Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Leading up to Christmas

Well as my frequent readers know I do advent activities with my three year old. Some of the ones we did were really easy and others a little more complicated. Either way I hope that she learned about the bible and had fun doing so. I know I had a blast with it. We also do activities after Christmas until the new year. Yesterday we made new years goodies bags for the new years party we will be attending. I didn't have the time or the money to get the items that were suppose to be in it so instead we used the candy from our Santa stockings. (we had plenty of that) The little story that is attached to the bags goes like this:We are giving you chocolates with colorful wrappers to represent the colorful people in our lives, Candy canes to remind us to keep Jesus with us all year long, circle shaped caramels to represent the ending and beginning of a year, silver pieces for fortune and prosperity for the new year, and most importantly red suckers to remind us we can pray for forgiveness thanks to the blood Jesus shed for us.
Today we will be making the armor of God and learning the My God Is So Big song, and tomorrow we will open our time capsule from last year and make a new one.

For Christmas Eve my husband had to work all day so we decided I would take the girls out to El Valle to hang with his family all day. The day before I baked two pies (pumpkin and chocolate pecan) and a sugar plum coffee bread. (not sure what sugar plum is suppose to be but the recipe was just cherries) That morning I was trying to pack for the day to El Valle and for the weekend in Tuxpan at Issacs sisters house. Also I was planing to bring Alanas activity out there and enough stuff for all the kids to get to join in. The activity was to paint old bottles and make glitter pictures. They bottles where to represent the gifts from the three kings. (the kids all loved it and made such pretty stuff) Issacs mom and Aunt showed up a lot sooner than I thought, and not sure if this happens with anyone else but they seem to be fine with making you wait but when its their turn its obvious they are not to happy with it. So in all the rushing about I forgot Alanas sweater because its actually pretty warm in my apartment and its warmer in my town than in the valley. To say the least I didn't hear the end of it all day. And one of his aunts reminded me like 3 times to be sure I packed it for the trip to Tuxpan. Sometimes I swear they think Im an idiot and a bad mother. I expect this sort of thing from my mother in law, after all they are her grand-kids. Also I have seen her do it to Issacs sister so that makes me feel a lot better. I´m starting to realize that in Mexico Aunts have the same nagging rights as mother in laws. I always get so frustrated with all the constant corrections with my how I´m doing with my girls but my husband assures me that this is just how family is here and its not that they think I´m a bad mother. So needless to say by the end of the night I was a little on edge but for the most part the day went well. This year was so much more comfortable than last year. I knew where to pick up and pitch in and when I didn't I was able to ask. And as a matter of fact they were cooking a turkey and no one had any idea what they were doing so I was able to give advise and help with that. Although there were a few miscommunication even with that. It came with a bag of gravy and I told his aunt I would fix it when it was time and that it needed to wait until right be fore time to eat. She asked me how you eat it and I told her you poor it on top of your turkey. Well after I made it I had to run out and help one of my girls. When I came back in she had pored the whole pot of gravy over the whole turkey. lol. I didn't say anything I figure some day Ill make them something with gravy and explain it then.
At one point in the day I was in the kitchen with an Aunt (wife of Issacs uncle) and Grandma and we were cleaning the romaritos (not sure I wrote that right). Anyway the Aunt asked for banana and Grandma made a crude comment to her. Tia was all like, "That is your son you talking about." And grandma just kept shrugging her shoulders and laughing. The reason I tell this story is because I got it... I got the joke and was able to laugh with them. This also is how things go in my family and so at that moment I felt so at home. Honestly even though the aunts drove me nuts sometimes with their nagging and Issac and I got into a tiny tiff about it all in all things were better this year. I told Issac that couples fight over stupid family stuff like this even when they are all from the same country.
It was a pretty exhausting day though and when I got home there was a card from my mom under the door. It was her Christmas card and in it was an invite to come to her house for games and food. At that moment I could picture us all there playing checkers and my girls tearing up her house and I balled. I think the worst part is that Issacs mom was staying with us that night, but she cries about everything so I'm sure she understood. I haven't cried that hard in a while and for that reason it was most likely a good thing. A good cry is good for the soul. I did and do miss my family at this holiday time but I know that my life is in the right place and on Gods track.
And so to all have a safe and Happy New Year.


  1. Oh wow! You got me all teary eyed, I am so very sorry that you miss your family in the states, that is something that I'm sure no matter how many more christmasses pass you will always miss them. It is good though that you not only feel but know that you are in the right place with your hubby & kids. Everytime I read all the post all you women out there write I put myself in your shoes and imagine it's me writting ang going thru all that, it's my way I guess of preparing myself in case we must move out there, sometimes i'm all laughing out loud while I read them and other times i'm in tears as I practically am at the moment.I am very thankful that I found all these diffenert blogs that always give me insight on life out there.
    On another note, that's very good that you do all those different kinds of activities with your kids. Those right there are good memories they will for ever have.
    As far as the aunts, don;t think that just in Mexico they are like that Hehehe! Hubby's got some here in the states that oh my chickles sometimes make me wanna go off on them :)

  2. Amanda,
    The Spanish word to describe the aunts is "metiche" (meh-TEE-cheh). You can say to your spouce, "¡Tus tias son muy metiche!"..."Your aunts are very meddlesome". I know all about this. I struggle with the same problem. Nothing you can do about it except just wait your turn and then slip one in on them once in awhile to show them that the Gringa can handle herself :)

  3. Every family has it's own dynamic, no matter the culture. I have a high-stress mil that acts as if she is the commander of a family platoon and barks out orders accordingly, including to me. Over time I've seen how my husband and his sisters know how/when to ignore her and pick battles sparingly, only when it's really out of line or annoying. Although my family isn't this way, people usually chime in because they have good intentions to help, and they don't consider that they should wait to give advice until it is solicited. When this happens to me, I smile and nod, then go do what I want anyways...no harm done. :-)

  4. I think that no one, who hasn't gone through what you have gone through, can really understand how brave and strong you are. I didn't even have to go through as much as you. You are an amazing woman. and I know when I was in the same situation as you how I felt at the time. God bless you and My prayers and hope and faith to you and your family.

  5. I feel you on the in-laws thing. Aunties, sisters, cousins... sometimes they won't let me hear the end of it, whatever "it" is. Sometimes I get flustered and defensive, sometimes I try to explain why I'm doing things my way, but mostly I just nod and smile and then keep on with my own way. That seems to work best. :) Best of luck. And happy new year!

  6. sometimes I forget that lots of people are really close to their family. It makes me forget how hard it must be to be away from your family on the holidays. I'm glad you could at least "come over" and celebrate the holiday with us.