Monday, November 3, 2014

Prayer and Shania Twain

Well I don´t have a whole lot of time or a whole bunch to report on. Pictures still aren´t working, my comp says that the computers here are the worst she has ever used so maybe things will be better in other areas...in the long future. 

I have come to the realization that Shania Twain really is my favorite singer. I mean she has always been up there on my charts, but there was a time during my teenage years where I kind of just forgot about her. Also, it is so weird how one moment I can be really happy and loving life and then 5 minutes later really discouraged. I now know that mood swings are a real thing and have never experienced so many in my life! And during these times is when I realize that Shania Twain is my favorite and that her lyrics really just speak to me, because, "Man, I feel like a woman."

Me and my companion are doing work and having fun. I have been concentrating a lot on prayer lately. I remember when I was younger I thought that prayers were only said at night and before meals, and then one day me and mckell were doing something and she talked about how she prays all the time. (we were probably like 12 or 13) and I was like whoa, mckell, how many times do you pray in a day, and she acted like it was obvious and said "oh goodness like 20 to 30!" and I remember that I was completely blown away because I didn´t realize that we could pray whenever or about whatever. And since that time I have really tried to apply the gift or prayer more frequently in my life and I can honestly see so many blessings that have come from it.

Moroni 7 is my favorite chapter in the Book of Mormon, I was reading it in today and verse 26 says ..."Whatsoever thing ye shall ask the Father in my name, which is good, with faith believing that ye shall receive, behold, it shall be done unto you."

And scriptures like that actually appear a lot throughout the Book of Mormon. I have been praying so hard, and almost constantly, for so many different things lately and honestly, HONESTLY, my prayers have been answered. But we can´t just ask and not act. I strongly believe in the 50/50 rule. More like 100/100 I guess. But we have to do all that we can, show that we are trying to follow the Savior and do what he has asked, and then we will be able to recieves those blessings.

Prayer is real. It is a gift from God. Use it.

I also want to say just how grateful I am for all the love and support I have recieved while serving. I feel so blessed and the support means so much, I don´t have the words to express it.

I love you all so much! Thank you for all that you do for me!

xoxox

Hermana Blair

Tupungato!

Hola familia y amigas!
 
This last week seemed to fly by. I write down things during the week so I can remember what happened. When I read them it seems like it was so long ago. This last week I had my first kiss from a man. He isn´t a member and is the dad of our main investigator Ana Laura (15). We went over to her house for a lesson and I stuck my hand out for a handshake and he said "In Argentina, we kiss!" and then he grabbed my face and planted a big, scruffy kiss on my cheek. I wish I could have seen my own face, it was probably so funny. It took me by surprise. My hand was still outstretched and I kind of just stood there and dídn´t know how to react. And since then have had a couple more kisses from, lovely, nonmembers that aren´t expecting a handshake. Always scruffy and always awkward. But I am learning how to be a more loving person so that is a plus.
 
Ana Laura is awesome, she is our main investigator, she pretty much found us and is so enthusiastic about the gospel is crazy. We have a baptismal date set for her in a month and we are all pretty excited. She is 15, I guess she had a dream about something and it made her start investigating, she talked with the online missionaries and already has a testimony about everything and really is just such a sweet girl. She loves American things so she likes to talk to me about that.
 
I completed one month in the field a couple days ago. woo! crazy how time just keeps rolling. My spanish is improving little by little everyday so that has been good. But even when I feel like I am speaking my best, people still tell me they can´t understand me. So yeah that is fun too.
 
A lot of the young women in the ward have asked me if I have brothers. They are looking for a husband from the states. So look out Taylor, there are a lot of 13 year olds on your case.
 
Its funny how the food is starting to taste better. The candy that I didn´t think was all that special in the beginning, now i feel like it tastes like heaven. Everyday I am surprised by what I am able to scarf down when we are eating with the members. But at least it is becoming easier. However, there is one dessert that I absolutely HATE! its called anchi. Its ground corn, like powered corn, and lemons, mixed to the point that it is like applesauce, (looks like applesauce) and served hot. ughhh, it makes me want to cry and we always get served so much of it. maybe with time my tongue will just stop tasting things and it will be alright.
 
We had exchanges two days ago and I was with Hermana Keil who is also from Utah and only has one more month than me in Argentina. She came to my area and we tried our best to navigate the streets. I must say I am pretty proud of myself because we did a pretty good job. Also, she has the voice of an angel so we were able to knock some socks off with our opening hymn in each lesson. Haha, really though, it was just nice to hear a hymn sung in tune. We celebrated my one month by eating my favorite popcorn that I brought from home, and a small bag of sour patch watermelons, also brought those from home. It was a good day!
 
Yesterday it rained. The first time it has rained since I have been here. It seriously poured. I think that the rain here just collects itself in the heavens for months on end and then decides to randomly drain itself in five hours. I am thankful for umbrellas, must say. But I was really happy for the rain. We were trudging through puddles but I was able to picture just a little bit, what fall in the US might feel like right now. The only bad thing about the rain is that when it stops raining, the stench of everything that smelled bad before just gets amplified by ten. My sinus´s are now clear. woo!
 
Again, I can´t figure out the pictures. I realize that they are too big, but also these computers are weird and some are more faulty than others. I will try and figure it out but we never have time. NEXT WEEK! maybe I will get lucky.
 
I am doing great, loving life. My life is so strange. I laugh sometimes because really, I am here in Argentina, hanging out with a cute little peruvian, and we walk the streets and tell people about the true church on the earth today. I am sure people think we are crazy. but I am loving it!
 
Love you all and thank you for all of the love and support! Remember that we are all missionaries, no matter our age or calling.
 
Peace and Blessings. XOXOXO
 
Hermana Blair

Abbey Argentina

well, my life is crazy. that is what I think pretty much everday here. and of course I can´t upload pictures. something is wrong with my camera. I will figure it out soon! 

So today we went to a monestary. Granted I don´t understand what is going on about 80 percent of the time, today I really had no idea. The Elders set stuff up for every monday, and then us hermanas get invited! So we went to a monestary, a member picked us up and drove us there. We were all squished into this really old ford car. Like really old. And we were on this really rocky dirt road and I was just praying that his pieces wouldn´t start falling off his car. I don´t think anything did, I mean it kept running. 

So we get there and the "chapel?" is under construction. There is just this telephone sitting off to the side, we had to use it to call a monk. We call a monk, he came and gave us permission to walk around the grounds (I have never met a monk, he was really really sweet. And was totally rocking the socks and sandles, he pulled it off quite nicely) and then we just walked through some vineyards and then stayed entertained by trying to throw rocks into one of the Elders shoes. Yep. Weird. That is my life. It was fun though, hopefully I can send pictures next week.

Yesterday we had lunch at a members home, she lives pretty far away so we had to take a taxi. I really don´t think there are regulations to this taxi business. This guys just picked us up, we paid him money, and then he took us where we needed to go. Maybe I will become a taxi driver in Argentina after my mission, seems promising. Anyway.

So at this ladys house we ate cabbage, and tomatoes, dosed in oil. Mysterious meat, and bread. This lady joined the church about 20 years ago, but I don´t really understand. She thought it was the church of the Devil, but still wanted to be baptized. Yep. Then she went inactive, and now I think she realizes it is the true church but I can´t really tell. She let us dish up our own plate and I purposely only took like 2 small tomatoes. She asked me if I liked tomatoes, I said no, so then she took her spoon and put 4 more on my plate. Then she sat there and watched me eat every bite. Haha. Super weird.

I don´t think this letter should go on the blog because there isn´t anything spiritual, and it sounds like a dis to argentina. but ugh, I don´t know what else to write and my companion is just sitting here waiting for me to get off. I love you guys so much, thanks for all that you do! hopefully next weeks email will be bteter. I am just in a sad mood because my pictures arent working and I don´t have room left on my cards. I will figure it out. Love you all, have a great week!

Sunday, October 19, 2014

2 months gone

This week has been great, oh and SORRY that I didnt write yesterday. we had our interviews with the president, which were great, he is a lovely guy, but yeah, today is our pday.

We have been working a lot with the members here. We had lunch with the Singuri family. They have 4 kids that are incredibly crazy. The 8 year old boy always tries to kiss me, the girls always tell me my clothes are ugly and laugh at my spanish, and for some reason, they all love the food on MY plate, it must be better than theirs. haha, it is just always so crazy whenever we go over there. We helped set up for their sons birthday party and then we stayed for the first little part. They had a ton of family over, loud spanish music, and lots of bread. So I had a good time. But no joke, I was the tallest one there. Not even kidding. And there were probably 50 or so people. Everyone thinks I am really old because I am tall, also everyone gets very concerned about the welfare of my skin. I am always offered a spot in the shade and apparently the president is making all of the gringos buy sombreros, really just a hat big enough to shade our face and shoulders, so yeah thats huge, but that wont look weird at all......good thing it is the Spirit that converts.

I have been able to get to know my companion better as my spanish improves. We decided to tell eachother funny stories from our life. This one particular day I was sharing about the time I honestly thought I broke my bum because, first of all, the third platform at Lava Hot Springs is never a good idea. But better yet, dont go bareback horseback riding and ride your bike to Aggie Ice Cream twice within a one week period. Just tak my word for it. Anyway, so I tell her that, more story like obviously. And then she tells me about how she kissed a boy when she was 13, her little sister told her dad, so her dad sent her to the poorest part of Peru to live with her Aunt for three months. and I mean like poor poor. She rode a donkey everywhere and ate guinea pig as a delacasy. cant spell, sorry. anyway, ashley wasnt your first kiss at 13, I think your punishment is a little long overdue.

Anyway, so my companion is a boss. love her.

I cant believe that halloween is coming up. it is most definitely spring here. feels just like May.

I found my favorite scripture. for a while it was my favorite quote, then I realized while reading the scriptures, that it is actually a scripture. Dad, you said it to me right after I was awarded my scholarship to Utah State. I remember you didnt say congrats or anything. You just looked at me and said "where much is given much is required". That really pushed me to work hard in school. Now is has a whole new meaning to me. Luke12:48 says "...for unto whomsoever much is given, of him shall much be required: and to whom men have committed much, him will they ask the more."

I have been struggling lately to understand why in the world I have been SO BLESSED in my life. There are people here that have NOTHING. Dirt floors, if lucky, concrete, and they are always so happy. So I wonder why was I placed into a wonderful family, in the United States in this day and this specific time. And I realized it doesnt matter. "Because I have been given much I too must give". At the last day The Savior will look back on my efforts to serve and what I did for others. I aspire to work HARD this next 16 months and I am everday grateful for the love and support that I get from family and friends. THANK YOU. Love you all and pray for you everyday.


XOXOXO

Hermana Blair

Abbey in Argentina

Heavens to betsy, I cannot handle the computers here. Sorry, this email is going to be so weird. Not all of the pictures would send, so here is one of me and Hermana Matheson.
 


Holllla Mi Amigos y Mi Familia!
 
First off, I want to say thank you for all of the love and support from everyone. I am doing great here in Argentina and I know that your prayers are working. I always enjoy the emails and letters. THANK YOU SO MUCH.
 
I never know where to begin. I guess I didn´t say who my comp was in my last email? Her name is Hermana Vargas, she is from Lima, Peru, she is almost 23 three, and is the sweetest nicest person ever. Wait a second, I did say that last week, I remember. Anyway, I am her last companion, she must have needed to learn about patience or something because I sure am giving her a run for her money with this whole lack of spanish thing (I try every moment of every day to work on the language. Dont worry)
 
I have no idea how to use any of the technology here so sorry if I don´t get to your emails this week, and sorry that I can´t send a lot of pictures.
 
My apartment is great. My bed is the comfiest thing I have ever laid on. I don´t know if that is because I work all day or if it really is comfy. We have a washer and dryer which I am so grateful for! Not the type you might be thinking of, but it is great. We pour three buckets of hot water into the washer, pour in some soap, and then it whirls it around a bit. Then to rinse we do the same thing, minus the soap. Our dryer is a short cylindar looking thing, we put our clothes in, and it spins the clothes around really fast so all the water can drain into a bucket below, and then we just hang everything all around the apartment to really dry. Some missionaries dont have that so I am really really grateful.

 
My area is gorgeous. The Andes are beautiful. The people (in the branch) are so loving and happy. I am so blessed to be here.
 
One day me and my companion were studying in a park like area. A homeless man came up to me and started talking to us, I guess he was asking me to read him the bible. He didnt have any teeth so besides the fact that it was in spanish I couldnt really understand him. Anyway, so he starts trying to read my book of mormon, I had no idea what was going on so I just sat there waiting for my companion to do something. He kept talking, and kept petting the pages of my scriptures. My companion started to gather her stuff so I did the same. Then the guy started to pet my head and that was when we really got up to leave, haha. My comp did give him a pass along card though, which he then kissed and held to the sky. But yeah weird stuff like that happens ALL the time. But dont worry Mother, my companion knows her stuff and does a great job at keeping this oblivious American safe.
 
Conference was great! We werent able to watch is but I was able to listen to it through a tiny computer speaker. Sadly it was hard to get a lot out of it because there were 4 of us in the room if anyone even breathed a little too loud we couldnt hear. Just one more reason to keep pushing my spanish so I can read the talks in the Liahona. So I didnt get to hear all of them but out of the ones that I did hear I liked Richard G. Scotts the best. That man is awesome. I bet his prayers are an hour long, he is a great example to everyone. Anyway. He talked a lot about family and prayer. The entire time I could only think about how the Second Coming really is nearing and that we need to do all that we can to prepare to be ready for it. Whatever it is that we need to change in our life in order to become worthy, we just need to do it! We need to "care more about what the Savior thinks of us" because in the end it is Him who will be our judge. I want to be with all of my friends and family in the Celestial Kingdom and I am willing to do whatever it takes to make it there. We cant just let life pass us by. The Gospel provides us with so many opportunites to enjoy complete happiness. That is one of the reasons I am out serving. Not only to share this message with the people of Mendoza Argentina, but to you as well!
 
I am so grateful for the time I have already had and for the rest of the time I will have in Argentina. It is such a crazy yet wonderful opportunity to be here. Thank you thank you for all of the prayers, love, and support. I love each one of you and think of every.single.one. of you everyday.
 
With Love,
 
Hermana Blair
 
blog: fromabigail@blogspot.com I probably wont be able to include everyone in a group email again, but on the right side of the blog there is a box where you can enter your email address and you will be emailed when the blog is updated. I can honestly say that the one thing that has tested my patience the entire mission has been this particular Argentine computer. God Bless The USA.
 

 

Monday, September 29, 2014

Abbey's Argentine Adventure

Holllyyy Cowww,

I am in Argentina! Man, so much has happened since my last p-day. Getting here was crazy and kind of awful. I think over all it was like 36 hours of straight travel. Goodness I don´t even know what to include in this email.

I am in Tupungato serving with Hermana Vargas who is seriously the sweetest and cutest peruvian I know (and if I am correct, the only peruvian I know). She is really small, very patient, and doesn´t speak english. Woo! I feel so bad for her because I don´t really speak any spanish either, so it is quite a hoot when the two of us try and communicate. Sadly, I won´t be able to send pictures. Dropbox doesn´t work on this computer. But me and Hermana Matheson both got natives as our new companions and they call us ¨Giants¨ because we look so big compared to them. Self esteem boost right there. Apparently in this mission most of the girls gain like 20 pounds and lose a lot of hair. So, I will come home fat and bald, mmm, my favorite!

An old Argentine lady on the plane complemented all 80 of us missionaries on our well grooming. We said thank you and then she said, you all dress so nice that you will probably get kidnapped. So that is a plus too.

Apparently my area is the one that gets the closest to the Andes. Before I got assigned here people we talking about this one, they said mountains, and I said that is where I want to go. And here I am! It´s really dry here and sometimes reminds me of Cache Valley, and Oregon, and New Mexico all combined. Well the outskirts of my area remind me of that, but the ¨city¨ is a whole new world.

I really don´t know how to describe this place. Maybe look it up on google earth. Some places that we have been to are REALLY poor, while others are a lot nicer. The food is a wee bit weird as well. In my area potatoes, meat, and rice are really popular. We have had that for every meal, and we always have it all together. Honestly, I have already have cake where the bottom was rice, the middle was potatoes, meat, and cheese, and then another layer of rice on the top. And that was actually my favorite meal! I will have you know that I have eaten everything that was put in front of me, including all veggies and fruits. A couple days ago we were fed two lunches, and that was a struggle. But I did it. And gained 10 pounds. 

For some reason shower curtains are often absent here. The pole and the rings are there, but not the actual curtain. I have no idea why. Maybe they are in high demand? Hard to find? We went to the store to try and by one but they weren´t even being sold. But don´t worry, I will let you know when I find one. :)

I am happy here, I don´t know any spanish and I can´t understand anyone but I am happy. Oh and the clapping outside of peoples doors thing? Yeah I will have to get used to that one. Dad, I honestly thought that things would have changed 30 years later, but no I think it is still the same as when you were here.

To greet people we don´t shake hands. We kiss cheeks. Gah, I don´t even like hugging let alone kissing. So I am really bad at it and my face is breaking out from touching so many people. I actually don´t really like doing it, I will come to love it I am sure. But yesterday at church was the worst. There were so many people! Honestly, whenever you say hello and goodbye to someone new you kiss them. The worst part, and I don´t mean this offensively, is that everyone looks the same to me and I can´t tell who I have and haven´t kissed yet. Ah, its a struggle. But everything is just so funny to me. So crazy. That is the word I use most often. Crazy.

I wish I could send pictures. Tell Karma I got her Dear Elders. So I guess you can get letters here, but it all just depends on if the missionaries in the office will send them or not. 

Well I guess that is about all! There is just way too much crazy stuff to even try and type. Don´t worry I have written most of it in my journal and will have some lovely stories afterword. Oh, I had to bare my testimony in church yesterday. It wasn´t fast sunday. But yeah that went terribly and mostly people just look at my like I am stupid. Oh, (I keep remembering things) whomever told me that I wouldn´t stand out here, that is definitely a lie. I get so many double takes and people stare all the time. Sometimes when we are walking down the streets people will say, in english, Hi or Hello because they think its cool. My companion says it´s a good thing that I can´t understand because sometimes they say more than just that haha.

Also, everyone here is tone deaf. (I just took a deep breath in and out) I will have to get used to that.

Well I love all of you so much! I am so blessed and so happy that I have people supporting me!! I think of you all often and I pray for you always. 

Con Amor,

Abbey

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Argentina Bound

So Abbey left for Argentina on Monday. She was able to call home and let me tell you that was the best thing of my (Ashley, her little sister) life! She said she just loved the MTC. She had such a great time with all the other Elders and Hermanas. But, she was ready to head off to Argentina. 

This is a picture we received upon her arrival in Mendoza, Argentina 

Saturday, September 20, 2014

VAMINOS MIS AMIGOS

Alrighty, so this last week in the MTC has flown and has been SO MUCH fun. Last Friday I got my travel plans. Two Elders didn't send their visa stuff in early enough and have been reassigned to Oregon and Pennsylvania. It is really sad that we won't be able to fly out with them but it is really cool that they get to serve in two different missions. So we leave here at 6:00 a.m. on Monday morning and fly to Georgia and have a layover for a few hours, then we fly out from there at like 9 p.m. and then get to Buenos Aires at 8 a.m. the next morning. Anyway, we don't know what next happens from there but I will be sure to let you know.

Just an FYI I love hearing from everyone but if you send a Dear Elder after 12:00 p.m. tomorrow I won't get any of them. So if you are going to send something please send it tonight or tomorrow morning. Thanks love you.

On Tuesday Elder Richard G. Scott came and spoke to us for our devotional. It was awesome to have a general authority there and he did a really good job. He spoke about prayer and it was amazing because just in his talk alone I had almost every question I have been pondering about, answered. He is the man.

I see Kenley all the time. We got to sit by each other at the Devotional and me and my comp played her and her comp yesterday in vball. I got to talk to her a little today while we did laundry so that was good too.

Me and Hermana Harris were asked by a teacher to help his district of all Elders with the law of chastity lesson. We were the investigators and the tea

 cher just told us to make it as awkward as possible. I thought it was really funny and I didn't feel awkward at all, but the Elders were so flustered and embarrassed, it just really made my day.

Okay, so earlier I wrote about how I got my travel plans and all that, and don't worry, I have my visa and my plans and all is well. Well, yesterday I got this letter that was addressed to me and was from the secretary of the Arizona Tempe mission. They said they were excited while anticipating my arrival and the letter was informing me of some changes made about the amount of clothes I would need to pack in my carry on or something. So me and Hermana Harris went to the front desk, they called Salt Lake and they confirmed that I actually do have my visa and that I will be flying to Argentina. 

All of the Elders in my district had read the note I had gotten but they had all gone to lunch. So me and Hermana Harris came up with this bizarre story of how all along I was actually supposed to go to Tempe Arizona Spanish Speaking and that the call I received to Argentina was actually wrong. Hermana Harris told them all and said not to talk about it because it was a really sensitive subject. I tried to be sad through out the day but it was actually really hard and I didn't want to waste a day being sad. So I didn't really try to hard to convince them, I would just say I don't want to talk about it if any of them asked. Anyway. So last night just so happened to be my turn for spot light. And it was awesome. Everyone had such nice things to say and I was so blown away and it was awesome. Luckily no one really brought up anything about Arizona or I would have felt really bad. But a few of the elders talked about how they just can't figure me out and how I am full of surprises (they really set themselves up for that one). So at the end I talked about how grateful I was to have at least been put in a district with all of them, and then I said that I know that the reason was so I could prank them all. And then it was silent. And then Elder Wilson was like "wait are you serious or are you kidding?" and I said I am actually going to Argentina with you all. And I didn't really know in the beginning how many of them really believed that I was going to Arizona, but it turns out that they all, hardcore, fell for it. They were so mad. I guess Elder Baesler had been telling everybody that had ears and was talking about how crazy it was because this has never happened in the church. One Elder said he had started fasting for me and a couple other Elders said it had really shaken their testimony about the way the church assigns mission calls. It was SO FUNNY. They are all still really mad about it and I am just so happy that it worked out so well. Oh my it made my life.

 I actually don't really know if that whole paragraph makes any sense, but I am going to Argentina. Although, here is the kicker. Hermana Streadbeck is in another district but got called to go to Mendoza. Her visa didn't come in time and last night she got her reassignment to AZ and on her paper it listed me as her companion but my name was crossed out. Really weird. I don't know what happened there but yeah I am still pretty sure that I am headed to Argentina.

So that is my funny story for the week. Gosh I just really love pranks. Me and Hermana Harris hid in a closet the other day and scared Elder Wilson. It was like 6 in the morning in an "empty" dark classroom.  He was singing scripture power as he walked in and was just trying to be a good soul and restock the toilet paper and tissue boxes for our service assignment. And we got him good. Haha, his face was the best I have ever seen. His arms were full and everything went flying. He hit the wall behind him and just fell over. Haha, it was the best.  He is the sweetest of all the Elders too so it was funny that we got him. But he scared us the night before so I don't really feel too bad.

Brother and Sister Hartman are our in our Branch Presidency. They are the coolest couple I have ever met (and are in Darby MT right now, Dad) and have been the greatest to our district. I remember taking the color test in school but I guess he is the creator of the Color Code. I don't know how popular it is but I guess it is a pretty big deal. So I will attach a picture with them below, they are awesome.

Well this very long email pretty much sums everything interesting up! I leave on monday and I will be so sad to say goodbye to everyone. I really still believe that me and Hermana Harris will be companions for the next 17 months. A sad realization will that be. I know hardly any spanish but I am excited to get to Argentina. The MTC has been so much fun and has been a great experience but I am excited to really get out there and help some people.

Oh, I have been watching this video over and over. Actually our entire district has. It is awesome. It is short, take a second to view it. 


I love you all and the next email you get will be from Argentina! hopefully.

xoxo

Hermana Blair 


Her district. 


She's will be off soon! 


Las Hermanas 


Apparently they were standing by a Porsche 

Another Day, Another Destiny.... or just same destiny

 Hola Familia y Amigos,

So I don't really feel like I have a whole lot to report on this week. This past week has flown by and I have actually loved almost every second of being here. Sometimes, 3 hours of a teacher blabbering away in spanish at 7 in the morning isn't always the most fun, but honestly everything other than that is the best! My spanish is coming a long slowly but surely. Us hermanas decided to do a little competition to see who could speak the least english. Whoever loses has to where what ever clothes in their closet match the least. I haven't lost yet, but I will send a picture when I do. The Elders decided to get in on the game too and one Elder had to shave his legs last night. It is actually pretty funny to see all of us trying our best to speak the language. I can't conjugate at all and sound like quite the gringa, but I am fine with it. I have faith that the language will come.

I ate my first salad this week! Yes I have gone 19 years without ever eating a salad and yes I don't feel like I have been missing out. My salad probably had more croutons than it did lettuce, but I still ate it nonetheless. In fact I actually had two salads this week. Which those will probably be the least of my worries food wise for the next little bit.

Each night we have a "spotlight" for one of the members in our district. At first it started out as just complimenting that person and saying what we like, but it has since turned into quite the show featuring the chosen person in their very own spotlight. It is a lot of fun and it has really helped our district grow closer. I really do love everyone in my district. We do everything together and have become a close little family out here in the big empty sea. We play volleyball together every day and our district is actually really good, so that has been really fun for me!

I saw Mckenley yesterday! I was so happy to see her, I had been waiting all day. We saw each other at dinner and we were able to talk for a little bit. It is weird because we can't really hang out or anything, but I was so happy to see here and I am really excited for her. 

It rained, like poured, here a couple of days ago. There were big puddles everywhere! Me and Hermana Harris ended up not having a lesson to teach because our investigator didn't show so we went out and took some pictures. I am also so grateful for the Hermanas that I am here with. They are all so funny and we get along great. I am also grateful for all of my friends that are serving right now as well. Their emails really make me have a more positive attitude and somehow make what I am doing here, more fun. I am SO GRATEFUL that I have this opportunity to serve. I am so blessed and I am learning so much about the gospel and myself. Thank you for all of the love and support! I am so grateful for everyone in my life! 

xoxo

Hermana Blair


Elder Benedict in the spotlight


Because why not sit in a puddle


This is when I fell in....Just kidding I was hopping through the puddle with my chair and having a grand ol time


Me and Ken. The cereal at the MTC is how she will survive. (just kidding kenley.....ha..ha)

Semana Tres (week three)

So this I have been here for 3 weeks but I am technically in my fourth. We leave in like 18 days or something so that is exciting! I feel like when the 6 weeks is up I will be done with my mission, like it doesn't feel real that I will be flying to another country.

Things are great here. Each week I write down things that I want to tell you guys and then by the time p-day roles around, those things I wanted to say don't even seem cool or funny anymore.

So I guess last week I was just barely starting to feel like I was getting used to have "hermana" be my first name. Now I am totally used to it. When someone says "hermana!" in the lunch room, all of the girls heads turn. 

I know the first name of everybody in my district, and its weird because I feel like some first names don't fit the people. When I was asked I told the boys that my first name was Harriot and they struggled with that for a bit. When they figured out my name is Abbey they said that fit a lot better. Apparently I seem like an Abbey, but Hermana Matheson seems like a Brooke..her name is Aubree but the Elders are sure that it should be Brooke. Anyway. That wasn't what I wrote down to tell you but there you go!

The MTC seems like a breeding ground for disease. Sickness spreads like wild fire here! Once one person has something, everybody gets it. So that has been fun.

On Monday night we taught  a couple old guys again. I don't remember where they served but they still spoke spanish pretty well. My companion planned the entire lesson, she knew what she wanted to say and how she wanted to say it. We only taught two men and for 20 minutes each, so I wasn't too worried about the lesson and decided that I would just bare my testimony and say little things here and there. Well right at the beginning of the first lesson Hermana Harris had a cough attack and had to leave the room, when she came back in she couldn't even talk. She finally just left the room entirely leaving me with an old man, and no lesson. But the gift of tongues is real! I was able to teach and testify and it was all okay because   I am pretty sure the guy we taught has alzheimers. So I feel like he enjoyed it.

We went to the temple today and did sealings and it was the coolest experience ever! As hermanas we can only be proxies for daughters. There was an old couple that were the parents and they are the cutest couple I have ever seen. They have been married for 67 years and the husband is 90 and the wife is 87. Everyone could tell that they are still very much in love and it was just the coolest experience ever and I want to have a relationship like theirs someday.

So there is that! I am doing well and having fun. I love and miss you all!

Hermana Blair

oh and I have one of the best friends ever, check out the AWESOME package mckenley sent me. It was the cutest thing ever and really made my day. When you see her give her a high five and a kiss for me. 

ps chocar la mano is how you say high five



 ^^ Missionary Supplies ^^


^^The box of happiness Kenley sent Abbey. Ken needed something to do having all her friends on missions ^^


^^Hermana Blair and her wonderful companera Hermana Harris ^^ 

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Semana dos: I taught Thomas Monson

First off, thank you for all of the Dear Elder letters. They are the best and getting letters is what keeps me going.

So yes this last week I was able to teach Thomas Monson......Thomas J. Monson. He was the sweetest old man, not the prophet, but still it was pretty cool! The language is coming along slowly but surely. My teacher served his mission in Mexico and has plainly admitted that he is teaching us "dirty" spanish, so that will be real great when I get to Argentina. I now struggle with writing and speaking english or spanish and it usually just comes out as spanglish, but at least that means there is some improvement with the language!

P-days actually stress me out quite a bit. We woke up early and did our laundry and wrote letters, went to the temple, and now we are here. Our district went up to main campus to have lunch and go to the bookstore there, and boy is the main campus a different world! The bookstore has 20 times the stuff we have at the west campus so all of us were going crazy in there! I bought another journal, books from the missionary library, and scripture markers and stuff. oh and I got a new, much needed, toothbrush so that was nice. 

We also went to the cafeteria there. I kinda wish we wouldn't have because now I know what we are missing out on. The cafeteria there is HUGE. And the food is way better. There are a lot more options, which could be a curse, but there are more HEALTHY options there. At the west campus we have 2 selections. Greasy Chicken or Fatty meat. I am so thankful for food, don't get me wrong (maybe a little too thankful for food) but I don't will never listen to anyone complain about the main campus of the provo mtc again.

We have 50 minutes of gym each day. Me and my companion dominate in volleyball so that is really fun. But usually we just end up playing 4 square with our district. I had never played 4 square until I got to college, weird how that has worked out. But my advice for any young person is to start on their 4 square skills now.

My district is really cool and we are all getting really close. A little too close probably. I don't know if I will be able to last the next 4 weeks with the same 8 boys but we will see. They are just really stinky and fart all the time, so that really invites the spirit.

A couple of the elders asked me the other day if I have ever been angry in my life. I told them I was a very angry person before my mission and that change is real. haha, but I thought it was really funny, their goal is to see me get mad before we leave. I really don't think it will happen, I honestly am loving it here. But who knows, maybe their stinkyness will throw me over the edge!

My favorite words to say in spanish are super (suPEAR) and unpoquitititito, which means really really really small. So its like unpoquito, which is small, but then you just add a lot of titittiti and that makes it really small. I hate the word verdad, which means truth, or .... right? My teachers say it ALL the time, even when it probably doesn't make sense, so now I dislike that word. Also, singing in Spanish is quite the experience. I usually don't recognize the hymn and can't read the words fast enough to be able to know what to say and how to sing it, but everyone just tries their best, and it usually sounds terrible.

This might surprise you but waking up at 6:30 hasn't been bad at all. Yet. I am sure the day will come, but I am actually doing great with the sleeping schedule.

I have a new found love for the book of mormon and honestly can't stop reading it. I love the stories and the words inside. I also have a new interest in the plan of salvation. I love being on a mission because I get to learn all of these things. It has been so great, I feel like I have been here a lot longer than two weeks but all is well and I am loving it. Thanks for all the love and support! xoxo

Hermana Blair



Me and Mi Companera Hermana Harris. 

None of us planned to match. Our light went out in our room and we got dressed in the dark. Great minds think alike.

The spirit is so strong at the MTC, it literally lifts me up.

Today at main campus, me and mi companera with the map.

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Semana Uno (week one)

Wow, I don't even know where to start. I am doing well though! Also P-days are the best thing that could ever happen to anyone. My P-days are on Thursday, so technically I should have had one last week, but that would have complicated things, so they decided having to weight a full 8 days would be the best way to go.....whatever, I made it. 

So far we have had Jenny Oaks Baker,( daughter of Dallin H. Oaks) and YW general president Bonnie L. Oscarson come and speak to us. Both of which have been awesome. Jenny Baker is an awesome violinist so she threw us a little concert, and if you ever get the chance to go and see her in concert, do it! She can play the violin so it sounds like two people are playing at once. I was astounded.

The food isn't so bad here either. The first day I had some fish that tasted like dirt, but hey, it has only gone up from there! and it actually is really easy to gain weight here because all we do is eat and sit and eat and sit. And there is nothing about the food itself that makes everyone get sick, it really is just all of the elders loading up on so much food that does it. We took a BEFORE picture of our district. Hopefully no one changes too much.

I love my companion Hermana Harris, she is so cool and I am so happy we got put together. We have so much in common that it is kind of ridiculous. She is from Vernal Utah and is super easy to get along with, really nice, and is constantly serving others.

We sit in a classroom for hours on end trying to learn spanish, but the days really are starting to fly. When I first got here someone said the days feel like an eternity but the weeks go by in a flash. I can't believe I have been here for this long already!

I am so grateful for all the love and support, just saying, some Dear Elder letters would be much appreciated. My unit is 800. I am the only that hasn't gotten a letter yet. But I know you all love me, even though you don't send me things. Right? I sure love you all. I am so happy to be here, I know this is what I am supposed to be doing and I look forward to hearing from you again next week!!

xoxox

Hermana Blair 

(ps that is really hard to get used to. I have introduced myself as Abbey a couple of times already, and mostly I just forget what to call myself. I really should have practiced the whole hermana thing beforehand)



^ We are literally glued to our seats here at the MTC ^


 Me and my bestie Aubree Matheson with another fellow ambassador Elder James (left)


Our district in front of the temple 


Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Officially Hermana Blair

On August 11, 2014 Hermana Blair was set apart as
 a missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. 
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


^^Taylor, Abbey, Ashley^^



^^Best Friends. Both called to serve in Argentina.^^


^^Abbey with the Martins^^


^^ Abbey enjoying her "last supper" with her family with a frosty and a junior bacon cheeseburger.^^


^^With her bags, ready to go! Thank you Elder for the help.^^


And she is off to the MTC to learn Espanol and much more. Your family loves you Abbey! Good luck. :)

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

goodness it's glacier



It was mine and Ashleys first time in Glacier National Park and goodness was it beautiful! There were people visiting from all over the world, which is no surprise because this park is amazing. It is incredibly beautiful and makes me love this world so much more.



^^We spent two days there hiking around to the different attractions. And selfies will never stop being weird, but it is what it is^^

^^ I don't know what it is about taking pictures of animals, but it seems like EVERYONE does it. So naturally we felt compelled to take some also.^^


^^ We spent the night at a campground which is big for our family. I still am very proud of my mother. She spent the night in a tent which doesn't happen often. This is me and Ash in front of ours, very proud as you can see. However, we didn't go all out with a campfire breakfast, hence the poptart.^^






^^ One of my favorites....(hey dad.)^^

But my FAVORITE favorite part of the trip was watching Ashley. Since returning home from school I feel like I have become her personal photographer. When I get sick of taking pictures I usually just start video recording her, which has turned out to be a lot more amusing in the long run.

What you will see in the video below is Ashley contemplating whether or not she should attempt to walk across the log. We spent a couple minutes convincing her that hiking the rest of the way with a wet foot would not be fun and so she decides not to try it, but the video shows just why I love her and also displays her sense of misfortune.


video

and we got bored on the way home so here is a second of the same video with a few different effects just for fun.


video


BUT WAIT! Not even 10 minutes later this happened. I love that I captured in on video, and don't worry, she wasn't hurt.


video


I love her and I love glacier. Thanks ma and pa for the wonderful trip!