Sunday, July 20, 2008

Gotta love Concrete!

So this past friday, Claudinho , Jaxson, the other guy from the farm whose name I do not know, and Rick laid out some more concrete pad sidewalk areas at Mount Horeb. As is the case in many countries.. they spent half the day waiting for more concrete to arrive, but they still managed to get it done! This of course is old school concrete.. the kind you have to mix yourself! I of course assisted by taking as many pictures as I could.
As nice as the new sidewalks look, i was not loving concrete the next day when i spent half an hour scrubbing ricks socks and pants.. and they still are not even remotely clean. ARGH.
I also spent the lunch hour teaching Cirlene and some of the other ladies how to make friendship bracelets, after the discovery of embroidery thread in the "clothes room". I think Cirlene said they are leftovers from Donna Ruth's store- all I can say is- Thanks for the Leftovers! Cirlene thinks this is a great project to teach the girls... she wants me to go up to Cacador and teach them there!
Also, the church had its own festa de junina this saturday (man there are a lot of these festa's!) We had a great time.. Rick got allll dressed up for the event! No festa de junina is complete without a mock wedding, in which the groom is not at all interested in getting married. (I have asked about this festa and its customs.. the reply i get is allways "its cultural"... right.) I dont understand it, but its funny to watch! They also had this massive fire- it was pretty cool! I got a picture of the full moon, thru the sparks. (I really like this picture!)
This coming week we are taking advantage of the slower days at Mount Horeb to take a break and go visit the beach. It will probably be our last break for quite some time, so we are looking forward to a little relaxation. Please contintue to pray for our language training, and also for our upcoming travels- Africa is only 4 weeks away!!!

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Festa's and Other Adventures

This past weekend Mount Horeb school held their annual Festa de Julianina (sp?). Everyone has these festa's but the school plans theirs to coincide with the beginning of the winter school holiday. After a long week of lessons and helping at Mount Horeb and with the soccer school, Rick wasnt sure he wanted to head out for it. We were under the mistaken impression that it was a party for the kids, so rick decided to stay home and get some computer work done. Man were we wrong- I showed up to find half of Itaperucu and some of Rio Branco had descended on Mount Horeb. The kids put on great dances, and they were all dressed up as either gauchos (brazillian cowboys) or lovely folk ladies! They had bingo, and a concession stand, and prizes.. it was great! Alot of the kids who come to mount horeb dont come from Christian families, so it is allways good for the teachers and staff to be able to connect with so many parents!
After our fishing adventure on sunday morning, our friends took us to this amazing. "gruta" or cave near Rio Branco (about 15 minutes from where we live). Getting there and back was practically an adventure in itself.. although we were assured that "lots of people come here" the lack of a readily discernable trail and infrastructure had me doubting that theory! It was so steep I pretty much sat on my rear and slid all the way down, and crawled on my hands and knees all the way back up! However, it was worth it- as the cave was beautiful. Rick plans to return maybe next weekend with a group of men from the church and go thru the whole thing. (Which again.. we have been assured.. "lots of people do!")
Me and Rosanne in the mouth of the cave.
After our fishing and caving expiditions, we went back to Rosanne and Denilson's house for some awesome fish dinner (ill spare you the photos of the preparations for that.. ewww) While we waited Derick brought the neighbors three puppies over for some play time... IM IN LOVE!!!
Thank you all so much for your prayers- we have finished our "official" portuguese lessons and are now onto the review and practice phase.. Im not sure which is more difficult! We will still have a few more lessons with our teacher to go over grammar and verb conjugations, but now it is really up to us to study study study! Also, thank you for your prayers regarding our visa extensions.. what we had thought might be a bit tricky turned out to be soooo easy, and we breezed thru the proccess.. they even gave us a few extra days in case something goes wrong with our flights! Praise the Lord. It is now less than FIVE WEEKS till we leave for Africa, we can hardly believe the time has gone by so fast! Please continue to keep us in your prayers, we appreciate them so much, especially as we are now aproaching yet another stage of travel, visas and culture shock! God Bless,
Rick and Heather!


Well... one of the activities that Rick loves, besides hunting of course.. is Fishing. Aparently there are a lot of brazillians who enjoy this activity as well, and Rick has met up with them all I think! One thing we have realised as we have been studying and trying to learn portuguese is that the best way to learn is to talk to people. We have spent many evenings at peoples houses trying to speak and communicate- and are happy to report that our work is paying off! We can now spend entire days with people who speak NO english, and get along just fine! It really is rather satisfying!
Rick has spent several weekend days with several different guys just going out fishing! Its a great time to relax for him, but also a great time to tak with the men and practice his portuguese. Here are some pics from the various fishing trips.
The first fishing trip with Borges- doesnt the condition of this boat just inspire confidence??! They used the one on the left.. which only looks better because they bailed all the water out of it! (btw.. didnt catch anything)
Borges, paddling along. Borges is a great teacher. If we dont say something correctly he makes us repeat after him until we say it just right!

Second fishing trip, this time with Denilson- he has his own motorized boat- now we are going high class! (still didnt catch anything)
Third fishing day- this time with Denilson, his wife Roasanne and their son Derick. This time I went along too, and we went to a place where the little ponds are stocked. It took some time, but we all caught something.. and enough big enough to keep for an amazing supper.
Rick and his first catch of the day... yeah.. this guy was a bit small for dinner!

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Canada Day & BBQ!

The smile says it all.. these were good Pizza Buns! (notice we even decorated!)
Happy Belated Canada Day! We had a great Canada day here- after informing anyone who would listen that July 1st was The Day of Canada, we decided to make a "Canadian" style lunch for all the people who eat at the school. We decided on Pizza Buns, Ceasar Salad and Watermelon (goes perfect with Canada day!). After making over 200 Pizza Buns or Pizza Pao as the kids called them, we were able to enjoy some ourselves.. they were great! New favorite at Mount Horeb!
Adding the cheese.
Church members praying together.
This sunday was also Communion sunday at our church, which means we have Potluck and church in the morning instead of the evening. This month we had a Churrasco (BBQ) at the Farm. (I brought lots of bug reppellant this time... and i was the only one who did.. so it got used lots!) It was so awesome to have Communion up there, surrounded by God's creation. We do find church hard though, as we find we understand very little of what is said.. please pray for us regarding this, as it can be frustrating to not be able to actively participate! Its one thing to talk to people and ask them to repeat and slow down.. but kind hard to do that in the middle of a testimony or sermon!
Rick was asked to serve communion.
We went into the city this week to get our Visa's extended.. which was a little nervewracking.. only to find out that.. we had gone in to early! However, if we return next week they can give us a temporary visa.. no problem! Phew! I went totally expecting to find a building full of Federal Police in their uniforms, instead it was like any other office building, and most of the employees were wearing jeans and sweaters! When we walked in, there were about 50 people sitting in chairs waiting and I was thinking.. "my goodness- we will be here all day!" Then we were directed to tiny sign on the wall "estrangeiros" (foriegners) -we were second in line there! WOOHOO! For once I am glad to be a foreigner!
We only just discovered the "pay by the kilo" ice cream store in town owned by our friends.. Rick is enjoying a much needed milk shake!
All in all we have had a great week, please continue to keep us in your prayers, we need them so much! It is now only 6 weeks until we arrive in South Africa- hard to believe it is coming so quickly! We cant wait to post pictures and stories from there!
This last pic is for allllll the people who tried to buy our "donation box" off of our display. Its made entirely of coke bottle caps.. and here is a milking stool that says "drink coke" on it!!! I know there are people out there who will find that funny!