Monday, December 29, 2014

Happy New Year!!!!!!!

December 29, 2014

Hello my family!
It was so awesome to talk to you guys this week! You all looked beautiful! And the next thing you know we`ll be skyping again on Mother's Day! That made me feel good to hear that you think I am normal still and not some crazy person. I still feel normal so that`s good and I don`t feel different because of the mission, just better than I was before.
Ok so about the email from grandma... that is way funny and I`m so sad that I didn`t get it. Tell her to send it to me again! Maybe she has my email wrong and that`s why I didn`t get it and you did? But I`m looking forward to hearing about elderly people and the U.S. treasury... haha.
So everything is going good here. We found a family this week! They didn`t come to church on Sunday but I`m excited to teach them! Families are just the best!
Our diet starts again today. I am so excited for it too this time. I will never eat Santa`s cookies for him again. I really don`t know what the heck we were thinking, buying so many treats and thinking we could eat it all. We literally felt so sick for like 3 days. I think that was probably the stupidest thing I`ve ever tried to do in my life. We ended up taking more than half of all that stuff to the elders in the office! They were very pleased and told us to keep up the good work... haha. But now we are back to being healthy! We actually ran down to Viña today. It only look 30 minutes so it wasn`t even bad. But, it was fun so we`ll probably do that every pday now. We`d love to run back but I just don`t think that`ll work with our huge watermelons in hand. Maybe for week 4..... 
Also, I can`t believe that this week is New Years! Seriously 2014 just flew by. I can`t believe I`ve been in Chile for basically all of it! So in memory of 2014, I thought of 14 accomplishments slash events slash random things of my 2014 year......
1. Went through the temple for the first time! And was a worker there! Those are some of my most special memories. I can`t wait to work there again!
2. Left on my mission! 
3. Learned Spanish! And probably spoke it more than English this year!
4. Spent 30 hours in an airport. If I ever go to the Atlanta airport again it will be too soon!
5. Broke my front tooth with a fork!
6. Became OBSESSED with mineral water. It`s seriously SO good! 
7. Experienced a high earthquake per week ratio. It`s like weird to NOT have them!
8. Was eaten alive by fleas. My record is up to 36 bites at the same time..! 
9. Wore skirts EVERY DAY!!!
10. Had my first empanada and now I`m hooked!
11. Celebrated Christmas in the summer!
12. Received the most free ice cream slash other little treats (Being blonde in Chile does have it`s perks)!!!!
13. Have the hugest withdrawal from Mexican food. I need Mr. Taco!!!
14. Most importantly, this year I have solidified my testimony of the gospel of Jesus Christ. There is no doubt in my mind that He lives and loves us. That even though life is hard, it doesn`t mean that God doesn`t exist or doesn`t care. I know that the principle object of the gospel is change. We are not stuck, or frozen as we are. We are not rocks. We are capable of becoming better and overcoming our weaknesses and Christ and His Atoning sacrifice are there to help us become better, and one day, even perfect.  I know that a 14 year old boy said a prayer one Spring day with a simple question and His answer changed the world. I also know that if an uneducated 14 year old boy can receive an answer to his prayer, you and I can and will absolutely receive the answer to ours. We just need to be humble enough to accept the answer and its form. The gospel is so amazing. I know that I didn`t need to come all the way down to Chile to really come to know these things for myself. God gives us all the tools we need. The scriptures, prayer, church. Boom! So simple. So beautiful.
I hope you guys have a great time in Utah this week! Shred the gnar for me out there, I know kk wishes she had as much steez as me on the snowboard..  ;)
I love you all!!   Talk to you next year!
Hermana Evans

Saturday, December 27, 2014

Feliz Navidad!!!!!!!!

December 22, 2014

Hola familia!!!!!  Feliz Navidad!!! I just have to say that I am so excited for Christmas!

This week was the same old same old. Hiking up hills. Burning thighs. But I am so glad to have arrived at the week we have been long waiting for!! CHRISTMAS! Ok so at first I was like kinda bummed, not going to lie... walking in to houses and seeing their Christmas trees because it was like ah man, I don`t get to have a tree, I don`t get to watch the movie, Elf, I don`t get to do all of the fun Christmas family things. But that only lasted a day because then I got my head on straight and was like wait a minute. The awesome thing about Christmas is that everyone is even more focused on Christ than they normally are. And as missionaries, we`re focused on Christ 24/ 7, so REALLY everyday is like Christmas time for us as missionaries! And that is way better than just a day in a month. And thinking of Christ and his birth and his life and atonement is definitely the best way to spread Christmas cheer, (the second best way is singing loud for all to hear :) )
But my companion and I have been planning our Christmas morning since the beginning of the cambio. So we started our diet right after Thanksgiving. And we`ve been doing awesome with it! Straight salads and turkey burgers (I`ve lost almost 10 pounds! yesss) BUT we`ve saved up our money good and we went to the American grocery super story place and we`ve bought everything thing wonderful and magical and sugary that anyone could dream of (and that`s available in Chile). Lets just say we have like 3 bags of Doritos, 4 tubs of ice cream and at least 11 sleaves of cookies. Not to mention the cinnamon rolls, cookies and brownies we will be baking. We added up all the calories we`ve eaten this month with the salads and everything and it was like 17,000. Then we added up all the calories of all the food we bought ( not including what we will be baking) and it`s like 51,000!! Hahahah we were dying. Don`t worry though. There is no way we are going to be able to eat everything. But I think it`s safe to say that we will be having a VERY merry Christmas indeed!!!
Have you guys seen the video the church made for Christmas?? It`s called, He is the Gift. IT`S AWESOME! Anyway we show it to everyone right now and I`ve been thinking about the message.  I absolutely love the part where it says that God so loved YOU that He sent His son. It`s so true. He really does love you. And me. And every single one of us. There is nothing that he is not willing to do to help us if we just go to Him. I`ve been thinking on what kind of gift I can give to Him and to my Savior this year. After all I mean it`s Jesus` birthday right?? He definitely deserves a gift. So I wanted to give him a baptism and we got it! But having that experience I think was way more another gift and blessing that He gave me. So I got to thinking again. The Savior is a very hard person to shop for. But then I just kind of realized something that I think I`ve always known anyway. Really the only thing we can give to the Creator of the world is the only thing He truly doesn`t have and that is our will. It`s the only uniquely personal thing that we can give Him. God gave us our agency so we can give Him our decisions. We can give Him our trust. We can give Him our love. And we can do that by keeping His commandments, through serving others, by being examples. It`s a hard gift to give, but it`s also the gift that will just keep giving.
I love my Savior so much. I`m so grateful for his birth and his life. For that beautiful night in Bethlehem, not only a baby was born, but it was also the birth of hope, joy, love, second and third chances. The birth of pages in white, the birth of everything lovely and of good report. I love that baby Jesus. I love that man on the cross. I love my Savior.
I hope that this season and EVERY season, Spring, Summer, Fall, and Winter, we will always remember and use this great amazing, infinite gift from the most loving Heavenly Father. 
I love you all! Have the greatest, merriest Christmas!
Remember to leave some cookies for Santa!
Con todo mi amor,
Hermana Evans
Me and my companion

Me, of course!

another pic of me and my companion...we used
this as our Christmas picture!

Monday, December 15, 2014


December 15, 2014

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Even Mount Everest Has Its Top

December 8, 2014
Hey there family!!!
Wow! It sounds like you guys have had a super busy week! I wish we had Christmas parties here! It`s weird, Christmas just isn't a super big holiday thing here. No one is excited about it. Although all the tacky funny Santa sticker things that everyone has in their windows have finally came back into season.
I´m still enjoying everything here! My comp is awesome. But I do have to say that this week was hard. I don`t know what we were doing wrong or what, but it was just one of those weeks where no one would let us in their house or our investigadores that we do have weren't  home when we passed by or weren't answering their phones. So basically we walked. A lot. And then we walked some more!
This week we also watched the movie, '17 Miracles' with one of the recent converts. I don`t know if you guys have seen it, but I never had and it was SUPER great! Oh my gosh. The faith of those pioneers. I was like if you can walk through the snow for weeks and weeks, I can walk up and down hills in the sun. Actually, yesterday was a super hard day. No one wanted to listen to us and it was hot and we were tired and for some reason my scriptures in my bag seemed a lot heavier than normal.  It was like the hours converted into days. And, no one would let us in to sit down. We walked hills for hours. At  7pm we had an appointment at the top of the hill but of course she wasn't home. So we were like 'darn,' because we didn't want to have to walk back down the hill because that meant walking back up. (We live at the VERY top). But we had no other option because we`d already talked with everyone up top. So, we went down to another investigador which was home! Only he lives alone and is paralyzed from the waist down so we always teach him through the window which means standing! So then afterward we had to make the trek back up. I really have no clue how we did it. It made me think of the 17 Miracles movie and how they said that there were angels pushing their cart. I think there were angels pushing us up that hill too! It was crazy. I was just so grateful for the strength from some unseen force. It was a great experience though (although I`m sure my thighs would disagree) because even though it didn't seem like we were having success, we had the strength to push through and climb. It was just super cool to see how the Lord really does always bless us and is always there. Even when it seems like no one is listening and we could think like what are we doing wrong? I think it`s the same in life. We have days or maybe even weeks that just suck. And we're absolutely exhausted and we're just like what am I doing wrong? Why is this happening? And really we're not doing anything wrong. The week just sucks that`s all. But God loves us and he blesses us with the strength to endure and persevere. And then the next day or week is better. We just got to keep going one step at a time. At some point the hill has got to end right? Even Mount Everest has a point at the top where everything starts going down hill, you just got to get there.
Our Mount Everest top this week was that Luis, the little raisin of an old man, came to church!! Which means he can be baptized next week if he doesn't`t have more health complications! He was so cute. We called him an hour before church and he answered and said he was ready before the first ring even finished. I was a little worried because our chapel is two stories and the sacrament room is the whole upstairs and there`s no elevator or anything... but good ole Luis surprised me. That man is spry! He just dominated those stairs. So honestly the fact that he came to church made the walking the hills the rest of the week worth it. I´m so blessed!
So that was basically my week. But I love it here and I love the people and I love that Christmas is in 17 days! Life is good, even if the hills are steep.
Hope you all have a great week! Eat lots of Christmas cookies for me!!
Con todo el amor en mi corazón,
Hermana Evans

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Thank You!!!!!

December 1, 2014

Hola familia!!
I hope you all had a marvelous week and are all big and fat after eating lots of turkey and stuffing and everything wonderful! 
One thing I was really grateful for this year is to have an American compañera for Thanksgiving. So obviously we weren't going to be celebrating it this year but we decided that wasn't going to keep us from eating some good ole delicious green bean casserole! So we were actually able to miraculously find the ingredients and we made a little one for lunch. While it definitely wasn't as good as yours mom, it was good, and it still felt a little like Thanksgiving.
This week was awesome. We found this one grocery store place that is seriously almost like Target. I think we spent like a good hour and a half walking up and down the aisle because they have all the American brands of stuff. Ha ha ha it's kind of sad how excited a bagel can make us. But I've really learned that we don't know how good we got it in the States. 
This week I had my first intercambio as a leader and I was a little nervous about it just because I wanted to do a good job and really help the other hermana. I was with a hermana from Peru, in her area. The people here are a lot different from the people in my other sectors. I think it was because I've always been in more like countryside and here it's almost like La Jolla. The people are just really rude. But the best part was that with the one cita (appointment) they had, we walked in the house and the first thing their investigadora told us before she even sat down, was that she wanted to get baptized! It was awesome because the hermana had told me that she wasn't sure if she really wanted to do it and that she needed a confirmation of her testimony. But I guess she has a friend who she didn't know was a member, but after talking to her friend, she felt like it was the thing that she should do. I love member missionary work! I never realized how much power and influence we have as just members to help people come to Christ, but I know that our example is so important and that one person really can make a difference! So that was like a tender mercy from God after a day of many mean rejections. But the intercambio went well and I realized that I really have no need to be nervous and that the spirit really does guide and tells us what to do.
Also we found this couple that was super awesome this week! We taught them the Restoration and it was seriously like they were finishing our sentences! AND get this, THEY'RE MARRIED!!! I seriously feel like the Lord has been preparing them. It was so awesome, we were teaching about prophets and they're like well if God always sends prophets there should be one today. and we're like yeah!! there is!! And when we were talking about priesthood authority and the apostasy they were like so God needs to call another prophet and give him the authority and we're like just wait until we tell you about a boy named Joseph Smith! It was so awesome. Their problem is coming to church though. It was funny because Javier (the husband) was like ok even though this is the true church it's just hard to go to the chapel in the morning. I didn't even care in the moment that he was making up excuses because the words true church were just ringing in my years! It was awesome. They're going to read and pray and I know that when they receive an answer they'll be more motivated to come because really the only thing in their way is laziness.
The biggest miracle of all was yesterday when we walked into church we saw that Gabriela was there!! She came! I'm still not sure how she got her husband to let her come but she was there with her kids! See that's just what I love. The people that REALLY TRUELY have desires to be baptized and change really do follow through with the commitments. They come to church. And it's not for anything that we do as missionaries or people. The spirit touches their heart and they feel motivated to act because they want to align themselves more with Christ and His gospel. It`s so awesome! She'll for sure be baptized this month. I`m so happy for her!
Since this week was Thanksgiving I was thinking about all the things that I'm grateful for. And while I could easily make a long list from a ocean view to fresh made Chilean bread. The things I'm most thankful for is my Savior, Jesus Cristo, His gospel and my family. Over the past 10 months I have come to know the character of Jesus and His love in a way that I could have never known before. I know that He lives. I know that He loves us. I know that God has a plan maravilloso. I know that while this life is hard ( you wouldn't believe the situations and trials I've seen people here bear), but that the gospel gives us relief. It gives us an eternal perspective. It motivates us to push forward, it gives us hope in turmoil, it lifts hearts, spirits, and attitudes. I know that the family is forever. I know that this life is designed for us to have trial and hardships so we can become the people that God designed us to be. I'm grateful for this knowledge and for the comfort and confidence I have because of this. I'm grateful that I can be so far from home but never feel that far from home because I know that we're united in the gospel, because I'm teaching the same truths that you guys taught me. I'm grateful to be able to share this gospel and Christ's teachings. I'm grateful for my testimony. I'm grateful that I know the truth. I'm grateful for the answers of prayer that I've received. For the people who's lives I've seen changed. I'm grateful to be a missionary. It means everything to me. 
I'm grateful for you guys. For your constant support and love. Thank you. Gracias.
Con todo el amor en mi corazon (Seriously), 
Hermana Evans
Look what we found!!! Haven't seen these since I left the States!!!

Intercambios en Agua Santo, another part of Vina

Look at that City....Vina Del Mar!

Castle in Agua Santo

Another picture of the ocean in the distance!

Green Bean Casserole!

Celebrating Thanksgiving with a green bean casserole!!!

Me and my companion getting ready to dig in!

Ew....Gross.  But people actually do it here!

Check out those stairs! Don't worry, those are
in the Elders' sector...

Ghetto door!

Night lights

Andes mountains in the distance....

Pretty sure that dog was possessed!!!!....