- See more at: http://blogtimenow.com/blogging/automatically-redirect-blogger-blog-another-blog-website/#sthash.fBBcEurs.dpuf Casa de Sion: October 2007

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Sorry I have not written. Life just seems to always be busy. And the orphanage work has been so routine it was boring. The land we are buying has been twists and turns trying to get enough paperwork to protect our purchase from a family of Mayans who have no paperwork. So we have a good attorney and she is gradually getting it done. The land had to be resurveyed and we spent alot of time working with the surveyors making sure that was done right. It was nice time as it is beautiful up there with fantastic valley views. Jody had to spend all of Friday up there working to get the 1200 foot road bushwhacked so that the surveyors could mark the lines. He got bit again by 40 or 50 ants. The man does not know how to look down. Eight of the oldest boys went with the guardian from the orphanage and put in some good work time working with machetes and starting to take possession of the first land they will own.
The kids are through school until Jan. All of them but one passed and most of their marks were in the 90s. Most of these kids would not have gone to school if they were not living at the orphanage as school requires a stable life and the funds to pay for books and enrollment.
We have had some great help recently. Pan en la boca is raising significant amounts of money for us. Isamundo foundation has offered to pay for the road. Ryan Williams, with Bountiful Tours, brought a group down a month or so ago with great donations. And two days ago Russ and Susie Trepanier and other family members left the burning fires of San Diego to come to Lake Atitlan and bring us some much needed donations.
We moved the orphanage into an old hotel in Panajachel. All in all, it has worked out okay. We are still going through the adjustment period with staff and the kids and getting new routines down. Everytime we go back to the States or down here we have a 2 week adjustment period--getting settled in and getting new routines going.
We have a 7 year old boy coming new week. His parents are dead and his grandmother, who is raising him, can't afford the cost.

Saturday, October 13, 2007

The kids at the orphanage moved this week. They have all the beds up and the kitchen functioning. And most of the clothes organized. It has rained solid since the day they moved so it has been very hard getting clothes dried. And what do you do with 35 kids on rainy days when you do not have an inside play area. The baby who came with the 14 year old mama is very cute. 13 months old and a boy. The girl mama is nottaking great care of him so we are woorking on getting him a seperate legal status than her so that we can give him the care he needs. I had to take him to the doctor this week for a skin infection. He has taken to me tho and did not want anyone esle to hold him. I have taken to him too. His name is Carlos David. I am working on getting the baby room set up at the new location.

For those who have been following this blog for awhile and remember the murder across the lake last June..... An update. About 3 weeks ago there was a double murder about a mile from the orphanage in Cerro de Oro. We have yet to get many details but it was 2 blocks from one of our employees house. The killers were wearing the same military fatigues and black ski masks. AND there was another murder on our old road where we personally lived at Chelchic Abah about this same time. Pedro talked with another gardner on the same road who is very scared. Again, the same custom. This gardner wants to quit but doesn't have any other options for a job. Vicki was certainly right when she predicted we were leaving a battlefront. Between the banditoes and the vigilantes. We feel very safe over here in Panajachel tho.

Our attorney is working on paperwork for land purchase. Buying property is more complicated here than the states because there is no registry of deeds in every county. Most land is not registered but our realtor believes that this might be which would be excellent.

Sunday, October 07, 2007

Just wanted to do a quick catch up.. My grandson is born. He is so cute. Big chubby cheeks. It breaks my heart not to see him for 44 more days. But he lives in my house so when I get home I can hold him for a long time. Also had another son have a birthday. He is 26. And another son will be 22 in two days. Then a granddaughter will be 3 in 3 more.
Life is busy down here with the little ones. I gave food and clothing and meds to a woman who comes to my house and has a sick 6 month old. I am not sure she has a place to live. She has two other children also. I am investigating where she lives. She is good at begging tho. I want to do an outreach program to these children who live on the streets.
Also , now that adoptions have virtually stopped in Guatemala, I am told by one woman who receives babies, that she will be turning over 3 or 4 of them to us at the end of the month as she can not find families to adopt or pay for their support. I have a special room for the babies at the new place we are moving and need to stock it with infants things. All these babies are under 3 mont This. Another woman has spoken to me about the same thing with her babies. They will first see if the birthmothers want them [ which they do not think they will be able to take them ] and then send them to us.
So start collecting formula and diapers and other baby things. This is not to mention the extra nannies we will need to hire.

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Sat. I met the man who has been renting us the place where the orphanage is currently located. To make a long story short, he was mad we are not buying it and said we either had to pay him $17,000.00 to rent for the next 6 months or get out asap. Well I can build bedrooms for 32 kids for $15,000.00 so I am not paying him $17,000.00. So we offered a $500.00 reward to several people in Pana we knew needed money to find us a place that would rent to 35 kids starting in a week. And one of them found us a place. An older non fancy hotel that is letting us have 5 rooms big enough to sleep 6 kids each and a bungalow house with 3 more bedrooms and a kitchen and big dining area. Plus a really nice sunny room for the babies. They pay the electric and will have their maid wash the sheets once a week. It is not perfect, but doable. All for $1000.00 a month.
Adoptions have shut down in Guatemala. No more referrals to families are being made and no one knows when or if things will start up again. UNICEF is very against adoptions and has offered $28,000,000.00 for them to stop. So we are preparing to receive infants. Anyway, we are moving all the kids on Tues. to Pana. We close on the land the first of next week and hope to start the road the following week. As soon as we can get building supplies in we will start the buildings.
Life has been busy. My down syndrome son was 10 today and my first grandson will be born on Fri. the birthday of my 25 year old son.