Monday, April 7, 2014

It's General Conference Time

April 7, 2014

I really dont have much time. News is I missed conference on Sunday because I was transfered. I was busy taking a bus ride of joy for 14 hours. So I am downloading the talks right now to listen to during the week. I am now in Gloria, Manaus. Its super hot and full of hills. My new companion is Sister Nina. She is from Bolivia and I absoulutely love her!! Also I am Senior companion. Woot woot.
It was great seeing Sister Rocha again today. She is still in Flores. We ran quickly to say hi to Patriarca and Tereza, Claudia, Rebecca and Nazare. I sure did love getting to see them again. (Except Tereza wasnt home. Send her my love over facebook!!)
It is amazing how attached I am to these people in such a short amount of time. Lislane cried her eyes out when she found out that I was being transferred. She walked an hour to the bus station Sunday morning to say goodbye. I cried a lot. I didnt want to leave, but am super excited with the oppourtunities that are here for me in Gloria. It is amazing how the Lord can change your personality. I LOVE MY MISSION AND LOVE THE SERVICE I AM DOING.
All in all it has been a busy past few days, full of love and tears and seeing lots of old friends. I am excited for all of the new ones I will make.
I really hope you all enjoyed General Conference for me! I really was sad when I got the call saturday morning where the Elders told me that I would be traveling on Sunday. mas tudo bem. :) I traveled with Elder Adams and Elder Brito. lol I am getting used to being the lone Sister while traveling.

I love Ryans desire to be obedient to the rules of the mission. He is such an example and I love reading about his adventures. Japan sounds like a beautiful place.
Good luck with all of your work this week! Give my love to the ward!!
I got a few cards from Christmas and Valentines day. Also I got a letter from Kirsten!!! :) :) Thank you all so much for your kind words and support. I have an ever growing pile of letters to send and now and even bigger one of letters I want to write. :) LOL. We were a little lazy in Vilhena and didnt take advantage of the post office... also there is that fact that we wanted the keep our money.  Some day I promise that I will send them.
I love the people I serve with all of my heart and I couldnt be happier with where I am!!  I am going to suffer so much in 9 months when I come home. I will be a sad, but joyful day. You should bring tissues to the airport with you, because I know that I will be crying.

LOVE YOU!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Sister Chatwin

... Proud of my brothers...... <3 and my parents!

Hi Kiddos

March 24, 2014

HEHE. I think that this is the best letter ever.  LOL. I sure do love you guys!
Today Sister Olivera and I will be looking for the new furniture for our apartment. Since we are the first sisters here in Vilhena we had to find a new place to live. It will be fun. I will also be looking for a new pillow.. The one the mission gave me is now trash and for the past few weeks I have been using a random stuffed animal that we found in the Elders house. I am beyond excited to get a new pillow.
Meanwhile in the Elders house...  The electricity falls all of the time. Especially when you are taking a hot shower. lol. Anyways, Saturday it fell for good. We had an electrician come and look at the black box or whatever you call it.. because when we were flipping the switch  to turn the lights back on, sparks started coming out.  The cable was burnt. So he temporarily fixed it to where we have electricity in half of our house. Going to the bathroom is fun.. its pitch black in there. And our showers for now are super cold.. but all is well. Hopefully we will be moving into our new apartment later this week.
Its a bummer that the school hours are changing again. I remember how annoying that was.  And even sadder that the jeep is gone. I am going to come home to a bunch of new cars.
Remmi sure is a smart pumpkin.

This thursday we are haveing a branch activity. They are having a movie night, well we were in the meeting last night and they were trying to decide which movie to watch. It started out with Thor 2, but all of the women were worried about the violence.. etc.  Then  (this is the sad part) The Irmao suggested Ta Chovendo Hamberguers 2. CLOUDY WITH A CHANCE OF MEATBALLS 2. Yup. They are watching the movie I have been dying to see. I love that lots of people here have watched the first one and loved it. Its just sad, because I know that in portuguese it probably lost a lot of the humor from the puns etc. Either way, the activity will be cool and I hope that all of our investigators and less actives will come!
Sounds like church was good yesterday!

Greetings From the Land of Wacky Weather!

March 10, 2014

Hello beloved family! :) 
First off, Liene. She was an investigator of mine in Porto Velho. She is super sweet and it was hard to say goodbye to her. I didnt bring her email address with me today... Could you tell her HI for me?

WOO HOO! I cant wait to see  and hear all about Sterlings trip to Ireland! He is going to have a blast!
I am so happy that you all went to the temple! I am so exited to got to the temple with you all when I get back! It will be great. :)
GO MOM! SHE REALLY IS THE BEST!! I am super duper proud of my mommy! You really put your heart into your teaching. :) I think that you are the best teacher in the whole world! Happy early anniversary! 
Stake presidents are the best! Its been a long time since I have eaten tamales... I dont know that I could say I have a favorite food here in Brasil. There are just too many that I like.


Tastiest food: One of the Elders in our district made a cake. It was pretty tasty. Also we got to drink a lot of Terere this week. The Elders in my district love it. Its funny because we are always trading or buying lime juice for eachother. I have a pretty fun district here in Vilhena.
The cake likes me, but the terere.. We always seem to drink it in the evening or right before bed... therfore it is hard to sleep during the night because I am literally going to the bathroom every five minutes because I drank too much. I think one night this week Sis. Olivera and I drank four liters before bed. That was a mistake. lol. I sat at the kitchen table for awhile while she was sleeping. I did my Tinker bell puzzle and then colored in  my My Little Pony coloring book.
Funniest and most embarissing things... I really dont remember..
Most important thing I learned this week... to love what you do and who you do it with. That is the key in everything we do. I have learned to much from the people of Brasil on how and what love is.
My favorite scripture... 1 Nephi 8:12
While reading this chapter I put all of  your names in. It was super good to study. I am loving reading the Book of Mormon again. I am learning so so much. I am really practicing on listening to the Spirit while I read so a few times this week I was prompted to re-read a few chapters before moving on. I think I read at least one of them four or five times, and I learned something new each time. This time through I am paying special attention to what  the Book of Mormon teaches about sacrifices. I mark those in a special color and then I mark in two other colors blessings and the things of the Lord. It is incredible how a dedicated study can open your mind to new things.
Sounds like a really neat video Dad! I just watched it. I didnt hear anything he said because I dont have headphones, but it looks wonderful! It make me love that I am out here in a different country learning so many different things and making so many friends in the gospel. The Gospel of Jesus Christ is truly a blessing, not matter what language. It just made me want to travel the world and learn every language so that I could communicate with so many people. :) :)
Well I love you all so very very much! I too pray for you every night! :) You all are the greatest family I could have!
-Sister Chatwin

Women's Conference

March 31, 2014

Lol, I got some funny comments on Sunday. Especially about the picture with the frog in your mouth. :) :) I just laugh and tell them that that is our family! I wouldnt change anything about you guys!I sure do love my family. 
Womens conference was great! Although I think I missed out on the significance of a lot seeing as I watched it in Portuguese. Brother Torrie emailed me talking about some of the things President Eyring was saying. lol I thought it was funny. I am still at the point where I can understand, but if I zone out on my own thoughts... boa sorte. lol. I will download it in english and listen to it again. I really loved the video about the importance of the temple in our lives. And also the video of all of the cute kids singing around the world.  :) :) People are just wonderful. 
I am super jealous of Ryan right now. It sounds like he is having the time of his life in Japan. I really want to see his pictures. lol. We sure will have a lot to talk about when we get back. I was thinking about the day when I get to see you all again! It will be such a happy day! I really do love what I am doing here, but I also really really love my family. Even a little bit more now! Today is 8 months on the mission!! Woo hoo! Looking back I am a completely different person now. It is amazing how the Lord changes you for the better.  I am excited to see how a mission will change Ryan too!
Transfers are this Sunday. I think that I will stay here in Vilhena. I hope that my companion stays here too, but we never know. Next transfer is only five weeks, not six. My district leader thinks that I will train next transfer. We will just wait and see! 
I am having so much fun here in Brasil serving people! It really is when you are lost in the service of the Lord that you are the happiest. I learned that lesson this week. We were running back and forth in a rush this week looking for the new furniture for our apartment and waiting to see if the mission office approved what we had chosen. We found a good deal, but seeing as the mission is opening a lot of new areas they are also opening up a lot of new houses. So this week we should finally move with just a washing machiene, fridge, and beds. We will be buying the rest of the furniture little by little. I am just happy that we will finally be moving to our new apartment. It is so much closer to our area and everthing else that we need. Right now we are walking at least 3 hours a day to get to our area and back to our house. It is really taking a toll on our bodies, and this last week was even more because we walked to literally every furniture shop in the center of town. Hence, we didnt really get time to visit people like we normally do. Not serving others, really lets the stress of a mission enter in. I know my limits and we were definitly hitting them this past week. BUT all that should be over soon. (Mom, this is why I really want that exercise dvd. I need something to help me start my day calmly. We walk so much here that if I do any other exercise my body is dying by the end of the day) 
As always, the Lord is wonderful. He is always there to help us when we need it most and through other people too. I am so greatful for the oppourtunities that we have to listen to the words of a prophet and apostles this weekend. ( and to have a break from playing piano on sundays) :) I enjoy playing, but we dont have the keys to the chapel so we have to walk at least an hour to arrive in the branch presidents house where they have a keyboard. Yup. We walk a lot here. I think that is is funny. Warren got a car on his mission, Ryan gets a bike, and I get my own two legs. :) Its a good thing that I dont mind walking.  I think it will be strange not to walk to the chapel when I get back to the states, but then again I will gladly take up driving again! I will never take a car for granted in my life again. They are such a blessing. :D

Love you all, but sadly I am out of time! Enjoy General conference and know that I pray for you all every day!
Such a lucky girl to have my family! :) :)
Sister Chatwin

St. Patrick's Day

March 17, 2014

WOW! Those pictures are stunning! This planet is absoulutely beautiful!  REALLY.
Teaching was went well this week. We didnt really get to work a lot in our area, because the branch presidents wife (For now we are a part of Branch 1) is taking us to see a lot of her neighboors and teach them. Her son just left for a mission so she is super excited to be helping and that Vilhena finally has sisters. She has one neighboor that is super excited. She asked us a ton of questions the sencond time we visited her. We are seeing a lot of less actives also. I hope that with time they will begin to go to church! There are a few who really want to come back, but as always something comes  up and they dont make it to church. But that is okay because we have church every week. 

Its so crazy that Ryan will be going to Japan here in a little bit. I am super excited for him and all of the delicious food he will be eating! I just email Elder Chatwin and told him this. :)
I am the pianist in our little branch right now. It is fun and I enjoy learning to play the piano again. It really is amazing how the Lord blesses us with the talents to do the things that are required of us.  I am learning so quickly! I will be playing three songs at new beginnings this saturday. It is a daunting task because I have never really played an actual piano song before, but just practicing I can see my improvement and I know that it is only through the help of the Lord that I am able to do this. When I play I have to help keep myself calm and really focus all of my energy into playing and reading the music. Thanks mom for haveing me take piano lessons and letting me play in the band all these years! It has helped a lot!! :) :) I may not have enjoyed piano at the time, but now I am absolutly loveing it. The music is so beautiful. Saturday I will be playing Eu anda pela fe, Juventude da Promessa, and Como Viverei. ( I walk by faith and How shall I live) They are songs in the young womens songbook.
Hmm..  a scripture that I I really liked this week was 1 Nephi 18:15-16, Verse 16 is my favorite. After four days of this pain and suffering we read ," Nevertheless, I did look unto my God, and I did apraise him all the day long; and I did not murmur against the Lord because of mine afflictions."   We have  so many reasons to complain during the day, yet we should always return to the Lord. We will be so much happier if we do this.
The scriptures in portuguese have such beautiful translations in my mind. Not every word  translates to the words used in english, therefore my mind ponders and thinks of the significance of what is being said. It is beautiful the ways the Spirit helps us learn.

Have fun with the crazy Oklahoma weather! You all should go to the zoo for me and send me pictures!
Today we get to take a five hour bus ride to the other part of our zone for zone conference. Woo-hoo.
Sister Chatwin

What a Week!

March 3, 2014
Hi mom!
I am super glad that you and Remmington are feeling better again!
SNOW! I miss snow right now. Although I am loving the weather in Vilhena. I dont have to sleep with a fan or airconditioning. IT IS PERFECT.
To answer Moms questions... I saw that huge list and thought they were all for me. My thoughts were this...Oh no what has Ryan done. lol. I am glad that only a few of them are for me!!
I now have seven months on the mission. It is a strange feeling. Time flys so quickly and I have met and learned to love so many people. It will be so hard to come home! I am not looking forward to it,but I am looking forward to being with my family again!

There are some cool really tiny moths here. I see them in our house. But otherwise I havent really seen any bugs here in Vilhena.

The new area is great! IT really is perfect. It is not hot, and there is wind here. There are not any noisy streets. It is just a cute little town. My new companion is Sister Olivera. She is a sweetheart, she got here one transfer after me, although she is Senior companion. But I know why.... Our area is Vilhena 2, we are in charge of Branch 2. Which ironically we found out the day we arrived doesnt exist. There are 3 branches here 1 and 3 are up and running, but some time ago branch two was shut down. So our job right now is to reactivate all of the old members and find new ones to baptise. Right now we are a part of branch 1 until branch two is up and running. It is the second time that Vilhena has had sisters.(the first time was 14 years ago and only for a few weeks) I have a feeling that I will be staying here for a while, seeing as we have so much to do. Right now we are living in the Elders house, and they are staying with the other set of Elders here. We just found a new apartment for us to move into, so that should be happening here in a few weeks. You can look it up on the internet. Right now we live on Avenida Parana, above a market. The apartment we will be moving to is on the same street as Park Shopping (the grocery store) the apartment is a part of the Olinda Hotel. Anyways Sister Olivera has been a member of a branch almost her whole life, so she knows how things work.
The 12 hour bus ride was a twelve hour bus ride. The bus stopped at every city, so when  you finally fell asleep you woke up again. Our zone is ji-parana. So when we have our treinamento de zona we have to take a five hour bus ride to get to them. Conferencia de Zonas will be a twelve hour bus ride to Porto Velho again.
The land is so beautiful. While we were staring the bus ride I kept thinking, mom and dad have to take this bus ride, just because it is absoulutely beautiful.
The people are great too!

Love you all so much! I am glad that all is well with you! I cant wait to hear from you again!
-Sister Chatwin