Tuesday, May 26, 2015

For Libby

Congratulations, you've reached that age
It's the time in your life where you start a new page
It's white and it's blank, just waiting for your pen
So blow out your candles, eat some cake, and then....

Dip your quill in the ink, just let the words flow
with your life in your hands oh the places  you'll go
This word or that word? there's so much to choose
But put your heart in your story, there's no way you can lose

Sometimes there'll be blots, I'm not gonna lie
You'll want to cross something out, you might want to cry
You'll then start to notice that pens don't have erasers
Because nothing beats the whiteout of our Lord and Savior

Never look back, write left to right, not reverse
For a story that doesn't progress is the worst
Always keep learning, never stop writing
Fill it with twists, make it exciting

I love you LIbby, you're gonna do great
To see where you go, I really can't wait
And when we're both old, we'll be able to read
Our very own life, adventure stories

Happy 18th Birthday!!!

Monday, May 25, 2015


Maracuya or Passion Fruit

Chupetes de Maracuya
My companion and I have a crazy obsession with frozen fruit flavored sugar water.... aka chupetes. Last monday was a multizone pday. In the morning my companion and I went over to a ward members house and made chupetes de maracuya. You literally blend up maracuya, mix it with water add so much sugar it makes koolaid look like a diet drink, put it in little plastic bags, tie them and freeze them. We made like 40.... they didn't freeze in time for the multizone pday.... so we kept them in our freezer and have been gradually eating all of them this week.

We also made chupetes de coco and chupetes de cocoa with our pensionista. For those you take coconut and milk and sugar and water (or cocoa powder, milk, sugar and water depending on the flavor) and freeze them. They're like jungle creamies. Oh, yes, did I mention, coco means coconut and they're delicious.

For zone pday we played minute to win it games. Picture 16 missionaries, ages 18 to about 25 playing in the chapel. It was hilarious and a blast. One of the games was bobbing for apples and basically my companion and I are champs at that. There are 4 areas in our zone, 2 elders and 2 sisters in each so we had 4 buckets and had a contest between us. Our area won twice :)

This week has been awesome. As missionaries we also help reactivate, or rescue, less actives. This week we rescued a less active and her eight year old son was baptized :) It was so precious. He was afraid of the water but he suddenly had a burst of courage and just like walked right in. It was a beautiful baptism :)

I love you all and I pray for you constantly! Enjoy all that rain :)

Love, Hermana Blanca

Monday, May 18, 2015

Normal Missionaries Eat Ice Cream

Let me introduce you to our district:
Elder Christianson and Elder Arroyo are the zone leaders, they're also the other set of missionaries in our ward. Elder Christianson leaves after next transfer to go home to his 14 brothers and sisters and Elder Arroyo leaves in 4 weeks to go home to Ecuador.

Elder Torres is the district leader and his companion is Elder Quispe. Elder Torres is from Hondures, speaks fluent English, sweetest elder ever and goes home in september. Elder Quispe doesn't talk and has 7 months in the mission (he actually talked to me for the first time yesterday when he asked how are baptism went.... I'll get to that in a minute) I was quite shocked actually that he had the ability to speak.

Hermana Keyes and Hermana Paez are the Hermana leaders in our zone (actually the hermana leaders are over the sisters in three zones). Hermana Keyes leaves after next transfer for Utah and Hermana Paez has 7 months in the mission

And then there's Hermana Johnson and I.... we are the normal missionaries in our district. We had a district meeting on Thursday and after the meeting everybody else kept sitting and I was kindof like "what are we doing now?" and then I realized that they were waiting for us normal missionaries to leave.... so we went and got chupetes de maracuya (basically homemade jungle otter pops). Normal missionaries have time for ice cream.

I'm sure your wondering about this baptism I mentioned earlier. Well it was incredible!!! Leslie is a 9 year old with the maturity of like a 13 year old. She's incrediblyintelligent and just amazing. We've been teaching her family and she's the first one to be baptized, her brother's baptism date is this saturday and he's already talking about getting the preisthood!!! Their parents are getting married before they can be baptized and they've got a marriage date set for the end of June!!!! Marriage in the morning and baptism that night. We've come to love this family as our own. They're just incredible. They've also got two younger kids, one who's 5 and one who's 3 and everytime we come over they get excited and start yelling "Hermana Why, Hermana Jo!" over and over again. We love them so much :)

I hope everything there is fantastic, it definitely looks like it from the pictures :)

I love you all

Hermana Blanca

Monday, May 11, 2015

Social Time

Let me just set the stage here. I am serving out in the jungle, in a town called La Merced, on the outskirts of the amazon jungle. There is a set of Elders in La Merced and then a set of Elders and a set of sisters in San Ramon, a town about 15 minutes away.... the next closest missionaries are 2 hours away. We literally hear about nothing out here. Mission gossip? nada. Transfers? nope. We know where no one is. It's fantastic but sometimes you just need to see other missionaries. It's nice to know that there are other peope out here.

So, may I present: the wonderful invention that is the multizone conference!

Multi-Zone Conference At A Waterfall
This past week Pday was moved to friday because of a multizone conference on saturday. About 50 missionaries... yes, you read that right, more than just us 4 missionaries, went to some beautiful waterfalls. Oh! and we played with monkeys! Legit jungle monkeys. It was so much fun!!!!

Jungle Missionaries Play With Legit Jungle Monkeys
The next day we had a zone conference which always includes some sort of role play, which was not as bad as I thought it was going to be, and the assistents talked about repentence which was also pretty cool. We had stake conference saturday and sunday as well and Elder Taylor Godoy came out and spoke. It was awesome! 

Funny story though, Elder Godoy began his talk with "can I get two foreign missionaries to stand up" My companion and I kindof looked at eachother like "us? does he mean us?" So we stood up and he asked us how people knew that we were from the United States. We were like "um, I don't know, we speak english?
Multi-Zone Conference
we're white?" Finally another sister missionary whispered, "your pasaporte"

Right, that would make sense. 

He then proceeded to talk about how people would know is you were from the church, what do you show people your part of the church. He said, in the way that you treat people, in the way that you pay your tithing and one more thing which is in my notes which I obviously have to reread.

Anyway, it was a fantastic week! I love you all and really loved seeing you :) 

Love, Hermana Blanca

Moroni 8:3

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Mother's Day Update

We had a wonderful time speaking with Hermana Blanca tonight. Here are some of the highlights from the conversation.
  • She has a second mother who takes very good care of her. Her name is Hermana Johnson.
  • She lives in the bottom floor of a concrete 3 story building. The room itself is very small, and has one bathroom slightly larger than a trailer bathroom. She does have a good bed, though, which is very important.
  • Transfers left her in the same area with her same companion. She is happy about this because she refers to La Merced as the Garden of Eden. It is in a valley surrounded by beautiful rolling green hills.
  • Recently they had a multi-zone conference. They were all able to go visit a gorgeous water fall. We saw a picture of this as her companion held the phone up to the computer camera...
  • Her and her companion are being very successful. They have had one baptism, another family will be baptized soon, and they are teaching many others.
  • She is concerned about all of the food that they feed her. They feed her Scott Meager portions (for those who know Scott), and she is expected to finish it all. They have convinced their pensionista to feed them cereal for dinner to help with the huge amounts of food. She has recently had eggs with hotdogs or noodles, and chifa, which is a fusion of Peruvian and Chinese food.
  • We asked her to say a family prayer. Half way through the prayer she switched to Spanish. Apparently English is no longer her first language. Does this maker her a native?
We loved seeing and speaking with her, and can't wait to see her again in 7 months.

Monday, May 4, 2015

My Idea On Freckles

Freckles are awesome, they're super unique and not everyone has them.

They have perks, acne blends in, no one's going to notice another spot on your face

Another perk, one that really only applies in the jungle, bug bite scars just looke like light colored freckles

My mom always told me they're angel kisses, so I'm super loved

I've come to the conclusion that when God made me he ran out of tan food coloring so he frosted me in vanilla and added sprinkles

So Basically We're Reactivating A Celebrity

So this week was incredibly busy. We had so many lessons this week, that we actually met the standard of excellence in the lessons area (rarely done, like if you meet these standards you're basically superman... or woman). One of our lessons that we had was a street contact. We contacted a mom and her twelve year old daughter on wednesday and then on friday we went to their house for lesson 0. The 0 stands for oracion, or prayer, basically in a lesson 0 you get to know the person and teach them how to pray. Anyway, we go to the house and a different daughter lets us in and we're sitting on the couch waiting for the mom and we see really expensive technology like an apple computer and cameras... we were kindof wondering where we were and if we were still in the jungle. The mom comes in, we meet here and then the dad comes in. He says hi to us and then tells us, "oh yea, I was baptized in your church like 30 years ago" What?!?!?! So that's cool and then he was totally encouraging the rest of his family to listen to us and be baptized, it was awesome. We found out though that he's famous. He puts together books about Peru: pictures, writing and everything. Like he goes and camoflages himself and takes pictures of jaguars, he speaks the native jungle language, he even told us about a plant that the natives have that gives you the opportunity to hug rainbows. We're fairly certain that's against the word of wisdom. It's like one step up from a tree hugger, he's a rainbow hugger. Anyway, it was super super cool to talk to him. His name is Henry Ginez... you should look him up, see if he has a wikipedia page or something.

Other than that... nothing to report. It was a fantastic week!

I love you all, I can't wait to skype!!!!

Love, Hermana Blanca