September 26, 2011

wowee wowzers...​.Congreso is a huge melting pot!

I just would love to give you the low down on everything there is just never enough time!
Yesterday I really got to appreciate the GREATNESS of the area where I´m serving. Lots of great missionaries have come before us and the leaders here are always trying to do better, be better and work in the Lord´s way. We had a huge meeting (at 7 am.....blehh...) with all the bishops of the stake and the stake presidency and the missionaries to have...stake council. I LOVE it! They are so set on helping the missionaries that we have this meeting once a month to make sure that the wheels stay squeeky-free. We have great programs in the Church that have not been used as well as they could here but now that´s going to change. We had PRACTICES with the bishops and counselors to practice teaching the program of 5-5-5 families and we did them President Gulbrandsen/Preach My Gospel style so the practice, then evaluate and suggest improvements. So great!
Then at church we got to talk to a lot of great people. Our ward is the ´passing through´ ward. All the tourists, backpackers, etc. that have hotels and hostels here are directed to our ward for however long they stay. Yesterday we found out the name of the great Young Men´s president, Hermano Morency from Haiti. He´s here studying electromechanic engineering....whoa. Gives me the willies...I remember math....I had nightmares about it the other night....
Listen, trying to get to know a new ward is HARD. A lot of names, a lot of faces, callings they hold to remember...sooo much. So I’m actually really grateful for the weirdo talent I have to remember names and faces even just hearing it once. It also makes the members feel really special when we see them other places than church and we can greet them by name. They love us thoughJ
We had lunch with a GREAT, cute, cute couple yesterday. (I hope she reads my blog today :) Found a fellow blog stalker...I mean, lover;) They are from Brasil, he´s a returned missionary from the Sao Paulo....something mission. Dang I thought I could remember it but if Danny said it I would think it was the right one. It´s the Sao Paulo mission that DOESN´T have a compass direction in the name....anywho. SUPER great, SUPER cute couple. He´s the Elders Quorum President and she´s the Young Women´s President. Super busy being a newly wed couple and callings, working and studying medicine. I just love them. We were eating, laughing, talking (in THREE languages) and had a wonderful time getting to know this faithful couple. They both speak Spanish (obviously), Portuguese (another obvious) AND fluent English. My favorite part of the whole thing was that we were switching back and forth between Spanish, English and Portuguese (for them) and had a great conversation about the blessings of the gospel in our lives. It was so wonderful to also remember lovely American things like cheesecake and talk about how great cupcakes are. Hahaha long story..... Anywho, love them and am so excited to be working with them in Congreso! They were the ones who were telling us how excited our ward is about having sisters. It´s really hard to not get prideful when people are saying how wonderful sister missionaries are, how much they love us and appreciate the spirit we bring. It´s just because we are sooo beautiful, so great and so spiritual. It´s really hard to be a sister missionary :) hahaha JOKE. It´s such a great privilege and opportunity for which I will be eternally grateful.
Hna Diaz is from Peru, a returned missionary and also SO great! She opens her schedule for us to go with us to citas and invites us in her home and is so understanding about our diet. Not ON a diet but just the fact that we DON´T eat like Elders. Some of the sisters may or may not have been offended when we didn´t have seconds when the first plate was plenty. Boof. So this week we tried to repent for the offense that may have been taken BUT ended up paying for it with reeeeeaaalllly painful days. Overeating KILLED the spirit and made us run for the nearest bathrooms instead of being able to calmly talk with everyone around us. Poor Hna Shelley suffered worse than me so not even being used to the food yet and ALMOST had a True Missionary experience...Remember that thing Brady Bills told me about?.....yeah, NOT cool.
We had zone conference this week and the night before we were asked to prepare a 3 minute talk on Alma 37:37. Every missionary prepared and only a few were called upon to share what they had felt. My dear, lovely, courageous comp Hna Shelley was one of the lucky 4 that President called at random. She spoke all but two words in Spanish!!! I knew there were other trainers there but they all have Latin comps and mine showed her true colors as a ROCKSTAR! Love her. She did a great job and I was so proud. 3 weeks and we can already talk very fluidly. When we´re teaching about the gospel, she´s 100%. When we start asking about life, daily things like work, buying things etc....I start to lose her. The thing is, she´s gotten so good at PRETENDING that she´s understanding and sympathizing that I forget! Sometimes I´m just so impressed that she´s getting it but as we walk away she asks what exactly we were talking about. I make noises and faces that she follows when she´s lost the words for what we´re talking about. But she´s doing so great. I´m not even worried about her. She´s got great goals, high expectations and we are climbing surely to reach them together. I love her and am so grateful for her!!
Hey mom, remember how she was my blog stalker? She has one too. Her mom updates it like you. WE´re like the same person.
Ok, we have a lot of work to do. Today is spring cleaning and there are 20 dollar Toms on calle Florida (a super tourist souvenir street of great stuff.) with my name on them. Cleaning is super fun.....AFTER when you can enjoy the clean, non-man smelling apartment. We´ll get there. :)
Listen, I LOVE being here. I love you all and I am so grateful to know that the truth of our Heavenly Father is made known to us. And I know that this is the true Church, we have the restored gospel because of the love that God has for all of His children. I know that this is true without a shadow of a doubt. Not even the hardest of hearts, the most negative of souls could chip away at my testimony of the Book of Mormon, of the Restoration of the Church of Jesus Christ or of my divine role as His daughter. I love the Lord and I am grateful for my portion of the Spirit with which He blesses me as I strive to invite Him into my heart and into my life. This IS the Lord´s work. Hna Shelley and I are on His errand and we LOVE every minute.
It´s finally starting to be spring and warm and the ice cream is calling my name.....
I love you all!
Be good. Have a lovely week and ENJOY GENERAL CONFERENCE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! LOOOOVE IT! I can´t believe it´s here again. We are listening to all the talks from April in preparation and we are inviting EVERYONE we SEE! Hooray! THIS weekend we get to listen to a Prophets voice!
Favorite talk summaries next week? yeah? Ok great!!!
Love you all!

Suzette does not want to know the count down, but I will show you!!

Hermana Gonzalez

September 19, 2011

hey hey!!!

Today's email from Hna González:

Yo yo yo,
hey there family!!! I can´t even begin to tell you how much we have to talk about when I get home because there is no way that all the great stuff can be relayed in such rudimentary means as EMAIL. No great argentine hand gestures or phrases or facial expressions to get the great story telling effect. <bummer. I will tell you, first of all, that I am SO grateful to have such a wonderful family that makes me cry of happiness that you are MINE. MY mom, MY dad, MY dear brothers and MY LITTLE POOHHEAD! Seriously, 6 of the greatest blessings I have from my loving Heavenly Father. Wow.
Got a message from MATT super weird that that´s his name...ex elder Griffeth! Hooray! AND from Steff AND from Naty AND Brady!!! Happy day! I love these people! That has to be a record of how many friends have written me in a week because I ALSO got ANOTHER dear elder letter from the adorable Emma Cano! Gosh she makes me laugh. Good thing Hna Shelley has like the SAME sense of humor as I do so she also thinks things are funny. ALL the time.
So Monday last week was pretty great. Had a noche de hogar and got some new investigators though it would have been MUCH more successful had there not been a LOUD atheist who didn´t let the other people really feel the spirit because of his contention. And he wouldn´t leave though he kept saying he didn´t want to participate. Whatevs. Part of the new training program (there´s a booklet and everything so I don´t have to PRETEND to be good at everything, the Quorum of the Twelve and the First presidency has made sure that it doesn´t just get left to ME but that the Lord has both hands on the wheel....but MY foot is on the gas.... :) ) So part of the program is that by week 2 the new missionary is taking charge of starting lessons and extending baptismal invitations. Basically Hna Shelley is the!!! She takes every chance, every challenge to make sure she isn´t getting left behind. She kept saying that she felt like a tag along the first couple days because she couldn´t understand the natives but she really isn´t! I know that I have to let her try, she will NOT mess up so badly that it can´t be fixed, I have no worries about her. SO basically, all I have to do is shut MY mouth and look at her and smile encouragingly and she takes charge! More like, she opens her mouth and acts on the faith of having a promise fulfilled that´s in DyC 84:85. She is SOOO Courageous! And it´s like not even a thing anymore. She is such an example of everything and I´m so grateful to be with her. She prays fervently every chance we get to pray for the gift of tongues and charity and it WORKS. She works really hard to understand but the speaking part is not even a problem. I help with the wierdo masculine/feminine Spanish has going on and pronunciation and that´s it! She´s a rock star!!!
Then Tuesday and Thursday were leadership training. It´s for all zone and district leaders and trainers and the new missionaries. It´s basically one of my favorite things that we have as missionaries. Zone conf and district meetings = great but I LOVE two days of getting fed straight from President in the things that he is learning as he´s learning it. Not that I don´t have confidence in my missionary leaders but the trickledown effect is so unfair to compare from hearing it straight from President´s mouth. It´s crazy!!
We learned a lot and I have been repenting so that I can have more faith and confidence that I can do the Lord´s work if and only if I trust in Him and not my own strength. And tomorrow is zone conference! Wow, I can´t believe this is week 3....this is going way too fast.
Last week we got a lot of former investigators to remember what they felt at one time and extended a lot of baptismal dates. We were even preparing a baptism for this Sunday! I was really excited but more for Hna Shelley with her first baptism. all came crashing down. Dandy, the investigator, had to work the day of his baptismal interview and didn´t show up THEN didn´t even answer the phone when we went to pick him up for church. We were basically crushed. THEN I went to ask the bishop a question about a meeting after church and got asked to give a talk....not BAD. I LOVE speaking in church. But this was officially the shortest notice EVER. Like 10 minutes. But hey, I happen to carry a handy dandy general conference talk in my scriptures. I love it. It´s my favorite that´s why i always have it with me. It´s by Pres Uchtdorf from may 2010 the young women general session, called ‘Happily ever After’. SOO great. I didn´t talk about fairy tales so much as the tribulation and struggle before our happily ever after which means the Temple and Eternal life with our loved one. There´s a song that I LOVE on my ipod that´s by Jenny Phillips also called ‘Happily Ever After’. There´s a line that says, ´when trials are hard you´re just between once upon a time and your triumph in the end´. So, so, so great. People who weren´t in church last week saw me and asked where the elders had gone. haha it´s fun. The members are really excited for us to be here. Hna Chavez just about cries every time she sees us. She´s a convert from Paraguay, she´s pretty much the cutest grandma ever and her missionaries were also sisters. Aww.
So the baptismal dates we have set are still under construction. We have to make plans every day for how we are going to help these people reach this goal. Mostly, we need to have a huge group wedding and get a discount on cake :) haha pray that the normally sluggish argentine system for marriage goes abnormally fast, yeah?
Oh, some not so happy stuff went down this weekend that doesn´t really matter because hey, it´s over now. Things like the baptism falling through, weird contacts on the street, people stiffing us on citas, not being home/sick until 7 pm; we found out that only 3 converts of the last 2 years are ACTIVE. Bummer to the max. Then Hna Shelley and I were walking to our back up plans (thank goodness for plan b) and we were kinda walking in silence (a strange thing, NEVER happens for us....only when we´re sleeping) and suddenly we both started giggling. A giant poster we walked by said ¨Argentine Tour: The RICKY MARTIN experience¨. Of course everything else had gone wrong but at least Ricky Martin´s popularity is still alive and thriving. All was put right in the world. hahaha
It made my day.
So this week is going to be yet more of the work hard, serve more and FIND PEOPLE!
I love the mission. I feel like I am such a different person. I no longer am cowardly to hide behind an excuse like ´I’m shy´ or ´I can´t do it´. This isn´t MY mission. This is the Lord´s mission. Even though it´s hard doesn´t mean it´s impossible. I love the Lord, My Savior and Redeemer. Through Him, all my hopes are real and my love and life are full. I know this Church is the only true church. The Book of Mormon is true and so important in my life.
Love you all. I wrote a ton. oops. I waiting for the pictures to load and one is struggling. They are pics we took today at the Congreso Nacional and some pics from Tigre with locro (mmm....Hna Whitehead´s fav...just kidding. It makes her yak) and fun stuff I haven´t been able to send in a long time. Hopefully the pics with hna Campos and elder Griffeth also go through.
love love love love love love love you all.
Until next week,
Hermana Gonzalez
(haha sam, i´m funny right) ;)

                                                    Suzette and  Hna Natalys Campos
                                                        Congreso Nacional building
                                Beautiful missionary (what can I say, I am her mom)
                                                            Hna Shelley and Hna González
                                                 So excited I think she will explode :)

Until next week!!! Mom González.

September 12, 2011

Hey hey, it´s a girl!!

Ok, That may be the LAST time I make reference to Hermana Shelley as my ´daughter´. I´m not really a fan of the titles like that. But my new companion is WONDERFUL! I am so truly blessed to get to serve with her! She is an amazing example of obedience, we work really well together and it´s really like she came PRE trained and I´m just her first companion in the actual field of labor.
I was SUPER nervous as we were getting ready to go to the mission home to pick her up. Hna Whitehead and her new comp Hna Vargas from Guatemala (such a CUTIE love her) went to drop me off and we kinda said goodbye there.
SO once we walked into the mission home where all of our comps were waiting anxiously for the trainers to walk in, (we always walk in singing Called to serve, it´s a hair raising spiritual moment as we welcome them with full voices and they join in) I looked at the 4 sisters that were sitting, bright eyed on the couch and tried to be nonchalant about staring to see who might be my dear companion. 3 north americans and a latin (argentine) sister. I was so excited!!! Hna Shelley´s name was called with mine and I went and gave her a giant hug. I sat and started talking to her in Spanish (which she speaks amazingly well!) and we got to know each other a little. It was super funny because she was just laughing and told me she had a confession to make. (Because of the coming confession I KNEW we would get along amazingly well and I would just love her) She said: I know that I´m a really awkward person and kind of a stalker because I knew who you were when you walked in. When I got my call I googled everything I could on the mission and your BLOG was one of the first pages to come up. I read it and all through the MTC I would tell my companions, “wouldn´t it be so funny if I met Hna Gonzalez or if she was my trainer?´ hahaha So great!!! haha looking through the pictures on my camera and ones I’ve printed she was like, yeah, I’ve seen that, oh her? Yeah you wrote about her I think...haha LOVE IT! Stalkers know what´s going on in life. The end.
 Soooo....maybe somewhere out there, another future BS AS North missionary is reading my blog. COOL!
So Hna Shelley is 21, from Mesa, Arizona (so she´s freezing in the Argentine spring while I´m dying of heat) and is so great. She gets my humor and follows my sarcasm. Sooooooooooo amazing. I really don´t feel like I´m qualified to be her trainer and example but I know the Lord doesn´t call the prepared but prepares the called. Thank you all for all the prayers in our behalf, we´ve certainly felt them.
We were called to open or whitewash the area of Congreso. It´s like, pure city. I put a few things that you can google images from and you´ll know where I am. It´s where all the government buildings are. Hna Shelley was saying that it looks like walking around D.C. with a little New York City thrown in the background. The Congreso Nacional building is immense and beautiful. I LOVE the old architecture and the feel of this area. It´s like what I imagined BS AS would be before I got here.
I will definitely miss the great people I got to know and love in Tigre but being here at this time in this place is what God prepared for me so I will go and do as He has commanded.
The ward here is small but strong. The Bishop is amazing and he and his wife are sooooooooooo great. Their kids spout the book of Mormon. More about them another day. Like the time the 6 year old Fabricio was quoting 1 nefi 4 to me while walking down the street and how Nefi´s courage to kill Laban was something he hopes he won´t have to face. WOW!
The relief society president is Brazilian and is so funny. It is really hard for ME to understand her but nearly impossible for Hna Shelley!!! Such a crazy visit to her house when we met her hahaha I told her about Danny´s mission and she just went off about how lucky he is.....haha
We haven´t gotten lost yet which is truly a tender mercy. I didn´t realize I had been in the country long enough to get around when I have NO idea where I am but apparently I have been! I know exactly how all the stuff works and if not, I know how to ask so as to not sound like someone the person can take advantage of. Good stuff. The Lord is really blessing me and I hope that it continues. We are trying to find new investigators, families and men to teach. WHERE ARE THEY? Wherever they are hiding we will find them. :)
Oh, there is a brother in our ward who writes articles and takes pictures and makes videos for the Liahona and church website.....basically, he is just waiting to make us famous. He´s shooting a video in a month that he wants us to ´star´ in so I’ll let you know when it´s done and you can look it up on YouTube. haha When he started talking about the appeal of sister missionaries and all the stuff he wants to do now that we´re here I couldn´t help thinking....why me? Hna Peña would have DIED for this stuff. All I’m thinking is....can´t. Takes time from teaching and finding. haha Wow, the Lord blesses us so much. I love being a missionary.
The whole ward was super excited to receive sisters, especially the hermanas because a lot of them are returned missionaries! Hooray!
Ok, gots to go. More next week, love you all. Be good, take care and thanks for finding me that talk! PERFECT!  Ps Brett Sam and Ruth and Kam should all read it. CHANGES YOUR LIFE!
BE the fourth missionary. Be SMART.
Love you all, have a wonderful week,
Love forever,
Hermana Gonzalez

September 5, 2011

hey hey´​ll never believe...​..

Earlier TODAY!!! I made it!

So once upon a time there was a sister missionary who LOVED her family and was super duper grateful for everything that they had done for her, prayers said, emails written, etc.
I have big news and I think I will ask you to pray extra hard for me because
 I have been called to TRAIN! 
AND, like the wonderful sense of humor that the Lord has as far as challenges He throws my way....I am OPENING an area with my new companion! Wow, right? Sound familiar? Like....10 months ago with Steffannie Peña? Yeah...I´m leaving Tigre which makes me super sad because I was already loving all the people, members everyone but I know that the Lord has prepared my new companion and me and the future investigators we will teach together for this specific place and time. I just can´t even tell you how nervous and excited and sick I feel!
I will meet my new companion tomorrow when she arrives. Whether she is from the US or Latina, I don´t know but next week I will tell you everything! We are definitely going to work hard and I am so excited. Pray for me and this new missionary for our safety and success in a new area.
As of right now, I´m spending today and part of tomorrow still with Hna Whitehead and her new comp Hna Vargas from Guatemala (like my dear EMMA!!!) Hna Whitehead is going to be senior companion and I am SOOO excited for her!
Real fast, how cool that Brady came to dinner! Thanks for inviting him and feeding him....haha He
can´t resist a delicious meal! haha. I´m so glad that everyone won out of that night..last night? I LOVE zucchini bread! I can´t believe it. There are sooo many random things that I miss and I forget all about. But tell Brady thanks, he hilarious and has ALWAYS made me laugh but tell him that I will make him and you all argentine empanadas when I get home. Doesn´t the thought just make your mouth water???? Mine is....... I´m HUNGRY!!
I GOT the package with the hot sauce I LOVE IT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! It made it safely with the bobby pins, a book of Mormon and post-its. Anything else that was supposed to be in there? No tights yet....was that ever sent? I found some here anyway so it´s cool.

I saw Hna Campos last night at her despedida and I hugged and cried and laughed with her. I can´t believe I had only been separated from her 5 weeks and I missed her like I do my blood sister! Love you poohhead even though you didn´t write me this week..... mwah!
Hna Salas was also attacked in a giant hug. SOOO long since I’d seen her. Gosh, I missed being near the other missionaries.
A good friend Elder Griffeth also finished the mission, super weird because I met him when I first got here. We bonded at despedidas and zone and leadership conferences. haha He´s great. I´m not sure what he´s doing when he gets back but hey, in the rush of everything I didn´t get his email or anything. He has mine but I don´t even know his first name! If someone by the last name Griffeth adds Steffannie on fb, tell him he needs to write me with his info too!!! I was completely overwhelmed by all the transfer craziness that I didn´t get to ask him..anywho.
Elder Neilsen is back! Don´t remember if I told you, think I did, but he had to be flown to the US for a surgery on his eye because something crazy and metal flew into it. I saw him too and he looks great and is so happy to be back in Argentina. I didn´t get to talk to him much either. He´s like my little brother on the mission.
Ok, I gots to go but I just have to tell you that I am so excited for everything that is coming in the future. It is going to be a great challenge and a GREAT reminder that this is the Lord´s work not mine and I need His help and guiding Hand every step of the way to be able to accomplish what it is He has sent me to do. ESPECIALLY in showing a new missionary how missionary work is done following everything to the letter out of Preach My Gospel. This is no funny business, it´s not vacation.  We can rest later. There are souls at stake and their salvation is on our heads. I LOVE my Savior. I know He lives. He died for me to save me from my sins and I strive daily to be worthy to be with Him and my eternal family in the Celestial Kingdom.
I love this work. I know we are led by men truly called of God.
I love you and will see you all laters!!!
Hna Gonzalez

PS. I had heard NOTHING of earthquakes before last night when President talked about it. Not even the Argentina one. I´m glad Morgan is ok. And what did I hear about a hurricane in DC?? Tell me!!!! I want to know about all these disaster things! Hna Whitehead´s brother is living in Florida right now. Something happen there too? And an earthquake in ROME?? WHAT??!
P.S. and tell Emma I don´t know when she wrote me but I already got her dearelder letter! Super duper fast! hooray! Dearlelder still works great! Tell people to use it. I think the whole stamp and stationary weirds people out or people think a lot of people love me and write me, but it´s all lies!!!! My dear family writes me every week but friends??.....hmmm let´s just say, I think I know who my real friends are..... :) Anywho. Spread the dearelder word! Love you family! I´ll tell you about my new comp next week!

my hands hurt

From August 29, 2011

I have been writing like a mad woman trying to get everything done as quickly as possible. Seriously I think I have to learn how to type better or I’ll get carpel tunnel....blah
Anywho, Ruthie! I love you and I am so proud of you! I am so excited that you are going to be working on branching out and especially your talent with the guitar. Seriously, Brady has studied a lot about the song writing he may be able to help and you have so many great things in your head that are waiting to get out and be heard in a beautiful melody with an angelic voice. Go get ´em chica!
This week we FINALLY got two girls confirmed after their was a lot tougher than I thought it could ever be. Hna Whitehead and I talk a lot about the things we´ve learned from the mission. One of them I´m fighting with. Two things I loved before the mission were dogs and children. Remember Mom, how I was planning my life around having a dog? Well, the mission taught me that love can change....I do NOT like dogs and will never have one. The one I´m fighting with is children. So far, I have been cured of being baby hungry. Before the mish I could hardly wait until I would be a I have to pray that the Lord will give me patience and the love back....later. I still plan on being a mom, Mom, but NOT SOON.
I forgot to tell you more about Hna Whitehead, so many things happen to us and we bust up laughing and then we forget to tell our families about it. We have crazy stories from everything but mostly I wanted you to know that she describes EVERYONE as crazy. CRAZY. I´ll say, oh who´s this person? oh her?...She´s CRAZY. haha she´s such a nut. I love her.
We are finding and trying to find a lot of new people to share the gospel with. The investigators we´ve had are NOT progressing which is the saddest thing because we teach them, learn to love them and then get tempted to keep hanging around to see if they´ll change or really progress. Dropping investigators is super hard and heart breaking.
I love the mission! I love the Gospel and know that the Lord has a wonderful, perfect plan for us, the children He loves.
Les quiero un montón!
P.s. look for Annika Huish on facebook she was my comp for a couple weeks and I love her. She´s great!
Love you all
Soooo much
Until next week
Hna Gonzalez

Tigre and Hna Whitehead

From August 22, 2011

So I love this area with all my heart. I miss the beloved people in the South but I must say that there is something really exciting and great about this change of area. There is so much work to be done and I don´t feel like I’m plateauing like I did at the end of my 6th month in Rio Gallegos. This is a really touristy area and the train station is literally right next to our house. Which is cool because we have quick transportation like, 30 seconds away but we also hear the trains all hours of the night. No biggie though, I sleep like the dead. I don´t wake up until I have to:) haha but Hna Whitehead was telling me last night that it was crazy how fast I fall asleep. My body is just sooo used to laying my head down after praying and giving over to sleep at 10 30.
Anywho, our apartment is also getting a face lift. It had been terribly cared for the past...I don´t know....YEARS and when I got here I was a little grossed out and pretty disappointed. In the south, my comps and I had kept it spotless and well organized and de-cluttered in order to more fully invite the Spirit to dwell with us. Poor Tigre apartment...Hna Whitehead got here and said, ok well, this is the mission. Then I got here and turned it around. We spent an hour and a half getting up to our elbows in suds to get weird, crazy caked on dirt and grime off of everything and now it´s a lovely, nice smelling apartment and proper home to the Spirit and calling we have. We are also going to paint which is super exciting! Because once upon a time, they used duct tape or something all over the walls and pulled the paint off with it. But all is well because we are going to get that taken care of.
It´s incredible how quickly light and peace come into our lives when we are clean. Not just where we live or where we sleep but our daily lives. When we are clean in thought, word and deed, we are happier, we feel ´lighter´ and we have the promise of the Lord that we will have His spirit to be with us.
Oh, I wanted to do like a profile on my comp since I always forget to talk about my dear companions. I have seriously had such great luck companion-wise because I have loved and cherished every one of them. I have like 4 new best friends in the world. It DOES help that we are connected at the hip for months at a time but that much time together, between two girls, COULD be major problems but I have had nothing of the kind. Hna Whitehead is keeping with the tradition. We adapted to each other  a little differently because we were in a trio for a couple weeks but even though we were super sad to see Hna Huish, Annika Huish, go back home, we walked away from the Mission home smiling and plowing forward into the work and I love her for it. She is from Holladay Utah, went to Skyline high school and Utah state for a while. She is one of 10 children so she´s got great stories to tell always. We fit together perfectly. If I’m not on top of things, she is. If she´s not talking because she´s grumpy from being sleepy or hungry, I’m ok. if I’m grumpy from getting rejected or wasting time, she gets us moving. She makes me laugh with her craziness and I´m so glad to get to know her so personally because in big groups she goes silent. At least I get to know how funny and great she is. I laugh constantly with her.
We gotta get going but we have all sort of crazy stuff that has happened to us. 2 weeks ago, I forgot to tell you, that we were walking to church the day of our 5 baptisms and we walked into a fight between a drunk guy and girl and a couple other guys that were trying to take the gun out of the drunk guy´s hand! whooops. I kept a cool head though my comps were super freaked out. We got behind a thick cement wall until we heard them go away and we went and got in the car and went to church.
Then this week we were walking in Rincon and there was a huge group of kids around two men throwing and punching each other. We stopped, backed away slowly and walked a reallllly long way around.
These are the craziest things that have happened to me on the mish but they are weird because they don´t faze me. I never feel scared or in danger and I know it´s because you all and many, many others pray for our safety. I know that this church is true and the Gospel of Jesus Christ has been restored by a modern prophet. If I didn´t know it, I would be home, chillin’ on the couch, bundled in a blanket or something but I am trying to give back a little for all of the blessings in my life. I would be selfish not to share it. I encourage every youth in our branch to serve. It is such a great opportunity and blessing for me, for my family and all the people I get to meet and talk to about this glorious plan our Heavenly Father has for us. Love you all!!!
Be good and safe!!!! Pictures of your old, sunburned faces please?
Love, love, love, love, love you all
Hna Gonzalez


From August 15, 2011

104 what?
 Baptisms, I wish.
 Investigators in church, even better,
 but alas, illness struck again.
 It was mostly my fault. I´ve been really stressing out PLUS pretending I´m superman so I was home yellow, barely able to walk (luckily in a trio there are TWO companions to lean on/carry you home) with a 104 degree fever! Oops, promise, I won´t let it happen again. I will bundle up Rio Gallegos style and make sure that the same thing that happened on Saturday doesn´t happen again.
It was actually a funny story. I guess most things like this are in retrospect. In this hour of need, I asked for a priesthood blessing. I was actually WAY scared because my hands were freezing, I couldn´t feel my legs and the fever was rising. In the moment, I felt like that time I got food poisoning in the south and I just threw up and was fine (though I didn´t eat for about a week) but this time I was NOT fine.
I was super nervous but companions, Hna Whitehead and Hna Huish, went into ´Mom´ mode and were tucking me in, bringing me water, making sure the leaders knew and got on calling a brother to give me a blessing. They called our Branch Presidente Torre and he and his wife and son came over asap to bless me. It is funny because this was the first meeting them ;) haha instead of a happy, ALIVE Hna Gonzalez, he met me on my ´deathbed´ blessing me to recover. He had been out of town with his wife and so what a way to make a first impression! I didn´t really talk to him, I just told him my full name (in slow first name is CRAZY for argentines. They don´t get it...good thing my comps helped.) And then a thank you. I saw him through squinty, tear-filled eyes. So pathetic and sad. haha Hna Torre was all gung-ho doctor mode touched my feverish face and then proceeded to take off the underarmour and sweaters I had not taken off because I was really cold when I got home and didn´t think ´fever´ was the reason. I was not in a state to self-diagnose but I was just cold and didn´t want to be. oops my bad.
But all is well in Tigre. After the blessing, I felt so much better. Not physically so much but mentally, emotionally and spiritually I was whole. I knew that the Lord would take care of me. And He did. Less than two hours later, the fever had broken and I slept all night without waking. Then I went to church and gave a talk in Sacrament meeting. hahaha Presidente Torre had already assigned it during the week but I kinda looked at him crazy when he announced it and I took a deep breath and got up and bore my testimony about the power of the priesthood and the Atonement of our Savior Jesus Christ. What an incredible weekend.
I love my companions. We each bring something a little different to the table. Hna Huish is all about talking to everyone, meeting new people and living a little on the wild side (like walking down weird alley ways to knock on doors I would usually avoid but hey, EVERYONE is a child of God) AND knocking on the super richy rich people´s doors. But now we have two very wealthy investigators. Not sure how long they´ll investigate but we are definitely praying that the Lord fills our mouths with the precise words and softens their hearts.
Hna Whitehead is the schedule Queen. She makes sure everything is done in a timely matter and if we don´t finish, welp, we´ve got to try harder and be faster tomorrow because it´s time for bed.
I´m really going to miss Sister Huish. It´s been a ridiculously fun couple of weeks with these two beautiful daughters of God. We have seen and done a lot together. We were talking this morning about how we can´t believe that our chapter in life together is only 2 weeks long. Feels like MONTHS. We will definitely stay in touch though! She goes home this week, by the way.
But we keep moving forward. Pause....
Shout out to my super old brother who has recently turned even older....
Are you proud of the Superman blue? Yeah, that was on purpose. Man, I am sooo soo so so sorry that I forgot to mention that last p-day. Don´t hate. Please forgive. You have no idea how awful I feel. Ask my comps. SORRY! I love you and I want to hear all about your new 24 year old life, yeah?
Ok, Ruth I´m sending huge fan finders your way. Hna Huish is from arizona so somehow we´ll work up a plan so that everyone in Utah and Arizona, maybe California, too listens to you with love. I am so excited for you and your talents. You will be a great influence in the world, I know it. You are in mine. :) Love you girlie
Brett! Haven´t heard from you in forever! Remember I love you? Good. Never forget.
Sam, you are a crazy monster. I meet 15 year olds and they remind me of you (just because of the age because you, my friend, are a diamond in the rough NAME THE MOVIE!) and I think, wow, I actually have a waaay mature brother. How lucky am I?  Hope you are still doing crazy things and imagining all the world away. Read any of the books I mentioned? I hope you are writing a book list for me (converse with my sister on this because we both know she has great indy taste) for when I get back. BUT we will have PREACH MY GOSPEL study time too so you and Brett better start brushing up. You WILL be prepared PMG missionaries BEFORE the MTC so you can rock it from the first day you hit the mission field. You are a different generation. You HAVE to be better than me and any other missionary that has been. (paraphrased quote from Elder Holland so you get the picture)
This week have more baptisms to get ready for so there is never time to stop. It´s a wonderful thing to have p-day but we are just as busy on p-day than any other day....oh well. There is no rest for the wicked so the good can´t take a vacation either :) hmm that sounded way better in my head. I´m tired. Story of my life. But like another great Elder Holland quote “give it all you´ve got. Don´t leave anything in the tank.” he was talking about finishing a race where a runner should be winded, exhausted and spent. A missionary shouldn´t leave anything on the table. There should be an ambulance waiting for her at the airport. haha I´ll call the from the plane. At the rate I´m going I just need to learn how to better rely on the Lord AND take care of myself so we don´t lose more time or days on illness that was silly and brought about by not caring for my body.
Well, folks. Love you all. I know that this work is the blood life of the Gospel. I am sharing not just my testimony of it but of all of you. I am a set apart, called representative of Christ and I strive daily to live up to the call. Many are called but few are chosen, but why are there few chosen? Look it up. Doctrine and Covenants is the BOMB we´ll talk about it next week.
Love, love, love, love you all.
Until we meet again,
Hna Gonzalez


From August 8, 2011

So here´s the really quick low down on my area and new comps....
Basically we have a ball doing missionary work, laughing our guts out and having really wonderful spiritual, growing, learning and teaching experiences all at once. SSSOOOOO great.
My companions (yes, plural) are Hermana Whitehead, who has 3 months on the mission and is fantastic, and Hermana Huish, who is a mini missionary from Arizona in President and Sister Gulbrandsen´s ward in Mesa who is here being great and serviceful and practicing Spanish before her study abroad. It´s so great to serve with them because their excitement and joy and love for the work are CONTAGIOUS! I´m not getting tired of the work but I am really tired. With them, I feel like with a new energy. Though now I really wonder what my letters are like, if they make sense at all because when I got here, I couldn´t really speak English. I hadn´t realized that I had spoken very, very little English for 9 months and I was more fluent in Spanish. Weird but hey, Hna Whitehead got a kick out of my mixed up, stuttered sentences so it was fine, haha.
Hna Whitehead is from Holladay Utah! and basically we get along great and the three of us make a lot of goals and reach them!
This last week when I THOUGHT I was staying in the south, they were here waiting for me and working alone! It is so amazing that these two sisters accomplished so much having so little time in the country and little language skill. Obviously and their testimony is that the Lord provided for them. I came mid-week and helped them make sure the baptisms that they had worked for came to be......

 5 BAPTISMS!!!!!!!!!! And 12 investigators in church!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! (Hna. Huish I stole your picture, Suzette’s mom).Can I just tell you how much I wanted to cry all of Sunday?? So many miracles came walking in the door by themselves and I know that Tigre is going to burst from here on out.
(Just so you know, my best week in the mission for investigators in church was for a conference and there were 9, so 12 blows that out of the water and I´m SOOOO excited about being here!!!)
5 baptisms and it was a great experience. A lot of the branch participated, 2 recent converts who received the priesthood baptized and it went as smoothly as 5 baptisms and craziness can go :)
I can´t even begin to describe how much I love my comps. I wish I could send pictures but my camera ran out of battery.
I love, love, love them. We have the weirdest sense of humor but it works because we all die laughing. Only bad thing: sharing such close quarters....we are ALL sicky with sore throats and runny noses. 3 gringas with reddish noses from wiping and blowing constantly. Shooters. But hey, all is well.
I LOOOVED the glaciers, it was amazingly beautiful and so unique to be interviewed by president there in such a venue.
The plane from the south to here was a little shaky with the most turbulence I have ever experienced and it was actually making me pretty nervous before we touched down but we made it :) Good thing.
Elder Grover....not sure if I´ve mentioned him before but since in the south there weren´t a ton of us and here there is a lot more missionary interaction, I’m probably going to mention the Elders more. I loved the Elders that were in Gallegos and I actually miss them a lot more than I thought I would but up here, the few that I knew before I´m super happy to see again and especially have them in my district. Like, E Grover. He went to Orem High, younger brother is Sam Grover....Ruth, do we know this name???? It sounds reeeally familiar. Let me know chicadee
He´s hilarious and works really hard as President´s right hand man and does a lot of crazy things and loses a lot of sleep from his work in the offices. He and Elder Unrau, Elder Mcneil and I all have an OREM peeps picture from like, 6 months ago. Mcneil is already home haha weird.
Speaking of people that are home, if you see Brady Bills, which I hope you do because I saw his homecoming is this Sunday, let him know I got all 3 parts of his letter and thank you so much for the story he shared about the visit from Elder Oaks. It went perfectly with my personal study on obedience and my comps and I learned a lot and really felt the power of the Spirit testify to us. He sent me pictures a while back and he looks older and wiser :) haha tell him to send me his home address so we can keep writing. I told you guys that we were pen pals his whole mission right? He was a great support from someone who has a lot of missionary wisdom to share. I really appreciated it. Tell him Hi and thank you for me!!
Another Elder that is in the district that was in my first one is elder Bahamondes from Chile. He has changed a lot in 6 months. And I saw Elder Parra today when I went to Capital to do paperwork for my DNI! He was there with his comp and I was so happy to see him. He is actually a zone leader back in the area where I first met him. I think of the ´friends´ I have in the mission, of the Elders, E Parra is (for now) my favorite. He´s way more chill than the other elders who keep quiet and to themselves because the Hermanas have cooties or something. Anywho, it was nice to see familiar faces and share with my fellow missionaries the joy of the work. I hope everyone in Gallegos is well especially my dear, dear Hna CAMPOS! I talk about her a lot (expected right?) Hna whitehead it´s so fun! She reminds me of so many people but basically, if we had met before the mish., I think we would have been great friends!
AND I GOT 3 packages and I felt like the queen of the world!!! I was overwhelmed with happy fuzzies in my heart. I got the under armour, pop tarts, hair ties, candy, reeses, stickers, .... Hooray!!!! I didn´t get leggings or tights yet which I actually WILL be needing still here in BS AS. Even though it´s not as cold, my tights and stuff I was using are ragged and unmissionary-like. Plus I left the long skirts I had been using in Gallegos there for Hna Salva and other sisters to use in the cold winter months. They´ll need them more than me for sure. And no bobby pins which I hope are coming because I am saving like they are gold THREE little bobby pins hahaha
And no baby Bof mormon....hmmm Got the hymnbook thanks!
I love, love, love it here in Tigre. Have I mentioned that enough? I thought it would be stinky and horrible to come back to capital but it is actually wonderful and I am so grateful for the wonderful companions I have, the area that has been so blessed and prepared by many that came before me and that the Lord has taken us by the hand and led and protected us to know where we should be and how He wants His work done. I love it. There is no greater work and no greater call....until I´m a Mom and then we´ll talk. But until then, I will never STOP being a missionary because this is just so great to not be part of.
I love it! haha
I know that the Church is true and that the only way to salvation and the Celestial Kingdom is to follow the example of Jesus Christ and make and KEEP the sacred covenants with the Lord. He promises and is bound to His promise IF and ONLY IF we do what He says. And He loves us. Who better to be telling us how to live?
I love you all and thank you for your love and support.
Will you pass along thank you messages to Steffannie Peña and Brady for their advice, their stories and their friendship. Tell Steff that I love her and expect her to have all the details of her first date SOON.
Tell Angelica I got her emails, I am waiting for her letter (which, PS, I will get WAAAAY sooner than ever because the mission office is in my district and they can give us our letters WHENEVER hooray!)
So, I don´t know how else to describe my excitement and love for this area. I can´t believe that the Lord has opened the windows of heaven so wide that we can´t see the end of the blessings. We just have to keep working hard, hard, hard and living worthy of the blessings to keep them flowing.
We went on a boat ride today down the river with President and his wife because our Zone broke a zone record with 60 investigators in church this Sunday!!! The goal had been set at 45.....woot woot!!
One of the most hilarious moments together here was within 2 hours of me arriving, we went and picked up a member to accompany us and then got a bus. Hna Whitehead was talking to the member (Hna Rivera) and I was chatting with Hna Huish....Hna Whitehead motioned for us to get to the door and we did so. The doors opened at the next stop and Hna Huish and I stepped off. We looked behind us and then around us as the bus pulled away and Hna Whitehead wasn´t there! She and the member hadn´t gotten off!!! I started laughing immediately but then started running after the bus because it was turning a corner and I didn´t know the area or where we were going and neither did Hna Huish really. Luckily they got off and we caught up to them but we were laughing so hard it was hard to breathe and run. woooo. We´re crazy I know.
Later I’ll have to tell you about our 5 baptisms and the 9 dunkings that took place. ....One sister was very, very difficult to baptize I guess, (she wouldn´t go down easy) so they have to try 4 times. It was comical ONLY because it was so unreal and President and his wife were there to support us so though I was stressed beyond belief, it turned out beautifully and unforgettable, like all baptisms are :)
The Church is SO true.
I love you folks so much! Until next week!
Love your missionary,
Hermana Gonzalez

high di ho there good neighbors

From August 1st, 2011

Listen Folks this´ll be a super fast, hit-and-run type email I think.
We have very little time (so unusual, I know..) but this is even shorter than you think.
We have only HALF a p-day because of two things,
ONE: President is FINALLY in town (hadn´t been able to come for the volcanic ash situation) and we are having a capacitación and interviews TOMORROW in.......
Ok, look it up, google whatever because it´s a HUGE tourist town. It´s in our zone but it´s like 3ish hours away by colectivo so we never see them. We have district meetings with them on speaker phone on their cell phone :) The area was opened years ago and grows slowly but surely. Oh yeah, the Branch President out there is a convert of Elder Scott (Like the apostle), no big deal. If I’m wrong and Elder Scott didn´t serve a mission in Argentina then it´s Ballard but now I’m doubting myself....
Any who, we will be travelling tomorrow morning if weather permits HOOOORAY! Let me tell you why I’m so wicked excited......President and Sister Gulbrandsen are taking us to see the glaciers!!!!! And we would never be doing it unless Pres took us so hip hip hooray!!!!!  I will be addicted to glaciers after this. I´ve seen bunches on the OTHER side of the planet and now here??
 I´m dying of the excitement.......but then…
REASON NUMBER TWO for weird p-day and why I wish I could be more excited about Calafate.....
I´m leaving Gallegos... :( BIG SAD FACE
My zone leader told me last night and I thought he was joking. Remember how I told you this transfer was weird but I was ridiculously happy to be able to stay for a long time?? Yeah, that all came crashing down last night. E´Simper called and said he had good news and bad news. Thinking innocently that there could not be any bad news that would kill good news, I asked for the bad FIRST. I was already crying and so NOT listening when he told us that we were going to Calafate, interviews, whatever.
I love Rio Gallegos sooooo much. Not the place, per say, but the PEOPLE have won my heart. I wish I could do so much more and had such great plans and hopes for the member and investigators. There are so many less actives here that it breaks my heart. But all the people I have met will be in my heart forever. No more Ushuaia in my future though I reeeeaallly wanted to go there and breathe in the mountains.
I´ll be in Tigre (the area Hna Peña just left) very, very close to the mission offices and with Sister Whitehead! Who is my ´sister´ because she was also trained by Hna Peña. I don´t know exactly what is going on BUT Hna Whitehead is new, like new, new 6 weeks in the mission. My first yankee comp and I have to learn the area, train her AND help her learn spanish?!?! PRAY FOR ME!!!!!!!!
Ok, now this has taken too long and we´ve still got to go to the super....oops maybe I’ll write tomorrow but hey, no promises. But think of it this way, I think I’ll get packages WAAAAy sooner now instead of waiting extra in the south.
AND I´ll be able to say goodbye to Hna Campos when she leaves this next transfer!! Happiness in BS AS (Buenos Aires).
Remember folks, I’m trying to be positive about this change ESPECIALLY returning to capital where the people are busy and cold, the schedule is DIFFERENT and I will have to readjust my body clock AGAIN. And yeah....I love the South and would be happy to be ´stuck´ here a bit longer. But the Lord knows best and I will go and do what He has commanded. I know that the work will continue here and there will be much growth and that Tigre will be more beautiful blessings and miracles to be seen.
I love you my family. I always pray that the Lord is caring for you so that I don´t have to worry and be focused here. I am SOO excited for Ruth she´ll be famous in Argentina. Young people in Gallegos are youtubing her :) haha yay!! I´m so proud of my little sister and while I pray for your success I also pray that you will always remember to follow the spirit and the counsels of the parentals. May the Lord protect and guide you all. LOVE YOU MUCH
I know this Church is true with all my heart, might, and mind.
Until next that Mr. Rogers quote? I can´t think of the song he sang.......anywho you get the gist.
Hna Gonzalez

PS. are you guys still burning with summer heat because we are snowed in down here......I feel like making a snowman!!!!
PPS, heat underamour soon?!!!!?? please? and thank you!

Once upon a time....

Sorry for the delay, I will get caught up to today's email from Hna. González (Suzette).
This is her email from July 25th. Sorry again!! Suzette's Mom.

Wow, I don´t even know where to start. Let me just say that after another tearful Sunday.....
I’m STAYING in BELGRANO Sur!!!! I can´t even believe it. This is a tender mercy of the Lord because I really don´t want to go (not that I ever will) but there is still so much to be done and I am grateful for whatever time I have to be here in Gallegos.
Basically there were no changes because, again, the volcano. The flights still aren´t normalized so no one in the mission moved. NO one! Except where there were trios of sisters but the ´extras´ left because they had completed the mission, including my beloved ´mom´ on the mission, Hna Peña. She´s done, done, done and surely on her way home to El Salvador tomorrow or Wednesday. She will surely be on facebook ASAP so find her and tell her I love her dearly and sorry that I couldn´t be at her despedida but the 40 hours bus ride is a killer. :) I don´t know but she´ll probably look for you guys too.
How wonderful that I get to stay!!! I was with my beloved family here in Gallegos, the Winter´s, last night and they made a fantastic torta as a despedida. We laughed and cried and shared our testimonies and hopes for the future. And then cried some more. haha how silly. Mom, you never told me that you talk with Astrid on facebook! She´s such a great young woman that is destined for great things.
oh, like i was saying, who knows how long this happiness will last because even though the flights are a mess, there WILL be some changes we just don´t know when. That is VERY stressful for us because we could get a call in a week, 2 weeks or never so we´re always on our toes. I don´t know what will become of me because Hna Campos completes her mission this transfer! She´s 17 months old in the mission! What that means for me in ´killing´ her is that I will stay yet ANOTHER transfer after she leaves to teach the area. That means 9 MONTHS in ONE area. Half my mission in the south. BUT, as I said, who knows? They could transfer me (if someone leaves I THINK it would be me) in a week or two and Hna Campos would be left to teach as fast as possible and then part ways with Argentina. :(
Anywho, that´s the nitty gritty. I was thinking the other day that I never talk about WHAT I do but my thoughts and experiences about what goes on in my daily life.
You all might remember that our schedule here in the Patagonia is different than in BS AS. We arise at 7:30, exercise, shower, eat breakfast and then study from 9-10 in personal study and 10-11 in companionship study. Personal study (where I used to read and read and read and loved finding all the insight and applying it to myself) has changed to be dedicated to finding answers and doctrine to help, teach and guide investigators to the truth. We plan what we will study in the morning during our nightly planning. We study things like the Word of Wisdom, eternal marriage and repentance in order to be more prepared for our appointments for the day where we have planned to invite the investigator to keep the word of wisdom and stop smoking/drinking/etc. or invite a couple who are living together to go and sacar turno (make an appointment) to get married, and invite everyone to come unto Christ, follow His example and be baptized. After studying personally, we sing, pray, and share briefly what we found with each other, keep studying and write a lesson plan for each cita (appointment). We read a couple pages in the Mission Manual every day of the transfer to be able to finish it in 6 weeks. When I was a new missionary, we each read 7 pages a day aloud to be able to finish it each week. The first 2 transfers of the mission, we read the MM every week. So now, I’ve read it 16 times all the way through and this morning we started it for my 17th time. That´s not a lot but we basically memorize it :) haha I’ve got most of the beginning and specific parts memorized in both Spanish and English.
Because my comps have all been latinas, I read in Spanish while they read in English. Ambas (we both) correct pronunciation and it´s all a happy learning experience. haha
Then we practice presenting the Book of Mormon (English, Spanish, depends of the day and how courageous my comp feels :) )
Then... language study. I found a fantastic way for me to not get bored during language study. I know that I don´t know Spanish perfectly, but studying the grammar makes me so frustrated that I just end up doing whatever with my practice books. But now I read all the Liahona we have (which are A LOT) because I can read and find words I don´t know, see how it´s used in a sentence, look it up, talk about it with my comp and learn SOOO much better that way. My little Spanish-English dictionary is my best friend but even though I find a definition doesn´t mean I know how to utilize the word in real life. Liahonas rock!
Then out to work OR if we don´t have lunch with a member we cook early at home so that we can eat and get out to work early. Eating with members is great because they have so much love and we feel much more a part of their lives and gain their confidence and we in them. Unfortunately there aren´t that many ACTIVE members in our branch so we eat with all the same families every week....that´s ok too because they all cook delicious food :) BUT we are starting the diet again but for reals this time.
I love Hna Campos. We have worked perfectly in tune since the first day. She knows what I think and I know what she´ll say. I know what she likes for breakfast (she´s a BREAD fan like my dad, anything bread and she´s chocha la vida [very happy]) and she always helps and serves me with such love that it´s impossible for us to be mad! :) Ever. We laugh and laugh over nothing, get emotional over everything and are just great friends! Best of all, she shares a powerful testimony and isn´t afraid to show the importance the gospel has for her, me, our families and everyone with whom we are blessed to share it. I love her dearly.
We go to different zones that we have in our area trying to work efficiently without wasting time walking great distances back and forth to different houses.
Since I got here 6 months ago :) there have been a lot of changes. Rio Gallegos is growing constantly. It´s also a kind of melting pot of every province in Argentina and the south of Chile. In the north of Argentina, Salta, Jujuy, Corrientes, I have been told that it´s tough to find work and the pay is poor when you can find one. Down here, there is so much growth and oil wealth that people come here, work a few years, save, save, save, save and then move back north with their savings and live well in the north because the cost of living is much lower than down here. So we teach a lot of people from all over the country and a LOT of Chileans. :) We make contacts or knock doors and I know en seguida (right away) who is not from here :) woot woot.
Oh funny moment of the week, so it´s really kinda uncomfortable walking down the street and getting whistled at, honked at etc but I’ve learned to ignore it (though that doesn´t work out so well because then members greet us and we ignore´s a lose-lose situation) BUT this week we were visiting a less active member and while we were sharing a powerful scripture, a friend of his son (maybe 25ish) walked in. They introduced themselves (after evading the ´kiss´ greeting less than smoothly haha I’ll show you how I do it someday) and then we introduced ourselves,
Hna Campos: I´m Hermana Campos, I´m a missionary of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints....(looks at me)
Me: And I´m Hermana Gonzalez.......
(silence while they stare).....
The son:....What a beautiful name.....
Me: uhhh....Hermana?
Hna Campos kicks me under the table and we invite them to sit and share the spiritual thought we had been sharing before the interruption.
hahahaha So funny and so awkward.
Anyway I’m sure you can all tell that I write a lot more when I DON’T receive emails. I´m not feeling the love Folks. Mom and dad, from you ALWAYS but I’m talking about the folks who live with you...just saying.
And will you tell Emma I love her and I´m writing her today.
Also, give Angelica a guilt trip that she up and forgot about me and I’m considering revoking her title. That´s all :)
Amber (who just returned from her mission) looks LOVELY! She looks so great and I can´t believe she´s home already.
Tell Hersch I love him and am so happy for him and his bride is beautiful!
Yay!!  for Melissa Neilsen HAPPY HAPPY HAPPY! Send her my love as well.
My MTC comp wrote me a loooong time ago and told me she went HOME from the MTC for her medical problems like a month after I left, can you find out if she´s ok? Better? On a mission? Married? And it was her birthday on the 4th. manden saludos!! She´s Minerva Ochoa from Calexico, CA. Find her on facebook?
I love you all so much (a lot of love, I know, but hey, I´m a sister missionary, we are MADE out of LOVE) :)
I´ll let you know when or IF a change happens but for now, I’m staying happy and staying PUT!
I know this church is true. Until next week.....oh and I´ve been on a mission for a whole pregnancy!!! HOW TIMES FLIES!
BUT let´s make a deal, yeah? NO COUNTDOWNS! I won´t get trunky if you don´t. Ok thanks, LOVE YOU!

Hna Gonzalez

P.S. something that is interesting (maybe to Danny only) and I don´t know if it happens anywhere else because I have never BEEN on a mission anywhere else but lately (like the last month) when we have weekly planning or a mission wide message from the president, we get a mission wide conference call. We conference our district first, then connect the zone (our zone is tiny, 8 of us) and then the assistants connect the zones and president calls the assistants. It´s kind of awesome and unique to have 160+ missionaries receiving the instruction directly from the President´s mouth even though there´s thousands of kilometers between us. Oh the wonders of technology.