Thursday, June 17, 2010

The World Cup from a Layman's Point of View

This is what the World Cup looked like in our living room on Wed.
while the Brazil team played their first game.
I'm really not that much into sports
but we are in Brazil
and Brazilians take soccer aka Fotebal seriously.
I mean it.
They close businesses during the game.
McDonalds posted a sign in the window
(as did other establishments)
that they would close their doors 15 minutes before game time
and open 15 minutes after the game was over!

before the game started:
So our church did what every church should have done.
They hooked up the TV
and had a party!
And all that could come (in the middle of the day) came!

and although I'm not that much into soccer (or any sport for that matter)

I like a good party!

let the game begin:

most of the group (the food along with a few more fans are off to the side)
tense moments:
looks like there is a chance for a goal:
Right on! A goal!!!!

there was a lot of excitement with each of the two points:
The crazy thing was, when the game was over (Brazil 2, N. Korea 1) everyone just sat there.

Non responsive.
Slowly they got up and started to clean up the mess from the party.

where is the cheering and shouting?


I guess Brazilians take pride in the game
and this was a poorly played game.
Facebook was full of comments from my Brazilian friends
about how lousy they played.

I always thought a win was a win - guess not!

Oh well, better luck next time, Brazil.
(Sunday, our place!)

But the party sure was fun :)

Monday, June 14, 2010

Come On In.....

It was almost an eerie sound in our house this morning....
Quiet. Absolutely quiet.
Well, except for the ticking of a clock.

It seemed so to us because just a few hours previously it had been full of activity -
music, laughter, talking and even a few tears.

People spread throughout our home, enjoying one another
and, more importantly, enjoying a time of meeting together
to hear from the Lord and to have fellowship with Him.
The service was wonderful
and Warren felt your prayers.

This is taken from the very back of the sanctuary.
What you can't see is the people off to the right
and in the front.

Studying God's Word

Wonderful worship...

Warren having just finished the teaching.
His translator is to his left.


That's right - we have made the church our home for the next 2 months.
After being here a few days we decided that it would be easier access for us
by foot to grocery stores, restrauants, coffee shops, buses
and most importantly the people, if we stayed here.
John and Flavia have made it clear that we are welcome to use their house
while they are gone -
and if the temperature gets unbearable
(this building tends to get cold, we are told!)
or for whatever reason we may think it a good idea,
we may accept that offer.

But, for now, this is our home.
And we couldn't be happier about it.

the kitchen

the living/dining area
see the stairs at the end of the room?
They lead to the sanctuary and office.

the other side of the livingroom
we sometimes watch a movie here and meet with people
but most of our time is spent in the office upstairs.
The LR tends to be the coldest part of the house-
well, that and the kitchen!

our room
The house actually has 4 bedrooms (the other three are used for children's classrooms)
Each has it's own bath.

our bathroom - the shower is just off to the right

I guess I forgot to download a picture of the office.
Our favorite room and where we spend most of our awake time.
I'm sure before we leave here there will be a picture
or two taken of us here.
We're surrounded by John's books with a desk in the center of the room -
two computers on top of the desk so as not to cause any arguments!!

We had the joy of having people individually stop by throughout the week.
(Warren even got a few going out for coffee times!)
Bible study was here on Thursday night.
We went to a couples dinner on Saturday night
(where we spoke briefly and enjoyed wonderful food!)
And yesterday was busy with morning and evening services.

We loved all the people time!!!

As far as the times in between?
We spent a good portion of it in this very room.
The day we were leaving for Brazil I had injured my hamstring on the left leg.
It finally caught up with me last week and I could barely walk.
So I spent most of the week icing, heating, up on pillows
and generally over-all babying it.

It's much better today.

So if you want me to tell you about the week
be prepared
to hear about Season 2 of the Gilmore Girls,
a little about Everybody loves Raymond,
a Beth Moore Bible study (wonderful),
a few key sentences I'm learning from our first Portuguese lesson,
and what all my friends on Facebook were doing.....

You get the idea!

So, although I'm still trying to be gentle with the leg and stay off of it,
I'm heading out to explore a couple of blocks around our new home.


I need this people.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Head and Shoulders.....

Last Saturday we had the privilege of going to one of the favelas (slum)
here in Curitiba.
Karen is a young woman from the church who
volunteers there to teach a class of 9-10 years old English.
They love her!
She had wondered if Warren and I might join her and her nephew, Pedro,
so that the kids can hear English
"without the accent"!

the class (w/ Pedro in front)

We jumped at the chance!
Karen introduced us and then opened the time up for questions and answers.

Questions like:

What do you eat for breakfast in the U.S.?

(they tend to think that all Americans eat bacon, eggs, pancakes, etc.
every morning of our lives. It's a huge disappointment to hear we tend
to open cereal boxes most week days!)

How big is your house?

(I assured them that we don't all live in houses like what they see in the movies.)

How many kids do you have?

How old are you?

(they were told that is rude but I answered anyway!)

What is your favorite food?

(we then had to talk about ice cream for a while!)

Are you rich?

(what? are you kidding? I am soooo very rich in ways that really matter...)
(Warren answered wisely : God provides everything we need.)

teaching the words to the song

After the many questions we were able to teach them a song in English.
Warren had thought of a kids song earlier that morning:

head and shoulders, knees and toes, knees and toes
head and shoulders, knees and toes, knees and tooooeeees,
eyes and ears and mouth and nose,
head and shoulders, knees and toes, knees and toes!

(I know you were humming!)

Writing the words to the song.

We sang it over and over, faster and faster.
With the motions of course!!!!

They also thought they had to teach Warren and I to sing it in Portuguese.
I'm a better teacher than I am a student :(

We finished the time with plenty of hugs and assurances that I would be back next week.
I'm bringing marsh mellows!!!

(Warren will be studying on Saturdays and won't be able to go again)

A stone walking street.

After leaving there we headed to one of the malls where we ate lunch
and then walked around some of the downtown area. Beautiful.

Many beautiful churches in the area. Most of them Catholic.

"My Lord is my God"

I love the colorful buildings in this area.

This area had a small park in the center.

This is a line of Taxis in front of a building where an artist had done the pictures
that you see on it out of tiles.

It was a wonderful day with our new friends, seeing another side of life
and a new-to-us city.

Although, a truly beautiful statue, my first thoughts in seeing it were
"I am so thankful the Savior I serve is no longer on that cross"!

We're enjoying our time here and can hardly believe
that we have already been here for 2 weeks.

Warren starts teaching this Thurs. night.
(John, Flavia and the children arrived in the states yesterday)

We both will speak at a couples dinner on Saturday night.
(It's valentines day here)

Warren will teach twice every Sunday
and I will lead a women's study every other Saturday.

We're needy of prayer.

We are weak but He is strong.

Friday, June 4, 2010

Another Place to call Home

We're back in Brazil now

but before we left we were so blessed to have Brett come
and see us for a few days.
Remember last year when he was suppose to meet up with us in Brazil
and then the trip was cancelled at the last minute
(and I do mean last minute!)?
Well, once again, plans haven't gone as we thought they would.
He planned to come and see us in Brazil in August
only to find out (when purchasing tickets for the trip)
that he had to fly by June 5.
No chance he could go to Brazil because of prior commitments
so he used the ticket
(that he would have lost anyway)
to come to Tennessee.
It was a great to get to put him up in our house
and spend some precious time with him not knowing
how soon it would happen again.
It was quick but full of great, serious conversation
and plenty of laughs.
And some work -
we were getting ready to leave for 5 months, ya know!
I love that kid more all the time.

It was with some sadness that we sad good-bye to our new friends
at the church in Cleveland.
And then there were the good-byes that needed to be said
with Jason and Kellie again.
Always hard but better this time! (knowing we are going back).

We arrived in Curitiba on the 28th of May after an all night plane ride.
Living in Tennessee has cut off a whole day of sitting in airports
and flying across the states!
Thank you, God! ( and I mean that!)

Our trip was uneventful which is what you want when you are flying!
John picked us up at the airport, took us to breakfast and then
we went to stay with the Gill family.
It was so great to meet this group of people - and I do mean group -
Deborah and Fred have 11 children (3 of them no longer live at home)
and what fun they have together!
We especially enjoyed the singing they did together before meals, in harmony, I might add. Beautiful!
They enjoy a place right outside of city limits on a few acres of land
where they have many different kinds of animals.
Warren especially loved it and I think had a little bit of envy when he spied their shop!!!
We look forward to getting to know all of them better as they attend the morning service at Calvary Curitiba.
The Gill's house

The Gill's shop

We were only in Curitiba one night and then headed to Iguassu Falls
where we were so blessed to get to see all the people from the church
that we had come to love so much when we were there last year.
God was good to allow that visit to encourage us in what is before us this year.
It was such a blessing to get to spend time with
Tim, TaLisa, Bethany and Abraham.
TaLisa said we only have yet to blow up at each other once
and then we will truly be family!
Our hearts are certainly being knit together.
She blessed my heart by telling me she just feels better when we are around.
Thank you, Lord.

We stayed with one of our favorite families in Iguassu Falls!
Raames and Jacqui, along with their three girls, have from the beginning
(when we were there last year) taken care to see that we would love our time in Iguassu
by having us over at least once a week (usually more often and Raames is the best cook ever),
stopping in to check on me when I was sick (Jacqui is a doctor),
bringing food over, taking us to Paraguay and
making us feel part of their circle of friends.
Generally, just making sure that we wouldn't get too lonesome and homesick.
All this and they speak very little English!

We had a few laughs as we tried to communicate with one another
but on the whole it went well and we couldn't have enjoyed
our time with them more.

We love them all.

And Jacqui - it meant the world to us that you would come
to tell us good-bye after working a 24 hour shift!
We had the best time going over the border into Argentina.
(Terri and Larry, we must go!)
I have blogged about this restaurant before when Larry and Karen
took us there last year.
Some of the best food you'll ever want to taste
and very inexpensive by American standards.
We all felt pampered and full by the time we left but....

eat your heart out, Larry Lyon!!!

we still had to finish the night at the coffee shop
(okay, I snuck in coconut ice cream from the shop around the corner).
A perfect end to a wonderful evening.

We got to play Grandma and Grandpa to Bethany and Abraham
while we were there.
That included attending one of their classes in self defense.
Sooo fun to watch.
I'm no expert but it looked like they knew what they were doing
and it looked hard to do!!!

We were blessed to get invited over one afternoon
to our good friends' house, Lucianna and "grandma".
Lucianna was our Portuguese teacher when we stayed in Foz last year
and became a very good friend as we spent many an afternoon
pouring over lessons and then finishing up with good conversation (in English!)
and coffee (with frozen whip cream!).
Grandma is a little spit- fire that speaks no English
and yet, somehow, we wormed our way into her heart as she has ours.
She is growing in the Lord and shares, with tears, her love for Him
and her desire to see Him.
We love them both dearly.
And the food was amazing!!!!

We left Iguassu with some sadness
while at the same time excitement in knowing
that we have the same opportunities
to grow in love for the people in Curitiba.

Lucianna and "Grandma"

We are now in Curitiba.

You may have heard the expression that
"it's cold in Curitiba and the weather isn't too great either"!

If our first time with our church family last night
is any indication then that is only true about the weather!
(it is cold and rainy here today)
They were warm, inviting people and we are so looking forward
to getting to know and love each one.

And Warren and I look at each other and ask,

"can you believe we really get to do this?"

God is good.