Saturday, February 25, 2017

Meet the World's Cutest Brother-In-Law! - February 2017 Ministry Update

As I prepared to leave the Ranch for a time to be with my husband in Nicaragua, I knew that I couldn't leave without letting the kids who come to Bible study ride Zoeva, so on our last Friday together for a little while, I groomed and saddled the little mare and got all of them on for a short pony ride. Most of them got on without hesitation although a couple took some extra motivation. But they all enjoyed it, and of course I made sure I got pictures of them.

Hold on tight, cowboy!

Ready to ride while Oscar plays soccer with the boys as they wait for their turn.

Excited to finally get to ride!

We even convinced P to ride! 


The following week, we all headed off to the Honduran Fellowship retreat, where us and a couple hundred other missionaries spent time worshipping together in English, attending workshops about a number of problems missionaries face, and eating meals together. I was able to secure housing off-site with a family so that I could bring my kitten along.

It was an AMAZING time of rest, learning, and fellowship. It was really good to be able to reconnect with friends I had met at previous events throughout the year and last year's retreat, and to make new connections. Although I was no longer able to be a part of the single missionaries event, I enjoyed sitting down with other married missionaries and hearing their stories. What an inspiration to be with couples that have been serving for over 30 years together!

Are we there yet?

Directly from there, Roberto and his dad came all the way to Tegucigalpa to pick Olivia and me up. We all had lunch together and then as the Beards went back to the Ranch, I went with my family to Nicaragua. It was a long journey made even longer by the construction that was everywhere along the two-lane highway, but we made it to the border around 10pm and then finally to the house around 2:30am.

Stretching out after a LONG day of traveling.

My mother-in-law thought she was done having kids nearly 14 years ago with the birth of her third son, but God had other plans and so while I was at the retreat I got the news that her water had broken which eventually led to a c-section because she had some heart issues during the pregnancy. Little E had some minor complications after birth so he was kept in the hospital for a few days.

I was excited to get the invitation from my father-in-law to go with them to pick him up. Of course I instantly fell in love with all 5 and a half pounds of him. He's not only super adorable, but he's also a really chill baby.

Like I said, world's cutest brother-in-law!

The young woman who's been helping out with the cooking and cleaning is on a short vacation, so I've been taking over a lot of her duties along with Roberto. I've never cooked Nicaraguan food before and never really consistently cooked for more than one or two people, so it's definitely been a learning experience, but overall it's been good, and I love being able to help out around the house.

Hanging out with E while his bathwater is readied!

And I've of course been able to spend a lot more time with my husband which has also been really good. We're still really new at marriage, so it's not all pretty, but we're both working hard to overcome our cultural differences and really communicate well with each other so we can have an amazing marriage. I can't help but to be in a constant state of awe at the amazing man that God has blessed me with.


I've also been able to get a good start on some marketing ideas M and I have for the trade school. I'm working hard to gather lists of names and contact information that we will start working our way through to hopefully get more of the trade school products out there in the world. If we can get even a few positive responses, then it will be a huge blessing to the students in the trade school.

Please be praying:
- For the staff at the Ranch as they continue doing ministry without me, that God brings in more help as needed and that they wouldn't burn out with too much work.
- For the connections I will soon be trying to make, that it would be a blessing to the trade school students.
- For the Bible study lessons that I'm planning that I would be able to reach the kids for Jesus through them.
- For unity within my new family, that I would continue to adjust to the culture and be able to help them as they need me. In particular, for my mother-in-law as she cares for a new baby while her body continues to heal.
- For our marriage that it continues to be honoring to God and that we continue to work together to make our relationship rock solid.
- For Roberto's work situation as he continues to wait to hear when he'll start at the call center where he applied a month ago, as well as that we would be able to get his visa to be able to travel together to the US this August.

Weak kid who spent the night in my room.
He's now doing great!

If you are interested in supporting us financially, you may do so online or by check.

Online: Visit and click the “Donate” button on the sidebar to give through PayPal. Make sure you include my name (or Roberto’s) and your email address so the funds can be directed to us.

By check: Make checks payable to “RO4Y” and include a note with my name (or Roberto’s) and your email address, then send the checks to: Rancho Oasis for Youth, P.O. Box 1853, Mason City, IA 50401.

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