Monday, December 28, 2015

Feliz Navidad


This week went by a lot faster than my first week, which is great.  There is so much adjusting to do on the mission.  Every transfer, every new area, every new mission president.  I am learning a lot. 

So this week we had a Christmas party with the whole mission!!! It was so great.  We had a devotional at the beginning with lots of testimonies from the people that are dying (missionaries that are going home) next transfer.  I am still getting used to the dialect of missionaries...It's pretty funny.

 Here is what I have learned from the missionary dialect so is trainer, grandma is trainer's mom, dying going home, greenie or verde in Spanish new on the mission, white wash is when two new missionaries go into a new area without anyone with experience.  That's all I can remember so far, but it's so hard to get used to people saying, "Oh! She is my mom!" Haha. 

But anyway, back to the Christmas party, I had a real American lunch full of stuffing, sweet potatoes, potatoes, green beans, turkey, rolls, and pumpkin pie!! It was so good.  In the CCM I guess you could call what I had American food, but it did not even come close to this meal.  They even gave us leftovers too! That was pretty much the only American thing I have had on the mission, but I think it was good enough to last me.  I love Mexican food even more!  It's pretty funny every time I go to a member's house to eat, they question the amount of salsa I put on my food. It's not even that spicy!! Haha. 

Anyway, after lunch, we got to perform 10 minute skits.  They were all so funny.  One was of a returned missionary and he called President Maluenda and asked how to hold a girl's hand, and President Maluenda answered the phone call and said, "Don't you remember from the last training we had?" It was interesting to see President Maluenda like that. He is pretty funny :).  Then we got to have a gift exchange from gifts that the mission parents sent.  We each got 2! Since it was the last Christmas of the Maluenda family, they made it special for all of us missionaries. 

The next day was exchanges. I found out that I was going to be in my area and I was basically going to be the Senior comp, so I was to drive.  That was pretty interesting because I usually just follow Sister Messer around, not knowing my way, but we had maps and we only got lost once! I was with Sis. Ingleby. She is featured in the picture with the chalk board that says Merry Christmas.  I learned so much from her, and we were able to work so hard and talk to so many people.  We each were able to give each other commitments.  Sis. Ingleby also lives in the apt. with us. I love her so much! 

The rest of the week was filled with lots and lots of tamales (yummm) and people being really busy, but I know that everyone has their agency. Even when people said they were busy I would be annoying and give them a little lesson on the restoration.  The people are so nice down here that they never shut the door if you just keep talking haha. 

Yesterday at church it was pretty strange because we didn't have a piano player for the opening song.  It was literally the worst song I have ever heard haha.  Latinos tend not to be very good singers at all haha that's why they always tell us to sing for them I guess.

I challenge all of you to read Alma 29 this week.  It talks about the reason we should be serving a mission.

Love you all,
Hermana Findlay

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Monday, December 21, 2015

First Week in Texas

To family and friends,

My last week at the CCM was so special.  We had so many testimony meetings and so many great firesides!! One fireside that I really remember was by an area seventy named elder Salinas and he talked about how we all as missionaries need to have an experience through the atonement.  It was such a good talk!!

Also, before we left all the Hermana's in my district got priesthood blessings from the elders. I was so happy that we did that!!! In mine, it basically said that I have a gift of love so much so that I will be given the hard companions that others have a hard time to love, and that I am a strong young woman along with other things.  It was so powerful and I knew that it was God's words, not Elder Connell's.  It was so hard to say bye to the elders!! Luckily, I did not have to say bye to the sisters because we are all here in McAllen, Texas.  Also, we are going to see each other tomorrow at this big Christmas party.

My flight from Mexico City here was crazy!!! Hahaha we left the MTC at 8 in the morning and didn't get here until 9 at night.  Long story short we missed our plane from Houston to McAllen.  I met my trainer the next day and everyone here is surprised at my Spanish!!  I get to serve in a Spanish-speaking ward!!!  It's great!!

So my trainer is Sister Messer and at transfers we hugged and she literally picked me up. hahaha!  It was pretty funny.  I am learning to love her. 

One of our investigators is Diana and she is pretty much a golden investigator!! It is so fun to teach her!!

Love Hermana Findlay

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

 Trip to the Mexico City Temple

This week I had the opportunity to teach my district some Spanish.  My teacher was busy, so she asked me to teach a little part of the lesson.  It was pretty funny. 

This weekend, it was pretty cold for Mexico City, but there was a Utah girl that let me borrow her jacket.  It was so sweet!!  Also, on the way home at night, Hermana Rivera took off her jacket to shield us both from the rain.  It was so nice of her! 

This week to start off my fast, I had a whole bunch to eat for lunch.  I had tilapia flavored with cheese and tomatoes, 4 corn tortillas, lettuce with salsa, pineapple, half a chicken scone thing, a little bit of rice, 3 oranges (so good!), and 2 ice cream bars.  Who knew that I am still losing a little weight here at the CCM.  It is probably because my workouts are so cardio intense.  

Then, at dinner, we didn´t have anything scheduled, so we got to play games with the district.  That was a lot of fun.  We played a game called psychiatrist.  

On Sunday, we got to watch the Christmas devo!! So good!! I loved Elder Bednar´s talk, and all that music.  I don´t think I have ever appreciated mo tab that much in my life.  It´s crazy how my desires to be better change.  Here, I am developing such good habits too.  I even make my bed every day now!!  

Also, on Sunday, I started reading My Search for Happiness, and it said something about how when our desires to become like Christ change, we will be exalted.  I feel that so much on the mission!

Today, there were 57 of us who got to go the the Mexico City temple.  So pretty!!! I loved being there with so many missionaries.  Also, it was only my second time seeing Mexico City, so that was cool.  I could not stop staring out the windows.

Love Hermana Findlay

Thursday, December 3, 2015

Thanksgiving in the CCM

So I don´t know if I have mentioned this yet or not, but my companion is a total farm girl.  She even has llamas on the farm, and I love that she knows how to work hard, and that we both aren't girly girls at all. I love all her stories of butchering the chickens and of eating llama meat.  She lives in a town in Idaho with a population of only 500. We actually get along really well.  We also really love gym time too so that´s good.

Hna. Rivera and I are now in week 5 and we are teaching so many lessons now.  We have 6 investigators, and we teach about 2 lessons to each one.  Also, on top of that, we are always practicing in the classroom and teaching people from the Mexico City that are mostly recent converts.  We taught 3 from Mexico City this week.  Since I know the lessons so well now, I can take a few seconds to think of what the investigator needs, and it is so great teaching from the Spirit.

This week, it rained for the second time here at the CCM, but it was our first hard rain.  It was so fun looking out the window to see all the rain.  I love when it rains here too because for a little bit the air is actually clean.  Also, we get a little break from the gross stink of the CCM.  Our roommates call it the 4 o´clock stench haha.  It seriously smells awful sometimes, but it´s okay.  I love being here at the CCM because there are so many opportunities to speak with Latinos.  It was really funny this week when Hna. Rivera and I sat with Latinos this week, because we did the same thing as we usually do when we sit with them like have small talk, and then when we said mucho gusto, I realized that one of the hermanas name was one that I already knew. We felt silly haha.  I bet the Latinos get sick of us talking to them because we always try to work on our Spanish, and we are taking the time away from them talking to the rest of their district. They are so loving all the time.  I love it!! I teach them English words and they teach me Spanish words.

Thanksgiving here was great!! We had a devotional in the morning by Elder Oaks and his wife with a lot of musical numbers.  I thought it was interesting that both Washington and Lincoln said that the purpose of Thanksgiving was to give thanks to God, and for religious freedom.  Later, we had a Thanksgiving lunch, and it wasn´t the best Thanksgiving meal I´ve had, but they tried so hard!!! There was apple pie, pumpkin pie, ice cream, turkey, ham, mashed potatoes, and gravy. They even had red, white, and blue tablecloths out.  The latinos were confused about the different food haha. It was pretty funny. Also, later, Elder Connell shared a bottle of Martinelli´s with our whole district.  He got the Martinelli´s from a package that his mom sent, and it finally felt like Thanksgiving was complete.

On Sunday, we got to watch Meet the Mormons and it was sooo good.  It was really funny at the end because there was a song by David Archuletta playing, and everyone looked at Hermana Arculetta.  I felt bad for her though because when she heard her Brother´s voice, she was crying because she missed him so much.

My most spiritual experience this week was listening to a devotional by Elder Bednar.  It was an old Christmas devotional broadcast, but anyway, he talked a lot about how the word repent can be replaced with turning outward, and that we, as missionaries, need to turn outward in love, compassion, and service.  It was a really good talk!!

Hermana Findlay