Monday, December 30, 2013

Holiday Challenges in Honduras

Dear Family

Well, first, I found Elder Long. He is actually in my zone. I saw him a few times before I realized it. Yep. Talked to him this morning. (I met his mother through facebook so told Michelle to keep her eyes open for him.)
This week was super good. Actually, it was mediocre, but I feel good. I feel like God is trying our faith because I am being super obedient, but we´re not seeing the fruits of our labors. We haven´t had anyone in Church for 2 weeks. This week we are going to have 10.(Our goal) I am so determined. I am going to become a challenging master. It is just hard because I seriously invite EVERYBODY to come to church. Every contact, every new person we meet, every member. If I am talking to someone, they are invited. Yet no one comes. A bit frustrating.
Thank you Grandma and Grandpa for the Christmas money! You guys are so sweet. I bought a lovely dinner and I am going to buy a backpack and temple clothes with it. The temple clothes here are so cheap. And  I really want them. Thank you so much!
We had a good Christmas. They celebrate on the 24th and eat a ton. They eat a dessert called Torejas... o algo... but it is basically french toast soaked in milk or honey. It is pretty good. They also make a ton of tamales. They are basically tamales that you just put your whole fridge inside--any kind of vegetable or meat. They all taste different. Today we are going to help an investigator make them.
For some reason nobody wanted to learn about Christ on the day we celebrate His birth, so we spent a lot of time walking on Christmas. But we were prepared. My companion's mom sent her goodies and candy to give to children, so we put them in bags with messages about Christ and the Articles of Faith and our number and we spent the whole time chasing children and mothers. It was a bit creepy. There was basically no one on the street so if we saw someone we went into full stalking mode. The first mom we saw, we pursued for 2 blocks. Sister Missionaries=  Creepy. It was way fun. I pride myself on my stalking skills, so it was good to fine tune them.
We almost had a baptism this week. A lady brought her nephew to us and told us to baptize him. But he doesn´t live here and was only here for a few days, so it didn´t work out.
I am learning the importance of obedience. The other sisters we live with aren´t quite the most obedient people.  They take a bunch of naps and don´t like to leave the house and come back early. I am hoping we will be blessed for our obedience. But They just baptized a family so.... Yep... its a bit hard. But we plan on baptizing 3.
We share the area with the sisters and it is getting increasingly harder. President is thinking about taking a pair of sisters out and moving them to a different area. We will see what happens. Our ward mission leaders are discussing the needs of the ward and the amount of work. But our area is HUGE!!! We also haven´t had a correlation meeting with the ward mission leader since I have been here.

Well, I love you all so much! Have a happy new year. 

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Life In The City

I am not sure what happened this week with the time for the internet, but it ran out. Well... really soon.
I finally got all of the dearelders that mom sent! Thank you so much! it was so great. I loved the news about the mission, the letters from Grandpa and the email from Kaitlyn. Because I got transferred they messed up all of my mail, so it took awhile to get here. Thank you so much for your dedication.
We had a mission Christmas activity this week. It was super fun. They split the missionn in 2. We had presentations from every zone, then a gift exchange (they put everyone's badge in a box and then if they got your name they gave you a gift)
I got a Christmas mug. With candy. They served mashed potatoes, turkey and salad. it was way good. Then we got to watch an animated movie. The Croods. It was a lot better than I expected. And it was in English with subtitles, so I was even happier.
We also had a ward Christmas activity. I was way happy that I didn't have to do basically anything for it. We set up chairs. My forte. And we actually had investigators who came! There were 2 guys that we haven't even  taught, but they came. We had contacted them. Another family came. It is a part member family. She is going to be baptized, she just doesn't know it yet.
The RS is split in our ward and somehow we were assigned to the side that has no one from our area. It is the area of the elders. I have no idea why it is like that, but I talked with the mission president's wife and now we are going to go to the other one. The other sisters who attend that relief society might not be too happy, but I am not scared.:-)
There is a woman named Albaneli and her husband called us asking us for money. She was really positive before that, but then she has gone into hiding. I have had to tell yet another person that missionaries are here to help them spiritually and not financially. I am getting good at this talk .
Oh shoot, times up. Good thing I will talk to you tomorrow. Love you bunches. MANANA!!! 

Tuesday, December 17, 2013


Before I forget. We can skype 24, 25, 31, or 1. Just let me know. I want to do it early in the day. like 11 or 1. 1 is probably better. But I can work with your schedules. I just need to know so we can work it out with a member. We can skype for 50 minutes. Yay! 

So. I got transferred. Woohoo. I was pretty sad to leave Campamento. I truly grew to love the people there so much. Soooo much. They were like family. The people were so nice to me when I left. A few made us food and other people gave me stuff. Like key chains of Honduras and a shirt and other stuff from their houses. Homemade jewelry. So sweet.
I am now here in Roble Oeste with Hna. Clark. A different Hermana Clark than was my trainer. She was in the CCM with me but in another district. But it is so fun. It is a little bit hard to learn Spanish with companions from the states, but hey, I like a challenge. This is also the richest area in the mission. We are no longer allowed to contact people in their houses, so it is all in the street. We are practicing our people skills and our stalking. Basically we jump in front of people and say, "Hey we´re missionaries, can we come to your house?" Its pretty sketch.
The people here have cars. And houses. And electricity. And food. I am not really used to it yet. I am actually in a bit of shock. But, WE ARE IN THE AREA OF THE TEMPLE. We still can´t go to it, but ITS HERE!!! I am super excited. I tell people about it in every contact and in every lesson. Oh hey, have you seen the temple? Do you want to have your family for forever? Its sweet.
We need to learn how to work here better. Basically we wander a lot. I can´t wait until I know the area and the members. The members will be key in this area. We share our area with other sisters who live in our house and the assistents. Basically it is way too much sharing.
We also share our house. It is the biggest house in the mission. We share it with other sisters. We have 2 washing machines, a stove, everyone has their own bathroom and basically we are just spoiled. And the bed doesn´t kill me every night. I still miss Campamento. But the members feed us a lot here. The mission president and his wife are in our ward, too. Kind of a bit of pressure. But I am pretty sure his wife loves me. Who wouldn´t?:-)
We had a meeting with the BISHOP yesterday and we were getting to know each other and he asked me what area I was in before and I told him Campamento. The assistent told him that when I got there the attendance was 30 and we got it up to 70. Actually 68, but it was nice to know someone noticed. I seriously saw so mnay miracles there. I almost want to go back, but then I look at the temple and change my mind.
The focus in the mission is families. The missionaries before were teaching a bunch of old women, who have families. So now we are teaching their families. And there are a few that are pretty receptive. We have one investigator who smokes, drinks and used to do drugs. But he wants to change. He went to Church this last week.
It is nice being in this area because we get mail faster. I assume. I hope so. Oh how I love mail. There was a batch of mail that got to our zone that was for me but I was transferred the next day, so I have to wait for them to send it back to the office and then to send it to me. Eck. But basically I am really happy and ready to work. 

Love you all! Feliz Navidad. 


December 9, 2013

This week was pretty crazy. Lots of changes. My companion got a call that she is going to train. I only have 5 months in the field and I am going to be a grandma! There are only 5 missionaries coming in the change. All Latinos. 2 Sisters. I am nervous to leave this area. 

We had a zone activity this week. We played soccer and I am growing to like it a little more. I don't like that I am bad at it. A member of the branch made us Baleadas which is the classic Honduranian food. She gave us 4 of them. It was hard to finish them. They were massive and stuffed. One of the elders looked over at us sisters and offered to finish our food if we couldn't and my pride was touched and I ate all 4 before anyone in the zone. Mom, be proud.:-) It was funny. The zone leader gave me a look of disgust/pride. The Elder who offered to finish our food couldn't finish his 4. Pretty funny... but I regretted it a little later because it was a ton of food. We also played dodgeball with toilet paper rolls. I owned. Gracias to 3 years of weight training when we played dodgeball a ton. 

I got a cute letter from the ward! I loved it so much! It was so sweet. It was the RS if front of my temple! GRACIAS!!!! Thank you so so so much!!

I also got the cutest Christmas card from Kristen! Your family is ADORABLE!!!! Ahh! Feliz Navidad y Cumpleaños. 

We also had a zone meeting this week. It was really good. The zone leaders have good hearts. Really good hearts. They taught us how we could present a plan of a lesson to the investigators. Me gusto mucho. 

We went to Tegus on Thursday for the meeting for Trainers for my companion. I am so happy for her. She is going to be so great! We found Pdte's house! I always feel super accomplished when I find the placed in Tegus. It is CRAZY in the city. And I love it. 

We have the compromiso to baptize 3 people and 1 family this month. We are trying so hard to accomplish it. We are being SUPER obedient. And now that we are being separated we are going to baptize 6 people and 2 families.

Friday night my DL challenged us to cumplir all of our goals that we put for the next day for Saturday. We had put some pretty high goals, but with a lot of help, we accomplished them. Even he was impressed. MUCHAS LECCIONES!! WE had 6 lessons with investigators, 4 were with members, and a million other little things. 

We contacted a girl friday night, went to her house Saturday and she and her cousin went to church Sunday. She is going to be baptized. 

I love you all so much! I will give you all the details next week about changes. FELIZ NAVIDAD!!!

Monday, December 2, 2013

Thanksgiving Feast??

Hello Dear Familia. 

First, Shout out to Grandma and Grandpa Smith! I got your birthday card and it made my day! Thank you so so much! I will save it forever! 

Also, MOM!!! I got your package. I definitely have something to be grateful for this past week! Package from Camille for birthday and Mom for Christmas. Oh Honduras mail... But my companion wants to say thanks too. She is completely addicted to American chocolate and peanut butter. She is waiting for me to get home so that I can send her a package. THANK YOU SO MUCH!!! It was part of our Thanksgiving feast! 

Area= We had zone conference. My 3 to 5 min talk was about 2 min. But no one is sad when they are shorter... And it was a wonderful day. Presidente spoke about the Atonement for an hour and it was wonderful. In the end he spoke about faith. This guy is powerful. I learned so much and it was so motivating. They gave us burritos for lunch and I was way happy. 

ANNNNDDDD...... WE GOT CELL PHONES!!!! Only the hermanas, but nonetheless we are enjoying the blessings of modern technology. It is quite pathetic and really duro, and I have never been more grateful. 

We are committed to baptize 3 people for every companionship this month. If everyone does it, we will break a record in the misison. 1700 baptisms. 

 We are using the Book of Mormon more and more in the work. We always used it with investigators but we are going full force with the menos activos and members. We are challenging everyone to read it over again. We also practiced using the Book of Mormon to answer questions and resolve doubts during the reunion de distrito and my companion and I mimicked dad. We had them open the Book of Mormon and read a verse and it was perfect for their situation. It is great to know that God is mindful of us even when we are practicing. 

Funny=It got a little bit cold here and everyone pulled out their winter gear. It is way funny. And THey don't want to leave their houses because It is too cold. It is like 50 degrees. I am so happy. I don't even need a sweater and I don't sweat. Perfect weather. 

Our Thanksgiving was a little pathetic. But I expressed gratitude all day long. We had a... feast... in the night time. We made fried platanos and bread with pb. And American chocolate. It was wonderful. I made hats/headbands for us. My companion was an Indian and I was a Pilgrim. 

Challenges/Blessings=We had a shorter week this week in which to work--due to zone conference-- so we were a little nervous about our goals. But we were able to meet our goals of lessons with members. The standard of the mission is 10 every week and we had 11.  It was a blessing. 

The church building is under construction for the next two months so everything is a bit harder. But the sweet members spent all of Saturday cleaning it so we could have a pretty place to be Sunday. I love them

Changes are this week, so we will see what happens since I have been here now for six months. Actually they are next week. 11 de Diciembre. 

Love you all so much! Happy day!

Our Thanksgiving Feast and our costumes.

Honduras and Elections

Dear Family,

This week has been way weird with the elections. I found out that I wasn´t supposed to tell you guys about the elections so that you wouldn´t worry. Woops. 

But in other news, I GOT THE PACKAGE FROM CAMILLE!!! It was so so so so sooooooooooooo perfect! We baked the cake and shared part of it with our district and then made cake balls from the rest of it and dipped them in chocolate. My companion is in love! She experienced part of the states and is dying for more. Every part of it was wonderful and I have already needed to use the little packet of emergency stuff that is just so darling. Thank you sooooooo much!!! 

Last Tuesday we had intercambios. It was fun. I went to Talanga. Campamento is way prettier. We are now no longer allowed to contact people in their houses. Only the sisters can´t. That means we get the opportunity to find a lot more in the street. It will be fun. 

The Elders had a wedding this week and then their first baptism in the area! I was so happy for them. This guy has wanted to be baptized for 6 months but he had to get married first and was scared to ask his wife to marry him. I don´t understand Honduras. 

We have an investigator named Gissela who is way promising. She accepted a baptismal date. Her husband is a member and we are hoping to reactivate him and help him get worthy to baptize her. Ahh! It will be so great. But transfers are in 2 weeks so I probably won´t get to see her get baptized because she has to marry her husband. 

I got to give a talk on sunday. I spoke about the Doctrine of Christ. Luckily no one was there because they were all working for the elections. (actually that part really stunk) But, it was over pretty quick and I shouldn't have to speak again in this branch. 

I have to speak for 5 min. in our zone conference tomorrow. Pdte called me and asked if I could talk about diligence. We have to go to Tegucigalpa and there will be 2 zones. I am more nervous for that then for this last Sunday. 

We spent 3 days inside during the elections. We cleaned, studied, wrote letters, made real food and watched church movies. It was fun, but we are really ready to work. 

In honor of Thanksgiving, I am now way more thankful for= 
Technology= washing machines, running water, light, dishwasher, oven, air conditioning, etc

email, fb, skype netflix

Communication with family


But since being on the mission I am immensely more grateful for=

My family and parents that were married in the temple and honor their covenants. 

Church programs
Church leaders

Happy Thanksgiving! EAT A LOT FOR ME. AT LEAST 3 PLATES!!!!!!!!!!! 

love you all! 

Here are the pictures from our birthday party celebrations

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

A few awkward moments . . .

Hola familia! 

Life is just a dream come true aqui in dear ol Campamento.... mas o menos. 

Before I forget, Honduras has elections this Sunday, so we will be on lockdown. They aren't expecting anything to happen and I am by far in the safest area of the mission, so even if anything happens it won't affect me. But I won't be able to write Monday. Quizás martes o miercoles. We aren't going to leave the house Sat, Sun, o Mon. Church is only going to be one hour on Sunday for all of Honduras. Yay elections. 

Area= Basically the only news is elections. Our mission had cambios, but it didn't affect us or anyone in our district because we are all in training. Yay. Our Sister Leader Trainer changed. We have intercambios tomorrow. I get to go to Talanga and my companion will stay here in dear ol Campamento. 


There is a girl named Paola who goes and visits people with us a lot every week. She is preparing for her mission and finally got her call. Guatemala Coban! A girl from my freshman ward is serving there. She leaves in February. 

We had an activity this week! All went well! It was Cultures and Talents. The branch members brought food from Honduras, I pretended to make no bake cookies, but I forgot the recipe so they turned out just a tad bit different... But hey, no one knows what they are supposed to be like here. One girl went crazy on them. 

Entonces, Mother dear, o alguien, puede mandarme una receta de no bake cookies? Mantequilla de mani style? Gracias. 

The talent portion was way too funny. Mostly because the talents were a wee bit pathetic. There were a lot of dramas. As missionaries we did a mini drama about how family life is a lot happier with the gospel. It was funny and we asked for references as part of it. We also sang Christmas songs. Tis the season. 

All in all it was a success. 

We were really excited the last week because we had two families in Sacrament meeting. Then we went to visit one with the elders and they told us they didn't want anything to do with the church. Then the next day we visited the other family with the elders and it was the most awkward lesson of my life. The goal was to get the wife to pray. We taught about prayer and the Spirit was strong. And then everything came tumbling down. She said she did NOT like Church and she will not be baptized in the Church of her husband (our Church) and a bunch of other craziness. We still asked her to pray at the end of the lesson. We all knelt down and she and her husband closed their eyes and nobody said anything. Most awkward moment of my mission. Complete silence for 5 minutes. I am not even exaggerating. There were 4 missionaries and no one knew what to do. Finally Elder Carrillo tried to remedy the situation and it just got worse. Eventually we left and we all felt awful. But the husband prays for his wife to accept the gospel in all of his prayers and that the missionaries will fulfill their purpose in his house so that he can have a eternal family. It is powerful. Every time I look at him I can feel his potential. 

Spiritual= We are finding out that when we pray really hard, we find people to teach. Last night we needed to find one more family. We prayed fervently and within 3 minutes we saw a family in the street. We contacted them and the husband was a member. His wife was with him and we have a cita with them tonight. But we still needed a family. Withing 5 min. we found another family. There were fireworks outside and the family came out of their house and we attacked. They are great. We'll see how it goes with them. 

Funny--We laugh a lot, but I can't remember at what. 

We also leave our umbrellas in every house. Every house. 

Challenges/Blessings= We are having menos activos popping out of nowhere who have esposos o esposas who aren't members. Last night we found out where 4 separate couples live. 4 part member families! Yay! We have to work really hard this week to fulfill our goals because we are short 2 days. The 2 best days.

Well, that is all. I love you all so much. Make good choices. Go to Church. Help the missionaries. Feed them. Yep, AdIos!!!

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Hello my dear family! This week has been... intersesting...

Primero, noticicias. Honduras has elections the 23 y 24 so we are not going to be able to leave the house for those 2 days and the 25. I think that there is only going to be Sacrament meeting in all of Honduras, so we can leave for that and then run back to the house. I don´t know what we are going to do for 3 days. I hate not working. 

Second, Mom´s questions= Our zone activity was quite unorganized. We played futbol, ate some burnt corn that some American elder made (crazy nasty, but we all ate it with a smile because we are missionaries and we eat weird food) and later went to eat at a chicken place. It was really good, but I felt kind of queasy the next day. 

We used to help in the Primary, but they honestly didn´t need us so we now help in the youth. They NEED the help. Ít is a lot more rewarding and we helped them start having mutual again. The 3rd hour we go to Relief Society. I love it. 

We share the entire branch and area with the elders. Our area is massive so it isn´t a problem. And the Elders sometimes visit our investigators with us. More info about that later.... 

Area= This week we are going to have an activity. Cultures and Talents. Gracias mom and dad for the papel sobre como encontrar personas. It is going to be a smashing hit. 

We served a menos activa named Gilma. With machetes we mowed her weeds. It is quite normal here and quite ineffective when a group of Americans are doing it. Within 15 minutes my hand was bleeding from the Machete and my companion spent the week helping my finger not receive an infection. It was great. 

We are learning how to make tortillas. They are getting better and better. You are welcome, future family. 


Ummm... I love my companion. We made schedules for every hour of our lives so that we don´t waste time. I love schedules. 

We are having more and more success with Menos Activos. We are starting to have an activity every Saturday with the members to find menos activos and invite them to church. I hope we see the fruits. It will help the members a lot. 

We HAD 61 PERSONAS IN CHURCH. About 10 were investigators, 5 were visisting and 15 of our strong members didn´t come. There is hope of 70 this month. We had 2 families in Church. Success. It was a miracle!!! Ahh! 

Funny= I had a dream in Spanish! My companion woke up because I was teaching a family in Spanish in my dream. I am FLUENT.:-) I was so so happy! 

Blessings- Challenges. 

We have 2 really positive families that we are teaching. Armalia y Bany. They both came to Church, accepted a date to be baptized. We went to visit them with the Elders and they were packing all of their belongings because they didn´t have money and they have 2 months of rent to pay. They left for their house in the Mountain this morning. We returned to their house in the night to see if they could still come to Church and everything and Bany spent the whole time being crazy and complaining to Elder Carrillo. It was the worst lesson ever. But maybe his wife will still come. 

The other family is a miracle. The husband, Santos, is a menos activo and God seriously led us to his house. He and his wife went to Church this past sunday and are preparing to go this sunday. We need to start their papers for their wedding aHORA if we have hope of baptizing them this month. We are going to talk to them again today. Jeni, the wife, wants to be baptized, but I don´t think she understands why yet. 

Life is just peachy! Love you all! Happy Birthday Dad! 

Monday, November 4, 2013

Birthdays and Shopping??

Hola Familia. 

I am writing a tad bit early because we have a zone activity in another pueblo. Its 30 min away in bus. Its crazy I used to be terrified of buses when I lived in the states. Then I came to Honduras and it seems really normal to ride on the public bus. 

Primero, Gracias Mom, for the cartas. I love love love them. I haven´t gotten the package yet from Camille, but the odds are really high that I could get it today or that it is sitting in the office in Tegucigalpa. 

This week was really good. We had a lot of meetings which is frustrating because we don't teach as much. We had the reunion por nuevos. I always love these reuniones. So good. We had training on planning, 12 Semanas y more planning. We got real food, which is always a treat. Carne. Y no carne that I can´t recognize. 

We also had a reunion de nuestra zona. En Talanga. It was good. We have good zone leaders. I don´t remember what they taught, but we practiced inviting people to chruch and to Baptism. Ï never am afraid to invite, I just get frustrated with people´s agency. Saturday we woke up early so that we could climb to the top of a hilll and help a family get ready for Church the next day. I got sunburned and they didn´t come. But their neighbor did, so that is nice. 

I also had MI CUMPLEANOS!!! my companion is so great. She coordinated with the family Garcia (Isable was baptized from this family 2 weeks ago) and I joined in their celebration for their family. 2 people in their family had birthdays during the weekend, so we celebrated for all 3 of us. It was great. It was nice that it was p-day. 

We also found some clothes super cheap for us. I found 3 skirts for $4. Oh, Campamento. Ï love it. I also found a Christmas Jacket for $0.50. Best 50 cents I have ever spent. 

We also went to the house of Gethzel y Kelin, my first baptism. We had a noche de hogar con ellos and then they fed us Baleadas. Basically I ate a lot and the next day my companion and I were a little sick. But it was worth it. And Gethzel collected flowers from outside and with her grandma made an arrangement. Everyone is so so nice. And so willing to sacrifice. It means so much more when I know they are doing it with love. 

Astrid was baptized this week. She is 17 and is the neice of a member muy inactive. She cried after her baptism. tears=success. It was so great to see. And she wants to go on a mission and get married in the temple. I hope she can influence her family. 

We are trying harder and harder to help people fulfill their commitments. Helping them understand and act. I hope that we are beginning to see the fruits of our labors. 

I feel really blessed to work here. I love this gospel and I love the chance I have to share it.


Mucho Amor! 

Monday, October 28, 2013

It's A Miracle!!


Gracias for all of the wonderful birthday messages! You guys are the best! I have love for all of you! I am so glad all is going well for Grandma! 

This week was CRAZY!!! So, so, so Good! 

AREA= My companion and I helped the branch have Mutual for their first time in a long time. It was a smashing success! They had a spiritual thought, then they learned how to make Baleadas, the favorite food of Honduras, and then my companion and I played games with them. They all had fun, some of our investigators went and almost all of our conversos recientes came. YAY!!! And our branch president enjoyed it tambien. 

This week I tried the typical soup of Honduras. It is called Sopa de Mondongo. I am pretty sure it is the stomach lining of the cow. It wasn't terrible...

My companion and I also attempted to make baleadas. They weren't terrible tampoco. It is my goal to perfect my ability to make tortillas before I go back. We always need to have goals... 

We also had intercambios. I love them too much! They are so great! I stayed here in Campamento and my companion went to Talanga. My companion was from the US and so she talked to me in English a lot. It was weird. But kind of refreshing. I like Spanish more. 


We found 5 FAMILIES this week. Let me repeat that, 5 FAMILIES!!! This is the miracle of miracles. The goal is to find 3 every week and I have never done that. This week we found 5. God is in the work. We are so excited. Allo of them are going to be baptized. tHey have no idea, but it is the truth. 

Isabel, our investigator from forever, was BAPTIZED!!! it was a miracle! she has been meeting with missionaries for 2 years! Success! She shared with us the scripture that helped her make the decision. Alma 12:11. Dios es sabio. I thought it was interesting...and very direct. 

She cried after she was baptized. I almost cried. It was such a tender experience and I was so so happy. She is going to be the next Relief society president. I just know it. 

Baptism de Isabel. There are no words to describe it. She was the first person I challenged to be baptized here in the mission and the first baptism of my companion. Too bad I had to challenge her to be baptized 4 times before she was ready. But the Lord has His timing. 

We went to Cacao. It is an aldea de Campamento. There is a special spirit there. It is far from the city and just peaceufl. It was rejuvenating. 


We saw a snake... but it was after we found 2 families, so it was okay. 

My companion continues to be a blessing. I love her so much! 

I will share all the great birthday details the next time. Love you all! 

Happy Birthday to me! 

Monday, October 21, 2013

"Udderly" Irresistible. . . .or what's for dinner???

Hola Familia,

It has been a pretty great week. Be sure to let me know how Grandma is. I will be praying for her. I hope all goes well. 

My birthday is in exactly a week. I want an email from Ryan for my birthday. And everyone else!:)

Area= We had entrevistas in the Church. Pdte. went area by area. Or chapel by chapel. We were at the end of the road, so my companion and I brought fruit for President and his wife. I didn't particularly enjoy going to interviews with dad, so I figured fruit would make it a little better. I hope so. The interview lasted maybe 3 minutes. How are your prayers? Do you feel the Spirit? Questions like that. I think mine was the fastest. I understood President. But he also speaks a ton of English. But I am proud to say he only spoke to me in English my first week when I was sobbing. Not sure if I should be proud of that. Hna. Fortuna trained us on how to adapt to the mission life. 

We spent P-day with a family from the branch that goes with us a lot on visits. We learned how to make corn tortillas and then they fed us lunch. It was interesting. When I saw it I knew I shouldn't ask what it was. Later I asked my companion. We ate cow tongue and utter. Yummy. It was... okay. The utter was straight up fat. I don't think I will ever order it in a restaurant. 

People= Isabel is going to be baptized!!!! She is the one that fed me utter. But she was the first person I challenged to be baptized... and the first person to tell me no. But 4th time is the charm! She finally gave up her novio and she is going to stay in the Church for her whole life. She already goes to church more than her family who are all members. I love her. I hope all goes well. It will also be the first baptism for my companion.

Spiritual= We prepared a lesson for a member and she ended up crying. Success. We read an article from the Liahona about how we should be Saints in every season. READ IT. 
We are also working with the Jovenes. We are preparing Mutual this week and hopefully they will start that up again. 

Funny= We were teaching about authority to Isabel during the Restoration and my companion asked her if her dad could be a prophet. He was there and quickly proclaimed that he could. It is funny when you know that he has been a member for 15 years and right now is an alcoholic. Maybe not funny, just twisted. We reexplained authority...

We have umbrellas. They are necessary. We use them for the sun and the rain. Unfortunately we leave them in every house. We spend a ton of time regressing to other houses. Neither of us has ours right now..

Bendiciones/Desafios=Basically I am elated about Isabel. We had the opportunity to serve which meant people fed us. I had 2 really good meals this week. And I also proved I can beat anyone when it comes to shoveling. It is really hard to find families. Pray for me. We have a goal to baptize a family this month, but we aren't teaching any. Lots of prayers... 

Ummm...once again, NEXT WEEK IS MY BIRTHDAY!!!! OCT. 28. Don't forget. 

Love you all. Praying for you and Grandma! 

Thursday, October 17, 2013

This week in Honduras . . . or how to get a stove the quick way.

Hola familia. Life is just great here! We had a busy week. 

Area= We went to Tegucigalpa esta semana for a meeting for the nuevo misioneros. It was kind of interesting. I still feel like I am the new one. But it was great. Motivating. Inspirational. Comforting. And we got real food. 

After 3 weeks without a stove I decided to go about getting a new one the faster way. I slyly mentioned to Hna. Fortuna that we didn't have a stove (I did it with grace and subtlety) and with in 20 min the office brought us a new one. I also managed to sequester a new DVD player and a box of copies of the Book of Mormon. Success. We have never been so happy to cook. And my companion knows how to cook here! Yay food! 

We have interviews this week. Presidente is going to travel to every area. He is coming here Friday in the tarde. And they might check the house.. or might not. We have a lot of cleaning to do. Only because the water broke to the house and so we haven't had water for a few days. But there is a guy who is fixing it right now. Yay! 

We were going to have a zone activity today, but nobody has money, so maybe next week. 

DIANA WAS FINALLY CONFIRMED!!!! Hallelujah. I can finally breathe. And she is preparing to go to the temple for baptisms with her nieces. Yay! Valeria was also confirmed. But she counts like a nina escrita. Whatever that means... 

We are finally having success with the menos activos. We have had at least one in the Church for the first time in 3 months for the last 2 weeks. They are just scared. But there are menos activa twins that are going to help us teach a lesson this week. I stole the idea from your mission. 

I was feeling a wee bit down because of Spanish and the inability to teach really well, but I came to the conclusion that if I am trying to be like Christ as much as I can, then it doesnt matter. And I just have room to improve. Yay. 

It also hit me this week that Repentance is a blessing. Its an opportunity to feel happy and clean again. It isn{t something bad or something to look down upon. Its happy! 

Funny= I don{t have anything in specific. But I am laughing a lot. A lot a lot.. I get along really well with my companion. 

Our water broke, but its being fixed! 
Spanish is interesting. Basically I am learning that I have been saying a lot of things wrong for 3 months. Yay. But I am still humble :) 

LOVE you alllllll!!!!! I{ll lett you know how interviews go.
Love you so much! 

Monday, October 7, 2013

A New Companion . . .

Oh my... this week has been pretty long. But I know it has been even longer for my companion, so at least I am one step ahead. I keep having mini flashbacks to my training and then I ask her why she isn't crying. She is so so so wonderful and so ready for the mission. 

Her name is Hna. Montaño. she is from...wait for it...ESMERALDAS ECUADOR. Sound familiar, Mom? Your first area! All of your horrible stories.(They weren't horrible stories, I just described the living conditions which were pretty rough) But she is wonderful! She is 20 and is a powerful teacher. Sometime I don{t even want to talk because I want to listen to her. But I talk anyway. And my Spanish is improving a ton. Ah!!! We laugh at my pronunciation of a lot of words... a lot. I am kind of American... but I am learning. She is getting really good at understanding what I want to say. 

Area: Cambios. I still love my companion. And Hna. Clarke is in Juticalpa which is an hour away, but not in my zone. I will also miss her. 

Last week we went thrift shopping in Campamento. Basically ultimate thrift shopping. It doesn't get much better. And I found the perfect skirt. It is the one I am wearing with my new companion on the fb page of the mission... I am assuming she put it on the page. 

People= people are a lot more receptive when they understand us. It is nice. We are striving to work a ton with the members. We are finding new people, but they are stalwart Catholics who are happy as they are. But its good. We only had 2 investigators in Conference. But we worked really really hard to try to bring more. 

I loved conference. It was a bit hard to understand, but I received the comfort that I needed and answers. Basically there is a lot about the Atonement that I don{t understand. A lot. But what a great opportunity. I loved the talk of Elder Ballard. Faith preceeds the miracles. I have faith, my companion has faith, therefore, HOLA MIRACLES. This is going to be a good time together. A family will be baptized. Or 400 of them. 

I have also realized that the Spirit is the teacher and we need to open our mouth to share our testimonies or else the Spirit doesn{t get to teach. And it doesn{t matter how eloquent we are. 

Funny= So some vocabulary differs from country to country. In Ecuador, BOLO is a drink. Kind of like icecream. In Honduras it is a drunk man. We almost had a really uncomfortable situation. Turns out I know a little bit of Spanish that is helpful for my companion... We laughed pretty hard. 

Basically we laugh a lot at my spanish errors. But we are happy! 

WE still don{t have a stove. I am hungry. 
NEw missionaries are expensive and we have 2 meetings this week so basically we have no money. 

But, once we get a stove we are going to have a whole new appreciation for food. I am excited. But there isn{t a lot of hope. I really want a stove, but the missionaries are all working hard to appease me. 

Just kidding, I am nice. 

This is all I can think of to say. I am really excited to work with Hna. Montaño. Basically she is a sassy black girl who is powerful. 


Thursday, October 3, 2013

Michelle is Training!!

Sorry it has taken me so long to post her letter this week. We didn't have internet for three days and then I was busy. But here it is!!


So, due to the length of the emails and my inablilty to retain any information because I am so excited for news from home, I take a picture of your emails to read later. Or reread. It has been wonderful. But I need to mention a few things that I forgot to write in response to your letters. 

1. Dad, I am so sorry that you keep having to send home missionaries.  I know that must be really hard! 

2. Mom-- I need more direction on how to use the BoM things.  How do I use them with investigators/at what point? I am just nervous because I don't want to slaughter it with my limited vocablulary. 

3. Mom, can you please tell grandma how grateful I was for her note? It was so great to hear from her. I pray for her and grandpa everyday. I miss them so much. Tell her that I love her and grandpa! 

Can you also send me grandpa's email address? 

And I am totally impressed you drove to Hna. Hernandez's stake. Holy cow. 

Kali--I LOVE LOVE LOVE the pictures! It was so fun to see your kids! Emmitt is huge! Also, your emails are hilarious. 

Kristen= I LOOOOOOOOOOOOVVVVVVVVVVVEEEEEE hearing stories about the boys. I don't know how you do it. But at least they are entertaining. 

Allie --I got your email and it was wonderful! I will try to respond soon, but I will probably just send a real letter. 

 I AM GOING TO TRAIN!!!!! I am not sure if this fits under the heading of area, but it is the biggest part of my life right now, so I am just saying it first. President called me Tuesday morning and we had a meeting in Tegus jueves. Me, 3 other sisters and like 15 elders. My district leader is also trianing, so I will never have to travel alone. Yay. Someone is looking out for me. 

I gave a talk on sunday. Importance of the Book of Mormon. I am not sure if anyone understood a single word, but they all looked at me. Basically the branch loves me. Therefore, they are nice. 

We also helped someone move houses. That was interesting. Right before a baptism. I should have taken a before and after picture of myself. I am definitely learning how to get ready quick! 

The niece of Diana was baptized this saturday. Technically it was an nino escrito [child of record]. I have no idea what that is in English. But it was good. We almost started on time. 

No one was confirmed this Sunday. oh... esta familia es un dolor en mi cabeza. One of them went off running and the other refused to come out of her room. But, we went by the house later and convinced them to commit to being confirmed in 2 weeks. Esta familia... Pero, I am learning a lot of patience. A lot of it... 

Spiritual= This week has been crazy and my companion has wanted to say goodbye to everyone in Campamento. But, we have still had some tender experiences. She was saying goodbye to Pdte Amador and it was wonderful. He is so much like dad. He just sat there and taught us from the scriptures. I just soaked it up. He is the one in white that baptized Valeria this last saturday. He looks really grumpy, but he is actually the nicest person ever. 

Funny= I introduced sock buns to Campamento this last Sunday. They thoguht it was hilarious. I now am under obligation to teach the Relief society president. 

Quote of the week= We were in sunday school and the girl was teaching about missions and she was saying that repentance is an important step before we leave on a missin. Her exact words---, If you kill someone, you should repent before you go on a mission. She just turned in her pápers, so I hope that isn't a personal experience... 

Language barrier= we asked someone if they had questions [preguntas] and they thought we asked if they had una pelota [ball]. Almost...

I totally messed up the hymns on Sunday. No one knew what verse we were on and we just sat in silence. I decided to jump to the last verse. Too bad my companion kept playing... But I just walked off. With a super red face. 

Challenges/ blessings= 

We still don't have a stove. Which means we don't have money. Which means I am hungry. But we went to the office after the meeting on thursday and I talked to Elder Robles. Turns out he already knew who I was because he is from Guadalajara. Therefore, he knew dad and was way willing to help me. So I gave him a list of items I wanted. But he was way way nice and showed me pictures of his home. He goes to the ward by the temple. Yay. 

I think this is basically it. Next week will be more excitng. I don{t really want responsibility, but I am excited to have equality. And I will learn Spanish. I saw the list of sisters and one is named Hna. Zapata. That is the coolest name ever. And her first name is Katherine and her second Michelle. It is fate. I Hope I get her. If not, It will still be good because it wiill be inspired. 

Love you so much!

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Hola familia! 

First, shout out to mom who wins on the letter front. You are the best. I seriously love mail so much! I am also really grateful you send me Grandpa´s emails. They are so fun to read. I also got a surprise letter from Sis. Abbott. It was so great. It was perfect in every way. She is so nice. I am excited her son is going to Tegucigalpa. Also, Kristen, your jokes were more than timely. They saved the world from my wrath... or just made me smile at the end of a really long day. I also got a letter from Camille. It was so great to hear about her life. Keep them coming

This week has been crazy. I feel like nothing has happened, but at the same time everything has happened. 

Yesterday was Dia de Independencia. There were no fireworks. I don´t get it. But there was a parade. You may be thinking, how fun a parade. Nope. It started right before church so we had to race to church so we didn´t get stuck behind it. And it was all of the kids from all of the schools in Campamento so we have been listening to them practice for the last month. I don´t like drums. 

Last Monday we helped a member make every possible food from elote. It was so fun. I am going to own in the kitchen after the mish. I now KNOW how to make tamalitos and fritas. There is other stuff she made from it, but I don´t know how to make them. I love the members. It was with Balbina who is my Camille. 

People: We have been singing ´´Una familia Dios me Dio´´ all week long. That´s right! We were blessed with a familiy to teach! This is huge! And they came to Church on sunday and said it was what they were waiting for and basically they are perfect. We might have problems with ´´Obedecer y Honrar las Leyes´´ because they live in the US, but the Branch President made that rule quite clear in his first conversation with them. Thanks for biting that bullet. They are wonderful. 

We also might have another baptism this saturday. The goal is to have one every week in September. It is a young girl who has sisters who are members. 

Basically we would be useless without the Spirit. This week I had the strangest impression to teach about tithing with a really strong member who might be the only full tithe payer. But it turned out to be just what she needed. She was feeling way lonely and basically ended up pouring out her whole life to me. By the end my companion was sobbing and I was comforting them both. I really don´t like emotions. But it was a tender experience. 

We also saw the baptism of Diana.See was the one who had the date for the 17 de Agosto, but we had to work REALLY hard with her. It was a miracle that she was baptized. 

I have come to understand Ether 12:27 better. I am truly starting to understand my weaknesses. But instead of being overwhelmed by them, they are simply a way for me to use the Atonement in my life and become stronger. 

We also went to the temple. 2 zones shared a bus. It was so great. And beyond perfect timing. I was so so grateful. 

We made a mess out of the hymns on sunday. During the first one, my companion threw off the hymn book and in the second I walked off the stand before the last verse. Yay us. 

I also had to jump over the wall again for the baptism. We need a key. 

Challenge: This week the biggest challenge has been that we need to organize our branch better. After Presidente visited us last sunday he made the elders the new secretaries in the branch and as a result we now have to visit all 300 of the branch members. We will see how long it takes. We are using the members a lot. I am slowly ocnvincing them it is like a scavenger hunt. yay! No one has addresses here. They are just hints. ´´ house de tierra a bajo pulperia´´ 

Love you all! Hope everything is going well!