Monday, August 31, 2020

Storm's Arrival

Sure enough, the storm that's been brewing finally let loose this evening here on Hvar. 

All day the sky has been dark, with almost no sun, though it's still warm.

But you can tell, and see, that rain is somewhere out there, and probably headed our way!

By 8:30, the storm had arrived, complete with a lightening show. I don't know how my phone camera managed to capture this, but it was spectacular!

And a little later on, I captured this lightening strike somewhere out on the sea.

Soon after, the rain come gushing down, as the thunder and lightening increased, and our electricity went off and on a few times. We're supposed to get some high winds tonight too.

Glad we're tucked in here in the house, safe from what's going on outside!

Sunday, August 30, 2020

Wandering Stari Grad

Dave's brothers are here on Hvar, and we're spending the week with them enjoying being family and just hanging out.

But you can't be on Hvar and not see a few sights! So this afternoon we headed over to the other side of the island, to the town of Stari Grad to show Steve around, who has never been here.

L-R: Steve, Dave and Josh!

It was so fun just wandering the streets, and showing him favorite places where we like to walk when we're here.

As wandered, I know Steve, Claire and I were keeping our eyes out for scenes that we might like to paint in the future, now that Claire and I are hooked on Steve's hobby of oil painting!

It would be hard to choose which scene to paint.

Stari Grad was inhabited over 2400 years ago, making it one of Europe's oldest towns, not to mention, charming!

I've read that most buildings in the old town center were built in the 16th and 17th century, making it such a picturesque sight to wander around in!

Claire and I ducked into one of our favorite stores on the island to pick up local specialities, like honey.

We haven't been here together for several years so it was fun to share it again with each other!

By the time we were ready to leave, the weather had finally started shifting into what the forecast has been predicting.

A phenomenon that occurs here when there's a shift in the weather, happened as we were walking back to our car.

The water began overflowing from the sea, covering the sidewalks.

Dave and I have been here when it actually flooded farther into the town! Buildings that are in danger of flooding, have special systems where they can close off so the water doesn't come in.

It probably won't be that bad today. But a storm is definitely headed this way!

Saturday, August 29, 2020

Judah's Tale: First Cast

While we are here on Hvar, we got news from Tyler and Lara about what's happening in their family back home in Ostrava.

Yes, this just happened!

Judah jumped off some play equipment yesterday and broke his foot. ๐Ÿ˜ฌ ๐Ÿ˜ชSo he's now in a cast for at least a month.

But they said he's been so brave! Judah himself sent me a video explaining what had happened to him, which I won't put in here, but will give some highlights!

"I was jumping off the dyno and I broke my little bone in my foot. I needed to go to the hospital and get...what did I get dad?...oh yeah, a cast. And they gave me toys! They also gave me a girl smurf too. I came home and I ate dinner but Asher already ate and after we ate, we got ice cream!"

When Tyler asked him if there was anything else he wanted to tell me he proudly said, "Kids don't have to have scabs!" Tyler gently corrected him saying, "Crutches", to which he quickly repeated his previous sentence saying, "Kids don't have to get crutches!"

But he then went on to say, "I'll have it for a week and then they're going to put a lighter scab on me!"

Scab...a multi purpose word! ๐Ÿ˜‚

The hope is that he will get a lighter cast eventually, and then a boot to be able to walk around in.

Although I've never had a broken bone, every one of my kids broke a bone sometime in their childhood, and lived to tell a tale about it! This will be Judah's tale to tell someday. ๐Ÿ˜

Painting Day

Today was a monumental day for me!

My brother-in-law, Steve, is an oil paint artist, and he brought all of his supplies here to Croatia so that he could paint. But not only that, he was excited to let Claire and I learn from him. So today was day number one of learning to paint with oils!

Oil painting has been one of those bucket list items for me. But you don't go out and buy all the supplies to try it out ... what if you don't like it, aren't good at it, and it just doesn't turn out to be your thing?

I am SO thankful for Steve's willingness to share his talent and supplies with us, to try it out!

Claire is a gifted artist, and has done a lot of different projects with acrylics and water color. But she also has never done oils so was excited to try it.

We worked at it all afternoon, learning, experimenting and actually painting! I wouldn't have thought it possible to actually work on a canvas on the first day. But we did!

We're not anywhere close to being finished, so these are "works in progress".

But I can tell you that I loved the process...learning, making mistakes, and finding beauty in mixing colors.

And I'm deeply appreciative of Steve, who answered every question, every time...all the while, starting a little masterpiece of his own!

That's Claire in the hammock, right there on the terrace!

I'm excited to keep working on my painting this week!

Friday, August 28, 2020

Evening on the Terrace

This evening as I was prepping dinner inside, I could hear laughter on the terrace so stepped out to see what was happening.

This is what I found.

The three brothers were talking to their mom and dad in Denver! It was such a sweet moment listening to them all talk together; even Claire joined in to say hi to her grandparents!

The weather forecast keeps saying that we're going to get some heavy winds, rain and clouds, but for now, it was an absolutely lovely evening out here.

Claire and I had prepared a Charcuterie board (meats, cheeses, fruits, jams, olives, breads and crackers) for dinner - such a perfect meal to enjoy outside on this beautiful summer evening!

It's the kind of evening where you wish you could bottle it up and open it back up on another day to enjoy it again, because it's just so sweet!

Loving this family time here!

Breakfast for Seven

Claire and I drove into Hvar Town this morning, and made our way through the little streets towards a restaurant there for breakfast.

But it wasn't just breakfast for was breakfast for seven!

Five of our JV ladies are vacationing here as well right now! So we arranged to spend the morning together having breakfast and coffee at the wonderful restaurant simply called "Fig".

Our waiter was quite intrigued by us and asked me who we were, and how we're all connected! 

We had THE BEST time together, sharing about our summers and what God's been doing in our lives.

These are some fierce, brave, godly women, who are giving their lives for the sake of the Gospel in Slovenia, Ukraine and Czech! How proud of them I am, and how I adore each of them!

What joy to have a few hours together today, in a place that is a favorite for us all!

Thursday, August 27, 2020

Brother Time

What a fun sight to walk in on this morning!

It's really a miracle that Dave's brothers are able to be here right now, especially Steve. Coming from Oregon in the US, he had to have a negative COVID test in order to be allowed into Croatia, and it had to be less than 48 hours old. He got it on his way to the airport, and thankfully it was negative!

With all that's going on in Portland, where he lives (riots have been happening there for 90 days), it's definitely a nice change of scenery to be here in this beautiful place.

Claire and I came down to the sea to hang out for a while together.

And then the brothers came down a little later!

Dave couldn't talk them into jumping off the cliff (something he, our vacationing friends and kids have been doing for years), so he went ahead and did it by himself!

No worries - it's deep!

The three of us then lingered down here for a while, enjoying the sun and time together.

Still no storm...but they say it's on its way!

Wednesday, August 26, 2020

Arrival on the Catamaran

After taking all of our things off the boat, and heading up to our house to meet up with Dave's brothers, Dave and I jumped in the car to head to Hvar Town.

The storm still hasn't materialized, so it was gorgeous here, though quite empty - so unusual for August.

American and British tourists usually flock to Hvar all summer, but because of coronavirus, they have not come this year. It's good news for those who want to enjoy a quieter summer on Hvar; but not good news for businesses. I wonder how many won't make it because of a lack of tourists?

We didn't come to town just to admire the beauty and enjoy the quiet, though we sure did do those things!

Instead we came down to the end of the pier to await a catamaran's arrival (that's a passenger only ferry).

I can't even begin to explain how stunning it is to see it so quiet here, when normally this whole area would be packed. European tourists have come, but not in high numbers.

We enjoyed the quiet down here this afternoon, while feeling for the town's economic well-being.

The catamaran was a bit late, most likely because the sea is becoming rougher as the wind picks up.

But finally it docked...

...and a certain special somebody disembarked!

Yes, our Claire has come to join us for some vacation time with her parents and uncles!

We're so excited that it worked out for her to come down to join us! She left home in Celadna to go to Prague early this morning, taking a car, train, bus, plane, bus and ferry to get all the way here to Hvar this afternoon!

We're looking forward to this family time ahead of us!