Monday, December 30, 2013

Mi Familia!!

It was SO fun skyping y'all! I loved it :) It was the best Christmas present ever! I just want you to know that I love everyone of you so much and it was SO good to see you! I love to see that no one has changed too much in the 2 and a halfish months that I have been gone. 

Well this week was pretty fun! Skyping was definately the highlight. But besides skyping we made lots of sugar cookies last week for our investigators. We had dinner at some members, we had a two hour lesson with Luis (he is getting baptized on the 10th!) oh by the way I dont think I am getting transferred (I am so excited to stay here!) my district leader had to go home :( Hermano Alfredo fed us cow tongue (lengua de vaca) and it was actually really really good! we peeled potatoes without a potato peeler (apparently Hispanics dont like to use potato peelers and it takes FOREVER!) we went to Purple Cow which is a restaurant with Claire (a member from the English branch who came to a lesson with us) and I ate the most purple ice cream ever! and it snowed today! Just a little but still it was exciting. I didnt think that I would be excited to see snow but I definately was. I went to Five Guys today too :) 

Also, we had some pretty great lessons this week and got some new investigators. We had Luis and Lupita come to church. I also played piano in Sacrament again. It doesnt even scare me anymore like it used to at home. I dont even mind doing it! I love it :) So there is still a possibility I could get transferred (I really hope I dont) because transfers arent until Wednesday morning but usually you get a call Monday morning if you are getting transferred and we never got a call so supposedly I am staying unless something crazy comes up in the next day and a half. 

Also, I miss volleyball on New Years Eve. Our branch is having a party but it doesn't start until 8 and we have to be back in our apartment at 9... so we can go if we bring investigators... so I am not sure about that. Hma. Howton and I bought some sparkling cider at the store today so we might just set an alarm for 11:55 and wake up and have a 5 minute party and maybe bang some pots and pans and have some food and then go back to bed :)) And yes we still go out and do work on New Years Day.

Family! I just love you so much! I also just want to share my testimony with you all. Se que Dios es mi Padre Celestial y se que soy un hija de Dios. Se que El libro de Mormon es verdadero y que Jose Smith fue un profeta de Dios. Se que Dios siempre contesta mis oraciones pero necesitamos tener fe en el. Se que Jesucristo es mi Salvador y sufrio y murio por todo humano. Se que esta obra es muy importante y estoy muy animado para servir aqui en este tiempo. se que atravez el espiritu santo podemos saber todas las cosas. en el nombre de Jesucristo, Amen.

note from mom:  I translated the above for those of us that don't know Spanish and this is what is says:
I know God is my Heavenly Father and I am a daughter of God. I know the Book of Mormon is true and that Joseph Smith was a prophet of God. I know that God always answers my prayers but we need to have faith in him. I know that Jesus Christ is my Savior and suffered and died for every human. And that this work is very important and I am very encouraged to serve here at this time. And that right through the Holy Spirit we can know all things. in the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.

As you can tell (for you Spanish speakers) my Spanish still has a long way to go but it has come pretty far. I am getting to where I can almost understand most of what people are saying. It is really hard. But I know that God is definately helping me out! 

Gracias por todo!
Les quiero!
Hermana Goudie

Our Christmas Eve with the cute decorations!

Merry Christmas Eve!!

BEST Christmas EVER!

Sometimes studying for 4 hours straight gets to you.

Purple cow and bright purple icecream! (You can't really tell in this picture).

Merry Christmas from your favorite Hermanas! 

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Esta Semana Fue Muy Loco!!

Hola mis amigos! Como estan? So this week was absolutely crazy!!!!!!! It just kept getting better and better each day. Definately a week to remember out here in good old Arkansas! But one thing I can tell you. The gospel is true and God answers prayers! 

Well, this week we were able to teach Rosa and Hugo about the Restoration and they were really receptive to it. We were there for awhile and for some dumb reason decided to walk there (we were on bike week this week and didnt realize how long of a walk it was) and by the time the lesson was over it was like 830 and we wouldnt have made it back home for like an hour. They were so nice and offered us a ride! I LOVE THEM!!!!!!!!!!!! They are the sweetest and I really feel like they are ready to accept the gospel. We are teaching them tonight and I cant wait to see them. God is preparing people right now and I think these 2 are ready. 

We had Zone Conference this week (for all the missionaries in Arkansas) and it was awesome! We had lots of speakers and yummy food that all the moms from the stake who have sons out on missions made for us and we got presents from the relief societies and I also got a new skirt! The sisters did a clothing exchange. We had a talent show and Hermana Johnson, Mitchell, Howton y yo sang the words of Josephs Smiths first prayer to the tune of Come thou fount en espanol and it was so fun! We also sang with all the other spanish missionaries the Arkansas Mission song in Spanish. And we watched Ephraims Rescue. It was good! And I felt cool because I know James Gaisford! And Adam Deitlein. 

After conference we went on exchanges so I went with the sis. training leader sis. Christensen and stayed over at her place for a night and went teaching with her for a day. In english. It was so weird! I realized that I actually do know how to teach and talk to people its just I need to learn Spanish... 

The Hansgens sent me a package! So if you read this, THANK YOU SO MUCH!!!!!!!! 

Also, I am getting fat. Okay. Not really. But dont worry I am getting fed plenty over here and especially with it being Xmas I am eating lots of treats. 

So like I said before this week was bike week and can I just say it was crazy! The first few days were beautiful weather but then it started to downpour and what did we do? Bike in it! It was actually pretty fun the first day because it wasnt cold at all. But by the end of the first day on our way home we were getting soaked and we had to bike through a river to get home (everything was flooding). It was fun! I survived and my shoes arent even ruined I dont think... We couldve filled up to buckets full of water from our clothes that night we got home. I also almost got eaten by a dog this same day but let me tell you God answers prayers. I dont think I have ever prayed so hard in my life. It was chasing us on our bikes and it was SO scary.  We got to try Papusas this week Our alarm didnt go off one morning so we woke up an hour and a half late... we had a less active make us yummy fish tacos and we learned how to make tamales. Hma. Foster is awesome and drove us all around the second day it was pouring rain (which I am so grateful for because it was super cold) and they also fed us dinner. We taught Luis about baptism and he better be getting baptized soon because he already know s everything! JULIA CAME TO CHURCH!!!!!!!!!!!!! Shes so awesome. We sang in church yesterday the south hmas and us and hma. franklin and I played piano in sacrament because no one was there to play. Sorry this last paragraph was so scattered but I am out of time... Overall it was a crazy week! 

I love you all!!!!!!!!!!!!

Hermana Goudie

Note from mom:  I was chatting with Chanty today and I had asked her a yes and no question and her response to me was: "Yes ma'am. They say that here in the South. To everyone. I am not trying to be rude that is common courtesy here."  I thought that was so cute :)  I will love it if she comes back saying, "Yes ma'am!"

The beautiful park we ride through!

Sis. Christensen on exchanges. We lit a leaf pile on fire. They live at a members and they wanted
to burn it so we did!

The night we biked through a river. You can't tell but I am dripping wet!

Making tamales with the Lomas familia.

Eating home made fish tacos. Dad they were so good and spicy! You would
have loved them!

Monday, December 16, 2013

The Ice is Almost Gone!

Well, just another week here in good old Arkansas. I am not too homesick. I am keeping really busy and honestly for some reason it helps to see the Elders a lot around here. They keep me sane ;) I see Elder Ludwig and Elder Dalton (who reminds me a lot of Braedon) like everyday. And my companion is just awesome! We have a good time. I love the area and the people. So I am doing good!  This week is my bike week... that will be fun. Today if feels really nice out and I don't even need a jacket. I Dont have much time so just warning you now my sentences might not be complete... Last week on P-day after we emailed we had a Nerf gun war with the Elders in the church. It was super fun. And of course we played Chairsketball. LOVE THAT GAME. 

Thanks for all the packages, when I get up the stairs to my apartment and see a box there I literally squeel! haha it is pretty great!

We had a Zone Conference this week in Hot Springs. It was about an hour drive. Some really sad news at this meeting was that at dinner appointments with members there can only be one companionship. So we can not eat with our district anymore for dinner at members :( Which is all we do. We only have like 3 families that feed us so if we have to switch off meals between the 4 sets of companions we will have like one meal a transfer... I am so bummed and dont understand why but I guess I have learned sometimes we just have to do things and we dont know why to test our faith. And believe me is it testing my faith ;) 

Haha funny Spanish thing. I forgot to mention this my first week but I got a blessing from Branch Pres. Barrientos (you are supposed to get one from you Branch Pres when you are new in the area) and in the blessing I kept hearing pollo (chicken) en espanol. I had no idea why he was blessing me with chicken... I was a bit confused... Come to realize he was saying apoyo which means support. Oh spanish is great. 

We met the most awesome family this week. Rosa y Jugo. They were referrals and we went to go visit them and we knocked on their door and before we even said who we were she told us to come in. We started talking to her and found out that she has 4 kids that live in El Salvador and they have not seen their kids for 6 years because it is really hard to get a VISA for them. We prayed with them and in the prayer she started crying and right after the prayer she asked where our church was and told us she cant come this week but she is for sure going to come next week. It was so cool! We talked about families and how we know they can live for ever and she just started crying. The spirit was so strong. My companion and I have been praying for our investigators to be able to see that we are called of God and to be able to find someone that is ready to accept the gospel right now and see that they need this gospel in there life. We challenged them to read the first pamphlet and they agreed and she just was so excited. I know that God answers prayers and that He is preparing people right now to accept it. We just need to ask and we will be able to find these people. We are going back tonight to teach them and I am SO excited! 

I got a new skirt this week. Hma. Barrientos gave it to me. Its cute! So... the beef jerkey you sent me... I didnt know it had to be refrigerated... I opened it the other day and there was mold all in it :( 

We had our Xmas party with the branch and english ward as well this weekend. The missionaries and a few members sang Noche de Luz at it. We also helped decorate a room with a lot of different nativities and Xmas lights and what not. It turned out looking really pretty but took lots of time. There were a lot of people at the party and lots of yummy food. None of our investigators showed up though :(

So I play piano every week in Relief Society. Its pretty great. I only make about 20 mistakes a song because I dont get to practice them before hand but its okay. This week in church I also was asked to share a small talk/my testimony. In spanish. To only spanish speakers. It was really scary. But I know that God helped me out a lot with it and everyone afterwards told me how good my spanish was and that they were able to understand what I was saying so that made me feel good :) The second speaker only spoke English so Pres. Barrientos had to translate for him the whole time. It was awesome. 

We ate at the Franklins house again last night and they fed us deer stew (yes it was a real deer that he killed awhile back) it was actually really good! It kind of tasted like pot roast. I liked it. And we had those home made thin mints cookies again. THOSE ARE SO GOOD. And we also practiced because we are singing Angels we have heard on high (I cant remember the title in Spanish) next week in Sacrament. Hma Howton, Hma Mitchell y Johnson, yo, y Hma. Franklin. It sounds really pretty and we have solos and duets and I am excited! 

Well thats about it for this week. I Love you all! 

Hermana Goudie

My cute Christmas tree. THANKS SO MUCH MOM!!! I love it! Our apartment feels
festive now! :) Also the Christmas music. I LOVE IT!! And the cute piano ornament and lotion and
tissues and dice game and keychain. I JUTS LOVE IT ALLL! THANK YOU!!!

Mi primo y Alfredo (he is a recent convert and is AWESOME!!! He bought us Wendy's last week) and he
comes to lessons with us at Luis quite often. He is un jefe (boss).

This is a puppy that we always see at Luis house. By the way. He was supposed
to be baptized this week :( His neice randomly got really sick and started having seizures so he
couldn't make it to church to be baptized. :( Pray for him. He is ready to be baptized. I know it!

Some ladies in the Spanish branch. These are the ladies that sang Noche De Luz (Silent Night)

Mi distrito! I love them. :) This was part of what we helped decorate for the party.

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Another Freezing Week!!

Hola mis amigos! 

Well this week was awesome. And freezing. And slow. But still good! I got a new companion. She is SO cool! I seriously love her SO much. Her name is Hermana Howton and she is from California and has been out only one more transfer than me. I am so glad to have her as my comp. 

So last P-day we went to Chick Fil A with the South Hermanas. It was so good! Then we went to the mall and shopped for a bag for Hma Smith and lotion for the other Hermanas. It was super fun!

Oh something I forgot to mention last week was that Elder Ludwig gave me a blessing last week when Hma Smith was leaving. It was so cool. I love him! Am I allowed to say that? I mean he is my cousin and everything... 

Those packages were AWESOME mom! Thank you thank you thank you thank you! I loved them so much! As I was opening it and looking at everything I could not believe how perfect it all was. Everything, literally everything in it I had been craving for the past week or told my comp. how much I wanted that and then it was all in the package. Thank you so much! I cant thank you enough!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! The Preach my Gospel case is so cute and the jewelry is perfect. I even bought hamburger and a box of Hamburger helper earlier that day so I could make hamburger helper. 

We had dinner at a recent converts house this week. She made mole which is chicken in a chocolate sauce. It was good. Hermana Howton made breakfast for me this week too. She is just so cute. We definately did not go hungry this week because of all the yummy food in the package. THANK YOU SO MUCH!!!!!!!!!

So we have done lots of Spiritual Harvesting (like tracting) We taught some pretty cool lessons this week. We have like 3 top investigators that we love and hopefully they will be baptized because they are so cool. 

We went to Wendys after one of our lessons with the Elders this week and Alfredo (a recent convert) bought us dinner. He is so cute! Oh and by the way I fixed my straightener. I bought some duck tape and it works now. 

So these last 3 days we have had to stay inside all day because the weather and roads are so bad. The whole town shut down. Even the McD's by our house. The roads are just covered in ice. It is bad. So we have had decorated our apartment and made yummy food and studied a lot. However we did walk to the church two times and made dinner with the 4 North Elders and watched the Christmas Devotional which was super cool. 

Something really cool this week though. We were able to go out during the day for a few hours but we had to walk but all of our people live really far away. So it takes us like an hour and a half to get to our investigators apartments. But we walked to our investigator Julia (we have taught her once before) and we read some scriptures about baptism and the gospel of Jesus Christ with her and then after I felt prompted to ask her to be baptized. AND SHE SAID YES!!!!!!!!!!!!! We said that we have a service on the 21st and asked her to prepare for that date and she said she will try and when she feels ready she will be baptized. SO COOL!!!!!!!!!! The gospel is true and the Spirit is so cool and is able to speak through you and I am just realizing how cool it is when you speak by the spirit. 

Church was cancelled this week. We went to lunch at the Branch Presidents house though on Sunday (yes it is kind of silly that he cancelled church but then lets us come over for lunch) but we did have sacrament at their house.

Well that is about it for this week. I love you all so much! 

Hermana Goudie
Chick Fil A!

La Familia Goods

La Familia Izaguierre. Luiz is getting baptized next week!!!!! He is in the brown. He is so cute!

Me with my HUGE packages.

With all my treats. I have the greatest mom in the whole wide world.

Hermana Howton and I getting ready to go out in the cold.

WE are frozen.

Everything is frozen here.

Walking to go teach.


La Familia Barrientos

Monday, December 2, 2013

Thanksgiving and Bike Week!!!

So this week was pretty great. We definately had a high and a low for the week. The high was that it was Thanksgiving and we got lots of yummy food from members. The low... it was bike week. And this week was FREEZING!!!!!!!!!!!! The night we ended bike week it was just starting to warm up and now today it is BEAUTIFUL!!!!!!!!! So last week after emailing we had dinner at a members (pizza from pizza hut) and she is awesome! She takes care of a ton of grandkids and they all live together in this trailer and one of the grandkids had cancer for the past few years. She is clear now though and super cute. I think she is like 5 years old. I love her. Then we had a district meeting. I played piano. Oh and I also played in Relief Society yesterday... that was a mess because I didnt know the songs very well. We had Mcdonalds after District meeting (I love my district can I just say?) We ran into another district there and some senior couple came up and paid for our food. It was so nice of them! So we are pretty close in distance to the North Spanish Little Rock Elders and sometimes we find out that we are teaching the same people. Its a little awkward. So we both show up to Luiz's house (our top investigator but also the Elders top investigator-not sure how that works out) and we go in and teach a lesson together. All 4 of us to Luiz and his nephew Orlando. Oh I forgot to say this is Elder Dalton and Elder Ludwig-my cousin! I love him! I think we have seen them at least once everyday this last week. Because they have been helping us out a lot with our bikes and making sure we have rides to dinners and stuff and bringing us copies of the book of mormon and food and Mexican sodas and yeah. Theyre great. I think they just feel bad that they stole our car the most freezingest week of the year. But we gave them some Chicken and Dumpling soup too because we had a lot extra (which Hma. Smith and I made and it was DELICIOUS!) So anyways sometimes I get a little side tracked. Back to the lesson. It was AWESOME!!!!!!!!!! And Luiz was going to get baptized this sat. the 7th but then he didnt show up to church yesterday :( So hopefully he can get baptized either the 14th or 15th. And same with his daughter and nephew who we are also teaching.
Weird thing happened this week. I woke up and half my face was like drooping... it was really weird. When I smiled my mouth was crooked and my cheek was like really hard and swollen. I dont know what it was but it was definately interesante. But it is back to normal now so esta bien!
We went out to eat a few times this week because it is easier on bikes. We went to Wendys and Taco Bell. We got free food at Taco Bell because they messed up our order and just let us keep the extra (blessings!!!) haha because we were both starving.
We had dinner at the Lopez's this week and it was delicious Colombian food and then also at the Franklins last night and it was the best FRIED CHICKEN I have ever eaten! It was homeade too!
The South Hermanas (Hermana Mitchell included) came to one of our lessons this week as well and it was super cool because we went in and she was saying she is catholic and will always be but we just started teaching her the 1st lesson and she was super receptive and willing to read it and accept our commitments. So that was cool. I havent been back there yet though.
Thanksgiving was great. Lots and lots of food and pie. Our district met with Pres Barrientos and the Bowen family. I loved it. We also went and sang a hymn with the South Hmas at one of their investigators.
We got stopped by a black guy this week who wanted our number. That was great. We also got invited to go to a different dinner with the English Pinnacle Mountain missionaries. It was in the nicest neighborhood I have ever seen! It was like insane how huge and fancy these houses were! it was so crazy though because the last 2 weeks all I have seen is trailer parks mostly... The house we ate at was with some members in their beautiful home and they reminded me of Dawn and Henry. They fed us leftovers from Thanksgiving so like I said I have eaten a lot this week!
So Hermana Smith is getting transfered this week. No it is not problems with me but some other personal problems so I am getting a new comp. probably tonight and she has only been out one more transfer than me... we will see how this goes. Well that is it for the week. Love you all!
Hermana Goudie

Chicken dumpling soup! Homemade. So good.

Bike Week in the freezing cold!

Under the freeway!

Dinner with Pres. Barrientos

Dinner at the Bowens

Los Elderes Y My Primo Elder Ludwig!