My Christmas 2011 will be spent in Boaco, Nicaragua with my old host family. Once again, the holiday is celebrated by over-drinking and setting off bombas at all hours of the night. Unlike the States, the festivities take place on the evening of the 24th and roll over to the 25th at midnight when gifts will be opened (drunken unwrapping party?). I myself have been patiently waiting to open the gifties my family has sent me, which I have placed under the tree that I made out of a wine bottle and poster board!
I have adorned my refrigerator with some gel molds that my sister sent me:
And I was able to decorate the Casa Materna with some foamy paper, glue and glitter!
The women at the Casa Materna are much like me this holiday season in that they are not at home with their families. So I decided to have a little Christmas celebration with them. I began with a charla about the birthing process (very Christmasy!), handed out gifts, facilitated a craft project, and attempted to bake cookies. For the gifts I decorated some old envelopes and stuffed them with baby clothes which were donated by a medical mission group out of Grand Rapids Michigan run by Nancy and Bob Gillette (blog post to come). Although they did not quite understand what they are, I led my pregnant ladies in making gingerbread men out of foamy paper. They turned out beautifully!
|making gingerbread men|
|13 newly-baked gingerbread men, and 13 buns in the oven|
The Cookie Fiasco:
Since moving to plan B I have concluded that about 1% of the oven-possessing community of Nicaragua know how to operate them. I brought the dough to my neighbor’s house and actually found COBWEBS in her oven! Upon asking how to turn it on, she confessed she had never used it, and when trying to light it (being a match-starting model) there was a benign but frightening mini-explosion.
I did eventually find a woman who knew how to turn her oven on and I was able to make the cookies by 10 o’clock that night. My experience has inspired a self-conducted verbal survey. So far, of the four oven-owners I have asked, ZERO know how to turn them on.
I will be visiting friends and family in Alameda, California for the first week and a half of January. If anyone has been feeling the urge to donate, I would be happy to fly back to Nicaragua with any (or more) of the following donations:
Lightly used or new:
beads or jewelry supplies
Email me or call the house in January to let me know!