Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Tasty Tuesday


Last week before we could come back to Belmopan we had to stop and buy tacos for Ritchel's kids.  They claim that Orange Walk has better tacos than Belmopan.  The tacos were simple; a corn tortilla spread with meat and/or beans and then rolled up.  Tacos are three for a dollar. And, just so you know, you order buy the dollar amount you want and not by the number of tacos.

She wrapped them up in foil and they were still warm two hours later when we delivered them to the kids!

Monday, August 29, 2011

1000 gifts...

I had started counting blessings on my other blog...but for one reason or another I keep forgetting to post over there.  As we get busier here it is becoming even more important to slow down now and then to count the gifts of life.  So I will take up the counting again.
238. quiet moments outdoors with a flower and a bee.

239. late night with the youth from church performing at Legacy...Fired Up!

240. all of our friends in Tropical Storm Irene's path are safe and well.

241. enjoying music from Belizean musicians

242. little ones trying to get a peek at the service

243. being allowed to give the message at church on Sunday morning.

244. watching the youth dance with joy.

245.  young tourists who choose Belizean hairstyles.

Friday, August 26, 2011

Plaza Las Americas

On Sunday after checking out of the hotel in Orange Walk Town we hit the road to go Chetumal, Mexico... just across the Belize-Mexico border.  Our friend, Ritchel, agreed to go with us so we had someone who knew the ropes and who speaks Spanish fluently.

Leaving Belize

Entering Mexico

 View as we crossed the bridge

Father and son selling cold water ...
I wish I could have gotten a shot of the" no vendors on the bridge" sign

We didn't drive around the city much because we only had one destination in mind for this short trip.  With Ritchel's help we drove straight to Plaza Las Americas a shopping center we had heard so much about.  

 I chose to eat at Mickey D's because I was in need of a taste from home.

Tom and Ritchel chose the Cajun Grill

Tom and I shopped for the things that we had on our simple list, a harness for Harley from the pet shop, 100% cotton yarn for me, and some office supplies from Office Depot.  It was easy to find everything we were looking for. 

Maybe next time we will try going to a movie!

We were told that most of the time the movies are in English with Spanish subtitles.  

I think we may have set a record for the shortest trip to another country.  Shopping with two men meant that we hunted down what we needed and then left.  Next time maybe we'll stay a day or two and check out more of the city and the local cuisine.  The women at church were thinking of making the trip...and that would be fun!

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Twitter Party

For the Love of Blogs is doing a Twitter Hop today. 
So, if you are on Twitter come link up and join in!

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Thought for Today

This photo was taken just outside the airport in Belize City, Belize.  The sign on the building is clearly visible as you are driving onto the grounds.  While some may find it offensive I saw it as the owner's testimony as to whom he has chosen to serve.  May we all be bold enough to make our declaration to serve only Him in whatever way He lays on our hearts to do so.
linking up with:


Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Tasty Tuesday

After the youth rally was over Tom and I decided to explore the city.  We walked around the downtown area near the town square.  We found several little shops and as we went from shop to shop there were those who engaged Tom in conversation.  One young man, John, struck up a conversation with Tom and soon found common ground.  He was from California!  He was a student at Cal Tech taking a little time off to earn some money in his family store.

He recommended several different places to eat in the area.  When he mentioned pizza we were intrigued.  Other than tacos or Chinese food there were not too many choices in this little town.  Although John mentioned a bakery that also made pizza we discovered at the hotel that there was actually a pizzeria in town. The young gal at the desk gave us a map and directions and we set off to see what we could find.

What we found was great conversation and fascinating stories along with pizza that had the same taste of slices I remember from my time in Rome, Italy.  Carlos, a classically trained chef, and his wife Anna, the owner, are very kind, and attentive to their guests.  I could hear an accent that was not Belizean when we talked with them.  Carlos, or Charles, is from Algiers and Anna is from Columbia.  He could tell right away that Tom was an American but he thought I was Belizean.  We are getting used to that assumption since it happens frequently!

When I asked Carlos how many languages he spoke... he laughed and said "only seven and four dialects".  What a fascinating person with an incredible life.  After spending time as a lawyer he chose to go back to food.  His father is French and his mother is Italian but the taste of the freshly made sauce and garlic infused pizza dough reflected his Italian roots.  He began with telling us about his time as a private chef in mansions in LA and Miami.  Then we heard war stories and stories of life in Canada and how he met Anna through her brother when he was stationed in Alaska during his military service.  Can you imagine such a wide and varied life?

If you make it to Orange Walk Town, Belize make sure you stop in and see Carlos and Anna...you won't regret it!

Carlos and Anna, with the Orange Walk special...a chicken pizza with garlic and cilantro.  Yum!

front of Carlos Pizzeria

Monday, August 22, 2011

What is in the news in Belize?

We were!!

Our time in Orange Walk Town this weekend was incredible!  I cannot find the video but here is a link to the transcript of two of three interviews>> CDF Holds National Youth Rally

The news cameras showed up near the end of the rally while Pastor Antoinette, a local pastor, was leading the youth in a purity pledge.  They even filmed Tom, Patrice and I handing out New Testaments. As people were clearing out they interviewed Jadine, a CDF board member, along with Patrick and Esmerelda, members of the drama team from Mt Hope. We had 130 youth show up and some parents too.

The program began with prayer and then the Belizean national anthem followed by several performances from the youth group that went up with us from Mt Hope Church in Unitedville. We had worship and then I gave my testimony, followed by Patrice, a volunteer, giving a talk on who CDF is and what we do.  After lunch we split the large group into three small groups.  Jadine took the kids under 12 and she taught them about personal safety.  Patrice, took the parents and taught them how to talk with their kids to protect them from abuse or exploitation.  And Tom and I, had the largest group, ages 12-18+, and we took turns teaching about the emotional, psychological and spiritual effects of sexual exploitation and sexual abuse.  It was an awesome day!

Getting ready to start
Youth from Mt. Hope performing a rap song

Drama team from Mt. Hope
Late comers in the bleachers


Belizean flag

Break time
Signing in

Everyone was given lunch 
Pastor Antoinette
New Testaments to be handed out
Patrick being interviewed

We had to cancel the Saturday event because of Tropical Storm Harvey coming through.  The plan is to reschedule so that we can go back and do a presentation to the community and the surrounding churches.  Parents were very receptive to our message and the teens were engaged all throughout the day.  We hope that word of mouth along with the story making the news will draw out even more people when we go back.

Thanks for all of your prayers!

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Sensitization weekend in Orange Walk

We are gearing up for another busy weekend.  On Friday we will be with CDF at a sensitization event for teens to educate them about Commercial Sexual Exploitation..  And on Saturday we will be doing the same thing for the community and local churches.

At the youth event I will be sharing my testimony about sexual abuse.  And on Saturday at the community event, Tom will speak on the psychological effects of exploitation and I will speak on the spiritual effects.  There is a large team going up together for these back to back presentations. Including the youth group from a local church here in Belmopan.  They will be performing several skits throughout the day on Friday.

Recently I was spoke with someone who used to live in area the presentations will be in and I heard about the number of young girls who take jobs in bars that often lead to prostitution.  Often, these young ladies see this 'job opportunity' as a way to help provide for their families.  We hope that the education we provide will dissuade at least one girl from falling prey to that type of lifestyle.

Keep us, CDF and all who will be attending these events in your thoughts and prayers!