Monday, 30 January 2012

80's Party

Last Saturday we had a pretty rockin' 80's party. There was bright colors, big hair, and aqua net (just going to say i am glad i wasn't a teenager in that time, it takes way to long to make your hair big!). We had lots of fun 80s songs...... even taught the Thriller Dance. And of course, in true Mexican fashion.... 2 pinatas!

Here are some pictures!

Tuesday, 24 January 2012

Psalm 68

{Blessed be the Lord, Who daily loads us with benefits, The God of our salvation! SELAH {Psalm 68:19}

I wish I was better at taking the Lords benefits. I know i should take this load because I know the burden is light because of the Lord, He is my mighty King and will carry it for me. This is good. God is good. When life gives me burdens, I want to immediately turn them over to the Lord, who work all things out for good--- for me! I probably won't recognize the burden as a benefit at the moment... but I do trust God enough to want to hand it over!

Dear Lord, I submit this day to you. Let me not squander the gift by wasting time with meaningless activities. Let every minute count. Your benefits are more satisfying than any burden that I can conjure up on my own. I have this great temptation to fret over whatever is bothering me and neglect to pray over it and hand it over to you.

Forgive me for fretting Lord, I should know better by now...

Monday, 23 January 2012

Progression of our coffee shop!

You can click on it to make it bigger!

Grutas de Cacahuamilpa (Cacahuailpa Caves)

Here are some photos from our recent quest to the caves with the youth group! It was a great time of fellowship and taking in the amazing creation of God!! We were able to take 36 people!

10 things I have learned in Jesus Maria's Park

1. You can use just about anything to strap your baby into the swing. Since there is no baby swings, I have seen people get creative. One man (I am assuming grandpa) takes off his belt everyday, wraps it around the two ends of the swing and TADA! I have also seen a sweater, rope, and some sort of hose!

2. Dogs like to play soccer too! Well, they love to chase the soccer ball when there is a heated game going on. It does nothing but tick the guys off playing, but it amuses me!

3. If you aren't careful the pizza man, on his little scooter thing will run you over when he comes zipping through the park!

4. I can now pick out the shady people in the neighborhood based on the activity they do in the park. One group of guys I will always avoid... when you walk by them they smell like pot and they are always trying to get my attention, and there is a guy always selling "something" to young people. There are also the super nice people you see everyday and start to develop a friendship with.... but, I believe it mostly has to do with my super cute dog!

5. People here either take SUPER good care of their dog... or they don't. The people that do take care of them have little outfits and matching leashes. If there is more then one, they have matching outfits with the others. And one lady has five dogs. the boys have blue jackets and the girls... pink! haha
Then there are the dogs that are all matted and you aren't sure you want to touch.

6. You can fit FIVE people on a single bike. Its like a family vehicle.

7. You can always tell what happened the night before by the type of trash left over the next day.... And that's why we don't go in the park after about 6:30pm.

8. They teach kids in Mexico how to play soccer as soon as they take their first steps. There is a class on Wednesday that teaches toddlers how to kick around a ball.

9. On any average day I see 5-10 people in the park that I know, usually from church or english classes, and you need to stop and at least say hi to them. There is no such thing as a continual walk with the doggie! And at first i thought it was annoying, and now i have come to enjoy it!

10. Because i am white.... I get asked if i give english classes about 10 times a day!

there might be a 2nd edition of this post... stay tuned =)

Thursday, 19 January 2012

Community Center Classes

Next Monday starts another round of Community Center Center activities.

Community Center-- Tiempo de Vivir
(all classes are free with the exception of Saturday’s music classes)

Basketball—Monday and Wednesday 5:30-6:30
English classes— Monday 5pm, Wednesday 5 and 6, Thursday 5, and Friday 9:30am
Country Dance—Monday 6pm
Zumba–Monday, Wednesday, Friday 7pm
Guitar classes- Wednesday 6pm
Craft Time—Every 3rd Wednesday 9:30am Starting Feb 1
Baking class–9am Every Other Thursday Starting Jan 26th
Knitting class— 9:30am Every Other Thursday Starting Feb 2
Math and Physics Tutoring—Saturday, 9 a.m.
Saxophone, Violin and Keyboard classes—Saturday, 9-11 a.m.

Tina’s Coffee Shop
Monday, Wednesday, Thursday - 4:30-8pmempo de Vivir) classes!
Please be praying for them =)

Meet Our Community Center

Thanks for making this (and letting me use it), Jim!

That is our wonderful community center. We don't own all the locales, we own three. And they aren't all together! 

The one on the far right, with the yellow and red awning... that is the newest addition. It is kinda set up as a kitchen. So, we are going to use it on our big events for food... we are also using it for the Amigas del Alma baking class. Tiffany received a donation to buy a brand new oven/stove. 

The one right in the middle, with the little monster on the front of it... that is the original community center. We use that for a little of everything. But, mostly it is used for most of our classes.

And we own the one on the left that has the door open. That is going to be our new coffee shop! It will open Monday, and be open three nights a week. We have spent a lot of time in renovating it, and the tables should be ready on Saturday! Here is another picture of it (ill post another when everything is in place!)...

Wednesday, 18 January 2012

Crazy time in Mexico City

Here is a combi. We ride combi's frequently! It is the mode of transportation that is CHEAP and convenient where i live. It is also the first leg of public transportation to get to Mexico City (about 45min ride to la paz). Nothing to crazy today... just the normal sardine feeling.

This is the metro. I hate when it is this crowded. People push and shove and you cant breath!
Today on the metro...
* There was a very drunk guy with a bottle of whiskey in his hand. He almost landed on Tiffany!
* a crazy man sat RIGHT next to me... big stick and all. Tiffany tried to cover her laughing by putting her sunglasses on and her head down. That just made it worse. He kept  asking her if she was crying (yes, that is how hard she was laughing). I would scoot over... so would he. He of course wanted to talk. Asked where we were from and if we knew where Mount Rushmore was. He told  us we were about to pass it. haha
* Two guys were passed out on one metro as we got on. They smelled like urine and alcohol. The conductor woke them up. One guy got off right away... but the other. oh boy. He was stumbling around.... sniffing something... sucking on a plastic bag...and sucking his thumb. People on the metro were literally gagging. gross. 
*And last but not least... someone dropped a used nasty condom by my foot. Somethings should be thought about too much.

This is Mexico City. Somewhere down there we were a little lost. well I wouldn't say LOST.... because we knew how to get back to what we knew. 
But, this was our conversation...
Tiffany: We aren't lost, we are seeing a new part.
Tina: But, I don't think part is safe for us.
Tiffany: I agree.

Lets just say.. if we ever decide we want to be prostitutes we know a good area.

Home safe now!

Sunday, 15 January 2012

Wedding =)

Yesterday, I had the pleasure of attending my first Mexican wedding.

Their (Elizabeth and Sergio) wedding was very nice, and she was beautiful in her dress =)
In a lot of ways it was similar to weddings at home, and in other ways... very different! The church helped out a ton in making this wedding possible... from decorations, to buying rice, etc etc.

They also dedicated their baby!

Rod officiated the wedding. You can read more about their lives and decision to have a Christian wedding on Rod's blog.

Please be praying about this couple as they start a new life together... and pray that Sergio comes to know the Lord!

Here are a few pictures:
Civil Service

Church Service

the lasso 

Tiffany and the beautiful bride!

Wednesday, 11 January 2012

Stream of Consciousness

I don't have anything of substance to say today (or... you know, really any day), but i feel like i need to post SOMETHING. I mean, I left you without a word for so many days in a row, it is like I used up all my vacation time. So, I figured I would do something we used to do in high school when we had to journal every day. Instead of a prompt on the board when we walked in it would say, "stream of consciousness." Which pretty much meant we were suppose to write whatever came to mind first. Boring? sometimes. Random? always!

So welcome to my first blog "stream of consciousness"

In high school most of these things sounded something like, "I wish my parents would let me do ______" Or "I met a boy, i think i am going to marry him". Hopefully I have moved past that!

So, I think a lot of bloggers have decided that blogging more often is part of their new years resolutions because my feedreader has exploded. I just don't have time to read a thousand entries a day. I mean... I do important things... like reading (I am on book 5 for the year!!), or cleaning my house, or feed my dog, or go to the gym, get things ready for the craziness that begins next week!

I actually made a list of my new years resolutions. I broke them down to bite size pieces so i can mark them off faster! I am a very goal oriented person. You should see my to-do lists. They are as long as a football field, but it isn't as overwhelming as you might thing. I like to put little things on them just so i can cross them off! Things like... "brush teeth". That is way easier to check off than " do all of the laundry including sheets, blankets, and dog bed" or "learn to speak spanish fluently."

Speaking of spanish.. I am still working on that one.

Today Tiffany and I had really good coffee at  little coffee stand near walmart today... her exterminator came early so we had some time to kill before we were getting picked up at Walmart with all of the coffee shop stuff. 

Oh, the coffee shop... We bought everything we need to get started today.... should open monday. Cameron, a guy who is visiting us from Cali took a pic... see below!

Last week, Tiffany and I joined a gym. All we seem to do here is eat (well we do other things... but people always invite us to eat)... so why not make it a habit to workout too! Day one... went well! Day two... not so well. The gym has this trainer every morning. So we decided to use him. BAD IDEA! He had us doing 80 YES 80 lunges with weights. The next few days we could barely walk. We should of known it was going to be a bad idea when the first question out of his mouth was " so when was the last time you were in a gym?" and then he kept walking up to the mirror, pulling up his shirt and admiring his abs!

So, today... first day back since last week... we did not want to go...but we did! Proud of us! But, it was closed. FOR LUNCH? really? only in Mexico! Tomorrow we will go twice to make up for it! =)

Last night, I was reading before bed when I heard a crackling noise and started smelling smoke. When i got up and looked out my window this is what i saw...
my neighbor burning their christmas tree in the street... notice the flames are as tall as the house. I am grateful for no wind and cement houses. 

Well, that is all i have for today. I am off to work on the coffee shop, get things to make the arch for this weekends wedding, or maybe i will fold that laundry! maybe ;)

Hope you have a great day!!

Thursday, 5 January 2012

Tomorrow's Three Kings Day!

So, in true Mexican fashion, Tiffany and I bought balloons (for three kings day tomorrow). What the kids (and us) do is buy these balloons and then let them go with what they hope the three kings bring them tomorrow (kinda like santa) tied to the bottom!

P.S. we both wrote we wanted a car.
            Rod could grant that wish for us! ;)

Tuesday, 3 January 2012

New Years Dinner

We went to Fabian's Family for New Years.. I would just like to share what was put on the table at midnight. (For the record... they had never had it like this either...)

But, why?

This morning was no different from any other... My dog has to go to the bathroom and I just want to continue to be warm in my bed! But, because I am a good dog owner, or because she is very persistent... I get up and take her to the park to do her business!

I usually don't pay attention to many happenings around me in the morning... because, well.... I am still in dream land. But, this morning was the first day back to school! All of the little kids dressed in their cute uniforms were walking with their mom or dad, and I overheard one little boy. I couldn't hear what the mom was saying but he kept saying in a whiny 6 year old voice ... por que (why?). My guess is they were talking about school (at least that was always the conversation in my house when we had to go back to school after a long break! )

But, this continued... mom would say something and the boy would say why. And with every 'why' he got more and more frustrated.

I bet the mom was thinking.. that her son was really cute at first... then my guess is she wanted to say... "why. because i said so... thats why!"

As I was walking home and thinking about this little boy and I thought... I don't think that is much different than our relationship with Christ.

A friend got into a really bad car accident... But why God?
A family member is really sick... But why God?
Life is hard right now... But why God?

It is often hard to understand the 'why' questions. Why does God allow pain? suffering? hard times? It sometimes is a hard reality to swallow... not knowing all the answers. But, that is where faith comes in to play. Sometimes you have to be ok with not know... at least for now. 

But, it is comforting that God doesn't leave us high and dry.
"For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are you ways my ways.... as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts are higher than your thoughts" (Isaiah 55:8-9)

God asks us to lay down our need to understand why. Something I have never found easy, but we can rest in the promise that when we surrender our need to know, His peace "... which surpasses all understanding," will guard us from being jaded. (Phil 4:7)