Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Blog from Kelley

Today we arrived in Antigua. We drove about three hours from Lake Atitlan. After we arrived, we ate lunch on our own in groups. I ate with my Mom, Dad and brother Casey at Cafe Barita. The students that went to language school beforehand were able to show their families and friends around the city, see the language school, and the casa they stayed at while at language school in Antigua. It was nice to have an expert with us to show us this wonderful city. As we walked around the city I saw the nicest McDonald's I have ever seen in my life with an awesome interior courtyard. Along with the ancient churchs we saw a huge mercado with many people. The city is very pretty but is very busy with people, markets, cars, motobikes and tuk-tuks. Lindy has bought some more firecrackers so we will enjoy another fireworks display tonight. Most people will not get much sleep knowing that the first van leaves at 4 AM and the rest at 5 AM.

Yesterday at the lake, there were eighteen people that went to zipline through a nature preserve with spider monkeys, butterflies, and a natural gorge with beautiful views of the lake to the south and other waterfalls to the north that lead to the lake. There was a 700' elevation hike up the gorge that took about a half an hour. Then we went on eight separate ziplines that zig-zagged across this gorge, four per side. The ziplines varied in length up to about two hundred feet and in speed up to about 30 mph! Talk about a zip of faith! God had us in His hands as we flew across side to side. Some of us actually were caught by the guides before we flew into the end of the cable or a tree, with the emergency brake. We got a great view of God's beauty while flying through the air.

Even thought the trip has been exciting and full 0f adventure, we are all really tired and want to be home. Everybody says hello and we will see you tomorrow!

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Day 9 photos

Into Lake Atitlan

Spider Monkey

Rosby's favorite pinata, Harry Potter

Karley and friend

Day 9 from Marie

Today we had the wonderful opportunity of traveling across the lake (on a massive boat) to a cute little indigenous village. As soon as we staggered onto the shore, several children and women began filling our faces with beautiful jewelry, wood carvings, and colorful bags. This is when I began the daunting task of bargaining. The streets were full of cheery Guatemalans showing off their impressive work.
On our way back to the hotel our boat Captain showed us a cozy little lagoon. Almost everyone jumped from the second level into the cool and cleansing water. Kelly was a stud muffin and jumped from the top about ten times! The lagoon did bring about some challenges (aka trying to get 20, very close to one another, while treading water- in order to take a picture.) J
One adventure led to another, and soon 18 of us found ourselves zipping through the luscious forest. Zip lining in Guatemala is nothing like you’ve done before. We began the journey by climbing 700ft in about one mile. Once we reached the top, we had eight zip line rides down. We had amazing views of the lake, volcanoes, waterfalls, and monkeys! Elliot and Rosby were the champs.
Then after dinner tonight, I had one of the most memorable moments of my life. Steve led us in devotionals. In the beginning of the trip Steve gave everyone a little card that had a fruit of the spirit. We were assigned to keep an eye out for a team member and a Guatemalan that embodied the values. After everyone shared, Steve led us through a very different way of taking communion. Instead of one person simply handing it to everyone else, we gave communion to each other. As we felt called, we would give communion and pray for our friends. God’s presence filled the room as smiles, tears, and laughs were shared. I will never forget this experience of sharing communion with one another, and becoming brothers and sisters in Christ.
P.S. Clarita is the best roommate EVER!!! =)

Monday, August 3, 2009

Day 8 photos

Farewell service

Preparing crafts for VBS

VBS Puppeteers

Lake Atitlan
Kayaking on Lake Atitlan

Monday - Day 8

We had a wonderful farewell service last night - and were amazed at how close we have become to this little church in the past week. We have come to love the young pastor Harold and his wife, the beautiful children of the neighborhood and their families. The welcoming service message last weekend was about being salt and light in the world; the farewell service message last night challenged us to support missions wherever we are in whatever ways we can.

This morning's devotion caused us to think about conspicuous consumption vs compassionate concern; and that what appears to be the right thing to do may not be. A thoughtful group left Guatemala City for the mountainous drive to Lake Atitlan - a place that Liesl calls a cross between Hawaii and Lake Tahoe - as we start our time of rest and reflection.

And we have lots to ponder and pray about.

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Tom's Creative Blog Title.

Hey Y'all,
Today is our last day in Guatemala City (sniff, sniff) and our last day of home cooking (more sniff, sniff). In the morning we did more construction, with most of the men using pick-axes and shovels to excavate a thick layer of dirt under the seminary. Others took away the wooden planks that were holding the cement in place.
Instead of sitting down at the site to have a large meal/feast, we all drove to the church where we held Vacation Bible School (VBS). Slowly, families sent representatives to pick up the people from our group that they were hosting for lunch.
Jeff and I didn't have to walk very far; we were having lunch in the second story of the church. We ate with the pastor and his wife in their tiny but cozy home. They prepared chicken that easily beat Pollo Campero, tortillas, rice, cantalope, salad, and cantelope juice to drink. It was all delicious, and was accompanied by poor Spanish by us Gringos and hospitality by the Chapinos/Guatemaltecos.
After our lunch, we all loaded into vans and headed back to our hotel. The Liggett boys all took siestas, and then got dressed all snazzy-like for the service tonight. The last time I came to the Farewell Service, we got home at about 3:15 AM; mostly because a semi-truck went off the road. However, this service is known for its length.
Tomorrow we will wake up bright and early to leave for Antigua. Have fun in the 'States!
tom liggett

Photos from home visits on Sunday/Day 7

Maxi and Caesar

David and his hostess, Josefina

One of the moms and babies in the church :)

Lucy's family

Beth and Nic with Lucy

Day 7 from Clary

It’s our last day at the worksite and it’s obvious that everyone is exhausted. Looking down the breakfast table this morning, I saw all tired faces with the exception of Karley who had 3 cups of coffee before 9:00 am.
To back up a little bit, yesterday the group continued pouring concrete in the morning while some of us sat in our “knitting circle” to cut the wire ties for rebar. After lunch, the entire team headed to the church for our last VBS. =( The chaos began as soon as we drove up! The craft for the day consisted of a popsicle stick picture frame decorated with crayons and sticky foam stars which we filled with pictures of the kids. Immediately after arriving, we began taking pictures of the kids and giving them numbers. Upstairs, we had four camera printers set up and we ran back and forth trying to get them printed before craft actually began. After a crazy two hours, every single kid successfully left with a framed picture of themselves and a goody bag!
For dinner we went to the food court at a local mall. The mall made quite an impression as we soon came to realize that it is significantly nicer than the ones in the US. It felt very out of place in the middle of the inner city and the poverty we’ve been working with.
That night I experienced the craziest thunder and lightning rain storm of my life! It was awesome! Only the fact that we were utterly exhausted allowed us to begin to fall asleep. Lightning was lighting up rooms and the thunder felt as though it was shaking the hotel.
Today we had our last breakfast at the site and finished up our portion of work here. For lunch we are all splitting up into groups of two and going to different houses around the village. The general attitude seems to be that of nervousness. Luckily, I am paired with Andrea who speaks fluent Spanish but I feel bad for Karley and Mr. Marty, neither of which know Spanish very well and are paired together.
Tonight we will go to the goodbye church service and tomorrow we head to the lake. This trip has been amazing but after two and a half weeks, I’m ready to be home. =)
We are thankful for all your continuous prayers and look forward to seeing everyone in a few days. =D

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Day 6 from Casey

Danny and Greg with VBS kids

For about a dozen of our team members, the long-awaited journey to Guatemala began with a week of Spanish language school, consisting of five intensive hours of one on one instruction. Each night, we were given about 5 pages of homework to hone the skills and concepts taught that day in class. However, a majority of this time period was spent outside the classroom, in the historic and charming streets of Antigua. In the afternoons, the group had free time to roam and explore each and every corner of the city. From lounging in the internet cafes, visiting a nearby coffee plantation, enjoying a delicious collection of cookies and coffee, to climbing the massive Volcan Pacaya, everyone thoroughly benefitted from their own personal experience.
Exactly a week after departing from the Bay Area, we reunited with the remaining team members at Hotel Spring in Guatemala City, which officially marked the beginning of the mission portion of the trip. This week, we have been working on two separate construction sites about thirty minutes outside of the city. Our main tasks thus far have been tying rebar to support the buildings’ foundations, moving piles of sand and rock, and most recently, mixing and pouring concrete. In the afternoon, a group of us visit the local church to run the VBS (Vacation Bible School) program, which consists of singing and dancing, face painting, Bible stories, a puppet show, and sports to conclude the day. Typically, we then return to Hotel Spring to clean up and get ready for our group dinners, which have been plentiful and filling for all, despite the recent bout of stomach pains experienced by a number of team members. Tomorrow is the finale of our mission work, with the lengthy farewell church service hosted by the locals.
On Monday morning, we are scheduled to drive to Lake Atitlan for a couple days of reflection and rest. On Wednesday, the group arrives in Antigua for a final day of tourism. After about two and a half weeks for some of us, we depart early on Thursday morning for our flight to Dallas, where we have a layover before finally coming home to San Francisco. Here is a list of the funnier moments during the trip:
· Solving all 600 levels of the block game
· Danny eating the concoction at Pollo Campero
· Eating too many breadsticks at Pizza Mia
· Me lighting my napkin on fire at Finca Colombia and almost burning my hand off
· Mrs. Marty accidently calling the soup at the homestay house “malo” (which means bad)

Friday, July 31, 2009

Day 5 from Molly

Greg mentioned some of the group is spending the afternoon at Vacation Bible School. It’s been amazing to see this collection of beautiful kids who always seem to be happy and energetic simply to be at church every day! It’s easy to see the face of God in these little smiling faces. Each day the number of kids has increased. Yesterday, we had 204 children there to participate! They are incredibly polite and even clean up after themselves after the craft projects. Each session starts with one of their teachers sharing the Bible story and lesson of the day. Everyone sings the well-known Guatemalan songs after that, which could probably be heard from miles away! A puppet show, complete with music and dancing, is performed by various team members. The sometimes hectic craft activity follows, which is a feat unto itself for that many kids and only twenty team members to assist everyone in finishing their project. Outside games end the program for the day. The games include a combination which includes water balloon tossing, stomping out balloons filled with air tied to their ankles, and of course their favorite sport, soccer. It’s been really fun to see our kids interact with the Guatemalan kids in this environment.

on (not) keeping to the code

yesterday for dessert at lunch, the women who cook for us brought out delicious-looking chocolate covered frozen bananas. we sat in rapt attention as the bananas made their way down the table. my dad turned to me,

dad: "I might have to break my banana code"
me: "what's your banana code?"
dad: "I hate 'em"


in addition, only by the grace of God was I able to explain the Parable of the Prodigal Son to some kids today with my limited spanish from one week of spanish school (plus one year in 6th grade let's not forget that). Guatemala's great! we're getting ready for dinner at POLLO CAMPERO and expecting some rain later. thanks for reading!

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Day 4 photos

The beautiful children

Marty family filling water balloons for VBS

Greg tying rebar
Guatemala Clouds (and rebar)

Day 4 from Cindy and Greg

From Cindy Marty:

As you’ve probably already read, 12 of us spent a week in language school in Antigua before meeting up with the rest of the team here in Guatemala City. Our group included at least a couple who had NO Spanish language capabilities…..I was one of those. As I enrolled, the school administrator asked me to tell her my Spanish level….I told her I was a beginner. She proceeded to tell me I needed to take a Spanish test to make sure I was placed in the appropriate level…..I guess that was my first Spanish language “misunderstanding” (there have been PLENTY more since then)……so I explained again that I was a beginner and just needed to start at the very beginning!

My teacher was a wonderfully patient woman, Silvia. I learned lots of vocabulary words, but have had lots of trouble putting the words together in sentences. Fortunately, my host family in Antigua and our Guatemalan brothers and sisters in ministry this week have also displayed great patience with desire to use my new words….and my limited abilities to use them correctly or in complete sentences. For example, today I tried communicating with one of the dear women who have been working in the kitchen each day preparing our delicious and ample meals. I tried to explain that Karley was my daughter (but found out I really said she was my sister) and also tried to tell her that Danny was my nephew. Her eyes lit up and she proceed to respond with a series of wonderful questions… Spanish of course…..fortunately Danny and Karley were willing and able to translate and respond to her additional questions! As part of the family of God, we all have something unique and special to offer the team….part of my gift just happens to be spreading lots of laughs as I attempt to use my newly acquired language skills!

From Greg Liggett:
The sun beats down relentlessly as its rays bully their way through the compassionate, shade-giving clouds. Speaking of clouds, the sky here is absolutely AMAZING. Due to high barometric pressure resulting from the fact that this is Guatemala’s rainy season, the magnificent nubes (“clouds” for all you gringos reading this) have flat bottoms and the rise like great regal fortresses. As I have recently acquired a camera, I find that the vast majority of my photographic endeavors have been spent attempting to capture in ten megapixels the sheer wonder of the element over our heads. (see photo in separate post)

The sky is a great way to take my mind off of the numerous cuts and scratches that I have on my hands and arms from the wonderful, wonderful rebar. For those of you who don’t know (and I don’t know if it has already been explained in detail on a previous blog. If so, my sincere apologies), rebar is basically thick iron rods, anywhere from ten to thirty feet in length (with the exception of today, when they thought it would funny to see the gringos struggle with two pieces welded together to make a forty-five foot lance of death) and we have to tie these pieces together with metal wire. The wire, however, comes in long coils and each that is cut has incredibly sharp edges. You may see where this is going. We wind a doubled-up piece of this wire around all rebar intersections and then twist the wire until it is tight and the little tail end that we are twisting breaks off—even sharper, woohoo. So, with my inherent drive to do all things as fast as I possibly can, coupled beautifully with my apparent lack of sense for self-preservation, I raced along the metal behemoth, securing its monstrous limbs together, not noticing or caring when it reached out with its unassuming claws to snare me. Hmm…I sure hope none of these cuts get infected. Maybe I’ll go grab some alcohol swabs for later.
Alright, a general group update: Danny is not feeling so good—as long as throwing up and sickness that can keep such a trooper like Danny off the construction can be considered “not so good.” Other than him, however, the sickness has been kept mostly at bay. Yes, an hermano or hermana will fell in the pits every once in a while and I think there has yet to be a day where there has been no one sick at all, but considering that my first Guatemala trip over three years ago saw at least half the team stay at the hotel one day, I’m considering this trip a smashing success so far. Everyone in the group is phenomenal as well, always volunteering for shopping, or working on the other site, or handling the kids at VBS (Vacation Bible School), we do, after all, have over 200 kids. You read that right, >200. Yikes. But so much fun! While the heat is no fun and the bugs are annoying and the humidity is hard to stand and the exhaustion is creeping up, I can’t think of a single moment where someone has consented to a task without a huge smile on their face. Alright, it’s off to pizza for the team and my goal is somewhere between 6 and 8 pieces. Please keep the team in your prayers and keep the States under control until we get back!

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Day 3 Photos

Feast of Chiles Rellenos Today

Tying rebar.

Kids Singing at VBS

Face Painting

Wed July 29 from Danny O'Neel

Hello to Menlo from Danny O’Neel…
I’d first like to share something that just occurred to me: evidence that God works in mysterious ways. In this case, it’s the convergence of three unrelated situations.
1) Mrs. Liggett asking me to write on the blog this morning.
2) The non-trivial heat & sun and my considerable fatigue.
3) God making it quite clear to me that this blog is very important… something I should take seriously… something I should probably spend all morning doing… in the shade.
In contrast, my friend Casey Eason is out attempting to cut rebar. The ironic thing is that rebar is made specifically to not break, so needless to say, Casey has also been blessed with an enjoyable task. I realize that the word “complain” may come to mind, but Steve specifically told us that a “complaint” and a “statement of fact” are different. The former is not permitted, but the latter can in fact be insightful. Of course, Steve isn’t here right now anyways, he’s off on his way to Honduras to meet up with 3 interns. You may have heard about ongoing riots in Tegucigalpa that are currently complicating the interns’ attempts to travel to Nicaragua. We’re also missing 9 or 10 other people who are currently working at another site. I am not there. This is because I was there yesterday and sweat about half my body weight in the shade-less and H2O-free area. It was heaven to return for lunch and of course, the pineapple. The abundant, luscious, juicy pineapple. You think it sounds good, but you can’t imagine. It’s like spending a month in the desert and then suddenly finding yourself in an air conditioned room filled with 2 liter bottles of water. Unfortunately, lunch might be a little difficult today because I have been asked to give my testimony, and also have promised Tom to eat two little green peppers, twice the normal (but still incapacitating) amount. I’m honestly not sure which test I’m looking forward to less. I’m praying that I don’t have to eat the peppers and then immediately stand up and try to speak, because that just won’t work.
In addition to food (which is the most important) the other dominating aspect of the day here is the construction. For better or worse, the Guatemalans have wisely assigned us the less technical jobs. This means we are hauling rocks and dirt for cement, carrying awkwardly long pieces of wood right through the kitchen, and tying rebar. Thinking about it now, it’s definitely for better, because even tying rebar proved a little bit too technical for me on day one. (In my defense, yesterday I was told that my ties “está bien,” which is a significant improvement. When not tying rebar, people are often shoveling rocks and dirt into buckets and hooking it onto a pulley rope. Then a team of 2 or 3 on the third floor pull it up. If the construction site was a society, the people pulling the rope would be the oligarchs. It is unquestionably the hardest, yet best job. For people not like John Liggett (i.e. pretty much everyone else), your turn pulling the rope goes something like this:
1st pull: Hey this is fun.
2nd pull: Definitely more satisfying than shoveling.
4th pull: I could probably do this for a while.
6th pull: It’s not as bad as it seems.
10th pull: Alright my hands kinda hurt…
20th pull: When did they switch out the smooth rope for barbed wire?
30th pull: I might accidently jump off the edge this time.
I haven’t pulled in two day s, but my hands still hurt. A lot. Unfortunately, I think I’ve been writing for about twice as long as I should allow myself to rest. Therefore, I think I will travel back up to the third floor and tie more rebar, and hope my efforts to avoid the shame of failing inspection aren’t futile. Once again, I must resort to prayer.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

estoy enferma

so guess who spent the first day of work sleeping in the van. that's right, it's me. lindy. steve, who I think I will begin referring to as 'papa bear', got me some Glucosoral (pedialyte) and sulfur-based antibiotics. and I took them and I thought "yay! modern medicine! i love you again!" because I felt soooo much better last night!

And then this morning happened. And I was working. And after lunch my little stomach decided to stage another revolt. I don't really know what's wrong :( I haven't even been drinking any of the bad water! or eating questionable things!

but the word on the street is that "we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose." so I feel like... it's gonna be ok :) for now I'll wash dishes then sit down for a while. And go to the bathroom an unfair amount of times/day. and show papa bear that I'm taking my antibiotics. Then drink some more water (and pedialyte... blech) and wash some more dishes. There is plenty of work to do, including low-impact jobs for me :)

but as far as other people are concerned...
  • today was our first day of VBS! Rosby has done an INCREDIBLE job of organizing these crafts - I want to make a bean tambourine now! for reals!
  • there is a little fox/weasel/dog that hangs around. it belongs to someone who lives down the street. his/her name? SHAKIRA. THIS IS AWESOME.
  • we've had some scrapes and bruises, but our medical supply box is well stocked
  • Rachel, Cindy, and Molly are chatting between bucket hauling trips, and it's another beautiful day in Guatemala :)
  • oh and VBC people just got back! They can post more later

Today's Memories and Meals from Beth

At breakfast and lunch we sit at a 30 foot long table, serenaded by a very loud vaca, and enjoying the culinary gifts of Rosa and her team. In just the few hours that we have climbed, hauled, sweated, and cemented together, we now laugh as amigos and egg each other on to try even hotter varieties of peppers (good for your indigestion) and an interesting white fuzzy (DON'T EAT THE SEED!) fruit called something like pandera.

Other memorable moments have included: John and Greg Liggett's two pull bucket ascension style ("an arc and a science" says John) which is both riveting and frightening, learning from Lindy that yelling "Risto" means nothing even close to "Ready" and that I should be saying "Lista" instead, and shopping with Victoria at a local maze of markets for pollo, pina, papaya, pandera (sp?), and all the other ingredients that just magically morphed into the incredible lunch we just ate.

I am so thankful to be here in familiar and new community. Working, worshipping, and just hanging out. United by Jesus and our hope in him.

Beth Kawasaki

Monday, July 27, 2009

A few first day photos

Clary, Tyler, and Greg pausing from the rebar tying.

We're being careful not to disturb the local residents in the trees. This baby bird was discoverd in a nest on a branch hanging over our heads.

Tying rebar on the seminary roof.

View from the seminary rooftop where we are working on Day 1.

Hey Guys, It's Clary!

We left Antigua last night and as stoked as I am to be here with the rest of the team and working on the projects, I am sad to see that week come to an end. A week of volcano climbing with running hot lava and setting off fireworks is not quickly forgotten! Nevertheless, here we are and I am ready for the actual missions trip to begin! We left Antigua yesterday. The drive went smoothly and we arrived at the Spring Hotel around 4:15. With incredible luck, the rest of the team’s flight was not delayed and they arrived later that night along with the pizza we had hungrily been not so patiently waiting for. =) I suppose the only thing that I was not ecstatic to see was the summer reading book my Mom sent with a member of the team that I had conveniently left at home (jk, Mom!). This morning we had a team meeting and headed straight to the worksite where we were greeted with a DELICIOUS breakfast of fried platanos, frijoles, huevos, queso and mucho pan! Me gusta la comida de Guatemala! We’ve started the construction project which consists of hauling bricks and buckets of rocks to eventually finish the already started seminary being built. Crazy enough, we have internet at the site and I am sitting at our breakfast table surrounded by thousands of flies listening to little Maxi shout heave, hoe! The trip is going fabulously so far thanks to everyone’s support and prayer.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

end of antigua week

hey friends.

1. hopefully other team members will be able to email me blog posts, etc. so you don't just have to hear from me

2. and i'll be able to update more often (and remember more...) when I don't have to talk 30 minutes to an internet connection. just saying. the blog will improve... :)

yesterday, thomas, clary, marie, casey, danny, tyler, bruce, and cindy hiked a volcano!! PUCHICA!! and took lots of pictures that I am unable to upload. but thomas knows such things, so look for them in the future :)

oh, also - fireworks show last night for Antigua's saints day!!! amazing. we were about 15 feet from the launching and let me tell you... those fireworks do not go very high. a few malfunctioned and exploded on the ground, and we got some pieces on us. but it was kind of like being in a magical rain storm! a magical burning rainstorm. I'd do it again. but maybe with a hazmat suit on or something.

this morning some of us went to an english-spanish language church, and then to get some food afterwards. some = the liggetts... that's all i can speak for. clary and marie are at a coffee plantation, and the other people are probably having lots of fun

we're heading to la capital in about an hour and a half... I'm excited to see the rest of the team! thanks for following the blog and praying for us <3

Friday, July 24, 2009


disclaimer: we're all fine. but yes we did have fun.

so the first day of language school in orientation we were told that the guatemalans *love* their fireworks (cohetes is the word they use here apparently) and that when we hear them at all hours of the day and night, we shouldn't be afraid. it's not gun fire, it's just fireworks. and, there is a tradition of shooting them off at 5 am the day of someone's birthday. and i thought "my birthday was yesterday" which brought the obvious conclusion of "I need fireworks" and my teacher and I went to the market to look for them (this is the beauty of 1-on-1 tutoring. but mom i was still learning new words). I finally found some (this was Monday when I had no quetzales), and went back to the market on Wednesday to buy them. I bought two of them for Q6 each (about $1.50), and carried them in my bag all day with apprehension and excitement. my teacher taught me how to shoot them off. there were a lot of words, but the most important one was "corre!" which means "run!"

so last night, we met at a cafe here that has a worship service in english. ask someone else about that, I was having dinner with my guatemalan family so I was late. Afterwards, we were committed to lighting them, and went around the corner to la Merced which is a big church with a park in front of it. That's when we say the procession. there were candles, and people singing. And some really catholic-looking stuff. I thought "thwarted!" as we watched them process around their block. But as they re-entered the church, they set off their own fireworks! God bless this awesome culture.

we went to a side street and put the fireworks strip on the ground. and this is when we ran into technical troubles. the matches i found in my room have an entirely too thin phosphorus layer, so as soon as they light, they extinguish. I think I tried like 10 matches while people (including the group... clary...) laughed at me. finally the group made me give casey and danny a try. they tried three times, and the final time we thought we say smoke. but nothing was happening (cue jaws music...). thomas gave it a try, which we thought was a good idea since he's a boy scout (and boy scouts can set anything on fire). he took the matches and approached the fireworks. it was then that we realized, where there is smoke there will most likely be fire. as in fireworks. and as he bent down with the matches, it started exploding. I think he's ok. I mean, he can still hear out of his right ear... :)

we corre!-ed and enjoyed the noise and light. then I set off the second one (only one try this time! i learn quickly) and it was even better. today, my teacher asked why we didn't place them end to end, like a domino effect of fireworks. looks like I will be going back to the market... setting off fireworks in the middle of the street is the best combination of "when in rome" and "it's illegal in california so i need to do it here"

I also bought postcard stamps today (sorry no transition). John bought them for Q6.5, I paid Q8 (about $1). I walked up to the counter in el correo and waited until the girl who worked there got off her phone. I used my best spanish and she gave me 32 Q1 stamps, and showed me an example of how to put 8 stamps on a postcard (as with hair, the key is to layer...). I paid her, thanked her, and she picked up her cell phone again to continue the conversation she apparently hadn't stopped. It was like this, but in spanish, and not as funny. I was apprehensive of putting 8 stamps on a postcard... 7 of them are sticking to other stamps' waxy surfaces, which does not inspire confidence. I dropped them in the mailbox and I hope they make it to their final destinations. but if not - kristin, alysha, and leah (though I doubt you read this blog...), I tried!!

I learned how to say "holy cow!" (like when something good happens) today - it's "puchica". two notes though
1. it's a derivative of a bad word, like "frick", so don't mispronounce it
2. it's pronounced "POOH cheek ah"

tell your friends!

Tom's Photos of Antigua


Atlantic sunset as seen from plane.

Cobblestone Street

Hike to the cross.

Ronald chilling at the plaza with the misty volcano in the background.

An enclosed "patio".

Street view of volcano.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

so apparently it's the rainy season...

... and apparently that was noted on the packing list! apparently!

but it does cool things down a bit :)

we're settling nicely into our respective casas, and i'm not getting lost anymore (!!). we've been to the mercado a few times and we hiked up to a cross thing on a hill yesterday (as the rain began to start). We're all safe. There's talk of hiking up a volcano on saturday... it's active... and safe?

now that I'm actually at a computer I forget all the funny things I was gonna say :( We can't wait to see the rest of our team on Sunday, by then hopefully our stomachs will have adjusted to the food and altitude here (and that's all I'm gonna say about that...)

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

hay tarea que hacer

hola amigos! Lindy, writing from McInternet (no joke) in Antigua Guatemala. After a flight delay, 8 of us got here safely...

... jk all 9 of us did :)

We drove to Antigua and our driver dropped us off at our habitaciones. I am with Clary and Marie, and our bungalows (I think is the only word to describe them) are beautiful - they surround a garden in our very own courtyard! We are living with a woman named Irma who is very nice and makes sure to correct our spanish. We have learned that at breakfast you eat fruit first, but at other meals it's last, and that soup on a hot day can be really delicious! Basically amazing.

Language school is about a 15 minute walk and in a beautiful courtyard! Actually, there are walls around every building so pretty much everything is in a courtyard (una patio). We've been a bit jet-lagged (and a wrong assumption about d.s.t. made everyone get up an hour early on Monday... oops) but things are getting better! I have learned sooo much spanish and what I don't know I can try to sign with my hands.

Antigua is very pretty, but we keep hearing stories about people getting robbed. There's also an armed guard at McDonald's... so please keep us in your prayers for that :) Tomorrow we hope to take a little hike.

Ahora, hay tarea que hacer. Adios!


(when I have pics, and a way to upload them to a public computer, I hope to put some here. We'll see. for now imagine cobblestone streets and sunny skies - though today is cloudy - and little lost americanos)

Sunday, July 19, 2009

anxiety at 1 am...

Hi followers! Lindy here. finally found the login info to update the blog :)

Today's been a long (but productive!) day and I just got home from hanging out with a friend, and am going over my packing list one last time before I leave in about 6 hours :) my room's an absolute mess since I turned it upside down today to find what I needed (and, let's be honest, it was a wreck while I was gone this summer) but I'm excited to leave tomorrow and see what God has in store for myself and my team in Guatemala. I made mix cd's (of delicious spanish pop music) for our vans... so i'm excited! but nervous. you know how it is :)

I found my camera and connecting USB cord, so hopefully I can upload pics (to the blog and possibly Picasa... but don't hold your breath) while in Guatemala.

Language school people are leaving tomorrow, the rest next Sunday. Please keep us in your prayers! And I'll end this rambly post now. Thanks for reading!

“So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.”- Isaiah 41:10

Friday, April 17, 2009

Raising Support

Prayer support is one of the most important aspects of this mission. We are also raising money for the construction work and children’s program. If you are interested in supporting us in prayer, please let us know. If you would like to contribute to the trip financially, you can make an online contribution to the Guatemala 2009 team by following these steps:

1. Visit and click on the "Online Giving " link found above the church’s logo in the upper left corner. Fill out all information on the payment form. Select "Special Designation" from the pull down menu to the right of the amount field. Click the "Submit" button.

2. All contributions must be specially designated via email. After submitting your payment, from the confirmation screen click on the "email" link to designate your contribution for the individual raising support. Your email will go to Deb Stacey at Occasionally, the "Send" button is not visible due to the pop-up window size. If you experience this, please be sure to expand the size of the window by clicking and dragging on the corner of the window.

In the designation email:

1. Make the Subject Line: "Guatemala 2009-Special Designation".
2. In the email body: restate the amount of the contribution and whether it is for General Support, a specific individual going on the trip, or the Children's Program.

Any donations received after July 27 will go toward future church mission endeavors. Thank you for joining us on this important mission!

Children's Program

Bible Program
Conducted in Spanish by the local Partnership Ministries staff, the bible program is put on for the community we're serving in. Open to all children in the community, we can get up to 200 or more kids gathered for the program that includes songs, puppets, and a bible lesson. After the lesson, we conduct a craft time for the children.

It's a great deal of fun for all involved!

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

let the pictures begin!

We know you come here for the pictures... so here's one to get you started! Here is part of our 2009 Guatemala team. So when you pray for us, here are some of the people you are praying for!

Friday, February 6, 2009

MPPC'S-Guatemala 2009 Short Term Mission Trip

Welcome to our team blog!

This is the sixth and largest team MPPC has taken to Guatemala since we've begun working with Partnership Ministries in Guatemala. We're excited to have you join us over the internet as we get to know the church members in Guatemala and while we're knee deep in concrete on the site build!

Stay tuned for pictures and updates as we prepare for this Kingdom Adventure!