The Gerba Family Updates
The Gerba family was off to the Galapagos Islands with some friends from Peru. It was a wonderful time and the everyone enjoyed themselves even Mike who broke his foot on the second full day on the Islands.
The Kermesse is Colegio Roosevelt's big PTA fundraiser. It is a carnival complete with talent shows, inflatable bouncy houses, games and rides. The kids had a ball yesterday. Maddie's class danced to Starships. They had great costumes, makeup and purple hair extensions. Porter's class sang and danced. They both did great jobs and had fun. We then spent the rest of the day playing games and jumping in inflatables. Linked below are videos of Maddie and Porter's performances. Enjoy!
So on Thursday we are actually at our drop dead date to get this house all packed up. Dave shows up again early which is good and better yet 3 more guys show up by 9am. We now have a crew of 4 guys and we feel good that the move will get completed today. The kids are at day care and we are packing and running the last minute errands. The house is humming all day with guys packing and moving boxes. At around 5pm there is a slight panic in the house. The movers are now worried that we are going to fill the full container. At the beginning we laugh at how big it was but now will all the beds loaded plus the extra king guest bed the container is getting shorter and shorter. The guys are not too sure so we are prioritizing the final batch of stuff in the backyard and the garage. The plastic lawn chairs do not make the cut nor do the nicaraguan rocking chairs. After some thinking and planning we figure out how to put together the last of the pieces of the puzzle. I figured out how to maximize the space with the last of the bed frames and helped get it all packed tight. The movers did a great job and got almost everything we wanted into the container. We only forgot one thing the bed frame for the crib to convert it into the full bed. Oh well it was a great job and a very long day. We stayed at the hampton inn again but Porter was way better and Maddie although wound up finally went to bed. Good day but everyone is ready for this adventure to begin.
On the second day of the packing up our house only one guy, Dave, showed up so it is going to be a long day. He said they would finish today but I knew there was no way. A second guy showed up later in the morning but no way we are finishing today. The end of the day came around and they made a lot of head way but still more to pack and everything to load. They packed up beds so we are lucky our friend Keith hooked us up with a deal at the Hampton Inn. It is a great room at a great price. The kids were going crazy tonight and did not get to bed until 10pm. It will be another long day tomorrow.
We are under Attack!!!...no it is just Christmas in Peru
Christmas time in Peru was a little strange and wonderful for us this year. Many things did not change for us this Christmas even though we are in Peru. Erin did most of the shopping for the family this year, like normal, but this year it was because she was traveling to Minnesota for work. She shipped a lot of presents to her office and said when she got into work her office was packed with boxes from Amazon. Michael waited until the last weekend before Christmas to go out to the mall and he of course regretted it. The main upscale mall by our house was packed the weekend before Christmas. The economy down here in Peru is humming along at around 10% growth per year so there is a growing upper and middle class so the mall was packed with shoppers. The decorations were the same this year with maybe some modification as to where we placed them. Since there are no really Christmas trees our fake one was smaller than normal so our trees outside got decorated by the kids. Again just like normal Porter and Maddie asked to open their presents every single day and by accident a couple of their presents got ripped a little. We also got to use Facetime and Skype to visit with our families which made not being home all the better.
Truly the biggest difference was the weather as you can expect after seven years of living in Minnesota you get use to the cold and snow. So Christmas time with out either was a little strange but we did adjust while having cocktails outside in the beautiful 75 degree weather. I did have new appreciation for the Sinatra song "White Christmas" but we got over it quickly. So the main differences in Christmas down in Peru is the customs. Our family custom is normally to celebrate Erin's birthday Christmas Eve, as it is her birthday, and maybe let the kids open one present just to be nice. We then open all the gifts in the morning usually at a very early hour.
Well here in Peru the custom is that Christmas Eve is a big family party that does not really get going until around 11:30 or midnight. I guess usually the little kids go to bed early then are awaken by their parents right after Santa comes to open their presents right away. So the party starts around midnight. I am not sure what the order of event is but generally I guess gifts are opened and everyone eats and drinks until around 4-5am. We also were told that at sometime in the evening fireworks are usually shot off. We knew all of this when the kids went to bed. What followed was pretty funny and I think pretty scary for the kids. Once the kids went to bed we stayed up a bit and could hear our neighbors starting to party. Our houses are actually pretty close and sound travels easy. At around 11pm fireworks started in the neighborhood but they seemed pretty small and were a distance off. Then once Erin went to bed and the kids way asleep the real fun began. Our direct neighbors decided to get out their arsenal of fireworks and this was not a couple of bottle rockets and some M80s. This was the real thing. I would guess they spent about $500 to $1,000 on fireworks for Christmas Eve. It started with bottle rockets then got bigger and bigger at the midnight hour past. At the point the kids finally woke up they were blasting off in rapid succession fireworks load enough to rattle the glass in our house and set off our car alarm. The flashes from the lights were lighting up our whole house. As I was trying to turn off my alarm every couple minutes and the kids scrambling into our bed scarred to death I realized that the rest of the neighborhood had gone outside to watch the firework display. I never really got to see the but I know it did not end until 1:30am. So let me say that when the kids woke us up again at 6am to open gifts we were a bit tired. Next year we are going to buy our own fireworks and fire them off at 6am just as our kids are waking up and everyone else in the neighborhood is just going to bed.