Monday, April 21, 2014

In A Nutshell...

I hope everyone had a beautiful Resurrection Sunday yesterday! We opened our front door in the morning and this cool breeze met our faces! We didn't think it would happen as Resurrection Sunday was so late in the month this year. We have often wondered if when Christ rose it was a chilly morning. We have never had a hot Easter. We had a wonderful day spent with friends and family. It was beautiful to think about God's sacrificial gift of Salvation on the cross for us. Because of this, I have the infallible assurance of eternity with Christ.  

When you start receiving helpful tips and hinting texts from friends about your sadly barren blog, it's been a tad too long...don't you think? The last we posted was in February and that doesn't mean nothing has been happening around here! We still take pictures on camera, phone and iPod, documenting our every day. It's been busy and fun and challenging, and I'm going to share a bit of it with you! So, this is for you Ms. Bev;)

As I said before, I have quite a few pictures to share. This new year has been full for us and capturing special moments, big or small has been our way to remember God's goodness and blessings in our lives. Birthday outings, reading aloud, Spring gardening, baking, our little nephew and so much more!

We have been enjoying all the pictures and video of Kyler. He has the Huron eyebrows that's for certain! Holding his head up like a pro!

 These glasses are really his and he actually keeps them on!


Benuel and Peter went up to South Carolina for the weekend. Ben met his little nephew for the first time and I think it was an instant bond:) Just look at his smile.


 God miraculously provided the steeple for our church that we have been praying about for some time. Construction began in January and God has continued to move mightily. The community of San Antonio have been so supportive! They have given monetarily. They make us smile with honking and waving as they pass the church. And also showing up on the Work Days and pitching right in with the other men. The man in the above picture is testimony of that. Mr. Frank, a retired firefighter, has been such a tremendous blessing, not only to our church but to our family as well. We have so enjoyed getting to know him and his wife.

  Love this picture. It's life being lived.

New invention kits using discarded paper towel rolls and lively conversation with the grandparents on "Pizza Day".

And this box...so cheery! So festive! If that isn't something that makes you glad, I don't know what would!:)

The boys went on a fishing trip and caught an enormous amount of fish. What better way to enjoy than with a Fish Fry! These "winter" days have made it perfect for eating outside.


Another April happening. We have a new driver in the house! Paul is officially permitted to drive without needing me in the passenger seat beside him:)

Rainy, cold and wet outside, cozy warm and dry inside. Perfect combination.

Abuelo had throat surgery. Abuela was nervous and pretended she wasn't. Her knitting wasn't being knitted. She watched me solve Sudoku puzzles instead. Waiting Rooms are for waiting, so we did. I love this wonderful lady.

Out of surgery and doing great! Just look at that handsome guy!
























Our little guys love to bake and cook. Scoot a chair up to the counter, give them a whisk to stir with or and an egg to crack and their day is made. The BOY version of the Easy Bake oven was the perfect Christmas gift. I must say those little bread rolls were pretty tasty.

























This picture is precious. It describes Santi completely. He loves calendars. He loves church and church functions. And who needs Scrabble tiles to play Scrabble anyway? They're much more fun used this way. I walked into the dining room and he had spelled this all by himself. He never ceases to amaze us.

Because celebrating is mandatory at our house! And sprinkles make it "funner":)

Reading aloud and enjoying the last of the cooler weather on a Sunday afternoon. Abuela's afghans are the coziest, especially when reading about cold frosty nights and hot-cross buns.

And don't you just love that toothless grin?

 This little boy doesn't need anyone to entertain him. He is just fine on his own. Samuel is the exact opposite of that! I had to snap a picture when I found him in the dining room, under the table, feet tucked under him, belt askew, his little fingers absently tracing the book edge. Waldo is a hard guy to find!
























What a gift to get together with friends for coffee and fellowship!


Roses from our neighbor, "just because". Straight from her garden! Just beautiful!

It inspired us to try grow our own flowers...does it look like roses could grow and flourish here?! Just prior to this picture I had wrapped my hands around a bunch of stinging nettles! I was trying not to scream;) Forget the roses....

Just look at that full trash can!....Not at the weeds all around it.
























Treasure was in her best friend's wedding earlier this year...


 Sometimes it's the little things that make our day. Free birthday sundaes for the 14 year old is one of them! Happy Birthday!

 Starbucks outings with our precious Uncle and Aunt. So thankful for them in our lives.

 These boys...almost the same size, almost the same height, completely opposite in character but like two peas in a pod. Everything about this picture, down to the untied shoelace and missing front teeth makes me think of a Norman Rockwell painting:)

 Luke likes the hammock. The hammock likes Luke. And this is the way they get along. This is not posed:)

 On our way to a singing engagement!
























Ice-Cream always helps you sing better:)


Hope everyone has a blessed Monday!

Monday, March 10, 2014

Is Anything Too Hard for the Lord?

We are so thankful for those of you that prayed for us while we were in Honduras. What a blessed trip! Olivia has already shared a little about our time away, but here is a short collection of pictures and video clips to give you a glimpse of our mission in Honduras.

We are praying and trusting the Lord for miracles in this upcoming year having to do with our brothers and sisters in Cuyamel. We met so many that, yes, need the Lord, but many who need basics such as food and medicine. We are trusting the Lord for a whole container of food and clothing for the church people and others the Pastor knows, in the near future. Wouldn't that be amazing?! We are so excited with just the thought. Please pray with us concerning this idea as we seek the Lord and ask for His provision and means of actually getting a container there.

Dad and Mr. Henry Leiva had the opportunity to share for three evenings on the family in a local church there.  The first night was directed towards the men, then the wives and lastly, the children. Many surrounding churches were invited, and I believe the Lord did a special work in the families that walked or came in buses to attend. It was special to be a small part in those services, and to meet such loving people whom we now call friends. Our hearts continue to grow, not only for this country, but for the people who desire to know more about our God. When we leave, it's only 'till next time, and I think that's what the people see, and they love us in return for that.

One scripture that has really blessed me lately and makes me think of all that surrounds us here at home and our desires abroad, is Geneses 18:14.

"Is anything too hard for the Lord?"

Oh that the windows of heaven would be opened and that we would see His mighty hand move on our behalf!

Anita





Monday, March 3, 2014

It's Your Birthday...


























Our puzzle lover. You can't get enough of all those odd shaped pieces that somehow fit perfectly together, creating a beautiful picture. Today is your special day. And you like to enjoy every last second of it. You are so excited.
You are precious to us. The challenges you face every day that others around you do not, doesn't faze you one bit. You live life joyfully. With a smile on your face and a laugh around the corner:)
We couldn't be more proud and blessed to be celebrating 16 years of your life today.


HAPPY BIRTHDAY!


Saturday, March 1, 2014

Eighteen...


Paul, We are so grateful for your life. You are not afraid to stand for Truth and proclaim your love for Christ. Our little guys look up to you and you treat your sisters like royalty:) We love you.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY!

Friday, February 28, 2014

Gloria a Dios...

Thank you to everyone who prayed for our group while we were away in Honduras! The Lord landed our plane safely back into the Ft. Lauderdale airport early Saturday morning! After being in a Spanish speaking country for a week we were a little taken aback when we stepped off the plane and were greeted with a "Good Morning!" and not a "Buenos Dias".

What I write for this post will surely only scratch the surface of everything that took place, but I hope it will give you a glimpse into what we experienced.

Our first day in Honduras we walked through town talking with people, inviting them to our church services the next day and giving lollipops and "goodie" bags to the children who weren't too shy to approach us. It was hot. The streets were scattered with trash and with the occasional bike, motorcycle and car flying driving by, the dust came in puffy clouds. We'd been warned the motorists stop for no one, so we tried to stay out of their way. By the end of that week I was so accustomed to it I was shocked when a car actually stopped at a STOP sign and let us cross the street! The children had such bright smiles. It stretched across their faces and made their eyes crinkle up. They loved our cameras but were timid about approaching until you showed them their picture and then they would laugh and point at the screen! I watched them run down the street clutching the lollipops and was humbled by how much joy a small piece of candy can bring.

The Pastor and his wife served us straight from their hearts. Every day we walked into their home she was already at the stove frying chicken or flipping tortillas. We would get in the kitchen and try to help but our tortilla flipping skills were lacking. We created our own version called the "mini Honduran tortilla". She laughed at us and spoke Spanish and we laughed and spoke English and we understood one another to a degree. I told her one day I would teach her the Mexican way of tortillas, with a rolling pin. She said, "Absolutely not, it would take way too long!" I wish I could have somehow captured pieces of our trip to communicate to everyone how thrilling it was to be there. 

The services at night were centered on marriage and the family. Not speaking Spanish and understanding very little gave us more of an awareness of how the Holy Spirit was moving. To see people cry, and go up to the front for prayer was something that moved me...even though I wasn't quite sure why they were going up front. I knew that it meant hearts had been moved, and I would begin to pray...it was a beautiful three nights.

I know God did a work in all of our hearts this trip...every one of us perhaps in a different way. God challenged us in certain aspects of our lives. One night at church, a guest pastor and a man from his congregation got up with their guitars and sang a song. It was all in Spanish. The expressions on their faces as they sang was one of pure worship to God. As they sang the chorus it was one word: "Hallelujah...Hallelujah...Hallelujah."  God spoke to me that night. Surrounded by so many loving people. In a beautiful church with dirt floors and no roof, just the stars, He spoke to my heart. "Will you praise Me?...In all things? In every circumstance of your life, not just the happy times but hard times too; will you make that choice to lift up your hands and praise me?" To sing Hallelujah?...

Olivia