Thursday, August 30, 2012

Grocery Day!

Saturday is market/grocery day! Beth and I decided to go along with Lolita to see what we could see :D

We bought some cheese from the cheese lady...
:)) Mmm...

Then we bought some tomatos and some chiles...

Then we walked over to the meat section of the market to buy a big pig...
Just kidding.
Oh and it may look like this guy is hugging the little piggy, but actually what he is doing is skinning it. Yum. :))

Bethy loves the little cherkerns

Here's our little meat guy slicing our chuletas and flechas... Sorry,
I have no idea how to say that in English... the words escape me haha.

Poor little chickens, just waiting to be bought and cooked up...

Here's a guy serving up one of my most favorite things in the market... Our local honey! It's amazing.

And outside, they sometimes sell parrots and birds! I had my camara out and ready, because I was totally expecting this lady to get bit! The bird was vicious and the lady was, well, being not so smart. :D

Then we started on buying our fruit!

Here's one of the fruit guys... I think he needs to eat more of his own produce...
He looks a tad malnourished.

We have every fruit imaginable in our market! Mangos, pomegranites, kiwis, jicama, peaches, papaya, apples, guayaba, pears, pineapple, canteloupe, strawberries... You name it, we got it.

This right here is a rare find though... Deep dark purple grapes! I'm still kicking myself for not stopping and checking them out. :( We were in a hurry to our next stop.

And our next stop? Chedraui!
We are not so brave as to buy our fish from our lovely market, so we go to our grocery store instead.

No, we didn't buy these, but they look way more interesting than the fish that we bought haha.

Evil gluten :))

Done with our grocery shopping, we went outside to catch a bus!

Stay tuned for an update on our school! :)


Thursday, August 23, 2012

New Chairs!

In these first 4 days of school we've noticed something that has been bothering us-- the chairs that the kids are using are too short and too big for them. We wanted to buy hydraulic computer chairs for each kid so that they could adjust it the proper height, but with the budget we're working with, there was no way we could do that-- in the stores here, the hydraulic computer chairs that we wanted are upwards of a hundred dollars!

Here are some pictures to illustrate the situation we were dealing with:
 The little ones can barely see their keyboards to type-- the chairs swallow them up!

Note: If your chin is touching the table as you write, you need a shorter table or a taller chair...

...the older ones are slouching horribly!

Bethany and I have also been sitting in the same chairs as the kids and at the end of the day we are ready for a trip to the masseuse! That may sound funny, but I am not kidding. 
5-6 hours of sitting in these chairs is a recipe for extreme pain.
(Even as I am typing this post while sitting in one of the dreaded plastic chairs, I keep catching myself reaching to massage my neck. LOL! Ouch.)

So how can I say that the above problem was what we were dealing with?
Today Bro. Dad was driving around town running errands and while driving he happened to look over to the side of the road, and what did he see???
Hydraulic computer chairs!
A quote from Bro. Dad on the occurence: "I almost had a heart attack!" :))
So of course, he whipped over to the side of the road to check out the chairs...
They were used, but in okay condition!
It turns out that an office had just remodeled their offices, so they were trying to sell a ton of these chairs.
 He asked the lady there how much the chairs were, and she told him 300 pesos each- (about 25 dollars). Bro. Dad said that we would want several and was there a discount for buying more than one? 
The lady thought about it for a while... and then said "Yes. You can have them for 150 pesos."
With our current exchange rate, that means we got each chair for 11 dollars! Wow!! Now, of course these chairs are not brand new and some may be dinged up a little, but we are so thankful to God for taking care of our need. They are perfect for us!
Just yesterday we had been discussing our desperate need for proper computer chairs and today Bro. Dad just happens to run across some on the side of the road! Thank you Jesus!

The boys went crazy when Bro. Dad dropped off the chairs after school during their P.E. class.
This was another "first" for them-- spinning, rolling chairs!
They immediately got into the chairs and began yelling and laughing and playing "carritos"-- bumper cars!

They got a little too into crashing them into each other...

And the hilarity came to a screeching halt when two of the chairs toppled over... The kids may have been having the time of their little lives on those chairs, but we were not ready to sacrifice our "new" chairs for the sake of them having a little fun. :))

We had each kid scoot his chair to the wall and told them play time with the chairs was over, and to continue with P.E. They all did as they were told and went back to playing basketball.

One of the last kids to push his chair to the wall was Eddy. He didn't notice as I watched as he went to leave his chair and what I saw him do next was so stinkin' cute--
He looked lovingly at his chair, and patted the seat as he said in his baby voice, "Adios", and then ran off to join the other boys in their game.
Ahhhh!!! So precious!
Here he is with his chair... :)
^^This is the first time that I have seen this little boy smile like this!^^
He is always so serious. It was so nice to see him laughing and smiling about his chair :)

Thank you Jesus for our new chairs!!


Tuesday, August 21, 2012

First Day of School! Our Dreams Coming True...

Yesterday was our first day of school! This is a dream come true for us. In the past, homeschooling has been against the law. It has also been against the law for a church to have a school. The only option for the kids has been the public school.

As it is in the US a lot of the time, the public schools are not a place one would prefer to put their child in. Here in Mexico, the public school system is saturated in Catholicism. On Day of the Dead, the children are required to bring food sacrifices for the altars in each classroom. It is a huge battle every year, trying to get out of it. But, last year we discovered a homeschooling curriculum that complies with the law and gives parents an added option in their children's education. It is also based on the Bible!  

The teachers here are like dictators. Whatever they say is taken as a commandment written in stone. Every so often, the teachers check their students to see if they are practicing proper hygiene. This includes looking at their nails, hair, and underclothes. They tell the parents what food they can and can't bring. If a parent misses a meeting or doesn't come to school work days, they are fined or their child's grade is lowered.

When Nicole and I were younger we attended the Mexican public schools. We have seen things happen in the classroom that would make you gasp! The teachers routinely leave the classroom for hours on end, leaving no adult supervision. It is not uncommon for a teacher to smoke in class. Mine did, and would throw her cigarette butts on the classroom floor. Nicole was given a shot without parental consent. Crazy, crazy!!

Besides all of this, the immorality of the schools shameful. The kids are taught that homosexuality is normal, and that there are three genders. The teachers curse at the kids and do not show any kind of respect. I once saw my teacher twist a kids ear so hard, I'm sure his feet come off the ground!

Through this new project, we are trying to increase the odds that our kids will be saved. Not only do we want to make good students, but we also want to develop them into true disciples of Jesus.

For our first year, we have 6 students...all boys!!

We start out each day with prayer and devotions.

Pastor prays with the kids then gives a small lesson on a certain theme. This month's theme is "One God"!

Every week they will have verses to memorize, chosen by Pastor.

After devotions, each child logs onto their computer and starts their schoolwork! They will study Math, Spanish, History, Geography, Science and Penmanship. At the end of the day, there is P.E.

This week, the kids are learning how to use the computer, mouse, and keyboard. 

...Except for Nansito. He is learning to read and write.

Eddy learning to type :)

Bryan is the kid in gray. Monday was his first time to ever use a computer!

Nicole at her desk... at my desk!

Dansito and Eddy with their watches that they made

Yesterday we memorized "a s d f, j k l ñ"

Each kid has their own computer, and at any time, we can log onto our computers and see what they have accomplished.

Lunch time!

Taking a! Nicole is SO worried everyone is going to actually think she is sleeping in this for Nicole's sake...she is only playing!

Yesterday was a day of learning and experiencing things they've never experienced before. Yesterday the boys had their first opportunity to use an electric pencil sharpener! They were fascinated!

So now you know what our latest adventures are! We are so excited to be starting this new chapter of the work down here in Mexico. This is going to change lives and destinies! has yet to be seen WHOSE lives will be changed...ours or the kids? Haha! Yesterday I learned the technical words for each finger in Spanish (pointer, middle finger, ring finger, pinky!) So along with the kids, we are also being educated!


Thursday, August 16, 2012

Missions Trip: Day #6

Day six of the missions trip was the saddest day of all!! That was the day everyone left. I bawled my eyes out! Fortunately for all of you, these are the only pictures we have! Brittany woke up feeling sick so like a good lil mama, I cradled her in her arms all the way to airport. A good snuggle is the cure to almost anything! (A good way, also, to pass the illness I have learned :)

Brittany has got the "sick look" down pat!

Thank you to...
 Elder White, Sis. Debbie White, Pastor PJ White, Sis. Clark, Thomas, Ryan, Steven, Pedro, Ron, Sis. Cynthia, Rachel, Brittany, Noah, Sofia, Briana, Candace, Gary, Nancy, Jacob, Jasmine, Bobby, Leslie, Karoline, Meagan, Lilly, Emily, Andrew, and Sis. Camacho
...for making the sacrifice to come down to Mexico! You all were a huge blessing and we absolutely had the best time! Thank you for praying with the people, being willing to get out of your comfort zones and be a little crazy, for singing, preaching, and for showing the love of God to our people. We love you all!


Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Missions Trip: Day #5

Sunday we had our first service out in the open in front of our market and the thousands of cars passing by!
We gave away candy, had a puppet show, people gave their testimonies, and sang our hearts out... Well, some of us sang our hearts out... but I'll get to explainin' that a little later! :))
The group from California did a puppet show about the story of Joseph!

So cute! :))

The kids (and parents!) loved it.

Narrator Gary!

We had a gooood group!
A nice mix of saints and visitors that dropped in off the streets.

Some of us walked around by the roads in front of our set-up and handed out flyers to the people passing by, inviting them to the second service in the evening.
We gave flyers to people walking by, zooming by on their bikes, and to people driving by in their cars!
Karoline and I definitely made some memories passing out flyers... We stood on a tope hoping to hand out flyers through car windows as they slowed down... Well. We thought they would slow down.... LOL. Few did, and many just didn't. But we sure did have fun shoving nicely tossing flyers into the car windows as they zoomed past!
(Hey, we were not rude. Just want to make that clear. Hahaa.)
 It was also really fun when bike riders would go past and want a flyer... they would teeter to a slow pace, going over the tope while steering with one hand... So entertaining! :))) 
And the puppet show continues...

Gary talking to Pharoah
I heard from various people that the puppet show was really fun!
...sadly though, I did not get to see the Joseph/Pharoah/plague show... and the singing part of our service... and the testimonies....
 And why?
Oh, you know, I was just circling the the colonia in the car with my dad looking for two lost souls from our group! We were actually quite worried. I won't name names because we already let them know that they scared the living daylights out of us. (Okay, not all the daylights. Just some of them.)
Bethany and Noah (*ehem*) had gone to make copies of coloring books for the kids.
They left right when we got to the market. That was at like... 11am.
They were still missing at 11:30am. And still hadn't shown up at 12pm.
My dad got worried and could not focus on what was going on while knowing that his precious (LOL) daughter was missing. So off we went to search for them!
We never found them. Dun dun duuuuunnnnn...

They showed up on their own after being gone for almost 3 hours. Hurrah.
Turns out that the copy machine at the business they went to had broken down and they had to fix it before making the 1100 copies! :D

Isai did all of the music!
He took it like a man.
 But he did let me know how he really felt about Beth and I not doing our part.
As we packed up the equipment all he told me was, "Que gachas!!!"
The definition of "gacha" is terrible... awful... annoying... :(((
The infamous copies being passed out!

We packed up and all headed to our church to have the second service!
We went upstairs into our house for a little break...

Aunt Debbie and Punkin'

Brittany and Beth
Aaand here we go with the evening service!

The choir :)

Elder Wakefield preached for us!

And look who showed up! Pakatelas!
Though he just could not quit talking during the preaching!

One of the puppets getting into the preaching :))

Another good showing of people!
^^We closed off our street and put up this really cool huge tent!^^

Pakatelas praying in the altar.

This is something that we have been looking forward to for a looong time!!
So exciting to finally see it happen!

More people praying.

The girls with some of our church kids

Sofia and Britt!
Can you believe that Sofia is 13?? She's so tall! :)

 Then the guys started seeing who could climb the poles holding up the tent! :))

Oh my, people got so into this!
There was so much screaming and cheering! :))

Another guy that made it to the top!

Bro. Dad climbed it too! :))

Austin, Andrew, Pakatelas, and Judah.

 Britt, Beth, Brianna, and Rachel...
...and Noah and Candace!
...Who made it in the pic wether they knew it or not :))

Then we all got onto the bus and went back to the hotel/downtown for our last night of hilarious and crazy fun!

We hung out in the zocalo for a while...
Here's a weird lady and Brittany.
This was hilarious. Who knows what she was supposed to be but she looked scary-ish and was holding a little box. (For donations maybe?) She had this very serious expression on her face.
--The part that wasn't covered up anyways...
Brittany decided to try to make her laugh! Ohhh myy hahahaa... Britt started off on this spur of the moment speech, talking 90 miles an hour. In English. And her spiel was about talking fast, and talking English... and having to use the restroom, among other things.... HAHA.
Slowly but surely the lady's expression changed from very serious, to smiling, and then to laughing! :)) She tried valiantly to keep her face straight, but she was no match for the hilarious motormouth, Brittany Walden. :)))

 Next stop!
Oxxo for energy drinks and then to sit down and eat!
Sushi and a Monster... Delish. Haha.

We finished our food, suffered from various effects of our drinks, hung out in the lobby, and then decided we needed a second round of drinks! :))
We had all purposed to stay up the entire night. No sleeping. At all. Not usually my cup of tea, but I did it!! And it was a blast! :D
Bethany's reaction: Calmness. (For some reason, she had a reverse reaction??)
Brittany's reaction: Got 10 times more hyper. :))
Noah's reaction: Just kept him normal for the rest of the night and morning.
My reaction: Hyperness. Twitching. And relentless burping. I broke records that night. :))) 
So disgusting and hilarious.

Murder is always a fun game... But even funner in the early hours of the morning!
Are you kidding me, everything is funnier at 3am/4am :))

Bobby Kolski.
Murder player extraordinaire.
Sunday night would not have been the same without him. :)))

Noah, Brittany, and Beth!
Sunday night was so fun and funny. We stayed up playing murder, doing the hokey pokey, heads up seven up, and then that crazy repeating game... Somebody brought Uno and Phase 10, which we put both to better use than just card playing! :)) Card throwing ! Some people were more apt at this than others...  :)) I thought I was going to end up with little cuts and red marks all over my face... and a cut cornea LOL...
We stayed downstairs doing crazy things and playing games until 6am and then headed up to our rooms to shower and come back downstairs for breakfast!

Technically this post already has some of "Missions Trip: Day #6" in it... but we'll just stop here and pick up with our Monday morning breakfast and more, tomorrow!


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