This week has sped by so fast! I woke up this morning and could not believe it was already P-Day! The beginning of last week was a little more challenging, just because it felt like we were doing the same thing everyday, but by Wednesday I got over it and we had a really good week. We only have 13 more days left here, which is so crazy! I do and I do not feel ready to leave and enter the field, haha.
We started being investigators ourselves for District 5 E, and we got to pick who we portrayed. I had to switch my partner after the first lesson, because one pair had some difficulties, but it is all good now! Besides, I fifn´t want to Bible bash, and the man my parter was playing did.. So yay! Haha.
Thanksgiving was awesome. We only had class until 10:15 and then we got to watch the Thanksgiving Devotional from the Provo MTC. Elder Niel L Anderson spoke, and it was really good. He had some of his granchildren come up and talk, it reminded me of a primary program for the beginning. He also had two friends talk about their missions, and it was awesome.
I don´t think I will be able to go back to the temple at all, which is sad, but I am glad we got to go twice, when I originally thought we would only go once.
I love my district! We had a district inventory last Saturday, which was really helpful and so amazing. We each talked about some of our strengthens, and then Herm. Velasquez (our afternoon teacher and investigator) picked a few people to talk about what we needed to work on. The elders (mainly just a few) have a hard time being in the classroom all day and constantly working hard, so we talked about that and set some realistic goals. We set the goal of having 5 minuets in every hour to relax and have fun, but we hav'nt been too good at sticking to that one.. About half the district rally tries, so hopefully our good example will spread.
We have this tradition in our building where we sing´´Para Siempre Dios esté con Vos´´ every Saturday night for the missionaries who are leaving the next Monday or Tuesday, and it is so fun, but sad, especially when you know the missionaries who are leaving! We are always joking that we will have to sing to ourselves when we leave bc there are almost no districts who entered after our huge group. It will still be amazing though! I will record it, and hopefully send it home. Less than two weeks away! ahhh!
This week, since we are fifth weekers, we had to put Soló Español on out nametags, but we are so bad about only speaking Spanish outside of the classroom! It had been a goal of mine since I first got here, but I am not very good at making and keeping goal.. haha oops, room to progress!
I love all of you so much! I am out of time, but I hope you all have an amazing week! I truly love it it here, I am so blessed to be here, to be a full-time missionary. I know that I am going to be able to help so many people, and through me, the Lord will be able to bless so many people! It is so humbling to be here, and to depend so wholly on the Spirit for guidance. I hope that I will be worthy to have its companionship everyday in the mission, so that I can be led to the people the Lord has prepared! ¡Hasta Luego! (Con mucho amor)
This week has gone by faster than last week, if that is even possible, haha. I cannot beleive tomorrow is Thanksgiving. There are no decorations or anything to help us feel like it is Thanksgiving, but we are in Mexico ( although there are only about 100 Latinoes here and I think about 600 American missionaries). We have been told that the Comedor will serve us something special tomorrow, so we will see, haha. Pretty much every meal consists of some kind of chicken, that may or may not get someone sick haha, and rice, along with a salad bar, fruit, and bread. I like it, though. It is really funny, because they always have Nutella, haha. We have a devotional tomorrow morning, but besides that, there is no difference in the schedule for Thanksgiving. I hope you guys are having fun on the cruise.
A few members from District 5 D (I am 5 E) and I are going to be singing for the 4:00 Sunday Devotional. We are singing a mix of Away in a Manger and Angels Have You Heard on High. It´s really pretty. I also don´t have to play the hymns on sunday by myself now! Elder Jackson from 5E will play some, too. He is also playing for our musical number. I wish we could listen to music in the MTC, but we can´t. So I pretty much sing every day (all day) to make up the difference.
A funny thing that happened lasst week, Elder Olson brought up how everyone in our district (the elders) started flossing after I told them how my Dad said that if you only either floss or brush your teeth, always floss because you can scrape off plaque (Is that how you spell it?) with your finger. Haha. I thought it was funny. A clarification question, though, probably for Dad. Is it better to floss before or after you brush? I feel like you told me before, but I am not positive.
The devotional last night was so good. Elder Pino of the Seventy spoke, and he talked about how we are all called of God to our missions, how it is pure revelation, the way we receive our calls, He shared his experience observing the process, and it was amazing. He is also really funny, and pretended to have a stake president interview as a normal young adult with President Call (1st coucilor of the MTC, who also served as a mission president and stake president). He then had the same comments\questions for President Call, this time pretending to be a missionary in a mission president interview. We all klnew where it was going by that time, because he asked if it was okay that first he went to the beach on thursday with some friends and girlfriends and played in the water, then on friday to the movies, and then to a dance on saturday. It was so funny, t hough, when he first switched over, everyone started laughing, haha. It was a good way to explain, though, how different the rules are for missionaries. He testified with so much power though, I loved it. My companion thinks I just need to buy a little packet of cleenexes, b\c I tend to tear up sometimes. She keeps giving me hers, haha.
We have pizza night on tuesddays, which is a nice break from the interestingly cooked meat, rice, potatoes, etc. I am grateful to have food, though, and in a way Indonesia prepared me to juat accept the food I am given with gratitude. I love Bueno Bars! they sell them here at the Tienda, and they are soo good! I keep wanting to try a frozen one, bc apperently they are amazing that way, but everytime I go back to buy the one(or ten) I stuck in the freezer, they are always gone. :( I want to put a sticky note on the ice cream freezer saying if you take a Bueno Bar, please replace it, but I probably won´t haha.
Last night, Hermana Napier rubbed out Hermana Toliver´s shinspints, (roommates plus STLs) and it ws the funniest thing! She kept laughing in opain, and then squeling into her blanket. We were all dying! I felt bad for her though, because I definitely know how it feels. She has bruises today, haha, poor thing.
Wow, I am writing a lot, I gues thats what happens when you prepare a sticky note on things to write hokme about, haha. Today has been so nice. We finally had a full P-Day! It has been so relaxing, not having to be in the classroom all day studying or teaching. Our lessons have been going okay, though I still forget half the time to include how to begin teaching points in each lesson. Ah well, room for improvement, ha. The spanish is challenging, though. We never have time to really study and practice a certain tense or grammer before having to learn another one the next day. I feel like I am almost learning nothing at all, yet I am slowing improving. I just wish I could know it all right now, but that´s not how it works.
One last thing, last night after the devo we talked about it as a district, and basically had a testimony meeting. I thought it was so cool how Elder Pino brought up how the missionaries are being prayed for, and I though about all the prayers we have as a family, blessing our family members who are serving and then all the missionaries around the world in practically every dinner and family prayer, and then in every Temple session, every half hour, we are being prayed for. I know that there is true power in prayer, and realizing just how many prayers are being offered in my behalf iso encouraging. I shared that with my district last night. I am glad we had that, because it helped us become closer. We have been having problems focusing on the work since the beginning, and though it is slowly getting better, some of the elders are frustrated with the teachers bc they have to get on their cases about it. I have hope, though, and I know eventually they will figure out and truly understand why being exactly obedient is so important.
So it has been another week! It is definitely going so fast now, and we now teach two investigators. One is our morning teacher Hermana Rodriguez, the other our previous investigator, Hermana Velasquez. I love it here more everyday. The elders in our district are so funny, but they've gotten better about focusing on the work, so that's good. I don´t think I said this, but pretty much half the CCM got really sick from the food about a week ago, but they are mostly better now. I never got sick, luckily. The weather is not warm! It rains pretty much daily, for three days in a row it was constantly raining. Its pouring outside right now, and I don't have my umbrella or a jacket haha. Oops, definitely should have brought a coat. We got to go to the temple again today, and I did so much better at the end of the session when you have to speak Spanish. Improvement! Mas fe! Haha I sya that all the time when I am struggling or having doubts, it just means more faith. Our sister district (idk what to call it, but we are really close with them, their sisters are my roommates) have this saying when they do well in a lesson afterwards. Salsa pic ante! (If that's how you spell it?) its great! I love the devotionals, especially the ones that are broadcast from Provo (they're in English then!) My companion Hermana Tyrrell is so boss! She beats all the elders at ping pong, including Elder Sillitoe, breaks apples in half with her bare hands (we've developed a habit of each eating half, its great. I never thought eating half an apple would be so satisfying, but it is.) and is SO FUNNY! She's patient with me when I go a little crazy, or sing all the time, which is good. Haha. I honestly don´t even know what to write, I can barely remember the past day, haha.
I wake up at or before 6:30 am, and get ready until 7:00. There is never enough time in the morning to do anything, let me tell you. We have a struggle getting to class on time..
We usually have personal study and then breakfast at 7:30, then personal and comp study until 9.
Then Language and coaching all morning, then lunch at 12:30 or 45.
Gym after lunch until 2:20 sh and then teaching our lessons that we haven't really had time to prepare at 3.
(Our schedules have changed a bit this week since we teach two investigators now, so half the class teaches one in the morning, the other half the other investigator in the afternoon. So we rotate investigators every day.)
Its also different on different days, Tuesday's we have a devotional in the evening so we don´t have Tall (online Spanish learning, its boring, but effective, usually an h our every night)
We never get home until after 9:30, and then we take turns showering and getting ready for bed. We pretty much have no time to even do our homework until the day its due (studying certain topics, etc) and even then usually no.
I have yet to do a single load of laundry, so I am hoping to do that right now, but P-day technically ends at 5, so... Well, that's all the time I have (I may have gone over, oops) Bye everyone, I love you all!
This past week has gone by really slow because we´ve been learning so much (or at least trying to) and fast at the same time. It´s weird. I feels like its been a month already, but its only been 7 days. My compañera is Hermana Tyrrell (rhymes with carol). She is 22 and so cute! We have the same mission. There are a lot of us who just got here last week who are going to Florida, Ft. Lauderdale. She doesn´t know Spanish very well,though, so I do a lot of the talking during our lessons. We are living in an apartment like building with 18 other sisters, and we have two roommates, Hermana Toliver and Hermana Napier. They are our new Sister Training Leaders, because our first ones Monday.
We began teaching Andrea (Our investigator, and we found out yesterday that her real name is Hermana Valesquez) I think on Wednesday. Our first lesson was rough, even though we had about two hours to prepare for it bc we went last out of six. We were so nervous, but it got better after that since we knew a little more of what to expect. Our lesson on Monday was by far our best, it was when we talked about the Book of Mormon and baptism. I explained how it was important to be baptized by immersion with the proper authority, and that an infant baptism is not right (Andrea grew up Catholic, but she isn´t very religious). Then Hermana Tyrrell extended the first baptism invitation, and oh my goodness! She couldn´t get the first two words out before being overcome by the spirit (I say it´s the gift of tears, but she says she just cries a lot). It was amazing! She eventually got the whole question out, and the spirit was so thick in the room, it was absolutely mind blowing. I cried a little too, but more importantly, so did Andrea. That experience helped me to see how important it is for an investigator to make the decision to be baptized, that it is the first step towards Eternal life. After the lesson and we paused the play role for feedback, Hermana Velasquez explained that she is not a real investigator, but that she represents her dear friend Andre. She told us that she wanted him to hear us teach, that he could have been there with us as we taught her about baptism and asked if she would follow the example of Jesus Christ and be baptized. She told us that we were prepared before getting to the MTC to be missionaries, that we were BORN missionaries! I cannot fully express how much her words meant to me. We LOVE her so much, she is the kindest lady! She is also a teacher here. She is so cute and little, and always smiling. Ah, that lesson was so amazing. She loves us! Haha.
We got to go to the Mexico City Temple this morning. It is a beautiful temple, though Moroni is being worked on. The session was in Spanish, so we had to use headphones. They played the same video that played when I first went through the temple. At the end though, we had to speak in Spanish, which was nerve racking, but I only said about two words at a time, so it went okay, I guess, haha. We went to this little store afterwards on the grounds and I got you guys some key chains and Dad a tie. I don´t think I can send out packages here, so it may or may not come in time for Christmas.
I really like it here, even though it´s stressfull. Saturday morning we went outside as a district during class (there are twelve missionaries in our district, my companion and I are the only sisters) and we read from Ether 12, in Spanish then in English. Verse 27 never hit me so hard in my life, I couldn´t even finish reading it in Spanish before crying. My companion had to finish for me. The first few days I was really hard on myself for not being able to pick up the language faster, for not having more faith in my Savior and His Grace. I definitely needed to confront that, so it was really good that I chose that chapter to read. Since then I've been doing a lot better. Sunday was amazing! I was super tired Monday (I am super tired everyday, we all are) because I felt the Spirit almost constantly, and cried a lot, haha. Good tears, though, tears of the Spirit.
Overall, it has been quite an experience. The food isn't always great, but its good most of the time. They have a small selection of cereal open for breakfast and dinner! I have only had cereal for dinner once, though! I am beginning to understand why everyone always says this is one of the hardest but most worthwhile things to do. Let me tell you, it is not easy to wake up in the mornings, but I am sleeping through the nights now, so that's good. I love my district, they are all such goofballs, we call them hijos or niños (children) bc sometimes they are not very mature(most of the time :) ) Its fun though, and we all get along prety well. There is just one elder who I am slightly worried about, Elder Markle. He isn't close with his companion Elder Callister (Megan, you might know him, he dated Cassidy Swartzlander and ´"hung out" with Sydney) and he doesn't seem too happy to be here. I am praying he will learn to love it here, and get to work.
I think that's it for this week, I like hearing from you guys! I still cannot believe Trump actually one the election. I was so sure yesterday the Hilary would. Well, I hope everything is going well at home, we were told last night at devotional (it's in Spanish, so afer every few words a translater speaks in English, it's weird) about a scripture in D&C that our families will be watched over as we serve the Lord, so don't worry, and get to work. I haven't let myself think about you guys too much because whenever I do, I get really sad and remember how hard it was to leave you all at the airport. It's like there is some kind of separation from my sorrow and being here, so that I don't feel it so long as I do not let myself think about it more than maybe once or twice a day (like in prayer). So I am good! Keep praying for me, I need it because the Gift of Tongues is slow to come! Haha. I Love you all so much, have an amazing week!
P.S. This keyboard is really hard to type on, so if there are a lot of mistakes, I'm sorry, but my fingers hurt haha.
I made it safely to the MTC! Once I met up with the other missionaries, it was a lot better for me. My P-day is on Wednesday, but it starts next week so you wont hear from me untill then.
Carretera Tenayuca-Chalmita #828
Colonia Zona Escolar, Gustavo A. Madero
07230 Mexico, Distrito Federal
Mexico The estimated departure date for your missionary is [December 13th]. The use of the above address on allcorrespondence will greatly faciliate delivery to your missionary at the MTC. Please don't send packages.