Tuesday, March 17, 2015

A New Car

The day has finally arrived!!!! We now are the owners of this reliable car!

No, it won't fit the whole family, but we prayed about it, and really felt that we didn't need a car to fit the whole family right now. We just needed a car to run errands, and this car definitely fits the bill! It belonged to a friend of ours from Holland. He is serving as a missionary here on base, but will be leaving soon to go back home. We are going to miss him greatly, but are incredibly blessed by the opportunity to buy his car.

Thank you so much for donating to make this a reality, and thank you Daniel for this blessing!

Monday, March 16, 2015


It is amazing how many varieties of fruits our family has been introduced to since moving to Brazil. Just off the top of my head, there are 7 or 8 fruits on our base that I didn't even know existed before moving here. One of the fruits we have really taken to lately is called "Graviola." I'm not really sure if we would call it by the same name in English, but Google translate tells me that it's called "Soursop." Either way, I had never heard of it.

Around here, everyone seems to like Graviola in juice form, but we really like to just eat the fruit. The fruit is slightly sweet, but sour as well. To eat it, you break or cut it open and pick out the individual, pod-type pieces and squeeze out the seed. At least that is how we eat it. If you have ever eaten a jackfruit, "jaca" in portuguese, I would compare graviola to jaca in the way you eat it. It's quite tasty. If you are ever able to try graviola, I highly recommend it!

Thursday, March 12, 2015

Construction Has Begun!

A many of you know, we have been praying about beginning a little construction project on the house we are living in. The upstairs portion of the house has a beautiful outdoor deck area. Unfortunately, this area was the source of a lot of water leakage in the downstairs portion of the house. The walls were becoming saturated with water, mold was growing, and water was entering near the electric panel in the house. We knew this was an issue that needed to be handled sooner rather than later, and God has provided the majority of the funds, so last week the workers began the construction.

 As you can see below, the roof had to be removed on a good portion of the upstairs. We're praying it doesn't rain over the next week while they are putting on the roof.

This picture below is the most recent picture. We are grateful that we were able to get started on the project, as when the rainy season begins, a project like this would be incredibly difficult. Lord willing, the upstairs will be enclosed and leak-free before the downpours come.

To everyone who prayed or donated to help with this project, thank you so much!

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!!!