Five years ago I spent three months teaching English in Zanzibar, Tanzania, Africa. One of my favourite things about this experience was that I was living completely amongst the people, I learned so much about their religion, the food they ate, what they did for fun, their beliefs etc.
Peter and I knew we wanted to take Spanish classes in Guatemala and we decided on San Pedro, a little town on Lake Atitlan, Guatemala. We took 4 hours of Spanish classes a day for 5 days and lived with a local family.
Maria y Ventura nuestros padres (our parents) and Manuella y Juan nuestros hermanos (our siblings) took us in with a warm welcome. They taught us everything about traditional food from how to make tortillas from scratch (a lengthly process that Guatemalan women perform everyday) to how make traditional salsas, ceviches, tamales etc. We got to experience a traditional ceremony that was performed for the daughter and learned about what a day in the life looks like for a local Guatemalan.
After feeling so welcomed I wanted to make something special to give back. I decided that a colourful necklace for my second mother and sister would be the perfect gift! They too had a bucket of beads that they've been collecting over time so I made the necklace with a combination of beads. The women in Guatemala dress in a traditional hand-embroidered blouse and skirt and I just loved how the colourful necklaces matched their colourful dress.
Muchas gracias mi nueva familia!