Showing posts from September, 2010


The title of this blog came from a facebook message I got this morning. It's a little misleading since I am under a minute amount of stress compared to like, say, July, but I have been feeling it since about Thursday, when Chris and I picked up 5500 newsletters and envelopes from Universal Graphics. Some were extra; the mailing list sits at 4,500 or so. To get each one ready to send, there are 3 steps: "stuff" each newsletter with a Business Reply Mail envelope "tab" each newsletter with 3 sticky seals--the USPS is REALLY picky about this part "label" each newsletter with an address label, and sort into trays by zip code The past two times we have sent one out, there have been tons of hands on deck to help, but the timing of this one meant the whole process fell on the already overworked office staff. I had a big role in designing this one, so in addition to knowing that it will bring in between $20,000 and $40,000, I felt responsible for getting it se

Spontaneous Saturday

After running errands all Saturday morning, I looked at my phone and saw I had a message from David Garcia; we built the Garcia family two houses over the summer. Turns out he was inviting me to their youngest daughter Nadia's 6th birthday party, which was that afternoon! A little last minute, but I guess their grown son had my number in Juarez so they had to wait until they could get a hold of him to call me. It's all good though...not like I had anything better to do. Everything I had planned could wait til Sunday, so I finished up my load of laundry, ran out to get a quick present, and headed on over. It was just what I expected, since I have noticed that Hispanic birthday parties tend to have the same general components--the whole extended family, LOTS of food, an inflatable bouncy house thing (the Garcias have a trampoline instead), a pinata, and goodie bags. I wound up being there for almost 6 hours, which also didn't surprise me in the least! The Garcia girls and I.

Mission offers meals to needy in Lower Valley The mission made the paper, thanks to Chris and his press release-sending bonanza a few weeks ago! The title of the article was "$1 Lunch," and we even got COLOR pictures! Pray that its message brings some much-needed traffic to YLM, especially the Hot Meal Program. It's a wonderful witness and something that was created to fill what we know is a true need in our community, but it has nearly reached the point where it's no longer logical for it to stay operational. Elvira did say that the phones were ringing off the hook the day after this article ran (Tuesday 9/14)... Also pray that some of the other print and electronic media outlets that received word of our ministry via one of Chris's press releases would respond! Until next time, blessings!

Baby meets Kitty

Time for some new goddaughter/cat pictures, especially since they had an up-close and personal meeting the other day (sorry, no pictures of the most adorable episode of all: she kissed him on the nose!)... ...and for a support-raising update. It's been a long time in coming since LCMS is switching to a new gift processing software called Blackbaud, but I know the staff is working tirelessly to iron out all the glitches and hopefully once it's in place, the tracking process will be simpler for everyone. They are still several weeks behind, but as of July 23 I am short of my goal by $7,884.12. Getting close! I am praying that there are additional gifts in the 7 or so missing weeks to help that number get closer to $0! I have already raised $39,966.88 though, so that is something to be thankful for and proud of for sure. That total also means that I am over 70% funded for my 2nd term! It might not mean anything to you, but it's not an arbitrary target; if I wasn't by the

"Gozo al Mundo" Photo Shoot

I don't know whose idea it was to do the photo shoot for Mariachi San Pablo's new Christmas CD, "Gozo al Mundo," at White Sands National Monument, but these turned out pretty cool! I went along as their roadie. They all had to roll up their pants/skirts to hike across the sand! These are my versions of all the poses that the photographer took. For some of them, they literally had to be in position in less than a minute due to the changing light at sunset! They didn't use the manger in any of the photographer poses, so I had to take one of my own. They played "How Great Thou Art" right before we left, because you can't be a mariachi band, in your suits, with your instruments, and NOT play, wherever you are! It was pretty easy to get the meaning of the lyrics in a setting like that. And some of my scenery shots: That has to be a planet to the right of the moon. Order your copy today at the special pre-release discounted price of $12. The recording is s

What does it cost?

I spent most of my 3 day weekend helping Chris with what's proven to be a time-consuming but enlightening project: figuring out down to the penny what it costs to run the mission. Basically, he has a 388 page Excel document with a line for every check that was written and every petty cash transaction that occurred, plus all of the revenue that we received from various fundraisers, mariachi CD and T-shirt sales, the thrift store, the hot meal program, etc. My first job was to take a whole bunch of sheets of notebook paper with headings like "SE," "Admin," "San Lucas," "Vehicles," "Utilities-Water," etc., tape them to a table (so we could work with the air on and they wouldn't blow away), and categorize numbers that he would read me into subheadings like, "Bridge Tolls," "Postage," "License Plates," "Salaries," etc. That took around 8 hours on Saturday for the checks, but we knocked out the

Play Ball!

Pastor Tovar (who runs all of our non-Juarez mission sites) communicated a special need when he and his wife were here a couple of weeks ago: baseball equipment! What a cool way to spread Christ's love, especially for a baseball fanatic like me! Chris and I have been jumping at every chance to spread the word since we heard about the opportunity, but baseball equipment is awkward and heavy to ship so our success has been limited. We were super-excited then, when a servant event leader responded to one of our facebook pleas with a check to purchase some stuff here. THANKS! Chris had fun at Wal-Mart and Academy the other day (see below), but unfortunately discovered that baseball equipment is expensive! Pastor Tovar's fledgling team is still in need of: --enough gloves for an entire 9-man defense --a full set of catcher's gear --at least 5 more batting helmets --1st, 2nd, and 3rd base --a few more bats and balls Let us know if you can help or know someone who can! If we get t