Tuesday, December 28, 2010

The Things I See...

We purchase milk in one liter plastic bags which are called, sachets, This morning my husband arranged three of the milks in a cake pan and informed us he had made a Torta Tres Leches, one of our favorite cakes.

GROAN~ I know, this is his Three Milk Cake.

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Friday, December 24, 2010

Christmas Eve ~ Vernoy kids~ Beaufort, SC ~ Dec. 24, 2007


Don't mess with me and my chocolate!
My daughter, Jewel, takes on her brother and cousins in defense of her chocolate.
(3 years ago)

The Night Before Christmas ~ In Paraguay ~ Written by BOB BOSTON

Twas the night before Christmas, and all through the barrio
Not a person was calm, not even old Mario.
The stockings were hung by the kitchen with care,
In hopes that Papa Noel soon would be there.

The children were running around through the house,
Fireworks exploding, scaring even the mouse.
And Doña in her tank top, and I in my cap ,
Gave up on the idea of a long summers nap

When out on the cobblestone, there arose with a clatter,
I sprang from the hammock to see whats the matter.
Away to my rejas I flew like a flash,
With my windows open, smelly gunpowder made me gasp

The moon on the breast of the new-fallen dust
Gave the luster of grey to the objects at dusk.
When, what to my watering eyes should appear,
Through the dust, the gun smoke, and the sparklers veneer.
But a miniature sleigh, and eight exhausted reindeer.

With a little old driver, so lively and quick,
I knew in a moment it must be St Nick.
More rapid than car window washers they came,
He whistled, and shouted, and called them by name!

As fireworks lit with a candle they fly
when they met an obstacle, go to the sky.
So up to the flat top houses they flew,
the sleigh with few toys, as everyone knew

Cracking the tiles, I heard on my roof
the landing of rockets, and thrown sparklers too.
As I ducked flying objects, and was turning around,
down the kitchen extractor came St. Nick with a bound.

His eyes-how they twinkled! His nose red like a beet!
Fireworks and explosions, he´d braved to my street.
His droll little mouth was smiling at me,
At midnight, with a heat of one hundred and three.

He sprang to his sleigh, to his team gave a shout,
Having used up the fireworks, it was safe to go out.
But I heard him exclaim, ‘ere he drove out of sight.
“Feliz Navidad, and to all a good night”


Monday, December 20, 2010

Beti's Baby

"He's dead! He's dead! He's dead!" was the shout being raised through out the small village. The news roared through the houses like a wave. One woman lifting her voice to pass the awful news on to her neighbor, until it reached my own ears.

But who was dead? At this point, no one knew any longer who had died, just that the death wail had begun. One by one, people dropped whatever chore they were doing and ran towards the Monolo Clan's clearing of houses. The closer we got, the louder and more anguished the wails.

The smallest house. The house of Beti, was surrounded by people with fearful eyes and uplifted grieving voices. My husband and I worked our way through the throng and into the small round hut. We both had to duck to pass through the low door and into the dark, hot, crowded, small one room.

The wailing by the women was even more dramatic in here as they were mostly immediate family members.

Beti is the smallest woman I have ever met, standing at barely 4' 6". Her husband had left her and her children and the rumors were he was living in Brazil with a new, younger wife. Beti's youngest child was nearly three years old, the other 4 children ranged in ages from 10 downwards.

The smallest son was lying in a hammock, naked, and dripping wet. In the corner sat a 7 year old sister, crying and pulling her hair.

My husband rushed toward the baby, I rushed to the little girl. She sobbingly told me the story.

She had been sent to the river to do laundry and had taken the youngest with her. He had cried to go along and as is fairly normal, he was taken and allowed to play on the banks or in a canoe nearby. While doing her chore, a few more children came down and the girl became distracted. She forgot about the baby brother, joined in to play, and when done, headed home towards the village. She had arrived a few moments before us to hear the wailing and realized she had forgotten her brother at the river!

Before finishing her story, my husband stood up and yelled out,

"Be quiet! He is not dead! I need to listen to his heart!"

I rushed to his side as the crowd quieted. We began CPR on the baby and after a bit, the child came to and began to cry. First weakly, but more and more robustly!

The people in the house became stone still and eerily quiet!

A new cry began!

" He's alive! He's alive! He's alive!"

Beti took the baby in her arms and rocked him as he calmed down. She told me the rest of the story. She had been to her garden and just arrived at the clearing when another woman came up the path with her son. The woman was Gloria, a christian woman, who thankfully, was not afraid to touch what she thought was a dead body.

Gloria had been paddling home in her own canoe when she found the small boy floating with the current towards her, face down in the water. She had fished him from the water, thinking him dead.

When I had seen the baby lying in the hammock, he looked lifeless and purple. My husband had been able to detect a weak pulse and had revived him.

To the Ye'kwana this seemed like a miracle of a dead one coming to life again. We explained that we had not brought him back to life, but had been able to revive the small spark of life left in him, just as the women would revive the apparently dead fire each morning by blowing and fanning the blackened embers.

We could see the comprehension arise in their eyes, but they were none the less grateful that we had been there and my husband had known to look for the " spark" and had known to breathe life back into the child so that his "fire" did not extinguish...forever.

Had we not been there, this child would have been buried by nightfall ! Instead, he is now a 16 year old, a capable hunter for his mother.

God graciously allowed us to save the child's life that day.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

So this is what the Internet looks like...

After a week of  no Internet service, I had forgotten what it was like on here...wow!

Things you missed during our nearly city wide Internet block out...Grand kids end of school year program with Elena as High Wire Walker and Abby the Elephant trainer. Jayde's first piano recital, Clint giving out toys to a local orphanage and medicines to an old folks home. Lexi learning to wave and say 'Chao,Chao'.Several visits with new converts, a trip to Brazil, a tree limb falling on our car windshield while driving through town, two birthday parties and the return of the 'Queen of England' and 'Prince Charming' to our fair city of Ciudad del Este and, the oddest thing is that we had to dig out sweaters and jackets to wear in December!

Wednesday, December 08, 2010

The Things I See...

 I am pretty sure that a hobbit lives here!

 I would like to knock on the door and ask for,
 "Mr. Baggins, please!"

Hobbit Holes

Monday, December 06, 2010

After the storm!

Leaks... 4 am and my hall was turning into a river...

These were taken after the rain had stopped.
We woke up to find water flowing out of the chimney and leaking from the roof onto the mantle. The Flat Screen TV was dripping. The Wii was being baptised. My laptop was sitting under the dripping water in a puddle on the mantle.
Our fireplace resembled the Iguazu Falls not too far from our home...

Maybe we should open up a water park in our house?

Sunday, December 05, 2010

A thought for today

"We're not necessarily doubting that God will do the best for us; we are wondering how painful the best will turn out to be."
C.S. Lewis"

Wednesday, December 01, 2010

Sweep away the Flaws

This broom was photographed by my oldest daughter and it does indeed serve it's intended purpose. It is mainly used as an outdoor broom to clean patios and yards. I have noticed that Paraguayans tend to keep a very neat yard even when they live in a humble home.

While mentioning this to my neighbor, she shared a Guarani 'wives tale' with me. It seems that the mothers and grand mothers are always telling the young girls to do a thorough sweeping of the yard, porch, and house.

This sweeping needs to be done in a methodical, meticulous manner because it will effect the future of the young lady. A girl needs to be extremely cautious while sweeping so as not to leave behind any litter or dust bunnies because each one left behind represents a flaw in her future husband.

So a lazy, careless girl will undoubtedly end up married to a man with many character flaws, where as a diligent girl will find herself betrothed to a nearly flawless man.

No wonder my neighbor's daughter gets up early and sweeps the yard almost every day. Even the sidewalk! Her husband will certainly be a saint! Personally, I am not so sure I would enjoy being married to a perfect man. I would probably leave a few dust bunnies just to make sure my future husband had a little 'rascal' left in him!