Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Navidad en Peru

It is probably safe to say that none of you are in the Christmas frame of mind now that it is three weeks after the fact but I will share with you a bit about our first Christmas here in Lima. To begin with, Christmas here is celebrated on the Eve of the 24th rather than on Christmas day. The typical celebration goes something like this. At some point in the later evening you gather with your family and snack on paneton with chocolate caliente (freshly prepared hot chocolate) while you are waiting for the main meal to be served. At midnight the family eats together and then they open the gifts early on in the morning. Afterwards some people then go to visit other relatives or friends, it can be close to an all night affair. Oh, and I forgot to mention the fireworks... at midnight the sky is completely lit with fireworks. No not organized displays like we have in the States, just random fireworks exploding everywhere. I did take a video to post because it was quite interesting but with the speed at which I am able to upload it might be next Christmas before you would be able to view it, so I think I will skip that.
We did things a bit in line with tradition but not quite exactly. Here is how our night went.

Before leaving the house I tried to get a couple of nice pictures of the kids by the tree. We normally do not have a tree but this year Eddy's brother lent us one with all the fixings so we put it up for the kids and to feel a bit more "homey" for the holidays.

This wasn't the kind of picture I was trying for but it is cute how they are looking at each other. "Why does she make us do this kind of stuff?"
"I don't know Josiah, I've been putting up with it for two and a half years now, just amuse her."

There we go, now this is what Mommy was after.
We went to Uncle Oscar and Patty's house around 4 PM to spend a little time with the family.

Finally, a nice family portrait.

Paris all decked out for the evening.

Hadassah couldn't wait for that paneton.

Yumm... Ricco!!

Some of the family...
Carlita, Gustavo, Kike, Oscar, Patty, Jesusa and Jacky.
Paris, Lisa and Eddy.
Falta una (missing one).
Eddy has four brothers and sisters, they are five altogther.
Eddy, Jesusa, Oscar and Kike.
After we ate the paneton Hadassah and Josiah were given gifts.
I was so happy to see the new baby for Hadassah as she had been asking for one for awhile. Josiah received another dump truck for his collection.

By this time it was around 7 PM so we headed to the church for the service there. Here are a couple of photos of the worship.

I enjoyed hearing traditional Christmas songs sung in Spanish.
After the worship many people stayed in the church to have a meal together. We did not wait until midnight to partake however. We came home around 11:30 PM and watched the fireworks from outside our living room window. Since we needed to be up fairly early the next morning we retired to bed just after midnight... not quite a Peruvian celebration but close enough!
The children had their own table and Hadassah had a great time dining without Mommy and Daddy. She is getting to be such a big girl.

The cafe all decorated.

Pepe, the friend Eddy has been bringing to church for a few months now.
That brings me to a few prayer requests.
Pepe is not only coming to the church now but has been bringing along friends and relatives as well. We've really come to reevaluate just why we are here. For some time we just assumed that because Eddy works well with his hands that this is how he would serve the church here. As time progresses we see the Lord using him to witness and minister to many people outside of the church. Pastor Brian has suggested to him that we begin a home study for Pepe and his friends as they may feel a bit more comfortable in this type of setting (for those not comfortable coming to church as of yet). Eddy also has family in the area that have also expressed an interest if something like this were to begin. We sense the Lord is leading us in this direction and ask that you lift this up with us as well. I can not remember all of the names of the people Pepe has brought with him but there is one older man named "Lalo" that is actually attending the the weekly prayer meeting with Eddy and Pepe in this moment.
Josiah is also sick with a stomach infection. We had to take him to the doctor today and are waiting for the results of one last test to come in. So far he was positive (don't ask me for what exactly) for one test (he had a total of three) which means he will now be on antibiotics to clear whatever is causing him grief in his stomach. We feel for this poor little guy as he has been sick for the most part since shortly after we arrived and when he was not sick he was teething. It has definitely been a trying time for us dealing with all of the illnesses we have encountered thus far. This current one with Josiah was most likely caused from some bacteria in the water or fruits. We must now take even greater precaution (we thought we were extremely carefully as it is) with the kids to prevent this type of thing in the future. Translation, more work when it comes to the food preparation... sigh.

1 comment:

Sarah said...

Great pics-must have been fun to be a part of a different Christmas tradition.