Sunday, February 27, 2011

Mid-Summer Activities

I don't seem to be getting any better with this cut and pasting of pictures! Anyway......Here we are mid-summer and already thinking of the rainy season and some of the preparation to plant a few things. The second pic is me painting some of the kid's shelves for their books. To think our furniture for our escuelita came from the Opal House property. We still have more at the carpenter's that is being made into chapel side tables. And we want to build some cabinets for Veronica's kitchen. We have 'visitors' that come into her house and leave their 'calling cards'. We are trying to show her that there is definitely a connection between the food she leaves out on the counters and her little friends that know where they can get an easy meal! The first picture is at San Lucas, actually from our coffee harvest from last year. This year we didn't do so bad about 125 lbs. We have more than 500 more plants to get into the ground this year. We want to work on that aspect of the farm. The other two pictures are of the grand opening of the San Lucas' Women's Center. This is a place where the women of the parish can meet, weave, I've heard bake bread (we sampled some....mmmmm)and I believe receive educational talks and things of that nature. Chonu, Fr. Greg's assistant had tears in her eyes as she shared what the center means to her and the parish. It's a very beautiful building, big kitchen and medicinal herb gardens surround it. It's just one example of the solidarity that we have witnessed in the parish. We are grateful to be a part of that community. One of the pictures that I can't seem to find in our camera, is of me and the beginning of a preschool. I have 4 little 4 yr. old boys who are a treasure to me. I have them for a few hours, 3 times a week. I read to them, and am helping them become familiar with the alphabet, we do little crafts and ofcourse...PLAY :) The first week, Will and I took them out 'avocado hunting'. One of the boy's big brother was out of school early and climbed the tree to shake them down, while the little guys ran here and there collecting them. We got quite a basket full and brought them home to their moms. We picked sunflowers and ate little apples off of a struggling apple tree. Our great discovery this season is that we have 2.....count them 2! Peach trees. Now I don't know plants and trees like country people do but the flowering of a particular tree caught my attention one morning when I was running. And I see lots of peaches for the future. Will and Juan cleaned and watered them and hopefully with some care we will have our first taste of them soon. The boys were thrilled when they found a bird's nest as they hunted. This is the part of being on this land that is starting to bring the seeds of a dream in the future. God willing, maybe we can have a holistic preschool where the tending of animals and having gardens for the children to take care of are part of the curriculum. I'm going to be receiving my first little critter (baby chick) here soon. A family who wanted to say thank you to Will for helping with some minor surgery is giving us one of their pollitos. They already gave us a freshly killed chicken which Veronica made into one of their Guatemalan dishes called pepian. The chicken was a little tough but it was a really delicious dish. I don't think I have the guts to watch this baby chick grow and kill it, so I told Will this one will be a pet. Unless of course, our Rottweiler, Izzy gets a little hungry for another kill. She just kills chickens but doesn't eat them. She's probably waiting for someone to cook them for her.
So, it has been a beautiful summer. We have made new friends and God continues to bring visitors to us and we are grateful. Even with our continuing struggle to become fluent we can carry on conversations now. Diego continues to be a blessing to us. Will is teaching him to drive and so one day we will release one more young person onto the streets of Agua Escondida. At least he won't be driving a chicken bus.....

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