Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Another Week in Good Old El Parque! 26 Jan. 2015


Not much has really happened this week! We had some great times walking and working hard! We have been trying to find new investigators a lot this week. It is so hard with everyone being on vacations here.. Everyone went to the South or the Beach for like 3 months. But it's ok! The work continues, because nothing can stop the Lord's work from progressing! We decided to look into our area book and see what we could find. Apparently no one has cleaned that thing out in a while.. Because we found investigators from 2005.. yeah, 10 years ago. So we found 17 pages of New and Future Investigators. So we started organizing and making lists. We have been trying to stop by all of these people's houses and see if we can teach them. We have a list of about 300 houses in our sector. It is crazy! We got started working on it this weekend and found one new person! It only took a few door slams and about 15 people who didn't answer. But we keep going!

We had interviews with President this week. It was great to go and talk with him. One of my favorite parts about interviews is that we get a cookie. Like a real, homemade cookie from Hermana Wright. It was the highlight of my day! I think I will eat chocolate chip cookies for a month straight when I get home! But it was so great to talk with President. He is so smart and helps so much! 

Yesterday was kind of crazy in our sector. It was the birthday of Carlita so we had an once with her and her family. And we also went and had a family home evening with Rodrigo and Nayibe. But there was this weird concert that was going on right by the chapel. Rodrigo and Nayibe wanted to take their kids to walk around in it for a bit so we got to see what was going on. It was like a carnival/rock concert! In my little sector! They were selling potato chips.. on a stick. That seriously exists... But we had a great lesson with them! Nayibe will be starting English classes in about a week. We got her a Book of Mormon in English so that she can practice with that. They have most of their plans set up to move to Canada in a year. It is incredible to see the change the gospel has had in their lives. A year ago they were here in Chile, completely miserable not knowing what to do with their lives. Now, they are baptized, Rodrigo is the Elder's Quorum President, Nayibe is able to use the Perpetual Education Fund to learn English. And they are progressing in their lives. They are such a sweet little Colombian family! 

Today for P-day we went to San Jose del Maipo. It was pretty interesting. We went with two of our investigators, Connie and Patricio. We took a little bus up there and walked around and had a picnic at Connie's Uncle's House. I like exploring Chile! Our mission is pretty little, so sometimes we don't know what to do. But we always have fun when we go out and find new places! It was great to be with Connie and Patricio, too! They are so great! This week was pretty calm, but always fun down here in Chile :)


Hermana Flake

1. Carlita's Birthday Party with some other Beehives in the ward.

2. Nayibe and I at the weird street Concert last night.

Temple with Carlita! 19 Jan. 2015

This week was full of challenges, but also incredible experiences I will never forget. It started off pretty rough. On Tuesday we went to see Annaemma. She told us she didn't want to hear anything more or see us anymore. It was pretty devastating. But we kept going. The next day we tried to find everything that could help us feel happy. It was a good experience to learn that you can't let anything depress you. If it's a hard day, no big deal, other people need you. 

We had a great day on Thursday! We got to go to the temple with Carlita, Hna. Ana Ortiz, y Jose Manuel. We went to do baptisms for the dead for ancestors of Carlita and Hna. Ana. It was such a special time! Carlita was baptized for her grandmother and Jose Manuel was baptized for her two grandfathers. When Carlita was waiting after the baptisms she started to cry. She said she had never felt something like this before and that she was so happy. She kept saying "I was baptized for my grandma" I couldn't believe how strong the spirit was. I love being in the temple!

Sunday was also great! Hermana Francisca went to church! She is a less-active who we found in November. She hasn't been to church in like 11-13 years! She came on Sunday and was smiling the whole time! I love seeing the Spirit working on people to help them know that they are making the right decisions. I love being here on my mission! 

We were blessed with a miracle today. It was cold! I have no idea what's going on in Chile. But it was freezing. I wore a long sleeve shirt! It was like 100 degress yesterday, and 65 today! Everyone says there's gonna be a huge earthquake! Haha we'll see :) I love you all! Hope you have a fantastic week! 

Hermana Flake

1. Hermana Ana, Carlita, me, Hna Christensen, y Jose Manuel
2. Carlita and I at the Temple

1. We eat watermelon... so much! They're only like 2 bucks for a gigantic watermelon in the feria! Perks of Chile!
2. Tomas! Tan lindo :) THe grandson of Hna Francisca.
3. Hermana Francisca

1. Mac N Cheese for Pday. This is Great Value Mac n Cheese.  BUT! I have bought Kraft.  There is a supermarket called jumbo in the center of Santiago, like 1 1/2 hours from my house by bus that sells American stuff. You can buy Ocean Spray Cranberry sauce there, but I am too lazy and poor to travel that far to buy super overpiced Mac n Cheese.  SO this is Great Value from Lider aka Walmart. I buy Great Value everything!  Best brand in the whole world!!!! hahaha I never thought I would hear myself saying that.... I have GV ranch dressing, jam, peanut butter and BBQ sauce.  SO darn good! 

2.  Me and Hermana Christensen at the temple.

Monday, January 19, 2015

It Just Gets Hotter and Hotter 12 Jan. 2015


Okay, so I am melting. But it really isn't that bad. We had the hottest day Chile has had in 17 years this week... yay! Chileans are crazy! They love feeding you boiling soup and hot tea when it is 100 degress outside! Oh well, I am using lots of sunscreen and drinking gallons of water everyday! I love this country!

I think the most exciting thing that happened today was that Annaemma accepted a baptismal date! We have invited her to be baptized a few times and she has told us that she is really scared. She is catholic and doesn't think she can change religions. But when we invited her this weekend she said yes! She is preparing to be baptized on January 31! She just needs to stop smoking completely. She has been working on it this week and is doing better. But she just has days when it is too hard. We are trying to help her in every way we can think of! She came to church yesterday and loved it. She is progressing so much! She reads everything we give her from the Book of Mormon and is learning faster and faster each time. The Spirit is really helping her to understand all of the doctrine. It is amazing!

Hermana Christensen and I have had a pretty good week. Everyone is on vacations now. People leave for months to go to the beach. But it's ok! We are street contacting constantly! We are finding new people to teach and walking all day everyday! This week we are planning to go to the temple to do Baptisms for the Dead with Carlita, Hermana Ana, and Jose Manuel. It will be great! We are pretty excited!

Nothing too exciting has happened. We are happy to be working hard everyday! The members are so great. Every time they see us walking in the heat they give us something to eat, like an ice cream or some coke. Never water, I ask for water and they look at me like I'm crazy! Haha, such a different culture :) I love my mission and the experiences I am having down here. I really cannot believe how much my life has changed in these few short months! Everyday is an adventure full of learning experiences. This is truly the Lord's work and I am just trying to be obedient so he can use me as His instrument. Hermana Christensen and I are super excited about Annaemma and her baptismal date! Keep her in your prayers :)

Hermana Flake 

1. Cristobal and I! He is the son of a less active named Carla who we recently found and started teaching. 

2. This is the dog that lives in our chapel. His name is Chocolate. The Bishop keeps telling people to stop feeding him because he can't live in the chapel. But he is skinny so he fits through the gate around the chapel and he won't leave! Haha he's smiling in the picture!

3. Ninoska and I! She is moving to Los Angeles in the south of chile this week. She was a mini missionary and from our ward. We are gonna miss her so much!

Monday, January 5, 2015

¡Feliz Año Nuevo!

Wow, where do I even begin? I can't believe it is 2015! How crazy the time goes! This week was pretty great! It was kind of tough down here, but that's okay. We pushed through! New Year's is WAY bigger down here than Christmas. Everyone went to the beach for the whole week.. so, we saw a bunch of less-actives. Which was great! But different than normal, is all.

We had a super great New Year's Eve! We went to the Calderon Family's house for dinner and it was way good! They are so great. They are a family who struggle with some things, but we are helping them! We have a Family Home Evening with them tonight too. After we had dinner we had to go back to our apartment and be there at 10:30. We had to go to bed at 11:30. But we woke up at midnight for like 10 minutes to watch fireworks. We live on the 10th floor and could see all of Santiago! It was so pretty! 

On the 1st we went to Rodrigo and Nayibe's house for lunch. They are recent converts from Colombia and cook so darn good! It was Rodrigo's birthday the night before so we had a little party with some other people in the ward. I decided to attempt to make a chocolate cake... Attempt would be the right word. It was a DISASTER! Ughhhh, cooking here stresses me out so much. But it's ok. It turned out pretty darn good. Just not anything I would be proud to show haha. I found a chocolate cake mix to use.. and I ended up having to add like 2 extra cups of flour to it for it to rise sufficiently. But that's ok. Everyone loved it because it was super different from cakes they eat here! Nayibe cooked us some mango chicken and it was one of the best things I have eaten on my mission! Everyone was done with theirs and Hermano Calderon didn't finish his and he asked me if I'd like more. I almost lunged for it! Sometimes it's embarrassing that I eat way more than everyone else.. haha oh well!

Yesterday we had a great day in the church! Hermana Miryam Valdebenito came again! She just makes me so happy. It is her 3rd week since she came back to church. And she is dead set on not letting anything get in her way of staying active in the church now! 

We had a great lesson with Annaemma, one of our investigators. We taught her the word of wisdom, she is a hardcore smoker. She has health problems and she thinks it helps her keep her mind under control. She committed to quitting for this week! We are going to try to visit her everyday and be her support. She is such a sweetheart. She has prayed and feels it is all true! She just needs to live the word of wisdom and she'll be ready to be baptized! I love sharing the gospel with these wonderful Chilean People. They have taken over a place in my heart I had no idea was empty before my mission! I am so grateful for this new year! The whole year of 2015 I will be on my mission and I couldn't be more happy about it! Love you all!

Hermana Flake

1.The cake! It tasted a whole lot better than it looked!
2. Hermana Miryam and I in front of la capilla ayer.
3. The hermanas I live with in our living room! Hermana Ferreira, Hermana Valezquez, Hermana Christensen, y yo!

1. Okay, so I got this blister on my foot. And then it got like crazy infected. So then my foot swelled up and I couldn't walk without limping. So when we went to eat lunch with the Familia Calderon they freaked out. And Hermano Manuel was determined to heal me. We found the stethoscope thingy and thought it'd be funny to take a picture.. Crazy Chileans!
2.Sunflower! I love Summer! Just kidding.. it's kind of the worst. But Oh well, there's a brightside to everything right? Like, I am melting in the heat, but hey! There are pretty sunflowers at least.
3. My foot was killing me, but it's better now. A little :)

Sorry... lots of pictures this week!
1. Feliz Navidad! I love graffiti ;)
2. We ordered pizza today for pday.. so dang good! It was like Little Cesar's but super expensive. But so worth it for a taste of home!

Last Email of 2014 Dec. 29

Hello everyone!

Wow, this week has been full of craziness and holiday cheer! It was so great getting to skype with my family on Christmas day! So special to see them and talk with each one of my siblings! Christmas was super great! Our stake does a Christmas Devotional on Christmas Eve so we went with Annaemma, one of our investigators. She loved it! It was really beautiful, a great choir and live manger scene. Then we went to the Bishop's house, the Llancoñanco Family, and had Christmas Dinner... Asado. SO GOOD! We had so many ribs and I almost died and went to heaven. We went home and opened a present from Hermana Christensen's mom, PAJAMAS! And then we just talked until it was time for bed. We woke up the next morning... And Santa Had Come! Haha, just kidding. But we made a dang good breakfast. Probably the best I have eaten my entire mission. French toast with Buttermilk syrup. They had almost none of the ingredients for the buttermilk syrup, but we found quite a few substitutes! Then we did our studies and went to lunch at our ward mission leader's house and skyped with our families! It was a great day! 

Work has been a little rough this week. No one really wanted to let us in and teach them... So we decided to try an alternative. We made them cookies! Everyone was more than happy to let us in when we gave them a bag of cookies and asked if we could share a little scripture. It was a good time to see a lot of less-actives in our ward. We are wokring hard to find so many members who have been lost. Our ward has 600 members... and we have about 85 that go to church. We have a lot of work to do!

But this Sunday was great! Hna. Miryam Valdebenito came to church again! 2 weeks in a row. She is such a sweetheart! She just hugs me all the time and makes me happy. I could not believe how much joy I felt when I saw her walk in the chapel. Really, the love I feel for these people amazes me. Sometimes I am so frustrated when they aren't progressing, or I have a bad day and I'm in a bad mood. But they make me happy! Seeing them doing the things they should and changing their lives for the better was definitely the best Christmas present I couldv'e asked for!

I hope all of you had a wonderful Christmas and that this New Year's is fantastic! Love you all!

Hermana Flake

1. I have more than 5 months in the mission! I found this Felices 5 Meses written on the sidewalk and felt it was for me ;)
2. A less-active young woman in the ward, Myrtha, said I looked like Sid from Ice Age one day... Apparently I was tired..

1. This is Myrtha. She's so darn cute! I think she looks like a Peruvian version of Lilo :) Myrtha is the best!!!
2. Asado (BBQ) at the Bishop's house.. they take food seriously here.
3. Our Christmas Dinner!

1. Christmas Pajamas!! And our Christmas tree, with a duck on top instead of a star... 
2. We helped Carlita find names to take to the temple! Elsa was so excited to find the names of her parents! We had to search for awhile, because Elsa couldn't remember any birthdays or anything. But it was so exciting when we found them!
3. Mi Zona! Estaca Javiera Carrera!