Thursday, January 21, 2016

New Beginnings

Humph....I guess that six month break broke my writing habit. 

Whatever.  We're going to pick up and move along.  Because every day is a new beginning, even if it's 21 days after a new beginning.  God's been reminding me "Every Morning is New.  Throw away yesterday's half completed list and let's start fresh."

The big boys are back at school, with some changes to teachers that were unexpected and hard, but have turned out to be good.  Quinn is fully 3 1/2 with all that means, the good and the bad.

Over the Christmas break we moved around beds and are now getting ready to build a wall and frame out a door to make another bedroom for Baby Girl, who should be coming in just about 10 weeks!

Speaking of that, how can 10 weeks feel like way not enough time to get everything done and yet and eternity away?  Time and pregnancy have a weird relationship. 

So that's where I am living.  Not always gracefully, but that's the whole thing right?  That He has compassion and new mercies for me everyday.

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

As Per Tradition...

Saturday, December 19, 2015

Baby Update with Some Cultural Oberservations Thrown In

We're almost to 24 weeks with this new baby.  Feels like it's been a lot longer than that.  For whatever reason, I had that aweful wanna puke but can't but that doesn't mean I can function all day sickness with this one for close to 17 weeks.  Quinn was this bad, but it only lasted, well, 15 weeks.  Whatever.  We'll blame it on the altitude.

While most of my pregnancy with Quinn was here in Costa Rica (we were in language school, remember that year?  ) this pregnancy has been even more Costa Rican, if that makes sense.  We live here now.  We have friends here, close friends.  My doctor this time around is Tico.  It just feels more Tico.  Add to that the fact that this baby will be born here (Quinn was born stateside)  it's just been different.

There are subtle differences in how the culture approaches pregnancy.  For example:  Ticos have absolutely no qualms about touching a pregnant belly.  No thought at all. I am not a touchy person to begin with and then to have 25 year old guys (yes, guys do it all the time!) rubbing my belly,'s just strange.

Something else I've noticed that is so very different is people don't ask how I am doing, they ask how the baby is doing.  The conversation typically goes something like this

I walk into a room
Tico friend:"How's the baby today?"

Which I never really know what to say. 
"Ummm, she's fine?" 
"Ummm, she really like dinner last night?"
 I don't know. I usually just say "she's growing!"

I think this points to a very big difference in how children are viewed in this culture.  Here, they are cherished and loved, to a fault some times. As in when one of mine throws a fit, someone is usually there to give them a piece of candy or a cookie to keep them from crying.

Kids aren't considered an inconvenience or annoyance.  We feel this even in the airports as we travel back and forth.  If we are sitting at the gate waiting to board a flight in Latin America, our kids get help putting shoes on, they are given cookies by strangers, no one bats an eye when one cries or gets wiggly.  That help and grace continues though the flight, but once we hit the ground in the US, the attitude is totally different.  Children are viewed as an inconvenience and people often give us looks and rolled eyes.  It's so striking the difference.  I've even heard people say in the US things like "kids shouldn't even be allowed on airplanes."  Here, if you have an infant with you, you are usually bumped to the front of whatever line you are in.

Everyone asks me if the baby is a boy or girl and once they find out it's a girl, they immediately want to know her name.  As in the doctor asked me this last week so he could write it down in my medical records.  I've heard him call babies by their name while he's doing the ultrasounds.   I mentioned to a friend that one of our boys was a couple hours old before he had a name and look of shock on her face was priceless!  She said "OH!! You CAN NOT do that to your daughter!!" 

Nombre BebĂ©:  Baby's Name

For the record, we haven't settled on a name just yet, and I doubt we'll share it before this little one is born, but you never know, we might cave to cultural norms here.

Speaking of cultural norms...earrings.  Yeah, here they do it at the hospital within the first 24 hours or so.  It was comical to me when I asked on Facebook for moms' opinions on this cultural custom.  Most of the responses were from friends and family in the States and the overwhelming response was "DON"T DO IT!  Let her choose."  The response from my Tica friends was "DO IT!  It won't be as painful and she won't remember the pain.  Plus she's a girl!"  I am not sure I've ever seen a little Tica without earrings.  So we'll see, not sure what we'll end up deciding. This is defiantly ones of those "it's not right or wrong, it's just different" cultural things.

So you never know, after living here almost 5 years, you just might know this little girl's name well before she's born and she might end up with earrings within the first hours of her life.  

Saturday, December 12, 2015



When I sent my computer off on it's international trip July 15th, I knew it would be a while before I would be blogging again.  I thought I would get my machine back in early September.  Turned out I didn't get it until late October. 

And then.  Well, there really isn't an excuse for not showing up here.  But maybe since I've been at this blog thing since 2008, we'll call this six months off a sabbatical of sorts?  Yeah, let's go with that.

I am not even going to attempt to do a hodgepodge post of all that has gone on since July.  Not only is my brain in pregnancy fog, but I think it would be too long and too boring for anyone to bother reading.  So.  Sorry, you'll just miss those six months.

But now, let us let go of the former things and press on towards what is ahead. 
We are pulling out all the stops this year because 1) we aren't going anywhere and 2) no one is coming here and 3) we were able to bring all manner of Christmas fun from the States this time around. 

We happen to live right where all the cedar Christmas tree farms are.  To find our tree, it was literally 15 minutes from our door, to get the tree to back to our house.   Elliot decided this was the most huggable tree in the field so we took it!

After too many years to count we have ornaments on our tree!  The boys had a blast decorating it and the results weren't too bad.

The big boys finished school on Friday and are off until January 11th, so now we can focus on cookie decorating, creating and playing and blowing off some steam!

Sunday, September 6, 2015

In Case You Haven't Heard

If you don't follow us on Instagram or Facebook...

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Three Weeks

Three weeks in.  Feels like we've been back a lot longer than just three weeks.

We've done a lot in that amount of time.  And there is a lot more to do to really truly be settled again.  There are still piles of things to sort and put away, we still need to register the boys for school that starts in a month, still need to restock the panty supplies fully.

But we are on the way.  I think all the bags are unpacked even though there is still stuff to put away.  The big projects are mostly done, with the exception of staining and vanishing the shelves and cabinet.

Oh, and just for the record, if you are planning on moving internationally, don't do it three days before Father's Day and a birthday.  Honestly, we've done Father's Day, Quinn's Birthday, Noah's Birthday since we've been back!  That's a lot! We totally skipped out on the 4th of July this year, much to the disappointment of several of us, me included!  Oh well, live and learn.

I think our hearts have caught up to our bodies for the most part.  It's been a bit rockier of a transition than I was anticipating. But boy, have we've so enjoyed being back at church each weekend,  and being part of our community here!  Noah's been in the office this week some, and it's been good to get back in the swing of things.

I'm hopeful that by August, when the big boys start school again, we'll be resettled.

And with that, this might be the last blog post for a while.  My computer decided to act up three weeks after being in Costa Rica, which means it gets a trip to California tomorrow, then to the repair shop, then to Illinois and then back to Costa Rica in September!  Yikes!  That's a long time without it!! Not sure how well I can blog on a tablet or phone, so we'll see ya when we see ya.

Friday, June 26, 2015

Just a Quick Note

So just a quick pop in to say we're alive and kicking.
It's been one week.
Huh.  Sure feels longer than that!  We've been the process of unpacking, and reoraganizing the house.  For some reason, I thought that we would be able to just come home and unpack and be back up to speed, sorta like coming home from a vacation.  That is not how it's panned out, for a lot of reasons. 

We're also doing some major overhaul to our laundry room and building some epic shelves and a shed since our great friend Jamie is with us and she has all sorts of skillz in those areas.

We've also had to take the 4Runner into the shop, and work through the process of renewing our residency, and get the boys enrolled in school again, and, and, and.

There has also been some visiting of volcanos and plans to see the ocean at some point.

We were able to go to a birthday party on Saturday and it was so good to be home with our friends. 

Alright, now that you're all up to speed, it's off unpack and sort and build some more.