Tuesday, December 10, 2013

#53 [La Venta - 13] Dec. 10th, 2013

(A day later due to mission conference)

WOW! What a long letter! Thank you for your updates about Disneyland!

I am glad that Jake and Ryan had a good time. I’m sure they rode my favorite rides enough times for me! :)

And yeah! HAPPY half way mark to RISS! How happy. Time flies. I cannot believe that I will be hitting a YEAR soon. Crazy.

And as for the packages... I always think of stuff that would be nice, but not necessary. Anything healthy. :) maybe q-tips? haha, I don't know.

SPEAKING of packages! THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR THE DEARELDER package! It was lovely. There are lots of cookies and some peanut butter in it, and I really appreciate that. You love me way too much. :) Thank you! :) and also, I heard a saying. "The package is only as good as the letter it contains," and with that being said, the package was great. Thank you for the little note. It made me tear up, but not cry, just almost :) haha, thank you. That's one thing you could put in the package, a nice, long letter :)

The Christmas party sounds like it was the best ever! Too bad we missed it. Hopefully it is just as cool next year. :)

....sorry about bamboo hut...(closed down)

So a couple things happened this week. Me and Hermana Peck have been working on a duet on the piano, and we finally got it down, and it's lovely. I plan on recording it, but you won't see it for a while. It is called "Still, Still, Still" - it's easy. I am grateful that I know how to play the piano, and that I have been able to play it here.

So because we have a recent convert family, A__ and I__ :) yay!) We had a few opportunities that would otherwise be overlooked. Pres Rodriguez had a special, exclusive Christmas party on Friday, only for invited families and their missionaries. :) Yep, we went. AND we stayed out past curfew. We got home at about 10:25. We got to go to their house and there was an A cappella group of 10 guys. I was super skeptical at first because as a general rule, Dominicans cannot sing worth anything, so I wasn't expecting ANYTHING. BUT, I was mistaken :) – they were FANTASTIC! Like, the most Christmas I have felt while being here on this island. It never feels like Christmas, because people are usually too poor to decorate or anything, and they only have their lame bachata music playing, so this was great. I felt so happy. They sang hymns in parts, and they even sang "What a Wonderful World" in English!!!!! "I see trees of blue! red roses too! What a wundurfel wullld!" it was lovely. :) I was just jolly and full of the Christmas spirit. :) I love music. :) They also had some type of tea after. We knew we could drink it because Pres. made it. I think it was lavender – and gross.

We heard from the leaders that we can call the family on the 24th or the 25th. Originally it was just the 24th, because they celebrate it here. And then all the Americans complained, and the rule was changed. About skype... we are not sure. They tell us only on p-day, so on the Monday before, but you can expect some complaining. So maybe it will be on the 24th or 25th. I will keep you updated. I am sure you have a count down for when you can talk to me. I know you just miss me so much. :)

OK, so the reason I am on Tuesday instead of Monday is because we had our Christmas conference yesterday. We woke up at 5:30. I didn't know what to wear, so I decided to wear my most modest skirt (the yellow one grandma made) cuz Hermana Rodriguez it super strict about it. But we did that and went to the temple to take pictures and then headed to a chapel for the conference. It was really great. They talked about stuff and the leaving missionaries gave their testimonies. Hermana Gamez gave her testimony, and it hit me that I will probably give mine next conference... weird! But yeah, that took most of the time. Then they gave us lunch. Thank goodness because we didn't eat that morning. It was a great meal. We had 2 types of meat, rice, an apple, grapes, and a banana lasagna... which I didn't like... at all, and a roll and a tiny empanada. It was all great except above mentioned food. I also didn't get the salad that came with it. But while we ate, there was a slide show. I think we'll get a copy of it; HOPEFULLY. We were on it a few times :)

Then, we had the part that we were most excited about – the production. I don't have pictures of it, but I have a video of our production. I was very proud of it. All of the different zones took a part of the mission commission and had to present it in a tasteful way, and ours was so delicious! Some zones did parts of the scriptures, others did skits, other sang a song. BUT we did a MUSICAL! :) and it was so great. I don't have words to describe it. We started out with an angel giving Samuel his calling to preach, and then he preached and the people were angry, and then it fast forwarded to modern days, and a sister got her call and went out to preach, and people rejected her, and then people accepted it, too. It's a lot cooler than it sounds. But guess who I was!!! :) I was the sister missionary. I had a solo!! I sang in front of like, 150 people! So Heather had her concert (way to go, Head!) and so did I!!! People said it was great. But right after I got my call, I was supposed to act excited, so I did. I jumped up and did a victory dance, and my modest skirt flipped up and I flashed the crowd!!! I was.... embarrassed, but it was hilarious. I got more compliments about that than my singing. And, you should be proud, because I flashed everyone and then had to sing. So I was composed enough to still sing. Mission accomplished.

Overall, I think ours was the best. It had no violence, and it was just great. It was very g-rated. People also said that because my "g's" showed... haha, so punny.

Anyway, this week should be good. We plan on contacting all day for my year mark... so that stinks, but it's what we planned I guess... we'll see. But yeah, that was yesterday. I love the mission pres. and his wife. I love the mission. I love being a missionary. I love this gospel. I love my Savior. I love serving Him. I love you all and I hope you have a great week!

Thank you for everything you do for me. I can't thank you enough. :)

With way too much love that she can't even express it,

Hermana Erickson #1

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