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15 Nov 2010
We thought you guys might enjoy hearing about our work in different way tonight, so here's Jared to tell you more about a community celebration we were a part of in early October.  Hope you enjoy.
12 Nov 2010
The bustling market. A steady stream of public transport buses. Mail and laundry services. Easy access to Panajachel. A soy store that sells delicious strawberry soy ice cream. These are just a few of the reasons for which I find living in Sololá, as opposed to Chaquijyá, to be very convenient. Though I may sometimes joke about the bother of not being able to find chocolate chips here, there’s no doubt that we have...
08 Nov 2010
      Walking through the streets of Guatemala, you find trash scattered around and piled up, ignored as a problem in many parts of the country.  Generally, NGOs in Guatemala either focus on environmental education or on the economic growth of an impoverished area;  Long Way Home is working towards both. This non-profit is educating the community in Comolapa, Guatemala by...
03 Nov 2010
This morning we had the opportunity to join the members of Chaquijyá for a special moment - The Day of the Dead.  Where cemeteries and death are often somber topics in the United States, here it's much the opposite.  Here, they don their nicest clothes, pack lunches, and head en masse to the nearby cemetery. It's a time of celebration, of cherished memories, and socializing with neighbors....
29 Oct 2010
This Tuesday marked the launch of our summer camp "un viaje alrededor del mundo con Manna Project" (a trip around the world with Manna Project).  For six weeks, we will be leading 115 first through sixth graders from the Central primary school through educational activities in English, science, art, and sports, as well as community projects once a week.  Borrowed from everyone's favorite 90s game show,...
25 Oct 2010
TED talks have taken the world by storm, and it's about time.  Finally, a forum for anyone to share an inspiring idea, fascinating theory, or comical revelation.  Each year TED awards one person $100,000 and one wish to change the world (former awards have been given to Bill Clinton and Bono).  This year the winner is J.R., and yes, that is all we know about him.  He is an anonymous street...
15 Oct 2010
Today is blog action day, an annual event that unites the world’s bloggers in posting about the same issue on the same day with the aim of sparking a global discussion.  This year's topic is water.It seems pretty simple, and extremely applicable as I sit here sipping from my water bottle, but the underlying complexities of the most abundant liquid on earth are innumerable.  Here in Guatemala it is not...
09 Oct 2010
We’re thrilled to celebrate with Peruvian Mario Vargas Llosa as he receives this year’s Nobel Prize in Literature.  While, to be candid, none of us had heard of him before the prize was announced, we’ve relished learning about his literary progression and political advocacy.  We tip our hats to the men and women of Peru and hope that this award accentuates the work of other Latin American authors.In an...
06 Oct 2010
Oh, How Time Flies!It almost feels surreal. The sudden realization that we’ve been in Guatemala for nearly three months and have been teaching English for over two months astounds me! Time has passed so quickly, and it is hard to believe that next week is the last of the current school year for our students. During the past eight weeks of class, we have formed new relationships and begun to bond with a number of...
01 Oct 2010
"Meet Mogli (the feisty one, to the left) and Oliver, our newly adopted kittens!" Photo by Karen, the Baker
26 Sep 2010
As often as it feels like we’re living in the epicenter of “hurry up and wait,” from time to time the opposite happens and problems solve themselves overnight.  There’s that rare day when a week’s worth of frustrations are suddenly put in their proper perspective, and solutions materialize from the red clay of the Guatemalan countryside.  I’d like to share two such vignettes with you, to briefly...
09 Sep 2010
A beautiful graveside etching. We arrived in a rush, as usual, after the typical morning struggle to herd all six of us out of the house at once.  One by one, we squeezed our way off of the overcrowded microbus, and before we were able to speak, we were left in a cloud of exhaust as the van scurried off down the Inter-American highway.  We crossed the road, four lanes of sporadic, speeding...
29 Aug 2010
          The time is flying by before our eyes.  We are entering our third week of teaching English at the local primary school in Chaquijyá, and have officially been Sololá residents for one month.  I feel very much at home here and have gotten into a nice routine.  However, my window view will never cease to amaze me and the days are never monotonous....
21 Aug 2010
Kat explaining our first exercise.Surprisingly, it went off without a hitch.  Teaching elementary school English wasn’t as daunting as I first imagined.   As I reflect, fresh from my second class in what will be an eight-week section in English, I’m torn in my appraisal of our success.To bring you up to speed, I’m teaching 5th graders with Kat and we’re thrilled by the voracity and joy they...
13 Aug 2010
View from the balcony of our new house :)              Today is a very special day. Why, you ask? Well, it’s because today marks the end of settling into our new house! After several weeks of searching, negotiating, and nesting, we are finally settled into what will be our home for the next year, and the potential home for future generations of MPI...
06 Aug 2010
¡Bienvenidos from MPI Guatemala’s new house in Sololá! Our first attempt at a group photo from our balcony     During the past three weeks, my fellow PD’s and I have been living, learning, and experiencing San Pedro La Laguna, an incredibly picturesque Tz’utujil and hippie-tourist town located on the world famous Lake Atitlan. Not only were we able to take intensive Spanish classes every morning...
11 Jul 2010
There is no school that could have taught me what I have learned in the past month. We eventually found an organization, Mercado Global, to donate food and supplies to all 20 families in Chaquijya that lost their homes because of Hurricane Agatha. We learned cultural norms and traditions like eating 4-8 corn tortillas at every meal; the fact that "embarasada" does not mean embarrassed, but pregnant; and being on...
04 Jun 2010
01 Jun 2010
When the storm subsided and the rain finally let up, I looked out my window expecting to find chaos.  Instead, men and women were lining the streets with shovels and brooms cracking away at what Agatha left.  Within hours the muddied streets were lined with piles of garbage ready to be picked up.  I thought the immense lake would be a different story, only to find people of all ages up to their waists...
30 May 2010
I am so happy to be back, and so excited for the next months of preparation before our founding team of Program Directors and my wonderful co-country director comes down to also discover the wonder that is Guatemala.  Right now I am in Panajachel, a lovely town on Lago Atitlan, staying in Hostal Montufar.  It is a cute, homey place run by a friendly family. My DELICIOUS first breakfast in Panajachel......
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