Monday, December 29, 2014

79th addendum pictures….






79th blog Hello Ffffaaaaaa-fffaaaaaa-mmmmmm-iiiiii-lllllleeeeeee

Ffffaaaaaa-fffaaaaaa-mmmmmm-iiiiii-lllllleeeeeee.

Stats time: now that Hermana Cook has taken over the role of Mission Nurse and I am a consulting nurse and translator. Therefore, my time as nurse is coming to close... of course it is my calling until I leave here the 19th, but I'm training to retire :). Sooooo, I have taken a rough count of how many nursing calls I received in 18 months..... 1,500. HOLY SMOKES! That's a lot of sick missionaries. 

Speaking of sick missionaries. I do not understand what is going on in the mission. The weirdest things are happening and we're sending a ton of missionaries to the clinic. Gallbladder removal, Christmas day ankle injury, etc. We were doing so good for a while and then boom! it all came a crashing down. I'll blame it on the month of December.


This is necessary. Nurse News Flash: we have broken the head of a femur here in Chile Santiago Este. I wouldn't be surprised to say it's a first. How do you do it? You jump down 3 stairs in your house onto a freshly mopped floor (unknowlingly). How to fix it? Surgery to make sure you don't cut off too much blood supply to your leg and lose it... and lots of time in the hospital and the mission home. What really stinks? It's his last 6 weeks in the mission. How to prevent it? Stay on your 2 feet at all times and all places. =) Good job Elder, you've made history. SMH. Hahahaha. He's doing just fine. Reading lots of scriptures and sleeping a ton.

December 2014: record month for craziness in my entire mission. We've had sooo many meetings, activities, and uuggghh never a dull moment. However, I truly loved this month, even though it was difficult to schedule everything. Christmas was great! It actually felt like Christmas this year. December was amazing!

Family!!! We got to see each other even if it was in the bathroom! Guess what... Few weeks more and it will be even better. I loved talking to you all, laughing together, and getting made fun of. Thanks. Love you all too. :) But we didn't take any pictures! :(

The best ward idea ever: give 4 families Christmas Eve dinner with the ward's funds. I wish I could have been there to see their faces. Man, do I love service. Thanks Mom for inbreding that Godly principle in my life. I hope you all were able to serve someone this Christmas. That's what makes the day His day. Now may we all do it throughout the year.

Sooo, it was my last summer Christmas. It's so funny to me that the Chileans think it is terrible to have snow or for it to be cold at Christmas time. They like to go to the beach, have BBQs Christmas Eve for their Christmas dinner, stay up until midnight (of Christmas Eve) to open gifts, etc. Really they celebrate Christmas the night of the 24th and don't even wait cor the 25th to arrive. Haha. The traditions here are very different than at home. I can't imagine living in a place with summery Christmas and they can't imagine it in winter. Haha.

Christmas Eve we ate with the Familia Muñoz. Pizza. :) What a funny Christmas dinner, but it was good. Then we watched and talked about El es la Dádiva. We talked about how the invitation and message of the video is to "discover" and "accept" the gift, Christ. We had just been reading in our studies in the morning of how powerful our prayers can be. I know our Heavenly Father wants to hear from us; He loves us. He wants us to have what He has and know what He knows. So He gives us the opportunity to talk with Him; at times, we really talk to Him and others we just sound like a person ordering pizza. If we want to learn spiritual truths and enjoy the Spirit more in our lives, prayer is essential. 

Late Christmas Eve (12am) we opened up some of the gifts. That's how the Chileans do it, so when in Chile... I was able to hand out the gifts from Patti Riggs to the 4 other Hermanas here in the house. They absolutely loved them and immediately started eating the candy. I think I heard: "I love Patti.", "Patti is my new best friend." and "THANKYOU Patti." at least 10 times. Haha. They loved the American candy! Thankyou so much!!! :) After we opened some gifts, we read The Living Christ together and talked about the meaning of Christmas. It was a wonderful moment together. Then we went to bed. Haha. Only to wake up in the morning, shower, study, stuff our faces with Hermana Grannis and Hermana Williams, and Skype with you guys. Then we went out to work in the evening and taught some great people. And that was Christmas! :)

Just for giggles: we contacted a sweet young lady last week who has some mental challenges, but is the happiest being I've ever seen. She talked about her friends and how happy she is almost the entire time. Then it came to explaining who we were. So we said, "Nosotras somos Mormonas." (we are Mormons) and she totally heard and understood, "Nosotras somos monjas." (we are nuns). Hahaha. It was quite a funny moment when we realized she thought we were nuns. :) 

Sick. Sick. Sick. I have been SICK! It's hanging on for dead life; I am too. No voice for days. Fevers. Strep throat. Sinus infection. Etc. I think I'm sicker than when I had Swine Flu. I started on antibiotics, received the most precious Priesthood Blessing ever from Elder Mamani and Elder Vasquez, and slowed down to rest a little. I'm glad I've got more time to heal and am not coming home today. That would be miserable! Blessings of extending. :)

I've had a lot of time to think recently about school and what I'm gonna do. But wait for it... I still haven't decided. :) I have been quite bent on not going back and thinking 'for what?'. Until, our "How to Go Home and be Independent workshop"... I came up with this... Why be content with the education that you have?! You're young. You could work full time and school part time. Or work part time and school part time. You don't have to go into debt for it. Go for it. You'll use that knowledge for the rest of your life. Always continue learning. You can do online classes if needed.... Soooo... I'm more open to the idea now. Still haven't made the decision yet, but at least I've come to the conclusion that it's a reasonable idea.

Luke 2:8-18. I noticed something this week as I was studying about the birth of the Savior. Read the scriptures. Focus on the shepherds.


8 And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night.

9 And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid.

10 And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.

11 For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.

12 And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.

13 And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying,

14 Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.

15 And it came to pass, as the angels were gone away from them into heaven, the shepherds said one to another, Let us now go even unto Bethlehem, and see this thing which is come to pass, which the Lord hath made known unto us.

16 And they came with haste, and found Mary, and Joseph, and the babe lying in a manger.

17 And when they had seen it, they made known abroad the saying which was told them concerning this child.

18 And all they that heard it wondered at those things which were told them by the shepherds.

The shepherds heard the angel, believed him, decided to act upon his words (unknowing the results), went and saw the baby Jesus, felt it was something to share, and went out and shared it. And because of all of that, they affected the lives of many others. I'd never seen before that they were shepherd missionaries! How cool is that!

Love you all! Go out and be missionaries! Make known abroad the saying which was told...concerning this (Christ) child!


HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!!! Make some goals for 2015. Write them down. =)

Love love love.
Brooklyn

78 Blog Pictures of the one and only Hermana Talbot



The whole entire mission!!!
picture of the mission. Cool huh?
President Wright, Hermana Wright, and me.
This was our Day of Honor at their house.
Talent Show at J.P. Alessandri!
Clarina and Miguel came. 
This dog followed us to church... waited 3 1/2 hours for us in the church parking lot...
and walked us home after (30 minute walk). We named him Joaquin.
FELIZ NAVIDAD!!!  Hermana Tingey, Hermana Talbot, and Hermana Cook
I got cards and a package this week! Thanks to Mom, Patti, Joy, and Dr. & Hna Johnson.
HAPPY HAPPY GIRL


78th Blog….. Calling all of the hooligans in Hooliganville

78th Blog of Hermana Talbot

Family... Dearest hooligans... Hi. :)

18 months in the mission!!!! One more to go for the record of 19 months! I spent this special day in the temple and at President's house. It can't get any better than that!


Alejandro had a break through with family history! First time sitting down at the computer with the family history consultant, Solange, and he had a great time! He came to the computer not knowing who anyone was after his parents... and he left knowing his grandparents. :) Gotta love family history!

Story time: we got a reference from the office of a Juan Ignacio. He's 21 years old and is absolutely wonderful. We met him that same day and set up an appointment for 2 days later. Thursday came and we taught him in a park. We simply asked him, "For you, who is God?". I cannot even express what I felt as he told us his feelings about God, his Heavenly Father. He spoke of a father, someone who loves him and knows him. He spoke of someone who is interested in his life and who is there to help in every way. I sat there astounded. I felt the Spirit as he was talking. My eyes filled with tears and I felt edified by my investigator's testimony. I never realized how much these people can and are changing me. My testimony is much stronger. I know, just as Juan Ignacio knows, that Heavenly Father loves us all more than we can comprehend. Bad news... he's moving... BUMMER.

I had my Temple Day and Day of Honor with President and Hermana Wright this past Thursday!! I still can't believe that I'm coming home. I feel bipolar when it comes to my feelings, but I think I'll normal out soon. Haha. So this change there are almost 40 of us who are going home. It's one of the largest groups to leave the mission at one time. In fact, for all of us to have our Day of Honor, they had to split up the Elders and the Hermanas because it isn't possible to feed us all at one time. So all of us Hermanas had our own special day with the Wrights. Cool!! It was better off that way because we didn't have to act like ladies (ex: playing basketballs in dresses haha). It was a wonderful day. I have many memories to write in my journal. It was a great goodbye, even though I'm not leaving with the group on the 29th of December. I've got a little more time to play. :)

Funny fact: Hermana Tingey and Hermana Cook have been struggling with names recently. We're not sure why, but they've been calling each other Hermana Talbot!!! Bahahahahahah. It's so funny to hear them talking and then hear the exasperation after they say my name. Pure shock and shame. Bahahahaha.

Second story time: okay, 2 less actives. We always pass for them. Always. They're never home or never have time. They can be very short tempered, but also very loving people. I have entered their house maybe 4 times since I've been in this sector (almost 10 months of passing by for them) and 2 of those times were while Clarina was working inside her house and 2 others to offer service. However, POR FIN, we got into the house this past week and we had a bomb of a lesson (as Hermana Cook called it). I talked a lot. Ooppss. But I know the spirit was present and there were very inspired moments as I poured my heart out to them and them to me. Also, they made me feel wonderful for 2 reasons. (1) They said I was the first missionary who had come into their home of the which they felt I was truly interested and worried about their spiritual lives. [Side note: I was very bold with them and told them how it was... they must have liked it.] Anyway, (2) as we were leaving Miguel said to me that he was happy that Clarina got was she wanted and accomplished a desire. Her desire was for me to come back to their home before Christmas so the two of us could talk. And lo and behold, they came to church for the first time in about 5 years. How amazing is that! Those are the little breakthroughs that make this all worth it. All people can change!!

Speaking of changes. In South America, we're changing the way we count lessons and people in our key indicatores! For the first time here in the mission, President called a meeting of the entire mission to let us know about these changes. I am so excited to see the photos! So starting 2015, we will not be counting lessons with members, recent converts, or less actives, references, and progressing investigators. Wow! What a change! However, I am excited because now our focus will change. We will look more toward ordinances and those who are progressing. Also we are starting to report the total assistance in the chapel every Sunday. The area presidency of South America are crackin' down! Yyyahhhoooo!


It's the little things: we were in the metro contacting people as we were traveling to a reunion and all the sudden I saw something that lifted my spirits. This teenager, a very tall and white looking Chilean at that, pulled out his cellphone. I thought nothing of it, until I saw Moroni sounding his trump at the top left corner. He started reading and had a thoughtful look on his face. I immediately reached over 5 people and tapped him on the shoulder. I asked him, yelling at that, "Are you a member?" He said, "Yes." with a big grin on his face. I responded, "I have an assignment for you to do." and gave him 3 'El es la Dádiva' (#heisthegift) cards to hand out before Christmas. He accepted the challenge and we got off of the metro. It warmed my heart to know that a youth in the church took his precious time in the crowded metro to read about the gospel and strenghten his testimony in Jesus Christ. Every person, young and old, should aspire to do just the same.

Have courage, stand for truth, testify of Christ, strengthen your testimony... I'll do the same. That's a promise. :)


FELIZ NAVIDAD!!!! MERRY CHRISTMAS!!!! May we remember the reason we celebrate Christmas. It's not our birthdays. It's the birth of our Savior, Jesus Christ. Had He never been born... had He never offered Himself and completed His mission, the Atonement, there would be no hope for any of us. Let us celebrate Him, forget ourselves, and serve those around us.

Love,
Hermana Talbot

P.S. We had a missionary ward activity... We Hermanas did synchronized swimming. It was sooo much fun. Too bad I can't send the video. :P



P.P.S. Last photo... it was of today. We had a Christmas Devotional with President Wright, Hermana Wright, and their oldest son, Jonathan. We ran into a whole bunch of people... one of them being Hermana Allred! Kodak moment. =)

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

77th Blog addition Pictures pictures pictures….














77th Blog …. time is drawing near ….. 5 more yipppppeeeee



Family!!!

Last Sunday was fast and testimony meeting. :) There's this cute grandpa, Hermano Barrera, in our sector. Hey, I think I've sent a picture of him before. The one when we're making empanadas. Anyway. So he's just this cute, quiet grandpa who rarely ever gets up to the pulpit. Well, this past Sunday he totally did. And he sang in MAPUCHE!! It was the coolest thing ever, even if it caught me off guard. He was talking about how they used to translate the hymns into Mapuche a long time ago in order to sing them. It was so cute and he was so shy about it. I might not understand diddly squat of Mapuche, but it was equally fun!

Family, let's have a Skype date okay?!? Christmas Day? I've still got to figure out who's house we're going to in order to give you a time, but give me some ideas of when you'll be available. Dad and bros: I'm 4 hours later than you. Mom and Joy: I'm 2 hours later than you.

Martin went to mutual this week. He's just such an amazing kid. And he totally went on his birthday cause he didn't have anything else better to do. The crazy butt, though, is waiting to live the Word of Wisdom until the end of this week so he can party with his friends for one last time. He's a pretty amazing 15 year old kid. We taught him the entire Plan of Salvation in like 30 minutes and then asked him to teach us the plan. He totally did it. Perfectly. I'm excited to see him progress and to see his life change. He was just made to be a missionary.

I just had to write this down. Our zone leader, Elder Mamani, was in our district class. We talked about attributes of Christ and recent experiences we have had. He stated that he admires all of us English speaking missionaries for our courage to learn and speak a different language. I had never heard that from a Latino before and it made me realize how much courage that actually takes to speak Spanish. I admire Hermana Cook and Hermana Tingey for their constant effort to conquer this language! They're champs. I am grateful for my Spanish and the blessing I have been given to learn quickly.

Zone conferences are the bomb!! I absolutely love learning about the gospel. My mind, at times, just explodes in amazement of the plan God has for us. He really does love us and wants us to live with Him again. I have learned so much about the gospel, here on the mission, and cannot wait to learn more when I have Internet access. :) Also, Hermana Cook sang at the conference a BEAUTIFUL song, "More Like Thee" and accompanied her. Hermana Wright asked us to sing a few weeks ago and I thought the song was really slow and boring... until we got practicing it and I learned how spiritually lifting it was. We also learned that so far in December, as of the 10th, there have been 14 baptisms. According to President Wright, this is the highest number so far at the beginning of a month. We are expecting to give our Savior a huge, return to sender gift of love this year. #heisthegift

We hit a record this past week of how many sick calls I received during the night. 12am. 3am. I have been so tired. I wake up in the morning to the alarm and feel more tired than I did when I went to bed the night before. One morning, I was filling up my water bottle and needed to dump out the old water from my bottle. I literally went to the window of our 14 story apartment to dump it out. Can you say loca?

Ramon. The 30 year old Chilean "wow kid". He's a little odd, not gonna lie. He wears a black, leather, rain hat with black James Bond sunglasses and his shirt was on inside out. An honest description. Haha. So every time we would say something he'd say, "wow...". Example: Us - "We have a message about Jesus Christ to share with you." Him - "wow, I'm so interested in that." Us - "We'd love to pass by your house tomorrow and teach you more." Him - "wow, at what time?". Hahahahahaha. Not even joking. :)

12-13-14. Totally happened this week. That's the last run of numbers for a while... just so you all know. It's very important information right there.}


We went to Aguas de Ramon again! I think it's a yearly adventure. This time though, it was just us three. Until... we ran into this 21 year old girl from Brazil hiking by herself... she was lost and had lost her friend on the trail (scary!). She spoke very good English and it was fun to talk to her in Spanish, her to talk back in Portugues and to undertsand it. YES! Anyway, she hiked with us to the waterfall and back to camp. We found her friend back at camp after we got down (thank goodness). It was record time that we got up there, sat at the waterfall, and got back to camp. It's supposed to take 2-4 hours. We got up there in like an hour. GOOD WORKOUT RIGHT THERE. I honestly think I am sleeping at the computer as I am typing. It's the first time we've sat and relaxed all day long. But let me say, I was wonderful to get outdoors and smell the wonderful smoggy air of Santiago. =)


News break: Alejandro PASSED THE SACRAMENT for the first time yesterday!! He was sooo happy and content. After it was over, he said he loved it and that it was "quite easy". Hahaha. We are working with him tomorrow with his Family History so we can get him to the temple for baptisms before I come home. That's the goal!

President Benson said that one of the greatest things about Christmastime is that it increases our sensitivity to things of God: “It causes us to contemplate our relationship with our Father and the degree of devotion we have for God. “It prompts us to be more tolerant and giving, more conscious of others, more generous and genuine, more filled with hope and charity and love—all Christlike attributes. No wonder the spirit of Christmas touches the hearts of people the world over. … For at least a time, increased attention and devotion are turned toward our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.” This Christmas, as the spirit of the season permeates our hearts, let us do something that expresses our feelings in an outward way, showing that we understand that the babe born in Bethlehem is the real Redeemer.


President Howard W. Hunter (1907–95) gave some practical advice that helps us do that:
“This Christmas, mend a quarrel. Seek out a forgotten friend. Dismiss suspicion and replace it with trust. Write a letter. Give a soft answer. Encourage youth. Manifest your loyalty in word and deed. Keep a promise. Forgo a grudge. Forgive an enemy. Apologize. Try to understand. Examine your demands on others. Think first of someone else. Be kind. Be gentle. Laugh a little more. Express your gratitude. Welcome a stranger. Gladden the heart of a child. Take pleasure in the beauty and wonder of the earth. Speak your love and then speak it again.”


Without Christ, there would be no Christmas. Without Christ, there can be no fulness of joy. Without His birth and His Atonement, we would have no Intercessor, no Advocate with the Father, and no Mediator who makes it possible for us to return to the presence of our loving Heavenly Father and live together as eternal families.

May we all remember who we are and to help others along the way.


Love,
Brooklyn

Friday, December 12, 2014

76th Pearls of Wisdom from MY Brooklyn… Don't forget about christmas.mormon.org. =)

En la Plaza de Armas... again... for my carnet... They are restoring a building there and have this amazing tarp over it. Isn't that cool!?
Hey y'all,

We were talking about service today and I found this amazing quote. It made me think a ton and want to work harder at being a more serving person. "Throughout our lives all of us depend on others for help. When we were infants, our parents fed, clothed, and cared for us. Without this care we would have died. When we grew up, other people taught us skills and attitudes. Many of us have needed nursing care during illness or money in a financial crisis. Some of us ask God to bless suffering people and then do nothing for them. We must remember that God works through us." May we all look around us, focus on someone else, and be the hands God needs us to be.

Don't forget about christmas.mormon.org. =)

Martin is amazing. He legit is a 25 year old in a 14 year old body. We saw him twice this week. He started reading The Book of Mormon and has already gone to church. I'm not sure why he likes to learn from us. He does get a kick out of Hermana Tingey and Hermana Cook, though. Anyway, he's progressing well and I'm excited to see where we end up with him next week. I am trying to think up some good ideas for how to get his Dad involved in our lessons. :) In one of our lessons, he was getting ready to head out with one of his 18 year old friends. We showed up and he told his friend that they were both going to listen to us first. How amazing is that? As a 14 year old, I definitely would have had fear or felt embarrassed to say to my friend "hey, we're gonna listen to 3 crazy Gringas talk about God for 40 minutes and then we can go celebrate your birthday." Especially because his friend doesn't even believe in God. WOW. Also, he said something super cute this past week. I asked him, "Martin, why do you listen to our message?" and he said, "Because I want to know the truth.". I then responded, "And have you found it?" and he stated with a smile, "I believe I have.". He has sent a baptismal date for 21 December 2014 and is very excited. Now we just have to make sure he's ready. Pray hard!!

 Marcela!!! She has a baptismal date and she's a drinker, smoker, etc... She's going to do all she can to stop doing those things to her body. She knows it's bad, but is hard core addicted. For the 3rd time here in the mission, I carried cigarettes in my bag for the day.

Marcela. Dunno if Ive told you guys about her. She's an investigator that I've been trying to find for months. I met her with Hermana Tax and she just had this feeling about her that she'd be open to our message. But then she was never at her brother's house and we didn't know where he lived. Well a few weeks ago she was sitting outside of her house and we walked by. It was really funny to pass her and think 'hey I know her' and to finally realize who she was and be so happy to have found her again. Anyway, so we've been teaching her now and we invited her to be baptized after I shared my testimony and experience at my baptism as an 8 year old. She also accepted the date of the 21 December 2014 and stated she wanted to feel the same way I felt when I was baptized. I am soooo excited for her. We've got a lot to teach her still, but she's excited, scared, dedicated to learn, and wants to receive her answer from Heavenly Father about or message. Pray for her please. What an amazing CHRISTmas present that would be!!

Coolest Contact Ever: Anthony, the Peruvian. Where: In the Immigration office of Chile with 200 other people. Okay. So Anthony is sitting on the floor reading a book. I think in my head 'hey I've got a better book for you to read (the Book of Mormon of course)'. But didnt say anything because he was 4 people down. Then, lo and behold, Hermana Tingey starts talking to him. Literally we didn't stop talking until we left the immigration office... about 4 hours later. He's just a cool guy, what else is there to say. :) Wish you all could meet him. Mom, you're gonna get a FaceBook request from him. Haha. The one and only contact I've ever had that I've added on FaceBook during the contact. He is Mormon material and extremely nice. He's got family who are members of the Church and has read the Book of Mormon. Don't you worry. We sent his contact information on and I'm excited to see what becomes of him. :)

Crazy Chilean Weather. Ugh! One day: 95 degrees ... we walk around all day and are sweating to death ... we teach 6 lessons (booya!). Next day: Sunny and hot in the immigration office and the PDI (police peeps) ... we sweat and stand all day waiting. Next day: Colder than cold ... we're back to wearing tights and thermal shirts. WHAT KIND OF WEATHER IS THIS?!?!? (The more and more time I think about coming to the bitterness of Maine, the more I realize... I am going to freeze to death!)

I've got a new goal until the end of the mission. Well I've got lots of goals, but one that I want to complete. Everyday I'm going to find the weirdest word to use in our contacts. Fork. Toaster. Snail. Dirt. Etc. Give me some ideas!!

We all have insecure moments right? Personality, outside appearance, embarrassing moments, etc... Ya well, I think we all forget how grateful we should be of who we are AND stop comparing ourselves to others. We had to go 2 days in a row to finish my carnet and on the way home there was a man in the metro rapping for money. He was a severe burn victim with thick scar tissue on his entire face. He lacked eyebrows, had sunken eyes, thickly scared lips, etc. I learned something only by looking at him and imagining his pain. All of us have a lack of confidence and love for ourselves and it's completely uncalled for. We are God's children; we have a divine potential. What are we doing beating up on ourselves?

Let's all realize our potential this week! Posi+ivity goes a long ways.

Love you all.

Brooklyn



P.S. Hermana Berthelson says hi to everyone... little did she know it was going to go on the blog. Haha.

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

75 B-Day www.christmas.mormon.org to watch a wonderful Christmas video

Hey family and friends!!!
Sister and President Riggs strike again with a Thanksgiving package!!!
Thanksgiving surprises!! Thanks Patti and Mike! Isn't that tree adorable?

This week was much better, even though we did send someone to the hospital (who came back with a combination of weird diagnoses which don't make sense). The nursing calls were calmer, crazy as usual (elbow rashes, nasty stomach virus with missionaries dropping like flies, an elder who complains about falling asleep during studies in the AM hahaha, pink eye, etc), but overall calmer...as was our missionary schedule. We did have meetings, nursing and missionary; however, we worked hard. Hermana Cook and Hermana Tingey are great. They're learning tons!! I have seen serious leaps of growth in both of them. Training really does make you put your best foot forward. I wish I would have trained a long time ago. I have discovered so many new things in the gospel and as a missionary. I guess I've got a life-time of growing to do. Thank goodness for that.


Santa Lucia! Hermana Cook's 1st empanada. Chicken and Cheese

Weird Chilean fact: all of them have 2 scars the sizes of dimes (or larger) on their upper arms. I finally asked them what vaccine they were from and they said a combination of hepatitis and measles. Some of them say they're vaccine was placed wrong, had balls of infection and huge scars after, and had them surgically removed (only to be left with a dime size scar anyway). I still do not understand what vaccine they are receiving. I'm grateful I don't have scars on my arms, just sayin.

I totally had a Marilyn Monroe moment! Let's just say I couldn't think about it much because I was turning red. Anyway, so we're walking by the hospital and there's this vent in the ground... I didn't realize that cold air was coming out... until I see my skirt at eye level. No worries no one noticed...or at least before I screamed they didn't. Oooppppssss.


Story time... well 2 cool stories... You know, I'm learning that everyday is completely different than another. One day is extremely sad and you cry in the lesson because your soul hurts from someone rejecting this message of hope, love, joy, etc; then the next day, after enduring to the end, talking to everyone, and praying with lots of faith, you run into amazing people who really have been prepared. So here's a few of them:


With Martin... He's amazing

(1) Martin - 14 years old - grew up in the Evangelical church - has never wanted to be baptized - believes in God and Christ - lives with his dad and grandmother - on the shy, but willing side - very sober and intelligent - point blank, a mystery to me. We contacted his grandmother a few weeks ago. She didn't want much, but I had a feeling when we were talking with her that her husband had recently passed away. So I asked her and yes indeed he had passed away a few months earlier. We talked for a few minutes with her and she told us we could come back, but didn't know when. So we retuned this week to see her and Martin answered the door. She was not there, we started to leave, and I felt we needed to talk to Martin. So I asked him if I could give him something. He said of course and we talked for a bit about God and prophets. I practically interrogated him with questions about religion and what he believes. He answered many of my questions, but still left me not completely understanding or satisfied with who he is or what he believes. Why did he never want to be baptized in the church he grew up in? Anyway, Hermana Cook taught him an object lesson about prophets and he told us to come back in 3 days. We definitely went back. Haha. Returning to his home we found him, his uncle, his aunt and her boyfriend. They invites us right in... we sat down... and taught them all about the restauration. AND Martin taught them the object lesson about prophets! In that moment, I saw him as a missionary... it was sooo amazing! I have not seen such interested people before in months. You could just see in their eyes that they were soaking it all in and wanted more. That's not to say they agreed with it all; however, they listened intently, gave us their direction for other missionaries to teach them, and have committed to read the Book of Mormon. How cool is that?!? Best part, Martin went to church with us yesterday! Talk about hitting him with a Mormon bang. Haha.

(2) There's a couple, Hector and Javiera, and their daughter, Anastasia (5), who live down the hall from us in our apartment building. He's from Uruguay and looks just like Chris Martin from Coldplay (no joke); she's from Chile, speaks fluent English, and is adorable. I met him a long time ago (months ago) in the elevator and always felt I needed to talk to them. But the moment never came. I don't know if it didn't come for a reason or if I lacked in faith. However, finally, I kept thinking about them the other day and said okay I'm gonna just go knock on their door. And we did. THEY'RE AMAZING. :) He grew up in the church; he's been an inactive member for all of his life. His parents are temple workers and family history gooroos in Uruguay. He remembers a lot of the teachings of the church; not that he agrees with them all though. They are legit, amazing people. When we knocked on their door, she greeted us like we were long, lost friends who hadn't visited in 20 years; she was so excited. They told us they were drinking and smoking (Friday night) but we were more than welcome to say and they would listen. I felt we needed to stay, so we sat out on their balcony and we talked for a few minutes. It made me feel so grateful for all of my non-member friends, their respect for my hatred of alcohol, and the acceptance I have learned from them. I honestly don't know if I would had say there if I hadn't had the Maine experience and learned to appreciate all types of people outside of the Utah bubble. Anyway, we have an appointment with them too. I feel we have found some amazing people to teach and amazing, new friends. :)

It rained Saturday. A lot. Bad part: I sent my rain boots back to the office 2 weeks ago. Opps. Let's just say, I didn't know what it was like to swim in your own shoes... but now I do. My feet by the end of the day were itching. I hope I don't get some kind of weird fungus or growth. Gross. Pray for my feet. Hahaha.


I tried to send you all legit, amazing, Christmas packages.... the USA will not accept clothes from Chile. How stupid is that?!?! So sorry, but you'll all have to wait till I can get home and send them off. Brandon says to just send them to Canada and then have them shipped to the US.... hahahaha... I might think about it. For now, we'll just say my Christmas presents will be Skype calls! =) Not too long now!


EVERYONE!!! Use the new video of "christmas.mormon.org" and #heisthegift ... or in Spanish "navidad.mormon.org" and #elesladádiva. Let's go baptize, retain, and reactivate!! There's a no better time than now... it's HIS time... it's Christmas time.


Love,
Brooklyn


P.S. Mom and Brandon, I still go to bed every night thinking about what I'm gonna eat for breakfast. Haha.

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

74th B-Day 9 more B-Days Thank you Patti Riggs for the package

Package from Patti!!! Thanks so much!!!
We can't wait to do some of the activities for Thanksgiving and Christmas!


Hey family and friends!!

Last week I completed 17 months in the mission!!! Can you believe it!!? It's not long now and I'll be home... 2 more to go! Wow. I feel the mixed, bipolar emotions.

We had an Endure to the End reunion with President and Hermana Wright this last week. It hit me like a 10 ton rock that I'm leaving this soon. I feel like this has been an 18 month dream project and now I have to hand all my work off to someone else. Hermana Cook is great. She's gonna be an amazing mission nurse, but that doesn't make the pain of leaving it all behind go away. I realized that this past week and can't believe that soon this chapter of life in Chile will come to a close. I am forever grateful for my time here. I have learned more here than I think I ever will in such a short amount of time. This mission has changed me and my future in the most positive way you can think. I just can't imagine leaving behind so many missionary friends and my mission parents. January 19th is going to be an emotional day.
Picking up Hermana Cook! 

With President and Hermana Wright today


Anyway... Enduring to the End... Working Harder Than Ever Before... Forgetting Myself and Getting to Work Now....


HAPPY THANKSGIVING TO ALL!!!! We're probably going to eat beans, bread, and fried chicken... I'll let you know next week. Hahaha.

Remember the family I told you all about last week? The one that made the agreement of: doctrine of Christ for help making empanadas? Ya well, we had our Family Home Evening last Monday and our raw meat cutting session on Friday (it was quite interesting). Marcelo and Valeska with there 3 daughters, Victoria, Renata, and Laurita are wonderful people!!! They are just down to earth and kind people. They work hard for what they have, are very respectful and accepting, and are extremely easy to love. For me, it was love at first sight. I saw a hope in them that I haven't seen in anyone in a long time. I saw a desire to learn even if there was apprehension. Marcelo knows God exists, but denies it. Valeska was baptized into the church at 8 years old, but soon after left. The daughters are adorable, ready to learn, and have deep doctrine questions. In the Family Home Evening, as we were teaching them, I realized how amazing it is when the Spirit is present in a home. I realized the gospel's teachings are really meant for the family unit to help us all have the same goals with God. I realized how many teachings about God I have always taken for granted. I realized the blessing of growing up in this church and how it has changed my life. I am so grateful for a Heavenly Father, a resurrected and glorified God with a body of flesh and bones, His Son Jesus Christ, who's Atonement answers all of my life's questions, and the Holy Ghost, who confirms to me on a daily basis the truths of God. I am grateful for the goal to have an eternal family and to base such family on the teachings of Christ and His servants. I know, in this crazy world, there is an urgent need for guidance and direction. How grateful I am for olden and modern day, living prophets who help warn, guide, protect, and direct my life after the teachings of Christ. There is a true prophet and 12 apostles on the earth today! How amazing is that!!! I can't imagine any other counsel that would be better than theirs, for I know, when they speak, it is as if from the mouth of Christ. This is His restored church, afterall, with the same organization and power as it did when He established it with His 12 apostles. Of this I know....and what a glorious news it is, for I have seen it change lives! I hope it does the same for this family.

Let me tell you what... It's been a stressFUL week with nursing calls. Particularly one day... The day that Hermana Cook got here. Lucky me! Good thing Hermana Cook and Hermana Tingey are amazing and calm mannered people. Here's just some of the happenings: weird, unknown caused fevers of 104; appendicitis and surgery; possible seizures with 30 minute periods of unconsciousness (the scariest moment of my life so far); hospitalizations, etc... They say, when it rains it pours! :) I'm just waiting for it to rain blessings. Haha.

#triolifeornada. That would be us! Hermana Cook made it up when she wrote her parents. Haha. Isn't it cute? I love being here with these two. They're great. :)

We have had some fun, some stress, some lessons, some... of everything the past week. We've had sooo many reunions! From new people reunions to going home people reunions. I've never had so many meetings before. I don't mind it, but that means less time in the sector working. And we got people to see! :) I hope it calms down soon; although, we were able to have some legit lessons by the end of the week. Hermana Cook is pickin' it up fast and is just amazing. After some of the stress came down, we were able to really start getting to know one another. Good times. Stress honestly kills everyone and everything. I don't recommend it for anyone. Life is to be enjoyed.


I had my first couple's fight with Hermana Tingey haha. Our poor daughter just sat there and didn't say anything until it was all over. Then she said, "all I could think was: 'Mom and Dad are fighting'." hahaha. How terrible is that!? The poor thing. But nah, the contention was for like 30 minutes and then Hermana Tingey and I talked until 1am. Oooppppssss. But we got it all worked out. Communication is the key!!

I have had a life record the past 3 days of how many times a person can sneeze, cough, and blow their nose (fun Spanish fact: blow your nose is 'suena tu nariz' = sound your nose haha). Allergies have hit me hard and I have a cold as well. Miserable. Just miserable. But today I feel a little better. The day I felt the worst we had many successful lessons. Blessings!


Today we went to spend some time with Hermana Wright for a phone conference we needed to attend for a new insurance program the church is starting up for missionaries with Aetna. It was good fun! We had lunch with her and President as well; we were able to talk about many things which helped me as a missionary and as a nurse. I am to endure to the end... to work as hard as I can... to train well... to help invite others to Christ... and to move on with life once it's over.


There's a really neat initiative called "He is the Gift" that the church is starting for Christmas this year to help all remember the reason for the celebration. It will me on christmas.mormon.org. It starts the 25th of November. There are 4 dates in November which will be key to the launching of the website, video, and youtube publications. (wow!) We will be using all of these to contact and share with people for the Christmas season. We watched a preview of the video today with President and Hermana Wright... it gave me goosebumps. We also got 2 emails this week from Elder Evans (70) and the Salt Lake office letting us know how we can best use this initiative to help our investigators, contacts, less actives, and members. I AM EXCITED!! Technology is amazing. THE WORK MOVES FORWARD!

"And it came to pass that we did go up to battle against the (Chileans); and I, even I, in my old (missionary age), did go up to battle against the (Chileans). And it came to pass that we did go up in the strength of the Lord to battle." Book of Mormon. Mosiah 10:10. I am grateful for my Savior and the powers I can access through His Atonement. I have been strengthened and blessed here.

Search the scriptures for what it says about the powers of the Atonement (redeeming, healing, etc.). It has opened my eyes as to what my Savior actually has done for me.

Love you all.
Brooklyn

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

73rd Blog we are getting closer by the day to Brooklyn arriving home

Hey Family and Friends!

I hope you all are doing well. I'm going to try to find some stuff to write you all about. Haha. Nah, mission life sure is a happening life. It seems like the surprises never stop.




We talked to Esteban this week. I don't think I've ever told you about him before. He's a guy from a Evangelical/Christian church who we contacted a while back because he always makes copies for us. Anyway, he loves to talk about spiritual things and listens to pastors all the time as they come by to invite him to their church. So we got teaching him and as more time has gone on, I have seen a change in him. Before he was all up in arms about many things because he didn't believe it. It was as if he listened to find things to disagree with. I can't even tell you how many times we talked about listening with an open mind and heart so he could take something away from our lessons. He also stated that he felt like he was betraying the Bible when he read the Book of Mormon. Then all the sudden His countenance started to change. He listens with all intentions of learning. He has stated on multiple occasions that what we are teaching him is what he's believed for years from reading the Bible; however, he couldn't find a church that believed the same. How cool is that?! I will not deny it; I felt a slight fear to ask him to be baptized due to his possible reaction. I was uncertain it the answer would be an explosion of Bible passages or if he would really think about it. However, the fear of Esteban was a lot less than my fear of him wanting to accept a baptismal date but I didn't want to ask. So I did. And his response was flabergasting! "but I dont know which of all of the churches are true! I've been baptized 2 times and I still don't know." ... However, he's been thinking about it a ton. Also, we invited him to church in Sunday and he said, "no" because he didn't feel ready. However, he was quickly to ask if we were going to keep coming. Haha. I find it utterly interesting that a man, who knows the Bible cover to cover and listens to so many religious pastors, finds it faith strengthening that two 20 year olds come and teach him about a restored gospel. I know this church is true. I can't convince anyone to believe as I do. I can't brain wash them either. I can, though, touch their hearts with God's truth and invite them to come unto Christ and follow his teachings.


We found a new, amazing family on Saturday. Well it's a family that we've been trying to get ahold of for months; and they finally let us in their house. We're excited to teach them! Also, we made a pact with them... if they welcome us into their home once a week for Family Home Evenings then we will do service and help them make and sell empanadas every week. Sounds like a good buy to me! :) They said yes.

Also, no worries about my skin. I have started using sunscreen everyday because I made a pact with Esteban. If he smokes 5 cigarettes less a day, I will wear sunscreen. And he's totally doing it. :) I'm not so sure why he's so worried about my skin, but I win!



Hermana Tingey and Hermana Villalba (divisions for the carnet run) had an appointment with Alejandro. He's reading the Book of Mormon more! It was such a challenge for him to take time to read before his baptism. He also told them that this restored gospel and the Book of Mormon has changed his life. He states if every person on the earth had and read a Book of Mormon, then wickedness would end. I am so grateful he is finding love for the scriptures.

Totally had some weird health moments this past week. I had an allergy attack and my eyes got all painful, puffy, itchy, and red. It was terrible. Brandon, I feel for ya. And also, I had one of those weird migraines and lost some of my sight in my L eye for an hour or so. But no worries. I'm okay now. :)

Hermana Tingey moment: she asked me one day why I was so excited. And I said I didn't know and asked how she knew I was excited. She responded "because when you're excited you wiggle your legs when your sitting and do a side to side shuffle dance when your standing." How embarrassing is that?!?!? I'm like a little kid who can't control her emotions. Haha.


Hermana Talbot moment (written by Hermana Tingey to her family haha): "The other day Hermana Talbot and I were talking about who would be the champions of arm wrestling tournaments. And Hna Talbot kept saying champignon which means mushroom. So who would be the mushroom of arm wrestling. I laughed for like a long time." ---- I totally said "chamignon" on purpose. Hahaha.

I went with Hermana Berthelson to the center of Santiago (Plaza de Armas) to extend my Chilean visa. It is so beautiful there even though we only had a few minutes to look at the buildings. I am slightly worried about my visa with the extra extension that I made into January. However, the office has it under control. For now, I am legal until the middle of December. Then I will go through the process again for January. Can you imagine getting to the airport and them being like, "nope, you can't leave Chile cause you're here illegally!"??? Panic moment. Hahaha. But that's not going to happen cause Hermana Mayer in the office is on top of it now that I've told her I extended. ;)



Here's the new address. It's not really new. It's just reorganized. Haha.
6824 Cristobal Colon
Las Condes, Santiago
Santiago Metropolitana
CHILE

Highlight of the week: We're having a 21 year old baby tomorrow!!!!! We're not really sure who is the Mom and who is the Dad or if there's 2 Moms or what... But either way, it totally happened... we're having a baby!!! And she's a BIG one at that! 0_0. She will be delivered to us at 9am tomorrow morning, November 18th, 2014. We have bought clothes and baby food and a crib and all that jazz. We are sooo excited!!


Funny story: so President usually calls Friday night or Saturday morning to tell us about changes. We waited all night for his call. (We knew we were going to have changes but didn't know if Hermana Tingey was staying or going.)... Anyway, the call never came. Then we waited all morning. And we thought he wasn't going to call. Until my phone rang and it was Hermana Wright... We thought "how weird". But it was so cute, she says, "I have a surprise for you this morning..... You have changes and your going to train!". Hahahaha. I said, "Really? I can't believe it." Hahaha. So we ended the call and THEN we realized that President had called 30 minutes earlier and we were the ones who didn't answer. Hahaha. Oooppps. We are excited to receive her tomorrow!!!

I hope you all have a wonderful week and that you don't ever write me to tell me your having a 21 year old baby. Seriously. It's kinda creepy.

Love.
Hermana Talbot


P.S. Do you realize how close we are to me coming home?

Saturday, November 15, 2014

72nd Blog of someone named Brooklyn….


Hello to all you Gringos.

I had a slight panic attack last Monday. I didn't get time to tell you all about it. So I'm at the internet and I get a text message that Hermana Wright was trying to call me. So I call her back and she says to me that there's a new update in church policy about missionaries going home. If a missionary has been booked their returning flight ticket and there happens to be a need to change that flight, it is only changeable with Quorum of the 12 Apostles' authorization. Wow!! So Hermana Wright was calling very concerned that we weren't going to be able to get me home January 19th because my ticket got booked months ago for December and wanted to let me know they were looking into it... Phew.... I then told her that I had received my ticked in my email this past week for January 19th and to not be worried about it because I had kept Elder Sheffield (who books tickets) updated on the wishy-washiness so he would not book my ticket. We both had a very grateful moment that my ticket had never gotten booked before we knew what date I needed to come home... Otherwise, it would all be up in the air again.... Such drama my life holds! (and I've never even been a dramatic person!)



Ohhh hilarious story: Happened last Sunday. So the Bishop's 4th son, Thomas, (turned 2 this past week) is always up on the stand, even though the Bishop hates it and his wife tries to keep his attention. It's a long lost battle really; but hilaious for everyone else. Because he will be coming up to the stand and look at his dad. His dad will give him "the eye" or shake his head... but to no avail. He climbs up anyway. So this past week he comes up to the front and has this HUGE plastic dinosaur, which inevitably talks as well. Haha. So he goes around roaring and clomping during fast and testimony meeting. It was quite entertaining. Hahaha.


I LOVE BEING A MISSIONARY!!!! I have seriously found a love for it these past few weeks and am so grateful to be here. Maybe my stress is going down a little. Hahaha.

Here in Chile, I think I've mentioned this before, September 11th is a dangerous day here in Santiago. Well in some parts. So we made a connection this past week... September 11th forever ago was a day when there was a revolt and there was a lot of young people killed. And because that generation was killed, that's why there are a TON of old people and little kids. Literally, it is so hard to find a young adult here in our sector. But that's why!



Hermana Wright called me this past week and told me she wanted me to go see Hermana Cook, the new mission nurse that comes to me next week. She said that Hermana Cook was feeling nervous and a little in the dark, so she suggested we go see her to give her a little heads up. Well, I thought that was a great idea, but not as a teaching basis... more like a friend basis. Soo I met her on Thursday. We went to the CCM and had lunch with her and her companion. It was wonderful. On the outside, she's very calm, cool, and collected. I told Hermana Tingey that she's going to have to grow a thick skin here with the missionaries and the Chileans. We are very excited to receive her in one week. I still can't believe that I'm going to train someone to take over my responsibility as nurse and also as a missionary with Hermana Tingey. Isn't that crazy? I'm gonna have a daughter (as they say in the mission)!!!

Remember when I ate pavement at college right before finals and had to have stitches in my upper lip and everything? Ya well, I almost ate pavement again. But this time not at the hands of Silas pushing me, but at the hands of Hermana Tingey pushing me in a wheelchair. So we're returning a wheelchair back to Dr. Johnson and it looked terribly stupid for us two to just be pushing this wheelchair down a busy street, so she tells me to get in. I'm thinking, yes, this ole body is gonna get a break. So I get in the wheelchair and just kept my feet up (I did not put them on the footrests) and thankgoodness for that because we come to a curb and BOOM I go flying forward in the chair. Luckily, I catch myself with desperation; Hermana Tingey and I start laughing after the shock disappears. Only to find there's a garbage guy who watched it all and is also hysterically laughing. Hahaha. We laughed for about 2 minutes, right after I got out of the wheelchair and walked (feeling stupid as we walked down the street with an empty wheelchair was the better option after all).



We have met lots of great people recently. We are hoping all of the contacting and knocking on doors will pay off. One family is Cristian, his wife, and 2 kids. We always passed by Cristian because he owns a little store and was always outside. He got our attention though because he always said hello to us with a smile. So one day we both said to each other, "we need to go talk to that nice guy with the little store". And we did just that. Only to find his 2 sons running the store. We talked for a while and his oldest son, Diego, told us that he had been to the Mormon church a few times and liked it. Then we stopped by the next day and talked to Cristian and he told us his mom had just passed away 3 months earlier and how much it still hurts. He actually cried and believe me he is a macho guy so we knew it hurt to talk about it. Anyway we testified of the Plan or Salvation and the Book of Mormon, left them with a prayer, set up an appoitment for the next Monday, and off we went happier than ever. They are an amazing family!! So genuinely happy and humble. I hope they see the worth of our message. Oh ya....the best part is: it's a young family (practically a miracle in our sector).


Creepiest moment of the mission: okay, I don't even know why it creeped me out so badly, but we contacted this old guy outside of his house. He was sitting on a chair in front of his house and there was a gate between us. So we just talked to him for a second, then all the sudden in the window above his head, between the glass and the curtain, I saw a cell phone slowly come up with the camera side towards us, stay for 2 seconds, and go back down. I was creeped out more than ever in my life. I couldn't even speak. I have no idea why it scared me so much, but I was struck dumb. Isn't that the creepiest thing that people take pictures of us?!? I guess its a reason to put makeup on everyday. Haha. But seriously, that is so creepily weird!


We had a special conference today with Elder Russell M. Nelson from the Quorum of the 12 Apostles, his wife, Elder Viñas (70) and his wife, and also President and Hermana Wright. It was absolutely wonderful. I am going to miss the inspiration and Spirit one can feel in their presence as they encourage us to continue working with all heart, might, mind and strength in missionary work. I have been inspired more and more to continue on with the work of salvation after the mission and also for the last few months I have left. I thank God and my Savior that I have a testimony that there is a living, true prophet and that he has 12 apostles, just as our Savior did. I know this church is the same that existed when Christ was on the earth. Everyday that I testify of such, my heart swells with pride to be a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. =)


I have found another favorite scripture. It is what I wish for every member of the church... to welcome all with open arms (no matter their past, culture, weaknesses, or personality) and to establish the restored church of Jesus Christ. "Nevertheless, the people of the church did have great joy because of the conversion of the Lamanites, yea, because of the church of God, which had been established among them. And they did fellowship one with another, and did rejoice one with another, and did have great joy."(Helaman 6:3).

May we all be accepting and loving this week and forever, that we may accept the love the Savior has for ALL people.

Love. Love. Love.

Brooklyn


P.S. I don't know if I said this or not, but the address to the mission has changed a little. I will let you all know next week what it is.


P.P.S. Don't send Christmas packages! Save your money for when I get home... I want lots of presents and date nights. Hahaha. =)

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

71st Blog of the girl named Brooklyn



Happy Halloween
(we celebrate any holiday here, even if we think they're stupid in the USA)

Hhhheeeyyyy guys!!!

It was a good week. Quite an invigorating one, actually. Recently, my sprits have been down and my attitude a little "ah, oh who cares?". Not to the point that I wasn't working or didn't work as hard as I could; however, yes, to the point that I wasn't as excited as I should be to be a missionary and the mission nurse. I think the stress and tiredness started to cause an EMPTY in my spirits and body. However, I was able to get my spirits up on Thursday. I'm not sure what it was... maybe it was the divisions we had and talking with Hermana Berthelson about stress and unrealistic expectations of ourselves and those we're teaching... Anyways, I just came back to my sector and was so glad to be here. Since then, I am enjoying more fully the time I have here in Chile. People would die to have the same experiences I am having. Plus, the time is coming to a close... :(

Hermana Tingey time: we couldn't find mangos this past Monday at the grocery store and I was so upset. But Hermana Tingey says "it's okay we have apie". I have no idea what apie is; so I asked her what "apie" was and she says, "celery". It made me laugh so hard because she knew it was the wrong word, used it anyway, and was so calm about it. Hahahahaha. Celery = Apio.... I tell you what. I love knowing 2 languages. I need to find me some more Spanish speaking friends. :)

Fun Spanish/Chilean fact: potato bug = little dirt piggy (chanchito de tierra). Isn't that funny? :)


Terrifying fact: we got hit by a dust tornado here... we were sitting on a bench in a park and I could see this dust tornado coming towards us... so I warn Hermana Tingey and the inactive member that was sitting with us... they didn't move... neither did I, in fact. Haha. So we're sitting there and I'm thinking "ah no, it will go around us"... NOPE. It hit us straight in the faces. Hermana Tingey was laughing so hard that she had dirt all in her teeth after. HAHA. And we were pulling dirt, garbage, and weeds out of our hair for hours. =) I got hit by a tornado!!! Only in Chile.

Divisions with Hermana Todesco and Hermana Stokes

Convert moment: we had a lesson with Alejandro about the Priesthood this past week to prepare him to recieve the Priesthood yesterday. He made me so happy and yet so sad in that lesson. Happy because he stated that he is ready to become involved in the church and to serve the Lord in whatever capacity he can. Yes!! Sad because he told us that his family has started making fun of him and the church because he told them all he was baptized. Satan never rests and at times I get quite sick of it. He says that at times they will say things like, "so you got all your sins washed away huh?" and that even his mom (who he lives with) will yell at him through his door absurd comments about the church. Urgh! He is as firm as a rock, though. His faith and testimony will pull him through; however, all the same, it makes me want to chew some people up and spit them out due to their disrespect. Let us all be respectful and kind to one another. We are all God's children, brothers and sisters.

Happy Halloween! I feel like here in the mission I get more excited about stupid holidays because it means people are in their homes and it's a reason for us to celebrate. Anywho, for Halloween this year, I was Sleeping Beauty! Only thing was is that I had to change the story a little cause if I would have waited for my Prince to come to wake me up with a kiss, I would still be in my bed. :)

I have started reading once again a book called "Adjusting to Missionary Life". It's a book about preventing and coping with missionary life stress. I testify it is an inspired book! There's one part which hit me like a rock. It says, "You have a front row seat to the greatest miracle of all: the effect of Christ's Atonement on individuals and families. Practice focusing every day on blessings you are grateful for. Notice the Spirit's influence in your life....".

HAPPY BIRTHDAY HERMANITA ALLRED!

We had lunch with the Mamita and I got the world's best advice. She told us of her life, the struggles she faced, and the trials which were thrown at her. Her mother died when she was young; her Father was inattentive. She received no parental advice or love. Her bed was made of grain and they went hungry often. She and her sister used to chew and suck on reed like plants to kill the hunger. She left home at the age of 8 to go work with her young sister. She worked as servant in a house of a North American family. She was physically abused there. Eventually she moved to go work for another North American family and there she learned how to love and was treated kindly for the first time in her life. However, it didn't last long. He then married an alcoholic, unknowingly. She raised 6 kids alone. Then the missionaries came knocking on her door. They taught her the gospel; she accepted it to the wrath of her husband. She and her kids used to walk to the chapel on a rock filled road only to have to throw said rocks at her husband who was following behind in order to safely arrive at the chapel. Needless to say the story continues; however, I believe it is unnecessary to continue. Just this much makes me ponder my life and ask a few questions. Why have I never suffered like others have? Why was a born in the USA to a wonderful family who taught me correct life principles? Why do I think sometimes that my life is so difficult? I have learned so much here seeing the poverty that exists in Santiago (practically nonexistent). I decided this week: I have been given much, so I can learn to give more. Hermana Tingey and I have planned on going to poor places in the world to offer ourselves as helping hands and to give more Fast Offerings. I can live with so much less; there's proof of that all over the world. Hence, there's a lot more I can give.

Chilean money!
We just happened to have all of the bills and coins this week

Love you all! Take care. Mom has my return flight itinerary! Time's flying. January 19th is going to come so quickly.


Brooklyn

Monday, October 27, 2014

70th B-Day Post and finally for REAL a date and place of her return…. She's comin' home to MAINE!!!

Hhhheeellllloooooo!!

I forgot to tell you all.... 16 months down as of last week... 3 more to go!!!

A good fruit: Mauricio, the drunk, is no longer a drunk. He hasn't touched alcohol since that day with the rock. Yay! Also he's been working, saving his money, and putting it in the bank to ... wait for it... rent an apartment or room. (He currently sleeps in the emergency room at the hospital.) How amazing is that! All people, no matter your past, can change their future.

Last week was a stressful one from Monday to Wednesday. I think just the combination of making decisions of Maine vs Utah to all of the sick people calls fried me a little. However, after crying it out, THANKS HERMANA TINGEY, to talking it out and making a decision, I was able to forget myself and get to work. And then the week turned itself right around. I read a quote in True to the Faith that helped me too. It says, "The Savior invites you to give of yourself in the service of others. Your opportunities to do so are limitless. Each day, look for ways to gladden hearts, to say kind words, to perform labors for others that they cannot do for themselves, to share the gospel. Be receptive to the whisperings of the Spirit, prompting you to serve. You will find that the true key to happiness is to labor for the happiness of others."

Fun World Fact: fresh pomegranates are a pain to eat... sweet... but painstakingly slow.

Funny Hermana Tingey moment. So we're teaching one of our investigators who has a medical supply shop. Ya well he has all sorts of weird stuff. And one of such things was in a package and it says "baño fácil". Keep in mind the word baño has many meanings in Spanish (bath, bathroom, etc). So she looks at me and goes how would that make you go to the bathroom easier?! I busted a gut laughing. Literally was a laugh attack right in front of the investigator who had no idea what was going on. Later on I explained they were like baby wipes... like a quick, easy shower. It was a good laughing moment.

Just a quick note. Elder Sheffield in the office tried to book my ticket. However, he states there's a problem. The airline sent him back an email stating that they "have boycotted and are no longer sending planes to Maine". I don't even know what to do now. I asked him to try another airline and he says that he can't due to the church's contract with the airline. Ughhh!!! I don't know what to do now.

On a good note: Alejandro got baptized this past weekend!!! It has been quite the road trip that we've taken with him; however, despite it all, he decided to be baptized and start on this new journey. At the interview with Elder Silva we got talking with Hermana Filomena (the 81 year old, amazing, most loyal convert) and she told us one of her experiences. Hahaha. I can't even think about it without laughing inside. Anyway, the interview it went like this... imagine a 20 year old Gringo talking to this hilarious 81 year old, Chilean grandma.
Elder - "Do you drink alcohol?"
Filomena - "No. Never have. Never will."
Elder - "Do you drink tea or coffee?"
Filomena - "No. I gave that up."
Elder - "Do you smoke cigarettes?"
Filomena - "No, but I do smoke marijuana."
Bahahahahahahaha. She said the elder's face was like this.... 0_0. Hahahahahaha. The humor of grandmas. I hope I am like that when I get old.




Anywho. So Alejandro got baptized on Saturday!!!!!!! It was amazing to watch him make this covenant with our Heavenly Father. He will be a blessing to the ward, of that I am sure. When we taught him his last investigator lesson on Saturday, I had this distinct impression that he needed to invite his son, Abraham, to his baptism. (side note: Abraham is the reason Alejandro started believing in God and why he first talked to the missionaries...) So I had invited him to bring Abraham to his baptism many times before; however, he felt uncomfortable to do so because his x-wife isn't all that understanding with religion and doesn't really appreciate Alejandro. Anyway, the feeling that came over me to tell him to call his x-wife was so strong. So I very strongly recommended that he call her to ask for Abraham the next day. He doubted that he would be able to get a hold of her and that she would allow him to have Abraham for the day; but, called the same..... And he totally arrived on Saturday with Abraham smiling from ear to ear. Miracles!!! Also, it was a special experience for Hermana Tingey because she and Hermana Leishman were the ones who contacted him and his son in the street when she was in Las Condes. It was actually a mutual contact because Abraham wanted to talk to the "angles" as he called them. Then, the Hermanas sent the reference to us so we could start teaching Alejandro. Hermana Tax and I began teaching; however, changes came. And lo and behold, Hermana Tingey comes here to JP. So she was able to see from the beginning of contacting him, in a completely different area of Santiago, to teach him the end of the lessons and see him be baptized this past weekend. How awesome is that? Oh ya and at the baptism Elder Silva (district leader) and Elder Vasquez (zone leader) brought an investigator... and she received her answer thanks to Alejandro's testimony... and she's going to get baptized in December! Miracles!!!



I have to tell you all something that I find adorable in the mission. There are some Latino elders that do not call me Hermana Talbot; instead, they call me Enfermera Talbot. Isn't that adorable?! It makes me laugh every time. And then when the Gringos call me Sister Talbot (saying "bot" not "bit"), I immediately think of you Mom. Hahaha.

I totally wrote out my 10 year life plan. When I was on divisions with Hermana Benitez, she gave me a chart that was given to her last year which maps our your 10 year life plan. I totally did it. It's kind of funny to look at actually. When I'm gonna get married. When I'm gonna have kids. Etc. I guess we'll see what happens and how on I am with my guessing. :)

An amazing fruit: we did a scripture study with Juan and Flor... it was pretty amazing. We've been having a hard time with them to get them to see the value of the scriptures, especially the Book of Mormon. Until this past week. We did a study with them of the Plan of Salvation with the Bible and the Book of Mormon. And they transformed. I have never in my life seen such excitement (kid in a ice cream shop on a hot day excitement) here in the mission. They just soaked it all in and started teaching each other what they were reading. It was a great moment to see them find a little bit more love for the scriptures, just like I have here in Chile.

They say it hit 105.8F this past week here in our area. I don't know if I believe it. I just only doubt it by 5 degrees. It's been sooooooo hot. I don't remember it being this hot last "spring". We haven't even hit summer yet... oh bother.

Fun Hermana Tingey fact: she says the Chilean word "bakan" sounds like a crazy chicken talking. Hahahaha.

Fun service project: we spent 3 hours helping an inactive couple make baby clothes. This member makes legit store sold clothes. The material comes to her cut and she has to sew, cut, place buttons, iron, clean, etc. It's a LONG process and it doesn't help that she makes 100s of them in a day. Anyways, it was a fun experience. I finally enjoyed doing service!!! (no one around here ever accepts service...)

I gave 2 talks this week past week. One on baptism at the baptism (duh) and the other on Sunday at church. My topic for Sunday was an interesting one and a learning experience for me. It was about times of consecration, like the mission, and how to help those who are worthy to serve have the desire to do so. I always had the desire to be a missionary. I'm not really sure why. However, when I saw the privilege it was to share the gospel, I knew it was something I would enjoy and a time I would cherish. The blessings of our Heavenly Father are unbelievable, especially when we consecrate time to Him. I see lives change for the better and have the opportunity of being part of that. Even through the ups and downs, who wouldn't want to go on this adventure? :)

Love you all. Remember where true happiness lies.


Brooklyn


P.S. My flight has been booked to Maine. Elder Sheffield is just a hair losing liar. :) It was a good joke though. Big brat. I didn't believe him for a second. Cause he told me they booked my voyage on a boat. Hahaha. I said that was fun just as long as it was a cruise. :)