Monday, September 8, 2014

3 Months Down.....3x5 to go!

Dearest Familia,

So our mission president gave us a spoiler alert and Sister Baros are staying here for another transfer!  I'm excited because I love the people here and would have been super bummed to have to leave, but at the same time I was ready for a change of some sort.  That will make 4.5 months with the same companion!  I've heard that things can still change and that President often changes his mind at last minute, but I'm comfortable here and am all right with transfers :)  I'm just SUPER happy I don't have to leave this area!  My zone is going to a MBA game at the Diamondback's stadium this transfer, all the Spanish branches in our zone are having a giant combined Fiesta, Elder Nelson is coming to our stake, we get to go to the Phoenix temple open house, and see the Meet the Mormons movie!  So much to look forward too!  I also want to see Lorenzo, Daniel, and Julio baptized before I leave!

Phoenix Zone

Last night was probably the craziest experience I had this week.  I wake up at 2 in the morning and it sounds like there is a tornado outside.  The wind and rain are smashing up against the window right by my head, the thunder is crashing, my room is lighting up with every flash of lightening and it was freaky!   I'm trying to fall back asleep and then I hear water.....and it wasn't coming from outside.  I jumped out of bed and felt the windowsill right by my pillow to find water puddling.  There was so much rain coming down the side of our building that it was seeping through the top of our bedroom window.   I quickly move my journal and planner out of the way, run to the bathroom to turn on the light, find towels and a cup in the kitchen and begin trying to keep the water from getting on the carpet.  Finally the noise wakes up Sister Baros and so we found a big tupperware to sit on the windowsill, move my bed away from the window so I don't get soaked, put a towel on the floor, then try to fall asleep again.  The sound of dripping water was so annoying though....and the thunder was super loud!   I probably didn't fall asleep til 3 am.  When we woke up at 6:30, it was still pouring rain, but the wind was blowing it the opposite way so finally the window stopped leaking.  While I may not have gotten the best sleep last night, I'm grateful the storm woke me up because my journal would have been ruined where it sat underneath the window.  Blessings!

Other mishaps with our bedroom this week included coming home to the sound of a cricket chirping in our closet.  We tried to find it, but couldn't and we're both little girls, so we were too scared to really look hard.  It wasn't chirping the next morning so we assume it died, the sound was coming from Sister Baros's side of the closet so I wasn't too concerned :)

This week we got to go to 2 hospitals!  Not for my hand...I still need to get that checked :p  Sister Baros says she's making me this week.  Rocio got put in the hospital for appendicitis, they took out her appendix, then realized that wasn't the problem and she had a bacteria in her stomach.  We went and visited her.  Sister Baros thought it was so cool because we had to wear gowns, gloves, and masks.  She said she felt like she was on Grey's Anatomy...she's funny.  Rocio seemed really glad for the company and said all she wanted was decorations for her hospital room.  I told her I would draw pictures for her wall, but then she got released before I could do it :/  The next day me and Sister Grooms were together for a few hours while Sister Baros and Doolhoff were in a meeting.  Sister Grooms needed to go to the children's hospital in Phoenix to visit a member and her baby, so we biked there.  That hospital was so cute and kid friendly, but it was so sad to see all those kids in there and all these worried parents :(  

I'm going to do my food update for the week now before I forget :)  This week I went to Panda with Sister Grooms, and a local burger place with Sister Baros.  Both delicious!  Also Sister Jackson got me addicted to a new phenomenon.  She melted cheese on a tortilla in a pan, then did a swirly of barbeque sause on the tortilla, topped it with another tortialla, flipped it over to warm the other side and wha-la.  Barbeque quesadillas.  I thought it looked disgusting, but it was delicious!  Also a member bought us Costco pizza yesterday....a little sac-religious since it was Sunday, but it is my favorite kind of pizza!  OH and Sweet Hermano and Hermana Orozco.  All 8 of us went to their house for dinner this week and she had made chicken with a side of pasta.  But they know I don't like pasta so Hermano Orozco made me a plate of Caeser Salad!  I haven't had that in 3 months!  I love that family!!

I did one full-day exchange in Sister Grooms' area today and it was quite fun!  We taught the restoration twice, once to a blind man named Darrin and once to a drunk man named Eddie.  We don't really know how drunk Eddie was, but I hope not too much because the lesson made him cry and want to make changes in his life so I hope he can at least remember it!  The best part of exchanges that day is when we happened upon a lady in the hallway of an apartment complex and I decided to talk to her.  I couldn't tell what race she was so I started in English.  She responded "I don't speak a za engish."  With a grin on my face I responded, "Esta bien!  Yo hablo espanol!"  She brightened up and told me her all about her family.  It happened again 5 minutes later with another lady.  This lady seemed to think that the fact that she couldn't speak English would get us to leave.  When I switched to Spanish I loved the surprise on her face!  Then she started telling me how she had diabetes and the doctors were going to cut off her toes.  I think my name tag says, "Hermana Short, please tell me your life story."  It's hilarious what people will tell complete strangers!  Our name tags with Iglesia de Jesucristo on them are magic!

Me and Sister Baros got to go to the Mesa Visitor's center this week again!  We took the Ramos family who is all members except for the mother.  We watched the hour long movie about Joseph Smith and the restoration and they all said they loved it!  We wanted to do the Christus and the God's Plan for Families presentations too, but right after the movie they ran out the door to leave.  Sister Ramos had to talk to her mom in Mexico I guess.  Mabye next time :p  
Mission apt.  kitchen
Our dining room table
Our study area

We took Liliana with us to a baptism this Saturday!  Sister Grooms' had her first baptism this week of someone she found, taught, and then baptized.  Her name is Irma and she's this gangster mom who rides her bike to church with a 2 year old in a seat on the back, and the 3 year old on the bar in front.  Saturday morning this fantastic Irma rode her bike to the church to help us clean it :)  We took Liliana to her baptism and Sister Penalba from Panama translated for her.  At one point Liliana cried!  We are having a hard time reaching Liliana's needs and concerns because of her mental challenges, but we  hope with the help of members and Liliana's sister we can help her with whatever she's going through.  The cutest thing about that baptism was when Irma came out from changing and I turned around and saw her 3 year old run up and say, "Mommy did you just get baptized?!"  Irma said to her, "Yeah!  And someday you will too!" :)  It was so adorable!  

This Saturday is another baptism for Sister Grooms' investigator Danny.  I want to go to this one so bad since it was on exchanges when I invited him to be baptized!  We want to take Julio or Lorenzo with us.

Julio still has not gotten Sundays off, and we can't move towards baptism without him coming to church :/  We are still praying for a miracle there.  As for Lorenzo, he told us he would tell us when he's going to get baptized.  We told him we had prayed about September 20 for him and felt it was perfect.  Even his wife who isn't a member keeps asking him why he isn't baptized yet!  Yasury too!  We hope he really prays about September 20 like we asked him too and that he'll accept it this week.  I have my doubts, but I'm going to try to have full faith in it!

We had a lesson with Daniel's mom on the Plan of Salvation this week.  We asked Daniel to explain the 3 kingdoms to her and it was the cutest explanation I've ever heard.  He said (in Spanish) "The terrestial is like the moon, and telestial is like the stars and they are good, but you can't do everything you want there.  But it doesn't really matter because everyone wants to go to the sun which is celestial because you can play all day!"  His mom Xochitl listens well and has good comments and a few questions, but she doesn't seem committed to learning.  I also think she is afraid of becoming committed because her husband doesn't want anything to do with us.  He doesn't mind if his family does, but Xochitl has said she doesn't even want to invite him to listen :/  We hope to find him at home soon so we can invite him ourselves.

Texting out a scripture of the day last week set up a miracle for us this week!  We sent one to Leticia who we dropped a while ago and she said to come meet with her this week!  So we did and we taught the Plan of Salvation.  She has a sincere desire to repent and be clean and said if she feels that this is right and learns more, that she will get baptized!  She wouldn't settle on a date to work towards though :p  She had lots of questions about reincarnation.... even after we explained the whole plan!  I guess we need to teach it a little better next time.

Always have to do the "funny face" picture!

Thanks for the letters from everybody at the cabin!  I hope I got them all :/  The envelope was opened when I got it, it looked like it just unsealed.  I got letters from Kellee, Kristin, Zach and Carter, Meg, Bumpa, and Blake.  I also got Jensyn's letter finally!  I'll try to write back today, but Sister Baros wants to go clothes shopping and take pictures outside, and Sister Jackson and Heuea want to go get ice cream :p  So I might just be able to send a family letter this week.  Tell Mattie and Sister Wintch I loved my letters though!  I was so excited!

I love you so much!!!  

I love you, I Love You, I LOVE YOU!!!

Hermana Short

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