Monday, June 24, 2013

June 24, 2013

Hola Familia!!!

Oh my goodness, this has been an amazing week! So much has happened, and it has been incredible. There´s so much to say!

First of all, I am sorry for the scare last week! I am doing absolutely fine, no need to worry. :) It seems that I still was very new to Peru, and a little stressed about everything - how to get the things I need, how to overcome sicknesses (haha), how to cope with the work and enjoy life, etc. I probably asked for too many little things that aren't really important Mom, but don´t worry. Everything always changes RIGHT after email time! During P-day and the rest of the week, so, I apologize. I actually have a very tender story to share about how I recovered, with the most tender love and care from the little abuelita that lives above us, oh my goodness. I wet my pillow with tears that night because of her kindness to me. I think I´m going to include it in a letter I'll write to Gma and Gpa, and have them share it with you all too. This little abuelita, is the owner of our apartment, and is a member, and the sweetest lady I've ever met. She is like my Peruvian grandma. Also, our pensionista, Hna. Felicita Llontob, is like my little Peruvian mother. She is so so kind, really an amazing lady, the Relief society President, our laundry person, and she cooks the most incredible food! So, I am so grateful for them both. And ALL of the members here, are amazing. really. I am getting fat! Haha, they always feed us. And honestly I love the food, it is my favorite! Two families had us over to celebrate my birthday, and we made a cake! It was so fun, and really good! They took pictures, and said they're going to put them on facebook and try to show the pictures to Mom. Their names are Janet, and Nataly. They are so kind! 
Elder Clarke & Elder Arancibia
Okay, also before I get started talking all about our investigadors and what has been happening, I want to thank Aunt Ida May and Grandpa for their letters to me! I got them last week, and made me so happy. I am going to take my companion to lunch, too :) you´re the best! Oh, also. I found out that sending letters is really pricy. I am going to send a lot though, I am just not sure when. Sending a single letter is 18-20 soles, and a package is 60. Also good info, 2.66 Soles = 1 dollar, mas o menos. So, for the most part, everything is really cheap down here! Like, okay. So last week for P-Day, we all went to the city to buy stuff, and..:WOW!! It´s so crazy. They have TONS of stuff. The city is absolutely a jungle, I can´t even explain it right now. But also there are a lot of American things that are sold, like Nike and stuff like that. All of the products that have any little imperfection get sent down to places here like Peru, and they sell them all for super cheap. Like, 40-50 soles for super nice shoes, jackets, clothes, etc. When you convert it to dollars, it´s way cheap. I bought a nice sturdy pillow, some sweet sweats that are like stretchy pants for sleeping super warm for like 15 soles, and a classy very nice and thick sweater for 30 soles to wear while proselyting. It´s nice. Even though it´s not that cold here, I still wear a sweater almost every day just so that I won´t get sick. Every day I do, I think to myself that Mom would be so proud of me, for taking care of myself and wearing sweaters like she always told me to but I never did! Now I am. It only takes one experience of getting sick to try to do all you can to not get sick anymore. I really am taking care of myself, and with time I know how to do that better. I also cleaned the shower and toilet, so good today! Man. Dad would be proud. Haha :) 

Dad! That super sweet Training Worldwide meeting you went to last night, we got to watch a broadcast of the whole thing! Oh my goodness, it was AMAZING. That is SO cool you were there. Amazing things learned!! This work is so incredible. I love the gospel, the Lord, and His ways.
Also, I want to say Happy Birthday to Uncle Ken this past week, and cousin Natalie as well!! I was thinking of them too. :) 

I had such a good birthday!! We had a baptism planned, which would have been a great present, but it fell through. But we have 3 people getting baptized next week - it´ll be awesome!! But in the morning on Saturday we went to the stake center for our investigators to have interviews with a member of Mission presidency cuz there were some issues to clear up, and we had to wait a long time. So, during that time, BEST present EVER. I got to play the piano for a while! A ton of the good hymns and songs I know. It made my whole life. Also, I ate so much bread!! I love the bread, and panderia here. And we had a cake and stuff too, it was surely the best :)
Also, Saturday night, Bishop asked us to speak in sacrament meeting for sacrament meeting on mission work, and we did! It was such a good experience for me to prepare and give it in Spanish. Spanish is really coming well for me now. It was such a tender moment, as I expressed my gratitude and love to the members of this ward here in Pamplona, I cried. And couldn't see my notes, which was a problem haha. But a little girl from the congregation ran up and gave me a tissue, and I continued! It was so special. Also, had an exchange with Elder Usma, district leader, in his area, and Mannn. It was ALL hills, tons. It was...seriously, an adventure. Like that's when it hit me, I´m in a foreign country! And at times it can be difficult to do the work of the Lord here, but I learned that as we work our best, the Lord is pleased and blesses us and I have seen that first hand. I am so grateful for the opportunity to be in His work. 

Elder Arancibia is the best!!! It is so fun, every night he reads talks in English and has to translate tons of words which I help him with, and he is getting really good! We have lots of fun, and he is such a happy good character. I am so blessed to have him. I also am learning so many good things from his example in lessons and stuff. He´s my favorite! Hopefully I´m going to send some pictures today. Also, he is so kind! Right when I got sick that morning a couple weeks ago, he disinfected the whole floor while I rested for a bit! And he always sweeeps every night. He´s the best. 

Okay, I had better get going, but I just want to tell you all how much I love you, and I will talk with you much more later! I have such a strong testimony of this gospel, Jesus Christ and His atonement, and this mission work. I am so grateful for every opportunity to build my faith, which happens a lot. I love you all!! :)

Elder Clarke

Moroni 8:16

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