Monday, November 19, 2012

Mexico Day 3- Casa Sweet Casa

Monday morning we ate pancakes and eggs at YWAM before heading back out to the build site. After several trips down this road we got used to seeing certain landmarks like the stacks of junked cars, the hillside graveyard, the Ensenada jail and so many taco stands.

We pulled up to the lot and the family stood outside waiting for us. Diana remembered us from yesterday and was excited to see us again. While the guys jumped back into building, most of the girls got back on the bus with Sylvia and the kids to go on a shopping trip to Wal-Mart.

Most groups take their family shopping but Sylvia was taken aback and didn't want to come at first. She teared up, all of this was just so overwhelming for her. But we got on the bus and headed to Wal-Mart. Tyler and Ellie came with us to help translate and figure everything out.

We tromped into Wal-Mart, a bit out of our element, ready to fill up shopping carts for our new friends.

We helped both kids pick out new shoes, found all sorts of things for the kitchen and kept filling the carts aisle by aisle.

We kept Irving and Diana entertained as their mom shopped so she could focus on getting what she needed. Diana has the basics down of this smile--mouth open, hands on hips... but she's kinda missing the smiling part of it.

Kayla, Haleigh and Haley were all so good with her--making her laugh, throwing a princess crown in the cart when she became obsessed with it and carrying her all over the store.

We were there for a couple hours and everyone was hungry by the end. Cheryl had everyone pick out a sweet treat from the bakery and Emma loaded up the tray. We weren't sure what everything was but it all looked so good. Checking out took awhile but eventually we packed the bus full of all our purchases drove back to the house.

While we were gone they had put on the roof, installed more of the drywall and started in with the trim. We jumped back in to help, finding new jobs from sweeping out the house, touching up the paint and learning to put on shingles. Ellie stuck with and helped her mom, Tyler made sure to take plenty of pictures of us, Hannah jumped in to help wherever she could.

Furniture comes with the YWAM house and now that the roof was on we could start putting it together. The uncles installed the bunk bed inside...

and the parents put together the dining room table and chairs outside.

Sylvia's family came to help her cook lunch for us. They made tacos with carnitas and it smelled so good while we worked.

We climbed up on the roof and learned to put on the shingles. It was easier than I expected and really fun to work with everyone up there.

We could see the whole neighborhood from up top. In the center of the distance you can see the cement stadium benches of a soccer field and the red roof of the school to the left. It was a special holiday with a parade in town so no one was at school.

Everyone was helpful and patient as they taught us just what to do. My #1 on my building bucket list was to get to work on the roof.

We all attacked lunch-- hand made flour tortillas, steak, rice, beans, guacamole, pico de gallo, and limes.  We'd eaten tacos three times in three days but these were easily the most delicious.

Tatiana and Jay had dance lesson number three during our lunch break. He's going to have a leading role in the Nutcracker Ballet this Christmas.

When he's not perfecting his ballet skills you can find Jay entertaining a crowd like this-- I'm glad I got to know him better this trip and can't wait for him to orchestrate getting Brett in my class.

We've been waiting for this trip for months and it's crazy that it's over so quickly. I don't want to forget what it felt like to be part of something like this, to work side by side with my Young Life girls, to live life with these families, to become friends with Tyler, Ellie and Jeremiah.

Everyone kept talking about how as we worked you couldn't tell which kids went with which parents, who the siblings were, how we all fit together-- we were just one giant family. And that's how it's really supposed to be.

As we arranged everything inside the house the family was supposed to stay away so it would be a surprise. Irving paced in front of the door trying to peak inside and see what was going on. We kept turning him away saying, "It's a surprise!" and he would laugh and run away only to come back a few seconds later.

Carrie brought this kids cape for Diana complete with a mask and wrist cuffs. Pretty sure this is the definition of precious.

Once the house was finished it was a frenzy of taking pictures and giving hugs.

Our bus driver took a picture of our entire group in front of the finished house--insane that we got it all done in just two days. I wish we didn't have to pack up and leave already. They had a little printer in the bus and printed out the picture and framed it to give to the family so they could remember all of us.

When the house is finished we circled back up and passed the keys to the house around the circle. Everyone got to say something to the family and Tyler translated. It was so cool to hear everyone reflect and wish the family well.

Then the family spoke to all of us. Diana went first and spoke right up, "Thank you for my house... And I want to thank all of you for my house." When it was Irving's turn he got choked up and couldn't talk. Watching him made all of us tear up too. His mom took over, wiping tears away, and thanked all of us for what we'd given her family.

Then they unlocked the door for the first time and ran into their new house to check it all out.

Once they'd seen it all everyone came into the front room and prayed with Sylvia, a prayer for her to accept Christ. Grande had no idea if the family were believers but they prayed with us and it was such an awesome moment.

While everyone prayed Diana ran around the bedroom looking through all her new stuff and handing us balloons to blow up.

Before we said good-bye each family took a picture with Sylvia and her kids.

I took my family picture with my Young Life family-- Libby, Haleigh and Haley really do feel like part of my family by now. We'll never forget this trip.

It was dark when we got back to the base and Ellie took us up to the roof. They served up steaming platters of shrimp & broccoli alfredo for dinner, the first non-mexican meal we'd eaten here.

Our team was on clean up duty tonight and they let us crank up the music in the kitchen. Singing and dancing to all of our favorite songs while we washed all the dishes is easily one of my favorite memories. We are good at singing loud and being so fun-- I would do work crew pits in a second with this team.

Both building teams went to the debrief room to watch a video slideshow of the past two days. Then each team stood upfront and passed the microphone down the row as each person shared their closing thoughts and thank you's for the trip. Good ol' Benny Swag had taken on a Mexican poncho and snapback by this time and was ready with another comment about how he hoped the family was "happier than a happy cow." This child is a gem.

Rather than going straight to sleep everyone went out to a restaurant around the corner for nachos and tacos. Just down the street one of the YWAM staff proposed to his girlfriend, she said yes. We stayed up late talking and hanging out, not ready for our trip to be over.

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