Friday, June 25, 2010

Halfway Finished!

It's so crazy how fast time goes by here. I am now nearly halfway through my time here. I know it's been a while, but here's a little bit of what I've been doing. :)

We went to Jama Masjid one day, (,_Delhi) and it was crazy. The mosque itself was beautiful, but it was so sad. Also, we burnt our feet off. You have to take your shoes off to go in, and I don't know if I've mentioned this, but it's stinkin hot here. We were there at like noon, so it was extra hot. My feet were sore for days. I made friends with three 8-10ish year old boys who used the few English sentences they knew on me. They asked my name, where I was from, one called the other crazy, and one said, "I'm fine?" Yep. He made it sound like a question. It was precious.

Yesterday, we went to a Hindu temple. It was creepy and sad. All of the idols here are crazy, but in the temple, seeing people worship them is really heartbreaking. They offer them food, and pour milk on their heads, etc. It's crazy because some of them barely have enough to eat, but they still continue to do it.

I'm learning how to cook! I may have already mentioned that, but I'm really excited. I can make like 5 or 6 things now! Well, I can help someone make them. Hopefully, I'll be able to make them on my own at home.

Shopping here is crazy. You bargain almost everywhere you go. It's kind of fun, but towards the end of the day I really would prefer fixed, not super marked up prices. Still though, their "expensive" stuff is really not that much to most Americans.

We've been to the slum 3 or 4 times, and it is my absolute favorite thing we do. The children teach me Hindi words which I love because they're kids, and I remember them better that way. Yesterday we got to just sit with the women in the literacy class and ask them questions about their life. It was so great! Our Indian friend (Didi...well, that's what we call her. It means eldest sister in Hindi) translated everything back and forth for us. She's so awesome. We spend a ton of time with her. She teaches us things, helps us out a ton, but still makes us do things on our own. She's a super servant too. I love being around her. (Which is good because we're with her like 6 days a week.) :)

I. Love. Indian. Children. They're all soooooooooooooooooo cute. Really. It's really hard for me to see them selling magazines, vases, statues, etc. in the streets at night. It's even harder for me to see them begging for money for food, but when you offer them food they refuse it.

We're creating a new product for the company we're working with, and I'm really excited because we're bringing them back to the states to test sell it there. Get excited.

We're going to the Taj Mahal tomorrow! I'm so excited!!!!!!!!

Oh, and I got a hoop nose ring. Sorry daddy. (I'll put the sparkly back in when I come home:)

I have so much more to tell you, but that's all for now. I'll try to update sooner next time. :)

Lovelovelove you all!

Oh, and here are a few more points for you
-Continued unity and closeness for Beka and I.
-That we can make the best use of the remainder of our time here and serve everyone we're around as much as possible.
-Continued safety. Being a white girl here is a little weird. We stick out a lot. Ha.
-That the women and children in the slum would know that we genuinely care about them, and that we can be some sort of light to them.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Oh my goodness it is madness here.

I was talking to someone the other day about how to even begin describing India, and some said, "It's like a fair!" That's totally true. More true than anything else I can think of to relate it to at least. Ever since getting off the plane I have been bombarded with heat and smells and colors and dirt and grime and noises that I don't usually, if ever hear. Ya know how at the fair you smell food you don't normally eat, animals you don't usually smell, people you don't usually smell, you hear lots of loud big noises and a murmur you don't usually hear while seeing lights and colors and people you hardly ever see, and how you get dirt on you even if you just walk around? That is India....where I am at least. I feel like my senses are being assaulted all the time. This sounds bad, but it's not. It's so India is what I'm learning. There are soooooo many people here that I don't really see how it could be any other way.

A few things you should know:
1.Traffic here is out of control. Street lines are mere suggestions, but it's totally fine if 3 or 4 cars drive where 2 would in the States or if it's clear to just drive in the lane of oncoming traffic. There are scooters, motorcycles, tiny tiny cars, autos, and rickshaws everywhere. In case you don't know, this ( is an auto. That's our main mode of transportation. My teammate and I caught and bargained for one our own today. Generally, the auto driver tries to super rip off westerners because they don't know better. We know how to get the correct price now (in Hindi!), but even if we didn't, what they consider to be a really high price wouldn't be that much if it were American dollars. 1 US dollar equals about 45 Rupees. Our normal auto ride costs 50 Rupees, and it's about a 20-30 minute ride. Also, people honk all the time. Not to be rude, just let the other drivers know they're there.
2.There are beggars and poor people everywhere. It's heartbreaking. It's really really hard for me to just walk past them, but there's really nothing I can do other than pr*y for them. The children are the hardest for me. It's even harder to know that many of their parents are raising them to do this starting at a very young age. Today, 3 children, the eldest being no older than 7, came up to me, said hello in English, held my hand and asked for money. I was ready to grab my wallet and give them everything I had. I'm a sucker for kids. Lucky for me, our sweet new Indian friend we'll be spending the summe with told them something no in Hindi, and they left. I'm sure many of you are reading this thinking that she and I are jerks. Until you see or understand the mass corruption and poverty that is going on here, please don't think that we are heartless. I no where near fully understand it, but I've already seen enough to know that giving to them is not always (usually) what's best.
3.BUT, we have our first day in the slums tomorrow, and I'm SO excited. It's a weird thing to be excited about, I know, but the organization we're working with is doing so much to empower the people in the slum! The slum we'll be working in is one of the largest in the city and contains between 45-50,000 people. That is 20 times the size of my hometown in ONE slum. There are so many slums here. More than I can imagine or describe even. They are literally on every street, sidewalk, and corner. This isn't why I'm excited though. I'm excited because we will meet the women this company is working with in their Income-Generation program. Some of the women come to the local ch**ch to make cards and jewelry. Working 2 days a week increases the women's income by 30%! This empowers the women and has aloud them to install a water pump in their slum. People in the slum thanked some women from the organization, and they told them to thank the women from the slum. Their work paid for it! The goal is to empower the women to hopefully get out of their situation at some point, and of course, tell them about our sweet Father. Additionally, this organization runs a medical clinic for the slum and A PRESCHOOL! I've been told that I can help come up with curriculum and teach some english/help out as much as I want while I'm here! The children in the preschool are from 1-5. I know it will break my heart to see them in this setting, but it is so cool to know that they are being helped and reached at the same time. Also, during the time we are here, my teammate and I have to come up with a 6 lesson series about different values to teach some of the adolescents in the slum. Each value will be accompanied by a elb*B story, activity, and craft. This means that these children will have the G*sp*l shared with them directly! I am so excited Papa has aloud me to be a part of this.

I have Hindi homework I need to do, but I'll try to update again soon! Thanks for reading and thank you so so much for lifting me up! Here are some more requests of mine, and really SEND ME YOURS!

Against sickness (also called, "Delhi Belly"). I'm only here for a short time and really don't want to be sick.
That I'll be able to sleep. I've woken up around 2 or 3 every morning and stayed awake until 5 or 5:30 every night since we've been here. It apparently takes one day per hour of time zones you change to get back to normal, but I jumped 10.5, so I'd really like it to be done sooner, and to get some rest! The heat takes a ton of energy.
That I will be a teachable servant while I'm here to my teammate, field mentor, and the women/children I work with.


Sunday, June 13, 2010

I'm here!!!

I'm here!

This will be short, but I am here and safe. Thanks for lifting me up. I'll update you ASAP. All I can say about India right now is that it's hot, stinkin' hot actually, dirty, neat, full of people, and has a very distinct smell. Ha! Don't let those words fool you though, I'm super excited to be here.

Hope y'all are having a great summer! Lovelovelove!

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

See ya States!

I'm hopping on a plane for India in a little more than 24 hours! I'm SO stinkin' excited. Training was great, but really. I want to go.

Here's what I have learned at training: (this is the ultra brief version. I mean, I've been here for almost a full week!)
1. I will most likely be spiritually attacked in India.
2. I will most likely experience culture shock.
3. My teammate and I will most likely experience conflict.
4. I will mess up in India.
5. I will most likely get sick (like food sick, not serious sick) in India. (That was really more from friends, not training. :)
6. I'm still so excited to go, and not really scared even though I probably should be.

~I'm surrounded by awesome people. Really. There's close to 100 young people here going to the nations this summer. PTL!
~I'm learning a lot about myself already while I'm here. That's good/difficult at the same time.
~After talking to some staff, I've decided to redo how I'm doing emailing/blogging this summer. My sweet friend has volunteered to be my editor for the summer. You can send emails to the same address or whatever, but Sarah will now be checking my email/editing anything that can't be sent to me and changing it, so I can read it while I'm gone. So, moral of the story is don't send anything you wouldn't want someone else to read. :)

How you can be lifting me up:
~Closeness with my teammate. She's awesome. I want to continue to be awesome together and love and serve one another.
~I will pick up the language, Hindi, as quickly as possible.
~I will be a blessing to the people I'm around and staying with.
~That my heart will hurt for our Father and His lost children. I want to be burdened with this.
~I want this to be another life-changing summer that draws me nearer to our sweet Father.
~Against everything mentioned about that I said will most likely happen. :)

I love you all so so much! I'll try to keep you updated pretty regularly!


Monday, June 7, 2010


Oh my goodness, I am so excited! I FINALLY got to meet my teammate today! She is incredible! I cannot wait to spend the summer with her!

For the past 2 days I have been in Palm Beach, FL doing a leaderish type of training for this summer. Rough life, I know. However, although we are in Palm Beach, we've been spending most of our time in a dorm/cafeteria/classroom. I did get to go to the beach this morning, but it required getting up at 6am to fit it into the schedule. Worth it? Debatable. We did see dolphins though, so that's super excited.

During the training we've been instructed on pretty much anything and everything you can imagine to prepare for this summer. It's super overwhelming. There's so much that goes into everything that I had no clue about. It's challenging, but I know I will grow a ton from it. :)

It's only training, but ridiculous/funny/awesome things have been happening already. I've used 17 pages in my journal, and I've only been here for 4 days! All that to say I should have lots of stories when I get back assuming I keep it up.

**Sorry this is all so random. I'm doing it in short intervals when I have time.

Fun facts:
1. There are 10ish people (I don't remember if it's 10 or 12) here from UofA. Isn't that cool?! We make up 10% of the total group! NWA is so great!
2. A lot of the students here go to Christian schools where the ratio is like 1 guy to 7 girls. Isn't that nuts?!
3. Less than 1% of North American missionaries go to unreached peoples (You can read about what an unreached people group is in my last newsletter). Most of the teams (about 21) this summer are going to unreached peoples! Isn't that cool!?
4. I'm still in America which is why I'm using all of these "Christiany" words. :)

I miss you all!

Friday, June 4, 2010

See ya Fayetteville!

So, I'm leaving for Florida for Training/Orientation in less than 8 hours! (This will be short. I'm going to bed soon :)

I just wanted to assure you that you are in the right place. This is where I will be updating this summer. Don't let the older posts confuse you. They're from last summer. :)

Thank you for reading and lifting me up! I so appreciate y'all!