Friday, November 13, 2009

The Beach

Saturday we took our good friend Ana and her two kids Dania (14) and Gregory (12) to the beach. It was Dania and Gregory's FIRST time ever at the beach.  They absolutely loved it!! We picked them up at the bus station and they were grinning from ear to ear. They piled in the car and off we went! We went to the Guayacanes beach that is about 45 minutes outside of Santo Domingo. It was a gorgeous day. All three were like fish and barely left the water...except to bury Dania in the sand, of course! They thought the salt water was soooo strange, and very very salty. 

Being with them at the beach was a reminder of how privileged we are....getting to travel, see new places, and experience new things. Can you imagine living on an island, being 45 minutes away from a beautiful public beach, and in 14 years never having the chance to go? 

Friday, November 6, 2009


Here are some things that have been going on around here....

- Avery turned 5 months this week! It's really hard to believe. Her little personality is shining through more and more each day. She found her feet and loves them. Anytime she is laying on her back or sitting in her carseat they are in her hands or in her mouth. She learned how to roll over from her tummy to her back. She loves to make funny noises and blow air and bubbles through her lips. She is in the 50% for weight (13 lbs) and 25% in length (I think her chubby cheeks and legs push her into the 50% in weight!- ha). She loves evvvverything to be in her mouth...even my hair...and cracks up everytime because I think it tickles her tongue. So cute! 

Daddy's girl
Some of our new friends let Avery borrow their swing. She loves it!
This is her new face that she does ALL the time. 

-The cultural retreat we went on last month up in Jarabacoa was really great. They taught alot on the history of the DR (and the whole island of Hispanola) and showed how it still influences the way Dominicans live today. We also learned practical tips about driving, how to dress, how to greet people, etc. They taught us things that we do as Americans that can be offensive and/or send a message we don't want to send. For example, when offering a visitor a drink/food, you just bring it to them and then they have the opportunity to say "no thank you." Whereas in America you normally ask someone if they want a drink/food first before bringing it to them. Here, if you ask first, it sends them the signal that you really don't want to give them anything.
The Dominican culture is very formal (style of dress, style of furniture, way of greeting), so they had a formal dinner for us the last night. After dinner we learned how to dance Merengue and Bachata! (El and I still have a LOT of work to do on our new moves- ha)

-2 weeks ago Elliott had the opportunity to speak at the Young Life/Vida Joven leader retreat at Juan Dolio beach. He did wonderful job, and we had a great time spending time with the Young Life staff. Avery liked it too because she got to play with our friends' baby, Judah, who was born 5 days after her! 

-God has been really generous and gracious to us over the last few weeks in providing new friends and new fellowship opportunities! This had been a prayer of ours for over a year. He is faithful to provide. 

-Things are finally cooling off here (a little bit). I made chili and cornbread this week out of my excitement....we were sweating (in out shirts and shorts) all the way through dinner. Oh well! 

-Monday is Constitution day here in the DR. Yay for Dominican holidays! I think we might head to the beach one day this weekend. 

I think that's it for now.