Natalie In Panama – Week 34 – In Which She Provides Service And Makes Tamales

So, I guess this week’s theme would probably be service. Seriously I don’t remember everything that happened this week. Every week seems to be getting faster. It’s ridiculous.

So, the highlights of the week are as follows:

Thursday, I got to see a bunch of guys trying to move the front part of a taxi on a wheelbarrow. It was really funny.

That day we also met the wife of one of our investigators. Turned out she was going to make tamales the next day to sell on Sunday for elections. We offered to help, and, with a little wheedling, she said yes. Seriously, it is hard to get people to let us help them, but when we do it’s great.

Friday – We got to make Tamales! It was awesome! We went in at 11 in the morning and left at 2 in the afternoon, and they still weren’t done. It is a ton of work. You have to grind the corn to make the masá and cook the chicken to go into the tamales. You even have to cook the leaves you wrap the tamales in because, if you don’t it, will become bitter. Then, you mix the sauce you cooked the chicken in into the masá. When it’s seasoned to your taste, your liking, you then put it into a small leaf. You put the meat into the masa and then 3 raisins, 1 green olive and 2 peas. Then you wrap it all up in a larger leaf.

It was really fun to make them.

At first, Felipe, the wife of Ricardo, thought she had to pay us, and then we explained that our service was free. It was great to just show her we loved her. She had a lot of questions. I think we at least softened her heart towards us.

Saturday, at 10 pm the president told everyone that they had to be in their houses by 2pm on Sunday. It was Election Day, so everything was going to be crazy.

Sunday – We had 4 investigators in church! Dian and Juan came with their Mom. Hermana Sugais (their mom) is an inactive member and doesn’t really know much anymore about the church. But she loves everything and so do her kids. Juan and Dian will be baptized this next week.

Then about 15 minutes later, came Ricardo. This is the one we did the tamales for. We had discussed if he didn’t come to church we would have to drop him. It was an amazing moment. Service definitely works miracles. I’m so happy!

So, after church we went straight home and broke our fast on odds and ends we had in the house. We took naps and I went through all the Liahonas in the house cutting out pictures. Then, we played soccer on our porch with the 8 year olds and under, grandkids of our landlords. It was pretty good for being stuck in the house all day.

Varela won, which was surprising for the election, but that’s okay. At about 9 we could hear the streets and it sounded like LA when the Lakers won the season against the Clippers [EDITOR’s NOTE: I think she means the Celtics. Our family isn’t into sports. As for what she was referencing, here’s the full story]. I was glad we were not out for that.

So, those are the awesome things for this week.

Love you all lots!

Hermana Natalie Palmer

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And Now For Pictures!

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Some pictures of a cow kitchen. It's a member in Arraijan who we visited last week to celebrate Ogles birthday with. I thought Mom would like this kitchen.

Some pictures of a cow kitchen. It’s a member in Arraijan who we visited last week to celebrate Ogles birthday with. I thought Mom would like this kitchen.

Also from the Cow Kitchen

Also from the Cow Kitchen

A picture of some guys carrying the front part of a taxi on a wheel barrow. It made me think of something dad would have us try to do to help him move a car part.

A picture of some guys carrying the front part of a taxi on a wheel barrow. It made me think of something dad would have us try to do to help him move a car part.

The second is from making tamales. This is me using the machine to grind the corn to make the masá.

The second is from making tamales. This is me using the machine to grind the corn to make the masá.

Us cooking the chicken in this giant pot! They put chicken parts with the bone in the tamales.

Us cooking the chicken in this giant pot! They put chicken parts with the bone in the tamales.

Ogles mixing the seasoning into the masá

Ogles mixing the seasoning into the masá

Tamales!

Tamales!

Tamales

Rolling tamales

This is what happens when you are stuck in the house all day because of elections.

This is what happens when you are stuck in the house all day because of elections.

Kids I played soccer with

Kids I played soccer with

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E-mail Hermana Natalie Palmer directly at natalie.palmer@myldsmail.net

Even a short, encouraging e-mail would be great!

If you would like to write to Hermana Palmer, here’s the mission mailing address:

Mision Panama

Carrasquilla Entrega General 0834

Panama

Republica def Panama

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