Tuesday, February 26, 2013

February 25, 2013

MOM AND DAD!!!!!!!!! Well this week has been fun and full of a lot of great things. The week went very well, we taught a lot. The weather is slowly getting hotter as each day goes by. I am not excited to be here in Managua for March and April. I think I will run out of sweat in this city. That´s awesome that you went to the Mexican restaurant and liked it. Welcome to the food that I eat here everyday... it gets old. hahahaha.

So on Saturday we had the baptism of Julio Castillo. It all went really well and we all felt the spirit. I have pictures but I left my camera at home so next week I will send some of that. We are supposed to have a baptism this Sunday but I am thinking the man needs a bit more preparation before. We shall see. We have an interview for another girl who has 25 years and she said she is ready and I think that she is but we will see what happens. Hopefully Saturday we will have another one. Well. That went great and then the elders had a baptism as well and so then on Sunday we had 2 confirmations and that was amazing. I love confirmations. Well, we had a bit of bad news this weekend. The family that we are teaching... she is a member and the guy isn´t . He wants to get baptized so bad so we have been trying to find a good lawyer and everything because she is still married to someone else but she really loves this other guy who she is living with and has a kid with. Anyways we are trying to help them so that he can get baptized. But we called in and they are saying it´s going to take a lot longer than we think. So we are hoping for the best with 2 months. We will see what happens.

So last night was super fun because we went to our last appointment and my good pal Hermana Creel called me and was like hey can we come stay the night in your apartment. I was like um yes come over!!!!! Their area is like 45 minutes away and we had to be in the church with our zone this morning at 7! So they came over and we got fed some pizza for dinner and we taught an investigator of ours and it all was super fun. Then we went home and just all talked and had a good time before we went to bed. This morning we got up early and met with our zone and studied the Book of Mormon together for a good hour and then we changed into our sports gear and went to this really nice park in Managua with the other zone and we all played soccer on turf and some basketball and it was super fun!!!!! Our zone is way awesome. All the elders make me laugh so hard and they are all great guys. I have always been super blessed with great zones! So while we were playing elder Bray... my zone leader... walks over to me and he said hey can I tell you something and I was like sure thing,thinking it was going to be like a secret or something because we always are just talking about everything. And he said hey do you wanna train, like what are your feelings about training? I was about to answer and then he´s like HEY everyone, HERMANA PARKER IS GOING TO TRAIN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! hahahahaha. Everyone went crazy. I guess I am the only one in my zone who will train. Wow. That was a surprise. So yeah, we have changes on the 6 of march and I will have a new little baby missionary walking around with me. I thought it was cool because Taylor is now training too. We will have a lot to talk about I am sure. I was a little scared at first, but now I am really excited and cannot wait for this new learning experience I am about to have.

Anyways, then today after the park we went to the mall with our zone and we all ate at mcdonalds and then I went looking for some more shoes. I bought some wayyyyy cute shoes and they are so comfortable. I am excited to wear them. Oh, but I took 40 dollars out but only spent 20.

I feel more grateful than ever to be sealed to my family for time and all eternity. I am so grateful for the chance that we have to overcome physical death and for the whole plan of salvation. I looked up our family tree this week and have a few questions. I wrote them down so maybe I will send them in a letter or something. I want you all to know that I LOVE the mission and I am doing my best to work hard. I have the amazing opportunity to feel the Holy Ghost guiding me and my companion daily. I am so thankful for the blessing to be a missionary. I love you all soooo much! Love, Hermana Parker Also, this week I got a letter and card and picture from Taylor for my birthday! I was laughing sooo hard, he is so cute. Also, Hermana Creel gave me a card with 5 pairs of way cute earrings and then I got a few letters from the families in my old area in Diria. So great. Love you all soooo much!!

Monday, February 18, 2013

February 18, 2013

Hair straightened

Marcella and Courtney

This week has been a lot better for me. I am still with my companion and she is doing a lot better. So this week was good. We had a baptisimal interview for this coming Saturday and his name is Julio Castillo. He is ready for his baptism this coming Saturday at 2 in the afternoon. He's the cutest little old man ever. He goes every Saturday to the church to index. He just loves indexing it is so cute. We were actually able to go this Saturday and do some indexing. I got a lot done and was pretty proud of myself afterward hahaha.

Well as you all know, I had a talk yesterday. I wrote it all earlier in the week so that I wouldnt be stressed about it. But then Sunday morning was when it hit me and we have a huge ward and so I was a bit nervous. The day before... on Saturday I was telling my little best pal here named Marcella (she is 6) about how I have to give a talk and that I am nervous and this was her advice to me... ok Parker, you need to take a deep breath and realize that you can do this. You need to get up there and tell everyone ok I am a little nervous but I have a lot to say. Then you need to talk with confidence and when you are done you need to be confident with all that you said.... hahahahahaha She is the cutest thing ever. I was trying not to laugh because it was so cute... and coming from a 6 year old. She is the best. Then Sunday after my talk she was like ok, so how did it go tell me everything. hahaha. Anyways so about my talk... I prayed a lot for guidance and comfort. We showed up at church and our Mission President happened to be there too hahaha. So it was a bit scary but I got up there and delivered my talk so well. There was a time when I just started talking about I don't even remember and it was all like perfect Spanish. I couldn't believe it was coming out of my mouth and it was nothing I had written. It was crazy. My whole talk went really well and I wasn't that nervous. I talked about how missionary work can reach the hearts of others. There was a man there from Utah that is here to help with the Cause for Hope and he came up to me and said, wow your Spanish is so good, I really enjoyed your talk. I was like wow, thank you. And then President Monestel came up and told me I did a great job and that he was proud of me. It was so great, but I know I was helped so I said a prayer of thanks.

Oh, I took 20 dollars out of my account because I had some extra things I had to buy this week. Hope that is ok. Oh and I am back to doing my own laundry again because the lady that was doing it took like a week and I can get it all done in one day. So I mean... sorry if I come back hunchback... their sink things are for midgets. hahahaha. Well, I hope that you all have a fabulous week and know that I love and pray for you always. Thanks for all that you do for me. And I am sending letters out today to Kev, Fro, Cottam, Karisa Rosander, and Memaw because I got letters from them all a little while ago. Thanks to everyone. con mucho amor, Hermana Parker

Friday, February 15, 2013

February 11, 2013

Well... this week started off very well... and then it went down to not so good. Well up until Thursday was great. We actually found out that one of our converts... well not one that I baptized but that my comp did before me but someone we visit a lot was sick in the hospital. So we had to ask permission to go and see him. They told us we could go and so we went... not knowing what we were about to see. So we walked in and they told us he is so bad that he cannot remember anyone or anything. So we were like ok we are prepared. We walked in and he was supppper swollen and he was a complete vegetable. It was the saddest thing I have ever seen. So then he couldn´t talk, walk, eat, see, nothing. He would only scream from pain. What happened is that he drank his whole life and about 4 years ago almost died because of it. He has like an infection in his stomach that since 4 years ago he has had some toxins leaking into his blood and finally on Thursday it entered into his brain. well, about 7 months ago he found the true church and got baptized. He was always a very smart, loving, happy person. He would always say and what does Hermana Parker say? Such a cute guy of 60 years. Great person. Well, that just really effected my companion and so then we went home and from that day on it has been hard. So then I woke up on Friday and took a shower getting ready for our district meeting but we didn't go. My companion cried and cried all day. It was very hard. I feel very blessed because there was a lady in our house... well she owns the house we live in but she helped me a lot. Then I called the bishop and he came over to give a blessing and he came with a family from UTAH . They were awesome and the cute lady told me she could call my mom for me. So I was so happy to hear that you guys got to talk to her. She is super cute and a sweet lady. I didn´t know that bishop spoke perfect English either. hahaha. so funny. But after that my comp went back to bed and slept all the way until the new day... but I was supposed to be watching her. So I haven´t been sleeping much. I finally was talking with the elders and they called our Pres for us. So then on saturday they called us and said that the guy had died that morning and we had to go to his viewing. So we went and I called the elders to come with us. It was just really hard on my companion. So then we left and we went to a members house and she ran into the back room and finally called the President so he said she has an interview which was today. Then on Sunday it was just crazy. After church, she told me that Pres told her that we have to do divisions. And so I was like ok if he said that that is fine. Then we went out and I was with another girl from the ward and I had a feeling to call the elders and so I called them and they were like um no you cannot do that she cannot leave you. So they came running to the church and we had to go search for her. Finally found her. Then we went home, then I finally just broke down and cried while she was asleep. I just didn´t know what to do. Then we finally talked to Pres today and I told him everything. Now we will see what happens.
Anyway, today at the office I received my BIRTHDAY package. baaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa aaaaaaaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh what the!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I have never gotten such wonderful gifts. Thanks to everyone. Goodnesss. Best ever. I took some pictures with everything. I am wearing the new watch. I love the new shirts, the monkey things are sooo cute. The owl neclace and stuffed animal. wow. soooo cute. The cute camel for hump day. And the book that mom sent.... um I will not be afraid to say that I cried like a little baby when I read it. Thanks soooo much. Also the rattlesnake poop that you sent is really good. That will be a fun snack. And I cannot believe you guys remembered how much I love craisons. so great. Thanks!!!!!!!! I am going to keep both watches because I couldn´t choose just one. And I also opened the valentines package yesterday because I was a little down and so that made my whole day. Thanks soooooooo much. All I have to say is that I love you alllllll Sooo much. Thanks for the valentines stuff and birthday stuff. I am soooo spoiled. I have also been getting a lot of dear elders and letters. From Cottam, from Kev, and mom and dad and Nathan and Josh and Karissa Rosander and Mema. I just sent a letter to grandma Thompson so you will get that soon Grams. Yesterday I felt down and so I read that story in the Ensign that says that the Lord has not forgotten you... it was a sister who gave the talk in conference. I read it and I felt sooo comforted. Because even though I have been so alone I know that my Father in Heaven loves me. I studied the scriptures a lot and I just had Elder Bray pick me up a Spanish book from one of the sisters who just left. Since I went to Guatemala and not Provo I kind didn't get all of the study supplies. So I finally got a great book to study and have already been working on that a lot. Today someone told me my Spanish was very good and she didn´t even know me. I feel very blessed to be learning this language. also this Sunday I will be speaking in church on the subject of missionary work and I will be using Lorenzo Snow´s book. It talks about how as missionaries we are not here for ourselves but we are here to help others learn and progress and come to the knowledge that there is a God and that He loves us. It´s so true. Like the other day I was thinking about some of my personal goals and I was like wow, I need to work on myself too because I am just focused on other people. Like I have so many goals for others but not a ton for myself. It´s super funny. But I guess through helping others I am becoming better and growing even more. That´s what the mission is about... serving others. not baptisms or numbers. Once a missionary can come to this knowledge, the better the missionary will be. I want to share my testimony that I know without a doubt that our Father in Heaven loves us. That he knows us and that he wants what is best for us. He knows our strengths and our weaknesses and he is always there. I have been studying a lot of the atonement and even in the bible I read in Matthew yesterday that it talks about how much Jesus loves and feels the needs of others. While he was here he only served and preached and healed. He did nothing for himself. He is the perfect example and I am grateful for the opportunity that I have to serve him. I love you alll soooo much. Thanks for everything. Love always Hermana Parker.

Monday, February 4, 2013

February 4, 2013

This is cute ol ronald

This is Vladimir. We call him Uncle Vladi

These are the kids we baptized. Jose and Alejondra

This is harvin... his girlfriend is a member. He´s 31.

The whole group!!!!!

So this is the whole group. And the guy in front is who baptized them all

Here is me acting like jack sparrow.

Another of us on the ship! hahahha we are crazy.

This is Elder Bray, Crisanto, me and my comp at my surprise party

Hello!!!!!! So this week was super great! On Tuesday we had 4 of our interviews to be baptized, and they all passed! It was amazing!!!!!!!! And then the other man said that he wasn´t ready, but I had been praying that we could meet our goal of having 5 baptisms and so then on Friday night we got a call from another investigator... Harvin. And he was like I want to get baptized tomorrow. I was in shock and I know that God was listening to my prayers. Wow!!!!!! It was a miracle. So then on Saturday for my birthday we had to go do his interview and he PASSED. And so then we got invited over to have lunch at this family´s house for my birthday and so we went over... just thinking it would be a small lunch and the Zone leaders Bray and Crisanto were there and they had all put up lots of balloons and there was a pinata and everything. I was so happy. They had a cake for me and we got to bust the pinata and everything. So fun!!!! Then we went to our baptism and it was sooo amazing seeing all 5 of them in white!!!!! Vladimir, Ronald, Harvin, Jose, and Alejondra! So great. I loved it. Then we sang as missionaries and I couldn´t help but start crying. It was powerful. Then we were actually invited for a second lunch!!! Gosh they sure know how to feed people here. So we went over there, ate and then started our fasts for Sunday! It was awesome. Such a great bday! They both had some cake and everything for me. It was great. Then the day before my bday we got invited over to celebrate at our recent converts house and our investigator Nelson, who is famous came over and sang and played the guitar. It was super fun and a great way to celebrate because they all went around and said things about me and how much they care about me. It was really sweet. Everyone here is always so impressed that I am away from my family for 18 months. So then on Sunday, which I guess was yesterday they all showed up to receive the Holy Ghost and it was so powerful. Then Vladimir got up and bore his testimony and we were so proud of him. The Stake Pres. said it was better than anyone´s testimony of the whole meeting. I cried. He has changed SOOOO much. The best thing ever. THEN! it gets better. Vladimir, Harvin, our recent convert Luis and Ronald all received the Aaronic Priesthood yesterday too!!!!! It was amazing!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! The church is growing and I am so happy to be helping in some form.

Oh so here is the thing... it´s actually very funny. I was waiting to open up my packages for my birthday and when I opened it on my bday it was actually a package from Christmas hahahahaha. It was like a way cute charm nativity bracelet and a brush from Nathan and some pictures and other cute stuff. hahaha It was so funny I just started laughing. It was sooo cute. I love you guys soooo much. But I should receive my bday package soon. Do not feel bad because I had a really great birthday and it was amazing and I had the wonderful gift of baptizing 5 people! Something I may never get to do again. It was great. Thanks sooooo much. I also received a valentines card from mom and dad and I choked back a few tears when I read how cute you two are. You are amazing. And the cute pics of you guys at the temple and lil Nate, Lauren and Josh. It was so great. So I got a package from Cottam this week and it had a shirt in it that said someone who loves you very much went to Arizona and got you this shirt. hahaha. It was sooo cute and lots of other things. Then I opened my package from Nat and had a cute journal and pens and candy and a cute card with pictures. It was great!!!!!!! Thanks everyone. Also Cottam is coming to Nicaragua this week so that will be fun for her. I am excited for you all to come. I was talking to my comp today about helping you guys out when you get here because you won´t know Spanish hahaha. She might come pick you guys up at the airport and all that. We´ll talk more about it later when you guys are closer to coming. Well. I had a great week. Thanks for EVERYTHING!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Love you allll so much. I fasted for you all this week and I know that you will be protected and happy. Love always, Hermana Parker. I will send pictures right now! Enjoy.

January 28, 2013

HELLO!!!!!! Happy groundhogs day this Saturday!!!!!! I cannot believe I am having another birthday. My last bday was just barely here, I feel like! Time flies when you are preaching the gospel they say! Well actually they don´t say that, but I do. So guess what. I was the luckiest lil monkey this week and at our zone conference I received FOUR packages. I was a little in shock but I handled it well I think. I got one from Jen that was for Christmas and it was a great package! She is awesome! Also, I got 2 from mom and dad and one from Nat! So I saw one said there are things for valentines day and so I am guessing the other is for my birthday so I haven´t opened any yet! Thanks soooo much! The thing that I really miss is probs swedish fish. But other than that, the Nica food is just great... ya know, the rice.

We are going to try to pull off 5 baptisms this Saturday for my bday so pray for us and our investigators. We are having all of their interviews tomorrow and so we will see if they all pass. We have our baptism for Vladimir finally. He is sooo ready!!! Also we have one named Ronald and he is such a good guy and he has been coming to church and really likes it. He has been 4 times in church and wants to get baptized. We have Harvin, he is 32 and he is a good guy. He used to be into drugs and all of that but now he is doing better and he comes to church a lot. Then we have two children that are 12 and 13 and they have been coming all by themselves. Their mom is a member but never comes but they want to get baptized. We also have Nelson but he is having doubts so not sure if this Saturday will work. He was fine until we invited his son to be baptized too. He got all scared because he doesn´t want to send his son off on a mission. We read him Doctrine and Covenants 4 where it says those who have desire to serve are called to the work. He´s still not sure. But he is famous and he´s a singer here in Nicaragua I guess. He showed us all of his pictures. His wife and him are seperated right now because she wants him to change because he used to drink and party a lot. But we have been teaching him for about 2 and a half months and he is growing a lot so we will see what happens. He comes to church every Sunday and he is in Alma in the Book of Mormon. We shall see. We also have an investigador named Julio Castillo, he´s such a cute older man but he has a strong testimony and he comes every week for the past 3 weeks. We put a date for the 2 of Feb but he said that´s way too soon. So maybe a bit later. Those are all of our main investigators. They are sooo great. I love them all, and the members. We had a great Sunday yesterday and we brought 2 families and 10 people to church! The church was PACKED! I love seeing the church full.

To answer dad´s question... we live in a house with an older lady... we just have a room with a bathroom and sometimes we go outside on her hammocks if we have some free time. It´s a nice area and it´s close to our lunch appointment and everything. That´s awesome that Jennifer Howell is heading out soon. Tell the Stone´s congrats for me. Also Lauren said Colton just got his call. That´s awesome, he´ll do just great! Remember how I said that the people here talk a lot. hahaha Well, have you ever heard a run on sentence that goes on for 2 hours staight without a breath? That happened to us this week. we were trying to leave and we kept saying we had to go but this man just kept going and going... I kept looking at him worried because he wasn´t drinking water or anything just talking and talking. Wow. That was an experience. My comp and I still laugh about that whenever we think about it. Soooo funny. So this is very random but please don´t throw away any of my soccer shirts or anything like that. I was thinking of making a quilt when I get home. So this week was great and I just sent off another letter. Thanks for the birthday wishes. I loved how little Nate went and got mom a pillow for her knees. He´s sooo cute. Also, Josh, sorry you pulled your hamstring. Dang it. That´s too bad. Stretch out like dad always says. Hope Jordan had a good birthday. Tell the twins happy birthday for me on wednesday and that I love and miss them. Thanks everyone for the love and support!!!!! I will talk to you once I am one year older. ahhhhhh. Scary.. hahahaha love you alll sooooo much! Love Hermana Parker.