August 27, 2012

oooooh now baby please don´t go...

Hey all you good lookin' people,
You´re all probably better lookin' than me... all tan and summer-like. How´s it going?? School started eh?? Good luck!

-Sad news. Vaughan went home to get better. She fell on her foot in July and hasn't recovered. MAN I´M GONNA MISS THAT GIRL! We became besties in like a week and a half. SO Hna Vawdrey came from Puerto to be Hna Carsen´s companion. Vawdrey is just the biggest sweetheart. Love her. Now we´re just 4 sisters from Utah living in a cracker box of an apartment!

-So, it´s been feeling like mid-november here in Bahia. So confusing because last week it was way nice and now I´m all bundled up in my leggings and sweaters. PLEASE JUST GET WARM BAHIA!! I´VE BEEN COLD SINCE NOVEMBER LAST YEAR!!!!! I´m ready for some heat. Just watch. I´ll be complaining that i´m melting in December. :-)

- Sharing an area with the Elders (nonetheless ASISTENTES) has it´s goods and bads... and lots of awkwards. When we have lunches together, they do all the eating. I finish my one little plate in the time they've had thirds. Less pressure! Woo! The Elders EAT A TON! It´s surprising and kinda gross. We had a hilarious experience last night, we went to visit this menos activo family and they live in apartments that are usually locked but they weren't last night, so we're like" sweet! Lets go visit them!" We knock on the door and who´s sitting on the couch? The Elders! Haha, what are the odds, honestly. We were just like, uhhh awkward, and came in  and just sat there all awkward because they were getting ready to give the Hermana a blessing! jaja. But the Elders do take good care of us and I'm super grateful for that.

- Today we wanted HEALTHY HEALTHY food for lunch so we bought tons of veggies and cut them up to cook them in the oven, but guess WHAT, our oven BROKE! So we went door to door looking for someone to let us use their oven. We found this way nice girl and she let us use her oven, but she had to set a stick pressing the gas button so it would stay lit and prop it against the wall to keep it on! We spent 20 minutes trying to work that out! Hilarious! Sometimes I forget that I live in Argentina and they are way behind the times!

-We had lunch again with the purple haired chorister this week. Did I find cat hair in my food? Yes, Yes I did.

- I miss carpet.

-  SO I´ve been so stressed lately that I made myself sick Thursday and Friday. (either stress or I ate something bad) Sick as in i had to be within 20 feet of a bathroom... so I had to stay in the cracker box most of those days. The Elders came by on Friday and gave me a blessing. I'm ALL BETTER! Can I just say I LOVE THE PRIESTHOOD!? How blessed are we to have the restored priesthood of God in our homes? I love that my dad is worthy to give me blessings when I need them. I´m grateful that there are 180 worthy Elders in the mission who bless the sick and give blessings of comfort. I will not settle for less than a worthy priesthood holder in my home.

- Ok we found a family of GOLD last Wednesday. Jesica and Fernando. They need to get married, pero MAL! She's 22 and has 4 kids under 7... yeah, you can do the math, and Fernando is SO attentive during the lessons. They are both reading and praying! They have very little clothes and such, so our AMAZING Relief Society got a big quilt for them!  Jesica was so surprised and grateful that people already care for them! They said they´d come to church this week! Woo! Jessica told us that her 5 year old had a bad cough the other night and she prayed and he was able to sleep the whole night. WOW! God answers prayers, I promise you that! It´s so amazing! I´m stoked for them. Pray that they can get married fast, it takes FOREVER here to get married.

- We went over to the villa last week to visit a part member family, whose kids are members but the parents need to get married. So we´ll be helping them with that. The villa is SO heartbreaking. It´s a barrio by the train tracks with tin shacks for houses and dirt floors. It just broke my heart at how humbly people live. I´ve never felt so humbled in my life as I have on my mission.

-Shoutouts: HAPPY BIRTHDAY TYLER! I hope my mom picked out something good without my help...!!! THURMANS! CONGRATS ON THE TEMPLE!!! I´m super excited and happy for you guys. KELS AND NOAH! So glad you went to see my padres. Noah when I get home we´ll speak Spanish in front of Kels to annoy her, k? Hah!! Kels, I LOVE YAH!!! ANNA!! When is baby girl Dunn coming! I was hoping to see pics today!!! AHHH.

- I love my mission. I´m growing and changing so much and I´m so grateful for this opportunity that I have to serve the Lord. I´ve never been so happy in my life. I´ve never felt so alone. I´ve never felt so much disappointment, but I´ve never felt so satisfied in my life. Like you said Greg, this is the MOST 18 months of my life. I know I'm going to bawl my eyes out when I have to take my tag off. When I get on that plane home, I´m not goin' without a fight :). These are my brothers and sisters, and I love reminding them of their potential and helping them come unto Christ. There is no work more satisfying and amazing as this. This is the true, and only true, Church of Jesus Christ. I know that with every single cell of my body. No matter how much people stare at me, or tell me it´s "my ideas", or scoff at me, or shake their fingers at me, I still know it´s true. All of that makes my testimony even stronger. I LOVE THE GOSPEL AND I LOVE BEING A MISSIONARY! And guess what else?  I love you all too! MUCHO. Cuidense mucho y ADELANTE!!! (**take much care and move forward)
Hermana Squire
1. Saying BYE to the Flia WIlt in PRINGLES
2. Elder Caicedo y Costanzi setting up our bunks in our cracker box apartment
3. View from our window
4. Vaughan and I pulling fat kid moves with her alfahors for her fan (and no i didn´t eat any :-))


August 20, 2012

Still lost...........

Hey you crazy people,

How's it going? I can't believe school starts sooooooo soon. Have fun with THAT!

-Well, another week has come and gone and I'm just sitting here like "whaaat??"  I'm sitting here in this dark game den... because our normal spot is closed for another holiday. Flippen Argentines. Always celebrating something. ANYWAY. I usually am a lot more prepared with a list of things to write and a spiritual thought and such, but it's just been another crazy week. We still feel pretty lost still and we're still trying to get to know our area. 

- There are like 3 widows in the ward who are just SO excited to have Hermanas. The Elders can't come eat with them, and they are just so lonely. I feel so bad! We try and go visit them and stuff but they sure can talk your ear off. They just need someone to talk to! But for the most part, the members here are great! There's a lot of gossip and talking bad about the leaders. That upsets me. They don't have super great ward attendance, but at least they have enough to have teachers and such. No teaching for me this transfer! There is the CUTEST lady in the ward whose name is Rosa, she's a little bit menos activo,(**less active) but SO SWEET! She comes to my elbow and has no teeth. I love her! We had lunch with the chorister, who has purple hair, and I found cat hair in my jello... yup.
-Ok, with lunches. We have lunches scheduled EVERY FREAKING DAY. My word. We had to say no for Mondays (pday) and Thurs (planning) but there is like fights for lunches, because there are four of us. It even got a little heated in Relief Society and I got super uncomfortable! They think they need to make this huge feast, but really, the Hermanas don't eat as much as the Elders!! I've been better at just saying "I can't eat that much," and even if they are offended I'm just like "listen. I don't want to blow up like a balloon here!! The Elders can take care of that.!!"..goodness... they each had 3 plates on Sunday!! Crazies!! We had lunch with the former bishop and his family and it was my FAVORITE!!!  So delicious and they were so funny. Way sarcastic and just fun to be with. They had asked about the weird foods we had eaten and asked if we'd had cow head yet... with the brains and eyes and everything. Ummm YUCK!! No! Hopefully that NEVER happens!! Then they said that cow testicles are pretty common to eat. UM WHAT!?? NO WAY JOSE!!! ALL of our faces were like "uhhhhh." Then they went off on cow testicles are tasty and I was dying of laughter AND embarrassment. Real nice conversation for Elders and Hermanas, eh? NOT!

- So Saturday we had a mission conference and Elder Viñas of the Quorum of 70 came. We all thought it would be a bajar de caña on our hineys, (lower the cane-or chastisement) cuz that is what mostly happens when General Authorities come. But it was actually so great!!! He gave us some great council and he left one hour for answering questions. Every question he went to the scriptures. One day I hope to be like that! He was so great!! I also LOVE LOVE LOVE being with other missionaries!! It's such a strength to me. I even got to see Hna Linco! LOVE HER! (mom she says thanks for her lotion and things). Conferences always get me pumped up for missionary work!!!!!
- Yesterday, we were walking to find our investigator, Rosalia to bring her to church. I had brought my umbrella because it's been raining for the past 3 days. Lo and behold it was warm that day. So I had my umbrella and I was like "why the heck did I bring this?" Right as I said that, 4, yes FOUR dogs came running after us and Hna Israelsen shouted "USE IT!!!"  And so I started swinging!!!! We escaped! Dumb dogs. They are so much worse here!!!  And Rosalia... she's 78 I think and just a spit fire!!  SO CUTE! She comes to my shoulder and weighs like 80 pounds. She didn't make it to church, and she might move to the campo to work. PRAY THAT SHE WONT SO SHE CAN GET BAPTIZED!!

- Rain is the WORST to do missionary work. You'd think people would be like "poor things, come inside." BUT NO. It's just another excuse. They say, "come back when it's not raining!" UM WHAT DOES IT MATTER TO YOU! YOU'RE INSIDE! LET US IN YOUR HOUSE SO WE CAN HELP YOU ACHIEVE ETERNAL LIFE! Sheesh. So we just walk around all day and get wet! And I swear cars think it's funny to spray us with water!! So I just give em the thumbs up when it happens! Yep, thanks so much!  Not like we weren't soaked anyway right?? 

Villa Mitre is ok... not as receptive as Pringles. People are pretty much hard as rocks. We have to count a lot on the members to get us references and help us get into houses. I'm pretty tired of people waggling their fingers at me and talking to me from their windows. But what can ya do. You just keep going, and keep looking for the elect. The ones who are ready to change.

 Mom, don't freak out. We're safe. We only work in the semi sketchy places during the day, and the nicer barrios at night. The Elders take the sketchy villas and work there. Every area has its dangers. PRAY WE'LL START SEEING SOME SUCCESS. We're looking hard for the Lord's elect.

-Shoutouts! TAY AND KRIS! Got your dearelders! Love ya! KELS! I got your letter. I flippen DIED at your news bit! Haha didn't see that coming!!! HADDY! AHHH I loved your dearelder. MISS YOU! Have a great week everyone! Work hard and pray harder!!

Con carino,
Hermana Squire

Padres, Vaughan is from S. Carolina and we're gonna be BFFs. She might come home early for her foot. Pray for her. DAD YOUR MUSTANG!!!! SO COOL!!!! Don't worry about me. Doing well.  
love yah. still tracking miles, 200 last transfer... 

Andamos un poquito perdidas...y locas....(We're a little lost...and crazy..)


-Ok, SO! UHHHH where do I start!? So, Hna Leguizamón got shipped to Bahia on Wednesday, and the Elders called us on THURSDAY to say we were leaving on Saturday to Bahia as well! We are in the Area Villa Mitre 2 (Veesha Meetrae) sharing an area with THE ASSISTANTS TO THE PRESIDENT!!!! WAH! And I'm still comps with Hna Israelsen. Everyone's pretty surprised that this is our 4th transfer together, usually THE MOST comps stay together is 3 transfers. I was ready for a change but...Sea lo que Dios quiera....

- Ok, let's start from the beginning. So we kinda had a feeling we'd be shipped out too, we kinda had a forewarning that Presidente was thinking of putting Elders in Pringles. So after we got the news, we went to all the investigators, converses,(*converts) and menos activos(**Less active) that we've been seeing, to tell them the news and say goodbye. Everyone was SO sad! Belén looked like she was going to cry, Presidente was sad they were taking "las ángeles de Dios",(**angels of God) and Amanda... oh that ripped my heart out. She cried and said that she would miss us so bad, and that we gave her life and helped her find the true church. She was super super sad. Ah, it broke my heart. I'll sure miss her. We visited the menos activos and the reaction that surpised me the most was that of the Familia Bailone. They always made light of things and laughed a lot and just bashed on the members. But they got way sad too! They said we were the only missionaries that were consistent in visiting and they loved when we came over. They wrote some pretty nice things in my contact journal. Anyway, it was just really sad to say goodbye, but I hope the Elders can do some great work in Pringles and help the rama(**Branch) to grow. 

- The APs (***Assistants to the President) came with the new Elders on Saturday to do the exchange. We had to get things pretty organized and write a bunch of stuff about the investigators, menos activos,(**Less actives) and miembros(**members) and where to find stuff!! It was stressful, but they got to Pringles and went crazy over how clean the house was and that it was stocked with food!! The APs went nuts because they hadn't had breakfast. So we rode back in Presidente's car with Elder Constanzi (Argentina) and Elder Caicedo (Columbia). Elder Constanzi is A CRAZY DRIVER!! I thought we would die, but we made it. They are SOOO FUNNY! We were listening to Enya and they were interpretive dancing in the car. We were laughing so hard all the way to Bahia! We spent Saturday organizing a bunch of stuff and copying the area book. We'll be working with Elder Caicedo and Elder Gravelle. Both EXCELLENT missionaries. The ward is stoked to have us 4, and HERMANAS. It's been 2 years since they've had Hermanas. We're living in Puyerredón (Heart of Bahia) with Hna VAUGHN! AHHH I love her! It's so nice to talk to someone new!! WAHH! The apartment is on the 11th floor, ITS TINY! like 1/8 the size of our house in Pringles, we have to slide past the bunks to get into the bedroom, there's no shower curtain so we spray water everywhere when we shower, the hot water lasts 5 minutes so we have to turn it off when we lather up, there's no place for us to study, the elevators are the ghetto gate kind and play 80s music, BUT NO IMPORTA! I LOVE LIVING WITH THE VAUGHN! She's the best and a girl after my own heart!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I'm so happy!

- SUNDAY WAS THE NUTTIEST DAY OF MY LIFE! We have to take a bus to our area, and we took it going the wrong way!! We're still trying to figure out all of the bus routes and times, but it's kinda hard! We thought, "well it'll just go in a circle and it'll be fine." BUT NO! It stops at the end of the route and the drivers all chill out in this hut in the middle of nowhere and drink mate for 15 minutes!!!!!!! AHHH! We were pacing around waiting for this driver to get done!!!! We FINALLY headed to the capilla.(**chapel) WE WERE 2 HOURS LATE FOR CHURCH! What a great first impression, eh? Thank goodness sacrament meeting was last! The Elders were like "don't worry hermanas! It's fine!" But I was way stressed!!!!  The members are SO NICE! AND WE HAVE A WARD MISSION LEADER!!! AHHHH so nice!! We ate lunch with the Elders... we might be switching off lunches, and sometimes eating together with the members... that'll be way weird. We already had like 4 sisters come to us and say "Call me when you want a member lesson!" MISSIONARY DREAM COME TRUEEEEE! AHHHHH. A WARD! So stoked!!!!!!! Side note: The first door we knocked on Saturday night was a menos activo! She was like, "did bishop send you?" And we're like "ummmm no"...... what a BLESSING!!!!! She showed us where the church was and our bus stop and everything. SO NICE! 

Shoutouts! TREVOR! You look like a MAN!!! Whoa!! Love my Dunn cousins. Hugs to them all and a belly rub to my little pregnant cousins!! Yay babies! VENICE YOU GRADUATED! Write me you goober. Everyone! I hope everything is going great! I'm happy to be here in Bahía! We are ready to pull our tights up to our armpits and get to work! (Remember Elder Holland's talk to us in the MTC?). We gotta work super hard to find the Lord's elect in Villa Mitre!!!!!! Have an amazing week!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Hermana Squire
Last Zone Conference with Hermana Detlefsen

Pension in Coronel Pringles

August 6, 2012

One of Those Weeks....

Hello everybody!

Ok, this letter is going to lack its usual perkiness because to be honest, this week was just very, very difficult. Every missionary has them and wahhh.... I'm struggling a little bit. This week was just SO CRAZY. I've never had a crazier week in my life. My heart has been broken one too many times this week! Darn Argentines. Love em too much. I've almost broken down crying a few times, it's just been a little much. Now, don't feel bad for me or anything, just know every missionary has these kinds of weeks. Also, don't think that I'm some dramatic sister missionary that cries when things go wrong. I'M NOT! I'm usually pretty positive, but it was just a rough week.

- I'm staying in Pringles for now with Hna Israelsen... but we might be changing things around in the week to come.

- Let's start with Friday. Our zone leaders came to Pringles to talk with Pedro. The thing is, Pedro told us that he has depression now. He's been having bad thoughts about his past and is now on some pill trial to help him. He wants to wait until October when he finishes this pill trial to be baptized. We spent an hour and a half with him, sharing sciptures and testimonies, promising blessings, but he still wants to wait. Heart. Broken. I feel so sad for him. Keep him in you prayers and pray that he will be protected. PLEASE.

- (Mom, you might want to sensor this or take it out for the little ones, or THOSE OF YOU WHO READ MY EMAILS TO YOUR CHILDREN*****READ IT FIRST & YOU DECIDE) After we left Pedro's house, we heard a crash on the main blvd. It's pretty common here because NO ONE follows the traffic rules and I have only seen one stop sign here in Pringles, NO JOKE. ONE. The Elders were walking in front of us, and then they took off running. So I'm like, oh crap, then I start running. A guy had gotten hit by a car on his MOTORBIKE (Dad, PLEASE be careful on the Harley. I'm freaked out now!!!). The Elders ran over to take the bike off the top of this guy. No one was doing anything, just gathering around (of course school had just gotten out), so I run over there and kneel next to this guy and he's cussing and trying to get up. But, his leg is just thrashed. His ankle was cut wide open... I could see (for you anatomy nerds) his talus and his lateral malleolus was SHATTERED. Yes, I could SEE it. One of the Elders was closer to his leg and said his bones were exposed in his calf and he just had TONS of glass in his leg. He kept fighting to get up and we're like NO! Your LEG IS BROKEN! LAY DOWN! But he pushed us away and GOT UP AND STARTED WALKING! He tried to get on his bike, and drive away!!! (I can imagine Adrienne right now... You're covering your mouth with your hand aren't you?) Luckily the ambulance came and took him away, leaving us shaken and our ZL with blood on his hands. WHAT THE CRAZY??!!!

- This week, our numbers were just so bad. The worst of my whole mission. I don't know what's going on, but Hna Israelsen and I were talking and we just feel like failures. This is one of the reasons why the week was so bad.I felt like I had let the Lord down and wasted His time. We were wondering why we weren't having success, what MORE could we do in Pringles, when we felt like we've done everything to get menos activos (*less actives) back and they aren't progressing, and WHY the 80 percent of the conversos (*converts) of the last 6 months have NOT been coming to church... Then I read a talk by Elder Holland that explains Missionary work TO A "T"! Here it is: "I am convinced that missionary work is not easy because salvation is not a cheap experience. Salvation never was easy. We are The Church of Jesus Christ, this is the truth, and He is our Great Eternal Head. How could we believe it would be easy for us when it was never, ever easy for Him? It seems to me that missionaries and mission leaders have to spend at least a few moments in Gethsemane. Missionaries and mission leaders have to take at least a step or two toward the summit of Calvary...I believe that missionaries and investigators, to come to the truth, to come to salvation, to know something of this price that has been paid, will have to pay a token of that same price."  Then THIS is my favorite part, that has given me SO MUCH comfort, especially this week. "The Atonement will carry the missionaries perhaps even more importantly than it will carry the investigators. When you struggle, when you are rejected, when you are spit upon and cast out and made a hiss and a byword, you are standing with the best life this world has ever known, the only pure and perfect life ever lived. You have reason to stand tall and be grateful that the Living Son of the Living God knows all about your sorrows and afflictions. The only way to salvation is through Gethsemane and on to Calvary. The only way to eternity is through Him—the Way, the Truth, and the Life." Yes. No matter what happens, no matter how sad I feel, or how I feel like I'm experiencing moments of Gethsemane right now, or how many times I get rejected, I am standing with the best life this world has ever known... I am standing with the Savior and Redeemer of us all... whose name I wear on my chest. 

- Let's get happy now, shall we?

- So we had to go to Bahía from Saturday to Sunday, and we attended church in Villa Floresta with the Hermanas. WE WERE IN A WARDA real live ward! I didn't have to teach a class, give a talk, NOTHING. Is it bad that I liked the break?? 

- So the Olympics are playing EVERYWHERE. TEMPTATIONS!!! Some guy was talking to us and he kept saying, "That Pellps guy can swim" and i was like who the heck is Pellps?? Finally it clicked. PHELPS! Jaja, ph=f sound doesn´t exist here. 

- OK ARIEL! I LOVE THIS KID! I've never had such strong desires to hug a 15 year old! He learns so quickly, is so intelligent, and WAH! So great! We asked him to pray and he said "Thank you for this opportunity I have to learn about your church. I ask that other kids can have this opportunity as well". Wish I could give him a squeeze, SERIOUSLY.

Shoutouts! KELS! HE'S HOME!!! YAHOOO!!!. TAY. Jimmer and JT I DIED LAUGHING!!!! Have fun in DC for me! I love yah! HUGO! Congratulations! You are a TEACHER! Never take for granted the Holy Priesthood that you hold. It is a divine gift and responsibility. HAPPY BIRTHDAY THIS WEEK JULINA!!!! Everyone. I love yah!!! Sorry I'm so dang morose today. I'm still happy to be a missionary. I still love life. I still love serving the Lord. 

Hermana SQUIRE

PS. A guy showed us pics of his travels to Lima and his hike to MACHU PICHU. LET'S DO ITTTTT! PLEASE!!!!! POR FAVOR!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!