Monday, December 15, 2014


This is the month to celebrate Christmas.  But here they start celebrating in November.  They tell us that we won't sleep the 24th because of all the fireworks that go on till 2:00 a.m.

 We never had an artificial tree in Oregon, land of Christmas Tree farms.  But in our small place we wanted a bit of Christmas touch.
Our son and daughter-in-law sent us a nice set of pipe chimes with music for several Christmas songs.  Here we are teaching the zone Silent Night.

Here we are in a family home evening with 17 people.  It was the birthday of Dalmaris (9).  We went in the morning and practiced with 5 other kids, then that evening for a birthday surprise they played this song.  Can you tell what it is?  Little Diego on the left did not practice with us, but wouldn't be left out, so we let him play.  He hit the pipe whenever he felt the urge.

Here is Dalmaris.  The song from the video above is Jolly Old Saint Nicholas.  I don't think they have ever heard of it.

We have been hold Christmas Family Home Evenings with as many families as we can schedule.  So far that is about 10.  This is the Zuñiga family (the dad had to leave before we took the picture),  The Elders had been in the area one day.  As we drove up to the house we saw the Elders working on the street and invited them to come and join us.

 Kendy, on the right, is a less active member.  The lady in the middle is Alicia, her great-grandmother.  She says she was born in 1901  which would make her 113 years old.  The town where she was born lost the records in a fire, so she has a birth certificate with an approximate date.
 The first time we met her was 3 months ago.  Today we were passing by and she was outside.  Vicky loves all of her wrinkles.  Her mind is sharp, her eyes are very good.

Last week as we left one morning the Guards were unwrapping a christmas tree (they come wrapped with twine.  When we returned they had it decorated.  It is over 10 feet tall, looks like a scrawny tree, and the needles don't have that christmas scent.  But they did a good job.  In the middle is a little house with Santa Claus.

Wde went to a wedding last week.  Here is the couple with some children (not their children).
Here are the homemade center pieces.  When we leave I want to bring back some bamboo to make vases for flowers.  A nice piece about 6 inches across and eight feet long should do. ☺

We had a multizone meeting, and since we had practiced Silent Night with Jillian,s chimes we were able to give a nice presentation.

Here is our zone.  There were 3 other zones in attendance.  Pres. & Sis. Ruiz are far right.

We made and delivered about 12 christmas baskeets, several to families who live off the beaten path.  I don't know what kind of  tree this is, but I love the colors.

We helped another family to get to the temple.  Milton and Ingred Zuñiga, their children, us and Bishop Melara.

The temple has a life size Nativity.

A few miles from the temple we finally found a "mercado" where they sell artisan things.  Here is a nice wooden Nativity.

Last Sunday 14th and yesterday 21st Ray performed 2 numbers on teh violin with a multistake choir and orchestra.  Here are the members warming up.  The new stake president in Coatepeque (where we live) makes his living working as a manager on a banana plantaion, but his passion is music.  He plays a nice guitar, piano, clarinet, the bass.  He gives lessons in his spare time.

A nice 3-foot tall Amarylis

Here is the Nuevo Look.  I thought I would try a flat top.  The biggest problem is there isn't that much to be flat on top ☺☻

At Christmas midnight they light off lots of big fireworks.  It looked like the whole city was being bombed.  Three houses on our block were shooting big fireworks over our house.  And not one fireman around.  Things are so humid and damp they don't catch fire.  Houses are made of cement.

Found this little guy outside of our back door.  Only about 2 1/2 inches across

On Christmas I wasn't quick enough with the camera to get the good shots.  I asked if on new year's the fireworks were as good.  "Oh Yeah"  So I stayed up till midnight.  But none of our close neighbors had fireworks.  Well, there's always next year (not).  The whole city was like this.  Different houses had their own displays.  It would be like in Silverton if there were 100+ houses lighting off skyrockets.

Anyone need a pair of soccer shoes?

Nice sunset over an area where we are teaching several families.

These little pigs went to market.  Three of them.  Will be tacos by the end of tomorrow,