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.