I’m moving. . . well not really. But my blog is moving! It’s taken awhile to get everything set up, but here’s the new website if you want to keep following me! https://jennehsheetz.wordpress.com
Well Ladies and Gents, it’s that time of year again. That’s right the Circus has come to town! Ok so I don’t mean the tangible circus. I mean the circus in your mind. I’m talking about those plots that are doing handstands on tightropes and those elephants that keep squashing your best ideas. Welcome to NaNoWriMo!!! For all you novices that’s National Novel Writing Month. We writers decided that NaNoWriMo was quite pun-ny and funny and rhymey, so thats the reason for the title of this post.
For those of you out there thinking that you can’t do this. I’m here to tell you that you can. Let me break it down for you.
There are 30 days in November. It should be your goal to write 30,000 words. That’s 1,000 words a day. Thats a walk in the park. (I once wrote an eight hundred word email in 20 minutes — that was a small trip to Africa.) The point is it’s very doable, and I am going to be here to encourage you along your path to the ultimate party discussion topic of “I once wrote a novel.”
This is I think my third time doing it. The first was the hardest. The second was much easier. (Obviously, I haven’t finished number three yet, so I will have to get back to you on this one. My first novel lies unfinished on my hard drive. I hated it about halfway through and I was told midway through the novel that I was going about everything all wrong. So I quit. But my second novel is available for purchase through the kindle store. And I’m quite proud of it. Granted Fingerprints was for me a way to practice lots of different writing techniques and to throw them all together in a sort of art show, but I don’t hate it.
For those of you who write all the time, NaNoWriMo should be called DroVryWriNoMo (Drop Everything and Write a Novel Month) . . . doesn’t have quite the same ring to it. Anyway stop writing all those poems and short stories. Challenge yourself! Write something different!
Well that’s all the time I have for now. . .I only have an hour and a half to prepare for a zombie attack. But I will be hanging around all month to keep you guys company. As usual, my novel ideas will be kept under wraps until I’m finished. I’m a bit OCD about people stealing my ideas. No offense. I know each and every one of my readers is a strong creative soul, its just that I like to keep everything stored away in my own big top tent.
So stay faithful guys and dolls. . .
a writer gal
I have nothing to blog about. No inspiration. De nada.
Hello everyone. I won’t be putting the full blog post from today up until tomorrow. I’ve been really sick most of the day and frankly I’m exhausted. Today was a really great day though, we got a lot of things accomplished, including finishing Blanca’s house, praying over the hospital and distributing food at another feeding center. The staff also cooked a great meal tonight for dinner and we had dancing and live music.
If you could pray for my mom, that would be great. She slipped and fell and really injured her knee. I hope she is going to be ok tomorrow. We have a three hour bus ride to Antigua and we are going to be walking around all day. Also just pray for our overall safety as we are going to be traveling back to the U.S. on Thursday.
Thanks so much to everyone who has prayed and supported while we have been on this mission trip, we couldn’t have done it without you. For tonight, I’m signing out. Goodnight all 🙂
Lots of people were feeling queasy and sick this morning. . .the main complaints were upset stomachs. . . so most people cut back on breakfast. It could have been dehydration for some people or lack of sleep for others. But as far as I know everyone is back to normal. So don’t anybody go freaking out 🙂 [Btw – breakfast was fried plantains, egg and ham omelets and refried beans — I had cereal though] Some people (Mike and Cole) had some weird lime juice with salt. . . its supposed to keep you from being nauseous. . .you’ll have to ask them if it worked.
Anyway back to the main events of the day. We woke up around 5-6 so that we could get all of our stuff situated in the suitcases. Most people had multiple types of things in their bags, so we tried to move everything around so like objects were together. We figured things would be easier to distribute. Emily and I think we had about 8-10 suitcases counting the medical supplies in one.
After breakfast, I realized that I was wearing my glasses instead of my contacts, which would normally be fine. However, when we moved stuff around, I took my hat and some other things out of my bag to make room for more stuff to distribute. So all I had was my sunglasses. Glasses plus sunglasses equals a problem. The other problem was that we were already down at the bottom of the mountain so there was no way that the bus was going to drive me back up. I had about 10-15 minutes so I figured I should start walking aka running. Well the fastest way up the mountain are the stairs I’ve heard rumors that there are about 207-220. . . Idk. There are a lot. I wish I had a picture to show you how steep they are, they literally go straight up, like probably 80-85 degree angle straight up. So I stand there at the bottom after I ran about .25 mile to get to the stairs and I think, I can do this. It was a challenge. At one point I had to get use my arms because it was so steep and I had to keep stopping to breathe, but I made it. Then I had to run a little bit more then go up two more flights of stairs to get to my room. Then I had to go back down. It was probably the most challenging thing physically I’ve done in a long time (probably those 1600 warm-up swims 5 years ago are the only thing I can compare this too. Anyway I not only finished, but I did it in my 10 minutes that I had. The whole time I just kept thinking, I can’t let my team down.
So by the time I got on the bus, I was drenched in sweat and I was ready for a nap.
We went to San Francisco, which is the village we are adopting. It is about 1-2 hours away from Hope of Life and we think it is sort of near the ocean because the land was flat and less mountainous. We were able to drive right into the village which was great. In Pueblo De Rio, we had to walk up hill and down hill with all of our stuff.
Initially driving into our village, it seemed a lot nicer than Pueblo De Rio, there was a gas station, a school, an old church and most houses were made of concrete. I think for a while at the beginning, I was kind of disappointed because it seemed like they didn’t need us. We set up the clinic, like we had been doing. Lots of people were already milling about because they knew that we were coming ahead of time and because the children were getting out of school soon. We also handed out a few healthcare packages before we all took a break for lunch. I know it seems like we didn’t do much, but we wanted to have people go through the clinic first (you’ll see why in a bit). Some of us also played some soccer or baseball with the kids and some people painted nails.
For lunch we had either peanut butter or ham and cheese sandwiches. The great debate started again about whether peanut butter was a proper condiment for sandwiches. I bought some Doritos down at the snack bar earlier at breakfast and I put those on my peanut butter sandwich and had a grand time. Ok though but Doritos in Guatemala do not equal Doritos in the United States. . . The Blue ones are not cooler ranch they are pizza flavored or something, Orange ones equal nacho cheese and the Red Doritos are jalapeno (which is what I had on my sandwich).
After lunch we started setting the shoes out on a table next to the healthcare packets (which I was working on) and some people started another line for toys for the kids. This actually worked pretty well because it kept the lines shorter since the kids were not with their parents the whole time.
This is kind of when the chaos broke out. Shoes, especially kid’s ones, are a hot commodity. The people started freaking out, so I don’t have many pictures. After a while we ran out of healthcare stuff and shoes, so we started put the clothing up on the tables. Again the kids stuff went fast, so did belts for men and bras for women. By this time, the neat lines had turned into a mob. Some of it was, I think, the allure of free stuff, but also afterwards the leader of the village came up to us and said that no one had ever come to their village and that often people forgot about them. So they kept saying that God had sent us, to which we replied, “Yeah God did send us.”
We also passed out pictures of our church congregation to people and we wrote on the back in Spanish, “Our church is praying for you. God loves you.” I think some people really appreciated this and made a point to hug us and tell us that they were praying for us too.
So yeah, that part of today was a really rewarding experience. To see kids getting excited over bubbles and pencils was just really touching. One woman also received some bottles and she started crying. We felt really bad that we ran out of stuff, but it seemed like everyone there got something that they could use. [side note: we did keep a few things back so that we could give them out to the children in Pueblo De Rio; we really felt like there were some things that they were in desperate need of.
After we finished handing everything out, we went over to the christian church, not the catholic one. The church is basically, some cinder blocks and some sticks. It really made me think a lot about our church. We are constantly doing things to improve it and make it look better, when there are people all over the world that are meeting in buildings with dirt floors, if they even have buildings at all. So we met with the Pastor there who told us that they had been praying for us ever since they found out that we were coming. We also took time to pray with him and thank him for the work that he is doing there. I don’t think we could have ended our day there in a better way.
By the end of the day, my attitude toward our village really changed. I found out that their water is trucked in, much like a cistern and ends up being pretty dirty. One woman told us that she sends a tiny bottle of water, like 8 oz. to school with her two daughters so that they have something clean to drink. We also want to get them Bibles. They are literate because they are going to school so this means that they can read Bibles, so we really want to raise the money or have those donated. Also obviously we want to help them build a better church so that they the protestant christians can take pride in where they worship the Lord.
We got back from our village around 5:20 and we ate dinner at 6. Today we had spaghetti with chicken and mushroom cause which was really delicious. Also we had a short devotion then we hit the pool which was much needed. The weather today was verrrrrry humid. We were sweating terribly, so the cool pool felt great.