Saturday, December 26, 2009

Christmas 09 on the US-Mex Border

26 Dec 09 in Chula Vista, CA

Hope y'all had a great Christmas... family and friends and out-of-tune church choirs and warm fellowship and catch-up with peeps we haven't seen all year... yes!
I vote we all skip the present-giving and just have fam+friends gatherings next year.

Just so you know... when you read 'delayed due to security concerns' in the Blog, it's becuz we are being very careful about NOT publishing when and where we will be in Baja Mexico.

The violence and narco-traffikking wars seem to be limited TO Tijuana and the surrounding burgs. YES, the situation in TJ continues to worsen. NO rise in crime in Tecate, Rosarito, Ensenada... and then definitely NO rise in drugwar-related stuff where Lori goes to on a regular basis. However, we have to pass thru TJ to get where we are going...

We are always going to be reporting AFTER, and it will not have too many date-based info, just to increase our security profile. Besides, you get to pray for us all the time for our safety and God's plan and Hand on our goings-and-comings...

Blessings, your bro,

Monday, December 21, 2009

Friendship Evangelism

Lori from San Vicente, Mexico
Dec. 11th, 2009
delayed due to security concerns.
Today was the last sewing class of the 2009 year. Wow! What a full week! There were 8 new ladies of the 25 different students who attended. Some people had to be turned away after the class reached the maximum (12) that I can teach at one time. I'm stretched pretty thin with that many and the machines there are to use. Tagging along with the 12 students were about 15 kids today making for a very FULL house. There are times I wish I could clone myself, especially when multiple students call out "Lorena" (my name in Spanish) at the same time. Projects for the week included: Christmas wreaths, hair decorations, tote bags as well as skirts and silver capes to be worn by the Christmas choir. Lynne and I dug through boxes of fabric searching out black fabric for the skirts when the ladies arrived requesting that color. Oh boy, did we make a mess in the process of our search.
The most exciting event was that one of the new students, Claudia, really took to heart the encouragement to invite family and friends especially those who don't have a church so that they can rub shoulders with Christians. (Friendship Evangelism.) During the week, Claudia's sister, niece and two neighbors responder to her nudging. I just returned from the Church's Ladies Christmas Celebration where Claudia had two guest joining her. Both of these ladies had attended the sewing course during the week and now they were sharing time with other members of the church for the first time.
During the ladies' party, the speaker talked about shaking off the things that hinder us in our relationship the the Lord as we prepare foe the celebration of our Saviour's birth. Next, we spent time writing encouragements to each other, Then we shared a wonderful meal of tamales, a very typical holiday food and champurrado a yummy hot chocolate type drink followed by a fresh apple and nut dessert.
more later,

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Tuning up

Lori from San Vicente, Dec. 8th,2009
delayed due to security issues.

Tuning up is hard to do.
It's exciting to start another week of sewing classes but, I sure have my work cut out for me. During the very first day of classes, several of the students express problems they are having with their "at home" sewing machines. (Five of my students have purchased used or been given machines.) The next day, 4 students arrive with their machines in tow hoping that they can be repaired. So, after two sewing classes filling 7 1/2 hours of the day, my evening is filled with what I call "tweaking". I bring no special mechanical skill to sewing machine repair except that which necessity has forced upon me during 40+ years of sewing. Still, as there is no machine repair place or person in town, I'll give it a go. Claudia, the student pictured above, brought her machine to see what I could do.

With two hours of "tweaking",
  1. it was discovered that she had bought the wrong bobbin, so it was replaced with the correct one,
  2. the needle in the machine was so blunt, it wouldn't prick your finger let alone the fabric, so the needle was replaced,
  3. the tension was adjusted,
  4. zig-zag was repaired.

and success was accomplished!!!!!!!! on ONE machine. Only 3 more to go. Well by the end of two evenings, 3 or the 4 machines were in working order. The 4th one will require replacement and repair beyond my abilities.

Beginning students tend to be pretty hard on sewing machines. So, even the machines that are used in the class continually require cleaning, oiling, and repair. It's not exactly what I love doing, but sure is a blessing to my students.