Literal translation: It makes three months.

REAL Translation: Three months ago.

I love how there is a difference between the two translations. To me, it is a clue to understanding the culture of a language and the language of a culture. Nuance is everything.

Three months ago, we rubbed sad drowsiness from our eyes to marvel at our first Costa Rican sunrise as a family, viewed through the Coach-sized portholes of our rapidly descending plane. Now, we look back at that moment through 90-some days’ worth of life lessons, major adjustments, new friendships, joyful moments, humorous adventures and grief. Oh, how we have learned so much. Three months ago:

M&m with Uncle Dan

M&m with Uncle Dan at Denver International Airport, August 10, 2013

… we didn’t know that we didn’t realize fully how technology would fall far short of real hugs, real coffee dates on chilly days and real eyeball-to-eyeball together-togetherness. We miss our family. We miss autumn. We miss our friends in Denver!

The entryway to our new Foote Rest

The entryway to our new Foote Rest

Our back patio fountain

Our back patio fountain

Beautiful stained glass windows in our main hallway

Beautiful stained glass windows in our main hallway

… we didn’t know that God would give us NOW our dream of living in an Italian-style villa “someday.” The house we rented blindly (without seeing a single picture) was truly encased in God’s guiding hands. He has provided us with a beautiful, spacious, renovated, colorful house to rent for as long as we need it. We are so grateful!

Which did we buy first: The Chicken Basket, or the eggs?

Which did we buy first: The Chicken Basket, or the eggs?

The eggs here are incredibly fresh and beautiful

… we didn’t know that we would be able to buy eggs from a guy. In a van. Driving down our street. Blasting rooster sounds from a VERY notsoquiet LOUDSPEAKER. And we didn’t know that truly fresh eggs don’t  need refrigeration. We haven’t had one go bad yet!

Micah, with our first orange harvest

Micah, with our first orange harvest

Our first surprise squash, which climbed up our fig tree!

Our first surprise squash, which climbed up our fig tree, in front of our banana tree

… we didn’t know what it would feel like to have access to orange, banana, cass (a new fruit for us – makes great juice!), and fig trees. And, as of a few days ago, our squash plants began exploding. Too fun! And, just a few houses down on a public street, a coffee tree is bursting with ripening berries. Cannot.wait!

Our first day of language school orientation

Our first day of language school orientation

… we did not know ANY of the people in this room (except for our teammates). Now, we see many of them 5 days a week or more! We cannot believe that we didn’t know them 3 months ago and now, we can’t imagine not having some of them as friends.

Jordan, Playa el Coco, San Juan del Sur, Nicaragua

Jordan, Playa el Coco, San Juan del Sur, Nicaragua

… we did not know that we would be going to a Nicaraguan paradise to receive re-entry visas for Costa Rica … nor that I’d be able to capture a corner of God’s indescribable glory with my incredibly finite, man-made camera. WOW!

Jordan has mastered the 10-minute self-study session in between our zany life moments

Jordan has mastered the 10-minute self-study session in between our zany life moments

… we had never been students at the same time, with children … what a change this has been for all four of us! We thought that juggling homeschooling and partner development (support raising) in our home country was intense. It is official: adjusting to a brand new culture while learning to speak the local language and managing the typical, everyday demands of family life, is even tougher. Studying Spanish has been a wonderful challenge for us. We are enjoying the learning process. Feeling like we can do all things well, however, is rather elusive at the moment. The Lord is gracious to us! Our teachers tell us we’re progressing well and our kids haven’t bought plane tickets to go home. We’ll celebrate it all – big or little!

Watch out!

Watch out! Just your everyday, designer sinkhole …

… we had no idea that the best way to mark a sinkhole behind a school is to put a dead tree in it and then weave CAUTION tape all throughout the branches. How inventive! Even MacGuyver would be jealous. Some friends who live a few blocks from this spot had their ficus tree stolen out of their yard the Sunday morning before I snapped this photo. We believe this is their tree.

Leaving the old life

Leaving the old life

New life

Stepping into a new life

… we had never watched a butterfly hatch from its cocoon on a path we walk every day. What a remarkable reminder of the work God is purposefully, skillfully weaving in our lives moment-by-moment. Just as the caterpillar was being transformed as we walked by it every day, without noticing it, often we are not aware of the changes God is creating within us. Here in Costa Rica, we feel the pressures of our cocoon, but aren’t fully aware of their potential purpose for us. Then, one day, something will capture our attention and we will realize we’re different … forever.

All this to show & say that in the past three months, we have been stretched and we have been soothed by God’s grace. We have grieved the distance between us and our loved ones, while different children of God have endeared themselves to us, have taken up residence in our hearts. We are being challenged to surrender our selfish motives on a whole new level every week. We feel as if we are learning how to breathe underwater (Thank you, JD Whitney, for that analogy. You were right!).  It is not a pain-free process, but we are so thankful that God loves us too much to leave us the way we are. As for the next three months: bring it on.

We love Costa Rica

We love Costa Rica

6 Comments

  1. Dorothy L. Foote

    Jordan and Marie, if your forbears could have painted a picture of their lives as sent ones with the tools and skills you have – oh, my goodness, their family and friends at home would have understood so much better! Thank you, Lord, for 2013 technology, for gifting Marie to write, Jordan to lead this family and for the two most precious grandchildren in the whole wide world!

    • admin

      We love you, Mom (and Dad)! And we miss you … an awful lot. We are so glad you can have glimpses of what our daily life here is like!

  2. Kara

    I love your observations! And in Russia, they mark open holes in the road with trees or sticks, or anything nearby … but no yellow caution tape.

    I sure wish we had more similarity in fruits, though!

    • admin

      Kara! How great to hear from you on here! You’ll have to hug the Todds for me when they arrive in Russia next year. We’re praying it’s sooner than February! One of these days, you and I will meet, right? =) Merry Christmas to you and yours!

  3. Patsy Lange

    Thanks for the beautiful update! Love your honesty; that it isn’t easy, but it’s still a blessing! And love your heart for Costa Rica!

    • admin

      You’re so welcome, Patsy! Yes … we are so blessed to be here, despite any sacrifices we have to make, whether big or small. We think of you often and we miss you much!

Leave Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


Hit Counter provided by technology news