Monday, February 23, 2015


 This week has been a little hectic but a very good week for me! I learned quite a bit and I am excited to finish out these last two weeks in this transfer!

This week I had three splits which was why it was so hectic but they all turned out really well. The first one was on Wednesday and I was with one of the zone leaders (from Columbia) in Los Andes which went really well and I learned a lot from him on how to teach. The next morning we went to San Felipe and Elder Bennett stayed in San Felipe and I took a different Elder to our sector, Catemu. This Elder has been in the mission even less time than me and talks a little less spanish than me and I had never been with someone that talks less than me! I was a little nervous at first because Elder Bennett does a lot of the teaching and so I had never had to take the lead and be the ¨senior companion¨ for lack of other words. It went suuuuuuper good! It was actually a ton of fun and I got to see that I really do(kinda) know spanish, well more than I give myself credit for! We had a really good day and we had some success!

Then on Saturday Elder Bennett had to go do the baptism interviews for a couple people in Llay-Llay so we decided it was best if I stayed in Catemu and worked while he went there. So a missionary from Llay-Llay came to Catemu for the day. He also has less time than me on the mission but is from Brazil so knows spanish really well, better than me. But because we were in my sector I was still technically the senior companion and did the majority of the teaching. We killed it that day and taught quite a few lessons and were able to visit a lot of less active people to invite them to church. Which was so worth it! There is a family that we have been teaching and the parents are less active. We finally got them to come to church yesterday!!:) They are so sweet and I love them all! Our lesson was really good Saturday and they said okay we will come and they came! I was stoked Sunday morning!

So I feel like I´ve been able to grow personally this week and I´m excited to keeping working hard!

The bad news is that the family of Nelson, Cecilia, and Patricio kinda got a little sad. Nelson is in the north working so we have just visited Cecilia and Patricio. Cecilia told us that she is scared to change her beliefs. She says it is a big jump and doesn´t feel ready. She also said how she is use to worshipping the virgin Mary and because we don´t do that it kinda makes her worried. It´s a bummer for us and for Patricio because he still wants her to make these changes. In the lesson he had the Book of Mormon open and was saying things like, ¨But mom it says right here that it is against the ten commandments to worship images! And mom it says here that you need to be married!¨ And his mom doesn´t really want him to go to mutual anymore and I don´t know... Yes for sure we will keep working with them and I haven´t lost faith yet but it is a huge bummer and makes me really sad to be honest. I went by their house Saturday night with my other companion just to see how they were and to invite them to church but they weren´t home and I just talked to the grandma. So we will see what happens with them.

Thank you mom for sending me so many recipes! In the next coming weeks I will be baking quite a bit for an activity we have and a little birthday party we are going to throw for Elder Bennett and one of the little girls that is in the family that came to church yesterday!

I hope you have a fantastic week!
Elder Gumball(as I am called now)

 that mountain of food is called a chorillana it is tons of fries, onions, sausage, hot dog, a fried egg, and whatever kind of sauce you want. It´s a heart stopper basically haha but Elder Bennett ate one this week. It was kinda gross haha

I got this picture 7 times with the following questions; I need the recipe for your biscuits cause the second counselor really wants to know how to make them? How do I make apple pie? How long to I boil the chicken in water for chicken noodle soup and is the water really safe to use after I boiled chicken in it? Whats the recipe for that yummy fudge cake I made that had strawberries in it and dad really liked it?  When was Addason's adoption story published in the New Era? I need the recipe for your eclairs and on the last one he said MOM, I LOVE YOU!  

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

 Ahh first thing first, I gotta say this first cause I can´t stop thinking about, Adela got a calling in the Branch! She is now the secretary of Relief Society! Why I am so excited about that? Well there are a lot of reasons but a couple of the being: President Hinckley said there are things that new converts need to have and one of the is a calling or responsiblity, another is having a friend and thanks to this calling she will have to work with a lot of people and will make more friends then she already has! It gives her responsiblities that might make her get out of her comfort zone a little but in turn will help her progress and help her help other people. It will also help her feel good when she accomplishes things which is what we want! She also invited us to eat lunch with her, her mom, her aunt and the aunt´s son on Sunday. So I made some strawberry shortcake cupcakes for that occasion. They didn´t look too pretty cause I ran out of powdered sugar and it was super hot so the frosting melted almost instantly but they tasted good which is the important thing! 

Haha but anyways Adela shared her testimony with every at lunch about all the blessings she has recieved since she first got to know us and how much happier she is now than any other time before. We now have a lesson with her aunt and son this Wednesday! We will see how it goes!:) Adela also went with the Sister missionaries in Llay-Llay to a lesson which went super good they said! She is just doing awesome and I´m pumped. It´s amazing to see how much she has progressed in everything. In her ability to read, how happy she is, her understanding, and just all around. The Lord really does bless us in so many ways than just spiritually.

We went back to visit the two kids that were riding around on bikes. The one we are teaching is named Matias and we are kind of teaching Daniel(his friend) but he is just there sometimes. Anyways we went to his house and he was outside and got way happy when he saw us, he invited us in and gave us some juice. Just a little background, his life is a little sad because his dad works from like 8 to about 10 and so he is home all day, alone. He is with his friend a lot but still just to be home alone all day everyday makes him a little sad. There are two other older kids that live a couple houses down and bully him and his friend which makes me really sad. All around Matias is a super sweet, sincere and friendly kid. He is very humble. So we finished teaching him about prayer and asked him if he could say the prayer to end the lesson and he said yes. It was a very humbling experience for me. It was such a sincere heartfelt prayer. You could tell that he was really honestly talking to God and asking for his help and praying for his dad and giving thanks for all the little blessings that he does have. He just went on and on praying for us, his friend Daniel, the other kids, his family, that his dad can always have a job and that he can be a good kid for his dad. All sorts of things. It made me realize that I need to do better in my prayers, to take them more serioulsy and express myself more. Express gratitude for what I have and to pray more specifically for people. It was a really good experience.

We did an activity on Valentine´s day for the young single adults and it was a blast! I made sugar cookies and Elder Bennett made cookie dough brownies! We had completos and drinks too. Another Elder did a lesson about the armor of God and made a suit of armor for Elder Bennett. The Sister missionaries did a game and then we ate all the food afterwards! Adela also came to this activity and was able to make a couple more friends and I think it helped her feel more welcomed and comfortable with the people here! She has a really good friend now named Romina who will be baptized this week and I´m excited for them to be even better friends so that they both have more support.

So I was in charge of the treats for a Valentines activity for the young adults that we are doing right now. I made sugar cookies and I taught(kinda) Elder Bennett how to make cookie dough brownies! Haha no he basically did them all on his own! I am so proud of him!!

I had to get all the cookies to Llay-Llay, good thing Elder Bennett buys so much cereal!

 We talked about the armor of God so here`s a pic of our armor we made and Elder Bennett! Haha not too shabby right

 It was a success!!

Something sad that happened yesterday, that is going to discourage me because it´s just a little bump in the road, was that Cecilia and Patricio(one of the families that we have been teaching for like 4 months) got a little discouraged. Well Patricio, no. Cecilia, yes got a little discouraged. She says she isn´t ready to make the changes that would be necessary if she was going to be baptized. She says that she has been Catholic her whole life and isn´t ready for such a big change in her life. And that she is okay if we still pass by to talk about God with her but that she is ready for change or to commit herself to anything. Patricio was a little upset and sad with this and he wants her to keep learning and things. She says that she has always worshipped the Virgen and that we don´t do that so that would be a big change for her and Patricio was like, ¨But mom! That´s against the second commandment, you know that isn´t what we should do.¨ But we are going to work hard for them because I know they feel the Spirit in the Church and when we are there.

Here are all the things I have for baking up to this point! Haha

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

 I also bought this beaut on P-day. I have a feeling we`ll be good friends:)

The picture isn`t too good but I made homemade rolls! Turns out that we did a mission wide fast so I ate one and gave the rest away.  It was waaayyy good!!!

Monday, February 9, 2015

All sorts of things have happened this week!‏

It was definitely not a normal week! But it turned out pretty good still! To start off, last P-day we went to Llay-Llay to chill with the other Elders there. We decided to buy hamburgers and a bunch of food and because my mom had sent me the recipe for homemade spud-nuts I decided I wanted to try to make them because I had never tried to before! So I didn´t know that the recipe was going to make like 200 spud-nuts, but it did! Maybe not 200 but pretty close. So all we did all day was eat and eat and eat. Definitely too much. Haha but then we had to sleep there because Elder Cruz and I had to go to Santiago at six in the morning (on Tuesday) to finish our visa papers. Well I woke up not feeling too good and same with him, actually I ended up throwing up(sorry for saying that haha) and so we definitely did not go to Santiago and we had to go Thursday. It is soo cool to be in the city, I love it! Especially right there in the center, not the poor part. It´s super pretty and it makes me want to live in a city for awhile one day.

So Thursday when we got back from Santiago Elder Bennett and I had to go to mutual with our Branch because the young women´s president asked if I could teach the YM and YW how to cook a couple of things! So that was an absolute blast!! We made brownies and strawberry muffins. It was really fun because I didn´t do any of the baking! I would answer their questions when they had them but I wouldn´t help them cause I wanted them to do it on their own! And everything turned out delicious, nothing flopped haha! I went and made the copies of the recipes beforehand so that everyone could have one of each too. Also Paticio(who we are teaching) came and loved it! He came to church this Sunday and is making friends already! He is going to mutual this week and the week after all the YW and YM from the stake are going to the beach which he already plans on!

I´m way excited for him and his family. Because his parents aren´t married(yet!) we have been talking to them about the commandments and the requirements of baptism. The Law of Chastity is both. So we have talked a lot about that which lead us into marriage. It´s really funny to see the family when this gets brought up because Patricio, Cecilia, and Cecilia´s mom want them to get married and Patricio always tells us that Cecilia will end up asking him to marry her. They have been talking about it a lot I guess (from what Patricio told us yesterday after church). We will see what they have to say today at 7:30 when we have an appointment with them!

So Saturday we went to Adela´s house and she had tons of coins spilled out on the table and was counting them all, without asking why, we just started counting the coins with her. We were conversing and talking when she was like, ¨I´m counting all these coins so that I can pay my tithing tomorrow!¨ This was the first time that she was going to pay her tithing and we hadn´t even reminded her about paying! She was just doing it all on her own! She was all excited about it too so basically way to go Adela! She´s fantastic.

Last night we were in a neighborhood and basically all of our plans had failed and we didn´t really know what to do. So we were slowly riding around on our bikes looking for someone to talk to or just something and there were two 11 year olds outside on their BMX bikes and one asked if we could do tricks and I just said, ¨Nah, we are boring, haha.¨ But then I did a little wheely and they were both like, ¨Hey you can to do tricks!¨ and chased after us on their bikes. Then one of them wanted to have a wheely contest with me so we started a little competition and then after they were doin all sorts of tricks and seeing if I could copy them or not haha which was really funny. Then they wanted to ride our bikes so we traded! We were riding on their sweet BMX bikes and them on our girl bikes. But after like 20 minutes of playing around we started talking and one of the kids said, ¨A long time ago missionaries came to my house.¨ We asked if his dad was home and if we could talk to him and he was like yep let´s go! So we got to his house and his dad came out and invited us in as soon as he saw us. Turns out he is a member and wants to get back into the church and he wants his son to be baptized and has just kind of been waiting around for a sign or some motivation to start coming back and then we showed up! It was funny how riding around on bikes with two kids lead us to finding a less active member who wants to get back into the Church. But we were pretty happy about it! We are going back to talk with them tomorrow! We are blessed here in Catemu. I am so grateful to be able to have gotten to know this little city and the people here.

That´s about it for this week! Thank you for everything! Just want you to know that God really does have a plan for each one of us. He wants us to be happy and so why wouldn´t he give us the things we need if we do what is right? He´s watching and He truly does know us.

Elder Gunnell

P.S. Kunane I got your package and have been sharing with all the niños here! They are loving the treats, thank you!

Monday, February 2, 2015

Super Bowl Sunday!!!!

Well I can say I miss the party that we always have with all the food but I can´t really say I miss the actual game but I heard Katy Perry sang the half-time show which could have been way cool or not very good but I hope it was decent! The patriots won right? Woohoo I am super excited for them! Haha no but good for Chan cause that´s his team!

This week wasn´t quite as exciting as the last week but it was a good one anyways! I think my favorite part of this week was the surprise hospital visit for Cecilia. The night before we went we called her son to find out how the surgery went, if she was awake, if we could call her, and things like that. We told him we wanted to call her to see if we could visit her the next day. When we said that he got wayy excited and said, ¨That is a great idea! But it has to be a surprise! You can´t tell her anything!¨ So we were like okay yeah we´ll make it a surprise! We made plans to meet up with Patricio(the son) in San Felipe and surprise her. I aso wanted to make her a little treat so I made some banana bread and topped it with some butter cream frosting. Then we went and surprised her and gave her the banana bread. We talked for awhile and the surgery went so well that she actually went home Thursday instead of Friday or Saturday! Which was a blessing! She also had on her night stand by her bed in the hospital the little pamphlet of the Plan of Salvation that we gave her like a week ago so that was kinda cool that she brought it to read while she was in the hospital!

Patricio(mentioned above) is doing really well and came to church without his mom or dad! Because his mom still can´t really do much from the surgery and his dad had just got home and was taking care of his mom. But he still came to church and likes it a lot! This week he is going to go to mutual for the first time. We are actually going to go with him because the young men and women are going to do a combined activity and the Young Womens President asked if we could come and teach a class on cooking and make a few things! They want to learn to make brownies(very popular here) and then said I can pick something else that we can make. So I think we will make like blue berry or raspberry muffins is all! But that should be a pretty good time I hope.

Sunday Adela recieved the Holy Ghost in Sacrament and that was really good! Then in Relief Society they ended the meeting with a mini testimony meeting. Someone who was sitting by Adela went and gave her testimony and then sat back down and nudged Adela and said, ¨Now it´s your turn!¨ So she got up there and bore her testimony! (The sister missionaries told us all this) But she said how before she met the missionaries she never went to church, never read the bible, never thought about spiritual things, and never wanted to do anything with a church. But when she met the missionaries and started doing what they asked she started to feel something she never felt before. She says that now she nows that this is the right path for her and her two little girls and that she doesn´t ever want to leave. So it was pretty sweet to hear all that! 

I think that is basically it for this week! Have a wonderful week, I will be praying for some snow for all you because that is very sad that there still isn´t snow!

Elder Gunnell