Monday, December 30, 2013

The things unsaid

Hello!

It was so fun talking with family during Christmas. :) But I found that just as when I often skyped my friends while at college that after ending the call, there was still so much I wanted to say!

I think I answered all the typical Honduran questions- the food, my ward, my companion, my area, etc. But one thing I failed to mention was the fact that I´m not only living here in Honduras, but that I am also serving as a missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. 

I recently (ha, yesterday) completed 7 months of my mission. I think it won´t matter how much I´ll have, I still wake up in the morning in awe that I am here, in Honduras, serving the Lord. How blessed am I?!?! 

It doesn´t matter how much time I have- I am literally learning something new everyday. That´s something I love so much about the church- whether we are new converts, spiritual giants, like my dear father, or me, who was blessed enough to be raised in the church.

One of my converts said, "Hermana Snelson, you are so lucky, I wish I could just put everything that you know in my brain!" And I realized that there may be a lot that I know, but I´m still a far, far way off. We aren´t perfect, and it´s wonderful! Each of us have the opportunity to repent each and everyday, to put our imperfections behind us and start new and better. 

I love that in the church, no one is better than the other. We are imperfect! But, through this mutual level, we are each able to help one another be more perfect- and I can´t think of a more wonderful way to serve others.

I am grateful everyday that I am here, in Honduras helping others. I love that I have such an incredible family and incredible examples in all of my siblings. I pray for each of you everyday and hope that all is well.

  And now I present you with a bunch of Christmasy pictures :)

 My cute comp made me breakfast Christmas morning!


I decided to dress in Christmas spirit for the Christmas party in English class. Plus my landlord knitted me this sweet Christmas hat (that several people commented were also the colors of Mexico) so I wanted to wear it out :)


We destroyed a pinata with my zone.

The lovely pinata before it was destroyed:




   At Chili´s restaurant... in Honduras :)

 
With my lovely Zone

 This is the only picture of me at Sofi, Jose´s little sister and Miriam´s daugherts house :) so Merry Christmas in Honduras, enjoy this picture of me with a water cooler :)


All of my love,

Your little sister, daughter and friend

Hermana Snelson :)

Monday, December 23, 2013

Merry Christmas!

Hi everyone this is my generic e mail this week! I'm excited to talk with family in 2 days! Just wanted to let you know how much I love you, and wanted to wish you a very, very merry Christmas!


We bear testimony, as His duly ordained Apostles—that Jesus is the Living Christ, the immortal Son of God. He is the great King Immanuel, who stands today on the right hand of His Father. He is the light, the life, and the hope of the world. His way is the path that leads to happiness in this life and eternal life in the world to come. God be thanked for the matchless gift of His divine Son." (The Living Christ)

Love you all so darn much!

Monday, December 16, 2013

Full of Christmas Spirit!

Funny story: I finished reading and replying to all the e mails I had gotten this week, and was thinking, "man, I guess I´m ready to log off!" until I realized I had not written my family. Haha sorry guys! I guess I´m just excited to tell you all about my life face to face.
Anyway, we had a lot of exciting things happen this week. The mission had a Christmas party complete with everyone singing Christmas songs, Christmas sweaters,
 
 turkey and mashed potatoes (a typical Christmas dinner here. Happy Thanksgiving?) and watching "The Santa Clause." It was fun seeing my friends, making new ones, and just hanging out with some swell missionaries.




The ward also had their Christmas party! Which meant more turkey, ham, and mashed potatoes. I´m pretty sure I ate enough mashed potatoes this week to feed the entire family (including cousins!) at Thanksgiving. Not that I´m complaining, Hondurans just like their mashed potatoes!


We also went Caroling with our Zone. It turned out to be really great to contact people. We go up to one house (a member, or an investigator) and all the neighbors hear us and come out and I just ran up and we started handing out pass a long cards and pamphlets. So it was really great. Plus I got to hang out with my awesome zone. We have a really great zone this change and if I leave in January, it´ll definitely be something I miss.



We also got to go to the temple again with our investigators. There is so much power in just sitting outside. There is talk that we might get to go in January which would be amazing. Honestly, people ask me what I want for Christmas and if I could just go to the temple, even to do baptisms, I would be over the moon and back again.

I love you all so much. Truly my testimony and belief in this gospel has strengthened so much in this short time (almost 7 months!) here in Honduras! My service has as confirmed everything I have been taught the last 20 years of my life and I feel so blessed everyday to be a part of this marvelous work.


I'm excited to talk to family on Christmas! Here we are will our fun Christmas tree!!

Monday, December 9, 2013

The week in pictures

Due to me being short on time.... this week will be full of pictures and little stories :)

Number of Christmas trees we helped decorate: 4.
 And in one house they went all out- we even changed the curtains to Christmas colors! But they fed me tamales after, so it was okay :)
 

  
 Thanks to Bees recipe book, I learned how to make apple crisp in the microwave. We love it! For dinner the other night, we made coffee cake and apple crisp. You know, welcome to living on your own :)

 
About every month Hermana Flynn and I switch clothes for a week- I bring a bag for her and she for me and then we get our clothes back the next p-day. Well, her companion Hermana Vasquez used one of my skirts, and my comp used my clothes that day too. So pretty much no one was wearing their own clothes this day :)
 


  We went back up to Picachu again, that really pretty high look out where there{s the huge Jesus statue. Obviously, we took a lot of beautiful pictures.

I just love standing up there, looking out in the city and thinking, "Wow, I get to live in this beautiful place"
 
 




 
Random Aubrey fact: I STILL love swinging on the swings. I could probably do it for hours. 
 

 
That is all folks! Love you all so much. I truly am so grateful everyday for the love, support, and happiness I feel each and everyday thanks to all those people I am blessed enough to have in my life.

The church is true! And I love you! :)

Hermana Snelson
 
 
 

 
 
 
 

Monday, December 2, 2013

The week everything changed

Hi everyone!
Thanks for the card from Brooke, the darling card from Rachel Chow, and the letter from Aaron

Alrighty. 

Things that happened this week:
1) It got suuuper cold! Like... probably 60 degrees, but that´s with Humidity and wind.

  For the first time I went tracting wtih socks, tights, and 2 sweaters! And I just bought a hat the other day, but today it randomly warmed up so it´s normal skirt and short sleeves again. For the moment anyway. Everyone says it gets really cold during Christmas (well, cold for Honduras) but I´m definitely enjoying it!
 
 2) Hermana J. got her wisdom teeth out, which actually wasn´t too exciting and just really miserable for her. She was on liquids for 4 days after, and she´s still not able to eat hard things, but doing fine

3) Thursday night we got the call... we were having changes. Hermana C. and I were walking to the Salinas´ house where Hermana J. had been resting while we were working. The phone rang- it was the ZL´s. 

Hermana C. started freaking out and saying "no no no!" so I answered the phone. We put it on Speaker. "Hermana J., will be going to Mira A (my area is Mira B) and will be with Hermana M. Hermana Snelson will be staying in Mira B, and will be receiving Hermana Z., from California. And Hermana C.... will be going to Dahnli as a Sister Training Leader!"

CALLED IT.

She didn´t want to believe it. I told her 2 weeks ago I thought she was going to become a Sister Training Leader to which she made silly excuses like, "I can´t be a Sister Training Leader... I love to shop too much!" Ha! :)

That night we got home and had 2 people´s stuff to pack up. It was pretty crazy, and even crazier the next morning as we ran around the house stuffing last minute things in her suitcases. We dropped of Hermana J. with a member where I met my new comp, Hermana Z!

Things to know about Hermana Z.:
-She has 13 months
-She was previously in the south (choluteca) and up in Dahnli
-She was raised in Orange County
-Her parents are Mexican, so she grew up speaking Spanish and English
-She is an art major, and studied at a community college
 
 
And we get along really well! I was explaining to someone who asked if I missed Hermana C. that I just don´t really miss people. It´s like a giant bowl of ice cream. My chocolate sauce (haha, we called Hermana C. chocolate because she´s brown) just left, but I got caramel. They´re both sweet, delicious, and wonderful, but they both have different things to enjoy. This is most likely going to be my last change in MiraFlores, so I´m just going to enjoy every single moment and make every moment count!

With changes, brought along this friend. I had been told that Connor M. was coming and he made it!  We went to Timpview together and he played football!  It was fun to see him his first day and to be able to tell him how awesome his Trainer is.

I´m doing so great! Working hard, and loving the gospel and the love and support I get from everyone.

Love you!

Hermana Snelson

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Disclaimer: I'm Alive! :)

After 3 and half days stuck in my house, I´m out!

Shout out to the Riverside ward for getting me the mini version of all the conference talks before I even got the Liahona! Awesome!

So much has happened! First on the list.... Miriam got baptized!

To demonstrate the awesome, loveable personality my sweet Miriam is, I wrote down some  funny things she said  leading up to the baptism. 


Tuesday- We went over and she offered food and we said that we had already eaten, but could we take it to go? She brought out this bag of tamales and other things and then she said,
"I just feel like your mom and you´re my kids.... And look, I just got another one!" Referring to Hermana J. I guess it was the way she said it- we were dying laughing.

Wednesday- We went over to her house with the ZL´s for her interview. We walked back in the family room after it was over and she was looking down at the floor. I asked what was up,  and Elder B. responded that the baptism was going to have to be postponed. I looked at Miriam and asked, "Miriam, are you getting baptized tomorrow?" She looked up, threw her hands in the air and yelled "si!" 

And the other day we were at a members waiting for her to finish making lunch. I looked over at Hermana C. and she was konked out! After she said she was just studying Lehi´s dream ;)

Thursday- We had zone meeting and while we were there we got a call from Miriam´s daugher, Sofie, telling us that Miriam was making food for the baptism (yes, her own baptism) and how many people were we expecting? "she has enough for about 60... should she make more?" We said we´d call her back.
Well, then we went into panic mode. If one person is getting baptized, there´s usually like... 25 maybe 30. At the wedding, there was about 60. So we said that should be enough, and no she doesn´t need to make more. 
After lunch we invited all the members in our area then went to Hermana J.'s old area because there´s no missionaries there right now. We invited a TON  of people and called and texted everyone we could. Good news? We ended up with 50 and all the food was gone.

But something else funny happened... they went to change and Jose hadn´t come out of the bathroom for a while. (oh yeah... Jose baptized his mom! the coolest thing I've ever seen!) I sent elder B. to check on him and he came back with the bad news... Jose had forgotten his white shirt. No matter! We just made our Mission leader switch shirts. It was hilarious, but it all worked out :)

 It actually wasn´t too bad being stuck inside during elections. I had time to do Zumba for an hour, personally studied for 2 hours (yes, I am turning into my father. But you know what, I like it!), and actually had time to cook! some of the delicacies included: crepes,

 french toast, stuffed peppers (made in the microwave... thanks bee!),


 baleadas, mac n cheese, chiliquiles (the things from the picture at Tipico´s), hamburgers (hermana C.´s choice!), 
and we splurged and got ice cream. So yes, it was fun, but I definitely have been feeling anxious to get out and work, especially because I will most likely have changes in 2 days.

CHANGES: due to Hermana C. having 6 months in this area, and Hermana J. only having 3 days in the area that she originally came to, they will most likely be leaving.

Current prediction:
Hermana C. is going to head up to Tatumbla or Dahnli. She already served in the south, now she´s been in the city, and now she get´s to head up to the north. But everyone is joking she´ll end in the south. We´ll see!
Hermana J. will probably  stay in the zone, and the ward, but back to the area where she was before her other comps left. So I´ll still get to see her around.

I will most likely stay to show my new comp around for another change, then I will head out.
 Vamos a ver!

Let's end with a random story...
We were walking home, and saw this nativity and she let us in her house and we just chatted with her. She is amazing! She does this every year and said she wasn´t even done!

 
Love you guys so much! Hugs and all the butterfly kisses in the world! 

-Hermana Snelson

Monday, November 18, 2013

Elections Week

Well hey there.

We have a lot to talk about so let´s get started with this.

Thanks to Elder Baird and to Miss Nicole Hopkinson for the lovely letters :)
Monday- we went shopping- like always! I did find some rad, cheap things and of course was stoked. Don´t worry, I only buy if it´s light, breathable fabric- preparing for the day I´ll eventually get sent to the south. 


Tuesday- the sister training leaders had called before (last saturday) to say that we were gonna go on exchanges, but we didn´t hear anything Monday night, so assumed that Tuesday was just gonna be another normal day. Ha! They called us and were all, "hey, so we´re leaving now, we´ll see ya in a half hour" so we got ready (i wait to get ready after personal study) and then I grabbed Hermana Brown from Texas. We dropped off her stuff at the house, then ran to do some service!


Things I´ve learned how to do in the mission:
-speak Spanish
-teach people the gospel
-make tortillas
-make tres leches
-and now... sand!

Hermana Elida is remodeling her house, so we went and sanded, finished, and painted the cabinets and other fun things in her kitchen. 

We had a lot of fun, and then changed and ran off to eat lunch. 
Right after we finished and were playing with Bishop´s cute little boy, the ZL´s called
"Hey Hermana, how´s it going?" 
"Uh good Elder, how are you?"
"Great, great, just wondering.... could you come to plaza to get the key to the church?" 
"uh, I´m in MiraFlores"
(MiraFlores is where the church is, plaza is by my house... there like 10-15 minutes from each other in a taxi)
"Oh well, the thing is the Elders and I have to meet the new  hermanas here in plaza so we´re gonna be late to english class so you could wait outside the church or just come get the key."
"yeah I´ll come... Wait, NEW HERMANAS?"

Yep, we had emergency changes. The Elders were out, and we got 3 new hermanas. I was teaching people colors and then they walked in, Hermana Jimenez, Dubone, and Reyes. Dubone and Reyes were at the CCM with me, so that was fun. 


Well, class finished and the elders didnt´look like they were gonna do anything. So I spent the next half hour calling members, explaining the area of the hermanas the best I could and helping in anyway I could. 

hermana Brown and I went back to our area, where we tried to visit people, and only were able to visit the Salinas family and watch the movie "John Tanner" with them. They loved it :)
Wednesday- got my comp back, and we went back to Hermana Elida´s to help out some more. and we also met wtih Miriam, Jose´s mom. like.. 1 week before we visited Miriam with a sister from the ward and Jose. That was when she told us that for the last 15 years she had been going to an Evangelical church. Then she saw all the faults in the doctrine and the things they were teaching and doing and just wanted out. She had quit going to her church, and prayed to god to help her find the path she needed to go. "And what do you know? These lovely ladies showed up on my door step just a few days later!" SO COOL.
As we left, Jose asked her when she was gonna be baptized. Then said, "If I get baptized, will you?" She thought about it, and said yes. Then Jose left to get the picture we had given him of his baptism and showed it to her. She was shocked at first, then said, "Well, I guess I´m getting baptized!" Wednesday was when we finally were able to meet with her. She said Saturday would be too soon (as in last week) but this Thursday would be fine. So holla, baptism this Thursday! She is really really excited and we´re even more excited for her :) 

Thursday- we went to the temple with our investigators! It´s always fun and I really think that helped seal the deal for Miriam. She really is seeing that this is right, that this is what she needs to do and the difference it will make in her life. I am so so happy for her :) 

Friday- was spent trying to find a list of inactives we got from the stake. We got lost many times- Honduras doesn´t have addresses. Literally, some of the addresses were like, "go to the buidling TIgo, the street next to it, the fourth house." and we´re all, "uh.. okay." So that was fun :)

Saturday- Taught english classes, taught Miriam, a good day but nothing memorable. 

Sunday- Yesterday was awesome! It was the primary program! Something I´ve decided- Doesn´t matter what part of the world your√© in, the Sunbeams are always the best part! After we jetted up to class where we were informed that Hermana´s Dubone and Reyes got their visa´s and were headed to Argentina, and Hermana Jimenez was gonna come be with us!


 This dress is a gem I found for one dollar, and it even has pockets!
I´ve been told I look like a Disney princess and Dora the explorer.



So now I have a new comp. It was crazy because then we ran to their apartment to pack, then the mission home to drop off the sisters, eat Baleadas, chat with President then go to our area. We had gotten all of Hermana Jimenez´s stuff upstairs (including another chair, mattress, and other food that was at her place, aaaaand a toaster!), got our scriptures, prayed, and were about to leave.... when the power went out. It´s a rule that if the power´s out, we can´t leave- too dangerous to be out in the street if the lights are out. So we spent the next half hour chatting, getting to know one another, ran and visited Miriam, and were home again. 

and today we went to Valle De Angeles! always fun to see all the cute things- some of it´s waaay expensive because it´s where all the tourists go, and they try to jack it up because I´m white. But we had plenty of opporutnities for fun pictures and lots of laughs.



Announcements: this weekend is the presdential elections so I´ll be holed up for 3 days (thus a baptism on Thursday) so I won´t be writing until Tuesday or Wednesday next week. but don´t fret! I´ll be fine! :)

LOVE YOU ALL!

Hermana Snelson