Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Re: Sending Money for Vans....and other items of business

Hey. Just wanted to let you folks know that people actually ARE sending money for vans! (And it wasn't because I made that comment on my earlier post).

Here's some more photos for you visual types.

First of all, let me introduce you to my two roomies - Carol and Denia - I promise that Denia is a nice girl, despite this look...and she gives an excellent late-night concert.
And, the newest addition to the Chacon - Perez family (my Costa Rican family), baby Julian! There's a lot of jokes about how white he is, considering that his dad is dark, dark, dark.
Here's older brother, Jose Andres...who looks more like dad. But I have to say, the resemblance between the two boys is strong, especially when laughing or sleeping. Oh, by the way, I went and stayed at my family's on Friday night. Baby Julian is really colicky and so was pretty much upset the whole time...except when I picked him up and did the "colicky baby dance" that Carleigh taught me...props to her and to that wacky dance!

Jose Andres was also sick...but wanted me to sleep in his bed with him...and so, I shared his bed, he kicked me a million times, and made noises like he was going to throw up in my ear. It was a beautiful night's rest...but how can you say no to such a cute face?
Then, on Sunday, our church (Vina Escazu), had a BBQ and baptism at the Pastors' house. Here's my friend Carrie, being baptized in our Pastor's pool. It was a beautiful day (after a lot of rainy days)...lots of fun...lots of people...and I actually got some sun!
And here I am with Eli (who works at the church, and whom I've now known for three years!), and Marsha, who is here for a few months working with another missionary couple.
The last couple of weeks has been lots of working during the day, and then hanging out with the other staff and the young adults of the Vineyard at night. It's been fun. I'm almost not ready for the groups to come...I'm having too much fun hanging out! :)

Thursday, May 24, 2007


This picture is my only proof that #1, Mike and I were in Costa Rica together and #2, that on my fifth visit to Costa Rica, I have finally been to the Caribbean side of the country. Finally.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007


Tonight, Gloria, Carmelinda and I made cookies. Somehow chocolate chip cookies taste WAY better in Costa Rica. Probably because they take more effort (like baking them in the gas stove...never being completely sure how hot the oven is, and sometimes it just turns off...).

It's quiet tonight, which is kind of nice. The guys went out for "guys dinner"...which meant they went out to an "all-you-can-eat-meat" place...tomorrow night it's "girls dinner"...which means that we will NOT be going to the same place the guys went tonight. The other girls went to visit a friend, and I decided to stay home and chill. Sometimes some quiet is rather nice.

Monday, May 21, 2007

A little slice of life...

So I've already been here in Costa for two weeks. I love it here. I think I'm addicted. There's not too too much to tell today...we've been working hard at getting things ready for our crazy summer of non-stop groups. We have so many groups coming, that they overlap! But in one month the rest of our staff will arrive...us 6 will be joined by 14 more! (And then all privacy is non-existent).

The last week I've just been working, and we've hung out a bit with people from church, which has been fun. It's been good to come back to people that I already know...I love meeting new people, but I think that to come back and keep building on previous relationships is something I enjoy even more.

On that note...here's some pictures for you all to enjoy.
Firstly, my little friend, Charlee, back in Canada, whom I miss lots...by the time I get home she'll probably be walking, and have a boyfriend, and listen to rap music. You know how it goes...

And here are my flowers from my Tica family...my favorite flowers, and I think my favorite colour of flower to boot (they were actually more orangey-red than the picture looks).

Here's my roomie, Carol, being cool on Chad's cool bike...eating cool Costa Rican chips. It's pretty cool.
And here's two sweeties. The one on the left is Abril...she is the daughter of a guy who works for us, Wilbur. It was her birthday yesterday so we had a birthday party for her here at the base...complete with Dora pinata (of course)! Here, Carmelinda (the daughter of the missionary couple I work for) is posing with her.

I promise here and now to take more pictures. Candice isn't here this summer to prod me to take pictures, so I keep forgetting. But I don't think you want to see pictures of me sitting at a desk doing administrative work...or washing laundry...or cooking food. Although, if you all decide that that's what you want to see, I can make it happen.


Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Mi familia Tica

Two nights ago, I got to go see my host family. It was SO good to see them...I don't really have the words to describe it. It felt right, and I was happy - my host "dad" would look at me and say, "are you happy?" and I'd say, "of course". They are my second family...and I love that I have that here.

I went with Chad and Patrick (two guys on staff with me here), and Chad had stayed with my "aunt and uncle" while he was studying Spanish. They live next door to where I was living, so it was fun for us to go and visit our combined family. We got the aunt and uncle's place and visited while I waited for my family to come home from town...and then little Jose Andres (my "brother" who is almost 6) came flying in the door...no hello, no how are you, just "come to my house, we have a present waiting for you" and then as he gave me a kiss, he just couldn't wait...and shouted "It's flowers!" So I walked next door with him to find some beautiful roses, not to mention my wonderful family and their new baby boy, Julian, who is almost two months old. We had a great visit, filling in the guys on our stories from last year, and making plans to visit more before I leave again, all while they chastized me for my poor Spanish (I was just thankful that I could understand and converse with them after 8 months of only English!). I wish I could have come to stay with this family for another month like I did last year, but at very least, I get to see them, which is a blessing.

Sorry, no pictures yet, I forgot my camera.

And I'm lazy.

Monday, May 14, 2007

my little miss sunshine moment

I said goodbye to the CBC team this morning, which was sad to do, seeing as I only got to hang out with them for a few days this week - but I'm glad that I got to hang out with them at all.

After working it out as a surprise, I ended up going out to Talamanca to meet the team, who thought I wasn't coming at all. I have wanted to go to Talamanca many times in the last three years, and for some reason or another have never been able to go...usually because a van breaks down or there isn't enough time. So...of course it would have it that as Chad and I drove closer to Talamanca, a tire blew on our vehicle.

But, God provides...and a gringo came along in the same vehicle a few moments later to help us out.

So I got to go to Talamanca...and I got to see the Caribbean side of Costa Rica for the first time (after how many years?).

We had a lot of fun out in the jungle. On Saturday we hiked for two hours out to a waterfall, which after walking for two hours in the sweltering heat, felt great. Of course, then there was the inevitable two hour walk back in the sweltering heat to our bucket shower, which wasn't as exciting.

I was really glad that I made it out there as well, because as it turned out, one of the girls on the team was rather ill and had to be brought back for treatment. So, as they needed a driver and due to my prior experience and knowledge of handling a stick-shift, I got to drive the five hours plus home. This is where I must share my "little miss sunshine" moment. For those of you who have watched the movie, you'll understand this. Please picture this with me. The van I was driving is a fifteen-passenger, stick shift...built similarily to a vw van (moreso because it is not boxy like the ones at home). Partway through the week, the van started a new nasty habit - the alarm would go off at any moment while driving....especially when driving on bumpy roads. Well, wouldn't you know it, for the first hour that I was driving, that lovely alarm went off every 2 to 5 minutes...and the button to turn it off? Located under the steering column. A very tiny, very annoying button. So that's bad enough right? Especially going through checkpoints with policemen who are wondering why your alarm is going off while you are talking with them.

Well, that was the first part. The even better experience took place when our van decided to stop starting. And we had to push start. Please picture again with me...10 gringos running along side a van in Costa Rica, praying that the van will start, and the alarm starts again.

I just laughed. Cause what else can you do?

(P.S. Send money for new vans) :)

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Pure Life...

I'm here again! Costa Rica...my second home, full of interesting people and places.

I'm hoping that my blog will be well-kept - I promise I will try for you all.

May the blogging (ahem, I meant adventure) begin!

Thursday, May 03, 2007