January 25, 2011


We arrived to the U.S. last Saturday. Joshua was pretty good during the flight, and even slept about 5 of the 8 hours. We've been spending this week with David's family and will be spending next week with Anna's family. Joshua has really enjoyed having so much family around. David's family even threw him a birthday party. It had an Elmo theme and the toy trucks abounded. He was thrilled and he'll probably expect a birthday every month now.

It's a little strange to be back. The coins feel lighter. We're already gaining weight from eating all the foods we've been missing. The t.v. shows are pretty ridiculous... Is "From G's to Gents" a real show that people actually watch?

We're not any closer to figuring out what we want to do with our lives, but the Graco Nautilus is working out pretty well for us. So, that give us some hope for the future.

January 19, 2011

The Countdown is Getting Short

Joshua's visa is here, we have official permission from the Chilean department of agriculture to bring the dog to the U.S. and the Graco Nautilus is properly installed in David's parents' car. In 3 short days, we'll step onto U.S. soil, closing one of the most important chapters of our lives.

January 12, 2011

A Foot in Each Country

We're still hanging out in Santiago. More goodbyes have passed, but we're not quite so stressed. Unlike in Alto Hospicio, our things are already packed and we don't have to worry about getting the house ready for a new resident. Joshua's favorite things about his new temporary home are running barefoot in the grass, running naked in the sprinklers and running over to see the fish in the garden's fountain. Since we're staying at the Columban Center House, we have the opportunity to go to daily mass. So, we take turns "watching Joshua" (sleeping in) and going to mass. We're trying to get into a healthy routine of walking at least an hour a day and eating healthy, since every time we go back to the States we double our weight. We're probably scoring about a 50% on that resolution.

We made our first big commitment and bought a car seat online. David's parents will be picking us up at the airport and unlike in Chile, Joshua riding in the back seat on Anna's lap is not an option. The car seat was kind of a metaphor for the life laying ahead of us: first, we had to research the seats. Which one was the safest? Which one the most user friendly? What does RF, FF, and B mean? Is a detachable cup holder really necessary? It costs how much? So many options... so complicated...

We'll be making a lot of major life decisions soon. Car. School. Job. House. Adoption. If it took us 3 days of serious researching and a good bit of arguing in order to choose a car seat, what's it going to be like making all of those other decisions? Part of the appeal to our lives in Chile has been the simplicity of it all. The "real" world can be an intimidating place.

Here's the seat we finally chose - The Graco Nautilus (yes, it does have a cup holder):

January 4, 2011

Chao Alto Hospicio

Our last night in Alto Hospicio has come and gone. We were saying goodbye to friends until 1 in the morning, got to bed at 4:30 and woke up at 6:30. Yesterday morning, we loaded the dog and the baby on the plane and arrived to Santiago in time for lunch. Gringuita was a little dopey all day from the tranquilizers we gave her for the trip. She was nervous in the car and even more worried when she looked around and saw so much green. She isn't used to trees or grass anymore. Today, she seems to be doing much better and she's getting used to her new temporary home. We're staying in the Columban Center House for about three weeks, while we sort out Joshua's paperwork to come to the States, say goodbye to friends here and rest a little.

Christmas and New Year's was a little tainted since it was shrouded with a melancholy feeling, knowing that each encounter with a friend was perhaps the last time we would see them. We're sure we'll be back to visit some day, but we can't be sure about who will be around when we finally make it. It was also sad to put an end to our ministry in Chile. We've really enjoyed the work we did with youth, as well as families and drug addicts. Hopefully, we'll be able to continue in the same line back in the US.

Arriving to Santiago has helped put a new perspective on our farewell. Last night at dusk, we sat on the porch as Joshua played with the dog in the yard. We were able to pray the rosary together and just sit for awhile, enjoying the peace after so much chaos of packing and goodbyes. It also gave us a glimpse of future evenings in the US, where we'll have our own home and will be able to dedicate more time to our family. As much as we have loved living in Chile, we have to recognize that the lifestyle we've had for the last 7 years has not been conducive to a healthy family life - constant running around, lack of privacy and the general negative aspects of living in a big city, like noise and pollution. It will be nice to focus on Joshua for awhile, and hopefully adopt some more kids. We're looking forward to the future.

Some "goodbye" photos:

This last one is Joshua playing in Gringuita's travel cage. We think that both of them would have enjoyed the flight a lot more if they could have traded places.