that’s so PR…

Last Sunday and this coming one I’m sharing about what I’ve been doing and what’s coming up for me.  Part of that includes Puerto Rico.  I wanted to share the video and some of the pictures with all of you.

Luquillo, Puerto Ricomy team (Tyler, Natalia, Me, and Taylor)

CasaBlanca, Puerto Rico
our house in CasaBlanca, Puerto Rico

CasaBlanca, Puerto Ricoview from our roof

Rio Grande, Puerto Rico
in El Yunque (the only tropical rainforest in North America)

Carolina, Puerto Rico
Tyler proud of our successfully shopping for 48 people at Sam’s Club

Luquillo, Puerto Rico
last day at Diego

Diego.Luquillo, Puerto Rico
Ashley and her glitter-gloss

The song in the video was written and sung by the girls from our first week!  The video goes through the sequence of our day, meaning the clips start with morning devotions and loading the bus for the day, working with the kids, then progress throughout the day to our time at the house during the evening; but it’s not meant to represent a”typical day” or anything like that:)  I hope you enjoy:

Only 14 days until I leave for Uganda…oh man.  So hard to believe!

much love!

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sparkle lip gloss

Tomorrow, well I guess technically today, is our last day of camp . . . weird.

Luquillo, Puerto Rico
Jarnel playing soccer at Bob and Karon’s last week

Although we are tired from doing this all summer, I know we will definitely miss the kids.
There is something about walking up and being rushed by kids giving me hugs.
Or talking and laughing with a little girl, who for the first 4 weeks we thought couldn’t talk.
Or my car being bombarded by kids wanting to help bring in the lunch totes and coolers.
Or being kissed on the lips by a little girl trying to share her sparkle lip gloss with me.

 

Luquillo, Puerto Rico
JonJon and Perla at Diego wk. 4

 

There is so much that happened this summer.  For us.  For the kids we worked with.  For the groups that came here.  But we know tomorrow is not it.  It may be the last day of camp, but God is not done; not with us, the groups, or especially the kids.

Please pray for the kids.  I know that as we are going to be leaving here they are not alone, but my prayer is for them to have direction and love in their lives.  For them to continue to see Jesus moving and working in their lives.

 

much love!

fighting polar bears

I wouldn’t recommend fighting a polar bear; over a week later and my ankle/foot still looks rough:
swollen foot / ankle
if you think this looks bad, you should see Sven (the bear)

But, I have been learning a great deal in the healing process.  Usually I am doing more.  I don’t like…
sitting when people all-around me are busy and I could be helping.
having to ask for help.
not being able to do things for myself.
feeling like I am lazy.
letting people know i’m hurt.

While the above has become a part of my reality since the unfortunate bear incident, God has definitely been using this time for me to reflect and learn.  Which is always a good thing.

On a different note, it’s hard to believe today is our last time picking up groups from the airport.  Our final two groups arrive in a few hours – crazy.  Somedays it feels like just last week we were starting this; but in reality, we are finishing it.

during wk. 5
art from Adventure Camp a couple of weeks ago

This week is going to be awesome!  We are going to have 50 participants living and serving with us.  This might be our biggest group, but that just means more love and more fun!

Please pray for our groups and our kids here.  As a team, Natalia, Taylor, Tyler and I, want to finish strong and give this week our all.  We may be exhausted, but we can still learn and grow in this week.

 

much love!

un mes

We’ve been in beautiful Puerto Rico for a little over a month now; and we have a little over a month remaining until we return…weird.  Honestly,  I don’t know what I expected for this summer, but not what this has been.  Don’t get me wrong, Puerto Rico has been so great and I couldn’t imagine doing anything else right now.

Casa Blanca, Puerto Rico
yep, that’s what Luquillo looks like from our roof

Rio Grande, Puerto Rico
oh yeah, we also live near El Yunque, the only tropical rainforest in North America

The first two weeks we were here, Natalia, Taylor, Tyler and I were busy cleaning and prepping our house for the groups.  After being shut-up for nine months or so, this house needed plenty of TLC; but, by the time the first group arrived, we had  scrubbed, killed mice, roach bombed and learned many of the quirks of a Puerto Rican house.

Our weeks look similar; the biggest change is in the groups that are here serving with us.  Groups come here on Sunday and stay until Friday morning.  Monday through Thursday, from about 9-3 they are basically doing a day camp for Puerto Rican kids in a barillo (or government project).

Half of the camp is Adventure Camp, led by Natalia, which is similar to VBS; it includes songs, crafts, games, a skit, a memory verse and more.  Taylor runs the other half, Sports Camp; which is either basketball, flag football or soccer.  We have learned though, the kids here are not interested in running drills and sticking to one sport, so variety has been added to this portion of the program.

Luquillo, Puerto Rico
volunteers last week playing perro, perro, gato (our version of duck, duck, goose)

 

The kids here need love.  It has been awesome to see the groups come in and connect with the kids.   Even though there might be a language barrier with many of the people we are working with, it all works out; God is doing amazing things here and bringing people together at the right times.

Luquillo, Puerto Rico
one of our volunteers loving on a little boy

 

Another part of our day is lunch time.  The government provides free lunches for the kids.  We are so thankful to have these lunches for the kids we are working with.  For some, it might be the only meal they get that day.

Yuquiyu II
lunch at Yuquiyu II during our second week there

 

But that’s not all we do.  We also do a service project, spend more time in the community and have time here together in fellowship and worshipping.  It has been really great getting to know a variety of people and having conversations about life, dreams, the weather, you know, whatever is going on.

Casa Blanca, Puerto Ricoour first group writing on their paper sheet during Big Group

 

I am truly thankful for the opportunity to be down here this summer.  We may lead a really busy life, but my Natalia, Taylor and Tyler are great to be with and the ever-changing groups keep things interesting.

much love!

my team…not my blog

This is my feeble attempt to let you know a little more about my team
Taylor, Tyler, Natalia, and Bethany
Taylor, Tyler, Natalia, and me the first day at our house in Casablanca

and what we are doing here in Puerto Rico.
We have been really, really busy; thus my lack of communication . . . but my really great boss recently wrote this blog about us:

Adam’s blog

Hoping that very soon I will be writing a blog of my own:)

much love!

i have an announcement…

What’s the best way to share exciting news?

One of my first thoughts was (maybe a little over the top) a plane writing a message in the sky, while a marching band is triumphantly making its way down the street.

(yes Ruth, I hope you enjoy the Christmas:)

Then I realized I must be like 50 for coming up with that; and in this modern era people would would probably tweet and send message on Facebook.

Well, what if I have exciting news to share?

I guess a marching band might be a little grandiose . . .

So, drumroll please . . . .

I’m going to Puerto Rico for the Summer!!

I’m pretty excited about this fact.

This picture from the Grand Palace in Thailand does a pretty good job expressing that current excitement:

Bangkok, Thailand

I will be working with Adventures Youth, a branch of Adventures in Missions (what I did the World Race with).  As of now, I do not have many details, of what I will be doing; I do know that I leave at the end of May for training camp and return towards the beginning of August.

I am the project leader for my location and I will be working with three other people.  The four of us will be the on-site staff when high school youth groups come to our location in Puerto Rico throughout the summer to do mission trips.

_ _ _ _

If you feel lead to help me in any way, there are plenty of opportunities available:)

-PRAY: for me and me three co-staff (Natalia, Taylor, and Tyler) and for the multiple youth groups that will be coming on the trips

-ENCOURAGE: if you ever feel like emailing me or leaving me a comment, go for it, I will definitely appreciate it!

-DONATE: I need to raise $500 by May 20 (every little bit helps:) (just click HERE)
*If you want to help pay for travel insurance or airfare, please let me know, because those are out of pocket

Please let me know if you have any questions about any of this.  I will try to let you all (y’all, as these southern folk say) know as I find out any more information about what this summer entails!

much love!