Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Week 7 - Here In Brawley

Well, I've made it!

     I got here and on the first day we took pictures and got our companions.  On the plane on the way here I talked to a marine named Bryant, and he wanted to know more about the church and asked me for a Book of Mormon!  It was really great.  The first day we took a tour at the Mormon Battalion, then we did a lot of finding. We do a lot of finding every day. Which is hard, but good! My companion's name is sister Tuia.  She's from Samoa, and is great!  We have a lot of fun, and I feel like our friendship is growing slowly but surely.  One guy we found is named Joshua, and he is great. He was the first person I invited to baptism, and now he has a date for April 16!  I'm really excited for him.  He's great.  He's really talented at the guitar, and he writes songs about every chapter he reads in the Book of Mormon.
      It's really hot here, and sometimes we ride our bikes around to find people.  But wow!  I get so so so sweaty haha.  But that's how we make some of our greatest contacts, so bikes it is.  Not everyday, but some days.  People usually just let us in because they're worried we're going to die of a heat stroke haha.  I'm also the ward pianist now!
      We went to the general women's session, which was all about service!  I learned a lot about what I'm doing here, and I really enjoyed that session. It helped me fill my spiritual bottle just a little more.  This week has definitely not been easy for me. Saying goodbye to my family at the CCM was really a struggle for me, and I'm pretty  homesick for Mexico.  But, I know that with the Lords help I can do all things!
      I read a conference talk today about the Holy Ghost, it's by Henry B. Eyring and I encourage everyone to read it!  Remember that God is good, and that Jesus Christ is not only our Savior but also our big brother and our friend. Turn to him with everything.

Les amo mucho!!
Hermana Fowlks

A little part of McKell's letter to me:
     Brawley is HOT and very different from Mexico.  My heart yearns for Mexico always and I might have to go live there or something after the mission haha. I got everything, thank you SO MUCH getting packages from home makes a huge difference.  I'm pretty homesick, for Mexico haha.  But it's good.  I don't think I need anything, except maybe more sleep haha. I love you!
Hermana Fowlks with her new companion Hermana Tuia from Samoa
Hermana Fowlks' MTC district pointing to where they will be serving on the map. 
Dancing with Hermano Silva. 
This pretty much depicts their realationship with Hermano Tilachi.
Classic white girl mirror selfie in matching CCM shirts. 
 Hermana Fowlks with CCM companion Hermana Shurtliff.
All of the CCM district with the branch presidency.
Another district in the CCM that Hermana Fowlks became close to.  The one flashing the tang signs in he back with the gray suit is JUST LIKE PRESTON!  It was crazy.  But all of these people were sooo awesome. 

Hermana Fowlks loved the little parrots that were all over the CCM.

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Week 6 - San Diego!

Hermana Fowlks' Mom here -

I went to bed last night anticipating a phone call from Sister Fowlks this morning as I thought she would be flying out to San Diego.  I opened my email to check in before going to sleep only to find that she had already arrived in San Diego a day sooner than we expected!  Sad that I missed her phone call, but relieved that she is safe and happy!

Here is part of the letter her mission President sent along with a couple of photos -

"We are so grateful that your sons and daughters arrived safely in San Diego.  I met individually with each of our new missionaries and am so impressed by their dedication and desire to follow Jesus Christ.  Tonight, they were assigned to their first area and missionary companion.  Tomorrow morning, they will tour the Mormon Battalion Historic site and then will head out to teach the gospel in their new areas."
The sister to McKell's right was her companion in the MTC.  I know one of the Elders pictured  was also in her MTC district.

Thursday, March 17, 2016

Week 5 - No mucho, lo siento

Hola mis amigos!
This week was not terribly eventful. Hermano Silva gave me a really good pep talk, and told me that I need to treat each lesson like I did my swimming races. Sure I feel nervous, excited, but I should be ready to go beat everyone else in the pool. (or more like beat the devil, but you know, same thing) and it was soooo motivational! 
Then Sunday night we had to say goodbye to some good friends from another district. They left this last week! it was very sad. ill attach some pictures of the final goodbye. :)
Also, I met a guy this week who lives in Tijuana and knows the Garcia family that I stay with when I go to build houses down there! So I attached a picture of us two that we took. 
And um, now I'm realizing just how uneventful this week was. I'm sure next weeks email will be much longer!  haha. 
I love you all!
Hermana Fowlks

Here is part of her personal letter to me -
I am seriously so sad to be leaving this place. I have met people here that i will love forever!! And i will send pictures this week! Last week we didnt really take any haha. Its getting pretty hot here in Mexico. I am sweaty pretty mucho all the time. 
Im glad your leccione went well! Im getting pretty good at teaching lessions. 
I just know that I have to be at the bus at 2:30 in the morning...yuck. 
I doubt ill be emailing before I leave again. 
And part of her personal letter to Madelyn -
One thing that is funny here that we do with another district is we have this class called TALL at the same time, and we usually don't have teachers because its on a computer. So this district is in one room and we are in the other and then we have sing offs! Sometimes we sing Justin Bieber, sometimes we sing Disney, it doesn't really matter. but it is really really fun!!


Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Week 4 - No Strangers

¡hola mis amores! (Hi my loves)
Last week started out one had water Wednesday morning! so no one could shower or anything. Todas las personas (everybody) smelled really interesting.
but it was okay! because then we went to the temple. we were there for 7 horas! but this time everything was in ingles and not spanish like last time. (we used translators) 
Then me and my compañera decided to adopt a new motto. "We praise him when we win, and we praise him when we lose." So basically we pray after and before every single lesson, thanking God that we had the opportunity to teach and the opportunity to learn a little more. Our lessons are getting better.  we work on my compañera´s español every single day, and i think its really helping. 
oh and hermano silva has a new life motto: "check your lipstick before you come for me." and sometimes he´ll even add "sweetheart" at the end if he's feeling really sassy.  interpret that however you want! 
Sunday was fast Sunday, and we fasted from lunch Saturday to lunch Sunday. I don't know how many of you know this about me, but i get hangry really easy. so i was a little worried about this whole thing. but i actually didn't even get hangry until after fast and testimony meeting which was pretty much lunch anyways!
The Lord was watching out for me that is for sure.
Then a couple days ago i woke up with like this giant sore on my lip and my lip was like the size of alaska. it was crazy. so we went to the enfermaria (nurse) and he gave me this ointment stuff, and the sore has gone away now but my lip is still ginormous. he told me i just need to give it time......but i look like an ogre so thats fun! oh well! the work continues on. luckily the spirit still talks to people that have giant lips. 
this week i have learned a lot more about listening to the spirit. i've realized that when i am nervous i talk really fast (so my spanish gets worse) and then there is no room for the spirit. so i've been practcing slowing it down, and letting the spirit speak to me. its gone tons better! so make sure you leave room in your life for the spirit! 
then last night we watched a broadcast from Elder Rasband about missionary work. apparently it was broadcast to all of the CCMs in the world. but it was cool, because at the end he said "Prophets and apostles are no strangers to the voice of the Lord." and its really cool that the same people who assigned my mission call are no strangers to the voice of the Lord!  anyways, that was awesome.
that's it for this week!! try not to be a stranger to the Lord, and try to become more familiar with his voz (voice). 
les amo mucho!! ( l love you much)
Hermana Fowlks

Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Week 3 - Whoa, were halfway there!

First things first, if you sang the next part of the song after my subject title, you deserve an icecream cone! 
So this week, Hermano Tilachi, my nighttime teacher pulled me aside and said if I was going to help my district and most importantly my compañera, i need to speak only español. i havent done a very good job of doing that all the time, but mostly because my compañera doesnt understand me when i do that and its kind of important to understand each other haha. but its good! 
Also, the food here is taking a toll on one of the Hermanas in my room, and oh boy, it is quite exciting. lets just say weve already had to get a replacement plunger. poor thing. 
and then! there is something that sounds like cannon fire going on outside of the CCM. always! and it doesnt sound quite like gunshots, and everyone here is lying and wont tell us what it is. the best lie ive heard so far is from hermano silva, because he said it means its the death of another tribute, como the hunger games!
Our lecciones with investigators are going pretty well, but its really hard because mi compañera doesnt speak spanish well at all, and she cant really understand it that well either. so i pretty much have to teach and then translate for her and tell her what i said and what they said.  and then she tries to speak spanish and teach them and i have to translate for the investigator and tell him what she said. its exhausting. but apparently it works and the spirit is there because last week one of our investigators really like started crying, and he never cries. (maybe he was just crying because our leccione was so bad.. who knows) haha 
Then sunday i had to speak in sacrament meeting! i was kind of nervous, especially because it was all in spanish, but it was acutally amazing because i didnt even use my notes and the spanish just came and one of the latinos that was there told me that my spanish was really good. so it was awesome! 
More of our district got changed, our district leader is now a zone leader and one of the other elders is now our district leader. WHEN WILL IT END!
Then a couple days ago for language we were teaching classes but they had to be in Spanish.  so like my job was to be a psychiatrist, but in Spanish.  and one of the jobs was to teach a dance class and hermano silva, like rockstar, slid on his knees into the wall. it was crazy, but hilarious! 
also, i learned why there is no carpet anywhere. we cleaned a house the other day and just brought the hose in and sprayed everything down! we got really wet and it was really fun. 
also, if youre having a hard time with anything, read D&C 50, its a really good section. 
were going to the temple again today so that will be awesome!
les amo!!!! 

- Hermana Fowlks

 Me and my companera at the temple
 My district at the temple
 My favorite building... the gym!