Wednesday, October 14, 2009


This weekend was a whirlwind as we made a trip to Nicaragua to renew our visas. We left our home at 11:30 Friday morning and arrived in Granada at 10:30 or so. It was a long trip made much more bearable by the company we had with us. We took two young ladies, Tricia & Kate, with us on our adventure (their first trip to Nicaragua) and also had another family, the Johnson's, traveling to Nicaragua at the same time. The Johnson boys, Jeffrey & Wesley, are good friends with our boys and their daughter, Katie, took care of our girls for much of the bus ride. The Johnson's were headed to Diriamba to visit a home for troubled teenage girls. We got up early on Saturday and everyone went to the market in Masaya while I met with Jesus concerning a side project we hope to get started. After the market, we headed for "TelePizza" to get some cheese! Cheese is really expensive in Costa Rica, so Tele's monster cheese-filled calzones were on our to-do list. After eating more than we should have, we went to visit the church that we built in August. It is finished for the most part and looks great. We saw several of the kids and a couple of the mom's. Of course, they asked about Linda and when she was coming back! We then stopped by Catarina for some photo ops before returning to Juan Pavon's for tacos, a youth church service, and updates on what's going on with our churches in Nicaragua. We finished the evening by meeting up with Kristen Haskin's toothless Romeo. He's patiently awaiting her return!

The next morning we experienced our first baptism service in Nicaragua. Maria said it was a only a 30 minute service, which sounded pretty good to us. What we didn't realize, was that it was 45 minute drive. The service was held on the shores of Lake Nicaragua, the largest lake in Central America (think Lake Michigan). The other important fact Maria left out was that everyone gets in the water and forms a circle around those being baptized. We didn't bring extra clothes, so we just watched. After watching the service, I really think we should try this at Kleinhardt's pond next summer! The ladies spent the early part of the afternoon seeing Granada's seven beautiful cathedrals. It really is a beautiful city. We are really trying to set up one of the girls with Dan Best, but after viewing his Facebook page, she is having second thoughts! He needs to step it up a little. Then we ventured off to Diramba to see the home for troubled teenaged girls. We learned a little about the ministry there and got to spend some time with one of the girls- she is 16, was "abused" by a half-brother, got pregnant, tried to commit suicide, but then a miracle happened! She is now saved by grace and is doing as well as can be expected. April had a fun time with her 6 month old son!

To wrap up the weekend, we spent an afternoon at the ocean with Juan, Candida, and Maria Pavon. The kids had a blast. The ocean is very warm there with lots of crabs and other creepy crawlies to discover. This was the first time at the ocean for Ellie, and probably the first time that Karis can remember. After another 8 hour bus ride, we were glad to be back in San Jose, especially because it is about 10 degrees cooler and probably 25 percent less humid.

So, we returned to classes today and got some test scores back. April sorely missed Maria, because in her absence I have drawn even or overtaken the lead in all our classes. Now that Maria has returned I will have to step it up a notch to maintain all that I have accomplished! Actually, we are both doing really well. My lowest test score was a 90 I received on a grammar test, and April's lowest was a 90 she received on a language test. Every other score has been over 95. However, those great scores have not carried over into our ability to speak! We've been told that at some point things will just "click." We hope it happens soon! Pics from the weekend are coming soon!


  1. Jody is jealous! Frost at night and 40's during the day . . . no swimming here. We miss you and look forward to seeing you.

    Steve, Jody, Jeremy, and Ty (and Jasmine says Hi!)

  2. Hello Dice's, lots of love from the "Neighbor" of your dreams! It's been awhile since I checked the blog but pray for you all every day. I hope to "tag" you with some pictures on Facebook of the Second Browns Road Gathering. Met the new neighbors they are grat people. The older kids are going to pack for FMSC. Details are getting finalized for the event and will send pictures. Continue to pray for the event, my team is fantastic, make me look good. Still miss you all and please send a wave to my friends Karis and Ellie for me. They alwasy made me feel so special when I drove by. Love You all, BRae

  3. You all look great! I have been collecting some great stuff for the gift bags next year for the kids and their families. This time they are going to be very FULL!!

    My love to all of you. Tell Maria hello for me!!!! I can't wait to see her again!!