Monday, October 14, 2013

Mi ultima mes en Honduras

I cannot tell you guys how many times I have said, "I have time to do that later"; whether it be taking a bike ride to La Chiquita (restaurant)/having Digna over to cook a Honduran meal/ taking 20 minutes to do some yoga/WRITING A BLOG POST!

And in truth, I actually do have time for these things, but for reasons I can't explain, I choose not to. Now don't worry, I was not always like that.  Up until maybe a month ago we took two bike rides every weekend. Jenny and I did yoga at least 4 times a week. (The blog thing, however, I never really got accustomed to doing). But recently, instead of doing those things I have focused more on simpler things/comfort things. I am getting lost in a book, eating a good meal, or trying to understand how I never watched Grey’s Anatomy before this year?? And while cleaning has always been something we do every weekend, I find myself choosing to sweep outside or do laundry instead of exploring outside of our house.  

Sister Marta, my sister, Sister Maria, Sister Olga
So as I had come to realize this, I wondered, am I too comfortable here? Am I not taking advantage of being in Honduras? Am I ready to go home? Do I not yet fully realize that in a month I will be leaving what has been my home since January? Am I anxious/sad/excited/sad/scared?

I think the first time I realized that we were coming to the end was after the last volunteer group left. Throughout the year, the sisters have had weekly groups come down and help at the school/farm/clinic. In March we would be talking about the dentist group that comes down in July and in June we were talking about the church group that comes down from Dighton, Mass in October. But now, we don't talk about any future volunteer groups because we won't be here. We won't be able to go out to dinner with them/have them over for a home cooked meal, get to watch them enjoy their experience here.

So since my last moments in Guaimaca have to be a bit different, we have made a list of activities/goals and are going to try very hard to get this all done and experience Guaimaca to its fullest. Just yesterday, Jenny and myself went with Father Jorge and a couple friends to lunch in a town outside of Guaimaca and then to an Aldea(mountain village) for mass. We got to see two of my girls who live up there! It was a great trip and whereas earlier that day I was unsure as whether to go, I am glad I went. I just got to take advantage of all opportunities that present themselves; through all the trips/moments I have with my students and friends; because if I don't take advantage of all these moments, why on earth am I here?

My clowns! Girls from Segundo Ciclo. 

Now a bit about teaching

Wow. The amount of respect I have for teachers. From understanding the different methods in teaching/learning the subject material/CONTROL OF YOUR CLASSROOM-(the hardest step for me). So to sum it up:
Teaching is hard. There are times I don't look forward to entering the classroom. Whether it be the subject or the rowdiness of the kids. Sometimes there are days I would like to say, "No thank you!" What I have discovered, however, is every time I think this, 90% of the time I have a perfectly fine class. The girls listen(well, most),we get through the subject, I don’t run out of things to say, the girls UNDERSTAND!! And when I do have a bad day, it takes just ONE of them to smile, sit in my lap or give me a hug to remind me that I love them and they love me. I can already think of a millions instances I will have when I go home and automatically think of on of the girls.
Suamy de IIICC
Titanic-Victoria Alejandra.
Sarcastic comments-Jennifer.
Saying the word 'Hello'-Paola.

And I could keep going..... because, sometimes they are not my favorite and I KNOW at times I am definitely not theirs, but in the end there is so much love, those little moments don’t even matter.

Tuesday, March 5, 2013


I am going to write an actual blog post but here is my address in-case you guys want to send me ya know a letter.

Helen Rodriguez
Marie Poussepin Center
Barrio Las Palmeras
Guaimaca, F.M.
Honduras, Central America

Thursday, February 14, 2013

5th Week here!

First off, Happy Valentines Day!!

Secondly, that’s right! Almost done with my 5th week! It has gone by pretty fast, and while classes can sometimes feel realllly long, this past two weeks have flown by. Today is Valentines Day! or en espaƱol,  Dia del Amor y Amistad! The kids are the cutest, they love this day and making cards! I did, however, find it is a very hard day to try and teach when all they want to do is celebrate. My classes are getting better for the most part. I am getting a hang of these lesson plans and Segundo Ciclo are behaving pretty well. It will be a little challenge with my older kids, but they all have such good hearts, in time ill get it.

I have gotten to spend time with the others teachers which is great. They are so sweet, and give good advice when needed. I was so blown away when I found out two of them are younger than me! One is 21 and the other is 19! They are already so mature, smart, and are more on top of things than I am! I glad we all get to see so much of each other because not only are they good company but good help when practicing Spanish.

I have started to eat chicken here. It’s mainly because our lunch usually consists of some kind of meat and I didn’t want the cook, Digna to have to keep finding avocados for me. Its good, and its always something different which is nice.

One thing I didn’t except I would have to do here so often is clean our house! We have to mop/sweep/bleach if necessary/dust the floors/everywhere basically once a week, mow the lawn every 2, take care of our dog,, laundry on a pila… it is a lot especially when you really can only do these things on the weekends because we are at the school all day. And the amount of dishes we use is crazy, we lovee eatinggg.

In the end, Honduras continues to have beautiful days. Its not scorching hot yet, so I am still loving the weather. And the view continues to be amazing, with mountains everywhere you turn. The view from the farm is the best.

3 months till Mango season and we have a mango tree so COME ON DOWN-we’re having a fiesta de mangos! I can write you a pretty convincing letter if you want. If you don’t know where I am, ask Mike Lydon. He can pull out his map puzzle and show you!

Monday, January 28, 2013

It's been two weeks!

Well, as you can see for the picture below, we are in Honduras! Saturday marked two weeks being in Guaimaca and it has just flown by! We have been adapting to the community, house, school, and getting to know each other as well as the sisters. Lets start with the sisters.

            Sister Marta and Jenny, one of my housemates, met us in at the airport in Tegucigalpa. Guaimaca is about 1 ½ away so after we grabbed some lunch at the mall we headed out. Sister Marta took us to our house, where the other sisters were there. I have only known them for two weeks but they are all so great! There is Sister Marta who is our main coordinator of the program. She is funny, organized, and gets things done! Sister Olga is a hoot, she is just great. Sister Maria is so kind and well Sister Theresa is just such a sweet person. We are going to be working with here a lot since she is the coordinator of the school. I want all of you to meet them, I know you would all love them!! Now, about the house.

 It is beautiful! Outside there is a little garden made by the past volunteers (we will be adding to it soon-gardening tips anyone?), a table, a hammock that was just set up and most importantly, a Mango Tree!! (beyond excited) We also have a dog, Negrita, who I will have a love/hate relationship with throughout the year (Don’t worry Benji, you are still my favorite). Inside, the house is lovely as well! My room is right off the living room. Its got the necessities, along with some roommates (ants) Now, I know I’m great company and really, who wouldn’t want to be roommates with me –TORI- but I would appreciate it if they left. We’re working on finding them a new home.

For this program, we will be going to mass, often. While it seems like a lot going most of the week, it will really help me with my Spanish, and getting to know people in the community. Mass here is different from at home.  Here, there is a lot of singing; I can’t wait to get a music book so I can sing along. Both of the priests seem very nice and enthusiastic about being in this community, which is great. Last Friday we went to Tegus. To see the Basilica, which is a cathedral. It was beautiful, and while it was long bus-ride, worth it.

I have learned that my Spanish is a lot better than I anticipated, although I still have a long way to go. I’m sure my students will work with me and I will start improving in new time (Even though they speak real fast)! Speaking of school, I got my class schedule!

I will be teaching Segundo and Tercer Ciclo (8th and 9th grade) Natural Science and Art/ Music history. I am so excited! The music one sounds like it will be so much fun, and maybe I can pull out my piano skills from last semester to try and teach them some piano-LOL! I have started my lesson plans for my science classes and boy have I forgot science, but luckily it’s not too in depth so I should be able to teach them and learn some stuff myself!

I feel like there’s so much more, I just can’t think about it right now. Oh wait! I never talked about Guaimaca! It is a small town, I think technically a municipality, but a town nonetheless. This country has AMAZING fruit and I have been eating beans and rice like nobody’s business, but am not complaining! We have been able to meet people in town through school, church, and Jenny who has been here a few months already. We are planning on having some over soon, so that will be a great way to get to know them and for them to know us!

GUYS IM IN HONDURAS! I wish I had more to report like funny stories, life changing events, me being a teacher, me riding a bicycle, but I think in some way I’m in such a daze I can’t pinpoint any events right now. I start school on the 4th so right now I’m just preparing, preparing, preparing! (and enjoying the nature, weather, our group cooking, the dog, our neighbors, sometimes riding the bike, waiting for mango season,  and just taking it all in!) So many emotions but mostly excitement for all my adventures here.

Well, that’s it for now. Hopefully in two weeks time you’ll see a new post!
Also, Happy Birthday Ashley and Dana! Whooo!!


Wednesday, January 16, 2013

GUYYSS LOOK WE'RE IN HONDURAS!! Only had a quick sec., will post an actual post later.

Monday, January 7, 2013


Hey Guyss!

As you probably know, I am leaving for Honduras on Saturday for around 10 months. I'll be in a town called Guaimaca, around 1 1/2 outside of the capital. Tomorrow I head to Stonehill for orientation for the week which will be a great introduction to the program and preparation of what I will be doing down there! Anyways, I am hoping to start and continue this blog for the duration of my trip! I tried this once for my previous  travel to Bolivia but it didn't go as planned (Take a look: This time I am determined to write AT LEAST every two weeks. I am sure you want updates of my teaching experiences, cultural experiences, spanish improvement, and of course updates of my hair. Feel free to comment..Maybe it will get you a shout-out! lol.

As scary as it is that I will be gone for quite a while, I have never been more excited, nervous, anxious and cannot wait to write a more substantial/entertaining/interesting blogpost than this one. Hope you guys enjoy what's yet to come!