Back-seat Drivers

Since I was a really little girl I always looked forward to driving. I would pretend to drive all the time and once, I was probably 7, I even made a steering wheel and petals to install in the back seat. I would practice as mom would press the gas and the brake. My dad used to drive a standard car so I would pretend to do the clutch and shift as well. The day I got my drivers' liscense I thought I would never be happier. Not to brag and boast, but I'm relatively certain I am one of the world's top female drivers. Yes, I've run a few red lights, sped a few more times, and had a tiny graze incident with an 18-wheeler, but that was not my fault. I learned how to drive on a Ford F-250. And after driving it for a few years could parallel park it like it was no big deal. Ok. Enough bragging. I'm really just trying establish in your mind that when I'm driving there is no reason to fear for your life...

... Tonight I made my maiden voyage driving in Haiti. We had to run an errand to Bas Limbe to get some supplies for our camp coming up. We've talked about me driving before and everyone seems to be impressed that I have such a cool skill. So we started our journey. Me, Guerline, Boss Varis, Boss Mervil, Johnny, and Windel. Before we got out of the drive way I had a small run-in with a large rock. In my defense, I am not used to large overly monstrous rocks causing me to bottom out... we typically don't have that problem on FM 249. But I did think that maybe not being behind the wheel for 2 months may have made me a little rusty. Whatever, I shook it off.

Once we got on the road that familiar smile came back. The one that I got when I drove for the first time. It kinda creeps up on me and by the time I realize I'm smiling I can't stop. Its actually kindof embarrasing and childish. Whatever, I'm a child. I'm fine with it. We were on the road. I was driving on the wrong side of the road, mainly because there were potholes on my side, and partly because it made me feel like a rebel.

Then the backseat driving began... "Sound your horn." "Go faster!" "See that hole?" "Watch out for the girl on the bike." "slow down." "Don't drive on the shoulder of you'll flip the car over." "Sound your horn." "Sound your horn." "SOUND YOUR HORN."  All of this usually would have made me pull the car over and sarcastically offer for them to drive the car if they think they are so good at it. But here, in a car full of 5 other people that don't know how to drive... that didn't seem like a good idea. Before we even got in the car they all expressed to me the fact that they thought I was going to kill them, except Johnny, he trusted me . I tried to be as sweet as possible and follow their back-seat commands. While we were in our village all the children ran behind us shouting, 'Norel can drive!! NoRel can drive!!" it was adorable. Once we left our village I started getting all the "Blanc" comments. "Haow aaar hough Blanc?" etc.

On the way back from Bas Limbe everyone made comments about how I was a good driver and they weren't scared anymore, but this didn't stop them from back-seat driving . All in all, it was a fun little outing with my friends. I was a little nervous, but I think I did well. There was not much traffic, but it was dark on my way back. So next all I have to do is learn how to manuver in traffic. (I'll let you know how it goes.)

..... AND....Everyone seems to love, (and comment) on the frog stories, so I'll leave you with the last detail of my day. I had just parked the car and everyone was ooing and awing at my parking job (at least that's what they were saying in my head... I wasn't really translating Kreyol at that point...) Everyone had gotten out of the car and I leaned my head out the window to say something and... WET... on my nose. I tried not to panic, and brushed it away a little bit. Laughed to myself, stuck my head back out the window. WET... and crawling... on my nose. Then the panic-startled laugher started. I couldn't figure out what it was or where it when when I flicked it off. Turns out it was a little froggie that loves me. I continued to laugh to myself for about a minute or two thinking how incredibly scared my friend who is afraid of frogs would have been. I'm sure she would have died. So here are my words of widsom for the night... next time you drive, watch out for frogs who decide to jump on your face. And be nice to those in the back-seat... even if they are bossy.

And to all of you who are back-seat drivers.... please stop. Unless you are litterally scared for your life... and speaking Kreyol.


February Update

So much has happened this month! Just looking at the calendar I would have never expected that so much would happen here. It is such a priveledge for me to be here and get a front row seat to all that is going on. AND to be able to tell you all about it. Sometimes the Valcins get so busy with all that they do in their ministry that it is too hard to sit and write a newsletter about it because it would take all month!! Thankfully, God has brought me here, and given me a semi-reliable internet system in order that I can update you on what is going on in the Valcin ministry here in the North. (Now we just need someone to talk about all that is going on in Port Au Prince!)

Church: This month, as I've mentioned before, a lot of things happened in the church. Please continue to pray for those who attended the class that Gersan was teaching about the foundations of Christianity. Please continue to pray for Tolem as Gersan prayerfully considers starting to mentor him into becoming one of the church leaders. Pray also as he tries to start a small buisiness of selling minutes for the telephone, so he can support himself in his ministry. Pray for the current pastor, that he will have a teachable spirit and start acting like a man of integrity as the leader of the church.

Voodoo: Please continue to pray for those who are living in fear and bondage to Satan. There has been a voodoo ceremony going on this entire month almost, and they are still going on, morning, afternoon, evening, night, dawn. You name the time, and they are chanting, shreiking, beating the drums etc. Here is what I know about the ceremony... They have somewhere around 20 chickens 11 goats and at least one cow. They are going to be sacrificing and eating these until the end of the ceremony. The word in the gossip circle around the village is that the voodoo preist is getting rid of all of his voodoo stuff by having a huge ceremony in order that he can become a Christian at the end. However, this is not a good plan. I wish someone would tell him that He needs to just come to Christ if he is going to do that. Please pray that he will come to Jesus. And not wait another minute, because his soul is at stake. (Not to mention that I'm sure those goats,chickens and cows wouldn't mind living longer. AND I could use a decent nights' sleep!)

Click here to read background info on the church and voodoo.

Medical happenings: Last week I asked for prayer for Lèlène and her leg. She went to the hospital in Cap Haitian and spent at least 2 days there. They decided not to do the graft surgery after all because the doctors thought they could save her leg without doing that surgery. As far as I know she is back at home and visiting a nurse daily for wound care. Thank you for your prayers for her! Also, I believe I had mentioned Bebelove and her severely infected eyes.

 I saw her yesterday and her eyes looked beautiful! Praise God! (sorry I didn't get a picture of her beautiful eyes and smile. Next time!)

 One of the men who works here full-time told me last week that his little baby had a burn. When I asked follow-up questions I discovered that she had fallen in some boiling milk and her entire bottom and the back of her thighs were burnt. I told him to call his wife and bring her that afternoon. Thank the Lord for His provision! Last year, He gave me the opportunity to work at Global Outreach International in Titaynen, Haiti. There is a specialty burn clinic there, and I got one day of burn experience before the earthquake, which then gave me lots more burn experience. Little did I know I would be doing much the same thing, without the earthquake setting here in Little Guinea. I have been taking care Krystena (I don't really know how to spell it...), or as we call her NaNa, for about a week now. She is making progress every day!
I was able to call Sheryl, the nurse at Global Outreach and she sent me some more burn supplies, because I was running low on them. Thank God for His goodness and grace. I think NaNa is going to recover well. We are about 2 weeks past the day of the burn and no infection. She is starting to get some of her skin back as well and it is no longer raw and red.

Nana was somewhat unhappy with me when this picture was taken. Burns are incredibly painful and I had just finished soaking and removing some of the dead skin from her burn. But recently she has been much happier. We are not best friends, but I think we might get there one day! Madam Tchaly is adorable. I love her. She is one of those people that I can tell is a good mom! Please continue to pray for NaNa as she heals.

Community projects: A lot has been going on in our village too. Water Missions Haiti has built latrines for several families in the community. This past week the director came and brought some of his team to have a formal ceremony of giving the toilets and doing my favorite thing... Health Education!! They had a wonderful presentation on cholera and general sanitation.

This girl was very articulate and did a wonderful job of explaining throughly and clearly what she wanted to communicate, but also expressing it in a way that someone could understand even without any type of education.

She explained how water gets contaminated with microbes, she explained what microbes were, and what the bad ones will do to you if you get them inside of you, and how to properly wash hands!

I was so happy that this education happened. I haven't been able to do much health ed like I had hoped because my language isn't quite that far along. I have been able to talk to NaNa's mom a lot about the burn, but she is very gracious with me and re-translates things back to me in CORRECT Kreyol, to make sure she understood what I was saying.

On top of doing health education there was a short presentation on the care and keeping of a toilet. Each person recieved a bucket to put clean water in and wash thier hands after they use the toilet, and to use to pour in the toilet to flush it. They were given toilet brushes, soap, a water carrier pouch to drink in the fields or at work, and a containter to carry water in and leave on the counter to drink. A lot of times people here get water in 5 gallon buckets which stay open and stagnant and go bad, but they still drink it.

This is the group shot of everyone who recieve a Each person recieved a latrine.

 I'm so glad that these people have this education and the tools to have better drinking water! The drinking water distribution site is here at Jacob's Well and it has been a joy to see people coming to fill their buckets!


 We gave this man a house at the beginning of the month.
 I'm not exactly sure how this came about, but he is one of our security guards here. He and his wife live in his house along with 7 other people. His house is smaller than the master bathrooms of most of you who are reading this. 10 feet by 10 feet maybe?


9 people live here.

And sleep here.

You can't tell very well from the picture but total in the house there about 4 beds all shoved together. I'm talking like beds without mattresses. Just the frames with wood or wire holding the rags that used to be sheets. People shouldn't live this way, but they do. Praise God that we were able to help this man and his family! The house we are giving him is a lot nicer, and will keep the rain out. And it will not be made of rags. Its still small for 9 people to live in, but it is a gift that they are very thankful for. We have all the materials ready to begin building, but don't currently have money for a slab. The slab will cost about $550 USD.

In conclusion:  God has done so very much this month in our village. There is so much I want to tell you about, but I think this post is about 7 times longer than it should be already. Bottom line... Pray for us. Pray for these people. Pray for their hearts. Pray for their souls. Pray for their bodies. Haiti never ceases to amaze me. And neither do the prayers that our God answers!!!

If  you are interested in donating to our ministry for the slab for this man's house or any of the other projects that we are involved in currently then please email me and I will send you more details: noelle.gonzalez11@gmail.com

I will be writing again soon about some of the other projects that you could donate to if you are interested. Please check back for details!


He's SO good to me!

Sometimes God really blows my mind. Sometimes it doesn't take much for Him to do it. And then I realize that I don't give Him enough credit for being God. I mean, being God is no small responsibility.

So here's what happened today that made me praise my King.

Actually, I'll come back to that.
First... let me tell you about yesterday.

So yesterday I was finishing the last peice of my nursing application. It comes in two parts, if you pass the first part you get the second, and then they tell you if you are in or if you are out. This was the last peice of the second part. Yes I let it hang over my head for this long. Not smart, I know. So this last part of the application is the triple check that I have all my prerequisite classes.... I'll spare you all the gory details and summarize it for you... I realize that I'm MISSING a prereq. Panicked. Panicked some more. Had a minor breakdown on skype with my friend that understands what a pain applications can be. Realized that I had already submitted the part of the application that says I'm not planning on taking classes before nursing school starts. Which disqualifies me from... well everything. The night ended and the best case scenario in my head was that I come home early from Haiti and take a mini-mester of a silly class before nursing school... IF I got accepted, IF I could somehow indicate that I was going to take this class...

It was all very complicated. And I was very dissapointed. This meant that it was very possible that after May 23 I had ZERO plans, I wouldn't be able to be roommies with my long-time roomie and best friend as she planned her beautiful wedding, I wouldn't be able to be in College Station with many of my other friends. I would have no job. I would have no future. etc etc etc.

This led to me considering what God was doing in this situation. He knew before the foundations of the world that I would be having this crisis at this time. He planned for it to happen. He was going to use it for His glory. Maybe I should be considering what He was trying to say. Was it, "Nursing school is not your thing." or, "Try again later." or, "You should look into so-and-so career." or, "Just trust me.... And for heaven's sake please stop freaking out about everything, you psycho!"

I went to bed feeling somewhat dissapointed, but knowing it would work out in the long run.

Ok, back to today...

Today, I got a text from my mom saying, "Your speech class fulfills the requirement for English that you are missing so you are good!!" WHOOP!!!! Praise the Lord!

I had a few follow up questions, so I decided to call the school myself just to be absolutely sure. I'll paraphrase our conversation... "Yes, she is correct. You are all set on prerequisites. And because your mom told me that your iternet is sketchy I went ahead and filled out the rest of your prerequisites on the form and submitted the application for you. So you are all set and don't have to worry about a thing!" (I LOVE this girl! I say girl because she must be young and hip-happenin' to say 'sketchy'.)

God had it all worked out. There was no reason whatsoever to panic. There never is. God is God and He is good! This was a very small thing, but it reminded me of how Faithful He is.

Taste and see that the Lord is good! Psalm 34:8


The Never Ending Rollercoaster...

 Matthew 6: 25-27;33-34... 25 “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? 26 Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? 27 Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life? ...33 But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. 34 Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.

Romans 8:28  " 28 And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose."

Meditating on these verses today. And trying not to worry. He knows my future. Even when it feels like a never-ending bad roller coaster.

PrayUpdated: Bodies [Urgent]

Pray for Léléne Celestin today. Right now. Léléne is 25 years old, lives in Port Au Prince, but is currently undergoing life saving surgery here in Cap Haitian. Pray that the Doctors will have wisdom and she will come through free of infection.

The details: After almost a month of not doing any clinical stuff or first aid, God has brought opportunities to my doorstep to help some girls in the village. Honestly, I was not really looking for these opportunites. I am NOT advertising myself as a clinic or anything, mainly because I know if I do I will have 900 (Not an exaggeration) people at my doorstep with various maladies. Last week, while walking through the village I saw a little 10 year old girl rubbing her eyes. She removed her hands to reveal not one, but two very red, infected eyes. I found out her name, bebe love (I'm thinking this is more of a nickname than actual name.) And told her I would return with some Gentomycin for her eyes. After digging through about 6 suitcases I finally found it and was able to deliver it to her on Friday.  On Sunday, I went to go look for her in the village and see how she was doing. I came across a girl, Erline (age 18), who was limping and had some minor cuts and scrapes on her leg. I asked her what happened and if she had been cleaning it. She told me she was in a motorcycle accident, and no, she wasn't really doing anything about it. So I asked her to stop by later and I would put some bacitratin on it and clean it well. She immediately asked if she could bring her sister, Léléne, who was much worse off than she was. Expecting more cuts and scrapes I said, "Sure! Bring her! See you both later."

Here is their story:

These girls were born in this village. Erline is 18 and has a 2 year old. Léléne is 25. She is finished with school,  she has no money, and no job. She currently lives in Port Au Prince, but she was here visiting her family. The girls were fooling around with some guys and riding on their motorcycles, which led to an accident, because usually when boys show off things get dangerous.  Erline just had some cuts and scrapes, but nothing major. Léléne got hit directly with the other motorcycle. It looks like a chunk of her leg is just missing and the other parts needed lots of stitches. They went to the hospital in Limbe the day of the accident and she got some stitches there. There is a line of stitches above the main wound and a line of stitches below. The accident happened on Tuesday (so 7days ago.) On Friday they got it cleaned and dressed again. On Sunday, I saw Erline in the village walking with a limp and I asked her what happened. She told me that she had been in a moto accident and showed me her scrapes, which looked like they needed to be washed well. I told her to come  see me that afternoon and she said that her sister was much worse, so could she bring her as well? So I told her to come along with her sister.
 When they got there I saw Léléne's foot. It was very swollen and looked extremely painful. I took off the dressings and immediately knew, not only was it out of my scope of knowledge, but she needed some real help. The more I looked at it, the worse it looked. It smelled very bad, and was obviously infected. It was incredibly painful for her when I was cleaning it, and since I didn't have the right equiptment, or knowledge, or sterilization, I didn't want it to get worse. I decided to put an incredible amount of bacitracin on it and told her that I would talk to the doctor's I know and get back with her. But then as I thought about it, I realized she needed to just go to the real hospital. So I told her this is very serious and explained that she needed to go to the hospital first thing in the morning. But I was worried tha because of their money situation they wouldn't do so, but if they didn't I knew she would be indanger of losing her foot. I went and reported to Gersan what I thought and he walked up and said, "She thinks you will have to have your foot amputated."

 Immediate fear. I couldn't believe he said that straight out to her, but then he explained to me that she needed to be scared in order for her to actually take us seriously and go to the hospital. After he walked away they said, "Do you really think I need my leg amputated?!" I told her that I didn't think that she would for sure need to get it amputated, but if she didn't go to the hospital it is likely she would lose her foot. I explained to her that she had a serious infection and it could travel further up her leg and get into her blood, and that if it got into her blood she would die. So while I didn't want her to panic, I kindof did. She neede REAL help. Lots of it. I slathered bacitracin on it and we took her home for the night. Sunday morning Gersan drove her to the Good Samaritan Hospital, a Baptist hospital in Limbe. He sent her with Windel, one of the guys that works here at camp. Windel, is the sportscaster for limbe and a local celebrity, and because he was with her, the hospital took her right away. Gersan said that the hospital was very full today, but because of our local celeb affiliation they treated her immediately and gave her their attention. The doctor gave her some antibiotics for the infection as well as some pain medicine. They cleaned it and dressed the wound again and asked that we take her to the General Hospital in Cap Haitian. But by this time it was getting late and Gersan was not able to take her to Cap Haitian (which is about an hour drive).

They had spent all day at the hospital. Gersan had taken them very early in the morning and didn't pick them up until late. As I mentioned before this is a very poor family, and the reason they didnt go back to the hospital in the first place is because they have no money. They spent ALL DAY at the hospital with nothing to eat because they have no money at all. When Gersan went to pick them up tonight he gave Windel money to go buy food for them. Then Gersan took the hospital bill and drove them home for the night. She needed to be spending the night in the hospital so she could be monitored and given pain medicine, but more often than not, what you need in this country isn't what actually happens. This morning, before I even thought about being awake, Gersan took Léléne to the General Hospital in Cap Haitian and left her with enough money to pay for her hospital stay and a ride back home. tomorrow. Today, probably right now, she is undergoing surgery to remove all the dead and infected skin from the wound. They will also be taking a skin graft from her upper thigh to place on her leg to reduce scarring and help it heal.

This surgery is saving her life.

The village is very impressed with the way that we handled this situation. They had all been talking about the girl, but doing nothing because they knew the family had absolutely nothing. Gersan already held a tremendous amount of respect from the people here, but I think this guesture, really showed them a new part of his heart. And God's heart. Praise Him that we were able to help.

-Pray for the doctors
-Pray for Léléne
-Pray for her family


Prayer Update: Souls

So much has happened this week that I barely know where to begin.

Since I've already talked about the church and the voodoo drums I'll start there.

Church: Gersan's class has gone so well! Praise the Lord! Thank you for all your prayers! However, it is not over so please keep praying, as it is always a struggle here to speak truth into the lies that they have believed for so long! Gersan had taught them about Eternal Security and they understand it in the classroom, but then when you apply it and say, "If you got angry and went to bed angry and you died in the night. What would happen to you?" They will all respond that you've lost your salvation.Pray that we can break through the traditional thoughts with the truth.
There were, on average about 20 people that were attending the class. The core-group of the church. They are committed to learning and gowing, but there are daily struggles in life, and with the class. For example, the pastor of the church here has not been attending, and is therefore not learning the same things as the people. In this culture, it is very common to teach Bible plus tradition. The pastor here is doing just that. Pray that he will begin attending these classes so that he will learn and have a better foundation to speak only the truth. The plan was to have an all-day class this past Saturday, but there was a death in the village. In this village almost everyone is related in some way to the Colas family. On Friday, Grandpa Colas passed away, which meant that 98% of the class was attending the funeral because they are all his grandchildren. This caused the class to be cut short a little bit, but God is still being glorified... On Sunday, Gersan was a little bit late to the foundations class, and he said when he showed up one of the young men was doing a review of everything they had learned in the two previous classes. Including answering questions and drawing diagrams that Gersan taught with. This man's name is Tolem, he is 24 years old and has a hunger for the truth of the gospel. Pray that God will continue to grow him into a leader of integrity and truth. He is already doing so much for the church, he leads a prayer meeting every morning, he works with the kids on Sunday afternoons, and helps lead worship on Sunday mornings. He has enormous potential and Gersan is hoping to start discipling him into becoming a more godly, and strongly rooted, leader.

-Pray for Tolem.
-Pray for the class and the truths they are learning.
-Pray for the Colas family as they mourn their loss. (I'm not 100% sure, but I do think he was a believer, so Praise God for that!)

Voodoo: A lot of you have sent me messages and questions about the voodoo priest and the ceremony that has been going on. To be truthful, I'm not really sure what is going on. But, I'll tell you what I do know, and what I think. The ceremony started on Monday afternoon. The voodoo priest was doing this ceremony for himself, but those from the village came to participate. He had somewhere around 20 chickens, 10 goats and a cow that he was going to offer to the spirits. Not to mention lots and lots of rum and alcohol. This is why the village attended! They offer the animals to the spirits, but my understanding is that they still eat the animals. In a country where everyone is suffering from protien deficient malnutrition, they are not silly enough to totally waste that much meat! The ceremony lasted all week long. There were many nights that the drums and chanting didn't stop until around 5am, and there were a few nights that they didn't stop at all.
There was speculation in the village about why? Why did he do that? Why was it all week? Why did he offer EVERYTHING he had and now has nothing left? Is it because he wants to come to Christ? He's been telling Gersan for a long time now that he wants to become a Christian, but he is being held back by fear and lack of faith. Fear of the spirits and what they will do to him if he leaves them for Jesus. And lack of faith that God can not only protect him, but provide what he needs without the income of voodoo. People in the village said that he was about to become a Christian, but he wanted to make the spirits happy first. He wanted them to be full of meat and drunk, so they would not bother him anymore and they would willingly let him go. But that is not the way to become a Christian. Jesus takes you right where you are. You don't need to clean your life up, you don't need to appease the spirits. They are going to be unhappy no matter what you do, because they do not love you and they do not care about you. Gersan was planning on saying all of this to him this week, but then things came up, and got busy, and Gersan also decided that he didn't want to be seen around the vicinity of the ceremonies. Gersan said another possibility is that this man will die soon if he doesn't come to Christ. Now he has fattened up the spirits and given them lots of things, but now that they have more they will expect more. He gave away everything he had for this ceremony, so if the spirits come back asking for more he will have nothing to give, except his life.

-Pray for this man. Pray for his heart. Pray that God gets him. Pray that he gets Jesus!
-Pray for this village. That they will be released, one soul at a time, from the fear that grips them so tightly!

There are so many more things to talk about, but I realize that most of you have not read many of the words in this post. This was much longer and wordier than I would have liked, but I wanted  you to have the details!
 Please pray for these people. And look for my other updates coming in the morning!


Saturday: Week in Review

Well I haven't been online much this week because my internet has been so painfully slow. Also, my dad and sister, Grace have been here all week, so we've been hanging out too! I've enjoyed them being here so much. They brought a little bit of home with them along with lots of laughs.... and chips and salsa!!

The weather has been strange this week. Pouring rain. It has made lots of mud that slowly and steadily crept into my house. This morning I did some major cleaning because I just couldn't handle it anymore.

My dad has been such a help around camp. He built 5 amazing picnic tables, some really awesome shelves for our storage area, and designed a linen closet for all the sheets and blankets that we are beginning to accumulate. I'm so glad that he got to come and meet the people I spend my time with and see where I am and what is actually going on here. Unfortunately, because of the rain, the school was closed or finished early every day, so I only had class once this week. They got to meet my older, and much smaller class and observe me teaching a class.

Gracie has been so fun to have around too! He has been helping me with random things that need to be done, and provides the humor to get me though the day. Today at breakfast she made me laugh so hard I almost choked on my peanut butter. She happily made valentines for my entire class on Wednesday afternoon, but then when we showed up for school all the kids were gone. I am planning on giving them their valentines on Monday, but I wish they could all formally meet Gracie and my dad too! The other nice thing about Gracie being here is that she is taking lots of pictures!! Which I love!

Last Saturday I traveled to Port Au Prince, so that I could be there to pick them up from the Airport. I think this was my first time to travel solo in this country, but it went really well. Thankfully my Kreyol is getting better. While we were waiting for my plane to leave I decided to bust out the camera and take some photos. Last week I printed some pictures that I had on my camera of me, and some of the other team members with some of the Haitian Staff here. I didn't realize how everyone else would get jealous... or at least pretend to be. So here is the picture I'll be printing out for Boss Varis... along with the one from when he retrieved my keys!

On Sunday afternoon after getting Daddy and Gracie from the airport. Gracie ran so fast to hug me that she forgot to not headbutt me in the process. Although it gave me a headache, I took it as a compliment, and a sign that she missed me!

This is Tuesday afternoon preparing for school. I made Daddy and Gracie help me make Valentines for my students. I printed out a few Bible verses on paper and then we decorated!!

Jan 3:16 "Paske, Bondye sitèlman renmen lèzòm li bay sèl Pitit li a pou yo. Tout moun ki va mete konfyans yo nan li p'ap pedi lavi yo. Okontrè y'a gen lavi ki p'ap janm fini an."

1 Jan 4:7  "Mezanmi, se pou nou yonn renmen lòt paske renmen soti nan Bondye. Moun ki gen renmen nan kè yo, se pitit Bondye yo ye. Yo konnen ki moun Bondye ye."

1 Jan 4:10 "Men kisa renmen an ye: Se pa nou menm ki te renmen Bondye, se li menm pito ki te renmen nou, ki te voye Pitit li a pou nou te ka resevwa padon pou peche nou yo, gremesi Pitit la."

I decided to teach on family relationships in honor of my family being there. I taught them words like Mom, Dad, Brother, Sister, Cousin, Grandma, Uncle, etc. Whenever I got to Uncle and explained that Bobby, (who is wildly popular in the village) is my Uncle they were all beside themselves with excitement. So, Uncle Bobby, if you are reading this, please know that you are missed...and they may all call you "Uncle Bobby" instead of "Bobby" from now on.

I know it looks like I am forcing these little girls to take a picture with me... We are still working on smiling for photos instead of frowning.

Or maybe they just like Gracie better?
On wednesday I showed up to teach school, (with 60 valentines that Gracie made) only to find out that they were let out early, so everyone was gone. We stayed and played with the 5 or so kids that were there for a while, then decided to  head home. While we were there I was taught the ancient game of "roll the wheel using only the stick." I'm really pretty terrible at it... If we are being honest.

Also this week I got to learn how to make the best jam/jelly in the world. It is made out of the rind of grapefruit, and I am obsessed with it. I've been dying for Alicia to show me how to make it for like 3 weeks now, and yesterday and today she showed me... Here are a few pictures that I made Gracie take, (So glad she's here!), along with some basic directions. These are not exact. TIH.

Soak rinds in water overnight, or until they are a little clear-ish.

Squeeze excess water out of rinds and set rinds aside.

Add a ridiculous amount of sugar (about 5 cups). Maybe that's why it tastes so good!
I'm not sure wheather this sugar is white or brown. Its the color brown, but has the consistency of normal sugar... like beige sugar maybe?
Add about 5 cups of water, stir together and put on to boil. I'm not sure how long these were left to boil, but it was until it had the right consistency for jam/jelly. Not too soupy, but not too thick either.

It has been a wonderful week and, like I said, I have immensly enjoyed having my family here. They have been a total blessing!

I'll be posting a prayer update very soon.
Be looking! Thank you for all your prayers!


10 on Tuesday... errr. Friday: Guest post

Since my lovely seester is here I've decided to let her guest post!!! Suprise!
Gracie, I love you and I'm excited to share my blog with you!

So I would just like to say that this week has been fantastic! I could not imagine a better week! Noelle has been super fantastic and I can really tell she cares for the people of Ti Guinea. It is so fun to watch her talk with the people and see her laugh and joke in a completely different language! Pretty crazy:) (Every time Noelle walks by kids that can see her, they all start shouting "noelle! NOOelle! noELLE! NOELLE NOELLE NOELLE!!!" Cutest thing ever!) ('nother side note: I have earned the title of Ser Noelle..aka sister of Noelle...I am pretty pumped about that one!) Okay, enough of the pre-blog! Here it goes!!!

1. First day in Limbe, Noelle, Dad, and I hiked up the "small" hill to see Noelle's house! This picture cannot even begin to show you the vastness and beauty of God's creation! So AWESOME!!

2. I don't know if you have heard, but a picture is worth a thousand words.

 3.  The first and last day we got to see Noelle teaching at school. It was incredible to see her connect and teach these kids! Also, when I say kids I really mean,"individuals ranging anywhere from eight years old to twenty-two." TIH.

 4. At school, Noelle had her students read the Bible verses we had glued to the Valentines we had made them. This particular one was John 3:16, it is incredible to see truth being confessed in "Every tongue and tribe.."

 5. SHE WAS ROASTING COFFEE! This was just awesome! I don't know if I have ever in my life smelled anything so delicious!

 6. During a tour of the entire camp, we picked up a small following of "little friends". On the way down the mountain, this little boy grabbed my arm and kept helping me down the steep places. SO ADORABLE!

 7. On Wednesday, school got canceled because of the rain, and we got to play for a little while with a group of kids. :)

 8. This little girl's name was "Bebilov" (sp?), she was absolutely precious! She has an eye infection right now, and Noelle is going to give her something for it tomorrow. It will be nice to see her again before I leave, but her eyes look like they are causing her a great deal of pain. Please be praying for her!

 9. I don't know of you can see in this picture, but this girl has the cutest dimples I have ever seen! She was a sweetheart!

10. My little friend from picture 9 and Bebilov would not let go of my hands on the walk back to camp. I didn't really mind though.  :)



Prayer update: Solid Foundations

It's 3:36 am.

Yes you read that right. Earlier it was torrentially raining and my internet wasn't working. When I say torrential I am not kidding. I was shouting at my sister, Grace, who was less than a foot away, because of the noise. When the rain stopped I think the silence woke me up... or the almost silence.

Drums. Chanting. This appears to be the marathon of voodoo ceremonies. Currently they are somewhere between hour 12 and 13. I'm actually really suprised they didn't stop for the rain!

Because I'm up, and because the rain stopped, (but really because I'm so excited about it) I figured I'd do a short ish update on what is going on here spiritually.  I am so excited for this upcoming week and would love for those of you that see this to commit to daily praying for the church here!

Gersan, the pastor that I am partnered with is here in the village this week and will be going through a foundational class with the church members and others who are interested!! I can't even begin to tell you how much they need this. This is a very basic, but important class that Gersan teaches in Port Au Prince to the baptism class in order to be sure that people understand and have a good, solid foundation in Christ. But here, he is doing it with the whole church!

Here is where the church is now: They have a body of members that loves the Lord. They really do. They Love Jesus and call Him their Savior, and love that God is their Father. But the vast majority of them have no idea what any of that means. They don't know why they need a Savior, they don't know that you can't lose your salvation. They think that Salvation is by works and baptism, and they don't understand grace and faith. They are not recieving sound biblical teaching from their pastor, nor is he setting a half decent example of living a life of integrity and character. He is muddling the gospel and honestly has told some of us that he would rather be doing other things than pastoring this church. To add to the problem, many people in this area cannot read, and if they can its only Kreyol. The Kreyol Bible is not the best translation, in many ways it is more of a paraphrase or interpretation like the Message, and so they do not have the resources to feed themselves God's word, but are relying on the church, which is not delivering well. And there are many other struggles that they face as well.

I have been praying since I got here that God would raise up a man who fears God ONLY, who lives and breathes God's word. A man with leadership and boldness, with love and wisdom, someone who can speak the truth to these people and love them fiercely. I have been praying for a man of integrity to rise up from this village and shepherd and disciple this flock. Someone who will pour God's word into their hearts and help them gain a firm foundation. Their houses are built not on rock, but on sand. And, as we have seen tonight, the rain does come! (and so do the earthquakes! but not tonight thankfully)

How to Pray: This week, while Gersan is here he will be teaching this foundational class. His first class took place tonight and he said there were about 20 people there. Pray for him, and for the students as they walk through this class together. After class tonight Gersan said that one of the most difficult things may be for him to go slow enough to make sure that everyone understands.
This is a class with NO spiritual background in truth, but rather lies and distortions of truth. Even after hearing the truth it is very hard to change the thinking and ideas that people have had for years and years. Pray for wisdom for Gersan, and for open and soft hearts towards the truth for the people. Thankfully truth shines greater, peirces further, and stands stronger than lies. Gersan is a man that loves the Bible more than anyone else I've ever met. He loves God and loves truth. Pray that God will give him wisdom to speak truth into their hearts. Pray for the body, and for each individual. Pray that they will understand! One of the beautiful things about Christ is that faith, while we make it so hard sometimes, is really so simple! Pray that they will grasp that. Pray that God will be raising up in this village a man, after God's heart, full of truth and wisdom, and love and patience.

Just pray.
If you want to commit to praying (and getting your friends to pray too, hint hint!) it would greatly bless me, the Valcins, and most of all the church body of Ti Guinea. I would love to know that you are praying daily! I promise to post more updates as the week goes on. Leave a comment or Facebook me and let me know that you are praying!

Also, it is 4:19 and appears that the voodoo ceremony is over. That aspect of life here is a million prayer requests as well. But for tonight, I'm finished.



Rain Check...

Due to an enornous amount of rain, and internet the pace of a paralyzed snail, we are going to call a rain check for the 10 on Tuesday.

But I do have an exciting suprise for you when the monsoon subsides. Check back for updates!

And while you are at it pray for my house to stop leakin on Gracie's bed, and not have any more leaks. And also for all my Haitian friends tonight, who I know are getting very wet!


Kè Bondye

There is somthing so cool about God. (I think that is the most elementary statement about God I have ever made. And cool doesn't seem like the right word, but its all I got right now.)

 I have been so blessed to experience and know God in a different way here.  Here his name is Bondye. I really and truely MET Bondye here in Haiti on January 13th, 2010. Exactly one year and one month ago today as a matter of fact! I had just spent the entire day living in mass heartache and pain, both physical and emotional. The day ended with me watching a beautiful teenager die in my arms, and watching her boyfriend as he freshly grieved his loss. I left the clinic that night and didn't know how to feel. My heart was broken, But I wasn't feeling a pain I had felt before. I started to pray, but didn't know where to start...this is what came out... Sobbing... "Oh Bondye!"... More sobbing. A garbled half Kryeol, half English, all sobbing prayer came out. And as I was praying to Bondye about how sad I was and how could this happen to people I loved so much and didn't even know... I realized He CREATED them. Loves them and KNEW this was going to happen. I realized I was not praying to my white skinned, middle-class God, but the God of Haiti. The God of all of this.

This is something I knew in my head, but its like reading about or seeing pictures of a beautiful beach, and then actually going there... two very different things!

This past week I have gotten to spend some more time with Bondye. Remember how my kids at class on Thursday were telling me that I spoke Kreyol well? Well after class they asked if I would pray in Kreyol to finish up class. Nervously I started, "Good afternoon, Bondye. Thank you for this day. Thank you for my class. Thank you for each student here. Thank you that they are all so smart. I'm so happy to be here. Thank you for me being here. I love you. Amen." (I don't really know how to pray ask for things, so it was all thank you's... which is kinda cool!) But afterwards, I realized that I just prayed my first, full Kreyol, non sobbing prayer in all words that made sense and blessed my students. It is so neat to see differents sides of God's heart!

Today in Church we sang :
"Notre Dieu est un Dieu Puissant
Il règne au dessus des cieux
avec sagesse, puissance, amour
Notre Dieu es Dieu puissant.
(Our God is an Awesome God.)

It took my breath away. Partially because the lady next to me was singing her heart out, and she had an INCREDIBLE voice. It was just so great. It was another moment that I really felt like God was not just God, but he was also Bondye.

I'm praying for more opportunities to get to know God's heart... Kè Bondye!

Because it is Beautiful.


Things I loved about today...

This post is going to be a little choppy. I wrote it all day in my head, but then when I actually sat down to write it I forgot it all... neat. Thanks for that, brain.

-Today I woke up and we did our daily phone devo with Gersan. Today's was especially good and I really enjoyed it!

- I worked on cleaning the office some and re-organizing random stuff. Put things in the shelves, didn't like them that way, so I rearranged them, then realized I liked them better the first way so I put them back... Everyone looked at me like I had lost my mind. I honestly kinda love that look. haha.

-School went well today!! That's 4 days in a row!!!!

-I showed up to school and all the kindergartners start chanting my name, "NoRel, norel, norel!" Then they started chanting something about being afraid of "blancs". Turns out there is a little girl who is scared of white people and they were making fun of her. Which is pretty sad. I'm going to try to not be terrifying and become her friend!

-At school I could understand the side conversations and joined in jokingly... Much laughs all around. Because of this I was told that I speak better Kreyol than Jack (one of the guys from Frontier Camp that just finished spending a lot of time here and is wildly popular in the village.) I've been told my entire trip thusfar about how good he speaks Kreyol. Today they told me I was better... Which of course, started a fight. the classroom quickly divided between who thought I spoke better and who thought Jack spoke better. Just to be thorough I took a vote. Want to hear the results? Jack=3.  Noelle=16... I took that as a win!

-There was a young woman who showed up at the end of school and was SHOCKED that I was speaking kreyol. She didn't know me before today and she kept laughing and saying, "wow! wow!" "she speaks kreyol!" "wow! she speaks everything in Kreyol!" So cute to see her reaction.

-I got told that my hairy legs were pretty!! DOUBLE WIN! Dear future husband, I might not shave my legs often. Hope that's ok. The Haitians think its pretty. Thanks, and Gig'em!

-I talked a lot today about random things that have no real need to be discussed. For example, I explained how people in Texas have accents, and people from different parts of the US talk different and treat people differently. I also explained the concept of "cowboys." That was fun! Dad, she is excited to meet a cowboy!

-One thing I'm loving about this minute is that my skype is working!! (notice I said minute, not day... there is no guarantee here.) It has been down for the past few nights and is finally alive!

-Last but certainly not least.... My dad and sister, Grace are coming to see me on Sunday!! The whole village is excited, but no one as much as me!! Love you guys!!


Laundry Lessons

A while back I texted my mom this message, "I'm going to start a list of lessons I learn here. Lesson number one: check the weather before doing laundry in a country where you rely on clotheslines"

Well... Today I learned lesson two.

When you leave your clothes on the line overnight shake them out because animals sometimes make them their new home.

Ever found a big frog in your bra??

....I have.

I love this place... I love it even more when my bras are frogless, but it provided a good laugh nonetheless.

remmeber this post!? Glad it wasn't in her bra!

(Have I said "bra" too many times in one post for this to be considered comfortable reading? Are any of you blushing? I hope so.... I'll try not to do this again.)


10 on Tuesday week 3

Well hello, my lovely friends.
Today. Sadly, I forgot that it was camera day until just now. (I know you are thinking, "NOELLE. Its 3 o'clock! You have plenty of time!"  But I don't. I only have 2 moreish hours of daylight. I considered doing 10 on Wednesday, but that just isn't as catchy. So we are back to word pictures.

One of these days I'll do it right!

1. Every morning when we wake up, before we start our day we all crowd around Boss Varis' speaker phone and Gersan prays for each of us, and for our day. He has also started doing a little devotional from a book he likes. Its such a sweet way to start the day. Knowing that we are prayed for, and that we are all on the same page together. Its like Sr. Staff meeting at Frontier Camp, (but shorter and earlier!)

2. Today's morning consisted of preparing the office for a makeover. I got help from Boss Tchaly in taking down the bed and moving it next door. I thnk I have removed all the bedding and placed them in a spot all together. Tomorrow I will begin the nitty gritty of sorting and placing things on our fine shelves that Frontier Camp built when they were here.

3. Also, my day has been full of conversation. I have been blessed to have had a few random skype and fb chat conversations along with some phone convos with Betty and my dad. Last night I was feeling a little far away from home, but then this morning I got a fb email from a dear friend giving me all the details of her life. Even one's that aren't important or even really relate to either of us... example: "so-and-so. (a mutal friend) got a haircut."   I love still knowing the details of everyone's lives. So if you ever need to word vomit details of your life on someone... I am your girl!!

4. Remember how last week I was discouraged about school not going well? Well, today I showed up for school and the little kindergartners (who aren't even in my class ran up to me and shouted, "Goodmorning! How are you? What is your name?") I know they didn't understand what they were saying because they ALL know my name. When I walk by I honestly feel bad for thier teachers, the entire class is disrupted because someone, always, without fail gets the whole class chanting, "Norell. Norell, NOrell." sometimes they chant my name along with other words, but I haven't yet figured out what they are saying.

5. Speaking of school... The last two days have gone very well. My first, second, and third graders had a blast with "Head, Shoulders, Knees, Toes" yesterday to learn our body parts, but I had to edit the words a little. They were getting confused by the "head AND shoulders. knees AND toes." Thought that and was part of the body part. Once the ANDs were omitted it was smooth sailing. Thankfully I have learned the value of a little friendly girl-boy competition at Frontier Camp and so, of course we split the boys and girls and had some competition to see who could sing the loudest AND pronounce the words correctly.
A-D-O-R-A-B-L-E. Today went well with my Fourth, Fifth, and Sixth graders as well. No singing for these kiddos (I say kiddos... most of them are my age or a little younger.) But they did learn them all. We practiced pronouncing things correctly and then had a quiz... They did wonderfully! I was so happy! Thank you God for giving me smart kids!

6. I really wish my camera was around for this one. I can't adequately describe this to you... So... I'm getting all the materials ready for Janet (the lady who comes in the evening to cook for me). I pull the tomato paste out of the icebox (which has not been refridgerated for over a week.) But the tomato paste has been open, left in the can, and put back into the ice box.... Ok. So I go to get it out.... Black Fuzz. Lots of it. around the top of the can. Open the can... (any normal individual would have gagged, but my science brain and the past month in Haiti has really decreased my gag reflex. Y'all. I have never seen this much mold anywhere. Not even in a science lab. it was A LOT. I exclaim that the paste is not good and Janet looks at me in horror. *rough translation* "oh don't panic, its FINE! I'll just scrape off this stuff and it'll be good as new." So... I'm eating sauce made with that tomato paste tonight. I hope I don't have any adverse reactions to the new floura I am introducing to my system.

7. So speaking of food... today Guerline went to the doctor in Cap Haitian, to get some medicine. She came back with a funny little bag of... something. It looked like... something... I don't even know. White and brown. I could see that it was hard chunks of some sort of cresent shaped thing. It is about 1.5 inches thick. (I'll save some and take a picture).. anyway... one of the strangest things I've ever eaten. At the beginning it has the consistency of sand and tastes like nothing, then it tastes like a mini wheat (you know the cereal), then it turns into a toothpaste consistency and tastes like vanilla cake mix. Very... interesting.  Its called 'bon bon amidon" Bon bon just means candy or snack... and apparently this is made from the same plant as cassava... Which I am planning on taking a picture of soon. Cassava is quickly becoming my comfort food/ after school snack, but its pretty healthy I think. Just a plant. Can't wait for next week when I have homemade Haitian peanut butter!

8. Tala washed my clothes today. When she was finished she came up and told me she was finished and that my underwear looked pretty on the line... "Ummm... Thank you? They are pretty much standard underwear..." I'm glad that's out there for all to see... maybe she meant that as a collective whole my clothes looked pretty on the line... I'll never know.

9. Preparing my lesson for tomorrow. Trying to think of songs or games to teach colors. Could be a short lesson. But I'll probably add some body parts that weren't covered in the song from Monday. I'm considering some sort of matching game or "hide and seek" type... we'll see...

10. Currently listening to my current favorite artist, Joshua Radin (google him. fall in love. I dare you. I even made it super easy for you), serenade me while I am talking to my mom on skype. Miss my momma. She is the best. She loves me so much that sometimes its overwhelming.. which, if you think about it, is ok! Talking to her on skype is always a joy and an experience. Partially because my internet situation is an experience all on its own, and partially because of my mom's relationship. One minute we will be talking about something serious and the next I'm trying not to wake up Guerline because I am laughing so much... MoMo, I miss being able to call you ever SECOND I think of something random to tell you, or texting you randomly throughout the day the funny things that happen in my life. YTB!

Here's to actually having photos in my next 10 on Tuesday!


Be still. live life.

One of the things that am learning here is to be still. To live life as it comes and not make things happen. To be content to LIVE here. I'm learning and seeing more and more that I am not on a "mission trip", but I have simply been called to live this chapter of my life here. It seems like a very short chapter. I'm almost a quarter of the way finished with it. In some ways I miss things back home, but in some ways I never want to go back to the states. The people here are slowly becoming my family for now. They will never EVER replace my family and friends back home, but for now they are my family.

This weekend was definitely a picture of what life is like. There was no work this weekend. Just life and laughs.

On Saturday we decided to hike the mountain in the backyard. I was so excited. I had hiked it once before and it is one of the most beautiful places I've seen. Where else can you see mountains, valleys, and the ocean in one glance? Not Texas... So because of the beauty this is a photo heavy blog... enjoy.

I mentioned the other day that I had found and claimed the land for my future house. As we were climbing the mountain I stopped to take some snapshots from my future porch!



Before long Guerline was tired and ready for a break.
(Also, for those of you who have read my last few blogs and seen the pictures... she does change clothes... but she has like 4 yellow shirts... hence the appearance that she doesn't change.)

Our fearless leaders... waiting for me and Guerline. The entire time Guerline was complaining... why are you running? Why are you walking so fast? Slow DOWN!! This only encouraged them to walk faster... thanks guys.

I don't know if you can see it clearly, but there is a black snake in the tree in the middle of the picture. Guerline had already expressed her fear of seeing a snake on the mountain (apparently there are different snakes up there than down here... the ones that live there are more scary like cobras... I think its a rumor.) But since neither of us are fans of snakes I told her I'd bring along the machete. Yes, I a whole mountain with a machete strapped to my back. I felt a little awesome... not gonna lie. But when it came time to kill the snake we decided against it, because it was peacefully in a tree, and to kill it I would have had to lean over and risk falling down the mountain.... into the snake tree. Since it was essentially doing us no harm we decided to let it live.

View from the ALMOST top!
Again. Our fearless leaders. Jonny (R) and Herman (L)
(I'm pretty sure that is the American spelling of their names... not the Haitian one.)

Happy to be almost there.

At this point. Once Guerline has sat down it was all over. She broke out her sugar cane and declared that she wasn't going any further. We were probably no further than 300 yards away. If that far. But she had decided it was over.... So alas, we didn't finish the climb. We turned around here. I wanted to give her some tough encouragement, which is needed sometimes for mountain climbing, but didn't know the correct words in Kreyol without sounding mean... oh well. Maybe next time

This is the view from the point that we turned around. If you look carefully you can see the ocean, and, if you've been here before and know our island you can see that too.

At this point we were descending. This is not my favorite. I am bad at going back down and almost fall with every 3rd step. They made a walking cane for me and then made fun of me because they said I looked like a blind grandma with my cane... and insisted on taking a picture... thanks guys.

On the way down

Happy to be going back down!

Not as happy to be going back down, but couldn't resist the urge to Gig'em!

Once we were back at camp we decided to make ourselves a little afternoon snack... after all, what's better to eat after climbing a mountain than sugar?

These guys are professional marshmellow roasters.

And eaters.

Guerline had never had a marshmellow in her life... much less a S'more... needless to say she was pleasantly suprised.

We spent the afternoon napping and drinking colas in our hammocks.  
Oh Jesus, thank you for this beautiful day!!

Sunday was much like Saturday in the resting aspect of things. I went to church, which made me a little sad. It was great to worship God in another language, but after a month without my churches back home I'm really missing them. In Tomball I have started to feel like part of the Redeemer Bible Church family and have been so blessed by the love for Christ and for each other that the body has. In College Station I recently became a member of New Life church, and the people there have blessed me so much. A few of my young mommy friends from New Life have just had babies or are about to give birth and it makes me sad that I'm not around. I was plugged in to two very healthy, God loving, people loving, Bible loving, church loving churches, and now I'm not. I am in a church where I don't understand much, and I'm stared at the whole time. Ever move I make is watched by someone or another. I can't even find the songs in the hymnal, so my neighbor has to help. I miss being able to sing my heart out to Jesus, cry if I need to, close my eyes and still know all the words, and know that those around me aren't staring and whispering to their neighbor about me.
(These are just things that I miss. I am not saying I want to come home or that I hate it here. Please don't worry about me!)
I am so thankful for technology, and have been listening to podcasts on sunday mornings from my church.

Sunday afternoon rolled around at Tala came by to say hello. She asked if we could go "upstairs" to the little hill that overlooks the valley. Guerline had some sugar cane that her dad brought for us, and so we went upstairs to watch the sunset. As we sat and watched the sun set the only noise "cruch, slurp, chew, slup, swallow, crunch, spit" repeat of us eating our sugar cane. (If you have never personally chewed on sugarcane that is what it sounds like... and I highly reccomend that you try some soon)

This was our sunset.  Mostly fog. But we enjoyed looking at the valley. This valley looks different every day.
 God never ceases to amaze me with His beauty.
These two are currently some of the sweetest blessings in my life.
 Guerline is on the left. Tala on the right.
Trying from another angle. Not quite successful at getting all of us, but this adequately captured our joy.

Thank you, Jesus for sweet friends!


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