Monday, August 26, 2013

Week 29- Dumpster Diving!

Okay I legit went dumpster diving this week.  In a skirt.  For nasty dog hair.  oh my gosh.  The things missionaries do.... So out here EVERYBODY has a dog (which is a thousand times better than Palmyra where everybody had a cat), but these are huge shedding dogs.  I constantly am covered in hair.  So gross.  My love for dogs is slowly decreasing everyday.  Anyways, this week we were visiting this lady who loves her dogs a lot. (She also loves the Beatles and Donny and Marie... I've never seen so much Donny/Marie paraphernalia in my life... )  So her favorite dog in the world died 5 years ago; so in order to stay close to him, she has his urn on the fireplace (think Meet the Parents).  I THOUGHT the urn was all... its not.  so we were doing service for her and cleaning her house... and I find this HUGE chunk of dog hair on the shelf.  I obviously think its disgusting, and use my paper towel to throw it away.  But the garbage was full... so I then take the garbage outside to the community dumpster (and of course right then the entire street decided to empty their garbage as well....)  So I get back into the house and she says, "Hey did you see Sophie's hair on the shelf?"  Who's Sophie?  Sophie is the dead dog.  She has been saving this hair since she died (she took him to get groomed the day before the dog died and so she had this nice chunk of hair to remember her).  I frantically scramble to the shelf and realize I just threw away her most prized possession. So that’s when I ran to the trash can.  That was real fun going through EVERYBODYS garbage.  Good part of the story:  I found the hair!!!!  And she didn’t even know it was ever gone!  Also a good part:  Buffalo is famous for Cheerios... there are the cheerio factories all around where they make billions of cheerios everyday... so it always smells like cereal   and I LOVE cereal!  So at least it didn’t smell as I was in the trash can!   Oh, but on a negative note, I had some sort of allergic reaction (I don’t know if it was all the dust from the house that hadn’t been dusted in 20 years, or the dog hair, or the trash, or what.... but all of a sudden my eyes started watering and swelling, and I looked like Will Smith in Hitch when he eats that weird thing at the seafood place or whatever... anyways, that was fun.  I should’ve taken a picture, but I was too preoccupied in trying to save my life.  An allergy pill and some advil brought me back, so no worries!

also HAPPY ANNIVERSARY DADDY AND MOMMY!!!!!!!   thanks for being the best parents in the entire world.  I honestly don't know how you manage to be so perfect at everything!  You are the best ever!  And I hope you have a wonderful day!!

Last week we went to the zoo!!  That was fun!  kinda... its kinda a weak zoo.. but that’s okay!  It was still cool!  And students get the reduced price, but I couldn’t find my BYU ID... so I used my MTC card and it totally worked.  Win for me!

This boy Zack got baptized yesterday!  I taught him a few times, but really he was the elders investigator... but Zack and I became SUPER good friends because he is Brandon's twin.  For reals.  He's 12 (his birthday is may 10), he plans on playing for the Yankees... if that doesn’t work out, the NETs... if that doesn’t work out he's going to be a lawyer.  We discuss paint balling and air soft wars a lot and he is going to call President Francis to see if we can go paintballing together.  He's so legit.  And he bore his testimony after his baptism, and it just made me so happy because I just kept picturing Brandon!  I miss you brandO!!!!!

Well, time to go... we're hitting up NIAGARA FALLS!!!  woohooo!!  Gonna go hiking and finally we can tell ppl we've been... its only like 20 minutes away, and everybody we meet freaks out when they find out that we haven’t gone yet.  

I love you all mucho!  Have a wonderful week!

Love Hermana D

Quote for the week:
"Believe in yourself. Believe in your capacity to do great and good things. Believe that no mountain is so high that you cannot climb it. Believe that no storm is so great that you cannot weather it. You are not destined to be a scrub. You are a child of God, of infinite capacity. 
Believe that you can do it- whatever it is that you set your heart on. Opportunities will unfold and open before you. The skies will clear when they have been dark with portent."
 -President Gordon B. Hinckley
This week is a new week.  We got this. 

love you all!

Pics are from the zooooo

The lamb's name is Harrison.. So obviously I had to take a pic of it... he has some mental issues and just runs after this ball all day.. he hits his head on it and then goes after it again.  so cute.  I love my harry :)

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Week 28- Tenemos Amigos!

We are starting to make friends!  woohoo!  Cause not gonna lie-we received a very lukewarm welcome to the ward the first week and we were slightly nervous that we wouldn’t make friends.  But people are starting to like us!  Yay!!  And we're winning for meals from members!  (Not that its a competition, but kinda it is).  There are 10 young missionaries in the ward.  And for this little baby ward to feed us is definitely asking something... they are all young (most are students at U of B), poor, and have little babies.... but we are definitely winning for the most meals!  yay!!  (We'll see how long it lasts... it could just be cause we're new haha)  but we're the only sisters (the rest are elders) so hopefully that can win us some points too!

So we've been meeting a ton of people and they all like to inform us about buffalo.... did you know buffalo is known for super cold winters?  cool.  And that they haven’t had a really harsh one in a couple years, so its due time for one this year?  It's August, and I have to wear a sweater!!  AHHHH!  I may die.   I inherited a huge coat from sister Jones, who inherited it from her trainer... Its the biggest coat known to mankind... hopefully it will keep me warm?  no se.   Anyways, pray that I don’t get hypothermia and die.  And lose all my fingers/toes to frostbite.  Oh also, there are a lot of ppl dying from mosquito bites.  One of our potential investigators just passed away from a mosquito bite!  We met him at the River, and he was totally fine.  He got bit that night, and then we try to call him the next two days, no answer... finally "he" calls us back... actually his girlfriend... he's in the hospital because of the bite... two days later, he died.  SCARY.  SO SAD.  oh my goodness.  I live in bug spray; you don’t even know.  And there is stuff all over everywhere warning us against the bugs!  scary!!!! 

what else?  I chopped my hair!!!!!   Hna. Tulande Vasquez is a hair dresser... and I asked for a trim... but then I decided "I’m on a mission- I don’t care what I look like!"  and told her she could do whatever she wanted.  I haven had it this short since like freshman year of high school... super weird.  but I think its really helping with my migraines and headaches!  I haven’t had near as many and I think its cause I don’t have 12 pounds of hair attached to my head! She thinned it out a ton too and my head feels so light!  Maybe I'll just shave it?

ooo fun story.  So last week Hermana Carrero (super old lady in the ward... like really old... like I don’t know how she functions at all) invites us over for lunch.  sweet.  We love food. Especially since we are out of money for the month haha.  so we go over and she actually turned it into a service project.  Okay.. Totally fine... we like to serve.  HOWEVER... Hrn Carrero is scary.  REALLY scary.  first off, she has birds.  Who has birds for pets?  gross.  Especially when you are old and crippled and cant take care of them.  They are messy and gross and loud, and I can’t think of one positive thing from having a bird as a pet... so my job was to clean up after the birds.  Fun.  And then next was to enter Hells Kitchen.  Oh my gosh; that was the most intense cooking of my life.  She is very strict, and everything needs to be done her way (including carving a chicken by cutting through all of the bones)  After lots of yelling, an elder setting the kitchen on fire (real talk... he set the kitchen on fire... we had to use the fire extinguisher), and escaped birds, I finally got kicked out to go clean the bathroom... fine by me; I was scared in the cocina.  So she tells me to mop and to use the bucket in the corner... I go get the bucket, and it is FULL of poop.  Not just a little at the bottom... like years worth of poop.  I have NO clue where it came from, cause it was pretty fresh... so I decide to dump it into the toilet; cause that’s the only idea I have... so I go to the toilet... and there was another explosion. So then I plunge and scrub that for a while... then get back to the poop bucket... dump out as much as I can, and then go to the shower to rinse out the rest.  Well the shower head is broken, so I end up getting completely soaked, head to toe.  And then an elder comes in to get the bucket (I took too long, so he got put on mopping duty) and for some reason he puts his head in the bucket to see if its the right one(no clue why... I ask why the elders do a lot of the things they do)... well there was still lots of poop residue... and he got it all over his face.  So gross.  So here I am standing completely soaked, and here he is with crap on his face... and she calls us in for lunch.  And when she calls; you run.  No "ifs" "ands" or "buts")  he wants to wash his face, but she starts yelling... which is scary (as mentioned a lot of times already) so he runs in and wipes his face with a napkin... and it was still smeared everywhere..... so gross, but really funny.  The whole thing was quite the adventure.  And now we're coming back to "eat lunch" every week!  yayyy!!!!  so stoked! haha

well, I need to go!  Love you all!!  Keep enjoying the beach and have fun at school!  All the U of B students are getting ready to go back and I'm kinda sad I'm not too... I love my mission.. duh... but I really love school a lot.  Next fall I guess!  


So the pictures:
 1. Its us in our room... the entire bedroom!  (aka we live in the tiniest little apt ever!  So cute and fun!  (The camera is in the hall).  With 3 beds, there is no space for any other furniture.... so we keep all of our stuff in the kitchen (good thing we don’t have much food, cause I need that space for my socks. pjs/everything else haha)  nothing like grabbing a frying pan next to my sweats haha)

2.  I taught Sister TV how to make brownies!  In Spain they don’t do boxed baked goods... silly people.... so I'm teaching her our fat America ways!  I'm also teaching her lots of slang.  and she teaches me useful things.  good trade-offs.  go team.

Week 27

Okay team, I was kissed.  It was gross.  He was a 40 year old womanizer.  (maybe dad shouldn't read this one....).  So our first week here we meet this man named Jim in the library.  He sees our Book of Mormons and comes to talk to us--he was "scared for our salvation."  But we get talking and he is so, so thirsty to learn more.  He had a very rough past, but turned to Christianity a couple years ago.  We offered him the BoM, but he refused, but he DID accept out card... then we saw him a couple days later.  He had checked out the website; he loved it, and he wants to learn more!  Sweet!  So we give him a Book of Mormon now with our testimony in it, and we had a lesson!  So far so good.  But then it just started feeling weird... woman's intuition?  No se... pero weird.  But we teach people on the Niagara Falls River... pretty sweet place, if you ask me haha.  We teach a lot of single men and we can't go into their houses, so we just meet at parks/wherever in public.  (There aren’t really any members who live in our area, so it's next to impossible to get a "member present" lesson).  So we're at the park, and we have a super powerful, amazing lesson, and we're saying our goodbyes and he goes in for the hug... which everyone always tries to hug, but I'm really good at sliding away before they can get us, and explaining that it isn’t the most professional, missionary conduct.  But he got me this time and it has potential of winning the most awkward side hug ever.  Well I'm disappointed in myself, because usually I'm so good at dodging the hugs of creepy men, and all of a sudden he's going in for the kiss.  ewwwww.   So gross.  Luckily I moved my head as quickly as I possibly could (almost to whip-lash point) and it was the fastest little peck ever... even that was gross... oh also, he had buffalo chicken wings for dinner (SIDENOTE:  did you know they originated from Buffalo?  I didn’t, until a few days ago.... cool.  haha  minus the fact that I hate buffalo wings and everyone and their mother tries to give them to us here).  And so the nasty wing sauce was still on his lips.  oh my gosh.  Gross.  and we're friends on facebook so he calls me "Addison" rather than Hermana/Sister Davis and it really irritates me.  The elders are now taking him for us cause we don’t like teaching him!  Thanks elders!  

Anywyas, on a happier note:  our area has been declared safe!!!!!  President came to our apartment a couple days ago and went all around the area because he was worried about sisters being in this area... half of it is pretty sketch (kinda like Hemet) and the other half is pretty nice!  But he drove around and we talked and declared it as safe... so that’s good! and he said our safety is of the up-most importance!  So I don’t even feel guilty about carrying around weapons!  (Daddy, I always have my pepper spray and my million volt tazer!!  ... none of the elders believed its one million volts and want me to try it on them... we may have a demonstration just so I can prove it is :)  ) MORAL OF THE STORY:  I'm safe!  And we don’t do anything that seems sketch.  Pinky promise!  And we have permission to come back before 9 so we aren’t out with the scary people!  yay!

We have lots of interesting investigators... one's name is Brain.... he is so sweet; kinda slow, but super awesome... well we thought.  He has a baptismal date for the end of this month set... everything was going really well, but we had a lesson the other day, and all of a sudden he pops out that he thinks all churches are true--especially Jehovah's Witness!  And about 2 minutes later, the JW missionaries show up to teach... that was kinda awkward.  We promptly got up quickly to leave, because they have been fairly physically abusive and very verbally abusive to the sisters around here, and they taught him a lesson as he held the book of moron.  cool.  i guess?  But he hasn’t called us back/answered the door ever since then, so hopefully we still get a chance!

so thuoght of the day:
D&C 121: 7-9.. Revelation to Jospeh when he was in Liberty jail:
  My son, apeace be unto thy soul; thine badversity and thine afflictions shall be but a csmall moment;
 8 And then, if thou aendure it well, God shall exalt thee on high; thou shalt triumph over all thy bfoes.
 9 Thy afriends do stand by thee, and they shall hail thee again with warm hearts and friendly hands.
We've been working with a less-active/investigator who has the whole world coming against her; she has every health issue in the book and I just feel so bad for her.  She finally let down her wall when we were talking to her a couple days ago, and filled us in on everything.  She has pain, but through the help of the Lord, she can overcome all of the challenges she has.  Same goes for us.  Our thoughts of loneliness, inadequacy, sadness, etc. should only for a brief moment; we all struggle, we all have hard things... but we have the help of the Lord in everything we do.  We have to stay strong and always turn to the Lord.
He wants us to be happy and successful!

I love you all so much!  Hope all is well!  It sounds like the house remodeling is going good!  and I loved Harry's wisdom teeth video! (Nicole, your video didn’t work :(  )  I needed a good laugh at Harrison moment; its been too long :)   
oh hey!  If you ever send a package in the near future, will you put in CD's!  EFY ones... good ones (not the YWs ones that are super old)... but I have some good ones in my car.. I think... we can only listen to LDS artists, but cds would be cool.... and what would be even cooler would be SPANISH MUSIC!!!!   If you see any Spanish church music, that would be legit!  gracias!!  

have a wonderful week!

love addi!

saying goodbye to tammie!  one of our amazing investigators in Palmyra that I love so much!
 2. old cathedral in downtown buff...

Monday, August 5, 2013

Week 26

Wow... so so much to tell you- where do I even begin?  So I'm in Buffalo... as you already have found out haha  I am in a trio! (which is kinda tricky, but we're figuring it out).  Sister Tulande Vasques, and Hermana Norr!  I'm training Hermana Norr!  She is from Washington (Tri-Cities area) and is actually a Visa waiter going to Argentina!  And Sister Tulande Vasques es de Spain!  HUGE answer to my prayers... I've been praying for a Native Spanish speaker since day 1 at the MTC so I can actually have somebody to speak Spanish with, and now I'm in a trio of Spanish speakers!  Its pretty intimidating, but I'm definitely improving, so it's really good!  Nobody in our area speaks Spanish though, but that’s okay!  (Actually everybody speaks French... like half of our ward is French Canadian and all of the stuff is translated in French... maybe I'll come home speaking French?) haha

So we got here with absolutely nothing!  We opened the area (so there hasn’t been missionaries here before)  Well kinda, there have been missionaries, but we split the areas cause they were super big... so they gave us the address and we drove up to nothingl (sister Jones is the greatest and gave me her GPS, thank goodness).  Speaking of cars... I finally get to drive!! Yay!  I missed driving!  The mission just bought 2 new Ford F 150s and 2 new Nissan trucks... they told us we got the new Ford F150.  We were super stoked for about an hour, and then they gave it to elders instead (apparently they help ppl move more than we do.. rude)  but we still got a brand new Ford Fusion... I'll take it :)  But yeah we got to our apt.... (which is an old Elders apt.. enough said.  you can imagine the smell and cleanliness and interesting things we found. )  but we got there and we had no map, no area book, a brand new phone with no numbers, pretty much nothing.  Which gave us a good laugh for a while.. Cause I don’t know how to be a normal missionary/open a new area/train/ speak Spanish... but hey-whom the Lord calls, he qualifies?  Let's hope so haha  But the next day we went to the gas station and bought a map and met the elders and split the area!  So I am a little bit north of Buffalo... they gave us 5 Less-actives from a list they had in 2006.  Cool.  And so we've just been working off of that!  And its incredible because we have seen SO MANY MIRACLES already!!!!!!   I am just amazed because just one thing after another keeps happening!  The Lord is definitely blessing us and I know without a doubt that we were supposed to open up Kenmore (official name of our area... even though we aren’t in Kenmore) right now!

The church is about 40 minutes away... (the southern tip of Downtown Buffalo) which is kinda difficult because we don’t get very many miles each month, and getting people to church is hard when its so far and nobody has cars (and most ward members aren’t in our area either, so they cant really give rides), but we'll make it work!  Actually really neat tender mercy:  so the elders call us on Friday and ask if we can help them do service.. umm YEAH... we don’t have any other plans.  So we go and cut down a "bush" (it gets quotes, because this is no normal bush... I called it a tree for the first hour... it was taller than the house and had a million limbs... but they swear its a bush.. so whatever)  so we go to help, and this old couple is there as well (the Munro's) and so we talk to them and get to know them while we were working and they brought our new investigator Tim to church on Sunday (it was so perfect doing service and meeting them, so they could help us!!)  Oh also a significant part about the service... I fainted... what the weird?  My first time ever fainting!!!!  So embarrassing.  I shouldn’t even be writing this for ppl to know.. whatever haha  so the elder cuts down a limb from the "bush" and its huge and it falls on Bro Munro's head... (and he is really old... I was worried he had died... literally, I was really scared for his life)  well, he ends up being okay, but his entire head of white locks is stained red... I go up to him to use my PhD Lifeguard first-aid skills (cause obviously I remember everything and am super certified) and I look at the slash in his skull and with my knowledge, I declare he needs stitches... but then I start to get really dizzy and things start getting black... so I walk to the "bush" to hold on to something, and the next thing I know I'm having this super legit drea... and then a cup of water lands on my face... apparently I fell flat on my back and had fainted.  My hands were twitching and my eyes were rolling... super embarrassing.  And little sister Tulande Vasques is holding my legs up.... I guess I don’t do well with blood?  Good thing I never wanted to be a doctor...  I was out for about 15 seconds!  and now everybody is calling me Marie Osmond (I don’t really know why.. apparently she fainted on dancing with the stars or something?  no clue)  but I'm totally fine!  other than my pride.  whatever. 

oh and Tim.... we found him when we were trying to find the Less-actives!  SO LEGIT!  We handed him a BoM and he just glew.  It was amazing.  he asked if he could come to church with us... duhh.  and I'm sure he'll get baptized within a month!   The Lord has so many people prepared to hear the Gospel!  We just have to find them!!!!

Well, I love you all!  I hope everything is going great!  Any prayers in the Buffalo direction would be appreciated... cause we're kinda clueless on stuff haha.... I miss the sites and everybody, but I'm really excited to be out here!  It's pretty rare in our mission to go "full-proselyting" because there are only 3 areas (well now 4, since we just opened one) for sisters in all of Western NY that aren’t at/close to the sites.  Huge opportunity and blessing!

Love you!
Hna D :)

pic: new companeras!!!!

Saturday, August 3, 2013

Week 25

~No letter. Transferred to Buffalo. ~