We Moved!

Posted by Jordan & Hannah Self

We've moved from Antigua to Guatemala City, but we've also moved to a different website as well! You can find our new and improved website/blog here:

Take Some Pictures of the Locals!!!

Posted by Jordan & Hannah Self


Jordan is always telling me (Hannah) to take more pictures of the locals so people back home will know what we see on a daily basis.

I always feel conflicted when I get an opportunity to take a photo of a local. In Antigua there are so many tourists from the United States and other countries. Many of them take endless photos of the people here because they are very different than they are used to.


Many of the Guatemalans in Antigua (especially the women) dress in their indigenous clothing. Many are poor and some don’t have shoes. They look rough because they’ve worked hard every day of their lives. They have lost loved ones to preventable diseases. They’ve lost teeth. They’ve lost husbands, wives, fathers, mothers, sisters and brothers to war and violence. Many of them live in homes with dirt floors. They are different from us.


They are different, but they are no less intelligent, loving, witty, or charitable than us (I’ve seen poor Guatemalans give to beggars that I walk past everyday and don’t normally give to). So when I get a great photo op I have to stop and think: Would I want random strangers taking pictures of me and my children several times a day? Just because I look strange to them? It just seems wrong…


Having said that I know that most of my friends and family in the US won’t know what life is like here unless we show them through pictures or better yet if they come and visit. Hopefully the few pictures that we do take of the indigenous people will spark your curiosity about Guatemala. Maybe you’ll come visit and see even more. Maybe you’ll decide to stay and find a way to help in some small way.


Whatever you take from these photos, please let it be with respect and awe of these beautiful people and nothing less.

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Day at the Finca Filadelfia

Posted by Jordan & Hannah Self

Less than ten minutes from our house in Antigua is a 700 acre coffee plantation called “Finca Filadelfia”. We decided to take the tour to learn more about one of Guatemala’s greatest assets.


There are more than 125,000 coffee plantations in the country of Guatemala. Many people agree that Guatemala has the best coffee in the world!

Here are the coffee beans green on the plant:


These are the little sprouts. You can see the coffee bean still attached. They splice the robust seedlings with the weaker, but better tasting ones for the perfect plant. Only women can do this splicing because their pH levels don’t destroy the delicate seedlings. Our guide said women can make over 150 grafts in an hour and feed their babies at the same time!


This is what the beans look like when they’re ripe. The skin is edible and has the caffeine equivalent of an espresso. I ate two…and am wired!


These are raw beans, ready for roasting:


Roasted beans:




The finished product! Yes, I am typing this with eyes WIDE open!




More coffee please!!!


Fourth of July and Language Learning

Posted by Jordan & Hannah Self

This 4th of July we tried to make the day special for Soly & Grace. We got all decked out in our red, white and blue and had some fun at a park. After that we ate hotdogs, chips and dip, and chocolate cake. You know, all the essentials. We listened to some patriotic music on Youtube and then ended the night with a literal bang by shooting of some fireworks! With every holiday we miss our friends and family back home, but we also get a chance to create new traditions for our family.


Ok, seriously guys, let’s try to be ready for the next shot!



Language learning is going really well for me (Hannah). It’s probably one of the most challenging things I’ve ever done. If you’ve never learned a second language to the point of communicating fluently in that language it’s easy to have grandiose ideas about what it would be like to learn one. Me, being the imaginative idealist that I am thought I would just naturally pick up the language during my every day activities. I mean, I just have to listen to some Spanish praise and worship songs right?

Yeah right. The truth is it is really hard work. The only way to really learn is to put in the time and effort and practice with real people a LOT! So far I have successfully been able to shop at the grocery store (this includes ordering ground beef and bacon at the meat counter), play the bargaining game at the market, spend a night in the hospital with Soly when he had a bad case of croup, and go to the dentist by myself among other things.

There are times when I want to rush through learning Spanish and begin our “real” ministry, but almost everyday I am faced with the need to communicate with Spanish speaking people. It is vitally important for our family’s survival here to become as fluent as possible. We have heard stories where the wife of a missionary wasn’t required to learn the language. Many times the outcome is a wife who feels trapped in her own home and a stressed out family. I am so looking forward to all of the ways that I will be able to use my Spanish to communicate, help and teach others!


My Spanish teacher, Yolanda, and Me at the Cerro de la Cruz. Yolanda is an incredibly smart amazing teacher! God knew who the right teacher for me would be!

Through the Eyes of a Child…

Posted by Jordan & Hannah Self

Thank you Springville Road Community Church Children for your sweet cards! It is so encouraging to know that children are praying for us and learning about missions. The kids had some really cute comments from “Mrs. Hannah do you have a lot of laundry? My mom does.” and “I love you very much that I can’t breathe.” to a simple “I am praying for you.” We love it! Keep ‘em coming!


“But Jesus called them to him, saying, ‘Let the children come to me, and do not hinder them, for to such belongs the kingdom of God.’” Luke 18:16

The Life of a Missionary Kid…

Posted by Jordan & Hannah Self

So much has happened since we arrived in Guatemala over three months ago and yet it’s difficult to sum it up into words. I (Hannah) am taking Spanish classes for four hours a day. Almost every day I get to use my Spanish that I’ve learned, but almost every day I realize just how much I don’t know. I can’t even count the amount of times that I have said ridiculous and possibly offensive things to people thinking I was saying something else! I have an incredible teacher who has given me the confidence to keep talking even though I make SO many mistakes. I have learned that speaking Spanish will be a lifelong learning process, but that the LOVE of Christ is a universal language!


(My view on my walk to Spanish class)

While I am in language school for the next few months, Jordan is helping me by taking care of Solomon and Grace in the mornings. He was worried that he wasn’t going to be used by God in any way during this phase of our journey. God has once again taught us amazing things and proven us wrong! Jordan has such a heart for people and specifically youth. There are so many young people in the central park in Antigua who shine shoes or sell goods to help support their families. Many people walk by without even acknowledging them, but Jordan has befriended a few and has spent many afternoons getting to know them. One boy named Jonathan David recently accepted Christ! The last time we talked with him he had almost read the entire New Testament that Jordan gave him. If only we all were so eager to read God’s word!


(Jordan & Jonathan David)


(Solomon is 3 and Grace is walking!)

I am finally getting a glimpse of what it means to be a missionary kid. Jordan told me stories of his childhood experiences and I read books but I could never really understand. In these few months here in Guatemala I have had many precious people come into my life for a few hours or a few days or a couple of months and then they had to return to their home or the next place that they were going. It’s easy to love with half of your heart when friends come and go so quickly. I am learning to love boldly and realize that I’m just extending my lifelong friends. As my friend Judy says “Small world, big family.” I am thankful that God has allowed me to learn this as an adult. I can only imagine what this life feels like for a child or youth and I am thankful to be a part of helping some MK’s appreciate and grow from their lives in Guatemala! I have included an excerpt from a poem written by an anonymous MK that has given me the best understanding of who a missionary kid really is:

Who is an MK? I am a combination of two cultures. I am neither and I am both… I am the six-year-old who cries herself to sleep the first two weeks away from home…I am the one who desperately worries about fitting in, but I am the one who wears my native wrap around the college dorm and doesn't care what anyone thinks. I am the one who has lived under strict school rules, and I am the one who returns to America and questions what my real values are. I am the one the churches make a saint out of, and the one some people pity and laugh at. I am the one who traveled halfway around the world before I was four, and I am the one who has no home. I am the one who promises to write, but never does because it's too difficult to deal with the reality of separation…I am the one who knows and understands world missions, life and death, heaven and hell. I am the one who has seen God work miracles. I am the one who knows prayer works, but I am the one who sometimes finds it difficult to pray…I am the one who has learned to live with a politically unstable government, and I am the one who waits impatiently by the phone for news that everything is safe. I am the one who has spent only three months a year at home. Yet I know, beyond question, that my parents are the best in the whole world. I am the one who speaks two languages, but can't spell either…I am the one who wears a thousand masks, one for each day and time. I am the one who learned to be all I'm expected to be, but is still not sure of who I really am…I am the one who laughs and cries, sings and prays, gets angry and doubts, fears and questions, expects and receives, hopes and dreams. And I am one who cares. I am an MK, and I am proud of it!

We thank you for faithfully praying for us every step of the way! Love,

Jordan, Hannah, Solomon & Grace


(My super sweet friend Hillary who I met my first day of Spanish class. Miss you Hillary!)


(Antigua is beautiful! Even and old wall looks like art!)




(The Guatemalan Mother’s Day is a few days after the one in the US so I got to celebrate twice Smile!)

Look into her eyes.

Posted by Jordan & Hannah Self

As I look into this little girls' eyes I see beauty and sadness. A life that is mainly lived on the street with her mother and sister. They sell small meals for people so that they can barely eat for themselves. As I gaze into her eyes I realize that my selfish world needs to be shattered!
Prayer: Oh Lord, break my world apart! Change my way of thinking! Help me to see life through others' eyes.