28 June 2014

{pretty, happy, funny, real} Pan Dulce, Tennis, Ice Cream, Misspellings

I have become so busy that these {phfr} posts are the only ones I'm consistently doing! I do have other post ideas, but I'll have to get to those later. Here's my week and all its lovely moments...


The third week of Totus Tuus brought us to a new location. I was the only girl on the four-person team this week, so I was on my own at my host family's place. It felt pretty lonely at first without the girls to hang out with, but the kindness of my host family really made up for the change. The Vs are an older Mexican couple, whose kids have all moved out (though, most of them live nearby on the land the family bought years ago). Both retired, they spend their days hosting family, watching movies, working in the garden and enjoying life simply. The woman is chatty, joking and feeds me like I am her granddaughter. "Did you have enough?" she always asks. The husband is much quieter but chimes in with his own humorous anecdotes, and he and his wife go back and forth talking about their life together. It is a charming but realistic picture of marriage painted before me.

About  mid-week when I returned to the house after the teenage session, the wife invited me to the table where a plate of these beauties lay. Her friend had brought over pan dulce, sweet bread, earlier in the day. Some had apple filling, others were like cinnamon rolls. My favorite is the pink one in the lower left. They are perhaps the simplest, but I think they're so pretty...

After a very crazy week last week (with over one hundred kids), this week was relaxed in terms of attendance. Each day we had between fifteen and twenty kids. I did almost every class with the younger ages (first through fourth grade). Each day we teach one of the Luminous Mysteries and, after all of the material has been covered for the first period, free time is spent coloring images of the particular Mystery of the day. T also taught the younger kids a lot and would tell the kids to make it a contest where he would pick the winner. I think he may have picked himself every time, though, because he would say, "Ooh. This is the best picture I've ever done. It is so prrrreeeeetty." The kids would reply that he had said the same thing the day before, which was true. The image below was from the Transfiguration (the fourth Mystery). T made it especially colorful and I couldn't deny it: it was prrrreeeeetty.


Stress relief activity spotted throughout the week is always necessary. I certainly never thought this job was going to be very easy. Honestly, teaching is probably the easiest part. Corralling dozens of excitable kids for Mass where you're meant to be quiet and still? Much more difficult for me than teaching. I am learning valuable lessons in patience, that is for sure.

Anyway, having fun during the week needs to happen in order to give us the energy to tackle another day. One day, we walked over to the nearby school tennis courts and played for a bit. I wasn't wearing the proper attire for tennis (hello, dress which is super affected by the wind and jumping) so I spent some time just taking pictures of the sport. I actually used to be the sports editor of my high school yearbook and was thinking of the two top rules of sports photography: 1) get the whole body of the athlete in the picture and 2) get the ball of the sport in the picture. This one is my favorite of the bunch I took.


One of the best parts about being in this town this week was Father F. He and C went to the same seminary, though the were at different levels when they were there together. He is the reason C and I are working with Totus Tuus, because he asked us if we were interested. Father F could probably be best described as eccentric, but in a way that I find funny. I can't think of any concrete, easily explainable examples, which I know is suuuuuuper annoying and unhelpful. Anyway. One night he had the team members and one of the families of the church over for dinner. His home is filled with the usual suspectsheavy Missals, religious art and two rambunctious dogsbut he also has a small pipe collection. I know nothing of pipes, but they do have a coolness factor.

T loves Father F because the latter is well-aware of the former's ice cream addiction and actively supports it. That is, buys several gallons of ice cream throughout the week supports it. T could not be happier, and the rest of us are quite fine with it as well. The thing is, a bowl isn't enough for T. When he isn't finishing off a carton with a spoon, he's loading up a plate with cream and sugar. Twice. I honestly can't take him seriouslythough he isn't a very serious person to begin with. At such times, T loves Father (but not when Father is dumping two liters of soda poison down the sink; at those times, T runs through the hall proclaiming, "I have to save the sodas!"). A very happy trio:


Last night (Friday) my host family invited the boys over for dinner. I sometimes forget that Mexican food exists because I eat it so rarely. It isn't really worth it if it isn't going to be good, right? I ate everything on this plate, plus another two enchiladas, the beans C didn't want and some of the enchilada he also slid onto my plate because it had beans touching it. I guess I know what not to cook for him in the future....

I was super full from dinner, but that didn't stop C and I from going out. We hardly have time with just the two of us since we are constantly working in a group or, when not in a group, we have to sleep. He wanted to go for a movie, but I wasn't interested in anything showing, so we went to Starbucks where I redeemed my free drink (but gave it to him, since I didn't want something as big and heavy as a frappuccino after eating so much) and he bought me a tea. Free drinks are always nice. Spelling my name incorrectly, on the other hand, isn't my most favorite thing in the world. I have the simplest possible spelling! I don't get it. 

We now have a week off from Totus Tuus, which I am definitely going to enjoy. C and I plan to spend a couple days with the family we were with the first week, then we're going down to New Orleans for a few days, then heading up to our next week's assignment. We never stop.


  1. I love, love, love pan dulce. Seeing that picture makes me want to make the drive to Bakery La Mejor. The best!

    1. They were all very good. :)
      Thanks for stopping by!