Thursday, October 17, 2013

Poco el Poco

Buenos Tardes!! Wow, so much to tell. Where do I start? First time on a plane was great, window seat, yes! :) Long though, very long. And we couldn't watch movies which kind of made it a bummer. The airport was packed when we got there, all Latinos picking up businessmen. We got to the CCM at one in the morning and just crashed. My companera is Hermana Ruesch. She is absolutely amazing and teaches me something everyday. A lot of lessons :) We started the next day with orientation and a lot of study, right into Spanish!! It's a little overwhelming and I was having a hard time at first, but they just keep telling us, poco el poco (little by little). We ONLY have Spanish teachers, I repeat, only Spanish teachers. Who speak ONLY Spanish. AH! It is crazy, our whole district is just looks at each other the first day with ghost like faces. It's awesome now because I can make out a good majority of what they're saying, definitely more than I can speak :) They refer to our Spanish books as Pokémon characters....... they are that important :) Hermana Ruesch and I are the only two girls in our district we have ten other elders, and it is so much fun. I love it, we are all going to Iquitos which makes it even better. We are all tons alike too. :)
In our room, it's Hermana Ruesch and I and then two other Latina companionships. They are so so sweet. I had a meltdown last night because I couldn't get the language. And the Latinas came over and just coddled me and took the Spanish dictionary so they could translate what I was saying. It was adorable. It is probably the most loving culture over here. They just want to take care of you and love you all the time.
The CCM is gorgeous. The grounds are so well kept and amazing compared to the city. We went out on the city today because it was P day and, you know those buses I was telling you about? Yeah, rode two of those. They are small and cramped to say the least. And the drivers there are nothing compared to dad's driving ;) The temple was gorgeous but kind of frustrating wearing the translator around my neck. We went to the stores and everything is just so weird here. You go outside and you feel like you are going to get lung cancer just from the air because it is so bad here. Just be so so grateful for all the blessings we have in America. We are very blessed.
So much to tell....FOOD! You guys have not tasted a churro, the churros here are amazing!! Oh my and the Chocolate is even better! Oh, and the ice cream is heaven! Let's just say sweet wise, I'm getting pretty spoiled. We have rice with every meal and some sort of meat, we all just ask each other what it is, because we never know. :) But we are so busy during the day that when we get to meals we are starving and anything will do.
I've been so sleep deprived, I'm not used to this whole getting up at 6:30 thing, and neither are my Latina roommates, they like to stay up, that's the culture, so our rule is, lights out at 10.30 but they never are. So, it is interesting.... :)
If I forget anything I am so sorry, we only have an hour and it seems so short. I will try to send some pictures of everything.
We taught our first investigator and it was our teacher. But he is an amazing actor, it was playing it up, he was crying and everything about the problems he supposedly had. It was pretty dramatic. It assisted a ton though so that we could know what we were going to be doing. This really is the way to learn Spanish though, it's perfect because you have to learn Spanish in order to survive here.
I love you all so much, and think about you everyday. Thank you for all your prayers! Poco el Poco
Hermana Larsen
 So much love and support to learn the language!
 The Peru MTC is amazing!
 Wonderful roomies!       
Hermana Larsen and her companera Hermana Ruesch hiding in the bushes trying to make it look like they are already in the Amazon Rain Forest!

Friday, October 11, 2013

Hermana Larsen made it to the MTC in Peru!

I've made it! Got my name tag and everything and yes, the keyboards are really really weird. Go spanish! I love you guys and the flight went great, had kind of a rough time when I read mom´s letter, but I completely crashed when I got to my top bunk. :) and now just getting lost in the language and work. Peru is amazing and the MTC is amazing and I cannot wait to write you again and send you guys pics! Lima reminds me a lot of vegas. Tell dad on the bus ride here I saw 4 KFCs, no big deal. :) sending my love and light to you.
Hermana Larsen

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

My Farewell

Five months ago... I received a white envelope addressed to Sister Cara Nicole Larsen. I got to open it at 9:00 sharp ish that night. I got to sit through a class that night, that's why I was opening it later. Torture. FINALLY, I got to go home to that white envelope. My whole family was there waiting anxiously, along with my very best friends on face time and there in person.
I was shaking, I was so nervous and excited at the same time. This white envelope held where I was going to be living for the next 18 months, no big deal. I opened it.
Dear Sister Larsen:
You are hereby called to serve as a missionary of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
You are assigned to labor in the Peru Iquitos Mission. It is anticipated that you will serve for a period of 18 months.
You should report to the Peru Missionary Training Center on Wednesday, October 9, 2013. You will prepare to preach the gospel in the Spanish language.
Uhhh, what?! Let's just say I was pretty excited! Then my dear friends on my couch of course had to look it up on MY smart phone.
"It's the 4th largest city in Peru!"
"It's in the middle of the Amazon Rainforest!"
"There's a quarter of million people that live there!"
I was so excited and all their statements just got me more pumped.
Five months later... We've learned my mission is brand new, just opened July 1st. So the list of stuff to bring was... let's just say... vague. I got all my clothes, which was quite the chore. Like, how do you shop for the Amazon Rainforest? Especially being in a skirt. :) I got practical shoes that weren't that bad looking, thank you very much. Oh, and let's not forget my yellow rainboots.
So it came time for my farewell Sunday. Not only was I speaking, but I was also singing. With my parents. To be honest, I would have rather just sang and not spoke. Ha :) beggers can't be choosers, I guess. I feel it went pretty well, I cried. So, I'm guessing I touched some spirits. Yeah! :)

What I did realize though, is that I have a huge family! Combined with my mom and dad's we filled up most of the chapel. Go us :)

My adorable nephew. I think he looks like me :)

I have such amazing cousins that drove down just to come hear me speak. Thank you.
And of course. My amazing parents and siblings

He really wanted a picture like this.


I also had all my family send the bag I'll be putting all my laundry in :) Thank you for doing it.
Bring on the amazon!