Where you go, I will go; where you live, I will live. Your people will be my people for your God is my God.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011



It is not something I am good at, but I find myself in times of waiting more often than not. 

Waiting for my husband to get home. 

Waiting for news of a friends’ passing. 

Waiting to move into our house. 

Waiting for a certain changes in our life. 

Waiting to have full, busy days. 

Waiting for out of town family.

Waiting for my neighbor’s heart to change.

Waiting for Sunday.

Waiting for my heart to be naturally loving, kind, and grace-filled.  Instead of unmerciful, quick to speak, and naturally angry. 

Waiting for financial peace.

Waiting for the answers to a million questions.

I am always waiting. 


I recently finished a book called Broken Down House by Paul David Tripp.  Each chapter opened my eyes and  brought conviction, but perhaps the most profound chapter for my life at this point in time was the chapter entitled, “Learn to Wait.” I underlined and scribbled profusely in my notebook while reading. 

He defines waiting as, “…living through those moments when you do not understand what God is doing and you have no power to change your circumstances for the better.”  

He goes onto say that waiting tests our ability to truly leave things up to God.   He puts it this way, “Waiting will always reveal where you have placed your hope.  Your heart is always exposed by the way you wait.”   Waiting is an act of grace for in my life.  My God wants to show me again and again not to trust myself and the control I pretend to have over my own life, but to trust HIM.  He’s got the whole world in HIS hands.  Not I.

One thing about waiting that has always irked me so that it just seems so passive.   What are you are you doing when you wait ten minutes for your tortillas?  Nothing, right?  Those are 10 wasted minutes.  And if I am going to waste time, I want to waste time the way I want to, not waiting around for other people. 

But not so, according to the author of this book.  Waiting is active.  Waiting calls us to remember, worship, serve, and pray. Waiting is an opportunity to grow, celebrate the goodness of God, and to make me a little more unsatisfied with the things of this life. 

Waiting causes me to long for eternity, to remind me that my life really is just a waiting time, until I am home.   

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

frozen grapes.


It was one of my favorite snacks as a child. I have recently rediscovered the wonderfulness of the frozen treat.  Like little balls of sherbet, as a friend said.  Pure delight. 

a chuckle.


I was enjoying my sunny walk going to who knows where. I was wearing a comfortable ankle length multi colored skirt, brown flats, and a brown shirt.  My hair was down and pulled back a bit to one side with bobby pins to keep the fly-a-ways  out of my eyes.  

An older man-you know the kind; the ones who look like they have been grandfathers there entire lives- on a bike was trying to get my attention.  I pretended not to notice.*  But this one was a determined fellow and he pulled his bike right up next to me. 

“Excuse me,” he said, “Are you from such-and-such a place?”

“No.  I am not.  I am sorry,” came my short and sweet reply. 

“But you are not from near so-and-so?”  he continued. 


“It’s just that sometimes young people come from there.  You know, the ones that read your palms and stuff like that?”  He stated it more in the form of a hopeful question. 

I smiled.  He thought I was a fortune teller!   I quickly explained that no, I do not read palms, that I was a Christian.  I also told him where I was actually from, and that it could perhaps explain why I look different?

He turned a deep shade of red, saying, “Oh!  I am so sorry for what I said!”  I told him not to worry about it, and he quickly peddled away. 

*Not because I am mean like that, but because when you are the only white woman in a city, it is generally best *not* to pay any special attention to men. I have not had any problems in my time in Mexico because of it though. It’s just a general rule of thumb.    People of all sizes and ages tend to stare when they first see “la guera”, but they quickly get over it :)

Today’s Lunch

IMG_0868A salad made with cut up chipotle chicken enchiladas (no dairy included), iceberg lettuce, mashed black beans, and topped with a salad dressing made out of leftover non-spicy salsa, a tad of mayo, and a bit of chicken broth.  It could be called a “Mexican Salad”  but Rafa says no Mexican would have come up with such a thing. Therefore it is an American salad with Mexican spices :)   I enjoyed it, except that the tortillas from the enchiladas were cold.  It was not bad, but not desirable.  The blend of spices however, was wonderful. Next time I will probably make extra enchilada filling and just use the marinated chicken instead of the whole enchilada in order to eliminate the tortilla, and then add tortilla chips as an alternative. Corn, tomatoes, olives, fresh spinach, and cheese would all make great additions too.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

El Cofre de Perote




{Pictures taken from the backyard in our soon-to-be finished house.}

Juevo con tortilla.

Eggs with tortilla. 

A very simply, but perhaps my all time favorite back-up Mexican meals.  Maybe its one of my favorites because it is so simple?!


Tear up a corn tortilla and fry the pieces on a bit of oil or butter.  Sometimes I chop up an onion and throw it in at this point too. Once they are crisp, add eggs.  I normally do a 1-to-2 ratio with the tortillas and eggs.  One tortilla, two eggs.  Sprinkle with  salt and pepper or any other spice you usually use with eggs.  Cook it all like you would scrambled eggs. You can melt some cheese on top if you like.  Serve with whatever salsa you have around. 


Eggs and tortillas are always something we have in the house so we have juevos con tortilla at least once a week, and I have yet to be tired of it!

Thursday, August 18, 2011

a couple favorites.


Gael and Rafa.

You know you are loved when…

…you have a place in your kitchen reserved for dishes you need to return to other people. 


Just from this week alone I have several: 

  • My neighbor brought me candy fruit that she made.  She makes food to earn a little extra cash, but when it is something she things I have never had before, she brings over a little sampling.  I don’t complain.
  • Rafa came home for lunch yesterday with breaded fried chicken breast from his great aunt.  She knows I love it {the closest thing to Chick-fil-A there is in Mexico…which is a good thing!}, saw Rafa, and packaged some up for me.   Cut up into strips, it was a great addition to our breakfast tacos. 
  • I have cloth napkins that I need to return to my suegra and her sister. A couple are from when they have given me tortillas and others are for when I forget to take one when I buy tortillas. 
  • Last Saturday a dear friend from church invited me over for lunch.   Rafa was still at work, so she sent a container full of ribs bathed in chipotle salsa back home with me. 
  • Rafa’s mom also sent over some black beans this week.  A nice addition to any meal in Mexico. 

Is your mouth watering yet?!  And a week like this is not unusual.   It is a “vicious”  cycle really.  When I take the containers back, I normally fill them with a little something too.  Some type of sweet treat or leftovers. (Sharing leftovers in the States may be a little odd, but here it is perfectly acceptable.)  For example, my suegra loves chicken soup and I have a pot of it on the stove right now.  There are only so many times in week that you have the appetite for chicken soup.  I always seem to make enough to feed a small army instead of two people.  Therefore I will fill up  the container that she sent over with the beans with soup when I take it back.  A win win for all involved. There is no sense of obligation on either side, though I think I get the better end of the deal.

Food does wonders at winning over hearts…and not just for men.  So, share a meal.  Send a little something to a friend, even if it is just a portion of a meal.  Invite the neighbors to sit at your table.  Share leftovers :) Jump into someone else’s kitchen.   Learn from them.  Begin the cycle of giving and receiving, of a community that cares enough to share what they have, be it small and simple.  Show people you love them.  You will be blessed and a blessing. 

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Around the house.









~A poinsettia  gifted in August.

~11 eggs in a white cloth box. You can buy in a carton of 30, half a carton of 15, or individually.  I buy 10 individuals at a time. Buying a dozen would seem like a natural thing to do, but I never have. Wonder why?

~Part of today’s lunch. Leftover salsa, ground sausage, tortillas and crushed tostados, to be accompanied by black beans, scrambled eggs, and Guava water, for warm simple breakfast tacos. 

~The table’s current center piece. 

~The soft glow of a candle.

~A basket cradling precious books. Including a The Dairy of Anne Frank in Spanish. {My current language challenge.} And at not a bad price, being a 40 peso find. 

~Our {now} empty afghan filled guest bed.   Won’t you come? 

Monday, August 15, 2011


The day is warm.   The afternoon still young.  I walk down the street, heading to buy our daily rations of tortilla.

“Mi amigo?!”   I look from side to side and finally down to see the face of a boy, no more than four years old.  His was the voice that had interrupted my thoughts.

“Mi amigo?!!?”  He asks, no demands again.  He obviously wanted some piece of information and thought I had it.   Had he lost something?  And did I even know this kid?  I had no idea. 

“No se, tu amigo…?”  I begin.  The light bulb comes on.   Of course I know this kid!  I saw him on the street corner near my house a few nights ago.  Rafa had talked to him.

“Oh! Mi esposo, Rafa?!”  I ask.   He gives me a look of an obvious “DUH, lady!”  I explain that Rafa is at work.  The child looks at me, shrugs his shoulders and scampers away.  

I hurry along my way as well, smiling and thanking the Lord that the man children know as amigo, I know as husband. 

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Really good.

Two weeks ago our modem was struck by lightning, therefore our internet was down for about a week. 

Last week we had Vacation Bible School, my husband stepped on a nail and was home for a few days, so the world wide web was on of the last things on my mind. 

Early this week we visited friends a few hours away, and brought some back to stay with us for the week, thus making trips to my suegra’s house less frequent.  For internet use, at least.  

It has been weeks since I have talked with some members of my family and friends that I normally keep up with.  My blog has seen a couple of posts here and there, but the pictures on my computer tell me I have a lot of posts left unwritten.  Skype dates with girlfriends have been less frequent, and I have a list of people that I need to email.  

But in these past few weeks I have been in more homes here, had face-to-face and heart-to-heart talks, the young kids from church are no longer shy or scared around me, but will come sit on my lap, run to me for a hug, or hold my hand while walking down the street. (It took VBS for them to realize that the white girl is a person too :) I have held babies of all sizes, including just a couple of days old.  We have visited old friends and made new dear ones.   More people have come in and out of our front door than the first three months combined that we were here. 

I love being busy, jumping happily form one activity to the next.  And being a stay-at-home wife in a place where you hardly know anyone is anything *but* busy.  Friends from the States would assure me that things would pick up without me even realizing it, and I would be longing for a day of nothing again.  I was not quite so sure….

It was is a struggle.  I tell God, “I want to do great things for you!”  He responds, “Be faithful in the little things.”   “But am I not better than that?  Don’t you want to use me for more than little things?!”   He gently reminds me, “No.  I am the one who did and does great things in you.  I made the world out of nothing.  I take nothing and make them something.  Be faithful in the seemingly nothingness.”    

He has put me here.  Here and now.  He is the One who allows what comes into my day.   He has put me here to build a family, know Him, love my neighbor,  create a community, make new friends, and live for Him.

So if you live far away, love me, and do not see much internet activity, please do not worry.  I am not going on a internet fast, I still love skype dates,  and blogging is something I enjoy.  Do not think that something is the matter.  On the contrary, things are good.  Really good. 

Friday, August 12, 2011

11 de Agosto


¡Feliz Cumpleaños guapo!

Doy gracias al nuestro Señor por tu vida. Gracias por ser mi amado. ¡Te amo!

Monday, August 1, 2011

Una Foto


{Photography credit goes to Rafa.}

Picking Fruit.


A few days ago I went to pick fruit from at a neighbors.  At the end of an hour or so there, the basket was full of peaches, a few apples and a couple of pears.   The fruit was pretty ugly on the outside, but when pealed, cut up, and the blemishes are removed, I could almost imagine myself savoring a Georgia peach.   Almost.    It was the end of the season for the peaches, and pretty soon the pears will be ripe.  I was invited back and told to take all I want from the trees that are already handing with what promise to be wonderful juicy pears.   It is eagerly anticipated….

Fresh Blankets






After 2 hours of hiking, it is semi-dark and we are just barley beginning to see the lights of Mixtla, our destination for the evening.   It is January 2010 and I and six others have been staying with the people of the mountains in there homes for over two weeks.  Our base home is the house of a single mother and her four sons.  The oldest son, age 16, is married, and him and his 15-year-old wife and their 2-year-old son live with his mom too.  The time we have spent there, we have stayed up into the long hours of the night chatting, laughing, and making tortillas.  The family has electricity, but all the cooking is done over a wood fire, and running water is unheard of.   Because of this and the cold, most of us have only bathed once in the week and a half that we have been there.  Three days ago we hiked up to another village, Tlaxticuapa to plant gardens, apply medicine to children with a skin disease,  and just be with our brothers and sisters in Christ there.  




Now it is three days later and we are returning back to Mixtla for another few days there until our two weeks there will be up.   We return late, but are greeted warmly by the entire family, and a hot meal of tortillas and black beans are waiting.   We eat quickly, say   goodnight, and us girls pass into the room were the four us shared a bed, changed without saying much, then climbed into bed, ready for a night’s rest. I pull the blankets up tight and smell something wonderful.   Cleanness.  In the little time we had been gone, the 15-year-old mother took the time to hand wash blankets in the cold so that we, dirty unbathed, sweat smelling girls, could have clean bedding the few more days we were going to be there. 




I washed blankets this past week, and in doing so, I thought of her.   I began to have a new appreciation for her and what she humbly did that week a year and a half ago that spoke volumes to my heart.   The time that we were there we saw new people come to Christ, children receive medicine they so desperately needed, vegetable gardens to give fresh produce to a people who hardly ever have it, and hearts encouraged.   We were told to take pictures, write reports, and make presentations about what we had done those two weeks.  But this past week as I thought and prayed for my friend, I found myself asking God to change my heart to be like hers.  To make me faithful with what I have been given, to welcome people into my home, and to love others and Him the way she does.  And I ask myself, when God watched that week the going-ons of small village in the mountains of Mexico, who delighted His heart? 


{A note on the pictures from this post:  Some are from the 3-years Rafa worked in the mountains, as he spent a lot of time in the villages mentioned above as well.  Some are from the few months I went there every week, and some are from when I went back for a visit this past May when the group from Augusta was there.  All of them were taken in the areas mentioned in above post, with the exception of the last one, which is from today here at home.}