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Thursday, October 28, 2010

2011 is around the corner.... {2011 YWAM Calendars}

Need a great wall calendar for next year?  2011 is almost here, and we have these wonderful calendars featuring photos taken by YWAM Pismo staff.  You can keep all your dates, events, and schedules organized while at the same time enjoying a photos from around the world.  Each month features a different country... a great way to remember to pray for the people of China, Haiti, Thailand, and Nicaragua!

Below you can preview the photos that will be featured throughout the 12 month calendar... and in addition, a little information about who we are as YWAM Pismo Beach.  Brandon and I are personally involved in leading DTSes, as well as leading the SFMI (Surfer's For Missions International) ministry.

The calendars are only $15 each!  Get yours today!

Now for the nitty gritty:

  • the $15 must be paid with your calendar order
  • orders must be made before December 1st
  • you can place your order online by clicking here

All the proceeds go to helping YWAM Pismo Beach do what we do!  Thank you!

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Wednesday, October 27, 2010

The Man and His New Bible

We partnered with YWAM Nicaragua in their vision to see a bible in every home.  Strategically we visited neighborhood after neighborhood, meeting every family in every house, and if they didn't have a bible, we would give them one for free.  

Then one day, we can upon this guy.  (No worries, he is alive.)  But he was presumably passed out, maybe even homeless. 

So, in the fashion of the day, we put a bible next to his head.  

Woke him up, told him the bible was for him.  He grabbed it, looked at it, then placed it under his head as a pillow.  Funny.

Then, he fell back asleep.  Nice.

I wonder if he'll remember how he was given his new bible when he wakes up?  Maybe God's word will fill the hole the alcohol had been filling...

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Saturday, October 23, 2010

There's a first for everything... {Shiloh's Hospital Visit}

Saturday night we didn't sleep a wink.  Shiloh was up, crying, fussing, and screaming every hour.  Just awful.  We endured, all you can do when you share a tiny cabin with thin walls... although the poor ladies on the other side probably didn't sleep a wink either.

So after such a odd night, I noticed in the morning as I was holding Shiloh, that she felt kinda warm.  We took her temperature, and it was slightly high.  We immeadiately chalked it up to being teething.  So it was tylenol, check temperature, paci-popsicles, check temperature, hold fussy baby, check temperature.  At about dinner time, her temp was down.  She ate.  Then within half and hour, she threw it alllll up.  Awful.  Hmmm, what issss this?  Does teething really cause vomiting?  No.  So we checked her temperature again. Up.  She ate again before bed.  And again, didn't keep it down.  At this point some of the ladies here on the base who have small children were talking to me (yes, God gifted me to be able to understand spanish for this) about how if it gets worse, they know someone who has good relationships with several pediatricians in Diriamba.

Over night she did eat once, and did keep it down.  Praises!  But when we woke up around 6am, her temperature was up higher than ever.  She ate again, and this time immediately threw it up.  So that was that.  Off to get the phone number of that friend.

His name was Mynor.  Super amazing man.  When Brandon called to tell him what was going on, he said, "Okay, I'll be there in 10 minutes."  He took us to one pediatrician that him and his wife use for their 2 ninos.  But she was out doing her rounds at the hospital.  So he called another.  That doctor met us at his mothers home.  While we were sitting waiting for him, Shiloh threw up AGAIN.  Gosh.  This was beginning to really worry me and wear on my heart.  Poor thing.  She just layed against my chest as I held her.  No expression on her face.  The doctor was very kind, and he basically told us that the only way we could tell what was making her so ill was to take her to the hospital where they could run some lab tests.

So we went to the Diriamba hospital.  (Much different experience than an American hospital).  But nevertheless, its a hospital, they have trained doctors, and medicine.  It actually one of the best in this area of Nicaragua, Mynor said.  So they checked us in, took her temp... it was still rather high.  And they ordered a blood test, and a urine test (more on that later).   We'd have to go to an outside lab to get them done.  So the doctor encouraged me to keep nursing her as often as I could, so that she would stay hydrated.  I sat down in the waiting room of the clinic and did so.  We planned on taking her to do the labs once she ate... but upon finishing, she threw it all up... whoa.  She couldn't even lift her head up at this point.

Mynor (did I mention how amazing he is), pulled some Nicaraguan strings and got them to let us into the hospital's labs to do the blood test right away, and then get her on an IV.  The blood test was hard... who likes watching their little one get pricked?   But then the IV insertion was even worse.  Because she's such a plump baby... they had a hard time finding a vein.  It took the nurses two tries, and in between tries, they gave her some drops of tylenol, and that made her throw up AGAIN.  Yes, for those of you mommies out there, I was in tears.  I would do anything for Shiloh, Brandon would too.  We'd go to any lengths to find out what is wrong, to find medical care, to keep her safe, and healthy... but at that moment standing in a foreign hospital, with a crying baby, feverish, vomiting, and so helpless, I cried.  And cried.

Eventually the nurses got the IV in, hydration!  They gave her an anti-nausea medicine through it, and began monitoring her while waiting for the lab results.  Brandon and Mynor went back to the base to grab us some belongings... the doctors told us we might be there +8 hours.  Shiloh slept.  And slept.  And slept.  By afternoon time, she was acting more "herself".  She even gave Mynor some baby smiles.  (I think she could tell just how amazing he was!).  The lab results came back.  She had an infection in her urine.  I guess the doctors said its common in this climate down here, really easy to dehydrate, and the dehydration makes babies prone to it?  Thats what we gathered from his quick diagnosis.  The nurses gave her some equivalent of pedialyte (tasteless, but Shiloh LOVED it), an antibiotic, and tylenol.  They told us we were free to go after she could keep it down for an hour.  But to come back if any of the symptoms returned.  Ay ay.

taken while in the hospital

her 2 prescriptions.

her poor bandaged hands

Complete turn-around.  She was back to her bubbly self in no time.  Babies really do bounce back.  REALLY.

bruise :( but she's all better now! :)

It did scare us as parents.  I guess being the first time she had been sick didn't help either.  Being away from our own comfort and our own pediatrician.  But you know what?  We have an amazing God.  One that beckons us to put our trust in because His love surpasses our fears, our worries, our pains.  We prayed over our daughter.  And God was our comfort while we were worried for her.  God was my comfort as the tears fell in that exam room.  Its moments like those that human words can't even bring an ounce of comfort or peace the way that God can.  I was reminded of a couple of verses from Psalms:

"When I am afraid, I will trust in you." ~Psalm 56:3

"for he is our God and we are the people of his pasture, the flock under his care." ~Psalm 95:7

And for those of you who are still wondering... Shiloh is completely healthy now.  She is back to her bubbly, giggly, and monstrous self.  And we're are very thankful!  Thank you to each one of you who prayed for her!

Oh yea, remember when I mentioned that urine sample?  Um, they gave us this tiny cup:

How do you get a baby to pee in a cup?  Seriously?  We chose a better alternative, one that goes in her diaper.  It was one moment during all the chaos of the day that we had a good chuckle.

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Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Bucket Baby

     Many times, in other countries, you can't take a real shower.  Bucket-showers are it.  Well, here in Nicaragua, we do have to use buckets for a semi-bucket shower... and so, if I've got to do it, then so does Shiloh, right?

     I found this great red bucket laying around not being used by anyone, so I cleaned it out, and its now been deemed, "Shiloh's Bathtub".

     At first she looks kinda shocked... I would too, the water is rather chilly.

     But then she is all smiles and splashes.

     Bathtime is perfect for reflecting on a busy day.

     She makes the funniest faces when we pour the water over her head... if she's anything like her mommy and daddy, one day, she'll LOVE it.

      Soap time!  She got kinda slippery and kept sliding over.

     Drying off with Papa.

     Like father, like daughter.  Don't worry, I'll be doing her hair from now on.

     All clean, snuggly, and irresistible!

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Friday, October 15, 2010

Simple Joy

"If you are cheerful, you feel good" ~Proverbs 17:22a

     Here at the YWAM base in Diriamba, we are working most mornings with their school.  The other day I got to help out with P.E. and the 1st grade girls decided to stand in a biiiiig circle and throw the ball to each other.  A simple game.  But I heard nothing but giggles and giggles and more giggles.  So.  Much.  Fun.

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Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Hush Little Baby

     With all the traveling from here to there, Shiloh sometimes has a hard time settling down for a good nap.  We try to keep a basic routine, which helps.  She has her own travel bed, which also helps.  But, as with all babies, sometimes they just need a little sleep assistance.  She loves it when I sing, although I can't imagine why, I'm completely tone deaf!  I tried the simple lullaby, "Hush Little Baby", but it was kinda bothering me to sing 'gonna buy you a mockingbird' because I am pretty sure I never will.  So, I came up with a more appropriate one for Shiloh, filled with all of our favorite things.  You'll most likely never hear me sing it, but still, I thought it would be fun to share.

Hush little baby, don't say a word.
Daddy's gonna shape you a surfin' board.

And if that surfin' board won't float, 
Daddy's gonna build you a tall sailboat.

And if that tall sailboat won't glide, 
Momma's gonna buy you a slip 'n slide.

And if that slip 'n slide gets dry, 
Momma's gonna serve you some pumpkin pie.

And when that pumpkin pie's all gone,
Momma's gonna sing some more silly songs.

And if those silly songs won't do,
we'll pray to Jesus 'cause He hears you.

So hush little baby, don't you cry.
Daddy loves you, and so do I.

And because everyone loves a photo....

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Thursday, October 7, 2010

Agua! Agua! Agua!

At almost every major intersection in the capital city of Managua you'll here it being yelled.  Small kids, young men, even 30 something year old women, all yelling out, "Agua!  Agua!  Agua!".  They walk up  and down the streets, strolling between the lanes of traffic, and jumping on any opportunity to make small change for selling bags of water.  Yes, I said BAGS.  

I decided one day to go and buy shoe polish, then wrote on a sign "Lustrado de Zapatos", and set out to the streets of Managua to see if I could polish peoples shoes.  My buddy Zach came along with me.  It was an extremely successful idea, and drew a lot of attention.  I saw an older woman sitting beneath a tree, with a whole gang of street men, women, and children.  I asked her if I could polish her shoes, and we got to talking.  She and the rest of the people there sold water, and other services such as window washing amongst the traffic.  I asked if I could come back and work for her.  She laughed, probably not sure if I was being serious.  But I was.  And we were hired!

Two days later we reported for our first day of work.  1-3 this afternoon was our shift.  Zach washed windows, and I sold water.  In all, there must have been 20 people working out in the traffic, some selling water, some food, some random other things, even one guy was selling plastic picnic chairs.   I was handed a large bag, with about 30 or so smaller bags of ice cold water, and I began walking up and down the street.  As cars would stop for the red light, I would yell out "Agua!  Agua!  Agua!".  Now, I was an amateur to say the least... but the 6 or 7 young boys working alongside me were pros.  They helped show me the ropes, pointed out the cars or buses to run and sell to, so on and so on.  Professional street venders, at age 11.  Amazing.  They shocked me with how ambitious they were, how smart, how energetic, and how excited to work there.  I kept thinking, if only they were in school, got an education of some kind, they would make the best CEOs or businessmen.

In the end Zach and I made about 40 cordoba each (thats about $2 American), and we decided to keep our earnings.  While we wanted to be charitable and give them everything we had made, it felt like we would offend them to work alongside them and yet not keep our wages.  The last thing we wanted to do was seem prideful.  So we took home our earnings, and thanked them for the opportunity to make some money and spend the day working with them.  I would do it again if I am able.  It was, for lack of a better word, a COOL experience.  I don't ever want to travel to another country and put off the impression that I am some how superior to them.  I want to do what the locals do.  And so I yelled, "Agua!  Agua!  Agua!"

the workplace
the stock.

Zach working hard


working hard

reporting back to the boss...

hard earned wages

My wonderful Nicaraguan boss.

Thank you!

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