lunes, 23 de septiembre de 2013

Todavia nueva....

So I fail at doing this weekly, but then I talk to my family every week, does that count?  Senior couples and mission presidents get to talk as often as they want to family and friends.  When the elders and sisters hear that we've done something, like watched a tv show or gone to a movie (oh wait we haven't done that) El Presidente tells them that he already did his mission almost 30 years ago, when they're our age they will have different rules too :)  They really just love to give us a hard time, imagine with our personalities people wanting to give us a hard time...oh, not that hard to imagine is it? 

Ok, so in the Mission President's Seminar they had one class that was entitled "the First 100 Days"  We just got a copy of all of those sessions and I pulled that out to listen to it.  I said to Jerry  "We're way past that aren't we?"  He looked at me and shook his head.  I've always been bad at math, hahaha.  It's just that if feels like we've always been here now and it's only been, idk, that would require math and I just know from his look it's not 100 days.  Still doing lots of firsts.  Like this last Saturday and tomorrow through this Saturday we have our first Zone Conferences.  And, you wonder, did I speak at it for longer than 5 minutes?  The answer to that is yes, three 40 minute classes, is my wonderful Spanglish.  But they got it, good thing we teach with the help of the Holy Ghost, because seriously there is no other way I could teach about a new booklet coming out for forty minutes in Spanish without divine help.  I so love the missionaries.  I'll be fumbling along, for sure using the right verbs with the wrong conjugations, until I hit a wall and don't know the next word.  When writing I have this handy translating app on my phone (which is aaaammmaaazing when studying everyday).  But I can't really just stop the class and say, "un momento" while I look up the word.  Lucky for me all I have to do is say "Elder, como se dice....." and one of our amazingly bilingual missionaries supplies the word, with the correct pronunciation, and off I go mangling the beautiful Spanish language some more.  I start the session with excuse my poor Spanish and end with, thank you for your patience with my poor Spanish.  Ah, it's a kick, and if I can give them a good laugh while they still learn the material, all the better.

So, some of you may know that I had a little side trip to Utah last week.  about 6 days.  Evidently I have finally worn out my second natural hip, and the Area Presidency thinks it better and faster to ship me to SLC for it.  They don't mess around, Jerry came home at 4pm on a Tuesday night telling me that I was going.   And he wasn't kidding, I was on a 10am flight on Wednesday and having a consult with the hip replacement specialist at intermountain healthcare on Thursday morning at 9:45.  It was really good timing for some other reasons to be in SLC.  Really another few milagros happened to me that few days.  So I will be under the knife on Oct 14.  The good news in all of it is that by waiting so long to have this done (yeah, my hip is popping out of the socket, guess it's time) they have a much better artificial hip than my other one.  hahah, the doc said this one will move better than a normal healthy hip.  Maybe I will take up gymnastics, I saw on the news the other night some 82 year old German woman competing in the senior olympics in gymnastics for the first time.  You know I'm just kidding....sort of.  While I was gone we got 19 new missionaries, 10 from the States and 9 from Mexico.  I met my first one at the first zone conference.  He is about 6'4 or 6'5 and has a poor bruised forehead.  He keeps running into the tops of doorways because they are so low.  We had a good laugh when he said he keeps thinking he's low enough, and then he's not.  Through the coming week I will get to meet them all.  I do know we have a new sister from Tijuana who loves basketball...perfect!!!

One other first was going to the doctor in Mexico today.  It's a sweet deal here for just run of the mill ailments (sinus and ear infection)  You just head down to your local pharmacy and the doc is next door, you don't pay her (yes so far I've met more female than male physicians here) she is paid by the pharmacy.  She checks you out (yes I did this all by myself, in Spanish, yo se, yo jactare) then tells you about your prescription, then she slides it through a little door, you thank her and walk around to the front of the pharmacy and pick up your meds.  They whole thing cost less than the cost of my co-pay for my doctor visits at home, and no appointment necessary.  I'm also now the proud holder of a tarjeta discuenta (discount card) for the Ahorra chain of pharmacies.  Totally tops CVS and RiteAid.  This whole excursion from walking into the doc to walking out with the Rx took 20 mins.  I'm a fan.

Well this is the first day of fall, officially and this is the first time I've seen the sun go down since we've been here.  It is usually raining this time of night.  I hope for the sake of the poor people in Acapulco that hurricane and rainy season are behind us.  The destruction there is unbelieveable and evidently the same is true of the Gulf Coast city of Tampico.  We're praying for the families that lost loved ones and for those that are homeless as well.  We truly love the people here.  They are so kind and warm and friendly.  You need directions, tips on places to eat, where to get the best fruits and doesn't matter, just ask a person on the street and they will give you great advice.  Never to busy to help someone out or even just to give an opinion.  The missionaries are amazing, full of faith, hard at work, and smiles on their faces.  It really is a privilege to be with them, and to share the Gospel with those that are prepared.  

Janna (or Juana as my husband tells everyone my name is!)

 CVS has got nothing on Farmacias del Ahorro, I'm official I have my own card
 Yes, it was Mexican Independance Day last week and we know have a flag, that's pretty official too
 Yes, I was in SLC, but it didn't feel like home, home is where the heart is and mine is definately in Mexico!

domingo, 8 de septiembre de 2013

una vez mas

So evidently Reid has become my conscious, yes that's scary isn't it.  Well, not as scary now that he's an upstanding citizen, married, returned missionary, college student with an end in sight.  Wow, I guess he can qualify now....who knew when he was making me crazy in high school he would be the one to tell me that I need to keep my blog up.  Anyway, I keep thinking that every week is kind of like the last, but it's not, there is always something or somebody new to write about, so here goes.  

A week ago Friday we took a P-day, and went to Cuernavaca to see more than the Costco (which is a beautiful sight, not gonna lie, a hot churro and some soft serve yogurt, yep, you get my drift).  Now the missionaries take P-days every week, but sometimes P-day for us is just for Jerry NOT to have to get in the car.  He spends so much time driving, getting lost, driving some more, then driving again.  Did I mention he spends a lot of his life in the car.  Its been a huge adjustment for a guy who could walk to his office for 21 years to drive over an hour to get there now.  While some things can be done here at home (we have an Elder Lauritzen, from California, who is a computer genius and can help him with anything by logging on in the office, whether hes in his car with his smartphone or at home) lots of things with the missionaries and the local leaders are only effective face to face.  So he drives...a lot.  So I digress, we did take a little trip to Cuernavaca, it's only about 45 mins if you don't get stuck behind a slow truck.  We actually live in the Cuernavaca mission here in the mission home lest you think we're sneaking our of our mission all of the time, those rules don't apply to mission presidents evidently since we don't even live in our mission.  Anyway, I will post some photos of beautiful Cuernavaca.  It reminds us a lot of Costa Rica, very lush and green, but not that humid.  We found the Centro, and toured the centro, the museum there that was built over the top of an Aztec temple by the Spanish.  One way to change the culture quickly.  They are excavating around the fortress (which is what the museum is in) and finding archaeological things from 500 years ago.  I like that stuff and so does Jerry, luckily for Harper and Blair we did this after they left.  We also visited a incredibly gorgeous botanical garden (another interest that the twins are not at all interested in, think of them sitting in the cafeteria at Kew Gardens in the spring, cuz they were bored, yep true story)  It was started as the home of Senor Borda who was French and also founded Taxco.  It's huge and gorgeous and they have built an outdoor ampitheater around one of his ponds that is so beautiful.  It was a great day and ended with a trip to Costco, of course, only place with bagels that we've found and, I mean you can only go so long without bagels.  Weird because they don't sell chocolate chips (a big shout out to my sister in law Teri for sending the heaviest box of every kind of chocolate we could want including to huge bags of chocolate chips...the missionaries are so happy when Jerry shows up with baggies of homemade chocolate chip cookies in his briefcase, actually any cookie will do, but I thing choco chip is the fav)

While we were eating lunch in Cuernavaca we saw a group of people with t shirts on that had photos on them.  On the back were the words Los Desparecidos.  Translation is the lost ones.  Kidnapping is still a huge problem here, we talked to them afterwards and the pictures were family members that were kidnapped and they never found out what happened or saw them again.  It was a huge range of people from young girls to older men, to everything in between.  No small children that we saw.  These people were not all wealthy and really some had no idea why there loved ones were targeted.  Later that week we saw on the news that it was a nationwide movement which was using that week to bring more attention to the problem.  It is incredibly sad.  I know this happens everywhere, but I've never personally met anyone that this has happened to so it became much more real to me to meet these families.  Que triste.

This past week we had our third leadership council and got three new missionaries from the CCM here in Mexico City.  They are headed for Argentina, but they're visas have not come through yet, I met the one elder at church today, we talked about it a little (he is Mexican and from Monterrey, Elder Meza) and I asked if they have the same problem with Mexican nationals going to Brazil, because I know at home its a big problem.  He said Argentina is the only Latin country where they need a visa, all they need is a passport for Brazil.  Que interesante.  We attended the two wards that meet right next to our office and the first was so packed that the missionaries had to stand to give up their seats.  The second was not nearly as crowded, but the Bishop in that ward gave an amazing talk, yes, I understand the talks in Spanish, just don't ask me to give one sin notas.  Also a young man in the second ward spoke, he returned from his own mission two weeks ago...also a great talk and he still looked just like our missionarys, sin placa.  I have a much easier time speaking to the members, even joking a little about my poor spanish.  I always ask them to please let me practice on them!!  They so graciously allow me to butcher their language.  

This week we are preparing for 20 new missionaries coming next week.  It also means saying goodbye to many of the missionaries that have been our leaders, and consequently helped us so much in the past two months.  We will miss them greatly as they have been great examples to our new missionaries and have worked hard til the very end.  Its a testament to their devotion to have a brand new mission president with an entirely different style and focus, and yet they have done all that he's asked even though they could just say, what the heck I'm going home.  Some have worked even harder to help Jerry than they have previously, knowing he needed all of them.  We are losing our assistants to train the new missionaries this month and next, it will be hard, they really do become your own kids.  

Well this is long and rambling and I always think of something that I should have written that I didn't.  Suffice it to say that every day one of these amazing young men and women affect my life in some profound way as I learn their stories and their struggles to be here and their devotion to the Savior.  It's humbling in so many ways, and while I surely miss my children, and my grandchildren, I love these young people with all my heart.  You find your capacity to love continues to grow, just as it does as you have more children in your family.  The Gospel of Jesus Christ is really all about love, His love, our love for Him and for all of our brothers and sisters wherever we are.  Espero que tengan un buen semana, mis amigos.


 Museo de Cuernavaca
 Los Jardines de Borda (also known as the Botanical Gardens)
 Consejo Liderazco  (losing some of these great leaders in the next month :(
Porvenir Capilla with Elder Martinez from Honduras (by me) and Elder Meza, 5 days in the mission and waiting to go to Argentina