Friday, March 28, 2014

Chilly in Chile!

March 24, 2014

Hola mi familia maravillosa!!
I seriously can´t believe it`s been another week! Time is flying! I love reading all your emails especially because they`re in english and I can understand EVERY word! My spanish is still terrible but at least I can understand a little more than I did last week, so small victories!
So pretty much they feed us like crazy here! I´m so sorry but we might have to buy an extra plane ticket for my ride back because I don´t know if one seat will contain me a year and a half from now....You seriously walk away physically exhausted from eating and I´ve yet to clear an entire plate. One day a lady brought in this huge watermelon for dessert and cut it in quarters and gave an entire quarter to us! It was seriously as big as my head.... ok exaggeration. But it was as big as the dinner plate. Not exaggeration. This week I´ve also eaten more fish than I would like.  Meat I don´t even know what animal it was from, and a pudding that tasted like my oatmeal body wash. On the bright side though, the ice cream here is WAY better than the ice cream in the U.S.  All the more reason for that extra seat. 
We met some interesting people this week, here are some of the highlights:
Maria who has a terrible speach impediment. She just stared at me the whole time we were talking and then finally she was like you look just like a doll. When we were leaving I turned around and she had a huge china cabinet filled with staring, blonde porcelien dolls, so that wasn´t creepy at all...
Daniela is gothic, believes in reincarnation, and thinks she was a witch in the previous life because she is so interested in tarioc cards and crystal balls.... Plan of Salvation is our next lesson. Her mom is a member and she was thinking about baptism a few months ago but now wants to understand the gospel a lot before she does anythnig. That was one of those lessons where I was understanding but didn´t think I actually was because she was saying some wierd stuff...She`s a sweetheart though and it kills me knowing how much better the gospel will make her life but she doesn´t understand it.
A hermano in the ward passed away this week, he had parkinson so it wasn´t anything sudden or anything, but the wierd things was when we went to visit his wife she had the casket in their living room with the part where his head was open! And the houses here are really small so it took up like half the room. I´ve never seen a dead person before so I couldn´t bare to look. But when we talked to her she spoke with a lot of peace in her voice. It was one of those lessons where I didn´t understand anything but I could feel the peace. I´m so grateful for the Plan of Salvation and that we all can have the assurance to be with the people we love most once again. This is such a wonderful message and I know that she knows this to be true in her heart. 
Camilla is one of my favorites! She`s 19 too and a menos activo. When we asked why she doesn´t come to church she said because shé´s not pretty. My heart broke. We talked to her about the temple and her divine purpose. I loved this because the temple has such a special place in my heart and I was able to talk a lot more I think because I have such a strong testimony of it. I even threw in my dinglehopper analogy from my farewell talk and it made her laugh through her tears so that was really cool!
Nicolas! I just love him to pieces. He`s 14 and has been coming to seminary with some the kids in the ward. They have seminary at 6 at night here... they have no clue how easy they have it haha. ANyway he was there early and we were at the capilla for a meeting so we gave him a tour of the chapel. There was such a special feeling in the room. Hma. Huaman told him I play the piano and he thought that was super cool so when it was my turn to talk I asked if I could play a song instead. I played Yo sè que vive mi Señor or as I used to call it I Know that My Redeemer Lives. It was a really special moment. I love the spirit that music brings into our lives. I think it`s the most powerful because music is what feeilngs sound like and the spirit testifies through feeilngs so basicallly music, well hymns, are the voice of the spirit. I challenged him to baptism afterward and he said yes! But he has to talk with his parents. And he came to church yesterday!! I pray everything works out!
Answer time:
1.We don´t have a mamita but a sweet lady in the ward does our laundry so that`s so nice
2.The food is mas o menos good (see above) But when it´s good, it`s GOOD
3.Food is chicken, fish, spaghetti, potatoes, pretty much anything with a lot of carbs they serve us. Hence that extra ticket once again haha
4. The toilet paper is fine thanks. It`s called comfort here which makes me giggle a little
5. The water is good and clean from the tap! I drink it everyday! Hence why I´m alive right now
6.We have good warm showers, except for the day we ran out of gas and it was really cold.
7. I enjoy my compañera but it´`s hard being with someone all day everyday sometimes. Especially when they don`t speak your language and I don`t think she understands how hard it is for me sometimes.. But so good so far!
8. I am SOOOOOOOO happy I´m here! SO happy! It`s really hard not being able to say what I want when I want and not understanding but I know that in teh end it`ll be totally worth it so YES, fullhearted YES I´m happy!
9. I am warm enough for now. I can feel winter coming so I will keep you updated but I know I´m going to have to buy a coat
10. No fleas!!!! Knock on wood.. But I´m safe so far!
11. (see answer for mamita)
12. Send packages to the mission home, the address is on my blog. Speak of which can you be sure to send more of those eye drops because I only brought enough for 9 months of the mission, also prenatal vitamins for my hair if you can!
13. See above
14. My bed is more or less comfy I haven´t really thought about it so I´d say that`s good!
15. We email from different spots. Right now Im in this really crappy place where the computers are in the smallest little cubbies and my elbows are cramped. I don´t know why my compañera chose this place. Also the key board is broken so sorry for so many mispelled things, I don´t have the patience to keep backspacing.
The cool thing about being a missionary is talking with people who have serious, real life problems. They have worries, doubts, needs and seeing the gospel of Jesus Christ is the solution to all. I love that I don´t have to convice, argue, persuade, trick. Missionaries aren´t salesmen, we`re saVesmen (saves(wo)men). This gospel is such a marvellous message. I´m so blessed to be a part of this great work! The spirit really does it all, not us, and man what a comfort that is!
I miss you all and hope everything is going well!!! Give the cats a kiss for me!

Con todo el amor en mi corazon,
Hermana Evans

Apartment in Quillota

Kitchen area



Street in Quillota

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Viva La Vina!

March 12, 2014

From: Secretario Misión Chile Viña del Mar <>
Date: March 12, 2014, 7:34:37 AM PDT
To: "" <>
Subject: Sister Evans

Dear Evans Family,
Your daughter arrived safely and is now with us in the mission field, we are grateful to have her here.

Here is a picture of her.

Elder Miles y Elder Truman
Secretarios Ejecutivos
Misión Chile Viña del Mar
4 Norte 1112 | 68315332

March 17, 2014

Hola mi bonita familia!!!

Ok first off I`m sorry I didn´t have a chance to write last week! Pday is Tuesday at the CCM but we left for Viña on Tuesday so we couldn`t write and then Pday here is Monday, hence por què I am writing you ahora. So expect my emails on Mondays now!!

Ok so first my last week at the CCM was fantastic! I was so sad having to say goodbye to all my amazing maestros and district!! My district was seriously my best friends and after spending like everyday all day with each other for 6 weeks we got really close. Luckily most of us will be at BYU afterward so we`ve already planned our reunion. 

BUT THE BEST NEWS IN THE WORLD: So Fernando, the guy we contacted who then came to church with the Hermanas?? So we saw him again on our last saturday there about to have a lesson with the Hermanas and we talked with him for a little while. He`s doing great. Then we ran into the Hermanas the next day after our evening devotional and guess what?! HE'S GETTING BAPTIZED!!! How cool is that?? Our first contact! Obviously we had nothing to do with the decision, that`s all the Lord and the Hermanas, but still, our first contact!! We were super excited! I don`t know how many people can say they contacted a person who got baptized before they even left the MTC. Super cool.

Answer time: I ended up buying a new camera at the mall, so I have one and I`ve been taking pictures! It`s shock proof and water proof so hopefully it`ll withstand. I`ll be sure to send them to you. Also that sucks you can`t whiten the acrylic on my tooth because my teeth are whiter than the color. But just barely, honestly I`m probably being dramatic because I always want everything to be perfect. I`ll just figure something out when I`m back.

So I made it to Viña!!! And it`s everything I ever imagined. When we first arrived we went to the clock like you saw in the picture they sent you. Then they gave us all Book of Mormons and an address for the mission home and were like ok, so you guys need to find your way, hand out the Book of Mormon and get a reference before you arrive. So we were like alright let`s go! It really wasn`t as bad as it sounds. The people here are so nice and willing to help and Hma. Watt and I were able to get 4 references on our way!

Our mission president is awesome!! I love him and his wife! Sad story time: We`re not allowed to drink coke. I may have let out an audible `what!`at orientation (hashtag oops)... Because I may or may not have drank it on our pdays at the CCM and it`s totally the same as mexican coke.. AKA the best thing in the world. It`s ok I´m over it now.

The area I`m serving in right now is called Quiotta. I think that`s how you spell it at least. But it`s not by the ocean. I know my heart may have cried a little, but I`m over it now too. My compañera is Hma. Huaman and is from Peru. She`s 24 and speaks hardly any english so I`m forced to speak the español 24/7 which is good because I know I`ll learn faster but can be really frustrating at times because my vocabulary is still limited. I can barely understand anything anyone says though. Also it is with a very heavy heart that I must report that Chile has been infected with a terrible mumbling epidemic. Everyone has it. I think they think the cure is to talk as fast as they can, so everyone speaks WAY WAY WAY fast. And that is not even an exaggeration. But it doesn`t help. In fact it makes it much worse. Hma. Huaman tells me that she even has a hard time understanding them and she`s a Latiña! I don`t know if that`s suppose to make me feel better or worse.. It`s like I`m talking on a cell phone that keeps cutting out every few seconds. I can get words here and there but not enough to piece much together of what is going on. So when it`s my turn to speak in lessons, I just bare my testimony because honestly I really don`t know what more I can do. 

We had intercambios (aka splits) on friday so I went to another area called San Pedro. We were suppose to teach the first lesson to this family but when we got there they were having lots of family problems because the mom has had to go back to work so she has a lot more responisbilities and the kids don`t like it because now they have to help out around the house more and she`s never home so they all were in a huge fight. Something like that.. Like I said I can`t understand much.. So when my compañera who also didn`t speak english looked at me I just testified. It was really cool because afterward the mom looked at me and was like `Wow. For someone who can`t understand, you sure can speak well.` That made me feel really good because I know I don`t speak well but it meant that she could feel the spirit through my broken words so once again I am EXTREMELY grateful for the language of the spirit. 

The area here is pretty poor. It`s wierd, we go into some houses and they don`t even have floors, its just like concrete and gravel and the walls are just wooden boards and then we go into a house on the next street over and it`s like a normal house on the inside. I don`t really get it, but it`s really humbling to see and it`s cool to see how the gospel applies to everyones life.

Church on sunday was great. Once again I didn`t understand much but eveyone is so kind and patient! The ward is really small. I counted about 50 people in sacrament. Also they don`t have a pianist so guess who`s the wards new sacrament pianist?? Yup, I am! 

We walk a lot which I enjoy and eat chicken and rice everyday which I also LOVE! Everyone is so kind and generous!

I love my scriptures so much! They`re AMAZING!!! Like seriously, have these things been here my whole life??? I wish I would have realized how wonderful they are before! 

I love you all so much! I hope everything is sunny and wonderful in California! It`s starting to get kind of chilly here at night so winter is coming soon. You are all in my prayers and I love hearing from you every week! Just know I`m doing well, healthy, and happily struggling to speak and understand spanish. I take a lot of comfort in the scripture that says I the Lord and bound when you do what I say. So I`m doing all I can do so He will do all He can do, which is anything so I think I`m in good hands.

Sending you all a warm Chilean ambrazo!

Con todo el amor en mi corazon,
Hermana Evans :)



Me and Hermana Watt before transfer in Vina
Vina Del Mar Mission Home

View of Vina


Sunday, March 9, 2014

One More Week To Go In The Santiago CCM

March 4, 2014
Hola mi familia fabulosa!

First, I love you guys! I hope everything is going well!! I'm so happy to hear that you guys finally got rain!! I know that was an answer to prayers! This past week has been awesome although I'm beginning to doubt that you can have a bad week when you're a missionary! But I apologize for this novel ahead of time.
Last week on Pday we found this little store that sells these super cool leather scripture cases that you can have them make custom for you! So I ordered one and we get to go pick it up when we're done emailing!! It'll have my name on the front and my mission down the spine with the picture of the santiago temple on the front and one of Christ on the back! I'm so excited to get it! I may or may not have dreamed about it a few times this week.

COOL STORY TIME...After Pday last week we had to go out into the calle (or as us lighter skinned people like to call it: street) and practice introducing the Book of Mormon to real people! So Hma. Watt and I go out and are like ok how the heck are we suppose to do this? I mean have you heard our spanish? It´s pretty broken but at least I can speak it ok and she can understand it ok so we make a pretty good team... Anyway we see this guy walking down the street so we´re like ok let´s just go talk to him and see where it goes. So we go over and I ask if he has a few minutes to talk and he's like yeah and we tell him we´re representatives of Jesus Christ and ask if he believes in Jesus and he does but doesn't go to church. It was really hard to understand him and we kept having to ask him to slow down. It was so nice though because he just kept asking us questions so we thankfully didn't have to work hard to engage him. He was like oh you´re North Americans and started asking if we were married and stuff and if we can only marry Mormons.  Then he asked about church and if it´s like mass and stuff and we´re just trying our best to answer his questions. We ask if he wants to come to church and that could be cool! But we didn´t know what time it was here so we brought him down to meet our teacher and were able to get his phone and address! So we got a referral! The first person we talked to! It was seriously the best feeling ever! THEN fast forward to Sunday. We´re sitting in sacrament waiting for testimony meeting to start when Presidente Doll calls us out to the hall. Guess who was standing there with some Hermanas?? Fernando! He came to church!! He stayed all three hours and told me he really liked it! He said that the Hermanas have been teaching him at his house this past week too! Seriously I have never felt such SWEET JOY!!!! I pray for him every night that he will keep progressing. I´m so grateful that the Lord trusts us enough to have let Fernanado´s mind be open to this beautiful message when we talked to him on the street, even when we really didn´t share anything that spiritual. It really taught me that even through broken teeth and broken spanish the Lord does work through you to touch the heart of others. You just have to open your mouth even when you have no clue what to say and the Lord will help you! I´m so much more excited to get out into the field now! 

Also this past week we started all Spanish in classes so now our teachers only speak spanish and actually only even know a little english at that, but it´s not as hard as I thought it would be. Friday we went to the temple for the last time as it is closed in March for cleaning so  it was probably my last time for the next 17 months, which is just the saddest thought ever. But it´s worth not going to the temple for that long if I can give other people the chance to feel its peace by bringing the gospel to them. AND I did the session ALL in spanish too! No headphones for this gringa! And when I say all I really mean ALL! I was watching, listening, talking the español the entire time, with the help of the workers of course!

SHOUTOUT to Aleigh and Hunter who ALSO went to the temple this past week and were sealed!! I´m SOO happy for you guys! I wish I could have been there but I LOVE you both and can´t wait to hear all about it! I ate the cake at lunch that day in celebration.

Also SHOUTOUT to Uncle Kel who I believe had a birthday this week! How many times have you turned 29 now?? ;)

Sundays here are too awesome! We had Elder Evans and his wife come and address us. And yes--He is as awesome as he sounds. He´s a member of the first quorum of the 70 and over all the missionaries and CCMs in the world. He gave an awesome talk on the doctrine of the family. I mean we had Elder Rasband a few weeks ago and then Elder Evans this week?? What is this the Provo MTC?? I love it.  Also I bore my testimony on Sunday in SPANISH! I mean how could I not after Fernando came to church! At least now if I can't learn anymore spanish for the rest of my mission I can bare my testimony at the end of my homecoming and everyone will still think I´m fluent.

Then yesterday I FINALLY got my tooth fixed! Hma. Watt and I caught a cab by ourselves and went to the office. It was funny because in the car we tried to talk to the driver about the church, like nothing big just basic small talk, but apparently he didn´t believe in Jesus Christ and then dropped us off a ways from the actual office. Oh well, you win some and you lose some, but we found it and it was a really nice place! In my head I had imagined some dark little room with a single bare light bulb and a table with an assortment of steak knives instead of dental tools. Not the case. And the dentista spoke english too! So that made it so much easier! He said he could either do a veneer or redo the acrylic covering so he did the latter and I´m as good as new! It´s not exactly perfect--the color is not quite as white as the rest of my teeth but it is pretty darn close. No one notices unless they´re like me and staring at it a inch from a mirror. BUT if you ever do send a package and want to include some white strips so I can even it out perfectly I would love you forever.

KK that´s awesome about lacrosse! You´re such a beast! I wish I could be there for some of your games! Also it was super awesome to get your email! Just keep a playlist of all your awesome tunes and then when I get back we´ll jam and you can catch me up!  Also keep the emails coming I love them! And I always will have time to read yours!

I don´t know when I´ll get to email next since next week at this time I´ll be on my way to Viña and I don´t know when Pday is there. But if you don´t hear from me on Tuesday don´t worry, there will be one coming as soon as I can!

I love you all and I love being a missionary!

Peace, love, and empanadas

Hermana Avans
(I have a maestro who consistently likes to spell my name this way haha)

MTC map of Chile

Santiago, Chile Temple

Santiago MTC

District 3 in the MTC