Saturday, December 02, 2006

Trip to Project Amigo in Colima

We drove 5 kids from Melaque up to The little village of Cofradía de Suchitlán outside Comala Colima for a special dental clinic they put on for us. Most of our kids had not been to Colima let alone in the mountains at the base of Colima volcano. They had teeth fixed and an adventure at the same time.

Project Amigo is run by a great bunch of people and has been working in Colima for 25 years. Their offices are in a beautiful old home in Suchitlán. I'll let you read more about it on their web page. Ted has given up part of his home, a block away, for the dental office.

Project Amigo Web Site

Kids getting snacks and orientation

Dental office

Garden behind dental office

Kiosko in the Suchitlán Plaza

Suchitlán main street

Volcano from Suchitlán entrance

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Barbara's house - at least it was

I promised to get a few pictures of Barbara's house. Sadly after her only being there a few months she decided to head back north. She asked if we wanted to take over her house and of course the answer was yes. It's more secure, prettier, feels larger, has a yard ... and is only a block from the beach.

So we're happier, have a garden to play with, easy for walks on the beach, a block from the kindergarden for the 4 year old (Marcos) ... and looking forward to cooler fall weather. Hopefully no hurricanes in the next few months.

Front of our new house in Melaque

Side street view with the ocean a block away

Our palapa in the front corner of the lot

Back yard - green tarp is for shade this summer - it's hot

Living room and one of 3 bedrooms with Jania on the floor (she's 8)

Side yard with palm, bananas and limes

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Settling down in Mexico

I've created other BLOG's for areas along the Costalegre as well as a few others about places I've been ... but have ignored this one. Since this is more about my life here rather than Melaque specifically - here goes.

After living for almost a year in a nearby bungalow the landlords personality just became too much of an issue. My neighbor (Barbara) and I finally just had to get our own places. No pool this time but a lot more peace of mind. Landlord issues are just another thing you may have to deal with in Mexico - especially if they are on the property. Believe me, gringo (or ex-gringo) landlords can just as bad as Mexican ones - and you can understand the words but don't have a clue where they are coming from !!

So Barbara got the place I originally wanted but since I've taken on a family the landlord was too skeptical about the kids. The pictures below are of our place which is very basic, suits the purpose well ... but lacks in the aesthetics department. We put up the palapa for afternoon shade ... and rather than a real pool we have a kiddy pool in the rear garage space.

For those interested in prices, ours is $3250 pesos a month (a little less than $300us), a large 2 bedroom that we made into 3 easily, 2 bath, secure parking, air-conditioning (we pay electric which is expensive), water-garbage-cable TV are included. We pay phone, DSL, drinking water and electric.

Barbara is paying $4000 pesos for a 3 bedroom, 2 bath - a block from the ocean and it has a beautiful garden. We´re 6 blocks away and have no real garden. I'll post another picture or two if I get good ones - and maybe a foto of Barbara's. It takes some looking to find decent places ... and if at all possible, avoid realestate agents, some here want as much as 20% a month for their services.

So quickly, my family now has 5 kids from 4-13, 2 boys and 3 girls. Then there is Mari who is really either aunt or grandma to these kids - an amazing woman who really keeps them inline ... and is a great cook !!

Adios for now

Front of our new house

Kitchen area

The living room from the kitchen - a lot of furnishings were included

Thursday, April 20, 2006

Two weeks Seattle and two weeks Hawaii

Flew up to Seattle around the 24th of March for 2 weeks of business, taxes and visiting with friends. And yes survived the weather which was not too bad but different than the Mexican paradise.

The best part was the second two weeks were spent in Hawaii at my sisters place. Got lots of fotos but don't yet have the sorted or on the website. Hope to have trip reports on 4-5 different hikes, surfing spots and just scenery around Oahu and the Hawaii Kai area.

Northeast side Oahu beach (windward)

Flying back early tomorrow morning VIA Salt Lake and Puerto Vallarta ... and bus down to Melaque the following day.

Then I can get to the web site and posting some pictures.

Two days later
Got most of the web site together ... at least the fotos
My Hawaii Page

Tuesday, February 21, 2006


Applying for an FM3 in Manzanillo

It's been awhile since I've posted here but I thought applying for my FM3 was worthy. I've been updating and creating Blogs from other parts of Mexico I've been. You can read those on the sidebar to the right.

Anyway ... we went to Manzanillo last week with almost everything we needed. The one exception was the "real" copy of a bank statement. So here is what we needed. Nothing translated or notarized

1. Proof of income - a 3 month print out plus an original statement (something over $1200 per month)
2. Proof of residency - My landlord went to the local Municipio (city government) with my passport and for 30 pesos I got a letter on City stationary. Utility bills would also work.
3. Copies of every page of my Passport - plus the Passport
4. My Tourist Visa
5. 7 pictures to meet their specs

Cost was about 1400 pesos and 120 for the pictures. First years application costs more ... but unsure how much. They told us we could pick them up the first of March - about 3 weeks precessing.


Picked up the FM3 on the 8th. I still only had a downloaded PDF statement from my bank - no originals. The clerk was still not happy with it but got permission from her boss to accept it. I promised to bring a check book, real bank statement and a letter from my bank - or some combination of the above.

Did you know an FM3 comes in a book similar to a passport - it's green.
The construction of the house finished in April 2011 and I'm pretty much settled in. As of March 2014 I'm in preparation for rain mode for this coming summer. That includes sealing and painting things and dealing with drainage issues from last year.

Sparks Mexico Web
Manzanillo Information
House building in Pinal Villa

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