Monday, December 30, 2013

Bugs Bugs Bugs

This week we have been busy planning a wedding!   Yay!  Our investigators are getting married on Friday and baptized!  Gloria and Crispin ( the parents) are wonderful!  They were a little nervous at first but now you can just see how much they are looking forward to joining the church!  We are also baptizing 2 of their 3 children!  Victor and Dulce (9 and 12)  They are both excited as well.  Things are going really well here.  The language is slowly (very slowly) but surely coming..  The elders in my ward say that they can understand me pretty well.  It takes me a while to adjust to how different people speak.  But it is coming!  
The people here still stare and make jokes about me being a gringa... Oh well I think I am just going to have to get used to that.  It is a bit annoying but I am just going to have to go with it!
Christmas was so good and I loved talking to all of you!  It was a lovely day and it was evidence of the tender mercies from the Lord, because I was not beside myself with homesickness!  The Lord loves his missionaries, I am slowly but surely starting to figure this out.  From what I hear it will take me a good 3 months... aah...  I love you all lots!  Be safe and have a lovely new year!
Love, Emily

First week in Mexico


Greetings from the land of babies and dogs!  I'm not kidding, there are so many stray dogs and so many babies!  You can't swing a dead cat without hitting a baby.. that was a weird example but you get my point.  Everyone has a baby! 
Okay, after all the craziness at the airport we went to the presidents house for dinner and Hna Johnson and I went and stayed with the sister training leaders for the night.  The next day was another orientation and then we were assigned our new companions and said goodbye.  That was so hard!  I miss them a lot.  I think it was more that I just miss things that are familiar, everything, really everything, is so different.  Not bad but different.  My new comps name is Hermana Manzueta.  She is great, she is very kind and patient with me, but she doesn't speak any English whatsoever, which I expected but it is rough.. but we can communicate well enough.  I really need patience.  She has more patience with me than I have with myself.  I get frustrated from time to time but hey. it is my first week.  I am allowed to be a little frantic.  Which is exactly how I am!! I was a mess when I said goodbye to Hermana Johnson.  My new area is called Martinez de la Torre, it is about 4 hours north of Xalapa.  It is a poor area.  The houses here make me sad and very grateful for the nasty apartment Hermana Manzueta and I live in.  Most people in America camp better than the way these people live.
 Hermana Manzueta and I are the only hermanas in the zone.  There was a zone class where I was able to meet all the elders in my zone, and there are about 6 Americans so I got to speak English!! Yay!! I will never take english for granted again.  I love to talk and when I can't communicate it makes me sad.  But don't worry I will figure this out and when I do no one will be able to stop me from talking!!  
The members of the ward are so nice.  And very affectionate which is weird to me.  All the ladies always kiss each other on the cheek, which I guess I have to get used to because everyday at least a dozen times that happens.  I have gotten to eat lots of good food also!  Nothing gross yet.  I tried mole like the real deal.  It was dang good!  who would've thought chocolate on chicken would be good? 
Also.  People here are not used to seeing a white girl.  I didn't think I was tall until I came here and towered over everyone!  I get so many stares, it is ridiculous.  An American girl in Mexico?? What??  They do love my curly hair though.  Everyone here has straight hair so they are all fascinated by my "chino" hair!  It's really funny.  This week has been a lot adjusting and it is crazy.  I hope it keeps getting better because life is weird.  You are all in my prayers always!  I love you lots!
Hermana Chandler

Mexico at last!


We have finally arrived!!! After the craziest adventure of my life we have finally arrived in Mexico.  I got off the phone with you and went straight from Dallas to Mexico City and that is where the craziness started!! Oh good heavens.  Only spanish.  Agh!  I have a whole heck of a lot to learn in Spanish because I couldn't understand anything that was happening.  Okay so somehow our reservations for the flight to Veracruz were cancelled and we found ourselves lost in Mexico City with out a flight or plans for another one.  Don't worry though, I was with my whole district plus some and we were able to figure it out after we found some amazing soul who was willing to help a couple of poor Americans out!  He was amazing and somehow we were able to get a hold of our president and the MTC in Mexico.  It was so crazy though we were stuck at the airport for a good solid 8 hours just trying to figure everything out!  My first meal in Mexico was a Mongolian Grill in the Airport at 12 in the morning!  Somehow it worked out and some wonderful man from the MTC Mexico came in the help us and picked us up and took us over to Temple Square!  We got to stay at the Mexico City Temple last night and fly out the next morning.  It was marvelous! That temple was beautiful and Mormons are the best people ever.  With as many things that went wrong on our journey here, I know for a fact that someone was looking out for us! We even almost missed our flight to Veracruz.  It was a crazy crazy crazy mess.  I just kind of had to go with the flow.  I am now comfortable and happy at my mission home.  My mission president is awesome and I am being assigned my comp tomorrow.  This trip was crazy but incredible.  It definitely makes for a good story.  Also.  Another funny thing was we got in from Dallas and gave our luggage to customs.... without any sort of ticket or anything.. so we gave our luggage to strangers so we lost our luggage and it was a mess and I was freaking out but the church is true and the Lord loves his missionaries because somehow everything worked out.  I am safe and happy.  I love you all and I cant wait to talk to you in 2 weeks!!  
Hermana Chandler