Apr 27, 2009

Swine Flu changes our schedule

Just wanted to update everyone. We are doing fine. There actually haven't been any official reports of swine flu in our state (although there have been some un-official reports).
The Mexican govt decided to suspend classes in the whole nation until May6th (with the possibility of it being even later).
When I found out that school was going to be cancelled I called Cory and told him I was heading to the store! Well, so was everyone else. The store was crazy and so many people were wearing mouth coverings. Lysol was a hot item in many carts!
We have been told that we are to stay at home until the 6th!! I hope we don't go crazy. I have lots of BIG plans for the kids - deep cleaning their rooms, organizing, studying, some crafts, some science experiments, I am even thinking about going and buying a microscope etc. Anyone have any ideas of experiments or crafts we should do?? Let me know.

Apr 23, 2009

Tequilla #2 -paper making

A few weeks ago when we were in Tequila Cory, my father in law and I took a paper making class. It was only suppose to last 15 minutes but we were so interested and had so many questions that it lasted a whole lot longer. As I mentioned in my last post Tequila is made from the agave plant. The heart of the agave, or piña, is used for the tequila while the rest is just discarded. Well, the part that isn't used in making tequila can be used to make paper.

The paper is a dark color but can be bleached.

The teacher showed us a few different techniques that can be used to make the paper.

Here I am making my first piece of paper. The first one was made out of Agave, the second piece we made was made of a mixture of agave and recycled paper. The third piece we made was a mixture of the two pieces. First we made a paper of the recycled/agave mix then right on top of that paper we made an agave piece. We then took away parts of the top layer to make a decorative piece.
This is how Cory's decorative piece turned out.

Apr 19, 2009


You might not know this but Tequila comes from the state of Jalisco (the state we live in). It is actually patented in a way that it can only be made in Jalisco and a few other surrounding areas. Well, Tequila, Mexico is the home of Tequila. It is about 45 minutes from Guadalajara. Every year the weekend before Easter they have Mariachi and Folk dancing. My in-laws are always in town during that time of year and we like to go hear the Mariachi.
Here is a look down on the town of Tequila from the interstate.

The kids infront of the stage before the Mariachi came out. The Pinneapple looking things in the background are the pines of the agave plant. These are cooked and then the sugars from these pines are turned into Tequila.
The Mariachi playing and the Jose Cuervo mascot dancing.
There are two mariachi concerts. At the end of the first concert the kids needed to go to the bathroom. When I got back Cory told me that I had just missed them asking if anyone was having a Birthday so that the Mariachi could sing to them. I talked to the MC between shows and she said that they would do it again so that Abigail could go on stage and get sung to. I thought she would be embarrassed and not want to do it but she was so excited. She ran up there and smiled the whole song. First they sang to her the Spanish song "Las mañanitas" then they sang "Happy Birthday" in English. When she got back to her seat she said "Mom, did you know that Mariachi know English?!"

Apr 17, 2009


Last week when Cory's parents were visiting we took a little road trip to a town called Tapalpa, about an hour and a half away from Guadalajara. There were huge cactus plants that were flowering. I wanted to get a good picture of the flowers but the plants were so tall that it wasn't possible to get a real close picture. This plant was probably at least 10 feet tall. If you click on the picture it will enlarge and you can see how pretty the plant is.
We went out to a lake and I got some cute pictures of the kids. Sorry they are sideways I still can't figure out how to turn them. If anyone knows how to rotate them please let me know.
We had thought about renting a boat and going out on the lake but since last week was a big tourist week they raised the prices and it was a little ridiculous. We ended up taking a few pictures and heading into town.

There were all kinds of fake animals around the lake. Zebras, elephants, dogs, rhinos, etc.
Here is Abigail under the shark!

Apr 16, 2009

Easter and Abigails 5th Birthday

Sunday was a super fun day. Not only was it Easter but Abigail turned 5. We got up and hunted eggs and the kids found their Easter baskets (wonderfully filled with goodies my in laws brought us from the states).

We got ready for church and headed to Krispy Kreme for a fun breakfast. Our Krispy Kreme has a great playground and we were the only customers they had. We stayed for over and hour and as we were leaving another family arrived. It was great we had to the whole place to ourselves. We then headed to church and had a good time with everyone there.

After lunch at Sirloin Stockade we came home and had cake and opened presents. It was a lot of fun.

Apr 10, 2009

Field Trip

A few weeks ago I got to go with Abigails class on a field trip. It was a field trip to a "farm". This farm is booked every school day with school tours. They said not a day goes by when they don't have a field trip.
Here are Abigail and her classmates waiting for the presentation to start. There were many stations that the kids were taken to and taught about farms. Here the kids are filling cups with dirt and planting corn. They had an area set up with corn plants of all different sizes where they showed the kids the growth process of corn all the way to harvest. After that we moved on to the tortilla station where they were told about how the corn is dried and then turned into dough for tortillas.
The kids were each given a small amount of dough that they rolled into a ball and put into a press. Then they took their tortillas to be cooked and later fed the tortillas to the chickens and other animals.

They also had a reptile show at the very end. Abigail wasn't so sure about this baby croc.


Cory and I have been working with this young couple for over a year now. They decided a few weeks ago that they wanted to get baptised. Two of the churches met at a waterpark for church on Sunday and they were baptised there. It was a fun day. Since it was a Sunday the waterpark was super crowded so we didn't stay real long.
Kike and Monica


American football just ins't that popular here in Mexico. Soccer football is the dominant sport. There is afterschool american football program. Its pretty intense though. They practice every afternoon and have games every weekend. Half of the games are out oftown and they stay the night there before their Saturday morning games. Well, the football school approached some schools in town and asked them if they wanted to start an aftershool program that competed with the other schools in town. A little less intense than the other program. Well, I was told by the gym teacher that when they made the announcement in gym class Josiah was pretty much jumping up and down. He has loved playing. The season was only mid Jan-1 st week of April. It was a lot of fun to watch him. Here are some pictures of the season.
Josiah is the one closest with the black pants.

Trying to act tough

This was after a really good tackle right before half time. As they were walking in to the locker room he and his coach were reliving the play. It was so adorable (is that an ok word to use when talking about football?)

The team right after they got their jerseys.

The parents had to present the jerseys to their own kids and tell them something.
I am glad the season is over because things are going to calm down a little but it sure was fun.

Apr 9, 2009

Science project and Abigails spring

Every year the kids Kinder has a party to celebrate spring. The kids all come with their bikes decorated for the spring. Some moms even have their kids bikes professionally decorated! In the past I have spent a large quantity of time on decorating the bike but this year I decided not to spend so much time on it. Instead I went out to eat at Chilis with friends and then they came home and helped me get her bike ready for the next morning. In the end I think it turned out 10x better than any other year. It was really cute.
Sorry I cant figure out how to rotate this picture.

Seriously the picture doesn't do it justice! Thanks girls for helping me.

Here is Abigail holding her class sign. They actually ride their bikes around the park with the classrooms. They even have a little race. After the bike parade there are parent/child competitions. It was a lot of fun. She is still talking about how we raced together.

Josiah had a science exam a few weeks ago. For the exam he had to explain to the class the life cycle of a butterfly or frog. He choose the butterfly. He was allowed to bring a visual aid to help him teach the class. This is what he (with the help of myself and Jeff Smith) made. Don't worry he was allowed to have adult help to make the prop. The exam was strictly the oral fluency and ability to communicate the life cycle to his classmates. Cory was worried that there was too much adult help with his prop. I saw some of the other classmates aids and I promise you they had much more adult help than Josiah did. It was probably the same moms that had their kids bikes professionaly decorated for their kinder party. Josiah did a great jog he got a 100%!


When we got home from Mexico City we had an all church retreat. It was a lot of fun. The Sunset Church of Christ college group joined us for the retreat. It was great to have them with us - they helped out with the children which was an amazing blessing.
Here is a picture of Hannah at the retreat with one of our Aimers - Aaron.

The youth prepared a skit for everyone. They spent months getting together on Saturdays working to plan this for us. The awesome thing is that the kids live spread all over the Guadalajara area. As far as a 45 minutes drive from eachother. I was really proud of them because they did a great job but even more knowing just how hard it was for them to get together every Saturday.

It was a really good weekend filled with so many blessings.

Apr 6, 2009

Gymanstics and Baseball

I have 6 drafts that I am working on to post this week. I decided too much has gone on since the last post and I would divide it so it wouldn't be
so overwhelming.

We had a great time at the gymnastics show. It was a lot of fun. It was a little different than I expected. It was a show not a competition so the athletes were a little free. They did some silly things and goofed off a lot. It was still fun but not quite as intense as I expected it to be. The girls had a blast.

The day after the gymnastics show we headed to Mexico City for the World Baseball Classic. We had a great time. We sat in the front row at almost all the games we went to. It was general seating in our section so we would always go 3 hours before the games and get in line. It worked out nice that way because we got good seats and Josiah got to watch batting practice. At the last game we went to (Mexico vs Australia) Josiah got two balls thrown to him by players. One was from an Australian and the other was from Miguel Ojeda. He also got his hat signed by Ojeda, Jorge Cantu, and Oliver Perez. It was pretty cool.

While in Mexico City we stayed with our great friends the Brednichs. We had such a good time visiting them and catching up on life. Their kids are great and we had a blast at Pierce's Birthday party.

Today, April 6th has been a long awaited day in our household. Today was the opening day for the Boston Red Sox. Much preparation went into today. I went shopping yesterday to make sure we had the ingredients needed for a proper game day cook out. This morning the kids were warned that at 11 o'clock everyone was going to stop what they were doing and get the house in great shape so we could watch the 1 o'clock game. Without me even having to say anything Josiah began cleaning at 11 and soon was asking me what else needed to get done, what amazing power baseball holds over a 7 year old. At 12 I realized I was missing kidney beans for the chili. Well Kidney beans can only be bought at the import store which is about a 15-20 minute drive from our house. I quickly threw together the Boston Baked Beans put them in the oven and drove to get the kidney beans. I got home at 1:03 and there still wasn't a first pitch. 1:15 still no first pitch, they were showing interviews with the players. Josiah was getting a little frustrated so I got on the internet and what did I see GAME POSPONED because of rain and wind. So, I broke the news to my family. All Josiah could say for the next 5 minutes was "I did all that work for nothing!" over and over. The truth is I was feeling the same exact thing he was! "I did all that for nothing!" Well, the game is tomorrow (Tuesday) at 4:05. I think we will just order pizza or have frito pies because I am not doing that over again.