Monday, August 25, 2014

Week 47 -- A Baptism and My Birthday!

Thanks for all the Birthday wishes!  I got a birthday package from the Swansons, and cards from Bishop Clark, Coach K, and Grace Clark this week.  Thank you!  I am so spoiled and blessed.  Thank you SO much!

1.  Tell me about your birthday!  Did you like your gifts?  Do they fit?  Do you like them?  What did you do? 

We celebrated my birthday on Friday. So my companion actually didnt feel well and we went back to the house a little bit early and waited for Marcia and at like 7:30 she got home and we made brownies (like American Betty Crocker ones) with Nutella on top and a fruit pizza and Marcia made her hamburgers which I really like. Then we opened my gifts!!! I LOVED my skirts! They were so cute and I loved all my gifts, actually! I got a scarf and a really cute tiny wallet crossbody from the Swansons. Andrea sent me a hilarious book (haha!) and the lotion you sent smells really really good. I love the earrings that Brie sent. But, yeah, I don't remember everything because it was like four packages, LOL, but I loved it! And Grandma and Papa's box had a bunch of shredded paper in it and Marcia ran up and threw it in the air and then we had a shredded paper fight and there was paper EVERYWHERE as you can see in the pictures! Then for my actual birthday we had ward conference so I had to play the piano... and afterwards we ate more cake with Marcia. And then we ate cake with Iris since she got baptized and Angi, her niece who is a member and she has like 10 years, painted my finger nails to look like watermelons, lol. And we had dinner with Israel and he told us that he prayed and felt like he got an answer so that was a miracle! And, yeah, I wanted to watch a movie so when we got home we watched "The District", how exciting, hahahaha. But, yeah, my skirts fit. I haven't tried the shirts on but I'm sure that they will fit just fine. 

2.  Tell me about one of your days from this week.  What did you do, where did you go, what did you teach in lessons, who did you meet with, etc.? 

This week we had divisions with the Sister Training Leaders. So after our district meeting on Tuesday we went home and waited for them... and waited for a good hour and a half. So we missed the 2 citas (appointments) we had that were real appointments and it was our first day getting back to work so everything was scattered and we left at like 4 pm and visited a menos activo and her daughter... and we read a scripture with them and left because really they aren't progressing.... then we found some new folks and we left pamphlets with them and set appointments to come back and explain.... and we stayed in this colonia (neighborhood) whose  walking distance from one end to the other is 5 minutes... it's TINY!  We try to talk with whoever is outside and who isn't moving because it's creepy and hard to contact people who are walking towards you.... 

3.  What did you do for P-Day today? 

Hna N and I went to get pedicures today!!!!! But they are different as far as the atmosphere.... there were lots of cockroaches and they don't have massage chairs.... but whatever. My feet feel nice now, lol. It's funny because the style here is to wear your toenails realllllly long which is weird... so I asked her to cut mine and she was like for real? LOL. Then we went to Fesi (the stake center) to practice for the choir I'm directing this week.... and I had to transpose the song into a different key which was hard but I did it and I felt like a boss. I think the Lord is blessing my musical abilities a lot.... then the stake president bought us pizza for lunch and now we are here! 

4.  How did the musical numbers go at ward conference yesterday? 

Three musical numbers but I only played for two of them and I also played the hymns. It wasn't that bad. 

5.  How was ward conference?  Did you have investigators there? 

It was pretty good. I felt a lot better after my playing the piano was done. We had six investigators there so that's more than normal. And Hna I got confirmed!!!  Hna S and her family came and E, and Israel:) 

6.  How are Hna I, E, and Israel doing?  And Hna S and her family? 

Hna I got baptized!  We didn't fill up the pila as much as we should have so when our Mission Leader got there he turned it on so it was on for all the talks.... UGH. But anyways, I shouldn't complain because she got baptized and now she's a memeber and she's just so dang cute! And E came to church so now he will get baptized this Saturday:)  Israel came and we challenged him to get baptized on the 6th of September (wow, it's almost September) and he is supposed to pray about that. But he didn't say so there is definitely a change there which is really, really good! And yeah, Hna S is so pilas and ready to get baptized... she just has to get married but doesn't want to yet because her boyfriend drinks and used to do some not great stuff and she just hasn't seen a big enough change in him yet... but we are getting there.... so, yeah, the people we have who are progressing are so pilas! 

7.  What miracles and tender mercies have you seen this week?  Answers to your prayers?  

Israel got an answer to his prayers!!!! That's pretty huge and Hna I got baptized and the ward conference went well and it was a pretty good week.  I think that's a miracle in itself.  When we were on divisions it started pouring rain during a cita. but it stopped when we were about to leave and didn't come back all day! 

8.  How has someone else blessed your life this week?  

Marcia! She is jsut so dang cute! And the little party she threw for me was just so nice. I felt like I was with family. And they took a ton of pictures so I hope they all upload.

9.  How have you blessed someone else’s life this week? 

I don't know. I think that this week I was a little to impatient with everyone since I had to prepare for the conference, the other conference, and divisions with the sister training leaders, and I'm old now and so on and so forth...I should probably look for ways to serve more. 

10.  What was the best thing that happened this week? 

My little birthday party with Marcia. And Angi gave me a rose for my birthay. It's so cute! 

11.  What was the funniest/funnest thing that happened this week? 

I don't really know.... probably Marcia throwing the paper everywhere

12.  What did you learn in church yesterday? 

That I actually really love playing the piano.... 

13.  What did you do for your district meeting and zone meeting this week? 

We talked about questions and how we can ask more effective questions. And Elder Scott always makes us do practices and I hate them and I never talk so they all think I suck.... not really. But I hate practices and I just...ugh...can't do them. 

14.  What was the spiritual highlight of your week? 

I don't really know.... I think it was Hna I's baptism.

15.  What did you learn from your personal study this week? 

I was reading in Jeremiah and in chapters 42 and 43-ish there was a group of people who asked Jeremiah to pray to ask the Lord something and they were like "we promise that whatever the Lord says we will do!" and so Jeremiah went and prayed and it says he got an answer 10 days later (which shows we don't always get our answers right away) and the answer wasn't what the people wanted and he told them that if they went to Egypt that they would die pretty much and then they got all bent out of shape and went to Egypt anyways and didn't listen to the Lord. So I thought that was interesting because as people how often do we tell the Lord that we will do whatever He asks and then when push comes to shove we don't do it?

16.  Do you know that I love you SO much and I miss you? 


17.  What was the most beautiful thing you saw this week? 

All my birthday presents... heehee!

18.  Did anything unusual or strange happen this week? 

Not really....there were a lot of cockroaches in the beauty salon that did our nails though.... 
19.  What are you looking forward to this week? 

The conference with Elder Alonso.... I'm leading the choir for that, too!  We're singing an arrangement of "I'll Go Where You Want Me to Go" and I'm also leading the hymns

20.  What was the best thing and the worst thing you ate this week? 

Best thing... cake. Worst thing was some club crackers with mayo on them.... I hate mayo! But I think I will be a soda addict when I get home... we literally drink it everyday, haha. 

Just so you know, our mission is 70 percent Latino and 30 percent gringos.... I can't believe Becky Rhoden is home already and that she really went skydiving!  Wow -- that's crazy!  I feel like I have s much time left to go but I guess it will go way too fast.  I really don't have that much time left.

Hna U said she got a package from you this week and she loved it.  :-)

Thanks for all your love and support! 
Hermana Gisseman

(Aaah...I'm so old now!)

Shoes that I bought

Experimenting with hairstyles
They decorated the door for my birthday!
One of the elders drew these
Hna Marcia made hamburgers for my birthday
And fruit pizza and real American brownies!
Opening gifts
Hna I with her family at her baptism

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Week 46 -- Sickness Strikes Again -- and More Root Beer


So just to let you know in advance, we didn't do like anything this week because poor Hna N was sick. She had a fever for 5 days and didn't eat and had aches and looked pretty terrible... so we were in the house for a long, long time.  She had a virus that is similar to dengue fever but isn't dengue.  But we would go to Hna Marcia's and watch church movies with her to keep me from going to insane, lol.

1.  Tell me about one of your days from this week.  What did you do, where did you go, what did you teach in lessons, who did you meet with, etc.?

We had a record low for number of lessons we have taught in a week.... we didn't really have any at all.... so yeah, I had lessons with myself while I studied and studied and then maybe studied some more.

2.  What did you do for P-Day today?

We cleaned and took out money and paid the light bill. We played soccer in the stake center and I actually played and it was pretty fun and I may or may not have accidentally run into some elders to get the ball... i just get too competitive, even in sports that I don't like. Then we went to Pizza Hut and to the American-ish grocery store and now we are here.... but that was fun... we tried 3 other internet cafes today and they were ALL full and the last one finally had computers so that was quite stressful trying to find internet.  But this computer doesn't have a USB port so I can't upload any pictures this week.  So no pictures.  But I'll send pictures next week.  I'll take lots of pictures of me opening my birthday presents and send them to you.  :-)

3.  How are the musical numbers coming along for ward conference next week?

I don't know... we haven't had practice since last Sunday....

4.  How was stake conference?  Did you have investigators there?  Was it like a stake conference that we would have here in the States?

We did not go to stake conference.  Our investigator, I, went, though. I was really bummed out, to be honest, because we couldn't go and President and Sister Dester both spoke in both sessions, too, and I couldn't go.... I cried a little bit.

5.  How are I, E, and Is. doing?  And SS and her family?

Iris is super pilas like always. E...I don't know...we haven't seen him this week. S is doing well and she already has a testimony of this gospel and of Joseph Smith.  We got her a triple combination, and she's reading in the Pearl of Great Price! Like, who does that?!  She's awesome and I know they will get baptized, it's just a matter of when. Is. is Is.  He needs to act but he just won't.

 6.  You said you spoke in church last Sunday about how to invite people to come to ward conference...what did you say about it?

That it's really not that hard! So I gave them some Ideas on how to do it. Like give out invitations, or if you are singing in the choir invite someone to come hear you sing.  I don't know...just a few ideas and that really we can talk about the church in any conversation even just something like, "Hey, how was your weekend? Mine was good, we went to church and whatever whatever.... " and share what you learned.  So we really should be examples of the believers in conversation! And we should speak about what we believe!

7.  Are I and E still planning to get baptized on the 23rd?  Did you talk with her about giving up coffee?

Yeah, I don't know because we weren't able to visit her this week.  She was doing well but now that we haven't seen her.... I don't know.  She should be getting baptized but E didn't come to church this Sunday so I'm not sure what we are going to do.

8.  How has someone else blessed your life this week?

I love Hna Marcia so much. She is like a mom to us. She let us invade her home while my companion was sick and just watch church movies in her house. She made soup especially for my companion. Joselin like us, too, I think. She bought me baleadas, made me popcorn and was just super sweet to us. I just love that family and I will be so sad to leave them.

9.  How have you blessed someone else's life this week?

I tried to do service for my companion this week... taking the phone calls, arranging rides to take us to the clinics so she could get blood work, getting her water and etc... but unfortunately I am still a little impatient and 5 days in the house drove me BONKERS so I probably didn't do enough service for her or maybe there just wasn't enough love in it... i need to work on that.

10.  What was the best thing that happened this week?

I did get to watch a lot of church movies and being a TV addict and all before the mission.... watching the TV felt nice, lol.

11.  What was the funniest/funnest thing that happened this week?

My companion talks in her sleep when she's really, really tired and doesn't feel well and it scared me so bad!  I woke up and she was saying stuff and it was funny. And this one lady in the ward came over to visit her last night, but there was some tension between her and someone else there, and it was so uncomfortable I had to try not to laugh.

12.  What did you learn in church yesterday?

We didn't go....

13.  What did you do for your district meeting and zone meeting this week?

Elder Scott likes pulling pranks... but I knew that. I watched him put a lizard in my hymn book and then I went to let it out and it fell on the floor and I screamed and the worst part is I knew he did it because I watched him do it but I still screamed, lol. But an elder talked about how to find new people to teach and how we can be creative!

14.  What was the spiritual highlight of your week?

I was praying to know how I could feel the love of God more in my life and, I don't know, just come to know Him and a scripture came to mind which never happens to me like ever.... like just some random reference. 1 John 4:7 and it was just perfect for me at the time and I really like that.  I think that I just need to have more love for others.

15.  What did you learn from your personal study this week?

I don't know.  But I finished my project!!! FINALLY ! So I will continue reading in Preach My Gospel and doing the activities at the end of each section.  I am slowly but surely getting through Jeremiah and I think I'm in Alma in the Book of Mormon and in Section 88 in the Doctrine and Covenants and it is really, really interesting! I read that in Spanish so I don't' know if i understood it all perfectly but it is really good and has lots of deep doctriney things

16.  Do you know that I love you SO much and I miss you?


17.  What was the most beautiful thing you saw this week?

Ummmm.... Hna Marcia's house and not ours.  LOL

18.  Did anything unusual or strange happen this week?

A guy got on the bus today and started preaching to us. I found that ironic.

19.  What are you looking forward to this week?

Just getting to work again.

20.  What was the best thing and the worst thing you ate this week?

The best... Hna Marcia made some really, really good chicken this week and I love her guacamole!  The worst... probably a tomato salad... mostly because I don't like tomatoes.

I got a Disney post card from Christelle this week!  Thank you!  And lots of e-mails from family and friends...I got e-mails from the Eubanks, Brinley, Ian, Christine, and even more people...I haven't even had a chance to look at them all yet.  I love mail!

And Happy Aniversary to Erin!!!!

I love you!
Hermana Gisseman

Monday, August 11, 2014

Week 45 -- Seven Investigators at Church, and Root Beer!


1.  You said you have mission lingo in your mission.  What is some of it? 

So "trunky" in my mission is "baggy" (homesick). The gringos have lingo like "subing" that comes from the verb subir which is to like go up to comp mayor (senior companion) or district leader or zone leader or whatever. And bajared from bajar which is to go down. 

2.  What did you do for P-Day today? 

We had a manana de talento (talent day) and so people showed off their skills so we sang the song we wrote and most of the others did improv stuff.  It was funny and then we played around a little bit. We went to Wendy's and then Hna N and I went and looked at some little shops and bought some sandals that are Honduran so I will take a picture of those for next week. 

3.  How was stake conference?  Do they do both a Saturday evening session and a Sunday session like they do in the States?  Did you have any investigators there? 

Stake conference is this coming Sunday.... but church on Sunday was good!  We had seven people there!!!! It was really sweet! At first we had three investigators there, I and her son E and Is, and then an investigator we were waiting on, S, came with her whole family! So it was really awesome! And we had to speak in church yesterday... all four of the missionaries. So I had to speak on how to invite people to the ward conference which is on my birthday.... so that was exciting stuff. 

4.  Are I and her son E still planning to get baptized on the 23rd?  How is G doing?  Were you able to have a cita with him this week? 

They are still planning on it,. but I is having a hard time not drinking her coffee... she says that she will dejar, leave, it when she gets baptized but .... so we need to talk with her this week. G... well, yeah, I don't know. I feel like we came into his life to help him a little but but his life is really crazy right now and he pretty much doesn't have time for us. So I feel like we were able to help him a little buit and give him the tools to put his life in order but I don't know beyond that. 

5.  What miracles and tender mercies have you seen this week?  Answers to your prayers? 

We had people at church and people that are really there to progress! 

6.  How has someone else blessed your life this week?  

Marcia had her birthday this week and she invited us over. We decided to do something nice for her so we made a big card and I gave her trail mix becasue she loves it and we made some Rice Krispie treats that we made with a little too much butter... but she loved it and she started crying and everything and we thought we finally would get to serve her. but no, she invited us to her birthday party and fed us and gave us cake and had a good time with us and I just love her so much and admire how even on her birthday she still cooks for us and she still thinks about us. It's like her whole life revolves around making sure everyone else is okay and it just amazes me. 

7.  How have you blessed someone else’s life this week? 

Well, we got specially invited to the ward choir this week and then they asked me to play the piano for them. Thank goodness I can play the two hymns that they are going to sing for the ward conference.... "Let Us All Speak Kind Words to Each Other" and "Love at Home". We are doing so much for the ward here and it's great... we spoke on Sunday and planned citas for a mini mission for the primary children this past Saturday. They did a mini-MTC and we had them visit less actives or really good investigators.  There were only five companionships of Primary Children (ages 8-12) but they all seemed to have a good time, even if they were hot and complained that they had to walk for a long time!  Hahahaha!

8.  You said you and Hna N wrote a missionary themed song to the Cup Song from Pitch Perfect -- what are the words? 

Well, they are in Spanish....but here they are:

Tengo mi llamamiento a Honduras, para servir mi misión. 
Se que Dios tiene algo, hay personas esperando, 
ya me voy de aquí. 

Ya me voy, ya me voy a servir. 
Si, me van a extrañar. 
Voy a bautizar la gente, voy a perder mi mente. 
Si, me van a extrañar. 

Cambios, milagros, pena y estrés, como puedo aguantar
Yo no entiendo nada de lo que esta pasando, 
San Pedro Sula Oeste. 

Aquí Estoy, aquí estoy a servir 
Ya soy misionera. 
Estoy comiendo Baleadas y pollo con tajadas. 
Hace bastante Calor. 

No puedo creer que ya me toda ir
Yo estoy super baggy
La misión me ha cambiado por tanto trabajo
Ya no Quiero salir... NAH

Ya me voy. Ya me voy de aquí
Si, la voy a extrañar. 
Quiero ver a mi familia y besar a alguien super guapo. 
Si, la voy a extrañar. 

(Translation from Google translate so this may not make sense:
Got my call to Honduras
To serve my mission
I know God has something, 
There are people waiting
I'm leaving here.

I'm leaving because I'm going to serve
Yes, I will miss.
I will baptize people
I will lose my mind
Yes, I will miss.

Changes, miracles, pain and stress, 
And can hold (??)
I do not understand anything of what is happening.
San Pedro Sula West.

Here I am,
Here I am to serve.
I'm already a missionary.
I'm eating baleadas and chicken and tajados
It's pretty hot.

I can't believe I go any longer
I'm super baggy
The mission has changed me so much
I want to be tight.  NAH!  

I'm leaving.
I'm leaving here.
Yeah, I'll miss you.
Want to see my family and
Kiss someone super handsome.
Yeah, I'll miss you.

(I think there are some idioms in there that Google translate doesn't know...I'll have to ask her for a better translation)

9.  What was the best thing that happened this week?

I think it was that we got to drink root beer.  We had noche de hobar (Family Home Evening) with a family and ate pizza from a place that sells things from the States so it was almost American pizza and we saved a few slices and drank it with the root beer we bought last week...I cannot tell you how good that root beer tasted!  I savored every sip!  It was so dang good.  So do me a favor and everyone go buy a root beer and savor that soda and make sure you pay attention to the hint of vanilla aftertaste that just makes it soooo dang good.  I miss that stuff!  On a more spiritual note, we went to a noche de hogar with Andrea last night and I swear she is just so pilas (great?).  I always learn from her and from her family and I love that live below us!  They are the best neighbors.  And she made donuts.

10.  What was the funniest/funnest thing that happened this week? 

P-days are always funny... but especially some of the elders' "talents" from today... enough said. 

11.  What did you learn in church yesterday? 

That there truly are people prepared for this gospel and they will come. and we talked about marriage in Relief Society... UGH. 

12.  What did you do for your district meeting and zone meeting this week? 

Hna N and I made fruit pizza!!! Marcia helped us make an icing that was really good and we bought a sugar cookie mix at the big grocery store and made a sugar cookie and put on the icing and fruit and it was way good.  We used kiwi, bananas, pineapple, and grapes.  :)   

13.  What was the spiritual highlight of your week?  

I really like going to noches de hogar with Andrea. Last night she talked about Jonah and that story is so good and there are so many lessons to be learned from it. But we really just need to obey the Lord's command and to preach the gospel. I think it's ironic or just a little appropriate or funny (I don't know the word) that in the end Jonah is waiting for the people to be distroyed and is a little ticked that the Lord hadn't done anything to them because he really didn't realize that he was the means to bring 120,000 of the people of Ninevah to repentance. We need to rejoice in the work that we do. 

14.  What did you learn from your personal study this week?  

There happened to be a ton on family and marriage this week which just makes me baggy... but I like what it said in Preach My Gospel... "El cielo es la continuacion del hogar ideal"...heaven is the continuation of the ideal home. But really the relationships that we have and establish her are the most important things! Really, the family we have here is the family that we are going to have there so if we don't take the time to make things work or to build a good relationship it's not like we are going to just wake up and have everything perfect in the celestial kingdom! We really have to make the relationships the best we can here because the life we will have is just a continuation of what we built here on earth if that makes any sense.... so really just that family is super important and I need to do better at making my relationships matter. 

15.  Do you know that I love you SO much and I miss you?  


16.  What was the most beautiful thing you saw this week?  

My can of root beer. and S with her whole family walking into the church.  :)

17.  It seems like the water situation is worse where you are now than in most places you have been...that surprises me because you're so much closer to the big city.  Is it really that way, or is just my imagination that the water situation is worse there?  

No, it's worse... maybe not as bad as Santa Rosa...the water comes more, but we share the tank with people and that's where the problem is.... 

18.  Did anything unusual or strange happen this week? 

Not that I can remember... it has been raining more but it rains for like 5 minutes and then stops, lol, and it's always sooo dang hot!

19.  What are you looking forward to this week? 

I am looking forward to the stake conference. 

20.  What did Pres Dester have to say this week?  

He talked about our companions and why it is that we preach two by two and then he repeated some of the mission rules that apply to helping and loving our companions. And he said that we can't go to the mall for my birthday which made me sad.  I won't lie....I cried a little.  I'm SO tired of my clothes.  I have found that there are a lot that I just don't wear because they show sweat, or the fabric is just too hot, or the skirts are double layers of knit and so they're too hot or not comfortable to walk in. I'm excited to open my birthday packages and see what clothes you sent!  :-)

21.  What was the best thing and the worst thing you ate this week? 

The best thing... Marcia's birthday cake! It was a vanilla cake with peaches in the middle and on top and it was really good! The worst thing.... I don't know. I think some old peanut butter that I had that I bought in El Dorado... 

Yup, that's about all I got folks... I'm not too exciting. 

I love you! 

Hermana Gisseman

Me with Hna N

Our view

Making a big birthday card for Marcia

With Marcia


Root beer!

Painted my toes...