Sunday, June 19, 2011

the ELMER's come to Costa Rica!

Brian and I were so blessed to have his family come and visit! We had such a blast with them! Some of the things we did included: Manuel Antonio National Park, White water rafting, Canopy Zip line, Monkey tour through the Mangroves, fishing, aerial tram through the rainforest and so much more! Here are a few pictures of our fun!

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

i LOVE to see the TEMPLE

How hard can it be to attend the temple? You schedule time in your busy schedule to attend, grab your temple bag or rent there, jump in your car and bam you're there getting all the blessings He has in store for you! Not so easy! Living here has given us so much to be grateful for there in California! I didn't realize how easy we had it in California!

Problems we are facing:

Running a hotel is pretty much an all the time job! While it is an easy, fun and relaxing job, it leaves little time for traveling. We are pretty much here at all times. The only really slow day we have is Monday, which is one of the only days the temple is closed!
We do not have a car that will get us to the temple, which is only an hr away. We would have to take the bus, which is a 2-3 hrs ride. That's not too bad though! We did not bring our temple bag and were hoping they would let us rent clothes. We now find out they don't rent! Hmm...that's a tough one to try and fix! We will figure it out!

While there are so many problems, there is also light at the end of the tunnel. Brian's sister Jenny and her husband Todd are coming in just a few weeks and we have plans to go to the temple! We are so excited to go! Here is what the beautiful San Jose, Costa Rica temple looks like!

This temple was dedicated June 2000. Just 11 yrs ago. We are so excited to see this wonderful place in person!

When our time is done here in Costa Rica, we will be heading through El Salvador to Guatemala to visit Brian's family. We were so excited to hear that San Salvador temple will be having it's open house the beginning of July, which is when we would be going through. But we were sad to find out our bus gets us in at 9pm and leaves the next day at 5am! Bummer! But here is what that gorgeous San Salvador temple looks like!

While we are in Guatemala, we plan on seeing the Guatemala City Temple. Although the Quetzaltenango temple isn't open, we hope to get some pictures while we are there! Here are pictures of both!

We are so grateful for the opportunity to be here in Costa Rica! We can't wait to see these gorgeous temples in person!

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Costa Rica Cooking

I am not the cooker! I'm the eater! My theory has always been "Why cook when my Dad is an amazing chef and cooks meals everyday!?" There was never a need to learn to cook. Even when Brian and I got married, I would get a text message from my dad saying there were left overs and we should come over! It's quite sad that I don't have any pictures of his cooking. I guess I just jump right in instead of photographing it! Here are a few pix of my Daddy who I miss so much!!

Now that we are in Costa Rica, WOW things have really changed! I was pretty nervous, but willing to try some stuff. I've been making some yummy crepes and banana pancakes for breakfast. I just made some yummy hashbrowns this morning! They certainly were delicious!

I had a minor mishap with some brownie s'mores I tried to make! They looked so good on the internet and they didn't look too difficult...boy was I wrong! 3 things I did NOT know before attempting these delicious s'mores: 1. Graham crackers are so hard to find here in Costa Rica, so we had to make do with some wheat grainy crackers that were more like wheat thins! 2. Baking chocolate is impossible to find in a small town! I had to use this crazy chocolate that was like wax and meant for chocolate dipped bananas, which are also nasty wax bananas! 3. Costa Rica ovens are in celsius, not fahrenheit! So when I read 325 F, I went to the oven and was puzzled why it only went to 250. So I just figured it was an old oven that didn't go very high and said...I guess just go as high as we can! We can probably get to 275...C not F! That means I baked that bad boy at 527 F!!! Yeah, not a success by any means! Lessoned learned!

A few others I have made so far are: Haupia, many different fruit smoothies, chocolate chip cookies, chocolate cake with frosting and peach cobbler! All in all, we are having a wonderful time and are enjoying every minute. (Don't ask my husband how the s'more brownies were!)

Monday, April 25, 2011

Oh how I love TECHNOLOGY

I am so grateful for TECHNOLOGY! Since we have been away from home, we have relied so much on the computer to communicate! SKYPE is such a great blessing to me at this moment in time! Here are our adventures on SKYPE!

We were so excited when we got to talk to a few other people too!!

Technology is wonderful and we are so grateful for it!! Just another one of Heavenly Father's many blessings! Thank you!

Blessings: Health Care in Costa Rica

Brian and I are having so much fun here in Costa Rica. The week leading up to the big holiday of Semana Santa was pretty relaxing, not too much going on. Brian and I were able to have some fun. Brian has made some really nice friends: Alfredo, Luis, Tito, Roger and a few others who he likes to surf, play soccer on the beach and volleyball with.

So one day he went surfing and came back complaining that his leg was hurting just under his knee.

T: "ok well ice, elevate and relax."
B: "no, we are gonna play soccer."
T: "Ok, whatever."

The next day...
B: "My leg is killing me. Maybe I shouldn't surf today, but I really want to. I'm gonna go, but pad it with a ripped up shirt!"
T: "You are crazy!"

The next day...
B: "I can't really bend my knee and my leg looks a little swollen."
T: "Not sure what you want me to say."
B: "I'm ok! I'm gonna go play volleyball on the beach with the guys."

1 hr later...
B: "So I fell right on my leg and it hurts so bad I can barely walk!"

B: "My leg feels a little warm, can you feel it?"
T: "Holy heck! Your leg is on FIRE, your whole leg is so swollen and the bump is HUGE!"
B: "I'm ok!"

The next morning...
T: "Go to the Dr NOW"
B: "Ok"

So there I am, the day before BUSIEST week of the year for us, with a hotel full of people. I made breakfast for 30 people. I collected all the bills. I answered phones and worried all morning about how my poor husband is doing and which arm and leg he is going to trade for being seen by the Dr. After only a few hours, he returned with antibiotics in hand and NO BILL!! What?! He said he was seen very quickly by a local Dr., the office was so clean and they were so nice. He just has a small infection, but it will be just fine! Wow! What a blessing! Heavenly Father was really watching out for us! He is doing much better and his leg looks great! And even though he wasn't feeling his best, he helped a lot with the busiest week of the year! We survived and we are able to relax again!

Where to Begin?!

Since I have so much free time on my hands here in Costa Rica, I thought I would try blogging again! Here goes nothing...

We are here in Costa Rica taking care of a friend's hotel. We got here March 16th and will be here until July. We landed in San Jose and took a taxi to the Coca Cola bus station, only a few minutes away. We were told there would be some scary people there and to watch our bags, try to blend it and not look like a tourist. That is quite difficult when I have no idea where we are or where we are going, Brian speaks some Spanish, I speak NONE, we had 3 huge gigantic bags, a uke and 1 carry on bag! Yeah, we fit right in. The bus ride wasn't too bad, got to see some beautiful scenery!

We arrived at the hotel in about 2 and 1/2 hrs. It is a cute little place with 7 cottages. We are staying in the 7th, so there are only 6 for rent. There are 3 dogs and 1 cat on the property, who belong to the manager that we are filling in for. Although we are not animal people AT ALL and I'm very allergic to cats, it's not too bad and the dogs are super cute! I find myself talking baby talk to them and rubbing there bellies, which I never thought I'd do!

We have been so lucky with some of the guests who have stayed with us! It is so much fun to meet so many different people and just get to know them! We have made some really awesome friends in the month that we have been here! I hope to make more since we have a few more months to go. For the majority of the time, the beginning of the week is slower and the weekends are packed. In the beginning of the week Brian and I have a lot of time to ourselves! We have been playing lots of games, reading books, Brian is surfing and playing soccer and volleyball with everyone! We are having a blast for sure!

The down side to this is that I miss my family very much! I miss them EVERYDAY! I was hoping my mom, dad, Nui and London would be able to sneak over for a quick visit, but things are busy for them. I hope they will have time before we leave in July, but if not...we will survive! I hope! I get to skype my London everyday or every other day. Technology is so amazing! The things you can do. WOW! I'm so grateful for technology!

Brian's sister Jennifer and her husband Todd are for sure coming in May and we are so excited! We are hoping to spend some time touring around with them if the hotel isn't too busy. We will have to see. We hope Brian's grandparents, Dad and family from Wisconsin will be able to come also, but we aren't quite sure yet.

We are really missing my mother in law Elizabeth and wish she could come to visit too, but she is busy back home with her business. We are planning a trip to Guatemala on the way home in July to see their side of the family. I cannot wait for that! It's going to be so fun! I've never been there!