Friday, March 30, 2012

A Beautiful Life

I keep wanting to post pictures of our Temaiken Zoo venture, & I will.  I promise.  But  this week I’ve been thinking so much about my many friends, supporters, & exemplars - their lives, and the different journeys that we all go through here on earth.

I have a dear friend in Washington who is struggling.  Her little 4 1/2 year old girl, Elisabeth, is very sick right now.  My prayers are with her.

I have another friend who just welcomed a little girl into their family last night through the miracle of adoption.  I rejoice with her.

I read NieNie.  I admire her.  I think of her often.  Her story strengthens me.

It’s a beautiful life.  I am so grateful for a loving Heavenly Father who is very aware of each one of us & our different lives.

The weather is turning cold, and we’re having heat issues; but today is warm, and we’re feeling good.  I’m back to boiling water & doing this:

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Her smile melts my heart.

I love my little family of 4 (almost 5).  Little Captain Wolfley is getting bigger all the time, & we can’t wait  to welcome him into our family.

Friday, March 23, 2012

Birthday Week

This past week has been great.  My husband & my brother both had birthdays.  We celebrated with chocolate.

  Nothing like Duncan Hines creamy frosting & colored sprinkles from the States.

Jared & Nathan are almost exactly 10 years apart by one day.  (The candles have nothing to do with their ages – I put the girls in charge of that part.)

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We took Nathan to Buenos Aires.  He started an International School there and will be staying with a host family for about one month.  I am so proud of my brave brother.  Here he is with Luz & Martin, two very good people who don’t speak English.

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To our surprise, the house was full of seven other students from all over the world – Australia, Holland, Brazil, NYC, & England.  He’s in for an adventure, that’s for sure.  There was a common area outside & a very tidy itty bitty bedroom for Nate. ;)

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We stayed in a hotel outside of Buenos Aires for two nights to make time for a Dr.’s visit, hospital tour, & a little exploring.  There was a storm the second night, and our power went out.  It was incredibly hot.  In an effort to cool things down we opened the door for maybe 1 minute, and mosquitos galore filled our room.  My face & AnnMarie’s left leg took one for the team.  I will not be posting pictures of myself (or AnnMarie’s left leg) anytime soon.

BUT we had so fun swimming in the rain and visiting the biggest & most beautiful zoo in South America on Jared’s birthday.

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I have a lot of pictures to go through, but for now, here’s a glimpse of Temaiken ZOOPhoto courtesy of my little photographer, AnnMarie.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Locational Thoughts

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Our family has been here for 6 months now.  That’s amazing to me.

Although I’m not fluent in Spanish yet, I’ve come a long ways, & that’s all that matters. 

I’ve struggled.

I’ve learned.

I’ve grown.

I’m better at facing challenges head-on.  I see the world differently.  I cling to my husband. 

I listen more than I speak.

I pray more.

I have to. 

You see, I’ve never really wanted to see the world.  I’m not afraid to travel, but I’m content with documentaries. 

It’s funny how a healthy childhood draws a person to duplicate it perfectly.

Sometimes it doesn’t always work out that way.

That’s okay.

Being a mommy doesn’t mean being stationed in a certain location.  It’s the same routines, the same activities, the same demands. 

Thank goodness for that, right? 

I can be a good mom no matter where I live.  Not perfect, but good,

and that’s good enough.

Sunday, March 11, 2012

A Long Life, A Small World

Look at these kids.  All Argentines, all Spanish speakers, all adorable.

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AnnMarie & Carlie started school two weeks ago at La Escuela de Los Padres, a private Roman Catholic school outside of town.  For the most part, we were happy with last year’s school, but we also had a few concerns.  Mainly, the English resources – they became extremely limited.  Our girls needed more assistance than was available at the previous school. 

(Also, the lack of sinks was a problem.  Measles & mumps broke out towards the end of last year in AnnMarie’s class…still feeling grateful for immunizations.)

La Escuela de Los Padres is indoors, has smaller classroom sizes overall, & has a separate English teacher in each of the three primary classes (3, 4, & 5).  Carlie is in the 3 year old class, & AnnMarie is in the 4 year old class.  The primary classes have recess at the same time, so AnnMarie & Carlie are able to play with each other twice each afternoon which is great.  School is every day, M-F from 1:15 – 4:45 PM.

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The first day consisted of a welcome ceremony along with an assembly for the students.  FYI, the Argentine National Anthem is long.  Everyone was singing with pride.  I just stood there & smiled with my hand over my heart while everyone stared at me.  (Apparently, they don’t put their hands over their hearts here; I realized that half way into the song.  I think I managed to recover by scratching my neck.  Oh, those moments can be painful.)

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I am grateful for this long life we all have.  Most often, it seems as though life is short, & I suppose it is – a short book of long chapters I imagine.   I think those never ending pages are to be relished.  This long chapter I’m in will pass – & before too long, I’ll turn the page to another, looking back on all I’ve learned.

And I love that we’re all in it together – taking it day by day.  It somehow makes the world feel so small to me.

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Back to School (with a bang)

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Summer break has officially come to an end.  The crispness of fall is beginning to set in.  It’s refreshing.  Since last year, little Carlie has been insisting on going to school with her big sis’, so we took a big leap of faith and enrolled her, too.  In Argentina, your child is expected to start school the year your child turns 3, so alas, she’s there. (More to come on school.)

Less than one week ago, she had a bad fall in our apartment.  She tripped while running & smacked her head right onto a dense flower pot.  That would explain her third eye in the picture.  It’s hard to tell, but she also has two black eyes. :(  

Carlie’s sweet teacher kindly asked us how we disciplin our children.  We got a good laugh out of that one.  Still laughing…

Good thing Carlie has Vidal Sassoon hair to distract from her bruises.

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