When my Mom and Dad found out that we were coming to Panama they decided to come and visit us. They've been here for about 5 weeks now. We've been having fun together with all sorts of adventures. They've gone off and had their own adventures too - some pretty major ones! The ones we're having together are much tamer. We've rented a vehicle for the time that they are here so that we can get around easier. We tried the bus all together and it was a very cultural experience - try sardines Panama style!
On another trip to Cerro Punta we stopped at a Swiss style hotel called 'Hotel Bambito'. You can wander the gardens and look at the ponds. We stopped at 'The Wandering Sloth' for dinner on the way home. We'll definitely visit there again. So good!
Grandpa helped the kids get set up for getting their ducks.
My Mom and I visited Finca Dracula which is an orchid farm up in the town of Cerro Punta. It's over 6,500 ft. and they grow some amazing orchids. I went to take pics and Mom got to learn a bunch about orchids - it was a win/win.
One weekend we went down to David to their international fair. It felt a lot like the Calgary Stampede. We enjoyed wandering there. From there we went on to Las Lajas to spend the weekend at the beach. I'll do blog posts on those separately. We were sad to see them go but we enjoyed our time together and will be excited to see them when we land in Canada again in July.
We don't have bugs here, but we do have spiders. Quite a few of them, and they are large. Not as big as the ones we had in Kenya, but still large. The seem to come out in the evening, after we close up the doors and windows, and turn the lights on. We usually do a walk around the house in the evening to get rid of the big ones in the bedrooms.
We have seen a few other bugs around, a couple of beetles, some tiny ants, fireflies, various moths, a few cockroaches, some caterpillars, a centipede or two (one stung Caedon), Tiggie found some tiny jumping worms, stick bugs, locusts, grasshoppers, praying mantis, spiders, a single mosquito, dive bomb beetles, tuner moths, large moths,... Hmm, so maybe we do have bugs here?
But mostly, just spiders. Not sure what type they are, or if they are poisonous - one looks like a wolf spider, but not really sure. If you can identify any of these, let us know! I tried making a lemon oil and water spray, it was supposed to make the spiders move along to somewhere else. I think instead they liked it, and invted their friends over.
The other day we woke up to no water. The water from the city wasn't running into the property for some reason. Thankfully, there's a holding tank, but there's only so much in there. We had to be careful with water usage so washing the dishes went right out the window! No one minded - but it did get a little messy.
We've found that bread is expensive here. It isn't unusual to spend $1.75 for regular bread more for some of the better loaves. Flour isn't expensive though so I decided that we should make bread whenever we can. Bailey tried her hand at making it and was very successful. Making bread on a no water day adds to the mess but, hey, why not?!! We're finding that it goes crumbly really quickly. After trying a few different recipes I haven't found one that doesn't. If you have a good recipe and want to try it I'd love to try it!
That afternoon, after Bailey and Keiran were done history class at the neighbour's house, a new friend we met arrived with her 3 horses for the kids to ride. There were around 20 kids here playing frisbee, on the playground and riding horses through the mix. It was great! According to Addy it was 'Awesome' and she 'never wanted to get down, ever'. Loved the smiles on our girls' faces as they got to love on and ride the horses.
By late afternoon the water came back on and we were able to do that huge stack of dishes. Most of the loaves of bread were gone - can't seem to get ahead on that one! They eat them as fast as I can make them. It's amazing what you can fit into a day here. We're loving the pace of life! Everything is slowed down and we have time to play and work together a little more.
By Keiran McNeal.
we got 2 ducks today to keep for eggs. Bailey and I built a cage out of some old pallets that we found, bamboo, and wire with the help of our grandpa. The ducks (Merlin and Eggsy) are still getting used to everything, but they're showing very good progress and aren't as scared as at first.
By Keiran McNeal.
So far this month has been much cooler than February, most likely because of how close we're getting to rainy season. Going to Cerro Punta made for some really great opportunities for photos, here's what I came up with:
As of today, Friday, March 9th, we have had the ducks for five days. They're slowly starting to get used to us, and we're learning what they like and don't. They eat a bunch of the kitchen scraps and watermelon really seems to be a hit with them. One of their favorite things to do is splash around in their water, so we've supplied them with a little pan that they can go dunking in when they want. We're currently working on getting them into the creek so that they can really enjoy themselves.