Monday, January 31, 2011

New Pictures!!!

More new pictures on the photos page.  Yeah!!!



So after waiting for 3 days to hear about changes, we finally got them on Tuesday night. The phone conversation went something like this:

Elder Carrillo: Hi Hermana Chamberlain. Ready to go back to Cuenca???

Me: WHAT???

Elder Carrillo: Haha!!! Just kidding. You're not going to Cuenca. (Sidenote: I'm getting so sick of those jokes!!)

Me: Oh. Okay.

Elder Carrillo: But we do have some good news for you. You're going to train a new missionary!!

Me: . . . . . REALLY???

Elder Carrillo: Yes!! Her name is Hermana Robison. We'll call you tomorrow to tell you what time you need to come get her from the terminal.

Me: . . . . . . I'm gonna TRAIN???

So I hung up the phone and couldn't sleep for the rest of the night. Seriously. I was way excited because I've always wanted to train but at the same time I was thinking, how can I possibly train?? What if I'm horrible at it?? What if she hates me?? What if no one gets baptized?? What if all our investigators dump us?? What if what if what if what if . . . . . and finally I thought, well, I can be afraid or I can have faith. I decided to try and have faith, and after that I was a little bit more tranquil, although still nervous!!! I remembered what Travis said about when he was waiting for his newbie to get there, that he was pacing back and forth like a nervous dad, well that's pretty much what I did all day, haha. But now HNA Robison is here and we are just having a blasty blast together down here in Loja. She says that her Spanish is horrible but that's a total lie, she speaks really well for someone that just got here, and the best thing is that she's not afraid to talk like I was. It's just so funny because I'm remembering all the things I felt when I first got here to the mission and I'm seeing her feel all those things too. But she's awesome. She's from Layton, Utah and is loving being down here in Loja with me and we're already having great times together.

So this week we had kind of a miracle happen. Lady, who HNA Bravo and I found last change, has been coming to church for 3 weeks and doing everything that she should be but wouldn't accept a baptismal date. This week we came by every day to find her and she was never there, which is weird because before she was always there!! I was getting really worried until Friday when all of our appointments had fallen through and we were walking to find a phone to call someone and I thought: let's go by Lady just to see if she's there. And she was!!! We talked to her about the Holy Ghost and what it can do in our lives and we asked her, how do we receive the Gift of the Holy Ghost?? She answered, by being baptized. I wasn't going to ask her about baptism because I thought she might have felt pressured, but I felt like I should, so I said, and how have you been feeling about baptism hermana Lady?? She said, well I've been thinking and praying and I'd like to be baptized. I was so shocked at this completely unexpected answer that I just sat there staring at her for a second and then said . . . . . really?? I quickly pulled myself together and said, will you be baptized this Saturday?? She said yes!!! So she's gonna get baptized this Saturday and we are just thrilled to pieces about it. She came to a baptism with us this past Saturday and to church on Sunday and this week we're just gonna make sure she's good on the doctrine and the commandments, she'll have her interview and be baptized!!!! Moral of the story: have faith, be persistent and always listen to the Spirit!!!!

This internet cafe is playing bachata and it's really hard not to listen. Why does Ecuador have better music than us??

More highlights from this week: Lady's little girl Angye and little sister Maria grabbing my water bottle, putting their entire mouths on the opening and sucking down half the contents and then offering it to Hermana Robison, who said, trying very hard not to look grossed out, No gracias. I laughed so hard I about died. Hermana Robison being asked to bear her testimony in sacrament meeting, looking scared to death, but bearing a beautiful testimony in perfect Spanish. Starting to teach Wendy, the 14 year old daughter of a 2 year convert, HNO Olger. Seeing Jessenia, the daughter of an recently activated member, in church for the first time. Teaching a lesson through a locked gate because the lady's husband and left with the only copy of the key to open the padlock. Walking around the neighborhood every morning. Old friends (ie: Hermana Morán and Elder Johnson) coming back to Loja. Introducing Hermana Salmon and Hermana Robison to Papatron, the best salchipapa place in Loja and probably all of Ecuador. Working in Argelia and Jipiro at the same time. Being a missionary!!

Well, that's about it for this week. Please please pray for Lady as hard as you can so that she can be baptized this Saturday, also for Jessenia, who will be baptized on the 19th of February. Pray for Wendy too, so that she can accept the gospel into her life and be baptized by her father. And pray for me and my companion, as always, we need all the help we can get!!!

Yo sé que vive mi Señor
Consuelo es poder saber
que vive aunque muerto fue
y siempre Su amor tendré


Hermana Chamberlain

PS: si mi querida mami HNA Lopez está leyendo esto, felicidades abuelita!!! Tiene una nieta más!!!!

Monday, January 24, 2011

Waiting for Changes


Well, HNA Bravo went back to Guayaquil on her way home yesterday and I don't know what's gonna happen to me this change because we're finding out about them tonight instead of last night.  Elder Carrillo played a hilarious joke on me when he called this morning to let me know, saying, oh hi Sister Chamberlain.  We just found out that you're leaving Loja......just kidding!!!!  Hahaha.  Anyway, since my companion left I've been hanging out with the excellent HNA Salmon (yes, like the fish) because her companion went home too.  She's got one change here in Ecuador and we are just having a blast together.  Yesterday we brought four people to church and afterwards taught lessons until we had to go home, it was fabulous.  We kind of wish we could be companions for the rest of the President, if you're reading this, HNA Salmon and I want to be compas!!!! 

Anyway, it was HNA Bravo's last week so we worked ridiculously hard and saw some amazing results.  Hopefully I can keep working hard with my new companion when she gets here.  I know that the Lord will bless us with a lot of success if we are diligent and obedient and have faith.  Those are like the 3 key things to having success as a missionary.

We found out something amazing this week-remember Monica, the lady that needs to get divorced so that she can get married and baptized??  Remember how we fasted with her??  She told us this week that her lawyer called her and her divorce will be final on February 13, in other words, two weeks.  You have NO IDEA how excited we were about this!!!  When divorce papers come through it's like Christmas and birthdays all rolled into one.  Fasting works.  Do it often and do it with faith!!!

We have a lot of people that we're working with that come to church, read the Book of Mormon, pray and know that the gospel is true-but won't get baptized, for one reason or another.  What do we do??  Suggestions, counsels and words of advice would be appreciated.  Seriously, there are like 4 people in our program that could totally get baptized tomorrow-they just need to make the decision.  HELP!!

Well this email is relatively short but last week's was really long so I don't feel too bad.  I don't really know what else to say, but I'm also really tired and can't really remember a whole lot of what happened this past week.  I love you all and I love the work and please pray for our investigators so that they can be baptized and receive all the blessings that Heavenly Father has prepared for them!!!


Hermana Chamberlain

Monday, January 17, 2011

My Top and Bottom Ten Lists of Being a Missionary


So this week, for some reason, I've been remembering random favorite things from the world.  Favorite movies, favorite songs, favorite computer stuff, books, you name it I've remembered it.  And then I laugh out loud and HNA Bravo asks me what I'm laughing at and I have no idea what to say.  In an attempt to feel better about letting my mind wander into the world again, I've tried to relate it all to the gospel.  This week you will all be treated to a glimpse of the things that have come to my mind, and my clever relations of them to missionary life and the gospel.

So one day in the morning I was getting ready and I randomly remembered Homestar Runner.  My cousins Hillary and David introduced me to this website way back in the day and it's been a constant source of entertainment to me ever since (Gracias primitos!!!)  Anyway, I randomly remembered one of Strong Bad's emails, where he lists his Bottom Ten, which is the opposite of a Top Ten.  In other words, he lists ten of his least favorite things.  I was laughing about it, remembering, and then I started thinking-what´s my bottom ten??  I compiled the list in my head and am ready to share it with you all.  Hermana Chamberlain's Missionary Bottom Ten is as follows:

10.  My clothes.  This week every time I have opened my closet I've experienced a bout of clinical depression.  To put it simply, I've worn the same skirts, tops, accessories and shoes for over a year and I'm completely bored of all of them.  I stand there staring into the closet thinking about what I can put on and I end up standing there for a really long time before finally putting on the same old thing.  Plus, I only have one pair of usable shoes left, that hopefully will last me the next 3 months.  Bummer.

9.  Unreliable running water.  Many times we come home at night to find that the sinks and faucets have ceased to function.  How on earth am I supposed to wash my face when there's no water??  And if you want to shower at night to save time in the morning, you can just forget about it.  Lame.

8.  Angry electric companies. Okay this was half our fault, but we really thought that the landlords were in charge of paying the light bill.  One night we came home, flipped the light switch and . . . . . nothing happened.  We quickly realized that it is in fact our responsibility to pay the light bill after all.  HNA Bravo then asked me, know where the only place in the house that has light is??  I replied, it's the bathroom, isn't it??  She said, how did you know??  I replied simply, it's ALWAYS the bathroom!!!

7.  Creepers.  And I thought Guayaquil was bad.  And the worst part is, I don't get why they all hit on me-my hair and face are gross, I dress in frumpy missionaries clothes and I've gotten fat.  What do they possibly see??

6.  Running out of gas for the stove, clean water and cell phone minutes.  On Saturday night we came home to find our house smelling like a gas station.  Turns out there was a leak and all the gas had run out (no, the house didn't blow up, fortunately.)  But this meant that we weren't going to be able to cook the next day, which meant that we weren't going to be able to eat.  Then we tried to call our district leader about something and found out that we didn't have any minutes.  Oops!!!

5.  People that don't read the Book of Mormon. pray, or go to church when they say they will.  This is probably pretty self explanatory, but it makes me sad that people don't realize how much it will bless their lives.

4.  Door slams.  Rude!!!!

3.  Changes next week.  I don't want to leave, we're working with a lot of great people and the branch members are great.

2.  People that receive so many testimonies of the Book of Mormon, of Joseph Smith, of the Church, but won't be baptized.  This hurts my feelings.  A lot.  And if it hurts my feelings, imagine how much more it hurts Heavenly Father's feelings.  His invitation is that ALL MEN come unto Him though baptism and when someone doesn't get baptized it's like they're saying, thanks Heavenly Father but I don't want to live with you forever.  Ouch.  Included in this is people that don't live the commandments, suffer the consequences and wonder why they're miserable.  It makes me really sad.

1.  Realizing that despite all the above bottom nine, I only have three more months to be a missionary and preach the restored gospel of Jesus Christ.  Typing that sentence just brought tears to my eyes.  Why can't the sisters serve for two years too??

So that's my Missionary Bottom Ten, included are lots of things that happened during the week that were difficult, but served for my experience and were for my good.  So then I thought, well I have to put my Top Ten on there too, obviously.  It's really more like a Top Hundred, but for time and space, I've picked my favorite ten.  So . . . . Hermana Chamberlain's Missionary Top Ten is a follows:

10.  Salchipapas (hot dogs with french fries) with pineapple sauce.  They are so delicious I could eat them every day.  In fact, one time we did eat them every day for a week, but then we realized that we were definitely increasing our individual heart attack risk significantly.  Plus my stomach was not pleased with me.

9.  Loving ward members.  Remember when we ran out of gas and couldn't cook??  The Castillo family gave us a big bag of bread that same day, plus they fed us dinner.  Through them I felt the love of my Heavenly Father and knew that he answers prayers-I had prayed that morning that we'd have enough to eat that day!!

8.  Instant answers to prayers.  This past week I was suffering from a bad case of hiccups.  I had tried everything but nothing took them away.  Then a thought came to my head-ask Heavenly Father to take them away.  So I did.  They stopped immediately.

7.  Finding new meaning in the scriptures-every single day.  This week I started reading the Book of Mormon again after finishing it again (me=baller, ha).  I started out-I Nephi, having been born of goodly parents, and . . . . having seen many afflictions . . . . nevertheless, having been highly favored of the Lord all my days . . . . I stopped to ponder on that for a second.  Even Nephi, one of the most obedient and faithful prophets in history, suffered a ton of adversity-but he was highly favored of the Lord.  I thought, you know, if the Lord didn't love us, He wouldn't give us afflictions, because through them, we grow, learn and progress.  When we pass through problems and difficulties, that means that we are highly favored of the Lord too, because He wants us to be all that He knows we can become.  You can bet I never would have had that revelation before the mission!!

6.  Finding new, prepared people.  We found a family of 3 this week, the Flia. Jimenez.  They were just dying to know why there are so many churches and which one is the true church of Jesus Christ.  We were happy to explain it to them, and while we were at it, we invited them to be baptized and they all said yes.  Although they couldn't make it to church this week, I know they'll come next week, because well, they're prepared, and that's what prepared people do.  Plus Lady came to church again this week and although we're not totally sure if she'll be baptized this Saturday, she's well on her way and that makes me happy.

5.  Feeling the Spirit speak through you.  I've noticed that this week, as I've tried to have more faith and trust more in the Lord and not compare myself so much to other people, my teaching has improved, and I've felt more like I've said what the Lord wanted me to say.  It's a fabulous feeling, I can tell you.

4.  Developing charity.  This week as I watched a family that we've been working with for a long time tell us that they didn't want to be baptized yet, for this reason or the other, I felt like my heart was breaking.  In that moment I realized just how much I had come to love them and how much I wanted them to be an eternal family.  If I don't see them in the Celestial Kingdom I might just die of sadness.  But at the same time, I realized that I was feeling the pure love of Christ-and that's something that everyone should feel for everyone else.

3.  Speaking Spanish.  It's so much fun and it will help me a lot when I get home!!

2.  Letters from my converts.  This past week the Flia. Criollo sent me a letter and it was seriously one of the best things that has happened to me in my whole mission.  Even though they are passing through a whole lot of difficulties right now, they're still faithful.  They're going to church, they have callings, they're having Family Home Evening and reading the scriptures together and best of all, they have a goal to go to the temple.  You cannot imagine the joy I felt as I read their letter!!

1.  Feeling the love, guidance and direction of Heavenly Father every day through the Spirit.  Being a called and set apart servant of the Lord Jesus Christ.  Knowing that He directs His work.  Having a stronger testimony of the restored gospel.  Knowing that your family is eternal and that's what everyone who listens to your message can have too!!

So there you have it, my bottom ten and top ten of missionary life.  It's hard but it's awesome and there's no other place I'd rather be!!!

More random things to share.  So this last Tuesday I ended up having to eat a ridiculous amount of food, after forgetting that one of the members feeds us lunch and dinner and agreeing that one of our investigators could feed us dinner too.  As we walked back to the house, my stomach and I had a conversation that went something like this:

Stomach:  Hermana Chamberlain, we need to talk.  I've worked for you for 23 years and it's been great.  We've had our ups and downs but I've generally enjoyed working here in your body.  However, I think the time has come for me to retire.

Me:  NOOOOO!!!!!!  You can't!!!  Why would you want to do that??

Stomach:  The thing is, I just can't take this kind of abuse anymore!!!  You just ate THREE huge meals in the space of six hours, do you really think I can work under that kind of pressure??

Me:  Okay you've got a point but that was just that one time!!!

Stomach:  Just that one time???  What about last year at Christmas??  Or your birthday??  Or the census when you made empanadas with HNA Bravo and then went and ate tamales with your landlords??  Or the time when-

Me: Okay okay!!!  So your working conditions haven't been the greatest over this past year, but it's not my fault!!!  They give us a ton of food and if we don't eat it all they get offended, plus they all feed us with a lot of love.  And you can't deny that it's good food.

Stomach: Well no, you're right about that.  But seriously, I canNOT keep working like this, okay, right now I'm about ready to explode.  Literally. 

Me:  Okay stomach, what do I have to do to get you to stay??  I'll do anything you want!!!

Stomach:  Well you could try fasting more, it would help us both out a lot . . . . .

Me:  Sigh . . . . okay.

So things haven't changed much here.  I'm working hard and eating a lot and very happy.  Life is good.

One more worldy thing that came to mind this week.  I was walking around Loja when I randomly remembered a line from one of my favorite movies of all time-Mean Girls.  It goes something like this:

Janice: You're taking 12th grade calculus??

Cady: Yeah, I like math.

Damian: Ew. Why??

Cady:  Because it's the same in every country.

Damian: (ponders that for a second) That's beautiful.  This girl is DEEP!!

When the thought came to me, I laughed out loud because well, it's funny right??  But then I started thinking about other things that are the same in every country and another thought came to my mind-the gospel!!!  DUH:  No matter where you are, the gospel is the same.  In every country, Latter Day Saints believe in God the Father and His Son Jesus Christ and in the Holy Ghost.  They know that Joseph Smith is a prophet and the Book of Mormon is true.  In every sacrament meeting they sing the same hymns and bless the sacrament with the same prayer.  In every country they are taught to read the scriptures, pray, keep the Sabbath day holy, live the Word of Wisdom and the law of chastity, pay tithing, and serve each other.  Every country has Relief Society, Primary, bishoprics, Young Men's and Women's, Elder's Quorom, High Priest Group, stake presidencies and patriarchs.  In every country, baptism, confirmation and temple ordinances are the same.  The only thing that changes is the language.  The doctrines, ordinances and organization are the same in every country that the church has been established-now that's beautiful.

Well, I think I've rambled on long enough.  I love you all.  Try not to remind me in these next few weeks how little time I have left-I'm trying not to think about it.  Thinking about terminating this amazing adventure of the mission is really exciting and at the same time, incredibly sad.  My heart flies into a thousand little pieces every time someone asks me the question ¿Y cuando se va usted hermana? and I have to respond en tres meses.  It's way too stressful to think about-so I don't.

Esta es la obra del Señor.  No hay duda alguna en mi mente ni en mi corazon.


Hermana Chamberlain

Monday, January 10, 2011

Random Green Plant Thing


Guess what I just got done doing?? Climbing a mountain!!! Really!!! Our zone climbed up a mountain and had a picnic and then we played Mafia, Elder Carrillo killed me and then the rest of the zone spent half an hour arguing about who did it. It's nice to know that my death had such a profound effect on my fellow laborers in the vineyard. Ha. Hopefully when I really do die everyone feels the same way. Then on the way down I slipped and fell and got completely muddy. And then one by one, all the elders slipped and fell too. The only one that stayed upright the whole time was HNA Bravo. What a baller.

Anyway, this week was awesome!!! The Familia Ushca accepted another baptismal date and I'm positive that they're going to do it this time. HNO Angel is a little less enthusiastic but I know we'll get him there. HNA Sandra and Orlandito are, of course, completely ready, but we'd like the whole family to be baptized together. THey're gonna do it, I just know it. Please pray for them every day!!!

Plus we had a special fast with HNA Monica. The only thing that's keeping her from being baptized is her divorce sentence. Her boyfriend, Ramiro, who up until very recently didn't want to get married, wants to now, a lot. But she can't because she's technically still married to someone else. Her divorce is so close to being final but she's just waiting on the judge to take it out of the huge pile of papers on his desk and make it official. So we fasted with her and I'm positive that her divorce is going to finalize this week and she'll be married and baptized the next. Her faith is so strong, and even though at first she was like, you want me to not eat for a whole day??? she did it, and I know she's going to receive a ton of blessings. She even paid her fast offerings, it was so incredible!!!!

We also found another super awesome person named Lady, again by randomly knocking on a door. When we went back to teach her there was this guy there, and when walked in the door he said, oh hi sisters!!! You're from the LDS church right?? Turns out he was an inactive member, but he really helped Lady out a lot, he explained the Book of Mormon to her and everything. And guess what?? She's gonna be baptized on the 22nd!!! And she came to church yesterday!!! Awesome. It was a testimony to me that when we do everything we possibly can, Heavenly Father puts His shoulder to the wheel too.

So we had this hugely random experience this week. We got on the bus and a little bit later this tiny old lady got on too, with a bunch of long green plant things in her arms. HNA Bravo got up and gave her the seat, so she sat down next to me. I wanted to talk to her but wasn`t sure how to start the conversation so I said the first thing I could think of-what are those things?? She told me the name, which I instantly forgot, and then said, here, have one!!! Oh . . . . okay. I took it, still not knowing what it was, and to continue the conversation I said, what is it for, can I eat it??? She proceeded to explain to me that yes I could eat it and how to eat it, which I instantly forgot too because I was thinking, how can I stick the gospel into this conversation?? Finally I was like, oh thank you so much for explaining, I'm not from here so I don't know. You know sister, I'm a missionary . . . . . and went on. As we were talking I noticed that everyone in the bus was staring at us as if we were completely crazy, but whatever. She told me that her daughters in Quito were going to church but she wasn't sure if they had been baptized or not. I ended up getting her address (although it wasn't totally clear, so I have no idea if the elders will be able to find it) and when I got up to leave I tried to give the big green thing back to her, to which she replied, what you don't want it??? Well obviously then I had to take it, and moreover, of COURSE I wanted it, because it would make for a completely hilarious story afterwards!!!

So we got off the bus and HNA Bravo was like, what is that thing?? I was like, I have no idea!!! So then we had to carry it all over centro while we were looking for the people we wanted to teach and everyone was looking at us weird, but we were just laughing because come on, it was funny. Finally we went to a cabina to call someone and the girl behind the counter told us it was a guaba and that we could eat the inside. Oh. Good to know. We ended up taking a bunch of hilarious pictures that I PROMISE I will send next week when I have more time and then eating it. It wasn't the most delicious thing I've ever eaten, kind of like mildly sweet cotton balls, but it was okay. But it was the most random thing ever-nobody's ever given me fruit on the bus before . . . . .

Well family, friends, and random strangers that read my blog, that's all I have to say for this week. Pray hard for all the investigators and for opportunities to share the gospel with others. The gospel of Jesus Christ is the only way to have happiness that lasts forever!!!


Hermana Chamberlain

Thursday, January 6, 2011

New Pictures on the Photos Page

There are several new pictures on the photos page, mostly from Ellen's time in Cuenca.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Sizing Up the Roaches

 One of Ellen's former companions (thanks Hermana Wise) posted this picture on her facebook page.  Ellen mentioned roaches the size of her thumb.  It looks like she wasn't lying!

Monday, January 3, 2011

Mr. Boon


Who's ready to hear all the cool/random/hilarious/awesome stuff that happened to me this week?? Everybody?? Eso!!!!

We decided to visit the Flia. Uscha again, after leaving them for a little while because they weren't progressing. We were walking around Zamora Huayco yesterday looking for people to take to church, everyone rejected us and we were thinking, great, another Sunday without people in church, this has never happened to me in my whooooooole mission. Which is when HNA Bravo saw HNA Sandra and Orlandito in the bus. "It's a sign!!! Let's go!!!" We went, shared the importance of keeping the Sabbath Day holy and asked them if they wanted to come to church that day. They said yes, so we said we'd come back at 1:30 to get them (church is at 2 now, Feliz Año Nuevo!!)

However, what we forgot about is that HNA Bravo and I have a problem. We talk too much. Seriously. When we cook food in our house and sit down to eat it, we could sit there all day talking about the most random things (ironically, yesterday we were talking about all the times we've made food for the missionaries.) Anyway, we spent so much time talking that we didn't notice the time, and by the time we got our rears out the door it was almost 2:00. We ran out, hailed a taxi and despite the fact that the Ushcas' next door neighbors who are members had already arrived and were yelling after us that they had left and there was no one in the house, we were undeterred. Unfortunately, they were right-there was nobody there!!! We went back down the mountain and I was praying in my head, Heavenly Father, I'm so sorry, we messed up, we talk too much, it will NEVER happen again, but PLEEEEEAAAAAAAASSSSEEEE get the Ushcas to church on their own initiative!!!!! We got to the chapel right as sacrament meeting started, fell into a pew and I started looking around to see who was there. When I finally looked to see who was in front of me guess who I found?? HNA Sandra and HNO Angel, and Erikcito of course. I nudged HNA Bravo and whispered (very loudly) LOOOOOOK!!!! The next thought that entered into my mind was-Heavenly Father is awesome. Seriously.

So then later that night HNA Bravo was like, I think we should go visit the Flia. Paz. They're a young couple that goes to our branch and used to be one of our mamitas until their schedule got so busy that they couldn't anymore, but they still love us a lot. Andrea has gone out to visit with us and Juan Carlos is a returned missionary. Anyway, HNA Bravo was like, I feel like we should go visit them, but I don't know why yet and I was like, uhhhh okay. The whole way there I was thinking, I have no idea why we're going to visit them but I'm just gonna trust you Heavenly Father. We get there and start talking to Andrea and she asked HNA Bravo how much time she had left in the mission and HNA Bravo said 3 weeks. Then Andrea got up and took out a book and said HNA when you get home you have to read this book, it's excellent. She brought it over and guess what it was?? The manual for the Eternal Marriage institute class!!!! I started laughing HYSTERICALLY and HNA Bravo got really embarrassed, but Andrea was totally serious. She went through the table of contents with us and was like, HNA if you're going to get married you have to be PREPARED, and in this manual there's a lot of great stuff, I am just learning so much. HNA Bravo I'm sure wanted to die, and I was dying of laughter!!! It was the most hilarious thing EVER. I'm still not sure why we were supposed to go there (we didn't get to share anything with them because they had to leave, although they did give us food) but it was worth it, although HNA Bravo wanted to kill me afterwards. Whatever. It was hilarious!!!

We are teaching a lovely lady named Olivia. She is the mother of one of the members here, HNA Paulina. Her home situation is a little bit difficult, because her husband doesn't really want anything to do with the church, although he is friendly. But Olivia is super sweet and already knows that the Book of Mormon is true and will be baptized the 22 of January. Pray for her so that she goes to church and so that her husband softens his heart a little bit and doesn't have a problem with her baptism!!!

We are teaching another lovely lady named Soledad, that we found this past week randomly knocking on a door. She is also very receptive and very sweet, but teaching her is a little bit difficult because of her very large, furry, hyper, but friendly and lovable Golden Retriever, Mr. Boon (yes, that really is his name.) When we come to visit he gets really excited and jumps all over us until we sit down, and then he tries to sit in our laps, lick us and basically invade our personal space in any way possible. Then when HNA Soledad threatens to take him out he lies down on the floor and looks at all of us with a "yo no fui" face (yo no fui=it wasn't me). But despite the fact that yesterday he tried to eat my scriptures, my bag, my umbrella, my shoes, my tiger keychain that HNA Blanca gave me, my legs and my face, I love Mr. Boon to death. He reminds me a lot of Boomer, except more yellow and less tranquilo. Plus I think he brings a lot of happiness to Soledad, because her husband died awhile ago and she lives alone with her two sons, and I think she has a few issues with the older one. I think Mr. Boon helps her a lot to not feel so lonely and for that I love him and will gladly deal with him even when he tries to lick my face, which you all know that I hate more than anything in the world. In fact, I don't even really like dogs. But Mr. Boon is delightful.

Anyway, this week was so fun. We cooked a lot, ate a lot, watched fireworks and burning muñecos in the street, found a bunch of people during the week but no one on New Year's Day, and I tried Hawaian Chicken and loved it. Right now we're looking for more people to put baptism dates on, pray for us so that we can find them!!!

I love you all. I love the work!!!

Hermana Chamberlain