Monday, August 20, 2012
Life in Nicaragua~Part 1
As of today, my 2 younger teens and I have been in Nicaragua for 1 week. I thought I would share a bit about life here which is really first impressions.
The picture above is the back patio. There is really no yard to speak of. This is the spot where the kids mostly play with toys and their razor scooters. It is our laundry area and it is a blessing to get to hang clothes under a roof. There are 2 clothes lines out from under the roof too.
The house is quite large with 5 rooms that can be bedrooms, one sun room, an open area for living room and dining room and kitchen, a TV room, and 3 bathrooms (we only use 2 so far). There are 14 beds (I think, I haven't counted).
The down side of the house is that there are no ceilings! So, there is this gap at the top between the walls and the roof.
This bed is messy as one of the kids took the picture. Mama would have neatened the bed first. ;)
Since the house is open to the outside, we sleep under mosquito nets. The windows have no screens but since the house is already wide open we keep the windows open for air. Every bedroom also has a standing fan on the floor.
There are bars on the windows and doors. The great advantage, besides security, is that the kids can play soccer outside and if the ball flies at a window, it hits the bars rather than breaking the window!!
Surrounding our small property is a wall about 15 feet high. This is great as those on the street cannot even see if our kids are outside and I don't have to worry about the kids leaving the yard. There's a gate on the front of the wall. There is no getting in or out without the key! There a metal knocker on the road side so I know when someone has arrived.
There is also a building in the front of our wall and other side of our patio that houses a church. They use our patio for children's ministry on Sundays. This past Sunday when we came home I only noticed 3 children. It is a small church.
I still haven't taken a picture of where we wash the laundry. Maybe I am in denial! ;) The younger children love to play with the water when the afternoon is hot. It is a good outlet for them!
Our frig is small for 8 people and it has a freezer box that needs to be defrosted. But there is no time to have the frig empty so do it so we don't use the freezer. Every other day, either all of us or my husband and one or two of the kids, walks to the market for food. There are 2 small grocery stores for our meat, dairy, and non perishables and then we go to the same woman in the market for our produce. There is one other person who we buy pineapple from. Our driver and overall Nica life interpreter taught my husband where to buy food. He also showed Robin where to buy big containers of water. He knows our American stomachs are weak!
Our younger 4 especially love fresh fruits and veggies. So, in the morning we have our breakfast and also cut apples or bananas or pineapple or grapes or this other fruit who's name escapes me...it looks like a really small lime but you break open the skin and there is kiwi-like flesh and a pit. At lunch and supper there is more fruit and also cut up tomatoes (so good here!) or cucumbers.
Here's one crazy thing here...they have money changers in the market where you can exchange American money for Nicaraguan Cordovas. They stand in the market with huge wads of cash! Can you imagine it? We think of America as safer but would you stand on a busy street in America with people walking all around you all the time waving big amounts of cash? No way!! But they do this here! And they don't seem to be robbed.
The market itself takes some getting used to. It is often busy and crowded and intimidating. The people are friendly enough but we are an attraction because 1. It is obvious we are foreigners and 4 Nicaraguan children, 2. If you miss our bright white skin, you won't miss that we are many, 3. Everyone seems to know everyone but do not know us. We're not used to being an attraction...
There are also dips and holes sometimes in the side walk. You are holding the hand of one of your children and guiding them around people or cars or vendors. You are looking ahead since it's busy and I am becoming famous for stepping in holes unaware! It jars my back when I hit bottom!! So Christian has taken it upon himself to warn me when I need to look down!
There is a park we can walk to that has a bouncy house sometimes on the weekends. This past Saturday we went and there was no bouncy house...sadness...but maybe next weekend.
We're adjusting...it feels huge. But God is with us and He reminds me daily that in all things I need to be content! I would love to hop on a plane today with all 6 children that are here with me. But I know in my heart that my younger 4 need this time to adjust to their new family without also adjusting to American culture which will be just a big or bigger to deal with. So I know it is good and God ordained. I know that God knows how long we need to stay. And I seek to purposely rest in that truth.
"I am not saying this because I am in need, for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry,whether living in plenty or in want. I can do all this through him who gives me strength." Phil. 4:11-13