Thus far in our time in México we have not been able to settle into a routine. We are getting there though. More and more details are falling into place and our house is slowly transforming into our home. But if you asked what a typical day has been like, we couldn’t really tell you.
All that being said, we would like to give you all a glimpse into what a day in our life can be like. The following is not necessarily a typical day, nor an extraordinary day. Perhaps it lies somewhere in the middle.
7:15 - We wake up before the kids (!) , put the kettle on to boil, and sit down with our Bibles at the kitchen table. 7:30 - Lewis and Elizabeth come downstairs and immediately demand a cup of milk to go along with their morning cartoons. This morning they are watching "Jorge el Curioso" (Curious George) so at least they're learning Spanish, right? Coffee and tea are ready. Oatmeal is put on the stove to cook. 8:15 - Desayuno is ready. It's not really Mexican, but at least it is healthy. Breakfast is a mix of crying, prayer, oatmeal, brown sugar, Lewis falling off his chair, more brown sugar, spilled orange juice and Bible reading. 8:45 - Scott takes a quick shower (the hot water tank is working this morning) and gets ready for language school. Annemarie cleans up while the kids make a mess somewhere else. Pearl is still sleeping! All night! Yay! 9:00 - Scott leaves for language school. After a 15 minute walk to a main road he hails a taxi to take the rest of the way. Taxi rides can be a good time to practice Spanish. Little does Scott know that his Spanish is about to be put to the test when he realizes he has forgotten his wallet at home and can't pay for the taxi ride. This moment of realization comes and some communication actually takes place. Accuracy unknown. The taxi driver is a little upset, he doesn't work for free you know, but he will stop by our house tomorrow to pick up his pay. Meanwhile Pearl has awoken, but she is too late for breakfast 😦
9:30 - Kythy has arrived. Kythy is our nanny/language helper and she is truly a blessing from God. Annemarie attempts to take a shower, but the hot water has left the building. Ten minutes spent fiddling with the fickle pilot helps brings the hot water back and a shower is accomplished. Scott arrives at language school just on time. Today the teacher is sick, so he will join another class which is practicing saying this, that, these, and those. In Spanish it is more complicated. 10:30 - While Kythy cares for the kids, Annemarie is able to get some chores done. Elizabeth's potty training seems to be progressing; she still has not wet her underwear. Also, Lewis is preaching in his own version of Spanish again. 11:00 - Kythy takes the kids to the park. Jehovah's Witnesses come knocking and this time they have brought someone who speaks English. Very considerate. Meanwhile, Scott is still trying to figure out demonstratives in Spanish. 11:30 - Spanish class ends. Scott talks to the owner of the school for a bit and then leaves for a meeting with a couple Mormon missionaries. They meet down by the river where the rats play. Talking to the Mormons about the nature of God is the easy part, remaining calm while rats run around is the difficult part. Back at home, Annemarie is preparing lunch. Today it's pancakes made from the kids' uneaten oatmeal. Not very Mexican. We'll get there. 12:30 - Annemarie, Kythy, and the kids eat lunch. Table talk is a good time for Spanish practice. It is important to learn the Spanish words for: potty, poop, sit down, and "how do you turn this oven on?". 1:00 - Pre-naptime chaos ensues: Lewis and Elizabeth are both having bathroom issues and won't allow Kythy to help, there is a trail of pee through the house, and Pearl is crying because she "needs" her mom. Eventually, all 3 are in their bedrooms and 2 are sleeping. Annemarie and Kythy clean up the kitchen while conversing in Spanish. 1:30 - Scott finishes his meeting. He has no money so he won't have any lunch today - at least that is what he thinks. God has a sense of humour. 2:00 - Kythy leaves for the day. Annemarie manages to fit a quick nap in. Things are going well. Scott decides to practice his Spanish on a small group of migrants who are lingering around by the river. Most of them are from southern México, one guy is from El Salvador. A man in the group speaks a little bit of English and communication happens again. The group is amused by both Scott's height and his Spanish. After explaining that he has no money on him, the group invites him to a "soup kitchen" which is about to open. Now Scott has lunch. 3:00 - After a lunch of pan con frijoles y queso, Scott decides it is too late to head home since they have plans to visit friends at four o'clock. Instead he walks to a market near the friends' house and spends time taking in the sights and sounds and practising a little Spanish. Of course he has no money to buy anything. 4:00 - Annemarie heroically herds all the kids, and all the needed accessories, in the van by herself. She navigates the maze of streets and arrives at the friends' house. Scott is already there. The friends are missionaries from the U.S., but spent the last 11 years serving in Nicaragua. They are wonderfully hospitable. 6:00 - After making homemade pizza together, we have a feast. After supper the adults chat around the table while the four kids run around the house yelling, or singing. It is loud, but is the kind of loud which you can appreciate. 8:15 - We head out the door, load into the van, and drive home. 9:00 - All the kids are in bed. Never-mind. Pearl refuses to go to bed. Thankfully there are no dishes and Scott and Annemarie can relax a little before going to bed. There is also time for pre-bed Duolingo. It has been a long day, but a good day. God showed up again in many different ways, details, and people. This is the joy of being on the mission field and very much out of our comfort zone. We need to rely all the more heavily on God to make it through and be used by him for the advance of the gospel. We fail often at this, but God never fails to take care of us. 10:30 - Pearl is asleep. Goodnight.
P.S. The tone of the writing has been altered to allow for more humour. Please enjoy.