Hello Family and Friends,
Today was an amazing day as we began building 5 houses for 5 amazing families. We actually are the first team to begin building in this village with a goal of building 90 homes over the next 2 years. Our day began at 5:30 with breakfast waiting for us, personal devotion time and Guatemalan Prayer (everyone praying out loud at the same time) before we drove 45 minutes on very bumpy and hilly roads to our village that is only 1 mile away as the crow flies.
When we arrived, the people were so excited and greeted us with smiles, a welcome and a prayer. We then broke up into our 5 building groups and got to work. Here is a glimpse of what each group experienced today:
Team Raymond and Bennet – Jodi, Jon, KaZya, Robby, Claire, Ben –The home we built was the farthest away from where we were dropped off. We were led down a long trail, through some trees, corn fields and up a hill to the location where we would spend our day. We met Daniel our Guatemala “helper” who showed us the ropes. We also met the family that we were building for and they assisted us throughout the day along with several small kids from the area. KaZya played with the kids, experienced power tools and hammered nails into the concrete floor! Robby worked hard all day assembling the frame, installing hardware and helping wherever he was needed. Claire’s fingers were sore from holding all the metal pieces in place and she looked like a ghost at the end of the day from sanding dry wall mud. Ben had a power drill in his hand all day from start to finish. Though we didn’t think we had any Spanish speaking helpers on our team we soon found out that Ben and Kazya were holding out on us. They helped us communicate with the family which was awesome! It was a great day!!
Team Johnston- Brooke, Josh, Jessica, Nate , Michaela & Sierra- rocked it today. They were hard working and super fun. Josh may have a future in construction as he was king of the drill. Jessica & Michaela were also very handy and drilled, hammered, sanded the day away with a smile on their face the whole time. Sierra was great at mudding and sanding, too. BUT, the highlight for our team was sneaking away from our work to go talk to the audience of children watching us. Nate’s best part of the day was teaching the children how to use the power drill….he had a lineup of little boys just waiting to drill a screw into the table. We also taught them how to play Duck, duck, goose and they loved it! They are super excited that we are coming back tomorrow….especially since we promised candy! J
Team Hansma and Theeuwes – Steve, Kim, Rachel, Allie, Taylor & Noah – really rocked it today J. Our fearless leader, Anya who is a tri-lingual, Russian body builder, cage fighter and all of 90 pounds pushed us hard today as our group got the farthest in the building process as well as helped all of the other teams complete their work for the day! Noah was a hard worker helping Steve work on the metal roof for our porch as well as the other team’s porches. They also attached all of the cement board to the outside of the home. The girls learned how to use power drills screwing in thousands of screws through-out the course of the day. We also all became master dry-wallers attaching all of the drywall to the walls, taping the seams, mudding and sanding 3 times. In fact, when we were done sanding, we looked like we were covered in snow. Our family is the largest aging from 74 to 3 years old. It was so cute as they were anxiously watching us and then finally decided to work with us all day assisting us in holding chairs/ladders so we wouldn’t fall, offering us water and Pepsi and “inspecting” our work. The children poked their faces in to spy on us a few times. We are so excited to work with them tomorrow and continue to build relationships with the families in this village.
Team Owen Squared – Consist of Tim, Don, Sienna, Hannah, Jennie, and Jake. We woke up at 5:30 (yes am) and started our day with a great breakfast of eggs and Frioles. Obviously, the staff didn’t know Ludge, what were they thinking serving refried beans for breakfarts. After a 40 minute ride over very bumpy, steep mountain roads we arrived at the village that we would be working at for the next three days. We worked with Pablo which was a small problem because he didn’t speak English. Luckily Jennie could interpret well enough to tell us what to do. Everyone began the day by working on building the walls. We all worked the power tools and by 10:30 we had four walls up. Next we nailed the walls to the cement and I had a great 5 year old little boy helping me with the hammer. Dry wall was next , followed by taping the joints and mudding. The whole team worked hard on this with help from the Grandpa that will be moving in to our house when it’s finished. We broke for lunch and enjoyed a meal of freshly made tortillas, rice and, you guessed, Black Beans. In the afternoon 5 helpers, ages 4 -9 showed up and helped us sand dry wall. Our best sanding went up only three feet. We finally had to make them stop when they started sanding into the drywall. We finished the day by putting cement board on the outside and a roof over the patio. We all had a hard time keeping up with 76 year old on our team. Great Day!
Team Ludge – Ludge, Tyler, Luke, McKenna, Emma & Amy – A very early start to the day at 5:30am with breakfast and personal devo’s , then headed to the village for our first day of house building. The whole team pitched in running drills putting the walls together. Once all the walls were done up they went to frame in the house. McKenna and Luke ran the drills while Tyler and Emma lined up the dry wall, Amy came through and put the finishing screws in. Ludge cut the sheets to size. After we had the inside dry wall all hung it was outside for most of the team. Ludge and Emma stayed inside and started mudding. The outside went up fast, was inspected and the porch was put on. Then Tyler and Luke went with Dan from Paradise Bound to help the other teams with their outside walls. Emma, McKenna, Amy, and Ludge stayed and sanded and put another coat of mud on the interior walls. There was thunder in the distance but it never rained, God is so good. We then cleaned up the work sight and got ready to head home. I (Ludge) rode in the back of the van on the way back to base. After hitting my head on the ceiling of the van 5 times I braced for a rougher ride. WOW I will NOT complain about Michigan pot holes again. After arriving back at base everyone was ready for a nice warm shower, we got the showers just not so warm. 🙂