Did you know I once saved a life with a turkey baster?
Back when I was a volunteer EMT, a neighbor collapsed in his kitchen.
His lungs were full of fluid, so much that it was spilling into his upper airways.
When I got there, he was blue and not breathing, but he had a pulse.
I rolled him on his side hoping gravity would clear his airway.
It didn't, and in a moment when I am sure God took control of my voice and body,
I raised my hand and yelled, "Do you have a turkey baster?"
By the time a police officer arrived, I cleared enough fluid for his oxygen valve to make a difference.
When paramedics arrived, the man had transitioned from blue to just really pale.
And by the time we got to the hospital, he had pinked up and regained consciousness.
Sometimes, you just have to use what you got at the moment.
This is how I always viewed life at work, at home, wherever.
Whether it was budget-neutral customer service and efficiency improvements for hospitals or using every bucket in my garage.
As you can imagine, that habit really comes in handy here in Guatemala.
We plant vegetable gardens in tires, bottles, and fruit crates.
And resharpened crayons and coloring books with used pages torn out work as well as the new ones.
Of course, there are times we have to splurge.
When a donor offered to buy us a freezer so we didn't have to mix mission and personal food anymore, I couldn't say, "Yes! Thank you!" fast enough.
Just because we're good at making do, doesn't mean we mind receiving help.
And our supporters can be confident even the new stuff we buy is the best bargain we can find.
Day in and day out, we stretch donor dollars as best we can.
We still use our home as our office and kitchen, my laptop is the company laptop, and if you call our mission phone numbers, Yesenia or I will answer on our personal phones.
It's our promise to you that as much as possible of the monies donated to our organization go to the children and families of our mission.
This year, some targeted generosity allowed us to replace our cars, build a new kitchen in Cocales, and add a mission pantry to our home.
We also distributed 500 pairs of new sneakers, and are set to share 500 personal hygiene kits next week.
This is on top of the thousands of meals and grocery bundles that form the basis of our mission.
And we were able to pay for lots of medicines, cooking gas, electric bills, and some other emergencies, too.
We know we are blessed, and that is why we want to do the most we can with what we got.
And if in the months and years ahead, we happen to "got" more...
We'll make sure the needy kids and families of our neighborhoods have more, too.
Thank you for any part you played in helping us out! and God bless!
Visit our home page to see what we're doing this month!