Wednesday, August 2, 2017

July 31, 2017 Trainer to Elder Maiz, "Corn on the Cobbley"

Hello everyone! Another good week here in Badajoz.
Well the week started out pretty crazy! Since I was called to train I had to leave here on Monday and travel all the way down to Málaga . I ended up leaving here Monday afternoon at around 5 o'clock. I then went and stayed the night in Sevilla. Oh yeah funny story so the other Elders who were supposed to pick me up in Sevilla were super late, so I ended up standing alone on the street waiting by the church for an hour so that was fun haha lots of awkward looks as people passed me by. Anyways they eventually showed up and we walked forever to their piso. Then next morning got up early to go catch my train down to Málaga . Yeah I got lucky this time and got a train so that was sweet! So Tuesday we had a little trainers training meeting then we got assigned to our new little gringocitos. Afterwards we got to go to the mission home, it was my first time haha! So we caught the cercanías out to Fuengirola where President lives. Man that city is sooo nice. Basically just feels like a vacation town. They made us some nice taco salads for dinner with ranch dressing! Haha I forgot how good salad dressing was after only having vinegar and tuna on salads for the past year. We all stayed the night there then the next morning we were off again back to Badajoz. This time we weren't as lucky with our travel plans. Our first bus left Málaga at 3 pm. Then we caught another bus in Sevilla at 7. So we didn't end up getting back to Badajoz till 10, so that traveling really wore on me for the rest of the week. 
Anyways so far training has been good. My companion is named Elder Cobbley he is from Illinois the land of the corn so everybody calls him corn on the Cobbley or Elder Maíz (Corn). Its pretty funny. 
When he first got here the branch presidents family and I got him with a pretty funny little joke. So we went to their house pretending they were old investigators who wanted to be taught again. About halfway through the lesson his wife was like I'm thirsty go get something to drink. So they brought out some Tinto de Verano sin Alcohol. So it basically looks exactly like wine but doesn't have any alcohol in it. So im like oh sorry guys like thank you so much but we don't drink alcohol and they pretend to be super offended and are telling us oh the missionaries before drank it no big deal and stuff haha. So eventually they are like alright if you drink just this little cup we will come to church with you guys for the next 2 months. I pretend to hesitate for a minute and am like alright and just chug it. Oh man you should've seen the look on my companions face, it was priceless hahaha. So then we are just like alright whose gonna tell him and President just hands him the bottle. Man it was so funny he was just in shock for the next hour the poor kid but it was a fun little prank that'll make the first day of his mission memorable haha. 
He is learning super fast though, he already speaks way better Spanish than I did at that point in my mission so thats good. We have just been practicing a lot reading Preach my Gospel out loud in Spanish during our comp study to work on pronunciation so thats helping a lot. 

For my birthday the branch president had us over for dinner and some cake. He also gave me this really awesome case for my Predicad mi Evangelio from his mission in Peru some funny socks and some cereal from America yummy! Haha they are the best! Then at the end the best surprise of all, they turned on the tv and there they were my family! They surprised me with a nice little video singing for my birthday. Thanks so much you guys you're the best! 💙💙💙

Okay so last two little things. This Sunday a sister missionary who had served here about a year ago came through with her family to visit. So I got to translate for them in the classes. Man it was pretty rough haha cause I can like understand everything but remembering all of the words in english and trying to make a good translation while listening for the next phrase is super hard. After church my brain was just completely fried haha. It was kind of a fun opportunity though. 

Last of all we had a cool little miracle. So we had left our piso and were on our way to an appointment that was far away so we decided to take the bus. So we were waiting for the bus to come and right as it pulled up I realized my wallet wasn't in my pocket which had our only money in it. So I kind of panicked we looked all over the ground by the bench and everything but no luck. So we ran back to piso and there it was under a piece of paper on our table. At this point though we were going to be late if we waited the 30 minutes for the next bus so we started speed walking across town. On the way some guy sweeping the streets started waving us down. I wasn't sure if he was just one of those people that just wanted to yell at us or what so we kind of approached him cautiously. Turns out he is a member that the other elders have been trying to get in contact with forever but had gotten a new phone so they had no way of reaching him. It was pretty cool that I just happened to forget my wallet so we walked through a way that we wouldn't have ever passed through otherwise right in the moment that he was there. The lord works in mysterious ways.. 

Anyways well thats about all, this ones been a little long sorry haha
 Love you all! 

- Elder Childers 

July 24, 2017 Gladis

Good day family and friends,

Well I got some exciting news. This week we were on intercambios doing our personal study Saturday morning when President called. Its always scary when he calls haha. Anyways he presented me with the news that I will be training! Elder Balukoff will be going to Cartagena near where I started and will be a DL now. So he's pretty nervous about that. I'm super excited but also pretty nervous haha. I'm currently on a bus to Sevilla where I will stay the night then tomorrow morning I will catch a train to Malaga. Tomorrow will be a pretty full day. We will have trainers training which will start at noon. Then we will finally be assigned to our trainees at 5:00 where we will have a little meet and greet type dinner in the capilla. Then Wednesday we will make the long trip back to Badajoz. I'm excited and just want to know who my comp is already but I'm also pretty nervous to be training. I'm sure it'll be a great learning experience for the both of us though! 

As for the rest of this week it was pretty good. During the intercambios we had one really awesome lesson. Friday night I went out with Elder Moore and one of the young men in our ward Gabriel who just turned 18. We taught a woman from Ecuador named Gladis. She was pretty down because she just lost her job about a month or so ago and is really struggling trying to support herself and two kids. We taught a really powerful little message to her about how God gives us trials so that we can grow. I testified to her about the power of prayer and the comfort and guidance it brings. It was really awesome to see her smile at the end and thank us. Gabriel the young man I mentioned just was called as the new branch mission leader. He's an awesome kid, we are trying to get him out working with us more because he is preparing to go in a mission. Elder Balukoff and I are hoping he gets called to Boise haha :) 

Anyways yeah that's the big news this week. Hope y'all enjoyed it. 
Have a good one! 

- Elder Childers 

July 17, 2017 - Fried Rice

Dear Mom and Dad, 

Hey first off thanks so much for sending the fried rice recipe. I got the email from you this morning and it sounded really good so we came home and made it for lunch. DELICIOSO!!! Y super fácil! We were going to make the Hawaiian haystacks this past week but we could not find cream of chicken soup anywhere. I don't think canned soup exists here... any thoughts on a replacement for that? I know its kinda like the main ingredient soo... idk haha. 
Anyways this week has been a bit slow. Mostly cause its been really hot here. As a result of the heat here everyone does like a reverse hibernation. They just try to spent the whole summer asleep in their piso. We can call people at 11 am or at 8 pm same result always asleep, its ridiculous. Also another crazy thing, everyone here has "summer vacation" basically they all just go take a month and a half off work. Businesses just completely close up its weird. Its just hard cause the time when everyone starts coming out is just an hour or so before we have to be. Also whenever we do go and try to contact people in their homes or call them they are almost always angry cause we've woken them up haha its like well its not my fault you sleep 14 out of the 24 hours in a day! And they wonder why this country has so many social and economical problems.. Well anyways this week we have just been trying to find some investigators. We found one new guy named Vicente on the street but when we passed by his house his wife answered and said he had left on vacation with some friends and would be back the first week of August so that'll have to wait. Like I said things are pretty slow right now cause no one really has ganas to do anything. What else happened.. well we had our last district meeting up in Cáceres because it was the Gibsons (the senior missionaries in our district) last week in the mission. So from now on they will be here in Badajoz every week. For the last one though she made us pulled pork sandwiches and cupcakes for mine and Elder Nye's birthdays. Normally our bus back home leaves at 2:45 so we left at the usual time and got there at about 2:40 to find out he bus had left at 2:30 just 10 minutes earlier because they had started the new summer schedule this week and we didn't know about it. Anyways so we got stuck up in Cáceres for a solid 4 hours which wasn't terrible just had some extra studies in the bus station. 
This week we also started trying to work with some of the young men in the branch. There are 3 and our branch president wants them to come with us and do like a mini mission just during the day. Since we have a new rule that no one can come in our piso except for other missionaries we planned out to meet him at the church and do studies and stuff there but he never showed up. Turns out he had lost his phone the day before and never got our last text confirming the time. This week we plan on doing it again though so that should be fun. 
I think thats pretty much about it. We started up the push up challenge again this week which has been fun. I decided to step it up a notch this time and do 75 every morning and night so 150 a day. Maybe in a week or so ill kick it up to 200 we'll see haha. 
We also cleaned our piso up super well and moved the beds into the main room so now we'll have air conditioning at night cause its started getting too hot to sleep. We'll see how that goes. It'll be nice to have a room with some floor space to work out in now. 
This upcoming Sunday we will get transfer calls, unless I end up training then president would call on Saturday. Everyone seems pretty dead set that I will train so I'm kind of nervous about that. I think it might be kind of fun but stressful and hard at the same time. I'm excited for transfers but not haha its been really fun with Elder Balukoff we get along super well. On the other had though its good to have different companions because I grow and learn so much from each and every one.
I miss you guys a lot. I hope everything is going good there. I love seeing all the pictures each week and hearing about what you are all up to. Excited to hear about you guys headed off to trek. That was a fun experience it'll be cool to see what Zach gets out of it. Make sure to take tons of pictures! 
I've been going super hard on my scripture study lately, took up Tori's challenge to read the BOM in 50 days. I just got to the part in Alma where it talks about Moroni and Teancum and their special ops missions haha. I love this part so hard to put it down :)
Fun to think back on our family scripture studies when we read these parts. 
Well I love and miss you guys a ton! Thank you so much for all that you have done and continue to do for me. Thanks for encouraging me to serve a mission. It is no doubt the  most challenging thing I have ever done in my life but also the greatest learning and growing experience. Thanks for the support and prayers. 
I love you the mostest toastest!
 Your son,

Elder Childers