Old Folks for the Win!

As we continue to settle into our daily lives here in Mexico, there are many familiar habits that have changed.  Some of these changes are good – some still need some adjustment.  We have grudgingly accepted that we cannot live as if we are on a perpetual vacation.  This is our life and it is time to choose how we want to live it.   One of the good changes is that we no longer watch TV.  So far, we have decided not to buy a satellite dish, which means we have no English speaking TV.   We do have Netflix, and every now and then we watch a movie.  And we always figure out a way to watch our Riders play – either on our computer or at some local sports bar.  But we don’t have that endless TV background noise playing in our house anymore – that is a welcome change.   Another good change is that Grant and I really do spend all our time together.  I like that and I am crossing my fingers that he does to.

One of our biggest changes has been in the area of health and exercise.  Grant has always been super active with his construction business.  He didn’t need exercise because he was lifting and climbing and pounding every day.   I, on the other hand, have always been a paper pusher so I do need to exercise.  In the last couple of years I had gotten into a good rhythm using online and/or DVD exercise programs and the gym equipment we had purchased.  Even when we traveled I was able to exercise.  And I had started to cook and eat pretty healthy.  Then we settled here and I was flooded with perceived barriers.  My house is too hot.  It is too small.  The floors are all tile which is uncomfortable to exercise on.  I sold all my equipment before I left Canada. My daily schedule was completely different.  I just couldn’t get into a rhythm.

5 weeks ago, Grant said “That’s it – we need to start exercising.”  So we put on the spandex, filled up the water bottles, updated the playlists and drove 10 minutes to the community of Nuevo Vallarta, the only neighborhood with smooth roads and sidewalks.  Grant strapped on wheels, I tied on running shoes and we started the painful journey of getting in shape.  As a former hockey player, he wanted to skate.  Fast.  I couldn’t possibly keep up on skates, so I ran while he skated.  I have always hated running – A LOT – but it was the best solution so I decided to JUST DO IT.  I started by walking more than running.  The low point was the day when TWO different taxi drivers stopped to ask if I needed a ride.  Apparently, I did not look like an athlete in training.  But we kept going 3 days a week and last Saturday I actually felt a moment of victory when my fitness app told me I had run 42 minutes and walked 11.   I realized I was enjoying my time more – running part of my route on the beautiful morning beach.  Praying as I ran – feeling peace and hope and joy in the journey.  Breathing it all in.  I can’t say I like running yet – my knees and ankles still hurt.  I look at my watch a lot.  But we are doing it.  Grant had a good day Saturday too – he skated 16 km, hitting his goal.  Old folks for the WIN!

Jungles and street paths and beaches – even some coatis checking us out

Progress and pain go together!

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Happy Birthday Francisco

Let’s face it – change is uncomfortable.  Stretching yourself is uncomfortable.  Walking in a direction that you know is going to hurt…. It’s all uncomfortable.   But if you want to live your best life – you just have to do it!   This weekend we went to two birthday parties for our dear friend Francisco.  I ate tacos and tostadas and strudel and 2 pieces of cake.  Because celebrating is also part of a good life and sometimes that comes with amazing Mexican food.  Tomorrow we will get up and head back to the street where the taxi drivers wave at me now.  And the one thing I know for sure?  It’s definitely going to hurt…..

And I’m okay with that.

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A Week of Surprise Dates

This was the last week of summer vacation for the school children of Banderas Bay.  On Monday, they will head back to school after a 4 or 5-week break.  Like children everywhere, they are not happy about the end of freedom, the beginning of perceived bondage.  Someday they will remember these as the simplest days of their lives, but for now it’s just school with its early mornings (school starts at 7:30 here) and afternoon homework.

Some of the children went to stay with immediate family or extended family during the break.  I have worried about them because I know they may have been left alone while parents or grandparents worked and they may not have had much to eat.  I will feel better when everyone is back safe in our care. But many stayed at Manos de Amor for the entire summer and we continued with English classes twice a week.  We went to the pool and the beach and played games and went for rides in the golf cart.  This week Grant and I decided to celebrate the last week of vacation by taking each of the children on a surprise date.  We took most of them in pairs, but the littlest girls are impossible to separate so we took all 5 of them together.  Although we know that living at Manos de Amor Casa Hogar has made a huge difference in each child’s life, we also recognize that living in an institution can never be quite like being in a family.  These children long to spend one-on-one time with grown-ups who love them and we knew they would be excited to head out for a treat with us.  We didn’t tell them what we would be doing – each date was a surprise.

Samantha and Mareli

On Friday, we picked up the two oldest girls and headed to the theatre to watch Despicable Me 3.  I had checked online for the movie times and dates – I double and triple checked.  The movie was to be on at 11:00 at the mall in the next town.  Of course, as per Mexico, schedules mean nothing and when we arrived at the theatre, the ticket counter was dark.  Others were waiting as well, until an employee told us all “No, we’re not having it today”.   Our very first date of the week and our plan was already in jeopardy.  I quickly went online and found out the movie was showing in Vallarta in 90 minutes – and looking at the puppy dog eyes of these two girls I knew we had no choice.  We headed into Vallarta to the bigger mall where we had lunch, played a couple arcade games, and watched the movie with giant tubs of popcorn, both plain and caramel.  They loved the movie but do you know what made them the most excited?   The escalator and the automatic hand dryer.  It seemed they had never used either before and they just laughed and laughed.  Samantha said, “You’re the Mom and Gran is the Dad (they just can’t say Grant) and we’re a family.”  Before heading home, we stopped at the giant bead store where they each picked out one charm to remember the day by.  It was a good day.

 

Cesar and Luisito

On Monday, we picked up two of the boys in our Golf Cart and took them to our house for an afternoon of Wii video games and a hot dog BBQ.  As they came into our very simple house, Luisito said “You must be so rich – you have a TV and games and an office.”  Well that’s humbling considering how often I grumble about what I think I lack.   We laughed and laughed as they raced cars, played tennis and baseball and boxing.  A perfect boy date.

The Littles

On Tuesday it was the little girls’ turn – 5 of them, aged 5-7.  They were waiting at the door when we arrived and the next 4 hours was nothing but a pure giggle fest.  We took them to a little zoo in Nuevo Vallarta where we fed the turtles and fish.  Then we headed indoors to the nearby mall to play in the giant play structure, eat pizza and Happy Meals and finish off with ice cream sundaes.   I am not really sure if the littlest ones understand that we don’t speak the same language – they just keep talking and we just keep nodding and laughing.  It seems to work.

Fernanda and Santiago

We have known these two for many years – they used to live at Manos de Amor but at some point, went back to live with their father.  They were visiting for a few days and when we arrived back after our zoo date, they were waiting by the door with expectancy.  What about them?  Could they go with us too?  Honestly, I was pooped, and we had English classes to teach in a couple of hours, but they looked so sad.  How could we turn them down?  So we put them in the golf cart and took them home – Wii games were waiting.  It was hilarious watching these spunky siblings fight it out – but I was so sad as I watched Fernanda’s tiny arms swing the tennis racket.  She is too thin and that scares me.

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Carlos and Brayan

Wednesday was another Video Game and Hot Dog Day with these two brothers. This day was kind of special to us.  These two boys were the first children we ever met at Manos de Amor on our very first visit 6 years ago.  They captured our heart then and that was really the start of our “Moving to Mexico” journey.   They have had a tough life – their Dad died when they were very young and their mom left.  They live with grandparents who really can’t care for them.  Manos de Amor has been the only constant in their young lives.  Watching them play with Grant in our home felt like coming full circle in this adventure.

Meeting Carlos & Brayan in 2011 – the day I fell in love with Mexico’s children.  Who could have guessed the road ahead!

Grand Finale Water Fight Party

Thursday was the party to end Date week – and more importantly to end the summer.  We filled up 350 water balloons, cranked up the music and spent the afternoon drenching one another.  When the water balloons ran out, Carlos introduced the hose and that took it all to a whole new level.  Grant and I were not spared – in fact we were ganged up on – and with 32 degree heat, it felt really good!  We finished it all off with a bunch of pizza and danced around the patio with Brayan as our DJ.  I was tired, but we weren’t quite finished…..

Jorge and Victor

These two guys don’t live at Manos de Amor, but they live in the neighborhood and are in our English class.  We couldn’t leave them out.  Especially Victor.  His mom recently died and he lives across the street with his stepdad who is seldom around – he is so sad and often cuddles close under my arm.  When the water party seemed to be winding down I gave them the signal – let’s go to my place.  It’s your turn.  One last round of video games and since they were a bit older than the rest, they really got Mario’s Kart moving!  It was so good to hear Victor laugh.

That was the end of Date Week.  We will never know what it meant in the lives of these children.  Probably something different for everyone.  But it brought us all closer and as I watched them play throughout the week, I recognized that they now deeply trust us.  When they were scared or upset they ran to either Grant or I and held on tight.  They held our hands as we walked.  They whispered “Gracias”.  And today, when we were driving a number of the girls home for the weekend, Mareli said “Karen, remember the day we went to the movie and Samantha farted and Grant plugged his nose?”  And then we all laughed like crazy again – cause that’s what families do!

 

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It’s Really All About the Food

Let’s face it.  One of the main reasons – maybe the primary reason? – people vacation in Mexico is because of the food.  Yes, the weather is perfect, the beaches and mountains are breathtaking, the people are welcoming, the culture is exciting.  But the food – well the food is amazing and addicting in both its simplicity and its complexity.  It’s generally just some kind of meat flavored with chile in a tortilla, but the flavors and the spices and the sauces come together to create heaven.

For as long as I’ve lived, I’ve loved to eat – but I’ve never really loved to cook.  I’m too clumsy and too easily distracted.  Inevitably shortly after I begin, my computer whispers to me that there just might be a super important email waiting (Is Publisher’s Clearing House Lottery even a thing anymore?)  and before I can download and delete, I smell the burning.

But recently I have been thinking it’s time for a change.  For a few reasons:

  1. 20170809_085053Money: To do all the things we want to do here, we’ve started tracking a budget.  We’re cutting back. ☹
  2. Weight: Our 6-week road trip did some serious damage to our midlife midsections.  We’ve upped our exercise game together too!
  3. Health: A recent cancer scare in our family reminded us that we need to get serious about cutting out sugar and chemicals and processed foods.

So this week I got the urge to cook some Mexican dishes. From scratch.  If I am going to do it, if I’m actually going to cook, I need to make it a fun part of our new life experience.  No lasagna, no meatloaf, no pot roast – nope I’m going Mexican!

I started by thumbing through the Mexican cookbooks I had accumulated.  (I’m so weird – for someone who hates cooking, I love to collect cookbooks) and then went shopping.  I was determined to buy everything I could at the small local shops and stands in my neighborhood.  I read about the different types of chiles – red and green, fresh and dried – but when I got to my neighborhood fruteria, they all looked the same to me.  But I did it.  For less than $20 I loaded up my basket and headed home to spend an entire day in the kitchen.  I toasted peppers, I grilled peppers, I peeled and seeded and blended peppers.  I soaked beans and boiled beans and mashed beans.   I roasted and shredded a giant chicken and made a huge pot of chicken broth.  I chopped a LOT of onions and minced many cloves of garlic.  I boiled and blended tomatillas and tomatoes.  When it was all done, I had a big pot of refried beans, a container of salsa verde (green sauce) and a container of red enchilada sauce.  I had enough shredded chicken to make dinner for many nights.  And of course, I had guacamole.

Last night we had red enchiladas and I have to say they were delicious.  Grant said they were the best he had ever had.  Not sure if that’s true, but HE SAID IT and that’s enough for me.  Tonight, the green enchiladas – pretty good too.  Both served with a bowl of guacamole and some refried beans.  And a salad.  Enough left to try a few other things this weekend.

Red Enchiladas, Green Enchiladas and a huge pitcher of Pineapple Agua Fresca

As you are probably guessing, it wasn’t all successful.  My first round of beans was a FAIL – I blame the computer and the stupid stove.  Grant blames my basic lack of attention to the pot that had boiled dry.  Whatever.  The poblano peppers that were on their way to being stuffed hit the garbage can after tearing in half.  Meh.  That won’t discourage me.  My oven dial does not have degrees on it – it has numbers 1 through 5.  Took me a while to figure out that just past 2 is 350.  That’s dumb.  But I’ll keep trying.  I think we’ll head to the fish store next and try some seafood dishes – how about a nice grilled red snapper? Some ceviche? Some giant shrimp rubbed with the left over chile paste?  Obviously some fish tacos with chipotle sauce.

But that’s on the weekend.  I think tomorrow night we’ll head over to California Pizza for some Chicken Tequila Fettuccine – I’m exhausted and craving some Italian!

 

 

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We’re Padrinas mistaken for Celebrities

It’s the last week of school here in Banderas Bay and that means it’s Graduation season.  Just as it has in Canada, Graduation has spread to every level and we were invited to a Kindergarten (Kinder) grad as well as to a Sixth grade grad (Sexto).  We were honored to be included in both of these important days with these students and their families.

On Tuesday, we accompanied the three Manos de Amor Kinder students – Gigi, Geraldine and Jose – to their ceremony.  We picked up the prince and the two princesses in our chariot and headed to the school.

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When we arrived, there was standing room only and we found ourselves a spot right at the back.  That’s when it got hilarious.  One of the teachers – perhaps she was the principal – came to us and asked, “Were you invited here for the ceremony?”.  Not quite sure what she was getting at, we said yes and she told us we needed to sit at the front.  We thought perhaps we were standing in an off-limit area, so we followed her to the front before we realized that she was leading us to two empty seats at the head table.  I tried saying “No, there must be a mistake” but it was too late – the program was starting and she indicated we needed to sit in those chairs.  Somehow, we had been mistaken for some expected VIPs.  She had me write our names down and we were introduced and asked to stand – to great applause.  We couldn’t actually understand the introduction except for the part where they thanked us for all our help.  Huh?  For the next 2 hours, we sat there like celebrities, handing out the graduation certificates and the parent awards.  We shook hands.  We stood for the Mexican National Anthem – notice in the picture that we are the only ones not saluting.  That was rectified with one sharp elbow to Grant’s side.  After the ceremony, the woman who had been leading the ceremony thanked us profusely.  We graciously accepted her thanks.  Eventually they will realize that we were just two old gringos who were celebrating like all the rest of the parents but for those long 2 hours we had the best seats in the house!

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On Tuesday afternoon, we attended our second Graduation party – this time for Samuel who was graduating from Primeria (primary school) and heading into Secondaria (high school).  Samuel is the son of Norma who used to work at Manos de Amor and the nephew of Veronica the director.  Again, we were honored to be included in this family celebration – with Anna’s delicious birria.  We had to leave early to teach our English classes and sadly missed the Karaoke!

20170719_140137On Wednesday, we went to nearby San Vicente to attend the 6th Grade graduation of Isabel and Laurentino.  This time we were asked to be the Padrinas, which are similar to Godparents.  In Mexico, children will have many different adults throughout their lives who will be considered supporters or mentors.  At important milestones such as baptisms, graduations, even weddings –  families choose madrinas and padrinas to stand alongside the children to show love and support for them.    At the graduation ceremony, we each sat behind our graduate and walked with them to the front to get their diploma. I love the symbolism of that – we support from behind, we walk alongside.    I admit I looked around today – the only white English speakers in attendance – and wondered what on earth we are doing here – with this very poor community, with this family, with the orphanage, with Mexico in general.  Maybe this is it – we are offering love and support and encouragement from behind, walking alongside our newfound friends as they find their own way.   When the ceremony was over, we told Isabel and Laurentino that if they finish High School, we will help them fund university.  I am giving you fair warning – it’s a few years off but I will be asking for your help when that day comes!

Madrina Karen and Isabel …. Padrina Grant and Laurentino

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Meet the Santanas – Laurentino, Irandi, Isabel, Mom Tina with baby Cristofer, Ibet & Kevin, Ivon & Lupita.  Irandi’s baby Alison is missing from the picture.  Also missing are brothers Jose and Nasabid

So this was a good week of graduation and celebration.  Milestones.  Accomplishments. Hope.  Future.  In so many ways the odds are against these children but for this week we dream and we celebrate.  FELICIDADES ALUMNOS!

 

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Arriving Home to Good News

We did it!  After 15,000 kms and 41 days – all but 3 of them in a hotel or Airbnb – we are finally home for good.  This was a painfully long trip and I am glad I didn’t know how slow it would be.  We thought we’d be gone 4 weeks and it just kept multiplying until it was 6.  Although slow, it was truly a great trip with no breakdowns or illnesses or emergencies.  We explored 3 countries – mountains and jungles and deserts and rivers.   It was the necessary conclusion to our life in Canada.  Besides the people we love, we have absolutely nothing left in Canada.  Everything has been sold or donated or relocated.  No matter how sad or painful, the end must come before the new beginning can manifest.

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The border crossing was easier this time.  We hired 1 guy to drive our heavy equipment and trailer over, 1 guy drove 2 van loads of household and building supplies, and we drove our truck full of all that was left.  After 2 or 3 hours, – and a pile of U.S. cash – we were IN and so was our stuff.  For the next 2 days, we traveled through Sonoro and Sinoloa south of the Mexican border, and we arrived home in Nayarit on Thursday night.  The last 5 hours were the worst of the whole trip, but we were determined to make it home and we pushed through the beautiful but curvy mountain roads as the sun was setting.

On Friday morning, we headed straight to the orphanage and were greeted just as we expected – with huge hugs and toothless smiles.  The children wanted to know about Canada and looked through every picture on our phones.  They loved the videos of the waterfalls and wanted to know who every person was in every photo.20170714_124927

20170714_120655We had two surprises waiting for us.  The first was to be hugged by little Brittany and Priscilla.  I told you their story last year when they had to leave Manos de Amor because their drug addicted mom insisted she wanted them back.  (My Very Worst Day….)  We had visited them a couple of heart breaking times at their grandmother’s tiny home and then a few months ago they disappeared.  No one knew where they had moved to and I thought I would never see them again.  In June their Grandmother called the orphanage – she had taken the girls from their mom, could they come and live at Manos de Amor again?   20170714_172811.jpgI am not certain about the status of their legal papers and honestly, I am not going to ask.  I am just so happy to see them laughing again.  We drove them back to Grandma’s house on Friday evening so they could spend the weekend with her and we were relieved to find out where they now live in a nearby town.  We were also thrilled to reconnect with their two older sisters.

We then drove Jose to his home and met his 5-day old nephew who had been born to his 16-year-old sister Ibet.   One of my Canadian friends had given me a large bag of clothes and diapers to share with this young family and the tired mama was grateful.  This baby is the second son for this teenager and I worry how another little person will impact this already struggling family.  Even though he was 5 days old, this little guy hadn’t been given a name yet – Ibet said she was waiting for me to help her choose – so we threw around some ideas and today I got to give Cristofer Alejandro his name.   He is tiny – around 7 pounds – but I was happy to see him being nursed which isn’t always the case with teenage moms here.

 

Meet Cristofer Alejandro

And there was more good news.   On Saturday afternoon, we met little Mateo who had also been born while we were away.   On Saturday night we visited with Francisco and Anita whose adoption of little Ivan recently took a giant step closer to being complete.  On Sunday, we hugged Carmelo and Paola who are now engaged after a sunset proposal on a beach arranged with hearts and roses.  Many happy stories – new beginnings – God directed stories of great hope.

 

New Beginnings! Meeting Baby Mateo, Ivan’s dedication, Carmelo pops the question

As we reconnected with all these friends, I was reminded that although cultures differ in so many ways, we are all connected by our similar human experiences – births and marriages, poverty and riches, joy and pain, hopes and disappointments.   The shades may be different but the colors are the same.

For Grant and I, a new stage of this crazy journey has begun.  The forever part.  Stay tuned…. it’s gonna be a story!

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To Canada and Back

What an incredibly wonderful and awful month it has been!  We have traveled over 15,000 kms  – through 3 countries,  6 Mexican states, 3 Canadian provinces, 13 American states and 3 time zones.     That doesn’t include the side trips we took to see waterfalls and mountains and lakes and wineries and deserts.  We have seen some beautiful sights and met many kind and interesting people.  Lots of weird powdery eggs in free hotel breakfasts and crazy gas station snacks.   We have been to a graduation and a wedding and a planning retreat.  We hung out with our daughters, our parents and all our siblings but one (next time Connie?).   We visited 3 different welders for trailer repairs and replaced one bulging tire.   It was a great trip and it is almost over.  Unfortunately, the last leg is the toughest – getting all our building supplies and equipment imported and driving it all through Mexican mountain roads.  But we are close and this last load represents the end of the transition.  The start of the forever life.

Heading up to CanadaMap - MX to Can (2)

Heading back to Mexico

Map - Can to MX (2)

 

Jungles and Waterfalls and Cities

 

Diana’s graduation and Jason & Bailey’s Wedding

 

Family time

I have learned a lot during this trip:

  • Hotels never have enough electrical outlets for all our devices
  • Americans still don’t know where Canada is
    • Guy:  It must feel pretty hot for you being from Minnesota
    • Grant:  Actually we’re from Canada
    • Guy:  Yeah same thing
  • People eat too much sugar
    • Girl in hotel breakfast room:  Dad, what are Corn Flakes?
    • Dad:  That’s Frosted Flakes without the Frosting – you have to add your own.  Proceeds to dump A LOT of sugar on daughter’s corn flakes
  • Avoiding mountains when you’re pulling a large trailer adds a lot of miles and states to the trip. In order to avoid Colorado we visited:  Texas, Oklahoma, Missouri, Kansas, Nebraska, South Dakota, North Dakota, Iowa, Arizona, New Mexico
  • There is no place on earth where you will not see a Rider fan wearing his green
  • Oklahoma is really good at summer storms and Arizona is really good at summer heat
  • Apparently Google Maps doesn’t know about all the new highways and interchanges….. rerouting…..rerouting…….
  • You get what you pay for when you book hotels online, no matter what the pictures look like – we’ve had some nice ones and some really NOT NICE ones
  • USA has not embraced whole grains – almost every hotel offered white bread only for breakfast
  • Big dreams come with big challenges – I have never considered quitting on this dream, but I acknowledge that it has been difficult and somedays are downright scary. I don’t know if I could keep moving ahead if I didn’t have faith that this all part of a divine purpose.
  • When you’re traveling with your best friend even the bad days are fun – or at least manageable!

 

Road Trip Sugar Overload

 

Crazy weather didn’t slow us down

I think the main thing I learned is that Bucerias has become my home.  When I learned that we would not be able to meet with the broker on Wednesday but would have to wait until the next Monday, I bawled like a baby.  I am so ready to be home.  I miss hugging children and eating tacos and hearing Spanish.  I miss our garden.  I miss my friends and my church and my crazy neighborhood.  We were so fortunate to see our family this month but we are definitely ready to settle back into our new life.

20170703_152107Tomorrow we will meet with two different brokers.  We will unload the trailer and the truck and will get inspections and will pay all kinds of fees and duties and ‘honorariums’.  It will take a couple of days and then we will be on the road to home.  If all goes well, next Tuesday. we will go to Jose’s Kindergarten graduation.  We will meet Ibet’s new baby who will arrive any day and Mateo who was born last month.  We will celebrate little Ivan’s final adoption by his wonderful California parents.  We will congratulate Peter on getting his Mexican citizenship and Verito on graduating from Veterinarian school.  We will celebrate with Carmelo and Paola on their recent engagement.  We will go dancing in town squares and exploring around town in our spunky blue golf cart.  We will reach out and make a difference wherever we can.  And we will eat tacos!

 

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On the Road Again

I can’t quite believe it either – we’re driving north again to get one last load of stuff.  Business stuff this time – our bobcat and scaffolding so Grant can do some building.  And my BBQ and Christmas stuff which didn’t make the last load.   We have combined it all together with a graduation in Tepic, a wedding in Penticton, a visit with my sister in Squamish and our daughters in Vancouver, time with family in Regina, and a work retreat in Moose Jaw.  And if we have to drive through Mexico, we decided to add a few vacation days and check out some new territory.  So this is a combination family/vacation/work trip and we will be gone about a month.

Our first stop was to say goodbye to the kiddos at the orphanage.   On Thursday when we told them we were leaving, they were not happy.  Samantha just mostly glared, “you said no more Canada, you said you live in Bucerias now”.    Yes but we need to visit our daughters and our parents.  We’ll be back, we promise.  We hugged and kissed goodbye and reminded them to be good for the English teacher sub Luke.  We will be back – this is our home now.

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After driving 2.5 hours through crazy winding mountain roads, our first stop was Tepic for our friend Diana’s graduation from Vanguardia – a Bible school connected with La Fuente church.   After spending so much time every day seeing children and teens who seem to have so little hope, it was refreshing and emotional to see a room full of young adults passionate about their futures, all of them eager to start internships where they will care for others and live out their faith.

 

This 113 km trip takes almost 3 hours because of crazy roads and crazier drivers

We then headed to the historic center of Tepic to start the vacation portion of our trip.  We hadn’t been in Centro 10 minutes before we were pulled over by the police – who knew you couldn’t turn left at any corners?

 

 

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Good morning view from my bed

Today we are heading to Guadalajara – the adventure begins!  We are taking a different route this time so we can see some new places.  Some gardens and waterfalls and historic towns.  Some Pueblos Magicos – magical Mexican towns.  Stay tuned – you know there’s going to be entertainment along the way!

 

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