Thursday, December 6, 2007

Manantial de Amor

Saturday, Kathy, Cathy, Katie, and I went to one of the girls' homes and hung out for a few hours. We will be doing that more often and planning special activities with the girls. I already have a special relationship with one of the girls, Kareli, who I met my first year here and then again the 2nd year. She is the one holding the Twister box.

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

busy week

Last week we had 35 women here from Cincinnati who come and do Christmas activities. They go to each childrens' home and give out presents and do crafts and decorate. They go to the Rio and Cadareyta and do outreaches. Plus they do some decorating here on campus and include the women staff with meals, etc. I enjoyed meeting them and getting to be a part of some of the things they did. One day I left my kids out of school early so I could go with them to the Rio and other times I met up with them after school or they included the staff children.

American and Mexican women working together to make blankets.

A SMCA craft day!

My students' outreach was putting together baskets for the masons who work for us.

On their last night we brought in girls from 2 homes and did hair, makeup, nails and had dinner together.

Friday, November 23, 2007

Thanksgiving Thoughts

As I am sitting here on Thanksgiving and not with family and friends from the states, I have a lot to be thankful for. God is teaching me so much this year that I couldn't learn back home. I am seeing things through different eyes and looking at the big picture God has rather than our day to day picture. Being the teacher here is different than coming down for a week's mission trip. My job is very important so the parents can do their work but I don't get out to the ministries much. This week we had no school Wed through Friday so I took that chance to get out into the other ministries. Wednesday I got up early and we went to Casa Hogar Douglas, the childrens' home nearby, to take the children breakfast. They usually have beans and tortillas and we took sweet rolls and juice. It was so fun to see their sleepy faces come in and eat and then they headed off to school.

Then I went to Cadereyta where we played with kids, served food, and working on construction.

I was so excited to see Nacho and Jullian who I had played with summer 2006!! (You might recognize Jullian from my brochure and pictures - he was always on my back)

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

SMCA Thanksgiving


The other night we went bowling with some of the teens on campus. Even though bowling is not my favorite, it was a great time and I am building relationships and working on my Spanish!!

Saturday, November 17, 2007

The new Sierra Madre Christian Academy

The new school is done thanks to a lot of hard work and monetary donations!!

The guys hauled everything from the old school.

The girls cleaned and got the new one ready!

This morning I put my new room together!

Sunday, November 4, 2007

Day of the Dead

"Day of the Dead" is a huge holiday here. They celebrate it instead of Halloween. People go out to the gravesites of their loved ones and put flowers, food, etc. everywhere. They believe the spirits need the food for their journey. We also saw some tents with memorials set up. Thank goodness we know where our souls are going and we don't need to take care of them after they are gone.

My first visitor!!

My cousin, Karen, came to visit this weekend! She lives in Austin so she took the bus down. I got to show her around and we went to one of my favorite authentic restaurants, Tacos Fede. We went shopping at the market Friday and ate in a cute little town, Santiago. Saturday we went downtown and to the Forum. It was so great to have her here. p.s. I love visitors (hint, hint)

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Fall Festival

Tonight we had a fall festival for the staff kids. We had a hay ride on the back of a pickup, played games, had a bonfire, trick-or-treated to the houses inside our campus, and watched "Charlie Brown - The Great Pumpkin". Lots of fun!! (yes I made my costume out of cardboard, a cut up shirt, and a bucket for the hat!!)

field trip #2

Yesterday we took a field trip to The Forum in downtown Monterrey. The Forum is an international event where countries come together and discuss relevant issues. There are 4 concepts: Cultural diversity, sustainability, peace, and knowledge. The Forum meets in a different country each year and we are lucky enough to have it in Monterrey until December. Just like the Olympics, there are many new buildings and new landscaping done. There are exhibits, museums, shows, etc. Our students got to see a Cuban dance exhibit and several museums. Everyone there loved to see the blonde children and wanted to touch them. We were an unusual sight I guess.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007


Well I've been here 2 months and sometimes it seems to have gone fast and then I think, it's only been 2 months. Anyway, I have lots of time to think and I feel like God is showing me soo much. I can't believe how I drug my feet so much about coming and cried and thought I couldn't do it. Now that I am here I realize how it's not a bad thing and I wish everyone could take leaps and do things like this. You can't even explain the blessings but you see things differently. One of the guys was asking me what the biggest hardship is of being here. There are lots of little things but really there are none. When you step away from your life for a time you can see things in a different light. Money doesn't mean anything like it did in the States. It's amazing how I could even get sucked into materialism when I was there for a weekend and went into Target. But here it really doesn't matter. I could give money away without a second thought. Maybe it's because it is support money, but I don't think so. It really is a state of mind. We see God provide because we live on the edge. Here I get excited for the little things. A letter in the mail or a piece of candy or a call from a friend can mean so much and I took it for granted before. I don't want to lose this when I go back. We are all in community here and everyone uplifts and encourages each other and lives in harmony. Why can't life be more this way?? I wish everyone could experience this life for a time and then go back and see how your life would be changed.

Monday, October 22, 2007

South Padre Island, Texas

I just got back from an extravagant birthday present. My sister and brother-in-law paid my way to vacation with them at South Padre Island for 4 days!! I loved it. I got to spend my days with Mia, my niece. There was an awesome pool and beach. We went on a dolphin watching boat trip and saw a ton of dolphins. Also, we picked up shells, ate out, and watched the sand castle building contest. My last day we got up early to see the sunrise, and weren't disappointed. I felt spoiled the whole weekend...
But I do feel tough since I crossed the border and drove by myself all the way from Monterrey.

Sunday, October 14, 2007

mi amiga

This is my friend, Evelyn. She comes over once a week to help me with Spanish. This week we went to The Centro - the downtown market. I had so much fun walking around and seeing the sights with her!!

My birthday in Mexico

My birthday was Thursday and I missed all my friends back home and had a few sad moments, but I was treated very well here!!
Katie and Katie got up early and drove into town for a Starbucks for me, which is like gold. I don't get it ever like I did in the states. They gave me gifts and then when I opened my door to go to school I was greeted with the kids singing to me (p.s. it was pajama day too)

Then they had cupcakes for me at school and they all made me cards.

Then all of the ladies went downtown to a restaurant to celebrate! Good times!

Sunday, October 7, 2007