Friday, November 04, 2005

On Hiatus

Hey all you faithful blog readers. I must apologize but my lovely computer has begun to be not so lovely and have little seizures of turning off and on everytime I try to use it so the blogging has become extinct. Dudley is coming in December and has said he will fix the problem and/or bring a different computer with him. Until that time the blogging is probably going to stay dormant. I can´t quite fit all that I need to do into my internet time at the mall. I do however appreciate the encouragement and the comments. I will get back to writing as soon as possible. I love you guys. You´re the best!

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

My First Honduran Car Accident

I FORGOT TO PUT THIS AT THE BOTTOM OF THE LAST POST!!!! Actually everyone take a collective sigh of relief that this was no major thing but still warranted a post by being the first of what will probably be many little runins with taxis and other crazy drivers. So I´m driving along a two lane road the other morning minding my own running late and not terribly patient business when a taxi comes up beside me and instead of waiting to pull in behind me because there is a bus parked in his lane, decides to just drive into the side of me. It was so bizarre. I don´t know if he thought I would jump the median in order to let him in or what but he was coming over despite the fact that my much larger truck was in his way. He then proceeds to get out of his taxi, by climbing over the patrons in his taxi, and tell me all about how he had the right away and it was all my fault. We are at this time completely holding up traffic for miles around because this occured not too far from an intersection. I then tell him all about how it could not possibly be my fault for obvious reasons. We are literally standing in the middle of the highway screaming at each other with people leaning out of their cars and buses to catch a piece of the action. It was insane. Unfortunately I couldn´t go anywhere until the taxi left without doing considerably more damage to both of our vehicles. At this part he starts yelling at me "Entonces!, Entonces!" over and over which basically means "So!,So!" but the 3 syllable word sounds a whole lot more meaningful than poor one syllable "so¨. Finally I look at him and say "So!(Entonces), I´m leaving!" and I hopped back into my truck and locked the door. Fortunately for everyone, including the poor people trapped in the taxi and in the traffic jam, the driver decides to continue on his way, as do I. I now have a long scratch and a medium size dent down the passenger side of my truck but other than that we seem to be doing fine.

Another Adventure

Hey Guys! I know I owe you a blog so here it is. I would have written this sooner but unfortunately my computer has decided that it only wants to work when I don´t need it to work, like at night when I´m just bored and I check and then spend the next hour playing this game where I shoot monkeys into blocks to save the world from a corporate takeover. Then the next time I go to use it for something important it flashes on and off and occasionally tells me there is no harddrive. I´m no computer genius but I´m guessing that´s not a good thing. Anyways....On Saturday we took 4 adults, 16 teenagers, 2 children, and 2 pigs to Siguatapeque (3 hours there, 2 back, go figure) in my truck and Guillermo´s even smaller truck, in the rain. That was exciting. It was actually a whole lot of fun. We visited a cave, which was the main reason for the trip, that and to drop off the pigs at Guillermo´s mother-in-law´s house. The kids loved the cave, none of them had ever been in one so it was a little scary for them at first but they warmed up to it. Afterwards we played some soccer and then headed home. It was a really long trip but suprisingly uneventful. I have to admit I prefer it that way. I´m hoping to post some pictures of the kids in the cave soon but that´s a little iffy with the computer complications. Hopefully I´ll talk to you guys soon. Love you!!!

Monday, October 03, 2005

A Quick Update and a Funny Story

If you haven't yet ready the below blogs then this one probably won't make sense so you might want to skip down and do that first. Sorry for the influx of blog entries but that's the way it seems to work these days. When it rains it pours I guess :). So on with the updates, only two but very important ones to me. God is in control here and doing amazing things.
1) Darwin came to church for the first time yesterday and today promised he would be a church tomorrow for midweek Bible study. This is a huge step for him. The closest he's come to attending church before is an occasional appearance at class time or the devotional after our Saturday youth activities.
2) Nelson came today!!! I really didn't think he would. I'm so happy he did. I've prayed for him so much over the past day and a half. It is hard to influence someone that you don't see so I'm hoping that he will continue to come around. Today seemed to be optimistic.

And now the funny story. I've always known that Latinos are supposed to be very supersticious but I hadn't really encountered it much so I had kind of forgotten about it. Until today. Today as I was eating lunch, a piece of fried chicken and a bag of tomatos, the extent of the superstition was made known to me. I had in my hand a pile of salt in which to dip my tomatos, because of course none of us had a plate. Upon finishing my meal I was left with quite a bit of salt so I asked the boys if they wanted it for anything and they said no just throw it away. I began to do just that, drop the salt on the floor. When I was greeted with a shriek and looks of horror from the four boys. "What are you doing?" You can't throw it down, bad things will happen to you." "Here, put it on this plate" Well subtle me looks at them first like they are crazy then begins to laugh hysterically. I was then met with looks of pure contempt for my idiocy and near life threatening activity. They definitely believe this stuff. Every day I learn something new, I guess.

Sunday, October 02, 2005

Construction Success

Where to begin….It has been an eventful few days that need to be blogged but I’m afraid I’m going to have to leave some things out in order to avoid boring you all to death. I will start with Thursday when we began the second layer of the stuccoing process. This entails making a cement and sand compound and smoothing it onto the walls in order to have smooth walls instead of really rough ugly walls. Evidently the boys had had their doubts about their ability to do this particular project, though they never expressed anything but full confidence to me. When we began working, and we began seeing results, the boys were absolutely precious. They kept exclaiming things like “look we’re doing it” “We’re construction workers” “They’re going to dedicate these classrooms to us and put our picture on the wall” and several other things that continued to grow into unrealistic oblivion but showed how proud these boys were of their work. I am so proud of them. They work so hard and get very little reward. I have come to realize that most of these kids don’t get a lot of opportunity to be successful at things. Their parents don’t have the time or resources to challenge them and the school system barely manages to teach them the basics. Where our children grow up hearing questions like “what do you want to be when you grow up” these kids rarely even consider that question and look at you like your crazy if you ask them. I continue to look for ways to stretch these kids, of all ages, and show them that God has created a world of opportunities for them if they will only work toward an education and hold off on having a family for a while.


Friday night I had 3 little girls spend the night with me Sharon 8, Claudi 10, and Belkis 11. These girls are some of Darwin’s little sisters and were the first of what I hope to be several outings with the Mogote kids. I knew that it would be exciting for the girls to spend the night with me and I was not disappointed. The first excitement came upon arrival to my little apartment which to them is one of the biggest houses they’ve ever seen. Sharon says she has to go to the bathroom and goes in, door wide open of course, walks around for a while and then comes back out. “Where do I go?, Where you bath?”. No Sharon go in the toilet. Look of total confusion. I go in and open the toilet for her and she sits down but this is obviously a new experience followed immediately by Claudi who does the same thing but doesn’t offer to pee in my shower . Belkis knew what the toilet was but the other girls had no idea. That was mind blowing to me. The girls then proceeded to take the first of 5 showers that they took while at my house. It was definitely the activity of choice to have hot water running from above you. They usually bathe with a bucket behind their house. Throughout the evening and the next morning we went to the mall for dinner, went to the arcade, rented movies, bought donuts and did several other things that I had thought would be really fun for the kids. While all of those things were fun for them nothing compared to their excitement over the simple things, showers, sandwich bread (the snack of champions I’ve learned), stories in bed, and just hanging out together. In my mind I had to spend a lot to entertain these girls but they proved that love is all you need to make a child happy. The next morning I awoke to the girls cleaning the apartment until it was absolutely spotless. That was another fun thing for them though I can’t imagine why. They really were a joy and I hope that I can have them over again soon.

Soccer in the Rain

We have started having youth soccer every Saturday in order to encourage more community teens to get involved and also develop better relationships among our teens. This week we all showed up and ended up in the middle of a deluge of rain. It was insane but as soon as it slowed down a bit we decided we were, most of us, already wet and we should go have fun anyway. So off I went with a truck full of wet teenagers to the soccer court down the road. We really had a blast. I was exhausted by the end of the day. We usually don’t play full court soccer because we’re usually playing in some field but this week we did and I played my heart out. I can’t claim to be the best soccer player in the world but I sure am learning to enjoy it. I wish I had some pictures of us playing soccer while dripping wet and laughing our heads off but my camera is not terribly rain friendly so you will all have to use your imaginations.

A Rough Spot

I debated whether or not to blog about this issue but I would really like for you guys to keep this young man in your prayers. Saturday, as we were finishing up soccer, one of the ladies that went with us called me over and informed me that she was pretty sure one of the boys had stolen my billfold. I immediately felt sick. After going through my purse and searching my truck I came to the conclusion that the billfold was indeed missing, including my driver’s license and ATM card. After a quick call to a friend staying at my apartment to make sure I hadn’t left it at home, the questioning began. It broke my heart to have to ask this particular boy if he had indeed taken my billfold. He is one of the boys that work with me each day in the construction and I trusted him completely. He of course denied taking it but later it was found in the bushes where only he had gone. I’m positive that it was him but at the same time I want so much to believe him. I wish that he would get mad or sullen or something other than looking at me with tears streaming down his face swearing he didn’t do it. So fortunately my license and ATM card were recovered and I’ve spent a lot of time praying for Nelson. I’m wondering if he will show up tomorrow. I’m hoping that he does. These kids have it ingrained in them that theft is a way of survival and I just can’t bring myself to be angry with him. My biggest fear is that this will push him away from the church. He was just beginning to be a part of things with the other kids. Please pray for him, he really is a great kid with a desperate need for God in his life.

Thursday, September 29, 2005

The Year's Best Purchases!!

Okay so this might not be the most interesting post either but I must share my excitement over the little thing so that you can really get a feel of Honduran culture. First I must explain that all mops in existance in Honduras are of the High School Janitor with a big mop ringing bucket variety. However, there are no big mop ringing buckets. That means that in order to mop in Honduras one must frequently touch the filthy nasty mop head with one's hands. I'm sorry but I just didn't exactly want to jump onto that little boat so there has been very little (aka none) mopping going on in my apartment since I moved in last month. You will be relieved to learn that my house was mopped once a week by someone other than me, namely Xiomara my lovely and recently engaged housekeeper. Back to the mop and the reason for this post - so for pretty much the whole time I've lived in Honduras I've been on the lookout for a mop that was in some way self ringing. Yesterday I round the corner in the giant Home Depot type store called Larasch & Cia and what do I see (Insert the angel choir singing) a self ringing mop head. So I grab my trophy and do a victory lap around the store (not really but I thought about it). This mop really is nothing special but is now one of my favorite possessions because after a cleaning marathon last night my apartment is finally really clean.
On to amazing purchase number 2. For the entirety of the rainy season (since about May) I have been sweeping out gallon after gallon of water out of out church classrooms due to leaky roofing and the fact that the roof of the classrooms and the roof of the church building don't quite meet over the hallway in between. Thanks to a valient effort from one Mark Thurman, we have semblance of a gutter between the two but unfortunately any wind just blows the rain completely over the gutter and into the building anyway. The gutter is greatly appreciated but ideas for a replacement are in the works (sorry mark :) ). Anyway, add to this water sweeping, wet cement sweeping that goes along with stuccoing the walls and you have some serious sweeping going on. Up until yesterday this was occuring with two 300 year old kitchen brooms. Not the most effective of tools is an understatement. So yesterday along with my discovery of the amazing mop I also discovered industrial size push brooms. Yay!!! Today the sweeping took about half the time and effort. I am rather pleased with my purchases and I'm sure you will all get a kick out of the fact that I spent the last 15 minutes of my life writing about a mop and broom and then you will realize that you spent the last 10 minutes of your life reading about a mop and broom. Isn't life intriguing? lol Love you guys. I thought we could use a bit of a break from the heavy blog entries but I have another heavy one in mind soon I promise.

Monday, September 26, 2005


Well you guys probably won't be nearly as excited as me about this but the few of you who have been here and met these people might have a semblance of my excitement. Xiomara (or Edy as most of the Americans know her) and her live in boyfriend, Henry, who became a member of the church early last spring have finally decided to get married. Xiomara is my best friend here and we have spent a lot of time talking about this issue. Sunday afternoon they sat down with one of the older men at church and had a long talk while I watched their two girls. When I finally came back to the house they had decided to get married. I'm extremely excited about this and we are planning the wedding together. I haven't posted in a while because I don't really have much new to share. I was really excited about this so I hope you will share in the excitement and pray for both Henry and Xiomara as they start this new part of their lives. I'll try and whip up something whitty to post again soon. Love you guys!

Sunday, September 18, 2005

Satan is hard at work

After I posted my last post and was happy to finish up a “rotten” day, I started talking to Meredith about the things that had transpired during the day. Throughout the conversation little things that were wonderful about the day kept popping up effectively spoiling that “rotten” day I had had. I will list my wonderful things later but I want to take some time to reflect on Satan’s power in our lives. I’m reading a book called “Seeing the Unseen” by Joe Beam and it is all about Satan and how he and his demons work in the world today. It is a little scary and sometimes a bit extreme but I’m very interested in it and it has made me view the world differently. Satan uses the simplest things to turn us away from the joys of being a Christian and doing God’s work. Today all it took a couple of childhood pranks and a rainstorm to erase a truly remarkable day. As you go about your day and you find yourself getting cranky, try to remember that it is usually just Satan manipulating you into ignoring the blessings God has put into your life. Now for the fun part:
1. Today all four of my boys showed up but we decided we really just didn’t feel like working. I had brought along some supplies to give to them in the afternoon. Saturday is always a long day because there is church at 6 in the evening and I stay all day. Today we decided to start an English class. The boys have been wanting me to teach English for a while and while I work it into the day a lot this was the first formal setting. I have to say I enjoyed it and the boys were absolutely enthralled. I look for that to dissipate a little but they are really excited about this opportunity, which makes me excited about teaching them.
2. I learned that the movie I took Fernando to last week was the first/only movie he had ever been to. I’m always shocked by discoveries like that but it makes me so excited about taking them again.
3. My favorite memory of the day: First a bit of background. In the group of kids that follow me around a lot is a family of 5 ranging in age from 3-8. The 8-year-old is a girl and she doesn’t really hang out much but the others are boys and they know I’m in town before I know I’m in town. I think they have some kind of Amber radar. Other people in town have come up to me as I’m pulling into town and said “how do they know you’re here.” I just laugh and say I have no idea they just do. In this family is a set of 4-year-old twins, David and Isaac. I love these boys sooo much. They are so rambunctious and will be running around like crazy and then land in my lap and stay snuggled there for the next half hour. I love it. Today 4-year-old David was doing just that thing and we were sitting watching the older boys play soccer. All the sudden he looked up at me, kissed me on the cheek, and said “I love you.” I smiled, kissed him on the head, and told him I loved him too, but when he turned back around I wiped a tear from my eye. These kids are so sweet. I’m taken back by their love so often. If imperfect me can love these kids so much, how much must God love us.

Saturday, September 17, 2005

Learning to Love

I kind of had a rough day so I decided to post this instead of writing about it but I will give you some highlights: One of the kids stole some money from my backpack (nothing major but the principle was frustrating), someone pooped, yes pooped, in the back of my truck, I sat through a rainstorm in my truck with 5 other people, it was a long day but now it's over. I'm really not that upset about it now but as I was sitting in the truck fuming about it in the rain. As I'm writing this I'm laughing so I guess I"m completely over it. Love you guys.

Things I’ve learned to love since moving to Honduras:

1. Grapefruit – Oh my goodness, I don’t think it gets any better than a skinned grapefruit with a little bit of sugar on the top
2. Fresh Pineapple – If you would have offered me either of these fruits before I moved here I would have wrinkled up my nose and given my patented “I’m a really picky eater” speech.
3. Driving a stick shift – It’s like playing a video game J
4. No traffic laws – scary at first but lots of fun once you figure it out
5. Cold showers – okay, maybe not love, but definitely appreciate. Hot showers are so draining.
6. Lack of TV – This has been a recent and hard lesson but I’m loving the peace of not having the TV going the whole time I’m at home.
7. Meeting new people – Shy little Amber was killed by Honduras mission groups.
8. Blogging – journaling has never been my forte and this helps me keep up with my own goings on
9. Honking - It gives new meaning to expressing yourself.

Things I still need to learn to love…
1. Beans
2. Rice
3. Plain tortillas
4. Coffee
5. Waiting

Friday, September 16, 2005

Picture's For Post,

Donut Fun Posted by Picasa

Eating at Burger King Posted by Picasa
Hey Guys! I left the last post up for a while because I wanted as many comments as possible. I’m still looking for comments if you want to scroll down and take a whack at the issues. Several things have happened in the meantime though. First off, the donuts were a tremendous hit. I get warm fuzzies just thinking about the look on the kids’ faces and their excitement over half a donut. (sidenote: if anyone from my childhood remembers where warm fuzzies and cold pricklies came from please fill me in, I can’t for the life of me remember)

I got really sick last week, I think it was broncitis and that was no fun. I ended up spending about a day and a half just sleeping. Luckily one of the doctors from this summer left me a bunch of antibiotics and treatment instructions that cleared me right up. I’m right as rain now.

Last Sunday we had Dia del Nino (children’s day) which is a celebration almost as big as Christmas here. This included 4 pinatas, 50 bags of candy, toys, and other prizes, lots of chicken and rice, and over 80 kids. It was really a lot of fun.

WE FINISHED STUCCOING THE CLASSROOMS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I count this among one of my great life achievements J actually we just finished the first stage but oh I was so excited. I think, I think, that the first part was the hardest but we shall see. We now have to go back over all the rough cement with wet cement and smooth it all out. This will be more time consuming but less physically demanding. We finished yesterday around the middle of the day so I took the boys out to lunch to celebrate. I kind of had that in mind as the day started so I kept telling them they had to finish but noon, but not why. They looked at me like I was crazy and said no way but they did it, it was actually closer to 1 but it works. When I asked them if they wanted to go to lunch at first they just kind of nonchalantly agreed (I always buy lunch for them but it is usually fried chicken from the neighborhood pulperia) At this point we’re all laying around on the church benches exhausted and chatting. Then they figure out I’m talking about going down the mountain into town for lunch and they get all excited. They decide they need to shower before going so they all runoff home to change. I don’t know where they found the clothes and shoes they put on but they were immaculate when they showed up at the meeting place. They were so excited. I love seeing them like that. So we all hop into the truck and head into town. After about 15 minutes of discussion they decide that Darwin doesn’t like pizza so that’s out, and we eat fried chicken all the time so that leaves hamburgers. Evidently Burger King is the place to eat a hamburger because that is what they all shouted when we decided on hamburgers. So off we went and we had a wonderful time. The boys tried to talk their way into the play area but didn’t have much luck since they are all around 14 years old. Oh I almost forgot sometime during that morning I became the official town ear cleaner. That was fairly disgusting but a needed chore. I cleaned out the ears of 6 children who had never ever had their ears cleaned before and were growing small farms inside them. The kids thought this was hilarious. Especially when I put peroxide in their ears and it tickled for about the next hour.

Now I’m back at Baxter with about 700 teenagers who are visiting for a weekend youth rally type thing. I’m supposed to have a couple of adult ladies staying with me but they have yet to appear so I will keep you all posted on that. Life here is wonderful. I hope that where ever you are it is the same. I love you all.

Friday, September 09, 2005

The Stucco Princess Rides Again

Darwin, Nelson (new kid), and Fernando mixing the stucco mixture
Once again we finished a room in one day!! It makes me so happy. I've had several things on my heart that I have been wanting to blog about lately so this is probably going to be a conglomeration of several ideas. First a touching occurance:
At the end of every day that the boys work I try and pay them something. Usually 50L - 100L. For those of you not up on your Lempira exchange rates that's about $2.75-$5.50 for a hard's day work. For me it is more of a token of appreciation than anything else, but for many of the poor people in honduras that is a good day's wage. So anyway, today at the end of the day I handed each of the boys 100L. All three of the boys said that I didn't need to pay them, but Fernando almost made me cry. He kept saying how thankful he was for all that I had done for him and that he would work for me everyday for free. It was so sweet. All I did was buy the kid some shoes and be his friend. Anyway after much arguing he said that this would be the last time he would take money from me for work. Such a little bit of love goes such a long ways here. In the morning all three of the boys are coming back to work and I'm excited about taking them donuts for breakfast, lol sometimes I really am a geek. Anyways, onto more serious matters. Please if you read this leave a comment with your opinion on at least one of the following subjects. I would really like some input:
1) How do you feel about giving money to beggars, either children or adults? I waver between not giving anything because most of it goes to by products that harm both the body and mind and feeling guilty because I have so much and they want so little. God calls us to give and I want to do that but at the same time I feel like I'm condoning bad behavior if I give money to the numerous people I encounter each day begging in the streets. Thus far my policy has been never to give money to kids because they use it to buy glue that they huff, but a few times I have taken kids to eat dinner instead of giving them money. Please let me know how you feel.
2) I encounter child abuse on a weekly basis here. Abuse of children I love by parents that many times I respect. I am at a loss as to what I can do to stop this or at least help the kids enduring it. Most people here believe that if you discipline your child and it doesn't leave a mark then it didn't do any good. I've even heard a doctor say this. I feel helpless to do anything for these kids that are obviously hurting, especially the adolescents. If you have any advice on what might be helpful please let me know.
I love and respect each of you so much. Your support and encouragement makes what I do here possibly and some days bearable. Today was highly bearable, it was a wonderful day, but sometimes I get bogged down by the problems of poverty that I face each day. Love you guys!!

Tuesday, September 06, 2005

An Interesting Day

Hello World! This morning I woke up and began what I thought would be a fun day but not nearly as interesting as it turned out to be. I will proceed to write this in phases throughout the day so as to further complicate an already complicated story.

Phase I: At 10 o'clock my new favorite teenager Fernando arrived and sat outside my door for who knows how long because he assumed that because there were no lights on in the living room (I was laying in my room reading) that I must still be asleep. He probably would have sat out there for a good hour if I hadn't heard him tell someone outside that he was waiting on me because I was still asleep. Anyway, so I go outside and we head off on an outing to find new shoes. Poor Fernando had been running around in a pair of 300 year old flip flops until they fell apart the other day. The flip flops were back up shoes to his tennis shoes that have huge holes in the soles. I finally decided yesterday after seeing him running around in his mother's 3 sizes too small flip flops that the boy needed some new shoes. So off we go. We arrive at Payless, yes I said Payless. My mom was shocked to learn that there was a Payless here, actually there are lots of them. It's a very popular place. So we pick out a new pair of tennis shoes and take them to the counter. The salesman does a very good job of convincing me that the "Buy One, Get One Half Off" Sale is a must have so we go back for more shoes. We finally decide on a pair of sandals that will be good for running around Mogote in and hop back into the truck. I'm sure he has never had two new pairs of shoes at the same time in his life. I love this part of my job. It is so nice to give to these kids that have so little and are so appreciative. So I ask Fernando if he wants to go see a movie and at first he just looks at me like I'm insane and then he smiles and says okay. So we drive around the block to the mall and check out movie times. Unfortunately it is 11 o'clock and the next movie doesn't start until 1 o'clock. We decide to wander around and maybe wait maybe not whatever way the wind blows us. We walk through the middle of the mall (the mall is a circle with everything coming out of this big open hub in the middle) and to our surprise find ourselves in the middle of a ping pong tournament, a what? that's right a ping pong tournament in the middle of the mall. Fernando had never even heard of ping pong. I've never heard of Honduran ping pong. Probably the most random site I've seen in a very long while. So we hang out and watch that until lunch time, pizza of course, then we head up to watch the Fantastic 4. I actually enjoyed it and Fernando got a huge kick out of it so that made it worth it even if I hadn't have liked it. End of Phase I.

Phase II: We arrive in El Mogote where I drop Fernando off at his house so as to avoid him walking around carrying two pairs of shoes and a death warrant through town. At this point several children pile into the back of my truck for the ride to the church building. I then stand around for the next hour waiting for church to start and keeping my little horde of hooligans from killing each other in the back of my truck. I love my bunch of kids but there are a couple of the older ones that I have to try not to strangle sometimes. Anyway so church members finally start arriving at about 5:15 (church officially starts at 5) and we sit down and do the before church chatting thing. Eventually we get around to Dia del Nino (kid's day) which is this saturday. We had talked earlier about taking up a collection and making lunch for all the kids. I was very supportive of this and had planned on making little goody bags for all the kids from left over summer group stuff. By the end of the conversation I'm doing the shopping with another lady and most of the cooking by myself for the 50+ kids we plan to have on Sunday for church. Not that I mind this new responsibility but it is going to be interesting getting it all done. There is talk in the works of a pinata which I'm against (blindfolded children swinging large sticks make me nervous) but will be fun either way. So then we proceeded with church, which was great. Guillermo couldn't get there because of traffic (which I will get into later) so one of the men from church did the lesson and did a surprisingly wonderful job. All of the members are very shy about leadership roles so I'm always impressed when they step up to the plate. End Phase II.

Phase III: So after church a lady asks me to give her a ride to Cony and Guillermo's house and I say sure. We leave amidst rumors of traffic problems but nothing solid and the assurance that we can always come back and stay with someone in Mogote. Little did I know as I was laughing off the suggestion what I was headed into. Evidently somewhere between 3:30 when I arrived in El Mogote and 4:15 when Guillermo headed out for church every taxi and bus in the city decided to join together and have a strike in one of the main thoroughfares of the city, specifically the one between my house and El Mogote. We are driving along and all of the sudden people are driving over the median. I am very confused and ask what in the world is going on (I had already forgotten the traffic comments at church, everyone walks, how would they know). I'm not sure what the strike was about but it stopped traffic for a very very long time making my trip home take over an hour as opposed to the normal 20 minutes. By the end of it Guillermo was calling me to make sure I wasn't stuck on the road somewhere or lost. But we made it. I arrived home at 7:15 starving, thirsting to death, and very very glad to be off of the highway. Unfortunately I had to let poor Panchita, my driving companion, walk the last 4 blocks of her journey home because I wasn't sure I would be able to get back through all the traffic. I felt a little mean but she completely understood. She is a very nice lady. End Phase III.
And now I'm sitting here in my nightly 8-10 internet session writing about my crazy day to all of you, as well as chatting with my dear friends Meredith and Ann. I am so blessed. Sorry about the epic but it was fun to write. Love You!!

Monday, September 05, 2005

Picture Hassles

hanging out in Roatan Posted by Picasa

Oh My Goodness I didn't think I was ever going to get a picture posted into my profile. All you guys that do fancy stuff on your blog have my respect. I am very excited however about getting this picture onto the profile. Evidently I have to make a whole blog section out of it to do that but it works for me. Luckily posting pictures to a regular blog is much easier so I plan on doing that a lot more often. I love you guys!

Saturday, September 03, 2005

Fun Times

Today I didn't have anything planned to do so I decided to take some of the assorted toy cars, balls, and crayons up to El Mogote with me and just hang out with the kids. I've acquired a group of about 15 kids, from 2-8, that just kind of follow me around whenever I go up there and today was no exception. I don't think I will ever get over the joy I get from seeing 5 year old Selvin tearing down the road and jumping into my arms with a big hug. I'm working on getting some pictures onto the blog so you guys can share in some of these joys with me. I was a bit apprehensive about opening up my little bag of tricks today. This is a poverty stricken area where the rule is generally take as much as you can as fast as you can because tomorrow it probably won't be there. I wondered if all of my toys would be gone by the end of the day and had basically resigned myself to that before even leaving. I was pleasantly surprised however. Other than a few normal and minor skirmishes over the sharing of whatever toy was coveted at the moment I had no problems getting the kids to share and everything came home with me today. It was very encouraging. None of the kids that hang out with me go to school so I try to work as much "learning" into whatever activity we're doing as possible. Today we did a lot of work on colors and numbers. These kids are so bright. They just don't have anyone in their lives that has the time or patience to work with them. I'm hoping to get most of my little clan into school next year through heavy encouragement on the parents' side but that isn't until February so hopefully some learning can be done before then. Pictures coming soon.
Love you!!

Thursday, September 01, 2005

Random bits

YAY!! I just figured out how to get KLOVE online (Christian music). I'm so excited. I haven't heard new Christian music in sooo long. I know you guys are incredibly impressed that I'm blogging again so soon. I know I'm special. lol sorry it's late, I'm a little delirious. I've decided that sitting outside the library at Baxter typing on the internet is going to be one of my new favorite activities. It is so peaceful out here. The only light I can see is the light from my computer and the moonlight streaming through the clouds and palm trees over the tops of the buildings. It's really nice. Anyway, I taught the women's class at church tonight. That was a little intimidating, especially when women and a couple of men who are new at church started streaming in. Our women's class is really growing and it's so exciting. I'm really enjoying being a part of a new growing church. It is so different from the churches that I've been in all my life. Not that they haven't been wonderful, but this is so new and it's so exciting to watch people's faith grow. We also have 3 new babies at church that are just precious. I'm loving watching them grow up. I want to spend some time writing about the kids that have started hanging with me each day but I haven't figured out the best to go about that so you'll just have to wait on pins and needles until next time. LOVE YOU!!!!

Wednesday, August 31, 2005

The Stucco Princess

That´s me! Stucco has become my life these days. I eat sleep and dream cement but the classrooms are coming along nicely. Luckily God has blessed me with some awesome teenage boys that do most of the work. For those of you that don´t know what stucco-ing entales let me explain. You make really watery cement and then you through it as hard as you can against the walls of a room, effectively filling in all the gaps that suck up the paint and covering everyone in the vicinity with cement as well. After this initial round I´m told that we will go back through with just cement and water and wipe that on the walls to make it smooth. Today we finished the initial phase of the second classroom, IN JUST ONE DAY!!! I know that´s not terribly exciting to many people but to me it was amazing. The first classroom took 3 days and I really thought I might die from sore muscles after the first day. Chalk one up to experience I guess. The second room looks much better, took much less time, and I can actually move today. The boys are basically relying on my for knowledge on how to do this wonderful project but I´m getting the impression that they are feigning ignorance to encourage the gringa. I did a lot of cleanup work today and pretty much let them do the real stuff and see how much better it went. These kids are amazing. There are 3 of them that help me out on a regular basis, with a few others in and out. Darwin is 14 and working real hard not to become a punk. It seems to be an uphill battle but I love him anyway. Fernando is 13 and the most amazing teenager I´ve ever met. The other day I peeked into the "construction" room, which is actually one of the classrooms with a bunch of junk and a big pile of sand in it, and Fernando was letting 12 of the neighborhood kids, ranging in age from 3-7, bury him in the sand up to the neck. It was precious. He is an incredibly hard worker. Please keep him in your prayers. I pray that he stays the great kid that he is now and continues to look for God´s guidance in his life. Jose is 15 and new to me. I know most of the kids in the area but Jose´s family just moved into the church building office room and I´ve never seen him until a few weeks ago. Living in the church means something bad must have happened to his house. I plan on getting to know the family more as I spend more and more time in Mogote but he is very quiet so I´m not sure that much information will come from him. He is also a very hard worker and a smile never leaves his face. Several times today I asked him if he wanted to rest and he just smiled at me and kept on trucking. It amazes me that God has given these kids the strength to face the things they must face each day, not to mention the overabundance of love they share with those around them. God is great, we so often underestimate his power in our lives.

Friday, August 05, 2005

I'm Home!!

Hey Everyone. I'm at home and it is so nice. A little surreal but very nice. I've already spent a little time with some friends in OKC and now I'm in Colorado with my family until the beginning of next week. It's strange to be back in the states as a visitor. I have definitely dealt with a little bit of culture shock and it is extremely odd for me to be speaking in English all the time. I'm really looking forward to going home and seeing all of my friends. Hopefully once I get back things will settle down a little and the blogging will become a little more regular. I love you guys. You are the best friends I could ever have asked for. Hopefully I will see you soon and if not you're in my thoughts and prayers.

Thursday, July 21, 2005

Amazing,...and a little bit crazy, new friends!

Hey guys, my blog has been on hiatus for a while but as I´m reading everyone else´s I´m realizing that´s a fairly common occurance this summer. I have been having a blast working with lots of new and old friends. We´re in the middle of mission group season and it´s been so much fun to see old friends and meet new ones. Tiffany Willis spent a great 6 weeks here and we learned so much from each other. I am so blessed to have had the opportunity to meet her. A few weeks ago a group arrived from Faragut, TN and life as I knew it changed. Talk about a crazy bunch of kids. I can´t believe how quickly they became a part of my extended family. They were here for 2 weeks (with the exception of Mark who was only here about a week, slacker) and when they left I felt like a part of me went with them. We built several houses, did some painting, built onto a couple of church buildings, and learned all the words to ¨Build me up, Buttercup¨. It´s amazing what a few people can accomplish with God as their strength. At the end of their time we spent a few days in Roatan, which is an amazing island off of the coast of Honduras. I had never been and I had a blast. It was so beautiful. We had little cabins on our own private beach. Ask me and I´ll tell you more about it. A group of girls was also here from OKC and it was a blessing to get to know them better and act as their surrogate mother for a few weeks. They taught me so much about trusting God and sharing my faith. Well that´s all I´ve got for right now. My favorite group from last summer began arriving today and the whole group will be here by Saturday. I´m looking forward to working with them and then heading home next weekend!!! I love you guys.

Friday, June 17, 2005

And Then There Was Light!..Well... Sort Of

Okay so the electricity man finally showed up yesterday at about 9 o´clock and worked very hard all day with the occasionally appearance of my land lady nagging at him and griping about what he was doing. At the end of the day, about 5:30, he comes in the house and starts trying lights. We finally get one light to turn on and I, being quite accustomed to electrical problems by now, think maybe if we unplug the fridge we will have better luck. I did and we did. So last night, as long as we left the fridge unplugged, we could turn on the tv and one light. We could even turn on the stove but it shocked the heck out of us when we tried to make dinner on it so we decided against that. Evidently there is a ¨pole¨that is lacking at my house that is causing the electricity to not be able to enter very well. I believe that possibly that means it´s not grounded but who knows. My land lord is too cheap to pay for whatever is needed so on Monday my good friend the electric man will come back and I´m going to pay for whatever is needed to completely fix the problem. In the mean time tiffany and I will continue to eat out and watch tv with one light one. I´m finding this whole situation quite humorous and I¨m just extremely glad that we have light and the tv now. For those of you that don´t know about my reality tv obsession I have one and we in the middle of a very intense season. I recommend the show Beauty and the Geek to each of you. We were able to watch it last night and it is quite the tear jerker and laugh maker. If you want to know more just email me and I will be happy to rant. You guys are the best. Love ya!

Wednesday, June 15, 2005

Who Needs Electricity!

Hey Guys sorry it´s been a while since I last blogged. I´ve been having an amazing week with Meredith, Tiffany, Jack (the dog), and no electricity. The day before Tiffany arrived (last Tuesday) I once again experienced the joy of losing my electricity due to rotted cables under the house. I called up my land lord and she assured me that she would fix it as soon as possible. Well Tiffany arrived on Wednesday and Meredith on Thursday and there was still no hope of the electricity returning anytime soon. Let me point out that in Honduras there is no such thing as calling the electrician company to come out and fix anything. You kind of just have to wait around for some handy man to pass by looking for work who is willing to fix it unless you happen to have an electrician friend. I don´t, and my landlord had run off all electrician friends she once had by failing to pay them appropriately. This caused me quite a bit of stress but we continued on with our week of excitement and nightly candle lightings with much success. I had an exciting spill down the stairs at Cony and Guillermo´s house, leaving me with a sprained foot and several large bruises but not terribly inhibited. We also spent a day at the prison where Tiffany met many new friends and we had a run in with a giant turtle. I also learned that the boys probably aren´t going to be able to have Jack (the dog) and that there is a good chance I´m going to end up with him. We saw a group of American Body Builders break lots of cool things and explode hot water bottles with their breath and we even met some little high school girls that will probably prove to be long time friends. On Sunday we met up with 2 more Americans working here for the summer and headed out to El Mogote and Izopo. That was a long day but a fun one. On Monday we headed up to the national park with the Jesus statue and spend a good portion of the day there just walking around and enjoying the view. All this time we were either eating out or cooking on a little camp stove that I happened to have and holding candle light vigils each night. It proved to be great for conversation, reminiscing, and getting to know each other. Meredith went home yesterday after greatly encouraging me with her presence. God has greatly blessed me with so many wonderful friends and I´m excited about getting to know Tiffany more as we continue to work together for the next 5 weeks. We are still waiting on the electricity and are getting pretty sick of eating out but some guys came by today and said that they would fix the problem tomorrow so here´s to hoping. I love you guys. Thanks for your support. We´re off today to visit my boys from Jovenes and I´m very excited about that.

Saturday, May 28, 2005

Bible Study

Last Thursday I started a Bible study with some of the new women at church. I was very nervous about this because I have never really done anything like this before especially with adults. We announced it at church and immediately 2 ladies who had only been there once before expressed their interest. This was very encouraging to me. Thursday I arrived and per usual in Honduras the 9 o´clock bible study started at 10, but other than that everything went wonderfully. The study involves a lot of talking and feedback and I was a little worried about sitting in silence, but they were great. They really got involved and are excited about our next study next week. Afterwards I headed over to Xiomara´s house on the other side of the mountain and we went to visit her sister in law. We were there for a while and then we asked her if she wanted to do the study and she said yes. So I did the study again there and about half way through Xiomara´s brother in law showed up and he stayed as well. This study went a little more slowly because they were more hesitant to talk but still it was great and they both said they would love to study again next week. I´ve been going crazy at home and God has provided me this opportunity to get out into the community again and share the gospel with some great people. I am so blessed to be able to see God working so plainly in my life.

Another New Friend!!

LOL yesterday I went to the prison to visit the boys and ended up coming home with a puppy. Jack, as I´ve chosen to call him, rejecting his name of "Homie", is an adorable baby pit bull. Someone brought him to some of the gang boys and they have to wait a week for permission to have him. They needed someone to take care of him for a week and that someone is me. He is incredibly placid for a puppy. He just sleeps most of the time which is nice for me. It means not a whole lot of clean up. I think a bit of that may be malnourishment though because before he was being fed things like spaghetti and rice. After I leave here I´m going to buy some puppy food and maybe it will perk him up a little. He´s a sweety but very shy. He sleeps on the floor by my bed and hasn´t barked once the whole time. I´ll keep you guys updated on anything exciting that happens during my puppysitting week.

Wednesday, May 25, 2005

A New Friend

About a month ago I was hanging out with my good friend Xiomara behind my house while she was washing the clothes (an activity she loves and I find impossible). I ventured into the little "maid´s room" that is out there, and that I am afraid to go into by myself, for some unknown reason. Upon entering I saw a grocery sack in the corner and decided to check it out. I had been in this room occasionally before and the grocery sack was new. Inside the grocery sack were several old bandanas (sp?). Nothing too creepy about that except that they are in the scary room and have no reason to be there. So I come running out with my normally overdramatic exuberance and shout at Xiomara, "Look!! Someone´s living in the scary room." Mind you this would require some pretty major acrobatics by a very thin person to even get into the room, but still my mind will do as it wishes. She laughed and stated the obvious about the near imposibility of someone getting into the room and also the large quantities of people (especially children) that come and go from my house and could easily have left the bag there. So that was that and the stranger in the scary room became a great joke between us. It also become the subject of many interesting dreams, not scary just interesting, that Xiomara found hilarious. The owner of the bag still has not been found, but 3 or 4 nights ago I found a very adorable little cat leaving the room. She sleeps there at night and quite enjoys the milk and cat food I´ve begun leaving her but won´t let me anywhere near her. Slowly she is letting me see more and more of her and I`m hoping that soon we will become friends. She has already decided that she really likes to watch tv (my kind of cat) and crawls between the bars on my front windows to watch every night. I´ve named her Bianca because Blanca (the spanish word for white) seemed a little too obvious. Maybe I´m crazy but I´ve fallen in love with this shy little kitty.

Wednesday, May 18, 2005

Visit with my boys

Hey Guys,
I just got back from visiting my boys for the first time since I left Jovenes. I had talked to them a few times on the phone but this was the first visit. They had their monthly visit with their parents and so they were in town and I just went over to IHNFA (basically the honduran dept of family services). It was wonderful. It was so good to see the boys. They are growing but are still the same great kids that I grew to love. There are now 10 more and I made friends with a couple of the new boys as well. It was hard answering questions about when I´m coming back because there is really no answer to that question. I made plans with a couple of the people that work at Jovenes to have dinner next week and I¨m already looking forward to that. God has blessed me with so many great relationships from my stay at Jovenes. Today also showed me that I really do have a talent for working with children and I truly do believe that is where God wants me. Sometimes it is hard for me to stay on track and I´ve become very good at doubting myself but God knows what I need and he provides it. Isn´t it wonderful that as Christians we have someone who knows better than we do what we need? That is unfathomable to me. God recognizes my problems and works at fixes them before I even realize I have them. That´s an awesome thing. I encourage each of you to take some time and think about how God is working in your life right at this moment. Whether you are feeling thrilled, devastated, or floating along in the middle God is there and he´s working in your life. I love you guys. You are amazing. Email me.

Tuesday, May 10, 2005

Crazy Thieves

The funniest thing happened the other morning, well it wasn´t funny at the time but I find it hilarious now. I had bought a hammock and put it out in front of my house. This is not an odd thing, it is actually quite common here. The hammock cost about $20 and the two ropes hanging it up costs $1 a piece. The hammock was hanging a total of one day and one night when I woke up, went outside, and saw that someone had climbed over my front gate, smashed the plants on the other side of the gate in the process of climbing over, and stolen not the $20 hammock which was laying on the ground, but one of the $1 ropes. WHAT!! people here are so strange. So I was frustated because on top of this I had no electricity and it was just a bad morning. I go to church and tell Xiomara, my best friend and cleaning lady, about what happened and by this time I think it´s just a big joke. She is furious. She says "where was the security guard he should have been watching your house. I`m going to talk to him tomorrow. " Which she proceeds to do. The security guard, who I expect to blow the whole thing off, starts apologizing profusely and saying that he wasn´t there because he had been in a house around the block drunk for the past two days. I´ve never heard anything so ridiculous. He then says that I don´t have to pay for the security until August and he will pay special attention to the house to make sure nothing else happens. Talk about craziness. I was expecting Xiomara and the security guy to get into a big fight. She was so funny. She started telling me how if I didn´t stand up for myself people were going to walk all over me and I just couldn´t stop laughing. Especially in light of the past months experiences. Oh the crazy hondurans.


Sorry I´ve been remiss in writing for awhile. The electricity in my house is out indefinitely which prevents me from writing posts at home and then bringing them in to upload. Last Sunday I had 4-year-old Julia spend the night with me and it was so much fun. Because of the lack of electricity we had to be a little bit inventive as far as activities go. So we decided to go out for lunch and eat pizza and play in the little playpark in pizza hut. A common experience at home but here something she talked about all day until we decided to go to the carnival. Now that was an experience. It is just a bunch of mechanical rides like you would find at a state fair all together near the grocery store behind my house. When they began this process I definitely was not anticipating the grand affair that it became. There are two giant roller coasters that went up literally over night. I have to admit I¨m a bit hesitant to get on them but I have seen inspectors looking over the rides during the day so that´s a good sign. Anyway, So Julia and I decide to brave the massive crowds of people and join the fun. First of all, entry to this place is one ticket which costs 5 L. Well me being the planner that I am buy 50 L. worth of tickets so that we won´t have to wait in line to buy tickets when we get inside. We pay our tickets go in look around and decide to ride the little worm kiddiecoaster that has the longest line in the park. There are an indescribable number of people in this place. You literally have to shove your way through to get anywhere. We wait in line for about 20 minutes and then arrive, finally at the worm. The ticket man takes one look at my tickets and says no sorry you need gray tickets, unfornately I had bought 10 pink entry tickets that could not be used for anything. So we go and buy tickets for the worm and learn that there is a different color ticket for every ride. Talk about insanity. So we finally ride the ride and have lots of fun and continue on our way encountering many other people who have made the ticket blunder and trading around tickets as we go. We arrive at a little ride that has the kids circuling in the air in little elephants and cars and such and I put Julia in and step back to watch. I watch a mother place her child, about Julia´s age, crying into one of the cars and then place one of his little friends in with him. She then tells the friend to hold the kid into the car. This poor kid is scared to death and his little friend has a vice grip around his neck. The mom just stands back and yells encouragement until the ride starts and the kids take off. The little boy finally calms down but the friend keeps his hold until the ride is over. It was a little sad but at the same time one of the funniest things I have ever seen. The little friend´s face was priceless. Well that´s about it for now. thanks for reading.

Tuesday, April 26, 2005

Los Chinos????

Oh the Chinese in Honduras. You rarely see them but if you need something unusual, they are where you go. Yesterday was the latest of many times I haven’t been able to find something and I’m met with “The Chinese, you need to see the Chinese people.” It has begun to really crack me up. These “Chinese people” are never referenced with a location only “Los Chinos”. I have a very large rat problem that has developed rather quickly in my house. I had the problem last year and evidently the change in the weather has brought them back with a vengeance. Yesterday Henry, the husband of my cleaning lady and best friend, came to fill in the rat holes, primarily the giant one under the sink in the kitchen, with cement. I had been several times to several stores to buy rat poison and everywhere I went they were out. When Henry asked me if I had bought the poison I told him this and all he said was, “Los Chinos.” He looked at Xiomara, my friend, and she said, “I went yesterday and they will bring it tomorrow.” LOL It is this underground item retrieval system or something. I know that when we wanted fireworks for the fourth of July we went to “Los Chinos” and later found out the fireworks we bought were illegal. I’m sure that the Chinese people here are wonderful and that the majority of them are not in the market of unattainable items but my experience so far has proven to be interesting.
Disclaimer: for those of you who don’t know me very well I spent my college career volunteering in English classes for, tutoring, and living with Asian girls. I loved each of them very much and have nothing against the Asian culture. I just find this amusing.

Nightmare in El Prado

For my faithful blog readers out there you may remember an experience with ants attacking me from a printer and a brief introduction to my house o’ rats. Well those stories are quiet lovely compared to what I experienced yesterday. I will begin by explaining that my house is extremely old and the kitchen cabinets are wooden and very worn out. Below the cabinets in the kitchen, in one corner there is only dirt that has been gradually taken out by my friends the rats. I had thought that I had overcome the rat problem, and for a few months I saw none, and then about 3 weeks ago they returned with a vengeance. For a while I just avoided the rats. When I told my mom about this problem her first response was “Aren’t you afraid they are going to get on your bed at night and bite your face?", WHAT!!! Well I wasn’t, but I am now. So then I figured out ways to block them from my room at night and talked to Henry about helping me out around the house with this problem. Henry brought in cement and began to fill in the numerous holes that we discovered around the house. During this process we pulled out several parts of the kitchen cabinets which led to an outpouring of large ants and cockroaches. I don’t think I’ve ever been so disgusted. I had seen the occasional cockroach in the house and killed it but nothing like this. I had no idea. Poor Henry and Xiomara were worried about me. I was so sick. According to them this problem should be taken care of with the removal of the cabinets that were rotten and just in case we’re also putting out cockroach poison tomorrow. At one point I had considered buying this house but that is definitely out of the question now. The house is much older and run down than I had realized before. I’m excited though about fixing it up over the next few months. I want to paint the living room and I’ve already starting working on the front garden.


Last weekend I took a trip to visit my friends, Cony’s mom and Yuvinny the young boy I have developed a close friendship with, in Siguatapeque with Cony and Michelle. It was really neat. We arrived late on Friday night and there was a little craft fair going on in the middle of town. We walked around for a while and Cony showed us all the things she used to do and the places she used to go. It was really interesting to listen to her talk about where the old school used to be and the first movie theater and many other things that have changed since she was a young girl. We have been there many times before but never have we had so many intimate talks as we walked around. It was very relaxing and fun to see Yuvinny and his grandma as well as get away from everything and just relax.

Friday, April 22, 2005

Cute Jovenes Stories

I have a little 4-year-old friend at Jovenes named Selvin. One of Selvin’s favorite activities is to run around with one of my shirts tied around his neck and say that he is Superman. He is very dark skinned and lots of people on campus call him “chocolate”. The other day Selvin and I were running around together and joking about him being chocolate. I said that I was made of chocolate and he said “No, I’m chocolate you are vanilla.” It was really cute.

Another day I was sitting with Selvin and we were watching a storm come in over the mountains and talking about God watering the earth (and the trucks J). We started talking about Heaven and Selvin said that there are two men in Heaven. I was expecting him to say God and Jesus, but when I asked who he said, “God, and the man that drives his car.” I cracked up. Here it is very common for prestigious people to have a driver and Selvin obviously thought that God would have someone to drive his car.


I never know what my fellow Hondurans will come up with next. The other day at church I was wearing a pair of sandals which were basically glorified flip flops and very old (hand me downs from a friend) . I tripped (surprise surprise) and broke one of my sandals. Thinking “oh great, this will be fun” I go to sit down and try to make the best of broken shoe. The next thing I know when of the ladies at church is rifling through her purse and says “give me your shoe.” Out of her purse she pulls out a very large needle and thread and proceeds to sew my shoe back together. At one point as she was beating the needle against the bench to make it go through the bottom of my shoe the needle snapped and I thought “well it was a nice try.” But no, she pulls so money out of her purse and sends one of the church teens to buy another needle and fixes the shoe. She then hands me back my shoe and says “There, good as new.” Being the wasteful American that I am I went to Payless and bought some new sandals but I am sure that she would have continued wearing them until they fell completely apart.

Tuesday, April 19, 2005

The Blog is Back

Hey Guys
Since it looks like I´m going to be in town a lot more again I´m going to try and start up the blog again. I just want to reassure you all that I am doing okay after my abrupt change in jobs and that I greatly appreciate the love that has been flowing in since my email news. You guys are the best. I´ll post something real soon. Possibly highlights from my life at Jovenes.