Well, I feel like I reached a milestone today. As I was walking back from the classroom after a long, full day of art, surrounded by kids we have to practically kick out for dinner, I realized today is the first day that I have really LOVED being here. Many of my days have been pretty good and sometimes fun, but never have I finished the day feeling that I loved being here at Canaan and in Haiti. Today was a great day in many ways:
-I feel like I really taught the students some art skills that they probably didn’t know. Watercolor techniques: Wet on wet, wet on dry, color washes, how to use Mr. Brush :-), horizon lines, and filling up the page with color. On to the details tomorrow!
-Having kids so eager to get into art they beat on the door or wait outside for more than 30 min.
-Having to practically drag students out of the classroom at dinner time because it is so dark from the brewing storm.
-I am feeling much more connected to the students and getting to a point of being able to joke around with them.
-Getting lots of hugs or smiles and laughs.
-I am finally getting used to the slower, relaxed pace of this community.
-Most importantly, I am really loving pouring into these kids.
The day was full and despite kinks in our schedule (that becomes a norm around here with the pace of Haiti!) we were still able to see tons of students and get them started on watercolor paintings. It was neat to see which students took off and didn’t really need much guidance while others needed a TON of motivation to paint a landscape, one color and stroke at a time. We will finish up on these landscapes tomorrow and I can’t wait to post pics of them! Right now FB via my phone seems to be the best avenue for posting pics with our internet service…so check often! It takes a really long time to upload anything through the computer. I am trying to post 2-3 pics a day from action in the art room! I cannot wait to post more pictures, I think they will just astound you!
We are feeling a lot more settled in our little house of 6 six girls! We moved to a different house before the huge team came down to consolidate. With the water pumps fixed (thanks to the team!!!) We have running water for the sink and shower, hurray!! We have internet in our house (spotty most of the time, but better than nothing). We are getting to know our sweet housemates better and better. We are still with two girls from NC, Robin and Amy, who are teaching reading on a similar schedule to art classes. Our other two housemates are of the medical persuasion. Katie and Stephanie have both spent lots of time here at Canaan so it’s nice to have some seasoned friends around. Katie is a med student in Birmingham and runs the Medika Mamba clinic for the malnourished kids that come to the health clinic. Stephanie is a pediatric nurse from St. Louis and she assists in the health clinic. Both of these girls were the stand in vets last night if you saw my Facebook post!! A dog that lives here at Canaan (one of prob 50) had a very badly injured leg that was going cause it to die if not helped. So, the girls used what medical skills they share and amputated the leg! It was a horrific happening of the evening, but it was successful even after the dog escaped a time or two. She is still hanging in there today! And in Haiti with no emergency vet (or vet at all for that matter) you do what you gotta do ;-)
As for the rest of the week...it should be a very different week. Without a team of 40 people buzzing around the community playing soccer, working on thousands of projects, packing out the cafeteria, and the constant high energy it will be pretty QUIET! We are halfway through our trip and I imagine now that we are in somewhat of routine the two weeks will go quickly. Bethany and I planned most of our remaining art teaching days, focusing on three major projects with the kids. We talked through our goals we want to accomplish in the time we have left in this community. We really want to be instruments of God in these kids’ lives. We want to be filled with joy and energy and live life to the fullest with every moment we have left with these kids. We are here to teach them and serve them. The possibilities of what to teach them are endless, but we have to do the best with what we have. I really want to teach them art foundations that they can continue to build on even after we are gone. Please pray that we can be well rested and inspired to teach our very best. Please pray that we can show God’s love through our every action and word.
We are excited to see what the next two weeks will bring!!