Saturday, January 30, 2016

Training overload

Okay everyone. I survived my first week as a trainer. And there has been a ton of training. That was my week. First of all I am a mom. Who knew being a parent was so much responsibility? hehe Shout out to all the real parents out there. Tuesday was our first full day together, my new comp and I. It was stange not going to lie. Well in reality it felt like intercambios for a day and I would be seeing Hna Ojeda again....but nope haha.  I actually contacted all of the people that day. I am not a HUGE fan of contacting but I saw the reason we do it. We had about 3 unplanned lessons and some new investigators that we found this week. I guess talking to everyone is a good idea. Wednesday was pretty dang slow. We had little to no lessons. When we aren't teaching the day is like turtle slow.  I remember in the beginning that I didn't want to teach because my brain was tired from not knowing what to say and understand but now I just want to teach every hour! Oh but the good thing about Wednesday is that we had a world wide missionary training. So all of my friends that are serving and my cousins that are serving watched the same long as their internet was working haha. It was super good. They talked about how we teach repentance and baptize converts. The main thing that stuck out to me was Elder Bednar. He taught how really the Spirit is essential. Without this member of the Godhead, we wouldn't have a true understanding of the gospel. The spirit testifies of the truth and through Him, we can gain more knowledge. I feel like Elder Bednar could be the Prophet so keep your eyes out for him.  Thursday was more training. 

my comp hna meza and I and our chicken
Seriously so much training. This time was with the trainers and the trainees. So weird to think I was in the same spot just 3 months earlier. I learned my responsibility as a trainer and seriously we are the example in all aspects. Words and actions. How we teach, how we abbreviate, how we eat, how we share scriptures, how we do everything. It's like a mini me...just from Honduras haha Weekly planning on Friday flew by but it was hard planning and explaining at the same time. Poco a poco I will figure it out. We ate hamburgers for lunch and all I can say is I could really use some In n Out. Saturday we worked all day and found more people! There are some weird people out random dudes that think it's okay to use the bathroom in a field that everyone walks isn't that illegal? who knows haha anyway,  We didn't eat with a  member for lunch  but she brought us food. And not just for lunch but just to have at our house. How great our members?!?! Super great. 

And finally Sunday. Wow what a crazy Sunday. We went to 3 church services. 8, 10 and ours at 12. We thought an investigator would come at 8 but sadly no. BUT our investigator who has been progressing and not progressing for the past 3 months came to church which means her baptism should be FRIDAY!!! Oh how I am praying like crazy that this time it's official. And after all our church services, we taught an investigator who should be getting baptized the first week of February. Everything is really great right now. I'm loving the mission and loving the chance to learn from my hija and become the trainer and missionary that God wants me to be. I love you all so much and thanks for everything!!

Hermana Cross

PS GO BRONCOS! Really happy that they are headed for the Superbowl. Our recent convert kept me posted on all that went down haha love these people

My new agenda
A family of our ward who are super super great

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Tear drops on my guitar

Wow guys I'm going to be real with you right now. I've never cried so much in one week. Tear drops on my guitar is the only reasonable Taylor Swift song to decribe this week. My companion says that a better name would be "waterfall on my guitar." Yes part of it was because of sadness but a ton of it was because of happiness. I have welcomed change with open arms this week. I don't want you all to think I'm a cry baby. I promise a majority was just the realization of how much I have changed for the better. How much my testimony has grown. How much I have learned in these past 4 months and the past 12 weeks with my trainer. I am incredibly happy to be here. 

The best part about this week was our baptism!! ALEX WAS BAPTIZED!!!!! WOOOOO!!! It was incredible. absolutely great. We did a practice baptismal interview with him on Thursday and wow. The change he has made is fantastic. I remember in the beginning he felt that January 16th was too fast but let me tell you, if a person who has never known the gospel can change everything to follow christ in 4 weeks, can we not do the same? The answer is that we can. Change is something we need to accept. Change to be better followers of Christ. Only through the Atonement of Christ can we truly change for the better. 

I have learned a ton. Absolutely a ton. Maybe that's why president called me and told me "Hermana Cross, you're going to be a TRAINER" Yep you read that right. I am officially a trainer! I'm a tad nervous because I set the tone for her whole mission. At the moment I have my hija Hna Meza and my mamá Hna Ojeda. The whole fam! She's from Honduras and is 19 too. Haven't learned too much about her. She does indeed speak 100% Spanish so that's fun haha. I am now an English specialist too. That just is a fancy title for "give the Spanish speakers a verbal quiz every week" Super cool though that everyone has a chance to learn a language in the mission. Sunday holy smokes. 

I have never eaten so much dessert. I felt like I was going to have a heart attack from the sugar overload. I tried fried banana and it was divine. woooo doggie it was good. My poor poor body. We ate at every lesson because we visited members so Hna Ojeda could say goodbye. Yay for goodbyes! Yeah it's been a  tad rough. I just love her so much. She has been a great example to me. S/O to her even though she doesn't read this hahaha  Today we just cleaned and cleaned and cleaned. Picked up my hija and shopped and here we are! Wow the weeks man are crazy fast when you are enjoying every moment. OH also when we were contacting we saw a car reversing and then all of a sudden BAM! the car did a hit and run. totally on purpose. Totally cray. Yeah that was something random of my week haha. THANK YOU ALL FOR EVERYTHING!!! Love you all.

Hermana Cross

18 months and 12 weeks

Holy cow this is the start of my 12th week in training. Can you believe that 12 weeks in the field has already come and gone? I can't.  Seriously guys it's crazy. And my companion has hit her 18 month
mark. WOOO!!! The latinas have the better luck because always the american sisters never fully complete the 18 months just because of transfers. And speaking of transfers, I don't have a lot of information. I will know on Sunday what the happs are. A little nervous but at the same time no. It should be fun! this week was great like the rest of my weeks haha. 

We have a new ward mission leader and he is the best. He has a ton of energy and is ready to work. He has a lot planned to work with the members. And seriously you members out there have a huge part in the work of the Lord. Your references are the best thing out there. I actually gave a small talk on that in church on Sunday. It was fun haha I don't feel uncomfortable talking in front of everyone or making mistakes because well I'm learning and the only thing I can do is rely on the Lord. Church was super great other wise. Our investigator came to church again which means he is good to go to be baptized on SATURDAY!!! WOOO ANOTHER BAPTISM!! He is just super great and the sacrifices he has made to follow Christ is just wow.  I will let you all know next week how the baptism went :) 

Anyway, on Thursday we had our zone training. Super good as always. the fun part was that I had to have a flu shot. Okay I don't really understand why I needed it because I got it before my mission...oh well my body is just double protected now. Haha I know that's not how it works but whatever. We also went to a young womens activity and talked about goals. that was a hoot. It reminded me of being a youth and really that it's something we should enjoy and take advantage of. After we had a traditional bread called Roska. Super good. The bread here man is just the best.  

This week we completed our standard of excellence of 40 lessons is the week. YAY! We had a ton of members join us. I just love members coming with us. They always just have a spirit that's so strong. We also went on splits with members on Saturday because we had a ton of lessons. I actually wasn't scared. The first time yes because going alone with a member and barely knowing the language was a struggle, but this time no! I feel ready for my transfers now. I just learned that relying on the Lord is the most important part of everything. That was basically my week. I probably left out stuff and this sounded very scattered but oh well!! Have a great week everyone!!!! LOVE YOU!!

Hermana Cross

Friday, January 8, 2016

Goal of the year: become a Mexican

HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!! wow can you believe it's 2016? I can officially say I'll be home next year.
Ahhh that gives me the hibbey jibbies. So weird. It's weird to think that so many of my friends will be finishing their missions this year too! Crazy how fast time flies. And even faster on the mission. To be honest the last week of 2015 I don't remember a lot haha. Just finished the year working hard and having lessons and such! 

An ex-missionary came with us in a lesson. Like he just got home. I always feel judged when they come with us when they are fresh out of the mish. hehe oh well it's nice to have their help. On Wednesday we had interviews with president. Just small check up interviews. It was super good. He's a great man. He has lots of insight on life haha. I'm super nervous that I'm going to have to train next cycle (well 2 cycles if yes). He helped me realize that the Lord doesn't have limitations. He will give us these challenges to help us learn and grow. These challenges will stretch us but God will never leave us to drown in our challenges. Thanks to the atonement we can be strong from our weaknesses. New Year's eve. We pretty much did the same thing like the other days. We ate twice that day so more food than usual but that's mexico for ya! That family was super nice! We had a small family home evening with them and talked about our year and just the upcoming year because that's what you do the last day of the year. Doesn't matter if your on a mission or not, you always talk about what happened and what will happen this year :) 

Like I said last week, my year was well good! Sometimes it's hard to reflect on that much time. In our district meeting that morning we talked about the success and challenges of 2015 and goals for this year as people, members and missionaries. It was good to look back at the success and the challenges. For me, it brings hope and the realization that every  year has it's ups and downs but if we focus on Christ, well those problems just become highlights of the year. The time we grew the most. Back to the new years eve hehe. We just ate and nothing traditional. It's really whatever is your favorite food.
And I did tell the fam on Skype that I like salad now. So for everyone out there that knew me premish and my dislike for salad...well say hello to salad loving Hna Cross! I had a lot of it this week. Yay for feeling healthy! We had sparklers so that was super great. that night Hna Ojeda and I set our alarm for 11:50....but when it went off we said "happy new year" and went back to sleep. We were going to eat our 12 grapes in a minute because that's a tradition here but we were too tired haha welcome to the mission. We ate them the next day at noon during our weekly planning instead. Let me tell you. It is not easy to eat 12 grapes in a minute. Nothing more was super exciting this week. 

OH WAIT. Yeah one of our investigators,who is super great and awesome...baptism this month hopefully, said before he met us he had a dream with me in it. that's why he accepted us because he thought he met me before. WHAT SO COOL. The lord prepares people in various way but that by far is the coolest one I've heard. Any way, I hope your new year has started great and make goals and make every moment count!! Love you!

New year, new me #2016
Hermana Cross

Heartburn with a dash of Chili

Well, Christmas has passed and we are already on the start of the last week of 2015. How is that even possible? I have no clue. What is time? I think about what I did this year and it looks a little like this: finished freshman year of college (GO AGGIES), worked at a call center and prepared for the mission, and went to mexico/started the mission. That was my year in a nutshell. My new years goals? I don't remember them. That is definitely something I'm going to work on for 2016. Writing down my new years goals and actually completing them. 

Anyway, this week was just great. The only days that stuck out to me were well christmas eve and the days following. Oh I'm looking at my journal tuesday was good too haha. Tuesday I didnt have time to read my emails because LDS everything had probs last week. So I printed the email from mom and dad. I was reading it that night and the last line said I could open my packages and decide which presents to open immediately or wait....but let's be honest here. I opened ALL of them that night. I didn't hesitate to go at it with my companion. Shout out to the best parents in the world!!!!! Seriously just made my life :) Before all of that, we helped prepare food with our convert Maria de la Luz. Just the cutest old lasdy. She was explaining to me how to make a certain food just like grandmas do. I didnt understand but I could feel the love. Christmas eve was super chill. At first we didn't have any plans for dinner because here Christmas eve is better than Christmas day. They start fiestas at 10pm and finish at 6am Christmas morning. Talk about Christmas cheer! We helped a family prepare their food for christmas and that made the day feel like a holiday. Then after working hard with the food, THEY INVITED US TO EAT!!!! Christmas miracle right there. It was so fun to eat with a family and hear the christmas music. 

Then....CHRISTMAS!!!! Oh wow just the best day in the world! First of all, we had district meeting so I was with a ton of missionaries. Then we did some service. We helped paint a roof of a members house. I love painting so it was a super fun service project. Not that other service is bad but I liked this one a lot. We ate with that family and just had a
good time. We had a couple hours of work time. No one is out and about and I was just super pumped to SKYPE. That was great. Wow yeah I can't explain how happy I was. Super awesome to see the fam and just laugh and talk- I LOVE my family so much. What a blessing it is to have families. The following day we did more service in the night! We went to a hospital and gave hot chocolate and cookies to those waiting outside. They cant wait in the building if their loved one is in a super critical condition. It's sad to see other people sad. It really is like the scripture that says mourn with those that mourn and comfort those that stand in need of comfort. (Mosiah 17:8-9) Sunday we had 2 investigators and the work is progressing more! And today we just cleaned and shopped and at pizza with other hermanas like usual haha.

Oh I almost forgot to mention why my title is what it is hahaha When you have heart burn it hurts a bit right? Well when you eat chile...and a lot of very spicy salsa earlier in the day...heart burn feel like your throat is going to melt it is very very painful. Like the burn is more than I can describe. Probably the most thrilling experience haha

I hope you have a great week and HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!!!
Hermana Cross