Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Cherry Limeade...Sonic?

Can we just say it is hot and I am craving some Cherry Limeade Sonic drinks!!  So, the other day when I was trying to think of a girly cupcake for a sweet nine year old at the Residencia de Vida here in Atenas, I was looking at my low stock of cupcake liners wondering what am I going to do with green liners...it is for a girl.
Some of you may have seen a picture on Facebook, but if you haven't then here is the final product.

I would love to share the recipe but I honestly can't.  I looked at about three different recipes online, worked with the ingredients I can find here, and then made up my own recipe.  I have some chicken scratch notes to see if I can duplicate this again.  So, if I make these again, I will try and make some better notes that can be shared.  

I thought they turned out super cute and were quite yummy too!  I think I need to make some homemade Cherry Limeade drinks this weekend.  The cupcakes didn't quite quench the craving I am having for that fizzy drink.

I dream of one day having a little pastry and dessert shop.  You know one of those dreams that are far more romantic on your head, the ones where you don't experience the labor intensive hours only to see you made $1.  I love to make pretty desserts and all because I have a dream, but until then I will serve anyone who is willing to eat my desserts from my home.  So, if you know me or live close to me I will make sure you gain a few pounds.  I can't keep all the desserts and bread that I make.  

Have a Sweet Tuesday!

Thursday, July 17, 2014

"Puentes de Vida" ~ Bridges of Life

A little over a week ago our entire family made a very long day of it and headed to the edge of the Cabeccar Reservation.  And I am so thankful for good little travelers who really don't complain about long hours in the car.  Daddy's only complaint is the too frequent bathroom stops...usually instigated by Mom.  I know, I am as bad as the kids.
It was an amazing day!  Several months ago we met a Costa Rican doctor who has dedicated his life since his medical career started to the Indigenous people of Costa Rica.  We got to meet his wife the other day as well.  She is an American and is also a doctor.  They went to Med School for the sole purpose of doing medical mission work.  They don't just do things here and there, these people live to help these people.  You would just have to meet them to fully comprehend their love for these people and see their desire to serve, completely and fully serve.  

They live about a mile outside of the reservation in a very small and very modest cabin.  He drives into the city to work in administration in one of the private hospitals where he has been able to make contacts and raise awareness for their work on the reservation.  The rest of their time is spent on the reservation serving these people and teaching them life skills that these people may not have ever had the opportunity to learn without their help.  They have raised funds to build foot bridges as drowning is the number one cause of death.  I could go on and on telling about the many different things they have in progress.  I don't know when they sleep!  
I have mentioned before the program that they started for the Cabeccar Women.  Judith (the American doctor) started a program 16 months ago.  The first 8 months she had several women enroll in a coarse she had developed to educate women on basic prenatal care, postnatal care, and newborn care.  She has taught these women basic things and this basic knowledge has saved lives.  These women went through the 8 month coarse and have been on the ground for 8 months now educating other women and helping other women.  She gave them something that will give for generations, and that is education.  
During election time in Costa Rica it is the law that government officials have to deliver ballots to the tribes.  One of these women who completed the coarse was seeing a women at the end of her pregnancy.  From the basic things she had learned she knew that a particular woman needed to leave the reservation and get to a hospital.  She did not know all of the physiology of what was going wrong, but she knew that something was wrong and if this woman did not get help, then she and her unborn baby would both die.  This young woman prayed that God would help her, help her find a way to get this woman the help that she needed.  These people are hours from the nearest hospital if they have transportation by a vehicle, and a vehicle can only get to the very edge.  Government officials arrived via helicopter to deliver the election ballots.  This woman acted quickly and used every resource.  I believe without a doubt that God answered her prayer with that helicopter.  I mean, what are the odds?  That is a God thing!  Only He sends a helicopter at the very moment it is needed.  She was able to arrange for this woman to be transported on this helicopter to the nearest hospital.  She used the knowledge that she was given, the resources God gave her at that moment, and she acted.  Her actions saved this woman and her unborn baby.  Had she not been able to be transported out by that helicopter she and her baby would have died.  She was having a placental abruption.  For those who don't know that medical lingo, that is when the placenta (what supplies nutrients and complete oxygenation to the baby) starts separating from the uterine wall.  She noticed the beginning signs of an abruption.  The doctors told her that she would have not survived if she had not gotten to the hospital when she did.  They did an emergency c-section.  When a placenta completely separates from the uterine wall you have minutes to do a c-section and get the baby out.  AKA....a nurse's nightmare!!!  Everyone on the unit moves at LIGHTENING speed!!!!  
{Left: Dr. Judith, Yamileth, & Gendry}
I am still trying to wrap my head around the fact that there isn't a nice labor and delivery room for these women with state of the art external fetal monitors, 4D ultrasound machines, epidurals, and an OR steps away from the delivery room.  These women don't have that.  They were born in a place, not of their own fault, where these aren't options.  Their reality is laboring on dirt floors without medicines, no idea what is happening to their body, no doctors, and at times delivering a baby completely alone.  They don't have everything that so many of us take for granted.  
I don't know to what extent or frequency that I will be able to help these women and this life-changing program that Dr. Judith has started, but she has extended the offer for me to help her with this program.  This is an answered prayer for me.  I was able to sit in on the last meeting with two of the women who completed the coarse.  I am in complete awe of their example to serve others and to love others like Jesus.  These women walk hours and hours to see just one woman or one newborn baby.  And then they do it the next day and the next.  They are changing lives, one life at a time.  If one life is saved, one life is changed, one life is able to see the love of God, truly know the love of God, and obey that awesome command that will free them, then the many hours in a car, hours hiking, the horrible Montazuma's revenge that strikes will be worth every second of my time and my family's time.  Because this is what it is all about...following Him, wherever the path may lead.  Please pray for this opportunity that has been set before us and that we will be able to plant seeds.  Keith, Lord-willing, will arrive with a group of 7 on July 28, and it is planned to travel to the reservation and go in further on July 30.  David wants me to be able to go on this trip.  I have only been to the edge of the reservation and not completely in, so this will be my first time.  As much as he wants to go, he is staying at home with the kids so that I can do this and spend some time with some of these women.  That is the most difficult thing about some of our work here, it means we each fly solo, because the kids can't always come, and this is one of those times.  So, please pray for all of us.