Thursday, March 10, 2011

nature, in a variety of forms...

It's interesting what some people consider photo-worthy! :)

A strange bunch of worms that Harlan found one morning near his garden...

A "racimo" of bananas starting to ripen. Store bought bananas do not even begin to compare...

Who knew that a pile of clothespins would be a comfortable place to rest.

One of many temporary pets.

a river-mud facial mask :)

cantarranas and aquarana... : )

So... we decided that everyone had been working hard, either looking for work or doing work, and it was time for a break! We packed a picnic lunch, loaded everybody up and headed for Cantarranas, a town over the mountain that has a nice little river close by.

Danilo, Harlan, Ali and Zack


Harlan and Zack discovering a new species of ...?

Angelica and Lilian, are we having fun, yet? :)


Ali and Mirian


Mirian, Danilo and Ali on the "bridge to nowhere". Some of you should recognize this!

The "bridge" on which we crossed the river!

On the way back from Cantarranas we stopped at Aquarana, where they have a pool. We ate our packed lunch, ordered some fries and drinks, and enjoyed the water and sun!

It was an ok pool, but it does look better in pictures... :)

And then I had to share the bathroom with this guy! But he stayed in his corner and I stayed in mine. Fortunately the toilet was in my corner... :)

Thursday, March 3, 2011


There is some land down between our house and the creek that seems to have some pretty good soil. Harlan had worked up some ground by hand and has a couple of nice rows of peas, radishes and cilantro growing. We are really looking forward to fresh peas, which are not readily available here.

Inspecting the crops with Galen Groff. We were blessed to have Galen and Phyllis, missionaries in Guatemala and regional representatives for Eastern Mennonite Missions, visit us for a couple of days on their annual visit to EMM's Central American missionaries.

Galen and Phyllis also helped out by doing some much needed pruning of rose bushes, bougainvillea, etc

Harlan was thrilled when a renewed contact with a Dutch neighbor came with a offer to lend us his old rototiller. In Harlan's words, "Even though it bucks like crazy on the rocks and tree roots that have yet to be cleared (this ground has likely never been machine tilled before), it seems rather surreal in the most pleasant of ways to be operating a Troybuilt tiller on Honduran soil." We thank God for blessing us in this way! We now also have lettuce, broccoli and cabbage in the ground.

The plan is to produce enough to not only feed our own family and ECA participants, but to also be able to give fresh produce to the Finca. Harlan was able to provide some green beans to the Finca kitchen from some plantings that he had made at the Finca before we left. Here are the first radishes and we're looking forward to many more!

Danilo also has a garden started and seems to enjoy working in the dirt almost as much as Harlan. :)

A small exercise we had our ECAs do was to take a planting pot, fill it with dirt and plant some cilantro seeds in the pot. This exercise was both practical and metaphorical in nature. The practical benefit being if they are responsible and take good care of their pot, they will eventually have one of the most common fresh herbs in Honduras available to them to add flavor to their food. We hope the idea catches on that gardening can be possible wherever you live, concrete jungle or green jungle.

The metaphorical take on this being that planting seeds reflects the start of new habits and ways of living as they enter the real world of adults. And just like the planted and well cared for seeds produce an herb that can improve the enjoyment of their food, the new things they are learning and putting into practice have the potential to improve their quality of life.

Pray with us as Mirna, Mirian, Kelly and Danilo continue searching for jobs

and now some things I should have blogged about before, but didn't until now... :)

We took Javier, Heidy and Lilian and went to Agafam for part of a day on January 30th. Agafam is a week (or so) long Agricultural Fair here in Teguc. Do not think Harrisburg Farmshow or even the agricultural part of the Ephrata or Manheim fairs, but it is something different and therefore a must-do! :)

Here Harlan, Javi and Zack found their next vehicle :)

It was interesting seeing some well-fed, well-cared-for farm animals vs. the local "wildlife"...

...but you can only see so much of these before you're ready to move on. :)

The whole happy group, some laughing, some embarrassed because I had just taken the above picture...

Later after church, everyone enjoyed those huge cement slides at a pupusa place where we stopped for dinner, even though "traseros" got heated by the friction of metal buttons against cement. :)