Wowzers, What a week.
WEll I'm sure you've already heard, but by some MIRACLE, I am still in Spanish work!! It was hilarious at transfer mtg President called my name to go up to the stand to pick up my new missionary, and as he announced where I would be serving there was literally a Gasp when he said, "spanish branch' becuase EVERYONE thought I was going english too! It was funny. Hna Painter turned to me on the way back to our seats, "Why is everyone freaking out?" HAhaha it was funny. It was sad to leave Hna Lythoge- but luckily I didn't have much time to think about it, becuase transfers tend to suck your full attention- especially whitewashes.
I am now in Murrieta California- the land of The RICH. Seriously, what a stark contrast from Vista. EAting in Tiny apartments with cockraoches all over to visiting members in huge spacious homes. We live with a member on an English ward in our stake- the Mazur fam- the ones that sent you the pics. We live in the Ritz Carlz...or it's equivalent. Seriously, I'm afraid to TOUCH anything!! GAted community- I have to show my Drivers lisencse everytime we come home. So fancy. but they are great. Very generous. Let us eat their food, use their laundry detergent, they buy lunch for us. Super nice. It has definitely been an adjustment though living with memebrs. It's a lot easier to be casual and relaxed...and harder to be strict with our schedule. But I'm doing my best to engrain exact obedience in to my new comp. Hna Painter is from Iowa. She is a convert of 3 years and she is 19 years old, She's sweet. She went to the Mexico MTC for 6 weeks and loved it, but I was shocked to hear that they didn't really teach her spanish there....very interesting. we have been focusing on spanish a LOT this week. But she is pretty fearless- which is a great thing.
It has been a stressful week to say the least. We arrived here to the new area (one set of missionaries was here before and 2 new sets just whitewashed in) to an area book Disaster-- no addressses, no records for some people, no nothing. Ugh, I could've just kicked the former elders in the shin for leaving an area in such a state! Irksome..... but it's okay. We've made some GREAT progress in getting organized and visiting the peeps here. The area wasn't even split either when we got there--so we were just kind of raoming around without boundaries for the first couple days until we got it all worked out. There are like ZERO people on the streets here. ZERO. So weird. I quite honestly feel like I am starting my mission all over again, because everythign is SO new! New culture. And it is just SO different. A lot of the missionaries here are from the Riverside mission whcih got put into CArlsbad with the split...which was much more lax about obedience and such- so that is hard as well. I just want to engrain obedience into the minds of each one of these elders! Sometimes I feel like the grandma of the mission. BEcuase I'm so OLD! Especially with the age change- they're so young. But it's okay- they will learn:)
WE are in a small branch, and although the people speak spanish, it is VERY much an ENGlish Ward. Everyone has a steady income and lots of gadgets and nice clothes. And EVERYOne is almost more comfortable speaking englsih...which was very interestign to me. Half of them didn't even know that sister missionaries existed- so they LOVE having us there. Well It's actually interesting, because they are very well organized and say they are excited to have us...but it really was kind of a cold welcome. but it's fine- we'll just kill em with some kindness and LOVE and all will be well:)
WE had a miracle happen this week. We went to visit a less active that was on our ward list and she invited us over the next day to teach her son. So we went and she has like this whole tabel set up and filled with sweets and ready for a our lesson. This lady hasn't been to churhc in 2 years and she was literally just WAITING For someone to come and invite her and she wants her son to be baptized and everything! So we have a baptismal date for thewith her 9 year old son. Miracle. it was great.
It is goign to be interesting to see how 'finding activities' go here. WE are going to have to work with the members like no other- becuase there just aren't that many hispanics here. And the ones that are here are hidden in huge houses in very white neighborhoods. So, I'm excited to get that going and see the great results from that:)
Funny story. Sister Mazur took that picture and let us see it before she sent it, and I said, "Oh geez, I bet you the first comment to be said will be about my feet." She laughed and said they wouldn't even notice....HAha yeah right. But that just made me laugh because that was the frist thing Al said:)
WEll that is all I can think of for today. I love you all. I'm so grateful to be a missionary. We were watching the RS Gen Broadcast and during the song. "I'll go where you want me to go..." It just hit me how SHORT a time I have left to be His full time emmissary. Oh how I will miss it. But I do know that there are peeps here that are just a waitin for me and Hna Painter! That's the great part:) I know that this is the true REstored Gospel and we are truly so blessed to have it in our lives. Love you all so! CAn't wait to hear from you next week!