Sunday, April 22, 2012

Sunday Nights (or Mondays)

One of my favorite TV shows is "The Amazing Race".  For the past few years, I have been watching it here with friends on the computer/television (depending on how the website is working).

So normally on Sunday nights, I head over to my friend, Kara's house (and Bill, Ubi, and Bacon) to watch the fun!

I decided last week to take some pictures of our time enjoying this crazy show!
Because of our crazy schedules this year, Bill and Kara bought the itunes pass, so we have watched on Monday nights most weeks, but also some Sundays. The fun has also been that we are behind, so we can often watch 2 episodes per time to help in catching up!

 Last week, Kara asked if we could grill out to which I responded a hearty, Yes!!! (Grilled foods are some of my favorites!) It was a blast!
 Hurray for The Amazing Race!! My favorite team this year is Bopper and Mark (how could you not cheer for someone named Bopper?? So fun!). I love their Alabamian accents and sometimes I have to interpret for Kara and Bill (although sometimes none of us have any idea of what they are saying!)
 Enjoying hanging out time!
Kara is a queen of hospitality! She and Bill love cheese, so it is quite often that the cheese slicer makes an appearance and it is delightful! Last week, they shared some of their fabulous gouda purchased at one of the stops on their recent cruise (I can't remember if it was from Aruba, Bonaire, or Curacao). Delish!

This has been a final season watching together as Kara and Bill are moving back to the states, so this is our last time to watch The Amazing Race together. I'm super sad that their time here in Panama is ending! So thankful for the Lord providing such a sweet friend!

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Easter 2012

Easter always evokes sweet memories of celebrating the resurrection of Christ.

I remember as a child going to sunrise service, being cold on those mornings, singing as the mist rises off of the grass, smelling in the cool, fresh morning air, singing the classic hymns of Easter (oh how I miss those), family dinners (the farm word for lunch), new dresses and white shoes, and hunting Easter eggs. I remember the soft Easter baskets mom made for us when we were little that were pulled out year after year with the fake green grass and a few eggs for decoration in them.
We were not an egg-dying family, probably because it was messy and mom knew we would NOT eat the eggs! :)

I remember at least one Easter having sunrise service in Dallas on flagpole hill. (Isn't that what it is called on Northwest Hwy and Buckner???? I'm losing my memory!)

I've always loved the Easter hymns, sung with gusto, and how so many of those songs are such a celebration of the resurrection in their composition!

"Up from the grave He arose, with a mighty triumph o'er His foes. He arose a victor from the dark domain and He lives forever with His saints to reign. He a-rose, He a-rose. Hallelujah, Christ arose"

"Christ the Lord is risen today, Ha-------------lelujah!
Sons of men and angels sang, Ha-----------lelujah!
Raise your joys and triumphs high, Ha-------lelujah!
Sing, ye heavens and earth reply, Ha---------lelujah!"

There are many others I could mention, but these are some of my favorites!

I remember Easter dinner with tables filled with aunts and uncles, cousins, grandparents, all squeezed in together at Grandma and Grandpa's house. I remember the huge Easter egg hunt outside with the big cousins hiding the eggs and the highly sought after silver egg with money inside.

I could spend this whole post on Easter memories, although it would help to have a childhood photo album. Maybe that will be a summer project to digitize our family pictures from way back when.

This Easter, I was feeling sad on Saturday about not being with family and doing something special. So we (the roommates) planned an Easter dinner with Rebecca and Cheryl.

It turned out to be a sweet time of celebrating together, cooking, eating delicious food, relaxing, and enjoying time with Jesus' family.

We came home after church and began our time together.
It ended up being a sweet time!

 Jess and I sported some awesome aprons!!!! It was fun!
 Cheryl licking the cool whip covered spatula! Yummo!!!
 Jess totally created this beauty in her head the night before on the way to the store.
Chocolate cake with a nutella spread holding the two layers together, covered in cool whip and strawberries with chocolate syrup drizzled on top.
 Our lovely spread - it was yummy! Yeah, team!
 Ready to eat!

It was a sweet day of celebrating with friends!

Monday, April 16, 2012

Mami's Pets and Sunset

Isn't that a fun title? I'm not super witty or creative, so I just write what comes to mind! :)

 We spent most of Friday on the beach, soaking up the end of our semana santa time. It was a lovely, cloudy day. I prefer the cloudy beach days because it doesn't feel so hot!!!
 I love the beauty of the beach, sand, footprints in the sand, etc!!!!

 The waves here don't look so intimidating, but they were crazy!!!!! The sound of the waves is one of my favorite sounds in the world! It's such a reminder of the grandeur and might of God!
 We enjoyed chatting, reading magazines, and relaxing!
 Mami has an amazing talent! The girl can hunt down AND capture crabs! We were in awe!
 She was so proud of her little "pets".
 Not only can she capture them, but she took basic ingredients and made an amazing pasta dish! Griffin and the rest of us were in awe! Mami has some mad skills!
 This last night was the most amazing sunset! The sky lit up to proclaim the beauty of the Lord and we soaked it up!

 Cheryl was up on the roof taking pictures!

I climbed up with her and we sat and talked while watching the beautiful painting God was creating continue developing in the night sky!

What a fabulous and beautiful way to end our time.

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Cheryl's Banana Birthday Bonanza!!!!

April 5 dawned sunny and lovely for the wonderful Cheryl Lynne's birthday!
We had it from a VERY reliable source (cough, Sara, cough) what Cheryl wanted for her birthday celebration, so we had put a plan into action!

 The day included a trip to David to get ice cream for said bonanza that involved banana splits! We couldn't get the helado the night before because there was no electricity in our house. It was SO lovely outside!!!!
 Dinner was fabulous fajitas (yes, I like alliteration and it is fitting since Cheryl is an English teacher!)
 So happy about her little yellow figurines! Thanks, Mind-a-lynn!!!
 The party plan was to include yellow (her favorite color), bananagrams (favorite game), and banana splits (yellow theme). Jess and I didn't not have a yellow shirt, but found one at the Importadora American in Aguadulce. Cheryl was like, "Oh, you bought a yellow shirt. Do you know that's my favorite color?" Um, yes, that was the point! :)
The funnier part was the Cheryl bought herself yellow trousers! Hehehe - she had no idea the party was occurring later that week.
 Oh dear, Cheryl likes matches.
 We were setting up for the self-timer, so as I was getting it just right, Cheryl kept posing and cracking me up!

 Ok, there is an inside joke with this picture because it is SOOOOO funny. Maybe you'll get it too!!!
 Happy birthday, Cheryl!!!! Yellow just for you.

Roses are yellow
Bananas are yellow
Celebrating you is never mellow!
(Poetry is not my gift!)

 I didn't get a picture of Kara's awesome banana card she made for Cheryl. It even had puns in it and we all laughed!
 We had no birthday candles, so we improvised!

Happy birthday, friend! We are so thankful the Lord has brought you to Panama and the laughter you bring! Thanks for being a listening ear, smiling friend, and fun next-door teacher/friend.

Cafe de La Luna

We finished our time in Boquete going on a coffee farm tour of Cafe de La Luna.

 The owner and his wife desire to treat their workers fairly. These two cuties kept spying on us out of their window. So sweet!!!!

 We all got to try the coffee cherry. Cheryl wasn't too up for it as she had eaten an entire coffee cherry once in her life, which made Richard (the owner) laugh hysterically!
 There are loads of flower pictures because the foliage in this region is incredibly lovely!!!!
 It started sprinkling when we sat down to learn about coffee and continued drizzling during our walking tour.

 Look at that lovely papaya (not my favorite fruit, unless it is just right!)

 More trumpet flours!!!

 In this process, the cherries are dried in the sun and then the beans are separated.
 Then the beans are separated in size and the rejects.

 Learning about what coffee can smell like - who knew? Toast was one of my favorite descriptions!

 We tried our hand at sniffing three different roasts of coffee.
 Jessica was probably the most proficient at it. I thought they smelled the same, but kept pretending they smelled differently! :)

 Then the three roasts were brewed and we had to try and guess the light, medium, and dark roasts.
Jess and Rebecca are on the only coffee drinkers in our group, BUT Mami and I totally called the three blends! YESSSS!!!!

 Because Cheryl's birthday was closest to our tour date (her birthday was the next day), she got to be the roaster of our sample coffees!!!
 She was excited!
 Coffee is beautiful! 

 The smell is one of my favorite in the world!
 The different tests of the beans throughout the roasting process.
 Finished product! Dad, this is coming your way this summer!!!
Jessica has been searching for Panamanian coffee that she likes and this was the winner for her!

It was a great way to end our day in Boquete!

If you are ever in the Boquete area, I definitely recommend this tour and learning experience.