Thursday, February 10, 2011

I finally made my move!! Keep up with us at:

See you there! :-)

Monday, January 31, 2011

Borobudur and Updates

A few weeks ago, the four of us took a day-trip to Borobudur, an ancient Buddist temple built in the 800's. It was about a 2 hour trip in the car. We hired a driver to take us there. He is a man that works with MAF people a lot and is good for language practice because he talks...nice....and....slow.... Daniel got a lot of practice since he sat up front the whole time.
The highlight of the trip was definitely the elephant ride! For about $5 per person, you can get a 15 min elephant ride complete with someone else taking your picture for you! It was so neat to be so close to these huge animals. I had no idea how tough their skin is or how they have a kind of prickly hair on them. We got to get right up close and pet them and Reece even fed one a piece of candy! She wasn't scared, but Joe kind of was. I don't blame him! I was a little scared, too!

You can see the temple in the background here. After the elephant ride, we joined the crowd and climbed the steep steps to the top of the temple. I can't even explain to you how many people wanted to touch our kids and get our picture taken with us! It was crazy! That happens sometimes here in Salatiga, but we were overwhelmed with it at Borobudur! Literally, we couldn't stop walking for a second without a crowd forming to take their picture with us. At first, I thought it was kinda fun, but after awhile it was just too much. Our kids were tired and hot and sick of being poked and touched. I hated to be the one white person they've met that was rude, so I tried to be really nice about it and say "no" gracefully!
I have a lot of really great pictures of this trip, but to be honest with you, the blogger web-site and Indonesia have never gotten along very well. Our Internet is fine here and Daniel doesn't have problems uploading pictures to wordpress, so I'm just going to start blaming blogger. I have blogged from here for over four years now, but I think I will have to make a change. This week is our last week of unit 1 in language school, and next week are on break, so I think that is when I will make my move. It's just been so frustrating when every time I have a minute to blog, the pictures don't upload or the whole thing gets erased. Grr!! Most of my blog posts are pictures because I know people want to SEE my kids and SEE what life is like here instead of me just rambling, so I'm hoping wordpress will be more picture and Indonesia friendly.
Quick Update:
-We are finally settled into the house we will live during the rest of our time here. We were in temporary housing for about 1 1/2 months, so it's nice to be settled. Pictures to come...
-We are getting to know our neighbors and able to have basic conversations with them. Some of them are very familiar with people who are trying to learn the language, so they talk really slow and even know a few English words if we get stuck.
-The twins are rapidly expanding my belly! I have always been bad about comparing my belly to others that are about where I am in my pregnancies, but this time it is just sad! :) I feel that I am quickly passing up people who are farther along than me! I just have to keep telling myself it's because I have two, but I really hope it's not all the fried food our helpers make and all the whole milk I drink... :) I hope there is room for the both of them!
-Daniel is having many adventures as usual! One, is that he went to get a hair cut and tried to explain to them how he wanted it...he ended up with a buzz! :) Two, he joined a true Indonesian gym, which he describes as "rustic." I just can't imagine Indonesians working out! They are just so little and thin! :) And, three, he got an invitation from our neighborhood leader yesterday for some kind of event. I will let him explain in further detail, but the letter was all in Javanese, which is the local language here and totally different from Indonesian (we are not learning Javanese). So, we asked our teacher at school what it meant, and he gave us this long explanation of how it was a "M" prayer meeting where they would pray for the souls of the dead and pray for the villagers. He told Daniel that since he got a personal invite, he must go. Well, another one of our MAF neighbors told Daniel later that it was just a birthday party!! SO, either our teacher is playing a trick on us, or there is some kind of misunderstanding. Look out for a blog post from Daniel on that! He is going to check it out tonight!
-The kids love school! They go 3 days a week and stay with our helpers the other two days. They both wish they could go to school 5 days a week, though. It is just cultural that the helpers are more interested in doing their work than actaully sitting down and playing with the kids, so I think the kids get bored. We may start sending them 5 days a week next month.
-We get a report about the kids at the end of each month from the school. Their report said that Reece is a "fun girl" and Joe is a "cute boy." It said Reece loves to read and asks her teacher everyday to read to her (they have a small library in English there). It said Joe is quiet and just walks around and plays by himself all day. And, he always wants to be with Reece (sometimes they separate the big and little kids). It also said that Reece doesn't participate during circle time when they sing songs and do the hand motions. I asked Reece about this and she said it was because she was embarrassed and didn't know any of the songs. This is not like her! We sing and do hand motions to song almost everyday! I asked her teacher today what the songs were, but she said they are all in Indonesian! So, now everything makes sense! I would be embarrassed, too...I actually AM embarrassed because we sing Indonesian songs at MY school and I don't know any of them!
-We swapped our mattress in our new house out with one that wasn't being used in a different MAF house. The old mattress is still in our front room, the the kids' latest game is to get the mattress down and jump on it and do "tricks." Joe even dragged our Indonesian neighbor in yesterday to watch him! He cries if we leave the room because he wants us to watch him, too!
Okay, so that wasn't a quick update. But, there it is. Look for a new post of my big move next week. Hopefully I can fill in the blanks of my ramblings with some good pictures!

Friday, January 21, 2011

Where have you been???


That's mainly where I have been! It is so tiring living in a foreign country and trying to learn a new language, so naps and going to bed early are definitely in order here!

I am pregnant with TWINS!! SO, that is really my main excuse for being an absentee blogger for the past few weeks! I have been SO tired, plus, what else to do talk about on a blog if you know you're pregnant with twins but aren't ready to share it with your blogging friends yet!?

For those of you who like the details on subjects like this, I'll elaborate for you a little bit! :-)

We found out the DAY BEFORE we moved to Indonesia that we were pregnant. I was SO happy and excited, but didn't tell anyone but Daniel since it was super early. It was so hard, but we kept it a secret for 3 whole weeks of living here until finally we had some friends of ours (Thanks, Megan and Corey!) help us see a doctor in a near-by town. Megan stayed with the kids while Corey went with us to translate for us. He ended up getting stuck with Daniel and I in the ultrasound room, which I know was really awkward for him! What a friend! :) We went to this particular doctor because he speaks some English and a few women I know have gone to him for their pregnancies. We talked with the doctor for a little bit, and then he proceeds with doing the ultrasound. I am always so nervous at these things because I'm always convinced I'll receive some terrible news. But, we saw the baby and it's little fluttering heart beat, and I was pretty relieved.

Then I saw something else on the screen fluttering around, and I asked the nice Indonesia doctor, "What is that??" I was pretty sure it was some kind of tumor or terrible growth or something very, very wrong. (I'm so positive, I know...) His first response was to just blow it off as some fuzz on the screen, but then he stopped mid sentence and said, "Do you have a history of twins?"
WHAT?? NO, I do NOT!!
But, there ya go, you have twins! I think he was pretty shocked, too. This weird American lady comes into his office and can't speak a word of Indonesian AND she has two men with her... what's up with that? And now she has twins? Crazy! PLUS, now she is crying and I'm pretty sure not a lot of Indonesians do that sort of thing in front of a doctor. Yep, she's crazy..
The babies first picture. It is just a picture of the screen since they do not print out pictures for you. There is one fluttering blob in the upper right and one fluttering blob that the doctor is pointing to.
Anyway, the rest of the visit was kind of a blur. All I remember is that he kept saying, "Ya, bagus." Which is common to say here. It just means, "yea, good." But, more of in a matter-of-fact sort of way and not so much an excited sort of way.
We were in shock for the next few weeks after that. It was so hard to believe, even when we told our parents, but I was (am) SO nauseous and my belly was already growing, so I knew something was up.
We went back to the doctor yesterday for a check-up and received another good report! I am 14 weeks along and the babies are measuring 13 weeks each. They share a placenta, which means they are identical! So, two boys or two girls. We will probably find out the gender just because we don't have a mall or wal-mart to run to when we have the babies and need to buy the right color clothes! It will take a little more preparation than that. Plus, I think Indonesians always find out what they're having. So they might think we are even weirder if we don't!
We are really excited! We are so overwhelmed that God would choose our family for these babies! It is crazy timing, but HIS timing is perfect! He knew this would happen and it is His plan. There are SOOOO many decisions we have to make about having these babies, and we just pray that we would do just what He wants us to do. The health care here is obviously NOT the same as in America, so we have a lot of research and planning to do.
But, for now, we PRAY a lot, take one day at a time and just praise God for His goodness! Thank you so much for praying for us and being excited with us!

This is the best picture we could get of the both of them yesterday. You can see each of their heads, and feet, and you can see the spine on the one to the right. It is actually two separate shots of the babies individually. They are actually positioned like this right now:

0---< >----0

So their feet are kicking each other. And they were moving so much! My weekly email said they are the size of lemons right now. I'm surprised I can't feel them seeing how much they move already!

Baby #1. Awww, so cute already! :-)

This is baby #2. I think they will still be moving around a lot, so it's probably too early to keep track of which is which. But, that's what the doctor said yesterday.

Babies and Mom are tired, so that's all for now! Stay tuned for pictures of our elephant riding adventure soon! :-)

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Catching Up

Like I said in my previous post, my blog and I have not been getting along! This has been erased several times, so I'm praying it works!

It's been awhile, so I thought I would just catch you up on a little bit of life through pictures.

The latest addition to our Christmas traditions! I got this in the mail right before we moved to Indo and the kids have loved it! I hope it's something I can take with us to all our Christmases, since I have a feeling we won't be "home" (where ever that is!) for all of them. I usually tried to read a scripture every day to them. I hope to add more creative things as the years go on like a craft or special treat. I thought about getting a more "grown up" looking one, but I think the kids will enjoy this even when they are older.

I brought another touch of home, our stockings. Reece colored a wooden nativity scene on the left and the one on the right is from my Mom. Reece felt the need to "put them to bed" every evening, so the colored ones hide behind the stable and the wooden ones got put in the stable with the doors shut.

Daniel, Joe and the bat-removal tool. I really don't like to think much about that evening, so if you want the whole story, you can check out my husband's blog.

First day of school picture! Both the kids had a great time! Joe didn't even cry when we dropped him off, and Reece says she already has a best friend there named Normie. There are about 20 kids there with 3 teachers. It is about half Indoneisan kids and half westerners. They can't wait to go back, but they don't start for another 2 weeks!

Joe and his new big boy bed. He is loving it, but his Daddy and I are not loving trying to make him stay in it every night!

Another first day of school picture. And, yes, Joe had cowie the whole time at school! What will we do with that cow?!

This is our teeny-tiny Christmas tree! They actually have bigger, nicer ones here in Salatiga, but we chose to buy a tiny one because we have a nice one in our crate. It did spend most of it's life tipped over on the ground. We liked our little tree, but while we were out of town for a little 2 night trip, someone came in our house and put up a nice, big tree complete with lights and ornaments! So, now we have two treess! Thanks secret Christmas tree givers!

Reece is having a blast in our little blow up pool! Since it is rainy season, you really have to get going early if you want to play outside or if you want your clothes to dry for the day! But, we got in a good time of splashing this morning. Too bad it ended with Reece being overcome with itching! I really didn't see anything bite her (and I'm pretty sure she would have screamed about that!) but after a shower, dose of benadryl and a nap, she was okay.

The clouds are rolling in over our house fast!

More splashing.

Joe really enjoys wearing his helmet all the time. We didn't even have a scooter at this point, but he still insisted on wearing it all the time! He likes to wear all of our helmets now, and he is obsessed with riding the scooter! He insists on sitting in the front and throws a fit when it's Reece's turn in the front. I really need to get a picture of all of us on the scooter. It must look rather silly!

Reece enjoys wearing her helment, too. Just not quite as much as Joe! :-)
That's all for now! I hope everyone had a Merry Christmas!

Friday, December 24, 2010

Merry Christmas!!

Wishing you a wonderful Christmas as you think about the birth of Jesus! He has changed the world!!
Much Love from Indonesia, Daniel, Becky, Reece and Joe!
Photo Credit: Our wonderful, awesome, kind, generous, talented photographer friend Jonathan Chang!!
He took so many wonderful pictures of our family right before we left. I wish I could share them all with you, but my blog and I are not getting along right now, so I will have to try to upload them again later.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Want to send us a package??

Lots of our friends and family have asked us about sending a package. I wanted to give the details of the "do's and dont's" and then also list some suggestions of what to send. I've talked to several friends here in Salitiga, and these are some of the things they have suggested.

Our Address:
Daniel Perez
JL. Arjuna # 45B Rt. 03/05
Jawa Tengah
Salatiga, 50701

-From what I understand, the best option is to send a package through USPS flat rate boxes.
Here are the prices I found on-line
Small Box-$13.45 and 4 pound limit
Regular Box-$43.45 and 20 pound limit
Large Box-$55.95 and 20 pound limit

-When packing the box, please take everything out of the packaging (include instructions if needed) You can place things in ziplock baggies (freezer quality is best). This is for two reasons. One, I can re-use the ziplock baggies! :) And, two, this will cause the value to go down on the item.

-If the total value of everything in the box is over $50, then we will have to pay taxes on it, but I don't think it really adds up to that much, unless it is something really expensive, like electronics.

-You will have to list everything in the box and list the price. Since the items are "used" (out of the packaging), you can put garage sale prices. I think the reason they do this is because they don't want you re-selling the items over here in Indonesia, but don't worry, we won't do that :) But, I'm not saying you should lie, either.

-I hear the flat rate boxes only take 10 business days to get here, which I thought was pretty amazing!

-Oh, and if you are going to send more than one box, please make sure they are going to arrive a few days apart. If we get two packages in one day, then we have to add up the total value of ALL the boxes and then pay taxes on that.

Here are some things you might think of sending. Since we have only been here a few days, these are mostly things that other people told me they like to receive, so I may change it up a bit later:

Crystal light (or equivalent off-brand … strawberry lemonade or raspberry lemonade are faves)
Instant oatmeal packets (lower sugar preferred)
Zip lock bags (particularly freezer brand)
Candy: a few faves are peanut/regular M&M's, skittles, Snickers, Nerds
Sidewalk chalk
Water balloons
Corn meal (for sprinkling around the house to kill ants and/or making corn bread … Jiffy corn bread mix would work too)
Jerky or summer sausage (especially hard to get pork here and beef is sometimes avail but expensive)
Velveeta or Parmesan cheese (or any kind of cheese that doesn't need to be refrigerated)
Hair detangler-kids brand
Flushable wipes
TV series on DVD
Paper plates
Fall-themed items to give a taste of home
Childrens' Books
Salsa mix
Clorox wipes
Children's acidophilus
Mouthwash (fluoride)
Mac & cheese (you can sometimes find here)
Wax paper (i hear you can sometimes get at an import store here)
Magic cookie bar stuff
Canned pumpkin
Salt & pepper shakers (just the little cheap ones that are sort of 'disposable' and already have salt & pepper in them)
Peanut butter (they also have that here, but it is expensive for a good brand and only comes in small jars)
books & movies
Mayo (they have it here, but it tastes kinda bad)
Microwave popcorn
Glow sticks
Canned tuna (solid white albacore in water preferred, any brand)
Scented candles
Crunchy taco shells
Campbell's cream soups for cooking
Kindergarten worksheets/work books for Reece
Garlic powder and/or garlic salt
Small toys for kids
dried fruit (crasins) and nuts (I'm not sure how available these are here, yet, but I thought I would add this one in anyway.)

I feel a little silly having a blog post about this! We certainly do not expect you to send us a package, it's just that so many people have asked, I thought this might be a better way of getting the information out there. There is actually quite a lot available here (more than I thought!) so don't feel like you need to send something. Only if you want :)

And, thanks in advance! Terima Kasih!

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Check this out!

My husband has a blog!! He's a lot funnier than me, so you would be missing out if you didn't visit:
New post coming from me tonight, hopefully :-)

Daniel, Becky, Reece and Joe

A Glimpse into the lives of a family on a journey to serve God through aviation in Indonesia!