Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Ghetto in Guate!


So this week I would like to remind you of this ghetto life I live so that y'all can remember to be thankful for your blessings. 

For instance... I'll start with the front door of our house, like how we have to do a running body slam to open it. One day we were in a rush to enter the house (Hermana Outsen and I are trying to drink 3 liters of water a day if you get my flow). This day the door was extra jammed, to our dismay, and I decided to do a sprinting body slam instead of a running body slam to open the door. The door didn't budge and it hurt. 

The bathroom. The bathroom door doesn't work either which is a problem when you're in a rush (3 liters of water). It has a lock that takes ten minutes to function and lets be real, I never have ten minutes. So, out of pure panic I just grab the big black TRESemme shampoo bottle that sits on top of our navy blue toilet. It's not a lock, but it keeps the door shut. Speaking of our navy blue toilet, its part of our shower. So, when I take a shower, it takes a shower too. The distance between the front of NB (navy blue) toilet and the wall is little so I always scrape my knees (TMI but this is real life people). 

The kitchen- or should I call it the celestial kingdom of the ant species. One time Hna Outsen made some nutritious oatmeal, left it on the counter for 2 minutes and came back to find a bajillion microscopic ants having Thanksgiving. She ate it anyways because it was either that or frozen boiled eggs (our fridge freezes everything) or Guatemala's version of saltine crackers. On the first Sunday I got here there was no food in the house but white jimbo bread, nutella, and biscoff cookie spread. So that's what we ate and it was Christmas on a sandwich. I think I died and went to heaven that day. (I bought spinach the next day no worries).

Lets see... what else? Oh yeah, the roof. Its tin and every time it rains it sounds like Niagara falls is falling right on top of us. So, I've become pretty great at sign language because its the only way to communicate because you can't hear anything. We can also hear every move of the cats and birds that live up there. Hermana Peguero is convinced that its a "demon",  its most definitely a bird. Oh yeah, I'll tell you about our windows. There is a weird spacer thing in between all of them. I don't know how to describe it but basically we live inside but kind of outside too. Don't worry, nobody can break in. (I tried to put my head and body through the space but my head is too big) Cats, rats, birds, cockroaches, basically anything that is smaller than my head can get through any window in our house. Usually whatever it is goes to our grocery bag garbage can and has a feast...that's always fun to clean up in the morning. Good times. 

On the plus side, for the first time in my mission, my bed is in the AIR and not on the floor! Pretty exciting right!? I love my ghetto life. Really, I do. I always get a good kick out of it todos los dias. I am so glad that I have been called to serve in the land of Guatemala! It's my favorite place!!! It will be nice because one day when I'm a broke newlywed I will have no problem living the ghetto life. All I need is two buckets, a plastic lawn chair, and baby cherry tomatoes.

On to the good stuff.....LEONEL IS GETTING BAPTIZED TOMORROW!!!!!!!! All of my hard work in Samala did not go to waste!! He will probably be the most pilas convert I've had. I'm excited for his family! Also, Hermana Outsen and I had a baptism on Saturday! Gimena and Nidia, the sisters of Jenni (who got baptized last Saturday). They are so cute! But, we did have a little mishap yesterday during sacrament meeting. Gimena and Jenni started fighting (like sisters do). It included hair pulling and all that fun stuff. I was all stressed out because they were kind of making a ruckus so I pulled a Tami Minnick and put Weston on one side of me and Whitney on the other. They didn't like that. After I looked around the congregation thinking that the members were going to be annoyed, but I'm in Guatemala and things like that always happen in church here. After they apologized to each other and gave hugs and continued being little angels. 

I am loving my area! I actually have a ward mission leader which has been sososososososo nice! He is the smartest member I've worked with in the mission. He just knows his stuff! Also, its been really great to have a gringa companion. We just talk each others heads off and I love it! 

I love my mission! I love this work! Its hard, yeah. But, I've never been so happy! I'm so excited for Weston to leave to Mexico! You will fall in love with that place so fast!

Read your scriptures, say your prayers and go to your cold air conditioned basement and lay on the carpet for me!

Much love,
Hermana Minnick


Jenn Heslop!! Thank you SO much for the birthday package!! I loved it!!!

Jill Klein!! Your package was inspired!! Those tissues saved my life! Thank you!!

Westy!  You look so handsome in your prom pictures!! Love you!

UPDATE: I think batman is gone. 

This is my iguana friend, his name is Tiko!

Gimena and Nidia

Is Utah this green?  I can't remember....I hope so!

Monday, April 21, 2014

"It is another crazy week guys"

If you only knew how crazy my last week was. First of all it was Semana Santa and that means that the Catholics remember that they are Catholics and the Evangelicos convert to be Catholic for a week because they want to participate in all of the events, also people who don't usually drink, drank. And, missionaries aren't popular. So, we spent much of our time in a church and I just about went crazy but I didn't, so that's good. I'm rambling, sorry. 

Second, this will make your jaw drop mom... so on Wednesday I was just sitting in my little hammock reading my little Spanish Book of Mormon listening to all of the booyah of Semana Santa outside when all of the sudden I hear "HERMANA MINNICK PHHHOONNE!" I don't like to answer the phone, especially in Spanish and also because our phone is from the last century. I yelled hello into the receiver 20 times before I heard the voice of Elder Russell (my ex Zone leader and the newest AP) "Hermana Minnick! It's your favorite zone leader!" I just thought, "Yeah, not after what you're going to say to me!" He preceded to say, "You have emergency changes, we will be there to pick you up in 40 minutes." I thought he was joking. FORTY MINUTES!!! Like, I'm a Hermana! I actually unpack my stuff and settle in!  I'm not some Elder that lives out of a suitcase! It will take at least 3 hours to pack... also changes?! What about my investigators and the members and my companion still didn't even know the area!!! But, that's the mission. So I just sat there in pure shock and Hermana Betancourth basically packed my bags... in 40 minutes. I didn't know it was possible! So they show up, put my suitcases in the back of the truck and then Guatemala decided that it wanted to rain really hard. I was in so much shock that I didn't even care about my stuff... although I did care later when I opened my suitcases that night.

Flash back to the night before, Hermana Garcia (the mission nurse who I love) called to check on me and Batman (my parasites) and told me that the area doctor told her that if my parasites didn't leave, or if they decide to come back, I will be deported to Los Estados Unidos to finish my mission!!!! So, she gave me some more killer pills and I am doing every thing I can to get these evil worms out of me. She told me I would be transferred in May to a parasite free area. But, I guess they decided that instead of May they decided tomorrow. So, I am in SAN MARTIN (this is ironic because it is Hermana Bontempo's last area and I feel like I am walking in her footsteps which scares me because I don't think I can handle the culture shock of the United States right now!) I love San Martin and I love my companion! Hermana OUTSEN!!! A GRINGA!! She went to Brighton and grew up in Sandy so we basically have small world moments all day long! These last five days with her have been an absolute blast! It's nice to remember that I still have a personality in English. (Please go read her blog because she is so funny and will share other experiences we had this week - )

I was so sad to leave my investigators in Samala, but my zone leader from Las Palmas told me today that Leonel passed his interview for baptism and that makes every hard moment of the last three months worth it for me!!!!!!! I might not be able to see the fruit but I dang (you can take that out mom) sure planted those seeds with all of my heart, might, mind, and strength! 

Also, on Saturday we had a baptism and it was the sweetest tender mercy in the entire world. My soul hurt for 3 months and on Saturday I felt so happy to witness a precious soul enter into the waters of baptism. 
This is Jenni, she is 13. Although she technically isn't my convert,
it is my goal to make her the best recent convert in the ward.

Onto other things...

1. An investigator tried to tell me this last week that keeping the commandments was like, "C´s get degrees."   No way, Jose!   
 See Alma 37:13

13 O remember, remember, my son Helaman, how strict are the commandments of God. And he said: If ye will keep my commandments ye shall prosper in the land—but if ye keep not his commandments ye shall be cut off from his presence.

2. I found this scripture this week and it pumped me up so much!!!  

DyC 128:22-23

 22 Brethren, shall we not go on in so great a cause? Go forward and not backward. aCourage, brethren; and on, on to the victory! Let your hearts rejoice, and be exceedingly glad. Let the earth break forth into bsinging. Let the cdead speak forth anthems of eternal praise to the dKing Immanuel, who hath ordained, before the world was, that which would enable us to eredeem them out of their fprison; for the prisoners shall go free.
 23 Let the amountains shout for joy, and all ye valleys cry aloud; and all ye seas and dry lands tell the wonders of your Eternal King! And ye rivers, and brooks, and rills, flow down with gladness. Let the woods and all the trees of the field praise the Lord; and ye solidbrocks weep for joy! And let the sun, moon, and the cmorning stars sing together, and let all the sons of God shout for joy! And let the eternal creations declare his name forever and ever! And again I say, how glorious is the voice we hear from heaven, proclaiming in our ears, glory, and salvation, and honor, and dimmortality, and eternal life; kingdoms, principalities, and powers!
I love you all so much!  Send me a letter or two if you want!

Hermana Minnick  

Ugly face contest...who wins????
(Outsen, Parker, Terry, Minnick)

La Semana Santa! 

Just hangin with some friends in the trees!

This is the first lizard I have caught on my mission...isn't he cute???

We had P-Night!

Following pics from LAST WEEK with her last comp in SAMALA!!!!!!  

My companion eats these sandwiches every day!  
My watch tan line!

This is where I study!

Thursday, April 10, 2014

A random letter...

Family, here it goes:

1. I asked a little girl in my ward what her favorite holiday is and she said, "General Conference." I was like, "Yeah. Mine too." Seriously though!! It was AWESOME!! I only got to see like 5 talks but I was grateful for that. Can I just tell you what General Conference is like here in Guatemala. First, on Saturday morning we show up at 9:30 a.m. with our investigators...doors locked...lights out. I was like, "HELLO, the Prophet is going to speak in T-30 minutes and it takes a Guatemalan at least one hour to successfully work the technology stuff!" So yeah, they finally show up and like I predicted it took 45 minutes for them to get the satellite to work. Then it was only in English so we were all translating. After a lot of silent prayers it worked. In attendance? 18 missionaries, 40 investigators, my Bishop, 3 members and the Stake Presidency. On Sunday the members decided to show up. We had 5 investigators which was a miracle and I was so happy! Halfway through the nortes went to the office to watch it in English. I loved every second of it. 

Things I concluded after general conference:

   a) EVERY SESSION OF GENERAL CONFERENCE IS IMPORTANT because there is not only 1 prophet seer and revelator, there are 15. 

   b) I will always back up our prophets and apostles because they are men called of God. They receive revelation for us. They want what is best for us. If the world doesn't like that - that's the world's problem. I follow the Lord's plan and not Satans. No matter how beautifully presented Satan's plan may be, I will not fall into his trap. Don't be the mouse that thinks he can get the cheese (they always die...not only physically but spiritually too).

   c) I will always invite as many people as I can to listen to our prophet. Side note - Weston, put a goal right now to fill a bus of people for the October General Conference.  I'll do it here in Guatemala, you do it there in Mexico. But, I'm going to fill two and you're going to lose!!!

   d) I love the Motab. 

   e) Mom, please send me the Ensign because I missed half of General Conference (note from Tami...English copies of the Ensign are like gold in Guatemala! Best missionary package stuffer!)

2. There were changes and I stayed in Samala. I was surprised and shocked but I guess my work is not done here! My new companion is Hermana Aveñdano from Puebla Mexico! I love Mexicans Weston! They are so chill and they work hard. Start practicing, "Que chido!" (cool) Anyway, we have already seen miracles in our area. I have learned so much from Hna. Aveñdano. She has 7 months in the mission and is seriously incredible! 

3. If there is one thing I could have right now it would be grilled salmon and steamed vegetables. Someone eat it for me!

4. Hermana Bontempo left me and I'm so sad! I love you Compañera! You're going to do amazing in Texas! I'll send you any tienda snacka you want! GO FIND THOSE CHAPINES!!

5. So we are teaching a family that I love with all my heart. They don't have a house and basically don't have anything. Lesbia (the mom) is 9 months and 5 days pregnant! She has never been to the doctor... Leonel (the dad) came to the conference yesterday and his eyes were seriously glued to the screen! He said, "The Book of Mormon makes sense, I mean, it says in the bible that there is another book!" I was like, "WHERE HAVE YOU BEEN ALL MY MISSION!" I LOVE it when people can read because that means they can read the most important book that will change their lives! I love this family, they don't have anything and I wish I could give them everything I have. I am reminded everyday here in Guatemala to be thankful for my food and shelter and clothing. These people are so humble! Remember to be grateful! I didn't get to hear Pres. Uchtdorf but I heard that's what he talked about! An attitude of gratitude!

6. I love all of you! Thanks for your prayers and support!

Con todo el amor en el mundo,
Hermana Minnick

Grandpa John and Grandma Shirley! Thanks for the letter! Love and miss you!
Grandpa Chuck and Grandma Lauradean!  Thanks for the email! Love you too!
Papa Sherrell and Grandma Linda - I am getting all your dear elders!  Thanks for all the updates and love!
Sara! Shoah! Syd! Miss you guys! Thanks for keeping me updated! I LOVEDDDDD THE PACKAGE!!! You guys get the best package of the year award!

My last day con Leyvita!

Learning how to be a girl!

Hermana Leyva!!

I'm not fat anymore thanks to my parasite friends!