Saturday, December 15, 2012

Day #4 DR Trip

July 30th, Lunes  (Monday)

6:45 AM did come quickly.  Last year we were awaken super early by fighting dogs and roosters.  Not so much this year.  The people who had the roosters behind us have we don't have them to bother us.  There are still several in the neighborhood, but at least they are not right behind us.  And the bedroom I am in this year is not on the street side where the dogs fight, so I didn't have to worry about that either.  We got breakfast and headed out to Hautico.  We did home visits while some worked on planting trees in the church grounds.  Cam stayed with the planting team.  The churches around here often have fruit trees behind the church and they use their vegetation to help support the people of the church family.  Really very neat.   I went out with Jenn and Isaiah.  We hit about 6 or 7 houses.  We spoke to them and reminded them of VBS and church on Friday.  Two houses really stood out to me.  One was a grandma and grandpa.  Some of their children and their children lived there also.  Grandma's name was Michaelina.  She owned a little store front.  She was incredible.  Her grandson had a TERRIBLE burn on his foot.  We promised we would be back later to treat it to the best of our ability.  We prayed for them and went on.  The other house we enjoyed was another grandmas house.  Her name was Norma.  Her whole family lived around her.  She has 9 children!  She didn't even know how many grandchildren she had. She was AWESOME!  We prayed with her also and moved on.  I love the incredible hospitality that the Dominican people give.  You go to a house and they are SO happy to host you, they will give up their chairs and say, "Sit, Sit!"  They will stop whatever they are doing to be with you.  They'll offer you anything and everything.  They just have incredible hospitality!  

After we visited, we went back to the church.  Pastor Octavio gave us coconuts to drink the milk out of.  I wasn't a huge fan, but it was cool and refreshing.  It AMAZED me exactly HOW cool it was.  It may as well have come out of a fridge and it has just been cut from the tree!  The boys were still all digging and planting.  Pretty soon Cam came in an asked if we wanted to see a tarantula.  We did!  We went outside and he was holding it on a twig!  ICK!  It was playing dead though as they often do when messed with....but we THOUGHT it WAS dead!!  We didn't know that it had been playing dead until Cam put it back on the ground and it scampered away!!!  FREAKED us out!  Soon we headed off to La Casa for lunch.  Lunch was La Bandera as usual with some Jamon in it this time.  YUM!!  After lunch I took the food to the neighbors.  I had done this once before on this trip, pero la mama no esta aqui, pero este tiempo fue a la casa!  She asked me my name,  I told her Tonya.  She asked if I was the Tonya from last year, I said yes and she was so excited and I was so excited!  It was a great reunion!  

After lunch we headed back to Huatico.  We started VBS with the kids.  It was a pretty good day.  I just am not feeling the connection with these kids this year.  I need to pray about it and try not to compare last year with this year.  VBS was successful and then we headed back for the dinner.  We had Tacos for dinner tonight!  They were tasty! Then we walked to the Supermercado.  I always enjoy doing that.  I got COLD water, COLD gatorade and Ice Cream. Cam got Tostitos, Coke and Cheese Dip.  We were all thrilled. After our walk we played Rage.  We had a FABULOUS time!  LOVE THAT GAME!  Wayne played and he is quite the funny guy.  He showed his true colors!  I found Tayler crying.  I asked her what was wrong.  She said she just doesn't feel the connection with the community like last year and as I wrote earlier, I understand that.  We prayed together.  I asked a couple other people who had been here last year and they agreed.  So we all prayed.  Hopefully tomorrow will be different.

 Michaelina and I ready for church.

 Norma with Jenn and I.

 Our Hautico Church.

Day #3, DR Trip

July 29th, 2012...Domingo (Sunday)

Today we woke up and put on jeans ( this humidity!), to work in the field for Miguels property.  We were digging a hole....a HUGE hole for a septic tank.  They hope to live on this land someday.  Some of us dug and some of us weeded around the plants, flowers and trees and watered them.  It was exhausting because it was SO hot.  There was a drunk guy walking around the perimeter the whole time trying to tell us how to do it better.  We were told to stay back from the fence by Miguel in case he tried to grab us.  It was only 9 in the morning!  We were done with that around noon and we cleaned up the house really nice before lunch.  Lunch was La Bandera again (yum)!  We rested only for about 30 minutes before we had to go out and start VBS with the kids in Hautico.  Our story was Creation.  We had about 50 kids there....but before they came we walked around and invited them all.  We talked to a lot of families.  They gave me the translator who doesn't know a lot of English again because between the two of us we do well together.  His name is Isaiah.  He's super nice.  We got to one house where there were boys riding a Donkey.  I said, "Como se llama tu Burro?  They said, ".....BURRO!"  It was funny, obviously they had no name for this donkey.  So we all sat down to talk with the family and the boys asked Cam and Adam if they wanted to ride the Burro and they did!  It was awesome!  Soon we went back to La Iglesia and played with frisbees, jumprope and bubbles. Then we started VBS.  We had a great time!  After VBS we had church.  Cam had a little buddy named Andi who was sitting by him and kept pretending to beat him up.

Before church started though, there was this man.  He came up to me and got about 3 inches from my face and started telling me about what a good baseball player he was.  He kept rambling so I got Lorene, another translator, to come over.  She told me to walk away because he was being inappropriate.  Then during church he sat next to Cam, who was next to me.  Cam got upset and told me to move...but I didn't and he was fine.  Church was fabulous.  I really enjoyed it, though we were very tired.  After, we prayed for the people around us.  It was a super late night because we were all gross and needed to bucket shower.  It was after midnight when we went to bed.  6:45 comes very quickly!

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Day #2 DR Trip

July 28th, 2012....Saturday

We woke up at 7am to be at breakfast by 7:30.  There was a good sized continental breakfast there, eggs, bacon, pineapple, etc.  Cam had jerky though to be safe because of his allergies, that he brought from the states.  After we exchanged our dollars for pesos we headed out shopping because we only had until 9:45.  Not all the shops were open, but there were still quite a few.  Our favorite one was not though  :-( , but we managed.  We got gifts for everyone including ourselves.  We did a lot of bartering.  At 9:45 we headed back to the hotel and we saw Miguel!  After hellos and hugs we loaded the mini bus for San Juan.  It was a nice drive.  We stopped after a couple hours for a bathroom break and Cam had to have a coke.  There was a lady sitting in the bathroom handing out toilet paper to everyone.  It was a little odd.  What if we needed more than she gave us?  Back on the bus and another couple of hours we were "home" back in San Juan de la Maguana!  Home sweet DR Home!  We drove first to Miguels house and picked up lunch, then we headed to our guest house.  We ate and then had a little orientation.  We had our beloved Banderos (rice and beans).  SO exciting!  Then Paster Octavio from the church in Huatico came to visit with a couple of his parishioners.  They each told us their testimony and how excited they were that we were here.  After, I had a really bad headache, so I laid down from about 5-7 when dinner and Kristen came.  I brought 2 bags of maternity clothes to Kristen!  She was super excited!  She is due in November.  We ate our meal of carne and arroz, talked a little more, had testimony given by Darwin and Trevor and then it was time to get ready for bed.  It was HORRIBLY hot and humid, so I took a shower...a bucket shower with a COCKROACH!!!  He's drowned now...I made sure of that!  Bed felt WONDERFUL!  We have to get up at 6:45 tomorrow for our longest and hardest day!

Buenas Noches!

Dominican Republic Trip #2....Day 1

The following 10 or so posts will be directly from my journal that I wrote while in the Dominican Republic for Cams and my 2nd Parent/Child trip.  Thank you to EVERYONE for your support whether it be through prayer or financial support.  We couldn't have made the trip without YOU!

We are planning a third trip this summer.  Only this time, Jake wants to go.  Jake will be the age that Cam was when he went on the first trip.  Great time to start!  Cam isn't sure if he will go this year or not....he is still thinking and praying about it.

Here we go.....

July 27th, 2012....Friday

Today has been a great day.  We woke up at 8 am, got dressed, ready and ate breakfast and were off to the airport by 9:30.  Just Jeff took Cam and I and Jake stayed home with MaKenna and Major.  They were sad to see us go.  The flight to Chicago was VERY bumpy and a tad bit scary.  Yet again it was  just a little puddle jumper.  In Chicago we had just enough time to grab a lunch before we got on a flight to Miami.  There are 22 of us, so thats a lot of people to herd.  The flight to Miami was almost 3 hours and a MUCH bigger plane.  It was a fairly smooth flight.  In Miami, yet again, we had just enough time to grab a very late dinner before we were off for Santo Domingo.  The flight to Santo Domingo was very smooth.  Cam and I enjoyed watching the lights of the little islands go by.  Once we were in Santo Domingo we had to go through customs and find our luggage.  It was almost midnight before we got it all.  Miguel is sick so he didn't meet us at the airport.  Our driver found us and we loaded our luggage on the mini-bus.

One thing I forgot to mention was all the teams in Miami either coming home from the Carribean on missions trips or going to the Carribean on missions trips like Haiti or Jamaica.  I also was excited about all the people that kept asking us where we were going and why.  It opened up conversations about Jesus.

Once we were on the bus, we had about a 25 minute drive to the Mercure Hotel where we stayed last year on our last night.  We got to the hotel around 1:30am.  Cam and I took showers and were in bed by 2, but the nightlife in santo Domingo is SO lively, neither of us fell asleep until after 2:30 even though we were exhausted.  There was loud music, loud people, sirens, dogs and car horns which were the most annoying.  We survived the night though and our last warm shower for 9 days.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

1st grade, 5th grade, 7th grade graduations!

My little girl celebrated her 1st grade graduation with field day at school!  I can't believe she is growing up so fast!

Then there is Jake...moving from 5th to 6th grade, which here in Nebraska means he leaves elementary school and into Middle School!

Cam celebrated his 7th grade graduation with a ceremony at school.  He is now the big man on campus at the Middle School!

Track and the Zoo

Cam joined Track and Field this year.  He did fairly well.  His events were sprinting events.  He did well, but didn't quite make it to state...maybe this year!

On Spring Break Rhonda and I took all the kids to the Zoo.  You gotta love the Omaha is by far the best I've ever been to!

Duke went to Heaven, May 29th, 2012

Duke had been limping for awhile....and not eating a ton.  We took him in and found out he had a tumor on his shoulder causing his limping problems.  It got so bad that he stopped using his front leg all together.  We finally made the decision to let him go.  It was a very sad time.

Duke Filleman 9-11-01 to 5-29-12
You were a good dog and will be very missed.

Lacrosse, Cam, Jake and MaKenna

Cam, Jake and MaKenna all played Lacrosse this spring/summer.  They had a great time and they all play very well.  Here is Cam in his game, followed by a picture of Jake and his team, and then MaKenna all dolled up and ready to go!

Major's Activities!

Major gets to do a lot too....but it doesn't involve the ice rink...yet.  Thank goodness!!!!  He is a MASTER swimmer though!  He LOVES to swim and he is SUPER good at it!

MaKenna took lessons with him this summer before our Arizona trip...but he can swim circles around her!

He also learned how to ride his bike with training wheels!  

And his sport this summer....while everyone else was playing Lacrosse...he played SOCCER!!!

Figure Skating!

In keeping with the ice rink tradition in the Filleman family, MaKenna decided to forego Hockey and go to Figure Skating.  Either way, we are STILL at the ice rink!  She had a competition in February and came in third place!  We had a lot of EARLY morning, before school practices and weekend practices, but she did great!!!

 Her coach giving her a pep talk.

Third place, and the youngest girl!

End of the Hockey Season 2012

Cam's Pee Wee Select Team ended the season in first place!!!  They were THRILLED!  You can see the banner as you scroll down that now hangs in the ice rink at Tranquility Park in Omaha, NE!

Jake had a good year too!  They walked away with second in the Mites division!