Tuesday, August 17, 2010
I got up and refused to take a shower because I'm child and that's what children do. I didn't really want to work so I put on a hat and a sweatshirt and after breakfast, I decided to watch the gringos work. I watched them break up the dirt in front of the new patio so that a sidewalk could go there and I watched them break up cement so that the sidewalk could go there. I was encouraging with my words and I even told them that if they stood on the otherside of the pick ax, it would gain them enough leverage to pick up the huge piece of concrete. So I helped, right?! lol.
I sat on the jungle gym and Elias and Pepas came out. They talked for a few minutes, left for a few and then on Pepas returned. We sat and talked for a while and he told me more of his background and his story. I was happy that he felt comfortable to share it with me. We just sat around and watched the gringos work on putting up the roof of the patio. Elias came back and had gone with Chris and Jacob to La Torre for some stuff. He brought me back a Coke (how nice!) and we ate his snacks. I don't know what they were but they were the best snack I've ever eaten I think. They were so good! And bite-sized so that it's easy to eat! haha.. A guy from the Army was here and he talked to Pepas about joining the US military. I didn't know that if you got your visa, came and joined the military and worked in it, they'll give you citizenship after 2 years. You also get all the same benefits and pay as citizens. That's pretty cool!
Chus had come out by this time and was asking him funny questions. Elias came up with the bright idea to ask, "Have you shot any children?!" and I turned around and said, "Do you think he'd want to be reminded if he had?!" and everyone laughed. Thank goodness the guy is in training to be a chaplain and hadn't. I would've felt bad for him if he would have had to say yes. The very next question I guessed for them. I said, "They want to know what kinds of weapons you use." They all cracked up laughing again because I was exactly right. He talked about his guns and they thought it was cool. Chris came out sometime around then and sat on the jungle gym with us and chatted. I stayed out there and enjoyed the sun even after the boys went to lunch and to change for school. Chris sat out there for most of the time with me but I waited until 12:30 so that I could tell the boys to have a good day at school. I always like seeing them in their suits. They look so nice! I said bye to them and came in to take a shower before lunch.
I got ready and we started eating lunch a little after 1. After lunch, I went to Esperanza and hung out. Julisa was talking to Jessie when Roberto finally got online. I had been impatient all day because it was his day to see if he got approved for his visa. I asked him and he told me to check Facebook. I think I may have screamed when I saw, "Robert Valla: Tn here I come!" I was so excited!!! I talked to him for a minute and then called Momma to tell her. She was super pumped too. Julisa had to go to sewing at 3 so I took my computer back to the gringo house so that I could talk to Roberto for a minute. I stopped by the school because the boys were on break and talked to them. I was so excited and they were laughing at me. They're always laughing at me.
I talked to Roberto and Tim and I were Facebooking back and forth. He told me Patty was on the way to get me for dinner celebration. I got ready and hung out around the gringo house until she got there. I walked over to tell Julisa that I was going and talked to her for a few minutes. Patty came and got me so I dropped my computer off with Tomasa who gave it to Chiquis and I left with Patty. We had to wait on Carlos 7 at the bus stop near San Lucas and once we got him, we went to the City. We went to Applebee's!! It was so funny to go in there and it was all the same. The decor was the same, the menu was almost exactly the same (except the descriptions were in Spanish) and NFL football was even on TV! I sat between Denis and Roberto and Tim told me about the day and how everything had gone. Roberto told me a little bit but Tim was more outwardly excited than Roberto was. We ate some dinner and hung out then headed on our way. Patty took me, Carlos 7 and Roberto back to Casa. We stood around for a while when she went inside for a few minutes. It was really cold outside so we went to the gringo house to sit. A few minutes later, we went back over and they left.
It was such a fun night getting to eat dinner with all of them. I had a blast!!! Denis said, "I've never even heard of this place before. Have you eaten here?" and I said, "Only like 40 times in the past two years," and he laughed at me.
I came back and put on my pajamas and went to Esperanza. It was really cold by now! The girls were talking to Jessie and watching a movie on TV. I didn't make it too long cuz I was pooped. I eventually went to sleep and don't remember what the girls were doing. I remember saying goodnight to Jessie but that doesn't mean much. lol.
Julisa got me up at 5:45 this morning so that I could head back over to the gringo house.
Today I plan on packing up most of my stuff, writing a few notes, hanging out with everyone, taking some pictures and then the boys are buying me pizza tonight. I'll of course then hang out with my girls.
I've been trying to put a timeline on everything that's happened since I've been here but I can't. I've been trying to figure out if I could stay here for longer and I most definitely can. It's not whether I could or not.. It's whether I'd be happy here or not. And I would be. I definitely would be.
As for now, I'm putting off taking a shower as always. I'll eat breakfast in a little while con los gringos.
I hope that you all are doing well. I'm doing great. Kind of sad but not really because I never get sad until I'm in the car, going to the airport. I'm going to enjoy my last day with my favorite people in the world!!
Got up kind of late with the girls and headed back to take a shower and eat some breakfast. The gringos did skits for Children's Church so I was all alone for a while which was kind of nice. I got ready for church and walked over around 8:40. I was standing in a corner and suddenly, all of the university boys were standing right in front of me. They kept talking to me and bothering me during worship so by the end of the second song, I moved and hid among the gringos. :)
I came back and they bugged me some more for the three minutes of offering that I was standing there. After that, gringos were dismissed until gringo church. I stood around for a while with Adam and Chris and Duke and then just sat down for a while. Gringo church was very good. Mike is talking about the strategies of Satan and this week was how Satan is the deceiver.
After Bible, I found Roberto and we walked to the gringo house so that I could put on warmer clothes (it was freezing!) and then we sat on the front porch of Estrallitas. I was pretty tired and my Sunday nap was encroaching upon me sitting there watching the rain and listening to music. I didn't have too much to say, mostly because I was tired and Roberto didn't have very much to say either. Eventually, I went to eat lunch and he went to talk to some folks and then left. I'm kind of sad that I was so tired while he was here but it happens I guess.
I went to eat and then went to Esperanza. They played on my computer and watched TV. I fell asleep until Chiquis came in at 5:30 telling me that the boys were looking for me. I got up, went to the gringo house to change clothes and then headed out with the boys.
We went to San Lucas so that they could go to La Torre for some stuff and Elias and I needed to buy minutes for the gringos' phone. We, unfortunately, could not complete that task because we didn't know the phone number and couldn't find it anywhere. After that, we ate somewhere and it was really good. I just got whatever Jacob got (I'm finding that's a pretty safe bet) and it was super good. The boys and I had lots of fun just hanging out. We caught a bus to SanBar and walked to see Elias' sister and then were pretty close to heading home. Some eventful things happened and we ended up at Casa relatively quickly. I'll have to explain it later but it's not a huge deal.
We came back and sat outside talking for a while and Chris came and talked with us as well.
I went over to Esperanza around 9:20 and watched "Miss Guatemala 2010" with them. They were so funny looking at the girls and talking about their evening gowns. It was just like watching it at home with a bunch of girls. The one from their area came in second so they were mad but happy that she got an award at all. It ended at 10 and they messed with me for a while before we all went to bed. It was a fun night with them! Every night is a fun night with them.
Sorry that this post is a little late. My routine has been messed up a little.
I hope you all are doing well. I'm happy as always!!
Sunday, August 15, 2010
We went through Antigua to go to Zapote. On the way into Antigua, Fuego (a volcano) was waking up. We saw the puff of smoke up in the air and it was pretty neat. A volcano erupting isn't ever cool because of the destruction but I enjoyed seeing it. It wasn't exploding all over everyone but just releasing a little congestion. lol. It was pretty neat to see in real life.
We went through Antigua and ended up on some roads leading to the volcano. I think Zapote is on Fuego but don't quote me on that. I didn't ask. But we passed through some really interesting parts. We had to cross four rivers. Some were only 10 ft across but some were probably 50 ft across. There were no bridges. We got lost only a little bit on the way but eventually ended up there. We were closer to the coast and definitely in the "jungle" parts and it was humid! I was so happy to feel dense humidity. Of course that made it a little hot but I still liked it! The people were really happy that we were there. Adam said the pastor almost started crying when we told him we were coming because he said no one ever wanted to come out that far and do something like that for them. We got into the village and the kids started chasing the bus in excitement. We went out to a clearing/soccer field near their tiny school and set up everything. They let us borrow their speakers and were incredibly friendly. The jumpy things were going as well as games and grilling hot dogs. The gringos played soccer with them and two casa kids as well as one gringo dressed up as clowns. The people seemed to really enjoy the party. The Gospel was shared and one kid asked a casa kid to help him accept Christ. As Adam said, it was all worth it just for that one kid.
It started raining so we had to pack up and leave around noon. We got back on the road and the rivers had risen a little bit but not enough to stop us from going through. I fell asleep quite quickly on the way back. I was asleep on the bumpiest parts but I was so tired that I didn't care. I think everyone in the van was asleep except Adam and Mr. Duke. Adriana was sitting on the floor and fell asleep. We got back, unloaded and the gringos ordered pizza. We ate some pizza and then Chris and Elias looked up movies times. By the time we were finishing eating, it was about 3. I went over and gave the girls my computer, picked up Julisa and asked Adriana's dorm parents if it was okay that she went with us. By 3:30, Chris, Julisa, Adriana, Chus, Jacob, Pepas, Elias, and I were on the way to the movies! We had to run by a few places and we picked up Elias' sister but got to the movie theater by 5:20. We got the tickets and then walked to a gas station to get snacks. We sat there and ate them and just chilled until 6:30. We went back and everyone got popcorn, etc. We went in and watched The Sorcerer's Apprentice. It was in English with Spanish subtitles. Pepas and Julisa sat on either side of me, both of them holding my hand. I pretty much don't walk without someone holding my hand now. All of them do. Boys included.
The movie was pretty good and everyone seemed to have a good time. We headed back to Casa and got here about 9. I watched the gringos practice their skits for the next morning in Bible and then went to Esperanza and went to sleep.
It was such a good day. Going to the block party was fun and I'm so glad that I went. Going to the movies with my favorites was even better. I was like a little kid on Christmas day on the way there which I'm sure was annoying but I was so excited. I am so privileged to know each one of these folks. I count it as very much a blessing that I know them.
It was a great day. Super long but SUPER great!!! I had a blast!!!!
I hope that you all are doing well. I've started reading the book of Joshua. I started a while ago and it surely is a good book!
I'm going to go grab some breakfast before church. It's freezing here. I mean like COLD! I mean like long sleeve t-shirt, fleece and sweatpants and I'm still cold COLD.
Saturday, August 14, 2010
I hung out with the boys and with David as he was preparing to leave. I put off taking a shower as long as I could because the gringos from Teen Challenge were cleaning the women's bathroom. At noon, I showered and got ready for the day. David left a little before lunch time.
I ate a late lunch with the gringos and then headed to the other side. I was outside, watching the girls play when all of the sudden, Julisa disappeared. She went out for the day without even telling me! lol.. And to think that she is always mad at me for leaving even when I do say something to her about it. I sat outside until about 4 when I came back to the gringo house and called Mom and Daddy. I said hello and then washed my hair and got ready. We were supposed to go to Elias' niece's birthday but Chris couldn't take us so Elias, Chus, Pepas, Jacob and I went to SanBar. I first stopped by Esperanza to see Julisa but she wasn't there so I just left my computer and went on.
We went to San Bar and went to eat (as always) and then just hung around. We walked around, saw a bunch of people that they knew, and enjoyed being outside. Got back around 8:30 and helped Adam finish up loading the trailer and prayed with the team. I went over to Esperanza and said goodnight and got my computer and came back to the gringo house. Since we were planning on leaving at 6:30, I figured I didn't want to wake the girls up that early on their one day off. They appreciated that even though they didn't want me to leave.
I hung out downstairs and did a load of laundry before I finally went to bed at 11.
It was a pretty slow day and boring but it was still lovely. I got to hang out with everyone. The best part was that Elias bought the girls Pepsi and Dorito's so they weren't even mad at me! lol. As Chris said, "They are easy to bribe."
Sorry that this one was boring but too much has happened since yesterday for me to remember!! I'll write about today later on tonight.
Hope you all are doing well!
Friday, August 13, 2010
Got up, went to eat banana bread with the girls and then came back to the gringo house. I got showered and dressed and ready to go to Antigua. We left around 8:20 to Antigua. When we got there, Elias and I went to see the hospital/church where he had his surgery a while ago. It was really pretty and Elias talked for a while about his surgery and everything that happened with it. It was a nice walk. We went after that to find Dorito's and shampoo for the girls. Elias was so sweet to come along with me to find stuff for the girls who are always mad at him. lol. It's true though!
After that, we went to a cafe where Chris was and drank coffee until 11:30 when we met David, Pepas and the girls to head back to Casa. We got back and I came to eat lunch with the gringos. I sat around for a while until I was positive that the girls were out of lunch. I went over, stopped for a while to talk to Adriana and then went to Esperanza. The girls talked to Jessie on Skype and were watching novelas. I gave them their shampoo and Dorito's. About 2:45, I fell asleep (only sleeping 4.5 hours a night makes that happen often in the afternoons) and I didn't wake up until the girls were already back from dinner. 5:45!! They said that they were poking me and talking to me to try to wake me up but they couldn't. I was OUT! I woke up and they were laughing at me. I don't blame them.
I got up and came back to find that the gringos had already eaten. I didn't mind very much because I woke up with a headache from sleeping that long. I sat around until the boys got out of school and we went to ask Chris if we could go to SanBar. I had to wait for them to change so we left about 6:20. Elias, Chus, Jacob, Pepas and I went. We walked around for a while so that they could decide something to eat. Eventually we went to a place that I hadn't been to before and got hamburgers. They were pretty good. Not quite the same but still good. Victorinos came on so they sat and watched that while eating. We left and went to the square. People are already setting up their booths for the big festival that will be on the 20th. Chus and I went to get a tostada with beans on it because what's a night in SanBar without one?! lol.
We watched the girls playing soccer and by this time, the Casa girls who were playing had gotten there. There were a bunch of Casa people. We sat around and then walked to get Jacob and Pepas and Chus some chicken and fries. We sat again in the square and watched the Casa girls play. Around 9 or 9:30 (I don't know which it was), we rode back with Alex to Casa. I was so tired that I laid my head on Elias shoulder and almost fell asleep on the short ride home. I was pooped!!
I got back, went to Esperanza and they were watching novelas and playing on my computer as usual. We went to bed around 11 and I was happy to go to sleep. I woke up this morning multiple times but apparently refused to abandon the bed. I woke up at 7:30. lol. The girls had gone to school and just left me! I don't blame them and I'm kind of glad that they did.
I don't have much planned for today except we are supposed to go to Elias' niece's birthday party tonight. I'm so excited about that.
I'll write more later! I love you all mucho!!
Thursday, August 12, 2010
I woke up and came back to the gringo house to take a shower. I got all ready to go to Antigua by 7:15. I came down to eat breakfast with the gringos. We had chocolate chip pancakes and they were so good! After I ate pancakes, I went to find the boys to leave. They were on the other side. I ended up walking around a lot looking for people but eventually I found Chris. We got back to the other side and since Adam's truck had broken down on Chris in the City the night before, we had to postpone the trip. Instead, the 7 of us walked to San Lucas and explored quite a bit. We drank some coffee and walked around all morning. Eventually, we ended up at Pollo Campero to get the guys lunch. David and I were waiting until we came back. We caught a bus for the last 3 kilometers. Elias was thoroughly against catching a bus for some reason but after a little bit of fighting, I convinced him it was okay for me to ride it. We got back to Casa and I said bye to the boys and went to lunch. They went to school. I sat around for a bit after lunch just chatting and hanging out. I wrote my blog and then headed to band practice.
I sat outside at band practice and it was freezing!! I stayed out there until Career had a break and I talked to Elias and Pepas. At one point, Pepas was joking around and grabbed my arms so hard and I was screaming and he realized it hurt so he stopped. I was kind of mad after that because my arms really hurt but I think it may have clued all of them in that I'm breakable and they can't keep beating me up. They all looked at me with puppy dog eyes after that. lol. I didn't get bitten once afterwards!
I left band practice to come back and help with dinner but they had it all under control. We ate tacos pretty early and then I got dressed for Bible and headed over to the other side.
Chus stopped me on the way and asked me to walk him to Chris' apartment so I did. We walked in and I figured Chus would stay there to eat but he didn't. About an hour later, Chris and I were still talking. I didn't even notice what time it was until I was definitely late for Bible. All of the sudden, I heard a knock at the door. I realized it wasn't one of the boys because no one walked in right afterward. I figured it was a gringo but I heard someone asking for me. I turned around and Roberto was there!! I ran and attacked him. Naturally. lol.
I got my stuff and said bye to Chris and then walked with Roberto down the stairs. He said he had to move the car to the outside and asked if we could use my keys to get back in. I said sure. Denis was in the car when I got there so my excitement doubled. If that was possible. We went out the front door (the kids were still in Bible so we couldn't go through the back gate) and he said, "Hey! I'm really hungry! Can we stop to get something?!" so I said sure. We stopped and got some pizza and came back to Casa. We came back and by this time, the kids were out. We stopped to talk to Arnulfo (the whole reason he had come) about papers that he needed for his visa. After that, the boys had to leave. They headed back home and I headed to change. I walked in the gringo house and David said, "Oooooooohh!!! You're in TROUBLE! Everyone was looking for you!!" hahahaha. Apparently the kids had missed me at Bible. A few of them asked him where I was. I explained to him where I had been and he laughed because I was so excited to have seen the boys. I changed real quick and headed over to Esperanza.
Chiquis and Julisa were about to be asleep but they popped up real quick and got on my computer. They talked to Jessie on my computer while I talked to Roberto on my phone. We stayed up talking about random things until 11! I finally fell asleep on everyone at 11.
It was such a good day!! I love walking around with Elias and Pepas and the girls. I also loved getting to see Roberto and Denis. I almost peed my pants when I realized it was him! Then I loved getting to be with two of my favorite girls in the whole wide world. They're so awesome, even if they like talking to Jessie more than me. lol. Just kidding. But seriously.
I've gotta run to take a shower and get to Antigua so I'll write more later. I love you all very much and I hope that you are doing well. Much love!!
Wednesday, August 11, 2010
They sat in Julisa's room and talk on Skype with Jessie. I sat on the bed and eventually got bored so I took a nap. Julisa was napping too. They call me lazy but I don't have anything else to do while they are doing that so why not? lol. I woke up around 4:20 and Julisa was going to do dishes. The girls and I sat in their room and hung out until they went to dinner. I took my computer to the gringo house and hung out for a while. Eventually I took a shower and put on my PJs. The boys and I ordered pizza for us and I bought one for my girls. It didn't get there until around 8:30 so I took my computer and their pizza to them and came back to eat with the guys. We sat around and ate pizza and had a wonderful time. It was Pepas, Elias, Chus, Jacob, Aaron, David and I. We hung out just talking until about 9:30. I went over to Esperanza and the girls were filled and happy with pizza and talking to Jessie. We talked for a while because I was full of energy but about 11, I fell asleep. Julisa was working on homework and still got up at 4:30. I actually woke up with her but didn't really gain consciousness until 5:45.
The new gringos that came in are military with young guys. When I got back at 5:45, the guys were doing PT on the other side and the lady with them was already working on their breakfast. They were back inside by 6:25 to eat breakfast so I went to take a shower.
I'll write about the rest of my day in a little while!!!
Yesterday was pretty relaxed and it was very nice. I've been so happy hanging out with Pepas again along with the rest of boys!
Well I kind of miss ya'll but not too much. hahaha. I do, however, sincerely hope that you are doing well!! I'm doing GREAT!!!
Monday, August 9, 2010
We effectively sat and walked around. They messed with me and bit me which seems to be the new norm. Instead of saying something witty, they punch or bite me. It's really painful. I have lots of bruises. At 11:30, they went to lunch and I went to take a shower. I got clean and then ate lunch with the gringos. They are really cool. There's a mom and daughter here and the daughter is a Chi O and the mom is a Tri Delta like Megan!! How odd!! I told them that I've seen more Chi O's than anything else. It's been pretty sweet.
I waited until I knew the girls were done with lunch and walked over. Julisa was finished and in her room so I said hello to Adriana, Chica, Celeste, Vera, and Bety. I sat down with them and then came to Julisa's room. She was doing homework and a few other girls were watching TV. We hung out and then sometime around 2:45, I fell asleep. The TV shows were boring me, mostly because I had to think. Lol. Julisa went to sewing at 3 and then came in and woke me up at 4:20. We walked outside and she went in to wash dishes. I sat with Adriana and Vera for a while. They were mostly paying attention to Chica and Chris. I went to eat dinner at the gringo house and then I came back over. I saw the older boys on the way and took a nice beating. They were all talking to me and messing with me and I left because I was tired of getting beat up. When Pepas punched me in the stomach, I kind of felt like I was going to throw up. I appreciate that they count me in as one of the guys but they've got to realize that I'm a little more breakable that they are. lol...
Now I'm at Esperanza hanging out with the girls. I'm sure that they will talk to whoever tonight. Right now, some are doing homework and some are watching TV. I'm excited to be here.
I love them MUCHO!
Well I hope that you all are doing well. I'm SUPER happy. Kercy told me today that I look happier since Pepas is talking to me again. That's kind of true. There is no one that I know of that is mad at me. Being at peace with your brothers and sisters in Christ is so important. Jesus says in Matthew 5, "So if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother has something against you, leave your gift there before the altar and go first be reconciled with your brother and then come and offer your gift." In 1 John it says, "Everyone who hates his brother is a murderer, and you know that no murderer has eternal life abiding in him."
All the time in the Bible, God speaks about loving one another in the body. Recently, two people in the body were angry with me. I begged for reconciliation but they refused. It tortured me everyday to know that they were angry with me not only because I love them and wanted to be with them, but because the Bible so clearly states that it is wrong. I prayed at least once a day that we would be reconciled. God has been extremely faithful to work through me and them to restore us to friends. So when Kercy told me today that I looked happier, I knew it was true. Totally true!!
Well I hope that you are doing extremely well. I'm doing GREAT :) Better than usual plus a few bruises! I'm praying for all of you and I hope that you are awesome!!
Sunday morning I woke up to Julisa coming to get in bed with me. She and I took a nap and didn't wake up until 7:15! I came over to the gringo house and David was finishing up laundry so I helped him and then he made breakfast. He joked that if anything, the army made him a good housewife. lol. He made eggs and toast. He kind of overestimated on me because he made me as many eggs as him. I was SO full by the time we were finished. It was so good though and very nice of him to do that. We both went to take a shower and then headed over to Bible. Since we can't hear the bell, we were a few minutes late. I felt bad about that.
Esdras taught on Sunday because Mike is still feeling bad from his eye surgery. Instead of having gringo church with Esdras, we all went over to Pastor's house. I played a few songs that everyone knew and then Pastor shared the Word. He talked about Gideon and how he humbled himself extremely low to obey God's commands to only take 300 men into battle. He talked about how we often just think the stories in the Bible are stories and not real life events and how we often take pride in ourselves for something that God has done. I really enjoyed his sharing. We finished up and I changed and went to the other side. I said hey to the girls eating lunch and then went to the soccer game. It was an eventful game. They lost 4-0 and a few of them got hurt. Pepas hurt his ankle pretty badly and came out pretty quickly. He sat with David for the rest of the game. Elias got hit a couple times and then got a bloody nose. We all came back to Casa and they went to take showers and stuff. Roberto was here so we got to spend the rest of the afternoon together. It was cool. We sat and watched it rain and just talked.
After he left, I went to the gringo house and a group of new ones are here. They're extremely nice. They had been traveling all day and were looking pretty worn. They ate dinner around 5:30 and I ate with them. Not even two minutes after I was finished, the boys knocked on the gate and said, "We're going to SanBar. Hurry up!" I hurried up and got my stuff and we set off. Jacob, Julio, Pepas, Chus, Elias and I. I gave them all of the Q I had and told them to eat off of that. It was only like $10. We went to the tiny place that we always go to and the boys ate a bunch of food. I was sitting there and Jacob said, "Why didn't you go get water since you hate the milk?" and I said that I forgot. 60 seconds later, Julio returned with a water for me and something orange for Jacob. Jacob is so laid back but so nice. I don't think I've met anyone as cool and collected as he is. He had sent him to get it for me. How nice!
I ate a tostada with beans and it was good. We finished and walked back. They stopped by tiendas on the way getting cokes and stuff. We came back and Elias told me to wait outside so I did. Pepas came walking over and asked if he could sit down. I said sure. We talked for a while and worked everything out. I was so happy. It was very exciting! I'm pretty sure that the only reason he did it was because David is his sponsor and David told him that he had to talk to me. I talked to David this morning and he said they talked about it for a little while and Pepas realized that he didn't have a good reason to be mad at me so he should talk to me. I'm very grateful for that.
So he and I talked and hung out for a while. The other boys hung out with Aaron. About 9:30, Elias said, "Hey! Emily is talking to you on Skype!!" I had NO idea what time it was and so I looked up, went to change really quickly and headed to Esperanza. I had completely forgotten about Emily's Skype date with Julisa and I didn't even know what time it was. I felt awful because Emily was signed off by the time I got there.
But Julisa and I went to sleep and got up this morning. I didn't wake up until 6:40. Today, I'm gonna eat a sandwich while the girls are eating dinner and spend the whole night with them. I felt so bad that I forgot. I know I can't make it up, but I'm gonna try!!
Right now, I'm waiting Chris and David. We're going to build an entertainment center for Chris. I told them I would help because I'm actually kind of good at that kind of stuff. Thank you robotics. lol.
I hope that everyone is doing well! I'm back on my schedule so I'll be posting tonight or tomorrow morning. I love you all very much!!
Saturday morning I got up and went to breakfast with the girls. Aaron told me right before I went to eat that he got sick last time he ate the pancakes. I ate 3/4 of one before I was full and had to give the rest away. It may have been a little bit of a mental thing. We ate and then I went back to the girls' dorm. We played for a little while before I headed back to the gringo house to say goodbye to the TN boys. I said goodbye and then painted Chris' cabinet again before I took a shower and went back to the girls' side. We hung out for a little while and just played around.
We watched the boys and girls play in a soccer tournament that was organized by their teachers. I eventually went back over to the gringo side to work on laundry that the other gringos had left. A new gringo, David had gotten here. He's SUPER nice. Adriana had told me that he was and she was excited about him being here and now I understand why. He helped with the laundry and baked a cake. We helped Adam get ready for a party at his house for the kids who have been throwing the block parties. He had to run to Antigua so the kids came over to the gringo house for a bit and played cards until Adam got back. David and Adam grilled hot dogs and we had those, chips, and drinks. It was a fun party. Elias had me translating for him on chats. We ended up watching a little bit of Twilight. David was cracking up because Elias was sitting in my lap watching Twilight. lol.. it was pretty funny. Despite his lack of weight, he was warm which was nice to me because I was freezing!!
We all had an in-depth conversation about Twilight and how Edward is kind of a good example because of the way that he protects Bella at all times. Elias said his momma taught him to always be like that, which I've seen because he's overprotective about taking me places.
It was a fun party at Adam's. We had a great time. I went over to Esperanza and Julisa was sleeping somewhere else so I was all alone!!
Well I'm going to write about Sunday now! Next post!
Saturday, August 7, 2010
I spent the night at the gringo house so I tried to sleep as late as possible. I stayed up pretty late the night before so I slept until about 9:30. I was restless after 6 but I tried my best. The gringos also had on all the lights and didn't really care that I was still asleep so it made it difficult. I got up, messed around and eventually took a shower. I went over to the girls' side at 12:45 and waited for Julisa. We hung out for a while until she went to band and I came back to the gringo house. I got ready to go out to the block party.
When we left, it was raining but by the time we had gotten there, the rain held off a bit. It was a beautiful little village and we set up in the town square. It was wet everywhere but the kids had a blast playing all of the games, eating cotton candy and jumping on those blow up things. I really need to figure out what the correct word is for that considering I've been saying, "blow up things" for a while now.
The gringos also grilled hot dogs and gave those and juice boxes away. The people ate, had fun and heard the Gospel. Elias translated for the youth minister from Virginia. A little while after he was done translating, he looked and me and said, "It feels good." I asked "What?" He said, "Sharing the Gospel with these people." I don't know why that impacted me like it did but as we continued to watch the kids play and listen to music, I continuously let those words sink in. As he was sharing, most of the kids kept playing their games. Most of the teenagers kept on with their conversations. The adults kept on with what they were doing. I was standing there, looking at all of the people NOT paying attention to what they were saying. However, Elias saw it the complete opposite way. He was looking at who WAS paying attention. He saw what was more important in that moment.
We got back to Casa around 7 or 7:30 and the kids went to eat in the blue building. After they finished, we unloaded the trailer and the gringos' pizza got here. Chris had ordered some for him and the boys. He invited me over to eat with them and I went but I didn't eat any. I wanted them to eat. They all thought I was mad or something but I wasn't. I was kinda bummed because Pepas' sponsor got here yesterday and it still bothers me a lot that Pepas and I don't talk. I miss him a lot and it was kind of overwhelming yesterday. But we watched Bad Boys and it was really funny. I love spending time with those guys. They are really great. Elias went so far as to get mad at me because I wasn't eating but I reassured him that I was fine and that I really didn't want him to be mad and he was fine.
I left around 10 and saw the TN guys next door at Josue's apartment so I said hello and then came to the gringo house. They were playing cards so I sat down for a few minutes before I changed and went over to Esperanza. Allie went with me. We got there late and the girls were already asleep. I bugged Julisa until she fell asleep. I was asleep very soon after.
It was a really great day. I had so much fun watching the people at the block party. I let Celeste take pictures so I haven't even looked but I'll try to get those on FB sometime within the next day or so.
I hope that you all are doing well!! I'm fabulous as always :)
Friday, August 6, 2010
I played guitar with Adriana and Julisa. Julisa couldn't go to band because she had to wash the blankets from her dorm so I went to give her a hug and hit my head super hard on her now-bunked bed. lol. It was funny but it really hurt!! Adriana and I went to band.
I sat there forever until Elias and Franklin came out for their mid-day break. They sat with me for an hour before going back to school. I love hanging out with them.
The band got out early so we headed back over at 3:45. I went to Julisa's dorm to wait on her because she wasn't outside. I figured she'd eventually come over but she NEVER did!! I fell asleep and woke up at 5:30 still waiting on her. I don't know what she was doing! I went looking for her and she was helping clean up in the blue building. I said bye to all of the girls and came back over. We sat outside for a while and I sang while a few guys were playing guitar. We ate dinner late, around 7:20 and I went over to Chris' because Elias wanted to use my computer for Skype. Before I knew it, it was 10:30 and I knew the girls would be super mad if I came over that late. I feel bad that I'm not there but I don't wanna wake them up!!
I came out of Chris' apartment and saw a beautiful fog settled on the mountainside. I was walking and saw cell phone towers blinking in succession. That was the first time I really realized that I'm far away from home. I don't mind at all being far away but I guess it just hit me. I'm so happy to be here. I've been happy all along but it's kinda neat to realize it.
I don't know if everyone else experiences this but everytime that I'm here, I always feel like I have nothing to offer. This isn't a low-self esteem kind of comment so let me explain it! In the States, I can lead worship and do lots of other things but here, that's not of incredible use. For example, the girls want me to sing in the blue building for Bible sometime and my thoughts are, "I'm not going to be singing in Spanish. What benefit would that be for them?!" I'm still not sure where the answer is on that one. I don't want to just be entertaining. That's not ever what I want to do. Sometimes when I talk to the kids, I don't have much to say. When I talk to the older boys, they wrestle with decisions that I'm wrestling with as well since we are close in age. I don't provide wisdom. I say all of this for a purpose.
I've realized very much in a real way that I, in and of myself, have nothing to offer these kids. I don't know why they like me. I'm not the typical person that kids love. BUT God has worked in a mighty way for me to love them and for them to love me. It's absolutely amazing that I love hanging out with teenage girls here. I've realized that I can be an arm to hold onto, a friendly smile, a big hug and many other things. I don't have much to offer but what I do have, they like which is crazy.
God is amazing and the things that He has called me to, I would have never been capable of on my own. My parents told me I was a terrible singer until 9th grade. I was a nerdy person who now is getting a degree in Music. I hated teenage people, even when I was one. Now I'm here loving them more than anyone else. I am very attached to my home and my parents and my city. I'm spending a month in a foreign country where it's cold. It's so funny where God has called me over the years and where He has put me because NO ONE would have ever guessed any of this for me.
Praise be the One who knows our plans and to the One who I am following!! It's amazing to be walking with Him, letting Him lead me and unveil the plans He has for me. I know that people like to lead others on scavenger hunts and I feel like God is enjoying leading me on scavenger hunt right now. It's so lovely!!
Hope you all are doing extremely well! I love you very much and I miss ya!
P.S.-Special congratulations to Philip Long and Amber Green who got engaged!! I'm happy for ya'll!
Thursday, August 5, 2010
I eventually took a shower and got ready but by this time, it was 1:30. I said hey to Adriana and Vera in the blue building then said goodbye to Julisa and Chica in Julisa's room. I then loaded the bus with the gringos and headed towards Antigua. When we got there, it was raining pretty solid. I thankfully had my rain jacket and my Chacos on. We went to a cafe and two of the three guys from TN, Aaron, Allie (who are also staying here long term) and I ate dessert and coffee. I had a fabulous brownie and ice cream with iced coffee. It was sooooo lovely!! We sat around for a while there and enjoyed eating together. Jordan and I left and went to the artisan's market where he needed to pick up a few things. I just wanted some earrings. He claimed that he was a great shopper and then picked out earrings that I loved! lol.. It was really funny. I picked out a few things for myself and some other people and then we headed back to the square. I actually found Dorito's for the girls and Dr. Pepper for me! I was incredibly surprised to find the Dr. Pepper. I bought 6 of them so that the boys could try one if they wanted. We headed back to the square and met up with all of the gringos and went to Don Rodrigo's. I ate a good dinner and talked to Mom, Dad, and Megan off of the wifi while waiting for our food. It was good.
We came back to Casa and got here around 8. I went to Esperanza and the girls talked to Jessie as usual. I talked to Roberto through Skype on my phone. I accidentally fell asleep on him, for which I felt very guilty. I was tired!!
Now I'm back at the gringo house, watching the gringos eat breakfast because I ate at 6:45. Today I'll probably paint and little and play a lot :)
I've been reading the book of Daniel which has been really good. I love hearing the stories of how God rescued in a mighty way. My favorite thing is how Gabriel addressed Daniel, "O man greatly loved." I love that!! It's repeated a few times throughout the book. I want to be like Daniel in several ways. In the first way, like Andy Stanley preached on, I want to be someone that when they try to dig up dirt on me, there is nothing.
"Then the presidents and satraps sought to find a ground for complaint against Daniel with regard to the kingdom, but they could find no ground for complaint or any fault, because he was faithful, and no error or fault was found in him. Then these men said, 'We shall not find any ground for complaint against this Daniel unless we find it in connection with the law of his God.'" -Daniel 6:4-5
Second, I want to be like him in this:
"Fear not, Daniel, for from the first day that you set your heart to understand and humbled yourself before your God, you words have been heard, and I have come because of your words." -Daniel 10:12
I want to set my heart to understand and humble myself before my God. Not so that my words will be heard for my own requests but so that my words will be heard for the greater good of others. Daniel was praying for his people, not for himself, when the vision came to him and said this. That is pretty cool. Really cool.
Well, I'm out for another exciting day.
I hope you all are doing well! I'm great!!
Wednesday, August 4, 2010
At twelve, I went to pick up the guy doing the field. I walked with him and the guy who owns the back hoe to the front gringo house where we ate their leftovers for lunch. It was really good. I walked him back over (I have keys) and he went back to work. At two, I came over with the girls for them to go to band practice. It had started raining by this point. I was trying to video chat with Megan but with the rain, the internet was REALLY spotty! It never really worked. So I went over to watch the rest of band practice. Adriana wanted me to go with her to the clinic because her jaw is hurting. We walked over there and a gringo dentist checked her out. We were sitting outside after this and it was so cold that you could see your breath!! At 3:30 in the afternoon!!
We walked BACK to band practice and watched them finish up and then came to the other side. Julisa supposedly had to go wash dishes so Adriana and I went to lay down on the picnic tables. We actually fell asleep before they went to dinner. I came to the gringo house and chilled for a few minutes and then went back to the front to eat tacos with the gringos. They made the BEST tacos ever!! Adriana had never had Mexican tacos before so she ate with us as well. They were amazing.. yummmmmmmm!!!! It was awesome! Everyone knows that I love tacos like whoa. We hung out with them for a little while and they went to hear Mike's testimony at 6:30. I came back to the gringo house where there were about 10 people. I sat down and borrowed Aaron's guitar and sang and played for about two hours. It was so nice just to sit and play in the relative quiet. They were still talking and stuff but it wasn't 40 people.
At 8:30, I went to the other side and saw Chris with a bunch of groceries on the way. I helped him bring in his groceries and then headed over with the girls. Julisa and Chikys had re-done their room into bunk beds. We talked to Jessie until Julisa and I were asleep and other people were talking to her. They had a good time. I finally woke up and shut off my computer and went to sleep for good.
Julisa woke me up for breakfast but I stayed asleep until they were going to school. I know... lazy bones. On my way back over here at 6:30, I saw Arkansas was already in full swing in the bodegas working on something else. They're amazing.
They are going to Antigua this afternoon so I thought about joining them but I'm not sure. If I don't have anyone to just sit around with me in a coffee shop, I'm not sure I wanna go. I don't wanna do the big shopping thing AND.. the other team is going so it'd just be me and three guys from the team that's leaving today who are staying until Saturday. My thought is probably that I'm staying here but who knows. It'll be a toss up!
Well I hope that you all are doing well! I'm doing great!! Feeling almost 100% and everything! Everything is going extremely well.
Tuesday, August 3, 2010
After we unloaded the front and were back in Patty's car to go to the back to unload, I saw Roberto walk up to Patty's window. I jumped out and gave him a HUGE hug! I was SOOO excited! He and I helped unload in the back and then walked around the to front. We talked and hung out for a while and it was so lovely. Eventually, he had to leave and I was sad but it's okay. I'll hopefully see him soon. I hung out with the girls for a little while and then sent them into dinner. I came back to the gringo house and someone said something offensive so I had to leave to bite my tongue haha.. I'm learning slowly.
I went to the girls' side and played guitar for Adriana and Tomasa and Julisa came later. Some of the gringos came out and said hello. They are so nice. They've been working dawn to dusk making cabinets for Esperanza. They've worked incredibly hard and it's awesome. They said hello and then I had to come back for dinner. We had hamburgers. Someone else said something offensive, not knowing it was me who they were offending by saying it. The girls were watching a movie and eating ice cream with the gringos from the other side. Again, I had to leave to bite my tongue so I went to Chris' apartment. We watched Shark Week and it was pretty cool. I learned what to do if someone gets bit by a shark. I feel like that could eventually come in handy.
About 9, I left and went over to Esperanza. The girls talked to Jessie until the internet was so spotty that she was getting cut off every few minutes. Julisa put me to sleep again early and I have no clue what she did after I fell asleep. They were all packed up and had everything off of their shelves in anticipation of the new cabinets today. She made me sleep on the wrong side of the bed so I'm pretty sure that I tried to push her off lol. She tried to put me on that side last night but I woke up on my side and she said "You wanted your side and you slept CRAZY!"
Haha.. I love these girls so much.
I'm loving being here and I've had some really good conversations with some of the kids. I don't necessarily share those on here because it's just not something that you post on the internet. I've loved being able to talk to them more and really learn what some of their biggest challenges are and what concerns them most.
Well now I'm off to work for the day. I hope you all are doing well!
Monday, August 2, 2010
Woke up late this morning. Julisa said I just growled at her when she tried to wake me up. I'd like to say that was uncharacteristic but its not. I woke up and came back to the gringo house to get ready for church. There are a ton of people here!! I got ready and they had fixed eggs, biscuits, and bacon for 43 people. Whoa. We ate and then I walked over to the other side. Church started and it was nice. I couldn't really sing along with them but I still loved their worship.
All 65 of the gringos went and sat by the blue gringo house and hung out until Mike rang the bell. In the meantime, the older guys arrived from the City. I was so happy to see all of them. I hung out with Roberto and Denis until gringo church started. I sat with Roberto in gringo church. It was a good sermon. Mike talked about marriage. I thought that was funny for some reason. I really did enjoy it though. He used a verse from Ruth that was perfect for describing marriage.
After that, I talked to Roberto for a while about different things. Eventually we talked about how I could come back to the City if I wanted and I started crying. I'm not totally sure why but all I know is that when he said he missed me, I was so upset. I told him that I was really torn about where to be but I felt like I was making the best use of my time here even though I wanted to come spend time with him and the boys. It made me really sad to know that he missed me. There's nothing worse than one of your best friends in the world having to tell you that when for once, you are in the same country. I had prayed about it and so I feel confident that this is where I want and need to be right now. I know that God wants me here to be with all of the girls and to work. I am happy for sure. I'll get to spend time with him soon anyways!! Whether he wants to or not lol.
After that, we sat and talked for a long time about whatever. It was very lovely. Denis came over and I started teaching him some more stuff on guitar. After a while, Roberto had to leave with Salatiel. He's sick too so he went home. I sat with Denis and Franklin and taught Denis some more stuff on guitar. He's doing pretty well. I told him that if he spent more time practicing, he'd be better. lol. He responded with, "I practice like 2 minutes a day!!" lol. After a while, Franklin left and Elias joined me. We also sat for a while and then he called Chris to see if we could go eat in San Bartolo. He gave the go ahead and along with Jacob, we set out. We went to some sweet ladies and they made us dinner. Elias got me some kind of hot milk and rice and I eventually had to tell him that it was disgusting and that I'd probably throw up from just the taste. He and Jacob died laughing. They called me a silly gringa and Jacob drank it. I had a tostada with beans on it. I'm pretty confident that's my favorite. It's delicious!
We then went to a tienda and got Julisa some Dorito's. Jacob got all that the store had. Four bags. lol. We got those and headed back home. All this time, Elias had me keep my hood up. He said I was drawing a lot of attention and so I needed to keep it up. I took it off while we were eating dinner and half way through, he asked me to put it back on lol. He said people were staring with a look that said, "A gringa? In there? She's not supposed to be in there eating!" Elias is a bit overprotective so I'm assuming that has a lot to do with it. He is always worried when we go out and he takes my phone, keys and money so that I won't get them stolen. I told him that I'm fine but I do appreciate his concern. No matter what I say, I don't really have a choice. He and whoever I'm with is the boss and they win because this is their country and they know it. Not me!
We got back around dark time, stopped by the blue building where Julisa almost made me pee in my pants by scaring me, and played on skype for a little while. Elias was on my Facebook and wrote on my sister's wall in Spanish something along the lines of "You are the ugliest sister I could ever have. Love, Courtney" so I was fighting him to erase it and he BIT me!!!! I don't think a grown person has EVER bit me! lol! He bit my arm and left marks! By this time, all of the guys were dying of laughter and I was in shock. I won the fight after that and he apologized for biting me. I was laughing and told him that I was just stunned. Franklin and Chus were down from us and when I told them, Franklin yelled at him not to do that anymore. haha.. Chus thought it was cool and he said that's what he's going to do to me from now on. I eventually got my stuff and headed back over to Esperanza. They had been with the other gringos in the blue building watching a movie and eating pizza. I got there and we went to the dorm. The girls talked to Jessie for a while and as guilty as I felt, I had to cut them off to talk to my parents. We all talked to them for a while. I liked being able to see momma and daddy. After that, Julisa put me in bed and did some homework. I was asleep as soon as my head hit the pillow. Again this morning, Julisa said that I growled at her when she told me it was time to wake up. I didn't wake up until 6:15! Now I'm eating breakfast and gonna get ready to go shopping with Patty! Yay!! I like shopping. I'm good at it now. Well, decent enough. :)
I'm looking forward to another WONDERFUL day in Guatemala!!
Hope you all are doing well. I love you bunches!
Oh! Health Update! I'm taking my antibiotics and it has moved from my head to my chest. I'm living enough and I'm feeling better than two days ago. I thought I might die two days ago. But now, I'm feeling a little more like a normal person! A little! I've just got that smokers cough now. It's really cute. Not. :)
Sunday, August 1, 2010
I woke up and sat around a little bit with the gringos as they were packing up and waited a while to take a shower. I took a shower around 8:45 because guys were working in the bathroom. Elias and I were planning to go to San Lucas at 9 but I was ten minutes late. Chris wrote a note for the both of us which made me laugh. I told him the night before that I want to be a part of the "Chris Perry Nation" but I wanna be an officer like Elias, Chus and Jacob are because they are always hanging out with him.
So we walked to San Lucas and went into a barber shop to get Elias' hair cut. All of the sudden, a bunch of the guys walked in. I was excited to see all of them! We sat around while some of them got their hair cut. We walked to a couple of places to look at things and just mess around. It was so much fun to see all of the people on the streets, kids playing league soccer on Saturday morning, and just to see folks out and about. We walked around a little while longer then we all rode back to Casa with Esdras. I got back and sat with the girls as they ate lunch.
I ate lunch with the gringos (of which, there are a billion!!) and then went back to hang out with the girls. They were watching some soap opera and I fell asleep. They woke me up after a little while and I went to get ready for the wedding. Right after lunch, the gringo that is a doctor checked me out. He says that I have bronchitis. Wahoo! I've never had that before. He gave me some antibiotics and said, "I'm going to love seeing you in Heaven but if you don't take these, I'll make sure that you get there first." lol.
I got dressed and went back over to the blue building. I sat upstairs with Elias, Mario and Josue because I was afraid I'd start sneezing or coughing and not be able to stop. It was a very lovely wedding and Ingrid looked beautiful. Pepas was a groom's man and he looked great in his tux. The bridesmaids all looked beautiful in their red dresses. All of the kids looked great too!! I have pictures that I will be putting on Facebook.
We enjoyed the wedding and hanging out after. Around 5, I changed to go to San Bar with the boys. I walked with Elias, Chus and two other boys over there. We left at 5:30 and got over there right before 6. Elias and the team started playing and I went with Chus to get something to eat. We walked around and eventually he found what he wanted and got it for me too. It was some kind of meat in between two tortillas. There was lettuce and onions on it but I figured if the meat didn't make me sick, those would so I took them off. We ate that, then went and he bought me a tostada with beans on it (my favorite thing of the night!) and some kind of "juice" that was hot and made of corn. It was kind of like drinking corn soup. I didn't drink all of it. He finished most of it. We watched the guys play basketball for a while and then Elias and I went to go get Jacob chicken after he was finished playing. When we came back, I got meet Elias' brother!!! He was so sweet. Apparently the sweetness that is in Elias and Analy's face is a genetic thing. His brother was the same way. He bought me something to eat and it was good too. They wanted me to try a bunch of different stuff and I surely did. He and I walked back to Casa and when we were on the road in between the two sides, the power went off. Luckily, we both had our phones so we didn't have to walk around in darkness. We got back, went up to Chris' apartment and stood outside to watch the lights come back on on the side of the mountain. It was pretty neat when they finally did!!!
They guys went inside and were finishing a movie when I left at 8 o clock and went to the gringo house. I changed real quick and then went to Esperanza. The girls were watching Harry Potter and eating a whole bunch of stuff. They used my computer for some homework and then playing. Julisa went to get me medicine and I was asleep in the midst of all the chaos. I fell asleep about 9:15 and was out until 6:30 this morning!!! Julisa said she tried to wake me up but I just groaned at her. lol. I love that. They were all dressed and showered and just waiting around by the time I woke up. I came back to the gringo house and got dressed and showered for church.
The gringos had their devotions separately and then all 43 of us ate breakfast at one time. Good-ness.. it's a lot of folks!!
Walking around yesterday really was so much fun. I love how they are out in the streets here, being friends together. I know that weather doesn't quite permit that in Mobile, which is why it was so weird but so awesome. For once in my life, I pictured myself living somewhere else. I like the simplicity of it all. I love how they play together and eat together and just are out. I really love it.
Today will be a fun day as Roberto and Denis are coming to church. I can't WAIT to see Roberto!!! I've missed him so much. Denis too. I bet that we will do something else fun today. I'm feeling the tiniest bit better as it has moved from my head to my chest. I can deal with the weight in my chest better than my head because I don't feel like I'm gonna fall over anymore. In San Lucas yesterday, my balance wasn't quite as good as it normally is and I kept walking into the middle of the street on accident. Cold medicine has a weird effect on me haha.. Elias and Chus just kept me on the inside in between them and the walls and that helped.
Well I'm going to church because I'm ready to see everyone.
I love you all very much! I hope that you are doing well.
Much love from Guatemala. I'm a happy kid!!
Friday, July 30, 2010
I messed around for a long time waiting on Patty to come and get me. We left about 11 and went everywhere to get the food. We went to Taco Bell and Patty was very funny. I promised her I wouldn't post on Facebook what it was. Shopping was interesting because we were buying for 64 total. The people couldn't believe how much stuff we had!!
We got back, unloaded and I left with the gringos who were here first and a team of girls from Casa and Elias. We went to a village (that I had actually been to before) and threw a block party. I couldn't play with any of the kids because I'm sick and I didn't want to spread it but I picked music to play and enjoyed watching them. It was a nice day overall.
I would write a good bit more but I'm too sick to really remember very much. I keep taking medicine and it makes me excited for about 30 minutes and then mellows me out hardcore after that.
I couldn't really function very well today.
We came back and ate dinner and now I'm at Chris' with the boys. They are always fun to hang out with.
Well I hope you all are doing well. I'm looking forward to tomorrow!!
After that, I went to watch band practice. Adriana's profe was playing her drum and cracking us up. So we danced and walked around to watch. It was fun. I sat outside with the girls before dinner and then came to the gringo house to eat dinner with the gringos. The new gringos are very nice. I ate a hamburger and some corn then packed to go to Julisa's. I thought I was going to seminary with Adriana but Mike cancelled it. I hung out with Chus and Elias for a while and then about 7:30, went to Esperanza. I saw Tim on the way.
We talked to Jessie for a while last night. I, by this time, was really sick. My throat was killing and my nose was running like crazy. Elias had it and Adriana has it as well. She and I got it at the same time because it hit us at the same time last night. The girls went and got me some Benadryl I think. I'm not actually sure what it was. I had taken some other cold medicine so I went absolutely crazy for a while. I couldn't stop laughing and doing ridiculous things. When I went to the restroom, Anna was there and she turned out the lights on me. I cracked up. It was a fun night. About 9:30, the girls were tapped out so I told Jessie we would talk to her tomorrow and I went to sleep. Chica tried to wake me up but it didn't work. They stayed up for a while longer.
Julisa didn't sleep with me because I'm sick. She woke me up about 5:30 and I came back over. I'm still sick but instead of running a fever, I'm running at 95. I took more medicine and hopefully I'll live. I think I'm going shopping with Patty today.
I hope everything is going well with you all!! I may be sick but I'm happy!!
Thursday, July 29, 2010
We had a fabulous dinner. As always! After dinner, I went to Esperanza and played and sang because I had missed doing it for the last couple of days. Bible was really good and I like Mike's sermon a lot. He spoke about not letting our emotions control us. Elias and I hung out for a little while afterward. He's sick so I feel bad for him :(.
I went to Esperanza at 9:20 and they were all asleep. Band ran 30 minutes late and they were so tired that they all went to sleep right after Bible.
Roberto messaged me and I miss him a lot. He and Denis want me to come back and hang out with them. I really love being here but I also miss them a lot. I wish everyone was still in the same place!!! It's even hard then but less hard. Last night I was kinda bummed but I'll see them hopefully Saturday and Sunday. Those boys are amazing.
I'm posting pictures on Facebook today so go check them out!!
Overall, a pretty normal day but still a good one.
Hope you all are doing well. I'm doing fabulous!
Wednesday, July 28, 2010
Hey guys! This is the first blog I've actually written online in the past few days. I'm writing this on Wednesday morning but it's fine. I'll get back on track tonight hopefully.
Yesterday morning was quite rough after not sleeping. I was pretty tired. But we went to paint Vencedores and I had a good time. I was elected to ceilings because I'm tall. I just went after everyone and did the ceilings and the stuff that they couldn't reach. Elias came to help which was lots of fun as usual. At noon, we quit to eat lunch. They ate lunch and went back to work but I took a shower and ate and went to play. I didn't want to miss any fun.
At 2, I went to watch band practice. It was really funny. Julisa and Adriana are playing bass drums and Vera, Chica, and Celeste are playing snares. I had fun watching them even though it was quite loud. It rained a lot all day including during practice. It ended at four and I kinda fooled around until the girls went to dinner. After that, I went to the gringo house to help out with dinner but as usual, Mrs. Maria and everyone else had it going on. We had leftovers from fajitas. It was the meat, rice, black beans, and some corn that they fixed. I had some meat but I mostly ate rice & beans and corn. I love rice and beans. The gringos went to hear Mike's story and I went with Elias to Chris' apartment. We watched a show on snipers and Elias talked to Jessie on Skype. It was raining the whole time. About 9, we all left. I came back to the gringo house and they were having devo so I sat in on the last part of it then changed and went to Esperanza. I tried to wake up Julisa to talk to Jessie but she was out. The other girls did for a while but we were asleep before 10:15. It was such a long day... but only because I was so sleepy.
Today I'm feeling pretty good!! Mrs. Maria and Mr. Jesse made biscuits this morning with sausage and eggs. Yum... they are lovely.
I hope you all are doing well!! I'm excited about painting and playing today.
Tuesday, July 27, 2010
After lunch, I went to play. Julisa took me to her room and told me to stay there with Vera because she was going with Mike somewhere. After about twenty minutes, she still wasn’t back. Three hours later, she woke me up. The girls had put a blanket on me and everything. Lol. They’re so sweet. We hung out in the dorm because it was raining. About 4, we went to look at the new gringos because the girls wanted to see if there was anyone cute. We walked around. It was freezing all day! They went to dinner and I came to the gringo house. About 6:45, Elias came over and ate dinner with us. He and I went to Chris’ apartment so that Elias could show him pictures. I finally got back over to Esperanza about 10. Julisa and some other gringos were helping her with a project. Her group had left it all to her so they were her group. She decided to go to sleep at 10:30 and I was out pretty soon. At 11, Chica came and got in bed with us. By 11:45, I still wasn’t asleep because I was in the middle and they were burning me up! I was wearing shorts and a t-shirt and sweating like a fool. I finally gave up and went to sit on the end of the bed. I tried to lay at their feet but they kept kicking me. Julisa told me to make sure that she got up at 3 so I pretty much just sat there until 3 when I bothered her enough that she got up. I slept until 5:15 when they went to breakfast. Needless to say, I’m pooped this morning. I refused to take a shower until after we work so I threw on a hat. I’m going to go to work and then take a shower and a nap after lunch.
It’s really cold here. I like it. I had to bundle up last night to go out. I had on Taylor’s sweatpants over shorts and a t-shirt, fleece and rain jacket. It was rainy too. I like it though!
Hopefully I’ll get internet today and I’ll actually be able to post this online and I’ll be in a good rhythm again.
Hope you all are well. I’m still having a blast.
I woke up around 6:30 and got up to get ready for church. I was finishing getting ready when Patty came in and said, “Hey! Are you ready to go?” Bible started early because Michael W. Smith was coming. I packed everything else up and headed toward the car. Carlos was kind enough to help me out with my luggage. We rode to Casa and when we got there, everyone was outside and very excited. We waited a while then went in and Mrs. Dottie was playing piano and Mike was leading songs. They sang a bunch of different stuff. I actually got to sit with the girls.. Julisa, Adriana, Vera, etc. At 9:20 or so, Michael W. Smith arrived and came in. He was funny because he didn’t know any Spanish or what the kids knew in English or Spanish. Josue translated for him. He sang songs and if the kids knew it in Spanish, he would just play piano and let them sing it. It was really cool to see them excited about him. He played for a while and then told them, “I wanna hear a song that you guys sing!” so they all screamed, “TOMALO!” Tomalo came on and we all danced and sung and jumped. He videoed it and laughed. I personally thought it was funny because Tomalo is so far from his style and it’s their favorite song.
After that, Mike preached and we had translators. He didn’t want to have gringo church too. Denis was the translator for our group. He did a pretty good job but tagged out and Roberto finished up. He was excellent. Of course. I expected no less.
Denis drew a picture of me and put my name at the top, “Popcorn Leg Cats” because apparently that’s what “Courtney Leigh Coxe” sounds like to him.
After church Roberto and I ate some lunch and then Patty took us to SanBar to watch the soccer game. For the first half, Roberto and I sat in the shade. For the second half, we laid out on the concrete. He took a nap but I watched the game. It was such a nice day outside. It always is. Chris brought us back and we sat around for a while. All of the kids were outside and we just watched them play and stuff. He left and Elias came and talked with me and Adriana for a while. It started raining so he and I walked back to the gringo house. He had to go get ready for Michael W. Smith’s concert in the City. I unpacked all of my stuff upstairs and got it ready. The gringos had gone to Antigua and they came back as I was finishing up. This group is so nice. I really like them a lot. It’ll be fun to work with them. We ate grilled cheese for dinner and I went to Esperanza at 7:45. I played with the girls as always. We watched TV, talked a bunch and finally went to bed around 10:30. It was an awesome day.
Hope you all are doing well. I’m doing fabulous.
Saturday, July 24, 2010
Woke up at 5:15 and took a shower. I got dressed and was ready at 6:29 because Patty said we were leaving at 6:30. When we went to leave, she said, "Oops. I forgot to tell you that we should go later because the second store doesn't open until 10!" But we went to Hiper Paiz and got some stuff for the gringos. I wasn't the best shopping partner for her because I wasn't quite sure what to get or how much of it.. but I tried and we got through it. After that, we went to Price Smart and sat there for about an hour and half until the store opened. Patty and I talked which was very nice. I like talking to her even though I don't have much to say sometimes. It opened at like 9:45 so we went in and got two buggy-fulls of food. By 10:15, we were in the check out line. We loaded everything in the van and it was pretty full. We went to Casa and unloaded the food into the two different houses. I was carrying three cartons of 60 eggs each... 180 eggs... when the bottom carton broke in my hands and I dropped them!!! EWW!! It was pretty okay. Only the bottom carton had broken eggs in it and not all of them were broken. I felt bad but it wasn't something I could've predicted. The little girls laughed and helped me carry it all in. By this time, I had woken Julisa up from her nap to come and help me. She was mad at me for that but I didn't really care lol.
I stayed at Casa through their lunchtime and then came back. Adam, his mom, his cousin and Aaron rode with Patty and I back to the house so that they could pick up Adam's truck. Adam drove and I sat shotgun so it was fun. Tim, Patty, Roberto and I sat around for a while hanging out then I went out with the boys. And so began the true adventure.
We walked to get Roberto's hair cut and then we walked to the bus stop. By we I mean Roberto, Denis and I. I got to ride the city buses for the first time!! We got on and Roberto and Denis told me to be quiet hahahahahaha.. They said, "Please don't talk loud." So I tried to follow their advice. We ended up by Price Smart and we went to the first of three malls. We had frappucinos from a froyo stand and then walked upstairs. The boys played DDR and it was pretty cool to watch them!! As soon as they were done, all nice and sweaty, we walked to the mall across the street where the indoor roller coaster and Chuck E. Cheese was.
This is where the most ridiculous thing I've done in Guatemala occurred. The boys really didn't give me an option so I was pretty much forced into it.. but I'm kinda glad I did it. I rode the indoor roller coaster!! For those of you who know me, I don't do roller coasters. My family is not a theme park kind of family. We went to Disney once and we rode It's a Small World. I cried.
I was so mad at Roberto when we started going up the hill. I screamed even though I had committed myself not to. I got off of it and my whole body was shaking. I couldn't see straight and I wasn't quite sure how I was gonna make it down the stairs. Lesson learned.. roller coasters=not fun. lol. They both just laughed at me. For those who are already balanced impaired.. roller coasters aren't a good idea. I had to focus for like twenty minutes just not to fall over.
We then went to another mall and it was so pretty. We walked back and got on the bus again. We got off and walked to McDonald's where we ate dinner. I may have made Denis spill a Coke but that's only a maybe. Or for sure. Either way it was funny.
We came back to the house and the kids were asleep so we sat in the garage and hung out. It was so nice. After a while, Denis went to bed and then it started raining so I was freezing and had to go inside as well.
Hanging out with both of the boys was pretty fun. They would grab my backpack when I was going the wrong way and steer me in the right direction. They told what to do and what not to do and were really nice. On the street, I was almost always in the middle of them.. one in front and one in back or both on the sides of me. I don't really get worried about anything but I especially didn't care with two of them with me. They were very patient with my silliness and for that, I am grateful.
Tomorrow I will go to Casa and spend the rest of my time there. I'm excited although I will miss everyone here. It's been and adventure for sure so far.
For some reason, I keep coming back to the two ideas that God is worthy of all worship and that God is powerful enough to save from any situation. I've been reading Daniel and although I know the story, there is more to it than a VBS lesson. A VBS lesson does this book no justice. Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego were crazy to defy the king's orders and they knew what would come to them. But God was so worth it to them that they "yielded up their bodies rather than serve and worship any god except their own God." (Daniel 3:28) I still find that amazing. The thought of "would you denounce Christ at the barrel of a gun" has been playing in my head and this story so much reminds me of it. I don't know what it's all about but God truly is worthy of all worship and sacrifice. Just knowing Him leads me to believe that. John Piper said, "Some of you will die in the service of Christ. This is not a tragedy. Treasuring life above Christ is a tragedy." To truly grasp this will be hard and counter-intuitive to our very nature of self preservation but I think wanting to grasp this idea means that I will have to move very close to the heart of Christ and let Him show me and prove that who He is really is more important than life, which is a good thing. Not that life is unimportant, because without it, we can do what we were created to do. But there is a priority list and being alive doesn't come before God and our devotion to Him. It surely did not come between Jesus and His devotion for us. Hopefully one day, I will have full understanding.
As for now, I'm stupid enough to ride an indoor roller coaster so who knows what's gonna happen!!
I hope that you all are doing well. Have a great day of worship tomorrow. He's worthy of our time and attention!
Friday, July 23, 2010
We left Chuck E. Cheese and it took us a while to get back to Casa because of the bad traffic in the city. We got them back and they said that they had fun. Patty and I checked the gringo houses for food so that we can go shopping for tomorrow. A bunch of gringos are coming in tomorrow. But while I was in the blue gringo house, I met two women and two girls about my age. They saw my owl and the mom said, "Like Chi O!" and I said "I AM a Chi O!! That's why I have it!" Turns out that the two girls go to different schools but all three of us are Chi Omegas!
How weird is that?! I was excited to meet sisters from different parts of the country in a completely different country. So odd but so cool.
Patty, Mishelle, Michael and I then headed back to the house. We stopped and picked up dinner. Michael started eating his fries in the car and by the time we got back, he was out like a light. He woke right back up when we got back.
The boys had waited around for me to get back to go the movies but I didn't make it back in time. Tim called them to see where they were so that he could take me but none of them answered. So Tim and I got to talking about music. I had no idea that he used to sing a bunch. It was nice to have someone to talk about it with. I don't often get the chance to speak intelligently with someone about music outside of school and church. Most people are too stuck in their genres and they are unwilling to explore.
Well enough about that. I got to Skype with Taylor and he showed me his armpit hair. It was truly lovely. Now I'm ready for bed and I'm getting up really early to go shopping with Patty in the morning.
I hope you all are doing well.. I'm having a blast. I'm looking forward to tomorrow. Tim said after I get done shopping with Patty, I should be able to hang out with the boys. That should be lots of fun.
As for now, I'm pooped so Aslan and I are going to take a nap. Hope you all have a nice day tomorrow!!
"Through him then let us continually offer up a sacrifice of praise to God, that, the fruit of our lips that acknowledge his name. Do not neglect to do good and to share what you have, for such sacrifices are pleasing to God.' - Hebrews 13:15-16
P.S.- In case you haven't read Mike's blog.. Michael W Smith will be at Casa on Sunday. Can you say, "Exciting!!"???
Thursday, July 22, 2010
After that, Patty and I went to Chuck E. Cheese to get a party together for Mishelle for tomorrow because it is her birthday. I got to see an indoor roller coaster! It was pretty cool. We came home after that. I demanded that Roberto come down to play with me and we went for a walk. I got to see where he works. It's a really nice building and looks pretty cool. I hadn't eaten since lunch yesterday so we went to McDonald's for dinner. He made fun of me for not liking anything on my hamburger but he was nice enough to order for me so that I didn't have to look stupid. We had dinner (which was uncommonly delicious to my empty tummy) and came back. As soon as we got back, Roberto, Denis and I walked back to McDonald's to get ice cream and stuff for Tim and Patty. Denis asked me how I felt walking on the streets of Guatemala and I said fine but I feel kinda funny sometimes. I asked him the same question and he laughed and said normal. I taught him a few chords on guitar and he practiced a lot. He now knows how to play "Open the Eyes of My Heart."
I feel like a giant here. Whenever I go out, there aren't many people that are taller than me. I know that seems ridiculous but for some reason, I felt self conscious all day about it. I really do see the ridiculousness of that as I write it but whatever. It's the truth.
I'm so happy to be back. I was excited to see Roberto yesterday.. and I am still excited to see him. I forget how much of my heart I leave here until I come back and find it. Seeing Julisa and the rest of them today made me SO happy!!!!!!! I was excited to hear how they are doing in school and everything. Apparently, they have LOTS of homework and projects this week so it wouldn't be good for me to be there. Julisa said that I would be a distraction which in all honesty, I can't disagree with. That's not a haughty statement.. I think I would be annoyed without anyone to hang out with because of all the homework and that would make me bored and therefore cause me to try to distract them. lol. True though.
Right now I'm skyping Roberto because we are both in our rooms. He's singing along with his music and I love it. I'm listening to "Cancion del Desierto" from Hillsong's new CD Con Todo. I'm really digging this CD! Well I'm looking forward to tomorrow and the adventures it will bring. Patty may need me to drive to Chuck E. Cheese from Casa. That should be interesting to say the least!
I'll write more tomorrow! If I stink at this blogging thing, feel free to give me tips. Or just stop reading. Unless you are my Momma and Daddy cuz you're required by an unspoken "Parent Contract" to always read this!
Love you all very much. And for those of you who supported me in any way.. prayers, words of encouragement, or financially.. Thank you so much in case I didn't get to tell you. I appreciate you more than you'll ever know. "Not that I seek the gift, but I seek the fruit that increases to YOUR credit. I have received full payment, and more. I am well supplied..." -Philippians 4:17-18
Thank you guys!