Dear friends, Happy New Year!
We had a lovely Christmas with my parents here, and the Christmas dinner included Birds trifle and Christmas pudding (made by Steph) and custard...yum! For New Year we had a house full of Alfredo’s family and he spent his birthday (1st Jan) in the swimming pool and then watching Top Gear on our new satellite that can get BBC Entertainment!
Benjamin understood the concept of presents this year and enjoyed opening everyone’s parcels (and has since tried to claim most of Camila’s toys as his own). We are now being forced to watch endless Thomas the Tank Engine and play with his new train set. Camila is growing fast and no longer fits her tiny newborn clothes which started out so big on her! She is sleeping well though the night with usually only one feed (our main problem is getting her to sleep in the first place!)
On the work front we have been forced to re-evaluate how we work. Alfredo went to Taisha to finalise the project for Samikim in December and the Mayor decided he no longer wants to work with HCJB. He said it’s because it isn’t unfair to the communities that we make them work for their project and that we should pay them... this is against the community development principles we try to follow (and we also understood behind this is that we don’t pay the Mayor his part either). So we currently have no funds for projects and almost no communities to work with as they have all got government projects planned. As always God’s timing is perfect... The girls have been doing evaluations of projects to help us improve the program, Alfredo has work in the hospital maintenance team so he’s not twiddling his thumbs until projects are found and as Steph and Fraenzi are leaving in the next month, the lack of money is not preventing people from travelling. Please pray with us as we redefine the jungle water projects program, start talking with new communities and begin to write project proposals to apply for funding in other areas.
We are planning on taking another Wheaton College course in March on Intercultural Communications so we are now trying to get the books we need to read ahead of time. This time all the reading is in English so Alfredo will be working extra hard.
· For a lovely three weeks with my parents, a fun trip in the jungle and a a kitchen stocked with English goodies.
· That my allergic reaction to an insect bite/sting in Makuma wasn’t too serious and I only looked silly for a few days!
· That the vegetable garden Fraenzi planted in front of my house has been producing great food.
· For new sources of funding for construction projects, flights and follow-up work
· For wisdom in knowing how to better the program while we have the chance to change
· For time to study for the Wheaton course and that the books will arrive quickly.
· For Alfredo’s Dad as he recovers from a severe infection in his foot which has hospitalized him twice in the past two months.
Wishing you all a prosperous 2011. Let us know if you want to come visit us this year!
Alex and Alfredo, Benjamin and Camila Leon
The hospital has a new postal box… so try sending post to the address below as post appears to arrive quicker than direct to the hospital address (the hospital address still works too)
APARTADO POSTAL 16-01-844, PUYO, PASTAZA, ECUADOR