Both teams enjoyed another gorgeous, sunny day at the work sites. We’re working hard, but were having SO much fun at the same time! Everyone here is so pleasant all the time it seems; it amazes us. No matter how much or how little they have, people are kind and positive. We wish we could bring the mentality home with us!

Site #1: Lee’s Team

This morning we learned to mix concrete, all by hand mind you, and then loaded it into buckets to be carried to the walls, dumped in, and packed down. As always, we worked as such a great team and accomplished what seemed like a lot of work in a short amount of time. It’s still incredible to think that it would be solely the mason and his assistant doing all of this work if we weren’t here. (*Not-so-fun Fact: this is the case with 94% of the homes that Habitat builds here in Guatemala. So for those wondering if another group will come to pick up where we leave off, the answer is definitely not–if another group is here next week they will be sent to help with a different home)

Lucky ducks that we are, we also got to spend some time playing with all the kids hanging around before and after school. Bubbles are clearly universally loved!

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Site #2: Dave’s Team (It’s no secret he calls them the A team) received_m_mid_1426722302137_991da31d498aa8a077_2

The morning here was spent mixing concrete as well. A huge batch consisting of 12 wheelbarrows of sand, 15 of rocks, and 8 bags of concrete! Plus there’s always more rebar to be made. received_m_mid_1426731590927_f4432931cd142c9613_2

With each day that passes, it’s going to be harder and harder to leave this family! Today we brought Fanny and 3 of her brothers and sisters to the park to eat our lunch. We shared our packed lunches with them and as always they were so appreciative.

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After only a half day’s work, we went back to the hotel and quickly cleaned up, then started out towards a national reserve about 20 minutes from us. Fredy promised if we had “good spirits” we would get to see a Quetzal bird. So we did bring our good spirits, but the very knowledgeable guide we had might have helped with the sighting as well.. We hiked down into the rainforest where we were lead to 2 different Quetzal nests. As we all looked on quietly, the guide would go knock on the trunk of the tree holding the nest; and each time a Quetzal flew out! It was hard to get good pictures from down below, but we can now say that we saw not one but two Quetzals while we were here in Guatemala. We know it looks like a pretty big bird, but much to Barbara’s surprise, it only weighs about 1/2 pound! 😜

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They are such unique looking birds with almost iridescent blue, green feathers, a red chest, and lonngg tails. We’re so glad we got the chance to take this little rainforest excursion to spot one. While on our hike we also stopped by a couple waterfalls and took full advantage of the photo-op. As you might be able to tell from this photo, we think it was our guide’s first experience taking a picture!

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We had to hurry out when a fog suddenly rolled in and the guide was worried we would get rained on.

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Tomorrow morning we are all going together to site #1 to visit the school right next door. We’re donating the books that we brought and in return they apparently have a program planned for us! ¡Que lindo!

P.S. A huge thanks to Fredy for being the best leader we could ask for through all of this! We are WICKED happy to have you and Herbert 😊

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