December 22, 2014

Week Fifty-Three: Come they told me ...

The traditional burning of the skirt at the one year mark of my mission.
Area: Penco
Companion: Hermana Romney
Hermana Romney's Blog: Christmas Spirit

This week was bizarre, family.

We didn't have a single day that we weren't participating in something or switching with a mini-cambio or singing. It is awesome because it makes the time so enjoyable and unpredictable ... but at the same time, it is really fome because it is making the time fly by so fast. I can't believe we are on week six already. I cannot believe it.

I feel so happy and loved. It is like I have a different pair of eyes on and I am seeing everything in a brand new light. It's like ... the opposite of blinding light.
The nativity in the church. We are so cute. :)
So, this week, we started off with a mini-cambio with the girls from Lirquen. I stayed in Crav ... and EVERYTHING fell through with our plans. I called every member in our phone three times to see if they could come out with us ... and they either couldn't ... or they said that they could and then cancelled last minute to say that they couldn't. Ah, like the good old times. I looked at Hermana Ponce and said, "Today is going to be an adventure!" And an adventure it was. We got a little bit lost because I still don't know the streets that well ... we talked to a bazillion people ... and we found new investigators. It was good.

The next day, we switched off ... and then Hermana Romney and I had to run to Concepcion to pick up some newby sisters for the News Conference. I was with a girl from Argentina named Hermana Ovando. She was SUCH a sweet girl. This day, all of our plans fell through AGAIN. Luckily, we had members with us and we tried to make the most of what we had. I felt a little bit frustrated ... like, "If we haven't had any problems this whole cambio getting people out with us, having lessons, etc ... why has it happened to me twice in a row?" But ... I got over the frustration and just smiled. I have gotten pretty good at bouncing back. So, it's all good.
Hermana Ovando and I
PIJAMADA with Hermana Ovando and Hermana Godown
I love mini-cambios even more being a Sister Training Leader. I feel like Heavenly Father has given me a little ability to see all of the good of every person. I learn sooo much from these Hermanas. I feel like before, I would get really down on myself because I would feel like a failure in comparison to all of these super awesome missionaries that surround me ... but I now realize that just because people are awesome doesn't make me less awesome. We are all so great and what I try to do now is learn from the awesome things that I see in others and try to apply it in my life. It is a much healthier way to live, I think.
Flor Morales is my hero. I love her sooo much! She comes with
us always and is a returned missionary.
Then we had this cuestión (that is a Chilean word for like ... thing) for the Christmas Concert. We have been practicing for this concert for sooooo long. Like, before this cambio started, we were practicing. I don't know if you guys have seen the videos, but I was singing The Little Drummer Boy. Loved that!! I feel like it is such a similar thing to my mission. I don't have any awesome things that I can give to the Lord ... but I try to give my best to Him ... and I feel like that is all that He expects. I feel like Heavenly Father is pleased with the work I have done on my mission so far. I am so excited to experience my six months of fire to end it off. 

WHOOOOOOOOO ... every. moment. counts.
Singing Little Drummer Boy
Before the concert, I walked around greeting all of the people that I knew. It really surprised me that I knew the majority of the people. I LOVED recognizing this. There are so many people that I have grown to love in this stake. I am SOOOOO grateful to be here!! After the concert, all of my peeps from Frutillares came up to greet me and I was just enveloped. The Hermanas were crying and they said, "We miss you sooooo much." They handed me birthday gifts and wished me a merry Christmas and I just felt plain loved.
The women of Frutillares who came to see me. LOVE THEM!!

With Presedente Navarro
I never realized how much the people liked me in Frutillares. It is a tender mercy from God that now I know. Hermana Romney told me that Presidente Arrington was with her kind of observing how the members were interacting with me and he said, "I guess you get attached to someone after seven months." The good news, President didn't forget that I was there. The better news, he put me in a place were I can continue seeing these people and can continue loving others. I love being here.
So, I hit a year in the mission and I can't believe it. I read my first journal entry that I wrote when we were in that hotel room waiting for me to go to the airport. I can't believe this life that I am living right now. I love it sooo much and I can't really imagine life before or after. I am pretty happy to just be living in the moment. :)

This kid is in our ward. His name is Andres, and he played O Holy Night in
front of all the people in the concert perfectly. What a stud!
Oh, and he is only 9 years old. Awesome.
I can't wait to talk to you guys on SKYPE!! YEEEEEHAW!! We are going to get all of the details worked out, but just a gentle reminder that we only have 40 minutes to talk. I love you all soooo much! Thanks to all of the people that sent me b-day shout outs and what not. I am going to work to reply to everyone!! I LOVE YOU!!!!!!! PRAYERS AND BESITOS AND ABRASITOS!!

Love, Laney

Hermana Gamboa and I
Lissette and I
Ramon Salamanca!
A picture posted on facebook during the week ....

In a Santa hat greeting friends

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