Saturday, July 30, 2011


July 19, 2011

If you have followed my blog, you have noticed that several posts are about animals. Pigs, especially as of recent, have been a frequent topic. In November we bought our first pigs (Pork Chop and Bacon) with the intent of eating them one day. Then in March Vern was given to us as a 1 week old. Ginny bottle fed him, walked him on a leash and let him cuddle up to her at night. She was more like a dog/pet until she began to grow and grow and grow. She got too strong and big to be inside and had to be put in the pig pen. I asked her previous owner, Celia, how big Vern would get and she told me Vern’s mom was 6 1/2 feet long and gave them 143lbs of meat. Seeing the look of concern on my face (how can we feed something that big?), she offered to take Vern off our hands in exchange for an empanada and milenesa meal. Since we all love Celia’s cooking, we all agreed to the exchange. Monday morning Celia’s sons came to the house and carried off the pig.

2 hours later, our friends came to the door and said that they’d heard that we were giving pigs away. We told them that we weren’t but we would, however, give them Bacon in exchange for helping us kill Pork Chop. They agreed. Tuesday afternoon Rosi and Paulina came to the house with cutting knives and helped us kill and butcher our pig (he weighed about 26lbs).

So we managed to get rid of 3 pigs in 2 days…and it sure feels good to be pig free.

Boots, our cat, waiting for handouts

Ginny eatinng her favorite pig part - the ears

Thursday, July 28, 2011


Snowy and Chewy are now proud parents of triplets.
Angelina, Mousey and Snowflake were born Friday, July 15th in the middle of the night.
They weigh 0.5lbs together.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011


Monday, July 25, 2011


Ryan is GROWING by leaps and bounds. In the last month his shoe size has increased3 sizes and he now wears a size 9. He is 5’1’’and his voice is deepening (with a few cracks here and there).

Friday, July 22, 2011


Nilsa went above and beyond her duty as my friend today when she helped me do lice checks on our entire family. Turns out…..we ALL have them! I am actually surprised that this is our first run-in with the little things because so many of the kids we minister to and have over to the house are invested with them.
It took us hours upon hours to de-lice our family. Jeff gave the boys haircuts. Then we brushed with a fine-tooth comb, lathered with a special shampoo and waited 10 minutes, we rinsed thoroughly, and fine-tooth combed our hair again. The last step was to look at our "bugs" under the microscope. Those things are UGLY!
We thought that would be the last of it.

3 weeks later and many shampoo treatments later, most of us are still dealing with an itchy scalp. It is not fun!

Thursday, July 21, 2011


July 15, 2011

Praise God, Julia has been sleeping all through the night as of the last week. She really responded to Jeff just telling her to be quiet and go back to sleep….who knew? With that advancement, we decided it was time to get her out of our room and our of the crib (we don’t really like having babies in our room, but there wasn’t any other spot for her in our house). For the past few nights she has been taking turns sleeping with Ginny and then with Joshua. All are very happy.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011


July 13-15, 2011

Every other year starting in 3rd grade our kids (and the other MKs in the mission) take standardize tests just to help us home schooling parents stay on track.

Sunday, July 17, 2011


July 7-12, 2011

Our annual SIM Paraguay Spiritual Life retreat is something we
all look forward to.

Here are some of the highlights:

Meeting a group of 13 who came from Colorado just to serve us…to
lead us in worship, teach our children and bring a message

Getting to fellowship with our incredible team…. God has blessed
us with a fun and unified team….I am blown away by their selflessness

Worshipping, taking Lord’s supper together, and being challenged
from the word…all in English

Watching the MK’s play non-stop, laughing at their skits,
marveling at their talents and praising God for such wonderful friends for my

Getting to know our newest team mates (from Korea) and meeting
our 2 newest short term team mates (from Canada and Switzerland)

Watching Ryan’s growing ability on the volleyball court (he even
has an overhand serve!)

Playing Minute-to-Win-it games….hilarious

Watch all the young girls pass Julia around all day long…they
are all little mothers to her

By far, the #1 highlight was JOSHUA’S BAPTISM!

Thursday, July 14, 2011


July 5, 2011

I am convinced that this girl gets more attention than a first born! The kids always involve her in their playtime. Sometimes she is the mom and other times she is the pet dog (because she crawls). Sometime she is the teacher and other times she is the student and they teach her various things (like how to go through a maze or over an obstacle course). It is really cute! Julia, in return, LOVES her siblings. Her face lights up when she sees them.

Julia is a great imitator. She claps when they clap, sticks out her tongue when they do and shakes her head “no” after them.

She still has just 2 teeth.

Julia is chattering all the time. Her favorite daytime word is “dada” which warms Jeff’s heart. In the middle of the night her favorite word is “MAMA”.

Julia still struggles to sleep through the night and will often wake up 5 or 6 times! Ug! Needless-to-say, sometimes I am ready to go to bed in the evenings before Julia is. Never fear because Ginny has became really good at putting Julia to sleep. Often I will go to bed and leave Julia in Ginny’s care. Ginny will get into her pack and play and sing to her and pat her back.

Playing in the crib with her.

Joshua fell asleep in the crib as he was putting Julia to bed.

Julia loves music. Often when she gets fussy I’ll call in one of the kids to play something.

This was my jacket as a baby. Ginny wore it too.

7-2-11 Julia had her first top-knot. Ginny says all the time that she cannot wait for Julia’s hair to grow out.

7-1-11 Julia had her first pique! Ouch! I’ll have to post about piques soon (since they are a daily nuisance), but basically it is a flea that burrows under the skin.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011


Today we got up at 6, left the hotel at 7, arrived at the docks at 8 and caught the 9:00 ferry back to Paraguay. We drove almost straight to the Asuncion airport (we stopped for lunch and in Luque for one last shopping spree). The made great timing, praise God and arrived 2 hours before the girls’ 6:00 flight. It was sad to see them go. I know that our kids will greatly miss them as well.

At the guest house, we celebrated the 4th of July with the Dreiling, Stouts and the Floyds (who had just gotten back from a year of home assignment).

Every year it seems that Jeff is in charge of fireworks. Since we were traveling all day on the 4th he didn’t have time to buy them. So, we extended our celebration to the 5th.

Not only does my hubby buy fireworks, he buys fruit, veggies and eggs to blow up.

The dog dish was used as a launching pad. The dog dish can no longer be used as a dog dish.

Joshua was in the "splash zone" and got some apple on his nose.

It's gonna be loud!

Run away!

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

July 1-4, 2011

FRIDAY we nearly made the entire trip from Paraguay to Argentina without a hiccup.

We left at 6AM in our “beast”. All our suitcases were loaded in a basket on back and piled on top. One of the intern said we looked like a scene from How the Grinch Stole Christmas when the Grinch has all of Whoville’s gifts set precariously on top of a sled. We arrived in Ciudad del Este just before noon (in record time even with muddy roads!). After lunch, we parked our car at a friend’s house and the girls headed out to shop for souvenirs.

Making breakfast in the car....bread and dulce de leche.

At 3:00 we caught a couple taxis and headed to the ferry crossing. We caught a little boat over to Argentina where we were planned to stay for the next 3 nights. Once in Argentina, we showed our passports to the immigration officer and had a problem.

We have crossed into Argentina many many times and have never needed visas because it is a free trade zone. The immigration officer liked our American passports but refused to let Jenny (traveling with a Taiwanese passport) in the country!

The last boat (until Monday) to the Paraguay side was leaving right then and the officer said that she need to be on it. In a split second, Jeff decided that the other 4 interns, the kids and I would go on as planned. He and Jenny would go back to Paraguay. In a split second, Jeff and Jenny sorted through the bags and collected their things. In a spit second, Jeff handed me the passports, money, and information (like the name of our hotel) and last minute instructions. And all the while the immigration officer is breathing down Jeff’s neck because he was holding up the boat.

It all happened so fast. It was sad to part ways with no way to communicate (our cell phones don’t have coverage in Argentina).

In AGRENTINA we checked into our hotel, ate dinner and then retreated back to the room where I fell asleep before the kids did. It had been a long day. In PARAGUAY our missionary friends took care of Jeff and Jenny.

Standing on the PARAGUAY side with ARGENTINA (in the picture) on the right and BRAZIL on the left.

On the little boat heading to Argentina.

SATURDAY the girls went to Iguazu Falls. Unfortunately it was chilly and lightly rained all day, but the falls are incredible no matter what the weather. The girls came back to the hotel that evening wet, cold and full of stories. The kids and I were hermits and stayed in the hotel room all day long (we couldn’t leave because it was raining).

And then… 7:30 Jeff showed up! I was so happy to see him. He and Jenny were able to see the Brazil side of Iguazu falls that morning. Then Jenny went back to our friend’s house and Jeff made his way via land to our hotel. He was pretty worn out.

SUNDAY we all went to the waterfalls again. We have been many times, but the awesomeness of God’s creation never dulls. Sunday evening (our last together) we debriefed about the trip. God had shown himself in amazing ways to these girls over the last 5 weeks. He proved faithful with finances, eased their fears, helped them communicate, and caused them to have a deeper understanding of and heart for missions.

These next few shots were taken at "Devil's Throat".
Ever seen The Mission? This is where (at the beginning) the priest on the cross goes over.
Ever seen the latest Indiana Jones? This is where (at the end) Harrison Ford goes over in a little boat....3 times.
Ever seen Mr Magoo? He goes over these falls at this point too.

If these pictures don't display God's awesomeness, I don't know what will..of course, it is even more impressive to see these waterfalls first feel its mist, to hear its thunderous power and realize just how small we are!

This is how Julia got around all day. I was jealous!

I LOVE these qoatis! i might possibly have more picture of them than the waterfalls.

In Guarani this bird is called Ambay..I don;t what it is in English.

It was pretty chilly at the waterfalls. Ginny and Julia standing next to a BIG mate guampa and straw....a hot tea-like drink.