Wednesday, December 16, 2015

December 14 Back in Mexico City

Cambios!  Awesome news, my new companion is from Spain, basically the best, you know I'll be visiting her after the mission.  I know we're gonna get along good.  She's got 2 months on the mission, and she's super sweet and humble, I'm excited!  I'm back in the DF, in Camarones.  I mean it will be a huge change again from Ixtapan but it's gonna be good.  I'm going to miss Herman Reyna a ton though.  We had an awesome last week together.  We put baptism dates with the family of Mayra.  I don't remember if I've talked about them.  Mayra Yazmin and Alexia, just a super family that we get along really well with.  It's awesome to teach people who are your best friends.  So we are excited for them. 

El Senor Matias

 We also went exploring in the pueblitos around Ixtapan and found some gorgeous new places, a Colonia called Los Narajos, we were looking for a house and I had to go to the bathroom bad, so we stopped by the next house we found, and met El Senor Matias and his wife.  We ended up talking to them and teaching them, but it was the best just hearing them talk about, we have fresh eggs, just stuff like that but he went on and on.  Super cool to get to know such humble people who are completely happy with the little things in life.   Sunday was awesome in the morning because we got to watch the Tijuana temple dedication!  Super cool.  President Uchtdorf was there with Elder Oaks, and they were awesome.  The talks are just the best, and it helped me focus on WHY I'm out here teaching these people.  I got to ponder and remember all the wonderful blessings we receive in the Lord's house and thinking about how awesome it is.  Makes you want all those around you have those same blessings. 

A really Large Nativity in Metepec

The temple rededication
 But it was the WORST saying goodbye to the people in Ixtapan, I cried like 20 times.  I love them so much.  
Saying goodbye to Ma Ysabel, Mayra and family

December 7 Christmas Devotional

Hermana Reyna has lots of secret photos of me.  This is how I look when people tells me lies on the phone :)

This week wasn't the greatest, the investigators that we have aren't progressing, like we didn't get everything done we wanted to.  I can't believe we're at our last week of this cambio already.  It went by too fast.  But we had a few fun things happen.  Friday was a ward activity...noche de churros y chocolate.  the greatest, we felt like it helped the hermanamiento that we lack, and everyone had a good time.  We watched a video "el Monte de sion", it was Wilford Woodroof telling the story of the Salt Lake Temple but a little deep for the investigators, I don't think they really got it.  We ate way too many churros, at the end of the night we started helping an Hermana make them all, and she was talking to us about the mission and everything.  We just kept eating churros and then Saturday Hermana Reyna was throwing up all night and I hade some major diarrhea so we were fighting for the bathroom.  It was pretty awful.  Now I never want to eat another churro in my entire life.  Sunday was awesome. 
Ethan and Denis, the craziest kids I have seen

Gorditas, yum!

 I LOVED the Christmas devotional, we only got to see parts of it, because one of the recent converts brought all his crazy grandkids and they were running around and we had to take them out and make them sit quiet, haha but I loved Linda K Burton's talk with the primary song "He sent His Son"  I think that's what is called, have faith, have hope, live like His Son.  Help others on their way, what does He ask.....Live like His Son.  Made me cry.  I love the primary songs that we sang when we were little.  I really liked when President Uchtdorf talked about gratitude and the story of the guy who got a wheelchair.  We take WAY too many things for granted.  After the devotional we went to the house of the Ruiz family because it was Sharit's birthday yesterday.  Hermana Reyna and I spent Saturday night making a bunch of cute bows for her and she loved them.  We had some awesome cranberry cinnamon tea and finished off the week. 

November 30 Andrea's Baptism

trensitas Our new thing

The update in Ixtapan.  It was an awesome week!!  We were working with Andrea (una jovencita de 14 anos) all week to get her ready for her baptism, the biggest challenge was talking to her parents so they would sign to give consent.  But it ended up being an awesome experience.  Her Dad talked with us a lot.  He told us that Andrea has been talking about her baptism all week, and he asked "what did you guys say to her to make her change so much?"  We just laughed, told him that we cast a spell on his daughter,jk.  No but we got to explain to him a lot of principles of the gospel, and why it changes us so much.  We invited both her mom and her dad to the baptism, and THEY WENT!  (I was super surprised) and then they went to church the next day! I'm really excited that they are showing more interest now and we will hopefully be able to teach them too.  I love the gospel of Jesus Christ.  I love seeing the changes that it makes in  my life, and in the lives of others.  Andrea was your typical teen, always kinda mad and rebelious, but her dad told us that in these past few weeks she has been so much happier, helps out around the house, and actually comes out of her room.  I feel so blessed :)   So that was the big event of the week.  It was a great baptism! 
The Ixtapan crew

Practicing for the primary program

 Then sunday was the primary program here in Ixtapan.  It was pretty funny, only 5 kids talked and sang... and I was playing the piano, my companion directing the music, you can imagine the mistakes and errors and fails that we experienced, but it turned out good and I think that 50 people that were there enjoyed it.  Hermana Reyna and I are doing really well, we are super happy and just trying to enjoy the last two weeks we have together this short cambio!  And 25 days until my favorite day of the year!!  Can't believe how fast time is going.  Love you all the much!

Nice Surprise from Home
I loved reading the mission diary you sent me of Grandma Howells'!  I loved being able to read all about it, and it made me laugh the language she used.  It was a wonderful reminder that she's doing the same thing as me right now.  

Nov 16th lots of photos


I had to tickle Mich to get her to smile with her teeth
esquites (toasted corn)

I'm glad the primary program went well, it's always good. I'm sure it will be better than ours.. we have it the 29th, and I'm a little worried. The primary kids are psycho and there's only like 6 that are participating I think haha. It might be a little of a disaster. I have to play too, but only a few songs so I should be fine. But it stresses me out still, wish I would have practiced more before so it would be easier now.
I'm glad dad is playing hockey, sports are the best ways to de-stress. I wish I could see some games! 
<3 hugs and kisses! we're getting super close to Christmas!! can't wait :)

When it is 11:30 and we are going to bed Hermana Reyna says "lets take a picture!" and I am like "What? Why" and she says "because it is a before bed pic".  She cracks me up but I love her
Early Morning workouts

November 23 Hermelinda Baptism

La Reyna and I

Wow so it was a great week!!
Hermana Reyna and I are having a blast together. so that's the best and it makes the mission so so much fun.  
Hermelinda smile, she is an expert smiling with her eyes

We had an awesome baptism on Sunday!! Hermelinda, a little old lady, who barely ever smiles so it's super funny.  She can't read or write, and she's from a little ranch. I admire her a LOT, she can barely walk because of her knees, but she is super tough and works so hard for her family.
for example, I'm grateful this week for running water and washing machines, because Hermelinda has to drag a basket of clothes to the river and wash them all on the rocks. 
But anyways, her baptism was kinda funny. She couldn't bend her knees very well, and wasn't going to be able to go under water all the way, so Elder Demars just hugged her and jumped backwards and they both went all the way in.  It works :) haha
The best was her laugh when she got out of the pool, just so happy, and it takes a lot for her to really smile. We have to tickle her in the pictures and she just smiles with her eyes.  but it was a great experience :)

So that was the main highlight. we also had a branch activity and it went super well, we are finally seeing a difference in the members, and they are starting to participate more and get excited about activities and stuff so it made me really happy. We watched the Testaments, about the Book of Mormon, and it made me cry again, such a good movie.

Those are the main updates for this week.  We've been having a blast with the Fair that is in town, tons of people, fiesta, reggaeton, and gorditas de nata (the most delicious food I've ever tasted, kinda similar to fry bread or scones, but not fried, idk it's tasty). and My companion is crazy and I love her.
I hope you have a GREAT thanksgiving.  
I'm so thankful. for way too many things. But mostly for the plan of salvation, and the Atonement. The way that it changes lives, and the way that it changes mine.
I'm thankful for the chance I have to be out here, to be a representative of Jesus Christ, there aren't words.
And I'm so grateful for the way of life we have back home. We take way too many things for granted.  
Most of all I'm thankful for my family and because we will be able to be together forever. I love you guys!
Hermana Schneider
Hermana Ma Ysabel and her little bugs she eats everyday

They're not to bad you just have to swallow fast

Oh an update from Monday, today we went El Christo Rey in Tenancingo again.  It was the coolest!  Today is the day of Cristo (every day on the calendar is the day of some sanot or some virgin for the Catholics) So they were setting up some chairs for the mass that was going to take place up at the Cristo.  We helped them out and then the maintenance guy let us go INTO the Cristo Rey and climb to the TOP!  Basically the coolest view I've ever seen in my life.  I'm pretty sure a total of 50 people have ever been up there, it's a total secret that you can go inside, so cool!

More Cristo Rey with our new friend who let us go to the top

Sunday, November 15, 2015

Nov 9 Don't let the Bed bugs bite!

Here's the update of the ridiculous things that happened this week...
I got super sick on Tuesday, threw up all night, so we didn't get a ton done on Wednesday. Then on Thursday morning we found CHINCHES(bed bugs) in my companion's bed. Ugh so we had to take everything out of our house, wash everything, spray this toxic stuff all over, and move all our stuff out into another little room in la casa de la dueña. Just a huge mess, and today we are going to clean super good and start moving stuff back in. We won't be able to move in and sleep in our cuarto until next week, for the fumes and all that but that was the drama of this week. I'll never forget it!  I finally understand the phrase "don't let the bedbugs bite."  
Last night at about 2 am I killed my first scorpion. I was super scared actually, but I destroyed it.  I had to put on my adventure boots, and then it was easy!

We had changes, and I'm staying in Ixtapan AGAIN! wooohooo I was happy to be able to stay and take care of all the conversos  and members that we are working with here. but a little sad because I'm the only one who is staying in our district. It's always weird to say goodbye when you get used to a certain companion. 
But mi nueva compañera se llama Hermana Reyna (sister queen).
She seems GREAT I think we will get along super well. She was a cheerleader before too, and she loves sports and seems really happy and like a hard worker.  I feel like we will get a lot done this change :) 

 Hermana Schneider
the last zone pic of LAS TORRES!!!!!
Las Chicas

Monday, November 2, 2015

Nov. 2 Dia de los Muertos

This week was pretty normal, all the kids went trick or treating here too on 31st but here it's more focused on Dia de los Muertos(day of the dead).  Everyone puts an ofrenda altar up in their house, a table with lots of food, flowers and things that their dead relatives liked when they were alive because the believe that on these days all the spirits come out and visit.  So its kinda a waste of money, all that food that no one is going to eat, but that's the tradition. 
And then if you had a relative pass away in the last year, you put up a HUGE altar and have to make a TON of food, because anyone who comes by your house and leaves a candle you have to feed them.  So that was kinda interesting.
ofrendas, not the coolest ones but you get the idea

But it was fun, sunday night we did a little noche de hogar with one of my favorite families and some people from the ward, and drank mexican hot chocolate and ate pan de muertos. It's super tasty, has an orange flavor with cinnamon. yummmm :)

We had a really good Sunday, lots of people went to church, and the rama felt full. The best feeling when you go visiting a bunch of menos activos and they all come back, and we brought a cool family for the first time all together. 
Plus my favorite part of the week is taking the sacrament. When you really take time during the sacrament to think about the sacrifice that Christ made for us, and repent of the little things that you can change, you feel the spirit in a totally different way.
So sunday was probably the best part of the week :)
I love you lots!
Mormon adventure boot 3rd edition..
great for ward campouts and all mission activity, 
durable and water resistant ;)