It's a big day for the Evans here in Guatemala. We have our first visitor from the States coming to see us for a few days. We're going to be staying busy and I'll have lots of photos to post so stay in touch.
My language teacher and her niece came to my house to teach me how to cook a typical Guatemalan meal. For one of the dishes we needed to whisk egg whites. My teacher handed me my whisk and a bowl of egg whites telling me to get at it. For 5 minutes I was whisking away and my arm was beginning to go numb (okay..exaggeration but it was exhausting for sure) . I mentioned throwing them into my electric mixer and she was floored! She said that she whisks her egg whites until they peak by hand ! Thank you Lord for the electric mixer and the electricity!
This is a typical salad here. They do use lettuce but more often around here you would find cucumbers for the "bed" of the salad. They throw in onions, tomatoes and lemons (limes). Some people toss it in a little oil (of course... this is Latin America-smile)
The meal was delicious. We had black beans that Cindy boiled for at least 2 or 3 hours.. standing over them and keeping them stirred. (whew!) The beans were then thrown into the blender (electric -hallelujah!) mixed with garlic, onion and....oil (very delicious! ) There was white rice cooked with a little...oil. The food item on the left is a corn tortilla that was dipped into the egg white mixture and then deep fried ..in oil... and cover with a tomato salsa.... very delicious... Did you notice the pattern with the oil though???
We attended the graduation of one of our fellow FH staff here at one of the universities. Nothing is "on time" in Central America. The graduation was to start at 12:00 and so we were assured that we could arrive at 1:00 ish and be fine. So, we took our friend to the airport and then got stuck in awful traffic ! We received a call at 12:30 saying that it was OVER. At that point we were at the university entrance so we drove through the campus anyway to loop back out and to be on our way home. As we were leaving the campus sitting in the graduation traffic I looked over to David's side of the traffic and there sat Nadia (our graduate friend) and her parents RIGHT BESIDE us in traffic ! The rest of the story is that we were able to eat with her and her parents and a couple of friends from Bolivia at a pizza place - mmmm my favorite!!!! Great time!
So sorry that I haven't put time into catching everyone up but I had to share some really funny things that both Dave and I have had happen:
1) the driving is DEFINITELY dangerous here. However, even more dangerous may be sitting randomly in a parked car for an hour by our mission office on any given morning. So, this morning David and Cooper were in the car waiting for someone to arrive and unlock the doors to the office at 6:30ish and a man walks up and looks into the car window. You would have to see our car ....but for safety reasons we have our windows tinted soooo black that you couldn't possibly see in. Therefore , this fellow was all up on the window trying to see in. David wasn't quite sure how to shoo (sp?) him away and so he turned on the windshield wipers ...while the guy was peeking into the window... Maybe you have to see how carefully we have to travel to think this was hilarious .....but personally , I thought David showed some quick thinkin' reflexes.... don't know what I would have done. Something much more lady like I'm sure...like laying on the horn to say ....HEY >>>SOMEONES IN HERE>>>tooo funny !
2) one of our PRECIOUS little guys dumped bobby pins in the toilet and then tee tee'd in the potty. David was convientely at work, Cooper was as well ....Jacob and ...even Grayson (I was desperate) were at school . So, with no one around to help me and not knowing how to say "plumber please" in espanol.... I , yes, had to grit my teeth and reach into the tee tee to fish out all of the bobby pins - yuck !
3) Same day..... I took the little guys to a grassy spot near our house for a picnic. The woman who lives around the corner from me comes over clicking large tablespoons together and makes scooping motions with them. I couldn't make out what she was saying and thought she was telling me that there was poo poo under my blanket. I moved the blanket, tried to make dog ears ..saying " poo" ...there's poo here?" ... FINALLY ... I understood that she was inviting me to her house for some lunch... I was so humiliated that I told her no thank you ...we'd already eaten and held my breath until she was out of ear shot. Then , I laughed so hard sitting there all by myself.... I'll probably never get another invitation to eat with her again....she's probably thinking...wow! loco gringo !
So, there you have it .... culture adjustment can be down right hilarious at times.... I never realized that my face could turn soo many shades of red.... Anything from trying not to explode on short patience to getting a dinner invitation confused for poo poo under my picnic blanket !!!
Grayson and I went to an old Mayan graveyard. The crazy girl had the courage to crawl up into an old grave. Where does that come from ?
This fellow was her inspiration. He was still in his grave.
Grayson and Jacob walking to meet their ride for the first day of school.
SERIOUSLY...this is how David cuts our back yard right now. He honestly cut the whole thing with pruning shears. Notice the Three Rivers shirt ? Some habits are hard to break. (smile)I should mention that our yard is only about 20x13 . It only took about 3 hours. hilarious.
Grayson and I scrap booking in our home in Antigua. We love to get our photos out and stick them in our books.... love it
Jacob is painting his room.... this is the first time in his life that he has his own room. It is the size of a walk in closet- smile- but it's ALL his and he's great with it !
Grayson is trying out her bed that Cooper and a friend Darby made. They made of these beds/couches for our house. Grayson loves hers. It has so much room on it. Check out the walls!!!! She is all pink and orange! I love her room . You just feel perky walking in it.
Grayson ....not sure if her walls were getting painted or just her. Either way...she had a great time.
This is Darby on the right. He has been our Guatemalan angle !!! He drove us down to a "zone" or area of town where we can't go by ourselves and helped us with his truck to get our "goods" home. This was a day of MANY adventures ! We are grateful for the awesome deals that we got with his help!
This is only going to be appreciated by families with many children or lots of visitors one. My news of the week is that we have found bulk buying for our groceries in Guatemala! For the last 3 1/2 months we have been buying items for 1 or MAYBE two meals at a time. One reason was because of the tote home. In Antigua the walk was ridiculous for lots of groceries and tuk - tuk's were...well, unsafe to say the least. You generally travel in those on an empty stomach and with an adventurous spirit...not several children and food. (smile) . So, over the weekend we found a "Sams" style opportunity here and we took it. Much prep work had to go into this adventure and it would have cracked you up to see us. First, we had to do a trial run through the store to see what items we would be purchasing on our "real" trip. Second, we had to intrust our children to someone while we would be gone for potentially three hours even though the store is only 5 or so miles away. Third, we mad a RUN for it. We quickly and "eye -sorely" went through the store filling up two buggies to the brim. NO ONE else in the store even had 1 buggy full of stuff ...much less 2 buggies. We are feeding a crew here and everyone is packing lunches for school and work plus as people know me won't be surprised ...we have had a couple of folks staying with us off and on...lots of food. HOWEVER, we know a family who had someone follow them home from this store and intended to steal their car and ended up stealing the car AND their child... so, David was VERY serious about safety FIRST. He parked our "get away " car at the end of the parking area.. right next to the exit lane and in we ran.... out we came. David stuffed 2 buggies of groceries into our sedan and I held a stake out looking for anyone who might look suspicious hovering around our vehicle. Next, David cranked the car...locked all of the doors... I ran and returned our buggy and JUMPED in the vehicle as it rolled out of the parking space. I was somewhat stunned at my husbands "get away " reflexes... we've never really used those much in our married life. Then again, we 've never encountered Central America as a living option before. smile- Only minutes from the store and several miles down the road I loosened my grip on the seat and sweetly suggested to my husband that we could probably slow down now and that surely his speed was an adrenaline rush. He quickly replied that this was our "get away " method and I just needed to get used to it.... He reminded me soberly that we had just spent in a few hours on two weeks worth of groceries what most Guatemalans make for a two month salary.
Somehow, I think that God wants us to see the prosperity that we have in our little part of the world that he has us in .... we ARE seeing ever so clearly that we are blessed and nourished to pour ourselves out for the sake of the poverished and broken. Our story of restoration into Gods right perspective on necessities may be the greatest story we bring home from Guatemala.