Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Christmas Cheer and TAMALES!

It is that time of year again! 
Christmas Cheer and TAMALES! 

Since this is the time of year that my family and I make tamales, we decided to make it a fundraiser for Costa Rica! 
I will be making and selling pork Tamales for $15.00 a dozen. I will ONLY be selling 50 dozen, so the orders will be taken on a first come basis. 
They will be available for pick up or delivery on Friday Dec 21 or Saturday Dec 22. You will pay at the time of delivery with cash or check only. 
They will be delivered frozen with instructions on how to reheat them.
Here is the link to order online :) You can also email or send me a facebook message. 
 If you have any questions, please let me know :) 

Merry Christmas and Happy Tamale season!

Monday, October 15, 2012

In AWE of God

"Let all the earth hear the Lord; Let all the inhabitants of the world stand in awe of Him" Psalm 33:8

There are times in life were I have the AWE moments of God. It could be because of a conversation with someone, a song, sitting on the beach or a scripture that touched the core of me. These are moments that I treasure. These are moments that I am amazed just how BIG of a God I serve and how small I am.

One of the weekends when I was in Colorado, a group of us went to Pikes Peak. That day is a day that I will never forget. It is one of my top 5 best days ever!  Not because of the people that I went with (they are amazing by the way!) or that the drive was amazing, it was because God showed me another side of him that touched my core.

I had just finished my second week of training at MTI which was a hard week for me. God had did some major work on my heart that week. Broke down walls that I had up, showed me that it is ok to grieve over the pain and hurt from this summer's trails with loved ones and open my eyes to how important the Sabbath is. On top of all that, I had pulled my lower back muscle and had been in pain the whole week and it wasn't getting better. I was physically, spiritually and emotionally tired and was looking forward to the weekend.

We had decided to go to Pikes Peak on a Sunday after church. The peak was cold, windy and just gorgeous. It took my breath away being up 14,000 ft and seeing for miles in the distance. It was also scary being that high, knowing that if you got to close to the cliff and took a wrong step, you would fall off the peak.

That whole day I kept quoting Phil 4:13, "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me." because I was in so much back pain. It hurt to walk, sit and stand. But even then, God still showed me his beauty. As I stood there looking out I was reminded of Genesis 1:9-12, "Then God said, 'Let the waters below the heavens be gathered into one place, and let the dry land appear; and it was so. God called the dry land earth, and the gathering of the waters He called seas; and God saw that it was good. Then God said, 'let the earth sprout vegetation: plants yielding seed and fruit trees on the earth bearing fruit with seed in them, after their kind; and God saw that it was good." As I stood looking  down at the birds and seeing the beauty of the rookies, I was just in AWE. In AWE of a creator that created this place that was good. In AWE of the One who has the power to move mountains, give comfort and give rest. In AWE of the One who gave His Son to die for a simple person like me.

I saw God's beauty in the colors of the trees below me and in the lake I could see in the distance. I saw His strength in the mountains around me. I saw His cleansing in the grey clouds that were above us and in the distance filled with rain. Everywhere I looked, I saw God. And in that moment I realized I saw Him, but what about those around me, did they see God and all His glory? Did they stand here and have their AWE moments of God? Did they stand here and realized that God made this for them too?

I left Pikes Peak with mix emotions because I saw God's beauty but others didnt and others wont and that sadden my heart. I realized on the way back to MTI, that going to Costa Rica wasnt just about meeting new people, changing lives and helping others. It is about much more then that. It is about showing them how much the God I serve loves them. It is about giving them AWE moments to experience God and His fullness. I want them to experience God's love the way that I do, with all its joy, hope and beauty that He brings to everyone who believes in him. This is why God wants me to go to Costa Rica, to show the high school girls there that they are fearfully and wonderfully made (Psalm 139:13-14) by the Creator. That no matter what society, family, boyfriends think of them, God loves each and everyone of them for He made them! That is my prayer, that God will use me there to show this young beautiful ladies all these things.

As I write this blog my heart breaks for those who dont know God. To live a life with no hope, no joy, no true love is sad. I want everyone to see and experience God the way that I did on that mountain. To experience his fullness and see his beauty, but I know that there are some that will never know Him and His love and I mourn for them. I pray that God will break our hearts, will continue to break my heart for those who do not know Him. That we as a body of believers will pray for them, that God will touch their lives. I pray that we wont forgot the cross and what Jesus died for.

I saw a lot of things that day. I saw God's strength, love and beauty. I saw a group of believers deepening friendships, united with the simple call to go and make disciples of all nations (Matt 28:19). I saw the birds fly below me because we were so high up. But what sticks out in my mind is that I had an experience of AWE that day of the God who created the heavens and the earth.

Monday, October 8, 2012

MTI Week 2 and 3

Week 2 and 3 went so fast. There are so many things that I have learned and would love to share, but that would take about a week to write. So I wont bore you with the information but instead I will give you the highlights of those week and my last weekend there :)

Week 2 started off with the last session on conflict. I learn that most teams or people depart the mission field premature due to conflict with team member or the organization they are with. We also talked about stress and it was emphasis that the average missionary daily experiences 2 - 5 times as much stress as the average inner city cop. We had a hostage simulation that same week and debrief on how we handle the stress of it, the physical and emotional side of it too. Towards the end of the week we talked about transitions and the different stages that goes along with it. For me the best part was learning about the Sabbath. This section was on the following day of the simulation, so it was nice to sit and rest. The first part of the morning we went in our growth group and talked about why keeping sabbath was hard for us. From there we were on our own to read scripture and answer questions in our binder. After lunch there was more scripture to read on our own but there was time to play with God. That was the thing that really got to me, that God wanted to play with us as well as sit with us. For some of the people that was a hard concept but for others it was easy. For me, I realize that I play with God with I am outside enjoying God's creation and painting. For others in the training it was simply coloring, walking, taking a nap or even going to Target. I also realize just how important the Sabbath is. It is not to just a "day off" from life but it is to stop and rest in God. To stop and listen and even lay down your burdens to God. This is something that I want to do more of in my life and something that I have realized that I need to here in Fresno and in Costa Rica. 

Since it was our last weekend in Colorado, we decided to rent a car and go to Denver and Pikes Peak.  Denver is a cool place. We went to 16th Street mall and had sushi there. But Pikes Peak was simply amazing. It was so breath taking and gorgeous. I will blog about that on another day. 


(Pikes Peak)

Week 3 was the most emotional week for me. There had been some stuff with my family that had happen over the summer that I had needed to process and deal with that I had been putting off. But here I was in Colorado and in a since I was forced to deal with it. And I did and it was hard. We had a session that I call Cry-feast (it was called Grief and Loss) and it was a time for us to really process what we are leaving behind here in the states. Family, kids, grand kids, boyfriends, girlfriends, etc. It was also a time for us to deal with things that we didnt want to or couldnt. For me it was a time to deal with the hurt and pain from this summer and lay it down at the foot of the cross. It was a time to truly start the healing process. After that session, I felt free and so much peace and comfort. 
The rest of the week we talked about MK and TCK (ministry kids, third culture kids), Goodbye's and Hello's and then we prayed over everyone. 

Now I have been home for about a week and today was the first day that it hit me that I am back in Fresno. Today was my Yuck Duck day. I miss my new friends, the community, and the understanding of missions we all had. I miss the encouragement and support from each other. I miss the Rockies and the cool weather. I know that I am back in Fresno for a reason and I am thankful for the time I had at MTI. This was an experience that I will always remember. I have already been looking back at my binder and notes trying to not forget everything that I have learned. 

So what is next???
Well I am still raising support for Costa Rica. This month I will be meeting with Life groups and anyone who wants to hear about Costa Rica and what I will be doing there. I will be doing some fundraisers through The Well for my cost to move there but I still need people to support me on a monthly basis.
 Here is the link to donate online and any little thing helps and it is considered a tax donation. Also if you would like to receive newsletters or want to meet up for coffee, please email me at ( Also if you want to know more about what Yuck duck means and MTI, email me and I would love to sit and tell you more about it :) 


Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Week 1 at MTI


Week 1 at MTI was really good. Some of the things that I have learned were basic things that I have known, but some of the stuff that I have learned have touch the core of my heart. I have gotten to know some amazing people who have felt the call to go overseas. I have gotten to laugh a lot, have deep conversations and be encouraged all with in a week.

God has shown me some areas in my life that I need to work on before I go to Costa Rica and he has also shown me his grace and beauty. I have come to fully understand the importance of being here at MTI and how important it is for people to go to a training center before going out in to the field. Training is not to just getting tools for how to handle conflict, it is more personal. It is about checking your heart, be willing to admit that you need to change some stuff and then doing it. It is about looking at the core of who God has made you and realizing that you are nothing without him. It is about change and being willing to get out of you comfort zone and being willing to surrender them to God.

With long days of talking about hard and tough issues, it is nice to have the weekends to rest and relax. The first weekend  here, a group of us went to Garden of the Gods. It is this beautiful place where there are some amazing rock formation that no body knows how it got there. A natural wonder. We were able to walk around and hike a bit around there. We were also able to see Pikes Peak. On Sunday, a group of us went to Church together and then we got to go and play outdoor laser tag.Yup you read it right! We got a really good deal and got to play for a little over 2 hours. There was about 20 of us and it was such a great team bonding experience.

 (Garden of the Gods)

 (My roommate Tiana and I)

 (Cathedral Spires) 

 (Pikes Peak)

 (Pico the Parrot and Me at Outdoor Laser Tag)

I am currently at my last week here, and am behind on my blogging. But I am excited for to tell you about week 2 and last weekend :) 

Financial Support: 
 Again, If you want to help me financially, here is the link to donate online. Any little thing helps and it is considered a tax donation. :)


Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Missions Training International (MTI)

For the next 3 weeks I get to see this.....

I am currently in Colorado Springs for training with MTI (Missions Training International). I arrived yesterday afternoon tired and ready for bed but excited for what God has in store for me here.There are currently 10 singles (2 males, 8 females), 10 families, and 11 kids that vary in ages.

Today was our first full day here. So far it has been fun to meet people who are going all over the world. Hear about their heart and passion and see how God has shaped them. For the next 3 weeks I will be in there SPLICE program. SPLICE stands for Spiritual, Personal, Lifestyle, Interpersonal, Cultural, Endurance/Enjoyment.  I will have a coach that I will meet with once a week here and I have a group of women that I will meet several times to dive into deeper and more personal conversations. We have classes from 8:45am to 4pm Monday-Friday and homework some of the nights. I have been told that we are going to be talking about issues that could and will be challenging for us, but will be good to do now so we can work on them before going out to the mission field. I have already felt God starting to stir up different emotions already and have started to process those. Overall I am excited and nervous to be here. I know that there will be some good conversations, encouraging moments and fun time, but I also know that God will use this time to prepare me for my time in Cost Rica.

Prayer Request::
1. That my heart and ears will be open to what God is teaching me here in MTI.
2. That I will be a steward of my time here. 
3. Fundraising while I am here will go well. 

Financial Support: 
 Again, If you want to help me financially, here is the link to donate online. Any little thing helps and it is considered a tax donation. Also if you would like to receive newsletters, please email me ( and I will add you to the list :)

My evening stroll :) 


Tuesday, September 4, 2012

So where am I at now....

Here is where I am at today with Costa Rica :)
  • Well last fall I made the decision to become apart of the SI staff in Costa Rica. Since then I have been raising support. 
  • Last month was my last month working for The Well Community Church.
  • I am currently on my way to the bay area to see friends and relax before I head to training. 
  • I will be in Colorado Springs starting next week at MTI (Missions Training International) for 3 weeks for my pre-field training. 
  • I will be back in Fresno at the beginning of October for a couple of weeks till I move.
So here is the timeline of this next month for me. It has been a really busy season of life for me. When I booked my training to MTI 6 months ago and let my work know, it seemed so far away. Now  I have ended my time at the Well and MTI is less then a week away. It is amazing just how fast time goes by.

People have been asking if it has "hit" me yet that I am not working at The Well and that I will be moving soon. Honestly, I havent had the time to think about it. I was so busy at work the last two weeks and then packing for my 3 trips (Paso Robles, San Jose, Colorado Springs) that I havent had time to process that much. But I am looking forward to some down time with friends this week and some good time at Peet's Coffee with my King.

Here is a praise!
Had my interview with the elders last week and got approved to become Extended Family with The Well!!! Such a HUGE answered to prayers!

Financial Support: 
If you want to help me financially, here is the link to donate online. Any little thing helps and it is considered a tax donation. Also if you would like to receive newsletters, please email me ( and I will add you to the list :)

Here are some things that you can pray for:
1. Safety and travel mercies. I am traveling a lot this month, so  please pray for protection, health, safety and rest.
2. That God will open my ears, heart and mind to what He has to teach me at MTI. I will be there from Sept 10-28.
3. Financial support. That God will continue to provide the means for me to move to Costa Rica and while I am there. 

Thanks for all your love and support! You can email me at, just to say HI or see how training is going or if you want more information on what I will be doing in Costa Rica. I will be updating this blog while I am in Colorado. Also you can read my other blog which is more of my random thinking and personal day to day stuff :)


Sunday, August 26, 2012

The Journey to Costa Rica.....

Over the last couple of months, people have been asking how this journey to Costa Rica has started. I could give you the short version, but I will give you the LONG version but in multiple blog post. I  want you to understand my heart and my passion and how God has lead me to this journey. If you missed the first post, here is the link for it.

Here is a blog post the I wrote in September of 2011. It explains my heart for Latin American people and it is one of the first blog post of my journey to moving to Costa Rica from my other blog

Heading back to Costa Rica.....

About 2 years ago, my church, The Well  was going through the book of Nehemiah. The message that night was talking about Holy Discontent. As I was sitting there at the table with my high school students, I began to write in my journal a prayer. It was simple. "Lord show me what my holy discontent is" Little did I know the journey that God was going to take me on. 

You see I have always had a heart for Latin American people. Maybe that is because it is my culture. I have seen how the culture treats women, how Americans treat them and how faith is a religion and not a relationship. I just didn’t know what or where I fit in, or what I was supposed to do.
At the beginning of 2010, I found out that WSM was going to take some high school students to Costa Rica. Now let me explain some things. 1. I heart mission trips! 2. I heart high school students. 3 It has been a dream of mine to take students on mission trips again. OK now that you know that, you can see how excited I was that they were going. 
After praying about it, I felt as though I was supposed to go. And I did :) I feel in love with Costa Rica. With the culture, the language, the people. While I was there, I got the chance to talk to the director. I explained to him what had been on my heart. He asked if I thought about CR and honestly at the time, I didn’t. I asked that he give me a year to pray about it. I had never thought about going there and I felt as though I needed more time to process that thought and be in prayer.

So I prayed about it when I got back. I wrote in my journal then put it on the shelf for a few months. I didn’t want to be consume by it, but I wanted to pray and let God do his work. In the spring of 2011, we started to plan for another trip to CR. I knew that I was supposed to go on this trip again. This time I was going to be able to co-lead the team and with that I was going to be able to go to each site. 

I started to pray again. I knew that God was doing something, but I wasn’t sure. It had been a year since I had been in the country and I wasn’t sure if I was going to have the same heart or passion for it. I told just a hand full of my closets friends about what I felt God doing in my life, in my heart. 

So July came and we left to CR. We (the team) were gone for 14 days. During the last week we were there, I met with the CR director and his wife. We talked about a lot of things, but mainly we talked about me possibly moving to CR and being apart of the SI staff.  I told them that I needed a few more months to pray and that I wanted to come back. 
Well it has been 2 months, since I have been back home.  I am currently in LA and by 2:25 am, my plane will leave for Costa Rica. See I have filled out my application for SI. I am currently getting ready to head back and live life there for a week, have my interview and  see what God is wanting me to do. I am nervous, excited, and scared. Nervous because I am traveling alone internationally for the first time, excited because I am going back to a place I love and get to do some mission work there. Scared that I will go there and God would have changed my heart. It is hard to believe that 2 years ago, I prayed a simple prayer and the journey he has walked me through. 
Here is what I ask from you::
     Prayer, Prayer, Prayer
     Pray that God will give me travel mercies. 
     Pray that He will continue to guide me in this process. That HIS will be done.
     Pray that God will open doors for me or close them. All I want to do is HIS will.

Sunday, August 19, 2012

San Jose.....

Over the last couple of months, people have been asking how this journey to Costa Rica has started. I could give you the short version, but I will give you the LONG version but in multiple blog post. I  want you to understand my heart and my passion and how God has lead me to this journey. If you missed the first post, here is the link for it.

San Jose....

After Romania, I came home and felt kind of lost. I wasnt really sure what the next step was or how long God was going to take before he would tell me where he wanted me to go. So I went back to work and back to routine. 

Around 2006, I was ready for a change.  I was ready to MOVE. But where was I going to go, I had no idea. So I started to pray.  I prayed that God would guide me, show me where he wanted me to go. I wanted to make sure that I was going to be in His will and not my own. I looked at Santa Barbara, LA, San Francisco, Seattle, and San Jose as possible choices to move. I had prayed that God would open the door for the place he wanted me to move to and close the doors to the other places. So he did, and the only option that was left was San Jose or Fresno. I felt God was giving me the option to either stay or move. He had provided me a place to move into, a job in San Jose,  so I took the step of faith and moved.

I moved to San Jose in August of 2007 and lived there for 2 years. During that time, I met some amazing people there who help shaped my life and my time there. Friends that I  hold dear to my heart. Friends that I still keep in contact with and that I see as often as possible. 

San Jose was good for me. I learned a lot about myself there and lot about my relationship with God. But it wasnt till I moved back to Fresno that I saw the reason why God had moved me there. You see, I knew that if God wanted to move me from Fresno again, that I could do it. I had already done it once. I just didnt know where and if he wanted me to move. 

 It wasn't till the following year that He will start to show me HIS plan for my life.


Sunday, August 12, 2012


Over the last couple of months, people have been asking how this journey to Costa Rica has started. I could give you the short version, but I will give you the LONG version but in multiple blog post. I  want you to understand my heart and my passion and how God has lead me to this journey. If you missed the first post, here is the link for it.


 In 2003, the church that I was at took 16 students and 4 leaders to Romania for a 2 week mission trip. It was my first time in eastern Europe and my first time in that country. For the 2 weeks that we were there, we got to stay with host families, we did VBS at a church and got to go to the capital for a few days. It was a great trip and while I was there I felt God calling me back.

The following year, I decided to spend my summer there. I would be going back to Romania with 2 of my friends for the whole summer. My last day of work was in a Friday and the next day I was on the van heading to LAX to catch a flight.

The first month there, we stayed in the same city. We all lived together with the pastor and his family. It did take some time to get used to living in a city and being in a country that I didnt know the language. They spoke Hungarian and I didn't. They had mineral water, which I didnt like but they had vanilla coke which was amazing.While we were there, we got to do VBS with the kids, did an outreach ministry with the Gypsys and put on a camp for a nearby village.

The second month we traveled every week to a different village. The first week we join another team and did a camp for the Gypsy's in a nearby town. Then we went to another village for a week and did a VBS day camp for nearby villages. This was the first time that I had visit villages that had never heard the gospel and I felt like there was more I should be doing but couldn't.
You see during this trip we kept seeing children and young adults place their faith in Christ but I wanted to know what the next step was. Who was going to disciple them, mentor them, continue to teach them who Christ is. My director said that it would be the local church that we worked with, but for me that wasn't enough. At the time, there was 15-20 small churches that 1 pastor would over see. Meaning that there was 15-20 small churches that he was in charge of disciplining, training and leading. And I couldn't see how any one person could do that. I felt as though there had to be more that we could do, more that I could do but I wasn't sure what more was or how I fit in to that. So I prayed, prayed that God would show me where he wanted me. Was it here in Romania, was it now?

Our last stop was at one of our translators home. We got to teach English to young adults and then was able to give our testimonies to those who wanted to stay and hear it. By the end of our time we had about 30 people staying after class. We did a bible study, sang worship songs and shared the gospel. We saw lives being changed.

At the end of our 2 month there, we met up with our 2 week team and headed to Budapest, Hungary to debrief and process everything that we have learned over the last 2 months. During this time, one of my dearest friend, Susan was there. She had came with the 2 week team. It was great to have her there, she helped me process everything, prayed with me and encouraged me. It was during that time that I heard God tell me not here, not yet. See those where the questions that I needed answered. He told me that I was not called to Romania and it wasn't my time to go yet. So I came back to Fresno, I came back to work, doing youth ministry and trying to figured out where God wanted me to go.

5 years later, God started to let me know where that was.....

Monday, August 6, 2012

Mission Trip to Mexico.....

Over the last couple of months, people have been asking how this journey to Costa Rica has started. I could give you the short version, but I will give you the LONG version but in multiple blog post. I  want you to understand my heart and my passion and how God has lead me to this journey. If you missed the first post, here is the link for it.

Mission trip to Mexico...

When I was in high school, I went on my first mission trip. Where was it, MEXICO! Now keep in mind I have grown up going to visit family in Mexico, so for me this was not that big of a culture shock. But it was different then what I was used to. I  was used to going and hanging out with family, playing soccer and eating good food that my Tia's (Aunt) made. This trip I slept on a sleeping bag, was lucky if I could take a shower and the food was ok. But what I did love, was playing with the kids, telling them about Jesus and just showing them Christ love. I also saw a lot of little girls that looked like the one I met so many years ago with my dad. At the time, it was just a fun trip for me to go and spend a week with my friends in Mexico. I kept going every year and then one year God changed my mindset and my heart.

It wasnt anything special, just another trip to Mexico, but this time my Mom came with me. I was working for a church in their youth department and we need another translator. So after many nights of praying, my mom agreed to come with me. For me it was amazing to see my mom there. leading a women's study and loving on the pastors wife. On this trip, God showed me that there was more to be done here. That there was still people there that didnt understand that it is a relationship with him that he wanted. I was overwhelmed with the feeling of helplessness when I came home. There was so many people in Mexico, back home and all over the world that didn't know God, that didnt have a relationship with him. I didnt know what God wanted me to do. I prayed and remember feeling as though this was just the beginning of something bigger that God was stirring in my life.

Sunday, August 5, 2012

How is started....

Over the last couple of months, people have been asking how this journey to Costa Rica has started. I could give you the short version, but I will give you the LONG version but in multiple blog post. I  want you to understand my heart and my passion and how God has lead me to this journey.

How it started...

I am a first generation American from my dad's side of the family. So I grew up going to Mexico on a regular basis. I have pictures of me when I was little but honestly i dont really remember it that much. My first real memory was when I was 10 or 11. I had went with my dad to visit family. I remember going to the flea market and being amazed by sight, smells and things. There were people there asking for money or food but that didnt brother me. I was just in awe be how big it was. I also remember going to the pyramids ruins and taking pictures with the mummy's. But for me it was one night that my dad took me to el centro (center of town) that sticks out in my mind.

You see it had been a long day and we would be going home in 2 days. So my dad took me to get a fruit cup. He knew that I loved them and had to have at least one everyday. We sat there and watch the people talk and some dance to the music in the background. My dad asked me if I was having fun with my cousins and if I liked it there. Before I could reply, this little girl came to us. She was about 4 years old. Her hair was down but had tangles in it, she had a dress that was brown from the dirt. She didnt have shoes and she looked like she hadnt taken a shower in weeks. She asked my dad in the sweetest voice if he had any pesos. My dad looked at me and then gave her 5.00 worth of them. She was so excited, she ran to her mom and showed her and she told my father gracias. I asked my father why that little girl looked liked she did. He told me that, there are people here that are less fortunate then us and it was our responsibility to help them when we can. That we are blessed and shouldnt take that for granted.

I knew right there and then that I wanted to help people. I wanted to help that little girl. How I was going to do that i didnt know but I felt as though God had placed that desire to help those who need it.

This blog...

 (sunrise: on the way to CR last year)

for those who dont know, i have been planning to move to costa rica for the last 8 months to be apart of the Student International team.  i do have another blog that i have been updating on a regular basis on my journey, but i have been thinking about starting another blog that is just focused on my journey before and during my time in costa rica. so here it is. 

this blog will be about my journey to costa rica and the work that i will be doing there. It will be about my day to day life, prayer request and the many lessons that god will teach me. I hope you enjoy reading about my life and time in cr but mainly i hope that you see why god has called me there.