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I learned after last year that I need to be a bit more strategic about which and how many of Nate's games to attend. I want him to feel supported by the kids and me but by halfway through the season the kids were on burn out and saying things like, "I don't want to sit at a boring soccer game, I want to just stay home." Since Nate would be delighted if they love soccer this seemed a poor way to have them experience it. So this year we've gone to less games to keep it exciting but in terms of job...

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Three days after we went to Ibarra for Carnaval we repacked our bags and headed out for another weekend away - this time to a house in El Tingo, about 45 minutes from the city. The purpose of the trip was a retreat for Inca Link Ecuador; for missionaries, local workers, and board members who work all over Ecuador to come together to connect for a weekend. Some of us know each other well and others didn't even know each other's name. It was a little crazy with 30 people occupying a six bedroom ho...

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One of my goals as Counseling Department Chair has been to find ways for my team to support each other and to have a high level of trust among us.   The reality is that in many ways our job is a solo-job. No one sits in the room with us when we are in a counseling session. No one watches us handle a Child Safety investigation. And when we do handle one, we are required to keep that information confidential even from our other counseling co-workers. So we have to spend a bit more focused tim...

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Since having our first child, Canaan, we've chosen to say no to a lot of things. Prior to his birth we were usually "yes" people but that all changed in a short period of time. Having a child, training to move overseas while working full-time, moving five times in a 6 month period, moving countries, and then adding a second child all in less than 2 years was a LOT of transition. And the reality is that the pile up of transitions often left us feeling depleted. If we had said yes to one more thin...

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20ish soccer players, 8 World Race Interns and 2 of the cutest little fans Cumbre Alta will ever have, all in our backyard. It was simple and barely organized. Hamburgers, hot dogs, potato salad and a lot of bags of chips and pop. The players ate and ate and joked with each other. They talked the game, they talked soccer in general and started the campaign to get Nate to organize a Fifa tournament next. They were polite and helpful, offering to put away chairs and take out the trash. They ended ...

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In mid August we experienced our first retreat with our new missions organization. It was a global retreat, but Inca Link global is smaller than our old organization's Quito staff alone! We spent 4 hours winding first further up into the mountains before heading, curving and looping back down until we reached the jungle. The real jungle. That Canaan kept calling the zoo. The camp was sparse and small but served it's purpose. The kids saw dozens of varieties of butterflies and bugs and spent a lo...

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For being a soccer coach I spend an awful amount of time at coffee shops. Of course I spend tons of time on the field too, but more and more I find myself sipping coffee. Soccer opens up the door, coffee deepens the relationship.       As I sit across the table from one of my players over a cup of coffee I can really get to know them. I get to hear about their families, their victories, their struggles. And I get to share about my family, my victories, my struggles too. Of course ...

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It's a good thing we have a big living room because 20 soccer full grown soccer players fill it up quickly.  20 soccer players, one coach, one mini tagalong and a whole bunch of pollo gus chicken.   Nate turned our living room into a movie room using a projector and had his whole team over to watch game footage.  It was our first time having the team over, but will become a more regular thing now that this is the team he plans to work with long-term.         I ...

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A group from Georgetown College arrived last week to help deepen Cumbre Alta’s connections to the local community. San Francisco is the community that we have partnered with, who will allow us to use their field in exchange for helping them maintain and improve the field along with providing additional people resources to the community.     The group was composed of 9 women and 1 gentleman. Our intern, Andrew, and a couple who usually is working with an orphanage in a province 8 hours away w...

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Last week my dad called via FaceTime with an envelope.  An envelope containing my testing results for my national AMFTRB exam.  The exam that needed to be passed as my file waited in Springfield as all approved pending acceptance of exam.  Probably something I would have loved to open in private since I was so nervous about it, but part of living overseas means having other people open my big envelopes.     Thankfully, mercifully I passed!  And last night another en...

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Contact

Email:  nktaube [at] yahoo.com
Skype:  nktaube
Nate's twitter:  ndtmustard

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