Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Household Chores

I'm enjoying that the kids are at the age that they want and like to help with the chores! Today Ellie did the dishes for me, so I thought I'd share since the process is a little different than in the States.

The first step is to wipe the scubber through the soap, which is solid. Then scrub the dish. And finally, rinse. It's important to turn the water off while scrubbing so as not to waste water...something that Ellie is still working on. But we don't fill the whole sink with hot water, and we actually use cold water.

 (I'd also like to point out that Ellie did her hair ALL by herself today! Such a big girl!)

Friday, January 20, 2012

The Infamous Playground

So here it is, Levi's latest passion! I can hardly coax him to play on anything else at the playground. You can just imagine the terror I feel as I watch him running as fast as he can...waiting for him to trip and watching the next seat whack him upside the head. Fortunately he's learned how to hold on well enough so that when he trips, he holds on until he gets his feet back under him, and he's off running again!

Ellie was quick to figure out how to maneuver the slide!  Levi, on the other hand, found himself face-first in the dirt. And consequently, he hasn't gone down the slide again.

The kids love the park, and I am thankful that it's only a block away from the house! Levi wakes up each morning and requests a "walk" and the "playground."

Food, essentials to live by

Now this is  what tacos should look like!

Ryan ate about 4 tacos...Ellie wouldn't even try one!
Even Matthew is trying new foods!
The definition of chayote...Mexican fruit!
It's a spiny gourd, and Matthew liked it!
When all else fails, there's always Oreos!

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Day 2

So, although I've lived here before, there are a few things I have had to learn...like how to fill the water tank! Basically, I just have to flip a switch and keep an eye on the meter, then turn it off when it's full. The pump carries the water to the tank on the roof of the house (which then provides water pressure).

As I looked around this morning, I thought about some basic changes. Like not drinking the water. But that also means not brushing your teeth with tap water...or accidentally filling the coffee pot with tap water out of habit! (I didn't do it! Mostly because Clay prepped the coffee pot before he left today!)

So, I thought I'd share a few pictures of my kitchen because you may be wondering where we get our water if we don't get it from the tap.  This is called a "garrafon" in Spanish...I don't know to call it in English except a Culligan water jug.

I think it's probably a good thing that it's located right next to the coffee pot...less chance of forgetting to use it. So far the kids have been good about not drinking water from the tap too.


This is the kitchen. I LOVE the cabinetry in this house! It's so beautiful.

This is the view from the kitchen into the dining room. You can't see it, but the beautiful flower is just outside that window. The kids are enjoying a few moments of coloring.

This is only a temporary house for us...so I hope to be posting pictures of "our" house in a few weeks!

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

We made it!

All packed and ready to go!

17 checked items

10 carry-ons items

4 carseats

4 kids

1 stroller

20 hours

2 flights
Entertainment at the airport

Bright eyed and Bushy-tailed!

Getting our luggage through Customs and Immigration!

We left the mission house in Columbus, Ohio at 3:15 a.m. yesterday. We only had 5 hours of flight time, which is great! It was the 10 hour lay-over that was killer! But we found plenty to keep us busy. First, there was a construction site outside one of the windows! (Well, actually it looked more like "destruction" because they were removing the brick roadway with a fork lift and manual labor.) The kids loved it, especially Levi. Matthew as happy to roll around and check out things. Ryan and Ellie had a few new toys to keep them entertained! 

Our flight arrived in Puebla, Mexico at 9pm. That's when the fun really started! All four kids had a mini-meltdown while waiting to get through Customs and Immigration. (I'm so thankful that we didn't fly into Mexico City! The personnel at the airport in Puebla were awesome!) Each item of luggage had to be scanned in the x-ray machine. Levi was very upset that his backpack, blankie and puppy dog had to screened too!

From the airport we had a 30 minute drive to the guest house. It was dark and there wasn't much to see. After hearing about how exciting it was to move Mexico, Ellie leaned over and said, "This isn't very exciting to me, Mom." The poor girl!

The view from my dining room...love it
View from the street.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

To-Do List

The final 4 days in the States...the to-do list is shrinking, I think. We still need to make a trip to the post office to mail some packages and letters before we leave. One more Walmart trip? (Really? Is it necessary? They do have Walmart in Mexico!) And I need to finish packing...I have packed 8 footlockers and 1 1/2 suitcases. We are allotted 12 checked items for our family of 6, plus 2 carry-ons per person. (Although Matthew requires a diaper bag, and is allowed to take 2 bags, I really don't want to be carrying 4 bags, plus the baby!)

It should be entertaining to watch us load 9 footlockers, 3 suitcases, 6 carry-ons, and 4 children into a couple of vans and get to the aiport by 4 a.m. on Monday...at least I'm sure it will be more entertaining to "watch" than it is to actually "do."

Tonight I explained to the kids that we're in the final countdown. They typically understand how many nights we have to sleep in one place the best. (Yeah, I'm starting to realize how abnormal life has been over the last 9 months...our kids are very accustomed to the countdown of how many nights we have left in a given location. I just counted and we've stayed in 12 different homes, not hotels, since April of 2011.) And so, we have 5 nights to sleep in the mission house at Uncle Charles' church. (Yes, I know it's not really Charles' church, but that's how my kids identify it.)

Here are a few things that I'd like to still do...in no specific order.
  1. Eat at Chick-fil-a
  2. Watch my children play with their cousins :)
  3. Eat at Olive Garden
  4. Visit with my brother and his family
  5. Eat American pizza
  6. Visit with Mom
  7. Eat birthday cake and ice cream with my nephew Jonas (we leave on his birthday)
  8. Say farewell to my family