Monday, April 28, 2014

week #15

Our little art project

P-day lunch

Getting ready for the new church tours

Hola  familia y  amigos!


This week’s highlight was definitely the” Show of Talents”! Our local church building has been under construction for the past couple months and  it was finally ready this week! Hooray!  In celebration of the new church we opened the doors to the community for tours and a viewing  we also held a Talent show. The open doors was from 5 to 7 in the evening The  missionaries stood outside the church and literally grab people off the street to bring them and give tours. It sounds weird but it was actually pretty fun and a great opportunity to answer questions about our church.  After tours we started the talent show! I was so surprised by how many people were there!!! I would estimate there were over 300 people! Everyone was gathered in the parking lot and the missionaries were the first up. We had two acts to perform the first was a song,  “Armies of Helaman”.The missionaries all went up but our  guitarists was MIA  so we waited for what seemed like an eternity when 300 sets of eyes are on you. Elder Whitlock attempted to entertain the crowd with some awful jokes while we waited. Finally, our guitarist appeared and all the gringos sang the verses in English then, together  we sang the chorus in Spanish. I’m not being humble, it was a pretty rough performance, the microphones were not really working and the piano was too quiet. (And Latinos aren’t the best singers so it was a mixture of singing and screaming.)  But what is important is that we all got up there and we were all smiling so I guess that’s what counts. Also, the people in Peru love you now matter how badly you sing. Our next act was a little skit. It was hilarious. The plot was a dramatic love triangle about a young man leaving his girl friend to go on a mission. Then while he was serving, she married his best friend, Tommy. When he came home from his mission they got into a big fight. Everyone was laughing and tons of people wanted pictures with us… so I guess our theatrical skills made up for the singing. After performing we stayed to watch all the other acts. It was so an awesome night, so full of culture! Dancers performed this little Peruvian step dance, more singing and the primary children also danced.…. they were actually really good, probably my favorite act, of course  there was that one little boy that was just going crazy and he was the highlight of the act.


Hermana Cadenas and I share our apartment with two other sister missionaries. Sister Z and Sister G. They are the sister leaders and they are awesome. This week they talked to our land lord about our apartment contract and found out the family on the second floor was moving. They checked out the apartment and said it was soooo much nicer! It had real tile floors, the colors were better, plus the shower and kitchen were nicer. They asked us if we wanted to move and duhh of course we would, especially if the new place was as nice as they made it sound.! So the land lord made a new contract which was actually a lot of trouble. Sister  G really had to push to get to the second floor, she  came up with every excuse she could for a reason to move. So finally after a lot of back and forth  on Friday night we got a call from the zone leaders saying that if we wanted to move we had to do it the next day! Hooray, we were so excited, Friday night we packed. Hermana Cadenas and I had not seen the new room yet so we asked to go see it. It was AWFUL! The first room we went in was beautiful. It had tile floors and was clean and spacious. The bathroom was looking good. But as soon as we went into the second bed room it was like, WHAT HAPPENED! Of course, the second room was intended for Hermana cadneas and I. It was literally a closet and it was just gross. I was soooo mad. Clearly, our roommates wanted to move downstairs so their room would be nice and big but Hermana Cadenas and I were the step sisters who were going to have to sleep in the cinder closet with the mice! At this point there wasn’t much that we could do! We were already set to move the next morning and we had a contract! I don’t think I slept at all that night. The whole time I just kept trying to think of ways to get out of moving downstairs. So on Saturday the elders came to move all of our things, AND MY PRAYERS WERE ANSWERED. The zone leaders got permission to move us ONLY if the room downstairs was the same layout as upstairs. President Erickson said that we could have a new contract if there were not any major differences. Obviously there were differences so the zone leaders ripped up the contract and we unpacked all of our stuff back upstairs. The whole thing was the biggest waste of time ):

Fun Experience:

THIS WEEK I FINALLY GOT MY PACKAGE! It’s the best when you get a package. It was the biggest package that the zone leaders have ever seen! Thank you  mommy you are the best!  The most handy little item in the package was the dog zapper! There are so many mean, stray dogs here with fleas. We tried it out this week to see if it would really work. While walking to lunch I brought the zapper and zapped every dog that came near me. It worked like a charm. The high frequency noise really irritates them and they run away. Except, when Elder Gomez used it. Instead of  running away the dog got really angry and ended up chasing after Elder Gomez  a whole block!

Overall I’m doing really well. I love my area and my zone. Our investigators are progressing! We had 10 of our investigators come to church this past Sunday! We are struggling with getting them to commit to a baptismal date but hopefully we will have some coming up next month.



Monday, April 21, 2014

Week #14

                                                                         I Love these girls!!!

Fun at the Arcade on P-day

Zone soccer game


Supp Hombres!

4.14.14 P-day is always the best! We have so much fun. This week our entire zone went to a soccer stadium and played soccer. The best part was that a lot of other zones came too so there were tons missionaries that I don’t get to see very often. Soccer is awesome, our zone kind of messes around but it’s a good way to just forget about stress and let off some steam. After playing tons of soccer we had lunch and went to an arcade. It reminded me of the family fun center! We played air hockey and Dance Dance revolution. But this dance dance revolution was way harder than any other DDR I have ever played before! We had to have three people on one dance square thingy to even get close to hitting all the steps!

Today was by far amazing! We started off with a great District meeting. Our district leader talked to us about being happy and always smiling as a missionary. (My companion really needed this lesson) We role played tons of funny examples of happy and sad missionaries. Then we practiced "How to Begin Teaching" as a whole zone. Hermana Cadenas and I were the missionaries and the  zone was a giant family that we had to invite to the lesson, control, get to know, and begin teaching. The Elders were giving us such a hard time! They were doing everything wrong so that we would have to correct it. Turning on cell phones, being distracted, one of the elders tried to greet us with a kiss, they said the prayer in some weird circle where they held hands and repeated each other, it was hilarious. Everyone in our zone had a hard time keeping a straight face, we were having way too much fun.

Highlight of the Week
We had a really neat service opportunity this week! There was a family of recent converts that were moving. They asked the missionaries to help. When I thought of moving I thought oh we will just have boxes and bags of stuff to carry  to their new house. That can't be too difficult. I couldn't have been more wrong. When they said moving they meant that they were moving their entire house! When we got to their home to help, we literally started taking apart the walls and ceiling to move and rebuild the entire house on the other side of the mountain. We worked all day even until 9 in the night. Moving walls, furniture, sinks, toilets, and refrigerators up the mountain and back down the other side. After, the first day, unfortunately, we weren't any where near done. The entire day was spent moving all the supplies. That night the family ended up sleeping at another  members home. I love their family so much! The Wife is awesome she loves soccer they are a cute young couple with two little boys. Their boys love me because I always play with them. The next day we invited the whole zone to help us finish the move. We mixed concrete laid the foundation and put up all the walls for the house.
The entire time I was thinking about my family who went to Mexico recently to help build houses, and I know exactly how they must have felt. The houses are like tree forts. They are simple pieces of wood nailed together to form a house, nothing fancy! At the end of the day when we finally had the last pieces put together it was dark probably around 9 o clock. We sat at the top of the hill to relax before dinner. As I sat at the top of the hill I could see the new house, along with the entire  valley, I could see my whole area, my whole zone. It was beautiful. I realized how blessed I am to have the life I do in America. After only a short year and a half I get to go back to warm showers every day and to a house that is stable. That moment of quiet contemplation was a realization of how lucky and blessed I am. Especially growing up on the plateau where we have such an abundance. I wonder now why I ever spent time worrying about some of the trivial, little things that seemed so important in high school. In the field I have met so many people with real, big problems that they have to deal with and it makes everything that I have ever complained about seem microscopic! I have a strong testimony that serving others can help us in so many ways. It helps us find humility, it helps us show our love for Gods other children, it helps us become more like Christ. I am so proud of my family who choose to go to Tijuana to help serve the people there when they could have been in Cabo with sun, sand and friends. I know that they probably learned, experienced and gained so much more.

Home building
looking out over the valley

day 2 of putting the house back together

There was two downfalls this week! Actual, literal Downfalls.
The first was Elder Urazola. Elder Urazola is a huge Columbian. When the memebers serve us mountains of food at lunch Elder Urazola helps me out and eats about half my plate after eating all of his. One time he ate his plate, mine, Hermana Cadenas and Elder Zundels food at lunch! We call him the black hole! So anyways we were all enjoying a nice little lunch break chatting along, and then all of the sudden Elder Urazola just flew backwards. If he had been hurt,  I wouldn't have laughed, but the chair leg completely snapped in half! Haha poor elder Urazola, luckily he was just fine and laughed about it too.

The infamous, Urazola and the broken chair...

The second downfall was Hermana Cadenas. As we were fast walking to our  lesson she tripped over nothing and fell. At first we didn't notice anything but once we got to the house and looked at her leg,  her whole knee was bleeding! I had a bunch of special  napkins that have scriptures on them from the CCM so obviously I gave her one to wipe up all the blood, and to make her feel better with a nice comforting scripture. However, the scripture on the napkin wasn't very comforting It was Psalms 55.22, "Cast your cares on the Lord and He will sustain you. He will never let the righteous fall." We both had to laugh at that, I joked that  Hermana Cadenas must not be righteous because she fell pretty hard. (She is actually wonderful and totally righteous!)

Spiritual Experience
One awesome spiritual moment this week was a lesson with our new investigator, Anna. Anna has a husband and one child. She loves her family but has never really had religion in her life even though she grew up catholic. At the start of the first lesson we taught her a little bit about how we pray, and I offered the opening prayer. I cant explain in words the feeling I had, but the spirit in the room was tangible. After the  prayer Anna said that she had never heard a prayer like that before and that she had never felt that way. She said that it was as if her whole body was overcome with peace. When teaching the most important thing to have with us is the spirit. Sometimes it doesn't matter what we say, or what we do, but if we have the spirit with us then the investigators can feel it and be taught by it.

 The Hejarr family is all girls! For the past couple of weeks, while the mom is at work, we have been teaching her 5 daughters. They are so much fun to teach because they love to learn about the gospel and Cadenas and I love coming up with creative, exciting ways to teach them the gospel. Normally we like to draw. During the last lesson we drew out the 7 days of the creation. We also like to do puzzles and other fun games to teach them. Alexandra is the one who is the most interested. Shes 11 and has attended church with us for the whole month. Tonight we are going to confirm her baptism with her mom!  Hopefully all the other girls will follow  her example and be baptized after wards.

Anna B is a less active member in the church. She is awesome! She is always smiling and loves to hear from us, sh is just all around just a great lady. Unfortunately, she and her husband have not been married yet, so this prevents her from going to the temple and him  from being baptized because of the Law of Chastity. We have been working with her to plan a wedding for the two of them. At first we thought that both of them were on board. But then we talked to N, her husband and he didn't want anything to do with a wedding. The whole situation was so sad. He just kept giving excuses. I  couldn't understand why, he has a family with two beautiful daughters and a wife that loves him. Why would he not want that for eternity! Hermana Cadenas spent a whole lesson talking about the importance of marriage but nothing really caught his attention. Finally in the end I bore my testimony about how important my family was to me. How every day I looked up to my parents and followed their examples, how my brother and sister were always there to support me. I tried to explain to him that that’s how his daughters probably feel. He needs to show his family his commitment to them. One of his reasons for not wanting to get married is that "Matrimonio iss no Juego", Marriage isn't a game. I tried to help him realize that his family isn't a game either. He can't just quit his family. Something got through to him by because by the end of that lesson  he was asking about the dates. It was so sweet how much he had changed from the first time we met him.

Well that is enough for this week.
Love you all. Thank you so much for all the support and I am sorry that I can't write everyone back each week! One hour goes so fast! I love the emails and pictures you send! IT gives me a little piece of home!
See ya next summer!
Hermana Huish

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

week #13

Things are going great over here in Peru!

MY highlight this week was that the new church in our area is opening! The building has been under construction for a while and it is finally almost ready to go ! This week we were able to walk through. It was so beautiful! Everything is brand new, and better yet, everything is CLEAN! A lot of the churches here don't stay clean but for now it is just so awesome! It has two buildings. One building contains the classrooms, offices and kitchen. The other building houses the stage and the chapel. Outside is the best, a volleyball court, soccer field, and basketball court! Its sweeet! And this is perfect because now the church is really close to all of our investigators so it will be much easier for them to attend. 

This week we had a work visit with our new district leader.The new  leader is a bit intimidating, he is really strict. The investigator that we arranged to visit is normally very receptive, and accepts our commitments. BUT of course on the one day she decides to be really difficult we bring the boss! Our whole goal for the lesson was to invite her to come to church on Sunday. She has been to church before and she attended conference so it should not have been that big of a deal. BUT she refused to come this week. We did everything that we were taught to persuade her to say yes, scriptures, promise blessings, testify. And she still refused. It was pretty discouraging. I don't even know how to describe it in words, but just know that it was frustrating. Our new district leader was not impressed. But we will impress him next time.

Fun experience!
This week we had a BLITZ. A blitz is when all the missionaries get together in one area that is struggling. For three hours we contacted people for the missionaries of that area to teach.We also switched companions so I worked with Hermana Ramirez. She has put in 6 months in the mission but unfortunately was awful at contacting! When you contact it is important to get to know the person a little bit and gain their confidence before you invite them to church. Hermana Ramirez really struggled with this,  but the upside is it gave me a chance to practice so that was sweet. One funny experience that happened when we were out was a dog we met. We knocked on the door of a house and a dog came to the window. I told Hermana Ramirez to pretend it was a real contact and ask it questions, it was hilarious when the dog would bark back at the perfect time. And then when we asked if it had a family and other dogs came to the window. It was hilarious. We were both dying.

So I love my companion she is truly awesome. We get along well and she is really chill, perfect for me! However, she is a little bit shy. Its hard to have a shy companion when I can't really speak the language yet. During lessons and in ward counsel she doesn't like to take charge and she doesn't like to talk in front of groups of people. I'm trying to help her with that.  At one of the baptisms she was asked to give a little thought and she said no. That is what missionaries are suppose to be prepared for always, giving thoughts at the last minute and talking in front of people. Also in lessons this is difficult because she doesn't want to be direct. That is probably the reason we were paired together, I don't have a problem being direct or speaking in front of people, but I CANT because of the language problem. So as far as success in this area I am  just going to have to be patient. I am not going to be able to do things the way that I want. I just have to be patient, work with my companions strengths and learn to speak Spanish, FAST.  To help with learning Spanish, I'm totally giving up English. The only time I'm going to use English is to write emails. I gave up English scriptures, English prayers, and English with my companion. The only way I'm going to learn Spanish is if I can just forget about English (: Once I can speak, Cadenas and I will be unstoppable.
see you next summer!
Hermana Huish

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Week #12

Cadenas and I

My new zone in Magnolias


This ice cream was amazing!!!
Its funny how happy a little American tasting ice cream can make you!

Hola Familia!
There is always just too much to share! I cant believe that it is already p'day again! Time flies by sooo fast! Where did the week even go? So much has happened but I''ll share a couple of my favorite parts of the week.

Highlight of the week:
The highlight of the week was making prayer rocks! We baptised Lydia last week and now we are teaching her daughter Stephanie. Stephanie is 11 year's old and is your typical sassy teenager. When we come to teach the lessons she normally  just gets bored and wants to liten to music so Cadenas and I were trying to think of fun ways to catch her attention. I remembered making prayer rocks in primary! A prayer rock is simple, you take a smallish to medium rock paint it, and write the word PRAYER )ORACION= on it. Then you put it on your pillow so when you go to sleep at night your head will hit the rock so you remember to pray. Then when your done you put the rock on the floor so that when you wake up the next morning you step on the rock and remember to pray! Stephanie and her friends were pretty excited about this idea.  We immediatley went searching for cool looking rocks outside. I found one in the shape of a heart. Then we painted them all sorts of colors and wrote the word Oracion on it. It was a good activity and I think it really captured stephanies attention! If nothing else, she is going to remember to pray now. If you have any more fun ideas for teaching young kids let me know because we are constantly trying to think of ideas!

The downfall this week was on Sunday. We got a reference from Nilton, a member, to teach a girl names Beatrice. We were super pumped about the lesson and had high expectations. So after lunch on Sunday we went with Nilton to go visit his friend. We had no idea where she lived. Of course this was the one day when I decided to where those cute little red heels. We ended up having to walk for about an hour to get to her house!!!!! The worst part was when we got there she wasn't even home. It was the biggest disappointment of the entire week. So then we had to walk home and by the time we got back my feet were raw, ouch!

Funny Experiences:
We ate these extremely hot peppers that are only found in the jungle in Peru. They are really, small, yellow and innocent looking but boy are they spicy. One of the members gave us a whole bag of these little peppers, and at lunch we all tried one. I can't even describe to you how hot this little thing was. My mouth literally had flames shooting out, my tongue was even a  bit numb! It was crazy! So the funny part is that not only did I eat one but I ended up taking down 13!!!! Me and Elder Barrientes had a competition to see who could eat more. Every time some one would pop one in their mouth the family we were eating with would cheer, and the mom would sprint to go get us water or milk or something to cool us down. It was crazy both our faces were red, both of us were sweating, and both of our mouths were just straight up numb. Pride had the best of both of us because we both wanted to win. At seven we were dying and agreed to a tie but the family and Hermana Cadenas and Elder Gomez pressured us to keep going. So at this point neither one of us wanted the other to eat one because that meant the other person had to. But some how the group pressured us into eating 6 more for a total at 13. At that point neither of us could take it any more so we made an oath to tie at 13. I know it doesn't sound that much fun to suffer through all that pain, but it actually was pretty fun and I think Elder Barrientes  and I will be legends in Magnolia's now.

Spiritual Experience:
The most spiritual experience this week was general conference! I have only had a month in the mission and I still don't understand tons of Spanish yet. Normally its takes about 4 months to be able to understand everything. So when general conference came I was really nervous that I wouldn't be able to understand anything the prophet and apostles were saying. I have never prayer harder for the gift of tongues to be able to understand the words of our leaders. I didn't understand a word they said but somehow I understood everything that I needed to hear from each talk. It was amazing!
Hermana Zarates Birthday!
So Hermana Cadenas and I live with the two other Hermana's in our zone. The sister leaders Hermana Goulding and Hermana Zarate. Saturday was Hermana Zarates 20th birthday! So we decided to make it really special for her! Friday night we made a big sign that said FELIZ CUMPLE! and then we blew up 20 balloons. After she went to bed we snuck into her room and hung up the sign and put the balloons all over the floor! In the morning our mamasita brought her a chocolate cake! It reminded me so much of our family tradition back home for birthdays! Decorate the birthday person's room in the night, and eat cake in the morning for breakfast! I think she felt really special. I'm so happy that we were able to do that for her. We also had a small zone party with a cake as well!. Then that night we had our own little special pizza party. Hermana Goulding bought Hawaiian Pizza and we all just hung out that night and ate pizza and stuff, and got to know each other better. It was sweet!

Hermana Lorenza is the! She was a menos activo and we found her when I first came into the area. We have helped her completely changed her life! She was totally inactive before and now she is active in everything! It is truly amazing. We teach her the lessons and give her commitments. She goes above and beyond on all of her commitments. For example, she reads the Book of Mormon like a mad women, and has good questions for us. And on top of that she came to every session of general conference, and even went back to the temple! I'm so thrilled that we were able to help her get her life straightened out and back to church. Now we are working with her daughter and her husband to try and help them as well!

I love you all!
See you next summer!
Hermana Huish