Saturday, June 27, 2009

a tooth, a butterfly, celebrations and rewards

Zack lost his first tooth. Well, not lost exactly... He was so excited to have his first loose tooth and he wanted it pulled out immediately! So, I grabbed hold of it and finally on the third pull it came out. I don't know if that's the best way to do things and I don't know if Zack will ever let me do it again! He thought it was cool that it bled though, especially when it grossed out his sisters. Boys...!

Our escapee caterpillar finally came out of its cocoon. We had the caterpillar in a butterfly "cage", but it somehow escaped and built its cocoon on our back door frame. It finally "hatched" and we found it on our floor. Lilian named it "Brisa" since it came out on a misty, rainy afternoon. We kept it overnight and let it go the next morning. Anyone know what kind of butterfly it is?

Angelica's Bible study class had another "reward" event for all those who were able to write their 13 Bible memory verses. Angelica did an excellent job and even wrote about half of them in Spanish! The reward was dinner at a local restaurant with typical Honduran food and then ice cream for desert. Eating out at a restaurant is a rare and special event for most of the Finca kids.

Andrea and Mirian being their "normal" selves. :)

Today, Alessandra went with her class for their reward for saying all of their 13 verses. Ali has also been commended by her teacher, Alonso, for being able to say all 26 verses in a row without any mistakes! I don't have any pictures since I didn't go along, but Ali's class had a special lunch of pizza over at the other finca, as well as ice cream.

On Thursday, June 18th, the new computer lab was "dedicated" and opened. HSBC bank funded the renovation along with the national newspaper, La Tribuna, and a national television station, Channel 10, under the "Donate a Classroom" program. Representatives from all three businesses were here, as well as their reporters and news crews. (We got to get our pictures in the newspaper, as well as Andrea's family who were here to visit :)
The Finca choir sang for everyone, all the representatives gave speeches, and there was a ribbon cutting ceremony. All the kids were happy to show off their computer skills to all the visitors!

Angelica, Ali, and Zack are finished with school for the "summer"! Well, except for some "field trips" that we wanted to wait and do when their cousin, Josh, is here. They also want to have a graduation party for Zack and end of year party for the girls, but they wanted to wait for Josh and their aunt Jodi, uncle Amos and cousin Karissa, who all arrive this Thursday, July 2nd. My sister and her family will stay until the 10th, while Josh, my brother's son, will stay until July 25th.

No school means time to work in the garden!!

And, of course, some more birthdays!! This time it was Jimmy and Javier. Both fairly sweet guys and fairly hard workers. I think they both turned 15 this past week. Some "little brothers" for Andrea to pick on!! :)

Please continue to keep all of us here at the Finca in your prayers, as we struggle with frustrations and feelings of failure from time to time. We know God is our strength and only with His help can we show the love that He has for all of us. We want to show His joy and peace to all who know us. May you feel His presence and peace in the midst of uncertainty and know His joy in the midst of anxious times.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

a beach and more birthdays

Well, I really wanted to sit on my back porch to blog and now that my laptop is finally picking up the Livengood's wireless signal from down below, I can!! I think we're getting a new router when Andrea's family arrives on Saturday, so then I won't have to make sure the weather conditions are right or that I'm sitting in the right position in order to get wireless. I was blessed though to find out that I can actually pick up the Livengood's signal sometimes at my kitchen table or on my back porch like now.

Ok, now I see that I've lost my signal again, so I hope I won't need to type all of this over again!!

Let's see... the big news since the last blog is, of course, our visa renewal trip to Costa Rica. I don't know, do you want the long version or the short version? :) The short version is that we went, had some problems at the Costa Rican border, had some awesome family and relaxing time in Costa Rica, started the return, had some problems at the Nicaraguan border and some police stops in Nicaragua, but with God's help and answered prayers got our new visas and returned safely to La Finca. The longer version includes a lot more details like: errors on the part of border officials and their computer system, leaving our truck sit at the border while we found a hotel for the night, God's assurance via a Cristian restaurant owner that the problems would be resolved, phone calls by officials to San Jose, leaving a driver's license as security so we would be allowed to go in search of some paperwork, truck paperwork problem resolved, relaxing time in Costa Rica, starting our return, talk of a 3 hour wait at the Nicaraguan border for a drug search of our vehicle since someone else with Honduran plates had been caught with drugs, God's help in being allowed to go without the extensive search, a couple of police stops in Nicaragua for the sole reason for them to try and get money, the final fairly easy border and back home in Honduras! Lessons learned: No matter what you think you have learned from previous border experiences: things change and there's always something new or different. AND God is always faithful and it's best to just trust in him so you can feel peace no matter what's going on around you.

Anyway... here's some pictures of the relaxing family times in Costa Rica!

We're all proud of Zack. He learned how to swim under water without holding his nose and with his eyes open. He had a little instruction from Ali, who can't even do it without holding her nose! :)

We were all glad for a time of rest and relaxation together as a family (and with Andrea, who hopefully also had a time of rest and relaxation, even though she had to share a room with my two daughters :) We were also grateful and thank God for bringing us back safely.

The other big event recently was the celebration of Harlan's birthday, which is actually only tomorrow, June 10th. :) On Sunday, we had a birthday lunch for Harlan and Michele, whose birthday is also the 10th. Our friends, Guillermo and Luz, were able to join us, as well as Alonso and Michele and family, Angel, Andrea, Patricia, Concho, and Danilo. Dwain and Audrey joined us later for desert after they returned from a night away. Guillermo was very impressed that we had three birthday cakes. Chocolate for Harlan and a pineapple cake for Michele, as well as a small peach upside down cake, in case the pineapple didn't turn out well. It was a new recipe. :)
It was a great time of fun fellowship and talking about everything from soccer, of course, to politics. By the way, how many of you knew that there was an important soccer game between the USA and Honduras this past Saturday? You can be sure all of Honduras watched the game!

Birthday pics...

Then on Monday for their after school project, Angelica, Ali and Zack helped Audrey make Harlan a birthday cookie.

Join us in thanking God for being with us in all things and seeing us through!!

PS. We love to hear from you! :)