Hola from somewhere over the rainbow!
A few things…
Dogs bard all night here. All night.
We live in a cute casa with some Latin sisters, and I never know what they are saying to me. Let’s just say that between the sisters & our teachers, I’ve mastered the smile and nod.
We get pizza on Tuesdays and that’s kind of fun.
We get to tie blankets for a Christmas service activity and it makes me so tired. I just cannot stay awake.
We aren’t allowed to listen to music here, and that makes me so sad you could never know.
Sometimes I miss my marked scriptures because I’ll be looking for
my notes & they’re not there! But at the same time I must say thank you for the new ones. It sure is nice to have all the pages intact.
I found a spider in our casa and about lost it.
We had tacos once and that was the best day ever.
We do a language program called TALL and it is my least favorite.
I spent all my money on stamps, so sorry about the Mexico charge.
We had to do a three legged race and I wanted to die because my ankle was bleeding.
We have a problem using our first names when we tell stories.
We spend 10 -11 of our 16 hour day in the classroom. Just think about that.

Sometimes they feed us weird things for breakfast. For example… spicy tamales or a ham sandwhich, but I don’t complain.

Curse: My hair is legitimately awful here. All the time. It looks so frizzy, and dry, and nasty.

We got to watch the Tampico, Mexico Temple dedication, but they turned out the lights and everyone slept. Oops. Also, I’m pretty sure President Uchtdorf spoke better Spanish than I do, so that was a stab to the heart.
Oh man! There are green parrots everywhere here, and despite how loud they are I kind of love them. I’m also extremely jealous that all of the Latinos are Disney Princesses and can catch them with their bare hands. How does one even do that?
Mexico has the best Christmas lights. The CCM is in the bottom of a valley so we look to the side and there are lots of houses on a hill with lights on them and it’s literally a flashing fiesta on their casa.

One of my favorite things here… people walk in the
middle of the busy streets, weaving through cars where people are driving, and sell stuff. And at stop lights people will roll down their windows and buy stuff.

Because we can’t listen to music, sometimes we sing or apply quotes to various situations. My favorites have been these:
What do you want from me?
You think you can do these things, but you just can’t, Nemo!
It could be worse…

I taught my first lesson without notes… So that’s what I thought after
being trolled so hard… “It could be worse”.

Would you like to know what it’s like to have a companion? Or two… I think it’s described well in the stalker song that goes… “Every breath you take…” But then apply every bite you take, every stinky sock, every bowel movement, etc., and you have a decent idea of what this is like. I doubt I’ll complain about privacy again. Also, Hermana P is from California, so she’s pretty sensitive to earthquakes, and she says there have been several small ones while we’ve been here, and I’m
so very upset I can’t feel them.

On Wednesday I got dad’s letter. THANK YOU. And thank you for the many letters after that. They are so appreciated. I sure love you all a lot. I hope they don’t cost you lots of money, but a big thank you for the nuts as well. Such a nice pick me up. Thank you to all who write me emails. They do more than you know. Also, thanks for the soap, mom.

 

Frustration… I learned this week that Spanish is not a perfect translation to English, This upsets me greatly
because English is so concise and there’s a word for everything, but in Spanish there’s not. And this is upsetting & confusing to me, & I sit alone. Apparently I’m the only human who cares about this. Struggle bus, population: One. Also, the fact that they kind of just told us to learn Spanish. They gave us books and scheduled study time, and then just speak to us in Spanish. I’m feeling as though it could be going better, but that’s just me. Oh, and they give us homework and I’m always just like, please no, I don’t know the answers. It’s the same in class. I just pray they don’t call on me because I promise I can’t tell you what that means. It’s like a high school flashback I didn’t sign up for. However, this place reminds me of school because people fall asleep everywhere.

 

Go ahead and look up Mexico, the Virgin of Guadeloupe and then you will understand that I am not exaggerating in the slightest when I say I thought we’d entered a war zone from December 10th to the 13th. They shoot off these fireworks that are just for the sound, so they sound like a canon. Welcome to Pirates of the Caribbean.

Quick funny… We live with other Hermanas in our casa and the bathrooms are connected through a hole and window, so you can hear when someone showers or brushes their teeth. Anyway, one night I had showered and walked out of the bathroom while I was brushing my teeth, and no exaggeration, I returned to the smell of death. So I grab my stuff, run out, and shut the door, but before I knew it the smell starts seeping out. So we’re all practically hanging out the window dying it smelled so awful. Long story short, I gagged and then slept with my air freshener in my hand.

 

The devotionals we here exceed all expectations. Wow do I look forward to Sundays & Tuesdays. I just want to share a few thoughts that have had an impact on me this week.

“We cannot become what we want to be by remaining what we are.” -Max Depree

I’ve been thinking a lot about charity, and the fact that our reaction to a situation literally has the power to change the situation itself.

“Ultimately, charity possesses us… We do not possess it.” -David A. Bednar

“We must think more of holy things and act like the Savior would expect His Disciples to act. We should, at every opportunity ask ourselves, “What would Jesus do?”, and then act more courageously upon the answer.” -Howard W. Hunter

We can all be like Jesus Christ someday. It all depends on what we do. Jesus said, when thou art converted, strengthen thy brethren. This makes me think of the account with Peter, where He asks, “Do you love me?”
Well, do we love Him? I guess, the question is, do I love Him enough to do this? Yes, a mission is difficult at times, and sometimes I think I’d rather be home watching a Hallmark movie with Dad and Devon, but I have to decide whether or not I love Him more than these. More than these is figuratively all things. Peter, do you love Jesus more than your boat, and your nets, and your business? Well, he did, and that’s when He became Peter, the great Apostle.
Do I love Him enough to leave my bed at home, my music, clothes, and all that is familiar? Do I love Him enough to walk away from my friends, family, and opportunities, literally leaving it all behind? Yes, I must. Then, when the 18 months is over, I can go home, but not back to that life. Not back to who I was, for this call is forever. Sure, I’ll sit in my house and listen to my favorite Jack Johnson songs, but do I ever get realeased from feeding His sheep? No, I don’t think so. It’s a forever calling, and I will love Him and praise Him forever.

I love you, and I pray for you.

Con mucho amor,

Hermana Holt

Scriptures… 2 Nephi 4 & Alma 7

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