Sunday, April 29, 2007

Wedding in the village

We got to attend a wedding in the village on Thursday for one of our friends and a girl from our school. It was such a special day! After the wedding we were invited back to the well-filled house for cake and soda and sharing with the family. It was so amazing to sit in the hot front room of their brick home and share the love and joy of being part of their family. I continue to learn so much from being here, far more than I ever imagined. What a very special day for both Candace and I, sometimes we just can't believe that this is where we really get to live.


The newest addition to our house is two tiny turtles. We went to the pet store to get fish and came back with two baby turtles. My joy was short-lived as my mom said they are not allowed in the states anymore because of disease...but I still really like them, I just won't tough them. Candace and I are still working on names for them, but they are so entertaining!

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

The tally is in...

Most unnecessary items in my move:
Cricket doll (although amusing to play with...can you believe that her batteries still work, she still knows how to sing AND her eyes still move??!!)
Scarves, stocking hats, gloves (although many Dominicans would disagree and call them a necessity)
Playstation and VCR (useless when I have no TV)
Prom dresses (although we're dreaming of what we can do with them)
Most anticipated items:
Refried beans
Dish towels
Flannel sheets
Itmes that are more fun than I ever imagined:
Photo albums
Fish tanks
Griddle (especially as we have no stove yet)
Number of items broken/damaged in the move:
7 (not so bad for such a long journey)

First week

It has been such fun setting up our house! What a first week we have had. It's nice having our own space and place to really unpack things...what a long time that has been! It's fun having friends over, lots of visitors in and out over the last week, but it's all fantastic. The house is better than we ever thought or expected, my favorite time is the evenings when we get to come home after being at school and just, well, be. What a blessing this house is, I'm so glad God thought it was a good idea for us to live here.

Sunday, April 22, 2007


Wow, what a week it has been. All I can say is that this house is more than we ever expected or hoped it would be. What a blessing it is to get to stay here and set up home!

The week has been full, as we opened box after box and went up and down stairs. It is coming to an end now thankfully, and is looking fantastic. Hard to believe we ever didn´t live here!

My apologies for not being on email or updating the blog this week...but I´m sure there are many understanding eyes. The hope is to eventually get email at the house, but it looks like that may be a long time coming. In the meantime, I´m using internet cafes and will need to work out how I can go about getting photos, etc. onto the blog from here. Believe me, I have a lot of photos from this week.

Thank you for all the support and prayers through all of this time, what a lot of ups and downs this journey has been.

Monday, April 16, 2007

So sad

I ate my last Reese's peanut butter Christmas tree today...


Wow, it's here! After leaving Washington D.C., hanging out in Oregon for 3 months, travelling to England for a few months, then sitting in customs here for almost 4 months, my things have finally found their way to our little house in Montellano! It's incredible.
So I have to tell a story of how amazing God is and the lessons I've learned in all of this. I don't often do this, so just bear with me. You see, when I got back in January, I felt I really needed to hurry and find a house because I had all these things that were going to clear customs soon (it arrived 28 Dec). We looked and looked and there was literally nothing available...nothing. I felt I just needed to not worry, trust in God's big plan, and wait on Him! Then this house became available but it needed many weeks of work to be move-able, so we went for it. It is more than I ever thought we would have, I can't wait for all that we get to do there, for the teams that we'll share the house with, the open doors we hope to have to those that come in. So after calming myself a few times about finding somewhere to live, I had to continue to trust that God would show me his perfect timing, again, with my things arriving. Can you believe that not 10 minutes after the cleaners finished drying the floors that the truck pulled up with my things! God had it all worked out from the beginning and just wanted me to trust Him. So many lessons to be learned as I walk through this, I don't know all of what is ahead, but I have learned a lot about how God just calls us to be fully abandoned to Him, to trust Him with everything, He is in control of it all and has the power to do anything. I could have settled for a small apt that was seemingly unsafe by the taxi stand, but I felt there was something more and it would be worth waiting for...and now I see what it is. I continue to learn, grow, and change daily as I walk this path. God doesn't want anything more than trust and obedience, to know that He has us in His hand and will guide us each step of the way. That's what I'm trying to do here anyways...
(And yes, that is my Cricket doll that made it here too!)

Night hike

On Saturday I was able to climb the Puerto Plata mountain again...but at night! We left about 8:30 for the trek up the mountain with flashlights and arrived after midnight. We set up tents and wandered around a bit and finally went to sleep. We got up again at 6am to get back down the mountain and play in the river...but someone thought it might be a good idea to run down, which I think was stupid because I haven't been that tired in a long time! What a fun trip though!

Thursday, April 12, 2007

My mom's cooler than yours

So my mom went as a relief worker with the Red Cross to Holly, Colorado last week after the tornado. She was working mainly in the shelters, but got to tour around too and see the area. She also served as a Spanish translator cause she's pretty cool. She got to learn a lot and experience disaster relief and is ready for the next one, although we hope that doesn't come soon.


So I walked into the house the other day and look what I found! So they thought it would be exciting to paint the rooms a fun color...can you believe it??!! I nearly had a heart attack when I walked into it. Look at that magenta, wow! And the top left photo, doesn't it (sorry) look like a uterus and Fallopian tubes (my maternity nursing coming through here, but Candace agrees). Oh well, you can't plan it all I guess. Anyhow, the bathrooms are amazing and the stairs are fantastic and smooth. So maybe, just maybe, we may be moving in Sunday or Monday. We're going to clean the windows on Saturday and the floors will get shinied (?) up on the weekend too, so it's just nearly there. Oh, and my things...they still haven't arrived. :)

Baby Princesa

Just wanted to show off what a cute baby we have! Princesa is 2 months old and I love her so very much. We get to have her on the weekends once we move in and I can't wait. We've been cuddling her in the daytime and feeding her and burping her and being little mommies...and it's the best job in the world!

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Back to school

After a week's break, school is back in session. I missed my kids so much, it's so nice to see them and hug on them and I look forward to being with them everday! We had a pizza party on Monday which was excellent, I'm sure many of the kids had never had pizza before. We got to love on our baby, Princesa, yesterday at school which always makes for a great day. Every now and then I get some work in, between hugging kids and translating, and worked on little Rosario's leg that had been burned. I LOVE this place!

Sunday, April 08, 2007

Medical needs

There are a few things that we could use at the center if anyone has extras:

Blood pressure cuffs-adults and peds
Otoscope-to look in ears
I don't know what the word is, but it's the plastic/metal stick that is for pulling things out of has a small open loop on the end and is very handy

Any meds are amazingly helpful, especially the basics of antibiotis, pain relievers, antacids, cough/cold meds.

Let me know if you are interested and I can tell you how to get it down here. Thanks so much.


So the latest with all the updates is this...

My things continue to hang out in customs! It all arrived here the 28th of December and over the last 3-ish weeks has been cleared by customs, but not been deliverable yet. There were problems with heavy rains, roads getting washed away, the truck not getting set-up properly, and then Semana Santa was the problem for last week. Anyhow, I have been promised it will arrive this week...they said Monday, but I'm hopefully that it'll be here Tuesday or Wednesday-or before the week is over I guess. I've learned a lot about patience and waiting and not being in too big of a hurry!

The house has also nearly been finished! Maybe, just maybe, we may actually be able to move in by the end of the week. I'm so glad the rain stopped and they were able to sort out the roof last week. They still need to set up all the pipes to our water will work, put the toilets and sinks in the bathrooms, pain another coat, clean the floors, and get things like a stove and fridge...but we are so close now. I feel it's going to be a good week!

That's it for now, believe me that I'll be posting all the exciting events as they happen!

Happy Easter!

Saturday, April 07, 2007

Jarabacoa Trip

We took a day trip up to Jarabacoa today, up to the mountains! It was Mercy Ships' last weekend here, so we took a waterfall hiking trip which was excellent. They got to see another part of Kids Alive which is always great to share with others, we had a picnic lunch and then set off. It was such a beautiful hike and nice to see my Jarabacoa friends again! To top it off, we got to have Colombian food for dinner.

Semana Santa

What a week it has been! At the school, the hen house is nearly finished after a hard week of work. Next week the roof should go on and the hens be delivered so we're ready to move forward with egg-collecting. I had the chance to work with the Defensa Civil, which is like the Dominican Red Cross, on Thursday and Friday. During the last four days of the week, they are sent to the beaches to help keep things safe and be ready for any accidents. It was a funny few days as I sat hoping no one would drown! As Candace and I don't exactly look Dominican, we got a some funny looks walking on the beach in our "uniform", but it was worth it for getting to experience this. And yes, the guy in the bottom right photo has a massive gun...I guess just in case!

Sunday, April 01, 2007

Mountain Hike

We had the best day today!! We hiked the main mountain in Puerto Plata today which was amazing. Well, the day started with breakfast with Mercy Ships where I got to have not only Trix cereal, but Cookie Crisp as well! We then headed out to the hike which took us about 3 hours to get to the top. It was so beautiful all the way, and the view once we got to the top was incredible, all the way out into the ocean and over all the hills. We had lunch at the top and sang songs and then took a cable car back to the bottom of the mountain. It really was a perfect day, I'm so glad we were able to go along...and the rain held off for us.