Happy Cinco de Mayo:
A Recap of our
Quick Trip to Mexico

Houses in Piedras Negras Mexico
Houses that I to helped to build on past mission trips.


Piedras Negras, Mexico is exactly what you would expect of a Mexican border town, nothing too fancy, quite a bit of dust, hot sun, and friendly people.

I first visited Piedras 12 years ago as a senior in college. I was nervous about my first trip out of the country and excited to be participating in a medical mission trip.  Little did I know that I would return  to Piedras again and again, that I would meet my husband, fall in love and get married in that same town.

Hotel California, Piedras Negras Mexico, site of our wedding.
The Hotel California. This is the hotel where we  stayed the weekend of our wedding. We had an epic reception here which included custom made pinatas to look like Michael and I and a real live donkey.

Crossing into Mexico for the first time with our 3 year old daughter we were both a bit nervous. Though I had crossed dozens of times, often alone and at night, this was all before the recent uprising of violence in Mexico. I hadn’t been to Piedras  in 5 years and it was Zenie’s first time out of the country.

Passports Ready, Piedras Negras Mexico visit
Passports ready.

Once we entered I was immediately put at ease. Piedras felt as calm, even sleepy, as always. Our friends let us know that the violence had stopped. In fact, any sort of violent crime was once again almost unheard of, making it feel much safer than most cities of its size in the US.

Dia de Los Ninos, Piedras Negras Mexico
Zenie hanging out at the Dia de Los Ninos celebrations.

At the end of the trip I complied a list of my favorite things about Mexico. Here is what I came up with.

1. Mexican’s love to celebrate. It seems to me that Mexicans have managed to work more holidays into their calendar (which I think is awesome, we all need a reason to celebrate and when you live a hard life sometimes a special holiday is the best thing to brighten spirits).  We happened to arrive on Dia de Los Ninos  (Children’s Day, which is actually an international day to raise awareness for the needs of children around the world). We visited a small school in Nava run by our friends from Manos y Pies Ministries are running.  Their school reaches out to the poorest children in town and provides them with a quality eduction.  Not only did we get invited to join in their party but Zenie got her first shot at a Pinata.

Zenie and the Pinata, Nave School. Mexico
I love how it is as tall as she is.


2. Mexicans make you feel welcome. We were greeted with hugs and kisses by many friends whom we hadn’t seen in 5 years. For some I gave no warning but simply knocked on their doors and I was welcomed in as if  no time had passed. Whenever we left we  were repeatedly told. Esta es su casa, this is your house. Come back any time.

Zenie making friends in Mexico
Zenie making friends in Mexico. This little girl was a newborn baby the last time I saw her.

 3. Mexico still feels a little wild. Maybe it is just because we are foreigners, but there is something a little exciting about being in Mexico.  It still feels a bit like the wild west, you never know when someone is going to ride down the street on horseback or climb up on the roof swing a pinata.


Swinging a Pinata, Piedreas Negras Mexico

Running the streets of Piedras Negras Mexico
We loved watching our little girl explore Mexico on her own. It was such an adventure for her.


4. Mexicans take their time. It seems like we always do a lot of waiting in Mexico. Some has to do with inefficiencies sure. But there also just isn’t the rush to get things done like there is in the US. Mexicans tend to take their time and live in the present.

Waiting in Piedras Negras Mexico
Trying to find a spot with cell phone service.  Another important trick, in Mexico always find a sliver of shade, it makes all the difference.


Long wait on the border bridge, Piedras Negras, Mexico
A two hour wait on the border. It was a holiday so traffic was backed up trying to leave for the US. It made for a good time to debrief or trip and recount all the things we loved about this place.


It has certainly been too long. We will be back soon. Love you Mexico.


  • Shannon Reply

    So glad y’all got to introduce Zenie to a place you love so much! <3

    • egjarrett Reply

      Thanks Shannon, I think being gone for so long and then going back helped me to realize how much we really do love it there.

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