Sunday, November 30, 2008

More of Saturday in the park

This is a different part of the program on Saturday.

My information on the history the Mayan Culture on may not be perfect but I have been told that if a man was interested in a lady, he would grab a small blanket that she wore on her shoulder. The side that she wore it on would designate if she was single or married. He then would take the blanket home and his parents would then talk to the parents of the lady and the marriage would then be arranged.

The ladies on their knees were washing their clothing when the group of "men" began flirting with them. At first the ladies resisted.............
.......then the lady in the middle began to have some interest.
This clip is of the man grabbing the blanket and the lady then breaking her you can tell the crowd is amused and it was very interesting.

Saturday afternon in the park

On Saturday afternoon there was another concert in the park. It was some type of cultural celebration which I really enjoyed.

These ladies danced to "The Little Drummer Boy." Their costumes were very colorful and you could tell they were enjoying themselves.
Baby Jesus looked a little pale. :)
These children were great and a clip of their dance is at the end of the blog.

These kids also kept the crowd entertained.

More photos and clips to follow.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Another day of Thansksgiving!!

I want to share this photo and story with you. Lisa sent me this photo when we were in Montellano at the meeting. It is a baptism of 5 new Christians in Mactzul V. Please check out Kemmel and Lisa's blog at they do a great job of telling the story. I especially like the scripture that they have posted. There are so many seeds that at planted on a daily basis and we just need to pray that they fall on fertile ears and hearts.

There are more baptisms planned in Gaspar's community in December. I am hoping that we can be part of that celebration.

Friday, November 28, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving! (a little late)

I hope that everyone had a good Thanksgiving with your family.......turkey with all of the good stuff. I spent the day in class and then had lunch with Debbie and John. They came down for the clinics earlier in the month and have been running around in Guatemala since then. They spent a few days in Pana and then came here to Antigua to study Spanish. Next week they will go to Montellano for the eye clinic and the ABC Celebration.

They took me to a nice restaurant called La Pena, which we highly recommend. The stage for their band was set and we could not resist playing around.

After lunch I studied for the afternoon and then went to a performance that Juliet's daughters were in. It was The Little Mermaid and it was good. I snuck behind stage at intermission and got their photo.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Video of team exercise

The following video is of the team activity that we did at Clinica Ezell. The object was to continue the movement of the marble in the tubing without it falling out, stopping or rolling backwards. As the marble passed out of your tube, you needed to move down the line to pass your tube to another team member...............and then position yourself at the end to be ready for your next opportunity!

The second day, everyone participated and we were able to circle around the entire driveway of Clinica Ezell! It took many trials, much patience, the maintaining of a good attitude, good listening skills, confidence in other team members, no finger-pointing and MUCH determination............doesn't this sound like many things we need to be successful in life??????

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Meeting in Montellano

All of the employees of Health Talents met on Monday and Tuesday in Montellano for a end of the year meeting. We discussed the clinics in aspect of strengths and also areas we are weak and how we can improve them.

One activity that we participated in was one that the leaders had done in an earlier meeting. The object is to pass a marble through tubes without allowing the marble to fall. The marble can not stop moving, it must continue to move forward and it can not roll backwards. If one of the rules are broken, the process must start again. As the marble passes to the next person, you need to take your tube to the next person in line who does not have a tube.......... and then you move to the end of the line to wait your next turn.....................sound complicated????? Believe me, it is not easy but it can be accomplished.

Aury and Maudy are practicing before they started.........technique is very important because if you do not have control of the marble as it passes through your tube then the next person will have a difficult time.. If you try to move too fast, it can knock the marble out of the next person's tube. If people get congested and too close, it is difficult to maintain composure of your tube.

The team receiving more instructions. Listening skills are very important.

As the marble passes through your tube, you run to the end of the line to give your tube to the next person. If you move to fast, the ball can be jarred out of the tube........if you go too slow, the ball will reach the end of the line before you do and that last person will not have a chance.

After each trial, which were MANY, the team would regroup and talk about how to improve.
On Monday, only the people who never had particiapted to play. Here, Sylvia is happy because she gets to cheer the team on..................little did she know that on Tuesday, EVERYONE would have to participate!

It is a good activity to help team-building and encourage opportunities for discussion.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Lazy Sunday

Today was a lazy day for me. There was not a lot going on and I even took a short nap which is unusual. This morning, Mary, a friend who lives here in Antigua went to worship with me. We met in the park and then walked as much as we could in the sun because the days have been cool and windy.

In class they are studying I, II and III John. The focus today was on the first chapter that tells us that God is Light and in Him there is no darkness. For us to have a relationship with God we must also walk in the light. We need to daily renew that is not just a one time commitment.

For lunch we stopped at one of our favorite restaurants for lunch, The Traveler's Menu. They have a really good vegetarian pasta dish.

OK, headed to Montellano at 0500 tomorrow morning. I will be there for one night and then back to Antigua for the last part of classes.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Sheri, are you REALLY studying???

Usually, Juliet my teacher is very strict and serious. I caught her in a different mood today as you can tell by the video below. She grabbed my glasses and wanted to wear them and then realized they were a little to strong for her.

She is not use to using cameras so as I reached to show her something, she surprised me by taking this photo.

As you can see from the video below she has a funny side.......not an action that she would want the director of the school to see her doing :)

I will study three days next week after I return from Montellano.......and yes, we really do study :)

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Walk to the Cross

One of the tourist attractions in Antigua is the "Walk to the Cross." I had never been before and had an opportunity to go today with Mary. The tourist police accompany you because of unfortunate events that sometimes happen.

The sky and view was beautiful. We were told it was 200 steps but we did not count.

A view of Antigua.

A view of The Arch.

Mary and I at the base of the cross.

It was a good morning and then it was back to class for the afternoon.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Let the arguing begin!!

Last night I went to the memorial service that my teacher had for her husband. There were about 70 people in La Merced and I felt sadness for Juliet and her family. It has been very difficult for her and her children. She does not have any family support that you need during times like this.

I don't have much to tell you about except the arguing in the hotel last night. Apparently, we have some new visitors and they really ruffled the "regulars" in the hotel. A big shouting match broke out and the manager had to get involved.........I hope things are quieter tonight but I am not sure that will happen. I joke a lot about people who have lived in Guatemala for a long time............hmmmmmmm............

Yesterday, I realized my sock had a big black spot on it and was not sure what caused it..........maybe I have been in Guatemala toooooo long???? Anyway, I found a hole in the bottom of my shoe........

You know life has to be pretty boring here in Antigua when I resort to showing you a photo of my shoe......................................ok, I am going to go out and find some REAL news.......

Monday, November 17, 2008

Quiet Sunday in Antigua

As I have mentioned before, Antigua is usually full of events and activities. There was some type of dancing contest near the park today but it was difficult to see so I passed by. These gentlemen were performing in the street near my hotel.

This is the pila in the hotel where the maid still does all of the laundry by hand. She then hangs the towels and sheets over the railing in the sun to dry. She begins every morning around 0630 by filling the pila with water. This is usually the first thing I hear in the morning..................unless my neighbor is snoring :):):)

The house/ hotel is filled with statues, plants name it and you can find it here!

Even the cats were being lazy on Sunday as they enjoyed the sun.
Today I started studying in the afternoon instead of the morning. It will be a different schedule but I will get adjusted.
Tonight I am going to a memorial service with my teacher's family. Her husband died a year ago today and she invited me to meet them there. For those who are familiar with Antigua, the service will be in La Merced.

Article by Jala about Guatemala

I want to share this article written by Jala who recently visited Guatemala for the first time. When I took this photo of her and her dad in Chuchipaca, she had not written the article yet.

I have a vivid memory of my dad coming
home from a medical mission trip to
Guatemala when I was 5 years old and
wanting to someday be a part of that ministry.
In April, I graduated from OC with a
nursing degree and immediately made plans
to be a part of last week’s medical mission
trip to Guatemala. The MRCC team consisted
of Dr. Robert & Donna Lamb;
Jack & Wynonna Skaggs; Dr. Barry
Mitchell; Greg Holder RN; Cheryl Bode
RN; Pancho Hobbes; my dad, Dr. Mike
Herndon; and me. We joined the efforts of
several other healthcare workers, volunteers,
and missionaries from Health Talents
I didn't know what to expect on my
first trip. I knew I would see a different culture,
but what I didn't realize was how my
heart would be changed. The contrast of
working in a modern ICU, to running a
mobile clinic in a small village with minimal
resources, was very eye opening. As
people lined up and received the care they
needed, you could see genuine gratefulness
on their faces. It was20challenging to see
the conditions the Guatemalans live in, and
yet it was inspiring to see how happy they
are with what little they have. In three days
we were able to serve the medical and dental
needs of over 800 people.
I would encourage anyone who h as a
similar passion and desire like mine to
come join this effort on our next trip. May
God bless our Guatemalan brothers and sisters
and the Lord's work being done there.
Jala Verner RN

Saturday, November 15, 2008

A special dinner at Las Palmas

I want to introduce you to Jack and Winona. They are from Oklahoma and were down with the last group. After the clinic, they stayed in Guatemala for a few days visiting Tikal and Antigua. They called and invited me to dinner one evening when they were here. Winona showed me their hotel, Casa Concepcion, which we would highly recommend. It was a nice evening and I really enjoyed it. Thank you!

This photo was taken in Las Palmas, one of my favorite restaurants in Antigua.

Friday, November 14, 2008 is FRIDAY!

I got up early this morning to study and then went to the school for my exam. It took almost 3 hours and as I had mentioned in a previous post, this is the most difficult one in the school. My palms were perspiring as Juliet started the exam. The written part took 2 hours and then the oral took another 30 minutes from a different teacher.......and of course she wanted to remind me how difficult the exam was........thank you! After the exam was graded, we walked to the office to get the next level of books. There are only two more levels left and I still have so much to learn.

After the exam, I went with Juliet and her daughters to a school function. Her daughters study English at a school in Antigua and they had a special presentation today. Juliet has always invited me to different activities that her children have. This is Juliet and her youngest daughter, Marielos.

Tomorrow will be a busy day with studying, getting my laundry done..................and who knows what other adventure!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

More activities in Antigua

As always there are activities in Antigua......I think they have these activities to prevent us from studying.......just joking! Tomorrow I will take my exam for Grade D. Juliet offered to give it to me today but I want one more night to study.

This is Juliet, my teacher, on the left. Olga, her friend is another teacher at the school. We heard the noise in the street and we all went to watch the parade as it passed by the school.

This is Heidy and she helps with the registration process. She welcomes students each Monday and gives a presentation on the school and what opportunities there are in Antigua for the students.

These were the people participating in the parade. The waiters and waitresses from different restaurants ran through the street carrying their tray of beverages.

I was told that once the beverages fall from the tray, the runner is disqualified but many continued to run with an empty tray.

These were some of the teachers and students cheering the runners on as they passed in front of the school.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Clinic in Chuchipaca

On our last day of clinic, which is always sad for me, this group went to Chuchipaca. We had a good response with 84 medical patients, 72 dental patients and 8 patients for dental cleaning.

Jala and Cheryl are trying to stabilize the scale to get a more accurate weight on the patients. This was the first time some of the people saw the new church building. They were very surprised! We will see if it is completed when they return next year.

Maury and Heidy finish preparing the dental area with their instruments.

It can be a very busy area where the patients check in and pay their money. Kemmel is in the background near the pharmacy area.

This is Barry, who is a full-time physician and a part-time photographer....................

These patients were waiting for their friends after their consult.

Gaspar always entertains the children............and they enjoy him! He had finished his dental cleanings for the day.

The ladies prepared lunch for us..............I think we all wanted a nap but there were more patients to be seen............

As I mentioned on an earlier day, we saw over 820 patients during the three days of clinic. We had a great time and as always pray our service was pleasing to God. The clinics help strengthen the ministry of The Church and we greatly appreciate the help that the brothers and sisters give us.
Update: I read on Kemmel and Lisas blog that the lady from Paxot II had surgery and she is doing better. She is the lady that Lisa and others visited in her home. To see more information and great photos, please visit

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Clinc in Paxot II

One of the clinics that took place on Friday was in Paxot II. We saw 36 medical patients, 54 dental patients and 5 patients had their teeth cleaned. It was a good day and as always, the glory needs to be given to God.

Juan began the clinic by welcoming the patients and explaining what services will be provided. He jumped up on the table so everyone could see and hear him.

Aury, Gaspar and Maury patiently await as the patients are signed in to be seen. Aury has recently been accepted to dental school and when she leaves to study, she will really be missed!

This is Winona and Donna as they were playing with the children.

Robert and Donna were asked to have lunch with their ABC child, Kata.......and I was able to join them. Kata is the little girl in front of Donna. We had a very good lunch of chicken soup and tamalitos. It was very exciting to be able to spend some time with them. If you are interested sponsoring a child, which helps them with their school, dental and medical care, please let me know.

Kata's mom pulled out pictures that Kata had drawn in school to show us........something that mothers here in The States would do! It was a lot of fun and encouraging to know you can help a child and the family both physically and spiritually.

Tomorrow..........more about the last day of clinic.......another day of adventure!



Be the FIRST to IDENTIFY on the post, WHO'S HAND is on the BABY's HAND????
and I will mail YOU a free POUND of Guatemalan COFFEE!!

Respond quickly!!

Monday, November 10, 2008

Clinic in Chutzurob

A group from The States arrived safely on Wednesday morning for three days of clinics. I met them in Chimaltenango in the afternoon and rode the rest of the way with them to Chichi. We had dinner, a short devotional and made plans for the next morning.

During the three days of clinic we saw 820 patients. We pray that the work strengthens The Church and their ministry. We also pray that we demonstrated the love of Christ in our actions.

On Thursday I went with a group to Chutzurob. During our day we saw 46 medical patients, 72 dental patients and had 11 patients for dental cleaning.

We started by welcoming the patients and explaining the process of the day to them. We gathered outside for prayer.

This is Debbie, Linda and John that worked in the pharmacy for the day. Debbie has been down a few times before and so has Linda. This was John's first time visiting Guatemala. He taught us some of Japanese phrases and entertained us with his juggling ability.

This patient wanted her photo taken with Cheryl, who has been down several times to help with clinics. Sebastian is the brother that helped us start this clinic in Chutzurob.

Heidy will soon be finished with dental school. This was her first time working with Health Talents and we hope that she will return to help again. Here she is with the first dental patient of the day.

These smiling people are Jim and Barbara.........a dental team......the annual November clinic would not be complete without them!!

Juan is handing out mouth wash to the dental patients before their appointment.

This mother wanted a photo of her and her son. I will take them a copy of it when we return to Chutzurob for the next clinic.
The ladies of the congregation prepared a meal for us. We enjoyed soup and tamalitos.

We sat on benches as we ate...............we were very thankful for their hospitality.

Tomorrow...............more clinics and more adventure.................