Well I’m finally taking time to write again.  It’s so easy to make excuses as to why I don’t write, but it really boils down to priority.

A lot has been happening the last month or so.

We met some friends (Christ and Yvonne) who are professional house sitters and travel all around the globe keeping an eye on people’s homes, pets or both while they are away.  We met them as they were here in Crucita on a job for some people who needed to travel back to the states for a time.  They both took a liking to this area and after their job here ended, we invited them to stay with us for a time before traveling back to the UK.  What a delight getting to know them better and learning about their very interesting lives!  During the time that Chris and Yvonne were staying with us we had our very first visitors from the US, my best friend Sheri and her husband Donny.  The six of us had quite an amazing time as it just happened to be Carnival here in Ecuador.  Carnival is celebrated throughout all of Ecuador and Crucita is no exception.  In fact, people come from surrounding areas to spend Carnival (which is similar to Marti Gras in the states) in Crucita.  There was food, parades, music, dancing and foam!  Cans of foam are sold on nearly every street corner and it is traditional to spray each other (even random people you don’t know) with foam as you pass them on the street.  Kids would chase each other with it having foam wars.  Adults took part as well and if someone sprayed you, you laughed it off.  It’s part of the celebration!  It was wonderful seeing a familiar face again and having time to talk, pray and re-connect with each other’s lives.  I’m hoping to see them again soon.

Yvonne and Chris decided to take some time to see the rest of Ecuador about a week or so after Sheri and Donny left.  They decided to travel around the country and experience the mountains, jungle and wherever else their travels took them.  They plan to return shortly and spend a little more time here in Crucita with us and I’m anxious to hear about their adventures.

The day after Sheri and Donny left to go back home, we had an interesting experience at the property we lived on the beach.  The lease was up on March 10 so we were getting ready to move to a different place anyway, however on the 1st of March our internet went out so we had very little means of communication and needed to find other areas with a hot spot to connect.  Then on around March 2nd or 3rd the power went out and stayed out (it’s not uncommon for the power to go out for several hours at a time here randomly).  We had no way of contacting our landlords and later learned that the electric was disconnected intentionally.   So with no power, we were forced to move a week early…in the dark, with food thawing in the freezer, and no way of getting water due to the water pump being electric.  We felt so blessed to have Chris and Yvonne with us still as they were a tremendous help for us packing in the blistering heat and helping us relocate to a different home.  You would think packing would be easy since we came to the area with only 8 totes of personal belongings, however we have accumulated quite a few items in the short 5 months we were here and it took several truck loads of help from a friend who has a vehicle to move us.

I know and was reminded again of how God works all things out after being in the new home for only one night.  We live in a gated community which at the time wasn’t extremely important to me however I’m appreciating the value of being able to walk the dogs in the community without fear of traffic, broken glass and debris and of course the street dogs here.  We have to be careful because our girls  cause quite a ruckus if they see other dogs and wouldn’t stand a chance in terms of a fight.  Also the poor street dogs unfortunately are often full of flees, tics and diseases.

The home needed a tremendous amount of cleaning and painting and after several weeks of chipping away at it, we are finally settled!  What a beautiful home it ended up being!  The exterior resembles a large ship with three levels.  The three levels have patio areas in which the railings on the patios come to a point reminiscent of a boat.  The home has 4 bdrms and 4 baths (each bdrm has its own bathroom) as well as a half bath on the upper level “deck” or patio area.  There are 5 patios total not including the upper level deck.  We are excited to potentially have a covering built on the 3rd level deck so we can spend more time up there and enjoy sunsets.  In addition to the 1/2 bath, there is also a small bar/kitchen area with a sink and outlets for a frig or other appliance.

The home is located in Crucita off the Malecon and is easy walking to restaurants and the subdivision is directly across the street from the beach.  We are also located directly on the bus route when we need to take a trip into Porto Viejo.  We feel incredibly blessed and happy to be here and are excited to continue our adventure here!

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