Hello you lovely party family. I can’t lie and say this last few days has been easy knowing you’re all at the Beach House this week. Ah...favorite place in the world! Loved your picture of the family... the Stone family is so good looking! I’m sure Katelyn made some cute little lovey-dovey remark about how the family isn’t as good looking without her smoking hot husband. Haha.
So this week I spent most of my time trying to figure out my new area, the investigators, each of their specific needs, and how my broken Spanish and random talents can help each of them. Yesterday I had a nice little confidence boost when the ward found out I played the piano. They have a piano in the chapel and have never used it. So after sacrament meeting I felt like a celebrity and was swarmed by the members. They also have never had a white sister in this area so I really felt like an alien from another planet. They just stared at me and touched my hair and it was hilarious; I loved it! Haha.
We have one investigator here in Independencia named Gonzalo. He had a fecha (date) for this last Saturday for baptism and called and canceled. He said the reason was because his parents were on vacation and wanted to attend; so he asked if we could change it to next week. It was tough, but my companion and I decided that we needed to pray about what we should do. After we finished, we looked at each other and my companion said, "I feel good about next week. I don’t know why, but I think it’s going to be okay." We both had such a strong feeling of peace. I’m going to skip what happened next and come back to it. Later on we went to his house and picked him up for a lesson at the stake president’s house. I honestly and truly am so grateful for his decision to postpone his baptism because if he hadn’t we wouldn’t have had this lesson. It was so awesome! When we started, I felt really strongly that I should talk to him about the atonement; so I explained to him that the atonement can be used for more than just repenting of our sins. It was truly inspired because he went on to ask more about the atonement. Then we watched the movie Finding Faith in Christ, and the spirit was SO strong. I just sat there crying and didn’t even know how to bare testimony after the moment we had. But somehow Spanish came out of my mouth and I testified of the power of the atonement. He was nearly crying. It was so special. Gonzalo is 18 years old and looks like a total punk, but has SUCH a strong testimony. I am so excited for his baptism next week. He asked me to sing in English. I’ll see what I can do. Haha.
So, quickly, back to Saturday. Haha. Oh my gosh! This is just so hysterical. Heavenly Father has the best sense of humor. I can’t wait to get up to heaven and crack jokes with Him. So, after we had received the news that Gonzalo wasn’t going to be baptized we grabbed our stuff and headed out to another little town in our area called Villa Ecologica. Now, let me tell you about villa: It is straight up Peru...like...exactly how you would picture Peru. Dirt roads; no plumbing; it is sweet! I love this new area because I feel like I’m actually in Peru. People don’t have TVs, or cars or anything...just dogs. It´s so much cooler than my first area. So on Saturday we were standing on the edge of this cliff knocking on a door of an investigator who was CLEARLY home and purposely not answering the door. In the blazing heat, I looked down and realized that the reason my feet hurt so bad was because I had rocks in my shoes because there were HOLES in my shoes. Plus, there were two nasty dogs sniffing my legs. Then I had a thought of the beach house pop into my head: everyone sitting around on the deck listening to music, laying out in their swimsuits and I literally just started LAUGHING! I can honestly say that I don’t remember the last time I was that happy. My companion was so confused...and so was I. I was trying to explain why in the heck I was so happy, but I seriously LOVE this country. I love these people with all my heart and I love being a missionary. I will only get this chance once and I want to look back on my mission and remember it being the best time of my life.
Love you all! Enjoy the sunshine and the ocean! I hope I can be back for the beach house next year. I will let you know when I find out when the transfers are in August next year.
Hermana Carli Stone
Here are some pictures.
PS. I'm not fat. I promise. Haha. I just look GIANT!
How cute is my companion though. We have matching backpacks. Ha.