Wednesday, March 20, 2013

March 13, 2013-Karee is a Trainer!

Note from Mom: Karee's brother, Calvin, just got his mission call to Brazil and will leave July 3, 2013. We are so proud of both of them and their desire to serve the Lord.

Calvin with his mission call envelope
At the airport before Karee left for her mission. Now we will have 2 missionaries out!

I past my month in the field! And has it really been 3 months? 3 months since I was at home, wearing normal clothes... 3 months since walmart!?! I didn't know how I would do without being able to have such close contact with friends and family, but I have been blessed to have letters from loved ones. 

In 3 months I have learned:
I can live without Walmart
I can wake up at 6 each morning without an alarm clock
The more I learn the more I learn I need to learn
I have learned quite a bit of Spanish, but not nearly enough
I know enough about relying on the Spirit that Heavenly Father trusts me enough to call me to be called as a trainer! WOAH WHAT!?!! 

I was so excited to get an email from Calvin (soon to be Elder Brown)! I had found out that in the letter from Kamber that I got last week that he had his papers in. I was so excited and couldn't wait to hear where he is called. I was so happy to read Calvin's letter that I started to cry. It is so crazy to think that he is actually going on a mission... and so soon! I can't wait for him! I am excited that he is going to be speaking Portuguese because I am really planning on learning it. I can already understand it for the most part, but like any language it won't do me any good unless I can say a few things to keep the conversation up. Speaking of languages... Spanish is coming along. I can understand most of what people say if I pay attention (it can be exhausting sometimes so I will occasionally tune out for a bit). There are still a few days that I walk into a lesson and have absolutely no idea what is going on! My companion (trainer) Hna. Hildenbrand is really great. She tries to give me that opportunities to teach. But that is so scary because she will just stop talking and look at me. Ahhh... then I kinda stutter and look at her begging her to not stop. Then I pray and take a breath and open my mouth. I need that because I need the opportunity to talk. I need to get used to it.... Because I AM TRAINING!!! Can you believe it? I just got here! So usually the training lasts 12 weeks. I have received only 5 of those 12 weeks!!! Now I am going to be taking over as senior companion and will be taking lead in lessons, phone calls, companionship planning prayers and lesson plans... everything! I do not feel ready and when I got the call from the president I kinda teared up. The elders had been telling me that it was going to happen and so did sister hildenbrand but I just didn't want to believe them. Then Saturday night as we were waiting for a bus to go home I got a call and President Packard said, "Sister Brown I am going to ask you to do something big something hard. Will you be willing to train?" Whoa!! I said yes, but inside I was thinking, "how can I do this? I don't feel comfortable doing this... the language, the doctrine, the great responsibility... everything" I went home and went to the closet... (that is my place to pour out my heart in prayer) I prayed and asked if this was really what I was supposed to be doing because I didn't think I could do it. I fasted the next day that I might be able to feel ready and that I will be able to do it. That whole day I felt at peace and calm like everything is going to work out. I am excited! I am going to be able to take over and let the people here know how much I really know... not that it is a lot, but I  have definitely held back a little bit. Now I am going to give it my absolute ALL! Heavenly Father knew that was what I needed to put it all in and try my hardest! So from now on I am going to be seeing a whole lot more miracles and hopefully most of them will be with the language... the language of the Spirit.

So this week didn't exactly go as planned. But as a missionaries we are constantly changing our plans and working with other people's plans. Isabel didn't make it to church.... at all, so she didn't actually get baptized on Colten's birthday. Sorry Colten. But that was a really fun day and I was thinking about you a lot. 

Tuesday: We visited Isabel's sister and brother in law at the hospital. They are from Florida, but they are here because it is better hospitals. We sang a song for him which he loved. He can't talk but he is so funny. He was making motions that his wife was talking too much. He always comments on how beautiful we are... the people are really good at saying things like that. We didn't have any appointments set up so we went around trying to find people on a list that we had been given from the zone leaders. Then we had dinner at the Matos family. A very typical Dominican dinner of rice and a meat, carrot and onion sauce, with potato salad (hispanic potato salad is really delicious).

Wednesday: We visited with an inactive member who we found last week named Nora. We dropped off a large print Libro de Mormon for Isabel so that she could try to read. It was super cold and we went around South Boston. We had an appointment but she "wasn't home" (even though we heard her hushing her barking dog) so we went to Panera to have some warm food. There we had a fun experience.... A man sitting at a table facing us typed something on his laptop and then turned it to us and walked away. It read "if interested type number here".... I was totally thrown off guard. After lunch we decided to find less actives in the area. We found an older man who hadn't been to church in years. The house smelt really strongly of smoke and we weren't sure what we were going to say, but he was very nice and we ended up talking about family history. He is the nephew of Levill Edwards... The one who the BYU stadium is named after. We also found Romalina and her daughter who haven't been to church since coming to the US. We had a delicious dinner with the Ramero family. They are so sweet and committed to help me with my spanish. They are a younger couple and are super strong in the gospel. They were married in the temple ( not many members here have even been to the temple) and he served a mission. I am excited to be working with them. Brother Ramero told me that my spanish is really cute because I pronounce my 's'. Most Dominicans don't.

Thursday: Sister Garcia planned a very amazing activity called the Life of Christ. It was so neat! The whole thing was based off of the life of Christ. We were blindfolded and were handed things as we listened to some music that talked about the life of Christ and the different things that He did. It was so nice... I bawled. The rest of the day I think we mostly planned for the next week.

Friday: We got snowed in. We went to the chapel and planned to play games and have dinner together. I ended up reading the Book of Mormon in spanish because I heard that it is one of the best ways to learn a language. So I will be doing a lot of that!

Saturday: We dropped of Finding Faith in Christ DVD at the hospital for Isabel's family then we visited a few people. Later we had a lesson and dinner with Maria and Margarita (very common names.. I feel like all families have at least one). It was very dominican too. Flan with lemon jello and strawberries for desert. Who would have known that those things go together? I ended up taking over in part of the lesson and shared Alma 34:8 a scripture that hna. Hiaglund shared with me before i left the MTC. It was really good. I might have teared up afterwards because i realized that sister hildenbrand is really leaving and I am going to be taking over like that more. Then on the way home we found out I was going to be training. Yay! 

Sunday: we had Church.. went to dinner with the lady who made me my first dinner and then went to Cambridge for a musical fireside put on by the missionaries. It was wonderful! President Packard and his two children sang duets and it was so wonderful! They are all so talented!

Monday: We had zone meeting and talked about member missionary work. We had lessons... lots of stop-bys and found some people had moved. We had dinner with a wonderful member missionary and we had such a great time!

Tuesday: We visited Isabel (we have decided to not talk about baptism because we feel like she felt like we were just pressuring her and we don't want that!), her sister and brother in law in the hospital, Martha, the Medina family, Nora, and had dinner with the Gomez family. We had to walk from the Gomez to Nora's in the rain. Hard rain! We were joking all the way. Sister Gomez fed us SO much! Rice and beans with a huge piece of Salmon... MOM I ATE SALMON! There was still some skin on it.. And I ate it all... ok not the skin part, but all the fish part. Are you proud of me?
Tomorrow I get my greenie! Wish me luck! I am planning to give her a green dinner.. Hopefully that works out great!

I love you... I need your prayers!

Love always,

Hna. Brown

Colten! Wow congrats on the test! Did you get your birthday package? Colten, I think that I would like you to drive that little blue car when I am gone! I know that you are responsible and that you will take care of things. So please feel free to drive it! I love you!

Mom, Thank you for all of those pictures! I laughed so hard with the Christmas pics... where was Calvin? Is he too old now for that? I love seeing the girls in those pictures! That's so crazy that you saw Joe! I think about him a lot because that is the only way I can remember a last name of a family in the ward. I hope everything works out for Calvin in going to California. Boots are doing great! I am going to try something new with my journal and hopefully it will help the letters to go better.

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