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Our second hand travel stroller find

Travelling with kids is an art form… It takes planning and equipment. Before we left for Mexico I was a bit of the classic frazzled wife trying to get everything organized with a long do list. One of the things that was most important to me was picking up a stroller that would be convenient for travelling. When looking at strollers it’s important to read reviews and ask people you know who have children who have used them. This is especially the case if you are looking for a specific type of stroller, like one that is good for travelling. A friend of mine told me about this isofix travel system that she got before she went on vacation, and this got me thinking that I too needed a new stroller for the kids. We already have two strollers at home; a single & a double – which I found by searching for the 7 Best Car Seat Strollers for Twins 2020 (although I don’t have twins, this is what came up with the best results for having two kids) – but neither of them fold up small and the double is quite heavy. So I wanted something more compact & light but we really didn’t want to spend money on one more thing for the trip.

Whenever I’m searching for baby gear I almost always look for used items first. Kijiji is a great resource in Canada for used items for pick up locally, I tend to go for used before new mainly because of the price. When kids outgrow gear so quickly it seems wasteful to spend the extra money on something new when you can likely find it in good enough condition used. It’s also always more environmentally responsible to purchase second hand.

I did my research on the top reviewed travel strollers and decided that the Joovy Caboose would be a perfect fit, and it has been! It folds up like an umbrella stroller, has one forward facing seat with a tray, a back seat for an older child to face forward or backward, and a standing board on the back which is great for Poppy so that she can just get on and off by herself.

I was so relieved when I found this stroller listed on Kijiji for $30 in our area, Score! We called the person and picked it up the next day. When you have a daunting to do list, making the tasks simple like that takes a weight off. I’m so thankful to have Kijiji as an online resource to be able to save money and find what we need because it really does make it more realistic for us to travel as a family. The $150 we saved buying this stroller used means we can spend it on a hotel room orrrr on an excessive amount of tacos.

What we are doing in Mexico

 

The idea of us going to Mexico first came up because we were told that their was a need for teachers at a school for kids of missionary families here. We had already thought we might want to do missions work for 3-4 months this fall so when we found out the semester was from September to December and received a few more nudges from God we realized this was the right direction for us.

We have been in Southern Mexico a little over 3 weeks now and I have been teaching a Photoshop class at a school for missionary children a couple times a week. We have been easing into other roles here so that we can allow time for our family to adjust to a new culture and rhythm of life.

David has started helping with a ministry that translates the bible into indigenous languages from the surrounding villages of where we live. Families dedicate years or decades to learning these languages by moving into the villages so that they can translate the bible audibly for these people who don’t read. They download the books of the bible onto these little devices that are solar powered so that they can hear about Jesus. It’s really an amazing ministry that so much effort and love goes into. Sharing God’s word with people who have never heard it is something that really excites David and I.

It hit me this week what a beautiful & sunny place we are living in. We have always wanted to live in a warmer climate and thats actually the entire reason we initially started looking to spend time away from Canada. But just adjusting to a different culture, language, and way of life in so many ways has been distracting that I hadn’t really paid attention to the sun, palm trees, cacti and heat. We’re starting to get the hang of not being able to consume the water coming out of the taps and are conquering the cockroaches, flies, and scorpion (lets hope that remains singular) that had made our house home before we arrived.

Since arriving we have felt 2 large, 1 medium, and 2 small earthquakes. If God wasn’t already teaching me to trust him enough already he’s really driving that point home. Our home has swayed and shaken but been safe, which we are so thankful for. The city where I teach experienced some more damage, including a collapsed hotel, and a handful of deaths. But there are many areas close by that need a lot of help recovering, so we are praying and doing what we can to provide them with what they need.

There are lots of opportunities to volunteer our time and resources here and we are trying to be intentional with what we do since we have to be careful how much of ourselves we commit when little humans need us. But we are really excited to just be here and to be learning so much from God everyday. Realizing that doing God’s work is of the greatest value to us, and thankful to be away from our hometown for a while, though we love it and especially love the people there is so much distraction living in such a wealthy area of the world. I’m very inspired by the “simplicity” of life here and major sense of community they embrace.



 

Poppy’s first eye exam

Before we left town for the fall we took Poppy for her first eye exam at IRIS. She did great, and actually really enjoyed it. Poppy can tend to be a timid with stuff like that, but she responded to all of the questions and tried out everything that the optometrist suggested.

Getting kids eyes examined when they are little is important to make sure they don’t have an vision struggles that you wouldn’t otherwise know about. If they don’t know any different they might not know that anything is wrong and it can effect them once they start school or learning letters. They recommend taking your kids in for a first appointment at age 3, Poppy is 3.5 and think it was the perfect age to take her for the first time. The appointment was quick and easy and free for kids under the age of 19 in BC.

She started on my lap, but once she warmed up she never wanted the appointment to end.

  

As you can see Poppy is very pleased to have good vision…  Actually she’s not, she was really hoping for a purple pair of glasses, but we are! Check out the IRIS store locator to make an appointment.

Our first week in Mexico

Hola! We have been in Mexico now for one week. It has been a week of stretching & learning for us all. It is a very different world here from what were used to in Vancouver, Canada, We are in one of the most impoverished areas of Mexico and it is very eye opening.

The first few days we were here we felt pretty homesick, the truth is we felt a little defeated. Travelling to new places is one thing, but taking your small children away from their comforts does something else to your heart. We just wanted to go back to our comfy home where we have all our little things the kids need, can drink the water, eat food without worrying about getting sick, know the language and to stop killing cockroaches all night. We realized quickly that we have growth to do. When we felt out of place and somewhat vulnerable that reality is that being at home is what we knew would bring us the most comfort, and we want/need what brings us the most comfort to be knowing that God is with us.

We know this is the town God led us to and the home He opened for us, so we know we can be confident in that. We just have to learn to feel it also. We have been feeling more comfortable each day. We drove to the city to visit a Walmart on the second day and ate McDonalds, and as much as I hate those two things and thought I was cooler than that and I would only shop at local markets & eat Mexican food, I was wrong, it was exactly what I needed. Especially when we walked into Walmart and My Chemical Romances’ very first album was playing LOUD on the speakers (my all time favourite teenage band) my eyes lit up. I looked at David and said “listen!” He looked at me like a crazy person while I nodded my head to crappy emo music.

This week we have driven to lots of different areas around us, eaten lots of Mexican food (and bags of chips bought out of little dark corner stores when we can’t find anything else). We’re getting a feeling for the culture and I’m growing to love our surroundings. It is rainy season, and especially rainy from the hurricanes so it is incredibly green & lush right now which is beautiful.

In the middle of the night on Thursday we woke up shaking from the Southern Mexico earthquake, it was the craziest earthquake I’ve ever felt, like our house was on a wave. All the closets, cupboards and doors swung open, dishes fell out of the cupboards and things hanging on the wall were crooked, but thankfully that was the extent. Others had homes destroyed, injuries, deaths, a hotel in the city collapsed, and we’ve been seeing other little bits of damage around town. Even though everything was alright, my adrenaline was pumping that night, David of course fell fast asleep again right after. But it was yet another experience where God was really teaching me to trust Him. Even if our brick roof caved in on us in our sleep, God is in control.

We have been watching the John Piper sermon series When I don’t desire God in the evenings (It’s old school churchy looking, but really solid speaking), since we’re reading the book of the same title. And I’m loving his quote “God is most glorified in us, when we are most satisfied in Him.” This is a season where I am truly learning to most satisfied in Him, with most of the comforts that I’ve grown to let give me satisfaction in the daily life aside. So that who am I as a person can glorify Him as much as possible.

 

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