It's been a busy and very fun weekend...
Saturday night, I went to my very first Quinceañera. A friend from the church, Sara, turned 15 and as is customary in Mexico, she had a blow-out birthday party. It's almost like a wedding. The girl has a huge, beautiful ball gown, everyone her family knows is invited, there's a ceremony, dancing and a presentation of the quinceañera, dinner and cake are served, accompanied by a toast to the lucky birthday girl too. For a day, she is truly a princess. This is not your average birthday party and is quite the extravaganza. I'm not gonna lie, I would have loved this when I was 15- especially the part where she dances with her 'chambelanes' (escorts that are usually her guy friends). The dances always include the traditional waltz with a few fancy tricks thrown in there. Sometimes there are just one or two but sometimes more, like hip hop. So fun! I'm jealous I didn't have a 15th birthday party like this. It was all really beautiful and fun but the sweetest part were the words her father shared. Sara's father, Horacio, adopted her five years ago. Though he is not her biological father, you would never know. He had the whole room in tears as he shared about 'his quinceañera' and though she had only been his daughter for five years, he loved her all the same. He said that day he understood what it meant for God to adopt us as his children, and the love that He has for us. What a beautiful picture and story of adoption.
This little cutie is Sara's cousin, Ester. Her 3 little cousins were part of the first dance. They were all dressed as Disney princesses. Adorable.
The birthday girl.
me and diana, enjoying the festivities.
Yesterday's greatness was two-fold. First, my sweet friend Tere came over to eat lunch with us. She's a sweet older lady who owns the little store down the road, where we go to buy tortillas or other last minute items. I usually stop by on my way to or from Zumba most days. I would say I'm not sure how we struck up a friendship but I know that it's because of the Lord. From the first week I was here, she took notice of me (is it that obvious i'm a gringa- white girl?) and started to ask me questions about why I'm here and what I'm doing. She was quick to share with me that she too is a believer and from the very beginning we had a connection. Sweet Tere works at this store, which takes up the entire lower level of her tiny apartment, all day, every day and hardly ever leaves or gets a day off. Tere is desperate for relationships and friends. It was such an honor to invite her over yesterday to eat lasagna (which I made in the crock pot!). She was so nervous at first and said she didn't get invited to people's houses much. As I sat and listened to her share with us about her struggles and rough life experiences, I kept thanking God for this sweet friend that He brought into my path and for the opportunity to serve and love on her.
And then...we watched the Super Bowl!! Yes, it was in Spanish and no, we didn't get to see any of the fun new commercials BUT we did have a complete supply of the super bowl munchies. I got busy with some pinterest recipes - homemade salsa, samoa cookie bars and herbed crackers. Everything was de-lish and I think everyone had fun. Go Giants! I'm not really partial, I'm just saying that since they won. It was a fun night piled up on the couch with my Mexican family all together. I love introducing them to these classic American celebrations. By the time the game was over, it had been a long day since 7:30 am lasagna prep and a full morning of Club Neón and I was ready to hit the hay.
Also, on a sidenote, I am now a driver in Mexico. Please pray for me as I take to the streets of Puebla. haha It's actually kind of fun with less rules...you can drive as fast as you want (basically) and you don't have to stay in your lane or really a lane at all...there's so much freedom! Here's to another step in becoming 'a real resident of Mexico'.