Friday, July 31, 2009

I say it's altitude...

Sorry about the ridiculous font issues of my last post!
No, I didn't mean to have 3 different fonts and 4 different sizes!
We've come to blame many things on the altitude here....this situation is no different!
Oh least you can see the pictures....I didn't know if they would ever load!

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Vivo en Bolivia!

I live in Bolivia!

To God be the glory….I managed to lug 2 (OK…if you count my pillow and blanket combo, 3) carry-ons around 4 different airports in 2 different countries over the span of about 24 hours. And, I am happy to say, there was NO DRAMA to report! Obviously there were MANY prayers going out around the world (or at least the US) and each one was needed…thanks!

Upon our arrival, my new roommate, Stephanie, and I were driven straight from the airport (at 14,000 feet…in case you were wondering) to our new house!!! Some missionaries had come in before to make our place welcoming…so sweet!

Here is my VERY OWN BEDROOM…yes, this is pretty exciting!

And here is 1 of the 2 “catch all” closets for the house…also known as my personal closet “filled” with my Bolivian wardrobe (see Stages of Grief if you want to know how I feel about this!).

Ironically enough, I’ve yet to sleep in my own room once! The nights are just so cold and Stephanie’s queen bed with a movie playing on her laptop is much more invitingJ! Oh well…I’m thankful for my own space just the same!

There is so much more to share, but because this post is already pretty long, I’ll leave you with a few pictures that “typify” La Paz…as I see it that is!

Many people carry HUGE loads and walk up steep hills...they're obviously used to the altitude!

As Logan, our director's son, said "I love La Paz because, no matter where you are, you can always see the mountains." Couldn't have said it better myself!

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Explore Idaho

That's right!
I finally had my first (and hopefully not last) friend come visit the great, yet widely unknown, state of Idaho! Therefore, she was dragged from potato field to mountainside getting the "best of" regarding all things Idaho.

Some highlights include, but are not limited to:

Kayacking the great Snake River in order to view the architecutrally impressive Perrine Bridge.

The bridge and canyon from above....quite breathtaking if you ask me!

Hiking with my sister, Laura, through the "potato fields" (or whatever they were)..... go cliff-jumping into a crystal clear lake!

Driving through Stanley, ID.... get the LAST campsite... Redfish Lake!

Yes, this was our own, private beach:)!

And, last but not least, viewing the Niagara of the West (A.K.A. Shoshone Falls)...

...and eating at my favorite restaurants with some of Twin Falls' finest:)!

My high school bud and my college bud.....I don't know what to do with so many of my favorites present:)!

I am happy to say that Lauren enjoyed her time exploring this state of mine and found out for herself that Idaho has more than just great potatoes!
Who will discover this blessed truth next?!

Stages of Grief

Yes....the time is drawing near!
And, even though I'm very excited to start my new life in La Paz, there is a huge hurdle I must leap over....and there are times when that hurdle just seems impossible to pass over!
"What is this hurdle you speak of?" some of you may be asking.

The "p" word.......yup, you guessed it....PACKING!

Please see the amount of clothes that made it through the NUMEROUS stages of purging..and yet, will NEVER fit into only 2 suitcases!

Hence the final rite of passage which included making it by the Pant Nazi (AKA Mom) and her sidekicks (the sisters Jenny and Laura)! Seriously, even though I was so thankful for their help, this was the part that brought out my many different stages of grief!

First I was just can you NOT let me take my favorite pair of jeans?
Second I was emotional....I've just had so many fond memories in this shirt!
Third I shut-down and became a robot....tell me what to do.
But, the fourth and final stage of MY grieving process was actually accepting this necessary course of action and delighting in the results.

TA DA! This is my (almost) completely packed bags!

Thank you family for helping me through my craziness and making my catastrophe a piece of art!

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Déjà vu

So...I must love the open plains of Kansas because, for the 4th time, I drove across the country. Thankfully, every time I've taken on this great feat I have had a friend accompany me, and this time was no different!

Lauren and I on day 1 of our 4-day road trip to IDAHO!

Possibly due to the fact that we were literally surrounded by ALL of my Charlotte belongings (I was VERY proud of the fact that I fit all/most of the past 3 years in my TiNy Cabrio) or because of the amount of coffee and water consumed in order to stay alert, we had to made a few stops along the way! However, even with our periodic stops, we made good enough time to "take a day off" in Colorado!

We loved the GREAT views of the beautiful Colorado valley....and the company:)!

Amy Jo (a dear TU friend), Jerusalem, me, Lauren, and Esther....loved hanging out with these girls and sharing a wonderful Ethiopian feast!

After 3 years in North Carolina and 3 days of driving, I was happy to finally arrive at our destination....Twin Falls, ID!

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Walking in Memphis

Although Southaven, MS (pronounced: miss-i-pee) is an exciting town full of exotic restaurants (Sonic) and exciting places to buy international wares (Target), I’ve been able to escape to the “big city” to see old sights with new friends!

clockwise from top: Sarah, Shauna, Stephanie, me, Natalie and Lisa

First stop, the Peabody Hotel. Not only is this hotel a beautiful landmark of Memphis, but it also has famous ducks that are escorted daily from the pond to the roof on a red carpet.

Can you find the mallards?

Memphis from a bird’s-eye….or should I say duck’s-eye....view!

Next stop, maybe after some finagling on my part, the Civil Rights Museum. I highly recommend this to anyone who finds himself/herself in Memphis….it was everything I had hoped for and more!

The museum was connected to the actual hotel where MLK Jr. was shot.

I left the museum with a sense of utter respect and gratitude for the bravery displayed by men and women who acted upon the conviction that God’s love for mankind is equal and universal.

Lastly, what would a tour of Memphis be without visiting the home of the King? So, after 2 different tries on 2 separate days, I saw the home of Elvis. Fun Fact: Elvis bought this land from a doctor whose grandmother, Grace, gave it to him; hence the name Graceland.

Our tribute to the King of Rock ‘n’ Roll! We love Memphis!