Well, I added captions today to my pictures.  I’m learning.  This post includes the explanation of the pictures.

My neighbor downstairs asked me if I would like to share her maid for a few weeks because she and her husband are house sitting a lot and haven’t been home to need it cleaned.  So, I jumped right on it.  Not to clean our small apartment but to cook!  Even though Chile has a rising middle class they still have many people who serve as maids for families.  I’ve heard that welfare is basically nonexistent here so I’ve also seen men with buckets washing cars in parking lots to make money.  So, the maids here work from 9-5 and it costs about 20,000 pesos which is $40.  I was very excited for this opportunity to practice Spanish and get to try real Chilean food.  The picture of the pretty lady is Patricia who came this week and cooked the casuela which I forgot to take a picture of until we had eaten most of it.  They use cheaper meat with more fat than we do and she also put fresh pumpkin in it.  It also included carrots, fresh green beans, potatoes, herbs, corn on the cob, etc.  She gave me a list of groceries to buy for next week which I think is called pastel de choclo and a very rich drink/dessert.  I’ll take a picture of that next week.

The other pictures are 2 salads- one I made and one that Kent had on his farm excursion.   He thought I would like it and I would have.  I love goat cheese.  Another picture is the fancy bowls I am using to cook.  I just can’t justify buying new stuff just to leave it here when we return.  It’s amazing how innovative you become when you have to.

The other 2 pictures are items I bought at the store.  I went looking for 2 cans of tomato sauce and found this “pourable” container.  Interesting.  Then I searched for the cottage cheese.  The cup I bought was too expensive!  $4.00 USD.   It’s funny the produce is cheap but any imported stuff is too much for me to buy.  I’m dying for a brownie mix!!! I’m hoping when my Mom and Dad come down I can give them a small list of items to bring.

I see that the weather back home is super cold and snowy.  Hope everyone is safe and staying warm.  I can’t believe how cold this winter has been.

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