Wednesday, May 11, 2011

First Zone Conference!

It was fun to talk to you! And I haven't cut my hair since I left. Last night it sort of took me by surpise how long it was. I will let you know the sizes for clothes next week, and maybe other things that I would like. I haven't really had time to think about it. We have been pretty busy since I talked to you.

Our zone conference was great! We had our conference with the other two zones in Madrid. There were like 70 missionaries there. Pres. and Hna. Watkins spoke to us, and then the assistants spoke to us, and then we broke into zones. We rotated through, so we had a little lesson with each of the zone leaders, and then we had a lesson with just our zone. Afterward, we ate in lunch in the temple cafeteria, and then we went back to the church for pics and goodbyes. It was so great! I learned so much, and everybody feels re-energized to go out and work.

I also learned that there are like 10 hnas going home in the next few transfers, in August and September, and that we are getting 10 more. That is about half of the sister missionaries. That means in a few months I will be one of the "old" hermanas in the mission.

There was plenty of time for socializing as well, so I got to catch up with my MTC district. They told us to arrive at 9:15, and to start studying at 9:30. Which is good, because otherwise, we would have all showed up somewhere between 9:30 and 10:00 and would have spent an hour catching up with one another.

Our P-day was so much fun. We went to the park Juan Carlos I. The park is huge, and gorgeous. We rented bikes and rode around the park, then we played ultimate frisbee, and then went to lunch. There was a buffet just down the street. Hna. Marín and I rode a tandem bike. It was little weird, and more difficult to maneuver, but it was still fun. We had a great time, and I have a pretty good sunburn. I think that we have P-day with the zone once a transfer, and I have a feeling that they are going to be some of my favorites!

Our schedule this week has been pretty crazy. We haven't had much study time. We had our district meeting on Monday (and we always have to cut our study time a little short in order to catch the train.) Then yesterday we woke up at like 6:30 so we could have plenty of time to get to the zone conference. We didn't have to get up early today, but didn't get any study time. And we have had some late nights. But tomorrow should be mostly normal.

Monday night we taught the Word of Wisdom to Jeaneth. She told us a couple of weeks ago that she smokes one, maybe two, cigarettes every night. She doesn't like to smoke, wishes she didn't have to, knows that it isn't good for her, but her body needs the nicotine to sleep. We gave her a plan to stop smoking. She wants to stop, but doesn't think that she can. She is also having problems with her daughter, and the adoption of Sheimy, and is having a hard time financially as well. Last night, we went to see her, to pray with her and help her to stop smoking, and we had our lesson in the dark because they had turned off her electricity. (She was able to pay this morning though!) Not having electricity sort of pushed her over the edge, and she bought some cigarettes last night. But we are helping her, and we know that she can do it! She had a hard time sleeping, but I think that if she can go two maybe three days without smoking, and without sleeping, her body will make her sleep, and that is when this whole process will get easier for her. She wants to get baptized, and Monday night when we brought her some grapefruit juice, she was cleaning out her coffee maker! I think that as soon as she feels like she can get by without the nicotine, she will be able to be baptized. Jeaneth lives in a part of town called Aguas Vivas, and we have to take the bus to go see her, so we spend a lot of time with her, and a lot of time in transit. But it is definitely worth it.

We have a new couple working in the office. And they have overlapped with the couple they are replacing, at least for a month or so. They will get some training and orientation and stuff that is specific to this mission and their responsibilities. I imagine that that is what Gramma and Grampa will be doing as well. Finding out and learning what they need to do and how to do it.

There is still no word on transfers, I won't know until Saturday I think. I don't think that I or Hna. Marín will be going, but there is always a possibility. I think that I will stay here, partly because of my residency. I am in the process of getting my residency card and stuff. We had to register when we were in Madrid, and I had to sign a change of address form because I came to Guadalajara. I think that it will be too much work, and not very effective, at least logistically speaking, to move to a different city. However, there are some new Hnas. coming next week, and there aren't any leaving. So there is always the possibility that I or Hna. Marín could be going somewhere different.

I can't believe that Sophie had her interview. I'm sure that she did great. It is weird to think that she will be getting baptized in just a few weeks!

You can definitely save the pictures if you want. I don't send all of them home (that would take too much time) and I don't delete any (unless they are really bad pictures) I am going to save my memory cards and buy new ones as I go....Idea! You could send me some for my birthday. That way I will have all of my mission pictures. (I won't be sending memory cards home, I have heard stories about them getting lost in the mail.) I don't really care if I lose blank memory cards though, just ones with pictures on them!

Glad to hear that everyone is busy and ready for summer!
Love, Amber

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