After various sicknesses caused June to be a tough month, we’ve had a relatively pleasant July.
Terry and I celebrated our 16th anniversary. We enjoyed a night at a local hotel. And Zeferina made us a very typical Bolivian meal, Silpancho. Rice, home-made french fries, a local pico-de-gallo-like mix, a thin steak, and a fried egg on top. Delicious.
IJM hosted a pastors and church leaders retreat in mid-July. Our whole family attended. We drove about two hours away to a retreat center called El Puente (the “bridge”).
Although it’s not too far away, it’s much lower in altitude and, as a result, very different in climate – tropical, much warmer, and somewhat humid. The kids enjoyed playing outside on grassy fields. They tried the swimming pool, but it was still too cold. On the drive down, Mirella stared and pointed at all the greenery. I think she forgot what trees look like.
We’re in the middle of winter. Pretty cold mornings. But the sun warms us up during the day. Still, everyone sleeps in sweatshirts and under three or four layers.
The local schools have Winter break in July for about three weeks. Actually, the schools close for two weeks. Then, after the two weeks, the government extends the vacations for a week due to cold weather. At least that’s been the pattern for as long as everyone can remember. But this year, the government had a twist. It decided to not extend the vacations, which led to many people having to cut short their trips or simply not returning and having their children miss school. A cold front then blew in. So after a week of school, the government closed them again for five days.
On a related note, we decided to enroll Nicolas, Eliana, and Mia in a Spanish private Christian school. They’ll only be taking art and science classes. We’ll continue to home school for all major areas. But the classroom experience will help them improve their Spanish and make more friends. Their first day of school is August 3.
On July 26, we celebrated six months in