Monday, December 29, 2014

So I´ll start by describing what happens here in Chile for Christmas! They celebrate it a little different then we normally do. The big thing for Christmas is the dinner on the 24th. All the family get together and the eat dinner really late at like 10 or 11 and then after dinner they open all their presents and go to bed really late. And in the morning they wake up and the kids can play with their toys and I´m sure the parents just sleep in! Haha

Our day for the 24th included a whole ton of eating. We had our District class in the morning in San Felipe where we ate cupcakes that I made and cupcakes that the second counselor in the stake´s wife made and other treats for chirstmas and then right after that we went to a member´s house, who always makes way good food and a lot of it, to eat lunch. Because we our class ended late we didn´t have time after lunch to go back to Catemu so we stayed in Llay-Llay and studied until six and after 6 we had our free time for Christmas! So we met up with the missionaries in Llay-Llay and ate dinner with a member at 7:30(he had the best meat) and then at 9:30 we ate dinner with another member. Soooo much food. I almost didn´t make it. But it was a lot of fun! 

Christmas day was basically just a normal day other than we could wake up an hour later and we had time to Skype! In the morning I opened my presents I got from my family and also I got the package that Grandma Debbie sent me, thank you so much!! So that was Christmas! The best present obviously was talking with my family! It was so good to hear and see you guys again! I am so very grateful that Drey still remembers me!

We had an activity as a mission on the 23rd which was very fun and really good! Elder Ceballos of the Seventy and his wife spoke to us. Also I got to see all my friends from the MTC (including Sister Sarmiento from Columbia) and she is just fantastic! Haha

We´ve been teaching a less active couple and they are fantastic. He works in construction so we got to talk about that a little which was a good way to connect with him! But they accept us very gladly and every single time we have gone to their house and shared with them the spirit has been so strong. We gave them a Book of Mormon and he was soo excited about it. He said that he had read it two times when he was younger and when we gave it to him he couldn´t put it down. It was neat to see that because he has such respect to the Book of Mormon he really truly knew the value of what he was holding in his hands. We also showed them a Mormon Message(I love the Morman Messages) about living underneath our potential. And the video spoke right to his heart because he feels like he isn´t living up to his potential. Everyday he wakes up and goes to work at eight then works for 12 hours and comes home, showers, eats, and goes to sleep just do it again. He feels like he doesn´t have time to become more or spend more time with his wife or anything else. And the video helped him realize that there is more in life then work and nothing more. I think it started a little fire in him and with time we can help him increase that fire until it´s burning really good. AND at the end of the lesson his wife said the prayer and she really really didn´t want to but as soon as she started everything got really quiet and then she just started talking and started giving thanks for soo many things. It was a very powerful lesson and I am excited to help these two find the join and happiness that we once had. I heard a talk one day and it said how out of all the things we do in the church it is to find more joy and help bring more joy to others. 

Thank you for all the Christmas emails I hope that Christmas was one to remember for all of you. I definitely won´t forget mine! I only have one more Christmas left in the mission! Ahh wayyyy too fast! Haha

With love,
Elder Bayler Moab Gunnell

P.S. No Chilean can say any of my names... Thanks mom and dad... Haha no I love them so really, thank you!

Sunday, December 28, 2014

Lots of Christmas Pictures

We sent Bayler a new camera for Christmas and it has wifi so he can email pictures right after he takes them.  It's been fun to get random pictures in my email from him.  He made these chocolate salted caramel cupcakes and gave them out to investigators with the notes (below) attached.  

 This was their Christmas lunch
 Bayler's companion talking to his family.
 Bayler talking to us
This is what how we saw him on skype
 Blueberry muffins he made with fresh blueberries

Monday, December 22, 2014

¡Feliz Navidad!‏

I hope this week is absolutely wonderful and full of snow! That´s a huge bummer that there still isn´t snow. Here the weather has been weird too, it´s been pretty cold! Especially in the mornings and the night. I have felt like I have to drink hot chocolate to celebrate Christmas a little bit and take advantage that it is a little cold... I don´t even like hot chocolate... But I think for la Navidad it will be pretty warm still! I think that is part of why I don´t feel homesick, it doesn´t really feel like Christmas!

So we have been visiting a family and we teach the mom and her two daughters. This family has hardly anything. They have to shower outside they don´t have shoes and I´ve only seen food in their kitchen twice in the 3 months that we have been teaching them. I don´t think they have running water in their house and they don´t have a fridge. They are incredible though. She loves going to church and it is very important to her. Why I bring all this up is because at the end of our last lesson with her she brought out two presents. One for each of us. Our investigator that has the littlest, thought of us and bought us each a present for Christmas. It was one of the best gifts I have gotten. I couldn´t believe it. And I have no idea how to repay her. It was something so very sweet and kind.

Yesterday we had an activity with our Branch where we rounded up a choir of like 15 and a couple vehicles and we went and sang to a bunch of less active members and families where only a few are members. We did it from 4:30 until 9 pm. It was a lot but it was really something incredible. The spirit of Christmas is real, even here in Chile, even though there is no snow and it´s hot(kinda). It was neat to see the change in the people after we sang and while we were singing. Some instantly started crying, some who weren´t so grateful that we were there at first were very grateful afterwards, some the whole family just hugged eachother. It was very pretty and I am really glad that we got the chance to do that and that the some of the members were willing to spend their whole Sunday singing.

We did some service this week and I have loved it! It feels good to do some manual labor again. Haha believe it or not Brett McEvoy I miss working. Maybe I don´t miss working every single day, not yet, but I do miss working. We made cement one day for an addition to a house and then the next day we helped a Sister clean up her yard because there were a ton of weeds. 

I really hope that this Christmas is a special one! Don´t forget why we have Christmas and what we are actually celebrating. But also I hope that you were all good so Santa can bring some good presents!

I am sorry I didn´t reply to a lot of personal letters today but I will try to get around to it! Thank you for everything!

Monday, December 15, 2014

¡Me quedo hasta Enero por lo menos!‏

I am staying here in Catemu for at least six more weeks! And I am so excited! Elder Bennett is still my companion which is sweet because we both know the sector and the people really well so now we can work even better and more efficiently. He is still District leader and now I am just his companion because 
I´m done with my training weeks! 

Every week is good, I can´t ever complain! All the cooking went over well this past week so I was very grateful for that. 

The thing that I noticed most this week before I knew I was going to stay here is the love that I have for the people. When I realized that there was a possiblity that I could change sectors I would get sad because these people here are incredible. They are my best friends and soo nice. All the investigators, the less actives, and recent converts. They are incredible. I was not ready to leave them all and so I am extremely glad that I have another six weeks here. But I think that just means that it will be even harder to leave... But that´s okay! I´m going to do all I can in these few weeks!

It has been really neat to see the progress of the people and they have given me a lot of encouragement in how much I have progressed with the language! Haha it is kinda funny but they tell me how when I was first here they hardly understood a thing I said but now I can tell stories(kinda) and they can understand and things like that. It makes me feel good that they can see that I´m progressing!

Something pretty dumb and funny that I did this week was burn my hand from the rack in the oven. Haha Elder Bennett has to laugh everytime it comes up and he loves to tell the story! Haha it was pretty funny though. I went to move the rack down for the angel food cake(the oven was already preheated obviously) and usually I have two oven mits but this time Elder Bennett had one and I completely forgot so I went to grab the rack with BOTH hands and yep, burned my hand pretty good, he says I screamed like a girl. I don´t believe it. Then I sat with my hand in a bowl of cold water for like an hour while I studied. Haha 

That just about sums up the week I think! Thanks for all the emails!

Love always,
Elder Gunnell

Monday, December 8, 2014

Where did the time go? It´s already December and it doesn´t feel like time is slowing down! 

Not anything terribly exciting happened this week but in general it was a very successful and fun week!

I´ve still been doing some cooking and this week our zone leaders asked me to make something for all our zone because it is our last week to be all together before some go home and some change areas! So I´m making a couple pies and no bake cookies! Then another missionary called me and asked if I could make a cake for a less active member for her birthday and then some other little things, I´m excited! 

Something that happened that was a first for me was an investigator that I really like decided that she didnt want to continue with the church. We are still going to pass by her house because her daughter still wants to keep learning. When I heard about this I was very sad because that kinda hurt. We found them almost two months ago and have become very close friends. They have really hard lives and I know how much the Gospel could help them and I really truly want the best for them. I hope she will change her mind.

Next week is our transfer week so I don´t know if I will still be in Catemu or in a different part of our mission, either way I am very excited!!

Thank you for everything!

Elder Gunnell

Monday, December 1, 2014

 Me making cheese empanadas! Also these fotos are from elder bennetts camera

 I put rocks in the middle so that that cake wouldn´t lift up the cup when it cooked, I didn´t know if that would happen or not but I did it in case! haha
My cake(small)

This week was a little stinky. I some how came down with a fever on Tuesday but it was anything too bad. Haha so don´t worry mom! Just a lot of laying in my bed and nothing more. I guess it was nice to get some extra rest but now I realize how grateful I am for my health! Being a missionary is way funner when you can leave the house and actually talk to people! When you can´t do that, it´s a huge bummer. 

I hope Thanksgiving was fantastic for everyone! We had our zone conference on Friday and that was the closest thing to Thanksgiving we had and it was soo good! The conference was in San Felipe this time which was incredible and there is an empanada restaurant that if you are anywhere near San Felipe you have to try it becuase it is so good. It´s called Sonia´s and the mission had them cater us! Ahhh I was so stuffed afterwards and it was super tasty!

Haha my mom said something about my last letter and how it was all about the food, I just really like to make things! It´s not that the food here is bad in fact I have loved every meal that we have had! But I like to make treats for us and others! And because we live kinda far away from everything we don´t have lunch with members everyday which means I get the opportunity to make something! Speaking of that, we didn´t have lunch yesterday after church so we made cheese empanadas(Elder Bennett´s first time, he says that I have to teach him how to cook so that he can impress girls after the mission haha) and teriyaki chicken(thank you for the recipe mom!) and rice! It was pretty tasty. The deli chicken is pretty cheap here, I like buying that better. Also it was a birthday of an investigator so I HAD to make a cake of some sort so I made an Chocolate Angel food cake! Well I made two small ones. And double chocolate chip cookies!

We found an incredible family, actually dos, but I am very excited to keep teaching them! They are funny humble and soo sweet. It´s a family of three. Their house consists of one room and a bathroom and nothing more. They have beds in one part of the room, a table to eat and cook, an oven, fridge, tv, and the normal needs. But it isn´t anything weird if anything it has made them a very close family and they are fantastic! 

Have you seen the He is the Gift video? That video is so good and the mission is doing a lot with that video. I am way excited for December and Christmas here! It´s such a good time to share the Gospel. We have shown that video twice and it is so powerful and brings the spirit so strongly. If you haven´t seen the video yet, watch it! And share it! I love it! Haha

I think that´s all for now... So happy first of December! I hope you get a ton of snow and enjoy it a lot!

Love always,
Elder Gunnell

Monday, November 24, 2014

I´d be lying if I said that this wasn´t the funnest thing I´ve done!‏

Every week is faster, more fun, and full of more things! Haha and I´m already loving it, if it keeps going like this I don´t think I´ll ever come home, sorry mom. 

First of all there aren´t any pictures this week because I left my SD card in the house of the miember that we just left and they live far away so those pictures will come next week!

I´ll start with the food. This week was a good week for baking! Pday I made a huge batch of cinnamon rolls and they were incredible. I made them small so that we would have a lot and so that everyone in my district could have two each and we still had a ton. They were the best things I´ve had in Chile I´m pretty sure. They reminded me of home, but not in a bad way! Elder Bennett and I couldn´t stop ourselves because they were sooooo good!! Haha and I made a couple other things for breakfast, like German Pancakes are almost a weekly thing, french toast is a frequent one too, scrabbled egg sandwiches, oh one day we had breakfast burritos with sausage and melted cheese and those were tasty as well, egg-in-a-hole haha to say the least breakfast is my favorite! And then yesterday I made strawberry and banana crepes!! Which included fresh strawberries and bananas, Nutella(believe it or not that I found Nutella in this little town, I was shocked as well), I made a strawberry syrup/glaze sorta of thing, and homade whip cream!! Oh....... We pigged out. Greatest day in the world! Haha I didn´t realize how much I liked cooking before my mission but now I´m realizing it and how grateful I am for my dearest mother for teaching me and helping me cook. Every Sunday I make our Menu(just like you do mom) so that we can buy all the ingredients for the upcoming week, I´m excited for this week!

Now for something a little more spiritual and just a really neat experience. We are teaching a family of three. There is the mom, and two sons. Aged 21 and 14(his birthday is this Friday, I´m making chocolate angel food cake for him!). The mom is a member but it´s been forever since she was active, basically since she was little. But she is realizing how much the Gospel could help in the lives of her sons and so she came to church this last week and things are good there! But anyways they live on a very busy road, well the only road there is to enter Catemu so there is almost always cars passing by and their house is right on the road so it is never ever quiet. But we were teaching a lesson with them and we were talking a little bit about the spirit(this is like 15 minutes into the lesson that has gone really well) and I started explaining how I personally feel the Spirit and was saying how usually there are a million things going on in my head and everything is going 100 mph and especially now that I am trying to learn Spanish, people´s names, street names, and whatever else my mind is usually a mess BUT ¨(this is what I said more or less) when I feel the Spirit, everything slows down and my mind is very clear, it´s almost like everything just stops and takes a breath¨ and in that moment I stopped talking and their house that usually has cars passing by and never ever is quiet, was absolutely silent. You could´ve heard a pin drop, no you could have heard a feather drop. And the room got all warm and seemed to brighten up and it was just... Wow... the Spirit was there very very very strong. And no it wasn´t all me because Elder Bennett played a huge role but just that the fact that we could be the manner for the Spirit into their home was incredible. Everyone noticed it and I think we all learned a little bit. I´m hoping that helps with their progress! 

Today was really fun! There is a member in Catemu who has always wanted to learn to make cupcakes because many years ago she bought cupcake pans but has never ever used them so I told her I could help her learn! So we went out to her house today to teach her how to make cupcakes and help her husband finish up his project of building sort of a garage type of thing. But it turns out the little store near their house didn´t have all the things that we needed but she had all the ingredients for cinnamon rolls! So I taught her how to make cinnamon rolls and she taught me how to make cheese empanadas! And then we ate my cheese empanadas, lunch, and the cinnamon rolls! It was very fun but I´m bummed that I forgot my SD card cause I´ve got pictures of it all!

Oh also yesterday was our Stake Conference too! We had the opportunity to go to the adult session Saturday night and I am so grateful for that because it was soo good. President Viñas of the Seventy and the President of the South America South was there along with another seventy because they Stake President got released and a new Presidency was made. All the talks were very very good but something that stuck out to me a lot was that when we have the Spirit of the Lord with us we can NEVER offend another person OR be offended by someone. Kind of a neat thought.

This mission is amazing. I am so grateful to be here. It´s the funnest, most rewarding, and neatest experience I´ve ever had in my life and I get to do it for 21 more months. What a blessing.

Thank you for every and I hope Thanksgiving is incredible! 

Love always,
Elder Gunnell

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

He answered a lot of individual emails this week so no big email but lots of pictures. 

 Chocolate chip cookies and cookie dough truffles

He says he's getting some chubs on his cheeks.  I don't see it.

 They went on a little hike and took pictures at the top.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Wow alrighty this week was definitely a little bit different than all the other weeks in the field and in a very good way! Since Elder Bennett has never been in Catemu he doesn´t know the area haha obviously but this means that this week I had to do our planning and before usually Elder Anderson did all that! So the first night was a little frustrating cause I didn´t know what to do or what was best or who we should visit and all these names of roads and streets that I didn´t know and ahh it felt kind of overwhelming! After awhile I finished up the plans for the day and stuff like that and bingo we are ready. Before I go on, another thing.
With Elder Anderson I never made my contacts, the goal is to talk to ten different people everyday and see if you can visit them or help them with anything and basically just have a conversation then invite them! I never really did that much with Elder Anderson for a bunch of different reasons like I was scared to talk to people cause I was afraid I wouldn´t be able to understand them and I didn´t know what to say to them or a million other lame reasons.

So the first day with Elder Bennett, because a ton of different streets here don´t have names, we would be looking for a street and we wouldn´t be able to find it but there was a person standing around so I would go ask them and I was soo shocked this day because all day long, any time I went and talked to someone for help finding a house or just to talk I could understand EVERY single word they said. Every word. I could ask questions and have a real conversation. We never got lost and found the people we needed to and new people. The gift of tongues is real. And it is an amazing gift of the spirit. After that first day out with Elder Bennett I have learned so much about the spirit and have so much more confidence in myself and in my spanish, no my spanish is still terrible haha but I have come such a long way from day one. Such a long way. I know that what Nephi said about how God has always prepared a way for us is true. I´m not ever going to lose my trust in that after that day! That day I made 20 contacts and before my highest in one day was like five, maybe. Haha and this week I made all 70 contacts! Woooo! Now I love making contacts, first I just try to be their best friend and it is just like getting to know someone(which I love doing) and then when they know that I truly care and have some trust in me I tell them a little about our purpose and our goal as missionaries and if we can come share a little with them and get to know them a little better! 

The reason I am writing Tuesday is because we had a special conference yesterday with Elder Nelson of the 12 apostles! His wife, President Viñas (president of this area in the church) and his wife! Wow that was so neat. I´ve never shaken the hand of an apostle before! It was a very very good conference and I would like to share a little something that Sister Nelson talked to us about. She talked about our premortal life a little bit. And if we could look into our premortal life for like 10 minutes what we would see. First of all in the premortal life we were preparing to come to the world so I kind of think of it like we were making our goals and plans for the kinds of the things we were going to accomplish in this life. So if we looked into our premortal life and we watched the last 10 minutes before we came to Earth what kind of things do you think you were telling yourself? If you had a list of goals and things you needed to do in your earthly life what do you think they were? Sister Nelson also said how if we aren´t accomplishing and doing those things on that list we made for ourselves before this earth that we will never find true happiness because our spirit knows there are more things that we said we would do. I hope that all made sense, I think that is a pretty neat concept to think about though!

Everyday is an adventure out here and you know I love adventures so I am very grateful to be able to be here in a foriegn country where I still don´t speak the language! Haha:) It really honestly is amazing here and the people are more than incredible. I absolutely love them and would do anything to help them.

I need to pubblicly thank my mother for everything you have done for me cause I am constantly asking for favors even though I´m not even home and you always do them. Thank you so so so much mom. I love you! 

Thank you for your emails as always! I´ll talk to you all in like six days! I wish you the best!

Elder Gunnell

Monday, November 3, 2014

Compañero nuevo! First change in the field!‏

My new companion is Elder Bennett! He is from Idaho Falls and has been
serving for one year and five months. He is my trainer because I still
have six more weeks of training and also our District leader so talk
about a lot of things to do and worry about. I'm going to do
everything I can to help him out! And he has never served in our
sector Los Andes or in our city Catemu. I am soooo happy to be staying
here. Elder Anderson and I have made some very good relationships with
the people here and I love them! So I'm very glad to be staying here.
But because Elder Bennett doesn't know the area I am in charge of
getting us to places and helping planning our day and what person
needs what and things like that I guess! I've got to show him where
our chapel is and district meeting and what bus to use and all that
but I feel comfortable doing that! In the next six weeks of my
training I am suppose to be doing a lot more talking so we will see
how that goes. Haha I think it will go good and I feel more
comfortable with the people we teach so I feel more comfortable
talking to them. For the majority of the time I can understand what
the people are saying. I just can't quite say or express what I want
to perfectly. And my accent still needs a lot of work but I am making
progress! The ability to speak spanish doesn't seem so far away now.

This last week we did our first splits. A split is where you switch
companions for 24 hours. We switched with the district leader and his
companion, Elder De Lima. Elder De Lima came to Catemu and I stayed in
here and Elder Anderson went to San Felipe with our district leader
Elder Fonseca. It was soo fun!! Elder De Lima is from Sau Pualo,
Brazil and has been out for about five or six months. It was way fun
getting to know him and his story. We talked and talked non stop and
went to bed later than we should have cause we were talking about
everything. This day I was in charge of where to go and what lessons
to teach which meant I talked a lot more and I was a little nervous
for that but in the end I liked it a lot. He is a great missionary and
helped me make a lot of contacts that day. It was overall a way good
experience and I was able to carry those things that I learned with me
when Elder Anderson came back. Also I made german pancakes for him
cause he had never had them!

Also this week I made banana cake from a recipe I got from Hermana
Lima from Brazil also. And that was pretty tasty! We did a really cool
family home evening with a family that is less active. We split the
family up in to two teams and kinda had a race to make brownies.
Beforehand Elder Anderson and I had measured everything out so all
they had to do was put the ingredients in and mix them up. The rule
was that nobody could taste the batter before it was cooked. Why was
that a rule? Well with one of the teams we changed the sugar out for
salt. So instead of two cups of salt they used two cups of sugar.
Obviously those brownies were gonna be gross. The moral and the lesson
is that Satan a lot of the time uses things that are really similiar
to good things but are actually bad. Sugar and salt are very similiar
and if you aren't careful you hardly notice the difference until the
end. Kinda like internet is something very good but if you aren't
careful it can be something bad. What would you rather have, the
brownies with two cups of salt or two cups of sugar? We have to be
very careful because Satan is always trying to tempt us.

It was sad to see Elder Anderson to go but it was also pretty cool
because he was so excited to see his family. One day I'll be there
too. It kinda made me sad for a minute but then I realized that I
don't want to leave this place or these people. I'm definitely not
ready for that! And I think after I learn spanish it will be even

Halloween was good here! It's a little different here but kids still
dress up and collect candy. It's not as popular here but every year it
gets bigger and bigger, at least that is what people have told me.
Here's a picture of one of the spiders that we killed last night, it
was pretty big and I'm almost sure it was a brown recluse. The food
mostly consists of rice, pasta, meats(that are soo very good, the way
they cook them I think), potatoes, and some others. I have yet to eat
something super weird or gross. The fruit here is incredible and so
are the avocados!! The avocados are to die for and dad you could make
some mean guacamole with them.

Thank you all so much for your emails! I can't believe it is already
November and that you have snow!! It is very warm here, some days are
super hot and some not so much but there is a lot of heat still to
come I've been told! I feel like Christmas is gonna be here fast.

Elder Gunnell

Our District

 Our Branch President and his daughter and me

Me dressed up in a traditional get up for a Chileano (obviously I need a new camera)

Monday, October 27, 2014

October 27,2012


Dad Happy Birthday!!!! You're like 46 or something right? I don't know if it's a good idea for you to go on a canyoneering trip with Brother Murray, you might get hurt.

I got your package mom and dad and family!!!! Ahhhh! Thank you for thinking way ahead of me 
and sending my reese's, oatmeal raisin cookies:):), oreos, others and PUMPKIN!! That was the best thing I've seen in awhile. I can't thank you enough! I had told Elder Anderson about those cookies earlier and when we saw that I got pumpkin he was like you have to make those right now!! So during lunch I made pumpkin chocolate chip cookies and man were they tasty!

 Wow sooo good. I'm making more tomorrow. They were a little off because I don't have
measuring cups or anything like that so everything I make I am just
eyeballing it but it's worked out pretty well. We gave some cookies to
some of our investigators which I loved because they had never had
cookies with pumpkin in them! So I loved that. Also this week I made
Chocolate chip cookies and some german pancakes which also were so
fantastic to taste again! Yesterday at a Stake activity I was talking
to a Sister missionary who was in Catemu before us and we were talking
about cooking because she would always make brownies for the people
and stuff and I wanted her brownie recipe so I could try it out and it
was just fun talking about cooking and treats with someone. Because
they don't have brown sugar down here her sister sent her brown sugar
so we made a deal that this week for district class she is going to
make chocolate chip cookies with brown sugar(mine didn't have it) and
I'm gonna make pumpkin chocolate chip cookies and we are gonna trade
during district class! Haha

We have discovered with the warming of the weather, it is starting to
get very hot, that our house is loaded with spiders. In one night, in
probably 30 minutes we killed ten spiders and this spiders aren't
little harmless spiders. They are big spiders. I don't think I've ever
seen any this size before! I mean they aren't like trantulas but they
are not small by any means!! Also here in Los Andes, the area I am in,
a very common type of spider is the brown reclouse(I don't know how to
spell that) and we killed a couple of them but for now we haven't had
any serious problems! Also I saw my first wild scorpions thank
goodness not in our house.

So when we travel to Santiago we usually take a massive huge tour bus,
sometimes the double decker massive huge tour buses, from Catemu to
Santiago. When we do that we end up in Station Central. This place is
like the Georgia Airport of buses. It's a gigantic mall where all
sorts of buses from other parts of Chile and other countries end up.
There is 100 spots for buses and I honestly don't know how to explain
it other than it is huge and massive and I've never seen so many big
buses in the same area or as many stores packed into one area. From
there we go underground to the metro and depending on where we are
going in Santiago we can either take the metro and walk or we take the
metro then a bus and then walk!

This week we went to Santiago because all the people that are
finishing their missions go to the Temple together. And because the
session was at 5:30 we weren't going to be able to get a bus to bring
us back to Catemu because they end so we had a sleepover in the
apartment of the President's assistants! They weren't there because
they were on splits with other missionaries but it was still fun! This is the view.

This Sunday we had four investigators come to church and a few less active and that was way exciting! It was the first time for me for this to happen! I realized how important it is that the ward members are very nice and welcoming for people who have never assisted before cause that would be kinda scary and intimidating I think! This week Elder Anderson has made me in charge of our cellphone so I have to answer it and make calls which is really good for me! Sometimes it's hard but it's way good practice and I'm getting better at it! Also one of the times we went to Santiago this week we weren't able to sit together cause we got our tickets late and I was sitting by this girl and I figured it was a good time to practice my spanish and we ended up talking for the whole two hours! I felt pretty proud of that haha Also let Tylee know that I really like her plan of practicing with Drey so that he doesn't forget me by the time I come home! I think that wraps it up for this week, I'm doing great and I'm loving it more and more! I love having good relationships with the people, that's probably the funnest part. Oh, also this time next week I will have a new companion! And possibly a new area. I'll find out Saturday if I am changing sectors or staying but for sure I will have a new companion haha and mom don't worry because our p-day is like normal so you will still hear from me! Love, Elder Gunnell

Monday, October 20, 2014

October 20,2014

 Today we had a zone activity at the Stake Presidents house.

This week I learned a lot about how much my family has played such a
huge role in my life. We taught a mother of a family that are inactive
and usually she doesn´t like listening and usually keeps herself
occupied when we come by but we stopped by their house out of the blue
and she and only one of her kids was there and we asked if we could
come in and share something with her. She was like yeah sure whatever.
But later on in the lesson she really opened up to us about her and
her families life when they were active in the church and had callings
and how close their family was and how now, things are just a mess. It
was neat because she kind of taught herself why church and being
involved are so important. I talked a little to her about how when the
family is together there something there. Like at Christmas time when
all all the cousins and aunts and uncles and grandparents are all
together, there is something there and in that time how Satan has no
control. Cause the family is so strong. I think back to the times when
my mom would get up in the early hours of the morning to make
breakfast for our family so we could all read scriptures before I went
to school. And all the Mondays that mom made me stay home instead of
going out and doing something with my friends and the nights that we
would do our little work out thing. Mom, if it wasn´t for all of your
family home evenings growing up I don´t think I would know half the
Book of Mormon stories that I know, I am so grateful for those. These
memories with my family are the memories that I cherish and I wish I
would have spent more time with my family.

There is another little town in our sector called Cerillo, its like a
30 minute bus ride and there are only buses every hour. But we went
our there to find a family and we ended up talking to a family and
neighbors who were all talking in front of their house and one of them
had cancer so we talked to them for while and had another lesson with
them just recently but the really cool thing was that they told us of
one of their neighbors who were having a hard time so we went and
stopped by their house. The daughter of this family had actually been
praying for help and we came by! But her dad can´t talk or move very
well so usaully he lays in bed all day, he can hear and nod his head
and give thumbs up and it´s way cool when he does that! But we shared
with the family and he started to cry a little when we talked about
the gospel, we asked if he wanted a blessing and gave him a blessing.
We left and then had another lesson with them. When we showed up the
mom answered the door and we went in and taught a lesson and they are
committed to be baptized the 9th of november! My explanation of all
this is bad but it was a really cool experience.

In lessons now Elder Anderson will stop talking and I have to take
over and talk so that is some progress for sure with my spanish! I can
understand more and more every single day! I´m getting excited for the
day when I can actually talk with these people and converse and share
my feelings!

I´m very very grateful for Grandpa Burke and his contribution, please
thank grandma Needa for a me a million times.

Elder Gunnell

P.S. The empanadas are very good(tell grandpa mark) and another big
thing is completos, those are good too!

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

October 14, 2014

I have 22 months left and my companion has like 19 days! Haha wow oh
well! I'm excited to keep this adventure going!

So yesterday was a day full of traveling because we had to go to
Santiago again and it just didn't work out to write yesterday but here
I am now! I don't have much time though cause we are in a hurry today!

This week has been really cool, we've got to given a lot of blessings
which is scary but at the same time an awesome experience when you
follow the spirit!

This place is gorgeous and it is starting to get hot. But that's okay!

My Spanish is still awful haha but getting better! Everyday I
understand more and I enjoy myself more! I'm really glad to be here
even though I struggle with the language. It will come:)

I got to make bundt cake for an activity which was way fun!

Elder Gunnell

P.S. Sorry it is so short!

Monday, October 6, 2014

October 6, 2014

This cyber cafe doesn't seem so forgeign anymore now that I kinda know
where I am!

First I need to do some thanking. Mother dearest thank you so much for
teaching me how to cook. Last email you asked if our house was
equipped to cook, my answer is in one of my pictures! Haha but thank
you so much for teaching me how to cook, it is a very useful skill.
Thank you also mom for teaching me how to sew because I had a hole in
one of my pants but don't worry I knew how to fix it! Thank you
grandma carol and grandpa mark for a mini sewing kit you gave me for
christmas! Thank you grandma debbie for the birthday money so I could
buy myself a back pack! Thank you everyone for the emails, pictures,
and support!

I haven't got letters yet because we missed district meeting because
we had to go to the dentist in Santiago for Elder Anderson but our
district leader said there was one for me! Tomorrow we have district
meeting so I will see if there is anything!

This week has been full of more miracles. It is absolutely wonderful
and amazing to see what the Lord can do.

One night we were looking for a house but couldn't find it, we went
down this road for a long time hoping it might be down there but soon
enough there was no houses and we got to the end of the road and there
was just fields all around us so we turned around and on our way back
there was a man outside in the dirt road just looking at the stars so
we stopped to talk to him. After talking to him in the road for a
minute he said he had time so we taught him a lesson. He said how he
wants to stop drinking and smoking and when we told him that there was
a way through Christ that he could completely change that and be
forgiven he was so happy and even got a little teary eyed. He said how
he was waiting for someone to come and just ask him to quit because he
didn't have the courage to do it himself.
It was really neat and a very cool experience.

I'm short on time but I really like conference! It was difficult to
get a ton out of it but I was able to get a little! It is not the same
hearing a translators voice and not the prophets.... But it was still
really good!!

I am glad to hear Alan Blad is getting better. I will keep him and
Hillary in my prayers.

Also I saw a Praxiar plant down here and instantly thought of Kunane
obviously! Hopefully he is enjoying Hawaii. That was like exactly a
year ago! Wow that went by fast.

Oh I forgot to tell you all this a couple of weeks ago! In the CCM I
had to give a talk, in spanish, haha so basically I just read the
whole thing! It wasn't amazing but the latinos said they understood
it! I haven't given one in church yet but I'm sure it will come soon.

Elder Gunnell