I was just reviewing our blog to see how much we need to fill you all in on with our work here in Costa Rica. Have we really not blogged in over 2 months?? We are so sorry. I usually blog on things of a more personal nature and Rob usually blogs about the Ranch so this time you are going to get a mixture of both of us blogging.
First off, we would like to let everyone know that we have generously been gifted with plane tickets to come home to CT on June 25th. We need to do yet another visa reset trip and since the kids have a few weeks off from school at that time we decided that this would be a great opportunity to travel to the States. This is, however, a very busy time for the ministry since many people are on summer vacation and willing to do some mission work. We have several building teams coming down to help out at the Children’s Ranch so Rob will only be in the States for one week. The rest of us have the blessing of being able to stay until July 23rd. We are hoping to have the opportunity to meet with all of our supporting churches and individuals while we are here so PLEASE CONTACT US via email or this blog to let us know when you’d like to get together.
Soon after we booked our plane tickets, we were taking yet another one and a half hour trip from our apartment in the city to the ranch and the kids started talking about the things that they miss from the United States. Here are some of the things that were mentioned: our cousins, my friends, bestamore’s strawberry jam, ice cream at Nana’s every hour, Pop pop’s French toast, Norwegian foods, ice cream (it’s just not the same here), our house, our front porch, having my own room, my stuffed animals, my games that we didn’t bring, TV in English, School in English, gymnastics, horseback riding, basketball, baseball, getting to walk down the street without an adult, shopping at the mall with friends and no adult, riding my bike/scooter, cold weather, hot showers, reliable internet, a reliable car that doesn’t break down every 2 weeks, being able to order food and have the waitress understand us, good service at restaurants, being able to pay the bills on line or through the mail…then it got quiet. We were all lost in what we had before we moved to Costa Rica. Then one of the kids said, “Wow! We were really spoiled in the United States weren’t we?” Then someone else said, “Yeah, but we’re doing fine without all that stuff.”
Music to a parent’s ears. The realization that we really had much more than we needed and that material things aren’t really as important as we thought they were in the moment. The conversation then changed to all the stories we will have to tell like…the tucans that ate from the papaya tree outside the team house, scarlet macaws flying over at school, the sloth that hung out at school, the gigantic frogs, giant iguanas, snake eggs that look like jelly beans, swimming in the river, our dog Sadie that just showed up at our house and never left, playing with the kids at the feeding center, learning Spanish in a Spanish speaking school, the herd of horses that grazed in our yard and tried to get into our house, living in one room has helped us to do more stuff together, all the different people that we’ve met from mission teams that come down, being encouraged by those teams, prayer walks through town, stopping at a stranger’s house to pray for them and being invited in to have fresco y arroz con leche (fresh squeezed fruit juice and rice pudding), discovering that my problems are nothing in comparison, the smile on Miriam’s face when she moved into the cabin we built for her, playing games on Miriam’s front porch, Miriam’s homemade popsicles! You get the point. We all love that Miriam has moved onto the ranch with us.
As much as we miss Connecticut, we have really had a very enriching experience here in Costa Rica. We have been so busy at the Ranch. We finished the temporary shed that we mentioned in our “God’s Abundant Love” blog. Then we started on a cabin for Miriam. She is a Costa Rican woman who has been cooking and cleaning with our ministry since it was founded and another mission organization before that. She retired about a year ago, but because of her amazing servant heart, she continues to help us out when teams come down. We promised her that we would take care of her in her retirement so we built her a cabin to live in at the Ranch. She will be the Ranch ‘Abuela’ for all the children that we have living here. She has already made quite an impact on our kids in the 3 weeks she has been living here.
We are in the process of building a barn/shed for the tractor that the ministry recently raised all the funds for.