laughter

this week has been a great week. the team that came in on monday have been rockstars. this team is willing to do anything and everything! 

ive got two very specific highlights of this past week. one of them is quite odd, but i promise it will make you giggle. 
the first highlight of my week is a sweet boy. him and i met during my first week here. his name is kinderson. he lives in our special needs home here on campus called the miriam center. he is the most unique and special person i have met in my life. his smile makes my insides happy and his snuggles are amazing. kinderson is a very unique human in the sense that no one can really diagnose what is happening with him or even get a slight understanding of what is going on in his head. but that doesn’t matter to me. what matters to me is his smile when he sees me, his smile when im pushing him in a hammock or his precious face when he’s sleeping. kinderson makes me so happy and the thought of leaving him in three short weeks already breaks my heart. 
the second highlight of my week is definitely something you’re going to have to read twice! i shredded approximately sixty, yes you read right, sixty pounds of spam. (Yes you read that right) and it was the best time. i still haven’t figured out why i had such an amazing time doing it. it was probably a mixture of the fact that i was feeding someone, and the fact that i was surrounded by good people while doing it! i definitely have found my calling in life (not really but it was fun while it lasted) 
as i mentioned before, there are just three short weeks before i head back to the states. my time here has been flying by and the reality of the word leaving is sinking in quickly. please pray for my heart as time gets shorter and shorter and i have to begin my “see you later’s” to the ones I’ve drawn so close to. also please pray for the team as they are still here and still working in incredible ways. please keep everyone’s health also in your prayers! the lack of sleep really takes a toll on people, but it’s totally worth it (: 

thank you for everyone who has been so supportive through this whole process. thank you to all of my friends and family who have sent encouragement to me through my week; y’all rock! 

see y’all soon (unfortunately) (i mean that with the most love in my heart) 
tatum 

reality 

this week has been a pretty relaxed week. the team i was with left on Monday so the rest of the week i had time to spend with the other team that was here and lay low. 

the group that just left last night was a group of people who had never been here before. going into this week with them we all had a very open mind and were excited to see how God was going to use them to minister to the people inside and outside of the mission gates. this team was so excited to dive in and get a small glimpse into each program we have here on campus. watching them love and care for each different program was such a cool experience. although each day was fun with new adventures, my favorite day was Saturday. on Saturday the team planned a beach day outing for all of our gran moun which is our senior citizen residence on campus. they haven’t been outside the gates in over four years so they all were so excited to be leaving and letting loose for a day at the beach. as much fun as it was to see them exited, i really focused on the excitement of the staff. 24/7 these women are devoting themselves to serving others and pouring out their gifts and talents to be completely selfless. watching these women dance and laugh and let loose was so fun. they have so much joy and it is so contagious and i strive to be more like them. these women work together and work to benefit others and make each other stronger. Proverbs 27:17 comes to mind when thinking about these women. “As iron sharpens iron, one person sharpens another” these women are such an inspiration and contagious in their ways. 

this week has been so relaxed. although relaxing is great and needed, it also gives me too much time to think. the thoughts of missing home are often overwhelming and sometimes too much to handle. other times my thoughts are sad because i have to leave here in less than a month. coming to the realization i will have to say see you later to the people who i have built such strong relationships with and connected with is something i dread. knowing that it’s a “see you later” instead of a “goodbye” makes it a little more bearable. but instead of “goodnight see you tomorrow” it will be a “see you later, but i don’t know when” is slowly breaking my heart. 

please continue to pray for health for the interns and other staff. also please pray that the relationships I have with people will get stronger. please pray for my heart and the other interns heart as we slowly come the the reality that our time here is getting shorter and shorter. 
loves and hugs 
tatum 

learning 


this week i have learned so much. 

on monday a new team came in. only two of them had ever been to haiti before so i had no idea what we were getting ourselves into. so once they arrived, we all were very anxious to see how God was going to use them. this team came in with a miriam center focus (which is our home for special needs children). on tuesday the team did devos and yoga with all of the kids. we had a blast doing that. the team and the kids love each other. after that we had some down time. and for those of you who know me, i love babies. so i was drawn to a little baby and her mother sitting in the courtyard. this baby was smiling like crazy and was so precious. after talking to her for awhile, i found out that they were here to get therapy started on the baby. she has clubbed feet and the mom knew that she could get help here. so autumn, our therapist here on campus, asked me if i wanted to help put casts on this babies legs to start her ten week casting therapy. so of course i said yes without any hesitation. i learned so much about therapy and how the mission helps babies and children with disabilities. after we casted this babies legs, i got to help autumn make wrist molds for part of our kids therapy. 

the team has done so many fun things in the short time they’ve been here. we took all of the miriam center kids to the beach, had many dance parties, had a movie night and just invested in the kids lives. this team is nothing short of amazing and i can’t wait to see how they finish up their last day and a half here. 

yesterday, we hiked to a waterfall just for a relaxing day. after hanging out there for awhile, two of the girls felt called to be baptized in the river where we were at! i was so excited we got to celebrate their proclamation of faith with them! God is so good! 

these past few weeks have been a little rough for me. i have really been struggling with homesickness and feeling like i’m missing out on stuff at home. i know that God has a plan and there is definitely a reason i am here. i can’t wait for these last five weeks to see what works God still has in store for me. thank you all for your prayers and your kind messages throughout the weeks. you guys are what keep me happy and motivated! thank you all for what you mean to me!
loves and hugs

tatum 

down time 

this week seems so long but so short all at the same time. 

we have our surgery team here so there are tons of people all over campus. they are here for one more week. they have been such a blessing to everyone they come in contact with. they have changed so many people’s lives with the surgeries they perform. they also have had an impact on the community when they are not in surgery. each person is so different from the other, but they work so well together! 

this week i had a team for only two days because then they went to the mole (one of the other campuses in the northwest part of haiti) my group was made up of four people. they were so fun. two of the people, an older married couple, were here when the land was purchased to put the mission on. so listening to them tell stories and watch as they were reconnected with old friends made their time here so special. even though their time was short on this campus, they made an impact. they taught some of the miriam center kids how to build benches (which was such a blessing) and they just did little odd and ends fixing around campus. 

after my team left i had down time for the rest of the week. i spent my time holding babies, hanging out in the orphanage and hanging out in the miriam center. i also got the opportunity to take charge and lead brothel ministry on friday. 

through my downtime i had so many opportunities to talk to God and just listen to Him. lately i have been overwhelmed by plans of the future. through my downtime and prayer, i have gotten so much peace about Gods plans for me and what that looks like even in the next few months. i am constantly being reminded that God has a plan for me and that is the best plan for me, even when i don’t think so. “May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust Him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit” Romans 15:13 

there is a new team coming in tomorrow (Monday) and i am so excited for them to arrive! i can’t wait to see God work through them and through those around them. 

please keep the teams in your prayers as they do ministry here on campus and off campus. also please continue for health for everyone here. 

thank you all for your support and love!!!!! 
until next week, 

tatum 

new people 

this week has flown by SO fast! 

Our first team got here on Tuesday. they are a team of seven people. their team consists of four people who have been to haiti, and three people who hadn’t been. 

my favorite experience of this whole week so far has been watching the team grow and learn while they are here. for those who have been here before, watching them fall more and more in love with the country, the people, and the experience of haiti. and for the people who had never been; watching them grow and become more and more comfortable each day. watching them take leaps of faith and try something they would’ve never done, or something they wouldn’t have tried if they were in the states. i also have loved getting to know each team member and being able to connect with a few on a deeper level! 

this week was filled with so many adventures as i helped lead this team through the streets of St.Louis. on tuesday we had a very relaxing day, the team arrived and they got to unpack their bags and go on the campus tour and just hang out. wednesday morning we hit the town and did grocery ministry. grocery ministry is where the teams give money (up to them how much they give) and they get to go to the market and buy food for a family. they put the groceries in a bag and then walk around the streets and up the mountain side and wait for God to tug at their hearts to lead them to a house that needs the food the most. each bag is about $10 american and will feed the family for a few weeks. the team split up into two groups so it would be easier to walk in the market and we could reach more people. we ended up blessing twelve families that day. on thursday some of the team went to the prison in a neighboring city. i stayed back with three of the women on the team and hung out at the vaccination program (for babies up to two years old) and got to love on the babies and pour into the mothers. we also spent some time in the birthing center. we got to hold a baby that was just shy of four pounds! also on thursday some of the team went to the trade school and helped teach an english class! friday there was a campus wide dance, so i spent my morning with two of the team members baking. we ended up making 256 cupcakes! they were a hit! yesterday, saturday, the team hosted a soccer tournament for any of the kids in the community. that was so much fun! the kids in the community loved it and it was a great time. 

this week has been crazy, to say the least. there have been times where i have wanted to be grumpy, or sad or even mad. but i am constantly reminded to choose joy. the times where i have wanted to choose a bad attitude, are times i had the most fun because i chose joy. this is something i am continually working on, so please pray for that! 

a few more prayer requests: one of the interns is on an iv from dehydration so please pray for her health and healing! we also have close to 70 people coming in tonight to stay and do ministry, which is amazing! please pray for them and what they are about to do and experience. please also just continue to pray for safety and health for teams and all staff! 

thank you all for loving on me and messaging me throughout the week to keep me accountable and feeling so loved! 
loves and hugs 

tatum 

two down eight to go 

there is no way we have been here two weeks! time has flown by. these past two weeks have been nothing but fun. bonding with other staff and the ministries surrounding me has given me so much comfort in the midst of missing home and people i love and miss. 

there are a few ministries i have really plugged into on campus that i will continue to pour into and get connected with. before leaving for haiti, i told myself that i was going to haiti to plug into the nutrition program. I was convinced that was where i needed to be and where God would use me best. little did i know, that was not where He wanted me. 

these past two weeks i have found myself wandering over to the birthing center with any free time i have. *side note* for any of you who know me, i don’t do ANYTHING medical and nothing to do with blood or needles or pain whatsoever *side note over* in the birthing center, women can go to give birth and also receive post and pre natal care for free at any time. i find myself going over and loving on literally brand new babies and hanging out with the nurses. one of the nurses already has such a special place in my heart and i have found myself calling her “mom” more times than i would like to admit. 

the second ministry i have really loved getting connected with is brothel ministry. these women are INCREDIBLE. they have been coming to bible study for awhile now, and i have just been blessed to have a small glimpse into what they do. these women who were rescued out of their jobs at the brothel, come to the mission on Tuesday and Friday to make jewelry. they make jewelry out of cardboard boxes and sell them at the mission store. they make jewelry for about an hour and then they do a bible study. i would age never guessed this would be the ministry that i would fall in love with, but God continues to surprise me and bless me with new opportunities. if you would like to see or purchase any of the jewelry please let me know and i can send pictures so you can purchase them! the money they make from selling their jewelry goes into a savings account ran by the mission for them. it will be given to them as they graduate out of the program. it will help them pay rent and get themselves on their feet, without resorting back to their jobs at the brothel. 

i also have been spending some time with the orphanage girls, who are amazing! they are such a fun group of girls who really just want to have fun!!!! 

through all of my new adventures, there is one bible verse that really sticks out to me. Hebrews 13:5 “I will never leave you nor forsake you” this was in one of my daily devotions and it just really gives me comfort when i feel like i am not where God wants me, or mostly where i don’t want to be. i just know and trust that Gods plan is better than i know and with Him, anything is possible. when we have God’s assurance behind us, the most amazing strength becomes our own. 

our first team comes in tomorrow (Monday) and i  am beyond excited for this summer to start in full swing! 

please keep my team and i in your prayers as we continue to bond and learn to work together. please also pray for the teams coming in that they will take full advantage of opportunities they will be given! also pray for health for everyone 🙂 

thank you all for your love and support ❤️
loves and hugs, 

tatum 

one down nine to go 

we have already been here a week??????? 

to realize and understand that a week has already gone by, makes me wonder how quickly these next nine will go. 

this past week has already taught me so much. here are a few things i feel are key to what i have learned through experiences 

• Gods plans are better than mine 

•the other staff here are incredible and I love all of them so much 

•holding babies for long periods of time makes you sweaty (but i am not complaining) 

•always wear sunscreen (always) 

•coke is good (like really really good) 

• God is faithful in his ways, you just need to be still (Exodus 14:14) 

• deodorant and showers are a gift from above (don’t be shy, just reapply) 
i am becoming more and more aware of the Holy Spirit and how it moves in me. God has a plan for me and i don’t know it yet, but i know it’s amazing. God did not put me here to fail. 
realizing and understanding that i am a small puzzle piece of God’s huge puzzle is amazing. God needs each and every puzzle piece to make His masterpiece. without me, His puzzle is not complete. my goal for this upcoming week is to make each person i come in contact with, realize that they are a puzzle piece too. and without them, God’s work is not complete. so when you feel like you aren’t worth anything or feeling like you don’t matter (which i get caught up in more times than id like to admit) that you are part of the puzzle, too. each of us is a unique piece of a giant puzzle, and each of us is needed. Ephesians 4:1 really sums up what i am trying to say “as a prisoner of the lord, i urge you to live a life worthy of the calling you have received” 

be a puzzle piece that influences other puzzle pieces 

loves and hugs, 

tatum 

here 

We are here!!!!! 3 planes, 8 hour bus ride and memories are what the first 2 days (Saturday Sunday) consisted of while we made our journey to the mission. 

So far, we have just had intern training and just hung out and gotten to know other staff on campus and just been able to hang out with the kids. 

On Monday we got some free time to do whatever we wanted on campus, so I spent my time with the older girls in the orphanage. I was warned before even getting to campus that they are mean and just try and pick you apart, so I took that as a challenge. I actually loved my time spent with them. They tried to pick on me, but they quickly realized I am just as strong willed as they are and they knew we would get along. So they asked me to “walk” with them, which in Haiti means “will you join our possee” so I considered that a definite victory in my book. 

We also started doing Creole lessons with Paul (pretty much our super protective Haitian father for the next two-ish months) and that started well! 

I have loved getting to know staff and all of the kids on campus! They’re each so amazing and unique in their own ways! 

Yesterday (Tuesday) we got to explore Saint Louis a little bit. We took a “small” hike up and down the mountain behind the mission so when there are teams here, we can lead them on the path we took. 

To my prayer partners: 

Please pray for comfort, as being away from home is already making this summer hard. I know the devil is using that to his advantage, unfortunately. 

Also pray that I get used to the food here, I am a picky person when I am in the states so eating here is definitely a struggle. 
Thank you to everyone who has supported, encouraged, and believed in me. I can’t believe I am actually here! I am so ready to see what God has in store over the next 70 days. 
loves and hugs, 

tatum 

depth and purpose

okay i am dreaming… right? 22 days and i am in haiti!!!!! this is incredible.

 

i have been ready to go since january, but now that time gets closer i am begging for more time before i leave. so many family members i want to see, so many memories i want to make but not enough time. satan is totally winning right now in the fact that he thinks it is okay to make me feel sad for not being able to be home this summer. satan thinks hes soooo cool when he does this poo.

 

prayer is so powerful and so incredibly amazing when it comes to situations like this. where i am stuck.

obviously i am going to haiti, and i am going for a reason. i am so excited to go and so excited to see old friends and so excited for all the new friends.

i am fully funded and completely ready to go. the only thing i still need is food… i can NOT forget food lol

 

so as most of you are reading this (if anyone actually reads this) and you’re probably thinking “okay crazy lady get to the point”

 

the point is that God gives you opportunities and blesses you with experiences to make you better and to make His kingdom better. i am so proud and humbled to be a kingdom worker each and every day, no matter where i am or what i am doing.

satan is trying so hard to ruin this experience and opportunity for me before i even get a chance to start. learning how powerful prayer is and learning how our God is so much bigger than any of the problems we face is so important and something that i constantly find myself thinking about.

so whatever you may be struggling with, God is bigger and God’s got you. God doesn’t put you in situations to fail. God puts you in places and experiences for a reason, always. do not let satan take that away (i am constantly reminding myself)

prayer is such a powerful part of my walk with Him. here are a few things that you can be praying for before my team and i set foot in haiti in 22 days

  • health (thats a biggie) (spiritual, emotional and physical)
  • safe travels into the country
  • and for every moment up until we leave, have a purpose and depth. (just let that one sink in)

thank you for all of you and all of your support leading up to my trip. this is where i will keep everyone updated while i am in haiti as well! i will be able to keep in touch via facebook messenger as well. please text, call or message me if you have any questions or have any advice as this next adventure in life approaches quickly!

loves and hugs

tate

 

 

this is real

seriously, this has never felt more real.

 

today we got the dates of our trip. i knew that i was going and i knew it was real, but today, it became actually real. on may 20th, i will be in haiti and on august 10th i will leave haiti.

that makes everything so real. i dont think i can actually say it enough.

lately i have worried so much about funding and found myself once again not trusting that God has a plan for me. which is probably one of the most pathetic thoughts that can even go through my head. i then follow up the negative thoughts with God did not put me here to fail. 

i think that we all take that for granted sometimes. we all want ourselves to believe that we are going to fail. but then you sit back and remember, God loves me more than that. I can only fail if i allow the devil in and allow him to win.

i refuse to let the devil win.

103 days until i step foot in haiti, the place i found so much love, the place my heart calls my second home.

 

please continue to pray for my team and i as we get closer and closer to being back to the place we are all called to.

 

if you would like to partner with me in this journey, please contact me

 

loves and hugs,

tatum img_3458