in Chile : My Mom and her Art

My mom taught me to knit, to crochet, and to do lots of things.  She’s always been so crafty and always doing hand work.  So many cool and beautiful things.   All the time, since my brothers and I were little.  Knitted skirts, sweaters, cardigans, hats, gloves.  Crocheted accents to towels and sheets, and curtains, and shirts.  Sewn pants, dresses, skirts.  Homemade ketchup, canned peaches, fermented pickles, apple sauce, jam, cookies, cakes. Embroidered doilies, sheets, kitchen towels.

And now, her latest hand work, needle work. Crewel.   After a life of working and making she had her work in an exhibition at “Centro Cultural El Austral” an art gallery in Valdivia.

Look at her work.

Photo by Emilio. Photo by Emilio.

I couldn’t be there to see it in person.  But have seen all these beautiful pieces all over our homes.  Gracias Mamá.

in Chile : Pucón and its flowers

In search of ‘spring’ here in the Pacific Northwest (it feels and looks like winter still) I’m sharing with you these flowers.  So beautifully made.

Pucón is a small town close to Villarrica.  It’s on the east side of the lake. “Towards Argentina”.  In the native language, Mapudungun, it means “entrance to the mountains.” Which is exactly what it is.  The Andes Mountains are right there, you can see them from all over town.  Huge, tall mountains hovering over anywhere you look.  A beautiful view.

These are wooden flowers.  They are typical of Pucón. They are hand carved from sticks and they look beautiful with all the colors.

Any color you can imagine.

Any shape. Hand carved.

So beautiful and perfect.

in Chile : Villarrica

Villarrica. This is, I think, my favorite place.  My parents have had this place for almost 40 years and it’s just beautiful.  I’m glad to share it with you.

Volcán Villarrica and Lago Villarrica.

this curtain I crocheted it for the apartment I lived in when I went to the university 20 years ago. I’m so glad to see it here now, in a new window. Perfect!

Copihue. Lapageria rosea.  Chilean National Flower.

Copihue’s flower bud.


and searching…

here it is!


So good! (if you like meat of course)

Learning to play fútbol.

Look at this view.  I will never tire of it.

Working with Tata.

And the colors! So bright and so perfect. I love fall! You can see another volcano in the background when it’s not hazy, Volcán Llaima.

Here it is on another day.

Araucaria araucana. 


Just plain ol’love. Love for all animals.

And more love.

The love of cousins.

Love of playing and having fun.

And the love of new friendships.

in Chile : VALDIVIA

To continue with our visit in Chile I would like to take you further south from Temuco, where my parents live and where I grew up.  To Valdivia.

Valdivia is a small city, very similar to where we live now. A river runs through the middle, it rains lots, there’s green everywhere you look, and very close to the ocean.  Well, truth be told… anywhere in Chile you are ‘very close’ to the ocean 🙂

Valdivia is where two uncles, two aunts, and four cousins live at the moment.  Lots of playing and lots of catching up.

El Torreón de Los Canelos de Valdivia. One of the two Torreones that protected the entrance to the city in the time The Spanish were here, dated from 1774.

Some playing.

Some more playing.

A craft fair.

Canned pairs and plums.

Bracelets and headbands.

So much fun in so little time.

in Chile : food – comida

Oh… there’s so much to taste. So much! Here’s pictures of just a few foods we tried and saw.





Frutas en la feria.




Castañas. Merquén. Queso fresco.  Membrillos.


Murta o Murtilla.

Piñones from Araucaria trees.


La Feria.

Marraqueta. Pan francés. 




Pasteles con merengue.

Pasteles con manjar.


Hope you enjoyed the menu as much as we did.

in Chile: first stop : TEMUCO

We had a good time while visiting in Chile.  Lots of family to see and play with.  Lots of fun.  Here’s some photos in Temuco.  A visit after over six years.

The view from Oma and Tata’s apartment.

At night.

Playing a new game (for us) with Tata. “Spot It.”  Lots of fun.

Cousins and an aunt and an uncle Lucas hadn’t met yet.  And well, after six years, everybody had changed a lot, anyways.  So, there was lots of sharing and getting to know each other.

Playing piano together with Tata.

A new set of chess. Made out of wood, painted by hand, with “mapuches” and “spaniors.”

Looking out some more. Lots to see. Micros (buses). Cars. Lots and lots of honking.  And jugglers who came at different times of the day. At night was especially fun, when they juggled with fire.  It’s too bad I didn’t get a picture of them.  Lots of entertainment from a fifth floor building!

And later this week we’ll continue with the tour of Chile.  To the south.