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We wanted to share this special day with you too!!

It is very quiet around here this week as many missionaries & friends are in the states during this break ~ not to mention our usual fiesta friends (aka our Haiti family) ~ Kim, Pam & Art ~ it just wasn’t the same without you guys ~ we can’t wait til you get back 🙂

Even so… today was a wonderful day as we celebrated our first born daughters 14th Birthday here in Haiti! She is a wonderful person & growing into such a special & unique young lady. Chloe is full of kindness, wisdom beyond her years & both outer & inner beauty. Our family is so blessed to have her among us every day. Sean & I are so undeserving yet blessed to have such a wonderful daughter.

We love you Chloe!

Making Chloe's cake & frosting.... ~Our beautiful Chloe~ Reagan & Chloe~Reagan was so happy to give Chloe fins for swimming!! B, K, Banning, Reagan, Chloe, Julise & Easton with Chloe's B~day presents! Chloe's fav indoor pastime...FLYFF... Nothing like online friends~Chloe got lots of cool FLYFF presents today!!

PS~Kim, Chloe was thrilled!!! Thank you, Thank you, Thank you!!!!!!


Later in the afternoon on Christmas day we went to deliver some donations we received & presents we bought for a Haitian family we know. They live in a cement “house” that is not fully roofed, has a dirt & rocky floor; there are 4 children & 3 adults that live here. They sleep, eat & hang out inside the part of their house that is “somewhatly” roofed… about a 10 by 15 foot area…all their belongings & what they have are there.

We were blessed to be a part of their Christmas day, blessed to be here in Haiti & blessed to even know this particular family. They are honest & hard working, very kind to our children & very humble. We also took them chicken, rice & beans & hard boiled eggs…Susan B & family, we did receive your box of stuffed animals & you will see some of them here for this family!!! Thank you so much!!

To get to their “house” you must walk down thru a mini ravine which is cluttered with trash, wandering animals (goats, chickens, pigs, rats), sharp debris & who knows what else. Then you walk back up a short but steep slippery slope & there sits their “house”. You must step up into their house…although their are no steps. So we hoisted each other up. I hit & bruised my knee so hard on a cement block as I went up, plus I was carrying stuff. I couldn’t imagine doing that all the time, many times a day, just to get to your own house. There was no toilet, no running water, no kitchen; although they did have an area where they cook with charcoal. They are working on wiring to have some electricity when the EDH (city power) is on but do not have that in place at this time. They had 2 twin beds in that main area as well. No table at all, but 2 very worn & tattered hard chairs that sat right outside the “main house” area, no other furniture or belongings besides clothes which you can see in some of the pics that hang above one of the beds that they are sitting on to open their presents.

…I forgot to mention…that they are very thankful to have a “house” of their own to call home…

Sometimes we feel very cramped in our “small” apartment that we currently live in on the QCS campus. The water pressure is low (sometimes not more than a trickle), often no hot water at all, the toilets & plumbing are not the best & often stink, hardly enough storage or pantry space, we can’t use all of our lights all the time or else we will drain our batteries & then our fridge will get warm, our fans won’t work & we won’t have any electricity until EDH comes on, when we’re tired, we also complain about the constant noise, as we are right next to a main street & also have a Haitian preacher right across from us that yells, screams & hollers at the top of his lungs with a mega phone 4 nights a week & sometimes we complain about the furniture which is rather worn & uncomfortable by our standards.

In the states our beautiful & very comfortable country home was 3000 sq. feet. Our nearest neighbor to the west of us was 10 acres away & to the north of us was 25 acres away & to the east of us was at least half a mile away…& to the south of us was beautiful, clean & protected BLM land…needless to say…we were used to complete quietness at all times when we were home. Here it is the complete opposite.

Anyways, knowing & seeing again how this family lives (& they have never asked us for anything, even when we have asked them what they need), was so humbling. My goodness…We came home to our apartment thinking it was a mansion full of luxurious amenities!

These are the toys that Susan B. & her family sent. The box was actually “lost” in customs for some time but then we finally got it on Christmas day of all days!?!?!

Going thru the stuffed animals that Susan B. & fam sent Reagan found her favs that she thought a little girl would love...

Here are the pics from Christmas day at the house of the family we help:

The older boy is the son of the adult brother that lives here with his 2 adult sisters & they each have a daughter. The extra 4th kid that lives there is just that. Extra~had no one else willing or possibly able to care for him.

Sean coming up from the little ravine Blesh kids at work Banning entering their "house" Denise entering the "main" part of the house that is roofed Clonise & her daughter~ Julise & her sister & her daughter Loudne Julise opening a gift...she loved it!!! The family with some of their gifts... Julise with a new yellow slinky Looking down & out from their house Reagan helping Kathina "out" of the house The wall up to their house...see the baby pig? The family's house~the 2 extra lil kids U see are neighbor kids

Clonise & her daughter Julise had Thanksgiving dinner with us at our house & Julise & Loudne sometimes come to our house to hang out & play…

In His hands,
Denise & fam serving in Haiti

A little late~ but we wanted to wish everyone a Merry Christmas from our blog. We hope you all had a very blessed & special Christmas day with your families, friends & loved ones. We enjoyed our first Christmas here in Haiti…a little different without snow during this time but the weather was beautiful & we were not complaining 🙂 We missed our family & friends in the states but thanks to technology & specifically, Skype…we’re staying connected as best as we can!

Christmas Eve Haiti 2008 Dec 24 Haiti~Karibe 2008

A little recap on what has been happening & pics since it has been so long since our last post. Denise & Banning had Dengue Fever again. (About the same time last year we had it…all of us but Chloe.) They were quite sick for at least 10 days & then slowly regained some physical normalcy after that. It is not a fun thing to go through. It was a little easier this time around since we knew what to expect & which ways worked best to try to ease the pain & symptoms… And now we are all currently blessed with healthy bodies & no bugs bugging us.

Once Denise & Banning were on the mend, we got to enjoy some local holiday festivities. We went to a Concert de Noel at a beautiful Catholic Church in Petionville & enjoyed it:

St. Pierre Catholic Church~Christmas Concert Our friend Pam Deyoung & Reagan Sean, Denise & Bethaina Easton, Banning & Chloe~Christmas Concert~ Haiti 08 Choir

While Denise & Banning were sick & Christmas wasn’t anywhere near or on their minds…the rest of the family was excited & anxious to start celebrating the season. We did not have any of our traditional Christmas stuff here in Haiti since we were “only going to be here for one year” last year…fortunately our stuff is still back in storage in Idaho but that wasn’t going to do us any good here…So some of our very good friends & fellow missionaries that teach here at QCS surprised our family with Christmas stuff!! They came over, played Christmas music (traditional American Christmas music!!) & brought with them all kinds of awesome Christmas decorations, lights, ornaments & a tree! Plus stockings for each one of us that they had personally decorated themselves & put our names on each one & they were each filled with goodies inside! It really lifted our spirits & we felt so loved & blessed 🙂

Heather DePooter & Bethaina getting started on the tree! Kim~enough said Art McMahon with Bethaina & Kathina aka B & K Reagan, Art, K & our cat, LT Pam & Chloe putting up lights! Bethaina & Kathina~their first American style Christmas! Chloe & Kimmers LT

Since we’re on Christmas break, we treated our kids & ourselves to a day of swimming & good food at a place called Karibe up in Petionville~we had a blast!

Reagan, B & K at Karibe Lunch~such a treat! Blesh kids Swimming~ Karibe Reagan & Banning~Karibe

Pics along the way to Karibe:

Women selling fruit

Christmas Eve & Christmas day in Haiti for the Blesh family:

Christmas Eve 2008 Haiti K & B early Christmas morning! Checking out their stockings! Kathina Denise, Banning & kathina Blesh kids with their new scooters...Santa brought these all the way from the states (thanks Rod & Brittany)...I mean the North Pole...well you know...

We very much enjoyed celebrating the birth & gift of Jesus Christ!!!

Its been a full year since the passing of Katie Broecker. Since then the school has always had in mind to dedicate the new QCS basketball court in her honor. Well that came true. Right before the very first men’s basketball game the new court was dedicated to Katie.
For those of you who want to know why the court was dedicated to Katie please visit this post.

QCS Basketball Team QCS Director Steve Hersey Katie Broecker Memorial plaque

Quisqueya also held its annual Christmas bazaar on campus. There were quite a few vendors and plenty of fun.
Easton getting ready to pitch a ball/dunking booth Bethaina discovering the slide Kathina with Mr. Day helping on the Mini Zipline Kathina & Isaiah eating snow cones Christmas Bazaar photo credit to Tony Dekoter Christmas Bazaar 1 photo credit to Tony Dekoter

And finally Denise, Chloe, Reagan and the Heaths sorted donations to prepare for the Kenskoff Kids Christmas.
At the Heaths organizing Christmas goodies for the Kenscoff kids Reagan helping sorting clothes & gifts

Beautiful view from our hike Lil' girl getting water at the stream waterfall our kiddos we hiked for fun~kids in front hiked for water!

Miquette dispersing money QCS students donated Kims donated soccer balls an exciting day yet still a sad situation