Sorry about the confusion on P-days, it is actually on Wednesday. Tuesday is our service day and that´s what I was looking at. Luckily for me, I can now speak Spanish a little better and can tell P-day apart from Service days :)
El CCM is just so incredible. I still can´t believe I´m in Mexico! Here are some of our adventures:
The elders in our district explained football one night to Hermana Hymas and I, since four of them played high school football. It was a pretty interesting day!
I am so grateful for how the Holy Ghost directs our lives. One day last week I was having a pretty tough day. I felt so down and was wondering a little bit about why in the world I was here and if I should stay. Okay, maybe it was a down right hard day. After personal study, we started learning some more Spanish. Before we really got into the lesson, though, Hermano Hardy stopped and said he felt like we needed to discuss. We had an amazing discussion that I REALLY needed to hear right then. It lifted my spirits and reminded me of why I am here and how excited I am to serve. A lot of us have talked about how we´ve felt almost attacked and are grateful we have one another to support us. I could never ask for a better or more supporting district and companion. I hope we stay friends for ever.
On a lighter note, one night we were preparing to teach Melissa and she brought some of her friend´s from Mexico to our classroom! So suddenly, we were attempting to communicate in Spanish with these people. We were starting to feel better about our Spanish, but after that, we realized we have a LOT to learn. Hermana Hymas was trying to ask if they have piñatas in Mexico, or if it is just an American thing associated with Mexican culture. Well, Karen (the girl) did not understand what a piñata was. So, Hermana Hymas proceeded to stand up and act out a piñata. It didn´t work. Thankfully, we were saved from further humiliation because we had to go teach. That was quite the adventure!
This week was Hermana Lui´s birthday! ( She is one of our roommates) So we made her a poster that we signed and taped to the door. We also bought her cookies! In addition, Hermana Hymas has this lovely little alarm clock that can play different tunes! One of them is Happy Birthday, and we thought it would be absolutely hysterical if we put it on that tone and hid it under Hermana Lui´s bed. So, while she and Hermana Lattin were praying, I sneakily hid it under her bed. It was hilarious! Until we all woke up to an extremely high pitched version of Happy Birthday that couldn´t be turned off because we couldn´t see and didn´t know where it was.
One of my favorite people here is the Post Office Lady. I don´t know her name, but she is so funny! She reminds me a lot of Jeannette Smith, and we go visit her almost every day. I got my first letter today!!! It is from Jessica (thank you!! ) and it totally made my day. :)
In el CCM, lunch is the biggest meal, so for fast Sunday, fasting starts after lunch on Saturday and we then eat lunch on Sunday. Sunday lunch is the best meal of the week, closely followed by Tuesday night pizza. :) We go to Relief Society with all the English sister missionaries and the CCM president´s wife teaches. Then, we have District Meeting (equivalent to Sunday School) and Sacrament meeting with our Zone. We are Branch 16, and our district is 16 E. We meet with all the 16 missionaries. On Sundays, we also have a MTC presidency class, a devotional, and a movie! This week we watched The Book of Mormon:How Rare A Possession. It was interesting.
Okay, so, the Power of the Priesthood is incredible. It is amazing to work so closely with these young men, most of whom have just received the Melchezidek priesthood. Three of us have gotten blessings (That I´ve watched, though more have happened) and they are so powerful. I am so grateful for it and for the Love our Heavenly Father has for each one of us.
Sorry this is a sporadic letter, I am going off of a list of things I wanted to ensure I told all of you about :)
This week, they got PEANUT BUTTER! It was the most delicious thing. They usually have bananas too, and nutella now. It is delicious. Just yesterday, they started getting maple syrup. Yum! One night, they even had the Orowheat Buttermilk bread, peanut butter, and bananas. I made myself a sandwich, and it was the most delicious thing ever.
Oh, if you get a chance, look up the "One in 8 million" series on the NY Times website. We use them as ideas for investigators, and it is a really cool look into people´s lives who live in New York City.
Hermana Hymas is one of the funniest people I know. One day, she tried a flaming hot cheeto (all of the cheetos are hot here. They don´t have normal ones, haha! The least spicy ones taste like jalepeños still) and choked a little bit because she ate it wrong. Well, Hermana Lui had offered it to her and started freaking out. Hermana Hymas took the bag and started looking at the ingredients list. "Oh no!" "What?!" "These have chili powder! I'm allergic to chili powder!" Hna Lui and Hna Lattin were so worried until she cracked a smile and started laughing. Oh, we have too much fun! One night, we were talking about dance parties (wondering if the loud music would start again) and I pulled out my flash light. One of the settings is like a strobe light, so we had our own mini dance party! Minus the music. It was great. :)
It rains so much here! I am incredibly grateful for my rain coat! Thanks Aunt Marra, Uncle Bob and Family! I love you guys :) The thunder here is incredible too. I have never heard thunder like it. The lightning isn´t as impressive as back home though. Maybe because we are usually in the classroom when it thuderstorms so I can´t actually see it... :)
Our CCM President, President Pratt, reminds us of the guy from The Incredibles, the one that tries to help relocate Bob Parr after we throws his boss through the wall. Oh! And I met President Romney´s niece! She left for her mission on Monday ( I think, it may have been Tuesday. I just remember eating ice cream when I saw her leave for the bus :) )
Melissa has been progressing really well, and she committed to being baptized! However, now we have two new investigators, Hector and Nancy. Hector we taught for the first time on Monday, and he is tough. His wife is a member and he has one son. He doesn´t know God and doesn´t really see a point in religion. He feels really closed off when we talk to him, and we are trying our best to show how much we love him. We teach Nancy for the first time tonight. She has two children, but her husband abandoned her and she is now suffering from depression. We really want to emphasize that she is a beloved daughter of God.
Tuesday night devotional was good! It was from a member of the seventy, and he was here in Mexico talking to us, so that was nice!
Last night we also got some newbies! I have seen my friend Jessica Howell, from BYU, and Caitlin Freeman, from GV stake! It was great to see them both.
I can´t tell you how much I love my district. When we have a free moment, we will all tell stories together, and people have the best stories. One of our favorite words is Hijole! To be used in place of any interjection. I am not actually sure what it means or if that´s how you spell it... :)
I adore and love all of you so much! Thank you for your support and your love.
Hermana Lauren Grondel
P.S. I gave you guys the wrong physical address. That one is for the old CCM, over by the temple. My address is:
Hermana Lauren Grondel
Honduras San Pedro Sula West Mission
Carr. Tenayuca-Chalmita No.828,
Col. Zona Escolar, Deleg. G.A. Madero,
C.P. 07230, México, D.F.; México.
Oh, addition to my letter! On Tuesdays, for service, we have been folding sheets at the laundry room. I love it SO MUCH! It is great and the men who work there are so sweet. One of my other favorite people is an Hermano that we see every morning on the way to our class room who cleans the buildings. He is a sweetie!
|Hermana Hymas, me, and our roommates, Hermana Lui and Hermana Lattin
in front of our casa. It is one story, and you can´t really tell, but it is purple and white ;)
|The sisters in my district plus our roomates, Hnas Lui and Lattin|
|Hermana Hymas and I with the sign|
|Us in front of the CCM sign|
|Oh look! The sign again!|