April 24, 2013

The cockroaches have attacked . . . .

but don´t worry, i´m still alive!  Seriously, there have been like 4 here! One morning i woke up and turned on the light and a giant (ok like 2 or 3 inches) was just chilling there.

Thank you for the letters! I literally love Pday, just to email:)

Week 2 in Argentina has been better. I have never been so overwhelmed in my life, but i have never been so humbled either. I was reading in Ether 12  about weaknesses, and it definitely takes new meaning as a missionary, and every weakness is exposed. There is literally no way we can do this work without the Lord. Many, many moments during the day I have wished that I could be anywhere rather than Argentina...(I know, I know, I waited and wanted the visa so bad)  just because there is so much to do but so much I cannot do on my own. I have never felt so inadequate! The Spanish is the hardest thing ever, and it is difficult to have perspective. But my comp told me about that story in the bible where Jesus feeds the 5000. We are like that....it looks as if we cannot do all we need to do. But God calls us as his disciples in our weakness and provides a way. I have noticed so many more miracles and tender mercies in my life. So there are definitely moments where I am reminded of why I am here, and that this is the gospel of Jesus Christ, his work, and we are entitled to his help. Sometimes faith is just waking up in the morning and doing all that we are asked to do to the best of our ability.

My lucky little feet are covered in blisters and bug bites. It´s been 2 weeks and my skin is already not attractive. Thanks for sending that bug and blister stuff though before mom! And my albino legs are developing a tan line).

Some other things about Argentina. They like to sit. A lot. There are always people sitting out on their porch if it´s past like 6. Time is so different too....because they have siesta, streets are dead all afternoon, and when they say noche it really means like 8 or 9.

You would die if you tried the bakeries here. They have the most delicious pastries ever. And i love that everyone goes and buys their bread every day. People also love to mop their porches....if people aren´t sitting on the porch, they are mopping it.

 We had a district mtg, and me and my companion made red velvet cupcakes with cream cheese frosting (her birthday cake mix). Oh my goodness it was a little piece of America. And of course the elders loved us.

They eat mayo with everything....it´s like their salad dressing here. Don´t know if i can adjust to that. Oh and they have grapefruit soda! haha ok ok...i know that was all food stuff. But i know you needed the update on that. Today we are making nobake cookies. :)

This week we did a lot of contacting, to find people. We have met some really good people, so now we have a lot to follow up on. We have some people set for baptism, but they still need to learn a lot and go to church. We met a sweet lady  (i don´t remember if i told you this last week...) but she was our first contact in the whole area. We went back and taught a lesson, then a few days later finally got a hold of her again. She had read the BOM every night, and the tumor that she was worried about and was going to need an operation had disappeared! It was crazy. We have an appointment tonight, so hopefully things progress, because she has definitely had things in life that have prepared her for the gospel. And we are teaching her mom too. I don´t have other cool investigator stories...yet....because we are basically starting from scratch. But there´s a lot of good that can be done here.

love you all! the gospel is true! have a fabulous week! gooood luck with finals!
love, hna andrews

p.s. I accidentally locked us inside our house (because their is only part of the handle, we have to remove it and put on the side of the door we are on), so i had to crawl outside the window and crawl around on a little ledge to our front porch to get the handle and key. don´t worry mom, i didn´t fall off the second floor)

April 17, 2013

April 15: I made it to Argentina !!!

Oh my goodness, where to begin...

So we flew here this week (i have no sense of days....). There was 3 of us from America. After the forever long flight we arrived in the morning in Buenos aires. >We made it through customs, answering all the questions right i guess! >(in the us we barely made it on our flight...haha....we thought we had plenty of time, and then the lady wouldn´t let us on the plane until we payed 160 reciprocity fee, come to find out in Argentina we weren´t supposed to pay>!  So we were just hoping someone would be there to pick us up....when 2 guys in white shirts came up speaking spanish, asked for our passports, and took the suitcases. We followed, cause what else would we do, and they had some sign that said church of Jesus Christ of latter day saints. I felt like I was in some movie....we didn´t know what was going on.(we soon figured they weren´t members, as they took a smoke...) Then they put us in a bus with all our stuff, and there was 5 other missionaries from the MTC here. Then we drove 3 more hours to Rosario to the mission home. Then we were at the mission home that day, had pizza, interviews, a bunch of other stuff, slept in the house, the next morning was training and then we left for our areas.
The mission home is huge and beautiful, the office is on the same property. The pres and his wife are sweet, both from Rosario but live in Provo.
There are 8 of us, me and 2 girls and the rest elders, most of them are from Chile. A ton come from Chile because they don´t need visas.

 >>Everything else is going to be scattered, as there are a million things to say.
>My trainer is  from >Utah, she has 3 months left. We are whitewashing the area, so basically we arrived knowing nothing. >It is quite the challenge....and we have a ton of work to do. The city is actually pretty big, and our branch is mostly middle class people.  The branch pres and his wife are the best!! They are younger and so excited, we met with them like the second day here. And the best news is that there is a family from idaho!!!!! Oh my goodness it´s so nice to have Americans, and they are a cute young family, and love american missionaries, and mom she is going to call you today!!
The food! cause i´m sure you were wondering about that. Portions are huge! In the mission home we had pizza, and facturas (the yummmiest pastries i have ever had...only in argentina!), They love dulce de leche! Lunch is the big meal here, so we have that with members.  (Everywhere closes at like 12 or 1pm, and doesn´t upon until 5. They need their sleep here. so in afternoon the streets are dead). But just like any other country, their is lots of different food....their milk is in bags, they eat a lot of pasta, and have the best juice that´s thick and tastes like a squished up peach. I am already planning to bring home a suitcase full of oreo alfajors, it´s like oreo cookie things stacked up and filled with fudge.

My comp is great! I was happy to get a north American, but she does usually speak in Spanish to me which is good. So she has been sick....one day the other hermanas, who are latinas, came and made us lunch. The Latina Hermanas are great, they sure know how to be hospitable! haha. They just come in and take over. There are some awesome members in the ward, a lady does our laundry and feeds us once a week.
There´s just a lot to adjust to, of course everything is different, and we don´t really know anyone here. And we don´t have any investigators. It has been frustrating. We have a lot of finding to do. It´s definitely better when we stay busy and are doing things. It´´s frustrating not knowing the people or language. We need some miracles here. But...ask me in a while and i am sure i will love Argentina!

So far we have gone to church, (yep, i played the piano! haha), walked around a lot, and have been trying to contact people to find to teach. We organized everything, made maps, etc. Oh, and we have hot water for showers!

It sounds like you have all had quite a week.... Crazy to think the semester is over! I have a totally different sense of time being here. And it´s almost summer for you!

 Sorry for all the rambling and everything, but thank you for your letters! It´s so good to hear from home!
love and miss you all!
love, hermana andrews


I looked out the window and what did I see?
popcorn popping on the apricot tree:)
Oh my goodness....the trees here are beautiful:) 
hola amigos y familia!
As you heard....I am going to Argentina today!!!! Woohoo! Well, I'm actually like peeing my pants. And calling home just might make me cry. But I am SO excited! I have only heard of one other elder from my district, who is in North Carolina, who got his visa. My comp right now waiting to go to argentina still doesn't have hers. Last week during weekly planning, she (jokingly?) said visas would come wednesday, and even wrote it in her planner. Of course I have prayed for a visa to come this past week, but didn't want to get hopes up or think about it too much. On Thursday afternoon i got a call from the office secretary, telling me my visa is here! Funny thing, the secretary said the email about my visa actually came late Wednesday night! Moral of the story, planning and prayers do actually work:)
It's crazy to be leaving VA. I have been here 1 transfer! While here I have made a collection of cat pictures, enjoyed beautiful spring, been in a wine store larger than home depot, been part of a compship of 4 gringos, and seen that there are more problems in the world than can be solved in 6 weeks. We always wonder what our neighbors and people think....4 girls always walking outside all together at the same time everyday, our walls are covered with Jesus and temples, always in skirts, all of us pile into the same car with little nametags...it must be weird for anyone who doesn't have a clue what a missionary is! But honestly, I am so grateful for the things I have come to learn in Virginia, and the people I have met. It has been a blessing to see 2 people baptized, to see the extremely humble circumstances that some of the strongest members I have ever met live in. It is eye opening to see the problems that so many people do have though - especially as many are illegal immigrants, have health problems, and live on hardly anything. It is a difficult balance between providing for peoples temporal and spiritual needs. What I have realized, is that at this time I am a missionary, called to teach others of Jesus Christ. We cannot provide everything, but ultimately the gospel of Jesus Christ can make any situation better, and is a need of every person on this earth.
This week we have watched '17 Miracles' with a couple members. That movie is powerful, and people love it. Other exciting news...a great family we are teaching has a baptisimal date for April!!  But I am SO excited for them! This family is awesome. The best lessons I have had, has been with them. This week we helped her make tacos and salsa, she is the best cook. Then it was time for the lesson...there was one distraction after the next - the phone kept ringing, the doorbell rang, and other distractions....It started out rough. Satan definetly did not want that lesson! And they even made that comment later. But it turned out good, and we commited them to baptism. This week the elders were also able to bless their house.
Conference! How was conference? I watched it at the church, for first time in my life! On saturday, the only people at the church were missionaries! I guess everyone here even watches it on TV. (I missed a good breakfast and sweats....but luckily I got to watch it in english!) I have been sick :(.....so even staying awake was a challenge. But luckily I feel so much better today. There is some flu going around, and it seems like always at least one person in our compship has been sick. But don't worry, I'm bringing my years supply of chewable pepto-bismol to argentina:)
Mom, don't worry, I went after easter shopping and got onsale candy:)  Yesterday we went to the Bishops parents house for lunch between conference, and I had my last real american meal. It was probably some of the best food I have had yet....BBQ, funeral potatoes, salad, baked beans, cake....mmm. We had dinner another time with the bishops family this week. Good week for dinners:)
It is true, there are now sister district leaders.
Did everyone else do anything for spring break? Did mom slave everyone into yardwork?
This is such an exciting time to be a missionary. The work truly is hastening. Obviously every person is not going to accept the gospel, (yes, we were dropped by a few investigators this week...), but Pres. Perry talked about being a representative of the Lord that is exactly obedient. He said we need to earn the trust of everyone, members specifially, in order for more doors to be opened to teaching people. Heavenly Father will always bless us and pour out miracles when we do everything in our power to follow him.
love you all!
have a great week!
-hermana andrews

April 6, 2013

April 1, 2013


kidding...it's april fools of course.
Still no word on it.....But Virginia is great!
Happy Easter!
Happy April Fools!
How was easter? Did you have an egg hunt with the fam?
So it was raaiinny here yesterday. And when it rains, it rains. (But today is SOO nice. And the trees are blossoming!) Basically we were at the church the entireee day, because we had church and meetings, but also because it was the last day of the month and we had no miles left to drive our car...haha. But church is just great!  It was the 5th sunday, and so they showed 'Finding Faith in Christ' for combined. I have never seen so many adults crying in one room.
On Saturday night we went to the YW broadcast. It was SO good. Except I felt like it should be me sitting at home there, wasn't I 12 like just yesterday?....President Uchtdorf talked abouthow at one time we were all valiant and wanted to return to Heavenly Father. It was a good reminder of perspective, and to see people as God sees them. Perspective makes all the difference. I have never been sooo excited for conference!! I guess that's what being a missionary does to ya. But I cannot wait:)
This week has been busy. (Well at least I think so...I don't have other areas to compare it to..) But we have had a ton of appointments, (well only half of the people are ever home), and lots of people to meet with. The only problem with the hispanic culture is they have a completely different sense of time, and everyone loves Jesus, so people are always willing to let you come in even if they are not interested. People rarely say "no thanks, we are not interested". They always just say "I"m busy, come back later".
 I think being a missionary has turned me into a boring person. So we have a goal to be fun. We have to do fun things, like tell jokes. And be spontaneous. So we are working on that...We sometimes eat with members.
That is so crazy to hear about the MTC.....even when I was there it was so crowded, so I can't imagine what it will be like! I also don't know how all these missions are going to manage, with the logistics like cars/apartments/etc. They are going to have to start little cities of tents for missionaries to live in.

Is it warm there?
 Things are well here! I love my companions, there are some incredible people in the ward, and definietly people who are prepared for the gospel. But....prayers are still appreciated for my visa:) This gospel is true! I am coming to understand more every day how the gospel needed to be restored, and the importance of prophets.
Thanks for all you do!
Love you all!
Happy April!
love, hermana andrews

March 25, 2013

Merry Christmas!

Hola familia y amigos!
Yep, it looks like Christmas here. Last night it snowed a ton, but luckily it is all melted on the road today, or we would not be able to drive anywhere. I'm glad to hear UT is freezing cold and snowy though, I wouldn't want to miss out on any lovely weather:)
It was quite the week around here! First of all, we had a baptism and wedding!!! A wonderful couple were married on saturday. Just like the old days, I spent my Saturday decorating and doing a wedding:) It was in the gym, we did the decorations and everything. There was actually 10 hermanas there, because of the people who came back for the wedding and their companions. (I got to see my MTC comp!!) The decor....well we were quite innovative. Good thing the relief society has a closet full of fake flowers and sheets they use as tablecloths. So before the wedding was a ward easter egg hunt (there was 750 eggs...and probably about 18 kids....) and then the ceremony, and then a potluck dinner thing. This week I really realized that all was not listed in the job description of a missionary - babysitter, maid, event planner, pianist..... The wedding all went really good though, and it was cute to see how excited and nervous they were to be married. (They have been 'together' for 10 years)
Yesterday was the baptism, which was SO good. It's nice to see the results of effort.They have been taught for a long time, and been through looots of missionaries, so it was good that some could come back. What is even better, is that this is just the beginning. I am realizing the importance of the temple, as baptism is only the beginning. (This weekend a group from the ward are all going to the temple, many are being sealed and receiving endownments. It is SO great, as the entire ward is converts) So we basically lived at the church this week, and too bad we can't have weddings and baptisms every week!
There was a sisters meeting this week. I had been hearing about it since I got here, and how great it is. It felt like young women therapy session/ a relief society "light lunch". But it was good! All the sisters in the mission go, and the pres and his wife speak about random things. And there's a clothes exchange, so like going to DI for free! I have actually collected quite a few things here and at the MTC...Mom, the lunch was salad and bread:) Also, Sister Perry, the pres wife, shared a super good story. So go to daringyoungmom.com and search for "Drops of Awesome".
This week there were so many little miracles. We received SOO many referrals. Ok, like 8. But that is a ton! I have realized that people are prepared. Not everyone is interested in learning more about Christ, but there are people who are ready. A family we are teaching came to the baptism yesterday, and after they were like "When can we have a day like this?" !! Yep, they basically asked to be baptized. We had asked them to be baptized last time we were there, but now we need to set a date. There is another family who just moved here from Dominican Republic. The husband is a member, and the wife is investigating. But yesterday she commented in every class, and acted like a member already! And then there was this little old lady who just moved here from Guatemala, who looked and acted like the relief society president but hasn't even had any lessons yet!
This week we also had a picnic in some ghetto parking lot of family dollar with questionable people roaming around. I wouldn't suggest this for a nice family activity or date, but sometimes you gotta do what you gotta do. When I get home, I have to make some real mexican tacos. Oh my goodness so good - corn tortillas filled with chicken, fried, and you eat it with avacodos, tomatoes, lettuce, onions, crema, and cojita cheese. Mom, not to brag or anything, but I have gotten pro at omlets:) THis is what you put on them: turkey, tomatoes, avacodos, green peppers, spinach, and cheese.
Other good things were watching soccer, because people here are soo intense it is hilarious. (Mexico vs Honduras, we watched with some members, she is from Mexico and he honduras!) Kids are always confused, thinking I only have a last name. ANd here's a joke....how do bunnies stay healthy?.....eggsercise! :)
Happy easter this week!
 There's a boy in this ward who just put in this papers, it's exciting because he is probably the first missionary ever from here. 
Thanks for the updates Grandma and Sandy! I love hearing about what everyone is doing.
Still no word on visa....thank you for all the prayers. I do love Virginia! Staying busy definitely makes everything better.
Things are not all easy, but there are definitely miracles. I don't think I am really making a difference for anyone here, but I have learned so much from the examples of people I have met!
Well my time is up, but I hope you have a good week!
-hermana andrews