Tuesday, April 29, 2014

An Unwelcome Guest

Hello famjamily!

This week was crazy. I say that every week and then the next one is even crazier.

So this week started off with an unwelcome visitor under my bed Tuesday night. See picture #1. I walked into the room and it was running under my bed and I was like, "uh, that´s not ok" so then I waited until Hermana Anderson got out of the shower and we started into Operation Kill the Scorpion Under Hermana Rawlins´ Bed. I´m just glad I saw it before it got too comfortable or anything. And yes, we took the pictures after it was dead :)
Then I spent 2 days in Apostoles on a division, and then I got shipped from there right to Posadas Friday morning to do tramites. But then they didn´t work so I had to finish them today because I´m in Posadas again for the leadership counsel that Hermana Anderson goes to, and so now as of this morning I have a visa to go to Paraguay! I´m not sure how I feel about that, or what it means for the transfer cause President just wants everyone to have one.
Then we got back Friday afternoon in time to pull off a branch activity about missions that we were in charge of, where we shared thingsfrom our missions and all the returned missionaries too. It was fun though cause all I had to share was about Virasoro, so my little table was just full of all the little gifts the members have given me, and they could see them there and that I treasure them :)
Then Saturday was T´s baptism, which was awesome. R baptized him and then gave him a hug in the water after cause the water was cold, which is what picture#3 is of. Then Sunday R got sustained as the branch YM´s president, which we´re really excited about. He was asking why he didn´t have a "carga" in the church like the other priesthood holders and we were like, oh just wait, we´re working on that :) So that picture of us and the family, #2, is where finally every member is baptized and active and R is the head of the household with the Melchezideck Priesthood and a calling. YES!!!! Seriously it makes me so happy. The thing is now I feel kinda like my work is done and I´ll leave Virasoro. I think I´ll go this next week, and I know my heart will break. I have lived and breathed Virasoro and our little branch for six months now, what am I gonna do without my friends and when I can´t make sure they´re ok?? Hermana Anderson and I are both sad the transfer is ending cause we both feel like life has to get hard again. We´ve been having too much fun and too much happiness :)
I love you all a ton and pray for you every day! I´m so grateful we have the blessing and promise that families are forever. Take care of yourselves!
love,
 Hermana Rawlins
p.s. Sister Rawlins looks so cute and so happy!! I know she´ll be amazing! For the record, I will remain Hermana rawlins and she´ll be Sister Rawlins. When people are practicing their English and call me Sister Rawlins, I get super confused and don´t know who it is. Whoever they´re talking about isnt me, cause I´m HERMANA Rawlins. :)





Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Embarrassing Moments!


Here´s a question from me: why the heck does kayla look so grown up??? and like a mix between me and alli?
oh also this week I got a letter from the activity day girls!! It was awesome, and yes, I remember you all!! :)

This week I had several MLIHK (My life is Hannah Kruman) moments that I would like to share.
First, we were walking to the S family´s house one morning and all of a sudden this dog in the street runs at me and starts jumping all over me. Like with his front paws all over my skirt and shirt and cardigan. Really muddy paws. So as Hermana Anderson ran away I helplessly tried to fend him off of me with my arm, and then the umbrella I had in my other hand, but he COVERED me in mud. So as I was trying to escape I was like "wait, that kind of looks like Nieva, the (S families) dog"... and then we rounded the corner to their house and sure enough, it was their dog that had been roaming around in the street. So we showed up at their house like, "uhhh... your dog just attacked me in the street and I´m really muddy." They apologized profusely, and made me change so they could wash my clothes, so I wore Hermana Standfields shirt for the rest of the day. At least it didn´t bite me or anything.
And then Sunday, before District Conference, I was walking outside of the chapel and totally WIPED OUT. Like completely. There was a puddle of water that I stepped in and then all of a sudden all I know is I was hurtling to the ground and desperately trying to grab on to a nearby convenient tree. So my legs totally splayed out from under me, The upper half of my body ended up hurtling into the pine bush thing next to me, and then I ended up rolling on the ground. And of course all of the members and our investigators were watching. So now I have a really huge cut on my leg where it met with the pavement, a rather bruised dignity, and something more to watch on the instant replay of my life in heaven. Hopefully in slow mo. I´m certainly not the most dignified representative of Jesus Christ out there, but apparently that´s ok and he still wants me here. :)
Also, I miss rachel hludzinski. How are you girl??

I also wanted to include a note for Em and any other hesitant or nervous future missionary out there.
One of the things that Brian said to me before I started my mission really helped me. He said, "Starting your mission is walking right into the dark. But you´ve got my voice, the voice of every other missionary, and the voice of your Lord Jesus Christ calling out to you from that darkness. As you walk with faith, I promise you will reach a point where the darkness will fade and you will see better than you ever could before." I want to add my voice to the many others, and as a representative of Jesus Christ say that despite all the nervousness and unknown of serving a mission, IT IS WORTH IT. It is hard, but it is so, SO worth it. You will never regret the decision to serve a mission.
Or in more light-hearted terms: come, join the party! :)

I love you and pray for you all!!
 love,
Hermana Rawlins


Questions from the family:

What happens after you say goodbye to your family outside the MTC (Missionary Training Center)?
A missionary is your "host" and holds your luggage, while you walk through the main building and get your tag and books and get checked in, and then they find your room with you, drop off your luggage, then they find your classroom with you and your teacher and district are waiting there to get right into things! ahh its seriously the best!!!!!!!!

Are you so excited for me?!
YES heck I´m actually really jealous of you getting to go into the MTC. I would LOVE to do it again it´s just so super great!! It´s hard, but also really really great

Emily wants me to ask you if you checked in online for your flight.  We can't remember if you took a boarding pass to the airport, or how that all worked.
I think I checked in online. but i don´t know about boarding pass, don’t remember

i'm glad you survived the no light situation last week! those pictures were crazy with the candles. did you guys just have a supply of candles on hand?
It´s still not 100 %, but for the most part everyone incudling us has electricity. No, we had to buy a ton haha

what's the weather like?
nice! sorry, more important things to write about today

any good stories about the work you've been doing with investigators? if stories are too long to type then no worries!
Well R got ordained to the Melchizedek Priesthood this week at district conference and he´s gonna baptize M, the 8 year old, this week! I really really really love that family and I think my heart will break to leave


This type of envelope doesn´t count as a package even though it goes through customs and everything, just a heads up. We can receive as many of them as we want, because it´s an envelope and not a package like in a box. Whenever you send another one, I really need another microfiber towel. also a conference Ensign in english. and maybe a gluestick.




Thursday, April 17, 2014

Redefining Normal

In eighth grade Mrs. Mycock made the whole class have a discussion defining normal, with the point that you can´t really because it´s based on individual perspective - what is normal and what is not. I feel like every week on the mission redefines my standard of normal, mostly because I say to you guys every week that the week was crazy, and then the next one turns out even more! Never a dull moment here in Argentina.

So Tuesday night, we were in divisions like normal (right now I have divisiones every week because Hna Anderson is STL), when all of a sudden the lights went out on me and Hna Passow as we were finishing a lesson. We walked out into the pitch black street, because not only all the house lights were out but all the street lights as well. So we were like "uhhh... we´re gonna call the Elders" (when in doubt, call the Elders :). So I called and was like "Hi the lights just went out every where and we can´t see anything and we don´t know where to go or what to do" (because it was only like 7:30. "ok hermana, do you know the way to your house?" "yes, elder". "Walk to your house." haha, ok I feel like that conversation is funnier when you say it in Spanish but whatever. Anyway, the lights never came back on so we spent a very hot night without fans or anything that night. Anyways, long story short some transformer stopped working that gives power to the whole city, so not only was there no luz but also the electricity is what powers the water supply, so the water was cut as well. (except we always had water in our pension #milagros). So things were pretty interesting all week, including people collecting the rain water, which miraculously came on the second and third day of it all, to bathe and flush toilets. You know, things in general were just cray.
The whole city got put on a rotation, where various barrios got electricity for a certain chunk of the day, because they brought one transformer to replace it, which came broken, etc etc problems all over the place, now there are giant generators on the road by the church which is keeping the important parts going, but right now we don´t have electricity in the pension, except it will probably come tonight because we´ve been getting it during the night since we live in the centro and they need to protect the shops during the night. Oh and this whole week we´ve had to go back to the pension early, as soon as it gets dark, which I totally haven´t minded at all because I miss downtime. :)
but besides all the craziness, we had a very very good week work-wise so things are good there!

Questions from the family:

Any last minute advice for the final week? How not to die of stress and become an anxious ball or nerves?
Just breathe. Do things that help you feel prepared or distracted. You´re going to be ok, and the mtc is just super great so don´t even worry. The Lord is the same in todos lados, and He knows you can do it!

how has this week been?!
crazy, see above :)

how is hermana anderson?
things are good!!

do you guys get to do anything for easter sunday?
um, we have a district conference so we´ll be traveling to Apostoles again. It´s not really easter related I think, but still fun!

ok I´ve gotta go, but I love you all!! hopefully everything I typed really fast makes sense. :)
love,
hermana rawlins :)

This is what our night has looked like every night this week


I finally decided I needed to buy myself momentos of the Amanda mate, so here´s me and my new mate Thermos and can of mate!! :) I´m gonna have the coolest house decorations for sure, mate with my name on it. boo yah.

Monday, April 7, 2014

Conferencia!

Ok first I have some matters of business for you all that I want you to see quick.
I got the package yay!! Who knew about the Sweetart chicks, ducks, and bunnies, and sent them "on Brian´s behalf"? That made me laugh a lot :) I love it all so thank you!!

I want to know more about my great-grandpa´s. And yes I mean specifically the grandpa´s thats not an english mistake :), Do you guys have stories or histories that you can send me? Also about the grandma´s too would be interesting :)

Also this week I got a letter from Bryce (Amanda’s great uncle) that I just loved! He said he was curious about how people speak here. The typical sh accent that everyone thinks is Argentine is actually just in Buenos Aires and other distinct parts, so no I don´t have it here or hear it here, except from the specific people who are Porteno as we call them, or from Buenos Aires. Also Uncle Bryce, I would love to hear about whatever stories you want to tell me! I promise I wouldn´t fall asleep from boredom or anything :)

So this week was long and involved a lot of travelling. We were in Posadas for two days and then we had divisiones for two days and then we went to Apostoles for two days for conference.
I wish i could share all my thoughts from conference but there are two many! I was gonna take a picture of my notes but then I forgot and now the computer is being stupid anyway. I decided that the title of the next Ensign (a magazine published by our Church) shouldn´t be Ensign, it should be Obedience. I lost count of how many talks were about that. I think Elder Bednar´s was my favorite, about taking upon us the Savior´s yoke and how our burdens are necessary to help us grow. I also liked how they talked about the "joyful burden" of discipleship, I thought that was interesting. Also "I would never have asked for this trial, but I would never give it away". That really touched me, and I´m starting to feel that way about my mission. Also in the prophet´s closing remarks him saying "Heavenly Father is personal and real. Realize how close He is willing to come and how far He is willing to go with us". I just really liked that. My thoughts about conference are a lot more poetic in my head but I got rushed along with some computer difficulties, so I´m sorry!
But know that I know that this is truly the church of Jesus Christ, and that His very prophet spoke to us this weekend. I testify that Christ Himself leads this church and will lead us as we follow Him and His loving guidance.

Questions from the Family:

Did you love conference?
Yes, how could you not love conference??!

Do you still understand English? :)
Yes, gratefully, but my notes show some really pathetic grammar mistakes :)

You haven't had mashed potatoes thrown at you, have you? :(  that talk by Elder Holland got to me! We are so proud of you! And know that you are sustained through very hard things.
nope, no mashed potatoes, but men do have a habit of yelling things at us that shouldn´t be said to a daughter of God.

love you guys a ton!!

-Hermana rawlins

Redefining Mormon Swag as we travelled to and from conference, including the people drinking mate up front. I really wanted to put a bumper sticker on the back of the sketchy bus that said "come, join with us" ;)
we love general conference!! especially in english!
guess what this is, and if you guess "giant ant hole" you´re right!