That's Show Biz

Last week on Monday, PSD turned the conference room at the office into a filming studio, and we did the video for an ad for a project we’re working on with several humanitarian organizations. I wrote the script, and Tabatha was the director. You’d think we’d be getting to be old hats at these filming sessions, but it’s still fun to be part of them and to see what goes into the making of even something as short and simple as a 30 second advertisement.

We were able to attend another event for a humanitarian project. These events vary widely—from outdoor rural settings to fancy schmancy parties. This one was like a business meeting. Pat Frandsen went with us to take photos. This project was for a diabetes foundation. Diabetes adversely affects many organs, but the eyes are particularly vulnerable. With the traditional ways of checking for eye issues, the problems were often so advanced by the time they were found that the damage was irreversible. For this project, the Church donated the money to purchase nine cameras that are designed to detect problems in eyes very early when the problems are still treatable. They will be used in nine different states in Mexico and are portable so that they can be taken to where they are needed. At the event, a doctor demonstrated for us how the cameras work, and it was cool to see. We always come away from these events thinking how wonderful the project was and wishing everyone could see all the good that is being done.

Pat took this photo of us interviewing the doctor at the event, so this is a glimpse of us at work.

Speaking of humanitarian projects, two weeks ago I wrote about a project for children with cerebral palsy. That story was picked up by the church’s global site. They translated the Spanish version of my article back into English and reworked it a little. It’s not a great translation. I wish they’d just have me send them my original English version when they do this, but we don’t know which stories they are going to choose to run globally. However, some of Pat’s awesome photos are included with the story. They’re way better than the ones I posted on my blog, so it’s worth looking at just for the photos. Here’s a link to it.

While I’m sharing links, I’ll include another one. One of the first assignments I got on my mission was to find a girl who had recently moved from Primary into Young Women’s and do a story for the Friend magazine. That story was published in the November issue which came out this week—that’s how long things take in the world of magazine publishing. We interviewed the girl over Zoom. She was so darling, and it was so much fun to do this assignment. Here’s a link to it:

I don’t usually include links to the articles I’ve written because they are in Spanish, but these two are in English so you can actually understand them.

This week was Elder Zapata’s birthday. All the Teca Once missionaries get together and have cake to celebrate each other’s birthdays. Ginny, his wife, took it a little further. She gave us the words to the traditional birthday song they sing in Merida, Mexico, where the Zapatas are from, and she had us get a pinata. So instead of just eating cake, we had a REAL party!

Ron had to figure out how to hang the pinata. He came up with a really long rope, and Tracy Frandsen stood two stories up on a balcony and held it. It worked great.

As we’ve been out and about, we’ve seen more and more Dia de Muertos decorations going up, especially the marigolds they decorate with here. That’s not surprising since it’s only a week away! Someone told us that the stores along Avenida Presidente Masaryk had flower displays. We’d heard the same thing at Easter, but when we went there then, we couldn’t find anything. When we heard it again about Dia de Muertos, we wondered if the first person had been mistaken about Easter and they did it now instead, or if they do it for both and we were just in the wrong area. So Friday we decided to check it out before we told anyone else about it. We went after a chiropractic appointment, so it was evening when we got there. We were hungry, so we found a restaurant to eat at right off. By the time we finished eating, dusk was setting in. We didn’t see anything as we first started walking up the street, but then we came upon a restaurant that had flowers all over its outer wall. A couple of buildings down, we found another flower covered business. We walked two or three blocks and came across several. They were beautiful and amazing to see. It kind of reminded me of the Rose parade floats. Then it started raining. Between that and the dark that was settling in, we decided to grab an Uber and go home. We thought we might get back there on Saturday, but we didn’t. We’re sad about that because the Wrights went Sunday afternoon, and the photos they showed us of the buildings they saw were even more amazing than the ones we saw. Since the displays are all made with fresh flowers and plants, they don’t last long, and they were taking them down last night. So we missed our chance to see all of them, but we were very impressed with the ones we did see.

These butterfly wings are completely made out of flowers and plant material


This wall of flowers at a car dealership were beautiful, but the car in the window caught Ron's eye. He had to go in and see how much it was. For a minute, I thought he was going to buy it!


This is the Sanborn's logo made completely out of flowers

On Monday at the video shoot, Tabatha told us about a bakery that she said makes the best Pan de Muertos (day of the dead bread) in the city. We looked it up online and saw that it was about a half hour walk from where we live, so we sent out a text to the Teca Once missionaries and asked if anyone wanted to go with us. We ended up having six couples go. It was a lovely day, the walk was pleasant, and the company was good. The bakery turned out to be a little café with a small bakery at the front. Some of our group waited outside, and we took turns going into the bakery because we would have overwhelmed it if we all went in at once. Besides the pan de Muertos (which was really good) we tried some of their other goodies. It was the consensus that the orange rolls were the best.



I thought this view of  Ron and Jerry walking along was picturesque, so I snapped a shot of it.

After the bakery, most of the group went to Parque Bicentenario, though we took different modes of transportation to get there, so we got split up a bit. We’d never been to that park before, and the road to it was a little sketchy at times. When the Alsops arrived, they said they kind of wondered if they were being kidnapped. However, the park turned out to be really lovely and large. We went there to see the large painted skulls which were scattered throughout the park for Dia de Muertos. We and the Wrights decided to rent bikes so we could really explore the park. There were a lot of people there, but the paths weren’t super crowded, so it was fun to ride around and see it all.

The couple on the right are the Deavers. They arrived this week and will be replacing the Alsops, who return hom in about a month.



Sunday I gave a talk in Spanish in our Sacrament Meeting at the CCM. I relied heavily on my translation app to prepare and then practiced enough so that I didn’t have to keep my eyes glued to the paper to read it. Now the branch president and his wife think I can speak Spanish really well. No, I can’t. I can just read it well. I am getting better, but I still have a long way to go.




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