nanny)

Me, Alison, Marcilena (our cook/cleaner), and Caesar. I really enjoy talking with Marcilena. She always has a smile on her face, and she is such a good cook! 

Thursday, September 22, 2016

Loco Papaya

Sorry that I haven't posted in almost a week. Things have been crazy, but aren't they always? 5 of the kids were sick, and I wasn't feeling too well either. Most of us are on the mend now though. I however am still battling almost a constant headache. And after only eating part of her dinner, Merlyn threw up. I cleaned it up, and almost did too by the smell, but am so glad that I kept my dinner down. Thankfully this time around though, the bugs seem to be biting less. I think its just because of the change in the weather. 

Edy will either have extreme highs or extreme lows. He'll be laughing so much for no reason, or crying and having his very scary episodes. Since coming home from the hospital, it's been a struggle to get him to eat. Before he'd be able to down 4 or 5 ounces every 3 hours in about 15 or 20 minutes. Tonight it took me nearly an hour to get his meds down in 2 ounces of formula. 

Bohnanza is played here in the home a lot. It is a game that involves planting/harvesting/trading/selling beans. I thought it was very weird when I'd watch them play during downtime, however it is very fun. Have you guys ever heard of that game?

"Loco Papaya" is a phrase that gets said here a lot. I'm not sure how it started, but Yeni says it a lot, and we call each other it if someone is doing something weird. Today Yeni kept saying it multiple times. I was feeding Edy on the couch and Bryan came to sit and chat. I called him it and he shouted NO!!! Then I called hms "loco manzana" (crazy apple) and every other fruit and vegetable I knew in Spanish. I felt like my Aunt Tanya who would always call my siblings and I different fruits and veggies.