Right now, I feel completely in a funk, so to speak, with my emotions. My heart feels so torn between my two worlds... My life back in the US and my life here in Haiti. As I start to prepare to leave Haiti to go home for the holidays, I get excited thinking about seeing family, my baby niece, and my friends!! My body is anticipating rest and relaxation... Time to refocuse and reenergize. However, my heart aches think about leaving...feeling uneasy about being gone for 4 weeks and knowing a lot can and will happen between now and when I come back in January. I have created so many wonderful relationships with the kitchen staff, the kiddos, and the missionaries..and it's sad for me to leave. Anxiety occasionally creeps in my mind... Worrying about what I might miss, what might the kitchen staff do, and what success or challenges I might not be able to witness amongst the people I am serving beside. Here is the part where I just have to let go...and trust. Yes, just trust.
I am feeling more confident then ever about my kitchen staff... Knowing that they have been through one whole, consistent month of a new menu change and have made great strides to make use of local and sustainable foods in Haiti..and not to mention even staying within a reasonable budget!! (More on budget topic in a future blog.. I am finding some very interesting discoveries!!). This week we also hired on a new kitchen manager. One of our temporary staff members has had quite the effect on the kitchen flow and production (meals getting out on time, preparing tasty foods without recipies or extensive instructions, and professionalism). Our new manager excepted the position on Monday, as we felt that her qualifications (education, training, cooking experience, and teaching experience) were relevant.. And exceptional for what we needed to help with the productivity of the kitchen. She has been a blessing to me...beyond amazing!!! As part of her job description, I have made it a point that she work closely with me to continue enhancing her nutrition knowledge and implementing it into the meals served at Grace Village. I am excited to see where things will go from here... :D
This is me with most of my kitchen ladies (missing two)!!
Today, my two apprentices (feeding center director and the kitchen manager).. And the rest of the kitchen staff and guardians... Surprised me with a cake and a special dinner for the kids!!! It was in appreciation of all my time here and a send off for when I go home, our new kitchen manager, a professional cook and baker, prepared a scrumcious cake and a delicious potato and egg bake for me and all the kids. Words can't even explain how much this has warmed my heart... Makes me want to cry thinking about how thankful I am that they did this for me. Makes me reaffirmed that I absolutely love the people I am serving beside (Even when we have our highs and lows) ....And how much I love being a dietitian on a mission. I feel so incredibly blessed.. And so thankful.
My professional cook and baker!! Love her!!
Two beautiful cakes made with love!!
Shared them with all my sweetpeas!!
My and the little (and not so little) guys!!