Who Am I?
Hi my name is Laura. I am the real life Mommy Maleta. I am a world traveling, tennis playing, coffee sipping & blogging mom of 3 who also enjoys reading in comfy corners.
What Is A Maleta?
The word maleta is Spanish for suitcase. It is pronounced mah-lay-tah.
Where Has My Maleta Traveled?
- North America – many states in the U.S., Canada, Mexico
- Central America – Honduras, Guatemala, Nicaragua, Costa Rica
- South America – Ecuador
- Europe – Spain, Italy, France, Greece, England, Scotland, Wales, Austria, Switzerland
- Asia – Japan, Thailand
- Africa- Morocco, South Africa
What Inspired Me To Start A Blog?
This blog is inspired by my overseas travel experiences…
- As a high school and college student, I participated in exchange programs in Spain, Ecuador & Costa Rica.
- I backpacked around Europe for 6 weeks with 3 of my friends right after we graduated from college.
- I have traveled to many countries on short term sports ministry trips: tennis in Japan, soccer or football in England, Wales, Spain & South Africa
- I lived in Granada, Spain for 3 years with my husband. We worked as missionaries with an organization called Ambassadors Football.
- I lived in Nicaragua for 4 1/2 months to adopt our son. Our entire family lived in Nica together for 3 of those months.
- Because of all these experiences, I want to help cultivate hearts of service and compassion among children for the nations.
- My husband and I continue to serve as missionaries with Ambassadors Football, but we are now based out of their international office outside of Cleveland, Ohio.
My Life Defining Moment – Grab An Oar!
I would say my life defining moment occurred when I was on a flight home to Chicago, after a short-term missions trip with Athletes in Action in Okinawa, Japan.
I think the leg from Tokyo to Chicago was 13 hours. To pass the time I watched the movie Titanic, for the second time.
There is a scene in the movie in which the “Unsinkable Molly Brown” is sitting in a lifeboat with other survivors in the middle of the ocean. As they look around, they can see they are surrounded by drowning people. Molly yells out, “Grab an oar!”. She wants to row out into the waters to save people.
The rest of the people on the lifeboat, however, are crippled with fear. They are scared that if they row out and try to save people, they will lose their own lives. So they stay put, and threaten to throw Molly overboard if she doesn’t do the same.
The scene reminded me of the Bible verse Matthew 16:25 that says, “For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it; but whoever loses his life for My sake will find it.” (NASB)
The verse basically means if we are so consumed with our own lives, and our own safety and security, to the extent that it prevents us from helping discover the Truth about Jesus and the eternal salvation He offers, then we are going to lose our lives. But, if we care more about others than ourselves, then we’ll actually find life.
So watching that scene with the Unsinkable Molly Brown became my defining moment. I knew that Jesus was speaking directly to my heart, telling me to grab an oar. I responded by becoming a full-time missionary shortly after that trip.