This post was originally written as an email on August 2, 2012.
Sorry it has taken me so long to do a proper update. As I mentioned in an earlier note, we have been locked into the Ecuadorian winter with days a full seven minutes shorter than those in the summertime and the short days have wreaked havoc on my timing. There just does not seem to be enough time in each day to lounge, walk on the beach, lounge, ride to town, lounge, check out our garden, lounge, clean shrimp, lounge, eat shrimp, lounge, swim in the pool, lounge, and go to bed. But, being the trooper that I am, I will turn to and pump out a few updates in the next few days to bring you all up to date on what has been going on here in Ecuador.
First of all, July 16th was our anniversary (seven years!) and my birthday (sixty-one years!) so we went to Canoa and Pedernales by bus to see the sights and celebrate. We loved Canoa and had fun eating American style hamburgers and onion rings at the Surf Shack.
We got some lovely carved tagua seeds (vegetable ivory from the seeds of certain palm trees) as remembrances of the day.
We stayed at our favorite little hostel in Canoa, the Amular hostel, and the proprietors, Diego and Lorena, remembered us from our previous visit and gave us a nice anniversary/birthday dessert the day we arrived.
We went further up the coast and crossed over the equator past Jama and onto Pedernales. Pedernales is said to be one of the most beautiful beaches in Ecuador, but we found the town to be a bit too big and bustling for us.
The days we were there the sky was overcast and it was windy, and especially after a noisy night in a hostel located right on the malecon (ocean front roadway) we were ready to wend our way back home.
We had a great trip and made it back home to find our friends Chandler and Ann from Vistazul watering our little garden area. They also brought some new plants for us to plant and it was really good to get back home. Everyday our little area gets more and more established and we just love to sit and watch the birds come by and visit our feeder and bird bath.
Our little saffron finches had a baby and they have been coaxing him (or her?) to come down and eat seeds on his or her own.
For days they came and the little guy would sit on the wire near our yard and peep with his mouth open until one of the parents flew up to feed him or her seeds from their beak. Eventually the little guy flew down to the wall and then to the ground to eat seeds that had spilled out of the feeder.
We were very excited when the little guy finally got brave and coordinated enough to hop up onto the feeder to get his or her own seeds.
Giovanni, the caretaker/handyman here, saw me watching the baby one morning and joked that I was the bird’s abuelo (grandfather)! Now the little guy comes on his or her own and the parents are back to being empty nesters! We have watched the fledgling go from almost white plumage, to somewhat colored and now more and more to adult coloration.
We had some people (relatives of our landlord Pepe) visit here for ten days and they often commented on how nice our flowers looked. Before they left to return to Quito they presented us with some gifts (a nice hand-made card and cookies and sweets and two very nice plants.) They gave us a gardenia plant and a beautiful yellow hibiscus.
The wonderful aroma of gardenia wafts onto our patio area in the mornings and we are hoping the hibiscus will attract humming birds to our kitchen window area.
We are praising God and thankful for the safe arrival of our nineteenth grandchild! Carrie bucked the odds and had a child after the doctors told her she could not have any more. (Guess someone knows more than the doctors do!) She almost had the baby very prematurely like Chloe, but she and little Damien held in there he came only a bit early a full 6 lbs. 2 oz. and 17 ½ inches long.
Both baby and Carrie are well and we are thanking the Lord for His providence and blessings.
Kind of a hodge-podge of topics today, but it all adds up to the usual…
Life is good in Ecuador!