Thursday, February 5, 2015

Lunch Dates

While we visited the United States in September, we took advantage of the good prices on toys and clothing and bought the children a few small gifts for Christmas. We wanted to round out their gifts with coupons, which allowed them to spend some special time with either me or Jesse. One of the coupons was for a lunch date. So each of the older children (Erin through Josiah) have had the opportunity to go out to lunch twice, once with me and once with Jesse. It's been such a special time, and something which we are considering continuing throughout the year as we've seen the blessing this time has been to the children and to us.

Jesse discovered this whole in the wall snack bar in Camaragibe that serves hamburgers, amongst other, more traditional, Brazilian snacks and meals like coxinhas and beans and rice.

 Of course, we have always opted for the hamburgers, with an occasional coxinha. For approximately $7 USD you can get two traditional, Brazilian hamburgers complete with egg, ham, cheese, corn and peas, and a two liter drink. It's really enough food to fill you up.

Yesterday, I had the privilege of taking Micah out to lunch. It was an incredible opportunity to only interact with him and take a peak at all of the thoughts going through his head. We had a wonderful time!

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Coconuts Galore

It's no secret, we are surrounded by coconuts. We have access to all of the coconut water we could ever desire. Thankfully, Joshua loves to climb coconut trees and all of the children love to drink the coconut water.

We let Joshua climb the smaller trees on base. Lucas, one of the newest boys in the House, is like a little monkey, climbing the highest trees in seconds.

The twins are the biggest fans. They never get enough!
Thankfully, everyone is always willing to share their coconuts.

After they finish drinking the water, the kids pop open the coconuts and eat the meat inside. Personally, it's not my favorite. But I know it's really healthy, so I let them eat away.

For those that don't know (this included me until recently), you don't want to drink the water from a brown coconut. Once a coconut has turned brown, most of the sugar has passed into the meat and is no longer in the water. The water is pretty bitter, but the meat is quite tasty.  One time Lucas got some really brown coconuts, grated up the meat and showed us how to make a traditional Brazilian dessert called Cocada. It's a lot of work, but it's worth it!

Saturday, January 17, 2015


One of the main ways we get involved with the community is through the various projects here on base. As I've mentioned before, Jesse started teaching jiu jitsu, which has allowed us to form relationships with around 20-25 children that live in our community. Another project is called "Floorball." From what I gather, it's like street hockey. Erin has started participating in the project, and has really been enjoying it. It's such a blessing to see her forming relationships with and showing love to some of our neighbors.

Josiah loves to sit and watch them play.
He really looks up to his big sister.
This is another missionary child here on base. She is one of Erin's good friends.

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Where Are We??

So it's been a while since I've written. Another 6 months have passed and we've experienced a lot as a family during those 6 months.

These boys....

...turned 1 year old!
Jesse started a jiu jistu program here on base for the people in the community.
We flew to the United States to visit friends and family.

These boys each celebrated their birthday. Caleb turned 9 and Joshua turned 11.
We celebrated another Thanksgiving down at the Hope House. This time we celebrated with a few extra boys from the community.
We also celebrated our second Christmas in Brazil.

And this boy...
turned 4!
We've been keeping pretty busy. Between the jiu jitsu program, the Hope House, homeschooling the children and the kids in the community always coming over to visit, we always seem to having something going on. It's been good, but tiring at the same time. Next Friday, Vika will be coming to stay with us for a while. This will be an incredible blessing to us as a family! We miss her! But also, it will allow me to have more time to spend ministering to the children in the community when they come to visit without neglecting some of the needs of our family. 10 days!!!

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

One Year Later...

Yesterday marked one year since we arrived in Brazil.  We saw it fitting to celebrate with the boys from Hope House. We celebrated with a dinner of hamburgers and french fries, classic American food, and ice cream for dessert.  We were also blessed by some friends who made a beautiful cake for us and brought it over.  They even used real cream and fresh strawberries in the cake - two things that aren't too common around here.

The absolutely delicious cake!
Our wonderful friends who made the cake.
One of the Hope House boys, Pedro.
He loves to help with the babies.
 I thought it would be fun to do a post of the past year in photos.  When I went to select the pictures, there were a lot of things I wanted to share.  Some photos you may have seen before, others maybe not. Looking through the pictures I was reminded of how faithful God is and how much of an honor it is to be able to serve Him. I hope you enjoy this trip down memory lane...

July 14th, 2013 we left with mixed emotions. We were sad to be leaving our wonderful family and friends in the U.S., but we were also excited to see what God had for us in Brazil. We arrived in the middle of the night and were greeted by friends who were anxiously awaiting our arrival.

We made many new friends over the past year...

tried many news foods and discovered how to make many familiar foods with the ingredients available...

dragon fruit
chocolate chip cookies
worshipped, prayed and enjoyed fellowship...

did lots of grocery shopping...

completed our DTS...

celebrated Christmas, Thanksgiving and many birthdays...

Caleb turned 8.
Joshua turned 10.
Thanksgiving 2013.
Christmas 2013
Josiah turned 3.
Erin turned 12.
Micah turned 7. 
Arianna turned 5.
had lots of fun and did lots of dancing...

had many wonderful visits with the boys at Hope House...

spent 6 months studying Portuguese with this wonderful woman...

received our first visitors...

went from being 7 months pregnant to having two 10 month olds to enjoy life with...

Isaac and Jacob arrived on September 9, 2013.

learned to enjoy life with lots of little creatures...

experienced Brazil's love of futebol (soccer)...

took lots of family pictures...

and said lots of goodbyes...

Overall it's been an incredible year of growth. I can't wait to see what the Lord has for us this next year.