Sunday, January 6, 2013

Feliz Ano Novo!!! December 31, 2012

Hey everyone!

Mom and Dad - It was SO good to talk to you guys on Christmas!!! :) I loved every minute of it! And everyone else - it was so nice to see all of you! even though I couldn´t really talk to you!! But just know that I LOVE YOU! And p.s. I loved the signs that you guys wrote, too :)
I love you all! :)

Well.... I attached a picture, not sure if you´re able to open it or not, but that should tell you about how hot this summer is probably going to be here in Rio. ha. I don´t think it actually got that hot in Fonseca, but it sure felt like it! I think Christmas and the day after were the worst - and they broke the record for the hottest day since they´ve started recording it...... whoop!

This week has been really good :) full of work! Oh, but guess what? I saw my recent convert, E the other day!!! It was the coolest thing ever. He was baptized when I was in Cabo Frio and is marrying a member from my first ward in Comari!!! Ha. when she found out I was being transferred to Cabo Frio, she gave me his reference right away. It was super sweet. But man! How I love my recent converts! I wish I could go and visit all of them :)

What are your guys plans for New Years Eve??? Haha. I told Sister C about our sardines tradition and she pretty much thinks I´m crazy :) But I´ll probably still buy them anyways, just to keep it up :) hahaha....

So I have a question for you guys: What do you think I can do to be a better missionary??? And yes, I really want your responses! :)

Te amo

Mary Ann said the temperature in Brazil will be 49 degrees celcius which is equivalent to 120 degrees Farenheit. So hot!!!

Christmas Eve, December 24, 2012

Feliz Natal! I was just writing to wish each of you a Merry Christmas! I love each of you so much and I pray for you everyday! I hope that you guys are all doing well! and I hope that you all have a wonderful Christmas!!!

The Christmas tradition here is a little bit different than ours. They have a huge Christmas dinner type thing that starts around ten o´clock at night on Christmas Eve and goes into Christmas. And then they open their presents afterwards in the middle of the night :) Pretty cool, I think.

Tonight we´re going to a family home evening at a member´s house. Her son-in-law isn´t a member,.Tomorrow we have lunch at the bishop´s house and then it´ll pretty much be a normal day, making visits and stuff. :) I´m actually pretty excited to spend Christmas on the mission :) I think it´ll be pretty sweet.

Well, I love Christmas! And I know that Jesus Christ lives. He loves us so much that He gave everything for us, including His own life. I have gained so much respect for Him and have come to love Him so much more as I have been serving a mission. I KNOW that He lives. And I´m eternally grateful for the role that He plays in Heavenly Father´s plan for us. It is in and through Jesus Christ that we can return to live with Him again, that there can be life after death and that we can live together forever as a family. I love Him!

MERRY CHRISTMAS!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Our family loved talking to Mary Ann on Christmas Day. We got to skype. Mary Ann looked so happy!

December 18, 2012

Thank you all for the Birthday wishes!!! :) It went pretty well! Sister C made it really good. She made me a cake, card and a banner and gave me a necklace and earrings! It was sweet :) And there´s a really awesome couple in our ward - our elder´s quorum president and his fiancĂ© - made dinner and a cake for us, which was super nice of them. They are awesome! I love them so much!! We are teaching his daughter right now :) But besides that, it was a pretty normal day! We got to go out and teach a couple of families with Brother R, our ward mission leader whose son just barely went on a mission.
Transferences were actually yesterday - they switched everything around last minute and so pday ended up being today. But Sister C and I will stay together in Fonseca!!!! I´m really glad that I´ll get to stay with her! Both of the other sisters in our district left though :( One finished her mission and went back home and the other one was transferred. I´ll definitely miss them a lot!
As for the Christmas phone call - we have a family that said that we could go to their house. They have a webcam and so we can skype.
So as for Michelle and Laura? Janurary it is then? man. I can´t WAIT to find out where you guys´ll be going!!!! :) congratulations!
Well, I love you and Merry Christmas!!!

December 10, 2012

Sister A was baptized yesterday. She was a contact we made about two weeks ago or so. I love her so much! She knows really well how to recognize the Spirit, its amazing! After every lesson, everytime in church she always talks about the feelings she has of peace. She´s says that she´s been a lot happier since she started taking the discussions.
Remember when I talked about Sister Z and M - the mom and son who had a date marked for, last Sunday, I think. well. big miracle. but first I´ll give you the background. so I made a contact with M about a month ago now and we went back there and as soon as we got there, she started crying. We talked to her for awhile and realized just how much she was going through. They went to church that sunday (we got there and she wasn´t feeling well and didn´t want to go, but we got a ride for her and she got a blessing at church) and then we went back to visit them. A day or two later we went back again and when we got there Sister Z told us that she didn´t want to (or couldn´t) be baptized anymore - but we talked to her and taught her and man.... I think that was the lesson that the spirit´s been the strongest since I´ve been out here. It was amazing. Anyways, she accepted and also accepted a blessing of health for her son who has a couple of problems. So we went back there the next day with the elders, but she said that someone in her family had died that day and she decided that she would respect them and not do anything right now and she told us that she would find us at church if she wanted anything. She didn´t even accept the blessing. Anyways, it was super, super sad because we knew just how much the gospel would bless their lives and because we had given absolutely everything we had in that lesson and didn´t know what more to do. The elders tried to help too, but nothing worked right. And so we hadn´t heard anything back from them since...... BUT. When we got to church this Sunday, got into the first meeting - relief society and guess who was there? Sister Z! Man! we were SO excited to see her! And in disbelief too! We kept saying things like ´is that really her? Is she really here?!´ super excited and everything. Anyways, we went back there with some members later that day, taught a lesson, and invited her to be baptized this next sunday. Man. I can´t really explain just how happy it made me to see her there at church or just how big of a miracle it was to see her there! Its kind of been a roller coaster ride with them, but... I hope that all goes well this week so that she can be baptized this next sunday! :) And I think it will - she's got a really big desire to be baptized now!
ha. its kind of funny cause it doesn´t really feel like December. like not at all! It´s SUPER hot here! It´s a tiny bit better today because we´ve had some rain, but this past week its been crazy. I´m not quite sure what the equivalent is, but it got up to at least 42 this week. And it probabley wouldn´t be too bad if we weren´t walking around in the sun all day, or if there were air conditioning. but its all good :) (42 in Celcisus is equivalent to 108 in Farenheit)

December 3, 2012

So to answer some of your questions: We usually have lunch with the members around 12:30 and we have an hour. We don´t actually usually eat dinner because we´re usually too busy visiting people and don´t get hungry. Sometimes people´ll serve us stuff when we visit them, or we´ll eat something when we get home, but we usually don´t get that hungry after lunch. For breakfast, I´ll usually eat toast or something simple, depends on the day. Today we had something brazillian - bolinho de chuva, which was really good :) I don´t know if I´ve really gained or lost weight here - I think I´m about the same? But then again I don´t really have any way to check.   And no, I haven´t really gotten sick. Like, not at all! I´ve been really blessed in that aspect! And I think I would say that churrasco is the best brazilian food :) It´s barbequed meat and delicious - the sausage they make is the best. I also really like the fresh juices that they make here - they´re the best! And my favorite thing about Brasil in general - the people!!! I love the people here SO much!!!

As for my companion - well, first of all, she is a GREAT missionary. I´ve really learned a lot from her. She teaches so well! But yeah, as I have been blessed with good health, she´s had many health problems on the mission. She has a problem in both of her knees and if she wanted to, they would let her go home because of it, but she loves doing the Lord´s work and wants to stick it out!! She is a great example of diligence and perseverance! :) love her!

Carnival is in the beginning of February, I think. And from what I heard, we have to be back home by six and then study for the rest of the night...... As for Christmas Eve / Christmas and all of the other holidays, I think it´ll pretty much be a normal work day. New year´s eve, we might have to be home a little bit earlier, but I´m not sure. We´ll have a Christmas conference this next week with our zone and a couple of others, so that´ll be way cool :)

 I LOVE YOU ALL!!! Write me!!

November 26, 2012

This week has been pretty busy, but also full of small miracles.  The other day, as we returned to visit a contact that I had made, we entered into the house and his mom (I think she is in her 80´s or something like that) hugged us and started crying.   She told us of a lot of the problems that she has been having - with health, family problems, etc. We listened to her, taught her the restoration and invited her to be baptized - which she accepted. Yesterday, we went to stop by to help her get to church, but she was not feeling well and didn´t have the strength to walk with us.  We got a ride for her and all was resolved. At church, (sacrament meeting is last) towards the end of sacrament meeting, she pretty much started crying because of the pain she was in and got up to leave. We went with her and she sat in the back for awhile, as we and a couple of others tried to help her. Then one of the members of the bishopric came and gave her a blessing of health and comfort.    In the blessing he said, well... the Lord said... that if she followed this plan that He had for her, that all would be well with all of the problems that she has been having in her life.  It was kind of cool because as he came up to talk to us afterwards about it it and said ´So from the blessing that I gave I could tell that she´s been going through several challenges´ Man. I love the power of the priesthood!!  Anyways, we passed by there later that day and she said that after the blessing, she felt a TON better.   She said that she intends to continue attending our church and that she is excited to be baptized this next Sunday.
 I am doing good and loving the work! Everyday I grow in the testimony of this wonderful plan that God has for all of us - the purpose of this life and what he has prepared for the next! I am so grateful that we can live together forever as an eternal family! I love the gospel and the way it blesses our lives!