Going Again: Cambodia, the Conclusion

It’s early and still dark outside, but I’m getting up. I’ve been looking at the clock every hour thinking surely it is morning now, and it has not been. I’m going to call this jet lag and hope that it will resolve in a few more days. I’m home once again, suitcases are unpacked, everyday life has resumed.  I can finally see my ankle bones again after losing them during the 20 hours of sitting in an airplane. The journey to Cambodia and back is over.

The last few days of our trip were full of relational activities, decisions about our financial gifts, a medical clinic outreach to the Prek Eng community, and, for me, computer problems that made it hard to complete the story I was telling.  I had hoped my “devices” would last the trip without malfunctioning and they almost did.



The relational activites were our nights with the PE4 and PE5 houses. Traditionally we have spent an afternoon and evening with each house, talking and playing with the children and having dinner with them. It’s an opportunity to introduce a craft or a new toy. This year it was “flubber”.  One of Trish’s friends had sent along the materials to make this interesting, goofy stuff and she ended up making four batches at each house, and sending the leftovers around to all the other houses. Now everyone knows what “flubber” is. Laughing, talking, making music, coloring, paper crafts, eating, and the final act – a dance performance by the kids – made the evenings so full. We finished with our tuk tuk rides home, courtesy of Long our favorite driver, and gratefully tumbled into bed.


As I mentioned before, one of the significant pleasures for me when I visit the kids, is to find a project not covered by regular monthly support and see it get done. It’s just plain fun to see 100% of the funds going toward a good end. The project of filling in the ditch started immediately after we agreed to it (always surprises me how quickly director Savourn can act), and I’ve since seen pictures of the finished results. All together, we were able to furnish seven bikes for each house for the children who have to ride to public school, closets for PE5 children and staff, and some furniture, a whiteboard, and guitars for the university student dorms. They move ahead without some of these conveniences and comforts, but are very grateful when they can be provided. Thank you to everyone who made this possible.

You might wonder where the gospel fits into my trip to Cambodia, since I don’t mention it often. I don’t do a lot of preaching (not my strong point) when I’m there. I do loving. But I’m also enabling others to talk about their faith and present the gospel. One of those opportunities was the medical clinic on our last day. The word was out in the community and people began lining up at our location early on Friday morning. It is primarily a triage effort, sorting out problems that can be helped with an over the counter medicine, and ones that are more significant and need to be referred to a doctor. Everyone got their vital signs taken, their blood sugar checked, a consultation with our midwife nurse Bora or me, an offer of reading glasses, and a chance to talk with the Cambodian house parents about their faith. Since they live in this community and rub shoulders with the people in it, the house parents are able to follow up with those who want to know more about faith in Jesus Christ.

The eyeglass station at the medical clinic

One of the people coming through our clinic was Long, the tuk tuk driver. We have had contact with him for a number of years and used his services almost exclusively for our rides to Prek Eng and elsewhere. We all have his telephone number and love to see his cheery smile and hear him saying “ba, ba, ba” when he understands our requests. He takes care of us, and last year when his moto blew a gasket, Hunsaders helped take care of him with assistance in getting a new one. This year, Long wanted reading glasses so he could read the Bible he had just gotten. It’s an example of how God works with some people through repeated, loving contact. It was encouraging to us all.

So ended this trip to Cambodia. It was rewarding, interesting, rigorous, thought provoking in many ways, and at its end, reminded me of how different life can be for those living in faraway places. I always come back with awareness of how much I have been given in this country and how grateful I should be, and also how much my blessings are taken for granted. Gratitude is a healthy attitude and feels good.

The Cambodia Saga

Due to not having internet connection when it was convenient, the last days of this time in Cambodia didn’t get posted.  You got a break, now the journey continues…

Dinner with all 5 Prek Eng families at Rock Royal Hotel, Kep
Dinner with all 5 Prek Eng families at Rock Royal Hotel, Kep

Last night the hotel restaurant served Khmer food to all at dinner – a challenge for a crowd this size. We were told it would not be Western food so had eaten well at lunch. They serve a lovely dish similar to coleslaw with crumbled peanuts on top, but I have learned to look for the very tiny shrimp that they mix in. I have tried to like this but cannot. Too fishy for my palate.

We also had the first meeting with all the kids last night– songs and a speaker. The theme for this retreat is “More than Conquerors”. Both last night and this morning the children have recited Romans 8:37 -39 in Khmer and in English from memory. It is awesome to hear. The messages have been geared toward some of the problems the kids are encountering now, encouraging them not to give in to bad peer pressure and to recognize the authorities God has put in their lives. The older children are the ones leading the praise songs, praying and giving some direction. Our team members have been giving the main message. We often have children sitting with us and looking at our Bibles. They are very attentive and make sure we have bottles of water and a good place to sit.

This morning they also had all the fathers in the group stand in the front, after which the whole group came forward to hug and thank each of them. They always try to remember our holidays, especially ones of this nature. I am thinking of my own father who is not longer here, and of Jack who was also a good father to his children. I am thinking of my own husband who is spending Father’s Day alone while we are here in Cambodia. I miss them all.

Once again the children have a scheduled time at the beach and have gone in the buses, in spite of the very rainy and windy weather. I have elected to stay in my room and watch the weather out the window. The curtains on my window blow in the wind, in spite of the windows being closed, and it sounds just like the winding down stage of a hurricane.

A great group of girls make a great discussion.
A great group of girls make a great discussion.

Later: Julie and I have just finished an hour and a half session with 13 lovely girls, age 17 and older, talking about things that are on their minds. Julie told me boys would be the main subject and she was right. We went through some Biblical guidelines for being women of God for starters and then had discussion. It is somewhat difficult with the language barrier but I believe we had a good time. There was much laughter, some thoughtful questions, and good attention. They are precious women. At the end, some wanted to know how I met my husband and I told them. I am so glad to have that story to tell. Thank you Dennis (the husband). But I must say that being around all the youthfulness this weekend is making me feel very old.

Later still: Our team and all the house parents loaded ourselves onto the bus for a short trip to Kimmly Seafood Restaurant for our evening meal. Over dinner and fellowship there was a lot of talk about the problem of middle school students having to ride their bikes to the public school which is quite a distance away. The house parents would like to expand the Asia Hope school to include middle school. Savorn, Asia Hope director, is excited about this idea and that usually means it will be in operation within six months. He has figured out how to add four classrooms to the present school, how many teachers would be needed, and how to invite selected children from the neighborhood to fill the classes to reasonable size.

As we were entering the meeting room for the evening session, I was pulled aside to where a group was gathered around a young man who had gotten a ring on his finger and couldn’t get it off. He was soaking his hand in ice water hoping to shrink the finger a little. Julie had offered “mom’s trick” ring removal method and I was to apply it. Dental floss was the readily accessible material so we tried that a couple of times but it kept breaking after moving the ring a short ways. Still that was far enough for me to move it more with my fingers and it finally popped off. Lots of people had gathered around and were anxiously watching and praying so there was a big cheer and audible sigh of relief. I think from now on I will carry a better brand of dental floss, just for this kind of thing. It is a very cool trick.

The evening message was good. The singing was exuberant and impressive – no one sings quite like it in the U.S. We are always moved to video the Cambodians doing their praise and worship, especially the littlest ones.

young worship leaders
young worship leaders
Yeah, especially the young ones…

The evening ended with Game Night. The meeting room is not large and 150 people, talking loudly and trying to organize themselves, makes for pandemonium and loud noise. The kids divided into 10 small groups for the first game which was to put two small jigsaw puzzles together. After one group won the prize by finishing their puzzles I kind of expected the game to end, as it would have if we were working with American kids. No, the game went on until all groups had their puzzles together. The same thing happened with the other games. It was a very loud, hilarious night. Exhausting is another word I would use. Everyone looked happy to be heading to their rooms.

who can make the tallest tower out of straws and masking tape?
who can make the tallest tower out of straws and masking tape?
putting heads together over jigsaw puzzles

Saturday in Kep, Cambodia

It is another blustery day with constant wind and a grey sky. Humidity is high. We have a free breakfast cafeteria with our room and it was pretty good, with some Western style food as well as the numerous concoctions to put over rice.

Breakfast at Rock Royal for all
Breakfast at Rock Royal for all

I am not planning to do much today. I was taking the stairs down to breakfast and stumbled, injuring my right foot a bit. The steps are slippery, black marble and the stairway is not lighted well. The steps are not regular either, the bottom one before a landing was triangular and I missed it altogether. Buidings here are such an interesting mix of sense and nonsense.

Another issue with the hotel was the use of the pool. This place was chosen specifically because of the nice pool that the children would be able to enjoy. Last year there were two drownings here and the government closed them down for a short period of time. When we got here and wanted to have the scheduled swim time with the dorm students, we were told that the pool was being chemically treated and would not be available for the whole time we are to be here. It’s very possible that the management was a little fearful of having a lot of children using the pool and made sure it would not be available. We are negotiating a refund since they knew the pool was to be the main attraction for us.

At lunch, discussing the needs of Asia Hope homes with director Savorn
At lunch, discussing the needs of Asia Hope homes with director Savorn

I was not hungry but lunch was the next thing on the schedule. We went in the Asia Hope van to a restaurant in Kep, getting a ticket along the way for going the wrong direction on a one way road. People are often trying to wave us in to their beachside cabanas and eating places and we ignore most of that but this time they were also trying to tell us we were going the wrong direction on the road. Who knew?

Julie and I were sitting at the same table with the director of Asia’s Hope, Savorn, and his wife Sony. This was a good time to discuss the funds that I had collected to donate and to decide how to use them. Savorn thought it was important to get water purification systems in each of the houses and so far only two had them. I had enough to purchase one and that was what the money will do. It will go in PE5 and be shared also with PE4 until they can purchase one too. I think Jack would have been glad to see his donation used this way.

Despite wind and rain Cambodians who come to the beach, come to the beach.
Despite wind and rain Cambodians who come to the beach, come to the beach.

Later: I was not planning to do much today (see paragraph 2 for proof) but just because I brought my swimsuit and shorts I decided to put them on and ride the bus to the beach with all the children. The public beach is only ¾ mile away and it is the only water option since the pool is not available. This resort town is on the South China Sea and the recent stormy weather has brought in some sizeable waves. It was in fact raining the whole time we were at the beach, but those who thought it important to remain dry stayed in the bus. The ocean was warm and most of the children were soon playing in the waves and having a great time. It was impossible to get only part way in so I was soon completely wet and had children hanging on each arm, jumping the waves with me. Later I got concerned about four or five of the boys who were bobbing around farther from shore. Rather than count heads each time they appeared between waves I went out and swam with them.

We were too wet to ride the bus back to the hotel so quite a few of us walked back, barefoot, in the pouring rain. No one had towels to dry themselves and we were a very bedraggled looking bunch. But everything we do with the kids serves to bond us to one or the other of them. They learn more about us and how we care and we learn more about them. It works.

Beach at Kep on a windy, rainy day.
Beach at Kep on a windy, rainy day.
AGO dorm leaders on retreat at Kep
AGO boys dorm leaders at Kep beach


Saturday’s Story

Barely surviving Saturday

I used to think I was tough. Today, I made it through the day but am very aware that I would not last long in this climate, doing what people do who live here. We had our medical outreach clinic for four hours in the morning, a lunch break, and almost four hours more in the afternoon. It was inside out of the sun but very hot and of course, there was no AC to cool us or the patients. I’m most likely just dehydrated but it has given me a serious headache, and I can think of little else but getting rid of it.

However it was a successful outreach. Of the 130 people in the community who were invited, 136 patients came through. Some were staff at Asia’s Hope which swelled the number. All received medical attention. Many received eyeglasses. All heard the gospel of Christ presented to them and 78 responded. Their names and addresses were recorded for follow-up so they could be invited to church to learn more.

We went to one of the Asia’s Hope homes for lunch – it was on the same compound as the outreach. The house mothers had prepared a nice meal and we sat around the room and ate. One of the treats midway through was the prepared coconuts with a straw stuck in the middle. We were each offered one and since it was delicious and I was thirsty, I drank the whole thing. They hold more than you might think. After I drained it, houseparent An chopped it in half and I scooped out the soft meat inside which was also very good. I had never had a “green” coconut before. Some of the others were talking about having gotten sick eating (or overeating) on green coconuts but I’m not going to hear that. It probably saved my life today – and that’s the story I’m sticking to.

my  coconut milk cocktail...
my coconut milk cocktail…

Thursday in Phnom Penh

I slept pretty well. I was awakened early by some soft noises, like a door opening, and then my light went on briefly and off again. I still haven’t figured out what happened. There are three rooms in our unit which come off a larger common room where the front door is. On my other visits all rooms in our unit have been occupied by our team so we didn’t lock the inside doors. I think I will do that from now on.

Another surprise was the Inn’s new restaurant where breakfast is served. It is across the street. The new manager, Vendent, has expanded the business into an additional building. The outdoor courtyard is where we eat. There are only three tables and two of them fill up with young university students from the U.S. who are here doing medical missions in outlying provinces. They are all from the same church in Fayetteville. AR. My breakfast comes out in 30 seconds, literally. I think they cook ahead expecting a rush. I’m hungry and it looks good.

I go back later with Trish and Mike and watch them eat. We plan our day and go back to our rooms to do some research on games for our Friday night time with the university students in the dorms. Our time has been split between the orphanage children and the dorm students these last two years and it is interesting to see how the Asia’s Hope children transition to being university students. Some of them have taken leadership roles at the dorm.

Later: It is now evening. I am very tired but have felt pretty good all day. After breakfast today Trish and I brainstormed for games that the college students could play tomorrow night at a gathering. We have two, both of which will be challenging to explain but a lot of fun if we do them right.

We went to the Russian market to get materials for the games. The market is within walking distance of our guest house. This particular market is large, unbelievably crowded and claustrophobic even in cooler weather, but it is sweltering heat now so everything is magnified. In spite of Trish and I being thoroughly wet and sweating, the Cambodian women can be seen wearing sweaters and long sleeved blouses as they sit and cook on their charcoal burners, or their mile high stacks of garments for sale. There are no breezes, no fans, no air. It is quite an experience. But there is so much to see that I love to go anyway and can’t wait to show it to Julie.

Russian market, where you can find almost anything if you can stand to look long enough...
Russian market, where you can find almost anything if you can stand to look long enough…
Russian market food section has many small vendors like this lady.
Russian market food section has many small vendors like this lady.

We had lunch at Jars of Clay restaurant (very good) and then went by tuk tuk to Prek Eng to see the children. We spent a couple hours at each of the two houses just to catch up on their news. They are so hospitable and welcoming. Unlike children in the U.S. who say hi and then usually disappear, these kids love to sit and talk or just listen. There is always someone sitting on my lap or holding my hand or massaging my neck. They smile and laugh easily and try to communicate in English much more than they did in the past. We were served dragon fruit, leechee, mangosteen, and fried banana chips along with cold water and coffee. Mike played soccer with some of the boys – they have a special ball that is light and small when they are playing in close quarters, but were kicking a regular soccer ball out in the open, with their bare feet! They are tough!

The tuk tuk ride takes nearly an hour each way, through terrible road construction. It is a rough ride with lots of dust and potential traffic danger. Back at Green Pastures Inn Bora was waiting for us. She is the student midwife who works on the medical outreach with us. She and Sophat, one of the Asia Hope students who has graduated and is in university, came to dinner with us at Brooklyn Pizza. This is another good place to eat within walking distance, started by a man from, you guessed it, Brooklyn.

Home again to meet newly arrived members of the team, the Hamilton’s and Lydia. I have been talking with Lydia for half an hour and find her very interesting. She is just out of high school, the youngest of five children of long term missionaries. They live in the U.S. now but do a lot of traveling. This is Lydia’s first time in Cambodia and she had a lot of questions. Time to get some sleep now and I am so ready for that

Tuesday Travels? Wednesday Travels? I’m confused…

As we three travelers finished our journey to Cambodia, it was hard to keep track of what day it was.  It was actually early on Thursday that I finished this, or so I’m told. You will probably also be confused by the time you finish reading.    

Our flight to Phnom Penh is only six hours long and I am on it now, as I write. FT is 9 am Wednesday but over here when we land it will be exactly 12 hours later. I can tell my body thinks I should be awake, although I am confused enough that I will be able to go to sleep when we get to the guest house. It is always good to have that rest at the end of a long time of being in a non-restful position.

I have been studying the pictures of the children in PE 4 and PE 5, hoping to learn the boys names and review the girls. Even though I have seen them for three visits now it is still hard to remember the names that are very similar, especially when I have not done anything specific with them. I would like to call them all by name but it is unlikely…

We are in a fairly large plane and it is full. We have been given the only meal we will have on this leg of the journey. We were given papers to fill out to apply for our visas. The price of a visa has gone up from $25 to $37 and we will get ours at the airport when we land. So far the trip has been uneventful but I am almost afraid to say that.


FT 12:45 pm Wednesday but in PP (Phnom Penh) it is 12:45 am on Thursday. At about 10:30 pm we had a rather rough landing and disembarked. Some of this detail is going to be boring to many but I’m hoping it will give daughter Julia an idea of where to go and what to do when she travels here alone on Saturday. I have never had to do it unaccompanied, thankfully. Everyone getting off the plane does pretty much the same thing so following the crowd is a good way to go. This airport is older, has a few holes in the walls, and a lot of strange additions to it – not at all like Korean airports. We are directed into a large room where lines are forming along the left wall. There is a counter with a lot of uniformed men, some women, behind it. They take our passports and $2 for a picture, then we stand in a group at the right of the long counter. Our passports are passed along the officials and end up at the last man who tries to pronounce our names in a way that we will recognize. Good luck there. He also holds it up so the picture can be seen. We pay $30 for the visa and get our passport handed to us again.

One more checkpoint as we move through the large room. There are several stations with an agent waiting to take another look at the passport, stamp it three or four times and give it back. We are now official tourists and the next stop is right in front of us – the baggage carousel. And by this time the bags are there and circling. Everything arrived undamaged and on time. There are carts to help us move it all. As we get near the door the waiting crowd spills through and starts the greeting and hugging. A lot of the kids have come, some of the dorm students, and a number of adults from Asia’s Hope. It is a royal welcome.

We are driven to the Green Pasture Inn, which is the guest house we have always stayed in, but now it has new management and some changes. Still it is familiar and feels like “home, sweet home” as Mike says. I have my double room, since Julie will be joining me in a few days. The “air con” gets turned on and, as usual, the password for the wifi doesn’t work. We’ll have to figure that one out in the morning. So for now, goodnight.

"home, sweet home" for the next two weeks
“home, sweet home” for the next two weeks

Tuesday Travels #6 The Flight to Cambodia

FT (Florida time)7 am, out the door and on the way to JAX, Julie drops me off, 50 lb. bags get checked all the way to Phnom Penh (thank you Lord), I go through security on pre-check (thank you again) and am waiting for my first flight

FT 10:30 am, ATL, sitting in the waiting area for the international flight. I was able to move by tram from concourse B to concourse F, which was marked as the international terminal. At the help desk I found out I was really supposed to be at concourse E, so I walked back rather than ride the tram all the way around the circle. Easy check in at the gate, hardly anyone else there. FT 10:45, Mike and Trish arrive. They started in ATL and the security check made them unwrap the video projectors Trish had so carefully bubble wrapped, towel wrapped and duct taped. We visit and catch up on each other’s status while waiting.

I want to keep track of how they plan events on the trip to make us think in the time of our destination. I’m not going to buy food in the airports, hoping that what we get on the flight will be plenty as it usually is. Still fighting this headache for the third day now but perhaps it is getting better. Wishing I had some noise canceling headphones for this trip. I settled for new earbuds that have soft rubber cradles to keep them on my ears. My ears seem to be different from the average human since most everything pops right out the minute I put it in.

My biggest source of confusion on these trips is my back pack with it’s zillion different pockets, compartments and zippers. I’ve named it Helper, hoping that it will take the hint. I always try to have as little “stuff” to keep track of as possible, but on this long a flight you do need to have some things handy. I’ve already nearly left my driver’s license at the bag check place in Jacksonville. I’ve had to hunt for my baggage claim checks when at the Korean Air desk. I needed my fingernail clippers after tearing off a nail stowing my pack under the seat, and of course, I needed my ibuprofen. I got the Kindle out on the flight from Jacksonville but as it turned out I only opened my eyes long enough to drink my cup of coffee. All this stuff has to come out and go back in handily or I look like an idiot.

FT 12:50 We take off and are soon at over 500 mph at great height. By 1:15 we are being served beverage and snacks, I decide to watch a movie “The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel” which I saw on the plane coming from Minneapolis but couldn’t hear any of the words. By 2:00 we are being served a meal. I take chicken. By 3:00 the lights are being dimmed and by 3:30 it is quite dark and most are watching a movie or sleeping. I will also try to sleep because my headache is coming back.

FT 8 pm. I did try to sleep as it was a bit like taking a late afternoon nap. However, these seats are every bit as hard as I remember them being and that is what keeps me from being comfortable for long. I am sitting on actual pain, even though I have used my blanket as a cushion. Numbness.

Around FT 6pm we were offered a glass of juice and choice of a brownie, peanuts or a hot bun. I’ve had the hot bun before and it was good – has something in the middle that tastes like a spicy stew gravy. Nothing like it in our country. So that’s what I had. Decided to watch another movie. Cinderella, just because I’m curious about this recent remake.

My Helper, with it’s many pockets, compartments and zippers…

Now we have just crossed the international date line, so it is no longer Tuesday here. We are at 36,000 feet going 537 mph and a little over half way there. I smell food again. I have been smelling something not so good as food for which the young boy sitting behind me is responsible, I think. He is also the one creating “turbulence” by kicking the back of my seat periodically. When we were all strapped in our seats during takeoff, he released himself from the seat belt and took off down the aisle. Two attendants quickly left their jump seats and grabbed him which was a bit dramatic since the plane was on quite an incline. They all three kind of fell down the hill, and then climbed back up. I’ve done pretty good finding things in my helper, except for my glasses case. I searched every compartment before I remembered where it was. That happens. As I said it’s now 8pm in Florida where I started, I’ve had a good nap but the plane is still dark. It’s disorienting to sit in this room with no outside view and with a constant loud white noise of the engines. I think they are counting on people being disoriented so they can play with our internal time clocks…

FT 4am on Wednesday morning. I am in Seoul, South Korea where it is 5:10 pm Wednesday. Confused yet? As I said about six hours ago, I smelled food. Meal number two was served at FT 9:30 after hot, warm washcloths were passed to all. We ate and the room was darkened again. I was sitting on both the pillow and the blanket which made my seat much more comfortable and I was able to sleep for several hours. This would have been normal sleep time for me at home. At about FT 2:30 we were awakened and readied for landing.

Incheon aiport is very nice, very busy. We followed the crowd to the line for International Transfers and went through another security check. My backpack was carefully examined by x-ray and then a manual search was requested. For some reason my wooden jewelry box with its two pair of earrings was hard for them to identify and after seeing what it was, all was good again.

There was sufficient time for us to find food, use the restroom and find Gate 20 where the next flight to Phnom Penh will board. I have gotten a welcome message on my phone from South Korea stating that I can receive calls and texts but cannot make them until some special authorization. I may not have wifi until we reach the guest house later tonight. All for now.

Me, being helped.
Me, being helped.

Tuesday Travels #4 (come along as I prepare to visit Cambodia!)

Donated craft supplies that I sorted - the girls will love making jewelry from all this!
Donated craft supplies that I sorted – the girls will love making jewelry from all this!

This week we got assignments – aaaaagh! I’ve had nightmares about being back in school ever since. I’ve done some of mine already, the most fun one of course. I’ve learned how to make ninja balls and you can too if you go here http:/www.youtube.com/watch?v=SyfxIryiD8A.(please disregard the annoying movie commercial that comes first…)  I will definitely be using this little idea to make gifts for kids.

Also on the assignment list was to pick out some songs and print song sheets. Daughter Julia has been asked to take her guitar and we will be singing worship songs with our missions team every morning and teaching a few more active songs to the kids. A number of the children show real musical talent both in singing and playing keyboard and guitar. They just seem to pick it up from watching others and, you guessed it, from youtube. They often create dances based on the songs. All of them like to clap and move so music is one of our favorite things to share with them.

We have a memorization assignment. That is going to be the hardest because we have to try to learn some Khmer, which is the language they speak. One of the house mothers spoke the Bible passage we are learning on a video but unless I can slow her down in some way – like to about half her speed – I am never going to be able to tell where one word ends and another begins, let alone what they mean. I already know the English version. We’ll see how the rest goes…

Notebooks for the school kids.  Thank you for all the donations!
Notebooks for the school kids. Thank you for all the donations!

Since I’m able to take two free checked bags with me I usually offer to carry some of the supplies and gifts the group collects. I was given the two bags this weekend, one with medical supplies and the other with mostly toys. The challenge is now to get all the stuff I’ve collected in those bags too, without going over the 50 lb. limit. I’ve been gifted with notebooks for the school, toothbrushes, jewelry making supplies and crafting materials. I spent one evening sorting the jewelry components and I believe the girls and women will have fun putting those things together.

We are getting close – twelve days until I start my journey. I always get a little excited/nervous at this point trying to make sure I’m not leaving some important thing until last. Prayers appreciated!