Boy did I hate to see breakfast end. Back to the seemingly never ending task of cutting boards in the sweltering heat and humidty. My spirit and willingness were 100% fully into this project of love but my arms were screaming STOP! Antonio (pictured below) asked if I wanted to quit.

House cutting up
Heck no – NOT in my vocabulary. Well at least not that I was going to admit! By now I was covered in sweat and a thin layer of dirt coated every inch of me where there was no clothing to protect me. To compensate for the heat sucking the water out of every pore in my body, I was drinking so much water I thought I would float away. Thank goodness I was sweating (not glowing!) because there were no restroom facilities – just like cruising down the Amazon and having to wait – no McDonald or Wendy’s to stop at along the way for a bathroom break. I take that back – there was an outhouse. The neighbors had one that Mari Luz shared. A large, deep hole in the ground that was sheltered made “private” by 4 walls of clear plastic. It was like a sauna in there so I opted to just “hang on.” No worries all the liquids sweated out of me anyway. Sorry for the visual – yet again!

House sawhorse
It was so great to teach this young man how to measure and cut boards. He was eager to learn even from a girl! And he was a quick learner. He asked to be on the “team” when I head back in the late Fall. Can’t wait to work with him again.

As I watched the men lay the foundation for the house and put together the framing I was awe struck by their ingenuity. No fancy tools. Just well worn hammers, a screwdriver and post hole digger. They measured the lot with sticks and strings not tape measures. They didn’t have any. Definitely, not the tools of a surveyor. To check that the posts were level they used a hose filled with water, raising and lowering the ends until the water was in the exact place they needed it. If adjustments were needed, they would tap the post in deeper if needed or pull it out, add more dirt under the post to make it higher and level. It was an amazing process to watch. I shook my head knowing this would never pass city code back in Dallas, TX! But here – no hay reglas – there are no rules.

House level
Little by little you could see the shape of the house forming. The framework for the house was being put together and fortified on the ground one side at a time.

House framing
We lifted up one side to set it on the posts and begin the framing process. Oops – small problem. Someone had “envisioned” it backwards. The door and window were switched. No worries for them. They put it back on the ground. Ripped out the boards and re-set them and back again to start the framing. It was so interesting watching these guys – 4 men – working wholly as a team. And it all came together very quickly.

House frameYou could have felt the excitement as we all started to see Mari Luz’s house take shape and take on her character.

House frame and old house
She was so excited. Her broad smile never left her cheeks – it just radiated thanksgiving, joy and love. But her deep-set eyes – I’ll remember them forever – so grateful.

MariluzHard image to erase, much like the picture I will leave you with. A visual of the old house with the new one we were building right behind it…….

House old and new

In His Almighty Grip and Loving EVERY minute,