Monday, November 28, 2005
In summary
I wondered how long it would take me to loose my commitment to blogging. Apparently it was only like 2 months, but I won't stop...I'm steadfast.

Many appearances have been made in Mexico since I last wrote. First, my mom and dad. They loved it here. My dad loved that where I live is safe, they both loved the kids (it was a really good day). And I'm beginning to see the product of one benefit of coming here, a deeper appreciation for my parents. I sometimes wonder why I have been given such deep and consistent love in my life (in all respects) and others don't have the same. Thank you to my parents for staying committed to love.

Jen also was here in a whirlwind of a weekend. And then we were able to meet up with a good friend Alex. We had an amazing time traveling to Oaxaca, meeting fascinating people (including Mike White), visiting native Mexican ruins, and falling in love with Mexico. It was beautiful. And mostly because it was with a dear friend who needed to be seen by me. Rumor has it she's coming back to backpack the Yucatan next semester...anyone else want to join us?

School is emotional and in my face. But I didn't realize how much I loved my kids until I was so mad a Satan for messing with my kids! "Stay away from their self-esteem!" I screamed. Every child needs so much love to fight-off the blows that will be thrown at them in this life.

My roommates and I regularly discuss quotes from the classroom that you would only hear in Mexico. Here is my favorite one from the last week, "Alejandro, take the staples out of your pants!"

(this is actually Alejandro)

Tuesday, November 01, 2005
Feliz Dia de los Muertos

From the 31st to the 2nd Latin cultures celebrate Dia de los Muertos, a time to remember and celebrate the life of loved family members who have died. At first, I was kind of freaked out because people make skulls out of chocolate, put their own names on them, and then eat them (don't you think that has a morbid connotation?). So, yesterday, the school made a huge altar (ofrenda) for the late Pope. My class was luckily designated to bring the chocolate and sugar skulls for the Ofrenda.

One of my attitude ninas asked me what Halloween was. She asked it in a way so that I would get in trouble for talking about Halloween (we aren't allowed to talk about it at a catholic school). So, I refuted her question by asking her what she thought about it. The students had come to a consensus that Halloween is a time to worship the devil. hmm...How to answer that? I told them that some people may use it in a bad way, but for most people it's a fun tradition. It's amazing how the Catholic beliefs are prevalent in every aspect of the culture here.

We had a family fun Sunday this past weekend. Before the festivities, we had Mass. I'm sure it would be interesting if I spoke the language, but imagine 2 hours of unidentifiable words being spoken. So, it's time for communion...I thought hard about if I should take it, mostly because I wouldn't want to do anything that offends the Catholic religion. But then I thought, "Really, communion is just about Jesus and remembering his life, death, and current presence in my life. So, I'm going to do it." I could feel the questionable stares...
Last night, one of our friends proceeded to question my roommate (not me, even though I was in the room), why I took communion. Basically, he felt I shouldn't have taken it because I'm not Catholic, and I don't worship the saints, Mary, and the pope. "Woah," I thought, "I thought this was all about Jesus." I was suddenly sad that even Christians aren't unified. Why get caught up in legalism...the issue is the heart, right? Because no matter if I worked every minute of every day to be perfect, I would go to sleep at night desperately needing his grace. I'm so glad my salvation is not about me and only about who I believe.

My parents are flying into Puebla and I'm about to pee my pants I am so excited. I'll let you know how that goes...