Monday, January 26, 2015

It's Always a Good Day

Hola Familia!!

Thank you so much for all the emails and love!  I have the best family
and friends a missionary could ask for!  Thank you so much!  I am so
lucky to be able to read everyone’s testimonies every week.  So you
guys (aka mom) asked me some questions.

Spanish:  Yes it’s a ton easier than 7 weeks ago, but I still am not
fluent.  I can understand a gringos Spanish perfectly, but some
Latinos are really hard to understand.  When we are talking about the
Gospel it’s a ton easier, but when they are telling stories it’s a
little harder.  I feel like I have improved a lot though.  In lessons
I can usually say what I want to say and I can understand Spanish of
people I am around a lot, like Hermana Rene.  This week I went on
splits with Hermana Chipunavi.  She came to my sector, so that meant
that I had to take the lead in lessons and talking with our
investigators and people we visited.  It also meant that I only spoke
Spanish all day.  I felt like I did pretty good and I loved being with
Hermana Chipunavi.  She is great and helped my Spanish a lot!  Every
day it gets a little easier.

Laundry:  Well this has actually been quite a mess.  Our person that
washed our laundry also washes the clothes of four other elders.  She
lost my sweats and almost my towel.  So we went and talked to Hermana
Rene and now she is doing our
laundry!  She is like super mom I swear!  She hand washes everything
and she does an amazing job! She has literally adopted us into her
family.  This week she accompanied us to a lesson (yeah she has time
for that too).  But she said to our investigator Cesar that she has
four kids, two latinos and two gringas.  And then she said “We are
happy, just us five”  WE love her!  She also tells us to not put too
much mayo on our food and salt.  And when Hermana Holland left to go
on splits in a different sector , she made her bring a jacket.  I
don’t know how she does everything!

Health:   I am sleeping fine, like always.  I can fall asleep in five
minutes and stay asleep the whole night.  I am very grateful for that
blessing!  I haven’t been sick once and we haven’t had to stay inside.
I don’t know how my health has stayed so good.  We get rained on a
lot, lots of cold showers, but I think its half on the food and half
on just taking care of myself.  Maybe it’s the vitamins! I don’t know,
but I am grateful for it.  The mosquitos are probably the worst thing.
Last p day we played soccer and I got bit.  It was so bad my ankle was
swollen and really tender and bruised.   Now it’s fine and back to
normal coloring J.  But I have used a whole tube of Neosporin.  For
the first time in my life, and that’s saying something.  Also my hair
has been falling out more than usual.  I think it’s the climate….

 Food: Well it’s a ton different than home.  Rice every day for lunch,
potatoes and usually a meat too .  Breakfast and dinner are really
small, like really small, but I have gotten used to it.   My favorite
thing is Camote frito, which is fried sweet potato.  It is so good!!
And my favorite meal is Aji de Gallina!  Its literally the best thing
ever!  I love when René makes it!   Desserts are just not sweet here
and they don’t eat for pleasure J.

Boots:  I am so glad you sent them to me!! Thank you thank you!  I
wear them on the days when I don’t want to wear my dirty walking
shoes.  They are great!  Thank you!

This week was really good!! But sometimes it’s really hard.  I would
say that the hardest thing is just feeling overwhelmed with how much
work there is to do.  There are a lot of family problems here.  I
won’t get into them, but its very taxing to listen to them all.  Its
emotionally draining because there is a point where you just don’t
know what to say.  There are a lot of menos activos here as well.  Its
overwhelming.  But the best thing was that 5 menos activos of ours
came to church this week!  I loved  it so much!  I think that they
usually need a friend or need to know that someone is wanting to see
them.  And that is an example of how rewarding missionary work is.
Yes you feel very sad about everyones trials, but then they come to
church its all better and worth it.

This next month is something they call Carnival.  I don’t know
everything about it but I do know that it includes throwing water
balloons at people.  Yes, it’s not February yet and Hermana Holland and
I have already gotten hit.  Ungooglable fact about Peru:  Their aim is
really bad!  WE just got our ankles it but still it was pretty funny!

Every Friday night in our ward we have Noche Misional!  Its like a
party with everyone every week!  It’s the best and this time we played
a game called the Bomba!! Its way funny and easy to play!  I found
myself on the team with a bunch of the kids in the ward,  our team
name was No Se, which is I don’t know in Spanish…. Haha I accidently
chose the name, but it worked out!  Haha The ward is seriously the
best and we had way to much fun playing this game!  I wish I could
explain it to you guys but it will probably take too much time!  Just
know that we laughed a lot and now I have like 7 Latino friends J

Agreeing with dads words, yes you are thrown into a random city in
Peru.  Yes sometimes I feel like I have no idea what I am doing here.
 Buts its always a good day.

  This Book of Mormon challenge is the best.  I have found one of my
favorite chapters.  Chapter 17 of Nephi.  First off, I love when Laman
and Lemuel are complaining about life and saying how they could have
enjoyed all their material things in Jersualam.  They obviously never
had a testimony in their dad the Prophet, or they would know that if
they had stayed they would be about to be destroyed.  And I love the
example of Nephi in this chapter,  He bears his testimony to his
brothers and does so with so much power.  It’s just amazing!  I love
that he had the priesthood power with him in this chapter.    My
favorite thing that he mentions is when he talks about the people that
only needed to look at the serpent to be healed, but because of the
simpleness of the way they didn’t look and were lost.  I thought about
the simple things that the gospel asks us to do, pray, read, attend
church, and how often we don’t do them.  They are simple so why don’t
we do them?  I think a lot of problems could be solved by doing these
things.  The natural man is swift to do iniquity and slow to remember
God.  I know that if we do the small and simple things now that we
will truly grow to be converted in the gospel and be prepared
(especially the youngins) to make eternal covenants in the temple J

Well I love you all to pieces!! Thanks for the support!  Have a great week!

love, Hermana Russell

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