Already celebrating!

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One of the many, many things I like about Peruvian culture is how big they celebrate Mother’s Day!  When I say it’s big, I mean, it’s up there with Christmas as far as holidays go.  At school, there are dance practices, gift making, vacation days, all in honor of mothers.  So, still a week away from the actual Mother’s Day, my little girls had a beautiful Mother’s Day program at school.

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I love this picture below snapped by a friend . . . all the mothers and their camera gear, so proud of their babies.

. . yeah, that’s me at the end “Hi Eva!”

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This Mother’s Day,  I am super excited to actually spend it with my mother!  She and my Dad are coming for their annual visit and it falls on Mother’s day!

Honoring those who work hard. . .

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“Dia de los Trabajadores” or Labor Day is celebrated on May 1st here in Peru.  Our Peruvian friends know what it means to work hard.  There are no government systems in place to fall back on if you are unable or decide not to work and very few retirement programs.

At school earlier this week, Abigail’s class did a cute musical number to celebrate and honor all those working hard everyday to get the “little” jobs done.

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“Don’t be afraid to give your best to what seemingly are small jobs. Every time you conquer one it makes you that much stronger. If you do the little jobs well, the big ones will tend to take care of themselves.” -Dale Carnegie PeruLaborDayAbigailDanceatSchool“There is no substitute for hard work.” -Thomas Edison

Surprise!

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Yesterday we celebrated Allen’s 37th birthday! At the end of a great day, he was TOTALLY taken off guard with a surprise party throw by many of his Peruvian friends and mission team. In good Peruvian style, they showered him with gifts of encouraging words, each sharing how he has impacted their life and how they see God working through him.

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And any good birthday party here includes cake in the face!

Happy Birthday Allen! You are loved my many!

Celebrating : one of the fun ways we live in community!

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As I mentioned in an earlier blog post,  last year I excepted my friend Carolina’s (pictured above) request that I be the photographer for her event planning business.  It has been such a fun blessing to have this creative outlet of working beside such a talented person. Since she plans mostly children’s birthday parties, it is a very fun job!  Earlier this week, her youngest daughter turned one! Carolina threw an incredible party with an “ice cream shop” theme.

Celebrating is one of the fun ways we get to live “in community” with others.

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We are so very thankful for this family, they have been such great friends to our whole family!

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Community Easter Party

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Our missional cell group hosted an Easter party today as a way to serve the community and get to know our neighbors better. It was a huge success.  Pablo and Emilio did an incredible job with some “egg games” and telling the story of Christ’s resurrection. And of course the Easter egg hunt (not a Peruvian custom) was a hit! While the kids were on the hunt for eggs, our cell group members were able to talk to the parents, inviting them to our missional cell group in the neighborhood as well as inviting them to our downtown church.

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Viernes Santo Candle Light Service

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Tonight was a special night of remembering the last 7 words of Christ.  We had a beautiful candle light service in our living room with our Cristo Rey church congregation and many of our neighbors.  The service moved our oldest daughter, Abigail, to tears. She was truly waited down with the thought that the Son of God suffered for her sins. She could not imagine how Mary must have felt watching her dear son suffer on the cross. All the more can she (and we) can rejoice Sunday morning!

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Prayers for our neighborhood Easter party please!

We would greatly appreciate your prayers for a neighborhood Easter party our missional community group is putting on next Saturday. The vision is to not only serve our community with a fun event, but also have the opportunity to befriend and invite more of our neighbors to our missional cell group.  We are firm believers in the power of the prayers of the saints and we feel so blessed to have so many praying supporters.

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Allen and two of his wonderful “Timothys” planning  games, making the invitations and getting ready to tell the most marvelous story of Jesus Christ’s resurrection.  The girls and I took care of putting candy in 500 plastic eggs for the Easter egg hunt. Fun times!

A new school year. . .

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We were all very excited to begin the 2013 school year here in Peru.  I really like how the school year coincides with the calendar.  It begins the beginning of March and ends just before Christmas.  So with the celebrating of Christmas and the new year, we also celebrate the beginning of summer break.  We have a had a wonderful summer filled a visit from Dadeo (Allen’s father ), an adventurous trip to Machu Picchu, summer camp provided by Twin Lakes, many great days with our friends at the beach & pool, roller blading in the park with the other missionary kids and some fun art and photography projects.

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We are thankful for the great summer, but my girls (like their parents) are always ready to get back into a good routine.  Allen and I begin this Thursday meeting with our core group of neighbors to brainstorm and pray about possible events and projects that we can do to get to know our neighbors better as a means to incorporate them into our missional cell group this year.

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Thank you God for giving us two great Peruvian schools for our girls to attend.

We pray our family will bless & love many people this year because we have been so blessed and loved.

Excited about a new year!

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Last weekend our “Cristo Rey” church held a conference of training and getting everyone excited about relaunching our missional cell groups around the city.  We would appreciate your prayers for the Golf cell group (in our home) and the other groups around Trujillo that we would start with strong core groups that would unit to reach our neighborhoods for Christ.  And that these missional groups would multiple to start more missional cell groups by the end of the year.  And, most importantly, that these groups would be a means to bring more lost people into a Christian community and to a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ.