A Day in the -brain- of Jenn

A few months ago I posted a "Day in the Life of Jenn" post. People really seemed to like it and wanted more. I figure it's an easy way to contribute to the blog, ya know, do my share. All I have to do is spill what's in my brain. But hang on; there's a lot in there. 

Well, I recently went back to the States to see my family and to attempt to do a bit of fundraising. Props to my family for realizing I can come back to Texas more often if there is fundraising involved. Hence my sister is becoming Second Mile's number one bead seller in the States this year. :)

After exactly one week it was back to Haiti for me. I am back now. If you are all wondering…I'm still in love with Haiti and I will plan to be here as long as God will let me. For me, first day back usually means working on fiances, databases, updating my super sweet spreadsheets, and trying to socialize. 

On my second day back, I head out to the land as early as possible and meet with my side kick, a.k.a. Dadou (the Haitian director of SMH). Of course there were bananas waiting for me on the kitchen counter of the staff apartment. He has figured out that bananas are the way to my heart (which is slightly true) and they are a good back-up in case he forgot anything/didn't do something while I was gone. I guess you could say they are like bribery with a peace offering on top. The topics of our conversation were: how did the employees do while I was gone; how's the irrigation system; did we change out the cow for a different cow that that will produce even more milk?; did we have any generator and battery issues and do the batteries have enough water?; prayer for the solar panels to come in; how we are so thankful for the vet; how we need to sanitize the recovery homes for our moms and babies who will be entering our facilities next week;  how the employees ran out of rice (not my fault, and how he needs to prepare better); finding another rabbit; will we have security guards when we receive solar panels?; how Dadou's family is doing; prayer for more school funds to come; him pressuring me to rent the space for the goats/cows; and lastly, him asking me how the surprise went with my family. All these topics were covered in about ten minutes. We are getting that efficient.

Ok good I was caught up. I felt really good with where we were at on the land. I felt good about the gardens, employees, animals, and the overall mood of the land. The trip to land also gave us some ideas on which aspects we need to start improving especially before we open our doors again (which will be on Tuesday or Wednesday ::)

Someone in Texas asked me what I will be focusing on when I get back. Well in order to really answer that question I must first spend time checking out our bank accounts and budgeting for our projects.

For instance… solar panels are coming in soon. They have been fully funded. Holllller. Pretty exciting huh? The panels are on there way to Cap Haitien and a team will be here in 5-6 weeks to install them. We were a little delayed getting them to Haiti since the first time they arrived in Florida they arrived damaged. Yeah, that sucked.

Since the solar panels are coming I will have a sweet team of electricians come down to install them, but before then there are materials I will need to purchase and some constructing I need to do on the roof to make it worthy of holding solar panels. I will also dig a line from the electrical building to the security tower/depot (which is on the back half of the property) so that we can give that building power. The main reason I want to do this is because then the well in the back will be connected to the solar system and run completely from solar power. Okay, that was extremely boring and sorry if I lost you there.

So here's what I ponder next during my day: renting another piece of land. While I was in the States, the money was raised to rent another 2 acres for grazing for the animals/more gardens. Exciting huh?

And….we received another $2000 to spend on purchasing more animals. 

How cool huh? Well it is, very cool, except that in order to feel comfortable making those purchases, Second Mile needs to be in a good financial place where we won't have to worry about our monthly budget for the next 3 months. This is why I am always checking our good ol' Bank of America account and currently working on strategies to get $10,000 in our account so that we can begin moving forward. Is everyone tracking with me? So I spend some time figuring out how many paper-bead bracelets, necklaces, and lanyards we have on hand. We actually have a $3,500 worth of jewelry ready to sell! My focus is to get those moving. This money benefits our beading employees, moms, and our business programs which make up a big part of our expenses as an organization.

By the way if you haven't checked out these beads they are gorgeous and they only tend to get better and better with time. :) They are a great way to get conversation started about Haiti, about families in Haiti, about Second Mile Haiti... you get the gist. 

Jewelry Sample and Prices - Contact us to order!

If you'd like to purchase any of these items or think you might be able to help us sell them, or if need more info, then just send us a message on our Facebook page, Second Mile Ministries

Okay, so back to what's going on in my head right now:
My goals: Work on getting more money for our general budget.
Then rent the space for our cows and goats to freely roam.
Purchase 100 chickens.

Oh and I can't forget maintaining the property while we have moms and babies and making sure the education, business, and gardening classes are happening. 

Then I take time out of my day to dream about future projects: finishing Dadou's office (plastering the walls, tiling, and finishing the windows), getting him set up with office supplies, starting the process of teaching him how to use a computer so that he can be just as good at spreadsheets as I am ;)), and finishing our sewing/beading room. We have two empty rooms attached to the education center and we want to turn one of those rooms into a workshop room for the ladies while the other will be an office for Dadou/employees. For the sewing room this includes plastering the walls, tiling, and finishing windows, as well as getting some decent equipment in the room. (this is more Amy's future project. ::) I just build.

And last thing to work on.. just love. Love when it's hard to love. Try to remember that God is love, and love always wins.

So this is what I'm working on in a nut shell. Ah, nut shell reminds me of peanut shells which is what I should be collecting today for mulching our gardens... It never ends. :)