Saturday, December 12, 2009

Happy Holidays-Love, Bill, Misty, Joey and Emily

Tuesday, December 08, 2009



We have now been here on Vacation for a week and we are very rested, and been having a good time playing video games, playing in the snow and visiting. Today we started something very important, we took the kids in for a checkup at the doctors office; now we get to go to a Pediatric Opthamologist, get cavities filled at the dentist, get immunizations, and buy more medicines. Its so less expensive to be blissfully ignorant, but its also nice to know that we are catching some issues before its too late. Joey played his Ben Ten Alien Force game and got all the way through it in 4 days this time because he didn't have the usual interruption of School or friends getting in his way. I found a used Wii Ski and Snowboard game to play and we have been doing a lot of skiing and snowboarding. I am doing pretty good, I have earned all sorts of cool skiing gear that would have costed me a few hundred thousand dollars, I have also been hit by numerous avalanches, and fallen off the side of a cliff that leads to blackness about 20 times. So I guess Im lucky to be writing this; I should be missing forever or laid up in a hospital bed in Canada.

This coming week we are planning on seeing more friends, playing music with family, spending a lot of time at the doctors, and trying to stay warm. We are so blessed to be here though, and so blessed to get vacation time. I have worked jobs that required you to work for 5 years there before you were able to earn this much vacation time, so again we are very blessed. Thank you everyone who reads this and supports us in your prayers and financially even.
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Monday, December 07, 2009

What's SNOW with everybody lately?

 So its Monday December 7 and we are a week into our vacation, we have had a great time playing, traveling, seeing friends but this post is about Snow! we haven't seen much of that stuff the past few years and  now we are catching up on our relationship with that fluffy, wet, cold, snow. Snow means shoveling, snowtires and chains, wet floors, excited children, a wet puppy with snow on all 4 legs and her nose. Joey and Emily are really excited to run around in the snow and play in it,  
and we are excited to have to get some more appropriate cold weather clothing for them so their feet dont get wet.
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Friday, November 27, 2009

It’s the day after Thanksgiving...

And we are cleaning up from yesterday’s events. During the past several weeks we have been buying Thanksgiving supplies. The week of Thanksgiving was spent actually prepping all the food and getting everything together. We cooked 14 turkeys, 8 hams plus potatoes, yams, vegetables, salads and how can we do Thanksgiving without Apple and Pumpkin Pies. Eastside Foursquare, and a team named Defender were here for dinner plus the staffers and students, we fed 200 people!
This is the first time for most of the "American" Disicpleship Training School students to be away from home during thanksgiving, so we as a family wanted to make sure that they had a really nice and memorable holiday away from home. Some of the Foriegn students excalimed "wow you guys go all out for Thanksgiving!" Everything turned out great, we had all the help we could ever need from our kitchen staffers Salvador, Anabel, Gemma, and Esther, plus 15 DTS Students were in the kitchen at various times during the day doing whatever had to be done, everyone worked so well together and it had a feel of HOME. Misty and her team were in charge of decorations and making it feel “homey”. It looked amazing with the yellow tablecloths and flowers, candy and candles on the tables.

Bill has been walking on the beach in the mornings when he can get away; it is so beautiful and peaceful. he has been collecting shells, and looking at the birds, it’s also a good time to exercise and spend some time alone talking to the Lord, you can talk or sing or whatever and no one can hear you because of the waves crashing.

Today is the last day of school for the kids for a few weeks; we are going to be traveling to Sparks, Nevada for Christmas Break.

We have asked the kids teachers to give us school work to do while we are in the USA so they don’t get too far behind. So if you speak and write Spanish and would like to tutor Joey and Emily while we are home e-mail us!

We are all looking forward to seeing friends and family and getting some much needed rest.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Weekend Away

 During this past weekend we got to have a trip to San Diego, we ate at restaurants, saw our cousins, saw friends and went to a museum aquarium, and even saw a movie! We drove down on Friday afternoon and on Saturday we went to an aquarium that is part of a nature preserve in Chula Vista, I didn't know it was so big. I always see the parking lot at the E street Exit of Interstate 5 and I thought it was a little trail that you park and walk on and look at the marsh or something. Actually we took a shuttle bus, met up with Joey and Emily's friends Caleb and Chloe and saw all  sorts of fish, petted some Rays, looked up close at Eagles and Hawks and had a good time. The kids especially had a wonderful time seeing their friends. I was about to scream as I heard about 125 times "when are we going to see Caleb and Chloe?" We usually meet up with them in San Diego, I know the parents David and Lara from when I was on Mercy ships. I came home they stayed in Mercy Ships and had their children at almost exactly the same time we had ours; Chloe's birthday is one day before  Emily's, same year and everything.

Later that day in the afternoon we went to a party for my cousin who is getting deployed to Afghanistan, so we saw him, his brother and his mom Michelle. That was the main point of the visit, but we only were there at the party for a hour I think. It was still good to see them, we had to get to our sumptuous motel to take naps and get cleaned up.  On sunday we saw a movie and got home to Ensenada in time for dinner. It was good to get away.
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Sunday, October 11, 2009

The Road Continues......

 So the road progress is still going on, as of now there is a nice concrete road on the north side of the YWAM Base. A couple of times this week I put out some coffee and muffins or danish for the guys working.  The first time I brought out the cart they were looking at me kinda strangely, but as soon as I said "GRATIS" which means "FREE" they were all over it, like ugly on an Ape! I really enjoyed giving some free coffee to some guys who just happened to be there working, usually we have someone tapping on the window.  
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We did get another guy to go to a rehab center, he was just about the only person I saw on the side of the building this past couple of weeks, also in the kitchen we have been VERY busy keeping the kitchen going and providing meals and lunches for the teams that were here building 5 houses this past weekend. Monday through Wednesday we will have teams here building 2 more houses. I gotta tell you though, it has been a tiring week.

Joey and Emily have settled nicely into school, but for now they are taking a break from Gymnastics. I don't know really what we will do with Emily, but Joey says he wants to play Baseball this spring. Misty is also now back to spending time as a mom instead of running the hospitality department and running around like a crazy woman all day running a department, shopping, picking up kids from school, etc etc. Now Misty and Bill work together in the kitchen in the mornings and Misty has time to be a mom in the afternoons as she tries to decode the spanish homework instructions.

Saturday, October 03, 2009

Olivia Ray


This is a good friend of YWAM San Diego Baja, John Ray and his youngest of 4 daughters, Olivia. John, his wife and daughters live in Arkansas but are here in Ensenada every summer during Mission Adventures. We love them all. Olivia died in a car accident today and on the base we are all sad, and I am especially sad. Olivia was a bright, energetic little girl who was always coming down to the kitchen during my first summer here asking for potato chips. It was crazy how she always wanted some pringles chips and as a matter of fact every time I see a box of pringles chips I think of Olivia. So now she is gone, and its a terrible feeling. The Moss family wants you to pray for John and Jane, and Hope, Hannah and Naomi. They are surely devastated and shocked. Misty is sad, Joey doesn't quite get it, and Emily said she is now in heaven like her grandpa is. This is one of those days when I cannot wait for the end when death, and pain and tears are all finished with. So according to the bible Olivia is now with Jesus and is seeing Jesus face to face and has been transformed perfectly to his image in a new glorified body in his presence forever. I hope to see her again someday.
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Sunday, September 27, 2009

House Building

Our home church Sparks Christian Fellowship came and built a house for a mom and her daughter: Ima and Wendi Torrez Venegas.  We all had a good time working together, chasing kids, meeting the family and other children from nearby,   and spending a weekend together in a very meaningful way. I am always impressed with the job SCF does when they come to build, and it is such a blessing to us as a family to have our church participating in what is going on here in Ensenada over and over and over! I,(Bill the author) am a cook by trade, I can put together a solid paragraph when I need to, and I can also play guitar and play Bass if I need to. I am not a carpenter though so I am not a lot of help on the building site.  So I try to help out a little, chase my kids around and keep them from falling into a hole or something else dangerous, and pick up trash; My real part in all of this is really a support role, I make sure the food is cooked for the teams and that the lunches are packed properly.
A good, injury free, safe time was had by all. The only tears I witnessed were ones of gratitude and joy. 
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Thursday, September 24, 2009

Road Construction

 We are getting the road next door paved and it is quite a project. Graders, bulldozers, hydraulic shovels, and dumptrucks are working together to put a nice road next to the YWAM Base....  Actually they are doing this for the new government office that is being constructed up the street.  Whatever it takes, I am excited for the upcoming lack of dust that will accompany the new road. Also drainage is being installed so now when it rains we will not have a giant mud lake lingering for a few weeks. 
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One of our Staffers, Esther Gastelum

This is Esther, she has been part of YWAM San Diego Baja for 9 years, she is in charge of selecting families to receive houses. She lives in town with her husband Salomon and their 2 children Iliana 2 and Saul 4 months.   Esther is a very sweet woman and she does a really important job that carries a lot of responsibility, she selects the families and also makes sure that the ones selected are truly eligible to get the house and not cheating the system. So I wanted to get her picture up on our blog so more people can get to know her.   Since she is usually interacting with the families she doesn't get to meet teams that are here to build. here is a link to Esthers staff page if you want to make a donation to help out with what she is doing here Gastelum Family&menu=staffstu&type=Staff
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House Building we will go!!!

 The team from Sparks Christian Fellowship will be arriving tomorrow afternoon and we will be swinging hammers, painting, lifting wood,and getting blessed as we get to bless a family. There will be a lot of joy, and maybe a bit too much joy...  I dont know. we will be posting more photos from this actual build next Monday, these photos are from a project that happened earlier this year.  If you have never done this SCF'rs, take the opportunity, another build will be going on in October. Talk to Rich Shannon, Or if you are reading this and not somehow connected with Sparks Christian Fellowship, then go online at; there you can find  out about Homes of Hope and how to get involved and who to call or email and get started. Come on down, its a tremendous experience, it could change your life.
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Emily's Party

 We had party for Emily here on the Base last 17th of September: Cake, Pinata presents.   The kids all had a great time, they NEVER get tired of Pinata. The next birthday is for Bill, he will be 48 years old. 
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Tuesday, September 15, 2009


As we get into the coming season of building houses with teams and getting ready for our Schools on the Base it has been an exciting 10 days. We continue to reach out to our nearby neighbors that come to the side of the building where the kitchen is, we have hosted a team from Indiana, and also at home we are getting ready for another Birthday for Emily. On Sunday in the early afternoon my kitchen partner and amazing helper Salvador saw a guy who was about 42 years old sitting on the sidewalk outside the building. He watched him for a while and eventually went out to talk to him and give him some water. As this guy shared his story of no home, no job, alcoholism, no family, no nothing. Salvador listened and asked if he wanted to go to a rehab center he knew of and the guy said sure and so he is now off the streets and right now is probably detoxed. I am sharing this because I am so proud of Salvador, and how he is helping out and also encouraging us here on the base and and reaching out to people in an amazing way. I really try to speak Spanish and I am always trying to learn more but I probably sound like OOH OOH YOU WATER HERE… TAKE EAT……YOU YOU GO REHAB. Yeah, so I am excited to see what happens here with our neighbors and how many people actually get off the streets, come to the Lord and actually have the life that He wants us to have. Last Thursday afternoon we had a Team arrive from Indiana they were from a company called Defender Direct they sell Home security systems and Dish Network packages. While here for the weekend they built four houses together with our Staff, and people from local Mexican churches, it was a great weekend. It was also a hard weekend because of the heat out at the job site, I heard that just about everyone was really feeling the heat. The houses were completed and four more families have had their lives improved in an amazing practical way. I had an awesome time in the kitchen cooking the meals with the other staffers together, I am very blessed with all the enthusiastic people that are here right now working together.

In a couple of days on Thursday it will be Emily’s 5th birthday, I can hardly believe it, it has been a fast 5 years. I was holding her the other day saying that I won’t be able to hold here when she is 4 anymore.The theme for this birthday is going to be Tinkerbell and we will have the usual: Cake, presents, PiƱata, and Bounce house. Last year we had a guest on base that was speaking to the staff and Discipleship Training School leaders and he got to enjoy the party too. (he couldn’t help it there were about 15 kids screaming outside his room) So he is here again, one year later and hopefully will have fun with us some more. Emily is an amazing child by the way, is totally fluent in Spanish for a 5 year old and is a blessing to me, the family, people we meet when we go places. She is the one who is friendly to strangers and starts conversations with random people everywhere. She is also a blessing in the kitchen when it is a weekend and we have helpers with us and she will go up and start visiting and making everyone feel welcome. Can you tell how much we all love Emily!

Saturday, September 05, 2009

Getting help and off the streets

Here in the kitchen at YWAM Ensenada we have a few rehab centers that send guys to do some work during the mornings and in return we give them leftover food from the previous day. Today we had a few guys that are from a center that is based out of a local church here. Accion Christiana (Christian Action) So they have been coming here for the past 6 months or so on Saturdays. I know it’s a big help for them when we give them food, because all guys in these rehab centers are not paying for the rehab, there is no charge they just have to participate in the program, and help out with the work projects. And it’s a big help to me, I get a lot of cleaning done for the kitchen and also outside in our patio as well. I had some cabinets made by very skilled carpenter, and today one of the guys offered to paint a mural for us if we wanted one. I am really happy for them as well that they are getting help and off the streets. I always have people that are living on the beach and streets coming to the side door asking for food. I have seen some people a lot over the past couple of years that live somewhere nearby; I can see them deteriorating before my very eyes that to me is heartbreaking. I have known a couple people that just disappeared one day and I have never seen them again. I can only hope they are maybe in jail or moved to another state within Mexico.

We have a new staffer on the base, his name is Salvador Vallardes; he came here a couple years ago needing to work so I was allowed to let him come into the kitchen and help out, and we actually started to pay him, then he took off at the beginning of last summer. I didn’t know what happened to him, finally after 9 months he showed up. He had a dream that I was saying to him “Hey Where have you been?” I am not like that really, but whatever works. So after about one week a couple from Canada named Gene and Patti Unrau paid his way to do a Discipleship Training School in Tecate Mexico. So now 5 months later here’s Salvador. By the way Salvador is Spanish for Savior so his name reminds me of Jesus and also Salvador has been a “savior” to me as he helps me get a lot of stuff done I do not have time for, He is also going to help run the kitchen, and help me interact with the rehab center guys.