Archive | March, 2018

A Tiny House in Mexico Revisited

25 Mar

via A Tiny House in Mexico

I thought I’d update a few pictures of my mother-in-law’s tiny house. It’s been one of my most popular blog posts. 





All is well. Just a stumble. 😂 I even predicted it.


Tiny House Plans

Alice has been visiting California and missing her cozy nest. Her kitty is also missing her.  I think I know more of what it feels like to be a house sitter as Lisa is away as well. Whatever you do this week, make it an adventure.





Lightning Strikes Twice

18 Mar

I have experienced typhoons in Japan, hurricanes in Texas and lightning in a snow storm in New Jersey, but nothing like the electrical storm we had this week in Bacalar, Mexico. This was a doozy.


The evening started with quiet flashes and increased breezes coming from the north. Only because we had just installed hurricane curtains on our screened-in porch, did we close up the house and head to bed. Might as well give these puppies a go. Lord were we in for a night!


An example of some of the storms that roll across the Laguna.

It wasn’t long before the storm hit. Blinding flashes exploded one after another followed immediately by ear splitting sonic booms which told me that the storm was stalled right over us. My father had taught me to count, one-thousand one, one-thousand two, between lightning and thunder claps to track the storm’s movement. It was right on us and I was glad for the concrete bunker that we live in and our newly installed protection.


Just in time.

I badly wanted to go up on the roof to watch the storm, but frankly I was scared. Mexico leads the world in death from lightning (National Lightning Safety Institute) and I wasn’t about to be stupid. The lack of grounding wire in many homes in Mexico is likely the culprit, not to mention the spaghetti bowl of dangling wire that can be seen all over most cities.

I checked on the dogs who seemed to be doing quite well considering, battened down the hatches some more and climbed into bed. I fell asleep counting one-thousand one, one-thousand two, as the storm slowly moved away.


NOT taken during the storm.

The next morning our yard looked like it had been through a spin cycle. Two banana trees came down with their top-heavy load of green bananas, lots of leaves, and a few big branches was all. We had gotten a much needed drenching and overall faired pretty well. It took a few days but all is back in order. Next time I will take pictures.



A Mayan Exploration

11 Mar

About an hour and a half drive from Bacalar is the town of Xpujil. Like many Mexican villages, it is situated on a major highway. Highway 186 connects east (the Bay of Chetumal) and west (the Gulf of Mexico) at the base of the Yucatan Peninsula and in the heart of one of the most advanced ancient civilization on the planet, the Mayan people. 



One of numerous sites in the town itself. The similarities to Tikal in Guatemala are evident.

I can’t imagine what it’s like growing up with pyramids down the street. Many children in Bacalar have never been out on the Laguna. Do the children of Xpujil study their ancestors? One can only hope.


Calakmul is a huge site. We drove forty miles down a bumpy road. Tour buses are not allowed.

We spent three days and traveled to four amazing sites in close proximity. There is so much to be learned about the massive civilization that connects Mexico with Guatemala, Belize, and Honduras. We truly live in an area rich in culture and history.


Wild turkeys that looked more like peacocks, air plants and passageways to the underworld. Monkeys were swinging overhead.


These three-dimensional friezes were well protected. I could have spent days studying them.

We would like to return to this area in the future. There was way more to digest than three days allowed. Also scroll down to see the bats! A genuine bat cave where a vortex of bats headed into the jungle at sunset to consume mosquitoes. They gave the Austin bats a run for their money. Truly an awesome experience. DOS TORTAS




Moving To Mexico Questions Answered

4 Mar

I was recently asked to contribute my experience living in México to help benefit women who are newly arrived. There are the retirees who move here by choice and those evicted from their residential country. Both need a period of adjustment.

Where do you live?
Bacalar, QR Mexico


A small band of women gather for solidarity with the US women’s march in January 2017 (I am second from the right and Lisa next to me in orange)

How have you created a life worth living here? What did you do? How long did it take?
We were able to create a retirement life in Mexico by living a simple life in the US. For years we used public transportation, ate out rarely, and saved consciously. We used the book YOUR MONEY OR YOUR LIFE. (Retiring To Mexico – Is It In Your Stars?)


How do you follow your passions?
My passions have changed considerably since retiring. I have become a homebody. I paint in watercolor and acrylic which was unexpected.


A watercolor painting from Rendezvous 2018, Merida, Yucatan

I have two rescue dogs which is a completely new experience. Be open to surprises, life will change. (A Funeral For Myself)


Frida and Luna

Are there safety concerns where you live? What do you do to minimize risk?
I have no fear for my personal safety. There are robberies which will always occur where there are poor people. We have a security camera at the entrance to our property because it is a distance from our door. I refuse to live in fear.



La Virgen de Guadalupe is a main factor in nearly all sections of Mexico. Have you adopted any part of this? Are there other Mexican saints that you have discovered an affinity with?


Guadalupe has a prominent location in our house.

The Virgin of Guadalupe played a role in my life way before moving to Mexico. Last summer we visited the Basilica in Mexico City. It was a very moving experience. My collection of her images has gotten a bit crazy. She is my protector and guide. (My Fixation On Guadalupe) I also like the Catrina skeletons.


She Decorates Our Kitchen

What would you tell a woman who recently arrived in Mexico?

Mexico is a very fun and polite country. Make eye contact, slow down, learn to greet people in Spanish, buenos días, in restaurants, on the bus, in the market. If a Mexican invites you to a party, go! Even if you don’t know a word of Spanish. Expect to be hugged and kissed a lot, even by people you don’t know.


Dance Like Nobody’s Watching

Challenges I’ve overcome to create the life we have.

Probably the biggest challenge has been being away from family, children and grandchildren. Travel is not as easy as it once was and the world political climate is not improving any time soon. Our family is spread out, so living in Mexico or the states, is almost the same, at least that is what we tell ourselves. Sometimes I feel sad and I wish things were different, but most of the time, our children are living their lives and we’re living ours and that’s just fine.


FaceTime with our two year old grandson.

Life is good and we are extremely blessed. Is it hard? Sometimes. Did we realize that traveling meant house sitters for our dogs? Not really. Did we foresee the growth in our little village and the repercussions to our beautiful laguna? Nope. Will we spend the rest of our lives here? Who knows. We WILL be happy today, give thanks and love life. Until next week…DOS TORTAS



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