Saturday, August 25, 2007
Thursday, August 16, 2007
Post Script to this story: YEAH!!!!! We got our puppy back. Our security guard went looking for her and found her in someone's yard. We gave both the guard and the person who brought her back a reward. Of course they were rewarded by 12 happy faces as well.
Monday, August 13, 2007
After the sermon it was time to share our first communion in Bolivia. First they passed the bread. It tasted a bit stale or perhaps even a tiny bit mildewed, but it was so great to be taking the Lord's Supper with our brothers and sisters here that it didn't even matter. Next, we were to take the juice....or so we thought. When the 'juice' tray was about 3 or 4 rows in front of us, Joe and I simultaneously caught a scent in the air and discerned it wasn't grape juice. Well, I suppose at one time it had been grape juice, but now it was full blown fermented wine. We began to prepare the kiddos. We told them that this church uses real wine and to just slam it down, try not to cough or spit it out. Jake sat next to me and passed me a cup. I told him next time we take communion to look for the emptiest cup for me. :>) Joe poured some of Hope's into his cup so she wouldn't have to drink so much. (At least this is the story he told me.) When it was time to share the cup together, we all slammed it down like you see cowboys in old westerns slamming whiskey shots. You can guess what the topic of our lunch conversation was. It went something like this: Josh said, "It tasted like cough syrup." Hope said, "I thought it was real blood." and so on. Joe said that it was the first alcohol that has crossed his lips in 25 years. I said at least it killed any bad bacteria that was in the bread. Needless to say I don't think any of us will forget our first communion in a Bolivian church.
Sunday, August 5, 2007
Thursday, August 2, 2007
Well, it's official. We visited the language school on Monday to arrange for starting our classes. We will begin on August 13....a week from next Monday. Seth, Jake and Caleb will also be going. They will take a 4-6 month course while Joe and I will be in for a minimum of a year. When I say it that way it kinda sounds like a prison sentence, doesn't it? I have lots of good reasons for being excited about language school, yet I find myself dreading it a tad. It's been a long time since I've been a student. So many pregnancies have killed thousands, perhaps even millions, of my formerly useful brain cells.
Now I feel as though my brain is:
one part Jello (or more likely Coca Cola Zero),
(b) a bit of Scripture,
(3) a spotty memory center for recipes, chores, and schedules
(d) my kids' names on a good day and
(5) from time to time there are nagging reminders of things I once knew.
These moments are most clear when trying to help my teens with their math. I once was a math major. Now it all escapes me. I hate ellipses, hyperbolas, distance formulas and everything related to them. (Can you tell what Jake is learning in his math?) Everything escapes me...where I put my money, keys, and sunglasses. The key thing can be maddening here in Bolivia since we must keep our gate padlocked. Therefore, when someone rings the gate bell I must go out and tell them to wait uno momento while I search frantically for my key to let them in. Here’s a scenario that happens to me on a regular basis: I send one of my children to carry out some needed task. They come back and tell me why they couldn't accomplish the goal and I can't even remember what I had told them to do. Many times I also send one of them to do something, then later ask "Where is (fill in the blank with the sent child's name)? I forget that I was the one that sent them on a task!! Often I will call a child and by the time they come to me, I've forgotten why I called them. They say all of our memories are filed neatly in our brains, well evidently I've lost the, the, the....what do you call that? Oh yeah, index. I've lost the keys that unlock the intelligent part of my brain. Sure, on most days I can carry on a conversation with one of my preschoolers, but beyond that I seem to struggle.
I know I wasn't always this way. I remember meditating on complex and deep things. I also believe that I used to be able to communicate multi-syllabically. But of course I can't know for sure since I can't really remember what or when. I also have the attention span of a flea. I flitter from one thing to another. I embark on typing an entry to my blog and remember that I must put in some laundry. (Hey, at least I remembered before we were all out of socks and undies!) Then I begin sorting laundry and decide I must start something for lunch. I go to the kitchen and see dishes that need to be put away, do this, clean the kitchen and then go back to my computer forgetting the lunch and the half sorted laundry. I get distracted more easily than a kindergartener. This is part of growing older I know. I am over 40 now. However, I could definitely use some of those long-gone brain cells as I begin to learn Spanish.
I suppose this could be considered a plea for help. A plea for prayer. Please pray that I will be able to learn what I need to and won't be too overwhelmed in language school. We will be going for 3 hours a day 5 days a week. That's like 15 college credit hours of all Spanish. Plus, there is an additional 3-5 hours a day of homework, work with a tutor and going out into the community to practice my Spanish. My brain feels like mush just thinking of it. So, would you please commit to praying for me as I begin learning Spanish. It is of utmost importance. I must give it my best shot as feeble as I might be. I have been praying for the gift of languages. Actually only the gift of language (singular)...Spanish. I know that God is able to give me this gift and I so desire it. Yet I know that if He withholds it from me it is because He will give me the capability to learn it without His supernatural input. I'm still hoping though. Either way I need His help for this gargantuan task set before me. I can not do it on my own. Thanks for your prayers and even fasting for me on this if you feel led. I would fast as well, but I always forget and eat. :>)