I'm so behind on this blog. I feel like we have so, so many things to post and write about, but just no time. So, so many pictures to share, but no time to upload them.
The other night we were visiting with fellow missionary friends and I was commenting on the fact that I have, it seems, no free time. I used to have free time. I know this because I used to read. I used to have time to read. I rarely read anymore, I just don't have time. It's been an adjustment for me, because I love to read. But all my free time now, once eaten up by a deliciously good book (or some other selfish pleasure), is eaten up by socializing. Or cleaning. I have never cleaned so much in my entire life. My kids are always filthy, and so is my house. I have never seen so much dirt in all my blessed life. I can't keep up. With the dirt. Or the people. We're too busy being with them to have time for much else. Argentines are very social people. And that is, in fact, how you reach people. You have to actually spend time with them.
So here is a picture of my new little friends.
Marcela's kids. I love them.
Marcela came to church yesterday for the first time. I sat next to her and helped her find her way through the Bible as the pastor preached. She got teary-eyed and went forward for prayer at the end. Her two sweet daughters, Camila (9) and Sofia (2), came with her to church. They kept looking shyly at me all throughout the service. So, of course, I fed them cookies. Later Camila took off with the 6-12 year olds on a three-day camp retreat with the kids from church. Just like that. She is there now, learning about God and Jesus and the Bible.
Today we went up to the slums to visit Marcela and her family. As we were heading out at 6pm, I thought of how many times our plans had changed in just one day. The morning started with Tony doing our taxes. Then he was going to fix our van (it's broken - radiator and power steering leaks), and then head out an hour south to continue work on a new church plant bathroom. But that fell through - post-poned until tomorrow - so it was off to the slums. But, wait, Juan was going to come over for a Bible study at 5 - what to do? So we called Juan to reschedule. No problem, Juan would go with us to the slums instead. Okay. But when the time came to go, no one could get a hold of Juan. So on the way out, we took a major detour and stopped by Juan's house. He was there. We all piled in the church's pickup and headed out.
Not two months ago this would have driven me crazy. Annoyed me at the very least. I barely noticed today. This is life here. Make plans, but roll with it. You never know how a day will unfold. And after we came home and stripped our dirty clothes for much needed baths, leaving piles of desert sand on the bathroom floor, the kids seemed to think dinner at 9:30 at night was perfectly normal, as well. I don't hear much of a peep out of them anymore over it (well, except the high-maintenance one, we always hear a peep or two or a trillion from her). They had too much fun running through dry river gorges up in the desert mesa with their new little friends. Throwing rocks at tin cans, kicking a ball around, and avoiding scorpions. Oh yes, scorpions. (No pictures, Denise, I promised.). Marcela said they've found them in their bed and crawling up the kids' legs. But no worries, the sting is nothing, she assured me. Her kids have been stung - "no big deal"....