Monday, December 28, 2015

el 28 de Diciembre

hello family!

this past week was a blast. we did have to sacrifice a pday to go 
to managua for the mission´s christmas party, but it was worth it. 
it was almost like an oprah winfrey type setting with our christmas 
presents, but now we have peanut butter and jelly, a microwave, a cool 
little thing for our desks, a bicolor marking pencil and so much more! 
best part was that we got to spend a couple of hours in pday clothes, 
and three other sister decided to bring their A game. we kind of bashed 
a little on an elder that goes to byu, but we had fun. plus, for christmas 
eve we pierced sister naumu´s ears at a member´s house so that was super 
fun. don´t worry, all was clean and sanitary!

my favorite part leading up to christmas weekend was the anxiety of 
christmas. the people here are super christian, so there was just christmas 
everywhere. they made a huge deal out of putting baby jesus in the manger 
in the nativity in the park and everything. the energy was super awesome.

a favorite person... hermana naumu. i don´t know what i would have done 
with a latin companion for christmas. it was just so much easier to handle. 
we made christmas pancakes and hot chocolate, we talked in English to our 
families. and it was just great. couldn´t have asked for a better companion 
for the christmas season.

a favorite scripture: doctrine and convenants 6: 14-15

Verily, verily, I say unto thee, blessed art thou for what thou hast done; for 
thou hast inquired of me, and behold, as often as thou hast inquired thou
 hast received instruction of my Spirit. If it had not been so, thou wouldst 
not have come to the place where thou art at this time. Behold, thou knowest 
that thou hast inquired of meand I did enlighten thy mind; and now I tell thee
 these things that thou mayest know that thou hast been enlightened by the 
Spirit of truth;

blessed art thou for what thou hast done. 

a most tender mercy. hermana mariela came and showed us around el naranjo, 
a tiny little deserted area while sick. a couple of weeks ago she had an accident 
with some hot water that left some pretty deep burns, but she sacrificed to come 
walking with us into the intermost parts of our area. bless her!

a great success... i didn´t cry while talking with my family. love you!

weekly goals. i have a goal not to say everything that comes into my head. i have 
gotten myself into some awkward positions, so i have made the resolution to try 
not to just speak, but to think first.

i love you guys so much. thank you for all of your support and for all those that 
will be present at the wedding tomorrow, tell my sister i love her.

hermana graves

Friday, December 25, 2015

Christmas Day

Today we got to skype with our missionary! She sounds like a native
with her accent. It took some doing to get together online. The power
went off at the house she was at to skype. Then her companion went
first. We finally got connected and had Grandma and Grandpa Bingham
skyping in too from Texas.  We were at Aunt Teniel's house for Christmas
and the kids thought it was great to see Janelle on the TV.

It was good to see her and hear her voice!
Best Christmas present EVER!!

Monday, December 21, 2015

el 21 de Diciembre

this week. was great. just almost picture perfect.

a favorite person this week... keiling. she is a sister in the ward 
who is the same age as i am and she´s a great reality check sometimes. 
i know that i am not the perfect teacher, and she´s helping me realize that 
i can do this and that i can survive these next ten days. being away from 
rachel is kind of hard, and seeing all the bridals just make it all really, really
 real. i love my family, but yikes! reality check for me... and keiling has 
been great. 

favorite scripture... please read 1 nephi 15:24-25. the word of god is your 
salvation. end of sentence.

the training is going great! we found a very large beetle this friday and he 
decided to die in our front lawn shortly after taking this picture. funny thing 
is we found another one not very far away who was dead also. i don´t know 
what kind of beetle he was, but he was a big one. hermana naumu had her first 
nacatamale, in true christmas spirit.

i got into the christmas spirit, and put this over tomorrow´s plans, because 
of the christmas devotional type thing we are going to have tomorrow. here, 
meeting in managua = all day thing = no work for sister naumu and sister graves.

a biggest challenge, getting to guiquiliapa, a little town in our area. it´s got a 
couple of less actives, and like any good missionary does, you try and active as 
many members as possible and baptize the nine+ year old kids. got to 
love re-activation! 

i love you guys all and i especially love this time of season. make sure to send 
me lots of pictures for christmas, and i am still missing lots of family pictures... 
love you all..

hermama graves

Monday, December 14, 2015

el 14 de Diciembre

ya´ll ready for this. the lord and president trusted me with a......

GREENGA. repeat, my new companion speaks ENGLISH. what is this!?
please welcome hermana naumu to the mission nicaragua managua 
south. and welcome to the celestial kingdom where everybody leaves this 
area well fed and well rounded.
hermana naumu is extremely quiet and half hawaiian. the people here always 
do a double take seeing to greengas, but it´s something they are going to have 
to get used to! the next three months el rosario is our kingdom.

so a favorite person, aside from my new companion... hermana powell. we have 
trained together twice now and this will be her last daughter. she´s from perry, utah 
(shout out to steph and ben) and she´s the cutest. we decided that we could be 
friends and took pictures... now to just figure out how i am going to entertain 
myself during the long training meetings we have in store...

a favorite scripture: 1 thessalonians 5:2-3

For yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so cometh as a thief 
in the night. For when they shall say, Peace and safety; then sudden destruction 
cometh upon them, as travail upon a woman with child; and they shall not escape.

let us all be prepared for the coming of the lord. because we all know he is coming. 
stay alert my friends

a tender mercy. hermano pedro. he´s a recent convert who is no longer a recent 
convert, but who like any good nica, likes to buy us coke. on sister rodriguez´s 
last day in el rosario, i bought a round of cokes for everyone in her honor. there 
was only enough coke for the two of them, so i bought a pepsi and we started 
making jokes. two nicas and a greenga. two shorties and a tallie. two cokes and a 
pepsi. it was great... 

a challenge... figuring out how to teach spanish to someone who doesn´t know 
how to speak spanish, being someone who doesn´t speak spanish. your head 
hurt yet? yeah, so does mine. my mouth hurt from speaking so much english. yeah, 
that´s a new phrase for me.... so we have some companionship goals to go back 
to learning five words each day. five words that we are going to use throughout 
the day, and learning the way to apply them correctly in our vocab. these couple 
of changes will be a growing experience for me. 

i love you all and can´t wait to hear about all the christmas plans you have! 
extended family and friends. please remember i want pictures to print here in 
nicaragua of all of you! instagram pics are accepted :)

hermana graves

Monday, December 7, 2015

el 07 de Diciembre

the biggest challenge, continues to be the itching. but thanks to some 
doctor´s loving guidance, i know that i have some mosquito bites infected 
from itching and letting them stay opened. i have now repented, and am 
on a new medicine cycle for the itching, with diligent applicance of bug spray!
some goals... get used to a new house! we changed houses from a little 
room, to a cute little house with hot running water and everything. 
welcome to el rosario´s cutest little house ever. and it´s all ours for only a 
hundred a month. love it!
a scripture for you from the old testament. to go with the church´s campaign 
for christmas, a savior is born, from isaiah 9:6
::For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall 
be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, 
The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.::
please go to and share the two videos with your friends. 
the animation personally is better than the video, but they both have a powerful 
message for us this time of the year.
favorite people: the cute javiera and mariela. they are soo great to help us with 
divisions, and help us get the work done here in el rosario. especially at seven am 
on sunday mornings to bring investigators to church. such dolls!
a tender mercy... the elders who helped us move houses all without using a truck 
up until the very end. they moved almost all the heavy/hard stuff by themselves 
and gladly accepted a glass of coca cola and some cookies as recompense.
i love this time of year. make sure that you give lots of hugs to your family, because 
there will never be a christmas quite like this. i love you!
hermana graves