I was fortunate to have a very blessed time at home, spending time with my immediate family in SC and extended family in LA as well as friends in Nashville, Charolotte, and Atlanta. I was able to rest ALOT and am very thankful. I showed my video quite a bit and had the opportunity to share the things God is doing here in Moz and what the culture's like to over 200 people. I even visited my sister's 1st grade class and showed them how to carry a baby on your back, amongst other things. and....I saw snow!
my sister and brother
I had some generous donations and was able to purchase quite a few needed things. The Lord protected my baggage and I managed to bring about 50 lbs worth of donations all for the very small price of $50....especially since 3/4 of that was over the wt limit once I got to London. I brought back: 5 medical books to help me out a little (1 on peds in 3rd world countries, 1 on tropical medicine, 1 on HIV care, 2 on community medicine in developing countries); an otoscope for looking in dirty & infected ears; a pulse oximeter, to better monitor my kids in respiratory distress; a child and infant BP cuff; a throat scope kit for better looking in tiny mouths; 2 bottle of liquid bandages; 1 of infant tylenol and peidalax; 6 bottles of glucose gel for diabetic emergencies; a baby care kit; 13 tubes of desitin; 7 tubes of teething gel; 2 infant toothbrushes and toothpastes; 5 giant bottles of children's muli-vitamins; 4 baby washclothes; 10 infant socks; 14 onesizes; 4 baby blankets; 4 bottles of baby bodywash; 12 pairs of toddler underroos; 8 toothbrushes; 12 baby spoons; 10 empty pill boxes (for keeping straight HIV meds); 4 tubes of neosporin; 2 child friendly reusable cold packs for bumps and bruises; 2 boxes of cartoon bandaids; 1 acewrap; 1 box of butterfly bandaids; and 2 boxes of sterile gauze. It sounds like a lot....cause it WAS! I praise the Lord it all made it safely. Every single thing! Oh and me too!
- I stopped in London with a close friend and we had a blast....and I got an extended visa....1 yr with a 90 day exit (i only have to vacate the country every 90 days) whoohoo!
- I came back and found out the my perfect angels remained just that way while i was gone. They would NEVER greet me this way......ok so they didn't (exactly) but i saw a lot of this last wk and just thought it was hysterical. yes, i laugh at temper tantrums. some of them are very good at them. needless to say. they don't work on me and they stop pretty quickly, but they have to try every now and then. here's just a few i caught on camera and my interpretation of each:
- Dionisio is CRAWLING everywhere and sitting up on his own from a laying position. It's great to see him interacting so much.
- Latifo (who was admitted just before I returned to Moz) came home from the hospital and he is blossoming! He is hiv + and severely malnourished. We have been told he is in full blown ends stage AIDS. I'm choosing to trust the Lord to heal this little one and not to believe this death sentence. He has gained 1.5 kg (3.3 lbs) in the last 8 days. We are doing more tests. He is quite the ham too.
This first picture is his last day in the hospital (march 19th) and the 2nd (below), was taken 2 days ago. Look at the improvement already.
me and Latifo. He only speaks shygunna (tribal language) and by speak, i mean he understands. He doesn't speak it yet....but he's learning portuguese and he signs for pick me up. too cute. also, he learned how to da cinco (give me five!).
The next one is a fun bercario picture....now here's a game: Guess the ages of these kids? No cheating! L to R: Lucilia is 6 months and almost 20 lbs. She's going on a diet as we speak. Dionisio is 14 months and also 20 lbs. Latifo is 2.5 yrs old and is 13 lbs in this picture (10.5 lbs in the hospital pic). And last but not least, Lucia is 12 months and weighs in at about 17 lbs. Moral of the story: appearances are decieving!
- the other Erin nurse left for the States permanently. Anna, a nurse from Holland (I hope I have that right) and a student finishing her Bachelor's degree in nursing while interning here, is helping for 6 months, in her place. Please pray for a permanent missionary to fill this spot! It is a big need!
- We got a new little girl Rosa (well she actually arrived right before I left, but there wasn't space at the moment and we had tons of admits in a row, so she went to the girls dorm for a bit...but now she's living with us). She's 3 and sweet! don't have her back ground yet, but I know she has other siblings living with us in the center.
Tower Bridge in London
In London at dusk with the Eye behind me
at Stonehenge with Jackie
Jackie and I at the Eiffel tower
admiring a view in Paris
Oh the baths...the roman baths in....ummm....Bath, England
Dionisio: Why did you leave me for so long?....and why aren't you picking me up? I mean, I'm CRYING here.....what is up with her? She's been in here for 1 minute already, and yet.....nothing. PICK ME UP!
Antonio: I am so over cake. It is NOT worth it. Why is NOONE paying attention to me? As if the cake is cooler than me?? I mean, sure they wanna take pictures, but it should just be of ME! Maybe if i lay here and refuse the really yummy cake, with a pouty face, they will HAVE to pick me up off the floor. I mean. I'm CUTE. Why is it taking them so long to notice? I'm getting hungry.....
Alirio: NEED MORE CAKE!!! I'm a growing boy. Would you look at me! I need more food. I cannot believe they just took the empty bowl away. I SEE more cake over there on the table. Bring me cake!
- I came up with and implemented a grow Latifo plan. It's working beautifully. I started a mandatory vitamin A administration program for my tots that are malnourished and/or are HIV + and under 5. They are now getting it every 6 months to ward off things like blindness. I gave 30 doses of albendazole in 1 day to rid my tots of neurotoxic worms. fun stuff.
- I've attended 3 consults (below is me with Lucia at her dermatology consult)....and 1 of them means that Antonino gets to have a surgery to fix the hole in his heart in a few months. We went 2x this wk to the private heart institute and saw a visiting team from France. He will go back the 1st of May for preop labs and tests and a surgery date! Good times.