Monday, February 24, 2014

The Rescue


Okay, It was Ben Hunsakers Birthday Saturday.. HAPPY BIRTHDAY.

Actually, im pretty sure it was George Washington´s, too. HBD.

Shoutout to my Mom because she is the most amazing woman I have ever met. She is my biggest fan when it comes to me being here on my mission and there is no way I would be moving through all I am without her support. 

To Roger and Jennifer,I've never thought about someone more in my life. I prayed for you both so much. I'm so happy Jen is doing better. Still in my prayers.

Can I first just say how dearly I love my companion, Hermana Lyon. I haven´t ever, my whole mission, laughed as much and as hard as I did this week. Not only that, but Ive never had the success that we had this week. When I moved areas and I ended up in Paraiso.. I was soo.. just so.. NEGATIVE about the WHOLE situation. I finally just gave in and said…

´´Come what may.. AND LOVE IT.´´

As soon as I did that, the blessings just poured down from Heaven. Opportunities opened up and the ball was rolling. Faster than I've ever seen it roll before. 

Monday Hermana Lyon and I… we just needed our hair cut. It just had to happen. So we go to this hair salon and we meet Yolanda. So Yolanda is absolutely gorgeous and as she is cutting my hair she is asking me allll these questions about being a missionary and Mormons and everything. So I straight up give her the first vision right there and.. she was our first new investigator. She is so awesome and Hna. Lyon and I are so excited to watch her progress. 

Tuesday we met the Bishop´s nephew, Pablo. He is a less active and lives with his girlfriend and son. Um.. so in the first 5 minutes of our lesson, Pablo is looking at me and says..´´do you dance?´´ When I say.. ´´yes…´´ he´s like… ME TOO. We both do ballet and when he just magically swung his arms up into 5th position I about died because.. well. Usually when people say ´´I DANCE´´… its just not the same. But yes, Pablo freakin' dances. And he´s good. And we are best friends right now. AND him and his girlfriend came to church for the first time in over a year yesterday. Pablo just needed to be taught by a ballerina haha!

 (Just a cute quick pic of Nicole dancing in High School)

The rest of the week.. Hermana Lyon and I just had so much fun. We were so unbelievably booked with appointments, we found so many new investigators, it is absolutely unbelievable. This area was SO ready for us! The Lord has prepared so many people! We put 7 baptismal dates this week and we are hoping to have them all in the water by the end of March. These people.. I am just blown away by the amount of people that have been just WAITING to be rescued.        

We definitely had.. moments this week. The lady we live with is about.. well. Old. Okay, if you have seen Series of Unfortunate Events, she is EXACTLY like the old lady that is completely psycho. Hahaha No, but really. This morning she gave me beet juice.

Her- ´´le gusta??´´(do you like it)

Me- ´´uh… -tastes it-… creo que no.´´ (I don't think so)

Her- ´´´.. porque?? Es saludable.´´ (Why not? It's Healthy)

Me- ´´… ya, por eso. Es como tomando plantas.´´ (It's like drinking a plant)


Also. There is this lady that sells ICE CREAM. She is a member and she just pushes her little ice cream cart around and she is the CUTEST! The first time Hna. Lyon and I ran into her, she gave us two free ice cream cones.

When I took my first lick… I'm pretty sure it was made out of 40 year old goat milk and tar. The worst part? EVERTIME SHE SEES US SHE STOPS US AND GIVES US FREE ICE CREAM. I cannot take it anymore, every time Hna. Lyon and I see her, we flip around… and run. We are watching our health!

All in all.. This week has been amazing. I miss my old area dearly, dearly. But at the same time, I wouldn’t trade this for anything. Hna. Lyon and I are really changing things and we are loooving it. I could be her companion for the rest of my mission. The problem?.. I'm never gonna learn Spanish that way hahaha!

With all my love,

Hermana Cedeño   

p.s… CARNIVAL NEXT MONDAY. So you won't be hearing from me. I've never been so annoyed in my life haha all is well.                              

Monday, February 17, 2014

I Hate Surprises.....

To my Aunt Char. She is like one of my bestest friends.. and the only one that I will ever let cut my hair. And I'm actually going to get a hair cut today and I've never been so scared in my life. Kill me. HAPPY BIRTHDAY this week!
And... Happy Birthday to my Uncle Flynt!  He's too freakin' cool for his own good and its also his birthday this week so HAPPY BIRTHDAY to Flynt!
ALSO. To the people in my family having freakin´ babies.. Mikel... My Mom sent pics and he is so stinkin' adorable!  I love him already!
And to Shalee Hiskey. I don't know her. But she always writes me and she was on Drill, so she´s actually way cool haha!
And one more... To My Uncle Roger and Aunt Jennifer.  I love them.  They are going through a hard time right now and I wish so much for Jen to have a speedy recovery!  I know God answers prayers and I am praying for you and your family daily. 
I'll start with Monday. Monday was actually so awesome. Hermana Blanco and I went to the Bishop´s house for a Noche de Hogar (Family Home Evening) with them and the Elders, Wilkinson and Bailey. We used the recipe book that my Aunt sent me and made BROWNIES. AMERICAN BROWNIES. So they actually tasted so good haha
The Elders came over and The Bishop gave a quick lesson and then started choking up as he explained how grateful he was for us as missionaries and all that we do. He knew that Hermana Blanco and Elder Wilkinson would be leaving because they've had 6 months so he said his goodbyes to them. I was like.. chokin' up a bit haha It was just so touching and It kind of hit me how much I was going to miss Wilkinson and my dear mom, Hermana Blanco.
 Saying Good-Bye at the Airport... So freakin' hard...
Tuesday, Hermana Blanco and I put another date on a Golden Investigator!! In the past week we had put 2 dates!! I love watching people follow through with commitments and making the goal to be baptized, you can just see the difference it´s making in them, its so unbelievable.
A lot of the day we went to members so that Hermana Blanco could say goodbye and get pictures and leave notes, addresses and such. It was so sad to see her say bye to everyone!! I just left with handshakes and hugs and ´´Hasta Luego´s´´ (See you later's)

We sat on the phone for at least 30 minutes waiting for Elder Peredes to call... and finally when he did, he said that Hermana Blanco would be leaving. We knew it!! She was going to Tabledita, the neighborhood right across the street!! She was looking forward to leaving Tarija.. but looks like she is still here haha
I asked who my new companion was.. and he says HERMANA LYON. Hermana Lyon is from Utah!! And the first thing I yelled into the phone is ´´ELDER PEREDES IF HERMANA LYON IS MY COMPANION.. I AM NEVER GOING TO LEARN FREAKING SPANISH´´
Well.. i said it in Spanish. But that's like all I know. I just need to learn Spanish.´But I was soo excited! Hermana Lyon was in my Zone, so I already knew a lot about her, and she is seriously the sweetest!!!
So I'm like.. ´´okay, so when is she coming??´´
And Elder Freaking Paredes tells me that She isn't coming.. THAT I'M LEAVING. That I'm going to the other zone in Tarija, called zone Andaluz. Seriously. I was freaking out. Hermana Blanco even stayed in the same zone and I was.. LEAVING. Elder Paredes explained that Hna. Lyon and I were OPENING AN AREA. So neither of us would know anything about it.
The worst part was.. Hermana Blanco had been saying her goodbyes to the ward all week, and I hadn't said goodbye to anybody. Anyone. I couldn't leave my investigators with.. strangers!! They were all progressing so unbelievably well, I was seeing changes in them and in the Less Actives that we have been visiting. I grow to love and I get attached so easily.. And it´s a problem.
Before I knew it, Wednesday morning, I went to the Bishops house to say my goodbyes to them and I was in my new home. I'm in the ward Paraiso.
It's rough. It was weird going to the zone meeting on Thursday... and not knowing anyone. But actually... Elder FRUEHAN from my group in the Colombia MTC is in my District here. haha Its kind of nice to have a friendly face, I haven´t seen people from my group in so long!!
I had a suuuuper hard time Thursday and Friday... and Saturday trying to adjust. We did a LOT of contacting.. and made lots of appointments, got lots of phone numbers. But THEN Hermana Lyon, poor thing, we lost her planner!!! AND THAT HAD ALL OF OUR INFORMATION IN IT FROM THE PAST 3 DAYS.  All of the work we had done to get new investigators... GONE. So hard!!!
I finally got a little comfortable yesterday when we got to know everyone at church. The bishop had me bear my testimony and i just explained to the ward that we are learning and that the work of the Lord really can't go on with just us missionaries, that we really need the members help! And that we are so excited to get to know them and work with them.
After, the members were all over me, telling us references, asking when they can come with us to teach and it was just.. awesome, really. We really do have awesome members in this ward.
The Elders in my ward are Elder Silvestre, from Peru, and Elder Boman from Grantsville, Utah. They will both be HOME in the next 4 months, so they are just finishing up their missions. But they are really awesome, they have helped Hermana Lyon and I a lot. We had a Noche de Hogar with them last night with a family and I just.. felt better. 

Sister Lyons is from Utah and she is seriously the sweetest thing!  My new companion....
My mom sent me a quote a while ago and It applied perfectly to my week, I wanted to share it:
´´What is the difference between an obstacle and an opportunity? Our attitude toward it. Every opportunity has a difficulty and every difficulty has an opportunity.´´
-J. Sidlow Baxter
Maybe Heavenly Father is just trying to teach me.. that not everything is going to go the way I want or the way I plan.. but sometimes you just gotta roll with the punches, ya know? There is literally nothing I can do about my switch in wards... but hey, I can grow to love it here just as well as I could in Senac. Before I know it, I'm going to be crying because I'm leaving here! So I might as well stand up, brush off the dust, and enjoy my time while I'm here.
Because honestly.. I don't remember anyone ever telling me that my mission was going to be easy.
With love,
Hermana Cedeño

Monday, February 10, 2014

We're Not Late, We're Early For Tomorrow....


FIRST. to my Dad. Well... my mission Dad. Elder Rios is heading home.  He´s been my only zone leader my whole mission!! Hasta Luegito Elder.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY to Azialee Hunt Serving in Texas. SERIOUSLY one of my bestest friends, I miss her to death. Also Abraham Lincolns birthday is this week... for those who want to celebrate that..

AND. To Brody Barfuss. My best friend in the entire world. He doesn't write me. Ever. But whatever, its fine. I don't know where I would be without him, he´s literally changed my life for the absolute better, even being the punk and a half he is. Best cousin ever. Love you, Brod.

 We've been Friends Forever!
 Our trip to Puerto Rico!

 Caribbean Cruise :-)


FROM the Barfuss Family!! Oh my goodness, I cant tell you how much i loved my package!!! The quote book.. I go so hard. I love it so much!!  I loooved my letters. I was laughing so hard. Especially at Morgan... "speaking spanish" and at Rylee talking about Brody´s singing at the end of her letter... I was dying because I know exactly how that is.  Mikel... I cant believe you are a stinkin´-dang MOMMY. Congrats to you and Blake!!!! MONICA. Thank you. I love you dearly. Thank you so much for my cook book!!  I can't thank you enough for the recipe book!  I left it at the Bishop's house last night because his wife was going crazy!!! We love american food.  Hermana Carmen loves it so much (the Bishop's wife).  She reminds me so much of my own Mom, she is the best!

Also from like.. the Relief Society?? I got my Christmas Package! So awesome with all the cards and my AWESOME high heel stocking. I was laughing so hard!! It was the best!!!  THANK YOU.

and.. shout out to Elder Bailey´s family. I heard you read my letters.  Bailey and I are planning on getting Latino Companions this transfer so we can learn this dang language!  haha

Okay, to the week.

So.. sadly. My black shoes broke! My ones that I really love and wear a lot. The bottom ripped off the from... so my shoes have mouths. BUT there is a ´´Zapateria´´ next to my house... and his little hut has Pornography posters all hung up inside. And I took my shoes to him...  and he fixed them for 2 freaking Bolivianos. Do you know how much that is? That´s like not even 25 Cents, okay. THAT was awesome. I was gonna send a picture of his hut.. but that would just be a picture of pictures of naked people.. so.. sorry haha

This Sunday was Ward Conference, so all week we had a bunch of different activities. Wednesday night was "Noche de Juegos" and we all met at the chapel and played sports. It was actually... so fun haha I loved it.

Thursday was suuuuper rough. It just rained all day so, once again, the roads were RIVERS. That is the WORST. I'm going on the hunt for rainboots today because.. This has just got to stop.

But, earlier in the week, Hna. Blanco and I found a man that spoke ENGLISH! He was just on the road and he just.. started talking in English. He explained to us that he lived in Utah to study at Utah State for a few months. THAT'S WHERE I STUDIED. He explained that he is losing his English and wants to be refreshed. Every human being I talk to or teach around here wants to learn English. SO...

Elder Bailey and I are starting an English Class. Its starting this coming Friday and we aren't the only ones that are so excited about it.  As far as I know.. All of Bolivia is coming, So we are super excited to get that started. We hope we can get some new investigators out of it too.

Friday, we had a fireside!! Hermana Iblis Angelo, the relief society primera consejera, taught Hna. Blanco and I how to make cake.. and we took it to the fireside! It was so awesome. During the fireside, The Bishop told me that I  was in charge of watching his helmet.. so he gave it to me.. and I wore it. It´s not hard to make him crack up while he´s on the stand haha I love it.

SO. lets go to SUNDAY, shall we? freaking. this was a mess.

So, I admit.. we were running a little bit late getting ready sunday morning, so I hop in the shower at about 7:40. When I get out of the shower, its almost 8:00... and the phone rings. And it´s the Elders.  Elder Wilkinson and Elder Bailey. And they´re like:

"Uh. so there was a meeting this morning at 7:30 at the church with the whole stake council and the Stake President is wayyy mad that the missionaries aren't there.. so get ready fast and we´re coming to get you. NOW."

and I'm like.. what? I"M STILL IN MY FREAKING FRESH-OUT-OF-THE-SHOWER-NESS. So I RUN into the other room and tell Hermana Blanco and we are just going HAM trying to get dressed and ready for this thing and about 38 seconds after I had hung up with the Elders, they were at our front door. UGH.

So we show up to this meeting.. I'm still sopping wet, and the President starts Criticizing us for being LATE!! When we make it clear that we didnt know about the meeting... he apologized. But then that made the Bishop look bad for not telling us... eek.

We then later found out that the Bishop had called the Elders last night, told them about the meeting and told them to tell US, THE HERMANAS. Whatever haha It was rough.

Not to mention the Bishop already looked bad enough because he´d gotten hit in the fact with a basketball the night before, so he had a black eye.. haha

But no worries, my aunt had sent me some toy eye patches in my last package. So I gave one to him. It was AWESOME.

Last night, Hna. Blanco and I went to the Familia Landivar, the Bishops family, to hang out and spend some time with them. I loved it. I just felt like I was at home. But really... like HOME. Like I was at my house with my family. We laughed at Bishop´s black eye, we taught some english, I helped Hna. Carmen translate some recetas from my recipe book, Bishop laughed at my translating because I cant speak spanish, so translating is like pictionary haha But I just had a GOOD TIME. I love them so much! They remind me so much of my own family. All fun and games.

 Us and the Bishop's Family, we shared our toys that my Aunt sent!

I wanted to share this scripture before I ended!!

Romans 8:38-39

38- for I am persuaded that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come

39- nor height, nor death, nor any other creature, shall be able  to separate us from the love of God.

My mom sent that to me a while ago.. and I just love it. :) I LOOOOVE the work here. Im going to be sad because.. tonight is cambios. New transfer!! And I hope with all my heart I don't train, but I know im getting a new companion!! Adios to Hna. Blanco. But we have really seen changes here in Senac. I love this ward. I love this Gospel with all of my heart. Thank you for all of the support, I love you all!!!

 This is a picture of our district!

This is our Zone!  Awwww, We're getting split up tonight!


Hermana Cedeno