Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Bethany's Birthday

It's been over a week since we celebrated Bethany's birthday. Usually one would say "I can't believe she's already 3 years old!", but with Bethany it seems like she's been 2 for at least two years!

We had a small party with some friends from the church to celebrate. When I asked Bethany what kind of birthday party she wanted she promptly replied "PINK"! Hey, I thought Allie was my "pink" girl! I guess most little girls like pink. So, that's what we did. For the first time ever, I decorated a cake... very simple, but pink!
My friend, Jessica Duarte, took some good pictures of Bethany on her birthday, I just thought you'd like to take a peek.


We played "Drop the Clothespin in the Bucket". I know, very interesting, but for a three year old party it just fit.
We enjoyed some fellowship.
Bethany enjoyed her cake!
She blew the candles out beautifully!
Bethany thoroughly enjoyed opening her presents! While she was opening her presents she kept talking baby talk. When asked after the party why she was talking like that she responded, "I was trying to talk in Portuguese!"
I'm thankful for sweet friends to help celebrate my little Bethany's birthday! She's growing up so quickly. Every day she reminds me of that by saying "I can do ....(you fill in the blanks).... because I'm a big girl now!".

Time really does go by too quickly. Before I realize what is happening I have another little girl instead of a toddler. Just because I like to reminisce a little I thought I would include some pictures of Bethany of years gone by...

Newborn
1 week old
2 months old
3 months old
4 months old

5 months old
6 months old
10 months old











Okay, maybe I overdid it just a little on the reminiscing part, but I enjoyed going through the pictures so much! This little girl definitely keeps us on our toes...and on our knees! We're often praying for wisdom when dealing with her. She has a strong will and a sharp mind, and we pray that she will be saved soon and even at a young age allow the LORD to use her.

If you just happen to want to see some more pictures of our Bethany that our friend Omar took go here.

If you want to see some cute videos of Bethany go here and here. And I'm sure there's lots more on these blogs somewhere if you just wanted to reminisce a little more along with me! :)

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Let's Talk Brazilian Politics

I really don't know THAT much about Brazilian government on a sophisticated level. I know that it is a federal republic and similar to that of the US in some ways. President Lula de Silva has been in office for eight years, and now it is time for a change of presidency. On Halloween Brazil voted in their first woman president, Dilma Rousseff.

President Rousseff was President Lula's chief of staff. Back in April she resigned her position and began campaigning to be the president of Brazil. Her main opponent in the race was Jose Serra, who ran against Lula in 2002 and lost.

Brazilian citizens are granted the freedom to vote, but they are not given the freedom to NOT vote. All those 18 and above MUST vote or pay the fees as a consequence. They HAVE to vote, AND they HAVE to vote for one of the candidates on the form. If all the candidates are no good, they are not allowed to write someone else in as we can in the States. Sixteen and seventeen year olds may vote on a voluntary basis.
From what we've heard Dilma is a very aggressive liberal. She has already spoken out against our freedom to preach against certain vices that are running rampant throughout Brazil.

It was an interesting political season where we lived. There were many political rallies in our section of town, and often we would hear fireworks SEVERAL times a day. Jeremy, out of curiosity, attended a couple of the political rallies that were held near our house. I could usually hear the noise clearly from inside our home because it was SO loud! Jeremy took a short video clip of one of the rallies if your interested in experiencing what we did for a few weeks!

video
Also, there would be political parades. Jeremy got a little bit of this one on video. The dirt road Jeremy is walking up is right up from where we live. One day I will take some better pictures of the road we live on.
video
Brazil, much like America, is in need of prayer. We are living in uncertain times, and are unsure of how long we will have the freedoms that we do to preach the gospel. We know God has sent us here, and we intend to fulfill His will for our lives here. Please pray for Brazil!

Friday, November 12, 2010

Learning About Thanksgiving In School

Allie has been learning all about Thanksgiving in her school. She even dressed up like an indian one day!
She also learned a silly turkey song. I thought you might like to watch her sing it. We're teaching it to Bethany, so maybe sometime in the next couple of weeks they will be able to sing it together.
video
The girls are also learning some other songs and verses for Thanksgiving, if we get it on video I'll be sure to share those as well! :)

Random Happenings

Just thought I'd let you in on a few random things that have been happening over the past few weeks...

Last weekend we attended a couples banquet at a nearby camp that is run by missionaries Peter and Zirlene Doolittle. It was very well put together, and we had lots of fun. We played games, had good food, and good fellowship. Jeremy even let me get a $6.00 manicure and pedicure for the occasion. :)
A little over a month ago we got a phone call from a friend from one of our supporting churches. They told us the church had voted to give us money to buy a microwave. I was so excited! Appliances are just so expensive here, and a microwave was not on the "necessities" list. Although I lived fine without a microwave for about 8 months, it is a very nice tool to have around. Especially when one of my all-time bad habits is to wait until the last minute to thaw out meat for a meal!

If you're wondering why it is out in the laundry room...I only have ONE outlet in our kitchen and the place where the outlet is wouldn't fit a microwave. Thus, it has found a home on our dryer for the time being. Also, if you're wondering what is on top...it's just our water tank.
The other day Bethany saw a dead rat at someone's house.

She asked Jeremy, "Can I pick it up and look at it?"

Jeremy said, "No, Bethany, rats have germs and carry diseases."

Bethany asked, "So, if I pick it up I would have to get in the river?"

Jeremy asked her, "Why would you have to get in the river?"

Bethany responded, "To wash off my diseases!"

Then we realized she was equating the story of Naaman with the rat! Funny how kids put things together like that!

In case you were wondering, the rat was not at our house, but they are pretty common where we live. When we first came to Brazil our dog killed three within the first month. And I have to confess that I think we have at least one now living in between our ceiling and roof. I can hear it (them?) sometimes at night. Now to figure out how to kill it without it dying up their and smelling up the whole house...

The next night Allie and Bethany were laying in their beds going to sleep. All of the sudden Allie started screaming and crying. We went in to see what was wrong and Allie said "Something tickled my foot, and I don't know what it was!"
Jeremy looked in her covers and around a little, but didn't see anything.
Then, Bethany, looking over at Allie said, "Maybe it was a RAT!"
That's what Jeremy wanted to say too, but he refrained. I'm sure it was just the covers that moved differently than she expected. :)

Now, to end this post is a song by our Bethany. "With Jesus in the Boat I Can Smile At the Storm!"
video

Monday, November 8, 2010

Atacadão

I have been trying to think of some different things to put on the blog. I have different ideas, but none of them seem to be coming to fruition! To be honest, at this point in my life everything is pretty much mundane, everyday, mommy/missionary wife sort of things. Clean the house, play with the kids, study Portuguese, laundry, laundry, laundry! I'm loving every minute of it, but it kind of makes for the same ol' stuff on the blog.

Anyway, all that said, here is my meager attempt at something different-- our grocery shopping trip. We usually do a big shopping trip once a month at a grocery store called Atacadão. Although we have our once a month trip there is ALWAYS something that I forget. That's when the small grocery store around the corner comes in handy. Then there are the one liter glass cokes that my husband enjoys on occasion, and we get those along with bread at the bread store around the corner. Lastly, there is the meat store a few blocks away where we have befriended the owner and that is where we buy all meat except for chicken.

Now that you know everything we buy...come along with us to Atacadão!

Please excuse my poor pictures, I don't pretend to be a photographer, especially when it's getting dark outside.

At 6:30PM we loaded up the kids and took off to the grocery store...
Coming from the parking lot to the store entrance you can see that there are other smaller stores outside of the main store. The store below is an "outdoors" type store. There is also a bread store, post office, and pharmacy if I remember correctly.
Here we are coming into the store. It kind of reminds me of a Sam's Club in the USA. Nothing that really looks unusual...maybe except us Americans that just walked in!
The first aisle...coke!
They have Christmas candy displays out already.
My beautiful children in their "carriage".
Such a cutie!
She always makes me laugh!
Sweet Allie!
Ah! Diapers...our biggest expense! But I'm oh, so thankful for them! The top price is the "bulk" price, the bottom price is the individual price. Just about everything in the store is set up this way. By the way, the price below is in Reais, not dollars, so please don't think we pay that much for diapers.
Halfway through the store is a small snack place. This is where I leave my family for their treat, and I go as fast as I can to finish before they do!
Here are the girls waiting for their daddy.
And...I forgot to take anymore pictures after this, but it's not really that interesting! Just a large grocery store.

I do have a funny and rather embarrassing story to tell of this grocery trip, and I can't believe that I'm going to write this on my blog, but here goes...

When I was almost done shopping Jeremy and the kids met me on the other side of the grocery store. The girls informed me that they needed to use the bathroom. This always happens at the most inconvenient time, but I wasn't going to let it get to me. I was going to have fun with them on our trek across the huge store to the bathroom.

As we were going, I was holding a girl's hand on each side. We were laughing, the girls were half jumping, half running-just having fun. Somehow, they both jumped in front of me at the same time. Before I knew what was happening, we all got tangled up, and we ALL fell flat on the floor! In front of the WHOLE store!

I wanted to lay down and moan...ouch, I skinned my knee! But, being the smart mom that I am! :) I picked up Bethany as fast I could and started laughing. The LAST thing I wanted was for the girls to start crying and draw even MORE attention to these strange Americans that were laying on the floor in front of the WHOLE store!

I picked up Bethany, helped Allie up, did NOT look around, and went as fast as I could to the bathroom. How embarrassing! What was that I was saying at the beginning about life being 'mundane'! Not with children. {smile}

Eventually, we made it back and finished our shopping. Jeremy paid for our groceries as the kids and I sat on a bench and played Hide-and-Go-Seek. (Not really my idea, but it was getting late...what was that I said about strange Americans...the teenage girl sitting next to me on the bench thought we were pretty curious. The kids even hid behind her a couple of times!)
When we all go out to the store it is very difficult to get anywhere fast. It's really kind of fun as long as we're not in a hurry! We end up spending half of our time talking to everyone else in the store. Some of the phrases we heard multiple times on this particular night were...

"Your children all look like baby dolls!"
"Look at all of their BLUE eyes!"
"Look at how WHITE they all are!"
"Are they twins?"
"I've been looking for some little girls like that..." (this from an older man, being silly, no danger, don't worry)

I have several different things to put on here, but I just lack time. Stay tuned, hopefully in the next few days I'll add them!