Saturday, December 24, 2011
Tuesday, December 20, 2011
It’s Christmas time….
Sooooooo Transfers are today and we just found out that Elder Rivera and I are both staying! 6 more weeks of the Chile-Cali duo! Crazy crrazzyy. I will probably be here for 6 months now since Elder Rivera only has 2 more transfers after this one! We have a lot of work to do still! Oh and my American buddy, Elder Hull is leaving to a different area and another native is coming, so my Spanish is going get a lot better because I wont get to speak English...ever!
So Christmas here is going to be interesting! I can’t wait to call you guys! I’m going to cry, so have the tissues ready. Here in Argentina they celebrate Christmas Eve more than Christmas! It’s called Noche Buena or Good Night and they party and eat super, super late in the night! My comp said that people start eating dinner and stuff around 11 or 12! Crazy! So we’re probably going to visit some members and then take some food back to the pinch. I want to buy a watermelon. haha (Christmas colors!!) Oh we finally put up the lights and ornaments on the cooolest Christmas tree ever!! I have pictures too! NOBODY listens to Christmas music here, which is a big bummer. But I love that you guys are doing all the Christmas stuff together. It really makes me happy and thankful for all the traditions and memories that we have! I’m SO GRATEFUL for my family! I hope that we all can remember our Savior at this time of year and all that He did for us and continues to do for us.
So on Sunday, we were all taking showers and when it came time for Elder Hulls comp to shower the water just turned off for no reason. haha So he had to shower out of a bucket. It was pretty funny. haha but then... KARMA. On Monday we woke up and still had no water, so all of us had to shower with buckets and when it came time for Elder Hulls comp to go, the water turned back on and he got to take a shower. RANDOM but so funny and a memory made!
So this week Elder Rivera had to go to Rosario to do things for his visa and the only person that I could stay with was a member of our ward! He’s like 22 and is doing all the stuff for his mission papers but is super shy. We went out all morning and taught some people and I was basically having to do everything. It was very humbling. haha We taught this one lesson to a family and I totally was tripping all over the place with my words and questions. But overall it was really good! I learned a lot and have a ton to learn.
Our investigators are doing pretty good! This week at church we saw some miracles! Graciela is really smart and really wants to receive an answer if the Book or Mormon is true but had never wanted to go to church with us! After teaching her on Saturday night, she kind of surprised us when she said that she was going to come! She came and loved it! We had the primary program, which was really cool cuz she loves kids. We also had a couple come that totally surprised us and the twins, Elizabeth and Lorena came too! I REALLY hope and pray that we will have baptisms this transfers. They’re coming!
I’ve had some pretty cool dreams this week! haha I was joking with Elder Hull about how dreams here are like the movie Inception! Were living in Argentina but at night were living back in America with our families! I had a dream that I was hanging out with Ty and we were talking about what I was doing on my mission. Then I had a dream that Dee and I were talking about all the experiences that we’ve had on our missions and then I had one that I was just at home chillin. I love dreams!! haha
So I was trying to think about something that I could share with you guys. I went through all the stuff that I’ve read and nothing really stood out. The only thing that I thought I could talk about was.... CHRISTMAS. I can still remember perfectly last year on Christmas Eve when we sat down with the lights off, candles burning, and read about Christ’s birth in Bethlehem. The girls were tired and wanted to go to bed but we focused on the real meaning of Christmas and read and bore testimony of the little baby Jesus. Afterward I showed Mom the song "Mary let me hold her baby," and then we went to bed. I remember feeling different when we were reading. I remember thinking; THIS is what Christmas was all about. I know now that the best thing we can do as a family during the holidays is focus ourselves in Christ. I hope that you guys can do the same thing this year and enjoy time together as a family. I’m so grateful for the birth of my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. I’m so grateful for a loving Heavenly Father that loves us so much that He has a plan for us and thanks to this plan and Christ, we can return to live with God and our families FOREVER. I’m thankful for my eternal family. I have the best eternal family!
I love you all sooooooooo much. CAN’T WAIT TO TALK TO YOU!!!!
With Love and Christmas wishes,
p.s. Shout out to Addison! I’m still waiting on that letter! We get mail on Friday and I’m looking forward to it!
Tuesday, December 13, 2011
This week has been pretty different! On Tuesday, I had to go to Rosario to do stuff in order to stay here in Argentina. Hopefully, I wont have to do it again soon. But for tramites, or the stuff we have to do, we go to this government place that's basically is like the DMV and yes it's just as horrible with all the numbers and waiting in lines and stuff. While we were waiting there I was talking to an Elder in English and all of a sudden we hear a girl from behind us say, "Do you guys work here?" IN ENGLISH!!!!! We both got freaked out a little bit and it turns out that she was from Chicago! Pretty dang random, but cool. Then on Friday, I started not feeling very good in the afternoon. My throat was hurting, I had a headache, blah blah blah. Turns out I had a fever and was FREEZING when we were walking home at night when it's still really hot. That night we went to the hospital and waited to get a shot, but after 45 min and Ibuprofen, I felt a little better. I rested Saturday morning and was out walking and teaching Saturday afternoon! Miracle!
So Christmas here isn't the same, but I get really excited whenever I see any type of Christmas decorations! Lots of people have little tiny Christmas trees that are so simple and so great. Nobody puts up lights on their houses sadly, only inside their windows at times, but it's all good! I LOVE CHRISTMAS!!! AND 13 DAYS TIL WE GET TO TALK TO MY FAMILY!!! WOOHOO!
So this week I was reading in the Book of Mormon and the word "heart" really kept popping out at me. I started to realize or try to understand why in the scriptures they always use the heart to describe the desires of the people. I then realized that this life is basically a war of hearts. Every day, every decision, we're either softening out hearts and giving them to God or hardening them and turning away from God. Dad and I always talked about this and how there's two sides to every single little thing. When Elder Holland spoke to us at the MTC, he said that if we could give Jesus anything to pay him back for what He did for us, we should give Him our heart. I think that Christ never had any problem giving His heart to God. He knew His purpose and he aligned it with Gods, "This is my work and my glory, to bring to pass the immortality and eternal life of man." I hope we can all try a little harder to make our Heavenly Father proud with our choices. I know that if we do, we will be happier! I really hope to learn how to give my heart to God.
So for Christmas here everybody paints their houses! This week we're going to help 2 different people to paint their houses, in the HEAT. It's so weird that were seriously having Christmas in June, basically. But it's different and kinda cool too! We do fireworks for the 4th of July and they do them for Christmas and New Years!
So were teaching a preaty good amount of people and they're all doing way great except the challenge for everybody is to come to church!!! I've already learned that IF they have the faith to come to the church on Sunday, they will get baptized. Eva, the cute 81 year old, has a friend named Perla and she accepted the invitation to be baptized as well! We're so excited for them, but the only thing that we have to figure out is how they are going to get together the money to go to church every Sunday. They really want to go but they have to use a taxi because they live far away. We're so spoiled with our cars and such. Only two families have cars in our ward. The rest ride the bus, or a vespa to church. By the way, I saw 5 people on one scooter this week. Record for me. haha. But seriously going to church is so important and essential and not something that we should take for granted! The twins are doing great too, just their mom needs to start coming to church again! Missionary work sure isnt easy. Lots of this, "aww man." ha but it's okay! I love how it says in Alma 17:16 that they preached repentance that PERHAPS one would listen. Oh and Karina, the girl that got baptized is doing FANTASTIC!! Super strong and has tons of friends. Also, some less active families are starting to come out to church! So cool!
and last night....WE MADE TACOS!!! SO GOOD!!! Pancakes for tortillas or course.
Well I have to go...
I love you so so so much and pray for you everyday.
Monday, December 5, 2011
Monday, November 28, 2011
25 Yea, and now behold, O my son, the Lord doth give me exceedingly great joy in the fruit of my labors;
So a normal day goes like this...
Monday, November 21, 2011
Elder Hjelmstad and Karina
Her BIG day....
First off. HAPPY BIRTHDAY GRAMMA AND JADEN! I hope you have a great day! Love you both!
This week was an interesting one! The baptism went great!! Getting everything was a little/really crazy though. We went to the chapel in the morning to clean it up a little and I ended up mopping the whole thing and cleaning the bathrooms. Thank you mom and dad, I have the cleaning fever. The baptismal service went pretty smooth! I directed the service and we sung "High on a mountain top" and heard a talk from Hermana Espinosa about Baptism and then we sang a musical number "I’m trying to be like Jesus" with the Elders we live with. Carina’s Grandpa baptized her and then we heard from Hermana Noguera about the Gift of the Holy Ghost, and then sang "Nearer my God to Thee." It went really good and I wanna have another one soon! The whole day I was thinking about Kellie and her baptism and how happy I am for her. Baptism is such an amazing thing because it’s the Door to happiness! We can have faith and want to repent but the only way we can show our faith is by doing something, or getting baptized. I love 2 Nephi 31:5
And now, if the Lamb of God, he being holy, should have need to be baptized by water, to fulfil all righteousness, O then, how much more need have we, being unholy, to be baptized, yea, even by water!
I know that baptism is so important and were so lucky to have the authority back on the earth so we CAN baptize! I’m so grateful for the chance I had to see a miracle in Carina’s baptism. And then yesterday she received the gift of the Holy Ghost and I realized how thankful I am for the Holy Ghost in my life. The Holy Ghost is like a special friend that’s there to help us learn, be comforted, and can warm us of danger. I know that the Holy Ghost is real and we need to be worthy of its companionship every day.
So I’m already getting Spanish and English mixed up. This week I seriously couldn’t remember the word niece and nephew. haha I sat there forever like uhhh I know it's Sobrino and sobrina in spanish but my English was lackin. weird. Oh and it's way easier to say "y" instead of "and." I think English should adopt that.
This week we had a really, really, really strange run in with a guy. We were on our way to lunch and a guy from the other side of the street called us over and so we were like cool, lets go. So he asked us if we believed in the second coming of Christ and we said yes...and how He will come in great glory and power. The man then said that Christ has already come. We asked where He was and he said that Christ is in Argentina, in Sante Fe. My comp then asked where and he said that we were talking to him. Seriously. We tried not to laugh and my comp asked why he was smoking then and he said that he smokes when he’s mad. We quickly shook his hand and when we were leaving he said he wasn’t finished talking and quickly got out of there. Probably the weirdest and craziest thing that’s happened. I seriously could feel the absence of the spirit when we were talking to him. So those prophecies about false Christ’s in the bible, yup. We then walked about 50 yards and looked back to see the crazy man sending his dogs towards us. They were bookin it toward us but they went right past us and looked as if they were lost. Miracle?
So one of my favorite things to do here is smile and wave at all the buses that pass by because everybody looks at me like I’m crazy. haha
Diego is doing good, but has started workin on Sundays so were pretty bummed. But tonight we have FHE with them so were pretty excited. Were trying to help them in every way possible we really want to help them become an Eternal Family!
So about a month ago we taught this guy named Jose and have wanted to teach him again but he’s always busy so we’ve started talking to his daughter Natalia, who is about 13 or 14 I think. SHES AWESOME! We actually haven’t even taught her anything except leave her things to read! She read a pamphlet and then read a chapter in the Book of Mormon and we left her with another chapter to read yesterday! She told us that she has never had religion in her life and feels good when reading! I know that this good feeling is the Holy Ghost testifying of the truth! I love the scriptures and have felt the difference in my life since my mission because of the scriptures. SCRIPTURE POWER!! woohoo!
K well I don’t really have anything else except that its really hard for me to believe that Christmas and Thanksgiving are so close because its so hot here! It’s going to be weird!
K I love you all so so so so much and am always praying for you. Every day try to come a little closer to Christ and invite Him into your life. Rely on Him and you will be surprised. He wants to help us, we just need to ask.
LOVE YOU TONS!!!!
Some people call me Elder “H” :)