Saturday, August 16, 2008

Uncle Jack's paintings and other photos

We see cowboys around here quite often. It is cattle country.
This captures one of our favorite towns. It is near here a quiet colonial village.

What a great smile!!!

what a cat!!! He and Emma are often lounging together

Jonathan and his buddies

Sometimes life feels like the movie Groundhog day.

Scott and I watched Groundhog day last night. This morning when I woke up it felt like the movie. Here we go again: same routine, same people, same food, same kids, same husband :o). Life here is good, but it does get so mundane. I am sure you read my blog and think "how neat, and exciting!!!" Sure if you did it for a week or a month, but year after year, somedays it is hard to feel like what you do even has a purpose.
Well, I think God knew I was going to feel this way. Cause he planned for me to also be in the middle of something that would give me a peek at why we are here and doing what we are doing.
Next door to us lives a retired couple. They have been here in Brazil serving as missionaries for more than 40 years. They worked in a tribe for a while until they were needed at the boarding school. So they packed up and moved here. They first worked as dorm parents ( I think like 30 little kids!!!) they also worked in the cafeteria, Uncle Jack taught art classes for years (he is an amazing artist!!!) and Aunt Babbs was always beyond busy.
They are returning to the states next month, and we are planning a nice going away party for them. One of the elements of the night will be notes from their "kids". I have been receiving them all day. And they really touch your heart. What do the kids remember about Uncle Jack and Aunt Babbs ( besides her unbelievable pizza??) That they belived in them, that they listened to them, that they loved them; they saw that they mattered!!!
What a great reminder for me to keep doing what we are doing. Even if it often does feel like the same ole, same ole!!!
So what did we do this week. Well we are senior sponsors so that means we have to help them plan their sneak and help them with some fundraisers. So yesterday, Marcy - our cook, helped us make 120 donuts and then today we sold them - with free coffee - and they washed cars. I am enjoying Basketball coaching for PE, and find it is also an opportunity to get to know the girls on a real level. All the stuff that gets held back all day comes out on the court. So I am finding that there is a bit of counseling ( as one of my students called it) also pushed into my busy day. But the best part is the friendships we are building. We watched Olympics last night with one of our families. Their daughter is a kick!!! What fun to sit and just laugh with her about the craziness of life. Oh yea, that and I accidently poked Emma in the eye!!
What a sickening feeling that was!!! She came bouncing in ( like she does these days) and I held out my hand for her skirt to put it on, and she somehow met my hand and my thumb jabbed right into her eye. Thank the Lord it just hit the side and not the Cornea!!! Oh, that was a long moment!!! Emma is fine today, just has a very red eye!!!
Continue to pray for us as we work here. Life just gets busier. Next week we have another student joining the school. She is not a missionary kids, but a Brazilian businessman's daughter. She attended an American school in Belem and they are moving near here and wanted her to be able to complete her American education. So that will be neat. Her parents are involved with missions and I am sure this girl will bring a unique flavor to our group here.
Pray for our finances. The dollar regained some of it losses this week (about 8 cents which can be over $100 savings per month!!!) This will help. We have also lost 3 supporters. Not easy when things are already tough, but God continues to provide, just the in-between times are hard!!! Each month we see how he allowed us to stay here. But it feels like a month by month situation lately. So thanks for your prayers. They are vital. Not only for our finances, but for peace and understand through it all. That we won't be caught up in worrying about things we can't change and focus on the job we are here to do. He gives us this strength for each day and we press on!!
Keep in touch, we love hearing from you, how God is working in each one of your lives.

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Almost there!!!

Thanks so much for your prayers, we are so close to having paved roads around our house that we are actually getting excited. It sure is a mess, though, and I am getting tired of my whole house shaking from the packing machines. But it will be so worth it. Already the dust is less around here partly cause few are driving by cause of the road work. Yes, I can go more than a day without dusting or mopping.

Here are a few pictures of the road, and a couple pics of Jonathan with his buddies - Jonathan took the pictures of the road work. what a guy!

Thursday, August 7, 2008

What a week

Yes, School started this week, and it has been fun, busy, challenging, and sad.
First, it has been really fun getting to see old friends/students; seeing them excited about this year. We have been officially asked to be the Senior class sponsors. This is great, though not as great as I thought. When I first heard about being Senior sponsors I thought we just went with them on their senior sneak. But of course it is more complicated than that!!! We have to help them plan it, plan lots of fundraisers so they can afford sneak and plan graduation!!! But it will be nice to spend time with these kids before they leave. There are three boys from the other school that have joined our group (Wycliffe missionary kids) but they seem nice. So it went from 2 girls and 1 boy, to 4 boys and 2 girls. I wonder where we will gofor sneak??
It has also been fun to get to know all the new kids - like 18 of them!!! We weren't planning for that many but had a couple more come in the last day so now I am short a grammar book which has made life a bit more challenging ( and the copier isn't running yet!!!) but we are getting a good start. Covered capitalization rules and on to punctuation. ( It is fun trying to teach kids to capitalize words they have never heard of cause they don't live in the US!!!). Girls PE started well, I loved the reaction when they saw it was ME and NOT Uncle Andy teaching them!!! Precious!!! And choir starts today - I wonder how many I will have in my group this year????

It has been busy as Scott is teaching 3 classes and helping out in other areas. Busy because two of our teachers have become unexpectedly unavailable. One because their baby was born and developed pneumonia and is in ICU, the another was sick and passed out. She fell and broke her face in 4 places. Both are on the mend, but it has been sad and challenging to cover their jobs. The lady who fell will have to have her jaw wired shut so she won't be able to teach Portuguese for over a month. She is the one who has been leading our Bible Study, I guess she can type her notes and someone else can read them :O) Emma is adjusting to our schedules pretty well. Aunt Gina helps with her 3 days a week, and then Scott watches her the other 2 (8-10am when I am teaching English).

Tomorrow we celebrate 16 years of marriage. Isn't that amazing. And we still love each other, love doing things together, and love our family life!!! God is good!!! We had hoped to get away for the day, but as usual the $'s are not there when you think they will be so we will wait and save it for another day. I will make a nice steak and salad and we will snuggle up and watch a favorite movie ( it still sounds like a nice way to spend the day ) oh, yea, we will make our kids go to bed at like 8 so we can enjoy our evening - no naps for Emma!!! What should I make for dessert??? Hmmmm. any suggestions???

Well, I am off, if you remember pray for baby Colton he is 5 days old today. Pray he can leave ICU soon so his mom can hold him!!! Pray for Coleen, she is having surgery today on her jaw. Pray for no infections, and for a quick recovery. Thanks so much for your part in our lives here.