Mary's Grammar Class

Mary's grammar class after their trimester fiesta. Their terrific teacher, Graziela is right in the middle.

Our Location on the Map

For those that like maps... Here is our location in Costa Rica. One marker is the Language School and the other is our house. Click "view larger map" below the map in order to explore Costa Rica. +/- will zoom in and out on the map. San Jose, as you will see, is a large city! Enjoy!

View Larger Map

Happy Anniversary Latin American Style

Our friends Bob and Tess celebrated their 11th anniversary and Bob hired a Mariachi band to play outside their classroom. Que Bueno! Here is the video:

1/3rd Complete

Mary and I had our final exams of the Trimester this afternoon and could not be more relieved that our first 1/3rd of language school is complete! We have 2 more days, mostly practice and a few fiestas and then we will enjoy a week and a half break! I can hardly believe we've been here for 4 months now and are all settled in this completely different culture! The last few weeks has been difficult for us and we're really looking forward to a little rest. Where are we at after 4 months? I am truly amazed at how much we have learned. This afternoon I walked into a shoe-store and asked for "indoor soccer sneakers in size 6 U.S. size " that "weren't to expensive" and then even negotiated a 20% discount. I even understood when the clerk asked me if I wanted the shoebox or not and that the sneakers came with a guarantee! We have now completed present, past perfect and past imperfect tenses and move on to the subjunctive and conditional tenses next trimester, the heart of the language. I am still at the point where there are many words I just do not know, so it can be frustrating to express myself. I find myself beating around the bush alot.

This weekend we travel to the rain forest to stay at a missionary retreat home for 4 days of rest. It is set on 35 acres and has its own trails, streams and lots of wildlife. The kids are very excited to get out of the city for a bit. (us too!) It still takes some getting used to living in the city. Mary will leave for Maine as soon as we return and is looking forward to visiting her Mom, family and some firends.

A Video Tour of the Spanish Language Institute ~ From a Fellow Student

Nuestra Hermana

Sorry we have not blogged much in the last week or so. We have endured a very emotional time here in Costa Rica, after discovering that Debra's (Mary's sister) pathology revealed ovarian cancer. Mary's Dad, Norm (shown above), flew down here to Costa Rica and was a tremendous help getting Debra to appointments and with the huge responsibility of deciding how to deal with this very disturbing news. With deep sadness, Debra ended her schooling this past week and we said tearful goodbyes as she headed to Florida to register at the Moffett Center, one of the U.S.'s most advanced cancer centers.

This was Debra (in the middle) being prayed over in chapel on Thursday by a loving group of our fellow students at ILE. It was a very powerful time claiming the truths of God's Word and the promises that He has for her and everyone of us. One thing that we have learned in the short few months of being here, that language isn't the number one thing that we are here to learn. In fact, it is very common for satan to attack now that we are so close to the mission field... that is why we need to be grounded in God's word, and prepared for battle. Colossians 3:15 says, "Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful. Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom, and as you sing psalms, hymns and spiritual songs with gratitude in your hearts to God. And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him." Ch. 4 vs. 2 "Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful. And pray for us, too, that God may open a door for our message, so that we may proclaim the mystery of Christ....." ~ Mary


The entire world is on a quest for Truth. Today, millions of people will wrestle with what is true and what is false in life. In my reading this morning (John 18) it struck me when Jesus said to Pilate, "You are right in saying that I am a King. In fact, for this reason I was born, and for this I came into the world, to testify to the truth. Everyone on the side of truth listens to me." Pilate's response was, "What is truth?". That made me sad for Pilate and for the many who are left searching for truth that never comes. When finding the real Christ and living life with Him, we find the truth. No need to search any longer. I hope you can rest in that truth today. I had a conversation with a friend recently about the many doctrines of the church and religion. I was left thinking how simple faith is when it is reduced to the truth of loving our God and serving others. As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord! How about you and your house?

My Big Cyst-er!

Before you think that I can't spell correctly (somewhat true) I want you to know that I have a big sister, Debra, here in Costa Rica who had a big cyst on her ovary. When we were deciding on a language school to attend a couple of years ago, my sister expressed an interest in attending and actually was granted a sabatacle from her school system (speech therapist) in Maine to come too! What a blessing! She ended up being one trimester ahead of us! Well, she was rushed to the hospital here in San Jose on Thursday morning and was taken in for emergency surgery to remove a grapefruit sized cyst on her ovary. We were very worried, however, it is in times like these that you find out how God can work out the smallest details, and how He shows His love and mercy through other Christians. We are so impressed with our experience at the Clinica Biblica Hospital and the doctors that we have dealt with there. Please pray for Debra and a quick recovery for her! Thank you!!!! ~ Mary

Cottage Rental

We lost our cottage to a large fire in April of 2009.  To rent our new cottage, visit:

Our family has a small cottage (small but sleeps 8-10 and is very well equipped) at the Alton Bay Christian Conference Center on Lake Winnepesaukee in New Hampshire. We are renting it out this summer in order to help support our ministry. Current availability is shown in the calendar below. Rentals are generally Saturday to Saturday.

The cost is just $500 per week. If you are unfamiliar with ABCCC, we are a Evangelical Christian Community of summer cottages on the most beautiful and largest lake in New Hampshire! Our community (families, singles, retirees) has Sunday worship services, youth activities, senior activities, a dining hall, private swimming beach a wonderful property to explore and is close to all the lakes region of New Hampshire has to offer. We are just 20 minutes from Weir's Beach. There are Saturday night Christian concerts on-site and the Alton Bay bandstand also has a weekend concert series and many festivals, etc.. We are within a short walk (2-5 min.) to fine dining,take-out food, ice-cream, a brand-new mini-golf center and many other attractions.

The cottage has a living room, kitchen (with lakeview) and dining area on the main floor. We have all necessary appliances and a comfortable living room. 2 can sleep on our queen-sized sofa-bed. Upstairs there are 2 open bedrooms with a bathroom in between. The first bedroom has a full-size bed for 2 adults and the second has a bunkbed, a twin with another twin underneath. (4 kids) The bathroom has a shower with hot-water. The basement has a bedroom with a twin daybed with a twin trundle underneath and a 1/2 bathroom. From the basement there is access to our yard with table for outdoor dining. We also have a Weber-Q grill that can be brought out and used. We are close to the center field, which is great for the kids to play. (volleyball court, baseball and even a tire swing)