Saturday, February 27, 2010

Erin Goes to Camp

Today, Erin left for camp at Lake Valsequillo.  She was so excited and she has been counting down the time for the last three days or more.  We were invited to have the kids attend the camp by a friend that we met recently.  The camp is being offered through Puebla Christian School but homeschoolers are welcome to attend.  She is in a cabin with five other sixth grade girls. 
Here she is with her cabin leader.
She is in cabin 22 and her name was on the poster.
Since she was the first girl to arrive, she was able to choose which bed she wanted first.  She chose the top bunk by the window.
Here are the camp grounds.

Here is the chapel.  The worship team was practicing for worship.  This camp is in English so she will be worshipping in English.
And here is the dining room.
One last picture with two of the girls in her cabin and her cabin leader.
We are excited for her and look forward to all the stories she will have when we pick her up on Tuesday morning.  She has her camera with her so there will be more pictures coming once she returns home.  Jonathan will be going on Tuesday afternoon through Saturday morning.  He also is looking forward to his time there and making new friends.

Friday, February 26, 2010

Dinner with the Frontier Fellowship Team

Last night we went up to the group house to say good-bye to another team that was here this week.  They were just trying to find a way to go out to eat and I arrived at just the right time.  I took three members of the team to the same restaurant we went to the other night.  They really enjoyed the meal. 

Gail and Erin with Julia, Robb, and Monty.  Monty is from Cuernavaca, Mexico and joined this team here in Puebla.  Apparently my accent is very good because Monty had a hard time all week not speaking to me in Spanish.  She would start talking to me and looked at me funny when I asked her how to say something.  That was encouraging - now if I can just add to my vocabulary.

Erin got a chance to play the cook for a moment. 
This is a picture that Erin took of a 7Up bottle.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

An Evening Out with the Oregon Team

Tonight we went out with the team from Oregon that is here working out on the land.  Jim has spent the last two days getting to know these fellow Oregonians and having a great time with them.  We stopped by our house on our way out and saw this fantastic sky.  The cloud formations were awesome as were the colors.  These pictures don't even come close to what it looked like in person.  Wow!
That's Mount Popocatépetl which is an active volcany that we can see from our house.
Here we are at the restaurant.  We had never been here before but it was recommended by another missionary here.  The food was absolutely delicious!
Here's the team that Jim has been working with this week and our waiter.

Blessings and Funny Things

On Sunday we received a blessing of a new pair of shoes for Jonathan.  Herb and Judy, a couple that was here visiting, asked if Jonathan needed new shoes.  We had met Herb a few months ago when he was here for a few weeks.  They had a pair sneakers that Herb had bought a year ago but that didn't fit him.  They were brand new.  The last time we bought shoes for Jonathan was in Brownsville and we bought his shoes big, knowing he would grow.  Well, if you haven't heard, Jonathan has grown about five to six inches since we arrived.  Guess what, his feet have grown also.  Who would've guessed?  Well, these new shoes are a size 11 and his old shoes were a size 10.  Okay, so that's not so bad right?  Except that his feet go all the way to the end of the new shoes which means he will need new shoes again soon.  We were so blessed by the new shoes.  Jonathan certainly hasn't complained that his old ones didn't fit him.  The Lord knows what we need and I am so glad that he provides.  (Matthew 6:28-34)

I think Jonathan was happy.
Yesterday, we were interrupted for a few minutes while trying to get our school finished. I don't really like interruption in school but this one gave us all a really good, hard laugh.  One of our cats had put his head into a food container that use to have food for the hamster in it.  I didn't have my camera around, so we just laughed and then took the container off his head.  A few minutes later, one of the other cats did the same thing. That time I couldn't resist grabbing my camera and taking a picture and I also got a short video. In the video, the cat following Mandy is the only one smart enought to keep her head out of the jar.  Hope you get a good laugh out of it today. 

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Another Trip To Africam

     Today we wanted to do something as a family since we are beginning a very busy week starting tomorrow.  We have a 24 member workteam that is arriving from the States.  So really, Jim's job will be starting about 2:00 AM with a quick orientation, once the team arrives at the group house.  We both love working with the teams so even though it will be a busy week, it will be an enjoyable one.
     Back to wanting to do something fun today.  We went to Angel√≥polis Mall, the big mall here, and walked around for a while.  After that we decided to take a ride out to Africam.  We have gone before but we did buy year passes, so it is a great quick trip that doesn't cost any extra.  It was also a good chance to drive out by the camp the kids will be going to at the end of the month.  The camp is just down the road from Africam.  They are so excited about this but more about it late.

Here are a few pictures from our afternoon.
We found out what they do with their old Christmas trees.

These rhinos were certainly close and we were glad that they were pretty mellow. 
This time the lions were out walking around but since you have to keep your windows rolled up, the pictures are not as clear.
The bears were up and about also.
Last time, the tigers were all just laying around on rocks.  We certainly went on a good day.
This is the way they all were the last time.
This rock is just outside the car.  Yes, the windows are rolled up.
This guy was walking right along side our van.  All of the sudden, water was spraying into our van.  We had no idea what it was from and our minds were thinking the worst yet having no idea how he could be peeing in our van.  We quickly discovered that the sprinklers were on and they shot directly into our car.  We all laughed so hard.  It was so funny!
We couldn't get the hyena to laugh though.
Erin, Jonathan and Jim
These turtles were hilarious.  We are not sure if it was some mating ritual or what, but the one would be continually going in front of the other and slapping him in the face.  We watched this happen over and over again.  Later, another turtle came up and chased away the one being slapped.  At that point, that one started getting slapped.  Too funny!

It was such a fun time with some good laughs.  God has such a sense of humor with some of these animals he created.  Hope you got a laugh also.

Friday, February 12, 2010

Mom-made Slippers

     I finally bit the bullet and bought some yarn here.  It is way more expensive here but I just can't see why.  Usually I make bigger things like baby blankets but they use a lot of yarn.  So instead, I found a pattern for slippers that I wanted to try and I decided to make some for Erin.  I must say that I was inspired by my oldest daughter, Kristen, who has knit many things for her children.  I don't knit, never have been able to get that down, but I have gotten quite good at crocheting over the years.  Over the past few years, I have learned how to read patterns but I usually have my mother-in-law right next door that I can consult with when I am not sure how to read part of the pattern.  I did call her about it but it is more difficult over the phone.
     This week, I have been down with a cold all week and the last two days, I have been in bed.  It seemed like the perfect time to start the slippers.  So, after starting and restarting and restarting again, I finally was on my way to making the first slipper. There were some times when I almost gave up because what the pattern was telling me to do, sure wasn't working well.  I ripped out many rows trying to get it right.  Finally, I had finished the first slipper.  Erin was so excited she wanted to know when I would finish the second one.  The first one took me a day and a half to make with all my mistakes in it.  I started the second one yesterday afternoon and was finished with it before Erin went to bed.  It came out much nicer than the first one.  When we look at both slippers now, it is quite obvious which one is the first one I made but you won't know from the pictures.  Then Erin got motivated to make a scarf.  She started and got frustrated because it wasn't working out right.  Since I had just gone through that experience of ripping out, doing over, ripping out again and so on, I was able to encourage her to keept trying.   We chose a different stitch for her to use and now she is on her way to making her own scarf.  I am very proud of the work she is doing and how she didn't give up. 

Here is Erin's scarf she has started...
...and here are the slippers.

They look a little big on her but she is still growing and it was an adult pattern.  She said she was so warm last night that she almost had to take them off in the middle of the night.  I am glad my little girl is warm at night now.  Too bad I didn't have them made when it was really cold. 

Monday, February 08, 2010

Super Super Bowl Party

     Yesterday we went to a Super Bowl party that we were invited to.  If you remember, a few weeks back, I posted about a family that we met at Esperanza Viva.  They had come in to play with the kids and Jonathan and Ian hit it off so well.  Jonathan couldn't wait to get together with them again.  So last week we called to see about getting together and Judy invited us to this Super Bowl party.  She said that there would be many families there, some home schooling and many with their kids in Puebla Christian School and others from their church.  We were told that it would be at someones house and that there would be about 50 to 60 people there.  When we arrived, we thought that it must really be at an event place because the house was huge!  We found out that there were three houses and one of them was rented by the family holding the Super Bowl party.  The yard was bigger than a football field and they had play equipment and an inflatable jumping structure. 
     When we arrived, Jonathan found Ian and began playing right away.  Through out the night, Jonathan made friends with several other boys ages 13 to 16.  He got one of the boys' phone number before we left last night so he can call and we can set up more times to get together. 
     Erin stayed with me until one of the moms introduced her to a girl her same age.  This girl, Christi, is also homeschooled and they hit it off right away.  The one hard thing is that this family will be leaving in April to move back to the states after four years on the mission field.  Erin met other girls there and was so tired by the end of the night, she fell asleep as soon as her head hit the pillow. 
     Both of the kids were invited to go to a Christian camp through Puebla Christian School.  It is run by one of the people that was at the party.  We were able to talk to them and feel really good about it.  Even Jonathan is wanting to go which is an awesome thing.
     Jim had a good time visiting with the men at the party.  Some are missionaries, some are working at different companies down here, and some are teachers at the Puebla Christian School.  I got a chance to visit with many women and was even invited to women's retreat coming up in a couple of months and to a women's Bible study.  Towards the end of the evening I played Hand and Foot with a group of women.  I am not sure if I ever played it before but it was a lot of fun.
     It was such a wonderful day and we thank the Lord for the time to relax and meet new friends. 

Jonathan falling out of the jumping structure...
...and playing with other kids.
Erin and Christi
Erin is only 1-1/2 weeks older than Christi.

Jonathan's friend Ian.

One of the five screen playing the football game.
Another screen.
Jim enjoying some good food during the game.
Gail with Lois, Roquel and Mar.
The kids playing on the jumping structure after dark.
This was being called the V.I.P. room.  Jim got nice and comfortable there with some of the other guys.
This video is of Jonathan running and jumping onto the end of the jumping structure which bounced the others into the jumping structure.  It was such a joy to see him playing and having so much fun.