Friday, July 31, 2009

Lawyer, Air, & Car

Today was a day of frustration as far as accomplishing anything...we spent much of the day in conversation with our lawyer trying to counter some of the inane requirements for residency; such as, having to come to the U.S. to get a Honduran Consulate to notarize papers that supposedly legitimize who we are....and my question is: "How would he know if we were telling the truth?"

Another chunk of the day was in negoitations for air conditioning for the children. We recently received a gift designated for this and we are making progress toward the installation, although it's a bit more than we had hoped it is absolutely necessary. Poor Pedro's allergies are a mess; his skin almost looks as if it's raw and it's caused by the heat.

We have been scouring the classified ads to try to find a minivan we can afford. Since our police incident the other day we desperately need alternate transportation. It looks like we can find a used van in the $8000 to $10,000 range...any takers?

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Policia donation!

With things so bad economically, here in the country the policia have set-up road checks about every two blocks....not really, but it seems like it. You can't go anywhere without getting stopped.

Well, today was my turn...Joyce, Gershon, Mauricio, Fabiola, & myself were headed out to do some errands when we got stopped. Mauricio & Gerhson were in the front with me and both were buckled. The cop (a young looking ....bleep) saw that and went for something else...he said I had to have a license plate on the front. I showed him our papers and told him we had 3 months to get Honduran plates...that didn't please him and neither did my telling him we had a lawyer. Next he claimed that the kids had to be 12 to be in the front seat. I told him there was no such law here, but he insisted and began to write a ticket, which means he keeps all my documents (license, title, etc.) and I have to go to the Transit Station within the next three days to pay. So, I knew he had me and asked if I couldn't just pay him there and he could give me back my license. I offered 2oo limperas and he said he couldn't because he'd already begun to write the ticket. I offered 500 limperas and he said, "Okay, but the money is going to the Transit Station."

When he started to write the ticket for the kids not being 12 I wanted to tell him they were...Gershon is in fact 15, but Mauricio is only know God wouldn't allow me to and He and I are still talking about that. I suppose I'm going to lose this battle as well!

However, I found a hairdresser for Joyce and she has an appointment for Tues., so today inspite of the policia, I am a hero at home!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Latest Employee

Our new cook is named Fabiola. Since we're not paying her I guess I can't call her an employee. Now, if I can just turn her into a DISHWASHER!

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

New Poll

Men, I need your opinions! Everyday Joyce cooks and everyday I do the dishes. Recently we hired a cook to come in 5 days a week to cook the main meal, giving Joyce some rest. However, we did not hire a there not something wrong with this picture?

Please send your responses ASAP so we can rectify this egregious error! I don't want this to have to go to the Human Resources Department

New Friend & Lawn Mower

Kitchen Prowler /Honduran Lawn Mower

Already this morning we have met new friends and been given a lawn mower...the monkeys are gone, apparently trapped and moved(we've not seen hide nor hairy palm of them for three days now); however, this morning we were invaded by new Honduran thieves...although one of them did work for his, or her breakfast. Joyce has not yet learned that you become like those you hang with and so she feeds these new thieves carrots. I tried to tell her they would become like a millstone, but she's hearing none of it. At least these don't climb, or open windows and doors.

For anyone interested in coming down for a long term comittment we've established a cost of approx. $500/month for rent in a beautiful, air conditioned apartment two doors away from us. All other costs would be covered by us, except for your personal spending money.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009


We got blessed by some friends of them gave us toilet paper (think we need that?), paper towels, toothpaste, SNICKERS (for Bob), pineapples, shampoo, cork board, bread & cookies, cereal, etc. Isn't that awesome? Another friend gave us a dresser for the boy's room, gatorade, ice pops, deodorant, hair brushes, q-tips, etc. It's a double blessing to have friends come along side us...the blessing of the material gifts and the blessing of like-minded friends.

Tonight we "Paid it Forward" Gershon, Mauricio, Antonio, and I took our big truck and our trailer to a warehouse to help our neighbor pick up some trikes he's been assembling. These trikes are for people paralyzed below the waist, or with no legs and are powered by pedal power...but with their hands. They are really neat and literally give these people a new lease on life! It felt good to help.

So you can pray with us we have two Scripture verses the children recite each morning: Psalm 133:1 & Proverbs 28:13

Monday, July 27, 2009

Thrills of the late night & early morning!

Just before bedtime last night I heard blood-curdling screams, and upon rushing into the living room I found Pedro hanging upside down from the top of the couch. He had climbed the couch to look over the wall when his foot slipped off the couch and down behind it, causing him to fall backwards with this leg caught behind the couch. Fortunately, no damage; just a little fear...wouldn't it be nice if it were enough to keep him from trying that again?

Early this morning I felt as if I was running a "Poo-poo Factory"....first Angel came to me with cries of, "Poo-poo, Bob" and just as I got him wiped Pedro was behind me, tapping me on the butt, calling out, "Poo-poo, Bob"! I'm looking for a new Plant Manager. Any applicants can apply to: Solid Waste Disposal Plant, Campisa, San Pedro Sula, Honduras. No prior experience necessary; classes held daily! All applicants must have a weakened sense of smell and a delicate touch!

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Spectacular Day

Today we were invited to go to a swimming 'resort' high in the mountains of Honduras. A local friend invited us to join she and her husband at her uncle's place in the province of Santa Barbara near the village of Colinase. The ride there was unbelievable with vistas that are out of this world...Honduras is filled with rugged, steep, high mountains that afford one the opportunity to seemingly gaze into eternity. Once there the fun began in earnest...they had two pools filled by constantly pumping water from the river and letting it flow out the other end, so it was always fresh and cool. All of the kids had great fun as you can see from this photo of the little ones...the older three were in the larger pool and never came out until we called them out. It is so much fun watching them have fun that we sometimes feel guilty for being allowed the pleasure.

Three Amigos!

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Bicycles & Dance

This morning we spent the better part of two hours driving around the city with our three girls looking for a dance studio we were told was pretty good. We did finally find the studio and they took us into one of the rooms to see a performance practice...turns out it was a performance in belly dancing...they looked like 10, 11, 12, & 13 year old street walkers. Joyce and I quickly decided we didn't need that kind of help. The culture here is amazing; even in the play yesterday some of the children were dressed in very racy clothes portraying a skit where they were after boys and using their 'wares' to capture just seems to be accepted at every level. Guess the U.S. isn't that far behind.

This afternoon I went out to pick up the 'new' bicycle from a repair shop. Mauricio and Gershon decided to ride double even though they had been expressly forbidden to do so. You know they did it anyway and when they saw me coming toward them they tried quickly dismount and in the process wrecked the bike tearing up brakes, handle bars, etc. We had just been talking in our morning Bible Study about how you can't hide sin, that it always gets revealed and here they were caught in the act...and they knew it! Well the bike is fixed, but they won't be on it this week; they get to watch Fabiola ride all to herself. Normally they take turns on it, but not this week!

Keep praying, keep giving, keep coming, keep sharing the opportunity,
Bob, Joyce, Gershon, Fabiola, Mauricio, Rosa, Antonio, Karen, Cesar, Angel, Jesus, & Pedro

Children's Play

Yesterday we were treated to a live dance and play presentation by a group of very talented young Honduran dancers and actors. A sister orphanage purchased the tickets for all of us so we were able to take the children to the cultural center for the performance. It was great and unlike anything they had ever experienced before. Of course, on the way home we had to pass by Pizza Hut and once the sign was spotted the shouts of "pizza, Bob" made it clear we would cap off our day with some pizza.

No monkey invasions yesterday and in a twisted sort of way I think we miss him! I hope we're not becoming children of the dark!

Our cabinets now look like a full blown pharmacy...worm & parasite medicine for 7, allergy medicine for two, anemia medicine for one, epilepsy medicine for one, cold and cough medicine for five....thank God for our very good friend, Dr. Margarita Coello who arranges appointments, prescribes medicines, and diagnoses our children for free!!!

We would like to ask you all to pray and ask the Lord to touch your heart, or to put someone on your heart who would be willing to make a minimum 6 month comittment to helping us here in Honduras. Perhaps someone who feels God is calling them to the mission field and wants to test the waters. We desperately need a bilingual Christian, couple, or family to help us. We are trying to get a handle on what an apartment rental would be...that would be the only funds necessary to raise, other than personal spending money.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Test Results & you know who!

We got the test results back for the children today and Cesar, Fabiola, & Pedro are clean as far as worms or parasites go; however, the rest are all infected! They all have parasites and Angel is anemic as well. We will pick up medicine for them in the morning. In addition Pedro is allergic to tomatoes, celery, and shellfish.

We spent most of the last two days going over the initial psychariatic evaluations of the children and they read like a pysch professors dream case name it and they need to work on it. Thankfully we serve a big God!

MONKEY STRIKE!!! Joyce and I were in the living room, she was studying her Spanish and I was watching the U.S. whip Honduras in soccer, when I heard what I thought was something falling. I called to Fabiola who was at the computer and asked, "what did I hear". She responded, "No se"...I don't know, so I forgot about it. A couple of minutes later Gershon raced in the front door and straight to kitchen. When he got to the kitchen he screamed and Joyce & I went to check...our friend had come in for a little snack of various cereals. He evidently gets bored quickly, because he never takes just one kind of cereal. I'm thinking we have the best fed monkey in all of Honduras.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Hades, mosquitoes, & more

I don't know how hot it'll be in Hades, but it must feel something like this...glad we're not headed there for eternity! It's so hot the sweat tries to boil, but evaporates before it can...don't show this to any potential long term helpers!

I'm positive there will be mosquitoes in Hell, they could only be the Devil's work. You would think since we live so closely together the mosquitoes would turn friendly, but that doesn't appear to be the case.

They are trying desperately to trap our monkeys and move them to another location...I don't know whether to pray for the trappers, or the monkeys, or the monkey's new friend!!!

The children are getting over their colds and had a relatively squabble-free day...I wonder if that means the roof will fall in tomorrow, or if they're actually making progress?

Keep Praying

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Things I Remember

Here are a few things we remember prior to moving to Honduras to raise 10 children:
  1. A dishwasher
  2. Hot showers
  3. Air conditioning
  4. Clean toilet seats
  5. Afternoon naps
  6. Sleeping in
  7. Free time
  8. Doing nothing
  9. Quiet meals with my wife
  10. No traffic
  11. No guards at every store
  12. No "extra" butts to wipe
  13. Having control of the tv clicker
  14. ESPN
  15. No flys or ants
  16. Our own bathroom
  17. Quiet moments it the "library"
  18. Anything we could label as "ours"
  19. Automatic pilot light on stove
  20. NO MONKEYS!!!!!!!!!!!

Monday, July 20, 2009

School, blood tests, bikes & more

Today Antonio & Cesar started their 'special helps' schooling...we pray this is the breakthrough we need for them to move forward.

Took Pedro back to the lab for more blood tests(skin allergy) and took Antonio to the hospital for an ECG.

This afternoon we took the three oldest and bought them a bike...we had some bikes, but none of them ever stayed together more than a day...we see about this one.

Last night was our worst night here...we lost electricity all night and the house was "mismo al horno" an oven! Even the kids were complaining...Joyce & I just tossed all night while praying for morning. Praise the Lord we have electricity tonight!

New discovery: The most dreaded words a man can hear while eating his cereal..."Bob, poo poo por favor"

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Emergency Room

We were getting the children ready for church when we heard screams...Pedro had fallen on the stairs and hurt his hand. Pedro is our 4 year old who has a handicapped foot which prevents him from walking properly. He had fallen coming down our stairs and in an attempt to catch himself damaged his hand severly. I suspected it was dislocated, but was afraid to pull on it lest it was broken.

The emergency room was an awful experience...poor Pedro screamed and screamed through x-rays and probing, but finally the doctor saw it was dislocated and not broken and he put it back into place. Now Pedro has a soft cast for the next 7 days. It's been a long time since I sat in an emergency room with a child in pain and fear, and it's not something I care to repeat. Pray for Pedro.

Our Wild Friend

This morning I was busily typing away at the computer when for some reason I looked down to my left and there quietly sitting and watching me was our wildlife friend, the monkey. I'm not sure if he's a pest, or our 11th child!

Blood tests

Yesterday, July 18 we took all 10 children to a lab for blood tests for worms and parasites...that means I got to hold all 10 while the nurse stuck a needle in their tiny arms! They were troopers and only a few tears were shed. Now we have to collect stool samples for each...not my cup of tea!

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Monkey vs Man

A month and a half ago if you had said I was dumber than a monkey I would have been offended, upset, possibly even angry! However, today I would simply drop my head and whimper, "I know". For six days in a row now our 'pet' monkey has broken into the house and stolen something. Despite the heat whenever we hear the children cry out "monos" we all head for the windows and doors to close them so we don't get an unwanted house guest.

However, our monkey is not easily put off! He tears open screens, pushes open sliding glass doors, and opens windows...he knows we have bananas and he's determined he's going to have some...and he usually does. This morning I was at the computer and Joyce was heading upstairs to put away some clothes...she closed the kitchen door and window and headed up. I was busily typing away when I heard the kids yell, "Bob, monos...chocolate!" That didn't make sense to me so I just kept typing, but they yelled to me again. Annoyed, I got up to see what the deal was and I saw an entire bag of ChocoCrispies spilled on the cement in front of the washing machine, and up in the yard sat 'our' monkey with a BOWL OF BANANAS! Turns out Joyce closed the kitchen window, but failed to LOCK it so our friend simply pushed the window aside and silently crept into the kitchen and fled with his spoils.

This monkey teases me...if I have nothing in my hand he allows me to get just out of arm's reach so I can't swat him. If I step closer he runs a few steps, sits down, stares at me and chatters as if to say, "what are you going to do now." If I have a pole or stick he runs to the back of the yard, If I have a stone he climbs a tree. He has defeated me and he knows do you think that sets in my craw?

I am on a monkey kill mission...pray for me that I don't get arrested and receive a sentence like having to feed the monkeys daily...I feel kind of like the captain in Mutiny of the Bounty as he sat on the witness stand rolling marbles in his hand muttering, "'s the strawberries, it's the strawberries..." only with me I mutter, "'s the monkey, it's the monkey."

Going Bananas,

Friday, July 17, 2009

#7 - The Widow's Mite

Our journey began in Sept. of 2008 when we had a team from Washington D.C. that wanted to view some feeding centers and orphanages. The last place they visited on the first day was the seventh different location. It had just been converted from a feeding center into an orphanage and was completely devoid of bedding, no toilet paper, no food, rags for clothes, very little supervison, no toys, and certainly no love! There were 17 children who had been abused, abandoned, molested, and who knows what else. Everyday that week the team went back to "#7" to visit the kids and God began to knit them into our hearts. On the way home Joyce, my wife, said "I have to do more." God had spoken to her heart and our journey was beginning to grow legs...we returned in Sept. and Nov. and then Joyce organized a Christmas trip where families sponsored each of the children to a backpack filled with clothes, school supplies, toys, etc. We arrived on Christmas day to find all the supplies we had previously given them were gone! We would buy truck loads of food only to see them stolen by the operators.

After our Christmas trip the Lord made it plain to Joyce and I that He expected us to help these children...already the number had dwindled from 17 to 12, we were told that their parents picked them up, but nobody really believed that! We returned in Jan. and met with the current operator of the orphanage and explained our desire to help the children...that we felt led by God to intercede on their behalf. At that time he told us, "If you get a place for them you can have them." So, we proceeded to recruit prayer partners in the states to help pave the way for these children and eventually(in April) we found a place to rent. However, the operator told us, "I've changed my mind, you can't have them." These children were being used as pawns to collect money from Spain and Germany, large amounts of money, and the children were being abused as severely as if they were still in the streets. In the interim one of the children died under mysterious circumstances!

We recruited more prayer partners and help from another orphanage operator in Honduras and began a legal fight to gain custody of the children. It was a roller coaster ride of highs and lows as it would seem we were on the verge of gaining custody only to see something go wrong, or another road block appear. Finally on June 11, 2009 Fiscaglia (Justice Dept.), IHNFA (Child Welfare), Police, Radio, TV, Newspaper personnel all invaded the orphanage to check on our allegations and found them to be more egregious than we had alleged. The conditions were so bad (rat dirt in the food) welts on the children, no toilet paper, filthy conditions, etc., that they immediately removed the children by force and gave them over to our care. So, June 11, 2009 is their liberation day, their day of freedom, essentially their Passover Day! Now we would begin to raise disciples of our Lord.

Joyce and I moved to Honduras to live with the children and raise them as our family...'our' doesn't just mean Joyce & I, it means all of you too. It takes all of us to pray, to give, to come to raise our 10 children. The final number of 10 children came about in this manner....there were 11 children left after the mysterious death of one of them. Next two more disappeared and we were told they went to a funeral and would be back on Monday...they never have been seen again. That left us with 9 children, which is the number we received on June week later we were asked to take in another of the original 17 who had been removed under false allegations. He had a brother and sister with us already and we had made a connection with him on our Christmas trip and knew he had been falsely accused. Although we were already overcrowded, we made room for his renuion with his siblings and now we are 10!

PLEASE PRAY FOR: Gershon, Mauricio, Fabiola, Antonio, Rosa, Karen, Cesar, Pedro, Jesus, & Angel.