Saturday, February 23, 2013

A Day in the Life of Carla!

I was privileged to be able to go to the pediatric hospital one day this week and spend some time with the next to youngest member of Casa 1! Camila is very close in age to our baby L. and a good 10 pounds lighter. She was born premature and was found abandoned in a busy part of the city. Jennifer got the call about taking her in on the day that we arrived here in Cochabamba last October! After the phone call, she spent about two months in the nutrition center and the hospital, before coming to live at Casa 1 towards the end of December. She is a fighter for sure. Very alert and curious about what is going on around her.

This time she was back in the hospital with a respiratory infection. When Jen sent out the e-mail that she needed volunteers to go and spend time with her, I really wanted to go, but with nine children in our house I am usually needed around here! I never said anything to Rudi about it, but when he read Jen's e-mail he volunteered Tia Techy and Emily to go. However, Tia Techy had left her Carnet at home and did not have any other picture I.D. with her, which is required to visit someone in the hospital. This left me to go (yah!), as we had already told Jen that we had the 11-3 time slot covered!

I braved my way in a truffi to the hospital, as I really did not know where it was other than some cross streets. Thankfully, I can finally speak enough Spanish to get around and made it safely to the hospital.
For the next three hours I had the most relaxing time, feeding Camila her bottle at feeding time, holding her up to the window and showing her outside. At one point she was getting a little squirmy, so I thought I would try laying her in her crib. She immediately started crying the moment she was put down. I ended up holding her the whole time I was there! Bummer!:)

I had lots of time to think and pray and just be quiet. What a blessing! I thought of the scripture in Matthew 25, that was one of the reasons that we came to Bolivia to do work with these children.
"Then shall the King say unto them on his right hand, Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world: For I was an hungred, and ye gave me meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me drink: I was a stranger, and ye took me in: Naked, and ye clothed me: I was sick, and ye visited me: I was in prison, and ye came unto me. 
Then shall the righteous answer him, saying Lord, when saw we thee an hungred, and fed thee? or thirsty, and gave thee drink? When saw we thee sick, or in prison, and came unto thee? And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me."
What an honor to be able to give my time to spend just a couple of hours with a baby who has been taken in by Casa de Amor, when she was naked, hungry, and sick.

Now to change the subject, I have an adventurous story to tell about my trip home from the hospital.
Carlee Van Zyl from Boise, Idaho is here as Casa de Amor's latest volunteer. She took over at the hospital to be with Camila when I left to go home. She is not as familiar with the transportation and is still not super confident with her Spanish skills, so I told her that I would figure out an easy way home for her to get home. I spent half an hour walking around that part of the city trying to find, by reading their signs, a Trufi or Micro that I knew would easily take her past Casa 1. When I didn't find anything, I decided to go back to the hospital and just ask the Trufi and/or Micro drivers where they were headed, as they passed right in front of the hospital. Well armed with some amazingly delicious ice cream to bolster my confidence, I noticed that the sign on one of the large Micros said that it went within 2 km. of my house and passed Carlee's destination for the evening also! Perfect! After confirming with the driver that this was so, I settled down to enjoy the ride home and savor my ice cream as well. About 3 km. into the journey the heavens opened and it started pouring rain in torrential amounts. The roads were full of water within minutes and looked like small rivers. As nobody has defrosters in their vehicles here, the driver had to wipe the inside of his window every so often, as they got fogged like crazy. At one point he stopped the rig and went out and put laundry detergent on the windshield. He didn't have windshield wipers either, so maybe this helped the rain wash away better.(?) (Maybe one of you would know a reason for this?) I remember thinking that I was glad I was not in a much smaller Trufi. It felt good to be up in a larger vehicle (The Micro handles easily about 30 passengers or more in a pinch!). I really thought that when a Semi-truck went flying past us and sent a HUGE wave of water up and over the front and left side of our Micro. It would have drowned a Trufi! The passengers on the left side (thankfully I was on the right!) got slightly wet when the water splashed through the many cracks around the windows! All was seemingly going well, when the Micro began to sputter and cough and then finally come to a stop on the side of the still busy, very wet road. I wasn't sure what to do. Should I just jump off and hail another Trufi? For 15 cents I could afford to catch another one! However, I had somewhat bonded with the funny, super nice lady I was sitting next to. She was giving me a running commentary of her opinion on all of the turn of events! And it just felt wrong to abandon the ship after all that we had been through together. Besides it isn't everyday that you get to have a grand adventure! (I don't get out much folks!) After the driver checked the engine a couple of times and tried to start it a couple of times, while we all sat patiently waiting to see what would happen next, he finally hailed another Micro of his same type and we all piled off together out into the rain to run to the other Micro for our last leg of the journey. Of course, we didn't have to pay this driver since he was doing the other fella a favor, so I got to go home the rest of the way for FREE! Worth the wait!
Jen warned us that moving to Bolivia we had to be flexible. If you just go with the flow it can actually be kinda fun!!

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

A Blessed Day

L. with one of his many girlfriends!
 Yesterday we went with our church on an "Excursion". The church had rented a really nice facility that had meeting rooms, lots of grass, places to play games, bar-b-que, and to even go for a pony ride.
We all were supposed to meet at the church at 8 a.m. "en punto" to ride to the facility on a big bus together. Which means that we all got there around 8:30, actually very "en punto" for Bolivians! It was raining and I must admit it did not look like the best day for a picnic! But not being faint of heart all 80 of us loaded on the bus! It was standing room only for sure! The Lord super blessed us because when we got there about 30 minutes later, the sun came out and did not stop shining until EXACTLY when it was time to go at 5 in the afternoon.

Concentrating on the Good Stuff!
 The day flew by with lots of games and activities planned for young and old alike. After creating the blue team and the yellow team they proceeded to play a variety of very active games! Below they are getting ready to play a game where they all are holding the person in front of them in a long chain of people. They then tried to pop the balloon of the other team that was on the last person in the line. You could not let go or you lost a point! Emily is on the yellow team straight ahead in the red shirt. Myles was on the blue team. I think the blue team won when the yellow teams person in back fell on his balloon! (That was hard to explain. I hope I didn't confuse everyone!)

Here it is in action! They were flying all over the place trying to pop the other teams balloon. It reminded me of a dog chasing its tail! It actually looked quite dangerous, but thankfully, no one got hurt!

 There was lots of time to make new friends! These girls built a fort together out of rocks and grass! I wish I had gotten a picture of it... (once again not the best at pictures!)
These two super sweet ladies shared their lunch with our three little girls. When Rudi was putting Paula to bed he asked her what her favorite part of the day was and she said, "Those ladies made a picnic just for us!" This morning she was still telling me what she had eaten...beef and rice! (The pile of rocks behind them is what the girls (above) made their fort out of!) R. Janeth, K, A, Paula, and Marta
A better picture of Janeth with Paula and K.
 Janeth teaches the small children's Sunday School. She is one of the nicest people I know and a great friend!
Naptime for L.
 When all of his girlfriends finally put him down L. sacked out for a nap in the corner of the meeting room.
 After lunch it was time for Clancy's favorite thing.... WATER FIGHTS! All of the kids had a great time soaking each other in various ways.Thankfully we had brought clothes for them to change into!
"Christo ama cada uno"

The young people at our church love our little kids. Here they are singing some children's choruses with them. I have been very impressed with the quality young people that go to this church. Most of them seem to really love the Lord and are always ready to serve!

It was a very relaxing, fun day! As we rode back to the church in the bus, everyone was singing Spanish praise songs together. It was the perfect ending to a memorable day! Even though we are just beginning to learn the Spanish language, the language of love is very much a part of our Bolivian church family. It is awesome to realize that the body of Christ is everywhere in the world and it always has the love for Jesus and His people at the center.
Ephesians 2:19-22 "Now therefore ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellowcitizens with the saints, and of the household of God; and are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief corner stone; In whom all the building fitly framed together groweth unto an holy temple in the Lord: In whom ye also are builded together for an habitation of God through the Spirit."

Friday, February 1, 2013

Lets Boogie!

Hi everybody! This is my first recording project! I hope you all enjoy it! It certainly is not outstanding, but for my first's not too bad! Enjoy the Twelve Bar Blues Boogie!
You may have to wait a bit!