Today I am giving a small tour of our home

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This is the outside of our house. I could of taken another one to filter out the sun, but this one had two cute little kids in it, and Addie is effectively censoring this picture so no one is offended by Gibson’s nakedness.

I decided the best day to give a tour of our house is the day after our maid came for the first time. She was amazing! She will becoming every Thursday. It will be so nice to have some help around here, because I feel that it is near impossible to keep completely on top of the housework. With 4 kids, no dishwasher, a labor intensive laundry system, and having to mop every day because it gets so dusty and this keep the bugs away; I was finding it near impossible to get any deep cleaning done. For me it was such a blessing to have her come. Plus, around here it is looked down upon, if you have the means,  to not hire any help.  I say woohoo for having a maid for an incredibly reasonable price!

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Here is a on our sidewalk looking down on our house, so you can see our street. You can also see our street a little bit if you watched this video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QAx_8ennoW0

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If you walk into our house and look to your left you will see this crazy Jacuzzi thing. The people who own the house won the Lottery and decided to add crazy things like this to the house. It is really sad because now they have no money and are actually in debt quite a bit. Behind the Jacuzzi area is my little laundry space.

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This is our entryway. To the left is the jacuzzi and our enclosed dining room and to the right is our carport.

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When you walk in the door and turn left you will enter our living room area. We are very Dominican with our bamboo furniture.

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This is our nice dining room. We put screens up so we have the feeling of being outside without being joined by flies and mosquitos.

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Once you walk past the living room you enter the area where the 3 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms are. Here is the kids bedroom. All four kids wanted to share a room. I guess after all sharing a bed for 6 months, having a boys and girls rooms was a little much for them.

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The third bedroom which is the playroom

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MIne and Randy’s bedroom complete with a little boy

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If you walk to the right of the entry way you enter a huge room that we have put our desks in and also the kitchen.

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Here is the room to the right of the entry way that feeds into the kitchen. It is a huge room that all we have in it is 3 desks and a bookshelf. If is nice to have such open space. But it is weird having so many living spaces. This is by far the biggest house we have ever lived in.

Gibson

DSC_3454 DSC_3451Yesterday with all the craziness of the big kids starting school, Gibson  turned 3 yesterday. We had already done a party for him with grandparents before we left, so the celebrations were a little smaller than normal. He had a couple small presents in the morning and we invited some people over for cake and ice cream at night. Addie, Gibson, and I also went to the park while the big kids were at school. Gibson is very excited to be three, he has been asking when he gets to turn 3 for the last like 4 months. When he woke up this morning one of the first things he said was, “Am I still 3?”

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Playing at the park for his birthday

I ask myself all the time how it is possible that my little baby boy is 3? For those of you who don’t know Gibson, I will describe him for you. First of all, Gibson is all boy. He loves swords, wrestling, legos, super heroes etc. If you ask him what his favorite things are he will tell you, “bad guys and kung fu pandy”. Gibson is always talking and loves to make jokes. He is actually really funny, and Randy and I often find ourselves marveling at the comedic timing of his jokes. All of his older siblings adore him, and always want to play him. Really anywhere we go everyone loves Gibson from little kids, big kids, teenagers, and adults. He is a charmer and a comedian. He loves people. Here in the Dominican he is always the star of the show because of his blond hair. Seriously, strangers want to get their picture taken with him. If you ask him to take a picture he rarely ever smiles, but has several faces that he like to make in pictures, and has names for all these faces: pirate face, surprise face, crazy face… We never stop laughing have him around.
We love our little buddy and we are so thankful that God gave him to us, and that we get to be his parents. We pray that he will grow up to love God and use his charming personality to impact the world around him for the Lord.

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One of Gibson’s picture faces (that is our truck in the background)ImageImage

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First Day of School Pictures

I dropped them off today. Claire was as cute as can be in her little uniform, and Autry was my sweet little boy. I did okay until Autry ran over to me to give me a kiss and a hug right before he left in his class line. When did my kids get so big? I don’t know why some of the pictures are big and some are so small. Claire was being much more cooperative in the picture taking. That’s why there are a ton of her and not so many of Autry.

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Transportation to and from school. Clarabelle will be there with them too, I just didn’t want her hair to get messed up for pictures!

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So glad Randy will be there at the school with them

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And here’s the Birthday Boy. Claire was very sad that she had to start school on Gibber’s birthday.

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Claire with her teacher. Her teacher is such a sweet lady. I am so glad I was able to meet her and talk to her.

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So excited for school!

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Sitting in her desk

Beach Day

We have been super busy since we arrived in the Dominican. Randy started work the Monday after we got here and we have been busy trying to set up our home, and getting our hands wet in several different ministries. So, when the option of a day beach trip came up, we were really excited (we bought a truck this week so it was possible to go). The day at the beach was a much need time of R and R. It was so good to get away and relax after the craziness of the last few weeks. We went with some friends who are missionaries in the Santiago area, it was a great day. The waves where we went were pretty small so the kids were able to swim the water no problem. Gibson is our little fish in the water, he was floating in with his water wings right next to me most of the day. He is doing great at learning to swim. The girls made a friend named Brooke, who is an 18 year old missionary in Santiago. It was such a blessing to have Brooke there with us playing with the kids, because it made it so Randy and I were actually able to relax.

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New Era

This tuesday starts a new era in the Poor Family. Claire and Autry are going to an actual school. I am on the verge of tears every time I think of it, and I am sure tomorrow I am barely going to be holding it together. As I thought of this transition for the last few months, I have been totally fine. However, over the last few days it has been slowly hitting me. My 2 oldest babies arn’t going to be with me every day all day. Part of me feels relieved because only having 2 at home is going to be a lot easier. The other part of me is scared to death. 

However, I know that this is a time where I have to really look at how much I am trusting God for the lives of our children. When they are at home, it is easy to think you are in control of your kids. But in reality I have never been in charge of them, I have never really had control. Now, as the leave the shelter of our home and are on their own for the majority of the day, I am forced to realize how our children really are in the hands of the Lord. 

This is my prayer as my kids head off to school tomorrow

Lord,

I know you hold the whole world in your hands, and you hold Autry and Claire in your hands as they head off to school Keep them safe. Help them to remember the things we have taught them at home to discern right from wrong. Help them to make good friends, help them to learn Spanish quickly, help them to not be scared. Help them to know you, help them to be a light of you to the world around them. Amen.

I know this mommy is going to be a wreck tomorrow, so if you remember to keep me in your prayers I would greatly appreciate it.  

How am I doing?

People keep asking me how I am doing. It is a hard question to answer because I feel that it changes pretty quickly. I say life is pretty hard right now. But the truth is, it’s not that life is hard right now, it’s more that very few things are easy. It takes effort to learn new things and it’s even more effort when there are so many new things to learn.

For example, I am learning to do laundry Dominican style. The washing machines here are very different than the all-in-one magical machines in the states. Those machines take up way to much electricity so we have a much simpler machine. The washing machine has two compartments, a washer and a dryer (which the dryer  is more like a spin cycle on your washing machine). Here are the steps: you take a hose (well right now I only have a bucket) and fill up the washing part with water and put your clothes and  soap in, mine fits about 10-15 articles of clothing. 15 minutes later you wring out the water a little bit and put it in the dryer.  Then you use the same water to do another load of laundry. Next you drain the water, and put in fresh water to rinse the clothes. Then you put the clothes in the dryer again. After this you hang them up to dry. Thankfully, clothes dry really quickly. I am not saying this to complain, just demonstrating the learning curve we are on right now. Talking to a friend tonight she summed it up pretty well. She said is it like having a newborn baby, you are excited for it because you have been planning and dreaming about it for so long but there are still some major adjustments that you have to go through. It is so much like that!

photo (1)My cute little washing machine

I have been reading through Isaiah the last few weeks (which by the way has been a huge comfort to me as it shows in such vivid ways who God is and his heart for His people) ,and this verse was a huge comfort to me found in Isaiah 26: 3-4 “You keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on you, because he trusts in you. Trust in the Lord forever, for the Lord God is an everlasting rock.” I love this verse because he is talking to the land of Judah about their restoration. It is so good to know that no matter what is going the Lord God is an everlasting rock. No matter how things change God is the everlasting rock, and he will keep those whose mind is stayed on him in perfect peace. Praise the Lord that he is an everlasting rock on whom we can put our trust!

Here we go!

We’re starting our first big undertaking as missionaries. There is a Haitian school that’s affiliated with the Dominican school Randy’s teaching at, that’s looking for sponsors for 20 kids. For $25 dollars a Haitian refugee can go to a Christian school, hear the gospel, get educated, and eat what might be the only meal they eat for the day.

There are an estimated 2 million Haitian refugees “living” in the DR. For years they have come looking for work (please watch this documentary about the living and working conditions of these modern day slaves). That number is an educated guess because since the earthquake, streams of undocumented Haitians have come to the DR looking for a better life. They cannot hold legal jobs and their children cannot go to school because they do not have, or have been stripped of their documentation. We are connected with some missionaries who have started opening up schools to help these poor children.

For less than $1 a day you can change the life of a child. Think about that. One dollar. One itty bitty dollar. One dollar means the difference between a kid eating and going hungry. The reality is, that $1 could save a little girl from prostituting herself out or a little boy turing to a life of crime so he can have a handful of rice.

I know I’m laying it on pretty thick here, but please consider giving to this cause. There’s really no sacrifice of giving up a dollar is there? BUT, we’re asking you to not only give, but to correspond with, pray for, and possibly even come visit your sponsored child. I promise you, your child will hear the Gospel daily. I will personally see to it that if they give their lives to the Lord that they will be discipled and trained to disciple.

Twenty kids at $25 a kid is only $500, we’d give that money ourselves but I want to share this ministry with our friends, family, and fellow believers. All we need is 20 people 19 people (the Poor’s will be the first to sponsor a child for sure!) to generously give.

If you want to sponsor a child you can:
Email us if you are interested. Once you’re signed up to support a child, your monthly giving can give through our website, or you can give through SW Bible Church, Lake Tapps Community Church, The Southeast Church, or Grace Bible Fellowship just make sure you mark you church giving to be for the Poor’s Haitian School and we’ll send the money on. We’re not taking a cut on any money given.

Please, please give.