Tuesday, November 25, 2014

I'm Training

First off, Happy Thanksgiving!!!!

I hope everyone has a wonderful day Thursday and eats lots of good food for me, and remember to be grateful, because we have so many wonderful things to be grateful for, especially having the gospel in our lives.  I don´t know how I´ll celebrate, maybe, I´ll go get lomitos with my companion. 

Speaking of my companion.... My new companion is Hermana Jarman from Cotton Wood Heights (Salt Lake), Utah and she is straight out of the MTC.  Yes, I´m training!!  She is basically the sweetest little thing.  She is just ready to hit the ground running, and she speaks really well.  Like... WAY better than I did when I first got to the mission.  But, that´s not totally fair because she studied for two years in High School and I only studied French.  With training comes 12 weeks of studying for 4 hours.  I´m actually learning a lot about my trainer, and thinking that Hermana Jarman is just so sweet, and patient and I do not think I was half as good as that with Hermana Casey, but these next 12 weeks are going to be fun and probably will fly by for me.  And I´m excited to learn lots.  

It was kind of a long week.  I found out Tuesday night that I would be training and Hermana Weeks had to pack and we had to clean, so we didn´t get much sleep that night.  Then we headed to the terminal to drop off Hermana Weeks and then headed to the offices to pick up my "hija".  We had a brief training with President and then they brought out our companions and then we left to our areas and we´ve been studying and working hard ever since.  

I just wanted to share something that I learned from Preach My Gospel this morning about how much our Heavenly Father loves us. "He weeps with us when we suffer and rejoices when we do what is right.  He wants to communicate with us, and we can communicate with Him through sincere prayer." (PMG pg. 31)  I know that´s true.  Heavenly Father´s goal is to see us succeed.  He didn´t send us to this earth to laugh at our struggles, but to help us learn and grow to become more like Him and He really truly feels every pain, struggle, joy, happiness, that we may have.  As we strive to live His commandments we will show our love for Him and we will be blessed more than we can imagine.  

Hermana Lindsay

Monday, November 10, 2014

I´ve been out for a year!

November 10, 2014

¡¡Hola Familia!! 

So it´s kind of a weird feeling knowing that I´ve been out for a year, it´s really crazy actually.  It´s weirder still, that six months ago when I was with Hermana Weeks the first time she was at exactly the same point I´m at and now she goes home in a week and a half.  The time just flies as a missionary. 

In most ways I still feel like I´m new in the mission, the only difference is that I can speak and understand Spanish a lot better.  In some ways I´m still the same person, for example we were at a member’s house this weekend and their house is only like two rooms, but I went in to use the bathroom and I confused the doors and the members were like, Hermana where are you going? And I´ll I could say was, "I´m lost".  Hermana Weeks and the members got quite a good laugh out of that.  In other ways I´ve changed a lot on the mission.  I´ve learned a lot and I´m continuing to learn every day and I just love Paraguay! 

This week was kind of different.  We normally do the same things every Tuesday and every Thursday, but we had zone conference this week, so it moved all our days around.  The conference was really good and then we helped the other Hermanas in San Lorenzo move apartments.  Our whole district came to help so we got it done really fast and the Hermanas are happy to be in a new chuchi apartment.  

Right now we are just trying to invite people to come to church.  We are working with one lady and she´s just the coolest person.  She´s really special.  We first found her husband and he´s really cool too.  The first lesson we had with them, he excepted the invitation to baptized right away, so we were really happy with him, but we weren´t sure how she felt because she didn´t really talk much. We left a pamphlet with her and when we came back she had read and understood all of it (that´s not super common here).  She just accepted the restoration right away and we leave her things to read in the Book of Mormon and when we come back she is always just eager to learn more.  The only thing is she works a lot and has to work on Sundays a lot. 

They don´t have a lot of money and they are supporting two little kids, but she talked with her boss and she arranged to at least work Sunday for the afternoon so she´s really excited to come to church and is really excited to get baptized as well.  Also, she´s got the cutest little boy, he´s a little terror though and is always trying to get attention during the lessons, but he can´t sit still and he´s either climbing all over his mom or running around.  You can´t be too mad though, because he´s got the cutest little voice and says the funniest things.  I imagine he´s kind of like the Paraguayan version of my brother Ryan when he was little. 

Other than that, it was a pretty good week.  We are excited to work super hard this week!! Love you all so much!! All is well with me! 

Hermana Amy Lindsay

Monday, November 3, 2014

¡¡Feliz día de las brujas!!

¡¡Feliz día de las brujas!! 

First off, it sounds like everyone had a good week and fun Halloween.  That´s fun that the whole gang was there.  Hermana Weeks and I had a fun Halloween as well, even though it´s not really celebrated.  I had pictures that I wanted to send you guys, but I couldn’t get the computer to recognize the USB. Sorry!! But, we have a cemetery in our area so we went there and took pictures for Halloween.  The cemeteries are a lot different and a lot creepier here.  They don´t bury their dead, but build little houses/shed things, and then put pictures and flowers in front.  Even though they don´t celebrate Halloween, the día de los muertos is 2 of November, so there were flowers all over the place Sunday morning, so pretty.  It´s basically just like memorial day. 
We had a fun surprise Halloween night.  It was starting to get dark and we were just talking about the fact that it was Halloween and then to our surprise we found a group of trick or treaters!!!  We just saw one group all that night, but we ran to a dispensa to buy a bunch of suckers and stopped them and gave them suckers and took pictures with them.  The lady that was taking them out just loved that we were so excited to see them, because it´s not a big deal here but everyone knows from movies and stuff how it is in the states.  She was beside herself that we wanted pictures and everything and an extra bonus, one of our new investigators was with them helping too. She´s a teenager so I think it was good for her to have that interaction with us because she´s been difficult to find.  Then to finish our Halloween day off we came home and made carmeled apples.  It ended up being a pretty good day.

The week was a little slow because it was pretty rainy and everyone gets sick here as soon as the weather turns.  We had lots of plans to meet with members, but there was always something that got in the way.  One thing we´ve learned is that working with members is the best way to get the work to progress, so we´ve been taking a lot of time lately trying to get to know the members here a little better and gain their trust.  The members here are really awesome though, so willing to work, it just takes a little bit of planning.  

We´ve been trying to improve our cooking skills because we are noticing we are lacking a bit and the Latinos cook really well.  They don´t follow a recipe or anything like that, but we need specific instructions to get things to turn out.  Well, last Sunday we were eating lunch with a member and it was chicken.  She told us it´s really easy.  It´s just soy sauce and seasonings and then throw it in the oven for like an hour on the highest temperature (Her oven only goes to 250 C).  Well, that sounded easy enough so we decided to try that too. 

We threw chicken in a glass pan with a bunch of soy sauce and seasonings.  Anyways what we understood is that she turned it on her highest temperature and we thought, well our oven goes a little higher and we had an hour to cook so we thought maybe it would cook faster if it was on higher.  Now our oven goes to 290 C and we put it all the way on that.  After about 20 minutes we could smell the chicken pretty good and Hermana Weeks thought to check on it.   All of the soy sauce had dried out so we did some thinking....not very good thinking, and decided that it needed more liquid or the soy sauce would just burn, but we didn´t want to put more soy sauce in so we decided water would be a good idea....but the glass was really, really, really, hot because we had the oven really, really hot and little did we know that putting water in a hot glass pan was a very bad idea....yes the pan exploded.  And that´s when we realized we´ve got a lot to learn.  Ha, ha we are ok, don´t worry it just startled us that the glass shattered.  We switched to a new pan and finished cooking our chicken and we didn´t get sick, so I´d say it was a success!! But, all the members had a good laugh at us, I think they are kind of appalled we can´t cook and they can. 

Moral of the story, sometimes we make mistakes and instead of giving up we just clean up the mess and try again.  Sometimes life is like that too.  We make mistakes, but instead of getting discouraged and angry at ourselves, we use the atonement.  We repent, and start over clean and pure.  This life is the time of testing and nobody gets 100 percent all the time, but we learn from our mistakes and we become stronger and more like our Savior. 

I know that we have a Savior who loves us more than anything, He wants us to succeed, but He knows we are going to goof up, but He is standing with His arms open, ready to pick us back up and dust us off so we are clean again.  We just have to humble ourselves and let Him and then we can find the everlasting joy we deserve because, "Adam fell that men might be and men are that they might have joy!" (2 Nephi 2:25)  So just be happy!! 

Love you all!! Have a wonderful week!! 

Hermana Amy Lindsay