Thursday, June 4, 2009

Rancho Esperanza

First of all I have to give a hallar out to my big sis Kelley "HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!"

We have been having computer issues so it has been difficult to get on and post, but we think we have it fixed now.

I posted a picture of Eddy and Ingrid. They are leaving us and we are so sad. Ingrid has been my laundry fairy and her kids have become a part of our everyday life. We don't know who will be replacing them but we will find out soon enough. Hopefully they are nice. Eddy and Brigham have become quite good friends so they will be missed.

Brigham is so funny. He makes friends with everyone he meets and charms them half to death. He has picked up a lot of the latin mannerisms which is so funny. He points with his lips and clicks his teeth with his tongue when he doesn't like something. I wish you could watch him in action it's quite funny.

We went today to te Rancho Esperanza. It is an orphanage a mile up the road from the car lot. We've been wanting to go by there for awhile now and see how we can help out.

It is run by a couple named Karen and Mike. I didn't get their last name. The ranch is beautiful and they set the orphanage up in such a way that the kids seem so happy. They have an orchard of different trees, horses a creek, and they are about to build a playground. They have 3 houses on the property, only two have children in them now. They put 8-10 kids in each house with a couple to be parents and try to make it feel as much like a family as possible. They have 8 kids in one house and 7 in another. They have a long waiting list but need another couple to live in the third house.

The kids were so cute. We met Michael and Danny. We brought a trash bag full of Gabby's pullups that we ended up not needing and a few of her outgrown dresses (some of them came from Eliza to Gabby and she outgrew them. So thank you Sonia they are still blessing lives!) The boys were so excited about the diapers! Danny took them and carried them all around the house. Imagine how he would have felt about toys! We have got to figure out a way to get more clothes and toys here for them.

They also reach out to the community. They have sunday church services in a chapel and youth bible study every Saturday night and every 15 days they have a movie night and show a video to the kids in the area that want to come. Soon they will be building a place to cook and serve food to the hungry children in the area. I am sure that this is where we will be serving the most. I'm sure they will need lots of hands for that.

She said that they are wanting to start a crochet and cross stitch class with the girls. I would love to help with this, soooooo if anyone has any extra supplies to donate - I don't think these things would get stolen out of the cars being shipped to us. Any kind of crafty stuff would be great! I had so much of it but couldn't fit it in the cars! Bummer!

We will have pics and more to report on this later.

I'll try to post again soon. We have kind of settled into an everyday routine so not as much to report as often.

We have to leave the country for 3 days to renew our visas so if anyone has any recommendations for any of the bourdering countries let us know. We are thinking Belize or Mexico. We can't do Honduras because they are in some alliance or something so we have to go outside the alliance.

Did anyone see the picture of the headless boatman??? Freaky!



I just read the comments from the last post:

Kim, I love to hear about Gracie and Aaron! Keep telling us about them! You are right! I've been a total slacker posting but in my defense we were having computer probs!

Robin, your car rule made me laugh! I am so glad you have joined our conversations. I bet Steve does keep up with the car now.

Hannah, Keep trying! I want to hear from you and the kids! Do what Kelley said and save before you post.

Leslie, our family misses you also! We had some funnnn times. My kids loved jumping on the tramp with you. I had a dream the other night you were pregnant. I was so happy. We do have candy bars. They are Q6 ($.75). So worth it for me. The first few times we visited Guatemala we couldn't find hershey's chocolate anywhere! I thought I would die. Nathan is settling into the quetzali mindset and thinks it's expensive so we don't get them to often but he bought us m&ms last night! YUMMMMMY!

Joanne, I didn't think I would miss fast food but I totally do. I feel like a kid when we find one. I don't know how many chicken nuggets I could eat but I am sure you probably got me beat!

Kelley, Happy Birthday! The fruit in the trees are bananas. Sweet huh? Thank you for your prayers. We appreciate it so much.


  1. Yea!!! I've been waiting for more pictures. Gabby looks so much older. Even though you're busy and you're not going to amazing ruins everyday. I'm sure I can speak for everyone, we would still like to see pictures of EVERYONE. I want to ask you guys if you want me to tape any of the kids favorite shows(ex.Disney Channel) and I'll have papa put them in one of the cars. I'm assuming that they won't get ruined. We could try. Just let me know!
    Grizzly Bear hug to Nathan
    Polar Bear hug to Melody
    giraffe hug to Ammon
    puppy hug to Xela
    monkey hug to Brigham
    kitten hug to Gabby
    love you, Kim and crew

  2. Hey, Mel. This is Tina from BecauseI'mTheMommy. I have a question about the visas. I've heard the rule about having to leave for 72 hours to have your 90 visa renewed. How does that work when you move there permanently? Do you just keep renewing? When I first found your blog, I wondered how someone is allowed to just move to another country (i.e. what were the rules)?


  3. Love your posts, it makes us feel close to you! The orphange sounds wonderful. You will be such a great helper there and your kids can befriend those kids and make them so happy! Glad you could pass down some of the clothes! Xela looks like she has grown so much in such a short time. COurtney and Sam check your blog everyday I believe! I'm thinking about letting Courtney join facebook-monitoring it. ( I have to have her password etc..) not sure if that is something you would let Xela do or not but might be fun for them to stay in contact better. We are doing the school days count down! 7 more to go!!! Can't wait for summer....seems like a long year. Did I tell you about dance revolution for Courtney? Its broadway dance here in Williamsburg and she had to audition to get in with singing and dancing and she made it in. So she is busy with that now. We are going on a cruise to Jamaica next spring! (if it works out they are thinking about changing the days of dance to YW night so I hope they don't do that!)
    We miss you guys soooo much!

  4. so mel i just might have a ball of yarn or two i could donate. who should i send it to?
    and have you figured out how to make that cacao nubs into tootsie rolls yet?
    love you guys
    aunt jo

  5. Tina,

    Let me clear up one thing first of all. In Guatemala there is the rule/law and then there is what is actually enforced.

    The visa/passport rule is: when you enter the Guatemala you get a 90 day tourist permission. You then have to leave the country (it can not be Honduras, El Salvador, or Nicagua because of the CA4 pact) for 72 hrs and get your permission renewed. What we have been told is that we can just leave the country and come right back in. I guess we will find out. One beautiful thing about living in a different country/culture is learning to take off your own cultural hat and put thiers on. I.E. "When in Rome do as the Romans"

    We plan on appling for our residency.

  6. That Picture of me on the Boat Dad was driving Pretty fast and, yes that is why my hair is sticking up. Hey Sis Cummings that is grate about Courtney making it. aunt Joanne we need as much yarn and hookes you can spare thank's


  7. YAY!!!! You want yarn. I want to clean out my stash. There are things I will never use and still have a hard time letting go (my big pack rat weakness along with pretty paper, fabric and books.) When there is a good cause it makes it easier to do! Any chance you are looking for fabric too?

  8. Jessica,

    Fabric would be great! Thank you so much!


    Thanks for saying that me getting in it is
    I'm watching you! LOL
    P.S. MY music queen is YOU FoReVeR! And don't forget it. Also in swim team... We learned to do flip turns. It scares me to death!!!!
    Also we have a meet next Week. And thanks for inspiring me to join a swim team!!! YOU ROCK LIKE A STAR! [GET IT?]