We drove in on Friday afternoon, got checked in to our room, and then headed out to do some exploring.
We then did a lot of walking around town before stopping by Dona Luisa's for supper. We can't go to Antigua without a visit there.
After eating we stopped by the restaurant bakery to see what they were selling these days. I have always loved their banana bread. They had just baked several loaves of sandwich bread and the boys got busy watching them pass it through the slicing machine. They were fascinated by it and we stayed for a long while to let them watch. We also got to watch bread dough being made. They loved that too!
the boys watching the bread slicing machine
As we walked around town we stumbled across a live music program taking place at one of the ruin sites in town. A local music school in town was having their annual recital and it was outdoors for the public to hear and see. Most of what they played was Christmas music. It was so fun to sit and listen to each one play and perform.
Here are a few videos from the recital-
We began Saturday morning with breakfast at McDonald's. The McDonald's in Antigua is in one of the most beautiful locations. We have always loved going there.
David and Ben enjoying breakfast at McDonald's in Antigua
One of my must do things while there was make a visit to see Ms. Ruth. When we first arrived in Guatemala ten years ago we did language study for six months in Antigua. During those months we lived with two different Guatemalan families. One of those host families was Ms. Ruth and her late husband. She took such great care of us while we were living in her home. So much so that when we returned from Stateside back in 2010 and I was pregnant with Cruz we moved back in with her for several weeks while we looked for a private place to rent there in town. She is just a precious lady and I was glad to get to visit with her again. She is like family to us.
me and the boys with Ms Ruth
That afternoon we visited a local coffee farm and music museum. I took a ton of photos while there so I'll do a separate post about it tomorrow. Before supper that evening we took the boys on a carriage ride around town. We have never done that there before so it was fun to experience it with the boys.
carriage ride around Antigua
me and Ben on the carriage
David and I enjoying Antigua
I had picked up a copy of Revue magazine right after we arrived. It is a free local magazine designed for tourists and lists places to eat and see along with maps of the town. What I wanted to look for was events taking place in town that weekend. I noticed a Christmas orchestra concert taking place on Saturday night and knew I wanted to go. It was free and open to the public. After supper we went to get in line with literally about 1,000 other people and waited for the doors to open. It took place in one of the cathedrals in town. It was a beautiful candlelit concert and probably my favorite thing from the whole weekend.
We began Sunday morning with one of my favorite Antigua things- having breakfast at Cafe Condesa. It's just a simple little place but there is something about it that I just love. We have a lot of memories from there when we were in language school.
Cruz took this picture of us with Ben
my boys at Cafe Condesa
Later that day we gathered with our mission family for lunch, visits, and then our Christmas party that evening. It is always a fun time when we all get together.
our IMB mission family
Josiah, Ben, Cruz, and Will at the Christmas party
It was a very fun weekend from start to finish. We squeezed a lot into a few days and made some great new memories while there. The cool weather and beautiful decorations made it feel a little more like Christmastime than it does where we live. I am glad we got to return and experience it at this time of the year. It was a special Christmas treat that I'll always remember.