Sunday, April 28, 2013

Los Padres in Bolivia (Part 4)

Hard at work!
 Saturday evening we went over to Jake and Jennifer's apartment for my parents to meet Jake, put together the quarterly newsletter for Casa de Amor, and have dinner! Daddy and Mama were able to take the newsletter back with them to be mailed in the U.S.
 For dinner Rudi bought Chinese Food take out and it was fabulously delicious. I should have taken a picture of it! It was a nice break from cooking for me!
Mama, Jen, and Leo

Myles, Grampa, Emily, and Jake
 It was good to be able to spend some time with Jake and Jen. Jennifer is starting to get a "baby pooch" and looks beautiful, as you can see! They have some sonogram pictures of the baby on their fridge and he/she looks beautiful too!
Jake, Jennifer &?, with Mama, and Daddy
Happy Birthday, Abby!
 Because the day that my parents were leaving was Abby's first birthday, we decided to go ahead and celebrate her birthday a few days early. The children were inspired by a cake they saw in a cookbook at Jennifer's house and tried to recreate it for Abby.... Hmm, I think they need a bit more practice!!!
The Inspirational Cake

Clancy and Clara with the result of the inspiration!
Abby didn't seem to mind that her cake wasn't fancy. She must not have a sweet tooth though, because she didn't want to eat any of it!
Abby "1" year old

The day before Daddy and Mama left for home, we took a picnic lunch and spent the day at Pairumani Park. It was a beautiful day for a picnic and hike.  

Paula, Carla, Mama, and Daddy
 We took our time hiking to the picnic spot. You can really feel the high elevation when hiking.
What a handsome pair!

At the Picnic Grounds!
 Rudi and Emily had packed us a lunch of chicken sandwiches, watermelon, cucumbers, and potato chips. It was delicious!
Paula and Paulita

Grampa and the Boys!
 After we had lunch we headed on further to go to the waterfall. The trail to get there is VERY narrow with a drop off of about 300ft. We had a bit of a scare when my father started to get dizzy from the high elevation and worry for our children on the narrow bit of land. It was not the place to get dizzy for sure. Thankfully, nothing happened and we all made it to the waterfall and back safely.
Clara on "The Narrow Trail"

Grampa resting up with Myles

Enjoying the river above the waterfall.
The Trail from far away.
The hole in the side of the mountain is where we walked to get to the Cascada. It has a tunnel to get to the other side.
At the Tunnel
Back down at the park the children had a great time playing on the toys.

Mother with her camara!
A very common sight was to see Mother taking pictures with her Smart Phone. It caused me much anxiety seeing her flash it around in town. She did get smart (pun intended!) about carrying under her clothes and holding onto it with two hands. I must say that it is one thing that I am glad is back in the U.S. safe and sound!

As Daddy was driving out of the park some women leading bulls came walking up the street. We were able to snap a few pictures. We all got a kick out of watching them.
Right outside the park was a tienda where we all shared some Coca-Cola in glass bottles! A perfect finish to a great day!
The Pause that Refreshes!
Here is a very funny picture of Mother, supposedly enjoying a Coca-Cola. She is really just showing off because she can't stand the stuff!!!

With all of the family at Pairumani Park

At last the sad day was here when we had to say goodbye and see my parents leave for the good ole' U.S.A.
At the Airport Saying Goodbye

 My parents left on their "47th" wedding anniversary. We felt honored that they would spend it with us.

It had been the best of times. We are forever thankful that Mama and Daddy took the time to spend with us in Bolivia. Thank you, Grampa and Grams for all of the memories! We love you and miss you very much!

Los Padres in Bolivia (Part 3)

Mother and I both love to hang out the wash. We spent many happy minutes here together chatting and solving the worlds problems! If I didn't tell Mama I was heading out to hang up the laundry, she would scold me and tell me "to share the love"! Mama also kept us all caught up with the folding. I wonder if she can hear me yelling "Mama, where are you", as I look at this weekends pile up!
Snack time at Casa 1
Mama and Daddy were both able to visit Casa 1, where the babies live. As well as, Casa 2, where the older boys live. We missed the girls house this time, but we had to leave something for next visit you know!! Brothers, J.K. and J. had a great time showing Mother around. Mother has a funny video of her trying to communicate in Spanish with them. She did a good job, but it was about half Spanglish and half English with a little French thrown in for good measure. (Mother took French in High School!)
Mama with brothers J.K. and J.
At one of our favorite lunch spots.
Pretty Girls with Pretty Grams
 Of course, there was a lot more time for quality time with Grampa and Grams.
Playing Rummikub

Cristian and Marlene and Family
 We also had Cristian and his family over for dinner one of the evenings. Cristian really enjoyed getting to know Daddy and Mama.

Daddy was such a big help with the babies. It seemed that every time we turned around he had one of them sleeping in his arms. With 8 kids of his own, and 37 grandchildren, I guess he must have had some practice!

Grampa and Emily doing "baby time"
Rudi and Carla in front of the Simon Patiño Mansion
 Friday night Tia came later in the day than usual and stayed into the evening with the kids, so that Rudi and I could have the night out with Mama and Daddy. We first went to Simon Patiño's Mansion/Museum on the North side of town. We only had to wait about thirty minutes for the "In English" tour to start. It was an amazing house that he had built with most of the things sent by boat from Europe. Simon Patiño is a famous man from Bolivia. He was born in Cochabamba in the 1850's, but made his fortune mining in other parts of Bolivia. He was one of the top five richest men in his day and is in the top 50 richest men of all time. It sure didn't buy him happiness though and he never lived in this grand house that he had built :(
"Watch your step"
 While walking to have Acai smoothies we stopped to take a picture of this hole in the sidewalk. My parents had to get used to watching their step all the time, but this was just too much. The amazing thing, was that this hole was right in front of a upscale women's clothing shop....only in Bolivia!
To top the evening off we had dinner at our new favorite restaurant, Paprika's. The food was excellent. Daddy, Mama, and I had Salmon dinners and Rudi had some type of Steak. To finish it all off each couple shared Cheesecake covered with Raspberry sauce. Yummmm...
When we got home the children were just finishing "Sound of Music" in Spanish, which Tia had never seen before! It was a night to remember for sure!
To be continued....

Los Padres in Bolivia (Part 2)

Baby feeding time!
 After our week of relaxation it was back to business as usual! During our week away Tia Techy's mother passed away. It was a mercy for her mother, as she was suffering very much and was ready to be with the Lord, but it was a sad time for Tia Techy. Tia took four days off work. It was a blessing to have Mama and Daddy with us during this time, as they both were a BIG help with all the extra work that a family of 10, with five children 3 and under, has! Mother self appointed herself to keeping our bathrooms clean... a full time job!

Diaper Duty with Grams!
The kids soaked up the extra attention from the grandparents and generally got very spoiled! Grams was able to have several painting sessions with the older children, as well!

Bedtime stories!

Painting with Grams!

And More Painting with Grams!

Hard at work
Chillin' with Grampa
The second Sunday of their visit we were able to go to church together. We did our best to translate, but the speaker happened to be from Argentina and is the hardest for us to understand because of his accent! It was nice to be able to introduce my parents to our friends there, who made them feel welcome despite the language barrier!

Ready for Church
Mama and Daddy in the "Yellow Peril"

My father who is an excellent driver and loves to drive, got in some driving time here in Bolivia. He seemed to have no trouble adjusting to the crazy driving here, even getting in on running a few red lights and such!! He did rename our car the "Yellow Peril" instead of the "Happy Mobile". I think it had to do with some of the rides he took jammed in the back with all of us. It was difficult for me to sit across from him and see him grimace every time we hit a pothole or swerved! Over all he was a good sport!

At the Tienda with Grams
The children had fun showing Grampa and Grams around our neighborhood. They went with them to the various "tiendas" a lot. Grampa especially enjoyed running out with them to buy eggs, milk, or any other things we needed pronto!
Rudi stayed home with the little kids so that my parents and Emily, Myles, and Clancy and I, could go with Tia Techy, Javier, and Tia's sister to a Futbol game (Soccer). I think we were the only Gringos there, but we whooped it up in English! Mother is an absolute riot to watch a game with. Wilsterman, Cochabamba's team, controlled the ball the whole game, but the game ended in a tie 1-1. It was the first soccer game I had ever been to, at that level of playing and it was a lot of fun.There was a lot of drama during the game. The Santa Cruz team was always whining about something... poor fellows!

Several times a little black dog came out onto the field while they were playing. We were wondering if it was the mascot for the team. It was pretty funny to watch the players take it all in stride, as if it happened all the time!
 At some points police carrying shields came out onto the field to "protect" the referees (or are referees for Basketball? I think my lack of sports watching is showing here!).

"Buy me some peanuts and cracker jacks!"
At the end of the game everyone threw the styrofoam pads, that you sat on to make the cement bleachers not so hard, into the air. I caught just a few in the air in this picture! It was a fun night!
To be continued......