Tuesday, July 22, 2014

RETREAT and PACKING


Friday, July 11, 2013
This week we went from one extreme to the other….we enjoyed 5 days of retreat with our team mates (the day after we said good-bye to the interns) and then we began a frenzied three days of packing and moving. 
Let’s back up to the retreat.  Each year our team gets together for spiritual renewal.  A team of 15 from the US came to minister to the missionary kids and boy did they wear them out.  A couple from the US came to teach the adults on the topic of Sabbath Rest….which is quite ironic in light of all we have to do and decisions needing to be made this week.  For starters, our car is sitting in the shop in Asuncion and won’t be ready before we fly to the US.  That complicates things a lot. The storage shed we’re building behind our team mate’s house may not be finished in time for us to move our belongings.  And it is schedule to rain Sunday, the day we plan to load our things onto an open bed truck.  So, in between Sabbath rest talks, we were coming up with plan B and C and D and so on.


But I have this great coping mechanism and it is called denial…but that only works for so long and ten reality hits.  Saying good-bye to team mates the last day of retreat was tough.  Walking into my home Friday night was tough knowing that we have two full days to pack it all up.  There was no time to waste.  Immediately we began unpacking our bags from the week we were gone and repacking our bags for home assignment.    

HAPPY 4th of JULY



It never ceases to amaze me how much my husband LOVES to blow up fruit with firecrackers.  



Monday, July 14, 2014

T.I.M.E update #7

June 29- July 5

The interns’ last week….
Bible study

last days with host families

One intern noted that T.I.M.E (the name of our program - Training in Medical Evangelism) should stand for Training in Meat Eating.  There is no doubt that Paraguayan LOVE their asados (grilling meat) and we have participated in several this month.  One of the intern’s family gave a good-bye party for the interns and invited their host families.  We again ate a lot of meat.



Monday Jeff saw his last patients (until we get back from home assignment in July 2015) and then promptly took down his sign.

Wednesday we left Jataity at 6:00 and headed for Argentina in our crowded vehicle….did I ever mention that all these trips with the T.I.M.E students we squeeze the 6 of them plus the 9 of us into our Excusion?  That’s 15 people and that’s crowded!  We were glad to pile out and stretch a bit at lunch before taking the ferry across to Argentina.  We were so thankful that we didn’t come last week because the border crossing was buried under water!  There has been so much rain that the dams were in endanger of breaking.  Once the dams were opened major flooding occurred in Argentina and in Paraguay.  In Ciudad del Este (where we cross over into Argentina 7,000 people were displaced.  I don’t know how many were displaced in Paraguay but we saw complete towns submerged as we drove back to Asuncion.
 
This is a picture of what the crossing looked like last week.  Crazy!  

 and this is when we crossed:
on the ferry headed to Argentina


Thursday we went to Iguazu falls and marveled at God’s beautiful creation.  All the flood waters causes the park to be closed last week, so we were thankful the park was even open.  As you can imagine, the Falls were full and beautiful.  However, several ramps leading to various views of the falls had been washed away and we saw its evidence crashed on the rocks below.






Early Friday we headed back across the border into Paraguay.  We got just a few blocks from the docks (on the Paraguay side) and our car broke down….it began to shake and make odd sounds and lost all power.  It was 7:00.  And thus began a VERY long day.  We waited while Jeff talked to the gas station attendants and was finally convinced that they hadn’t put bad gas in our tank.  We waited on the side of the road for a mechanic who never came.  And then we waited for a second mechanic who, thankfully, came but after trying a couple things decided that he could do nothing for us.  At noon the car limped its way to a mechanic shop and we waited 2 hours outside a grocery store.  At 2:00 the mechanics at the shop decided they could do nothing for the car and so we waited for a tow truck. 


 Our friend in CDE graciously transported us and all our luggage to the bus terminal.  He made 4 trips.  I’m pretty sure we totally exceeded the weight limit of his little 4 door car.  One the last trip we packed 11 of us inside plus a truck full of suitcases.  We were ride real low to the ground!



We boarded a bus at 3:00 and finally arrived in Asuncion after 10:00.  We got to the guest house close to 11: 00 and after eating pizza went right to bed.
The following day – Saturday – we were up early and downtown souvenir shopping.  A quick stop for lunch and it was off to the airport.  The time with the interns was sweet and fun and full of adventures.  As we walked back to our car after a sad good-bye Micah said, “I miss the interns already.” 

Saturday, July 5, 2014

ANOTHER HOMESCHOOL YEAR COMPLETED

My kids have finished 1st, 3rd, 6th, 6th and 9th grades!

 Can you tell what’s in the lower left of the above photo?
A frog.
Here’s the story.
Ryan had to dissect a frog for his biology lab.  Ryan caught a big one and Luke (the intern who was staying the night) tied the bag with three knots and they threw it in the freezer.  Luke checked on the frog about 45 minutes later and announced that it was gone.  Sure enough, the plastic sack was empty!  After emptying out the bottom freezer shelf we found the frog.  Thankfully it was dead.   

How many people do you need to dissect a frog? 
1.       A Dad who knows what he is doing
2.       Someone to scroll down the how-to-dissect-a-frog internet page
3.       Someone to pour and pass terere
4.       a little sister to ask, “what’s that?” every few seconds
5.       two little brothers to say, “that’s awesome!” every few seconds
6.       interns, interns and more interns watching over your shoulder
7.       And….oh yeah…the STUDENT

T.I.M.E update #6

June 23-29, 2014

The church threw a good-bye party Monday night for us and the Houghs (our team mates who are also going on furlough).  They butchered a cow that morning and grilled 50kg (that’s 110lbs) of meat for the event.  As I was sitting eating I began to think about what a big church event in the U.S. looks like.

First of all, I doubt 50 kg of meat would be grilled.   Nor would we be eating at 8:00 in the U.S.
 Or plates and cups washed using a spigot and bucket
As custom, plates are served with a bit of everything on them – rice salad, meat and mandioca.  Everyone pitches in to help.  No one seems stressed at feeding 80 people.  Since there’s only about 20 plates, the youngest get served first, then the teens and finally the adults.  Plates and silverware are constantly being washed.  Since there are even less cups, everyone shares. 



And I am pretty sure firecrackers wouldn’t be a part of a missionary send-off in the U.S.  We can thank Benson the TIME intern for that entertainment.
It has rained a ton.  Clinic has been cancelled a couple mornings.  Visiting has been cancelled.  Bible studies have been cancelled.  Our front yard is a watery mess.
our yard is a watery mess

lunch?
 cold weather is cabure time
class time
roof building

clinic days
cowboy Daniel

time with family


 making friends
visiting


helping to plant onions

 corn!
pulling mandioca

even Julia likes to help

San Juan parties


There’s been some serious World Cup watching.  Thursday the power went out just before the US vs Germany game.  That didn’t stop Jeff from bring his generator to our friend’s store so they could watch the game.