Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Vamos a la Playa......;)

Hola hola!  Another wonderful week in La Esperanza, Coatepeque, Guatemala!  This week was... how did I put it that one time... something about rainbows and butterflies and sunshine....?  Well this week was not that.  Mission reality check for the entire world... missions aren't easy.  Sometimes you contact for 6 hours straight in the rain and have 1 lesson.  But there's no such thing as a bad day in the mission.... there are good days and there are BETTER days.  We just work as hard as we can to have more better days than good days.  And every once in a while we get a best day. :)  Those are increíbles. 
Roomie love! Our neighbors brought over 35 bananas, not sure why.  We made smoothies!  I love these girls so much!  Living with 4 is a life saver.

It's the less than the best days that really make us count our blessings.  I was reading in Romans this week, chapter 8 verse 31... this brought me so much comfort.  If God be with you, who can be against us?  I have the name of the most powerful and loving person ever on my shirt.  I have no reason to be sad, ever!  I know  I've said this before, but when  I'm having a hard time I just look at the pic of my sweet family in my scriptures and remember that at least I've got those wonderful people forever and ever!  And for those who don't have that eternal family quite yet, like a few of the jovenes we were preparing for baptism but couldn't get permission from their parents, there is hope.  Never forget what it says in Romans 8:38-39.  The Lord LOVES us.  He WILL help us!  I know that these sweet little ones will get the opportunity to be baptized one day, but I also know that nothing can separate them from God´s love, nothing!  Never lose hope, learned a lot about that this week. 
A sweet family we are teaching referred by some recent converts. They may be baptized next week!
in other news, we contacted alot this week! ALOT.  Ha and we taught in some hilar places.  My favorite being a panaderia!  Haha yeah we def taught in a place where they make the oh so delicious pan dulce, too bad I saw how they make it... I may or may not be turned off from pan forever.  Let's just say sanitation isn't really a precaution here!  Ick!  But it smelled yummy :)  Another place was a carpinteria.  I felt all sorta of close to the birth of Jesus.  The smell of wood, it was lovely.  And the last one... my least favorite.... in a slaughter house, or should I say slaughter yard?  Yeah we found a menos activo who kills pigs for a living.  Luckily we showed up AFTER he killed the pigs but nonetheless they were sitting there, the pig carcasses, yes more than one.  And he was just hacking away at them! breaking bones ripping off feet.  And the worst part was when I looked over at the tree and saw the intestines and liver hanging on the tree!  What...... is my life a horror movie!?  He had blood all over him and wanted to shake our hands!  I could have puked!  Let's just say I RAN out of that house, we are going back another day AFTER work!
So people, the church is true everywhere and mas o menos it's the same all over the world!  We had the primary program this week! AH!  It brought our asistencia up so much!  SO MUCH!   Miracles!  But the greatest miracle in this sweet primary program was when my baby boy Jerico got up and shared his testimony and D&C 112:10.  Oh my goodness there goes my heart!  I love that sweet boy!  We had a lesson with him this week and we were reading the scriptures and we read 1 nefi 3:7.  So I was like okay Jerico what does iré y haré mean?  And he was like hacer caso?  That means to be obedient... and I was like YESSSSSS!!!!  My sweet convert gets it!  And he has officially made himself the ward greeter.  He goes around and shakes everyones hand and kisses all the women on the cheek. Sometimes I let him because I just love him so much!  Oh and in the lesson we marked the scripture so he could share it in FHE.  Ah, be still my heart!  I love my converts here.  They are my very best friends! :)
This week we made some food, of course!  Ha weren't you all waiting for this part of the email?  I know you were!  I taught the relief society how to make cinnamon rolls this week!  

We had so much fun!  And they loved them!  Maybe I'll bring the cinnamon roll to guatemala!  Also we made fetuccine alfredo for the bishopric!  Oh my I love pasta.  
my alfredo sauce turned out a little clumpy but I just told them that's how we eat it!

I love the food here but sometimes I miss some good pasta.  But it was so weird to eat without tortillas.  I like need tortillas when I eat anything now!  Oh Gautemala, what have you done to me! :) 
burnt the garlic bread. Like mother like daughter!
Funny story, when Guatemalans are drunk, they have the gift of tongues!  I'm not joking they can all of a sudden speak English!  So this man was asking us what the word procrastination means.  And then he started talking to us and was like oh your name is Sister Moore!  Wait what?  It's so weird to hear someone call me Sister Moore!  Sorry but my name is HERMANA Moore. :)  Always and forever. I love this language; but we have met a ton of English speakers lately!  That's always fun! :) 
So today we had a really fun p day!  We went to the beach!  
Tilapa, Guatemala

And the border of Mexico! ha!  I almost touched Mexico!  But instead I just took a pic at the border.
 I didn't cross the line!

  Dang fetch it was hot there.  Then we went to the beach and cooled off a bit........................ HA!  Jokes, did I scare you a bit there?  No we did not get in the water, duh, but we did enjoy a nice ocean breeze.  

We built sand castles and collected seashells and then ate sea food.... haha I know what you're thinking, mom.  I hope I don't get sick.  All I had was ceviche.... its like salsa with shrimp in it!  So I'll uh.... let you know how that one goes!  But I'm really content right now, great p day.  I'm sun burnt and sandy but really happy. :) 
a lovely dock at the beach

Learned a lot this week, but I'm excited for this coming week. I'm working on having faith unto miracles.  Faith is such a simple thing, but it truly can move mountains! 
Well all, I adore you!  Thank you for your sweet emails and pictures, they make my day! 

love love love,

Hermana Moore 

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Sweating In Coatapeque

Well, good news, winter is over! bad news, summer has begun.... and it won't end until NEXT SEPTEMBER.  Oh my gosh.  I thought I hated the rain but wow now I realize it was a nice refresher everyday.  We just sweat all day long here.  Literally by 10:15 am I'm like did I really just shower two hours ago?  It feels like I just went swimming!  But, I'll learn to love it... right?  Pray for me?
This week seriously FLEW by. I cant believe it's already over.  It still feels like last Monday!  But here we are, time is flying by and I just gotta run with it!  This week we had a lot of cool things happen.  
We learned how to make Papusas!

Papusas cooking on the stove

Finished product 

We had an activity in our ward this week, we worked super hard on it and it just didn't go as planned.  But we just roll with the punches here so it ended up being super great!  That is something I am learning from my sweet comp, Hermana Fusi, she just rolls with everything!  We are stuck here for an hour, hey no big deal let's become best friends with everyone here!  
pie eating contest at our activity

Just live life to the fullest as it comes to you. So at our activity we ended up just playing basketball and volleyball with the people that came but wow, people came!  And they stayed!  We had almost 50 people there!  That's almost as much as sacrament meeting here, so that was a small miracle!  
That's my Bishop on the left.  He reminds me of Uncle Darin

So we are playing volleyball when all of a sudden I turn around and a FAMILY I don't know walks in.  What the what?  So we go up and turns out we had invited one of their sons to the activity just randomly in the street one day... so the whole family came!  AHHHHHHHHH.  So we contacted them yesterday and now we are teaching them!  They rock!  So yeah the activity was a total success, because we got a family out of it!  I'm still baffled! :)  It doesn't matter that it didn't go according to plan, everyone had fun!  I'm really learning how to let go here in the mission!  Getting all Hawaii like Tim, hahaha! 
Oh and a funny note, that family that we found at the activity... turns out I had talked to her before! When we got to their house, according to their directions, it just happened to be the first door I had ever knocked on here in the mission.  I'm not kidding!  Things are coming full circle here in Coatepeque! Haha and funny thing, the street they live on has a grafitied wall that says "death wish".  You can imagine how excited I was to go down my first street contacting on my first day.  I just laugh at it now! Nothing scares me! 
Another thing we did this week was do an area attack in another ward in our zone!  All the missionaries showed up at their chapel at 6 am on Wednesday and then we had breakfast and then we received our "new companions"!  They had a bunch of youth from their ward come to do divisions with us!  

So we were assigned this joven named Browlio!  This kid is pilas!  That means super smart!  We contacted up a storm and even picked up another companion on the way!  He is a recent convert!  We had a great day with them! :)  I'm so excited for the people heading out on missions!  I heard that Natalie Bullough just got her mission call to Quetzaltenango Guatemala! Wow!!!!!!!!  That sweet girl has always impressed me so much!  I'm so excited for her!!!!!
SO I'm a little sick, I stayed in another hermana's house for divisions and it was super humid and moldy, and I'm blaming that on my sickness.  I have this great cough that just gets worse when I'm in the street or contacting.  It's really great.  Good thing Guatemala has no laws for eco friendly fumes, theres so much crap in the air!  But I'm slowly but surely getting rid of this tos, that's cough. 
This week we had lunch with the sweetest woman.  So humble, so much love for us and the Savior!  I adore this sweet woman!  She's a little one, my comp got a hilar pic of me and her.  She comes up to me rib cage, no joke.  

Proof that I'm a giant out here!

They like begged us to come over for lunch.  They have nothing, but they helped us!  So sweet!  I need to learn to be more like them, just so willing to serve!  I love sweet Hermana Alisia!

Editor's note: So I enlarged the picture above to get a good look at a typical Guatemala kitchen and noticed a little friend crawling up the cabinet below the green pot.  I emailed Erica about it and she responded that yes, it was a cockroach and "Welcome to my life....morning, midday and night!"

She wants us to come back again before I have transfers, I'm so excited!  I wanted to make them something special!  It's just her and her grand daughter that live there.  The rest of their family died!  So sad; but they are so strong!
Our relief society is doing classes on how to make cakes and we participated this week!  So fun!  I learned how to make cakes with my hands, no beaters necessary.  So funny being covered in dough up to my elbows!  

And what a workout!  But it was fun!  And I learned how to make a yummy cake! Next week I'm teaching them how to make cinnamon rolls! :)  I'm way excited! 
In terms of p-day activities today.... I went SHOPPING.  In a real deal mall.  In a store like Forever 21! Ah I about died!  Then we ate in a food court.  Oh my goodness.   People.... appreciate fast food for me.  I only eat cereal and yogurt here. and tortillas. and chicken. hahaha  But I miss me some Cafe Rio sweet pork salad! :)  Oh and this morning I washed ALL of my clothes. yep. all of it.  It took two hours and now my knuckles are raw.  Everyone, go give your washing machine a hug!  A BIG HUG!  I'll never complain about doing laundry again. :) 
I actually wrote some letters today so if your lucky, look for a letter in your mailbox in like..... 6 months! :)  By the way, I love receiving letters, so write me! :)  I'll write back! :)  Who knows if it'll ever get there but here's hoping! 

So funny thing that happened this week:  I am famous for my rain boots in this town. HA!  We contacted a family the other day and it had been raining just a little and they let us in.  But in a few minutes they asked me where my rain boots were.  Now understand that I've never met these people before... they were like yeah your big green botas! HA!  They said they've seen me around town in them and they were always so fascinated by them!  Well yeah they are the size of their youngest child! hahahaha.  That cracked me up.  But I think they like them because they always ask me where I bought them! 
Christmas is here already!

Oh and goodness gracious, tomorrow marks 5 MONTHS OF ME BEING ON MY MISSION!  Wow.
Time flies when your working hard!
Anyways, I love you all!  Dearly!  Praying for you always! :)

love love love,

Hermana Moore 

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Fiebre, Fiambre and Food Food Food!

Wow, another week - another p day! :)  This week I was looking at the pictures I took and wow, they are ALL of food.  Welcome to my life. haha  Will you all still love me when they have to roll me off the plane in a year??  But really this week was all about food!  First off, to explain the title of this email since it is in Spanish... fiebre means fever! yay. yep.  So here is the story.  People fed us street food which is against the rules...  I learned this week WHY it is against the rules.  I spent the whole night puking. woooooo.  Good thing there was a bucket in the bathroom, that's all I have to say.  Grossed out yet?  Get used to it!  We in Guatemala people!   But one amazing thing was I got my package from you guys that day.  So I woke up after sleeping all day and there were brownies and gold fish and love from home!  I about died!  Thank you thank you thank you. I love you all too much! :)  And tell Natalie Jensen she is such a cutie!  I love her little letters! :)  But I was down for a day this week with fiebre and you know... all that comes from food sickness.  So I'm never eating chuchitos ever again, until Navidad. everyone tells me that all people will feed us during Christmas. great! 
(note from the editor:  I'm assuming chuchitos means street food?)
divisions with Hermana Maye in a house made of mold, now I'm sick.  I blame this house!
I spent Halloween at this house.
Next thing,  FIAMBRE.  Okay fiambre is bigger than Thanksgiving in the United States. these people LOVE their fiambre!  Fiambre is basically a meat salad.  Not joking.  There are 4 types of sausages, 4 types of lunch meat type things, chicken, steak, ground beef, you name it.  It's in fiambre!  Oh and hot dogs, don't forget those; but they put that in everything anyways! haha.  So it's all the meat, then with every type of vegetable that you would ever want to keep in a jar of vinegar.  So imagine a salad bar and the meat section of the supermarket got together and threw a party, that is fiambre.  

Anyways, EVERYONE raves about fiambre.  And lucky us, we had it twice this week!  It's a delicacy here, because its pretty expensive.  So we had it with the Guinacs and then with Hermana Baechli the next day.  

Most Gringos hate it but I actually liked it!  It wasn't my favorite thing in the world; but with tostadas, anything is possible!  I'll have to make it for you when I get home.  I think Dad would really like it.  I liked it all, except the black sausage... sausage just shouldn't be black?  Who knows.  And the second time we ate it we just smothered it in salsa dulce, or ketchup, and wow.... improvement! hahaha. I'm a ketchup person now, and a chile person.  I'm a huge spicy food fan.  You can't really not like spicy food and live here.  It's like a sin.  Almost as bad as not eating tortillas.  It's the santo tortilla! hahaha not kidding. :)
One more thing about food, I baked a lot this week!  We made cinnamon rolls for our district meeting and it felt like I was home again! ahhhhh. :)  

Also we made a cake for the baptism this weekend!  A lady in our ward wanted to teach us how to make carrot cake!  So we did!  This woman is passionate about baking, she doesn't need a spoon, she uses her arm to mix that thing up!  Inspirational!  I'll never use a mixer again! 
So this week, Nehemias got baptized!  

At least we think that is his name, he spelled it Nemias; but I am positive it has an h!  He is this awesome kid who two weeks ago came to his friend's baptism and after the service he was like, Hermanas... I have to get baptized!  So he did!  Sweetest kid!  He has such a desire!  And wow, the hombres jovenes basically did the whole service!  They gave the talks, the prayers and they were the majority of the people there!  We have some rockin youth!  In 3-4 years this ward is going to send out like 10 missionaries, and they are gonna change the world!  

The baptism was great, I have been so incredibly blessed this month with people who are just so ready.  It makes this work so much easier when we just find the people who are ready! :)  I feel like my faith has grown so much this month.  I cant wait to echar fuego in November!  We got some big goals and we are going to work HARD!  This month is going to rock :) 
(Editor's note again:  I discussed the two words "echar fuego" with my Hispanic coworkers and they had never heard that and thought it was a Guatemalan expression for working hard?)
Funny stories of this week: I taught a lesson fearing for my life the entire time... there was a turkey the size of Ollie, our old dog, strutting its stuff right next to me.  I thought he was going to kill me! Turkeys exist outside of zoos.  They actually exist in houses too!  Freakin turkey.  So ugly.
random picture of foot tan lines!

Also,  I'm feeling good about my after the mission marriage prospects!  A man named Francisco declared his everlasting love for me this week.  It was quite magical.  We only knew each other for 2 minutes before he boldly declared, "Estoy enamorado con usted"!  (I'm in love with you!)  I figure after the mission if nothing else works out, I can always come back for this 80 year old drunk man with one foot.  The future is bright! 
When we were cooking cake I was attempting to grate carrots, zesting lemons anyone?, and I cut myself. so I was like "Ow"!  Then Jerico goes, "Porque llora la Gringa así"?   Hahahahahahahahahaha This kid.  I love him!  Basically he was like, "Why is the white girl crying like that?"  He is 11.  He is so funny!  Love my baby boy! :)
making carrot cake with two of my favorite converts, Natividad and Jerico
Other news..... I'm losing my hair!  Woooo, yay for stress.  I'll come back fat and bald!  Like I said, the future is bright!
But really, I'm loving life right now.  It's just wonderful being on the Lord's errand.  Thanks for all the love and emails and packages and letters.- they get me through the hard days! :)

love love love,

Hermana Moore