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Showing posts from August, 2009

first impressions

"laughter has no foreign accent."

introductions first of all intros for jess & carolyn are in order
carolyn- originally from Pittsburgh, but went to school in d.c. and lived there several years before joining this program. she was sort-of in my shoes with spanish last year when she got here. now she´s taking classes at a university and doing really well!
jess- from wisconsin. she´s 23 and works with the parish here a lot. her spanish is amazing! my new roommate =)
Jess and Caro have been introducing us to people like whoa. I´m starting to struggle with names. Then Father "presented" us to the parish after mass Friday morning while melissa & i were trying to understand some guy talking to us and before we knew it everyone was looking at us and clapping. it was pretty embarrasing.

water we buy water in the big things that you usually flip over and put on the thing (that´s a really bad description, but hopefully you get it). carolyn and i went to go buy more last n…

welcome to santa fe

12 hours on the bus and we´re here!

it was a long 12 hour bus ride yesterday, but we made it. we got to the bus station and the attendant said the bus would arrive at 7:55 mas or menos (more or less)...it´s a favorite saying here. After waiting until 9 I told Melissa they should just say mas and leave the menos off. we were a little afraid the bus would leave without us at stops so we only got off once from the 3 stops they had. they played movies the whole time (in spanish of course). if melissa or i saw one we would give the other person the synopsis so we could sort of follow along.
the girls planned a welcome fiesta for us saturday...i don´t have time for a real entry right now, but i will when i get a chance (jess is giving us a tour of santa fe and we´re only at our first stop).

i did want to post this from jenn´s blog. i read it when she posted it and told her how much i loved it and she said i could feel free to use it... so i will. (she´s now in peru)
^Preparing to leave for Per…

good bye san antonio

ok I'll admit it... I'm sick of good byes. i was so happy to get here and be 'done' with them. sike. friday i had to say good bye to marcelle, just now my parents and karen, tomorrow jenn and wednesday andrea, linda, mike & paula. they are not fun.

this is a group picture from Thursday. =) (thanks to marcelle for sending it out) left to right: Paula, Marcelle, Jenn, Melissa, me, Andrea, Mike, Linda
Wow did this month FLY by! It was amazing. I have a lot of uncertainties on the horizon and I'm just so excited! by the way... just so you know they changed our travel plans a little bit. instead of leaving for D.F. on Tuesday morning Melissa & I are now leaving Wednesday morning so we'll have a little more time in Monterrey with andrea, paula, linda & mike. so if you don't hear from me for awhile don't worry, we'll probably be pretty overwhelmed when we first arrive! =)

leeeaavin' on a... bus

i'm leaving for mexico in 6 days! i have no idea how it got here so quickly!

the rest of the week we have more academic presentations, conference calls (fellow missionaries at sites right now & family), and our big send-off, which we planned, on friday. then we have the weekend off and my parents & karen will be here so i guess we'll hit up san antonio. although honestly i'm so tired i'm not sure how much fun i'll be.

then monday is the big day.
the monterrey house, melissa & i will board a bus monday morning and cross the border and head to monterrey. we'll stay the night there and tuesday morning melissa & i will board another bus to mexico city! i'm so excited, but really trying to enjoy my last week here as well. i have no idea where this month went.
yes, i do think it will be a lot of bus time (fingers crossed melissa feels ok the whole time... she gets motion sickness), but i can't wait. i think we'll get to see so much more of me…

academics, etc.

warning this is going to be a bit of a long post so feel free to take it in sections.

academics
Initially training started with the history of the Sisters of Charity, self analysis, living in community, staying healthy and progressed to socio-economics. This week we had a few presentations from Larry Boudreau, which were very interesting, but difficult at the same time. Essentially he tried to give a semester's worth of information in just a matter of hours. I think he's a very smart man so he went on tangents, making it even more difficult for me to follow along. I'm going to try to sum up some info I got from his presentations because he did have a lot to share.
Critical Thinking is very important in our society and often not engaged in enough. It is often overlooked because it is so easy to go with how we were taught without questioning. Larry made a comparison to children learning to draw railroad tracks in contrast to the way adults draw them. Adults consider vanishing p…

misa mesa musa

all parts must be present in a Mexican fiesta.

we had MACC night last night

Misa-a prayer of some sort. We started the evening with mass for our misa. There are several priests here right now learning spanish so one of them led the mass in spanish. in fact, the whole mass was in spanish except for the homily. i was very proud of them (they all had some part in it) because it's not easy to get up in front of a group and speak in a different language. =)

Mesa-food. Spanish speaking dinner is always hard, but i am getting better with the inevitable discomfort. I have my dictionary and i make it through. Lot's of meat...mike was a fan! =)

Musa-some sort-of art expression. This could be poetry, singing, etc. Last night there was a mariachi band! I love it! I think my favorite song was la mariachi loco. we were all rockin' the seat dance. and to add lots of icing and cherries to the cake IT RAINED! i am not kidding. when it started they opened the blinds and everyone stared with rel…

oh español

ohhhh spanish

this is going to be a challenge for me and i definitely go up and down for whether or not i'm up for it. sat. night we had our first spanish only meal (only spanish spoken at the table). in case you forgot saturday was an extremely tiring day for me and i got to dinner and i wanted to shoot myself. everyone was trying to include me and speak to me and i just wanted to crawl in a hole. i just kept thinking, 'please stop talking to me.' they did lay off a little bit. then i actually tried and everyone was so wonderful and helpful! that's the key. i won't learn anything by sitting back and watching/listening. i'll admit i was frustrated. yeah, i didn't know most of what was said at the table, which was hard to deal with at first, but i know it will get better, especially since we're planning on having one spanish only meal everyday until we leave.

sunday's mass was beautiful and wonderful and we even received a blessing, but it w…

fun times in san antonio

i feel super de duper tired today ... so i'm going to share some fun times i've had so far here with you to attempt to snap myself out of this.

thursday night we had our first night off campus. we went to the river walk. it was so cute! under the surface it was a little strange though because there are all these water fountains and lush greenery ... you would never know sanantonio is in stage 2 of a draught if you just went there. that aside. we parked near the mexican market and walked through it to the river walk (with linda as our tour guide... i swear that woman knows every little fact about sanantonio, a wealth of knowledge). we all wanted to eat together so we ended up at a bbq restaurant. paula couldn't leave texas without bbq. (yes friends i can go to high meat places too and be just fine. i think i'll do a more thorough post about that later.) we walked over the the alamo and got a group picture... oh yes we can be tourists too. by the way if you would like to …

favorites

i have found i have several favorite things about where we are right now already

*there's a specific sidewalk lined with all different kinds of wind chimes. i love love love it! it make me hope for windchimes in D.F. or if there aren't any i will be getting one when i come home.
*the man that walks around the lake every morning with a cubs hat. no matter how much i dislike the cubs it makes me feel like home in chicago.
*the fact that after meals no one runs off to something they have to do. we put our dishes away and come back to the table to talk and spend more time together.
*the shade from the big trees... although i don't particularly like the ants that come with it. (they bite here)
*i feel like i have many coaches at the lake. i recognize the same people every morning and a couple have started encouraging me =)
*the dogs that bark at me. at the beginning of the week i didn't like them at all (in their fences) but now i tell myself they're telling me to have a …
I have a few things to update on today =)

Oh I just finished the best meal I've had since I arrived and it was oh sooooo good! I'm so full and happy right now! It was a mexican meal so at least i know i'm going to the right country.

yesterday Tere asked me to lead a little yoga class. automatically i said yes because that's how i am, but on the walk from the classroom to outside i started to get nervous. the only person i ever lead in yoga was karen & she laughed the majority of the time (it doesn't really count). i just took deep breaths and i did it. it actually was great. once we started i was able to integrate some favorite posses of the people in the class it was great towards the end when marcelle (who is rather soft spoken, but i love her) lead a few poses as well. i was actually happy with myself. namaste

i love our group. everyone is similar that we all have this interest to do missionary work, but we are all very unique and different at the sam…

THE LAKE

I FOUND THE LAKE!

So after my adventure yesterday I made my way to the lake this morning. YEA! (It's actually super close) =) It's a wonderful start to the day!
The pathway around the lake is 1.3 miles so not very long, but I just tried to not get bored and notice the small things. The lake is rather low right now because San Antonio is in a draught (which I think I said before) so everything is very brown, but it just makes the flowers all the more beautiful.

I felt like i was in grade school science as I was leaving because there are these beautiful flowers right by the gate exit and yesterday I admired them so much. This morning they were closed and I had to remind myself flowers close up at night. It was a great thing to be reminded of! =) Something you don't think about everyday...

The title of my blog is coming true... again. This morning several members of the group all came up with their own definition of my laugh: contagious, genuine, etc. I like mine and …

welcome to san antonio

So with all the changes I know i'll be experiencing in the next while and all the unknowns I know one thing about the next 2 weeks. It's going to be hot! Now I have to say it for my Missourians... it's a dry heat. =) Which is always nice. Although Texans consider it a humid heat.


My flight was landing and over the intercom they said it was 100 degrees.





I loved the welcoming! I met Meg and Mike at the airport without a problem and we headed to our orientation home at the Mexican American Catholic College on the west side of San Antonio. It's a very working class neighborhood, but there's a lake that I'm anxious to take a run at. I tried to go this morning, but got a little lost so I gave myself a nice tour of the area =) I started the run to the sound of a rooster. (I'm not kidding.)

It was a nice break from all the goodbyes with lots of smiles and hugs.

When we got to MACC 4 others already arrived and we all ended up hopping in a 15 passenger van to pick the …

new beginnings

Jess & Jarrit's wedding! I wanted to put a picture of the happy couple here, but none of the pics karen got of them did them justice. (They were both beautiful!) So basically I grew up with both of them, but they didn't know each other. Jess has been one of my best friends since 6th grade and Jarritt was one of my brother's best friends since I think Jarrit said 4th grade. Here's the catch. They didn't meet through us. They met on a blind date and before it happened Jess asked me if I knew him because she thought i did. I got very excited because I most definitely did! So there's a clif notes version. Monday night we were talking about kids and Jarritt was saying he hopes I don't have to work with any kids like he was when he was little. Then he said, "you know how i was when i was little." =)
The wedding was wonderful! It was perfect and I could definitely feel the love.
The wedding party. Yes there were 10 bridesmaids and groomsmen. It's kind…