Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Road Trip!

I live is the most amazing place!

This has been another crazy week as the nurses sidekick.  I’m thinking I’ll have to do a segment in my emails every week where I just sum up the craziness in a few sentences.  So here it goes… Visited 8 of the 10 zones in 1 day (NEW RECORD).  She only went to the hospital once (but stayed there for 2 nights) and I worked with another companion.  I had to do a quick pharmacy run while Hna N was in the hospital.  The assistants had to come to our house twice this week.  And today there's someone else in the hospital  Woohoo!!  But everyone's fine.   

I have no idea why this email is centered.  Guatemala computers always keep things interesting.

It's been an awesome, but crazy, week.  I have tons of pictures.  But this computer is really slow (surprise surprise) so we'll see how many I get sent off.

So Christmas was awesome.  I seriously love Christmas here.  I'll just start off with this.  In English the song Silent Night pretty much explains Christmas Eve in the states.  Its all quiet and peaceful.  But In Spanish that song is called Noche de Luz, or Night of Light.  Which perfectly explains Navidad in Guate.  It is not a silent night for anything!  Right at midnight there were soooo many fireworks that you couldn't hear anything else.  And we had an awesome view.  A family invited us over and they have a patio on their roof to see all the fireworks in the whole valley.  It was amazing!  We all ate dinner together (at midnight, which is what you do in Guatemala) and they had little presents with candy for us.  Then we went home and opened presents (also something you do on Christmas Eve here) and fell asleep at like 1:30.  We are SO not used to going ot bed that late.  Then Christmas day we talked to our families.  YAY!!  That was fun!  But it always feels so weird.  Like mixing two worlds that are so separate to me.  Then we went to go grocery shopping.  A family invited us over for lunch.  We got there kind of early and we were so tired!  We fell asleep for an hour on their couches.  Now they keep making fun of us and saying that when we come over we're just coming to go to sleep.  But it was worth it.  Then we ate the biggest lunch ever!  They just kept bringing out more and more food!  It was insane!  So between being SO FULL and staying up SO late we were just dead all Christmas Day.  It was really great though.  I'm sad it's my last Christmas here.  Christmas here is like 4th of July and Thanksgiving and a giant birthday party all mixed together.  Put it on your bucket list.

Yesterday was really awesome too.  Since my companion is the nurse she doesn't get a lot of p-days.  So yesterday we made up for it by having the greatest p-day ever.  The same family that gave us lunch on Christmas took us on a really cool mini road trip., We left at 5 am and we went all over the mission.  We went through the coast, Saw like 4 volcanoes, went on some sketchy bridges, ate really good breakfast, and did all kinds of stuff.  We also went to this place that is just mind boggling to me.  It's called the paso misterioso.  It's a tiny hill where if you put your car in neutral it goes up hill instead of downhill.  It's so weird.  And I don't understand it.  All I know is that we were going up on a downward slope.  Please Google it and explain how that works.  But anyway... we did a lot of driving through cool places to get to Lake Atitilan, which I've been to a few times.  But this time we took a super scenic route and went to another pueblo on the other side of the lake.  It was just really pretty and the family we went with is really fun.  It was kinda crazy trying to get back by 5 to start working but it was so worth it.

It's almost 2015.  That's so weird!  My goals for last year were all missionary related, But now I'm trying to think of goals for real life.  I hate thinking about it, but I've learned so much on the mission and I need to set New Years goals to keep applying those things in my life.  This has hands down been the best year of my life.  I'm sure there are many more awesome years to come, but this year has changed my life. And I'm sure it's changed my eternity too.

I love you so much!

Christmas Eve at like 11 pm.  This is us and the other companionship of sisters that came and the mom and her daughter

The family whose home it was


All my Christmas stuff. 


Christmas lunch!
 Pictures from our awesome Road Trip!!!!!  I love Guatemala!!!!

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Feliz Navidad!

This week was crazy.  Being the nurse’s companion never ceases to be an adventure.  Long story short we went to the hospital twice this week, went to two of the zone Christmas parties, had two days where we were not even in our area and had zero lessons, and drove through almost every zone in the mission (and through a few other missions).  But we survived!  Woo!
I really like this area, even though it feels way different.  I noticed I’m more tired in lessons because I’m not used to teaching on a couch.  It’s just too comfy for me.  It's also way hotter too so that feels nice.  But it's not as hot as other areas.  We had our Christmas activity on the coast this week and it was the first time I've gone to the coast.  It was SO hot.  This area I'm in has a good climate.
The Christmas party was fun.  We did all kinds of games and ate a lot and got to see lots of missionaries.  President and Hna Markham had some of us do the nativity as they read the story.  Hna N and I got volunteered to be angels.  So there we were in the nativity, wrapped in white sheet in the burning weather of the coast.  It was a good memory to make.
It’s been fun getting to know the members and converts.  We had a really exciting visit with a convert last week.  He’s a little old man who’s a natural doctor and lives in his karate studio.  He wanted to show us how he gets rid of head aches.  He got out some chop sticks and asked me to give him my left thumb.  Then he proceeded to shove the chop stick into the tip of my thumb as hard as he could.  So that felt awesome.  And he explained that he usually does that for about 2 minutes.  Then he took the chop stick out of my thumb and my arm fell asleep! The members we were with were dying laughing.  My arm was totally limp.  So that was interesting.  
Hna N and I are doing good.  We have a lot of fun together.  We found out that we both have scars on our left elbow because we both had the exact same surgery.  So that's cute.
I hope you all have a great Christmas!  Thanks for always supporting me and praying for me.  We need it.  I'm so thankful to be a missionary this time of year.  It just feels right.  I love the Savior and I'm so thankful for all that He did and does for me.  I'm trying so hard to feel closer to Him and really remember Him more.  
I love you!!!

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

The nurse is going to kill me!

That's right!  I'm companions with the nurse for my last change. It's been an adventure already.  We get along really well and we're having a lot of fun.  I've always really liked her!  It's kinda hard getting used to being the nurses companion because sometimes we have to stop what we're doing so she can take a call.  But it's really exciting.  I feel like I'm always on one of those exciting hospital shows.  Like The Untold Stories of the Mission Nurse.  And I like to think that I help out (but in reality one semester of anatomy doesn't qualify me for any of this.)  The other day I helped her figure out that some one  had a headache and diarrhea because they were dehydrated.  Maybe I'll get promoted to assistant to the nurse soon.

My area is way different.  I feel like I'm in the United States.  This area is so rich.  It's really small too.  It's like if Skyline Estates (our subdivision at home) was in an area.  Everyone has cars and couches and cell phones.  Everyone has Christmas lights and Christmas trees and DVD players.  And there isn't trash on the street. It's seriously so weird.  A week ago I was teaching lessons sitting on a cinder block on a dirt road with chickens and pigs.  And now I'm teaching on couches in a big house with fancy paintings to people who have nice clothes.  Its weird. But I really do love this area! I feel like it will take an edge off the culture shock when I get home though.  So that's good.

Just a heads up.  I will be getting fat this change.  There is a member whose a really good baker.  She's always giving us pastries.  I have eaten cake, cheese cake, pie, brownies, and or cinnamon rolls at least once a day since I've gotten here.  Start making your guesses now for how much I'll weigh when I leave.

We had a baptism on Sunday!!!!!! It was such a miracle.  It's a jovencito that has been going to church with his grandma for years.  On Friday we went and challenged him to be baptized and he said yes.  He was so happy!!  He got baptized before church early on Sunday and got confirmed an hour later.  It was just so good to see him happy! I know that we're going to see miracles this change.  This was just the first of many.

I am just so happy.  Things are going really good.  We are working hard.  There is no time to waste.

Love you all!!

Hna Haymond

Signing the wall in the house of the familia Pablo.  My last night in E.
They always do this and sing God Be With You Til' We Meet Again. Its so sad.

So the grandma of the kid who got baptized is a really good baker.  I'm getting fat this change.  But it works good because that way I won;t get married right when I get home.

This is our district

We had a baptism!! I decided Sadie is going to marry this kid.  His name is C.  Hes 13.  Hes gone to church for a really long time with his grandma.  But on Friday we showed up and challenged him to be baptized and he said YES!  In the closing  prayer he was so happy that he started crying.  I feel like I didn't do anything to help him.  I just showed up.  But its so good to see him happy!

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Oh Hermanos Adios pues Adios

El tiempo de ir vino ya.  I have changes.  I'll find out where I'm going tomorrow.  Ah.  It's crazy to think that this will be my last area.  Of course I'll be happy to go where ever Heavenly Father wants me to go, But I hope I go to the Coast. I've been to the mountains and the capital but the coast is the only region I haven't been to.  Next Tuesday you'll know.  It's always so hard saying goodbye.  The Monday and Tuesday before changes are always the worst days of the mission.  I thought it wouldn't be so hard here because I don't have as many converts.  But I was so wrong.  I love everyone in this area so much!  The street vendors, the contacts, the members, the investigators.  Ah.  Its so hard to leave.

I always ask myself why did the Lord send me here, When changes come around.  Even though I didn't reach my baptism goals in this area like I had in other areas, the lessons Heavenly Father wanted me to learn are really obvious.  First I learned what kind of member I want to be when I get home.  The members here are so willing to support us, Even when its cold, or the last minute or when no one receives us.  I also learned about humility.  Heavenly Father has given me SO much success as a missionary.  But these last few months I have learned that He will not let me go home prideful.

I hope you've all looked up He is the Gift.  If not, that's your homework.

It's still freezing.  Hne E and I had to stop by a members house the other day to ask for a blanket to walk around in.  

I love December.  In the area I was in last year there weren't any lights or Christmas trees but here the town has gone all out!  Its so exciting.  I also loved the Christmas devotional on Sunday night!  I hope you got to watch it. I think (i'm not totally sure) I saw Brother Wise (Hna Wises dad) in the choir.  So that was cool.

While we were in the Stake center watching a peaceful Christmas broadcast things outside were very much the opposite.  I don't know if I told you about this last year, but the 7th of Diciembre is a holiday here, called the day of the Devil.  Everyone buys pinatas of devils to burn right at 6 pm.  It's a really crazy night because everyone is lighting fireworks and burning anything they can find...trash, stuffed animals and sometimes firewood.  It's to get rid of the Devil and all the bad feelings and spirits before Christmas.  I've definitely added it to my list of traditions I'm going to keep up after the mission. 

One of our investigators passed out and started going into shock in my arms on Sunday.  That was a first.  But shes okay!  It was just hectic because all the members were freaking out and wanted to help and were giving us lots of suggestions of things to do (some more medically sound than others). The ambulance came in the end.  But it all turn out okay.

AND:::: here's a miracle!  We're having a baptism on Sunday!!!!!!!!  I thought I'd be sad that I have changes and I won't be here.  But I'm just so glad that we're seeing fruits of our labors.  The area deserves it.

It's been a good week.  We've had lots of adventures.  Four companionships from the mission got invited to go speak at SOY.  It's like EFY here.  And hna E and I got picked!  It was seriously one of the best days of my mission.  We got there really early and they treated us like we were famous.  Which is so funny to me because before my mission, missionaries were like super human.  It's weird that people think of us like that now because I am so normal. Anyway, we waited in this secret room and workers brought us snacks and water. (afterwards we got to go to the front of the line for lunch too.) Then the EFY director came and explained what he wanted us to do.  He explained that we were the surprise of EFY, That no one knew that we were coming and that he was so excited.  Its just so funny that we were the surprise.  Again, I just feel so normal.  But then the time came to enter the devotional.  They were singing the opening hymn, called to serve and they had us walk up to the stand.  The Spirit hit us so fast in the moment.  It was so cool to sing with them and look at all these really excited faces.  I could just feel that they're trying so hard to do whats right.  But it made me think of when I went to EFY and how awesome of an experience that was.  It totally changed my life.  The kids asked such good questions, like how to know if we're passing through trials from Heavenly Father or obstacles from Satan, or how we can be consecrated people.  It was cool to be able to think about all that.  And at the end of our question and answer part, the dirctetor surprised one of the EFY counselers and had his mission call ready to open.  So he opened it in front of everyone.  We were all just bawling.  I remember when I got that big white envelop.  I remember going grocery shopping in the hours before opening it to disatract myself.  I remember skyping everyone and inviting people to my apartment.  I remember choking up when I read the words Guatemala City Central mission.  In that moment I knew it was where I needed to go.  But what I didn't know was how much that letter would change my life. I didn't know what kind of person it would turn me into. I didn't know how much I would love these people or how much I would love obedience or missionary work.  I had no clue.  But Heavenly Father knew.  And I'm so thankful He told me to come to this mission.  I will forever be changed for it.

Love you all!

Every time I see a cow I just feel like reading the Book of Mormon to it.  So I did.

Familia P.  My family away from home.  They takes so much care of us.

The elders made us this delicious lunch last week

Zona Hoy

Zona Hoy
Us and all the stuff they gave us at EFY.
Badges, backpacks, bracelets, shirts (XXXL)

My first rootbeer in 16 months
p.s.  she's from Springville.

Zona Hoy

Zona Photo

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

El es la dadiva

Ah!! I really have no time left today!  I'm so sorry.  But yesterday we went to Panajatchel again.  It was way cool.  But I feel like I've been in the zone forever because we're already starting to repeat p-day activities.

I just want to say that I'm so thankful for the emails and experiences you've all shared with me.  Its been a really hard few months.  I haven't ever lied saying I'm  happy.  But I have to look harder to be happy.  But knowing your praying for me helps so much.  I know I'm not perfect but I know Heavenly Father knows I'm trying.

And everyone needs to go to christmas.mormon.org  and watch the video He is the Gift.  Think about the invitations at the end.  How will you accept them?  We've been using the video and its been really powerful.



So it turns out that it's not time for me to get over my fear of shots yet.  I freaked out waiting in line and when the mission presidents wife saw that I was about to pass out she said I didn't have to get it.  I love her so much for so many reasons but lately because she saved me from my worst fear.  So that was good.  But it was so horrible just to have to be there knowing that a million missionaries had to get the shot.  I really am so determined to get over this dumb phobia.  The next day in companionship inventory (Where hna E and I talk about what we're doing good and what we can work on)  the only thing she told me to work on was not being afraid any more.  It was the best suggestion I've received in a long time.  ha ha

Three of the missionaries in my district, including Hna E, completed another year of being members of the church this month.  They all got baptized in November.  One has 2 years, the others 1 year and 4.  Its so exciting!  So yesterday we kinda celebrated.  The Elders planned a bunch of activities and we made pupusas (they're like fried stuffed tortillas...SO GOOD!)  We invited some of the youth and it turned out to be a really good non-birthday party.  We played that game where you tie a balloon to your ankle and everyone has to run around popping each others balloons.  It was actually super intense because they used their soccer skills and it was to hard to track down their balloon.  Let me just point out that this game used to terrify me.  I hate popping balloons.  BUT NOT ANY MORE!  I may not have gotten over my fear of shots but I am no longer afraid of popping balloons!! I even won! That's my big feat this week.

Miracles are weird.  Sometimes we get miracles and then they seem to go away. For example, NONE of the 6 people who came to church on the 16th came on the 23rd and we cant find them.  So that's sad.  But I've learned that it helps us have just enough faith to be able to see more miracles that are even bigger.  Yesterday we called a lady who can be baptized this weekend.  We were by her house but when we called she said she was going to have to work until 9:30.  So we went and looked for new investigators close by.  When we came out of our lesson there she was!  She was outside her door.  She told us that she was just about to call us and she had just quit her job.  We had a really powerful lesson with her and she accepted to be baptized on Sunday!  It was amazing.  There were so many tiny miracles in the timing that helped us find her.  We are so excited!

I hope everyone has an amazing thanksgiving this week!  Today I got to choose the hymn in district meeting so I picked Because I have Been Given Much and Count you Blessings.  I think that's the extent of my Thanksgiving celebration.  But here are some things that I'm thankful for.  Its so interesting how my list changes being a missionary.  I'm thankful for....

my planner
members of the church
being healthy
my family
my friends
being able to email once a week
the mission rules
the commandments
the Church
the Scriptures
tiendas...where you buy food.
my converts
dogs that don't touch me
bridges to cross the highway
really good bread that they have here
sleeping really good and being able to wake up early
hot showers
every person that I get to meet and talk to every day.

The list could go on forever.  But more than anything I'm so thankful for the Savior.  I am so so so not worthy to be a representative of Him.  But I'm so thankful that He gives me the opportunity.  I'm thankful that He created the earth and for all He taught to ancient prophets.  Im thankful for His teachings and His example when He was here.  Im thankful He got baptized.  Im thankful that He loved me enough to die for me and my sins and sorrows and difficulties.  Im thankful that He overcame death and continues to love me and help me.  What better way to start off Christmas seasn than thinking about Him.


Me trying to pop this kids balloon.

Me after winning the balloon game.


Hna E got cut out of the picture.
But just pretend like shes on the right hand side.

Wooo hoo!! Feliz cumpleanos for being born again through baptism.