A Friendly Trip

Sooo Jenny and Sarah and Kim were supposed to come this week. The good news is that Sarah and Kim are still coming.... but Jenny can't find her passport. Bummer, bummer, bummer. So she's taking a rain check on my Costa Rica tour skills for now.

Here's what Sarah, Kim, and I will be up to this week:

monday, march 23rd
arrive at airport 11:45. settle into room at AMCA house. downtown adventure 3pm. with my tico family at 6 for dinner.hang out/rest.

tuesday, march 24th
go to school 6:50am tour the school, hang out in the classrooms, etc., leave school 3pm, catch bus to Puerto Viejo, sleep at Cabinas Jakaranda

wednesday, march 25th
beach all day :), can rent bikes for the day, can go to a butterfly garden

thursday, march 26th
sunrise?beach in the morning, catch bus to San Jose, late afternoon

friday, march 27th
catch taxi to airport at 3:30 pr 4am, $26 in total (split between 3)country exit tax $28catch plane 6am, and me back to work 7:30am


Visit to the Earthquake Site

Roots torn out of the ground.

So today we had a paseo of sorts... we ventured out to see the earthquake site from the 6.2 quake in January. The whole family came along for the adventure, and they had been to the area before the earthquake many times, so they said many times, "Aaah, remember when we.....??" but they kept saying how much destruction there is since the earthquake. We were also talking about how life can change so fast. The earthquake lasted only 48 seconds, but houses fell off cliffs, landslides covered entire pastures, and trees toppled like dominoes. It was unreal what it all looks like now.
Can you tell what it is??? A house...
The tica mom and I :) Que linda!

Electric pole snapped in half

another house that's barely a house

The whole family kept saying "This used to be green!!! All the trees have disappeared!!" Crazy, huh??

Roads were snapped in half like this... and the other half had mysteriously vanished... wow.
This waterfall drew tourists from everywhere... but now the draw might be more to see the destruction than to see the La Paz Waterfall Gardens.Judit, my tica sister... clearly up to something.
We stopped at a fruit market on the way back... and Judit and I were really cold. I think this is my cold/laughing face? :) haha Judit makes me laugh a lot!

Did Someone Say We're Having a Surprise Party??

Kim Loosa was the brains behind the idea to have a surprise party for the first grade teacher, Peggy, who is turning 50. Even with about 70 to 80 guests, we pulled it off without her finding out!!! Quite the accomplishment for 20 first graders :)

The two Kims on the lookout.
Beautiful flowers for the birthday girl!

Presents are ready!
She's here! The excuse was that she went grocery shopping with Diana, and they were on the way to Peggy's house :) Ha, think again.
There she is!!!!!
Kim made Peggy's favorite... apple pie. Ha, yes, it's a square apple pie.
Birthday cake for the birthday girl.

Gathering around the dessert feast.
1st grade mom congratulates 1st grade teacher.

And Mimi, our school secretary, congratulates Peggy. :)


Gracias a Dios

So I used to think the title phrase meant "Thank you, Goodbye"... so I always thought the people were saying they didn't want to talk to me anymore. Haha, thank goodness that now I realize that it means "thanks to God"... My tico family got a big kick out of that story.

Along the lines of "thanks to God," He has provided for me in lots of little ways recently. I mean, He's always providing in lots of little ways, but I guess the past few weeks He's really been opening my eyes to realize how much He provides. With the play, items that we need continually are donated or loaned to us... For example, yesterday one of the Sojourn teachers told me she had more fake flowers that we could have for the play AND Kim's parents confirmed that they have a top hat they can bring for the costumes. 2 things in one day!!! Also, God continually provides the finances to make life possible here. I am so encouraged to have so many here and in the States supporting the work God is doing in my life (and all of our lives!). Gracias a Dios!

I tried "Vaca Negra" with the family last night -- translation "Black Cow" -- and it's basically a root beer float with Coke. We were at the grocery store after that and I found a can of root beer, so when we got home, we tried round 2 of Vaca Negra but this time with the gringa way. Ha, we all enjoyed it.

The set for the play is well on its way to being finished. We have one more work day a week from today, and I'll take my camera I promise :). Sorry Mom that there's no photos yet. Just know it's looking good :)

Sarah, Jenny, and Kim arrive Monday at 12. Wowee, I'm super excited!

Life is busy and all is well!


A Sheepish Hello

I can hardly believe it's March 12th!!! Time really is flying here, as there's so much to do and so little time!

Friends Jenny Olson and Sarah Mikan (and Sarah's friend Kim) are coming in just 2 weeks, so I've been busy making reservations and plans for when they are here. It will be a quick visit -- only Monday to Friday -- but I'm the travel agent/hostess/chaffeur/Spanish translator, so I've been working hard to plan for that.

The play is approaching quickly as well. Just 3.5 more weeks!!! A group of high schoolers are helping me with the painting process, and we actually accomplished quite a bit today. There's so many details to think about! I'm also in charge of actor's costumes, so that's been quite the adventure to nail down. We have 3 of the 10 actors with full costumes... the rest are still "works in progress".

Oh yeah, and then I'm a teacher. Also an adventure.

Life is good and my bed is calling my name for the night :). G'nite!


Shout Outs

A big hello to Jason and Janna Crumrine as they sat under this same tree with me during their December vacation to Costa Rica. This photo was taken this past weekend when I returned to Playa Conchal with my friends. HIIIII tios!!!

This week begins a new term and along with that are lots of new ideas and strategies in my bag. :) Ha, my tico family calls my purse the "Mary Poppin bag" because they (and I!) never know what's coming out of it. In the classroom, we changed reading groups and I grouped one tico per group so now they're surrounded by English :). I'm loving that because they're constantly asking questions -- "What is this? What is that?" Sounds a lot like me in Spanish. We've also been creating our own life-sized drawings of the human body and it's systems. You should see our masterpieces :)... they're currently hanging on the balcony for parents to enjoy. I am also working to use every moment of the school day for learning... so we've been practicing quicker transitions, doing mental math and trivia during bathroom breaks... you know, I'm thinking more and more like a teacher.

And I have friends coming in just a few weeks!!! How exciting! Jenny Olson, Sarah Mikan, and Sarah's friend Kim will be joining me for a quick 4 day visit to San Jose, and I can hardly wait!

But before they get here, we are working furiously on the set and costume design for the upcoming production at the school. I am seriously so glad to be using my artistic background in this way -- it gives me so much satisfaction and joy! A group of high schoolers and adults helped build the set yesterday, so we will begin painting next week. Hurray!!! Sorry, there's no photos of any of this action yet, but you will see the final project on here for sure! :)

Tenga un buen noche!


Playa Conchal con Mis Amigitas

Here's some fun in the sun for you... It was a great weekend!