Monday, December 9, 2013

Week # 41 - Dancing in the Rain

Greetings one, greetings all.

A disclaimer - this keyboard is terrible, and please don't cringe at all my misspelled words. We`ll just blame it on the keyboard and time, and not on my English, deal? :) Not my fault - I have never actually had an American comp since TN, and I actually rather like it that way. I learn a ton about other cultures, and my Spanish is getting better everyday :)  

I love my Argentine Sky
On that note, off we go for some fun facts!! 

1) Did you know that literally EVERY SINGLE country in South America cooks rice differently? Hna Ruiz is from Colombia, and made some Colombian rice this last week when we didn't have lunch with a member. It`s dang good :) My favorites are the curry rice from Chile, Arroz con leche de Peru, and chicken and rice from Colombia :)  

2) Okay, this isn't actually my own language blunder, but I got such a kick out of it, its totally worth including. First, some definitions:  

Villano = villan

Villero = the name for a person who lives in the villa, or slums. 

Villano favorite = despicable me (no idea why the title is so different, but there you go) 

Scene - in the chapel, with Elder Smith and Valenzuela:

Elder Valenzuela - what movie should we watch this Pday? 

Elder Smith - Hm... my vote would be Villero Favorito 2

Elder Valenzuela- `cue the blank stare, then unable to actually say anything because we all started laughing so hard` 

Okay, maybe no one else thinks its that funny, but I got a good giggle :)  

3) Hna Ruiz cut my hair this last week! Looks way better than the time I cut my own hair with a pair of kindergarten scissors in my bathroom. Feels a lot shorter, but a heck of a lot cooler with the heat, so I'm happy :)  
This is called `dulce de membrillo`, and is suuuuper yummy. It's basically jam, but firm, and tastes exactly like fruit leather! I'm a fan, and eat it with crackers
4) Another thunderstorm this last week! Seriously, in the summers here, we literally have ROCKIN thunderstorms about every 3 days. Its always the same pattern - Ridiculous heat that literally saps every ounce of energy you have, huge thunderstorm in the night, and the next day, a cool front that feels amazing for about... 12 hours until the pattern repeats and ridiculous heat rolls back in. It's great :) 
 A huge thunderstorm rolled in and we all ran outside on the balcony to cool off in the rain, because it was HOT. Hna Condori - who is constantly giggling and dancing around - started dancing in the rain, and we started up a dance party. It was such a blast :)  I don't wear EFY t-shirts and wet skirts when I'm proselyting - it was a quick change from my PJs :) I love these girls and I love ARG!

Maria Sosa - she was companions with my MOM in Buenos Aires during her mission!!!!!
She is actually in the other ward, but my Mom told her that I was serving in San Nicolas, and she tracked me down :) I felt like I had a tiny bit of my Mom with me for a moment. 
5) I was at a lunch this last week, and on of the Hnas was showing me pictures of the time that she went to Mexico to serve the missionaries there. Her daughter is married to the mission president, so they went to visit for Christmas and help out. While I was looking through the pictures, I suddenly did a double take and said - that's my MTC TEACHER! And all of a sudden, there I was, at a small table in Argentina, looking at pictures of my MTC teacher standing next to my Primary president in my ward. It was a strange moment, but pretty funny :)  
I love you all! Thank you for your examples and lessons to me through my life -remember the quote that says that the Lord often answers our prayers through other people? One way that the Lord answers my prayers is by bringing to my remembrance things that you have said to me, or interactions that we have had. The other day, the Lord helped me remember the example of my parents in paying tithing to teach me the principle of example. I remember Eden's constant ability to think and notice the smallest of needs of other people, and unquestioningly act on those. I think of Carissa's reactions to stress, and her understanding of the importance to build ourselves before we can build others. Mason's ability during his mission to speak with the power of God, because of his unyielding obedience. Brayden's example of not allowing the personalities of others to knock down your own. You are such a part of my mission, and I am so grateful for your presence and example. Thank you for being my joys - I love you so!! 
I've been learning a lot lately, especially about how to help others, but not to the point that you sacrifice your own obedience. A huge goal that I have had lately has been the following - to learn to focus on the PEOPLE, and not on the TIME. That has really been a struggle for me during my mission -I am so motivated by obedience, that sometimes I get so wrapped up in being obedient, that the people get lost along the way. I have learned and progressed SO MUCH in this aspect this past transfer, and am very humbled and grateful for the chance to do so. 
Overall, its been a great week. Thank you for all your support and prayers! I love you all, and am so grateful for the chance to serve my God. I love my mission, and I especially love the Book of Mormon. Hna Condori and I are actually giving a lesson today in our zone meeting about the Book of Mormon, and I have loved the chance to study this sacred book more in detail. For those who haven't read the Book of Mormon lately, as they should - and you all know who you are - I encourage you to act upon the promptings that you have received, and that you are surely feeling even now as you read this. Take advantage of this book of revelation, meant exactly for our day. In all the history of the world, only select few have ever had the chance to read the writings and inspiration by these prophets. Thousands of years, millions of people, and this book was brought through it all specifically for our day, for our time. The Lord knows that the families will suffer, that it will be difficult to protect your children, that there will be great confusion. And for that, he started preparing to help us back before Christ even came. Take advantage of this book, and share it with the world. Only with daily exposure to the Book of Mormon and following its principles can we find joy in our marriages, peace in our homes, and satisfaction in this life. 

Really, I am loving my time here. There is so much that we learn in a mission that we can never learn otherwise. Its the best decision I have made thus far in my life, and I know that I will use the things I am learning here for the rest of my life.

I love you all :) Have a good day!  

Hna Lake


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