Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Planiton y Chocolate Caliente‏

Cara sent this on Monday. Merry Christmas Everyone!
Navidad is in 2 days! J I bet there is a ton of snow and is freezing there. I’m sure all the missionaries here would kill for that kind of weather right now. It is the rainy season but it hasn’t rained here in about 5 days. It’s extremely hot.
This week has been good, we had a baptism, a boy that is 14 years old, he is the brother of the woman that got baptized my first week here. When we first started teaching him he always looked so sad, he cried like our first lesson because he was having problems with him mom. (don’t we all have problems with our mom at that age?) haha  I love you mom. But he got baptized this last Saturday and has made a ton of new friends in the ward, now when I see him he looks a ton happier.
We also have been working on getting this couple married and baptized. Remember that chirapa guy I talked about. Yeah, him and his wife are getting married and baptized this week! J We were able to work with their papers and get it approved. So, they are getting married on Friday and baptized Saturday. Here it’s really hard for North Americans or gringos as everyone likes to call us. Because we always want to teach in great detail and be really direct because we have grown up with the gospel our whole life. But these people here don’t get that, so we have to be really simple with the way we teach and teach a lot from the bible the first few lessons. It’s actually kind of nice but kind of a hard concept to grasp. Haha J
It’s been kind of stressful this week because I get to learn a lot of stuff before cambios in a week just in case I have to train or get sent to a different place, but my companion is assisting me and I can feel myself learning faster and faster.
I'm starting to already miss Christmas in Utah. It's weird to think it is Christmas time because it is so hot and humid here, no snow? What is this?
Esepcially when I hear that is negative 14 there! Wow! People here like to have fruit cake and hot chocolate on christmas like normal, but hot chocolate in this heat? No thank you. Although, it's really good, they make it from the coco plant, it's delicous.
Anyway, not much else to tell! I love you all and hope you have a Merry Christmas! :)

Hermana Larsen

Monday, December 16, 2013

Feliz Navidad!

Later in the day after getting this letter Cara called to let us know she will be able to Skype us on Christmas. Yipee!

Oh my, what a week. It started with me being sick with an enormous fever at the end of p day last week, went to the doctor, and it was from the water...dumb bugs. I'm a lot better, the mission is just cracking down on what water we get and drink. Hermana Gòmez is making sure we use our filter water bottles and everything, so no worries :) But basically we didn't work at all Tuesday, Wednesday we did and then my companion got sick with the same thing that night, so no work Thursday, and she still is not feeling that great.
So, Sunday, I had to speak in sacrament meeting, I was freaking out to say the least, but I did it :) It was really short, but I think it made the ward warm up to me a little bit more, so that they know that I know a little bit of Spanish :) During the meeting we had a recent convert come to church and her dog followed her to church, now in Iquitos it is normal for dogs to just walk in the chapel, because dogs are everywhere in Pèru just scrounging for food and everything, but this one would not get out of the chapel, she kept leading it out and then she shut the doors so that he wouldn't come back in but he found a way and suddenly you saw him come in the chapel again, all of the missionaries could not stop laughing. :)
I've realized it's been a real blessing sometimes to not know the language, it has made me really pay attention to body language and peoples eyes. You can tell a lot when words don't get in the way, you can tell how a person is feeling and what they need. It's pretty cool :)
So Christmas is coming! Jingle Bells! Feliz Navidad!
I think we have three things that we are singing in for Christmas, one is with our stake where we are singing in this choir, another is with our ward where we get fruitcake and hot chocolate! :) and the other is with all the missionaries in Iquitos area on Christmas. Practicing for these takes up pretty much all of our time.
Cambios is coming up on the 30th and my companion and I might be split, but we don't know what exactly is going to happen. Crazy how fast time is flying! :)
Merry Christmas! :)

ALSO!! I ate suri!, I ate a worm. It was disgusting, but it apparently is tradition that when you get to the mission in iquitos you eat suri, well, I did it. I don't think I'll do it again. I have a video but it won't let me send it over email. :)

Monday, December 9, 2013

Juvia, juvia, juvia‏

Hola J
This week has been crazy busy, I’m learning spanish a Little more each day, it’s quite slow though, poco el poco.
This week Hermana Salinas had a meeting with the leaders in the mission all day, so I got to go to another area with a different companion for the day. And we got stuck in the huge rain storm, like huge, we were soaked, and had to go to higher ground because the streets were flooding. It was a joyful experience. I also got to hold a monkey! After we taught this couple they let me hold their monkey, oh my goodness. So cute J That’s getting to be pretty normal now. Last night, we had another huge rainstorm and it went into the morning, it’s so strong that it wakes you up during the night.
My companion has been super stressed because we don’t have very many new investigators and not very many dates for baptisms. Pero, yo tengo fe. J
Lessons have been going good, I’m starting to understand people better and better each day.
Last night we went to the stake center and watched the Christmas devotional live from the conference center, the North Americans got to watch it in ENGLISH! It was another joyful experience. J
Iquitos is good, the food is good, lots of rice, lots of beans, the normal. J
Haha, the elders had a baptism Saturday and we went and the 13 year old boy that was getting baptized got a haircut that day, he walked into the church and bam! Mohawk J it was awesome.
Today we are going to Quista Cocha to eat suri….grubs….buena suerte Hermana Larsen
I don’t have much else to tell you guys. J
Love you all
Hermana Larsen


Monday, December 2, 2013


Great news! Cara received the postcards we made her on Halloween and the package I sent for her birthday. For now she lives about 15 minutes from the mission home and getting mail through the pouch is easy for her get. I also have her address. I can send it to you if you message me. If you send her a package let me know and I will share what I have learned so far:)
Happy late Thanksgiving!!!! Here, they don't celebrate Thanksgiving, but they go all out for Christmas. But, I have the best pensionnista ever and she made us and the elders the all decked out thanksgiving dinner the other night, turkey, pie, all the works. It was the best :) Peru is hot! Everyday you just get used to being sticky and sweaty. Right now, it is the coolest time of the year because it is rainy season. Good for now, but I'm kind of dreading the dry season. At least I get to wear skirts :) The families we are teaching are so great, we are teaching a family who is so cute, they always want to ask me questions about the United States. Everyone thinks its so odd that Utah has so many Mormons because here there are people who don't even know who Mormons are. We are trying to find a way for the husband to get baptized but in order to do that we nee! to find a way for them to get married. They are named Israel and Candy, Candy's dad can speak English, he always comes out in lessons and we speak English for like ten minutes, it's awesome, mi Gusta :) In Iquitos it is super difficult for people to get married. Like, extremely difficult. So it is normal here that when we are baptizing a family, we are having a wedding beforehand. Well, this family has two sweet kids, Rodrigo and Carlita, Rodrigo literally looks like a Latino Harry Potter :) Carlita is just plain sweet. The only problem is they aren't really doing their part in the lessons....so.... yeah.
People here have this odd accent, it's called chirapa, which translates to jungle people. They talk really fast and kind of sing with it. It's pretty cool, my companion has that accent all the time, she's developed it over the year that she has been here. We are teaching a family who has that accent. Ladislao and Silvia. We are trying to get them married and baptized as well.
I've started to teach a little bit. I think the most frustrating part is when they see that I'm a gringa and when I start to talk they just look at me like I'm dumb and look at my companion to translate, and then she says the same thing. Ha, I guess I get to practice :)
The members in our ward get super offended that I don't know fluent Spanish and can't understand everything they are saying. There has been some experiences that haven't been the best. They just expect the gift of tongues to be over night and I can speak fluent and understand everything. They just don't know how it is to learn a language. Oh well :)
There's lots to do everyday and it is always really hot in our area, a lot of walking. I think what always makes my day though is when we go past little kids and they look at me and get really excited and whisper then I hear them say 'hello' 'how are you' ha ha they think it is so funny that they can speak a little bit of English, people do it all the time here when they see me. :)
Funny story, during a lesson the other day, the house was a little deeper in the jungle so there were a lot more bugs, entonces...during the lesson I feel something in my hair, yeah it was a huge beetle...luckily we were watching a movie, I looked at my companion and she started laughing at my face, I peeled it out of my hair and threw it on the ground, then another one flew on my shirt and another on my skirt. Geez! :) Experiences, experiences. :)
Well, I sure hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving! I miss American food but the rice is good :)
Hermana Larsen