So we now have pictures of many of the steps of building an adobe home (of which we're working on four separate homes). Here is a quick lesson. The first step is mixing mud for the bricks. This involves getting the correct dirt mixture bought and delivered, having water delivered, and hacking straw to give the bricks extra structure. In some cases, as on one of the sites, the homeowner doesn't have enough money for the dirt mixture and old, broken adobes (from walls that fell in the earthquake) have to be crushed before the water can be added. The formed bricks need to set out between 4 and 7 days, depending on if the sun comes out! One two-room house needs over 1000 bricks. While the first round of bricks dry, trenches are dug and filled with concrete (mixed by hand) to provide the foundation (all of the homes thatwere destroyed in the earthquake did not have a solid, cement foundation). Then more mud is mixed to act as the mortar and layers of bricks are laid for the walls. A special plastic mesh, called maya, is draped and then painstakingly tied tight to the interior and exterior walls. This is a vital step, as the mesh is what keeps the walls from tipping in the event of another earthquake. More mud is mixed and spread over the mesh. At this point bamboo beams (treated for termites and stained) is nailed to form the first layer of the roof (which serves as a very beautiful ceiling for the interior. Electric boxes, lights, and switches are also installed. Cement is then smoothed over all the walls and forms the top layer of the roof. Install doors and windows, paint it, and you have a sturdy, warm, secure home.
Please continue to pray for health. We are doing well, though Lori pulled a muscle in her back and is hurting. Everyone with intestinal issues are on meds and doing much better!