Once the footers were dug and the first two volunteers arrived (both on Saturday), everything picked up speed. The build was suddenly — ba-BAM — underway. After a full month of mostly invisible, and often tedious, legwork, boy, is it ever gratifying.

Sunday the rebar was delivered, and Monday was spent bending the rebar and preparing to pour the footers.

Tuesday, the footers were poured before lunchtime rolled around.

Here, the concrete truck is a little different: the gravel, sand, cement, and water arrive in separate compartments and then get blended together on site in a giant mixer. It’s loud. 

Wednesday, sand, block, and cement arrived, and they started laying block, forming up the corners and laying the first course along the back wall.

When our supervisors showed up for a visit, the jobsite was hopping.

Thursday, the crew continued to lay block while my husband and I and the two younger kids took off for a project director meeting, but judging by the photos they periodically sent our way, things continued to hum along just fine.

Friday, today, was more of the same: laying block, ordering supplies, managing volunteers.

In between and around all that, the tool trailer got a set of dandy shelving, the volunteer trailer got a large awning, a medical kit, fridge, microwave, and power (!), and tons of local volunteers showed up.

Plus, May’s finances got reconciled (whew), food got cooked, things got cleaned, reported on, emailed, purchased, and washed, basketball games got played and runs got runned, people got hosted (us included), and ice cream got eaten.

‘Twas a solid week of work is what I’m trying to say.

This same time, years previous: pulling the pin, the quotidian (6.8.15), delivery, white icing, thorns, how we beat the heat, on hold, what it’s about.


  • Melodie

    Your children are getting such an amazing education – summer seminar! Heard your parents were arriving like yesterday?? Enjoy the extra love and help.

    • Jennifer Jo

      A summer seminar indeed! Yes, Mom and Dad are here now (safely stowed in our tiny guestroom) and the cousins are in the trailer. It's a mini-family reunion….but in Puerto Rico instead of Virginia!

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