October, My Favorite Spring Month?

Yes, yes, yes. I know I’ve told you all a bajillion times that seasons are opposite down here. I think mostly it ends up me rubbing it in all your faces that the weather is getting warmer here and you all have to plunge face-first into a neverending pile of scraping ice off your cars, shoveling the sidewalks, layering up for 10 minutes every time you want to leave the house, and on and on and on. No, I don’t miss it. And no, I’m not sure how I will deal with this when we move back to the States.

So there is my compulsory ‘it’s spring here, sorry I’m not sorry, see you in six months after you dig yourself out of the snow’ speech.

September was weird, weather-wise. One day it was 80 degrees, the next day is was 50 and raining. That’s how it was this weekend. Saturday was cloudy, overcast and chilly, but today was beautiful. Sunny, 75 degrees and breezy.

After I managed to roll myself out of bed from my 10:30am-2:30pm nap this morning/afternoon (thank you Andrés), we ate some lunch, took another nap…just kidding, only Joaquin, and went up to Cerro San Cristóbal for a few hours.

Maybe one day we’ll walk up the hill (3 miles) with Joaquin, or bike up with him, but for right now the car is just…easier…or lazier…and honestly, Andrés and I are just kind of at a lazy point in our lives. Almost all of our energy for the past 9 months has gone into loving and caring for this sweet little boy, so if you give us the option to bike up  a giant hill with the baby or drive up…yeah, right now the answer is gonna be drive.  Ask us again in 6 more months. Maybe then we won’t be sleep deprived anymore (remember my 3 1/2 hour nap this morning/afternoon?).

Doesn’t matter how we went up the hill, we had a nice time together.

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Our child has gone through several stages in his little life, but by far the most important he’s gone through are the saliva stages, obviously. Months 0-3 he was a non-drooler, 3-6 heavy drooler, 6-7 non-drooler, 7-8 light drooler, 8-9 epic waterfall drooler.  This is simply to explain why this whale bib is a permanent fixture to his face in these photos. Luckily we haven’t gotten to the point where a bib needed while sleeping is necessary.

The women that take care of him at his daycare sometimes leave me scratching my head when I walk out of there. They tell me, ‘he’s drooling so much that we have to change his shirt three times a day’…

‘okay, do you want me to put extra shirts in his backpack?’ …

‘no, there are enough, but the drool is passing through the cloth bib onto his shirt’

‘do you want me to put more bibs in his backpack?’

‘well, it would be better if he had a plastic bib’

‘okay, you can use the plastic bib he uses to eat lunch for the rest of the day, because that’s the only plastic one he has’

‘well, really that’s for eating only…’

OMG I can’t win with these women. His shirt gets wet and all hell breaks loose in the place. Change the shirt or leave him to soak for a while! He’s not related to the wicked witch of the west.

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On Saturday we spent most of the day at the mall, and it is so sad that I am so excited for our new set of ceramic pots and pans. I am so old. It feels like just yesterday that I would get excited for buying clothes. I hate buying clothes now. Cropped shirts? Are you kidding me? I can’t keep up with the fashion of these youths.

We were given a set of pots and pans for our wedding, but have never been used and are in my grandparents crawlspace. Pots and pans are not really airplane-packing-friendly. We have used hand-me-down (aka:free) pots and pans from other ministry couples that have come and gone through El Oasis. The only problem with this is that most don’t have matching lids and have been heavily used. But they’re free, and they served their purpose for us for over two years. Fast forward to a week ago when I was steaming blueberries for Joaquin and completely forgot about them. The result was disastrous and it was the only pot we had with a lid that fit. I was devastated. I tried uselessly scrubbing it with steel wool to no avail. Andrés told me to toss it, and I told him that enough was enough. New pots and pans were in order.

Our new ones are so beautiful, so shiny and non-stick. The saleswoman told us to not use metal utensils, information I passed along to Andrés. He then decided to play a cruel trick on me that night cooking with the skillet and saying he scratched it with a metal spoon. I almost cried. Stink eye.

It’s okay, I still love him. Especially seeing him love on his son. Swoon.

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Tithing

This afternoon I saw an interesting article from Relevant magazine.

What Would Happen If The Church Tithed

I will not hold myself on a pedestal for this. I have many, many issues with basically everything about my personal relationship with God, but Andrés and I make a conscious effort to tithe. For me, it is something that I learned from my parents and the Bible. That this money is not mine, and that is is specifically to be returned to God, simple as that. When I brought home by whopping $100 paycheck from my part time job in high school, $10 every two weeks was not something I was missing very much. When I realized about a year ago that I’m kind of an adult now, it’s a little bit…harder to part with. On top of all of our normal expenses, we have to take 10% and just, give it away! So when I have those other expenses, like our electric bill and paying to ride the bus and lots of diapers in the near future and probably a lot of unnecessary toys, that 10% could really be…useful. And even in the grand scheme of things, that money is like wimpy monopoly money when you hear about how much the United States spends on their military budget every year, it’s a lot for us!

However, we still do it, month after month, and we find interesting ways to use our tithes rather than dumping all of it into the church offering basket on Sunday. We try to help certain projects at El Oasis, some students that are in need of something important and are coming up short, or taking our niece to a show so her mom can have a break.

But again, please don’t construe this as saying, Hey, I tithe, and anyone that doesn’t who calls themselves a Christian should take a good hard look in the mirror. Puh-leese. My issues are between me and God, and I prefer to keep them that way because it’s kind of embarrassing and I’m glad that only He has to know about it.

But yes, please construe this article (and my small speech) as encouragement, because you can accomplish amazing things with your funds if you’re giving with the right heart.