Today is the start of our last full week in Peru. To commemorate the day, here is a review of our last year in Peru!
—In January and February, I was busy with summer camps. This was our only year that we stayed in Lima for the entire summer. I wrote the Bible lessons for camps over the winter and then had the privilege of being one of the teachers during January for children’s camps. I taught three weeks in a row and had an average of 50 kids per week.
—In February, I was in charge of the rehearsals for the skits used for teen camps. I had rehearsals almost daily and I had to be in the chapel each evening to make sure they were ready to go. The one pictured above is one that I wrote, based on some verses in Romans about becoming a new man. During the summer, Brian was keeping up on maintenance (lots to do with camps in full swing!). He also stayed with Elena while I was out and about with all my responsibilities. And the best part of the summer: finding out we were expecting Joseph on Valentine’s Day. 🙂
—Bible school started back up in April. Brian wanted to do some changes with the afternoon work hours and one of the big ones was to implement community work days. He wanted the kids to see how service can be a ministry and open doors into our community. The first work day, they cleaned up the road leading from our camp up to town. The neighbors were extremely impressed and it did achieve its purpose – opening doors for us into the community.
—Brian joined a group of students and some missionaries on a week-long missions trip here in the Lima area where they built a church building for one of the churches that we partner with. This was a first for BCM Peru – a work trip – and it was good for the teens to see that “ministry” is not just preaching on the street.
—This year, I again tried to add some extra classes for my students. We did art, music, and baking. They learned how to read basic music and play recorder. They did fun art projects. And they learned how to bake muffins, cookies, and cupcakes! We did baking every Friday in July and froze everything in order to sell it all in their first bake sale during Conoce Al IBYM. They made enough money to cover the expenses and earn a field trip – which we’re going on tomorrow finally! We’ll spend the day at the National History Museum and then go to Pizza Hut for lunch. Fun stuff!
—One of Brian’s projects was to build a garage for the vans and a few of the vehicles. We had a visitor from Ireland and he helped Brian out. Brian also worked on the aesthetics of the property and changed the walking entrance.
—Brian’s absolute favorite project this year was the greenhouse and garden. A little secret about Brian: he loves gardening. And he’s good at it, too! He has always wanted to plant a garden here and he was finally able to do so this year. He built the greenhouse and then he and Fernando worked on starter plants and getting things going. A few veggies are already being utilized and others are well on their way to becoming food soon. Banana trees, lemon trees, and yuca are a few of the items growing in the garden right now.
—One of the highlights of the year was Brian’s opportunity to go to Ireland to visit BCM Ireland. He spent about 10 days there (traveling during the Olympics and having a layover in London!) and was able to see a lot of the ministry, meet most of the team, and do a bit of sightseeing. I do wish I could’ve gone with him, but being seven months pregnant and having crazy Elena would’ve made a 24 hour plus trip not fun. So, we stayed home. We didn’t sleep much (Elena really missed Papa those first few days and would fall asleep at 4am), but we survived! The million dollar question, though, is: Are we going to Ireland? Hmm… good question. We’ll let you know when we know. Keep praying!
—The night before Joseph was born, Eva and our other friend Cristofer threw Elena a nice birthday party. It came complete with clowns! Our house was a zoo for those few hours, but it was such a nice gesture, especially considering I hadn’t really planned on doing much at all for her this year.
—On September 27, we welcomed our little sunshine, Joseph Christopher, into our family. “Joseph” after Joseph in the Old Testament. We listened to a sermon series by Max Lucado over the summer entitled “You’ll Get Through This” and it was on the life of Joseph. This series really meant a lot to us at that time, plus the work Joseph did reminded us a lot of what Brian does. We wanted to name our son after someone in the Bible who has a great reputation – someone he would be proud to be named after. “Christopher” is Brian’s middle name, so he’s named after his daddy.
—October 8 was the annual Family Fair. I had helped with the rehearsals for the big play and it went off super well. The rest of October was really family time, getting used to newborn/toddler dynamics and healing from my surgery. Brian was around a lot to help me out – couldn’t have done it without him!
—This, our last month here, has been busy with getting the kids on good schedules and working on finishing up our ministries. I have been rehearsing weekly with my students for their program coming up this Friday. I also started teaching Janelle again a few days a week an hour a day and I’m grading the older kids’ work, too. Brian has been tying up loose ends, doing a few projects he’s always wanted to do, and getting the team ready to take over once he’s gone.
Phew. I do believe these four entries covers pretty well our time here in Peru. Naturally, these are just some of the highlights – there’s plenty more that’s gone on that I just didn’t have room for here. But, here’s the plus side: we’ll be back in the States soon, so you can just ask us questions and look at pictures in person then! 🙂
I know it’s impossible to express on a blog how grateful we are to have spent these years in Peru, so I hope you’re at least getting some of that sentiment from us. We know the Lord brought us here in 2009 for a purpose and hopefully we have accomplished that purpose. We will greatly miss the friends we’ve made here. We did enjoy living in Peru, even with the bugs, dust, and undrinkable water. Our children were born here and we actually have spent most of our married life here in Peru. This has become a part of us and we will never forget our time here.