Introducing Mr. and Mrs. Amores!!!!
As I predicted would happen once we got married and moved back to Chile, we have started a blog together. Kevin just wrote his first post.
Go check it out!
If you haven't figured it out yet I have taken an unplanned blogging sabbatical. Really this just means I got tired of blogging. After talking to friends and family, writing emails and a monthly newsletter my reporting juices have just gotten all dried up. Love I Try To Follow may be on the way out. Life is busy for a girl planning an wedding in a foreign country. Luckily I am heading back to the US soon to join in the festivities and get married in June to my Dream Boat. He said just the other day that maybe we would start a blog together once we got back to Chile (yes we are coming back together). So, until then.....
Reading the stories of God in the Old Testament for the first time with Chileans has been so fascinating and rewarding. You never know what they are going to pick up on, find interesting, question or challenge.
Probably the most challenging aspect lately has been the violence that takes place. Not only does it take place but it is commanded by God in a seemingly unmerciful way. When you've only read the peaceful, loving teachings of Jesus this can be quite a shock. I'm pretty sure this is something that most Christians have wrestled with at some point in their walk of faith and I am thrilled (and scared) to be walking along these people as they do as well and get to know God in a deeper way. There is so much richness to the Old Testament and I am loving it.
For example, this past Sunday we learned about the story of Joshua (Josue' in Spanish) which included the story of Rahab. To some this was a completely new story and to others they had heard it before but not really studied it. After reading her story I had them turn to Matthew and see that this woman, who not only was a prostitute but also was not even a Jew, was one of the few women listed in the genealogy of Jesus. Through her, our perfect savior was born.
A few points stood out to us from this story. One, that you should never limit who God can use and we also should not limit ourselves. We just need faith. Two, that Rahab is in the genealogy of Jesus but was not actually a Jew. Our Spanish study Bible said that she was adopted as a Jew and regarded as a heroin of faith, but by blood she was still not a Jew. Jesus had foreign blood in him. This really surprised them. And three, how far in advance God was working to bring us Jesus. The Old Testament and New are actually very connected if you really look close and you can see the big story of God. I never get tired of seeing these connections. They never cease to amaze me.
The Word of God is an amazing teacher, no?
Around this time every year the good eats start coming out in Chile. September 18th is their Independence day and they LOVE their independence day. It is almost like Christmas. This year, they got a 5 day weekend for it. Amazing! Half the fun is eating lots of good food. The other half is hanging out with friends. I got to do a lot of both. Here is some of the yummy food I enjoyed.
|Asado (BBQ) in my backyard with neighbors)|
|Chilean cooking class- Anticuchos (kebabs)|
|Enjoying an anticucho and pebre at the festival|
|Yummy cheese filled empanada|
|Traditional drink- Mote con Huesillo|
A new grocery store arrived in town a few weeks ago and the city is all a buzz. It is a store they have in Santiago and in other Chilean towns but one that has never made it to Conce. It was one of those things where everyone always said that it was coming to Conce at this location or that location but it never really happened. So when I got back from furlough and was told that it was actually built I thought it was too good to be true.
"What's the big deal?" you might ask. "Its just a grocery store." Well I know some of you out there can relate. Think about the first time the Trader Joes came to your town or the Whole Foods or HEB Central Market. It was an exciting first trip there, right? Well Jumbo is no Whole Foods but they do carry things that noone else in Chile carries and if they do its just because they carry Jumbo products.
One wild Friday night, the day after it opened, my teammates and I ventured over there to see if it was true. We went in not expecting to buy much so didn't even take a cart. That was probably a blessing and a curse. A blessing because I did not buy more than I could carry but a curse because my load got quite heavy and imbalanced to carry in my arms.
What did I buy on this trip? To mention a few things, I bought Chips Ahoy chewy chocolate chip cookies, Dr. Pepper, Crasins, icing in a can, chocolate cake mix in a box, light soy sauce and Panko bread crumbs. They also had cream of chicken and mushroom soup in a can and cooking spray. They are the ONLY ones in Chile who carry cooking spray. Luckily for me I came back from furlough with a make your own cooking spray bottle, otherwise that would have been in my stash too. They also had Weight Watchers ice cream bars, but guess how much they cost. $12 USD for like 8 popsicles. We passed on those.
A funny experience I had was when I saw some Chileans looking at the Dr. Pepper and Root Beer cans. I boldly went up to them and declared my allegiance to Dr. Pepper stating that it was my favorite soda in the US and I was very excited to see it. This led into a fun conversation about what we are doing here and other American products. It was quite funny. Not sure if they bought any but I did my duty.
I'm not sure that I will make Jumbo my every day grocery store as I imagine the prices are a little high, but it will be my treat grocery store when I need me some good ole' 'merican products. Welcome to Conce Jumbo!
I know it has been quite a while since I blogged but I am not going to make apologies I am just going to jump back into it. No promises of being regular, just when I have something interesting so share I will and when I don't I wont. That's that.
I have been back in Chile about 2 weeks now and am trying to readjust to life here. What better way to adjust back to Chilean life but a Bingo Dance! What is a Bingo Dance you ask? Well, I had no idea either but a friend invited and I am not one to turn down new experiences so I went. And you will be happy to know that it is exactly how it sounds.
It was a night of bingo that actually was meant to be a fundraiser for a local home for the elderly. We bought tickets in advance and they included one bingo card and a free drink. There were 10 rounds of bingo, each with prizes, with the grand prize being a 3 day trip to Buenos Aires, Argentina. It was a pretty full house and very entertaining. In between rounds the MC would do something silly to raise more money or get people in the audience to interact with him.
As we played each round I was quite nervous that I actually might win. I did not want to win because I did not want to yell out bingo and have to go stand in front of everyone. One of my teammates who was present did not mind winning and actually did. Know what he won? A toddler car seat for his non-existent child! It was quite funny. :)
So after 10 rounds of bingo the night was actually getting quite late and we headed out but the party was actually only half over. After the bingo began the dancing! Haha! What an interesting combo it was. What an interesting place this is.
Made it safely to the good ole' US of A yesterday and I am happy to report that it was a pretty uneventful night of traveling. It's never fun to "sleep" on an airplane but I survived and was warmly welcomed back. Today is a day of rest and adjustment for me which I greatly needed but tomorrow officially starts the whirl of activities of furlough. What better way to kick of my time in the US than a 4th of July party in the Capital of our country. I am looking forward to a great fireworks show over the national monuments with old friends and new. And I gotta say, I am enjoying this heat. It is a welcome change from rain and cold.
Happy 4th to you all!