Saturday, May 31, 2008

Birthdays, Anniversaries, Mothers' Days, etc.

Lot's of activity in the months of May, June and July...

Mother's day and the US date, 2nd Sunday, is different than the Nicaraguan celebration which is the 30th no matter the day it falls on.

Bev and I celebrated our 26th wedding anniversary on May 22. It has been an awesome time and the upcoming years are surely something looked forward to with much anticipation.

A friend asked what I had given her for our anniversary and I told him that we had purchased a washing machine. In unbelief he asked me if it wouldn't have been better to take her out to eat or to a night in a hotel or resort. I told him that we had gone out to eat... He seemed satisfied.

I was thinking later that I should have asked him if it would have been better to give her a Nicaraguan lavandero or a good old American washing machine. With the money saved I could have taken her out to eat a few more times, if she had the time. God bless Westinghouse!

I think he would have understood my decision, but the thought was late and I didn't have the chance.

Judah has also celebrated his birthday this month. He is now 16 years old and a fine young man. Contacts instead of glasses were his gift.

God is good and we have truly enjoyed the month.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Proud Dad

Well, the video says it all.

I'm proud of Judah and the "examen de grado" in his Tae Kwon Do classes. This kick was the final part of his test to move up from yellow with a grade to green. It was a very advanced kick for his level and he executed it with precision and excellence. Good job, Judah!

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Furlough - A leave of absence or vacation

We are ready to TRAVEL!!!

We have talked about an extended trip to the States for quite some time and now it is becoming a reality! Last week our tickets were reserved. We will be flying with our 6 younger children to Dallas, Texas on July 15 and our return to Nicaragua will be September 18. Cheree is studying Graphic Design at the University of Commercial Sciences in Managua and does not have breaks between trimesters, therefore she will not be traveling with us.

So, what do the kids remember from the 3 week trip we made 6 years ago:
  • Kelsy: going to the zoo with Grandma and Grandpa (from the pictures she has seen)
  • Luke: "Pastor Craft's" church
  • Lance: eating Krystal hamburgers and riding in the car
  • Judah: seeing "my breath" in the cold air
  • John: Uncle Lloyd's, youth camp, a worship seminar and working for Mr. Iwan (John went for a 4 week visit with Earl 2 years ago)
Our planned route is over 6500 miles, +/- 500 gallons of gasoline, that will be over 110 road hours which should leave us a good 40+ days to visit friends, family and sites of interest... we are looking forward to our "visit to a foreign country". The main purpose is to take our 6 younger children on a travel / camping trip so they can better appreciate their American heritage and experience some of the enjoyable points of the United States. In the past 15 years we have traveled to the States as a family only twice and the cumulative time is 7 months.
We are preparing everything here to function smoothly while we are gone and to transition into our move to Jinotega for new ministry there when we return. The "To Do List" is lengthy, with the following being among the most crucial:
  • Passport renewals, two U.S. and a few Nicaraguan, with 9 people and four Nica among us there is always a passport that needs attention
  • Distribution of all church responsibilities, big and small, to the elders at La Fuente and their emerging leaders
  • Finishing homeschool for the year
  • Preparing the house for our two month absence and future move
  • Finalizing contacts and scheduling for our trip while in the States
There are several things we need to make this trip a success. Maybe you could help with something on the list:
  • a roadworthy vehicle for 8 passengers and limited luggage (a 12 passenger van would be nice) to use for 2 months and 7000+ miles
  • finish payment of the plane tickets - $2500
  • camping equipment for our 2 month "tour" - tents, sleeping bags, camp stove, utensils, cooler, etc. (a combination of fun and reducing lodging costs)
  • funds for travel expenses - gasoline alone is projected to be $40 a day or $2500 (at least it is cheaper there than in Nicaragua), plus food, lodging, and other
  • car seat for our growing two year old
We still need to finish paying off the last portion of the plane tickets and, above our normal monthly expenses, we will need several 1000 dollars more to make the most of this special trip with our children. If you would like to help with this dream please send your financial gifts to our World Outreach Fellowship address [checks payable to World Outreach Fellowship]...

World Outreach Fellowship
2011 West Marshall Ave.
Longview, TX 75604

...or, communicate regarding items you could loan us during this time at .

We look forward to seeing many of our friends and family as we travel... see ya soon!