The meta post

Hey blog readers!

Funny story: before May of 2012, I did not do much writing. However, that May I dove in as the author of this blog, which I started writing for a variety of purposes.

Little did I know, I would really take to blogging. I love it! And many of you have told me how much you enjoy reading my online musings. Some of you have mentioned that you have passed along to friends, family and co-workers. It is always so flattering when people tell me that they enjoy what I write. Especially since many of my readers are:

To all of my readers: You are impressive people. You keep me honest and challenge me to continue posting subjects that will be interesting, culturally sensitive, funny, and informative.


Do you want to hear another funny story? I was notified this afternoon that Among the Stone Cactuses was selected as a winner of Peace Corps’ 2013 Blog It Home competition! No way!! I am so honored that my blog was selected as one of the four best blogs…in the whole world…as exemplifying the spirit of Peace Corps’ Third Goal!

This means that I will attend the Third Goal Mobilization Summit in Washington D.C. this August. Along with the other contest winners, I will plan and facilitate a session at the Summit, and give a presentation in a local school while in D.C. When I return to Mexico, I will share my takeaways with my fellow volunteers about “bringing the world home” and using communications for the cultural good.

Thank you all for reading and for inspiring me to strive even higher. Thank you to Mexico for being such a wonderful subject. And thank you to Peace Corps for the  exciting opportunity of expanding cultural understating to more Americans!

The logic of the Peace Corps is that someday we are going to bring it home to America.
President John F. Kennedy

I am very proud of you, and all that you are doing as a Volunteer.   It is great to have you representing Peace Corps and Mexico!
Mexico’s Country Director, Dan Evans


DC last summer. I will do the exact same thing this summer, same guy at hand!

DC last summer. I will do the exact same thing this summer, same guy at hand!


The other contest winners:

1) A couple in Jamaica

2) A couple in Ethiopia

3) A young woman in Thailand


 Making me smile (besides the obvious!):

  • Sharing chocolate birthday cake and locally grown coffee in an adorable café on a cold, rainy afternoon…after a 17 kilometer trail run/hike! We started in a cloud forest and ended next to tropical sugar cane plantations and ferns that were almost the same height as me. We were sure to jump off a waterfall for a freezing cold swim about mid-run
  • While watching fireflies and lightening brighten a dark forest, my friend’s seven-year-old cousin stood by my side with wide eyes, clasping my hand with her tiny fingers. She happily pointed to almost every firefly that she saw, crying out “oooohhh, look, there’s another!” Then she got me: she extended her hand again and excitedly said “Look! my FINGER!” I love seven-year-old jokes
  • Meeting a 74 year old woman who has, every day of her life, hiked up and down a mountain in plastic sandals, 2 hours each way. She looked so strong and healthy!
  • Making legitimate progress on my collaborative grant writing process, even though it is a bit of a headache. As they say in Mexico vale la pena, it’s worth the effort
  • Now I finally have an excuse to buy one of the traditional, handwoven blouses from my state. I have only been pining after them for half a year now:

Handwoven blouses made by indigenous women in the mountains of my state: a beautiful way to showcase Mexican culture at the Summit! Photo credit:


4 responses to “The meta post

  1. Congratulación! Congrats! And Glückwunsch!

    I’m stoked that your blog was selected as one of the six winners of Peace Corps’ first “Blog it Home!” contest.
    It makes me smile to read about your life and about the little things which make life in a foreign country beautiful (and sometimes a little painful too). It’s an enormous experience to go abroad; it’s like growing up again, but this time being conscious about it.

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts in this wonderful blog. Keep it up!

    The same guy.

  2. You awesome wonderful blogger you – you go girl! Fabulous news, but frankly, I’m not surprised at all. Of course you were chosen. I could have told you right from the beginning. You have this intimate way of sharing the, what’s the phrase? in your hand.. the important thing/feeling/communication (it’s probably French).. the most heartfelt part of the connection between people, between moments. It’s what draws us back again and again. So, go to DC, with your simpleness, love of learning, your Harvard degree, all your skills and experiences. Create that presentation & Summit Session. Know that all of us are with you in spirit!
    Much love to you,
    Aunt Kathleen

  3. Hi fellow Blog It Home winner 🙂

    I look forward to meeting you and the rest of the winners next month! I haven’t gotten a chance to browse through your posts as I am in transit, but I love your layout (I’m on Blogger) and can’t wait to swap some blog-formatting pointers at the conference. Also, let me know if you’d like anything from Thailand: my site’s province is well-known for its hill tribe products!

    See you soon,


    • Sawatdii kha Sara,

      So excited to meet you and the others as well! We certainly will have a lot to talk about, including the fact that I lived in Thailand 10 years ago. I will totally take your up on your offer to exchange goodies. Anything that I can bring you from Mexico…other than tasty but not-so-portable food items? I’ll write you via email to make things easier 🙂

      choc dii!

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