Sunday, August 9, 2009

July 7 - August 10, 2009

7 July 2009
So yeah, after just about 9 months in the mission Im finally going to have a companion for more than 6 weeks!! Im actually really happy about it. First of all because we had the best pday ever yesterday. Except for the fact we couldnt email of course. But anyway, since we didnt get changed and other people did and were traveling and waiting for their companions we had the day free!!! We didnt have our district meeting yesterday, we had it today instead. So yesterday we had a real pday!! We cleaned our room, organized our things, slept, wrote letters, walked to and from the center and in and out of every shop there, got treated to ice cream by a lady wo speaks chinese, spanish and english and struck up a conversation with us, developed photos, took pictures, and basically loved every minute of our freedom. So yeah, Im still with Hna. Arroyo and Im happy. I think we will have a good 6 more weeks together.

Our district leader has 2 investigators that are getting baptized and married this week except he got transferred to puno along with his companion so now my companion and I have to help with the wedding!! Shes going to be a witness and everything! Im sure Ill have stories next week.

I love you and miss you all!! Be safe and I hope that hot dog feed for 7-8-9 comes to fruition. And in the words of Bon Jovi (this song is playing in this internet right now and I think its a sign) Oh, oh were halfway there, oh oh livin on a prayer...pretty fitting I think. Love you!!!!


13 July 2009
Anyway, we had a good week. We´ve started to volunteer in a bakery one morning a week!!! We went Wednesday and peeled a mountain of apples and helped make empanadas and treats, that, get this, we ended up eating that night at the house of a member who had called and ordered them!! Small world. It was really fun, but volunteering in a bakery can´t be good for my health. Oh well. It feels like Im working in apple hill and Im a fan.

Oh, so we had a funny run in with 2 Jehova´s Witnesses this week. We were knocking doors and boy were they excited to see us!! They were like 2 80 year old little ladies who came out with their bibles in hand and were trying to get their glasses on and remember where to find scriptures. I couldnt even be roused into being contentious by the apostasy they were sharing because they were just too funny/pathetic. They asked me what our beliefs are about life after death and I explained to them a little about our beliefs about the spirit world and resurrection and 3 kingdoms of glory, at which point, one of them thoughtfully replied, ¨But we can´t live on the sun!!! It´s just too hot!!! Maybe on the moon, but then only astronauts would go to that kingdom. Explain that!¨ So we took their watchtower magazine, wished them a good day and laughed for like an hour about the conversation we´d had. Good times. Actually though, it was a really good experience. Ive never talked with Jehova´s Witnesses before and it made me SO grateful to be a member of this Church, that teaches that Heavenly Father listens to our prayers even if we dont really even know how to pray, and that there´s not a set number of people that will go to heaven, that He´s given us all the chance to return. Wow, thank you JEhova´s Witnesses.

27 July 2009

Hey guys!!!

Howd the week go? hope you all survived, had a great time, ate good, took lots of pictures and are now finally getting some sleep!! things are good here. im writing later than usual because we had a baptism today!! It was quite possibly the most hectic day of my mission. His name is willian. hes 13 years old and has been ready to get baptized for 3 weeks, but has been waiting for his mom to come who works in chile. Well she finally got here, but fell and had to go to the hospital today!! So the baptism that was going to be at 12 got changed to 3, then we couldnt find the member that was going to baptize him or the member that was going to speak or the keys to the chapel that had vanished!! i was sprinting a good portion of the day pulling my companion behind me!! To make matters worse we had bought 40 empanadas and were scared the baptim wasnt going to work out. luckily ive just come from the baptism and he got baptized and his mom came and it all worked out better than it would have anyway. So thats been my day.

this week one of our investigators had a picantada to raise money so she can get married and baptized so we helped her. Picante is a poular dish in peru and especially in Tacna. it is basically a stew of red hot chili peppers, not the band, tripe and potatoes served with a rustic bread they make here. we peeled potatoes for hours!! She Angela, was cooking it all in a huge pot outside over a little fire. well they only had like 3 little pieces of wood and needed more so they started pulling wood off the log cabin they live in to burn!!! my companion and I were horrified so we ran to a farm tha has a bunch of branches and dead trees and started hauling wood from there. of course at the end of the day they served us heaping bowls of picante to thankus. i tried to talk them out of it, bt when people have burnt their house to give you this food you cant say no!! So remember how i think toothpaste is spicy??? OH. MY. GOSH. This is THE hottest thing Ive ever eaten!!! I couldnt feel my lips for 3 full hours. Even my companion was sweating trying to eat it!! but somehow we finished off our bowls. thats quite possibly the biggest miracle of my mission to date. my companion told me shes never been more proud. She said I just kept shoveling spoonful after spoonful into my mouth and she cant believe I did it. Neither can I. Neither can I. but yeah, hopefully Angela will be able to get married and baptized soon.

Tomorrow is Perus 4th of July so happy 4th of July in peru to all of you! wednesday we have a stake activity with native dances and food that we are going to take investigators to so it should be fun. ill be sure to take lots of pictures.



3 August 2009

Hey Hey Hey Family,

Happy August!!! How are you guys?! Im doing pretty good. Not too much to report here this week. The week has actually gone by really fast.

We had that stake activity on Wednesday and it was really good. Peru knows how to have an activity. Every ward presented a typical dance from Peru and they all had traditional dress and every ward had built a booth, display of a different department in peru and had food and drinks and pictures and animals and clothes and music and all kinds of crazy stuff from that area. We ended up having like 14 investigators there. Funny how we´ve never had more than 7 in the chapel for church on sunday, but for an activity where they have food and candy and clowns and music and dancing, the whole world is able to show up! It was really fun though. They judged the booths to see which ward did the best job and part of the criteria was how much cheering the ward could do when the judges came by. Lets just say the mission hasnt made me any less competitive. No less than 3 people told me their ear drums had been damaged by my screaming. It was like Darrens graduation all over again-when Britt and Em and I screamed and everyone stopped and stared. They told me we had to cheer to win so I cheered!! How was I supposed to know I was going to hurt peoples ear drums?! Anyway, we won!! And yesterday in church a member bore his testimony and in it mentioned how good it was to see the missionaries involved in the activity screaming their lungs out. How embarassing. But we won so I dont regret it.

So picante is haunting me! We ate it AGAIN yesterday in our pension and we have to help a sister in our ward clean out peppers to make it for the primary kids on saturday!! The good news is I think my stomach has finally adjusted to peru because now nothing, not even picante with hot peppers and cow stomach, affects me.

Today we are going to the beach. Again. The members in the ward of the elders have a combie and they are going to take us there to eat lunch. Hopefully itll be fun. Im sure itll at least be good for stories.

10 August 2009
Hey Fam!!

Whats going on?! Things are pretty good here in Tacna. Transfers are next week and sadly I think my time with Hermana Arroyo is coming to an end, but Im pretty sure Ill still be in Tacna next monday. Anyway, we had zone conference this week and it was good. IT was nice to see the Davis´. Sister Davis is actually in oregon right now. She left sunday and will be there for 2 weeks because 2 of her daughters are getting married. In my interview with president davis he said the stake president had said some very nice things about me so basically i feel like I owe that man my life!! He, Pres. Herrera, and his wife are the nicest people ever. They are planning a trip to go to general conference in Oct. 2010 and I told them I would be there to drive them, feed them, show them around, so yeah, hopefully Ill be able to make it up to him for the lies hes been telling to president davis.

Oh, yeah, so we ended up going to the beach last monday. It was actually pretty fun. The bech we went to this time had a bunch of rocks so my companion and I spent our time playing around on those. We started out attempting to catch these crabs we spotted, but after 20 unsuccessful minutes we switched to catching starfish. You know, something a little more stationary. We ended up finding like 20 and my companion brought one home as a pet!! She tried to talk me into it otoo, but thanks to some unknown childhood trauma, I had visions of waking up in the middle of the night with my pet starfish stuck to my face smothering me. What was I allowed to watch when I was little??!1But anyway, it was fun. Anyway, my time is up, but I will write more next week!! Love, Christa

Thursday, July 2, 2009


So...I'm a major slacker. Here's a larger than life update of Christa's emails from the past two months!!

27 April 2009
Hey guys, hows it going? Not too much to report here. Mom, it looks like I finally got your letters. I just spent 20 minutes writing you guys an email and the computer just erased mine!!! So sorry this is going to be pretty short this week.Im doing pretty good. Not too much to report here. We have some good investigators, but a few of them come to find out need to get married so we will see what happens. Welcome to peru where nobody is married!!This week 2 little girls randomly showed up on our doorstep because they were late for school and needed help with their english homework. I should have sat them down and walked them through it, but they were late so I basically did their homework for them and sent them on their way. And I didnt even feel bad about it. I felt pretty good about it actually. If theyre smart enough to figure out where we live to come get help, Im happy to do their homework for them!! Oh, so everyone wears uniforms to school here. It is so cute. The 4 year old, Andre, who we live with always has his suspenders and tie and sweater on. I love that kid. The other day as we were leaving he asked us if we were going to talk to people about God. We said yes and he yelled after us down the street, well why dont you try doing that here sometime!! You havent talked about God not even one day to me!! Hes 4, but he sure managed to tell us!Well I hope you guys are doing great!! More next week, I promise. Im going to write all my emails in word from now on so they cant get erased!! Love you all!! Hope youre doing great!!Love,Christa

4 May 2009
Hey guys!! So lets hope the internet actually works this week for a change!! Anyway, things are okay here. It has been kind of a tough week. We have gotten rejected more this week than ever and it has been a little rough. Nobody wants to listen!! I blame it on the Virgencita de Chapi that all of Peru is celebrating this week. I don’t know what the real problem was but it wasn’t a good week. On top of that the elders call every night to find out our numbers for the day and if theyre not great, well, we get burned as they like to say down here. I went to bed crying 3 nights this week!! But today and yesterday were good days. The little girl Mabel we baptized got confirmed yesterday and then she bore her testimony. It was so good. The bishop also blessed her that she would serve a mission too! So yeah, it kind of put things in perspective. Ive also found a quote this week by president Hinckley that’s helped me a lot. It says, ¨It isn’t as bad as you sometimes think it is. It all works out. Don’t worry. I say that to myself every morning. It will all work out. Put your trust in God and move forward with faith and confidence in the future. The Lord will not forsake us. He will not forsake us. If we will put our trust in Him, if we will pray to Him, if we will live worthy of His blessings, He will hear our prayers.¨I love that President Hinckley.
So get this, last pday I almost got robbed!! My companion and I were walking down the street and I hear her go, ¨hey!¨And I thought she saw another missionary or something, but it turns out there was a guy who had opened my backpack and had his hand in it!! He looked pretty terrified that she caught him and ran away scared. Good thing my companion pays attention to things like that!
So the other night my companion was in the shower and I was on my bed reading. I heard these weird scratching noises coming from under my bed. I wanted to look but was too scared. I thought Sweet D, Ems rat, had escaped from Gville and was going to attack my face if I looked under the bed!! (if it isn’t apparent by now, I think I might just have inherited some neuroticism from this family) So instead I spent 20 minutes using my camera to try to take a picture of whatever it was so I could know without putting my face under the bed. After 20 unsuccessful minutes and pictures of only my luggage and the dust that’s accumulated under my bed a giant cockroach finally came strolling out!! Better than a rat, but still disgusting. Love, Christa

11 May 2009
Hey Hey HEy!!
Welp, not too much has happened in the last 12 hours. It was sooooo good to talk to you guys!!I also never finished telling you guys about mothers day here. On Friday all the schools invite the moms and the kids either dance or sing or act or their moms. Andre, who i will be bringing hoe with me, knocked on our door Friday morning and came in in his pig costume asking if we wanted to take pictures of him. of course I did. He performed the 3 little pigs and later told me it went ¨super well¨because he had been practicing for days. I love you guys and thanks for everything and i will talk to you soon!! Love, Christa

18 May 2009
Fam a lam!!!Shwat is up?! Not too much is going on here. Just same old same old. It´s been a tough transfer in terms of investigators who are progressing, but that gives me hope that we will have some really good ones lined up for the next 6 weeks. Speaking of which, transfers are on the 25th and I do NOT want to go! If you don’t get an email from me at the usual time next week that means Im on my way to who knows where! So lets all hope you get a normal email from me and that pachacutec is my home for 6 more weeks. So one of our converts, a single mom named cris, who has 2 little girls, came to my English class on Saturday after just being robbed. She had 500 soles in her purse and somebody stole it. She was going to pay rent and buy food with that money! She had to cut the lock off her door because her purse had her keys in it and she only had 6 soles in her pocket. It was so sad. We usually take her some of our food when we help her clean her house every week and this week I want to giver her everything I own!! I wont, but Im sure there are a few things she could use more than me. The bishop gave her a blessing on Sunday and she seems to be better, but still so sad.
The good news of the week is we learned how to make empanadas in enrichment this week! That’s one good thing about being a sister missionary, we are expected to attend enrichment. Im not sure Darren got to do that much on his mission. Anyway, I hope you all are doing great. I love you and am praying for you! Talk to you soon!!

26 May 2009
Welp. Im in Tacna. We got the call at 10 pm Sunday night and at 10 am Monday I was on the 6 hour bus ride to Tacna. So I thought I had bus experience when I had the privilege of riding the Greyhound to visit Britt in Vegas once, but I was wrong!People got on at every stop yesterday selling watches, necklaces, corn, avocados, pork, etc. Also, we had to look out the windows everytime we pulled over to make sure people werent robbing our things from under the bus!! Anyway, I am now with Hna. Arroyo who is from Cuzco and has been on her mission for 3 months. The elders told me Id been demoted to junior companion and I told them that sounded about right, but unfortunately they were kidding and Im still a senior companion. My companion seems really great. Shes only been a member a year and a half! Crazy.
So I was sad to leave pachacutec. I cried. My companion cried. The lady that does our laundry cried. The extremely catholic mom of our pensionista even cried! But I did get some pretty good parting gifts. Among them a miniature wooden house, shinguards, a cinderella diary, a list of recipes, and pictures of Andre in traditional peruvian dress when he had to perform a dance one time! It was hard to leave, but if I stayed longer I know it would have been harder so I guess it is good.
But yes, I am in Tacna. It is pretty close to Chile. I dont know what I ever complained about in Arequipa because we had flushing toilets ther!! Here there is a pitcher in the bathroom that we fill with water to throw in the toilet bowl - that doesnt even have a seat!! Also, compared to here the water in the shower in Arequipa was scalding!! Also, we have a tin roof and after waking up to scratching noises Im pretty sure theres a coop of chickens up there. Per usual. But dont worry too much. I always take a while to adjust but end up loving my areas. See my early emails from Pachacutec for proof. Im sure Tacna will be great. Just pray for me a little harder the next couple of weeks.
Good news mom, my package came this week so I was able to leave cinnabears and jelly bellies with people and they were SO happy to have that candy.
Anyway, thanks for your emails. Im going to go read them now. They keep me going! But I love you all and miss you and hope you are safe and healthy and happy and still watching tv and eating out for me. Love you!!

1 June 2009
We had a baptism Friday. I like Tacna. I had nothing to do with it of course, but that didn´t stop me from enjoying the fruits of someone elses labor. The mom of a lady in our ward lives in Lima. 3 weeks ago she had a dream she was dressed in white and got baptized. So she took the 20 hour bus ride to come visit her daughter in Tacna to talk about it. While she was here my companion and her companion taught her the lessons. She went back to Lima, but came back this week and on Thursday night told us she wanted to get baptized Friday! It was a little crazy to get pulled together, but it all worked out. We had lessons with her husband everynight they were in town and Im hoping he has the same dream and comes back to get baptized too!! I pray for my investigators to have dreams. They NEVER go against their dreams. I love it. So after 9 years of her daughter being a member Hna. Paulina got baptized this week.
I really do think I like tacna. We have parts of downtown in our area which remind me a little of San Fran. there are also parts that remind me a LOT of death valley too. It has a little bit of everything. Supposedly it is one of the hottest places in the mission, but since it is winter we havent seen too much of the sun. Even though it is a little chilly it is still WAY better than puno or arequipa this time of year Im sure so thank you for your prayers. Oh!! I got your package with gloves and nylons and makeup!! Thank you!!
I think our pensionista is good. After having missionaries live here for 10 years she finally got baptized last year. Get this though, her husband is a full blown buddhist!! There is always incense burning and he chants in Chinese!! he is really nice though. But it always takes a little bit of getting used to when we have to change pensionistas. For instance, Isabel is convinced I dont eat enough so she piles my plate HIGH with rice and potatoes and then sits by me until I finish it all!! My heart hurts from eating so much!! Im thinking of telling her I have diabetes and require a special diet...We´ll see. Also, we ate fried fish the other day and I spent 5 minutes trying to figure out what part of the fish I was eating and then I picked up a little round thing on my plate and realized I was holding a fried fish eye!!! It was then confirmed to me that we were eating fish heads. The good news is a family offered us calamari this week!! I was in heaven. Speaking of which we are going to the beach for pday today!! Itll be my first time to see the ocean here! I will gather seashells for you all. Love, Christa

8 June 2009
Buenas tardes fam a lam! Schwat is up? Welp another week here in tacna. I dont know what map youre looking at but suposedly Im in a place called TACNA. Who knows though right??
So our zone had a meeting with our stake presidency last week and they are awesome. They asked about each ward and bishop and mission leader and how they ca n help us. Theyre also taking us out for pizza this week! They told us that theyve heard that the mission arequipa is going to change its boundaries and include Cuzco and a place called Puerto Maldonado because it is easier to travel to those places from arequipa than from lima? Im guessing the change will take years and supposedly they werent even suposed to say anything so we will see what happens. Still kind of interestiang though.
So I do like Tacna. As my companion says , ¨tacna is a box of surprises!¨ S he says that because, among other things, there is a higher p opulation of arabians in tacna than peruvians!!

Mom, in answer to your questions we do have beds and a pensionista. She is nice, but it has been another adjustment. I never thought it would be so hard to not pick what i want to eat. Dad was wondering what we have for breakfast and EVERY morning we have bread and a drink that looks and tastes suspiciously like gravy....And to think I complained about meat and tomatoes for breakfast!!
Dad, in answer to your questions zone conference is coming up in about 2 weeks. You asked if they were fun. I wouldnt exactly say fun, I mean there are definitely no milk chugging contests like in NV LVW , but we do always learn a lot so thats something good.
OH!! Guess who I got a call from this morning ?!! None othe than the one, the only , Andre!! He said his heart hurt and he wanted to sing me a song to make it feel better !! I do miss that kid. I also talked to hna soplopuco. She sounds good. I m iss her too.
So...bad news... I think I have fleas. W hen I woke up with little bites all over, and my companion too, she diagnosed us with fleas. I hope shes wrong, but what can you do? We bought a spray for ourselves and our beds and are cleaning and washing everything!!!
Speaking of waking up with afleas, I found a scripture i really like this week in D and C. Its in 6 verses 13 and 14. I definitely wouldnt have ended up here on my own!! But if its where I ended up it s where i need to be right' I also like verse 34. Its a good little section.
Anyway, sorry this message has so many errors , I think somebody spilled a soda on this keyboard or something. But I hope you are all doing great. I miss you and love you and pray for you all the time. Talk to yo soon!! Love,Christa

15 June 2009
Hey fam!!How are you guys?? Im doing pretty good. Aside from the fact that I ate lung this week of course! LUNG. Cow lung. It was a lot like eating a sponge. But actually, it really wasnt that bad. Im worried ive given you guys the wrong impression with the food situation here. Theres LOTS of food. Ample food!! Good food! It´s just the fact that I cant open the fridge or cupboard and pick what and how much and when thats been a challenge. But yeah, dont think Im not eating. Im eating. Boy am I eating!!So things are pretty good here in Tacna. Our goal as a companionship this transfer, aside from baptisms of course, is to get to know the ward members so they can help us. I think we´ve made some progress in that department because every night last week we were invited to an FHE, dinner, birthday, or other event. We shared the spiritual thought and they shared with us. Among other things I was given a bracelet, earrings, a pair of pajama pants, shoes, a half kilo of olives, etc. The members here are really great and it´s going to help us a lot to know them.Dad, to answer your questions, we have about 120 members in our ward I think. In my other ward only about 60 were attending! We also have a normal chapel with flushing toilets, but no hymnals. Not too many indigenous indians but just about everyone speaks quechua or amayra. We havent had too many lessons with members, but we´re working on that with our plan to get to know people. They really are nice though.So how was Carson Valley days? Please tell me you were all front and center living it up for me. Want to know something ironic? You know how much I love parades in the US? Here parades are the bane of my existance!! They have parades all the time and nobody can ever go to church because theyre always marching in parades!!! The good news is there was no parade yesterday and we had 7 investigators at church.Anyway, whens Trek?? I cant wait to hear all about it.D and M, happy anniversary and wish stratt a very feliz cumpleanos from his aunt. And Dad happy fathers day!! I think you should make a trip to Tacna to celebrate. Ill take you out to the punjabi restaurant! Anyway, we have our multizona this week so Im sure Ill have more to tell you next week.Love you all. Hope youre doing great. Good luck with trek if its this week. Whens Cumorah?! Thanks for your emails and prayers and support! Love you guys.Love, Christa

22 June 2009
Warnaing-this keyboard isJACKED anda ainserts a´s all over the place anddoesnt do spaces. Sorry!!! Happy 2nd day of summer!!!Its definitely not summer here, but Im not freezing to death either so thats good news. It feels a lot like a giants night game here in Tacna. Humid and definitely chilly, but not snow worthy weather. Thankfully. Anyway, not too much is going on here I'm more interested in hearing how you all survived trek!!! Im hoping youve recovered enough to write me about ait and that em is sending me a copy of the book shes written about this painful period in her life. Things are alright here.We had zone conference this week and it was fuan to see president and sister davis. We talked about diligence and teaching and thianking about and loving and workaing with investigators. Pres Davis got rid of the standards of excellence and is letting us make our own goals every week. The standard of excellence is still the goal of the mission every moanth though soI guess things havent changed too, too much.
So Hna Soplopuco called me this week!! Iwas so happy to hear from her, UNTIL Ifound out whyshe was calliang-to tell me a guy we had tracted into in Arequipa was traveliang to Tacna to lookfor me!!We taught hima few alessoans, but he always said he couldnt focus because I made ahim nervous and there werent girls like me ian Peru. aObvioausly, we quit ateachiang him.I thinka his moam wanted gringo grandbabies or something because everytime we ran into her in town shed tell uswe had to go back and visit her son. Shed alwaysmake comaments about my hair and eyes too!! Anyway,I forgot about him, but Hna. S. ran into him and he told her he has business in Tacna for 2 weeks and is going to go chapel to chapel looking forme becauseI never told him goodbye!! So yeah, hopefully I wont have any news for you about my good friend Angel next week. Ironic that thats his name right? Hes not dangerous oranything. Im naot worried at all. Welp, theres not really toomuch toreport here. We have some good investigators.Willian, Renato, Angela, Maria, Nury...but some ofthem need toget married and some need permission from their parents so well see. OH, but Felix, the guy that we taught when he was in Tacna, the hausband of the lady that got bqaptized right when I got here, called us from Lima to tell us hes getting baptized!! I wont get to see it, but its still pretty exciting.
Anyway, how are you all?? What are the plans for the4th? When do you leave for NY?? I love you and miss you!! Stay safe! And sane, if possible.
aalove,a Christa
Sorryagain about this keyboard.Idont have time to fix itall. Love you!! Hope you can decipher this!!!

29 June 2009
What????? And to think I thought news would get to me slower in the mission! I found out about MJ the day of! Crazy. And Farrah Fawcett too?? What is going on??
Anyway, unlike the celebrities in the US, I am doing pretty good. We had a baptism on Saturday!! A 12 year old named Renato got baptized. On Fri we taught him and he prayed that a counselor in our bishopric would get home from his business trip in Lima in time to baptize him on Saturday. The wife of the counselor told us she couldnt get ahold of him and that meant he wouldnt be getting home until Sunday. Renato was sad and obviously so was I. Imagine our surprise when we were walking to the baptism with Renato on Saturday and saw Hno. Rivas walking into his house with his luggage!! You should have seen the look on Renato´s face. And on mine! So yeah, Hno. Rivas baptized Renato. We went to renato´s house on Sunday to pick him up to go to church and he wasnt there! We were so scared he wasnt going to be able to get confirmed. We waited for a few minutes and he finally came walking up. He had been at the house of a friend borrowing a dress shirt and tie to wear to church!! Precious.
Oh, did I tell you about how the bishop announced a lady in our ward had died and she really hadn´t? Yeah, well we went to visit her this week. She has cancer and is on bed rest and is the sweetest lady. And young. Shes only 50! We offered to sing her a hymn and she chose Nearer My God to Thee. I just about lost it. The bishop planned her funeral in ward council yesterday!I found the whole thing a little morbid, especially because she looks strong to me and could be around for a lot longer! So we have a ward activity today. It´s a family sports, games, fun day. My district is going to go, but get this, we dont have permission to go in pday clothes so we are attending our ward sports activity in church dress!!! Ill let you know how it goes next week...
What are you doing for the 4th??? Enjoy it for me PULEASE!!!!
Love you and miss you all!! Be safe!! TAlk to you soon!!

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Email from April 20, 2009

Well after a weeks as senior companion I only have a little bit of the urge to throw myself under a bus still. Lucky for me, my companion is great. She has 2 months in the mission, but is amazing and has made this change a LOT better than it could have been.

Not too much is going on here actually. Oh, so my companion and I are in the ward choir. We got roped into it because ward conference is coming up and they need as many people as possible to perform a special musical number. One word. Painful!! As you all know I cant carry a tune in a bucket, but compared to the people Im singing with I should have a recording contract or something! I want to tape it so you guys can witness it. It will be a musical number to remember! I thought about faking sick so I wouldnt have to go and be embarassed when we perform, but then I remembered Im in peru so who cares!

We went with the Relief Society president and bishop to do some service for a lady that just had a baby this week. I can now officially wash clothes by hand! A 6 year old walked me through the process and kept scolding me because I wasnt soaping the clothes right, but I eventually got the hang of it. Its a surprisingly long process that includes 6 different buckets!! Im scared for the life this mission is preparing me for.Since I can now wash clothes by hand does that mean Ill be living in poverty somewhere withouth a washing machine??!! Sure hope not.

We went to get our hair cut and met a lady in the salon this week. She sat down next to us and asked about the Book of Mormon on my lap. She also told us shed seen us in the airport when we went to see off our companions in March. Weve had 2 lessons with her and another one tonight and she seems really great. Well see what happens.

So I had 17 people in my english class this week!! I still have no idea what Im doing, but its fun. Some investigators were even there. So yeah, send me ideas!

How are you guys?? Whats the latest in Gville? Vegas? Iowa? I hope youre all doing great. Im surviving. The thought one day at a time is a big comfort and motivator for me. I love you and am praying for you all the time!! Talk to you next week!!

Email from April 13, 2009

Anyway, happy belated Easter!! So bad news. Theres no easter bunny in Peru!! And even worse, no cadburry candy!! BUT luckily i got your packages this week-thank you,thank you,thank you-I loved the notes in my pants mom, and a tigers milk and cliff bar were more than enough to make me happy on easter morning. I dont know where all the people were who were celebrating easter in a major way but I sure didnt see them! It was kind of like Christmas. If I hadnt known the date, I wouldnt have suspected a thing. Although nobody had work or school from Thursday to Sunday, nobody ate meat and we all ate fish stew so I guess thats something.

We had 2 baptisms on Sunday. Brenda, the ten year old daughter of a less active family and Mabel, probably the most impressive 11 year old Ive ever met. We met her through another investigator and she has begged her parents for 2 months to let her be baptized and they finally relented. I wish you could meet her and her little sister Maite. They are my favorites. Im pretty sure Mabel could speak in General Conference and do just fine. There are some people who just already know everything and our teacher her was just like telling her she was right about all the things shes always though. The first prayer she gave my companion and I just sat there shocked. It sounded like dad praying!! Anyway, it was a really good day.

Listen to this. My old companion, Hna Cabrejos is married!! She left March 2 and by March 28 she was married!! Her boyfriend was serving in this mission too-dont worry, they knew each other from their home ward in Lima. Apparently she dumped him 4 months into her mission and she always told me nothing would ever happen between them, but he got home 2 weeks before her and Im not quite sure what he orchestrated in those 2 weeks, but I do now theyre now married!! Crazyª!!

So I hit 6 months!! I celebrated with a card my companion made me and drinking milk and coke a man in the ward brought us. We also had salchipapa for dinner-french fries with hot dog slices, ketchup, mustard and mayo. It was a good day. And a great week UNTIL last night. Apparently I misunderstood President Davis in my last interview because my companion got transferred and I became senior companion!!! Wha????????? I want to throw myself in front of a bus, but what can you do? My companion is Hermana Soplopuco from Chiclayo. She has 2 months in the mission. Poor thing getting stuck with me. Seriously, not to doubt President DAvis, but Whaaaa????

Anyway, I love you all and miss you!! Hope mom and em had a great trip seeing britt. Talk to you soon!! Love you!!!

Monday, April 6, 2009

Hey fam!! How are you guys?? Burt, I hope you had the best Bday ever!! Send me details! Im glad you guys got my pictures! I think there were like 160. I have anxiety about erasing any until Im sure you have them. There were a couple videos too. Did you get those?

We DID get to watch conference and in English to boot!! We watched at a stake center and I watched in an English room with President and Sister Davis and like 8 northamerican elders. It was the best thing ever! I love conference. I miss watching in my pjs and being able to nap in between sessions, but just being able to watch in english was sufficient.

So we had a baptism Friday. Her name is Maria and shes 10. Maria is the daughter of a lady who was less actie for a long time, but has started coming back. Marias dad wants to be baptized too, but is waiting to get some papers from Bolivia so he can marry her mom. Shes a sweet little girl. Friday was her birthday so we had cake at the baptism too! I do love cake.

Well we went on that hike last pday and it was really fun. BUT we never made it to the waterfalls! After hiking for about an hour we came upon a guard of some sort with an ammunition belt. Not sure what the exact reason was we couldnt go any futher, but the ammo belt was enough to convince me to turn right around. Oh, that reminds me I got a letter from my good friend Hna Walther who is serving in Piura Peru. Good news and bad news. The good news is my mission sounds safer. The bad news is shes got way better stories!

Mom, you asked what the little kids I live with would like. Im sure any little toy or candy would do. Oh, and they do love dinosaurs. Also, a member of my bishopric has requested jelly bellys or cinnabears so maybe throw some of those in next package? Along with, and this is a long shot, but it you happen to have any church DVDS laying around that have a spanish track? Just wondering. But seriously! You can wait until July to send another package. There is NO rush. And send me a quick email the pday before you send it so I can add anything last minute. Oh, good news though, the office elder is picking up my packages again so thats great news!

Dad, if you havent sent your account of your milk chugging experience to the other kids and or read it over the pulpit, please do so now!! IT was Hilarious and Im glad you survived!!

Anyway, transfers are monday so I'll let you know next week what happened. Hopefully nothing!! Love you guys and hope youre doing great.

Love you!!

Monday, March 30, 2009

Happy Dia de Preperacion!!! How are you guys?? Im doing pretty good, just life as usual here in Peru.

So I taught English this week and it ended up being really fun actually. The problem is Ill be teaching every Saturday from now on and Im pretty sure I taught everything i know in the first class! send me ideas...

What else. Oh, I solved a mystery in my area too. Twice a day there is this really strong smell in all of Pachacutec. Ive always wondered what it was. This week my curiosity got the best of me and i did some asking. Turns out its Rico Pollo (Delicious Chicken) A factory in my area that burns the feather nd instensines and parts of the chickens they dont use or sell twice a day!! I shouldnt have asked. Before the smell didnt make me nauseous! ITs also pretty interesting that the only plae in PEru I havent seen dogs running rampant is in the vicinity of Rico Pollo...Im not suggesting anything, im just making an observation...

Oh, but speaking of missing dogs, guess who is out of my life?! The dog we live with! Thank you for your prayers on my behalf. We hadnt been followed or attacked for a few days so we asked the family about her and all we were told is ¨Kiara es de vacaciones¨ which means shes on vacation. Turns out tht mens the family got so sick of her antics they put her in a box, on a train, and shipped her to some ¨cousins¨somewhere in Pêru! For kiaras sake i hope thats true nd that she didnt get shipped to Rico Pollo.

Oh, heres something random. Theres a returned missionary in our ward who served in Lima North 2 or 3 years ago. HEs a nice guy, but he always shows up on our doorstep with stuff he wants to show us. So he brought over a huge stack of pictures the other day. When we finally went through them 1 of his companions looked so familiar to me. Do you guys remember Elder Young who served in our ward a few summers back? I think he came over for dinner a few times? I was looking at pictures of his twin brother!! Small world.

Dad, Ill fill you in on Easter more next week. Ive heard things about treks to the mountains, burning herbs in the streets, eating 7 plates of food, not eating meat, watching movies about Jesus and his life on TV, but Ill let you know more as I actually see all this stuff.

Could someone write on my blog that I cant read my email. Ive gotten a couple letters from friends saying theyve sent me emails and never heard from me. Thats because I wont be able to read that email for a year and a half. So apologize for me and promise them a response in a year and a half. I am trying to do better about writing letters though so hopefully they wont hate me for not responding to their emails.

Anyway, we are hiking to a waterfall today so ill let you know about that next week. Hope youre all great, love you and praying for you! We have a baptism scheduled for this Friday so pray that works out!! Talk to you soon!! love you!!


Monday, March 23, 2009

How are you guys?My week has been pretty good. We had a baptism yesterday so I guess I should say my week has been VERY good! A single mom named Cris. Funny because the night we went to visit Cris and were going to tell her we werent going to be able to visit as often because she wasnt progressing, she told us she wanted to be baptized! Crazy how things work out. Anyway, shes great and Sunday was a happy day.

We had interviews and our multizona this week. President Davis told me since Ive had so many changes already in my mission that hes going to let me stay with Hermana Silva for 2 changes so I can finally have a companion for more than a month! Its kind of nice to know that. So Ill be here in Pachacutec with Hermana Silva until May 25th and then I predict she will go and Ill stay until July. Well see, but Id be happy with that. I really like Pachacutec and Arequipa. Then who knows, maybe Ill be off to Puno or Tacna or Ilo.

The multizona was good. President Davis talked a lot about diligence and how we can be better teachers and the importance of contacting even if we dont like contacting. WE had a mini MTC where we rotated rooms and practiced teaching a lot. And we got copies of our mission calls so now I have mine in spanish too!!

Dad told me you guys have a rat now. All I can say is ewwwww. AND watch out for men with buckets.

Ive been healthy this week. Last week I got really sick for 1 day. I dont think Im a fan of papaya. Ill have to save the details for when Im home and can act everything out that happened, but trust me, itll be a Keele Family Classic!

Anyway, Im doing good. I hope you guys are too!! I love you and am praying for each of you everyday. I sent a little package for Britts birthday with a few more postcards so hopefully you guys will get that this week. Love you!! Talk to you soon!!!


Sunday, March 22, 2009

17 March 2009

Fam a lam a ding dong!
Whats going on? So I got my valentines package this week! I love it!!! Nothing says Happy Valentines Day like a can of potted meat!! Seriously though, the package is amazing, I love everything you sent!!! Thank you!! And thank Jen for the cute notebooks and card too.

Nothing too big is going on here this week. We were able to go listen to Julie B. Beck on Friday and that was good. She spoke with Marcus B. Nash. Hes the area authority down here. Ive been able to meet him a few times and he is great.

So a couple things. 1. I lost the dog of the family we live with this week! Just for a few hours. Em, dont hate me, but I hate this dog!! She ATTACKS us everytime we come in, eats my nylons AND my treats and I dont know how she manages to get into our room, but she freaks me out because she always pops out from under my bed-after peeing! PLUS she escapes everytime we leave and we have to chase her down for like 20 minutes!! Well we left the other day and of course she escaped. We were late to pick up an investigator so after some deliberation we decided to let her have her heart´s desire and roam free. I had faith shed make it home. Well she followed us to the appointment and then jumped in the taxi we were going to the fireside in. I had to drag her out!! Well we got home at 930 and when the dog didnt immediately attack us my conscious started to kick in. My comp and I sprinted to our room so as to avoid any questions about whether wed seen the dog. I couldnt sleep because I thought I was going to have to explain to the 9 and 4 year old why they didnt have a dog anymore!! Miraculously, at breakfast, before I even saw her, she was chewing on my shoe under the table! I still hate that dog, but Im glad the furball is back. And my testimony of prayer has been reinforced once again. 2. I rode in THE most crammed combie this week! I though the train in Chicago after a cubs game was bad, but that was nothing!! I dont know which was worse, the man shoved up so hard against me my face was literally plastered to the window of the combie or the bag of whatever he was holding that had feathers and an unpleasant small coming out of it!! Oh peru.

Anyway, I hope youre all doing great. I still miss you and am still praying away for you guys. Love you!! Eat corned beef for me this week!!


PS, mom, my ear is better. After two weeks of suggestions of urine and breastmilk I deduced I needed warm water to unplug my ear so I bought a syringe (which are WAY to available here by the way) took the needle off and squirted warm water in my ear, worked like a charm!

Love you guys!!!!

Monday, March 9, 2009

Hey Hey Hey!!!!

How are you guys? So its 5 months down! But once again, who´s counting...My week has been pretty good, Ive just been trying to remember how to get places and introducing my companion to people. I was actually really nervous about having to kind of direct the area until my companion gets familiar with things, but I think its been good for me. Its forced me to do a lot of things I havent done before and I admit, I kind of liked not having too much responsibility before, but Ive learned a lot this week so I guess thats good.

I got letters from Mom, Dad, and britt this week. I loved them all!!! THank you, thank you, thank you!!! I also got a really nice letter and card from Aunt Linda.

So Julie B. Beck is coming to talk in our stake center this friday along with the president of the primary. I cant remember her name. Maybe Cheryl lant? So that should be good.

Dad, I met an elder in my mission from Arkansas this week! HE about had a heartattack when he found out I not only know where Mountain Home is, but Ive actually been there! Apparently he used to live in Arizona and his dad retired to somewhere in Arkansas that isnt mountain home, but the elder worked in mountain home for a couple summers. Anyway, thought youd appreciate that!

So you guys have asked about my schedule a couple times. Heres a quick rundown.

630, wakeup, exercise
730, breakfast
8-9 personal study
9-10 companion study
10-11 companion study
11-12, finding, teaching, visiting less actives
12-1 lunch
1-5, finding, teaching, visiting less actives
5-6 dinner
6-930, finding, teaching, visiting less actives
930-1030, planning, getting ready for the next day
1030, bed!!!

Anyway, sorry Im not too exciting this week. I guess thats a good thing. Quiet weeks in Peru are always better than crazy weeks!

Anyway, I love you guys! I pray for you each everyday. Hope youre doing great!! Talk to you soon!!


Wednesday, March 4, 2009

March 2, 2009

Hey fam!!!
How are you guys??? Transfers were today and I am still in my area, but my new companion is Hermana Silva. She is from Chiclayo, PEru and only has 6 months in the mission! Wha??? What happened to my days with companions who had 16 and 17 months in the mission?? She seems really nice though so thats good.

We had stake conference this week and I saw 2 american families! Dad asked me if Id seen any americans and those were my first. To answer a couple other of mom and dads questions:Nobody really talks to me about national or international events aside from a few questions about OBama Ive gotten, Ive yet to meet too many devout members of other religions-most people seem pretty apathetic, We dont have themes for tranfers, we just use PMG, I dont know anything about zone leader training, We have taught quite a few bolivians but I havent met any CHileans or argentinians. Im not sure how hard it is to travel between countries. I know we have a lot of problems because the bolivians we teach cant get their papers from bolivia in order to get married in order to get baptized-its happened like 4 or 5 times! There are 5 companionships in my district and mom I dont think we have to stay together because of danger. Im not sure why we spend pdays together, but I really doubt its because its dangerous. We see president and sister Davis every 6 weeks at zone conference, but other than that not really unless its by chance. When we see them we eat lunch at the mission home. Anyway, Ill answer more questions next week.

Anyway, I love you guys and miss you guys. Im praying away, hope youre all doing great!! Talk to you next week!!! Love you!!!

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Here are Christa's emails since January. Sorry it's been so long since the last update!! I'll try to stay on top of it. 

JANUARY 26, 2009

Well, I was right. It has been an INTERESTING week!! We finally got a room. ON SATURDAY!! Until then we were living on the floor of Hermanas in our area. We would get up, take a cab to our area, work all day trying to figure things out, then take a cab back at 9 pm. The family we stayed with who the hermanas live with is really nice and were great to us. The only problem was we were living on the floor, out of our suitcases (which were full of dirty clothes because laundry gets done on monday and our changes were last monday so we had no clean clothes), sharing a bathroom with a man that rents a room in the same house who walked in on me while I was going to the bathroom, and commuting to our area!! We would eat breakfast with the hermanas then lunch and dinner with some elders in a different area. Obviously I was a little bitter about the whole situation. I went from feeling so cared for by my companion, my pensionista, the area I was finally learning, to feeling like Id been completely abandoned in the middle of Peru!! Of course I opened the scriptures the other morning to D&C 61:36. Talk about knowing exactly how I feel! And obviously thats the day we found a room, a pensionista, and somebody willing to do our laundry. Our room is good-its a room so I cant complain!! The pensionista is the sister of the homeowner so shell be cooking in the same house we live so we dont have to go to another house to eat so thats great news!

Im in the stake Umacollo, but the area we are opening is called Pachacutec. It took me all week to learn that name by the way. I still dont know much about my area. It seems like my old area, but greener! The members we have met have been really nice. I guess thats what happens when missionaries havent been around for 25 years!

Anyway, I have to go, but the moral of this week is I am alive and well with a room and a bed and food so I am happy. Thank you for your prayers and for everything! I love you guys!!!

FEBRUARY 2, 2009

Hey Fam!!

How are you guys?? I got dads email and cant believe britt made it for ems bday!! Thats so awesome!! The DAY before I was thinking how great it would be if Britt could be there for the big 1-6 and she was!!! So way to go Britt, figuring that one out without my assistance.

Oh, I got my packages!!! Well some of them. The ones from right after Christmas. I LOVEEEEE my clothes and tights!!! They are perfect!! Not to mention the oatmeal, granola bars, and drink packets! What a dream. I also got the blog printed, a letter from Mom and Jessie and a card from Aunt Beck. Talk about package pay day!! Anyway, THANK YOU!!! I love everything. But now I dont need anything for awhile so save your money!! Oh, did the CD of pics work I sent you? Let me know so I can erase them off my camera.

Things are going pretty good in my area. We are just trying to get to know people and contact and figure out our boundaries and how we can help the most in the ward. I start teaching english this Friday! Im with Hermana Cabrejos from Lima. She finishes this transfer and will be heading home. I really do like our ward. All the members are so nice. I like our room and pensionista too. And the family doesnt eat with uys here so Ive been able to start sneaking like 4 of my 8 pounds of lunch into Ziplock bags finally!! So the fam we live with has 2 little boys. I woke up to pounding on our door at 5am on Weds. I really am turning into mom because I was startled out of my sleep saying ¨whats wrong, whats going on?¨ Well, it was the 7 year old Gabriel. HE woke up and was bored and wanted to chat! I was so confused because it was 5 am and he was speaking to me in spanish, obviously, about his best friends and dinosaurs and rockets. Once I finally figured out there was no emergency I told him I was going to go back to bed. I felt a little bad for not playing with him, but not bad enough to actually play with him. Who wakes up at 5 am?? Crazy kid.

So I found out 24 northamericans came to the mission this transfer and 21 are coming the next transfer!! Coming by myself with all Latinos wasnt bad, but I am a little jealous because I found out since there were so many north americans president davis trained them in english and they even had their interviews with him in english!! Oh well, Im sure one day Ill get to hear the man speak english. Maybe not until the day I go home, but someday.

Anyway, I love you guys!! I hope youre all doing great! I cant wait to read your emails!

FEBRUARY 9, 2009 

Happy 4 months to me!!! Not that Im counting or anything...Anyway, how are you guys???Im doing pretty good. I ran into my old companion Hna Monteza today and she told me 3 of our investigators have gotten baptized since I got transferred!!! I was so excited, but also a little sad that I wasnt there to see it, those people were so great. I guess thats how missions go though. Anyway, I learned something a while ago I forgot to share with you guys. Turns out it is NOT summer here in Arequipa. Apparently like everywhere else in peru yes, but arequipa no. I guess the seasons in the mountains are reversed? So if I was serving in Camana or Ilo or Mollendo or Tacna Id be burning, but here and in Puno its not summer. I dont know exactly what season that makes it here other than rainy season! Its actually not that bad. It only rains for a couple hours in the afternoons. I got Jos blanket this week and it came just in time! Since we moved into our new place they only gave us one blanket each so I welcomed my blanket with open arms! I also got a card from Aunt beck and letters from Jenny and Diana and a card from carla and dan. And I hear I have 3 packages waiting for me, but bad news. Apparently the office elder in charge of packages is sick of picking up packages for me so hes making me do it. That wouldnt be a problem except I can only go to the SerPost place where all packages have to go on my pday. Then I have to wait in line for an hour or more he told me AND I can only take out 1 package everytime I go! To add to that I have to wait for Pdays when my whole district can go with me! As Britt and Em would say RIDICULOUS. So like I said last week, save your postage since it looks like Ill never get a package again! Im sure it actually will all work out, but just FYI. Oh, we finally had zoneconference this week and it was really good. Its true I dont see much of the Davis´, but when I do see them, I really, really like them. Ill handwrite you guys some of their training. So I puked for the first time in my mission this week!! But the good news is I think my pensionista learned her lesson about making homemade yogurt! Maybe not though since I was the one puking! Yeah the yogurt looked and smelled and tasted a little funny, but I had eaten liver the week before so I thought yogurt was the least of my worries! Luckily once it was out of my system I felt fine. Thanks for your letters last week! Anyway, I love you guys! I hope youre doing great! Talk to you soon!!! Love, Christa

FEBRUARY 16, 2009

Hey Fam! My Valentines Day turned ou better than expected. Albeit I didnt have moms sugarcookies, we had 2 baptisms!! We have been teaching a great family who actually lived in Miami for 2 years. The mom, Rocio, had he baptism set for he 14th. Her husband wants to get baptized, but needs to quit smoking first and the 2 kids have strong testimonies, but they also have a very catholic grandma who threatens not to talk to them if they get baptized. So Rocio was set for 3 pm on the 14th. Well on the 13th we found out she needed o have an inteview with President Davis who was 6 hours away in Tacna! he interview got scheduled for the 14th at 2pm so we decided to postpone the baptism, obviously, unil Sunday or Monday. Well we went with Rocio to her interview and when she came out at 245 she said, I want to get baptized today. What do I need? Just my family and water right? So we called he bishop and he said that was fine and he would go fill the font. So we frantically ran around telling people it was back on for 430. Well when we got to the chapel at 415 the bishop wasn there and the font was NOT filled! I hought I was going to have a nervous breakdown! Turns out the bishop was ironing the baptismal clothes because they hadnt dried from being washed. Well it was 630 by the time the baptism got started and it ended up being beautiful. And I guess Heavenly Father knows what hes doing because in th 2 hours of waiting the daughter, Rosario, decided she wanted to be baptized with her mom! She had been interviewed by the distict leader already and decided it was okay if her grandma didnt talk to her because she knew it was the right thing to do. Talk about a crazy little turn of events! Going from no baptisms that morning to 2 by 7pm! Then we went to the house of a less active family we have been working with the past few weeks and they gave us valentine balloons before we left. So yeah, it ended up being a good day. I hope you all had a Happy Valentines DAy. WITH sugarcookies!

FEBRUARY 23, 2009

How are you guys??? Whats going on this week?
Em dont read this!! so I know you guys felt a little bad you ate at the JT without me on christmas eve, but I finally kind of got my JT dinner this week. No there wasnt steak with garlic or french fries or ice cream, but there was RABBIT! Sure enough after we were told we had eaten rabbit I looked out back and the fam only had 4 rabbits instead of their usual 6!!! Rough life for ¨pets¨here in PEru!

Dad, to answer some of your questions weve gotten a few referalls, but do lots of tracting and working with less active and part member families to find people to teach. And sorry to get your hopes up, but Im still not fluent in Spanish. I just thought I wouldnt mention it because I didnt want to complain about it for a while. Although I thinks things are a little better than I think they are sometimes. We spent the first week getting to know a lot of people in the ward and that first sunday I had to talk in sacrament. So during my talk I mentioned Id been in Arequipa 7 weeks. Afterwards everyone Id met earlier in the week told me they had no idea and thought Id been out 9 months to a year?! Which means 1 of 3 things. 1. Im in a ward of people that need to do a LOT of repenting because theyre big fat liars. 2. All the other North American missionaries theyve met have been idiots since they sound like me after being out for 9 months to a year or 3. I actually am learning something. I really dont know which to believe at this point. I still dont understand a lot and Im FAR from being able to say everything I want to and I STILL wish I could teach in english, but i think im a little less frustrated so thats good. The buildings here do have fonts, although I hear in puno the baptisms take place in lake titicaca itself! anyway, ill answer more next email, but things are pretty good. Although transfers are next monday so Ill let you know how things are then! Just when I get used to things they change! oh the life of a mission.

Anyway, like my subject says its been raining here a lot!!! I am NOT a fan!! Id have to say the worst part though isnt even the rain, its the solar shower we have! My companion has actually stopped showering all together, lucky for me, because the water hasnt been heated for a while! So along with my bowl of oatmeal request when i hit the doorstep, a hot shower is also on the list. Other than that, Im doing good and I hope you guys are too!!

I read some conference talks again this week and I loved The Way by JElder Corbridge and pray always by Elder Bednar. i dont have time to put my favorite parts, but theyre good if you havent read them in a while.

Anyway, I love you and miss you!!! Hope you are all fantastic. Talk to you soon!!!!


PS My ear has been randomly plugged this week and the bishops wife suggested using my own urine to pour in my ear and she swore it would work1!!!! home rememdies in peru SCARE ME! IF you have any better ideas let me know! Love you!

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Today is Em's Birthday!!!! Happy Sweet 16 Emily!!!!!!!!! I came home for the weekend and attended church today at CV2 where I was reprimanded for not updating the blog (you know who you are)!!!!!!! So... I immediately came home to post some of the last two emails we have received from Christa. Keep sending letters and saying prayers for Christa. She appreciates it all:

Email January 12, 2009

Hey Guys!!!

How are you?? Im doing pretty good. Darren and Mel, thanks so much for your package!! I needed everything you guys sent!! It was so perfect! I love the pictures too! I hung some up in my room. Darren-so turns out the people I live with are Herbal Life distributors. They are crazy about the stuff! They have decals everywhere and even wear Herbal Life pins on their lapels to church!! So in one of the pics youre wearing an Herbal Life shirt and I showed them and their heads about exploded from joy! They loved it!! You have some instant friends if you ever come to Peru! And mom I got the other Christmas package on Saturday!! I love my shoes and outfit!! Everything fits perfectly, I wore it all to church on Sunday! And my comp was so excited to get the candies and pens and soap you sent so thank you!!! I also got a card from Dan and Carla and a package from Jason this week. It was a good week in the mail department.

So big news. We are having 2 baptisms on Jan. 17 (happy bday dad!) Dont get too excited though, they werent that hard fought. Actually, thinking about it they kind of were. We had to teach the lessons to 2 rambunxious 9 year old twins, Walter and Melvin. They are the sons of a sister named Rosa Mesa in our ward. Her husband is inactive and weve had her come with us to teach an investigator who lives close to her. The other night when we walked her home she asked us when her sons could be baptized. We were both a little surprised. Rosa and her husband had just never talked about having them baptized before I guess. But the twins are excited and we got through the lessons so we are excited too!!

Anyway, I have to go, but I love you all!! Hope youre all doing well!! I still miss and pray for you each everyday!! Talk to you soon!!


PS, dad have a great bday!!

Email January 19, 2009:

Hey HEy Hey!!
How was your guys´week? I hope it was fantastic!So we had our 2 baptisms yesterday!!! Just barely though!! The twins had to attend sacrament meeting in order to get baptized yesterday. After going to their house the night before to remind their mom to be on time and calling TWICE (Peruvians arent known for their promptness) they were missing in action during sacrament! Of course my companion and I had to talk yesterday (why didnt anyone tell me missionaries have to talk once a month?) So as soon as we finished we sprinted the 7 blocks to their house, threw them in a cab and all ran back into sacrament! The baptism turned out really nice. Their dad came and everything. And boy am I glad it happened because at 11 pm last night we got the call that I was getting TRANSFERRED!!!!!!!!!!!!!My comp and I were convinced neither of us was going to get transferred since she has only 1 change left and Ive only been in the field 1 change! We were wrong! Hna. Monteza has 7 and a half months in the area so we thought if anyone was going to get changed itd be her. Once again. We were wrong!! So I packed up my things and now Im in an area called Umacollo. Its still in Arequipa, but more close to the center. AND my new companion and I are opening an area? I ont even know what that means! BUT I do know it means we dont have a room or a pension yet! I think we are spending the rest of the day with our zone leaders looking for a place to live! Mom, you really should run this place! Nobody seems to be concerned but me! I hope thats a good thing. I think they said we could stay with some other hermanas for a while if we cant find anything. So I know you guys already are, but pray for me extra this week! Im kind of scared about all the changes. BUT I guess thats what a mission is all about right? Im sure itll be good.

Oh, speaking of shocks though, I got another one this week. Literally! We have electric showers so we can have hot water-Im sure you can see where this is going. So theres a switch on the wall that turns the electricity to the shower on and off. I always forget to turn it off after I shower and I feel bad because it wastes the pensionistas electricity. So I remembered the other day and was so glad I remembered until I flipped the switch with my left hand that was APPARENTLY still pretty wet and got a shock so hard my right leg shot out! yeah, last time I try to save anyone electricity!!!

Anyway, Im sure Ill have lots to tell you by next Monday. I love you all!!! Im still praying away for you guys. Mom, I got my charger and earrings!! Thank you!! And they told me I have 2 more packages in the office theyll give me once I have somewhere to live!! Dont worry, I have a feeling people will take pity on us and treat us better than ever in this area. Love you guys!!! Talk to you soon!!


Saturday, January 3, 2009

Feliz Cumpleanos

Today is Christa's Birthday! She's 23!! We are thinking of her and hope she has a great day today. My birthday wish for her is that she doesn't have to eat as much rice as usual...hope that works our for her:)