At the beginning of last week on Monday, we celebrated Mother´s Day in Bolivia. Mother´s Day is celebrated on May 27th every year, in remembrance of a battle that women in Cochabamba fought in 1812. While all of the men were fighting in the war, the women were home, and the army came to invade the city. The women fought with sticks and rocks, and obviously lost, but they are remembered for their effort. :) I was able to attend Mother´s Day celebrations with two of our girls who go to different schools because of special needs that they have. At J´s school, they celebrated with an all day picnic, complete with straw huts, llamas, ducks, turkeys, and traditional dances.And there was even a scheduled time for a siesta during the day. :) J´s class performed a special dance, and all of the mothers recieved a lunch and special gift from their son or daughter. It was my first time to celebrate Mother´s Day as an honorary mother!
The next day I went with another of our girls S, to celebrate at her school. To celebrate, the mothers participated in contests, and thankfully, I was never picked to participate! The contests included potato pealing, braiding hair, and lots of other things. It was definitely a different sort of celebration than anything I had done before. It was also a great opportunity to talk with the other mothers, and learn more about life in Bolivia.
J in her traditional Bolivian outfit at the Mother´s Day Picnic.
That same day, I drove for the first time in Bolivia! Out of all of the staff, only one of the Tias is able to drive, and they begged me to drive their van to help out when Tia Luz isn¨t working. It was not nearly as bad as I thought, but the rules (or lack of rules) are much different here. There are also lots of speedbumps on the road that are not clearly marked. On my second trip out with the kids, we were going to take a group picture, and I had 15 kids, and 5 tias in the van. They all offered their help in finding speedbumps, and notifying me ahead of time! We did make it safely, and ended up with a beautiful picture of all of the kids at Casa de Amor.
All of the kids from Houses 1-4.
This week I was also blessed to celebrate my birthday in Bolivia!On Saturday I went with several other girls, Emily, Hannah, and Carlee to the big market, La Cancha, the girls took me to eat Enchiladas, and then Emily even took us to get Frappuccinos! I was so thankful! Sunday for the day of my birthday, the Tias gave me a cake, and all of the girls sang to me before going to church. They tried to convinve me to keep Bolivian tradition and bite the cake with my face, but I was lucky to have the excuse of going to church! :) Hannah and I took some of the youngest babies to church, and they didnt cry at all- which was a great present!
When I got home from church, they had made lunch with chicken (Which is not common!) And had finished a scarf that I was trying to learn to knit. I think they realized it would probably be next year if I had to finish it myself. After lunch, we had a nail painting party, and my mom had sent tattoos for the girls in my birthday card. I think the kids might have liked the singing card better than the tattoos. They had never seen one before, and were so confused.haha Then Tia Annita asked me to drive across town and I had a suprise birthday party at a pizza place in town. My mom had asked Jennifer, the director, if we could do something, and the kids had a blast! On top of all of that, I was able to Skype with friends from home who were having a birthday party for another friend. I even got to pretend to blow out a candle on the birthday cake in Denton! Thank you to everyone who helped celebrate! I am so thankful for this life God has given, and thankful for where He has me now.
Enjoying her Pineapple drink at dinner.
Yes, that is Mustard AM is putting on her pizza.
O and AM playing at the pizza place.
Love you all, thank you for your prayer and support!