Mom's Blog

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Visitors, Pirana, and a new doctor

Having a bit of trouble trying to get this blog published with its pictures; I'm on my fourth frustrating try. so maybe no fotos, but just want to catch up any who may read this and wonder what happening in Santa Cruz. I promise not to talk about the political situation..:)
First our visitors: It's been a busy week. Our nephew, Martin Gutierrez, called that he was coming to Santa Cruz with some filming work and we were happy to have him stay with us for three days. Martin was a young teen when he stayed with us one Christmas in our home on Mason Street. Now, a young man who has his own communictions and filming business in Buenos Aires, Argentina. It was a joy to catch up with him on his life, watch some of his dvd's and remember old times.

Just after he left, my ex-student, Yolanda called saying that the Peace Corps was moving her from her village to the city for a couple of days. It seems the Bolivian President was to visit her village and bring along some of his 'cohorts' and the Peace Corps preferrred that she be tucked away in Santa Cruz. So she and another Peace Corps volunteer in a similar situation came to stay with us for two days. Maybe we should open up a bed and breakfast? It was fun having these enthusiastic gals with us, eager to begin their assignments, yet not sure if the Corps is even going to keep them here with the political unrest the country is experiencing.

In between these two visits, Daniel and Osvaldo, the man who is overseeing most of the work at our church were able to squeeze in a short fishing expedition. The two had been planning an excursion as soon as the flooring was done. So along with a couple of others from the church and brother Ruben and nephew Enrique they headed out and came back with a bucketfull of Pirana, the flesh-eating fish. Dangerous to catch since they have such sharp teeth that can cut the line or even bite your hand. But once in my fry pan, they were MY domain and with a little pepper and lemon they made a great lunch.

Then I can't not add a note about our newest doctor in the family. Felipe, Adrian and Lea's youngest, has just completed his internship at a hospital here and is now a doctor. Being only 22 years old this is quite an accomplishment, especially that he was voted the most outstanding intern by the doctors at the hospital. Way to go Centellas!

Monday, April 07, 2008

Posting requires patience!

This is the second blog regarding Sunday April 6. Hopefully I can get it all this time.
Daniel and I hosted the Centellas family birthday bash at our house on Sunday. About 25 people squeezed into out home to enjoy all kinds of foods as we remembered Claudia and Miguel who celebrate the 7th, Daniel having his 60th on Thursday and remember GRandma Centellas whose birthday was the 4th. So we had humintas that Graciela learned how to make from Abuelita, homemade Donuts made by Lea who is always trying out new sweets on all of us. I produced several loaves of my cheese bread with lots of spreads, and alforjes - those fruit filled cookies Grandma always made for her little store and which our boys always liked. Of course, topped off with traditional cake and fruit.
The pictures are of Daneil and three of his brothers, me playing RummyCube with Graciela, Lea, and Mayra, and hopefully I can get David and his son Christian in this blog. Christian is the youngest Centellas, born just several hours after Javier. We had a good time eating and catching up with each other.

Family Gathering

Sunday afternoon Daniel and I hosted a typical family gathering celebrating the April birthdays. With about 25 people at out house around our tables and outside we feasted on Graciela's homemade humintas (like Mexican tamales), Lea's homemade donuts, my cheese bread with several spreads, alfajores - the filled cookies that Grandma Centellas used to make for sale in her little store, and , of course, cake and fruit. Here are a few pictures if I can get them all downloaded. Daniel and 3 of his brothers, some of the women playing RummyCube and our youngest Centellas with proud father, David. Christian was born just a few hours after Javier.

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

SASA Student=Peace Corps Volunteer

In Saginaw, I often would run into ex-students while out and about town. It was always interesting to see what some of them had done with their lives and to hear their stories. Unfortunately, there were a few times that I couldn't remember their names.
Yesterday I had great experience with an ex-student. Yolanda Brooks was in the first high school Spanish class at SASA. She was a quiet, determined and hard working student. Then in her senior year I was her mentor for independent advanced Spanish. Not long ago she emailed me that she had just graduated from MSU with a degree in Microbiology, but was volunteering with the Peace Corps. She informed me that she would be placed in Bolivia.
With great joy we finally met up as she was in town here in Santa Cruz, before heading out to her assignment in Mairana, a small town about 4 hours from Santa Cruz. She had been in Cochabmaba for training and was excited to be ready to go to her work site which would involve envronmental education related to Amboro National Park.
WE showed her around town a bit, had lunch at Casa Del Camba - all typical Santa Cruz dishes and showed her our home, and the bedroom she is free to use anytime she comes to Santa Cruz for supplies or errands. It was so much fun cathing up with this very bright young lady.