Thursday, June 30, 2011

Just stuff to think about

For the last two days, the guys and I have had good clinics.

Yesterday, we were in La Palma. It was a good drive and when we arrived closer to La Palma, we exited the truck to see if the road was passable. Tomas and I decided that Manuel could do it! It is always easier to decide if someone else can do it when you are not driving :)

The road was slick due to previous rain with areas of deep mud. There was a deep ditch on one side and the cliff on the other. Manuel managed the technical maneuver very well! I gave him a "10!!" We had an excellent clinic of 11 patients and then enjoyed lunch together. We visited one patient in his home and I always enjoy that.

Today, we had clinic in Chichi. We had 13 patients and 6-7 were diabetics. I hope that in the future we can have the series of diabetic classes in Chichi.

For lunch, we walked to a close restaurant for lunch. Luis, one of the ministers from Chichi went with us. I always enjoy talking to Luis. He speaks slowly, clearly and is an exellent teacher.

He started asking me about diabetics, how they need to change their diets and why it is difficult for them. I did not have any idea that he was leading into a sermon that he is working on. So, eventually, he says that we have difficulty when we do not practice what we know that we need to do. Bam! His sermon is on target but it is not always that easy.

I told him about different conversations I have had with patients. Sure, everyone tells you that they know that they need a relationship with God but do they actually take steps to have it? Everyone tells you that they know they should pray more.......but do they do it? Do we always practice what we know that we should do? Of course, the answer to that is no.

We all can make improvements in our lives. The key or question is, "Are we doing it?" Small steps are better than no steps. I would rather have a diabetic patient refraining from eating some sweets than not changing their diet at all. I would rather have a Christian reading their Bible some days instead of not studying at all. As they say here in Guatemala, "Poco a poco." Little by little. Maybe those small changes will cause us to want to make bigger ones in our life. Just something to think about...................

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

A special day for Lisa and Kemmel!

Lisa and Kemmel---------Happy Anniversary! I hope it is a special day for you.

Thank you for all that you do for us :)

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Diabetic Class in Chuguexa

Today was our first diabetic class in Chuguexa. I have been excited about this because it is probably one of our clinics with with largest diabetic population. We were small in number but the participation was there!

Gaspar and I doing something silly to emphasize a point in the class.

We only had 12 patients attend the class but they asked a lot of questions and they listened to each others comments. There was a political meeting across the road that was burning out the loud speakers and we were told many people were attending that.

The next class will be on the 26th of July and I am looking forward to it.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Health Classes in Mactzul I

Well, as many know, my camera broke so I have been slow in blogging. It is difficult to blog without a camera but Kemmel and Lisa let me "steal" some of their photos.

Yesterday, we had health classes in Mactzul I and they were a lot of fun. We started the classes in Mactzul VI and we are slowly working our way around the Guatemalan globe :)

The MET students were with us and they added a special flavor to the day. They took photos and coached the students. Classes can be fun and also educational.

As you can see by the students faces, they were really listening!

The students deserve an "A" for paying attention and participating through the classes.

Here, "Dirty Phillip" had just eaten some chips off of the floor! Both he and Zach really got into their character and entertained the students while also teaching them some good lessons.

We provided the material to nine classes and each one was great. After the class, Lisa and the MET Students gave the students medicine to fight against worms and to better their health.

Sunday, June 19, 2011


Dad, I hope you have a great day at the beach!!

Happy Father's Day!

I love you :)

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Cook out at Lisa and Kemmel's house

This afternoon, Kemmel and Lisa were hosts to a cookout at their home. It was great to see them and spend some time with them. The grilling burgers smelled soooooooo good and I am sure the neighbors wished they were invited. Lisa and I cut up fresh pineapple and every slice was eaten!

Kemmel hung up the hammocks for us and people took turns in them...........the students rolled out of them after the large meal :)

But was there room for coffee and one more cookie???

Waiting their turn in the hammocks.

Maury, Martina, Manuel and Juan were just as comfortable on the ground.

When it came time to pack up, my camera stopped working. I walked up to Chichi and got leads on different places that might be able to fix it but none worked out. There might be a place in Santa Cruz so let's keep our fingers crossed. If I can not get it repaired, the blog will look very boring until I can work something out.

Tomorrow, we have different clinics. Please pray for our safe travels and that we will be able to help the patients both physically and spiritually.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Class in Lemoa

Today was our monthly health promoters class in Lemoa. Ruben taught the class on the system of the skin. It was interesting and I think everyone enjoyed it.

Before we got started, we took a few photos. These are the students today before class.

We began class with a scripture reading, prayer and a few songs. Then after Ruben taught the lesson, the class was divided into three sections. Still getting the class to understand to count in threes or how many groups you want, is still a BIG challenge. I think that Ruben was ready to go into the corn field and scream...........but he will catch on :)

Each group wrote out a summary of the different levels there are in the skin and then answered the questions.
There were 28 students and everyone participated.

Sebastian ended the group discussion with answering his questions and doing a fine job!

We enjoyed a lunch of grilled chicken, rice, salad, tortillas and tea.

The next class date was announced and everyone helped clean up the porch. The trucks were loaded and then it was time to return home.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Message from Elizabeth

Today, we finished the ABC Clinic in Mactzul V.

We had the other 6 MET Students with us today. This is the other half of the group that you met a few weeks ago. This group of students will also be with us for a few weeks.

Elizabeth met a young boy, Jose, and they spent some time together. This is their photo and what she had to say.

This is a little boy at the clinic that I met today. He also has cerebral palsy and I got to spend some time with him. He does not talk much but we played with his marbles for a bit and he seems to be such a happy little boy! I pray for blessings for him and his family!

Thank you, Elizabeth for your thoughts.

All of us look at life differently and this is good. What makes one person happy, may not matter to another person. One person may be dependant on a lot of material blessings and one person may be content with a few marbles and someone to share them with.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

ABC Clinic in La Palma

Today, I went to La Palma with Josefina, Tomas and Manuel. The road to La Palma has had a lot of work done on it and there is one part you are just not sure of.

Tomas first jumped out of the truck and scouted out the road. He urged Manuel on and then in the next section, they both jumped out to look at it.

Manuel decided that he could make it as he walked back to the truck.

Tomas wanted to be ready with his camera, in case we had tooooooooooo much excitement!!!

We saw all of the ABC Children and 7 non-ABC patients.

Noe and his dad joked around for the camera.

It was a good day, we had safe travels.........and the truck stayed on the road.......what more would you ask for???

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Day of classes!!

This morning Lisa picked us up and we went to Mactzul 6 to do some classes in the school. We were given some pre-treatment for worm mediine and it is a great opportunity to get involved in the school system. I have been really excited about it and the opportunity that it might bring.

I asked Zach to get a little dirty today to help with the class and he went above and beyond. Thank you, Zach! He brough dirt and then water was added to it to make some real mud. Lisa and Manuel watching as Zach prepares.

The students were a big help today. Thank you!! Some helped with the class as others distributed the pills.

Some people from the local congregation came to help and offer their support during the class. They told me that they also enjoyed the class when we had finished.

"Dirty Zach" played the part well........he ate chips but as he was doing so, he dropped them on the floor and then at them! The students were not excited to shake his hands as he went into the crowd to greet them.

Here, Juan is translating about washing your hands and preventing bacteria and illness.

There are 200 students in the school. We talked to half of the students while the others received the mediine. Then we traded groups and the other students went for their medicine.

When we were thanking the director of the shool, the students had already gone to the water spikot to wash their hands! The boy in the front was making sure his cuticles were clean!

As soon as we left the school, we went to Lemoa and started a Diabetes Class. Tomas spoke for a few minutes, we sang a song, prayed and then we began class. There were about 30 students to begin with and then a few more came.

It was a very good class. It was the first class of a three class series. They had a lot of questions and participated well.

Thanks to everyone that helped today! Everyone had a special part. Thanks to Josefina, the promoters and to the students.

The students will shortly be going to the coast and the other group will be coming up here for their highland experience. Please pray for Lisa and Kemmel as they transport the students and that everyone has safe travel

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Happy Anniversary Rick and Susan!

This morning I drove down to Montellano and waited for the group to arrive. It is as surgical team that will be here for the week providing general surgial needs to patients. They will have a busy week and we pray for their strength as they care for the patients.

After dinner tonight we had some excitement!

We helped celebrate the 28th anniversary of Rick and Susan! The cameras were flashing left and right with different groups of people.......and I patiently waited for this one.

Happy Anniversary you guys!! Rick spends a lot of time here in Guatemala and many, many hours a week answering email and organizing activities. Susan works for Harding Academy and I know that also takes a lot of her time. Thank you for all that you do and the support you give. I hope to take another photo after another 28 years!

Road Crew's Finest

I have lost track of time but one day the asphalt near our houses was busted up pretty badly. My first thought was that something huge had dropped on it and broke it but I have no idea.

Then, a few days water started flowing steadly from it. The gutters on the sides of the roads were full. The water flowed for about 4-5 days, maybe longer.

Then one day Lisa and I were driving home from clinic and the road crew had fixed it!

Isn't this a great patching job?? Well, at least it stopped the fow of water!

Now, since the rock has fixed the problem, I am sure it will stay like this for...............................

Friday, June 3, 2011

Happy Birthday, Josefina!!

We celebrated Josefina's birthday today after clinics. We tried to keep it a secret so she would be suprized. The students came out of the clinic singing. Then, Josefina realized something was going on.

Josefina with her cake.........yum!!

Marcos and Josefina..........

Josefina taking the first bite of just has to be done this way!!

Lisa serving slices of the cake.

It was a fun time together. Now it is time for the weekend....................................

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Blog by Haleigh

I asked the MET students to write a blog if they have something special happen to them. Sometimes, special events take place and they like to share it. Haleigh wants to share with you what happened today in Clinica Caris.
Today I witnessed why Health Talents really exists.

Before today, I thought that the primary reason was to build a clinic in a third world country and to provide health care for those who need it the most. But today a perfectly, healthy 21 year-old guy showed me something different.

This guy, Axel, came to Clinica Caris because he was taking some kind of pills every day since his dad, died 3 years ago. He wanted to stop taking them but couldn't. Dr. Ruben quickly explained to me that Alex was really here because he needed someone to talk to. As Ruben began to explain to him how to stop taking the pills, I could feel the tears pile up in my eyes as I thought, "This is what we are here for." It was just about then that Ruben leaned over and said, "I am preaching now."

Ruben went to get Marcos and although I did not understand more than ten words, I knew what was going on. Axel was so interested in what was being said. After about 20-30 minutes, I could feel God's arms wrapped around us. Marcos asked if we could pray and then we locked hands. Axel does not know God but as we prayed, he said, "God, I need you. I need your help." I choked back tears as I prayed that God would draw Axel close.

As our time together ended, I was left amazed. I had just seen someone searching for something to fill a void in his life. Something better than pills. He came to the clinic to hear about God, who would not only will a void but could also give him peace and love. What a mighty God we serve!

What an awesome and powerful message we have the opportunity to share.

This is what we are here for. I do not know what will become of this patient but I do know that you should join me in praying for Axel and others like him that are lost and searching in this world. After all, this is what we are here for.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

MET meets Mactzul VI

Ruben, Lisa, Gaspar and I met everyone in Mactzul VI this morning. Juan and the students arrived before we did so they had everything ready for us to start clinic. Today was an ABC clinic so most of the children would arrive in the afternoon, after school closed.

The morning was slow so we were entertained by different stories from the students. When the water was hot we enjoyed a cup of coffee and bread.

Then it was time for always it was good. We had chicken, beans, rice, tortillas and tea. It was the calm before the storm.

Then the students arrived................................

Merideth and Amber checking in some patients.

Molley checking the height of a student.

Haleigh measuring another student.

Merideth is laughing since I told her not to crunch the hair!

Merideth met Juan Carlos, who her parents sponsor. It was great!

We finished the day seeing 31 ABC Patients and 3 regular patients.

I always mention how the ABC Program changes lives! It gives the children the opportunity to remain in school, while receiving medical and dental care. It also benefits the family and the sponsor knows exactly where their support is going. Everyone wins! You may even have the opportunity to meet the child and family you are helping, as Meredith did today.