Tuesday, March 31, 2015


A nice "after study snack"
"Yeah, that's hot sauce on there!" (to which mom said "no... that's PB&J!")

Hola Mi familia! Ojala que su semana fue muy bien!

Okay, well this week for me was a good one with some nice Exito on the side! We were able to find some really good new people to teach, and help in a couple of different ways. 

To start with, I got sick on Wednesday night and woke up throwing up and all sorts of other things...for the whole night. And my companion was right beside me sleeping in her hammock...sleeping.  She didn’t even flinch the whole night while I was running to the bathroom every 30 minutes.  Finally she woke up when the alarm went off and found me running to the bathroom. She just looked really confused after I told her what kind of night I had, ha-ha - she felt bad she didn’t wake up, but it was just funny.  The rest of the morning I just lay in my not-so-comfy hammock (it’s fine when you’re not sick) while she did her studies.  Later at 9 we went to the doctor and I got ANOTHER shot.  It was the same lady and she was like “oh, I bet you’re just ready to go home now aren’t you!” I just yelled “NO!” Ha-ha, I think she thinks we are crazy because we are always walking and never have a real break from the work. So after that we went back and my companion went on splits for half the day and worked in our area with another Hermana and I stayed with a member who had AC and a king sized bed! That was the first time I’ve been in a bed in 7 months and boy, was it weird. I couldn’t go to sleep for like an hour because I wasn’t used to the bed, but it was really nice and I slept for like 3 hours there. Her little grandson was on the other side of the bed sleeping and at one point he woke up and thought I was his mom and then came right up next to me, trying to cuddle, and I was like “crap, this has to be breaking some kind of rule!”  He was only 1, but still.  I tried moving to the other side of the bed, but he followed and had his head in my back. Then I moved him over and he sprawled out in the middle, and I was in the corner in the wall, ha-ha.  But after like 45 minutes of that his mom came in and took him. I’m all good now - I think it was just a little bit of bad food. 

This week we have had some really good lessons. We had great lessons with Vicente and he’s coming along well and is progressing. He came to an activity with us on Friday. It was an FHE for the ward. In the end we all were getting up and saying advice for a missionary that is leaving tomorrow. Vicente can’t hear very well so he didn’t really know what was going on or what they were talking about so I had to explain it. When it was all over and the Hermana was about to say the prayer he yelled  "CAN THE VISITOR SAY SOMETHING"… So he rolled on up and said that he loved coming to the church and he is very content here and that he loves everyone. And he ended with: “you have a new brother and his name is Vicente" then after a loud “AMEN” he wheeled off back to his spot. He is just so great and it is so great to see his progress! 

On Saturday we were able to watch the women’s conference and it was really great! I was nervous because the last conference I didn’t understand a word because I only had like 3 weeks here, but it was fine and I was able to understand it all and it was so great! I really like how the one talked about trials and how if we haven’t experienced all of the hard trials like others, that we can learn from them and help to support those who are going through hard times. On Sunday we spoke in church, with the missionary that was leaving. Oh, and know what? All they have to do is give their testimony!  It was really short so we had a LONG time to talk.  I only took like 10 minutes and Hermana Bailey took like 15, so it worked out well. I had to talk about autosuficiencia.  It’s a hard word for me to pronounce and I had to say it like 10 times. By the end I got it down pretty good, ha-ha.  I’m pretty sure it went well because all of the members came up to us after and told us how we either need to marry their child or how we need to and deserve to marry someone really, really great! Ha-ha, so yeah, it was a little weird how many people kept saying that ha-ha!

Sunday we saw some really great progress with the Family Foster! We were able to have a lesson with the WHOLE family.  They have one son that has been really hard to talk with. Last night we passed by their house, and he was the only one home so we kind of just invited ourselves in for a lesson, ha-ha!  It went really great!  I thought he was going to be kind of a punk kid but he was actually really nice, just shy.  After about 20 minutes the rest of his family came home and we had a lesson with them all.  We read together in Moroni 10.  It was really cool - it reminded me a lot of when we used to all read together at night!  They all liked it and we were able to end with a kneeling prayer and those really are the best.  It was cool because my companion and I came into the lesson not knowing what to teach, and then we both just got the same little promptings here and there during the lesson.  It was just cool, because it just started off with us teaching the parents and now all of the family wants to listen!  I’m pretty sure their daughter Jessica will be getting baptized in the near future!  It will probably happen in the next combio!  It’s okay if I’m not here to see it, I'm just excited to see them continue to progress!  I really do love that family with all of my heart!  I’ll get a pic with them in this week so you can get a face to the name!  I love you all so much and hope you all have the best week and keep being thankful for all that you have! 

All of the sessions, not just one or two ALL OF THEM! 
Do it for your sister! 

Les Amo! 
Hermana Velasquez  

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Proud to be an American/Mexican!

Another wonderful day at the Merida Temple!
Vicente has come to church with us two weeks in a row!
The red dress with white embroidery reminds me of my Grandma Hope! Love it!
A very Pinterest-worthy pic, yes?
One of my favorite dresses is trashed...

I guess I learned a few things on Pinterest! Re-purpose, recycle, re-use!  

 Well, another week has flown by here in good old Paca-Paca. We had a fresh week full of sickness and a shot in the buttocks. We started this week off pretty American. We went with two of the members last Monday to the MALLLLL! I felt right at home (other than the fact I was a missionary!) It was super nice there and really pretty and they had really great stores with all of this new 70’s style that’s coming back? I don’t know what that’s about but the whole floral thing has really taken off!

In the beginning of last week I started getting a cold and by the middle of the week I couldn’t even talk and I’m not exaggerating.  For about two days flat I was doing this whole mucky smoker kind of talking. Hermana Bailey was doing really well at singing solos during this week in the lessons. Then a couple days after me she got sick. We went to the doctor close to our house and I got a shot; they think it’s just really wrong to do them in the arm...

This week also Vicente came to church again and that was pretty exciting! We went with the member to pick him up and he just loved it all over again. He is really hard to teach, because he just breaks out in song whenever he feels like it, and asks lots of questions, but I’m sure some day he will get baptized. The other day he gave us some references to contact. They all rejected us pretty hard and all I could do was just feel sad for them because they are missing out on changing their life and their eternity. We were talking the other day wondering if these people that reject us will get to watch it somehow in the other life. Of when they rejected their chance to listen to such a wonderful message. It’s just really sad, but all you can do is just keep going and finding the people that really need it and want it. 

On Saturday we had an activity with the Stake for the Relief society, for the anniversary.  All of the wards had a dance that they had to do and our ward was the best! They all did a traditional dance and it was the coolest thing I have ever seen. It made me very proud to be Mexican! We had the family Foster there with us; well, her and her two daughters! They are so great and they had a lot of fun! They are going to be coming with us for general conference talks for Saturday for the sisters. They are progressing so well and are planning on getting married but it’s a 6 month process so we will have to wait it out, but they will get there and be baptized in the time they need to. We are really working with their kids and they are all progressing really well. 

Today we got to go through the temple to do initiatory work. I was able to do our great grandma x5 and the next month I’ll be able to do her endowments. It was a really special feeling in the temple. There was a strong feeling of peace and love there. It’s pretty cool cuz when we go it’s caked with missionaries! It’s really cool to see everyone there doing the work of their family and I know those people are so ready to be able to keep continuing in the next life. I am just so grateful to be able to have the ability to go to the House of the Lord and really feel the love he has for me! I am so grateful for all of you and the gift I have been given, to have you all to be my family and all of the support you have all given me right now. I know this church is true with every part of my heart and I know it was restored by a prophet called of God! I love you all and hope you all have the best week! 

Con mucho amor,
Hermana Velasquez

Monday, March 16, 2015


How do you like my new brooch?
This is a bug that they buy and decorate and then it stays on their shirt like a brooch. Its' pretty weird, but also expensive!

A horse on the freeway...
 This week was a really good one full of many blessings. The first thing that I learned this week is that it’s not all about me, what I want or when I want it. My mission really isn’t MY mission. Something that is very true that Matt wrote me today is that the Lord is on my team. He wants to see the success in our lives and he wants us to find happiness. I have been so worried about things that really aren’t the most important.  It’s not all about what I want when I want it. It takes a lot of understanding what the Lord wants from you, and in his time. My companion and I have been working really well together in our time here, but a lot of times we are both stuck on what we want to happen and when we want it to happen for our investigators. The thing is we can do all that is possible and teach to the best of our abilities and people still don’t want anything to do with us or this church. They have their agency.  It’s hard to really accept that sometimes because you know how this gospel really could change someone’s life and you can see how different they could be, but it’s only up to them. We can tell them to pray and promise that they can receive blessings, but they have to be the one to act. 

So the great things that we saw in this week: First with the family Foster! We had 3 lessons with them this week and the first one was so bad. We were with the mom and two of the kids and they hardly said anything and we didn’t know what was going on because they are always so willing to participate. We left not knowing what happened or anything. We went back 2 days later just to talk with the mom. We found out that she was having a really hard time with her husband (that she’s not married to) and that they were talking about getting separated.  He is a great guy and we thought he was more interested in the church than she was. She is a Jehovah’s Witness and he doesn’t really have a religion.  Anyways she told us that he didn’t want anything to do with our message. We have always had a hard time with her and her big doubts about everything and always invite her to pray about everything. And she finally did! She told us that she knows it’s true and she wants this for her kids, but she is scared to go without her husband. We talked with her more and convinced her that she needs to go for her children for them to be able to learn. She agreed and said that she can’t go this Sunday, but the next. We said we would stop by Saturday to see if her kids could come with us. So we went back on Saturday night and she said that she IS going to church tomorrow because she knows it’s the right thing to do. We were still nervous she wouldn’t go but there she was waiting for us with her 3 kids. We walked together and they loved it the whole time! She really has changed soooo much over this week its nuts! 

Okay, second blessing of the week: So Vicente, the 75 year old that was singing in the video I sent a couple of weeks ago: Missionaries have been with him for like 9 months off and on and nobody has gotten him to go to church for the life of them. We always ask him if he will go with us and he always says no. We brought a member with us the other day and they hit it off really well. We planned on him coming to church last week but he didn’t end up coming. So this week we were dedicated. We brought the member on Saturday and told him he had to come and we explained what all happened in the church and what to expect. He said that he wanted to go. So we planned in the morning for the member to pass for him. Before church we got there early with the family Foster and I was so nervous that he wasn’t going to come, but low and behold!  I heard his sweet loud voice ringing in the hallways! I ran out and there he was in his little wheelchair and walker in his hands with the member right behind him. I was so excited to see him there I wanted to cry! We got him in there and sat down. He has a hard time hearing so he yells a lot when he talks. During the beginning of the sacrament they always announce the visiting people by name to welcome him. They said his name and he just raised both hands and waved at everyone, ha-ha, it was so great! Then during the passing of the sacrament they were passing the water and loudly he says “is that water?” The member says “yes” and he says “oh wait, let me get out my pill to take.” He whips out with a napkin that had a pill in it and it falls on the ground and he’s trying to fish for it and finally gets it after like 1 minute. Meanwhile, the boy is just standing there in front of him holding the tray. It was just so great! Ha-ha, we explained afterwards that the water isn’t for talking pills.  Ha-ha! He wasn’t planning on staying the whole time but he did and he loved it so much and he wants to come back! 

It was quite the Sunday and it honestly made my whole mission worthwhile. Just to see the change in Veronica Foster and to finally, after 9 months to see Vicente in the church! I know it was a huge blessing and it was just great! It was a blessed Sunday! 

I love you all and hope you have a great week! 

Love, Hermana Velasquez

March 9, 2015 The New Hermanas in Our District

Can you tell who's new and who has been here for awhile?

Monday, March 2, 2015

The week of stress...yeah, stress.

We had transfers this week! Here's my "new" area...
...and, here's my "new" companion!

We got to have a "tea party" at a member's house!
Here we are with our obisbo!
David is our new ward mission leader.
So this week was pretty crazy. We had people come paint our house this week, talked with some crazy people, found some good ones, and had a day with our mission president. Oh, and yeah, I didn’t get changed like I thought. Still here! 

This week went by super-fast because we had p-day late. We have been having people fixing a ton of things in our house because it’s just pretty bad with everything. So all day Wednesday we had two guys come and paint the house so we got to go next door to a member’s house and study outside and that was pretty nice to do. We had a little Mexican tea party; I’ve got some pics of that, don’t worry! That same day we probably walked about 6 miles. No one was home and so therefore we walked and walked and walked anddddd walked....It was good exercise. After that we went and contacted someone that my companion talked to on the bus, his name is Mario. He is 19 and he’s quite the smarty pants. We had a super great lesson. It started out like this: 
Mario: I don’t want to offend you, but I don’t think religion is important in this world. 
Us: Why do you think that? 
Mario: Well I just don’t have time for it. I am focusing on my career and I need to have a good one so I can make a lot of money and have a nice car, money, etc. (he is going to be a doctor) 

It was a long lesson and he was so stuck on the facts of everything. It was crazy though; he was asking all of these same questions that Joseph Smith had. I asked how he thinks he could get an answer to his questions and he said that he could find out through different books or the internet. He is really into books and facts stuff. Long lesson short, we cracked him and made his realize that religion is important and we had probably the best lesson I have ever had on my mission. It was so spirit-guided it was crazy! I really can’t even explain how well we were both explaining his questions and everything and I’m not even trying to toot my own horn because I know it wasn’t us at all, but the words of the Lord and the guidance of the Holy Ghost. 

On Friday we got a call from our President during the day and the President just never calls people and we were freaking out a little. Then he was asking how our area was doing and everything and he was saying that he wanted to maybe split our area and that would be super great! We have been wanting that to happen for this area for a LONG time. Then later that night at 7:00 our district leader called us and told us that the President and his two assistants were going to come into our area all day Saturday to work with us. And that really never happens. So the assistants went off and worked by themselves and we went out with the President all day. Don’t worry - we weren’t doing anything wrong to where we needed the President to correct us. They came to see about splitting the area and the President helped us with our investigators who aren’t married. It was a really good experience for us. A little scary at first, but really, really good! He told us that he wanted to keep us both in the area for another transfer together, so that was exciting for us. 

This week I’m going to hit 7 months and it went by super-fast! I am super excited to be here again, I always thought being in the same area for this long just sounded awful, but I love being in the same area for this long, it’s so fun. I know a lot of people here and all of the moto taxi drivers and that’s always fun! It’s kind of like being at home and seeing people you know everywhere! Well I love you all and hope you all enjoy your week. Keep finding time to read your scriptures and praying. The Lord loves you always, and always wants the best for you! I love you all so much! Happy birthday to Pyper this week! 

Con Amor,
Hermana Velasquez