Sunday, February 19, 2012

LAM Costa Rica Retreat 2012

This weekend we got to be a part of the LAM Costa Rica retreat.  This was a time when all the LAM missionaries in Costa Rica come together for the weekend to hang out, eat, laugh and have some time in the Word together.  Staff from the Miami Office came too, which is always fun to see faces that go with the names and emails we so often communicate with.

We got to spend some more like with Will and Elaine Savell, another LAM family here at language school with us.  After graduation, Will will be working with pastors here in Latin America, helping them get more training and support.  They have and 8 year old, Emma, and a 5 year old, Jack, which is in Forrest's class at school. 

One of the highlights for our family was the children's ministry.  There was a team of 5 people that came from Pennsylvanian to spend the weekend with our kids.  And it wasn't like they were just babysitting!  Oh, no!  This was like VBS on steroids!  Weeks ago, the team leader sent an email to all the parents asking how they could be praying for our kids, what our kids' favorite treats, games and activities were.  Friday night, they handed each kid a gallon ziplock bag full of all of their favorites!  And not just candy and, Elliot got a brand new book in Spanish, a sock monkey, and all sorts of other fun stuff, and Forrest even got a set of Legos!  He was soooo excited!

And they spend so much time with our kids!  They had great Bible lessons, songs, and actives.  And this is huge, all in English!  At church and school the boys they boys hear the Bible lessons in Spanish, which is wonderful and they are getting the language more and more.  But it was a great break for them to get it in their first language.

And the fun things!  Oh my!  The boys tie dyes (brave, brave women that will tie dye with a 3 year old!) they made crafts like duct tape wallets, and Elliot's favorite, the "Slippy".  That would be Slip and Slide.  There weren't many hills around, but the team squirt 3 or 4 bottles of baby shampoo on a tarp.  Oh. my. goodness.  They played in that for over an hour! 

Forrest said to me at lunch today, just before we were going to leave, "Mom, I am sad.  I am going to cry when we leave because this weekend was so much fun!" 

I told the team, "You really showed us love this weekend by loving on our kids."  What a blessing!

Noah also got to play his first soccer game since we've been here.  I guess the Saturday afternoon game is a long standing tradition for the retreat.

 Another highlight was getting to sit and talk with some other long time LAMers, especially in our area of ministry, Camping.  Bob Sebean is like the granddad of all camping missionaries in Latin America and he sat for a long while talking with us for the weekend.

Overall, it was a great weekend for the whole family.  We came away with more connections and more excitement for what is next for us.

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