Monday, October 31, 2011

Breaking News...

We found out this weekend that Sister Lewis will be coming home from Madrid a bit early due to illness. She is expected to arrive home late in the evening of November 1. We only found out that she had been sick on October 19, but apparently she had been sick for at least a month before she told us.

We are sad she is coming home early, but excited to see her. We hope to get her well and back on her mission very soon!

Thanks so much for all of your love, prayers and support for Sister Lewis and our family!

October 27

Well, today, (the 27th) is a very rainy day in Madrid.

I actually got the Webb family newsletter yesterday...I was fairly surprised. We went to the mission home for an activity of hermanas, (we carved pumpkins) and Hna. Watkins had to make a quick trip to the office for some Book of Mormons for some of the other hermanas, and there was the letter waiting for me...It must have gotten there yesterday.

And yes, I do get the pictures from the blog of gramma and grampa
Sounds like the family is super busy!

Things are going great here! We are still teaching our family, and the lessons are going really well. We are working on fixing a baptismal date with her, but she wants to be really sure that if she changes religion, that she's going to be making the right change, but is willing to make the change when she gets there...We're going to help her get there faster than the thinks!

We also started teaching another man, he's about 60 yrs. old. And our first lesson with him was amazing. When he didn't show up we gave him a call, and he told us to come back later that evening. We didn't think he'd show up the second time around, but there he was. We were pretty much blown away by the answers he gave to our questions. He told us that his Catholic baptism wasn't really a baptism because he was a baby and doesn't remember a thing...not many people say that. We have another appointment with him tonight.

I'm so excited to hear where Jake is going on his mission! A new elder entered the field last week, and right now is with the elders in our ward. Our district leader told us that there is going to be a new elder in the district, and that he happens to be Elder Lewis...And for a minute a thought! Hey, maybe it's my cousin, but then I thought no, my family would've told me, and I'm pretty sure his birthday is in January. Everybody keeps asking if we're related...especially the members in our ward.

This week is the last week of the transfer, but things being what they are, we're pretty sure that I'm staying here with Hna. Pulgar (although there are 4 hermanas who are entering the field this transfer, and no body ever knows what's going to happen.)

I think that Rootbeer happens to be a very American thing (like maple syrup) I can't find rootbeer anywhere, or maple syrup, and what do you put on a pancake if you don't have maple syrup...sometimes the small things are the things you miss the most, or the things that you notice the most.

Well, I think that's about it...
Love you lots!

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

A New Investigator!

Hello for reals!

Well this week we found a new investigator! She is actually a reference from a member, and is really amazing. She has a 7 yr old son, who turns 8 in November (It may be a two for one) She is really open to listening, and is looking for a church that can really fill her soul. She came to church this last week, and got up and bore her testimony. (This week was fast and testimony meeting, after gen. conf. and our stake conf.) It was really great to listen to what she said. We are both pretty excited to be able to keep teaching her.

We may have found some future investigators in the house of a member...but we're still working on that.

We ate in the homes of a member a few times this week, along with our elders. I'm always amazed at how much food elders can eat. It's incredible.

We had intercambios this week, but did them in our piso. Hna. Pérez came to Barrio 2 with me, and Hna. Pulgar went to Barrio 4. It was nice not to have to lug our luggage around. This week was our temple trip, and afterwards we went to the park and had a pic-nick, and played some uno. It was a pretty good way to spend a p-day, and we are enjoying the last bits of summer. This week it has really started to cool off. The last few weeks were cold in the morning and at night, but hot during the day. The changes in temperature gave just about all the missionaries colds and/or the flu.

I didn't realize that Ryan is taking piano lessons. I guess it gives him something to do. And I guess now is the time for recitals and performances, which really just means that we (or you) get to eat a lot of ice cream and yummy treats!

-And don't worry, we all get along great in the piso! We're actually hoping that nobody gets transferred next week. It's pretty unusual to have so many natives in one apartment that it's really fun for them...and they all tell me that I'm great to have around as well, since I'm not the typical Utah missionary-

Last year I had heard about the "witch's night out" parties that some people had, they sounded really fun. And I love the idea for a hat...I'd love to see a pic!

How fun for the girls soccer team!

Holy cow! It sounds like Gramma and Grampa are busier than I am! I didn't think they had so many things to do! I guess it's good that they are keeping busy!

And just a thought-I have officially hit (more or less) the half way point of my mission! It's really weird to think about! I can't believe that it's almost been nine months.

I can't think of anything else to say...
Love you lots!

Thursday, October 13, 2011

October 12


First, I guess some happy birthday wishes are HAPPY BIRTHDAY MOM!!!

I was thinking the other day that it was probably time for a change in the bishopric. That's exciting, and I'm sure that it will be great.

I hope that nobody gets too bored on Sundays! (Although Sundays are great days for writing letters to your favorite missionary!)

I guess it's good to have some "normal" weeks at home. And birthday shopping is always great!

We are still looking for more people to teach, but we have a couple of good references from the other Madrid missionaries, and a few more people that we are starting to teach, so things are starting to look a little bit better.

There is absolutely no English in the piso. We speak Spanish all the time (which is why my Spanish is so good!) The native speakers learn and practice their English more when they are in piso with Americans.

Hna. Pulgar is from Valencia. Her dad is a Spaniard, and her mom is from the Philippines. Her family joined the church when she was about 8, so they are all members.

Today, we are going Ice Skating! Should be lots of fun.

Just so you know, we usually do our email in the afternoon because the locutorios are about the only things open during mediodía, but sometimes the activities that we want to do require a different email schedule.

The week before General Conference was the Ward Conference, and last week was our Stake Conference, so we've been sitting in Conference a lot these past few weeks.

Also, I loved reading about the trip (Grandma and Grandpa's) to the Opera. It's a little sad that we (the young missionaries) can't participate in stuff like that, but it sounds like it all depends on your mission president. I've heard stories about missionaries that could go to approved opera performances, or plays, and even missonaries that had permission to choose between a bull fight or a soccer game. But right now we don't have that privilege. I'll just have to learn about the Spanish culture through the members and my companions!

Well, I think that's about it for now, maybe I'll send some pictures!
Love, Amber

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Wasn't Conference Great!


Wasn't conference great! I sure loved it! And I have a few more conference tidbits for everyone!

First, We watch the exact same broadcast as you, only we have the translators. We can hear a little bit of English before the Spanish kicks in, and they don't subtitle the music. So unless you happen to know the song, or have a hymnbook of your language handy, you are kinda out of luck. But that is why they sing the same "basic" songs every year. Because everybody has "We Thank Thee O God For A Prophet" and what not, so yes we sing-along only we do it in English.

Second, and way more cool, is that those general authorities who know and speak Spanish pre-record their talk in Spanish! So when a seventy from South America gets the opportunity to speak, we get to hear him in his native tongue. (I noticed that when we listened to Sis. Allred during the Relief Society Meeting, that the Spanish version sounded just like her English, only it was in Spanish. And after the recording ended, we finished listening in English.) And did you know that Elder Scott speaks Spanish? He pre-recorded his talk as well. It was really cool!

Plus, it was way fun to watch conference in the Stake Center. Lots of people brought food and had picnics between sessions on Sunday. And we got to see lots of the missionaries in Madrid, and it's suburbs. Almost like going to the conference center...almost.

It was cool to hear about the new temple in Provo, what a great way to use the land, and whatever happens to be left of the tabernacle! I was about the only one who laughed, or chuckled, at the temple in Star Valley - nobody else knew why Pres. Monson would go there and fish. But we, or those in Madrid, were way excited for the temple in Paris. We had actually heard some rumors about a temple in Paris. It sounded like the members in Paris knew the temple was coming from the newspaper articles that they were reading. There was, or is, a law in France that says that every building has to be completely open and available to government officials, even religious buildings. Basically they couldn't build a temple before because the government officials can't enter all the rooms of the temple. I'm not quite sure what happened to that law. But still pretty cool.

I'm glad that Sophie is looking forward to Halloween, I'm kinda excited to see what they do for Halloween in Spain.

It's been starting to cool down at night, but in the day it still gets pretty hot.

For first p-day here we just chilled in the piso, last week we went to the mall, and today we went to the Zoo. It was really fun! And while we were sitting there waiting for the Sea Lion show to start, we were watching the penguins, and I couldn't but help to think of Ryan. First, because he was a penguin (for Halloween) last year, and Second, because I think that Ryan would make a great Dolphin Trainer! Can't you see him running the Dolphin Shows at Sea World or somewhere! I think he's got the personality for it!

I'm still getting used to the new area. Not that it's bigger, it's just different. So many more people, buses, the metro. And the streets are all about the same. But I love the new area, and I have a great companion. Hna. Pulgar and her trainer (who I replaced) actually opened the area....well, maybe not opened, because there have been elders here for about forever (It's hard to pull all the missionaries from the ward that happens to have the APs) But there weren't hermanas here for about two years. It's tough to open a new area, and we are always looking for new people to teach! But there are a lot of people I'm sure we'll find some!

Love you lots,