February 22, 2012

TRANSFERS came and guess what???.....

Email from February 20th, 2012

YES!! Transfers and.....I¨M STILL IN USHUAIA!!!
Hey I’m LOVING the pictures that I’m FINALLY able to send today so I will write until all the photos load and then move on to the next email for more pics.
I can´t even tell you how nervous we were ALL DAY yesterday because of the impending changes. I thought for sure that Hna Shelley was out of here and I would be left to try and teach the area to my next comp. The Lord loves us and made sure that we could be together 6 more weeks and we are SOOO EXCITED! I love Hna Shelley SO much. She thinks I´m as funny as I think I am so we get along AMAZINGLY! It´s also one of the greatest things because we totally complement each other as far as personalities go because when I´m tired...(haha like every day but whatev) she says GO and when she gets down, I get the chance to lift her up and help remind her of the amazing life that we are living right now. We have such an amazing opportunity to serve the Lord and talk to everyone about the love of God and the beauty of the Atonement....(bah, English is hard. I hope you know I REALLY have to concentrate when I type on Mondays. I hope that the grammar and spelling is at least understandable) QUICK SIDE NOTE before I forget.....
Listen. NO ONE WRITES ME. I know that it´s not that long until we see each other again BUT I’m STILL HERE! I STILL want to hear from you peeps. Just know that EMAILS I love to read but rarely will handwrite you back UNLESS it´s a dearelder letter or a hand written to me. Sorry but it´s not a lot of time I have to write. Just quick notes like what´s up in your life and a quick testimony building experience. Sound good? ok good.
Well, we had such a wonderful experience this past week. Enrique, that we found by trying to contact the referral who is his dad, came to Church last week and this week after a sincere invite from us and the member that had referred his dad. It was so great and such an unexpected miracle from the Lord. Enrique is SO prepared!!!! GOLDEN!
We invited him to church. He went. We invited him to read and pray. He´s doing it every day so that he can understand for himself. We invited him to see a baptism the elders had this weekend. He went and enjoyed every minute. We were right there trying to make sure he had a good spiritual experience and he said he felt right at HOME. I just about cried of happiness. Hna Shelley and I had prepared a specialmusical number (the night before....haha oops) But Hna Shelley is a WONDERFUL singer and we prepared so we knew the Lord would help us to have the Spirit. It was not half bad, if I do say so myself. I was WICKED nervous because you all know I DO NOT sing solo in front of people, but here on the mission, Hna SHelley made me make an exception. :) It was super great.
transfers cont....
So Enrique, SUPER PREPARED. He is so ready for baptism, it´s not even funny. AND when we were announcing it to everyone, he was so happy to invite everyone. He is what they call here ´fueguino´ someone born and raised here in Tierra del Fuego. There aren´t many of them because either people move here from other places or the people from here move north but he is one of those who was born, lived and stayed. SOOO....that means, small town, knows a LOT of people. At church, it was like finding all these people that he says hello to on a daily basis but finding that they have something more than living at the end of the world in common: they have Faith in the Lord Jesus Christ and are all trying to follow better His example. It was such a sweet thing to introduce him to people and they say, oh I know you! It was bittersweet. It´s bittersweet because lots of members know him and that´s great because he already has bunches of friends....BUT this is the first time anyone had ever invited him to church. Wow. All these years that he´s been surrounded by members of the Church and at the first invitation, he´s ready. I just wonder if his friends at Church have thought of this too. Well, he knows so many people so we have a LOT of work to do because we are going to be baptizing ´a FUL´!
Cherry on top: President is going to be here this weekend for District Conference and a Zone conference and he will be here for the baptism!!! HOORAY!
By the way, the Zone conference will be Monday...pday will be Tuesday. :)
I am just so torn in all my emotions right now. I love that we are still here. We were in shock last night thinking that we really weren´t moving! And I know that our work is just taking flight after a transfer of WAITING for people to re populate the town because EVERYONE including the members had left for vacation. (Did I talk about that before? How people in Argentina get like a month or two for vacation and they just go somewhere, to visit family, to the beach, whatever for a month or two at a time? This really means that we get a ton of visitors wherever we are but no one that will be permanent. For the south, it means that everyone evacuates to go north to enjoy some sun a while. It was a terrible month having the streets to ourselves....)
OH IT´S DEFINITELY SNOWING today!! It was freezing yesterday and it finally fell on us today as snow! I am dying of cold, it´s ridiculous. BS AS is still warm, like upper 30´s.
transfers cont....2
So i´m torn because two of our GREAT elders are leaving for the north. Elder Herrera already left today (we went to the airport too because a sister from Rio Grande, a zone also in Tierra del Fuego but more north on the island than us, Hna Milmont left to go north to BS AS too) and it´s sad because we are good friends with ALL of our Elders. We love them and they are great. This was my second zone down here in the south with Elder Herrera and Elder Giraldo, but Elder Giraldo is still here. Elder Herrera was with me in Rio Gallegos and he was there and then here all the while I was bouncing around in BS AS and came back. He spent a YEAR down south and will be interesting to see how he adjusts to the north. He´s great! The two Colombians that we had in the zone are leaving. haha they are the ones in all the pics I’m sending. The pics are from everything from the National Park last week, the snow from today! And the baptism yesterday, random things that I´ll just have to tell you about in like...a while. haha but they are all great. Love the Elders in our zone. I learn so much from them and being the only 8 missionaries in the zone, we have gotten really close. It´s pretty awesome!
Love you all
I want you to know that I am so excited to work. I love being here and I love that I have been blessed to have you as my family; I have been blessed to know the gospel and have it as the guiding influence in my life.

Oops some of the pics will wait ‘til next week. LOVE LOVE!!
Until next week, Hna Gonzalez

USHUAIA end of the world

February 18, 2012

Hey family!! I love my life!!! Look and LIVE!

Email from February 13th, 2012

Hey family!!
We had quite the week, quite the day and I am just loving life!!! It´s been great working down here. It´s like a fairytale land and I know that it just won´t be my life for very much longer and I´m soaking up every minute of it. I love seeing the Lord´s hand miraculously in my life! The people all around us are little angels that Heavenly Father places in our paths to learn something or to make us be the instruments He needs to bless His children.
Once upon a time, a member told us yesterday that WHITNEY HOUSTON DIED??? WHAT? That is so sad. It´s such a sad loss because of how she went. Her great talent couldn´t fill her life and the love of thousands of millions of people couldn´t keep her from the horrible drugs. Is that what ended up killing her? So sad!
But this week we had member heaven. I love the members here so much! I feel like they are just willing to give so much of themselves. When we pass around a calendar for lunch, all the sisters sign up and try to fill us up for two weeks. Then, with our visits planned, they invite less active members, recent converts, non member friends, etc to be at that lunch! It makes it so great for us to have success in creating friendships with more less active members and the fellowshipping of recent converts runs so smoothly!!! Love it!! So happy with how this branch works.
Today we went to the National Park and the END OF THE WORLD! Literally, where the road ends and it says end. My favorite part? The sign says how many kilometers to Buenos Aires AND to ALASKA!!!! OF COURSE I´ve got a picture to show it and now, added to my ever-growing bucket list, is getting to the other end of the road in my beloved Alaska!!! YES!
Love this work. We have NO time but will get back to you next week.
We had interviews with President and as always I always feel WAAY better after talking to him and getting his feedback. Love it. We had a great conference too. But hey, no card yet, but it should come either with transfers or with the conference in 2 weeks. No worries.
BUT next week COULD be crazy. Please pray for me that no matter what happens with transfers that I´ll be ok, that Hna Shelley will be well and that the Spirit can keep us going strong in USHUAIA! I really hope I don´t leave!!!!
Love y´all!
Until next week!
Hermana Gonzalez

February 11, 2012


I can post this because Suzette will not see it until she comes home!!!

Sometime on the second or third week  of May, 
Hna González will come back home!!!!

February 7, 2012

What a week!!! Love LIFE!

Suzette Gonzalez suzette.gonzalez@myldsmail.net
Feb 6

This week has been like any other. I know that I´ve had a ton of crazy weeks but I really think that this one takes the cake.
It all started last week when we had lunch altogether as a zone (all 8 of us). We ate hamburgers and played soccer, much like we do every Monday (not the hamburgers thing) and we went and got Ice cream to celebrate my mom´s birthday last Monday. It was GREAT except we ate it while walking down the main street downtown (it really IS like Juneau, Alaska because ´downtown´ is only one, maybe two roads that you can walk down with stores down both sides. Oh, I said we were walking down the street eating ICE CREAM.....it was like 5 degrees Celsius!!! NOT great ice cream eating weather but it was GOOOOOOD.
Mom, quick question, there´s a sister here who´s sister has lupus...anything you can recommend her? I told her about how you have done a ton of different things. I even remember DR. Landis but not what you did to help control symptoms and such. She gets the huge ronchas that you used to get. Remember? in the house on Main St? That´s what hers looks like. Big red itchy horribleness. Anything to suggest?
Have I told you about how much I love a sister here named Hna Zapata??? She´s so great! Love her. She has been less active for a while but it was one of those things that she just had chosen day by day other things until not going to church on Sundays wasn´t a weird thing. Since Hna Shelley and Hna Malhue went to go visit her, she has been attending faithfully. She´s got the most heartbreaking life story I´ll tell you all about someday, basically, it´s a romantic story without the happily ever after ending...maybe.....haha well, she´s just great. She loves to have us over for lunch and we sure don´t complain because she stuffs us full of amazing veggies and healthy, light food that makes our work SO much easier to continue rather than the other HEAVY stuff we are fed for the ´cold´. It´s great! I love her tons!
I´m giving you all a little profile of the GREAT members that are living and sharing the gospel down here at the end of the world....
Hno Juan Godoy is an incredible example of a priesthood holder that strives to magnify his calling. He is a convert of 11 years. He is the only member of the Church in his family of 11 brothers and sisters. That doesn´t keep him down at all. He´s so great! He set apart 2 and half hours every week, every Wednesday night, to go with us to visit investigators and less active members or new members. We plan to take him to help and meet specific people because we know he´ll be there. He´s ALWAYS there, always on time, even EARLY. His testimony is powerful and he loves to be with us and the people so that he can do his part of sharing powerful testimony. He is the Elder´s Quorum President here too. He´s a rockstar!
President of the Branch, President Leiva is a convert of 2 years and is married to another convert of 2 years. They are AMAZING. I am SO grateful for the opportunity to serve with President Leiva who is so focused and great, with Hnos Cherañuk who are GREAT! I just love the members we are blessed to work with down here! We are so lucky and we count our many blessings!!

More....weird week
So we were with him Wednesday in a lesson where a new member, little 8 year old David, had a real concern about fasting. He asked, What? We can´t eat? How can we fast, we´ll die!!! It was such a sincere little cry of despair that we couldn´t help but chuckle a little before answering. It was so funny. What a crazy kid. The WEIRD thing, we met a cousin of theirs (we LOVE new people) and we share with her about the gospel. She gave us an address and we went the next day. It was for an apartment building downtown. We got there as a tenant was getting there so he let us in. We didn´t realize you needed a key to GET OUT so we went in calmly and on the way down after not finding her.....we found that we were left alone in an EMPTY apartment building. We got STUCK in the building for the better part of an HOUR until someone finally came and set us free. We were going crazy in there. Not being able to do ANYTHING about it! ah....
Then, Friday, Hna Shelley got bitten by a dog....but for REAL this time. Nothing to protect her from the fangs of a ferocious beast .....oh wait, it was a little guy. Those are the ones you´ve got to watch out for. He was annoying, barking at our heels (like he always does when we walk down that street) and then as we were getting by, he came up like a crazy and got the back of her calf. It was ridiculously painful for Hna Shelley. She limped to the closest member´s house where she got it cleaned off and then we called all the appropriate people to get the procedure. We got antibiotics, meds etc and like Hna Shelley is....got right back to work. She´s a nut! We paused long enough to ice it a little because it was swelling from the hit and then back to work. Probably not the brightest idea but we found lots of great people. It has been changing colors. I take pics of it every morning and night. The ones i included I think are from the first day and today. It´s as crazy looking as the pics show. I love her for her diligence but I HAD to make her stop to make sure she wasn´t going to die of rabies :) I figured her mom would appreciate that.
One last story and then chau-sito (little ciao)
On Saturday, we ate lunch with the branch mission leader and his big loud family. I love big loud families. Hno Franco was telling a ton of great, humorous and crazy mission stories. We would laugh, gasp and scream at all the right moments. Then the questions and stories turned to Hna Franco. Her 8 year old asked at what age she served her mission. Hna Franco explained that she had gotten married and not gone on one. The little boy said very seriously, Wow mom, you got married, what a blessing!
We were all DYING. Hna Shelley and I could NOT eat for about 5 minutes until the giggle had subsided. What a kid....
I am SOO crazy excited to work with the people we met this week. They are GOLDEN!
We have interviews this week with President. It´s gonna be GREAT! I love these things. President is like my temp Dad. It´ll be a great week again here in Ushuaia as WINTER sets in...it is all snowed in from the storm last night. This place is nuts. Sometimes I have to stop and remind myself exactly where I am. It´s the END of the world. Any further south and you fall off the corner ;)
I know that the Church is true. It is true everywhere and in every heart lies the Light of Christ that helps them recognize the message of great joy that we bring as set apart representatives of Christ.
Love you all

Thanks Emma and Amelia for the emails. I love hearing from you!!! Letters are few and far between but I hope you know I love you bunches!!!!!!!!!!!
Love you fam, thanks for sharing with me the song you sang mom for the B-day. Save me a piece of cake!! haha not, but I WOULD love a good Dunford doughnut ......mmmmm... dreaming about it :)

Love you,
until next week!
Hermana Gonzalez

 Glad to see that Suzette will always be Suzette!
 Beautiful place!!

 Dog bite
 Changing color
Snow on the mountains!

February 5, 2012

One day older and Wiser too!

I am very sorry for the delay updating Suzette'a blog, this is from January 30th, 2012 My birthday!!

Happy Birthday mom!!!!!!!
You are so wonderful and I am so grateful that you are MY MOM! I´m so lucky!!! Hooray! I hope you have a wonderful day! You are just great.
I was really happy to know that you were so excited to celebrate your birthday with your sisters, nieces and friends. I love your nerdy scrapbooking style. :) It´s really so beautiful! Did I already tell you how much I loved my birthday card you made? So amazing!
 Well, Ushuaia. It´s kicking my little buns into shape! We walk, we talk, we climb, we run, we fight off ravenous dogs, we teach, we invite, we study, we find and we LOVE EVERY MINUTE OF IT! It´s seriously so great that Hna Shelley and I are together again. We have been kind of feeling like it´s some incredible honeymoon we get to enjoy. It´s just fun! We get each other´s best sides out and we get to work. We are so excited to keep working with the members who are all slowly starting to come back to town after all the holidays. Lots left right before Christmas and are just getting back. Life goal: Be a STAR member that missionaries can count on for support in the missionary work! Done and DONE!
Last week we were really enthused about Daniel and while we haven´t given up on him, we have found out a lot more about the things we will have to talk about with him, like, his sister-in-law is a pastor in the evangelical church, though he doesn´t go and has never been baptized. He will have to invite his wife and family to listen with him and we are ready with members to back up the invite. It´ll be great. ALTHOUGH his house is where we had to fight off the dogs. I seriously have never been afraid of dogs before but I´m starting to develop a complex that they are out to get me! Paranoid? I don´t know, when 4 huge dogs close in on all sides (beauty and beast style with all the wolves) I started to get really nervous but not let Hna Shelley know. I picked up a huge rock and most of them took off running in fear I would chuck it at them. I don´t know if I could bring myself to do that. If they get me or Hna Shelley, yeah, I guess, but luckily we had our very own Beast that came and saved us, that was Daniel´s sweet little father-in-law. Whew! Lived to see another day.
 We have been working with this great family with a sad story but the Brother and his two sons are holding tight with a lot of help and love from the ward. We have Family Home evening with them tonight. They are great and very musical. We have been helping them with some English pronunciation so that they can sing along with the BEATLES songs that they play so well. It was so fun and they love having such a strong spirit in their home.
We are going to share a message about how we are children of God so that little Santi, 5, will know that he is loved. His mom is no longer with the family and that hurts a kid. We love him and are starting to be friends with him. I teach him tricks and he´s still in the impressionable stage so he LOVES it. We WILL be best friends soon.
We have been missing Walter because of all the extra hours he´s working right now in the factory. Because everyone ELSE is on vacation, he´s picking up all the extra hours he can. He went with us to the baptism last night, that the Elders had, and said that he will be prepared to be baptized THIS SUNDAY! Pray for him! He´s sooo close! He has such a great big heart and is SUPER forgiving because there was one day he didn´t show for an appointment we had and we called him tons before we realized maybe he had been called in early to work. Whoops. Good thing he´s SUPER kind hearted :)
Familia Diaz is a fav. haha They are so great. The three grandkids of these great members were baptized last month, the youngest of which, David, turned 8 on the day of his baptism. It was such a sweet experience for them and they are keeping strong. We study the scriptures they´ve read that day with them and we just feel so much peace and a visit to them can turn any frown upside down.
 It has been on and off, cold and hot this week. It´s the worst when we dress ready to freeze and then end up baking ourselves into oblivion because we´re wearing too many clothes. Or freeze to death because we dressed lighter and the wind wants to take us the rest of the way to Antarctica.
Speaking of Antarctica, there was this awesome member who showed up to our meetings yesterday. Brother Olsen currently from Salt Lake City was doing a conference tour for nerdy tech stuff but was all over Argentina and in a base in Antarctica with Argentines, Chinese and Russians peeps. He was in Chile on Saturday and then ended yesterday here in Ushuaia and will head back up to BS AS for a day before heading back home. Great member! He talked to everyone he was traveling with about the church and placed a Book of Mormon in Antarctica. Super SWEET!
Once upon a time, there´s this really great album by Jericho Road that Hna Erickson had that is now stuck in my head but I can´t get it out because I don´t have it.....it has a song called Come to Jesus on it but I can´t remember what the album is called. Does mom have it?? It has Homeward Bound on it too and Abide with me tis’ eventide. Super beautiful! Listen to it!
I have started the Book of Mormon over again and plan to finish by....Mayish....yeah. It´s going to take 6 pages a day and I can do it! I LOVE the Book of Mormon. I learn so much and remember the things I´ve learned from companions and leaders and teachers and my wonderful parents, every time I read it! It´s such a wonderfully wonderful book full of great teaching and counsel and comfort from a loving Heavenly Father. Everyone needs to know about this book. We are looking for the people the Lord is preparing because they are His children and we love them TOO!
I am so excited to get this week started. It´s already under way!
This morning we went to Hna Matamala´s house to drop off some letters that she is taking to Rio Gallegos for me. She is traveling by car there tonight and will be staying with my dear lovely friends, Hno Juan and Hna Olga Urquia. I LOVE them and got to talk to them a little while making arrangements for Hna Matamala and her son Agustin to meet them tonight in Gallegos. It´s going to be so great. My worlds combine again :) As we were walking to her house, though, we helped a woman carry her groceries to a school because she was loaded down with bags and a 20 day old baby! We talked to her about our message and the wonderful family center and we have an appointment to meet at her house tomorrow! Hooray! I love the tender mercies of the Lord. Sometimes we look so much for the incredible that we miss the daily miracles. I love this work and I am so happy to be a missionary and servant in the Lord´s royal army. We are called to serve and it´s such a blessing to be here!
Love you all,
Mom, party it UP! Listen to “I believe in a thing called love”, for me. Ruth knows. It´s a great dancing and jumping around song :)
Until next week, LOVE YOU ALL!
 The note is basically telling the missionaries "we ditched you".
 Dogs all over!

Hna Shelley and Hna Gonzalez