Sunday, October 17, 2010

Chile Part 2

Santiago is Chile's capital and home to 5.3 million people. There's a constant smog looming over the city but on a rare occasion, when the sky is clear, the view is beyond awe inspiring. The city filled with condo high rises, historical monuments and barrios is encompassed by the snow capped Andes mountain range on the east and the beautiful coast to the west. Amongst the loud hustle and bustle of this overrun city, there are pockets of immense beauty. I was lucky I had a pretty cute tour guide to show me and the girls around.

There was nobody else but us and 4 pair of large $5 snow gloves on the snow covered Andes mountain. It was breathtakingly white.

Sometimes something that starts out small. . .

. . . can end up really big.

This is the last post from our whirlwind, spur of the moment, incredibly difficult and amazing trip we took as a family. During this trip, we grew closer together, even though there was one less head to count. Our family grew stronger, even though at times I felt like I was falling apart. I love that I saw Charlie reaching out her hand, grabbing onto the empty air, and listening to her tell me that Max was holding her hand. I loved her even more when she got mad at Abby for sitting on Max as we jumped out of the rainy night and into a Taxi cab, or when she fed him fried fish and told us he loved it. I will cherish Abby crawling into bed with us as the sun began to peek through the window and all of us spooning like spoons nicely tucked in a drawer. Bedtime for the girls was spent chattering about the days adventures, while in the other room, Ryan and I held each other under an unfamiliar comforter and told each other we would get through this . . . together. This was a trip where we were able to escape watchful eyes and expectations, to just feel what we felt. No one, other than our Savior, will ever know what it is like to have an Abby, and a Charlie, and lose a Max. We cried when we felt like it, laughed when we wanted to, and ate incredible amounts of ice cream and gelato. It was liberating. To be moved by our own feelings. To actually hear what our hearts and minds were telling us; they were telling us it was going to be okay. To just be ourselves, together, as a family. It's a time in our lives I will never forget. It was a trip of a lifetime that meant everything to our precious family.

Monday, October 4, 2010

Chile Part 1

There are little moments in our lives that create a big piece of who we are.

At the age of 19, Ryan headed out with a new suitcase and set of scriptures, ready to convert Santiago to righteousness and love; ahh . . . young ambition, you have to love it. 16 years later, I still hear about his adventures in the loud and dirty, smog, dog and flee infested area he, at one point, called home. I had to see the place that helped mold the boy I fell in love with.

This was a one of the nicer gated homes in the area. I didn't get a picture as we drove past but just picture in your mind a boy, all alone, flying a kite on top of what looked like a landfill. The only thing that stopped me from crying at the image, was seeing the boy's face was full of happiness. He didn't see the piles of trash under his feet, he was just happy to be flying a kite.

After some reminiscing, we drove three hours away from the smog framed city and enjoyed the fresh coastal air.

We found a dirt road and decided to follow it. Luckily it led to some fun surf for Ryan and a beach with a tire for the girls.

Stay tuned for more living