Tag Archives: holidays

Our Christmas In Boquete…

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This has been our second year to celebrate Christmas here in Boquete. It was nice. I keep trying to figure out what to tell you about our holidays here. I find that I’m torn between writing about how great it feels to get to spend my time and money on buying small gifts for those who can’t afford to buy the things I gave them, and telling you about that dull ache in my heart that comes from being far from friends and family. I don’t think that I will ever stop missing people who are now so far away. And while I find such joy in creating new holiday traditions that have meaning to me, there’s always that little tug at my heart that comes from wondering what everyone is doing back in California. I love that We get to begin new traditions and that we also get to decide just how our Christmas will look and what we’ll do to make this time of year feel rewarding and meaningful. We’re not limited to celebrating the holidays in any particular way, no obligations, we’re in the process of creating our very own, brand new traditions. Traditions take time to establish and so far we don’t have many. But a couple of things just might stick and become things we do each year. One is the holiday Fundraising BBQ that Keith & Julian host each year on Christmas Eve to benefit an organization called Buenos Vecinos. Buenos Vecinos collects money to help feed needy families in our community. We went last year and then again this year and its a great way to spend Christmas eve. They have live music and they BBQ steaks, everyone pays $15.00 to attend and you bring a dish to share, either an appetizer, a side dish or a desert. We bring a couple of bottles of wine and our lawn chairs and we usually like to find a quiet place to sit and relax. Last year and this year we’ve really enjoyed this event, just sitting outside on a nice warm evening, with a great view of the huge pine trees and good music to listen to as we sip our wine, along with lots of really friendly people to chat with is a great way to spend a Christmas Eve. Its really very low key and easy, not a bad tradition , I think we’ll keep this one! Read the rest of this entry

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Our First Easter in Boquete…

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Easter weekend….
Today when I went to Rosemary’s house for our language class we talked about the Easter holiday which is upon us. I must admit I had not even really thought much about the fact that it’s a holiday weekend. Our workers do have two paid days off, Friday and Saturday so Scott will also have a couple days to take it easy. Because of this fact we decided to take advantage of the time off and made plans to go to Boca Chica for one night. Rosemary was telling me that she and her family have given up eating Chicken and Beef for Lent. Not being an especially religious person myself, I’ve of course never participated in this observation and I am very interested in learning how they celebrate this Holy Week here in Panama. It is a very important week for this Catholic country and there are many processions and gatherings to celebrate as a community. It’s during holidays here that I really enjoy observing how all the town comes together to put on huge displays that they seem to all enjoy with great gusto. Rosemary tells me that for three nights they have a long procession that marches all throughout the town and either begins or ends with a service at the church (remember she is telling me all this in Spanish and I’m doing my best to understand but I’m sure I’ve gotten some of the details totally wrong, forgive me for those of you who know all about this holiday). I would love to see this and I may try to go into town on Friday night to see if there is anything going on. Here is where my total ignorance comes out…remember, this is my first year living here so I’m still learning! I had to ask if they had the Easter Bunny and Easter Egg hunts and she shook her head and laughed ,”Noooo! ” “No Bunny!” hah! okay….I had to ask, feeling a little dumb. But now I know! That may be why It hasn’t really occurred to me that it’s actually Easter time, I haven’t seen any Easter egg dies for sale at Romero’s and come to think of it….not one easter basket either. Hmmmm….Okay. Got it! So it’s strictly a religious holiday, as I’m pretty sure it was originally meant to be. As many of the new customs I’m learning about this year, it’s refreshing that it’s not as commercialized as it is in the States. It’s very personal and it brings the entire community together as a big family to observe something that’s holy and a tradition all of the town gathers to participate in. We, heathens will be relaxing in a kayak exploring the coastal town of Boca Chica and likely enjoying a refreshing cocktail. If we happen upon an Easter egg hunt I’ll probably join in, but I suspect that isn’t the most likely thing we’ll see this weekend!

Lot’s of Holiday Happenings for our first Christmas in Boquete…

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I never could have imagined this time last year that we would be so busy during our first Christmas Season here in Boquete. For the last thirty years my holidays have been so cram-packed with getting all my clients hair ready for all their holiday travels and parties and special events that I never had a ton of time or energy to think of too much else. I always managed to get our big Christmas tree up and decorated on the weekend after Thanksgiving, and I always enjoyed that all through the month. This year we don’t have any of our own belongings here yet so we opted to forego any Christmas decorating at our house. We’ve never been big on buying each other a lot of gifts and sending things to the States is not especially cost effective so the money we would normally spend on gifts we’ve decided to contribute to local causes. There are so many great organizations here and it’s deeply rewarding to feel as though we’re doing something worthwhile to help people who really have ‘need’ of so much. I must admit that this form of giving makes me feel so happy. I always wished I had more time and resources to help those who really need it ,and this year I get to do that.

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This Time Of Year, I Pause…

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I pause to feel grateful . As we enter into this time of year we refer to as , “The Holiday’s”, many people , commercials, advertisements and greeting cards speak of being grateful . So I find myself pondering what ‘ I’m’ grateful for. Everyone seems to have a long, touching list of what they are grateful for in their life. The first, and most obvious thing that comes to my mind is my health and the health of those I love and care about. Then I think of all the happy, fun, loyal, deep connections I’ve had with various people during my lifetime . I’m grateful for the blessing of so many people who have been a part of my life and the experiences and memories I cherish. For me, my life would not be as rewarding without having spent time connecting with so many amazing people. For this, I am grateful ! Anyone who knows me knows how deeply grateful I am that my daughter made it out of her adolescent turmoil! That dark time will forever be a memory of not only deep agony but great growth! And it always gives me perspective on what is important to me. Seeing her on her own path, and observing the strength of her fierce independence and capacity for self dependence is a source of unending gratefulness. My partnership with Scott is a never ending source of gratefulness throughout the year, not only during the holidays. I am deeply, intensely grateful for what our relationship is to both of us! I’m grateful for the way we live our lives ‘together’ and the mutual respect and admiration , loyalty and compromise with which our connection thrives upon.

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The Holidays are Fast Approaching !🎄

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The holidays are fast approaching! Or should I say the holidays are UPON US ! Yep, that’s more like it! So begins the endless Christmas commercials invading our TV and radio waves! All the retail stores in our little town are decorated to the nines! ( Let the commercialism commence!) Yep! I think it’s safe to say it is now ‘officially’ , “The Holidays!”. Beginning this week with Thanksgiving , tumbling into Christmas tree chopping down and decorating, then a slew of holiday parties, whammo! It’s suddenly Christmas eve and then finally New Years Eve! Whew! Deep breath! The coast is clear to begin a new year!

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HollyWeen🎃

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I’m not really a huge fan of many holidays. I never remember anyone’s birthday and have never cared about making a big deal about my own. Thanksgiving has been nice since I’ve been with Scott, for obvious reasons spending time with my favorite Mother In Law……..and eating Scott’s outrageously delicious food! Although with the absence of much of my own family in my life, I sometimes feel a bit sad that we aren’t closer . Christmas, well, I have developed a bit of a Beef about many aspects of this highly commercialized holiday. While I enjoy parts of the decorating involved in this holiday ,( of course, I do love to set the stage!), the obligatory gift purchasing has a tendency to bewilder me. Don’t get me wrong, I do get great joy from giving the perfect gift that will shock and surprise the recipient. It’s really quite exciting when you know for certain that you have found a gift that is just perfect! ( of course , it would help if I could keep a secret!, I don’t quite have that part down!). In the end, I would much prefer the gift of time spent with those I love. That’s more valuable than any of the material things wrapped up in fancy paper and tied with a bow. So for many reasons that I won’t expand upon any further, I love Halloween! It’s a holiday that simply celebrates fun!

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