And what a week it has been.
Last weekend, for the fourth of July, we went on a joint trip to Tambor. We went with the Walker family, missionaries to Mexico, they have 3 sweet boys. And Janiel, she is a missionary to Paraguay with an awesome testimony of God's grace. She is one of the only people I personaly know who became a Christian because someone gave her a "track". And the Harris family (Lorin and Rebecca), a newly wed couple heading to El Savador to work with Kings Castle.
After class (yes, we really are in school), we packed our 12 passenger van (the 13 of us), tied our luggage to the top in the van (in the pouring rain) and headed out of town. The drive there was very adventorous. We drove the infamous roads of Central America, where the pavement suddenly stops and you are on a gravel road, and then after a few kilometers you are back on pavement again. It had rained so much, that many of the bridges had rushing water running over them. It was CRAZY. Being in a van loaded with people, I have no photos to prove how the roads and bridges were, but trust me, it was a little crazy. Thank you Darren for some awesome driving.
We reached a ferry boat, drove the car on, and headed to the Nicoya Peninsula. It was about an hour long ferry ride. By the time we reached the other side, the roads were quite dark. We made it to our rental in good time, and got all settled in. The house was a little. . . "rustic". It is probably just fine for Central American standards, but I like to rent a HOUSE. So I had a little adjusting to do. The first hour we were there, we had to chase a mouse out of one of the rooms. The house ended up being perfect for us, because we all had a room, (ok Janel had a couch, but it was in a room. . .)and a table big enough for all of us to play games, a kitchen, and an AMAZING view. And it came with its own sounds (we could hear the iguanas walking on the roof).
The next morning, after a wonderful breakfast, cooked on, what Dave calls a camping stove, we explored a little. We were right on the ocean. The heavy rains had caused a lot of debris to be washed up on shore, so the shore was really litered with logs, sticks, and "trash". The girls quickly called it stick beach. We felt like we needed to find a safer, cleaner beach, and settled on a place called Montezuma. The ocean was cleaner, but the waves were huge, and had lots of rocks. So the kids played on a little stream, and had a blast. They ended up making a damn over the stream, and people starting using it as a bridge. The ocean is beautiful here, because the jungle comes right up to the shore. It is an incrediable view.
Later that day we celebrated the fourth of July with a meal of tacos (with some of Daves famous salsa, and Darren's guacamole). We finished it off with Dave's apple pie (Darren's birthday is actally on the fourth, so that was our gift to him). We played silly games with the kids (like doggie doggie who has your bone, monkey in the middle, etc) and we all had fun.
The next day we were able to swim right outside our house. The girls really enjoyed learning how to boggie board. We enjoyed our time so much.
Later we packed up, and headed back to San Jose. Darren wanted to go eat at the Outback for his birthday, so after heavy traffic, we were finally able to get there. The Outback here is a little different than the states. Steaks are about 30 dollars, and the salad to go with it is 10 dollars. So we all had burgers. . .and shared a bloomin onion.
The girls had a good week at school, and wrapped it up on Friday with "Olympic" style games. They are having a great time making new friends and learning songs. They made sock puppets, and are working on several things for their last day of school. They were very sad about a new friend that had to return to the states after contracting Lime Disease. She will have to go home for the treatment. If you could remember to pray for Tess, her family would appreciate it.
Judy comes home every day, completely exhausted, but happy. She is really being challenged with her assignment. One day she had to fill in for the PE teacher. She is an amazing blessing to us, and the families here with children attending Sojourn. The kids at Sojourn are also getting sad that she only has one more week to go.
This week we felt an earthquake. It measured 5.0 richter scale, with the epicenter about 45 to 60 minutes from here. Dave and I felt it in conversation class. I am going to have to say it was a sick feeling, having my kids 15 minutes away. But I think that tremors are felt alot around here.
Dave and I had some exams this week, and so far are making straight A's. Learning a new language is so humbling. It really is. I thought I would walk away from here, able to do so much more, but am only now starting to form sentences and questions. I am really good at my adjectives. I can say things like,
My husband is tall
My husband is smart
My husband is handsome. . .
Kinda sad huh?
Anyway. . .
Saturday was fun for all. Dave and Judy were able to go on an off shore fishing trip. They went Darren, Lorin and Rebecca. They left at 4:30 in the morning and spent all day on the water. They all had an incrediable time, and were able to catch some fish a sailfish and some bonita. No one got sick or sunburn. So it was a perfect trip.
The girls and I slept in, the second time since being here, and then went with the Walkers and Janel to the Childrens Museum here in San Jose. It was alot of fun. We were there for 4 hours, and didn't see it all. The signs were all in Spanish, so I had to make stuff up for the girls. Please don't tell them. They think that their mom is so smart. The meseum had some really interesting parts, but the girls favorite was the bannana processing plant (where they wash, weigh, and package the bannanas) and a "mock" earthquake (they are on a platform that actally shakes).
That finally brings us to today. I am going to have to save it for a post of its own. We went to a church to give our testimonies in Spanish. I have it on tape and can't wait to share, but will have to wait. . .
We are having an amazing time.
God continues to keep us safe, and healthy, and well fed.
The missionaries we have around us are such a blessing to us. They are constantly encouraging us, giving us tips (on how to itenerate, stretch a budget, raise well adjusted kids. . . etc) and challenging us to become closer in our relationship with the Lord. I want to be able to give you a link to their blogs and sites on line, so you can see the awesome people God is using around the world.
P. S. I started the blog yesterday, but was unable to finish. . .so I will get tell about Sunday sometime soon.