Monday, April 30, 2012

Dia del Niño

Hello everybody!! Today was Dia del Niño here in Mexico, which means Children's Day. It is very celebrated with shows and toys of course lots and lots of candy. Our Sunday school kids decided that instead of getting a bag of candy like usual, they'd rather go to the park. So today, 23 of us smooshed ourselves into a 12 passenger van and headed to El Parque Ecologico.

Sis. Marisol in the trunk with a bunch of kids
When we got there, the kids just lit up with happiness! These kids rarely get to leave their own neighborhoods so this was a big whoppin' deal for them. 


Eliu and Dansito

About 10 adults went also and we had a fun time watching the kids and visiting with each other. 

 Our picnic table

This is one of our Sunday school teachers...she is just a kid at heart! 

How to eat an orange

Again, Lolita playing with the kids. 
Nicole and I were laughing about how we are so glad Lolita likes games because neither of us were about to go out there and join the game of Freeze Tag. Do you KNOW how frustrating that game is?!?! *Hot flashes*

Having a snack

I remember when Nicole and I were little we were the monkey bar queens! I literally had callouses on my hands from so much twisting and flipping. Monkey bars are the national playground toy of Mexico. 

Snugglin' with Nicole

La llorona, Lolita, and myself

Look at Choyito, the crazy little kid in red. What a cutie! 

Dog pile!

Marcos and Rocio

The boys

 Passing out lunch

This looks like one of those food lines you see in Africa...
But here we are with our tortas! 

Picky little Judah...protecting his food. 

Lil' boog

Sis. Elvira and myself

 After lunch the adults played a very abbreviated game of volleyball

And before we knew it, it was time to pack ourselves back into the van and go back home! 

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Dinner: Patitas de Pollo

Me, holding our dinner, bought right off the street:
^^ My esquite (chopped corn in a cup) and Bethany's elote (an ear of corn on a stick). What you'll normally find in esquite is corn, a squeze of lime, cheese, a pile of mayo (that has probably never been refridgerated in its whole clumpy existence), and chili powder in abundance. Mmm! Definitely a favorite!

When I heard the guy coming down the street announcing his "elooootes y esquiiiites", I immediately knew what I wanted for dinner! :)
But this time, as I walked up to his cart, he was serving up a cup of corn to another lady.... and I noticed something sticking out of the top of her cup... somthing that looked like fries...
As I got closer, I realized what was actually invading her corn...
 My next thought was, "Ahh! I have to try those and blog about it!"
...Oh the things we do for you, our dear readers. Hahaha.
No, sir those are not french fries! :))
The little corn invading "delights" were chicken feet!

Mm Mm Mmm! About to dig in! ...Hey, I actually did taste them!
(But only because I was told that my prim and proper Tia Hayde eats them... I believe my exact words were: "If my Tia Hayde eats them, then they can't be that bad"...)
Never again!
Ew!! They were so slimy! AND freezing cold! I'm just hoping they were even cooked! Haha!
Okay Bethany just told me, "They're better fried". Wow. Yay, I sense another chicken feet post coming but "a la fried"! :)))

Needless to say, after my first taste, these little slimeballs were quickly pulled out of my beloved cup of corn.

Here's little Punkin' on her new-found perch :)
Yeah, she pretty much rules the roost around here...
Bossy little thing!

Hope you guys have an awesome day!

Your self-sacrificial and adventurous eater,


Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Odd Situations and Justin Bieber

About a year and a half ago in a Sunday afternoon service we had a young lady named Jazmin and her mother come visit us. They looked very rough and it was obvious that the daughter was a little off. She had the whole blank stare thing going on and her clothes....well, less wasn't more in this case. She also had ribbons wrapped around her arms and waist.

Before Sis. Marisol got the Holy Ghost, she was very involved with the Catholic church and the demonic things that went on there. Sis. Marisol knew exactly what was going on with this young lady because she'd been through it herself. She'd had priests tell her that these ribbons were for protection against anyone that would try to cast a spell or practice witchcraft against her. Jazmin also had a necklace of the Virgin of Guadalupe (supposedly Jesus' mother). We had quite the odd altar call with Jazmin there, but after church some saints gathered around her and we began to pray. El Pastor asked her if she wanted to be delivered and she began to cry. She said yes she did, however, after a few seconds of praying she'd open her eyes, and with that creepy blank stare she'd say, "I see her! There she is!" We assumed she was reffering to the spirit she had. She said it's name was "Ades".  
Praying for Jazmin
Sis. Marisol did an awesome job of coaching and telling her to just concentrate on telling Jesus she wanted to be free. After a couple of minutes, Sis. Marisol motioned to someone to go get her some scissors. She began to cut the ribbons off of Jazmin, unraveling them from her wrists, stomach, and neck. She also cut the Virgin necklace off and when she did, Jazmin began to gag. And can imagine....

Cutting the ribbons off her wrists
Some of the ribbons and necklaces that Jazmin was wearing
Jazmin and her mother invited us over the next day to pray for their house. They knew they had spirits in their house, but said they wanted to be free of them. So the next day we went over and visited them. Jazmin came over and hugged all of us, saying she felt so peaceful and had slept through the night for the first time in years. She told Sis. Marisol, "You forgot to cut the ribbons off my feet!" As she led us into the house Jazmin pointed out her room. It has a chain and lock on the outside. She led us inside, sat in a chair and took her boots off. Sis. Marisol began cutting again, telling her that these ribbons were connected to spirits and to never wear them again. Jazmin spoke in a soft, child-like voice, agreeing with everything Sis. Marisol said.

The mother explained to us that Jazmin suddenly changed to this wild girl when she was thirteen years old. She had been seen on the road by our house throwing herself in front of the cars passing by. In the middle of our visit, Jazmin randomly told us that her dad had died, but that she was glad. Obviously something very wrong had happened and possibly was still happening in that house.

Removing the ribbons from Jazmin's ankles
El Pastor read them some verses against worshiping images and idols. Jazmin agreed whole-heartedly when my dad explained that there are spirits behind these idols.

‘You shall not make for yourself a carved image—any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth; you shall not bow down to them nor serve them. For I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children to the third and fourth generations of those who hate Me, but showing mercy to thousands, to those who love Me and keep My commandments.
El Pastor told them that if they wanted to be free of these spirits, they had to get rid of the images on the walls. Jazmin pleaded with her mother right then and there to please take them down so we could burn them. She said she "didn't want to be like this anymore" and wanted to "get rid of them once and for all", but sadly the mom refused. She had plenty of excuses of why she couldn't get rid of them.

There was nothing more we could do after that. Jazmin had been delivered from whatever spirit she had, but unfortunately the damage had already been done. We were talking with them when Jazmin told us she'd be right back. A couple minutes later she returned holding a stack of papers and magazines. She showed us a picture cut out of a magazine of her "boyfriend", Justin Timberlake and her "sisters", Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen. We all laughed and told her that wasn't true. She looked like a deer caught in the headlights for a moment, then adamantly insisted it was the truth. She then pulled out another picture of an immodestly dressed celebrity and said this was her. We looked at this picture, shocked. Jazmin was wearing the same type of boots, pants and half-shirt that this woman had on in the picture!!

Mary-Kate and Ashley, Jazmin's "sisters"
During this visit, she vacillated between reality and her created world of fame and "celebritydom". She informed us that she really was this famous woman in the picture she held, but that the reason she didn't look like her was because she was currently wearing colored contacts, had tanned her skin and dyed her hair. There was no use trying to convince her otherwise.

Just the other day, Lolita saw Jazmin on the street and stopped to chat with her. She had a baby a few months ago and Lolita asked how it was doing. Jazmin said it was doing well so Lolita asked when she could come over to see it and bring a gift. Jazmin giggled and responded, "Oh you can't, Justin Bieber will get mad!" (She claims he is the father).

Her and her brothers still come to church occasionally and it is always a to-do. Especially with the brothers. They stare at us with their mouths open and mimic what everyone else in the church does. Clapping, raising their hands, praying.......all with their eyes open. It is sad to see them and what the devil has done to their family. They are all grown adults, but have the minds of children. One of the brothers came to church just last night, sat on the front row and started ogling as usual. Unfortunately I was on the piano and got a terrible case of the giggles.

It is interesting, all the different kinds of people that we get to work with here. Of course, this has got to be one of the oddest, but still...there is no such thing as a hopeless situation.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Cupcake Date!

Last Saturday, two of our little girls in the church came up to me with a lot of questions that started with asking, "do you still make 'pastelitos' (cupcakes)?", "could you make 50 pastelitos?", and ended with "when are you going to make more pastelitos?".... 
Very inquisitive little gals haha.
:) I got the hint, so I beat them to the punchline-- 
And that's how I ended up making 50 cupcakes and 5 cups of buttercream frosting early yesterday morning!
Good thing I love baking :)
Who can resist something as cute as a cupcake??

My little "helper".... 
You'd be surprised at how good he is at eating these things! :))

Anahy and Daniela showed up, accompanied by a surprise guest...

...Little Lalo walked them over!
 I may or may not have specifically told the girls "don't bring your brothers", due to past experiences involving uninvited brothers.... 
But hey, who am I to set the rules? I just bake the cupcakes :))
Haha, for the first little bit he just sat and watched the girls decorate, but then briefly sacrificed his macho-manliness to decorate a couple cupcakes.
I think he styled his hair to fit the event... Ha! Cupcake-do!

While they dressed up cupcakes to take home to their families, I decorated several to sell on Sunday for the youth fundraiser.

Lovely lovely!

 The girls' line-up of cupcakes. Colorful! 

Eating some of their creations...

Here they are on their way out-
Anahy and Lalo

Miss Dimples... a.k.a. Daniela :))

I do have to admit that these cupcakes are the very best that I have ever made! 
...And I don't think it has anything to do with the fact that this is the first bread/cake that I have had in half of forever :))
Proof that they were amazing: 
Bethany "I-hate-cupcakes" Wakefield raved about them... 
And also ate an undisclosed number of them in only one hour!
( amount, though, that did not exceed 3!)
Hahaha :))

I'm not the only cupcake lover in the family! ;)


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