It’s my two week birthday!! (1/20/14)

Last p-day we had to go to Guadalajara to sign my visa extension paperwork and got so lost (but it was fun). I’m getting better at looking natural on the crazy buses.

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We eat a lot of tacos and after the first time people meet me or know I’m from the US they want to feed me hamburgers. I’m actually eating the tomatoes and pineapple, you would all be so proud of me. Also mom, we have garage sales here too! I got a new skirt, it was pretty great.

There aren’t a lot of people here who speak English and when they do they know the greetings and a couple words. So yeah I’m stuck speaking Spanish. It’s coming along. I can teach my lessons and share my thoughts well and understand the gist of things. It’s when we aren’t talking about the gospel that I have trouble understanding. So I just nod a lot and smile and say si when I think I should. My companion speaks a little English and I’m teaching her more. But she just translates things for me in Spanish just way slower than everyone else speaks. I’m so glad I have her.

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Everyone asks if my hair in natural and they also ask me if I’ve been to the White House and know the President of the United States. They don’t often know another Washington exists. So I say it’s above California and they know. Also little kids run up to me and ask if I’m from the US and tell me to talk in English. I’m kind of a celebrity. No big. And my name is a book in the Book of Mormon.

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Mi casa

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Mi casa

This week we found out me have to move houses. So we have been house hunting and have to move down a street because the land lords needs the house or something. So that’s been fun.

I love everyone’s emails and hearing what’s happening at home. I love you all so much!!

con amor,

hna Jacob

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Hola from Mexico (1/13/14)

I’m finally here!

The last few days in the MTC were so sad and so happy. There were quite a lot of us leaving. It was so good though. On Monday we flew out and on the 1st plane (to our layover in Arizona) I shared my first gospel message and gave a Book of Mormon.  It really pumped me up.

When we got to Guadalajara, President Camarillo and his wife picked us up and we all went to their house and ate dinner and celebrated Jan 6th with Rosca.

(Rosca (ring or bagel) is a Spanish and Portuguese bread dish eaten in Mexico, South America, and other areas. It is made with flour, salt, sugar, butter, yeast, water and seasonings.

A Mexican rosca de reyes

Roscas de reyes (ring of kings or three King’s bread) is an over sized version colored with candy fruit. It is part of the celebration of the Three Kings. Raisins, milk, anise, cinnamon, vanilla and colorful candy fruit are also used depending on the recipe. A plastic miniature baby can be hidden inside with the person finding it seen as the lucky winner of the prize)

Then we spent the night with a few sisters in the city. Tuesday I met my companera Hermana Rueda. She is great and is so patient with me and my Spanish. Tuesday after the transfer we went right out and taught people. We have 3 investigators and I was able to ask 2 of them to be baptized! It was so great! Our zone is Tlaquepaque and our area is Las Juntas 1.

My 1st Companion - Hermana Rueda

My 1st Companion – Hermana Rueda

We go out and are always busy with referrals, and visiting less actives, investigators, and members.  Everyone always gives us candy and one less active family has 4 puppies, so that’s always my favorite part of the day.

I love puppies.

I love puppies.

Things are definitely different here for sure. It just makes me so grateful for everything I have and everything I’ve always taken for granted, like water, and carpet, and my house. We take buses everywhere. So imagine the bus in the Harry Potter movie, that’s what it’s like, sliding all around and they are squeezing in between other cars and they barely stop to throw people off.  It’s kinda crazy.

Home

Home

home view

I haven’t seen another person con ´´ojos de color´´, so everyone stares at me like I have 3 heads. It takes some getting used too, but at the end of the day I blend in a little more because I’m covered in dirt from the roads.

Today for p-day we did go shopping. I still don’t understand pesos. We took our clothes to a members home who has a washer and then we dry them outside. I will have to get you a picture of that next week.

Today we have to go to Guadalajara to sign my visa extension papers. Sorry that this post is so scattered. I have so many thoughts and I don’t know what to say! I’m glad Devon is doing good and working hard, I knew he would.

Everyone here feeds us, feeds us so much and then also gives us more to take home. So I’m never hungry or thirsty because everyone gives us huge glasses of water or something weird to drink. Strange, but the food is not what I thought it would be and not what we had the first night at the mission president’s house. Nothing is spicy and it doesn’t have much flavor, but it’s healthy.  I hope I don’t get fat from eating so much. We also found a street vendor who was selling ´´kiwi loco/ fro yos´´.  It’s my favorite thing ever.

Fro-Yo

Fro-Yo

 

closeup froyo

There are a million more things I will have to tell you next Monday.  My address will just be the mission home. So send letters to:

Calle 18 de Marzo #3088
Col. Las Águilas
45080 Zapopan, Jalisco
Mexico

Adjusting is hard, so thank you for all your prayers and I know Heavenly Father is here helping me…. so I can do it.

I love you all so much… so so much and thank Heavenly Father everyday for you,

Hermana Jacob

 

The Last of the CCM (1/2/2014)

Hola!!

A tender mercy of the lord this week… I was kinda flippin out about Mexico and my Spanish when we were about to go to a district of all native speakers (some of who didn’t speak English). We taught them a lesson then we taught another lesson with a native speaker. I felt so much better after the lessons and now I’m so excited to get to Mexico! The native speakers were able to understand everything and I was able to teach just as much as my companion and it was just great!

I won’t be able to email home for like a week in a half because we won’t have p-day our first Monday in Mexico. Almost our entire district is traveling together except the two Nampa missionaries and elder Ball who didn’t get is visa sent in on time, so I think he is getting his new call today.

Snowflake revenge

Snowflake revenge

Since we had that snowman show up on our door we have been making paper snowflakes like crazy because the Elders were always saying how they didn’t want us to give then snowflakes for Christmas. We made about 250 of them and covered their apartment doors. It was fun! We felt like ninjas when we would drop to the ground every time a security guard would drive around in their little golf carts. We are kinda waiting to see what happens next. I hope it’s nothing too extreme.

Mom and Dad, Thank you for the cookies and apple! We loved them. “cielo in mi boca”

my district at meal time

my district at meal time

My District

My District

The District

The District

This week is kinda crazy, our 2 last classes are Saturday.  We have infield orientation tomorrow all day, and then we leave early Monday morning. We are all kinda freaking out but it’s good. I’m super excited and I can’t wait to tell you everything in my next email!

2 awesome teachers

2 awesome teachers

2 of my teachers

2 of my teachers

les quiero con todo mi corazon

Hermana Jacob

the coolest hermanas

Me, Hermana Corbridge, Shirley, Mansfield

We never go to go to the Provo Temple. It was closed when we got to the MTC and re-opened the day we left for Mexico.

We never got to go to the Provo Temple. It was closed when we got to the MTC and re-opened the day we left for Mexico.

I love my comp.

I love my comp.

My District

My District

Our going away fort

Our going away fort

Hermana Mansfield and Elder Toala

Hermana Mansfield and Elder Toala

Merry Late Christmas (12/26/2013)

Merry Late Christmas! I love you all and thanks for all the pictures and emails!

Before I get to Christmas I just have to mention that I gave my first talk in Spanish in church last week. I was freaking out but it went well. It was about enduring to the end, except there was a point where I was going to read from Nephi and I couldn’t read the verse I had planned so I picked a super random one and I had no idea what it was saying and I read it. No one even noticed, so even though it made no sense it went well.

our snowman

our snowman

So on Christmas Eve we woke up to a snowman, taller than me, right in front of our door on the 3rd floor. The Elders had made it that morning for us. I think it was supposed to be kind of a prank, but it made us all so happy, except for later that night when it started melting and we had to mop it all up so it wouldn’t freeze under the door and trap us in our apartment. Also, in our district we had secret Santas. We have been planning for like a month. We put all the gifts under out little tree (that I hid in the kitchen pantry). It was so funny because everyone picked up on things that everyone wanted with our limited selection at the bookstore on west campus.

Secret Santa Time

Secret Santa Time

That night after class we had our devotional and got to hear from Elder Evans from the Quorum of the Seventy and it was so good!

Christmas morning we woke up early and ate the most amazing granola ever and opened all our presents. They were all so great and I can use everything in Mexico! Everyone is obsessed with my necklaces and my scarves. And my district is excited for the HLJ rings (Spanish CTR rings).

Christmas Morning

Christmas Morning

Hermana Mansfield was in the talent show with a poem she wrote. I got to feel all talented sitting on the side stage with her. After she did an amazing job, we had lunch then choir practice. For the devotional we sang “Where Shepherds Lately Knelt”, which is not my favorite song. We were able to hear from Elder Bednar!!! I know right, I kinda stopped breathing when he walked in. When he walked in everything changed, and the spirit was so strong! We were broadcast to all MTCs excluding two. He said he wanted to have a question and answer session, so he passed out 200 red cell phones, trusting we wouldn’t call home, and told us to text him questions he would get on his IPad, and the other MTCs would email them in.

He is just so amazing and gave amazing answers to everything, which pretty much answered everything I wanted to know. I really didn’t want it do end. When he would answer something he would always find a way to tie it back to the atonement.

One thing I really got out of it was that we need to just go out and do. Have faith in Heavenly Father and the guidance we will receive from Him. Once He sees our faith He will help us, but we can’t just expect anything to happen without work on our part. As we come to know God more our perspective will change and we will be better able to understand His will for us. His love for us is insane. Christ, the God of the universe who created worlds without number still knows us so so well. One on one is the hallmark characteristic of Christ and when we can understand that we can know the love that he has for us individually.

It was so amazing, and after the Devotional we got to listen to a jazz band play Christmas music and then we got to watch the Mo Tab Christmas program and they passed out 18 hundred bags of popcorn for us. Overall it was an amazing Christmas.

I hope everyone is doing great and recovering from the hundreds of cinnamon rolls they ate (back at home). I love you all so much! Happy Birthday Mom. And thank you Nana and Papa for the emails! I hope you had a great Christmas!

con mucho mucho amor

Hermana Jacob

All our goodies from everyone who loves us!

All our goodies from everyone who loves us!

Vegas is for Missionaries (12/19/2013)

How is everyone!? Thanks for all the letters! I hope I have enough time to write everything! Christmas is so great here!

Last week we were able to have a devotional where the BYU men’s choir came. They were so good and my companion’s cousin was there singing! Also we were able to hear from Elder Rasband who is like one of my favorite and it was amazing. He talked about spiritual gifts and how we need to figure out what those are so we can share them with others on our mission.

Goodbye Christmas tree.

Downside of this week, they made a rule about no trees in apartments. I fought it for a while but in the end obedience is the key. Even if maybe there are rules that seem silly, God will bless us for following them. So we “planted” our tree outside, he looks like he’s always been there. So we strung the Christmas tree lights on the wall. I have to say it’s a lot better than I thought it would be. I am so thankful for those lights! Also a downside of this week, most of my friends that I’ve made here, that aren’t in my zone, have left. But that’s ok, they are all going off to do amazing work and change people lives, and they will all do amazingly!

Hello new Christmas tree!

Hello new Christmas tree!

All 11 of us at the airport.

All 11 of us at the airport.

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So as you can see, we were able to go to Vegas yesterday as a mission. Most everyone going to Guadalajara East went yesterday, minus those who didn’t get there visa papers in early enough.  We got up around 3:30am and caught a plane to Vegas. When we were there a senior elder missionary picked us up and while we waited for our appointment at the consulate he gave us tips on Mexico. Once it was our turn for our appointment, all they did was scan our fingers and take a picture. Which, I didn’t realize was for the actual visa so I didn’t smile and I look like I’m going to cry. pero, no importa. Then we flew back to SLC and got home around 9pm. So it was a long day but it was super fun.

It’s so crazy to me being a real missionary out in public. I kind of just realized how everyone looks at us, and I just realized that no matter their judgment, it’s because I am walking with the saviors name on my badge and I couldn’t be more proud. It’s surprising how many people are Mormon and how many people aren’t but who still ask us questions. I did realize placing a Book of Mormon is harder than I thought it would be. There was this lady who, when she realized we were sisters missionaries, started crying and she gave us money. She was so nice. Nice doesn’t even describe her. Her light was amazing and she wouldn’t stop talking about how grateful she was for us and the missionary work she does when she can. It is people like her that make us feel a little less homesick and proud to be serving.

Something I learned this week was about feeling the spirit. I think I’ve been stressing a little too much about not feeling it guide me as much as I thought it should, but we watched an old MTC talk by Elder Bednar and he just kind of said to stop worrying about it right now. If we are obedient and worthy then the spirit with guide us even if we don’t realize it. He talked about the 20 Mark note which is a super awesome story. So instead of worrying if things are my own thoughts or His, I have decided to just go with whatever I feel is right and then after I act I will receive a testimony that it was something that the lord needed me to do. And since I decided this it’s been so great. If it’s good then it’s worth doing. It kept coming back to me and I just realized that even if I doubt weather a feeling or thought is not from the spirit then I should still follow through on that feeling. Sometimes the Lord needs us to act on our faith.

I’ll try not to be too home sick. But I’ve kind of realized that even if I am homesick I can just think of the reason of Christmas is the birth of Christ and I am so privileged to be wearing that name on my tag. How better could someone celebrate? I love you all so much!!! And I hope you will have a great Christmas!

Love,

Hermana Jacob

This one is for Christi!

This one is for Christi!

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Love these missionaries!

Week 3 (12/12/2013)

Our little Christmas tree

Our little Christmas tree

Last week we were able to go get a tree and pretty much everyone at the CCM is super jealous. Thank you so much mom for the lights it didn’t looked quite like Christmas before we got them and now it’s perfect. We are making paper ornaments and I made a star out of a coat hanger.

Christmas tree excursion

Christmas tree excursion

Thank you everyone, and Cass, and Kevin and B for the food! Our pantry is full of food and I will never be hungry again. It’s so great! Thank you so so so much!

Tuesday for devotional we were able to hear Quintin L Cook speak to us and it was so great! We have pretty much the luckiest group on MTC missionaries. We have had 2 general authorities and we get 2 from the quorum of the 12 or 1st presidency on Christmas. If it is Uchdorf, Bednar, Eyring, Monson, or Holland I will cry!!! Also for Devotional I was in the choir and we sang “The First Noel”; it was the prettiest thing ever. So I sang to an Apostle of the Lord. NBD. Also I so happened to be sitting in seat that was on camera a lot. So when it zoomed in on me, my face turned bright red and my ears felt like they were on fire. BUT it was a broadcast devotional so Devon can see me again! And Again on Christmas! So I really hope he will, but Devon, don’t laugh too hard at my red face!

A little tender mercy of the Lord happened leaving devotional that night. We crammed about a million people onto a bus because it was like -5 outside and the bus driver played Imagine Dragons. No lie! I was so excited tears kind of came out of my face. It was so great. Heavenly father knew I needed that; I’ve been so deprived.

hermanadaniellecorbridge.blogspot.com My Hermana has a blog you should check out.

christmas tree excursion

So I’m sooooo glad I brought my knife. I’ve used it more these past 3 weeks then ever when we were camping. You can see I used it to chip the ice off the tree. And I’ve used it as an ice cream scoop, and to fix Hermana’s belts, and to eat pretty much everything.

I’ve only made like 5 elders cry at 4 square this week. But this week I guess the bubble we have been using has deflated and so we have been playing volleyball instead, I’m getting so much better.

Study time playing "Spot It"

Study time playing “Spot It”

My district is so funny. We are all getting pretty good at Spanish. We can now make fun of each other. But when we can’t, it come out like “come se dice nobody cares?’ They are all so great. Everyone makes fun of me because I fall so often and because when I get excited I can’t get my words out and I just make weird sounds. Hermana Shirley thinks that’s the greatest thing ever. It happened so often because I don’t have my mom to tell me to show down when I talk,

Sounds like Devon is doing good! I talk about him a lot and miss him like crazy. I feel like whenever if feeling down or frustrated Devon would know just what to say. So I pretend I just got a pep talk from him and I’m good to go.

I love you all so much!!

I hope you are getting my letters and thank you for the “dearelders” everyone, I feel so loved.

Hermana Jacob

On the bus to main campus.

On the bus to main campus.