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Thursday, April 30, 2009

Taking Matt back to USA

Dear Family and Friends,

Matt and I will be flying back to Richland on Saturday. This means that for the next week I will be existing in the "non communication zone."

Have a good week next week.


Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Sharing Cuenca with Matt

Dear Family and Friends,

Our son Matt has spent a couple of weeks with us in Cuenca. He flew back with us when we returned from the U.S. For those readers of this blog, who know Matt, you know what a very special person he is. We have had a wonderful time showing him our new home in Cuenca.

Just a day before we left to come to Ecuador Matt purchased his first ever digital camera. He has been taking many pictures and will have some great shots to share with his friends back home. He turns out to be quite a photo journalist.

Here are Matt and Chuck in the Park of the Iguanas in Guayaquil, Ecuador.

One thing we like to do with all of our visitors is take them on the double deck bus tour of Cuenca. Here is Matt lathered in sunscreen, wearing a protective hat and sunglasses and armed with his camera.

When we got to Turi, the tour bus stopped high above Cuenca for a great view. There was a vendor there selling "Salchipapas", an Ecuadorian favorite street food consisting of fries and a weiner. Matt had a go with this national fast food.

Here is a close up of Matt's treat.

When Matt and Chuck get together there is always a lot of clowning around.

Payback time: One thing about someone else holding the camera is that you never know what they may capture. Here is a picture Matt took of an Ecuadorian woman we all know and love snoozing in the plaza.

Matt keeps up with this blog and one thing he really wanted to do while visiting here was ride in the back of a Mixto. A Mixto is an extended cab pick up truck that is used as a taxi. People use them to haul large quanities of goods to and from the market.

Matt has had a terrific time with us. We are flying to Quito on Friday morning where we will visit the equator. Matt will be able to straddle the equator and be in two hemispheres at once. Then Matt and I will fly back to the U.S. I will return to Cuenca a few days after that.

We are hoping that Matt will spend all his vacations with us in Ecuador.


Thursday, April 23, 2009

Kids and Grandkids - All Together!!

Dear Family and Friends,

After visiting my family in Dallas, TX I returned to Seattle, WA. I had a first time experience on the flight. A crew was filming a reality TV show on our plane. It was for a show called "Whose Wedding is it Anyway?" or something like that. They were filming a couple going from Texas to Seward, Alaska to be married.

Here is a picture I took of the filming on the plane.

During my time away from Ecuador, Chuck had stayed in Cuenca and then went to a meeting in Hamburg, Germany. He arrived in Seattle a day before I did. He picked me up at the airport and it was a grand reunion since we had not seen each other in six weeks.

Our next few days were spent having our own family reunion. Our older daughter, Merri, who lives in Minnesota drove out to Washington with her nine (9) children. Here they are:

Our younger daughter, Kylie flew to Washington from Puerto Rico with our grandson, Bryce. Heidi and Cannon, our other two grandchildren live in Washington. So for the first time ever we had all 12 grandchildren together at once. We had kids sleeping on the floor all over the place. It was a great time having all our kids and grandkids together at once.

Here are a few pictures of those few day:

Our daughter, Merri with the youngest grandchild, Raven Lee

Some of the kids at a rest stop from Seattle to Richland.

Exhausted babies in the back seat of the car on the three hour drive to Richland.

We had a family picnic in our backyard.

Here is Bryce and Cannon doing their water tricks for me in the bath tub.

Life is Good!!

After our kids had gone, Chuck and I busied ourselves getting ready to return to Ecuador. Matt, our middle son (not the one that was sick), came back with us to have a vacation in Ecuador.

We are glad to be back home in Cuenca!

Nancy and Chuck

Monday, April 20, 2009

Dallas Family

Dear Family and Friends,

After leaving Los Angeles, I flew to Dallas, Texas. My brother, Norman and his wife, Nancy and my mother live there.

Again, this was a quick trip, but it was so very special. My mother lives with Norman and Nancy. Norman, Nancy and Mom came to visit us here in Ecuador in February. You can read about that special visit here

Norman was recovering from oral surgery and I did not photograph him on this visit.

Us "girls" went shopping and out to lunch. We had a great time together as you can see by my mother's excitement. She had purchased something at the Clinique counter at Macy's and had just received her "free gift."

Mom and me on this shopping trip.

After Dallas, I flew to Seattle to meet Chuck. I had not seen him in more than a month. Oh happy day!!


Betsy's and Bo's Art

Dear Family and Friends,

After visiting Columbus, I returned to Seattle for a couple of days.

Remember Bo and Betsy from my last post?

When I was in Columbus, I learned that Betsy had a show in the Winston Wächter Gallery in Seattle. Her art is beautiful. I absolutely love her work. With her permission, I was able to photograph some of the pieces she had on display.

As you can see in the first photo her show is still going on. If you are anywhere near Seattle, I recommend that you visit it. Winston Wächter Gallery is located at 203 Dexter Avenue, N. in downtown Seattle. It is just across from Denny Park near the Space Needle.

You can visit her website to learn more about her art and the awesome technique she uses to create it by clicking here:
The very next day, I flew to Dallas, TX by way of Los Angeles. Bo had a show at the Forum Gallery in L.A. I stayed the night there so I could see his show. I am so glad I did, his work is awesome.

You can learn more about Bo and his art by clicking here

Bo and Betsy enrich the world not only with their art, but just by being a part of it. I love you both.


Family Happiness

Dear Family and Friends,

It has been a long, long time since I have had the opportunity to update our blog. As I have mentioned before our house in the U.S. had everything shut off except for gas, water and electricity. I did not have a land line telephone, a television, internet access or even a computer.

Now I am back in Ecuador and I have all the tools I need to update our blog.

After our son was out of the hospital and was feeling better, I decided to visit relatives in Columbus, Georgia and Dallas, Texas. Since I only have 90 days a year that I can be outside of Ecuador (a requirement for the first two years of residency) I decided to see all the loved ones possible while I was in the states.

Here are some pictures of my family in Columbus. We all met at a favorite catfish restaurant - Ezells.

Here we are, all gathered around the table placing our orders.

This is my sweet cousin, Linda. She and I grew up together. My family is a big part of who I am.

Here I am with my cousin, Janis. She and I share an enthusiasm for motor scooters.

Here is my cousin Bo, and his wife Betsy. I was fortunate to see them. They do not live in Columbus but were there visiting our family also. (more about Betsy and Bo in the next blog).

This is the catfish remains of just one cousin's dinner. Yes, we do love catfish.

My Aunt Mildred was not able to make the catfish dinner. She was recovering from a recent fall. She is living in an assisted living home. She is pretty much the matriarch of the family now. I love her so much and I am so glad I was able to visit with her.

It was a short trip of only three days, but it was so wonderful to see all the ones that I love so.

"Happiness is having loved ones in your life."