Monday, December 30, 2013

Another Year Has Gone By

I have no idea how I am supposed to write two weeks worth of information in about fifteen minutes, but it's a good thing I am a speedy typer. I will do my best.

First of all, MERRY CHRISTMAS and HAPPY NEW YEAR! It was such a great Christmas. One I will never ever forget, that's for sure. 

I spent my Christmas Eve with a family that is investigating the Church. Well, kind of. They are at church every week, but aren't really too interested in getting baptized. But they are absolutely fabulous. Rubimar and Leani are the parents and their son Diogo is a member, who just married Simone, who is investigating the church as well. I don't know if that made sense. I can't speak or think or do anything normally in English anymore. It's rough haha. But Christmas was so much fun! We did an "Amigo Secreto" which is where you all draw names and get a present for that person, so we all ended up getting presents for Christmas (: Yay! We ate a TON of food and we were able to be out until midnight, which is when Brazilians open up all their presents and everything. It was so different, but it was SO fun. I loved it more than anything.

Then, Christmas morning, we had a funeral for a member's mom. Yeah, a funeral. She died on Christmas Eve. We threw together a funeral with the help of the Relief Society President and some of the District Presidency. It ended up being really nice, but I was bawling the whole time. So sad. I couldn't believe it. On CHRISTMAS. The whole family was devastated. However, we were able to console the family so much  because of our knowledge of what happens after this life. I was able to play the piano for a few hours as the family just sat in the chapel, and it calmed them down a lot. They all came up to me after, in tears, thanking me for playing. It was one of the most special experiences I have ever had on my mission. I am so grateful for the gifts I have that I am able to share with the people here. So blessed.

Then, I skyped with my family! AH. Bawling. I contained it real well, I thought, but the tears definitely came! Haha. Sorry fam (: But it was the best thing ever to talk to them. I have the greatest support group in the world.

That night, Elder Shepherd and I made homemade Cafe Rio for dinner. It was FABULOUS. So dang good. We had to improvise because they have very limited things here, but it was great (: The Brazilians hated it. They thought it was super gross, but we liked it, so that's all that matters.

Arthur's baptism was FABULOUS. The Spirit was so strong and I feel so grateful that I was able to be a part of his conversion. He has such a strong testimony and is already bringing more people to the church. What a great example that man is (:

We went to Uruguay too! AH. Part of our mission is on the frontera (I don't know what that word is in English) of Uruguay and Brazil, so we got to go there. Who would have thought that I would be in 3 different countries during my mission? (: SO cool. I got to practice my Spanish a bit, and it is completely destroyed. I need to practice, that's for sure.

Things are so great here. I had a fabulous week. I had a fabulous year. I can't believe that this year is ending. This week, I hit my halfway mark and I am going to be bawling all day. I can't believe how fast this time is going. I truly love my mission. I truly love everything about my life. I will never be able to express my gratitude for this work, for this time I have to serve the Lord. There is nothing better than this. I feel so beyond grateful to be here, to be sharing what I know and love with everyone in this small town. The church is true. I have never been more sure about anything else in my life. 

I love you all. I am sorry that this email was SO crazy and all over the place, but I did my best! Hahaha. Love you all. Have a great week and a happy NEW YEAR! (:

Sister Card


Arthur's baptism!

Cafe Rio/Costa Vida for Christmas (: SO good.

Christmas presents (:

Spent Christmas with my very own Mal (:

Diogo and Simone!

Elder Shepherd and I! The last Americans standing.

Everyone that got him where he is today (: LOVE.

Rubimar and Leani (: Spent Christmas with them! Love them so much

Zona São Gabriel:  Brazil - Uruguay Border

Sister Silva and I - Brazil and Uruguay Border

Zona São Gabriel:  Brazil - Uruguay Border

Zona São Gabriel:  Brazil - Uruguay Border

Zona São Gabriel

Zona São Gabriel

Sister Liahona!

Sister Ponce!

Sister A. Silva!

Brazil - Uruguay Border

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