October 31, 2011

No tengo cambio

So, they just called and I don´t have changes but my companion does, so that will be something exciting for this coming week. She only has one change left so I don´t think she is thrilled. And our district leader is going so hopefully we will still have someone cool like him. So we are off to Managua on Wednesday to find out the changes. We had a zone activity today in Nandaime. We went to a farm and ate fresh coconut and drank the milk right out of them. It was actually pretty good. Then we played kickball and ate hotdogs. It was fun, but it is an hour away. It was late for email but we got totally soaked so my comp wanted to change her clothes. I wanted to email. So my companion is a little shocked I think because they told 2 of the sisters they had changes earlier in the day, but that is because they are training, So, she thought she was safe but nope. So I am hoping that that means I will be here for Christmas since that would be right after this change and the people here will take good care of me. Anyway, we had a good week. We didn´t get the man we needed to at church yesterday so he will have to wait another week. It will be weird here being the one knowing what is going on. Thanks for all the mail.  I got your mail and package so I had my luggage locks all ready if I did have changes but I am glad that I don´t. I didn´t want to pack up all my stuff. Anyway, I am doing good and love you tons. People here know it is Halloween but I don`t think they really do anything.  I don´t know what people do but we are going out tonight. Anyway, weird facts of the week- I saw a Marshalls bag in the street that someone must have brought from the states. And I learned the word for boatload (barcada) when I was practicing how to form words from different words and nouns.  Anyway, as for Christmas stuff here - I did see a Christmas tree get put up this week and someone else mentioned that it is time to get ready since it is almost November.  Yes, Christmas is a party I hear with lots of fireworks and stuff on the 24th.  So yesterday was the Primary program here too, but a little different since it is so small here. But it was good and the 7 or 8 kids did give longer talks and testimonies.  It was fun.  I did have a cool dream the other night that for some reason I was with my district and other missionaries visiting the DR and I had a surprise visit from my favorite Lenny.  I gave her the biggest hug ever and then she sat on my lap for the meeting because there weren´t any chairs. So it was funny and I can´t wait until that hug is real in a year. I love you tons. Well, we shall see who my new comp is next week.  I have pictures but I will wait until next week to send those. Anyway, I saw a bunch of buses full of tourists pass by as we waited for the bus this morning. I bet they were wondering what I was doing here but whatever. I know why I am here - I am here to help families be like ours - a forever family. But it was fun to see them as they passed. I don´t know what group they were from but some tour company.  We have some guidance for this Sunday with the elections, to stay away from crowds and we have to check in at 5 or 6 to make sure we aren`t having any issues.  It will be fine and we will keep out of trouble.  If there are people causing trouble I am sure we will just go in for the day. And it will be good on Wednesday to be going with the elders too since one has changes, so we should be well taken care of for the week. Anyway, also I got a letter from Sister Orme this week that she mailed in July. I don´t know what happened but we have mostly done real well with the mail and I am excited about the stuff you sent. Well, I am glad we get to go to the change meeting since the sister from Hawaii is going home this week so I will get to see her before she leaves. She had a year when I got here and now she is going home. The time is going to go by fast. We are in November. I am glad you had a good birthday mom. I didn´t get ice cream on your birthday but I did a couple of days before, so we can call it a few days of celebration. Well, I love you tons. You are the bestest! The gospel is true. Love, Alexis

Greetings & Happy Halloween!

Hi. I am on the computer now. I hope Alexis will be on because I want to know if there will be any changes for her this week. We had planned to use internet a little later but our plans changed. At least it is not the last hour of p-day like last week. :) Today we cleaned the house in the morning like always and then my comp wanted to print pictures, so we did that. Then we came to the mall Mega Centro to see the sister that is going home next week. A bunch of the other sisters were here too. We were supposed to eat lunch at an investigator's house, but she wasn´t at church yesterday and we tried calling after we met up with the other sisters, but nobody answered. We´ll see if it was a bad choice to stay here and eat lunch or not when we visit this week. So things are good and we had a good week. Only one week left of this transfer. Probably won´t be changes next week, but I´m fine either way.

Grrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr. I just typed my email and was reading through it and then deleted it all and it didn´t save in drafts. Anyways, things are good. We helped put up a Christmas tree on mom´s birthday at an investigators house. I ate a super sundae for mom´s birthday too. Mmmm. We had an RS activity this week and decorated little Christmas bags. I made a bow for mine and I think Velvalee would have been proud.  I got a nice pile of mail on Thursday... letters and dearelders...  good times. I love mail.  I gave my talk yesterday in church. I think it went okay. I read a few quotes about missionary work and tried to say something half intelligent. People said I did good. We are starting classes for English and Portuguese this week. My comp will do the Portuguese and I will do the English, obviously. I´ll give you a report on how that goes next week. I did find out about the World Series in the paper. It sounded like game 6 was exciting and I was happy to see on Saturday that St. Louis won. I was thinking of your client, Dad. :) Well I am signing off. I love you peeeeeeeps soooooooooooooooooooo much!!!!!!!!!!! -until next week. ejc

October 24, 2011


I am on the computer now. I am doing good. So for p-day today we went to a family’s house. Then we ran into the store here in our area to grab a couple of things and now we are using the internet. Anyways, we had a good week and my comp and I really do get along well. We have been talking more in the streets and we both chill most of the time. I hope you are all doing well. So someone this week asked how old I was and I said 22. They were surprised and said they thought I was more like 30. What! It was just earlier this year that the secretary at Grandpa’s rehab asked what high school I went to. Anyways, kinda funny. I will be giving my first talk next Sunday which should be entertaining for all. It is 10 minutes on whatever I want, so we will see how that goes. :)  We didn’t get mail this week but I kinda figured that was going to happen since there were still interviews at the office, but I know I will have plenty this next week. :) l have caught glimpses of the World Series and even the flyover on Saturday night while we were walking in the street. Anyways, we found a few new people this week...one really cool older guy that the hermanas had taught about 8 months ago. I just want to tell you how much I love you peeps. I was remembering the line from Father of the Bride where George is holding the babies and says that life doesn’t get much better than that. Life really doesn’t get better than having a fabulous family that will be kept together with covenants forever. Anyways things are good here and it is crazy that it is almost November. Only 2 weeks left in this transfer. Funny about the ritz....I have a package at our house right now. mmmmm. Gotta love the fish soup. Anyways, Alexis, it sounds like you are doing well. My comp and I do get along and have a good time. Our week was good, but nothing too exciting to report on.  You peeps are the bestest and I am looking forward to mail this week and then emails again next Monday. This week went by quite fast and I am sure they will keep going faster and faster. :) I love you peeps all so much!!!! -ejc

Greetings Peeps!

So I am on the computer now. That´s cool about Uncle John´s award. I wrote letters today on the bus to Jinotepe for our zone activity and will hopefully get to the post office here before we head back. We came and played dodgeball and futbol at the church and had cake for one of the zone leader’s birthday. We will head back after we are done here. This week seemed to go by pretty fast. We had tons of rain and yesterday was the first day it didn`t rain but it is raining again today and we heard another storm is coming. I stayed pretty dry with my nice raincoat and everyone is envious of it. I broke out the boots one day so that was good. It has been fairly cool though so I even got out my sweater to wear under the coat a couple of days. I did look a little bit like I was going to the snow, but I stayed nice and warm and dry so who cares what I looked like. Anyway, it was a good week except yesterday the people we needed to come to church didn`t show... a lady I thought would come and the other man we had visited a lot during the week. And we even found some shoes for him since he burned his trying to dry them out. The elders had an old pair in the house and they were a little big but he could wear them. It is frustrating but I have learned this week and last, that as we work things will happen to make us successful even if it is different than we planned. We will receive the blessings with time. So, anyway we did have some success with people at church and we just have to focus on the right people who will progress. But it is all good... we have an activity the branch is planning for Saturday which we are hoping to have lots of people there. It should be fun.  Anyway, I am doing great. I hope all is well in my lovely AZ. I can`t believe how close we are to November. So just some random fun things I have noted to tell you about... You know how at home they have the mini ritz cracker with the fake cheese. Here they have them but they are with full size ritz mmmmm. I love fake cheese. Also they have some sweet rain outfits. You can buy rain coats and pants in yellow and royal blue. I think I might need to get me the blue raincoat and pant set before I come home. They have the pants because the people ride bikes and motorcycles and you need to be fully covered to stay dry. And, I had my least favorite food I have eaten here last week - fish soup. I was hoping for soup that day but more like chicken noodle or bean soup that they put an egg in that is real tasty, but when we got there it was fish. I don`t have a problem with fish and I think fish soup would be fine but it was the entire fish in the soup - bones and all. I was a good little eater though and downed it all, well not all the skin and bones and I think eyeball, but I ate it.  I think she could tell it wasn´t my favorite. And my comp was raving about it so I think we may have it again in the future but whatever. I just prefer things deboned. But if that is the worst thing I have eaten I think I am doing good. I know I have the best mail people at home. Thanks for the prayers. I pray for you too. I am so happy to be a part of this family and be with you for eternity. The gospel is true and I love sharing it! Love you tons.

Love, Alexis

PS, Taylor swift is playing in this cyber place. Gotta love TSwift

October 17, 2011

So, 7 months in!

7 months seems very weird. Sometimes when I think about it, it seems like it has gone by fast and other times slow. But it is nice now that I am past days of the year I will repeat in the mission and I can say next year at this time I will be at home. That would be cool to pick Elena up if she wants. I think one of the elders that is from AZ that I go home with is going straight home and the other is having his parents come. I think I am good with going straight home. We can come back when there is a temple dedication here. Anyway, I really enjoyed those peanut butter granola squares you sent. They were tasty. So this week was pretty good. We didn`t have much success with people at church, especially the ones who needed to come to be baptized this month. We still have 3 possibilities for October so we shall see. We had 3 people there and one new person was definitely a gift from Heavenly Father. I was not real thrilled when we got up and walk around for like 3 hours before church and got there empty handed. Then, after a few minutes there they introduced us to a woman who came on her own that we didn`t know. That was good and hopefully we can get her progressing. So, anyway we have had lots of rain and I enjoy it and I like to think about Grandpa Mullen and that he is here with me and all this liquid gold. It has actually felt quite cool here. It is kind of like Hawaii in January when everyone breaks out the pants and jackets since it is rainy and below 80 degrees. Actually in this internet place the thermometer says it is just above 80. But with less sun it feels good. So, I enjoyed the talk you sent from Pres. Uchtdorf and I am looking forward to getting the Liahona in a few weeks.  So, I used the chess thing in my workshop and the skit we did was about the conversion of Alma. My topic was success through sacrifice so I had them relate the pieces of the white side to successes and the black pieces to sacrifices we could make. It went well I think. That is good you got my mail. That letter with the cd came pretty fast you sent on the 4th. Thanks so much. That is cool about Lexi S's mission call! I can`t believe Annika will be at Poston when I get back. Craziness but 11 months to go. I am glad all is well and that gramps got to come home. So, I liked what Dad told me about the priesthood session especially about what Elder Holland said about the senior couples. You really need to come on a mission! Yesterday we were talking to a member and they are planning on going on a mission. They have a 20 year old at home and one younger that is married. She was so excited. They haven`t finished all the paperwork but they are planning on going and coming back to work to have money to go again. I think their plan is to keep doing this over and over. That is cool. Really, I think you should go as soon as you can. Missions need people like you and so does the world. So, just something to think about. Life is going good here. I know I am where I need to be. (O, and yes praying in English is very odd and I slip too into Spanish when I pray out loud in English.)
We had a good day. The zone came here to go to the beach at the lake. It is called San Jorge and is about 5 km from the Calle Panamericana (Panamerican Highway). Anyway, we played volleyball and I have some pics I will send. Oh, and I enjoyed a lovely twix bar today. You can get some American stuff like that at gas stations here. It cost a dollar but whatever. It was not a good clear day or usually you can see the volcano and island across the lake better. It has been raining pretty much all week so I have got use out of my coat. Everyone wants it. And I got to wear my boots today. It was good. So I had seen something on a newspaper or somewhere about the swine flu here. I am sure they will tell us if we need to get shots. I will let you know. There has been some big flooding issues here this week. I think farther north. Here there hasn`t been any issues. Here we are good. I love you 3 so much!  Life is good here in Rivas. The gospel is true. I love you tons. Well, I best sign off. I love you and look forward to next week. Love, Alexis

More from the DR missionary

Greetings!  I just got back in my area after a fun activity with the hermanas. The president´s wife and the senior office sister took us 12 sisters (8 American and 4 Latina) to the botanical gardens and we had a picnic lunch. It was fun even though I had already been there when I was at the CCM. It is technically in the west mission so usually you have to get special permission but the president´s wife has connections. :) It was a fun day. I got a lovely package this week when we went to the office for our interviews. It was fabulous...the shirts, food, treats, calendar (I liked what you wrote in it), and the Werther´s Originals are real tasty too...all of it was so great. I also got a couple of letters too. I don´t know about the mail situation this week as there will still be interviews at the office and the office couple wasn´t sure if they would be delivering and picking up mail on Thursday like usual but I always know there is mail coming from my favorite peeps. So we´ve had a good week. I celebrated my 4 month mark on Saturday with a lovely sundae. This week we haven´t had power at night for a little while and the little red flashlight I brought is a little wacky at times, so if you could please send my wind up one, that would be great. Muchisimas gracias.  I think we might be going to the temple in November. I´ll keep you posted. We had a much more successful week finding new people to teach. Not so much having them come to church yesterday, but what can you do? :) These 3 girls called us over to them and wanted us to teach them one night while we were walking in the street which was great. 3 new investigators just like that! I had my interview with the president this week which was good. It was quite short since it is a little hard to really have a conversation, but he and his wife are super cool. Luckily my comp and I decided to take a taxi to the office because it turned out that there was a strike that morning and the buses weren´t running and the other missionaries had some troubles getting there. It was also raining so that made it extra fun. The mornings are a bit challenging here since it is hard to find people in their homes that aren´t cooking and want to listen. Sometimes the 2 hours in the morning just seem to be a 2 hour walk around our area. My feet are getting lots of miles on them. :) Somebody asked me to pray in English after I had said the prayer in Spanish at the end of a lesson and I didn´t realize how hard it would be. I kept saying things in Spanish and really had to try not to. I guess that is a good sign. Also kind of a crazy story for the week was that we were visiting a member and her neighbors and we were going to sing a song to her other neighbor who was sick. But when we were going over there, we found out that she had already died. My comp and I still went and sang. It was a little weird being in the same room as the deceased but something memorable I guess. :) That is so cool that Lexi S. is going on a mission. You´ll have to send me her address. I am doing well here and this transfer is already half over. I was thinking yesterday about what it would be like if my three favorite people came and picked me up next year and how that would be super cool. :) Crazy that 7 of the 21 months Lexxy and I will be apart are over. The weeks seem to go by fast. My comp and I are doing good. She said that it would have been cool if our sisters had served in the same mission and had been companions. The activity was real good today, all I need is a little ice cream to finish off the day. :) I bought a big jar of crunchy peanut butter. I´ll let you know how long it takes me to go through it. :) I think I´ve eaten more peanut butter in the mission than most of my life. :) I saw a Mailboxes Etc. at the mall a couple of weeks ago, so I´ll have to investigate that in the future. Glad to hear you are doing well. I will be looking forward to reading your emails in more detail later and seeing the pics. I took a few pics at our activity today before my battery died. I´ll send them when I have my cord with me. I only have about 5 minutes left, but I love you all so much!  Thanks for being the bestest ever!!!!!! It is always a treat to hear from you. I love all of the mail and I love all of you! love, Elena

October 10, 2011

Aloha y hola!

So, I am on now too, so that worked out perfectly. We had a good multi-zone conference. My workshop went fine and I was glad to be in the first round so I could enjoy the ones I went to afterwards. I had a pile of mail there for me....DearElders from the 11th and 18th, handwritten cards from you and Lenny, and the package. So muchas gracias. I have responded to the letters today, just got to get to the post office after we are done here. Also, I got a little book from Grandma Harvey. They sorted through all the mail before we left and gave me what they thought was all but ended up missing a few that I got on Friday, so I had 2 mail days. Anyway, thanks! So, after the zone conference we had a day of changes among the 6 sisters in the zone. I stayed here and one of the sisters came from Jinotepe. We had the little companion swap. I was with Sister Perez on Thursday. She is from El Salvador - the east mission (Ilopango stake Valla Nuevo ward not sure on spelling) just for Marni's information. She was cool and I learned some new things with her. It is interesting how fast you can get used to someone new and forget how someone else works. I guess the mission teaches you to adapt and I think I will get quicker as time goes on. Speaking of time, 7 months in the mission this week. Craziness. Soon we will be saying that we will be coming home this year because Christmas and the New Year will be here before you know it. Also, the sister I was with had been in Rivas about a year ago so we visited some people she knows including one guy we are working with that I had some new insights with. He was super positive because she was and I learned I need to be upbeat and talkative with him because that’s what he needs. So, I am thinking her coming here was not coincidence and hopefully we can get this guy baptized. We had 1 investigator at church and hopefully we can get some more coming soon. This investigator is a sister of the recently returned missionary here so she has member support which is good. Hopefully we can get her baptized this month as well as a few others. That would be great. Well, Thanks again for the mail. I already wore the jumper. You are the bestest! Love you tons! You are the best. Also I am in agreement with Elena in the senior missionary department. You guys will make awesome senior missionaries. I think the sooner the better! One plus is that you get to choose your companion. :) By the way, this computer and keyboard are in English which is good, except I am slightly off with some of the symbols. But I like it. Weird with Spanish - In a dream, I was speaking to you in Spanish when I got home. I wasn't trying to, but it was habit. I think it will take me a little while to get back into all English, but I guess that is a good sign. Anyway, it is coming along. The president complemented my Spanish when we were eating lunch at his table on Wednesday. I still get a little flustered especially around him, but I was glad to hear that he thought it was all right. There are still plenty of things I don't know how to say or don't understand, but for the most part I can understand and communicate all right. Just keep practicing. That’s all. So, 11 more fast Sundays to go! I love you sooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo much. So, sorry to hear about the D-backs. The family we eat dinner at kept me informed. They are Yankees fans so they were bummed too. Anyway, a few other thoughts from conference. So, the general authorities that speak Spanish like Elder Christofferson and Elder Scott tape a translation beforehand so it is their voices. It is weird to listen in Spanish since we are so used to listening and knowing their voices. So I was happy I got to see it in English. Also something else you lose in translation is the phrasing and certain words. Like if they use three words that start with w in a phrase you most likely lose that because it doesn't translate exactly. Also when President Monson mentioned the story about the $5 bill. I thought how for the people here $5 is still quite valuable. It is different watching and listening from a different perspective but a good learning experience. Also for the intermediate hymn it had the words in English. On Saturday when there weren't a whole lot of people there they didn't sing but on Sunday they sang in Spanish while it was in English on the screen. Anyway, random conference information. I liked the info on the "I'm a Mormon" campaign that you and Joyce and Lori mentioned in the DearElders. How is it going? Life is going well here. Also I was thinking how interesting it is that with certain people you have connections with and certain people you don't. Not that you can't get along and work with them, but just not the life-long buddy connection. But I am so thankful for you all and my bestest buddies that you are. We will always be connnected for eternity. I love you tons. So a girl from the other branch here got her mission call to the Nicaragua Managua Sur Mision. She actually was on a mini mission for one change the same change I got here. They were thinking she wouldn't be able to go, but she got her call. So who knows maybe I will be her companion in the future. She enters the MTC in November and comes in the change in December. It is rainy today. But I like that it keeps it cool. My shoes get dirtier, but I did shine them all this morning. Well, I better go. My time is pretty much up. I love you TONS. The gospel is true. Love, Alexis


Hi peeps, I am on the computer now. We´ve had a good p-day. We did more of a deep cleaning of our house this morning since the president´s wife is going to be inspecting all of the apartments starting this week. We had to go through a bunch of stuff that other missionaries had left in the house in the spare room and we´ve got quite a bit of garbage to get rid of. Speaking of which the garbage pick-up is interesting here. You just have to wait and listen for the horn of the garbage truck and then take your garbage to the street on whatever random day it comes down the street. So that´s super cool. :) It usually comes at least once a week. I got your handwritten cards this week, a letter from Lexxy, the package, and also the DearElders. Muchas gracias. Mail is fantastico! Here are some photos I´ve taken since the last time I sent photos. They are pictures of the sisters in the mission and also from Tres Ojos last week. (Also of my district last transfer and the zone leaders.) Enjoy! 
We met up with some of the missionaries in the zone and played a game.  Then we went to La Sirena which is like Walmart. We ate in the food place there and I had a lovely doughnut too...mmmm. Then we came here.  So we had one investigator at church, and her less active husband came to watch their kids in the primary program which was great. We didn´t find a lot of new people this week, but we had some good lessons. We had a meeting with the president and all of the missionaries that came in with me and their trainers this past week which was fun. The president of the CCM (MTC) was there and it was great to see him. We have interviews with the president this week, so I´ll let you know how that goes. At the meeting, we were discussing the new training program. Afterwards at lunch, some of the missionaries were talking about how things are a lot different here than being a missionary in the states. I have gone crazy this week for avocados and peanut butter. I think I have eaten at least one avocado every day. I accidently bought crunchy peanut butter at the store last time, but I really love the crunchy. I sometimes even crave a pb sandwich. Crazy. I bought a big jar of more crunchy peanut butter today. Last week I had been wondering how the D-backs were doing and on Saturday I saw a paper with a Brewers player on it. From what I could make out in Spanish, I figured the D-backs had lost. Monsters Inc. was on in somebody´s house this week which was fun. Dad mentioned in his DearElder about the call from Elder Holland in the priesthood session for more missionaries and more senior missionaries. Oh how I love the senior missionaries here. The office couple is so great and whenever they call I talk to them because they don´t really know Spanish. We also ran into a humanitarian senior couple that I knew in the CCM and it was so fun to see them. Dad mentioned something about how people worry about leaving their grandkids to go on a mission, but all I can say is that there are lots of other people´s grandkids that need them in the mission. Senior couples are the best! I am doing well here and starting to feel like I understand the majority of what people say. I can´t always respond and some people I have a harder time understanding, but I can tell I am making progress. We were talking with the ward mission leader yesterday and I got the majority of the conversation. It´s a different story trying to have a conversation, but I know I am making progress. Little things this week have strengthened my testimony about how Heavenly Father is aware of me. For instance I decided to do my laundry one day even though I had planned to do it the next day and then the zone leaders called and told us we had a meeting in the morning. I also decided to take my mail with me to the meeting instead of waiting until our zone meeting and it turned out that they didn´t come and pick up mail at the zone meeting. Some people might think that these things are no big deal or just chance, but to me they are examples of little promptings from the Lord that make my life easier. I am doing well here. They are starting to sell Christmas things in the stores and I´ve seen a Christmas tree in one house. I had heard they start early here. :) That means Christmas is around the corner and I think we´ll be able to work it out to talk to Lexxy and you both from what I hear, but we´ll see when it gets closer. I hope you are doing well. We played a game with the zone today called Ticket to Ride which was fun. We might have to buy it when I get home. Anyways, I love you a million!!!!!  I am doing good and will hit 4 months this week. Craziness.  Sometimes it´s hard to believe that it´s P-day again. P-days are the best.  I love you sooooooo much.  I sent photos just a minute ago. I need to wrap up, but I am doing well and love you all!!!!!!!!!  I am so grateful for your love and support and prayers.  Gotta go.  Until next week- Love, Elena

October 3, 2011

Greetings from Alexis!

So I am on now. I am in Jinotepe right now. We went to Managua this morning to immigration to get my comp's ID renewed and then came here to practice our zone skit for the multizone conference we have on Wednesday. I had a real good hamburger here for lunch. We go to Managua for the multi zone on Wednesday and then will have a little companion sister change until Friday with the other sisters in the zone. I am staying in Rivas and one of them will come visit me. That should be fun. Yes, I thoroughly enjoyed conference this weekend. Our rule was you could go to the morning session without investigators but if you didn`t have any in the afternoon you couldn`t stay. And if you had one in the morning you were free to go all day. Saturday we didn`t have anyone in the morning and the lady I thought we could get to go ended up not coming in the morning or afternoon. Some people told us they would come in the afternoon, so we went to the church and waited. About a half hour in we were getting concerned and at about 2:45 my comp called one of them and they came so that was a relief. On Sunday, the husband of the lady who cooks us dinner showed up in the morning. We invited him but hadn`t gone to remind him in the morning so that was a nice surprise. And we had a couple of kids come in the afternoon so I got to see it all in English. I will look forward to Dad`s report on the Priesthood session. Also I thought of dad a lot during Sister Dalton`s talk and how you did all of it and got us to the temple! You are the best. More highlights from conference - I liked how Elder Scott called the scriptures - memorized scriptures - our faithful friends. I need to memorize more scriptures. I also liked Elder Cook’s talk about looking up. I really enjoyed Elder Uchtdorf`s talk and the Titanic stories were cool. It was all good and helped me recharge for the next 6 months. I am doing fantastico and really enjoyed conference. It was so great. I really felt motivated and I liked how several speakers mentioned that the Lord knows us and where we are and we are important to Him. Even though I am here in Nicaragua, He knows that and sent me here for a reason and will take good care of me.  He is aware of us all. And that was a good reminder for me. So, that was cool about the Provo Tabernacle. We were hoping for a temple announcement for Nicaragua but we will have to wait until April.  But the other places like the Congo are cool. Only one more conference left in the mission. One year from tomorrow you will be picking me up. CRAZY. Yesterday when we were watching conference in English the elder I go home with said today will be our last day of work in the mission in one year, tomorrow will be changes and on the 4th we go home. I was glad that I am not the only one to think like that. I had sort of forgotten about it yesterday, but he said one more conference, 2 more phone calls. And I haven`t even called from the field yet. I have lots to do before I come home, but it will be a great day. Also as the Japanese Seventy spoke yesterday about the coat in Japan and the elder who baptized him, I said to the elder wouldn`t that be cool if your convert was speaking in General Conference. That would be sweet and I have just got to find and teach these elect people. I haven`t gotten any more mail, but the zone leader said Wednesday and I think possibly Friday. I am not sure what the deal is. But I will be happy whenever it comes and I know I will have a bunch. So random thing of the week... We went to someone’s house and in the yard there was a monkey on a leash tied to a tree. The people we were there to visit weren`t there but it was odd seeing a monkey. That`s something that wouldn`t happen in other places. Anyway, don`t know if I will have time to write lots of letters and get them mailed today or not, but next week. I will hopefully write some letters on the bus back to Rivas, that is if I am sitting down.  This morning it was full so we were standing a lot of the way to Managua. But here it usually isn`t a problem.  Anyway, we have this zone conference this week and I am doing a workshop.  I have 20 minutes and have to give it twice. My topic is success through sacrifice.  I am trying to relate it to chess since that was one of the things I thought of that required sacrifice to get something better.  I will give you a report next week on how it goes.  Hope all goes well with gramps.  I am doing well and keep smiling as much as I can.  I love your emails. I just have a couple minutes left, but I love you and am doing fantastico.  Have a great week and I will too!. The gospel is true. Adios.  I am signing off. Love, Alexis

Greetings From Elena!

So I am on the computer. We´ve had a good p-day. We went to Tres Ojos this morning with most of the zone. It is like a national park with these caves and stuff. I bought some postcards of it to send eventually. I also took pictures that I’ll send later. Then we went to the park for the gathering of all the missionaries here in Santo Domingo that happens every transfer. It was great seeing all of the hermanas. There are 2 new ones. After the park, we came to Mega Centro...the mall we came to before. We ate Pizza Hut and frozen yogurt and now I am just emailing my favorite peeps in a nice air conditioned location. I had a lovely time watching conference this weekend. We could only go on Saturday if we had investigators. We left our house an hour before the morning session and walked around our area looking for anyone who could go, but didn´t have any success. I was kind of bummed and it was hot, but while we weren´t at conference we found a new investigator so perhaps Heavenly Father had a different plan than watching conference. For the afternoon session, I have never been so happy to see people ready to go to church. This Haitian lady and her kids are new investigators of ours this week. They don´t speak a lot of Spanish, so we´ve had a member help us translate, but they came to the Saturday afternoon session. I got to watch conference with the other missionaries in English which was fabulous. I reallllllllllllllly enjoyed conference and didn´t want it to end. All of the talks were fabulous and I thought of you all many times. So conference was grand. It was a little different watching it as a missionary. It made the prayers for the missionaries and the talks about missionaries more meaningful. I am glad to hear that dad wrote about priesthood in his DearElder because I was going to ask for a report. :)  The talk about the missionaries in Japan and the Titanic stories and talks about the Book of Mormon were all so good. I also really enjoyed Sister Dalton´s talk to the dads with daughters. I thought about you Dad a lot and how you do everything she talked about. I have the best family in the world. I am so glad that we have covenants that will keep us together for eternity. The missionaries were also excited to hear Elder Cornish since we´ve met him. I also liked when Pres. Eyring talked about taking his daughters to visit the lady and thought about how you peeps always took Lexxy and I wherever you went. I love you all sooooooooo much!!!!!! I was also touched when we sang Praise to the Man and the line...sacrifice brings forth the blessings of heaven. It is true. I got a boatload of mail this week. Lots of letters from August that I think were sent to the AP address. I think some might have had the wrong zipcode because I have gotten letters from the other address. I got quite a few from mom and Lexxy and Chessy, so it was a grand letter day on Thursday. I also got a letter from Olive and Dearelders from Gehrings and Marni. When I was reading the letter mom sent with the lyrics to "I Feel my Savior´s Love", that song was playing on the cd player. Weird. :) I love mail from you all. Thanks for being the best people ever!!!  I hope things are good with Grandpa.  An elder that is going home and his parents watched conference with us.  It was fun to see them but I think an airport welcome is what I would prefer.  Alexis mentioned seeing an Endeavor last week, and they have lots here. Gotta love that car.  We´ve had a good week here. It is weird being the one that people know. We have some new people and are hoping to have some success this transfer. I started reading the new RS book yesterday and it is really great. I love Sister Beck and the RS. It´s crazy that it is October. My companion and I are both looking forward to talking to our sisters and of course you peeps in 2 months. I just have a couple minutes left, so I will look forward to emails from Lexxy next week.  I am doing good and my companion and I are starting to get to know each other better and get into a groove. I love you all soooooo much!!!!  You are really the best!
Love, ejc