Crispy cool air with a mountain view. Calm, relaxing, and an enjoyable place. This is Sierra Nevada Granada in the summer – a wonderful get away for those like us that want to escape the heat and humidity of southern spain’s summer. Don’t get me wrong, I love the beach! The sand on my toes, the sea, the breeze… but… and this is a big BUT… living in a place where there is no central air and the humidity percentage is very high, making the actual temperature feel much hotter, drives me crazy! Sure, when we are at the beach it feels wonderful but since we have responsibilities and can’t do them in our swimsuits (sad face here) it drives us to look for a refuge from the hottest time of the summer.
A couple weeks ago it was our son’s 8th birthday! He wanted a Star Wars themed party to celebrate with his friends.
We decided to have a Star Wars birthday party in a park close by. I am so thankful that though it has been only a year since we moved to Spain, our boy has already so many dear friends.
I can’t believe it has been almost a year already since we’ve moved to Spain. It feels like yesterday and yet it feels we’ve been here forever.
We are finally settled down and have been pretty busy. We spend our time between taking care of our kids and helping our local church. It has been a wonderful experience and the more we do it the more we are certain of our calling to be here. Sure we went through an adaptation period with its challenges but nothing that distracted us from the fulfillment we have as a family to be loving and serving the people God brings in our lives. It’s been pretty awesome. But as much as we love it from time to time we like to have a little get away for our family. We know that we need this time to make sure we are all connected, to recharge ours batteries, and to enjoy fun quality time with our kiddos.
So the other day we went to Andalucía. We stopped in a beautiful town called Nerja. Boy, this town is breathtaking I told Keith we sure need to spend a weekend there. Look at the view.
YES VIDA Update
A belated Happy 4th of July to all of you back home! We have been back in Spain now for five weeks. During this time a lot has happened: We searched for and found a house! A lovely four bedroom apartment two blocks from the beach with a view of the sea, the castle, and the mountains. We have also reconnected with our church family here in Aguilas, and we have been busy catching up with them. We have been received very well here and have been invited in many homes to eat some amazing home cooked Spanish food! The rest of the time has been spent getting our house set in order. It is not perfect yet but it is getting there. In fact today we had our first house guests over for an afternoon lunch.
In addition to the fact that we have been quite busy we have not had a consistent internet connection until recently. Thus we have not been updating our blog posts. Now that we have internet and things have settled down a bit we are going to restart our efforts on the blog. In any case here is a post I wrote about the day we drove from Madrid down to Aguilas. Hope you enjoy it!
Returning to Aguilas – May 31st 2017
As we drove in the car from Madrid to Aguilas, I reflected on the day we left Aguilas in 2013. It was a bright sunny day almost exactly four years before. We were sad that day and there was no joy in the car as we saw the city disappear in the background. A few hours later when we boarded the plane to leave Spain Nicholas was crying hard, and even though he was only three years old he seemed to understand the importance of the moment. The three of us left Spain with heavy hearts. We had established a strong connection with the people of Aguilas but we had to go home.
“Teach us to number our days aright that we may gain a heart of wisdom.” I read these words in the bible a while back and they seemed to jump right off of the page to me. I had read this verse many times before, but why did it seem this time it had more significance? Maybe after having turned the big “4” – “0” not so long ago my perspective on time subtly changed. Or maybe God just wanted me to step back and look at the big picture in a different way. All I know is that after I read that verse I started to analyze my life’s trajectory and that analysis brought me to some interesting conclusions. I have had a very successful professional career over the last twenty years. In fact as a working life goes I am more or less at the halfway point. I could continue the corporate path for another twenty years. I would probably get promoted another time or two and make a nice income. At the end of that time I would be able to retire well and then sit back and relax. And yet if I continue on the path that I have been on and dedicate more time to the corporate life how fulfilled will I be in the end? More importantly would I retire having felt that I had fulfilled the calling in my life?
Moving is not easy. Moving overseas with kids is even harder. I’ve been so overwhelmed with so many things we still need to do in order to get it all ready to go. It has been a crazy time for us here. But as much as I am tired and can’t wait to be done with it, I got to say I am beyond thankful for my family church. All the help – coming to clean our house, buying our things, letting us take the left overs from our family group so we don’t have to cook the next day, offering to stay with our kids, offering to help deep cleaning our house once every thing is packed and ready… seriously, I am not exaggerating. This is what church is all about. Serving and loving one another.
One day I was at IKEA to buy a wardrobe for our bedroom. I had chosen the perfect one that could fit and that was functional and cute. The price was good too. I was very happy with my choice. If you’ve been to IKEA before and are like me you will go over the whole show room floor before going down to their warehouse to gather your furniture. So this time was no different. I spent hours looking, measuring, comparing, writing down the codes, and the Swedish names… then with my kids and my cousin I went down on a mission to find my perfect piece of furniture. Of course I had to go over all the decor sections before getting to the actual aisle where my wardrobe was. When I finally got there and went down to drag the heavy piece onto my cart I froze. I couldn’t move. Something inside of me didn’t let me move. It didn’t let me move that furniture to the cashier to pay for it and take it home. There was a voice so strong that I left empty handed and was in shock as I texted my dear husband who at that time was on a work trip in Belgium: I am at IKEA to buy the wardrobe we need and I can’t do it! I feel like we’re going to move again and it’ll be just a waist of money. My husband was not sure what to say since we had just moved to Atlanta. And he just got a new job. So moving wasn’t in our plans. But…
We are Keith and Suzan and together we create Yes Vida! Here you'll find glimpses of our life living abroad while raising our two kiddos and serving the Lord.