Sunday, April 29, 2012

Monteverde in Under 8 Minutes

Thanks to my talented neighbor, Adrienne, for making this wonderful video of this year's Monteverde Friends School Walkathon. This year, I opted to work a station with the family (Famous Station #7) handing out watermelon and words of encouragement to participants. Other years I have run the 13K route, but my body told me I better listen to it this year, so that I did and enjoyed spending the day with my boys. Enjoy the video and hope, through this, you can understand why we love this community so much. Smile for the camera Mike!
They sure look like they need a cool slice of watermelon! Good friends of ours from the school, take a break to refuel.
There were quite a few folks that saddled up and went by horse - Massimo (first grader) rides with his dad, Paco! Giddy-Up Now!
John stamping a walker's number to make sure she gets credit for walking all 13 kilometers. Good work John!
Michael's no fool - he makes sure he has entertainment for the lulls in the walkers - a perfect spot to set up hotwheets!
Peace, signed: S

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Where shall I begin? Thyroid Imbalance - Back to normal (whatever normal is)...never want to repeat that month. Edema, joint pain, depression, weight loss, it was not a pretty picture, but I can say, I am back to exercising (in moderation) and thankful that I have my health back. Lice - Well the little "buggers" came back again, so off came the hair on both of the boys! It wasn't a battle at all, so I plugged in the clippers and hacked away! Nice to see their eyes again and oh, the savings on shampoo! June Flights - Purchased! We land in Charlotte, NC on June 11th and will spend several days in Hickory with my folks. The boys will stay the week with Poppy and Choppy as Mike and I take advantage of their generous offer to watch the kids as we head to Chicago to 'set up house'. Yes, for all of you that don't know our news - we are moving back to the Chicago area. May Flight - Purchased! I will be flying back to Chicago for a whirlwind four day trip to look at rental homes, interview in the city and check out schools and summer programs for the boys. I'll have to buy an 'interview outfit', as I'm sure my camo shorts, tank top and three year old croc sandals won't fit the bill. Fence Building and Hole Digging - Trying desperately to complete the fence around our land in San Luis so we can plant our trees that Mike bought several weeks ago at a local nursery. Raul and Mike are working together but the hole digging is all manual, using heavy, old equipment - it is not for the weak! So, we packed up the kids last weekend and spent a 'work' day at the farm - I helped to dig holes up the driveway (of course, the rockiest part of the land) and am now suffering from my mistake of not wearing gloves :( The kids worked with the machete and saw as Mike and I concentrated on the holes. A couple more to go and then we'll be able to get the fruit trees in the ground. They say, May is the time to plant as the rains are sure to start. Our plan is to have our land mature while we are back in the states, and one day, build a small cabin to spend vacations and perhaps even return for another international experience in the future.
Birthday Parties and Soccer - The kids are enjoying soccer and have enjoyed the soccer outfits I have picked up at the American Clothing store in Santa Elena - The celebrated a friends 7th birthday with a soccer game ag Casem, a scavenger hunt and pinata! Happy Boys!
I am focused on the transition home and am eager to start back to work. It is time to clean house and start a 'give away' pile. Hopeful that anything we will not be taking state-side will find good homes. The school has hired a new Director and is in the process of interviewing for some new positions. Certainly a time of transition for all! For those of you who have contributed to the financial aid program at the school - we are close to making our goal and we thank you so much for your generosity. In an effort, to get this post on the blog, I will close here, know that we are looking forward to seeing you all and reconnecting with you. Peace, Signed: S

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Thoughts On The Simple Life

Hello Again. Yes we are here and well. We have been busily enjoying the dry season, and life in Monteverde continues to delightfully surprise us. We are in a similar stage as we were three years ago, preparing for a big move and not saying any permanent good byes. Inevitably, even in such a non-materialistic mini-culture, it seems that there is still much to purge from our not-so massive pile of belongings.

I have not written much on the blog lately, maybe because I am just experiencing the day to day life in a rural town. I would like to share some events, not to brag about what a special place this is (OK, am I bragging?) but to remind myself and others that there certainly are different ways of living and thinking. The average way here is more simple than the average way of life in North America and much closer to the natural world that we all depend on to sustain us. People do not need a cloud forest outside their backdoor to understand humanity's absolute dependency on nature, whether nature is a rock, a tree, 3 liters of oxygen rich air, the climate, an aquifer, etc.

Climb a tree, grow tomatoes, lie on your back and look at the clouds or birds. Relax. Enjoy what we have and save it for our grandchildren's grandchildren.