HAPPY ANNIVERSARY MUMSIE AND POPS! :) I was telling my comp the other day about how y'all are going for 35 years together and she was like [Holy Guacamole that's great!] I'm glad y'all are enjoying time together as a little family-doodle-doo there on the home-front. Sounds like all them chillins and granchillins are doing good. :) Elise sounds like a little ball of fun. :) Also, I´m glad Debbie is enjoying doing family history work... I may be serving a full-time mission, but she´s serving a mission that is just as important and just as difficult. Tell her to keep up the good work and that I´m proud of her. :)
Secondly: Maria got baptized! :) She is one of the smiliest people I´ve met in Honduras, but, sadly, the Catrachan frown came out in all of her baptism pictures. Let´s not judge her excitement for the baptism based on that, ok? Also, the sun was in our poor little ojitos. The member with us is Betty Hernandez. She rocks. Love her! (also, she´s the one who introduced us to Maria... members are such an important part of missionary work!)
Birthday suggestions: I would love nothing more than a Spanish verb book (as seen in the picture I´m going to attach) and $2 to buy delicious arabian chocolate bars from this one mercado. Also, pictures of or from the family. Crayon drawings are more than acceptable. Maybe also that one guitar hymns CD I sent home from the MTC hahahaha. But if not, I´m happy with whatever.
Where I am staying: I am currently staying in the nicest and most expensive apartment in the mission (minus, of course that of the mission president and his wife), although we are currently looking for new accomodations. We found a beautiful and relatively inexpensive place to live, but when we proposed the place to our leaders, they refused it, saying that they want us to find something bigger and nicer (and more expensive... how often does someone tell you that?!). haha. We´re trying to move as quickly as possible, though, so I think they´ll have to take what we can find. I don´t actually live in my area... in fact, I live on the opposite-ish side of town. We have to travel about 30-45 minutes each direction to get to our working area, but it´s not so bad. My area includes what they call the ¨zona viva¨ and a fairly good-sized part of down-town SPS. We start in more or less the area of the office and go up toward the Coca Cola mountain.
Grandma and Grandpa!!! :)
Boy, it was sure good to hear from the two of you. I went to a market today in Guamilito (it´s a colonia here in SPS) and practically everything I saw, I kept thinking, ¨my grandparents would love this!!¨ I wish I could send you all little gifts, but sadly the mail system hardly ever lets anything escape from here. We´ll see if I can work something out one of these days, but as of right now, it´s not looking so good in the ¨sending stuff home¨department. hahaha.
I´m glad you got to go to Grace´s baptism. It sounds like it was absolutely lovely. It´s such an important and wonderful step in life. How great that you could share it with her.
I didn´t know Grandpa fell. That´s never good, but I´m glad he´s feeling a little better. I pray for the both of you all the time and always hope that you´re doing well. I´m so grateful and so proud to have grandparents as great as the two of you. Take good care of yourselves and have a great week. I sure do love you both bundles and bundles!
Okey dokey. Let´s just talk about animals for a minute. Remember how much I liked animals before the mission? Well, I still mostly really love animals, but Honduras has a way of making me think I don´t. For example:
-I like chickens just fine. I especially like baby chickens (se llamen pollitos acá). However, I do not like when baby chickens peck the bug-bite-scabs off my legs. It IS NOT acceptable baby chicken behavior. (no worries, that happened in Olanchito... I won´t ever see that horrible little baby chicken again)
-I like birds quite a bit. For a short period of my life, I even considered studying birds for a living. However, I do not like when they splatter their Honduras droppings all over my favorite chapter of the scriptures (and when I say Honduras droppings, I mean diarrhea, because let´s face it: Honduras means diarrhea).
-I like horses a little bit. I like the way they look when they are very far away from me, but I can still see them. However, I do not like when they poo all over the road and I have to walk through it.
-I like rodents more than the average boy scout. However, I do not like when I am sitting on a couch and suddenly the cushion behind me starts moving and crawling up along my back. Nor do I like when I´m walking in the very heavy rain and a jumping mouse tries to attack me. Nor do I like when I´m walking in the street and I step on a fly-covered dead rat whose last act was to bare his teeth in a horrifyingly ferocious way
-I like cats only a little. However, I do not like them at all when they are covered in chicken blood, scratching my legs and playing with the hem of my skirt. Sorry kitten-lovers... that ain´t cute. Also, I don´t like when I have to dispose of the dead cat that the pet dog killed.
-I love all of the exotic birds and lizards here. However, I do not like when they peck and\or scratch me.
-I like pigs just fine. However, I do not like when they plop their very hairy very fat selves on my feet and fall asleep (thus trapping me beneath their pigginess)
As you can probably see, I have fairly decent reasons to feel a slight lack of excitement for the animals here in Honduras. However, I have one more animal I would like to mention at this present time. An animal that I thought I would never come to dislike. Man´s. best. friend. (Let´s not get crazy, we all know I still love dogs, but just hear me out). Yesterday we were walking along the street on our way back from an impromptu visit with Marina. There´s a dog on that street that has always been fairly friendly, but has recently become very vicious and ferocious. I was walking alongside the metal bars in front of the house where this dog lives, whistling a merry little tune, when suddenly something flew into my field of vision just as I heard a horrible snarl and felt a very wet and very strong mouth clamp aroud my free hand. That sneaky dog had hurled himself against the metal bars hard enough that his snout rocketed through just in time to bite me. If I hadn´t been shocked and annoyed and in pain, I would have been very impressed with his timing and calculations. However, with things as they were, I was slightly less than impressed with this furry little friend. Happily, I don´t think he broke the skin... he just left nice little dog-tooth shaped bruises, but considering how vicious he´s become in the last two days, I´m going to keep an eye out for him for a week, just to make sure he doesn´t have rabies (a dog can´t live more than 7 days with rabies, so if he´s still alive next Friday, I´m cheke). Needless to say, I am no longer friends with said dog.
On a more spiritual note:
*We had a lesson with someone in whom we haven´t seen very much potential. We weren´t very excited, but we decided to give her one last lesson before we left her. We arrived and she asked us why we hadn´t come to her house to take her to church on Sunday. She said she was waiting. She also said that she had realized since our last visit that when we´re there talking to her, she feels good and happy, but when we leave, she feels like something is missing again.
*We had an amazing lesson with Rolando on Sunday. We held it in the church in the room where the baptismal font is. At the end of the lesson, I challenged him to be baptised on the 24 of August (I think that´s this Saturday) and he said yes. We´re going to work really hard to get him there, and we´ll see what happens. :)
*We had another inspiring and beautiful lesson with Rigo yesterday. He said that when he left the church, he started going back to his old church. He told us about how he never quite felt the same, but he liked to go and pray. He told us he would go every single day because he felt so empty and lonely, but that now that he´s returned to the church, he goes once a week and feels more full than remembered was possible. :)
Welps family, I believe that´s all I´ve got for right now. Enjoy a non-rainy day for me. Love yáll ooberly-gooberlies.
p.s. We have changes this week, and I suspect that someone you know will be doing a lot more nursing in the near future. I´ll let you know what happens. ;)
p.p.s. Let´s all just admit, the baptismal picture isn´t the best, perhaps, but it´s the thought that counts. hhahaha