Saturday, November 29, 2008

It has been a while

Our first place Word of Life - a very nice apt
Yes, I can't believe all that we have done since I last posted. It has been a very busy month. We snuck away on the afternoon of the 13th of November with the Senior class and headed to a town near here that has a nice water park. It was the perfect rainy day ( cause all the water is hot) and we spent all day enjoying slides, lazy rivers, wave pools, volleyball, etc. We stayed at the Word of Life retreat center it was just 10 dollars a person so a very nice place to stay. We ate cereal and peanut butter and jelly - we were saving up for our big dinner in the city.

Scott and Jonathan - our to fearless leaders

After we left the resort town, we headed to our local huge city and spent the day enjoying the mall, eating out our favorite Brazilian restaurant - see the meat on the stick the bring to your table until you can eat no more - and every kind of meat you can think of - beef, chicken, pork, lamb, and all kind of different cuts. Plus the pinapple that is sprinkled with cinnamon and sugar and roasted over the fire, too.
Leah - enjoying every bite - see the meat in the background?

Lisa - Does she look like Becky ( my sis ) ?
Two happy people enjoying time away from all the crazyness of life
The last day we spent at another town that is in the mountains and has a really nice downtown - the best place to shop for gifts and tourist items, and then we went to the waterfalls, 6 that fall and you climb to the top of the hill, with pool after pool to jump into until you are too tired. One pool is 30 feet deep and the kids climbed up on the sides and jumped into the water, they really liked that!!! Here is a picture of one of the old churches.

Favorite place!!!
My three favorite Senior Girls (Rebecca is the other one)
We got home tired but content. It was a good trip and other than some money being stolen from one of the cabins and a lost camera it was perfect. The seniors are a neat group of kids and we are enjoying the time we get with them before they are off to the big, wide world.
Since sneak it has been busy, busy, busy. Working on Christmas cards, sewing a fun quilt, making Christmas presents, getting the cantata ready to go ( Sunday we will perform at our local church - even some songs we worked up in Portuguese, and the narration is also translated). I helped a little with the kids play, set, costumes, props. And I am even working on a recital piece - a duet. It will be a busy 9 days before I hop on a plane and head to the USA!!! First stop Massachusettes, then Maine, then Alaska, and home in Brazil for Christmas.
The tree is up, Emma told daddy today " isn't the tree beautiful, Daddy??" And Thanksgiving was fun, with all the trimmings, even though it wasn't a day off - Scott covered my morning classes so I could cook to my hearts content.
More updates to follow ( hopefully I can at least post the highlights from this next weeks activites.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

One of those days

Some days go so smoothly you love every minute, other days don't quite go like that.
First, Emma is in run away mode, so we have to be aware at all times where she is and yes, keep the doors locked. Not that she gets into much trouble, she goes and visits neighbors: Pickle the parrot, or Blitzen, our neighbor who give her rides on his carrier bike, Aunt Gina's place filled with friends - the hampster, Guinea pig, lots of fun toys, or follows the cats on their adventures. Anyway, she is always off to new places lately, and we find ourselves having to humbly call around looking for our lost daughter.
Second, My English class is working on a research paper. It isn't always easy to explain the whole process, and some are doing well, others are still trying to understand it. One I think has given up.
Third, it has been very hot, which just adds to the struggle.
Fourth, PE yes, in the heat, and I want my girls to do well, to play hard, and play their best. I know it is hot out, and the sun is bright, but still we need to do our best. How do I coach without sounding like I am yelling at them?? And you know how it is with girls, it is always personal, we taking everything personal. ( do I need to quote You've Got Mail?)
And last of all, it is election day, and who knows who will win. But whenever politics is in the forfront, things like Anti-American sentiment becomes very apparent. We are so hard on our country. America is still the best place in the world. It is an amazing place, where we have so much freedom and opportunity. Where the church is strong and serves. Christians are committed to missions and reaching their world and making a difference. They see outside their own world to the world beyond. Yes, there are lots of bad people in our country, people who do what is right in their own eyes, but still way better than what is around the world.
What makes me so sad is our MK's who grow up in foreign countries where it is quite popular to speak poorly about the US can fall into that same mode. They don't feel at home in the US, they hear us constantly talk about how our country is turning away from God and how bad things are going there, and they can't contextualize this thought. They don't know that there are millions of amazing, sacrificing people in our country, people who believe in right, and standing for what is right, and making a difference. So I find myself saddened, I can't explain to them well enough about what makes the US so great. They have to go there, they have to see it with their own eyes. They have to get to know the people. Because it is all about the people!!!
Scott and I mailed in our ballots. We wanted to have a clear conscience that we did our part. Everyone must do their part, but God knows what is best for our future, what will bring out the best in our lives, and our country. Sometimes he allows difficult times so that we will learn and grow. Let's be Jacob's and hang onto God until he brings out a blessing from this circumstance. Let's not let go when the going gets tough, lets stand strong and be shining lights on a hill, no matter who is president. Because it really doesn't matter. I truly believe this. I don't look to the government to make my life better, it has to be me, being what God has called me to be where He has put me ( and all of us doing our part) that makes our country great!!! It is each person, individually that makes my country great. It is all of you, that have had a part in our lives and work here, that make me proud of being an American!!!
Okay, enough, but I feel better just putting these thoughts down on paper. Thanks for listening

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Other pictures

I should write a note and tell you all the busy and fun things we are doing, but my brain is too tired from the never ending heat!!! So when it cools down and I can think again, I will send you a nice newsie note, until then, enjoy the snapshots of our busy week.
We went camping last weekend, lots of fun, nice cold water and good food, just a little too much sun. But it could have been cold and rainy so we enjoyed every minute.
Nothing like being stuck in the woods for some good girl bonding time. There were lots of boys there, but we didn't take pictures of them - they were usually eating or jumping off cliffs.
School dress up day - Even Emma wanted to dress up, that was fun!!!

Emma, a true Cinderella, lover of all animals, birds, bugs, and rodents!!!

Emma has been hanging out in the mango tree this week, which is fine with me, at least she stays in one place for five minutes!!!

Thanks for all your prayers and for your part in the work God is doing in Brazil. I know it is a small picture of world missions, but these kids are amazing, and we love seeing God working in their lives, they are our future, and their folks are pretty neat, too.

Picture Day