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God has a sense of humor!

You wanna know which Church I ended up singing in today's Mass?


Friday I began feeling a bit off, Saturday my head was hurting and my throat was scratchy and during the night the headache woke me up... and my throat was completely closed! I could barely speak this morning, there was no yodeling for me today!

Oh, but that wasn't the only thing in store for me. Lol! I believe God was intent on giving me a slice of humble pie! So, I did not go to 6 am Mass at Santa Maria, and instead I went to 8 am Mass at Sacred Heart, because in that Mass they have a choir of children that blows my mind off, so I would not have to sing. I get there, no choir. Uh-oh.

The Monitor looks pointedly at me while she asks the assembly if ANYONE would sing. I look at my feet, how interesting they are today! The priest is about to come out, and he leans out the door, looks at the assembly and spots me. He gives me the over-the-glasses-look and goes back inside. Ok, dodged that bullet, I'm gonna concentrate in the drapes while the Mass starts.

THEN there comes an altar boy with a song book. Uh-Oh. I try to look everywhere but at him. Shoot! he is making a beeline towards me and by now the bench is full and I cannot slide in like a coward. He reaches me. I pretend not to notice until he extends the book towards me. Crap! he asks me if I'm the lady who sings. I tell him I am aphonic today, but wouldnt you know, my voice comes out clear as a bell. He is evidently incredulous. The people in the bench in front of me looks back at me with reproach, the people in my bench look sideways at me and I'm NOT looking back to see what the people in the bench behind me are doing!

For the duration of the Mass, I pretended to be just another bench.

Thursday with my girls.

Thursdays are my days off. When I was single, I would usually read, sew or embroider; I had not been bit by the knit and crochet bug yet and I'd often draw or pull out my guitar and rehearse for Mass. Then I was married, and thursday mornings I'd do the housework (we live in a tiny house) and on the afternoons we'd take blissful bike rides through the countryside and sometimes even picnics. Oh, but they were not leisure bike rides! My hubbie is a fan of extreme sports, so it meant we would go uphill or through dirt roads that only goats enjoy, or we would go for a picnic on a dam that was about an hour bike ride... through the "cerro" (crosscountry).

And then the girls came, and nothing was the same! LOL! Thursdays now are a marathon, days when anything can happen. All morning I'm owned by LH, and we both love it! she's getting so big that I cannot carry her for long stretches of time, so now she walks almost wherever we go running errands. Then we go pick up her big sister from school, come back home and cook, then after eating with Dad they usually have a nap, we go for another walk in the afternoon and then it is time for supper, then their bath and off to sleep... well, for LH at least, cause BH usually decides that she wants to stay up till midnight, decision that crumbles the moment that all lights are off. Then she usually protests that "-yawn-she is not-yawn- tired yet"...snore...

Yesterday was a bit different, because LH was a bit fussy. They stay indoors almost all week, poor things, so I try to be outside in the sunlight and air as much as I can on Thursdays (there went my intent of crocheting the potholder... but I WILL finish it before Sunday, fret you not!) and we went shopping for groceries. We then stopped by Church, and paid a visit to the Holy Sacrament -(the "Santísimo Sacramento", or just "Santísimo") at the Santa María Church. And LH decided she did not want to leave...

...but she also wanted to run, yell and play! The acoustics on that Church are awesome, so imagine what racket the tiny tot made! She would not let others concentrate on prayer, so I whisked her off- not before the Vicar stopped us on our- shamefaced on my part, delighted on LH's -way out. Uh-oh. That's it. We are done here, I thought.

The Vicar asked if LH was the responsible... shoot! he WAS going to reprimand us!
-Responsible? - I pretended not to understand
-Yes, the responsible for you not coming to sing anymore-

Phew! I had been singing in 6:00 am Mass when hubbie and I started dating, and then again after I was married and after BH was born, with the help of a friend who played too. Even when LH was on her way I still managed to play the guitar and keep singing. Then I got so big that I could no longer reach comfortably around to play the guitar! lol! and it is also a Country stile guitar, so it is even wider than say a Flamenco guitar, or a Classic guitar. So I stopped playing and only attended Mass.

-Oh, yes, she's the one!
- When are you coming back?
- uh... whenever you want me back?
- Next Sunday
- ahem.. sure! - I was relieved that it was so simple as that
- You are playing at Sacred Heart, right?

Shoot! Blast! he heard about it!!! A friend of my Dad's is Leader of a Team of Ministry at Sacred Heart Church- one of the other two Parroquias in town- and they help during noon Mass, and he invited me to go sing during that Mass. I've only been there like TWICE and Father Artemio already knew about it?!?!?!?! shoot! News travel fast in a small town.

-Ok, then we split Sundays?

We made some arrangements for the mics so I would not have to drag all my equipment at 5 in the morning, talked about what songs were going to be neded (Pentecostés is next Sunday) and then we left. It was time to go for BH at her school, and on the way back, BH wanted to stop at the Santisimo... at Sacred Heart Church (it is two blocks from her kindergarden) ...

... And we run into my dad's friend, who wants to know if I'm gonna play in Mass NEXT SUNDAY... Sometimes, I really think I'm the Holy Father's personal cartoon! lol! So I had to tell Don Ricardo that I would be playing at Santa María next Sunday, and after some more small talk, we left, while I silently prayed not to run into Father Ernesto, the Cura of San José -the other Parroquia- lest he ask me if I would go play there next Sunday!

This was going to be a post about Thursday with my girls and the events of the morning have made me run off with it! LOL! Well, all events -almost - were Church oriented, now that I think of it. On the afternoon, Mom and my brother Alex invited us to my Mom's hometown, where the day before the Lord Christ of Mercy image had been crowned by the Nuncio -huge event! So we went to see how the Christ looked with his new crown.

LH fell asleep while on our way, and we had only about half an hour to make our visit - my brother had to be back soon. So when we got there and saw they were begining Mass we stayed at the last bench, which proved a clever choice, because BH kept trying to "wake up" a statue of some girl saint, we could not find out who was she supposed to be, in one of the chapels. And then at Communion, when I returned, she wanted to ask the man "to give me bread like you had!" and asked if it was vanilla bread- we almost laughed out loud!

After Mass, the monks started streaming into the Holy Sacrament Chapel for their evening prayers... Their voices sounded so beautifully in the big old Church...

We went out, bought some pastries for my Hubbie and my own Dad and Brother, and we were off to our homes. It was an eventful day, and I think that if I had planned to visit THREE Holy Sacrament shrines, I'd not have done it... if it hadn't been for my girls!

It is raining!!!

I wish I could show you the view from the bar at the café- it's raining! big, fat drops that splash with a happy noise! plus, there's a small stand with a metallic roof a few meters from us and the noise it makes is just delightful! Some customers rush inside with a temporary polka dot pattern in their clothes, and a young guy just walked by at leisure, purposely getting wet and such calm in his face... I love a rainy day. For me it is such a good omen, I don't know why. When the raindrops hit the ground, I believe everything is going to be ok after all. I think it has a lot to do with the way God made himself present in the Old Testament in the mana, in the rain, in the elements... God is with us! (can you tell I was just reading Exodus?)

It rained, and I am happy despite the fact that I did not sleep last night. BH complained that her face hurt (turns out it was her ear that hurt) and by 10:00 pm she had a fever. We drove all around town but no pediatrist was available. Her usual one was on vacation, and get this, she had left only last afternoon. Then another that we usually don't go because he has lines blocks long -seriously, I'm not exagerating - was away on a political rally, and thus we exhausted all possibilities. So I gave her a long shower to lower the fever, and when she was cool and had her milk she fell asleep. That was about 12:00 pm.

Then at 2:00 she came to our room and asked to go to the bathroom. When I picked her up I could feel her in a higher fever than before, so into the shower again, mommy and BH. We stayed there for about an hour, and then she had another bottle of milk. By that time I was about freaking out. We knew the pediatrist wasn't on guard that night so there was no point in waking LH up and go to the ER. We spent the next hour applying wet cloths to her forehead, armpits and tummy. Finally, around 4:30 she fell asleep again. But this girl amazes me so much! while we were in the shower, she started singing in spite of the fever! you'd never know she was ill by looking at her or listening to her! And while I was changing the cloths, she winced when it touched her skin, but turned to me and said "Mommy, I'm helping you, right? I'm a good girl, right? I'm not taking the cloths off!" I'm so proud of my little girl

And today we were the second patients at the pediatrist (the one running for mayor, remember?) and she was so good, letting him take her temperature, measure her, weigh her, listen to her heart and check her ear and throat. Turns out she has a mild throat infection, but it ran to her ear (remember her "face" hurt?). But LH... oh, LH! she was another story! she kicked and screamed all through the doctor's examination. She only sat still when she was weighed, because it was a cute yellow seat. She demanded to be seated again as soon as the doctor was done checking her. Turns out, she too had a throat infection and it was in her ear too.

And with the medicines! BH took them all meekly, but LH did her best impersonation of a mad bronco! I really felt like I was a ranch woman struggling with her! finally she did take it all.

Both my girls, I hope, will turn out strong: one all jokes but calm, other all sweet and reserved but with a very strong opinion. I love my girls

And did I mention it rains? luckily both love their coats!!!!

Little boy

Thank you all for your comments! LOL! I was sure my page had been blocked or something accidentally! Sending hugs to all of you, and I'm inflicting the next part of the story upon you, wether you want it or not! LOL!

Carl (for that was Little Boy's name) was a regular little kid. He was not always perfect and more often than not came back home with a rip in his pants, didn't like washing behind his ears and he'd rather eat cookies than broccoli, but that's how little boys are built. He also seemed to be a veritable magnet for mischief; whether he planned it or not, accidents were sure to happen to him. So when the new neighbor was moving the day before Mom told him to please wait inside and not get into trouble. Carl soon contented himself with watching through the parlor window the coming and going of the moving people. If he had further encouragement into staying in by the sight of the big black dog sitting still as if made of stone, he did not confess. Daddy was big and strong and surely would not be afraid of big black dogs that could eat a little boy in one bite, and Carl was determined to be as much like his Daddy as possible.

Convinced that the dog would not leave his post Carl gave up his plans of going to the neighbor and introducing himself so that he could look at all the mysterious boxes and things, and perhaps find some adventure. Instead, he took his glass to the meadow near his house. He always found the most intriguing things there (he had been trying to imitate his Daddy's big words, too) but Momma didn't understand how wonderful earthworms were, and the worms and jewel like bugs he had so carefully stored in boxes beneath his bed had somehow disappeared. Carl suspected Momma knew more than she admitted. Perhaps she had seen the monster under the bed take his precious bugs and didn't want to frighten him! Uncle Mark said there was no such thing as the monster, and Carl wanted to believe him, but he also said there was no God, and that was not nice and the little boy concluded that Uncle was either correct on both matters or wrong on both. So Carl continued to fear the monster under his bed, and to kneel next to it at night –with Momma always by his side- to pray.

And on that night, while reciting his little prayers he remembered the mother sparrow that had looked so hungry, and the pitiful little sounds from the nest he followed her to, and asked God to help her. God always answered his prayers, even if His answers were a little… unexpected sometimes. Carl was sure God would send someone to the wee creature.

When morning came and Momma went into his room to wake him up, she found Carl sitting up in his bed, sighing. She asked him what was wrong to make him sigh so.

- Oh Mum, God must be very busy because he asked me to help the birdie.

His mother just smiled a little, knowing that he spoke fully in earnest. She sat down next to him and brought him close to her.

- Well, let's see what we can do. Do you know what birdie needs? – Carl's face lit up instantly at his mother's words. Momma was so wonderful! You did not have to do a lot of explaining to her, then again she seemed to know when he was hiding something from her too, and that was not so great.

- The birdie was kinda hopping about, like she was looking for something, and I didn't know what it was but then I saw that she had three babies in her nest and I think that she was sad because they had no food, and oh Mum I dreamt that I gave her food in a little box… Do we have a little box somewhere that I can take to her? What do birdies like to eat? – Momma smiled a little more at the rush of words from her boy

- Well, they do like earthworms or insects – Carl gasped in horror- But I think they can eat seeds too –Momma hurried to add when she saw that he was about to cry. This boy of hers could not hurt his dear bug creatures.

So he dressed after his morning prayers and since Momma could see there was no way Carl would be able to sit still through breakfast if he did not do something for the little sparrow, together they looked up an appropriate box and filled it with all kinds of seeds: they cracked big sunflower seeds and added flax seeds and some dry crumbs of bread, put it all in the old pill box with the missing lid and snuck out to place it next to the nest. Carl was delighted that the bird was not awake yet.

After he had seen the seeds were welcome, he reluctantly returned home. The big dog had left the front yard and Carl found it more frightening, not knowing where he could be. The dog was really too big, and the brown spots over its eyes made him look cross. Carl looked one way and then the other, and made a mad dash for his house, arriving breathless but in one piece to the kitchen.

To be continued...

I really am back... I promise!

um... just so you know...

Actually, I'm kinda wondering if my counter is playing games on me or for real... like, I've checked it five times today, and everytime the counter has advanced just one number. Which means I'm the only one visiting my blog. Oy, not even random visitors?

NOBODY has dropped by my blog.

Or perhaps my blog has not been public? how come?


I know my friends won't desert me... so if you read this and answer, maybe it is the problem with the counter, but if NONE posts a comment... well, time to freak out!

Little Sparrow and Little Boy

Little sparrow had nothing to eat. She had looked around, but all the food she saw was claimed by bigger birds before she could grab it. Little sparrow felt sick with worry. She turned her head this way, that way, but there was no solution in sight. She was so frail, so weak! never mind that she liked to think of herself as a sister of the eagle, quite conveniently forgetting to acknowledge the contrary evidence every time she took a sip of water and a little sparrow looked up at her. She could fly, could she not? She could find food, build a nest and raise her little ones just like Big Eagle could. Poor little fool of a sparrow.

She took tentative little jumps and looked into the Rat's burrow. Rat had a bad reputation, but Little Sparrow had broken through Rat's moods and nastiness and found that he was not so bad after all. Perhaps Rat would give her some food for her very little sparrows. The burrow was empty of occupants, and she dared not enter to look for food, lest Rat came back and reacted before recognized her. She shuddered as she remembered the fate of other, bolder creatures. Rat could be fearsome, specially for someone so weak and frail as her.

She then flew to Rabbit's hole. Ms. Rabbit was kind and gentle, and her own wee sparrows usually played with the cotton tailed little rabbits. She was a mother, and she would understand.

-Hello, Little Sparrow!

- Hi and how do you do, Ms. Rabbit?

- None too well. Mr. Rabbit has not returned and I have nothing to start today's meal!

Little Sparrow swallowed hard, smiled a little sadly and bade her friend goodbye. There was no point in asking her for what she had not.

There were many animals all through the field, but she could not go to Fox, or to Snake. She tried digging for worms, but it was late and all the early birds had got them. She watched Squirrel run all over the trunk of her tree, and the little squirrels were happy gnawing at the nuts they had stored. Why couldn't she store worms like that? She would have tried it but she feared worms would go bad if stored when dead, and somehow she did not think live worms would stay to be happily eaten in her nest.

She was so sad she felt like crying, but her birdies would wonder what was wrong, and she had not the heart to see sadness in their merry little eyes. So she went back to her nest, where she found her little ones blissfully asleep. She felt another shudder, knowing well the hunger that would strike her babies come tomorrow, and she fell asleep praying, asking for God's mercy and shedding pitiful little tears.

Next day, Little Sparrow woke up to the happy chirping of the babies. There was food! So many seeds! They had appeared out of nowhere, and were in a little box next to her nest. Little Sparrow felt a surge of joy in her little heart and let it out in a song full of gratitude and joy

From the shelter of the shadow in a bush, Little Boy watched as Little Sparrow hopped around her nest in glee. He had watched her with his glass all afternoon the day before, and felt sorrow in his heart for the helpless creature. That night, while Little Sparrow prayed for help, Little Boy had a prayer in his heart as well. He asked God to help the birdie and protect her, because he was such a little boy that couldn't do much to help her, and there were other, bigger People who could do it better than he. He also asked God to deliver him from the Big Ugly Dog of the new neighbor. In the night, he dreamt that come morning, he'd take a little box full of seeds and place it next to the little Sparrow's nest…

To be continued…

D'cha miss me? I'm baaack!

Hey! your favourite mexican is back! My laptop is ok, turns out trouble was caused by some changes a programer did when habilitating it for work in the office's network. Now it is fine, able to log to the net AND to the local office net. Bet I had you all bitting your nails with this exciting paragraph, didn't I?

Well, I'm back, and happy to be able to read all your blogs in the instants that I have free. I'm broke, as usual, overworked, up to my eyes in debt but for these moments, happy. I have my girls, my health (five cases of AH1N1 in my hometown so far), my family and some sweet surprises.

My friend Heather sent me a parcel a few days ago, and it arrived today! It was so nice to receive it, I could almost feel the hugs she sent me! thank you so much for cheering me up.

hehee! see where it came from? aaaall the way from the other side of the world...

and inside, prettily wrapped...

This beautifull magazine, and an even more beautiful photo of my friend Heather and her two girls (even if only one is visible!) and a bookmark! (she knows I read a lot!)

Thank you, Heather! it was just the thing to lift my spirits!

And a parting photo: my two girls. When did they grow up so much? Life is wonderful! Well, most of the time, at least.

Now, if only I could gather US$30,000 before the month ends and be able to pay my debt...

Out in the dumps

Just a quick post, to let you know my laptop has decided to play goofy on me and won't allow me to connect to internet. I can do anything else, but oh, I cannot connect! so I'm here, on Sunday afternoon, at a cybercafé that only serves water on plastic cones (so much for the café part!) because I cannot yet publish from my phone either! I miss you all, and hope to have my laptop functioning again soon so I can catch up with what you have been doing. I can check my email on my phone, and also log on to the messenger and gmail chat, so I'll see you there when I can !!!

Did I mention I miss you all?

Contemplating moving.

It is hot in my hometown, so hot you itch to be outside as soon as you feel the tiniest flicker of a breeze, and the keyboard in my laptop feels uncomfortable against my skin.

Too hot to be in a single place for long, let alone crochet or knit!!!!!

I'm contemplating moving to cooler climates, if it is only in my imagination...

Sunny little things!!!!

I love daisies! they are so cheerful! (yes, I sound like what's her name in "You've got mail"... oh, yes, Meg Ryan "daisies are so friendly) but seriously, I love them! I like roses, but I like the garden variety better than the hothouse ones, and I prefer simple, fresh flowers like daisies. Or Cosmos, I definetly have a thing for those flowers!!!!

And my hubbie gave me these for no reason at all. So I like them even more.

These two flowers are sunny little things... just like these other two sunny little things I have :

Aren't they the loveliest?

This is a view of one of the parts of the main square about 20 meters from my home. The square is a bit oddly distributed, so if you had a rectangle and divided it in three withdwise, and then one third of it divided it in three widthwise again, this would be it.

And this is a pic of the City Hall, just before the Spring Parade. (Yes, it was about a month and a half ago, but I like how it came out). On this parade, only children from Kindergarden age participate, wearing cute little costume. My girl was a little frog, with all her classmates. One of my nieces was Spring Queen.

Follow up (moving on!)

Well, things are both scarier and better here in my country. Better because it seems the death rate is slowing down. Scarier, well, because some people are in histerics. And some more are adamant that this is nothing to worry about.

So I'm moving on to nicer stuff because I know you already know all this from the news, and because why dwell in unpleasant subjects when I can talk about, instead of these wonderful women. Please excuse the poor photo quality but I took photos of the photos at a family reunion and it wasn't such a good resolution camera.

I wanted for a while now to tell you about the women in my family, and I'm going to start today to make a sketch of my mother's mother's side... hehehe! well, here we go. Pack up your hooks and needles, and maybe some refreshments, because we are traveling back in time... :D

In this photograph, the first one, right to left, upper line is my great grandfather Manuel, or Nino Manuel. He's here with his parents and siblings. My Great-great-grandmother Margarita loved to do needlework... and do you notice something funny about the photo?

Well, check out the patriarc and matriarc... see what I mean?

She's sitting in a low stool and he is sitting in a chair... because she was taller than he was!
Nina Margarita was a very merry woman. As soon as she heard music, her feet started moving even when she was sitting, because her husband didn't dance much, specially since he was selfconscious about their height difference. I can easily picture her as a girl, dancing while doing her chores. The years of her youth were hard, but she was quick of wit and had a sunny spirit.

Once I was told that when someone asked her why had she married my great greatgrandfather when she was a lot taller than him (regarding her dancing sitting) and she andwered:

"Well, we started talking at a party, and I liked him pretty well. By the time we stood up and I noticed I was taller, it was too late. I was already in love"

On this photograph, again first, right to left, is Nino Manuel. Then there is my great uncle Martin, (their son), my Great grandmother Concepción (his wife), my great aunt Nena(their daughter) and the little one is my great aunt Rita. In this photo they were celebrating my Nino and Nina's silver wedding, my aunt Nena's quinceañera (15th birthday, like sweet 16 in US) and my aunt Rita's First Communion. Yup, that is their party clothes. Cheery, aren't they? I don't understand why photographers felt the need to make them look glum and serious. I know they were a merry lot!

Nina Concha was so much more addicted to anything related to needles, hooks, fabric and yarn that anyone I've known or know about! She lived in a very very small town (it's small even now), one of those towns with only one street, no electricity, no running water, you get my point. So, she had one son, three daughters, and she got up hours before the sun to get all her chores done before there was natural light. I mean, she used a wood stove, for cripes sake! She and her three daughters had to cook for her husband and son so they could take their food to the fields, plus clean the house, do laundry, and so on and so forth.

Then they were ready as soon as the sun came up to sit in their patio... and embroider, crochet, sew, the works!!!!! I've seen her work, and let me tell you, her lace is as good as any european expensive, delicate lace!!! they would work until there was no more good natural light, and then they had to begin preparing for the next day's chores.

This handsome woman is my grandmother Mary, here on her wedding day to my grandpa Carlos. She was Concepción's eldest daughter, pretty as a picture! To the day, there's probably no craft invented that she hasn't at least tried to learn. Well, other than carpentry. Or maybe ice sculpting. Or stone sculpting... well, she has done a lot!! She gave birth to eight daughters and four sons, of which...

My mom, this little girl with the big bow and serious expression is the eldest. She may look very solemn, but she was quite a handful, or so my great grandpa Antemio says (more about him some other time). She helped her mom raise her brothers and sisters, so she learned to sew at an early age. She taught me to crochet, to sew, to embroider... I honestly think there's nothing Mom can't do.

Ok, now I've introduced you to the crafty women on my family on my mother's side... I have more on my father's side. Now tell me

Is there any chance that I would have escaped this case of atavism, this adiction to yarn related crafts????

Lol! I'm sure glad I did not!


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