Our new family picture... you can download the prayer card here.
As I pulled out a few fall/Thanksgiving decorations this-morning, it occurred to me what I was doing. I’m decorating for fall already?! Last time we sent out an e-mail update I was all excited about the upcoming 4th of July festivities. Where did the summer go??? They say time flies when you’re having fun. Apparently it flies even faster when you are insanely busy!
In July we flew to the US just in time for some fireworks. We found a tiny little one room apartment in Aurora and moved in to that as soon as we could. Nathan started working construction up in the Denver area, and Cloe and I sat around and waited for the baby to come! Actually, we kept really busy visiting friends and family that we’d been missing, seeing as many parks as we could, etc. I was due with Gabi on Aug 15th, but she didn’t want to come by that date. So on the 17th at 6 pm my Dr. induced me and 5 hrs later, we had a baby! Gabriella Joy weighed in at 6 lbs 15 oz and absolutely perfect! We spent the next few weeks trying to learn how to be a family of 4. Cloe immediately fell in love with her baby sister. She refers to her as “my baby” and “sweetie pie” and is absolutely precious to her. If you want to read more about Gabi you can go to her birth story page on our website. One of the reasons we were SO glad to be in the US this summer was for the birth of my little sister’s first baby! Kimberly and Jeremy were expecting just one month after Gabi was due. Landon Vincent was born on Sep 16th. He is, of course, absolutely adorable! I’m so proud of my “baby sister” who is already such a great mama. Mostly I’m just SO glad we could be in Colorado long enough to meet Landon!
On Sep. 26th (after much drama and frustration with the vehicles) Nathan loaded up and headed South. We were driving 2 vehicles down here for 2 different friends, and one of them decided to stop working just 2 days before he left. So Nathan ended up having to tow that car all the way down here. In the meantime, I stayed in our apartment with the girls and starting wrapping things up. We were due to fly out Oct. 2nd, armed with Gabi’s birth certificate. Turns out we were mis-informed and couldn’t fly without her passport, even though the application had been submitted. So at 5:30 am on the 2nd we found ourselves packed and ready to fly, but not allowed to! It was a traumatic morning. On top of that though, our apartment was emptied out and we had turned the keys back in… so we had nowhere to go! I knew we had to stay in the Denver area in order to get the passport mess straightened out. Thankfully, Pastor Jim and Sandy Brannon opened up their home to us. We’ll never be able to say enough about what a blessing they are to us. Finally, after 3 days at the Passport Agency, we were able to fly home!!! After 11 days as a single mom, I realized all over again how grateful I am for Nathan… we were SO excited to see him at the airport in Tuxtla! For several minutes all Cloe could say was “Daddy I’m so glad about you!!!”
Now we’ve been back for almost a month. Nathan has been hard at work on the new Acts project, lining up voice actors and beginning the recording process. He also took a trip last week out to the Zoque jungle to distribute water filters, and was able to share with several people a Scripture in John that speaks about Jesus being the Living Water. Joel Arcos went on this trip with Nathan, and was, of course, a great asset. When they were ready to head back out of the village, they discovered that all the rain they’d been experiencing those few days had caused some major mudslides and they couldn’t drive out! Since that problem could take weeks to resolve, they decided to go ahead and set out on foot. After hiking for a few hours they were able to catch a ride in the back of a truck to the next town, where they then caught a taxi, then a bus, then another taxi. Finally, soaking wet and rather stinky, they made it home! Now our poor truck is stuck out there in the jungle and Nathan will have to make another trip out pretty soon to bring it back.
Thanksgiving is right around the corner now! We want to be sure that you know that you’re at the top of our list of things to be thankful for. `Hope your Thanksgiving is full of family, friends and good food!
Blessings, Julie (for Nathan, Cloe and Gabi)