Sunday, February 27, 2011


Saturday is cleaning day at our house. We get everyone to pitch in and help. Jon Felipe particularly likes to help out around the house, often doing chores like unloading the dishwasher or straightening up all the shoes in the back hall without even being asked. On cleaning day, he likes to clean all the mirrors in the bathrooms, wash smudges off windows, and sweep the floors. His favorite, though, is to wash down the kitchen table and chairs. He has always done this, so I think it must be something he did in the orphanage. He does a thorough job, even wiping down all the chair legs. As you can see, he takes pride in a job well done.

So, if you want to come visit me when my house is clean, you should come on a Saturday, but not too early or we might rope you into helping with the cleaning - many hands make light work and all that.

Friday, February 25, 2011

Tractor Parade

As we were waiting for the school bus this morning, the kids and I were treated to a tractor parade.

There were also lots of tractors parked in the lot at the high school.

This city girl thought it was fun to see kids driving to school on their tractors.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Wordless Wednesday - Iowa Landscape

Photo credit: Dwight took these photos for me. We were driving from Sioux Center to Orange City, which is just the next town over and where Luke goes to high school.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011


Several of my posts from Nicaragua mention Wendy. She is one of my students here at Dordt. She is a special person and I have enjoyed having her in several of my classes. This semester she is doing an independent study with me. While I was in Nicaragua, I had the opportunity to spend time with her family.

And a random picture of the ice in the trees because I think it so beautiful - treacherous, but beautiful.

Monday, February 21, 2011

Icy Day in Iowa

We had freezing rain and ice here in Iowa yesterday causing church to be cancelled. Today it is just lightly snowing. The kids were hoping for a delayed start this morning, but no such luck. Today is already a make-up day for an earlier snow day.

Dwight's van is too tall to fit in the garage. He had quite a bit of ice to get through to even get the van door open.

Jon Felipe and Maria waiting for the bus.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Leaving Nicaragua

It was sunny and warm as I flew out of Nicaragua early Friday morning and I arrived in Iowa late Friday night to temps in the 20's and predictions of a winter storm. Here are some pics of my hotel. It was a very nice place to stay. While not extravagant by American standards, it was very clean and comfortable. I had my own bathroom with a shower. I didn't have hot water, but most people don't in Nicaragua. I had a room air conditioner that I could turn on at night. I even had wireless Internet.

Geckos, geckos everywhere. These little guys move rather unpredictably, which can be unnerving. They also make a loud chirping noise - all . the . time.

The bed was quite comfortable and it was nice to have a reading lamp by the bed.

Cupboards for clothes. In the middle one there is also a T.V. The man who brought me to my room was quite proud that they had a T.V. with a remote control and programs in English. I never turned it on, but he doesn't need to know that :-)

Lovely brown and orange curtains.

I tried to describe this picture for Dwight, but it sort of defies description.

I had breakfast here in the mornings.

Most places have fences, gates, and guards.

They are building more rooms. These project out over the hill and are supported by posts. It all looked most precarious to me, but it is quite a common building style.

In comparison to these houses, it was like living in a palace.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Nicaragua Day 4

I spent my day today at Tesoros de Dios (Treasures of God). This is a school that serves children with special needs. The children come from local families. There are very little resources to meet the needs of these children. In order to help as many children as possible, each child only comes for twice a week for three hours each time. Still, there are children on a waiting list. There is so much need!

Thank you for praying for the workshop today. It definitely helped as it seemed to go very well. All of the Tesoros staff attended as well as a couple professors from a university here in Managua. Everyone was great to work with. The bonus was that I could often understand their responses and discussions even though it was all in Spanish.

Here are pictures of the afternoon session at the school. One of the things we did in the morning session was identify a couple children that we would collaborate on during the afternoon, so I observed and met with teachers and helped them design interventions or assessments for particular children.

One of the methods they use is therapeutic horsemanship.

I also went to Wendy's house for lunch.