Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Xocomil, Xetulul

First of all I have to thank my new friend Shauna for bringing me some treats from the states! Between Betty and Shauna we have been really blessed. Thank you Shauna for the stuff for the orphanage and for our favorite brownie mix and my raw almonds. I am soo happy.

Check out Nathan's curry crabcakes. They only lasted a few minutes. I didn't try them but they were definately beautiful.

One day I was washing dishes and Brigham ran in the house and said "Mom! You have to come see this gigantic bug I just caught!" He held his hands 2 feet apart to show me the size. I said "Brigham, I don't really want to see a bug that big." (Bad homeschool mom! I know!) He looked at me with big excited eyes and said "But mom! It's so beautiful!" I couldn't resist that, so I went out and took pictures of his big beautiful bug. As you can see it wasn't exactly 2 feet long, but it was definately beautiful. When it flew away it had huge wings like a butterfly. We found out it is called an Esperanza, which means hope. Which is fitting because this post includes information about a foundation we have been looking into called "Cause for Hope".

We had to go to Guatemala City again last Thursday to sell one of Nathan's trucks. We were just going to stay one night with Monkey and his family, but it ended up turning into a weekend fun.

Since we were over halfway to Mazatenango we decided to head over and meet Leonell Bonilla, who works for Cause for Hope. Our new friend Shauna had come to Guatemala the week prior with her father, mother, husband , sister and brother in law to visit the foundation. I think her father either started or is a big part of the foundation. She was so nice and brought us some gifts and craft stuff for the orphanage. She left it for us at Cause for Hope, since as we all know there isn't a trusted shipping service to us at this time.

Monkey's family decided they wanted to come with us also. We left Friday around noon to head to Mazate. We met Leonell at Burger King. Ate lunch real quick and then went to the foundation. We met with Leonell and his boss (I don't remember his name. Bad me.) The foundation gives the people micro loans to start businesses, and then educates them on running a business. They also teach English and Computer Skills and help prospective missionaries financially prepare for missions and help fund their medical preparations and clothing for the mission. Many of the members can't even afford the clothing to be a missionary let alone the expense. We are hoping to be able to help with this somehow.

We then went to a delicious restaurant in Reu. I am so sorry that I don't know the name. It was a very nice place where you order platters of shrimp that come with ceviche and seafood soup for everyone. We also ordered a couple plates of delicious steaks and potatoes for those of us who don't like shrimp. Then we went searching for a nice hotel. We found a place we really like called La Jardin (the garden). It was beautifully landscaped and had condo style habitations with two bedrooms kitchen ect. We piled the two families into one..... hmmmm..... I didn't know how it would work out either but they brought us an extra bed to put in one room and the other had 2 bunks so we all fit. They had a pool, and ping pong. We had a lot of fun hanging out playing that night.

The next day we headed over to the water park Xocomil. It was super packed but so fun. We really had a great time. We will have to go back when it's not so busy so we can ride all the rides. It was a Saturday and a Holiday. We'll go back during the week sometime. Nathan and I have both been before during the week on past visits and it wasn't busy at all. I think Nathan took Kim when they came also.

We left the water park at about 3 and headed over to the amusement park next door called Xetulul. This was so fun. You can get a family season pass for both parks for Q500, which is a little over $50. Crazy right? The amusement park you have to buy tickets for the rides though in addition to the entrance fee, so it wasn't busy at all. The tickets are cheap so it wasn't a big deal, but I guess it's expensive enough to keep the crowds away. The rollercoaster had no wait at all. Pretty much only men rode it. It was so much fun and the landscaping was breathtaking. You all have to come visit so we can take you here.

Nathan and the kids are eating crabs and watching the Redskins right now. Not much has changed. LOL!

We love to hear from all of you so please post a comment!


Friday, August 7, 2009



I miss you all so much:-(
Leav me a message or a question.

Lets chat on FB somtime

All those Napolen Dinamite lovers
I have been Drawing alot of my fav animals like




and more

Don't be scared to put some of you fav mixed animals too


Thursday, August 6, 2009

Utila, Honduras

"Happy Birthday George!!!" I know it is a day late but we thought of you all day yesterday! We didn't have internet access or phone service since we were in Honduras. We love you! We hope you had a great day and that you were spoiled rotten!

The first picture is a picture of Nathan's second batch of crabs he bought for Q1 each. Nathan and the kids were in heaven.

We had a break in the rain Sunday afternoon so we decided to get a head start and head out a day early for Honduras.

The first few pictures are of us waiting for our ferry from La Ceiba Honduras to Utila. It is called the Utila Princess. The ride out to the Island was a little bumpy but we made it. The first view of Utila was breathtaking. The water was soo blue. Gorgeous!

Our ferry ride was from 9:30 am to 10:30. We found a hotel right away and then headed out to get lunch and explore the island. You can walk from one side of the island to the other in 20 minutes. They also have little TUK-TUK taxis that you can take anywhere on the island. We did this a few times. There is a picture of us on the day we left all 6 piled in with our luggage. We found a restaurant called Evelyn's BBQ. IT was decorated with Bob Marley everything. The decour was fun but the service was absolutely horrible and the food wasn't to good and it was expensive. So if you ever go to Utila don't eat here!!

Then we headed out to explore the opposite side of the island from where we were staying. We ran into the owner of Afton's Dive Shop. (We heard from some of the divers that this is a great dive school and the owner was wonderful to us. He gave us tons of tips about the island) He told us of a great area to take the kids snorkeling on the other side of the island near our hotel. It was a pier just past the public beach called Coral Views. They have a great pier that goes right out to the edge of the coral and you can snorkel right by the pier which made it easier to take turns going out. The kids loved it so much. Then we hit the public beach on the way back to the hotel.

That night we went out to eat at the best little restaurant. It was an Indian/Thai reastaurant. I don't remember the name but I believe it is the only one on the island. It was packed and there was no doubt in my mind why. The food was sooo good.

The next day we went to the other side of the island to a private beach called Bando's beach. It was perfect. Soooo beautiful as you can see in the pictures. There was coral out from the beach. You had to swim a little way and then cross some dead coral and you could snorkel there. Nathan said that it was a wall of coral that you could view from the side. I will have to have him add a comment about it. The kids absolutely loved this place. I didn't go out because of Gabs, and I wasn't brave enough to go without Nate. We also met a parrot named Bud who could say "Hello". The kids had a ball talking to her. The owner has 5 different parrots. We stayed here until about 3 PM then we ate in the IGUANA garden. There are pictures of this place. You can see pictures of the "Utila Spiny Tailed Iguana" that are found only in Utila. These pictures were taken from our table while we ate. We took the tuk-tuk back to the hotel to drop Gabby and I off for her nap and then the rest of the family went back to the pier to snorkel until dark. Gabby was still sleeping when they got back so they left us and went to a place called the "Pizza Nut" to eat pizza and bring some back for us. It was soooo yummy! The crust was super thin. If you are ever in Utila you have to eat here.

The next day we were going to get up and go snorkeling one last time before catching the ferry at 2, but we were too sunburned. We actually applied sunscreen twice but I guess it wasn't quite good enough for the Utila Sun. So we just slept in. We had the Tuk- Tuk pick us up at 12 and take us over to the boat dock. We ate lunch at the best, and I mean the best, sooo good that you would go back to the Island just to eat there, Mexican restaurant. I took a picture of it for the blog it was so good. The enchiladas are the best you will ever eat and the nachos are world famous. Yummm!

So anyway the trip was wonderful and so much fun. Utila is breathtakingly beautiful. When we were researching it the books and websites mentioned that the rainy season doesn't start there until November. This didn't make sense to us since it is so close, but apparantly the tradewinds hold the rain on the mainland until November, so it was clear and beautiful. It is an island that is mainly for dive certifications. They are supposedly the cheapest place in the world to get certified. $250 including accomodations for your open water. Which takes 3 and a half days. Once you get this certification they will take you out for $25 including the equipment rental. So the island was full of young single adults coming to learn how to dive. It had a party atmosphere and we were really the only family on the island. Tourism is down right now because of the political problems, so there weren't many people and whenever you talked to the locals you could tell they were really hurting. It was really sad. July is normally their busiest month and was slower than their slowest month typically. The island's first language is English and second Spanish. So you don't have to worry about communication issues to go here.

As far as political issues we didn't have a problem. I did take a picture of one group of protestors we passed blocking one lane of the road. They all waved at us and smiled because the USA is working to help reinstate their President. I don't know alot about the issues here, but apparantly the President was changing the constitution with out approval from any other government bodies. One thing he changed was "no term limits". So the millitary kidnapped him in the night and congress voted the next day to impeach him. Part of the country loved him so they are protesting.

I also took a picture of one of the palm tree farms. They were so beautiful. I wanted to hang a hammock and chill under the canopy.

That's all I've got this time. Keep checking the comments though for Nathan's description of the snorkeling.

Thanks Kimbo for the rainy day suggestions. It is actually fairly sunny today! Yeah! I will defiantely use the website and the suggestions though. The game sounds so fun. I can't wait for it to rain so we can play it!