Keeping You In Stitches

Archive for the ‘Christmas’ Category


We  stopped at Coope and they saw a “stuffed” Santa so I snapped a picture of them!

Mark made a quick trip to the old country a week ago on Saturday and returned on Wednesday. Daughter’s father-in-law was in the hospital; I had the Costa Rican crud and there was no way I could fly with a stuffed up head and chest – (in fact, I’m still coughing!) Happy to report he’s doing well!!!

Mark returned on Weds. around noonish; we were at Dumas’ school graduation at 3 p.m.; I had a dermatology appt. at 4:45 p.m. and then we were at Maricela’s for chichirrones to celebrate the graduation!  Yep, one friggin’ busy day!

Then on Thursday, was our second annual 12 Days Before Christmas Party.  Lesson learned, make more Sangria, lots more Sangria! LOL  Lots of good snacks but as with any party, it’s the friends that make it.

Spanish class on Friday morning….can you say, Spanish wasn’t really on my mind. Georgia wasn’t either! LOL

Sunday, Lee and I ventured to Cemaco – all I’m looking for is a pastry blender; I’ve seen one down here but I can’t remember where!  Nothing irritates me more than to need something and not be able to find it! Sheesh!!! And I’m still looking….

Today Maricela came to clean and it had already been set up that Dylana and Nazareth and I would go Christmas shopping in town.  Because the girls are girls (LOL) and we’ve raised 2 girls, it’s evident that they know exactly what they want; so off we went in search of a Christmas gift for them.

I have NEVER EVER shopped with such patient girls in my life!  Nazareth thought she wanted a toy – we went to three or four stores and she looked and looked; Dylana knew she wanted shoes; all of a sudden Nazareth decide she wanted shoes too.  Of course, she wanted heels (she’s 7, and there’s no way I was going to buy her heels because I know she’d break a leg, ankle, etc.)  She picked out some cute flats; Dylana picked out a pair of tennis shoes….and the whole time I’m reminding them – they cannot tell their mother! LOL  They even picked out a pair for Maricela!

Heading back to the car I asked them if they wanted to buy their mother a gift; their eyes got real big and then grinned and nodded yes!  They were so excited!!!

We went to Antanos for lunch; such well behaved girls!!!

All the way home they kept saying how they had to come to my house to wrap their mother’s gift!

It’s funny because I think they visit our house daily to see if there are more gifts under the tree!

Pura Vida for now…’s such a fun time of the year with kids!!!



Maricela and Nazareth visited last evening. She’s headed to the Clinica today and will clean tomorrow.  I had just popped some corn, the old fashioned way, you know, sort of like Smith and Barney!  Shared with them and even sent some home with Nazareth.  Dylana is at a football (soccer) tourney this week.

Apparently there was another earthquake here during the night….we slept thru it! AGAIN!  I guess it doesn’t faze our dogs because no one made a whimper.

Derby is going to get his mouth glued shut!  That’s the only way I can think of to keep him from barking!  6:10 a.m. he started in…..the construction guys sometimes egg him on, I think.  If he’s in his crate, he doesn’t bark…..guess, it’s sort of like time-out for a toddler!  At any rate, I’m very irritated with him!!! Should have sent him home with Velma! LOL

Still recovering from company being here….the older I get, the longer it takes to recover!   Used to be able to recover in a day or two, now it seems like it takes days!!! But, I really, really enjoy having company!  It was sad when they leave; but I do realize I have good friends all over the world!

Need to start thinking about Christmas…..

Maricela and the girls have Christmas lights out and have hung some ornaments on the large cactus in the front of their house.  We went down there Friday night for the “lighting of the lights!”  And they sang and danced to Jingle Bells! It was so darn cute!!!

The girls will be helping me decorate the trees in a couple of weeks.  Maricela said they’ve never had a Christmas tree!  I have some stockings that I’ll be putting their names on too…..I told Maricela she could not come to see our trees, yes, I put up two trees, about 6 feet apart; one inside and one outside!  She can come when we turn the lights on!

When I was in the old country, I bought two felt kits of ornaments so the girls can make some ornaments too!  It will be fun!!!  If we’re lucky, Mark will go into town and get us pizza!  We’ll play Christmas carols and decorate like mad fools!

Off to hang out some clothes!

Pura Vida!!!


Things were shut down in Costa Rica for Semana Santa; what to do?

On Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday of this week, we had brief showers.  On Facebook there was a post that Antano’s would be open on Thursday and Friday….the brain was churning….so late Wednesday afternoon I sent out an email that because of the rain on the three previous days, I had the “rain crabbies”.  Since Antano’s was going to be open, I suggested we all meet there Thursday morning for brunch.

WOW!  We had 14 people show up!!!  I’m sure the wait staff was overwhelmed, LOL.  It was a fun time for all and even if a few orders got mixed up, so what…that’s life in Costa Rica…and where Pura Vida comes in.

Thank you Antano’s for being open and accommodating us!

Frances had asked me to go to an over-60’s group meeting of women.  They are trying to set up day trips once a month to go, do and see various things.  We’ll be taking public transportation on most journeys.  When women get together they eat; if it were men getting together, it would be beer! LOL

The first one is to go to Orotina to shop, and of course eat!

I’m really excited about the trip in May to the British Embassy. We’ll be going on May 24th and take part in the birthday celebration for Queen Victoria (yes, I know now it’s Elizabeth); anyone in blog land ever done anything like this?

Yesterday, while cleaning (attempting) the pool, I noticed two dragonflies; let’s just say they were having a good time and probably should have gotten a room! LOL

Sofi will be visiting the vet this week – breaking out on her stomach; I kind of think it’s from heat/sweating?  At least I hope it’s nothing major.  She spends her days lying under the car and guarding our property.  Seriously!  She let’s us know if someone is around and since they are putting in the road that runs behind our house, there are always “strangers” around!  This gets Derby barking and then Sedona….I wish they were all in tune and could harmonize!

This morning I finally sat down at the sewing machine and have completed another Christmas present. No, Amy, it’s not for you! LOL  I was trying to do a gift a month, I’m up to February! LOL

I become easily frustrated in the “sewing/craft” department here in Costa Rica.  It’s difficult to find notions and patterns, well, they don’t use patterns here.  Yes, I can order stuff on line but sometimes the shipping is just too outrageous.  Big sigh, so I’ll keep on trudging around looking for stuff.

Happy Easter to all and Pura Vida!

Adios, for now.

Unbelievable, I know!  I’ve just finished the last 2011 Christmas gift!  But hey, it’s before the end of January….Christmas happened upon me too darn quick with everything going on here with the move, construction, etc.  It won’t be a surprise when she sees it here, but maybe, just maybe, when I give it to her, she’ll act surprised! LOL   So, if you know anyone named Pat that built a cathedral, it’s yours!!!!!

Another gorgeous day in the Central Valley!  Nice breeze blowing and it’s 85 degrees.  Doesn’t get better than this folks.

We love living here and  meeting new friends every day it seems.

Pura Vida….Adios for now!

Wow!  Can hardly believe we actually live here – and Christmas is almost over.

Since I still don’t have window treatments yet in the bedroom, and the window wall that faces the valley; let’s just say it was way cool to lay in bed and watch the fireworks from the other mountain range we face!  Costa Ricans celebrate Christmas on Dec. 24 and Dec. 25 is just another day to them.

We were invited to Bruce and Frances’ for Christmas dinner; it was unbelievably delish!  Turkey!!!! Dressing, homemade green bean casserole that was way better than the mushroom soup version!  And a host of other food….I don’t think we’ll eat again till….well, maybe sometime late tomorrow.

After dinner we wandered out onto the rancho and as if on cue, there were toucans in the trees.  They are so colorful!  And really interesting to watch as they flew from tree to tree.

As I’m writing this, it’s about 7:15 p.m. and 73 degrees.   Christmas was wonderful – being able to have windows open, priceless!!! $$$$$ saved…..

We had a very nice Christmas with friends and hope everyone else had wonderful Christmases too!!!

For the last time this year….Feliz Navidad!

Pura Vida.

Last week a friend, Pat, said she was going to Dinia’s to make Tamales, which is “the Christmas food” in Costa Rica.  I immediately said – “oh ask her if I can come too”.  Like the friendly people here, she said “of course”.  It was fun!  That’s all I can say…..and I wished that my friend, Terri, could have been here.  She would have absolutely loved doing it too!

You use a couple of banana leaves, put a hefty spoonful of masa in the middle – then the fun begins!  You add a spoonful of steamed carrots, some rice (arrozo), some stewed pork (cerado); a strip of sweet red pepper; a few peas – it was told to me that different families use different ingredients – ie: onion, olives, etc.

After this is done, you roll up the banana leaves and then fold the ends in to meet in the middle; make another one and then put these 2 together and tie with cotton string.

Then you boil them in a huge pot over an open fire for about an hour.  I cannot tell you how much I thoroughly enjoyed having the opportunity to be able to partake of this!

Dinia spent all day yesterday making the “innards”; her father made the masa (ground corn, Lizano (a salsa like topping), and pork/chicken broth, whichever you want.  Dinia’s mother and sister-in-law were also making tamales; her father was the chef for boiling them and the string man (tied the string on the tamales).  At one point when I was taking pictures of him removing some cooked tamales from the huge pot, he wanted to know if I wanted to remove some.  I did not do that because I could see an emergency run to Doctora Candy!

Today was the culmination of all of yesterday’s work!

I am so enjoying learning new customs and being able to do them.

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Partied 3 nights in a row this week and on Friday night we both crashed!  Can’t decide if we’re too old to party 3 nights in a row or not. LOL

Saturday afternoon we ventured back into town to partake of the Christmas festivities being held in the park.  There were a few booths set up with things to sell….hmmm, maybe I should work on getting stuff made and have my self a little table of goodies for sale next year.

Watched kids from probably 3 years old to maybe 10-12 doing different dances.  The first group was a “dance” telling the story of Jesus’ birth.  When Mary and Joseph wandered into the town, it was hysterical….Mary actually had a little baby bump!  Then when they made their way to the stable, Joseph held up the blanket for the newborn babe, while Mary pulled the baby bump out!  Talk about a great chuckle!  Not everyone could see it, but where we were, it was very obvious.  Watched other kids dancing and it’s just darling!!!

Wandered over to Don Tados and had a bite to eat to waste  time before the Christmas parade!  And what a parade it was! Nothing compared to the parade at Disney World, but for little ole Atenas it was absolutely awesome!  Some floats were really detailed.  Lots of bands – some from Paos, Naranjo and other areas.  When these bands march, it’s not just a march, they’ve got a little jive in their steps, bopping and weaving!  And the drums!  I’m thinking that a “drum store” might be a good business to start up!  They do like to pound their drums!! If you looked around at the crowd, everyone was moving to the beat of the drums; even the little kids!  Some of those 3 years little girls know how to swivel their hips already!

There was a group of kids that specialized in belly dancing!  Brought back some great memories of when “our gang” took belly dancing classes.  They were so cute….and of course, I love their costumes!  Maybe next Christmas, I’ll dress up in my belly dancing outfit, including my coin bra!  Tee Hee!

If was a great evening…..felt like it was a Christmas Fiesta/Celebration.  If you weren’t there, you missed a wonderful time!

Adios, and Feliz Navidad!

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