“Are you getting settled in?” “How are things going?” “How are the kids?” “Are you starting to feel at home?” “Is everyone speaking Spanish yet?!” (That last one is funny!)
These are the questions we’ve been answering lately. And honestly, we are in a fun, exciting time! We are in “the honeymoon phase.” Everything is still new and adventurous, we’re soaking up the culture and finding yummy food, meeting new people, and the little everyday annoyances haven’t really bothered us too much yet. But it’s hard to say that I feel “settled.” I thought about calling this post “(un)Settling In,” but that has a negative ring to it. We don’t feel unsettled, but we certainly have a long way to go before we will feel “comfortable.” And speaking the language fluently will help a LOT.
We’ve spent the last month or so learning a new city – Siguatepeque. It’s a fun word to say – the kids will find any excuse to say it. We know where the grocery store is and a few good restaurants, but we still have a lot of exploring to do. Our house is in a very nice neighborhood. It’s small and gated and has a little playground for the kids. We have been meeting our neighbors here and there, and everyone has been nice. One night we had to ask our rear neighbors for help with getting our wood stove started because the power was out and I was determined to finish cooking dinner!
Speaking of power outages, they have been an issue. September is known here as “the month of storms.” Combine that with a recent change of electric companies and you have some major problems. Even people who have lived here for a long time say that it has never been this bad. Fortunately, we are learning to adapt and be flexible. Shasta came to Honduras with major anxiety about storms, to the point that she would make herself sick. But even she admits that it is getting better with more time and experience. Every night that we sit down to eat dinner it is so funny to hear Cash say, “Well, if the power goes out, at least we have dinner!”
Since my last post we have started language school! October 7th marked the end of our 6th week at school. Only 7 more weeks to go (not that we’re counting)! We are studying at The Spanish Institute of Honduras in Siguatepeque. If you click on that link you can watch a nice little video that will give you a good idea about what school is like for us. So far I feel that our learning is going really well. Shane goes from 8am-12pm while I stay home and homeschool the kids, we switch at lunch, and then myself, Shasta, and Cash go from 1pm-5pm. The kids study from 1pm-3pm and then play or do schoolwork while they wait for me. When we get home we have dinner and Shane does either History or P.E. with the kids. Then we all pass out from exhaustion – it is a very intense schedule! We have literally no time for anything extra Monday-Friday! But we are learning so much so fast and it is really helping us to be able to live and function here.
September 15th is Independence Day here in Honduras. Because we had a little break from school and El Ayudante’s directors, Beth and Tristen, were in the States, we spent a few days in ministry back in Comayagua. Shane helped lead a team of high school boys from Tegucigalpa. They were a great group of teens and they put on a basketball camp for the local school in Lo De Reina. I know Shane had a blast working with them and the older kids loved it too.
We’ve even been able to take our first vacation now! Two weeks ago we had a week off from school and took the opportunity to drive about 3 hours north to the Caribbean coast. We stayed at a great hotel on the beach in the city of Tela. It was so nice and easy to just walk from our room right onto the beach. The kids had never experienced being able to swim in the ocean. The waves were the perfect size for them and the water was clear and warm. It was such a nice relaxing time after all the busyness and change we’ve been through.
Another treat that helped with the settling process was having our first visitors last week. Shane’s mom Stacy and his aunt Suzy came down for 5 days. We didn’t tell the kids they were coming and they were SHOCKED to see them at the airport. It was so nice for all of us to have a piece of home and we are thankful that they could come and see that we’re ok 😉
Well, I think that’s all for now. Thanks for keeping up with us and encouraging us!
We love ya!