Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Well we have a present for you Tomas!

Well hello again!!!!!!

IT WAS AWESOME TO BE ABLE TO TALK TO YOU ALL ON THE PHONE!!!!!! You all sounded so happy and like you were having fun! It was kind of hard to hear and chaotic but I loved it... just like home :) I told someone the other day when they were apologizing for their crazy family/house... and I told them the quote from Uncle Ric that families "put the 'fun' in disfunctional." I told them no family is perfect but we are here to love and support and lift each other. I'm grateful for all the love and support and lifting you have given me over the years and ESPECIALLY NOW. IT WOULD BE MUCH HARDER TO SERVE HERE WITHOUT YOU ALL!

The rest of my Christmas was crazy. We went to a few members to eat and I was SUPER stuffed. They are all so kind and giving. Even though a lot of them don't have much, they worked super hard all day to make us a lot of delicious food... so of course I ate as much as I could to show my gratitude to them :) I had tamales and bunuelos (like elephant ears). I still need to learn how to make tamales... but no se preoccupe porque tengo un ano mas!

Last week when we went to mail off a package, Tomas the mailman guy was like, "Hey where is my present?" joking around... he said "Nobody brings me presents anymore for Christmas." So we told him, "Well we have a present for you Tomas!" Then we ran outside and got a Book of Mormon and ripped out a bunch of pictures of Christ from our pamphlets and taped them together for wrapping paper. We wrapped up the Book of Mormon in our Jesus wrapping paper and taped a candy cane on it and gave it to Tomas :) haha he was SUPER excited :) Then today I went by to send something and I asked him how he liked his present... and he said he is reading it! Yay!!! He said he loves to read and has started it already.... cool :) Hopefully something comes of it.




Tuesday, December 21, 2010

I had Menudo for the first time (soup with cow intestine)

Well hello there mi familia!!!!!!

This email is going to have to be short. My computer is being funky. That is okay though because I GET TO TALK TO YOU ALL THIS WEEKEND!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

This week absolutely FLEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEW BY! We were so busy. We couldn't fit in all of our appointments... but luckily when we have members come with us we can split and be two places at once. Did I tell you we were in the Raymondville newspaper? I'm sending the article along with a few little gifts in a package today. It won't make it by Christmas but I hope you like them.

So we had one person come to church yesterday :) Better than last time :) We are working super, super hard and although we can't see the results now, they will come and we are fulfilling our purpose as missionaries. We had the branch Christmas Party.. it was good... and interesting. I had Menudo for the first time. It is the soup with the cow intestine. It had really good flavor... the intestine was just a little chewy for my liking. BUT we have been eating A TON OF DELICIOUS TAMALES LATELY!!!!!!!!!!!!! That is probably why I'm gaining weight because I know there is a lot of lard involved with tamales... but I'm going to enjoy it while I can! I'm not going home until I can make them!

I've got to run but I will talk to you soon! I haven't recieved my package yet but I'm sure it will come today! I'm excited! I love you all!!!!!!!!!!!! Mike and Jess look so cute together! They look super happy. Say hello for me!


2 nephi 19:6

Monday, December 13, 2010

Bear with patience thine afflictions and I will give unto you success.

Woooo hooooo I'm excited for this package!!! We have our little tree lit and ready :) I know as soon as we left I was like "oh no I forgot to get her the address!" But luckily Melissa (the member that always comes out with us) was able to get it to you. I'm attempting to scrounge up things here and there to send for you for Christmas! We don't have a super long time to shop so I hope I can get it out by next Monday.

Yay for gingerbread projects! Yes take lots of pictures! That is funny that Jon just sent his companion home... because so did I! Yesterday we drove Sister Smith down to McAllen to drop her off at the mission home. When we were there President Trayner made pb&j sandwitches for us.. but when he heard I can't eat wheat he heated up some tamales for me! SO GOOD! Then we found out we would be getting another companion and picked Sister Carlos up and came back to Raymondville. It was a nice little Sunday road trip.

This week we didn't see a lot of success. We were working hard but not many people were interested or listening. We had no investigators at church for the first time in my mission. The baptism that was supposed to happen on Sunday didn't... I was like, man, I'm failing as a missionary! So I did some self-evaluating on what I was doing good and what I can improve... then we just kept working. That night we had three amazing lessons. Sylvia and her family were there for their appointment and want to get baptized in January. Leslie still wants to get baptized... but this morning when she was on her way to church, her grandpa had a heart attack or something and ended up spending the whole day in the hospital. And we set up a few promising appointments for this week. Today I read Alma 26:27 which totally fit in with how I was feeling yesterday:

Now when our hearts were depressed, and we were about to turn back, behold, the Lord comforted us, and said: Go amongst thy bretheren, the Lamanites, and bear with patience thine afflictions and I will give unto you success.

It is so true! We just need to endure and do our best and the Lord will make up the rest. Which is why He is the best gift we have ever received.

I want to tell you about Sandra. She just moved here from Georgia to live with her aunt and uncle. She was raised Baptist but we've been teaching her for a few weeks now. I loved our lesson with her on Saturday. We were just answering all of her questions with the Book of Mormon and Bible... when she looks down at the floor and says "this just brings me back to my first doubt....... that I think it's (the church/prophet/everything) probably going to be true... it just makes sense." She was totally sincere about it... but I'm just smiling to myself because that is the best "doubt" I've ever heard... if only everyone had that same doubt haha :)

Well I've got to run but I LOVE YOU ALL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I CAN'T BELIEVE IT IS ACTUALLY SNOWING PLACES! THAT IS SOOOOOOOOOOO WEIRD TO ME!



Monday, December 6, 2010

Perez kids fighting over the raspas we bought them. Raspas are like the Mexican snowcone. They put gummi bears & pickles on top.


Field is White, Already to Harvest

Border Blood! JK! This is the cnady they eat down here--Gummi Bears + Super Sour Gooey + Koolaid

Halloween with Irvine & Luisa - Recent Converts


Jennifer's Baptism

FHE Activity- Burying our swords (or temptations) like the Lamanites

Sopa's with Wendy & Jennifer

Ela & Eva (sisters) at Whataburger. Ela just got baptized.

Mexican Birthday Party with Confetti

I'm so blessed to be spending this Christmas working along side Christ here in Texas.

That is so fun that Mike and Jess are there!!!!! What things have you done besides the Space Needle? I'm excited for the beach gingerbread project :) :) :) I'm going to talk with Sister Nelson because that would be fun to make one Christmas Eve with investigators or something.

So Raymondville... is small... but has a lot of character if you know what I mean. Everyone knows everyone here. We see the people that we contact all the time around town. The population is about 9,000. There is only one little branch - it is all in TEX-MEX... so literally the President Ramos will say one sentence in english and one sentence in spanish. It is funny to listen to. My brain gets really confused though haha. They have head phones and a translator for everyone to understand. There is a lot of work to do here which is getting me really excited. Raymondville has a lot of potential.

Sister Smith goes home this Sunday! I'm excited for her - she gets to go home for Christmas. We put up a little tree with lights and it is cute. Today I'll buy some lights at the store. Oh and just fyi my going home date is officially January 25, 2010 (I think she means 2012). I go through waves of missing you all and wishing I could be home with you during the holidays...and being so glad I'm here serving the Lord. Yesterday during the Christmas Devo ( WHICH WAS AWESOME) we made popcorn for the people that came and watched it on a little 35 x 35 inch tv. I was sitting there and just started to cry because I've never done something so good in my life. I realized then that I am on a mission. My thoughts, efforts, and strengths are all dedicated to the Lord and His children. I love being out here and talking/teaching/testifying of the Savior everyday. I'm so blessed to be spending this Christmas working along side Christ here in Texas. I feel like my work is pleasing to Him and I can't express how much joy that brings me. I'm definitely NOT perfect by any means but I am trying... I'm trying so hard.

I want you to know that the Lord truly is watching over me here. I know that is in part becuase of your prayers and the prayers of many others. So many times we go up to someone's door and they were like "how did you get up here?" And we're like "umm...we walked?" haha. Then they say "huh that is weird becuase we have a big dog that always goes after people." We look around and there is no dog in sight. This week we came back for a return appointment and there was this HUGE rooster standing on the gate as we walked by only a foot away. It just stared at us as we passed. When we talked with the lady, she said the same thing "I'm suprised you got to the door, the rooster pecks and scratches people all the time - it is very defensive." I have seen some things here in Texas and have HEARD lots about the border that is getting worse but never worry because the Lord is protecting us.

I'm grateful for all you do for me. My time is up but I know that my Redeemer lives!