Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Lily Kathryn was born & Paragliding in the Sacred Valley -- Something I have always wanted to do

Congratulations to my sister, Laura and brother in Law Trev on their newborn little girl, Lily Kathryn.  She was born on April 27 and weighs 7.2 lbs.  I was so excited to meet her last night on skype.  She is an adorable little girl and I can't wait to hold her and meet her in person!!  I am so excited for this new season of life for them both!!  They will be such great and loving parents!!  I am such a proud aunt of 2 baby girls!

Yesterday I did something that I have always wanted to do, but didn't really know if I would actually ever do it!  I went Paragliding in the Sacred Valley -- It was incredible!  It was like I was flying in the sky with the birds, with mountains surrounding me!  It was a really unique experience!  Once I got up in the air I wasn't even nervous, enjoying God's beautiful creation all around.  I will try to upload a video that I took while I was in the air on here and post a few pics!  I decided not to tell mom before hand b/c I knew she would worry the whole time and not want me to do it.  :)  But I made it back safe!  I have learned that while doing full time ministry somewhere it is important to have some time to yourself and do some fun things once in a while so you don't get burnt out!  This was one of those things... :)

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Fun Day Saturday... Salt mines and Moray Ruins

Gotta have a little bit of fun!  It is easy for me to get so busy and always on the go here, but it is important to have some time to myself and
rest and explore!  Yesterday was just an absolutely beautiful day!!  My friend Lauren, roomie Katy, and I went on a little road trip to the Salt Mines, Salineras and the Inca Ruins, Moray.  As we were driving out I could not believe the beauty of the mountains!  It is absolutely beautiful here and just breathtaking!  As we were driving I saw this field in the picture with all of the mountains in the background and asked him to stop so I could run out to the middle of the field!!  I am jumping for joy here... :) haha  The first picture is of me walking down to the salt mines, las salineras.  These are natural salt mines where Cusco gets their salt from.  It was so neat to see!!  I tried a little piece and boy was it salty!  Then the next picture is of us three at the Inca Ruins, Moray.  The Incans used this area to bring their crops in order to find the best level of sun, shade, and elevation.  They were watered by a complex irrigation system.  This was such a great day and I am looking forward to spending more days and exploring the many more beautiful areas within South America!  

Monday, April 20, 2009

Housesitting, Strikes, Concert in the Cusco Cathedral

I can not believe how fast this past week has flown by!!  Jess, another intern who is here and I have been housesitting/babysitting for the Allen family this past week and until Wednesday who went to Africa to learn from the medical team there about tuberculosis.  It has been a lot of fun!  It's really been great getting to spend more time with Jess and getting to know her.  The kids have also been a lot of fun and sure have kept us busy!  They have 2 of their own girls, Sarah who is 7 and Noelle who is 8 then they have an adopted Peruvian girl, Cate who is 2.  She is precious!  Then there are also 2 older Peruvians who they have adopted as well.  Jess has been the main one who stays here at all times with the girls while I have been continuing my cello teaching and other activities then come back afterwards for the evenings.  

Last Monday a week ago from today, was the first day the parents left for Africa.  There was a strike, a "paro" here and there was no transportation in use.  I went down to find a taxi or a combie (which is there little vans that they use as buses) but I went down to find just people walking up and down the streets and some people on bikes.  I walked down to the Allen's house from my apartment, which was almost an hour walk, and along the streets there were huge blogs of cement, huge rocks, trees in the roads, fires from burning tires in the middle of the street.   It was crazy!  I saw a man with a machete also!  Thankfully it only lasted a day.  The main reason was b/c of the polluted water here in Peru..  These happen usually about 4-5 times a year.

Last Friday was the Cusco Symphony concert in the Cusco Cathedral in the Main Plaza de Armas downtown.  This was such a cool experience to be a part of!!  Usually you have to pay to get in to the cathedral, but this night it was open to the public.  It is the oldest cathedral in Peru.  A lot of my friends came and it was so fun to see them there!!  I brought the conductor some music from the states and we ended up playing one of the sons, Jesu Joy of Man's Desiring this night.  The Cusco Chorus also sang with a few songs... Gloria from Messiah, Ave Maria...  

I am so excited about Katie and my Dad coming to visit and work on some projects in May!!!  It will be so much fun to show them around here and show them what life is like here.  I can't wait!! :) 

Friday, April 10, 2009

I'm in the Cusco Magazine??
Ano 2 N. 4 -2009

Yes, so some friends just told me that they saw my picture in the "Cusco Social" Magazine??  How crazy is that!  I'm here doing missions and within the first month I'm in the magazine?  This is what happened... the second week I was here I went to the very first Cusco Symphony concert here in Cusco.  After the concert a girl asked if she could take my picture and I said... ummm for what?  She said for an article and I said ok.  I told her that I was going to be playing the cello in the symphony.  I had no idea they were actually going to publish the picture.  I thought this was quite funny and wanted to share it with you...  Here is the cover of the magazine and the page where my picture is...  

On this holiday here in Cusco, Good Friday, during the week of Semana Santa... Katy (my roomie) and I hiked up one of the mountains here to the cross at 6 a.m. this morning.  It was a great hike - quite hard b/c of the altitude but worth it!  It was such a great reminder of what Jesus has done for us!!  I think Easter really is one of the most important holidays!  Pictures will be posted to album!

Happy Easter! :) 

Thursday, April 9, 2009

More music opportunities, peruvian bible study, orphans, being sick is no fun....

Girl's Bible Study at my Apt.                                        

It is hard to not have favorites at the orphanage.  The picture above is Beltron, and I love him so much!!  He will never be able to walk and has cataraks. (sp?)  

I hope you all are doing well!!  I am finally getting around to feeling 100% better.  I'm not sure what I had or what I ate, but definitely was having stomach trouble for about 4 days.  I am sooo glad I am feeling better.  It is so hard to be stuck inside and not feeling well when there are so many things I could be doing!  We can't drink the water here, so you never know if somehow something I ate was washed with the dirty water or what?  And also all fruits and vegetables I buy in the market have to be soaked in clorox to kill the germs and bacteria.  Basically everywhere you go you have to be very careful what you eat, so it could have been anything...

Yesterday I met the director of the Cusco Chorus here.  He is probably about 50 and wants me to teach him cello!  He had called the other cello teacher, Sergio, here in Cusco to see if he could teach him and to see if he would be able to teach cello to the students at a "colegio" downtown, which is a middle school.  Sergio is too busy with students at the suzuki school here so he referred me to him.  I met with him yesterday and it sounds like I really neat idea!!  This is something he has wanted to do for years, but their has never been cello teachers here or money in their budget to buy cellos and ship them from Lima since they don't sell cellos here.  The plan is for them to buy 6-8 cellos next week and I will begin giving lessons each week and a group lesson for all the students each week.  I can not believe how God is making this happen!  I am so excited I get to be a part of teaching these children how to play the cello, something that is so special to me.  I'm sure it will be a challenge teaching in Spanish!!

Last night I led our first Peruvian Bible Study here at my apartment.  I was so thankful for how well it went and what a special time it was.  We had hot tea and baked chocolate chip cookies! :) There were a total of 6 girls and the age ranged from age 13 to age 19.  My room-mate, Katy who is 17, 3 girls from la Arca orphanage, and 2 girls from the church Buen Pastor.  One of the girls, Gabi who is 14 and has been at the orphanage for 9 years now has always wanted to play the cello and when she found out I played got so excited.  She is hoping to get a cello for her birthday in May and I will hopefully be able to teach her.  I would love to help give her a cello for her birthday!  Each of these girls have such a hard past, especially 2 of the girls from the orphanage.  We were able to go around and tell a little bit able ourselves, what we like to do, a little bit about their past and family history, and how and when they became a christian.  It was such a joy to hear about these girl's lives and to pray together with them.  They really have such a heart from the Lord and are really seeking him.  I'm so thankful I get to invest in to these girl's lives while I am here.  It is tough to talk about such deep things in Spanish, but I am continuing to learn and one of the girls from La Arca is American (her family is the one who started the orphanage)  so she is able to help translate some of the harder words.  I really want to love these girls and show them there is hope and how much the Lord loves them.  It is a hard situation for some of these girls having parents who didn't want them and dropped them off at the orphanage.  Please pray that I will be able to show these girls the hope they have in Jesus Christ.  

Th picture above are some of the girls in the bible study that we took at the end!  This is the loft in my apartment!

I hope you all have a nice Easter!  I will miss not being with my family in Miami this Easter visiting baby Grayson! :)  Love to you from Peru!