Thursday, September 29, 2011

Ischigualasto Archeological Park

On our P-day (Preparation or free day), we drove to this archeological park.  We paid for the tour, which consisted of driving on dirt and very rocky roads, to 5 locations to see some very interesting rock formations.  Along the way we saw another set of red mountains - Colorados.  As we're from Colorado and also have what we call Red Rocks nearby, we enjoyed seeing more of the country and this unique landscape.

Can you see the fossil on the lower right side?  It's black in color.

This is called the Painted Valley.

They named this Bocchi Balls Court and it was interesting to see all these round rocks!

It was a warm day but hey, it was 42^C 2 days ago.  In Farenheit that's only a mere 107.6^.  Must admit we're looking forward to moving into our little house and having air conditioning.  So far we're enjoying an air conditioned car and a wonderful fan in our apartment.  It's just the opposite for the young elders as they have a/c in their apartments but hoof it all day out in the sun.  They're troopers, to say the least - and all terrific!

At one of our stops we saw this Guanaco, part of the Llama family.  Their wool is finer and softer than the Llama's.

This rock formation is called the Submarine.

This formation is called the Mushroom.  It was humongous!  Notice the red mountains behind it.  They were magnificent.

We had a 10.5 mile drive back at the end of our tour and we drove so close to these red mountains that it looked as we could hike 25 yards and be right next to them. 

On the way back we also saw a pack of Guanacos.

On our way back we came across a cactus grove!

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Chilecito's little church building and other pictures of the country

We went to the little city of Chilecito, which is about 4 hours from Catamarca, on Sunday to visit the branch president and missionaries.  We loved the church building and the land around it as most of the buildings we've seen are wall-to-wall building with a fence around it.  This was great to see and the inside was so beautiful as well.

We passed red mountains along the way and absolutely loved the drive.
We felt like we could reach out and touch them!

The land is very arid in this region as you can see from this picture.

It looked like there was a wall built on the side of this hill but it was just part of the landscape and very interesting to see.

Annual Relief Society Satellite Broadcast Activity

Saturday evening, September 24th, was the annual RS broadcast.  As they showed it live and we're 3 hours ahead of SLC, Utah, the broadcast started at 9 p.m., which gave the women an opportunity to have an activity before and food afterwards.  The usual time they eat dinner is around 9:30-10:00 p.m., so it was perfect timing for the members in our area.  Please enjoy the pictures from the activity:

This is the poster our ward made.  It was so big they had to put it on another wall all by itself!

                                                         Many stayed for the picture!

There were a few Primary (the children's organization in the church) children there and they sang "I Love to See the Temple" to us.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Zone Conference, Argentine gates and walls, Beautiful homes, and an Elder car!!

Greetings once again!  I'll try to update you on what has been happening way down south.  First of all, we had a special zone conference (a zone consists of about 14-16 missionaries) and this conference was a combined one with the Catamarca Zone and the LaRioja Zone because Elder Foster of the 2nd Quorum of Seventy was visiting.  Here are some pictures from that meeting:

 On the front row:  Elder Foster, Sister Foster, Sister Salas and President Salas (mission president).

                                   The Lawsons with the Fosters.  They're wonderful people.

                              We found an Elder car!  How nice of Toyota to make one.  :o)

                                  Gates and walls - privacy is very important down here...

Our assigned area is very humble but as we drive throughout the city, we've found some beautiful homes and thought yóu'd enjoy seeing some of them.

A wonderful family we're working with in the ward is the Manuel Chayle family.  They're in the process of building on to their house - a bedroom for the 4 boys and a kitchen.  This is the beginning stage of their addition:
Manuel, with the help of his 2 oldest sons, has made every single one of these cement blocks.

Ariel is a great helper!

Monica and Manuel Chayle with their 4 boys from left to right:  Facundo, Gustavo, Brian, and Ariel.

Finally, we couldn't end without showing you this car we parked next to at the grocery store this week.  They have many new and modern cars but we also see lots of older cars.  We especially liked the red stripe on the side of the car!

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Goodbye Hotel Amerian...Hello Apartment!

I love the keys to the apartment!  And there's a key inside on every door.

We decided on a house to rent and just as we thought we'd be moving into the house we learned that the occupants weren't quite ready to move out.  So we kept looking and found a nice little apartment.  As we still wanted to rent the house, we asked if we'd be able to rent the apartment for a month.  The owners agreed to it!  We later learned that was unheard of so we're very grateful for their willingness to rent to us for only a month.  Tomorrow we go make the final arrangements for purchasing the furniture so our new adventure can begin!  Please be patient with the blog as we may not be able to add to it - at least pictures - for this month.

See that little brown door?  That's our entrance to the apartment, which is behind the business.

Behind that front door is the hallway down to our apartment.  That door that you see at the end will eventually have a home built behind it and this hallway will be shared with those tenants.  The house building is just beginning.

This kitchen - this is it!  To the right of the cupboards/sink,countertop will be the fridge.  I'm trying to figure out where I'll be putting the dishes, pans, food, etc., in the four drawers and under the sink.  So many little space!  All the elders care about is when we'll be baking them some cookies!

There are 2 bedrooms and this one has a closet!  The other room is just a rectangular room with nothing in it.  The entire apartment has this tile floor, except in the kitchen.

Our little patio in the back.  To the right of the sink is where the washing machine will go.  The window to the left is our bedroom window.  We'll be cozy and comfy this month.  Our only hope is that it won't get too hot as we won't have a/c until we move into the house.

The view over that wall where the new house will be built.  We can pick the oranges and lemons for now.

Our future home.