Friday, February 25, 2011

Best Friends and cousins

Before we were friends we were enemies.  My cousin, Sarah and I use to fight after spending more than one day together.  Our older brothers thought it was funny, they thought we were just playing but we weren't.  I remember one distinct time we were in the barn going at each other, pulling hair, biting and all the works.  Our two older brothers were there cheering and clapping.  As the years went by things got a little better.  By the time we were in our lower teens we could bear each others presence for two to three days.  Then after that, in my mind it, became a competition of who was better what I could do to make her look bad and make people like me more than her. There was and still is something about Sarah, that everyone loves.
  Kids are naturally drawn to her and adults can quickly be caught up in talking to her about anything.
During the middle teens and  upper teens we became best friends.  Sarah came down with cancer when she was 13 going on 14.  It was a crazy time in life, for the next few years she battled cancer, I wrote her letters and constantly prayed that God would heal my best friend.  After watching her go through many trials, loosing her hair, being sick, spending long amounts of time in the hospital,  her time with cancer was over and I saw a beautifully strong girl with an amazing sense of humor emerged from the struggles!  Her faith was stronger than ever and she was such an example of faith.

Throughout high school we talked about traveling together and after I graduated we wanted to go to Honduras together, but I had just gone to Peru and so she went without me.

We didn't give up hopes though a few summers later we went on our first adventure together.  WE went to Peru, South America.  We spent most of our time in Lima, Peru, where we helped out at a Christian school and stayed with friends.  We enjoyed walking around Lima and seeing all there was to see.  We also spent one weekend traveling to Cusco, Peru were we got to see Machu Picchu and explore Cusco.  She was very patient with me when I got sick in Cusco, due to food poisoning!  We felt like such great adventurers!!!  The most memorable thing about Peru was getting the chance to eat guinea pig. Not something we'd want to try again but it was worth the experience.

The next summer we didn't know if we'd be able to travel, but I was drawing closer to getting engaged and married so we decided it might be our last chance for a little while.  Thirty days before we wanted to leave we bought tickets to Guatemala and signed up for two weeks of Spanish school in Antigua, Guatemala.  This was a bigger adventure, because in Peru we knew people but in Guatemala we were going out all on our own!

In Antigua we learned Spanish, hiked a active volcano, and visited a little lake set in the midst of towering mountains.  We fell in love with Antigua and picked out the houses we would live in, if we ever moved there.  We also found a home that nursed malnourished children back to health.  We sat and held the babies and fed them milk, from a spoon, ever couple hours!

Our time passed quickly and the night we arrived home I got engaged!  She knew it was going to happen and didn't tell me!!!! She was there on the beach when Asa asked me to be his wife.  Through the next six weeks Sarah was a VERY supportive bridesmaid and even though she was busy in college she made time to be at my bridal shower and my

Together down life's road we walk... and all the while, I talk!
I could go on and on of stories, adventures and times together but I'll leave those for another time.  Although Sarah and I no longer fight, I'm still jealous of her.  I'm jealous of her zeal and commitment to God and the adventures she still has to go on.  Sarah has now graduated and started out on an adventure without me.  She is now in Cambodia teaching school for the rest of the semester.  I wanted to write this blog post because she has been my best friend, through the years, AND I want YOU to check out her blog, Sarah's Adventures, and follow her journey! She's always had an amazing way with words and I know you will be caught up in her adventures as I have!  Someday we'll travel together again and I'm so proud of her grit and spirit in all that she goes through!

Do you have someone who you went from enemies to best friends over the years?  Since I'm being all cheesy I'd love you to join me, tell me about your special friends!

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Peru... Five years ago

I had this blog post in my head.  All about valentines day, and making sushi with my husband.  It was a fun day but tonight when I was on the phone with my mom I got another idea... SOOO guess what, you're not going to hear about Sushi, yet. :)  

Five years ago, this month,  my family and I went on an adventure to Peru.  WE had very close friends down there, and we decided that it would be a good experience for us.  I went with mixed emotions, I was extremely excited to be traveling to a new country and yet, I was leaving behind my boyfriend and missing his first birthday, as a couple and, more importantly, our first valentines day.  However looking back I don't regret a single moment of that month spent with my family.  We made some awesome memories and traveling outside of my comfort zone opened my eyes to a whole new world.  

 WE arrived in Lima Peru and somehow managed to get to the bus station and in the right area, without knowing any Spanish.  (this was before I had taken ANY spanish at all so we were CLUELESS)  We were meeting our friends in Arequipa but up until that point we were on our own.   My dad was great at playing the language barrier game and we were all relieved when we we were on the bus and on our way


Arequipa was a busy city and we enjoyed exploring it for a few days, however the real adventure was just around the corner.  We got on another bus ride, which deserves a whole blog post to itself, and made our way back to a quant little town, in the mountains, called Velille.  

 This is where we spent a couple weeks and I was amazed at the culture and the food!  In the market they had these venders that sold cheese,  From what I can remember the cheese was the highlight of this town, it was what they were known for.  They also had alpaca on a stick that you could walk to the market and buy on Sundays and some other days of the week.  All these foods were amazing, and though my father thought my sister and I were crazy for eating it, I would eat all the food again  in a heartbeat!  

 The thing that took my mind back to that village, tonight however, was their yogurt.  Emily, Jenny, Julie and I would walk through the streets and into the market building to where the ladies would sit, selling their yogurt.  The would put it in little plastic bags for us and we'd rip open the one corner and start drinking away!  It was so natural tasting and nothing like I had ever had before. Here in the states most of the yogurt we buy is thick, however this yogurt was not thick at all.  It was the consistency of thick milk, but not solid, it was runny
So tonight I 'll drink my fresh homemade yogurt from a bag, and remember all the great experiences of Peru!  

Buying Milk from the local lady

Where are some places you've traveled, with food you have never experienced before?