Dec 17, 2008

Wow! I had an insanely crazy, half good and half bad week last week. I'm just grateful that we're here, it's December 16th, and we all made it through to the other side just fine. The 6th of December, Andrew left for Germany, for a short one week trip. It was going to be a good week (as good as it can be without your all time favorite person), but challenges surfaced in every corner of life here. I don't deal with cockroaches--they are 3 inches long, fast, and way to clever. However, they decided since the cockroach killer, a.k.a. Andrew, was out of town that they would come visit us. UGH!!! I found myself some cockroach spray that you can use from 4 ft away--it's lethal stuff. They become almost completely paralyzed with in seconds of being hit with the nasty chemical. Now that Andrew is home, he just uses shoes again--much safer for all of us. I also had clicking lizards jumping off the walls behind my computer chair, flooding from a vicious tropical storm, my internet died an hour after Andrew left and didn't return until the day after her returned,which also meant that my VoIP phone was rendered useless. It was a very trying week. But, in spite of the bugs, lizards, isolation from the U.S., we managed to have some fun, as there were two American families visiting to check things out before they transfer down here next year. The girls and I had a blast showing them around, and giving them tips on where to shop, etc.

A new thing we started doing last week is jornaling our prayers and thanksgivings with the girls, so we could physically document how God answers prayers. One prayer we pray everyday is that God will send someone to us that day that we can help. God has gone above and beyond the call of duty, and blessed us with several people everyday. We have people coming to the house needing food, clothes, etc., and yesterday, we had a teenage girl that I've never seen in our neighborhood stop by to tell us that she thought our poodle had escaped. Our poodle was safely within our gates, but as it turned out what she really needed was to talk, a word of encouragment, and a few good hugs. It has been so exciting for all of us to see God answering this simple prayer. Today, we had a few phone calls from people needing encouragment and a mother with little children needing food and clothes. How exciting is that? We also have not had one single cockroach today--at least not yet.

Dec 1, 2008

Viviani enjoying the rain at the Thanksgiving Party
Samantha's Apple Pie

Andrew juggling at the Thanksgiving dinner
Playing Dominoes

Christmas cookie baking with the Brazilian Ladies

Lagarto--two foot lizard in our backyard--he was quite amiable

Love how the water is glazed over their faces

Kaela and Theo with their new "hair-do's"

John Deere Brazil--A green Christmas, and a white Christmas tree

Nov 24, 2008

Miscellaneous shots from this past weekend. We went to church in Santa Rosa, and enjoyed a picnic in the park afterwards where we took the outdoor pictures. The girls have been swimming daily, and our yard has become the place to play in the neighborhood do to our large backyard, and the pool helps too! :) I took the picture of the sunflowers from inside the car as we sped by, but you can still see the beauty of them...and the bananas with the large purple flower hanging below--gorgeous!
P.S. I am super behind on my e-mails, but will try to catch up this week/weekend. I want to wish a Happy Thansgiving to you all! Love, The Foerderer's!!!!

Nov 21, 2008

Makaela at D' Forno Pizzaria where they make the pizza in a stone oven that you can see behind her. Makaela especially loves watching them make the pizzas, and she is always hoping the next one is for us. It's a long process going out to eat here--we waited a good hour or more to get the first of eight pizzas, and another 45 minutes to an hour for the dessert pizzas. Everything is sooo laid back!

Samantha and Alina
Alfredo and Nidia--Sadly this was their last night here in Horizontina. They are now transferring to Madrid for 3 - 4 years. We miss Nidia already! The other ex-pat girls and I are planning a trip to Europe next September to visit her and tour the area.

Molly serving Makaela the famous chocolate, pecan pizza.

Samantha at Zelandias--the best bakery in town--with the other ex-pat ladies. This is our Starbucks for now--they even use soy milk for us in their lovely cappachinos).

Fall Decorations made by the girls with various beans and corn

Bamboo trees downtown Santa Rose

Downtown Santa Rosa--I still can't get over the horses downtown--it's so charming to me

This has been a great week, as both girls are completely well!!! (For over 2 weeks, they were fighting a virus. Samantha had a fever for 6 days running!) Life is back to normal as we know it here, and we're enjoying the hotter days, with the very cool evenings. It actually feels "Christmassy" this year to me to have it heating up. The snowmen are back downtown too. Yesterday, Makaela and I went Christmas tree shopping, and she chose two--one for the family room and one for the bedroom. So, now we have Thanksgiving decorations downstairs and Christmas decorations upstairs. I usually never bring out the Christmas decorations before Thanksgiving, but with traveling over Christmas, we wanted to make the specialness of the season last a little longer. For Thanksgiving, we are feasting with the other ex-pats on the 30th, as it is too challenging to coordinate a large feast when everyone has to work until 6 p.m. Thanksgiving Day. The girls are excited as they each have a recipe they are in charge of. For the actual day, Andrew is going to take a half day off, and we're going to do some feasting on our own and make phone calls back home. We do so miss all of those lovely Thankgivings with the Fernandos--good food, music, and friends!

Nov 8, 2008

We cannot purchase salsa here, and Andrew enjoys canning anyway, so he and Makaela made a large batch of delicious cumin flavored salsa last Sunday. It's lovely--not a bit hot, so the girls can enjoy it also. Unlike the salsa, the days are hot, so we're back in the pool in the afternoons. The girls are toasty brown, and Theodore the "pool dog" is bleach white with the poofs on his legs tinged green from the chlorine.

Oct 24, 2008

Happy 10th Birthday our sweetest Samantha! We love you "to the moon and back", and are so proud of how you have grown. We will always cherish the gorgeous fall day that you entered our world. We love your passion, your zest for learning, your musical talents, and your love and compassion for babies and animals. We love you always and forever, Mom, Daddy, & Makaela

Oct 22, 2008

After all of the rain last week, the sun finally made its appearance Saturday afternoon. We soaked up as much sun as possible walking, biking, and swimming. The rain is back today, and apparently will last through Friday which means another beautiful weekend is most likely in store!

For the national Brazilian holiday "Children's Day," John Deere put on a neat program at the John Deere park with lots of activities and "rides" (you can see pictures of some of these on the girls' blog). To kick off the event, they had a pedalathon from Factory 2 to the park.

The watermelon truck is back!!! He sits on the side of the road daily selling the sweetest, juiciest watermelons we've ever had. If I had my way, that would be all I would eat.