Monday, April 28, 2014

April 28, 2014 (Granada Nicaragua)

Well everyone another week and another month have gone it seems like the time in Nicaragua is in Fast Forward I love it here!! It is HARD but so awesome... and hot it is really hot.... but FABULOUS!! 

SO here are some things that happened this week!! 

We were eating at a member’s house and their daughter walked in that we had never met and we were getting to know here and we found out she was inactive so we proceeded to ask why. She is a sixteen year old girl and this was her answer... "Well I am married and my husband isn’t LDS so I don’t go" WHAT THE WHAT a la grande! Ah man that is a crazy thought getting married at 16....but down here that is normal....

We got a contact from our district leaders this week and we went to contact him, when we contacted him he started speaking to me in English and it took me a long time to think oh wait this is English!! We taught him the whole lesson IN ENGLISH it was the hardest thing I have ever done in my whole life! He asked me to say the prayer and I said it in Spanglish because every time I would start speaking in English I would switch over to Spanish! My wonderful companion did her best and she did really well!! 

So down here I braid my hair basically every day of my life. I didn’t think it was such a big deal but no one down here knows how to french braid so I have been teaching a lot! They love it!! whoo hoo its fun!! 

These first few months have been hard but worth it I can already see my desires changing and my thoughts and feelings are changing it is crazy what happens when you full out hand your life over to the Lord he takes something broken bruised smushed and torn and he doesn’t just fix it he makes it better! I am so grateful for him and for this opportunity I have to wear his name on a little black badge next to mine for 18 months!! My love for the scriptures has increased so much and my love for other people as well it is awesome!! 

I have been blessed with the gift of tongues it has humbled me that he chose me to give this gift to. Some people don’t get this amazing gift but I did I love the Spanish Language and the Spanish people they live so differently than we do but you can tell we all have the light of Christ in us that just needs to be found and strengthened! We can strengthen it by going to church reading scriptures and all those wonderful things we learned in Primary but another one is SHARING IT WITH OTHERS!! Members of the church are the backbone in missionary work without you what we do doesn’t stick so please work with the missionaries and with investigators!! Share your testimony and lead by example!! 

Well this week we had just gotten back to our house after a long day and we were giving one last lesson to the people that live with us and ALL the lights shut off in our whole area. Street lights and EVERYTHING including our fans eeeeek!! Thank Heavenly Father that we were at our house already. Come to find out a transformer had blown so we didn’t have lights yesterday either so it was hard to get the members to church because there weren’t any fans!  We also didn’t have water....which made it even HARDER to get members and investigators to church because they didn’t want people to see them because they hadn’t taken a shower... what a silly reason not to receive blessings.... Right after the lights went out though there were two BIG FLASHES of lightning ohhh man it looked super awesome but it was kinda scary!! Today we have lights but no water. Tomorrow we are praying and hoping for water.

We were walking home and we had the Elders Quorum with us all three of them we had just finished a crazy lesson and we said hello to this lady and the boys were talking to each other so my companion and I started talking to her... When she talking back she was talking to us like you talk to babies hhahahahah oh man it was funny she looked and me and said in a baby voice and how old are you cutie?? I said 20 and she said oh oh oh how cute you cute little baby and she grabbed my hands and oh man I was trying to not laugh she turned to my companion and she kept touching her face and patting her belly oh man alive it was interesting... 

Everyone here wants to speak English so everyone that knows a few words speaks them and those that were shy about it are finally not and they talk a lot to me in English it is fun!! 

I love the work and hope all is well at home! For all of you getting ready to graduate! CONGRATS!!! And good luck!! 

I love all of you and wish you the best!!!

Zone Elders and Sisters working in Granada Nicaragua

LtoR Galvez, Escobar, Sorenson, Udall, Gonzales, Gutierrez
Piviral, Tambriz, and Avila.

Monday, April 21, 2014

April 21, 2014 (Granada Nicaragua)

I had my first baptism!!! I know this gospel is true true true!! 

Hermana Avila, Yena Gomez, Hermana Udall
Yelena Gomez at the Baptismal Font

Hermana Udall, Hermana Avila, Yelena Gomez, Hermano Bosco.
So the earthquakes have slowed down which is awesome! And we made it through "Semana Santa"!!! Life should become a little more normal! 

We had an investigator this week look up things about our church on the internet..... bad plan now he is super confused and we went to teach him with the whole priests quorum (all three of them) and we talked to him about a LOT of things I hate when they are doing well doing well doing well and then all the sudden they aren’t It is the hardest part about the work. 

We also have another investigator that is baptized but hasn’t been confirmed. He promised the Zone Leaders he would be at church this last Sunday but when we went to get him he wasn’t there.... BUSTED. So that night we went to his house well we sent a Sister from the branch to see if he was there and just didn’t want to talk to us he was there so we went and talked to him and the Zone leaders showed up.... he looked like he was going to die.... Oh man we talked to his mom and not only is Kevin going to be there Sunday but so is his mother! AWESOME 

I had interviews with President Russell this week we have them every three months... My companion had me all nervous she said he checks everything your planner and my lesson plans EVERYTHING but I got in there and we talked and we said a prayer and we got up to leave and he still hadn’t checked mine so I said President... do you want to look at the Area Book and my agenda? he laughed and said Sister Udall keeping me honest I don’t think I have to check yours I knew from the first moment I met you that you would be an outstanding missionary but I will look just to be fair to everyone else so he then looked through my agenda and was talking about how fun my P-Days sound....He is awesome!!! 

Well I hope that everyone is Keeping the Faith and Sharing It with others! All is well here in Nicaragua I haven’t melted.....YET but I am loving it and hope you are all doing well!!! 

Beautiful Sunset in Nicaragua!

Hermana Udall at TURTLE this week (on the right).  Didn't like it much. :)


Wednesday, April 16, 2014

April 14, 2014 (Granada Nicaragua)

I am alive everyone for those of you that heard about the earthquakes down here there are a ton but so far so good the towns that are closer to the volcano have it worse! But so far I am safe! 

Hermana's Garcia, Perez, Avila, and Udall

This week has been crazy! Divisions was fun I went to a place called Diriamba where I almost froze because my body is used to the heat because Granada is one of the hottest places in southern Nicaragua because we live so close to Lake Managua. Diriamba is a lot colder so I was actually freezing and it was like 89 to 93 degrees outside haha just think of what will happen when I get home... Morgan said it snowed a little last night so I am really going to freeze haha yay! Granada has become my home away from home I really missed it and my companion! When I came back I was so happy to see my crazy little town well not so little and all its crazy people!! 

In Diriamba I took THE COLDEST shower I have EVER taken in my life it was like swimming in Becker Lake after there was 2 feet of snow on the ground BAH! Crazy!! 

Well the day I got back from Divisions I was walking and walking and walking and we had to walk over this little hill and all the sudden my powers of Grace came out and I fell....hahaha oops anyway I cut my leg pretty good I just stood up and didn’t really scream or anything I calmly told my comp Sister I should probably go clean this and she started screaming and running around it was very funny so we went to the primary presidents house because she was right there close she washed it with water then we went to a little pharmacy place to get stuff to clean it and all they had was rubbing alcohol and boy did that feel awesome! but my Mother is a super smart lady and in my package she sent Neosporin (that is not how you spell that) so I use that and it is kinds starting to get better I went to a members house and she put this purple stuff on my cut that reminded me of branding cattle and so now my leg is purple awesome huh. 
Using Neosporin Mom sent in birthday package!  :)

Looks like purple medicine Grandpa Udall used to use on the cattle!  Ha ha.
This week my companion and I worked a day with The zone Leader Elder Howe from Utah and Elder Segura from Costa Rica and they helped us so much it was a long day but all in all it was good the Elders like to talk so they taught most of the lessons haha crazy people coming into our area and taking over haha just kidding it was good though! They helped a lot. 

My first baptism is on Saturday!! I am so excited she is so ready to be baptized it’s crazy!! We also have another baptism date for next Saturday and we are hoping he pulls through but he is having a rough time makes my heart hurt but at least he is still trying! 

This coming week we have interviews in Masaya on Thursday which should be interesting President Russell was in my branch on Sunday and he saw my leg and got super serious I thought I was in trouble but he said you are one of the tough sisters you will be okay Sister Russell just started freaking out haha she said I don’t have a Band-Aid but you are the first person I have seen that needed one! 

I love this work and these people they are fantastic! I am working hard and praying A LOT my Spanish is getting better and better every day and I know it is the Lord blessing me! Please those of you that know of the gospel share it and those of you that don’t know come to know it will help you so much!! I love you all and wish you the Best!! Take care till next week! And please pray for the people of Central America! 

"Semana Santa" that I described last week.  This was outside our apartment window.

Monday, April 7, 2014

April 7, 2014 (Granada Nicaragua)

Hola Mis amigos y mi familia!! Yo Tengo 2 Meses in mi misiĆ³n!!! 

It has been a long two months but it has gone so fast at the same time! 

This week was a good week we got to watch General Conference but only if we had investigators so I missed one session the Saturday Afternoon session but I get to print talks off so that is nice! We had all of our investigators ready to go with us then they all canceled so now we get to teach about...oh man I forgot how to say it in English....compromisos....promises they have made with us but they aren’t really with us because everything they do is for the Lord. 

This next coming week is Semana Santa here in Nicaragua it is where EVERYONE walks up and down the streets with music bands and they carry Saints they have made out of paper and things up and down the street. People hang banners and pictures at their house and if people walk by and say a certain phrase they get free food and down here free food us a big deal so EVERYONE one is Catholic for the week even the Members hahaha. 
My investigators are doing well they don’t like coming to church because Sunday is the only day they don’t work but my companion and I get them to church haha. 

We have been on Earthquake look out this whole week because of the huge earthquake in Chile we have had them on and off for the past week not big ones but they shut all the lights off which includes all the Fans everywhere and the fans are what save us most of the time. 

My Spanish is getting better and better every day it is still hard to understand things but I don’t feel completely out of place anymore which is a good thing. I have divisions tomorrow so I leave Granada and go with one of the training sisters in another area and my companion stays here... I am kinda freaking out but I know I have been trained well and I was raised to do hard things so I can do this! 

Sorry this one is so short! 

I love this gospel and everything in it! Thank you all for the support I hope everything is well with you!! 

Bugs in our apartment! My companion Hermana Avila (short Guatemalan) is too short for the job!  Ha Ha

Cacao and Pinolillo (my new favorite drinks)!
Mangos EVERYWHERE!  :)

A new favorite fruit for me "Jacotes"
Typical meal.
A Church in Downtown Granada Nicaragua


Sunday, April 6, 2014

March 31, 2014 (Granada Nicaragua)

Can you tell by "wear and tear" which Hermana has been serving longer?!  :)
Hermana Jessica Udall and companion Hermana Avila at Lake Nicaragua.


This has been a crazy week! The work was really slow this week and really hard I hit one of those days they talk about that make you second guess everything you are doing everything you believe in and if you are really worth it. I know that that happens because we need to be humble to do this work especially here in Nicaragua the people are so very humble. 

I BOUGHT A BACK PACK TODAY!! Oh man when I was coming on my mission they told me to bring a bag but my mission president lets us use back packs! Best thing ever!! 

SO I have my first baptism coming up! She is a 9 year old girl that is PILAS!! That is a Guatemalan word for hard worker. She came to church on Sunday and looked at us and said when is my baptism and of course my companion and I wanted to say RIGHT NOW but she needs two more Sundays and a lesson on the Word of Wisdom because EVERYONE down here drinks coffee. 

I got my birthday package on Saturday!! It was the best thank you Family! Telling people I am 20 is weird but hey I AM NOT A TEENAGER whoop whoop! I also got three letters from grandma Udall and that was awesome I got them at our Zone meeting and my Zone leader Elder Benson said wow Hermana Popular!! 

Okay so Granada the place I am in is very touristy but in the city I am not in down town I am farther out so it is rare to see White people.....I get whistled at a lot and the guys make kissy noises and say in really bad English Hey Barbie good morning.. That is rough ha-ha I just look at them and say have you ever heard of the Plan Jesus has for you? And they just laugh and stop talking to me hehehehehe. 

Dad....they call Pepsi, Coke down here and Coke is Coke.....psh hahahaha. 

I got pictures from Jordon and Ami about the car and her awesome so so cute belly I AM GOING TO BE AN AUNT WHOOOO HOOO I am so excited!!! 

WE got to go to the beach today for P-Day it was awesome it looks like the ocean but it’s a lake....its nuts!! I love this Country and everything about it. It is a super poor country but they make do and EVERYONE wants to speak English right now I am teaching 2 girls to speak English and quizzing other missionaries because in this mission we have to know Three languages Spanish, English, and the language of the Spirit. 

I apologize for my bad spelling as my Spanish gets better my English gets way worse! I love hearing from you all! 

Friday we had an earthquake but the house we are in is a really good house we didn’t even feel it and it rained last night so this morning was nice and cool it was fabulous! 

Guys the church is so true and it helps EVERYONE not just a select few. I am so blessed to be wearing this little name tag that means I am set apart as a missionary but I want to stress the importance of the fact that you don’t need a tag to do missionary work we depend on The members more than anything I love you all so so much!! 
View from the Airplane on the flight to Nicaragua from Mexico City

All the Sister (Hermana's) who started together in the Nicaragua Managua South Mission

Fairly regular meal down here

More next week!!