Monday, December 26, 2011

Christmas Eve and Christmas Day

It was the zone's goal to have a white Christmas - baptisms!  They had 8 baptisms that day so it was indeed a very white Christmas.

 This is the Arpires family.  The oldest son, Nicolas, is the stake executive secretary and baptized his grandmother.  Another son is serving a mission in Venezuela.

To the right are Elders Egbert/UT and Crespin/El Salvador.

                                              Now that's what you call a white Christmas!! 

On Christmas Day we fed all the missionaries pulled pork sandwiches, french fries, watermelon, and each received a bag of goodies - homemade chocolate chip cookies, snickerdoodles, and brownies.  Didn't seem to be any complaints...  :o)  Several also used our Vonage line to call home, one of two calls allowed for the missionaries per year (the other on Mother's Day).

Sisters Brown/UT and Adair/AZ, Elders Hughes/UT, Guymon/UT, Adams/TX, Crespin/El Salvador, Egbert/UT, and Auma/Peru enjoying their Christmas Day meal.

                                                    Elders Correa/Chile and Burton/CA.

Elders Gossling/GA, Nitta/CA, Perez/CA, Critchlow/UT, Bilbao/Chile, and Araya/Chile. 

Elder Gossling, Sisters Adair and Brown relaxing in the living room during the afternoon.

Above, Elders Araya/Chile, Nitta/CA, and Critchlow/UT with Elder Gossling/GA in the corner of the picture.  On the other side of the room:  Elders Guymon/UT, Auma/Peru, Crespin/El Salvador, Egbert/UT.

A district of elders:  Adams/TX, Bilbao/Chile, Perez/CA, and Araya/Chile.  Bottom picture has Elder Gossling/GA helping with the computer and doing some scheduling.

We hope you all had a very Merry Christmas and will have a wonderfully Happy New Year!!!

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

¡Happy Birthday Elder Adams!

Elder Adams/TX had a birthday last week and a member had a little fiesta for him.  We enjoyed sandwiches (typical food item served in the evening) and empanadas, which were made by Elder Adams. We had a great time and the cake was the best we've tasted down here.

The celebrants:  Doug, Nancy, Elder Guymon/UT, Elder Adams/TX, Mario Gomez (gave the party), Lucho Rasgido, Carmen Rasgido.  Emilia Chaile was also there and took the picture.

               Trying to blow out sparklers!


Mario also loves to sing so we sang a few hymns.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Multi-zone Conference and Ward Activity

On Monday we drove down to Cordoba for a multi-zone conference and loved being with the missionaries.  The conference was held with the Catamaraca, La Rioja, and Rio Quarto zones.   Here are some pictures from our day with them.

Some of the elders waiting for the conference to begin.

It was great for the missionaries to be with each other.
A break during the conference let the elders visit a little bit with each other some more.

Lunch consisted of an asado/BBQ with sausage and steak.  It was delicious and Elder Schlachter/Canada, the mission secretary, is ready to dig in and enjoy it all.
Santa, aka President Salas, his wife and the assistants were busy handing out gifts to all the missionaries.  You should have seen the happy looks on all the faces of the missionaries.  It was great!!
Sisters Brown and Adair having fun during the outdoor activities.

Today is a BIG holiday in Argentina, especially in Catamarca, the Day of the Virgin.  Thousands came here from various parts of the country with many sleeping in tents in all the plazas in the central part of the city.  We had an activity at our church for the families to be together and enjoy.

Walter and Emilia Chaile fixed 285 empanadas (the members donated the ingredients) to share with everyone as well as 2 humongous cakes. The other members brought a variety of things to add to the food the Chailes prepared.  Elder Gonzalez/Chile along with his companion, Elder Burton/CA, organized the activity.
                                                            The kids loved the games!

The Crettaz family along with the niece of the Guerrero family.

Elders Burton/CA and Auma/Peru along with Brian and Gustavo Chayle and Karen Guerrero.

Elders Richter/LA, Winger/UT, Guymon/UT, and Adams/TX enjoying the day.

Elvita Alduncin, Mario Gomez, and Elder Guymon.

Ariel Chayle with some flour on his face from one of the games.

At one of the plazas we saw this tiny horse and llama - ready to add to the festivities.

Friday, December 2, 2011

Cars for sale and our backyard.

How do you know a car is for sale in Catamarca?  Look and see:

They put an orange cone or something similar to what's in the picture on top of the car and Voila! you know it's for sale.  This is a common site all over town.

I love our little backyard with the Bougainville and flowering trees.  The above ground pool won't be used because it leaks water and we're not here to put it to use nor want to pay for all that water.  But it did a great job drying out all the bread cubes for the stuffing for Thanksgiving (we set all the pans out on the edges of the pool)!  There's no sprinkler system so I water the yard by hand several times a week and my goal is to keep everything alive while we live here and not kill anything. So far so good. :o) 

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Pirquitas Dam and other sights

We took a little drive north of Catamarca on our P-day to see the other dam, Las Pirquitas, providing water for the city and loved the sights we saw.  We saw green fields and WATER (it's very, very, very dry here).

It was a cloudy day so the water doesn't look blue but we still thought it was very beautiful.

It was so refreshing to see so much green. was much cooler, which was such a nice change from the 98-102^ weather we're enjoying daily in the city.  I'm not sure how cool it was but the car window didn't feel like it was in the oven. 


             Green is such a pretty color...

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Our Thanksgiving Feast

Happy Thanksgiving! We celebrated down here as well with our little zone.  Doug and I found a couple frozen turkeys - imported from Brazil for $30 U$S each - and decided we had to have our own Thanksgiving.  The pictures will tell the story:

Waiting for the butter to soften and the finished product.  The miracle?  They didn't burn!  The ovens can't be regulated other than low, medium, and high.

The making of stuffing/dressing.  And where do you mix that much dressing?  Why in the kitchen sink!  See our little turkeys on the counter?  They were yummy.  See my great helpers?  Sisters Brown/UT and Adair/AZ are temporarily living with us while waiting for a pension to become available. 


They look ready to dig in!

Elder Nitta/CA gives it a thumbs up and Elder Adams/TX seems mighty pleased, too.  He also made the delicious gravy.  The drink is what we called Lawsonelli's in honor of the Martinelli's we usually have back home.  It consisted of soda water and apple juice and was actually tasty. 

Looks like everyone is enjoying their feast.

                                                          Not bad, wouldn't you say?

The Catamarca Zone
First row:  Elder Nitta/CA, Elder Gossling/GA, Doug and Nancy, Sister Brown/UT, Sister Adair/AZ
Middle row:  Elder Kindt/Canada, Elder Richter/LA, Elder Crespin/El Salvador, Elder Adams/TX, Elder Perez/CA, Elder Valdes/Chile
Back row:  Elder Critchlow/UT, Elder Gonzalez/Chile, Elder Auma/Peru, Elder Burton/CA, Elder Winger/UT, Elder Guymon/UT