Wednesday, October 29, 2014

October 29th

So this week has been a really fun first week in my second area! It´s much more hilly here, so my legs are getting nice and toned (meanwhile, my waistline seems to have morphed to accommodate the rice and fried platanos of the island). And I´m in a stake! In a large chapel! WITH AIR CONDITIONING. Ah, the little pleasures of life :) My companion and I are doing a lot of work getting used to the area and finding investigators who seem to be quite scarce here. But I feel that we are rolling along! One really awesome thing right now is that we are in the city. In Bonao, I had to take a taxi to get to the store (there were colmados everywhere, but I´m talking a store with tile floor and aisles of food). Here, there are two “super target” stores within 10 minutes walking distance of my house! And one of them is in a MALL with a FOOD COURT that has GELATO. Oh boy oh boy oh boy am I a lucky little sister missionary.

I can´t think of anything too awesome to report. Except that we made the cake mom sent and shared it with the zone and it was a total hit. Thanks momma ;) I´ve broken into the oreos in the spirit of Halloween...although it´s beginning to look a lot like Christmas here. Seriously. Lights and wreaths and Santa Clauses pepper every house in this hilly labyrinth of a city.

I´ve really been enjoying my personal studies lately. I just want to share a quick testimony of the power of studying the scriptures and the peace that accompanies it. I thrive on my scripture study. I love reading church articles. I can´t get enough Conference talks. I´m lucky to have hours blocked out of my day to study these things, but I promise each one of you that if you make time for your own sincere and heartfelt personal study, even if it´s a matter of minutes, that you will see immediate blessings in your life. The church is true, the book is blue, and Moroni is always on the ball :)

Love Hermana Anderson
PS I have published part 3 of the Family Missionary Plan. Hop to it and good luck!

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

October 22nd

First things first. There's power in the house again! We got our electricity back after about 2.5 weeks without light. I learned to live the rugged life and it was great. I also learned to really appreciate water. And when we got the power back, I may or may not have had a selfie photoshoot with my fan….

Other important thing: I left my first area today! I have been transferred to Santiago Norte in a place called Tierra Alta. So far I love it. and it’s a ward, not a branch! So excited to be here and to have a new companion to love. I’m just excited for something new. It was super hard for me to say goodbye to Bonao, because I truly feel like the people there are my family. And I am really sad that I won't get to see Alvaro or Paola get baptized. But maybe I can go back for that! One thing that was awesome this week was how Alvaro is just my miracle muchacho. He is honestly too good to be true. Hermana Castillo and I were visting a member who lived nearby him one evening. He was our next appointment but we had to have a woman present to teach him, so we were going to swing by his house and bring him to the member, and he was unaware of these plans. We walked out of her house to go get him and he had just pulled up on his moped! He even had his Book of Mormon and pamphlets all under the seat and ready to go! Seriously, that guy is the miracle muchacho.

One interesting thing is that here in la republica, ya Christmas viene. Christmas is here. Seriously. Last weekend everyone started decorating. The decorations are meager in comparison to the US, but you cannot deny the red and green ribbons nad blinking lights everywhere. I think that without Halloween and Thanksgiving it must be totally normal to have Chrsitmas so early. We are already singing Christmas hymns too! but I am definitely not complaining because I absolutely love Christmas. Just one of the many reasons that la republica and I are meant to be J
So this week I had an interesting experience on the guagua. That’s the public transportation here. It's like a nice minivan. So I was trying to sleep on this long guagua ride. My head was lolling back and forth as I drifted deeper and deeper into sleep. My head slipped toward my companion and I could feel, in my half-sleep state, some fingers touch my head, gently moving back into an upright position. I thought it was a little weird that she did that, but whatever. A few minutes later, my head slips her way again. I feel the fingers once more and it kind of frustrates me because it's waking me up and I just want to sleep! So the third time it happens, I feel the fingers and leave my head there. The fingers are still for a moment, and then they begin to move around in my hair, playing with it lightly. I’m thinking “what in the world is my companion doing?” when I open my eyes a crack to see that she is sound asleep. The moment I opened my eyes, the fingers retreated quickly from my hair. I tried to pretend that I was delirious and tired and imagining it. I put my head in the upright position and tried to sleep once more. At the end of the ride, I sat forward in my seat, finished resting. I heard behind me “psssst! blondie!” and turned to see an eager-eyed Dominican man behind me. “did you sleep well?” he asked. I quickly said “yeah thanks” and turned around with my eyes bulging out of my head. I’m pretty sure that playing with a strangers hair while she sleeps on public transportation crosses quite a few lines. personal bubble = popped. bleghhhh.

love you all, have a great week!

Hermana Anderson


Wednesday, October 15, 2014

October 15th

This week I received the golden investigator. I think most people in the course of their mission have one, maybe two of these people who are just so prepared to receive the gospel of Jesus Christ. Alvaro came to church at the invitation of a friend a few weeks ago. He also attended General Conference. Due to scheduling conflicts, there was a delay in teaching him, but when we did, it wasthe best ever. We show up and he´s reading the Book of Mormon. We ask who he´d like to offer the prayer, and he says he wants to. We ask about how he came to know the church and he tells us how he´s been looking for the true church for over a year and how he has found it. For a moment I gota little disappointed, thinking that he was referring to another church. Then he tells us that watching General Conference, he KNEW, by the power of the Holy Ghost (yes, he even knew it was the Holy Ghost--this guy who´s never read the Bible until now) that this wasthe Church he was meant to find. I was ecstatic! In my mind I was thinking "we should invite him to be baptized right now" and about 5 seconds later he said "and I´m going to get baptized" WOW. What a privilege to be teaching him! WE´ve had one otherlesson so far and he has great questions and a genuine testimony and it is just amazing! THE CHURCH IS TRUE!

I have no time to write, but please pray that we get our electricity back soon! I love you all! I´ll send pictures next week.

Thursday, October 9, 2014

October 8th

Have you ever seen one of those TV shows or movies where a person gets stuck on a deserted island or they´re in prison or something and they start out counting the days of their confinement but after a period of time, they just loose count? That´s how it´s been in apartment A-9 here in Bonao. They days have started to blur together…I don´t know exactly when it all began…has it been 1 week? 1 month? 1 year? I don´t remember how long it´s been…since we´ve had…electricity. I´m like Jack Sparrow on that forsaken island asking “where´s all the rum? Why is all the rum gone?” Only, instead of saying “rum” I´m saying “light”. Truly, we´re never in the house so it´s not a huge issue. The only really bad thing is that we have no fridge. I never realized how essential a fridge was until now. Also I don´t know why we don´t have electricity. So don´t ask. But I trust that I´m learning something really important from this small trial haha. Also, I thank Heavenly Father every day that it´s the light and not the water. I can take a shower in the dark, but I certainly can´t turn on the lights and shower without water!
HOW WAS GENERAL CONFERENCE?!?! I loved it! One miracle was that our investigators came to the session in which Elder Bednar directed his talk at investigators!!! What good fortune!
A really fun thing we did this week was make empanadas! If you guys get the chance to try a real Dominican empanada, I would highly recommend it J
Another fun thing was this P Day we all went to the campamento where they do EFY here and played around as a Zone. We got to watch Frozen and I have never had so much fun watching a Disney movie. And you guys know how I love my Disney movies! First of all, it was super fun watching it with Latinos because they are simply hilarious people. Second of all, the voice of Anna in Spanish is so sassy and I love it. And last of all, we had a BLAST shouting along to Libre Soy, which is Let it Go in Spanish. We were all clapping and singing and even dancing a bit! We all agreed we had to rewind the movie and watch it again. Everyone cheered and hollered for Elsa as she let her true colors show! It was super fun!
I hope you guys are having a great October!
Here are pictures

Lots of love

Sunday, October 5, 2014

October 1st

This week was great! Lots and lots of rain. One of the best rain days was definitely Sunday after our District Conference (like Stake Conference, but for branches). It started raining RIGHT as we left the other branch´s building and started the 35 minute walk back. We. Were. SOAKED. We had a fun lunch with a member though. Dominicans don´t feed missionaries dinner, they feed missionaries lunch because that´s the big meal here. Anyway the lunch was very fun! A special treat here is called concon. Do you know what it is? The burned rice at the bottom of the pot that´s stuck together with oil. Ohhhh yesssss. I don´t like it because it´s too crunchy and too tasteless. But people here almost fight over it! Elder Alarcon loves concon, so we kept calling him Elder Alarconcon during lunch because he ate so much of it hahaha.
So we´re walking down the street and I see a green sign with a big evergreen tree on the sign. I think to myself “what does a tree road sign mean?” We continue walking and we arrive at the LARGEST TREE smack in the middle of the road! Now you know if you ever see  a tree sign, that you are about to encounter a mammoth tree in the middle of the street. Consider yourself warned!
Did you guys watch the General Women´s Broadcast? Go watch it!
Also it´s October, so that means that you should be on Month 2 of The Family Missionary Plan!!! Don´t forget to meet with the Elders and to keep opening your mouth and extending invitations to people.
Also, I really loved your talk. How did you not know that it was going to take up more than the allotted time?! it was basically a novel! anyway, I really enjoyed it!
In other news, I think we´ll be doing a Christmas flashmob here in the DR in a big mall in Santiago, and if so I get to sing and dance! I´ll keep you updated.