Archive | June, 2010
28 Jun

oh, the Lord IS taking good care of me– he really, really is. almost to a sort of funny extreme. all of this week, i was making comments to my companion such as–¨ i want dulce de membrillo.¨ immediately thereafter, someone offered us some. or, ¨i want yogurt.¨also given. it was pretty nice. ask and you really will receive.

yeah, hna moreno IS finishing the mission in 4 weeks, aaanndd.. i don´t want to talk about it anymore. it makes me so sad. after 9 months of cohabitation, i´m gonna miss her a lot. and she´s going to be in either argentina or spain. both of those options are different continents from the one i´ll be living on. but oh well. we still have 4 weeks!

please gently remind Dan to consider complaining about extreme weather only after he´s lived in bug-infested, uninsulated, dirty concrete boxes and bathed in ICE WATER and waken up every morning with his nose frozen and sore throat like i am… and to add high air humidity levels to all of that… it might make him think twice. people who live with wall insulation, thermostats, washers and dryers, garbage disposals, and carpet… have no room to be complaining. your condo is going to look like the ritz to me, come november.

last night, i went to wash the dishes, and as i began to rinse and squeeze our 1-week old sponge, a GIANT WORM-SNAKE THING CRAWLED OUT AND TRIED TO RACE UP MY ARM!!!!!!!

what on earth are these bugs, and where do they come from?? i don´t know. eew. eew. eew.

but on the bright side, we got our water heater fixed!

so yeah. here is a picture of a couple of our investigators, enrique and bilba. enrique wears sunglasses at night cuz he got his eyes operated on. but i like them. they go good with the gaucho beret. and bilba is cool cuz she´s taking art classes, and is pretty darn talented, and likes to show me her work. that white thing is a giant pasta machine that they´re keeping in their front yard.

sooo yeah. what else happened this week? URUGUAY WON 2 MORE GAMES!!! the world cup has been fun to witness around here. and i am very grateful that the US lost, cuz i now no longer run the risk of getting lynched in the streets.

it´s fun. people set off fireworks when goals are scored, and when games are won, they take to the streets in their cars, dirtbikes, and sometimes horses with uruguay flags and honk their horns and scream as they go through the city center in a caravan.

this is me at lunch in the city center last week. behind me is the CARAVAN!!   vamoarriba uruguay!!

how are you family? i´ve been thinking about you all a lot this week. like, way more than usual. which means a LOT. dan´s moving into his own place? rad!! congrats! you are a place owner!!  i´m really excited for teenie that she gets to be in utah soon. and as always, marshall is in my prayers big time. and so are you, mom! i was reading in the teachings of the presidents of the church- joseph smith book the other day, in the chapter about knowledge. it was super interesting. you should check it out. it talks about how joseph didn´t have more than an elementary school formal education, but in spite of that, managed to learn truths through the spirit and became a professor on scientific topics and math and languages in the school of the prophets. super interesting! that´s my new hope for passing math classes, come january.

haha, and thanks for rescuing my car. i´d just been worrying about her the other day. now i know why!

i´ve been able to notice a lot more blessings i´ve enjoyed in my life lately. like, being, generally, healthy, being a legal united states citizen, member of the church, having a great family… lots of blessings.

the church is true. i love you family, and i love uruguay even if it´s dirty and full of weird bugs. the people here are honest and kind.

just this morning, our buddy the cab driver took us for a free ride down the coast of  rio uruguay. it was really pretty, and relaxing. just cuz he´s nice and wanted to do us a favor.

I LOVE YOU MOM AND FAMILY!!!

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22 Jun

mom!

how goes the battle? good. it´s good. did i ever mention that the battle hymn of the republic is a really popular hymn down here? seems weird to me, cuz it´s like, a 4th of july song in the states. but i guess everybody can appreciate a good few rounds of ´gloooooooria gloria haleluuuuuujaaaaah´.

first thing is first- we had transfers this week.

aaaaaaannnndd,

drumroll please……

HERMANA MORENO IS STILL MY COMPANION!!!! FIVE CHANGES TOGETHER!!! 8 MONTHS!!!!!

VAMOARIBBA!!!! (vamos arriba. or, we go up. a mission cliché commonly used at district meetings, and equally as commonly made fun of by me.)

this amount of time together as a companionship has been almost unheard of since the first fifty years of missionary work in the 1800´s.

but the Lord´s got lots of great things planned for us in our time together. i´m really excited.

in other news, my guts are better! my baby food diet, however boring it is, seems to be working! also they gave me pills that protect my guts and help me digest stuff, so that´s good too. i´ve only felt sharp pains once this week. and i have more energy!! i´ve been really blessed. so far every member who´s given us food has given us food that is exactly what my diet indicates. the Lord is indeed taking very good care of me.

also this week, we were blessed to get to go to the temple again to see some of hermana moreno´s converts get sealed. it was so nice. i love the temple so much. everybody who can go, i recommend that you do it. asap. there´s so many blessings in there waiting for you!

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in other news, i bathed in ice cold water this morning. our water heater broke last night, and i just felt too dirty to go without a shower today. so, feeling inspired by some stories i´ve read about heber j. grant and perseverance, i mustered my strength, and with determination, took off my thermal pajamas, slipped on my ice cold flip flops, turned on the shower, leaned in, then gasped and then screamed as the ice cold water made my lungs seize for a moment. i then continued to breathe hard and scream until i finally couldn´t rinse my hair anymore cuz i felt my scalp beginning to freeze.

afterward, i enjoyed an endorphin rush and the feeling of being hard core.
but i don´t want to repeat this tomorrow morning.

we went to our sector conference, our last sector conference with president and hermana peterson, in paysandú on wednesday. i´ve really grown to love the petersons, now that they´re leaving. bad timing, but better late than never, right? in the end, they helped me a lot to get my gut problems figured out once they realized it was a real problem, and as i shook his hand to say goodbye at the end of the conference, he kept me there a minute, just to thank me. to tell me he knows i’ve suffered a lot in my time here, and that they acknowledge and appreciate that and are really proud of me–and that heavenly father is proud of me too. i´m glad things ended on such a good note.

after the conference, we got to visit my beloved family echenique!! and i got to see fran!! this 3 year old kid is the coolest. after i was transferred to salto, olga, the mom, told me he wandered around for weeks asking where hermana roach was. when i showed up at their house, fran was napping. then when he woke up and came out to the living room and saw me as his mom said, ´look!! look who´s here!! roach!!!´, he got so excited and nervous that he sat himself on the far end of the chair next to me, and covered his face with his hands so i couldn´t see him. as he peeked through his fingers i gave him a really big smile, then asked him if i could pick him up.

lately, there is very little more that can make me happier faster than the smile of a little kid. i love little fran!!

so yeah. this week? i was blessed. i´m really excited for this change. hna moreno and i have lots of goals we´ve set and a family of 5 we´re teaching. it should be good!

i love you and i miss you mom! you and the sibs are likewise, always in my prayers. may the Lord bless you and keep you all.

ps- i cannot get over the goodness of that package you sent! you are a GENIUS!! I´d been craving spaghetti for weeks, and now that i have the seasoning, it´s possible! and rosemary!!! mmm!!! and cheesecake! and those rad hair clips! and the chipotle sauce! the taco seasoning! the bbq type flavoring that i currently don´t remember what it´s called!! mom, you are the best. it was super thoughtful, and i still wander around with warm fuzzies. i send you a big hug. i can´t wait to give you a real one in 4 short months.

last night, i did a little bit of book art, just to see if i could. i could and i did. and it felt so good!!

Montevideo Uruguay Temple

15 Jun

this is me at lunch today! we got to see a little bit of the world cup from the sports bar TV. i´m totally following the world cup without any rule breaking, or trying. that´s the fun part of being in a country that actually acknowledges that it´s going on and shoots fireworks in the streets when goals are scored. the games are always turned on in all of the houses we enter.

so, my week? rad. i´m on my second trip to montevideo. we went on thursday, and the doctor poked me a bit, and sent me off for my ecogrophy, which he said he´d look at and give me my diagnosis. by the time we finished my ecogrophy and got back, he´d left town for the week.

so, i got frustrated and threw a hissy fit cuz traveling while sick isn´t much fun and that´s a six hour grey hound type bus ride that i was NOT in the mood for, so president felt bad for me and let me and hna moreno stay in the temple hostel with nice, never ending hot water showers, carpet, and a central heating system, and i went to the temple on friday morning to see the sealing of some of my comp´s converts!! i love the temple so much.

it was a really kind thing of the president to let me stay there and relax and calm down and recooperate a little bit. the mission is like, the worst possible place to feel sick. cuz all the time you spend in bed comes with a mini crisis of worry and guilt, knowing that it´s your job to be helping the children of God in your area get to know the gospel and be saved. so it´s been hard for me to relax enough and come to terms with this trial and recooperate well. to not feel crappy cuz i haven´t been able to be the ever-marching sister missionary robot i´d hoped to be. but i´m learning a lot from this.

and, for the first time in the year since i´ve been out here, i had a really good, really inspired interview with president, which left me feeling a lot better. and a lot more optimistic about the last few months of my mission.

ooooohh, and while i was at the temple, i totally bought more of those teachings of the prophets books, that i love so much. this time i brought home heber j grant, and joseph smith! and i managed to get the joseph smith one in english! which is good, cuz it´s thick. i mean, i can read in spanish preeeeeeettyyy fluidly, but english is still my native language. seriously. those modern prophets are incredible examples or exemplary people.

so anyway. we just finished up with the doctor appointment today—
and the diagnosis is—

the uruguayan food has atrophied my digestive system!!! the official word is, dispepsia hipoestemica, digestion lenta. (slow digestion) my large intestine is super inflamed.

so what does this mean? uruguayan food has been about as good for me as, i dunno, drinking drain-o. it´s full of viruses and parasites and it´s dirty and heavy and greasy, and well, my guts seem to be of a more delicate constitution.

so i asked the doctor when i would get better. he laughed and said, ´when you get back to the states and start eating the cleaner, healthier food that your system is accustomed to again. your digestive system simply can´t handle this stuff. that´s why you´ve been tired all the time, too. this diet i´m giving you might help you get by for the next few months, but you won´t get better until you get back to the states.´

so the doctor gave me a strict, strict diet of fat-free stuff and bottled mineral water and cooked vegetables and jell-o.

i am up to my ears in jell-o. it´s like, the national diet food around here. which is like, a cruel joke, cuz chocolate now officially sits on my list of forbidden pleasures. along with oranges. which kind of surprised me. who´d have thought there could be something harmful in a friendly little orange?

but yeah. overall, i´m happy. after wondering if i was experiencing liver failure or stomach cancer or hepatitis, i´m glad to know that, although they´re having a hard time struggling along amid this abuse, all of my internal organs are in functioning order.

so yeah. that´s my week. i love you and i miss you, family!! i send a huge high five and hug and dance of jubilation to teenie to celebrate the awesome news of this week!

and to everybody else i send lots of love too!

Pictures

8 Jun

me and hna moreno and veronica, a cool young single adult who moved up to salto from paysandu for college.

art!