Monday, December 29, 2014

As 2014 Comes to an End...

December 28th, 2014

It's hard for me to think about what I did this week cause I was able to talk to my family on Christmas.. So sorry if things are repeated.. So lets start at the beginning..
Monday, the classic P-day shopping, emailing, what else is new? So nothing exciting on MondayOn Tuesday we had our giant mission conference, which consisted of some really good trainings/talks by President and Sister Ashton and Patriarch Newbold from the clearlake ward. It was a really good zone conference. Then of course after that there was a talent show and this was the best thing ever. There are some really talented people in our mission.. Others.. not so much, but nonetheless I loved it. There was this one elder that basically had me peeing my pants. He went up and said "I'm going to be singing 'These boots are made for walking' by Jessica Simpson.. Just kidding just kidding!" haha he also warned that puberty was rough on him so his voice squeaks. This guy literally killed me. I was crying I was laughing so hard. 
Wednesday was Christmas Eve and we went over to the Tacam's house. (Hispanics celebrate Christmas Eve like Christmas) so we just waited for the other families to arrive and while we did that we played some games. I totally killed it with the cookie on the face game. Sister Winger would have been so proud. But also we did some cup stacking. Basically we played minute to win it and I was a champion. Good thing cause 6 year old Ian beat me again at memory. He's such a trampa. 
Thursday was Christmas and we had breakfast as a zone at the church and that was a good time. Green waffles, just like last year (that's what happens when you have the same leadership 2 christmas in a row) it was really fun! All that happened just in time to go over to the Gomez's for dinner/skyping with the family. That's where I learned that my family has grown up so much. What the? So crazy! After that we had dinner #2 at the Cervantes. I basically died. But really I did. That night I was up all night shaking, who knows what was going on there...? Not me. But I'm fine now, I was told to sleep more on Friday to recoop.
Saturday was your average day. We biked all day and Hermana Call fell off her bike. Again. Obviously it was a big deal so we had to go buy a brace. It was dumping rain and no one was home. We later stopped by the bishop's house to drop off a card we forgot to give the family and turns out there was a high priest party going on and we got invited. Pretty fun. The old men in this ward are crazy.
Sunday there was a miracle baptism for the elders (and for us). Louis that we taught at the very beginning of when Hermana Call was here got baptized yesterday. And I was able to give a talk about baptism.. YAY!
Transfer calls came this morning and Hermana Call and I are staying together. I'm out of time because I'm trying to fill out some applications so if I don't email you personally don't be offended. I love you all and hope you have a great week!
Hermana Groves

Wednesday, December 24, 2014


Happy week of Christmas!! I hope that everyone is having a great time prepping for the holidays, as for us we're just doing the normal thing but wearing our Christmas sweaters around the house.. We can't wear them in public, so we may as well get jolly within our 4 walls, right? Right. 
It's always the week that I don't have a lot of emails to respond to that I can't think of anything to write...Why is that? Well I'll think of something good, so everyone buckle up and prepare for the best Christmas email of your life.. 

This week started out slow (per usual) because Monday's are hard days to find and the members who love us are doing family home evening.. So yeah. Tuesday was a pretty hoppin' day. We had district meeting and I then went on exchanges with Hermana Johnson (who's from Bryce Valley, turns out we know a few people in common) in the area where Hermana Lister used to be. It was a really good exchange, I was able to learn a lot from her. She's a very obedient missionary and works really hard.  She has such a good attitude and I just loved being with her, she's fairly new to the mission but she knows her stuff. I can't wait to see where she is in a year. We went with this investigator to a ward activity and she drove us there.. The way there I felt like I was on a roller coaster she was going crazy and the way back we were going turtle slow! What she said on the way back "I like to drive slow, it's a lot safer that way" it was just really ironic. So this activity was supposed to be a Christmas activity but it ended up being like a presentation thing.. So all the kids moving from Nursery to primary were presented and then all going from primary to the youth were presented as well. We asked her how she liked it and she said "Man I just love how you center Christmas on Christ" haha it was in that moment we realized the she's basically deaf, so.. at least she felt the spirit of Christmas in our church.. right? haha It just cracked me up. 

Wedesday the Tacams wanted to take us out to dinner so Hermano told us he had a friend to introduce us to (we can't go eat outside our area unless members are inviting their friends) we got super pumped! We pull up to Cici's pizza okay? We're excited cause Hermano Tacam's got someone to introduce us to.. We go inside and he says "Hermanas... I would like to introduce you to a good friend of mine, the buffalo chicken pizza at Cici's." we were like "What? Are you kidding me!?" haha hopes were all gone.. But it's alright, because later we tried that man Julio(who came to church) and we were able to teach him and set up a return appointment for the next day! Cool huh? It was! That night we tracted some doors and met this cool lady named Maria, she also invited us back the next day. Success!

So obviously we were able to teach them both the next day, Julio was super cool he had lots of deep questions and we could tell he was interested. Hna Sorto came with us and she said "aren't you excited to go back to Guatamala and be a member of the church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints?" and he said "I will definitely be excited when that day comes" holllla! This guy is ready!

Friday was a super special day for me. I was able to go to the temple with Wilson!!! Wilson got to go through the temple and he requested that I be there :') it was a super happy day! Too bad it was raining cats and dogs, but nonetheless it was so awesome. I just wanted to cry I was so happy for him. But I was actually supposed to go to a meeting that day but President excused me cause he wanted me to go to the temple.. It was for all Sister Training leaders/district leaders/ zone leaders and so my district leader saw that I wasn't there ( i got permission from my president.. didn't need it from my district leader).. tried calling our phone (but it was off cause we were in the temple) and basically was super worried. So finally at the end of the day he called like he always does and told us he had a mini heart attack until he talked to president.. He was like "where are my sisters? what happened to them?" he wasn't even mad. Just concerned. We always make jokes that he's our mom. He totally is. We got to make papoosas with the familia Orellana in our ward that night. We killed it. I'm totally opening up a papoosaria when I get home. Watch out, I'm totally pro. 

Saturday was our ward christmas party. Julio came! And One of the elder's creepy investigators Roberto came too. We had to be with him cause the elders were late and he was complementing us and asking me how to say it in English to make him sound more exotic. How bout no. This fool. Haha don't worry. I've only gotten better at putting creepy men down on my mission. Why can no normal men try? I don't know. Great question. Anyways Elder Balls got to be Santa and the kids were upset when they weren't allowed to sit on his lap. Missionary probs haha. 

Read Jacob 5 this week and actually made more sense in Spanish. Fancy that.
Anyways I can't wait to speak with you guys on Christmas! I love you all! MERRY CHRISTMAS!

"started from the bottom now we're at the temple" with wilson

Ward party with WML

Sharing the gift with our school class

feliz navidad

(I wanted a cuter picture for my christmas card but my comp didn't like it of her) 

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

I'm dreaming of a white...Christmas...

December 15th, 2014 

The person who wrote that song HAS to be from Utah but spending their Christmas in Texas, because it's literally 75 degrees outside right now. Haha. 

Can I just tell you guys that this week was really awesome!! We experienced quite the miracle week. obviously we got 5 new investigators which isn't very easy in this area, but it all came from tracting. I have never tracted before in my whole mission, but Elder Hudson suggested it the other day in district meeting. I was able to gain a really strong testimony of tracting. We only spent a couple of hours doing it and almost 90% of the people who opened their doors invited us back (most of them were English speaking, we gave those referrals away) and a few even gave us referrals! It was truly a miracle! I keep telling Hermana Call that I'm going to endorse tracting for the rest of my mission, because sometimes the people aren't outside, and you've tried all the formers but Heavenly Father knows the desires of your heart, as you get bold and put yourself out there and define your purpose with everyone you meet you feel like you are fulfilling what the Lord has in store for you. I know that this truly can be the BEST time in my mission if I truly continue to put my trust in the Lord. 

We also tried chalking a few places. We were getting the sidewalk by a busy street and this lady stopped at the light looked out the window and said "Oh my gosh, that is so creative, I love that you are focusing Christmas on Christ, my husband and I have been looking for a church truly centered on Christ! Where are you located?" so I quickly gave her the coordinates of our building and told her the english services started at 9, I don't know if she came, but we planted a seed there! 

Yesterday a man who we gave a card when he was on his phone texted us and asked for the address of the church and the time. He came and stayed all 3 hours! The elders said that when he introduced himself in priesthood he said he felt really good.  Heavenly Father has been blessing us left and right. We also had a lesson with a niece and nephew and law of one of our less actives yesterday, the spirit was so strong as we taught the plan of salvation/my family and testified to them that they would see his sister (who just barely died at 18) again. They were both crying saying they knew what we were saying was true. 
Heavenly Father really loves us and is blessing us in ways that I honestly cannot describe more than the fact I just feel His love so much!

We've been doing the 12 days of Christmas with the members that live in our area and the 12 gifts are the articles of faith, we cut out a paper tree and every day we are brining them something to decorate the tree with. It's really cute, the families are getting really excited and focusing Christmas on the gifts that Heavenly Father has given us. I LOVE IT! 

On Saturday Jessica and Rosaurio from my old area stopped by to see me. It was so awesome to see them and talk and read in the scriptures with them. I look at them and I feel Christ's love for them, which is still something I'm working on. 

Okay also something funny, on monday we had a zone activity (like usual) and usually we end up playing "one bounce" (well our district and the other hermanas in my old area) which consists of passing the ball back and forth but allowing it to hit the ground only once.. Well.. Hermana Hull, Elder Anderson and I started a new trend. This game is hilarious. "One bounce" with our hands taped together. It was so fun almost everyone joined in. My legacy will live on in the THSM because I came up with this game and everyone loves it. Haha that was the excitement with that. It was hilarious. Just imagine it please. Haha I loved it. We also got to go to the Galleria. Totally overpriced and overrated. But a good time! Also had exchanges with Hermana Endicott. Party. Haha. Well I hope you all had a great week and keep having a good Christmas season. 

I love you!

Hermana Groves

Monday, December 8, 2014

I'm dreaming of a white Christmas...

December 8th, 2014

Buenas dias mi quierido familia y amigos. Como estan? 
Pues, no tengo mucho de que puedo hablar entonces... Voy a prepararles por mi regreso, con un mensaje en espanol. :) Esta semana fue muy bien pero no ensenabamos mucho. Teniamos muchas reuniones y intercambios y esto resulto en pocos lecciones por nosotros. 
Por Martes tuvimos una conferencia de zona y Presidente Ashton y Hermana Ashton hablaron mucho sobre la consecracion y como podemos mejorar en esta aspecto. Y yo lo creo completamente, de las hermanas en que estoy encargando son del mundo muchisimo. Y es mi trabajo de.. Ayudarles de cambiar basicamente jaja. Pero esta reunion fue muy bien y pienso que va a ayudar a los de mas (y yo) cambiar por lo mejor y sacrificar las cosas que en verdad 1. No son importante o 2. Que estan esperando cuando regresamos.
 Pero tenia la oportunidad de ir con la Hermana Beltran por su ultimo intercambio (ella fue mi primero) en su area. La area de ella y la Hermana Millard tiene mucho potencial no podria creer cuantos personas en verdad vivieron en su area. Esta una buena misionera y tenia muchas pruebas durante el tiempo de su mision. Esta lo mejor! 
Tambien pudria ir con Hermana Lister por intercambios. La extrano muchisimo. Esta la Senior Sister Training leader. Basicamente ella esta AP. jaja pero su area esta hoppin basicamente ella vive en mexico. Que suerte.. Literamente tienen personas a quien pueden hablar con todo el dia. No es justo! Pero, whatever. Ella me ayudo para respirar y tener un discanso o viaje de mi area. La amo, en verdad. 
Tambien ayudabamos la Hermana Gonzalas y su hija para hacer y limpiar despues haciendo tamales por una fundraiser. 
Ayer conocimos un nino que era muy chistoso! El queria que jugamos tag con el, pero no pudriamos. Hablabamos con el por casi 20 minutos. El nos dijo cosas muy rada sobre el complejo en que vive. Tambien antes la devocional de la navidad (que mirabamos en la casa de Obispo Gomez) mirabamos Jonny Lingo. Jaja. Estoy muy contenta que en verdad esta video era hecho por la iglesia. Un dia voy a ser un 8 vaca mujer. Jaja.
Really I didn't have anything too exciting this week. But I hope that you guys are all having a great week preparing for christmas!! HAPPY BIRTHDAY AL! Sorry I didn't send any pictures this week.. I love you all!
Hermana Groves
ps. I will be in my apartment until after christmas. 

If you are having troubles reading this Spanish Email, Here is the translation from Google Translate
It is not perfect because I am not a Spanish Speaker like Hermana Groves.


Quierido Good morning my family and friends. How are you?
Well, I have not much that I can talk then ... I go to prepare for my return with a message in Spanish. :) This week was great but we did not teach much. We had many meetings and exchanges and this resulted in few lessons for us.
On Tuesday we had a conference area and President and Sister Ashton Ashton talked a lot about consecration and how we can improve in this aspect. And I think it completely, sisters that are in the world am ordering a lot. And it's my job .. Help them to change basically haha. But this meeting was very good and I think it will help to more (and me) change for the better and sacrifice the things that really are not important 1. or 2. are waiting when we got back.
But had the opportunity to go with Sister Beltran its last trade (it was my first) in your area. The area of ​​it and Sister Millard has much potential could not believe how many people actually lived in your area. This a good missionary and had many tests during the time of his mission. This the best!
May also need to go with Sister Lister by exchanges. The strange lot. This Senior Sister Training leader. Basically she's AP. haha but its area is hoppin basically she lives in mexico. Lucky .. Literally have people who can talk to all day. It's not fair! But whatever. She helped me to breathe and have a trip discanso or my area. I love her, really.
Also we helped the Gonzalas sister and daughter to make tamales and clean after doing a fundraiser.
Yesterday we met a child who was very funny! He wanted to play tag with but not pudriamos. We talked with him for almost 20 minutes. He told us very rada things about the resort living. Also before christmas devotional (which we watched at the home of Bishop Gomez) we watched Jonny Lingo. Haha. I am very glad indeed that this video was made by the church. One day will be August 1 cow woman. Haha.
Really I did not have any anything too exciting this week. But I hope that you 'guys are all Reviews having a great week Preparing for christmas !! HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO AL! Sorry I did not send any pictures this week .. I love you all!
Sister Groves
ps. I will be in my apartment until after christmas.

Monday, December 1, 2014

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas :)

December 1st, 2014

Seasons Greetings to all those within reading distance. 

Can you believe that it's already December? Where the heck did the time go?! I basically heard that the highlight of the week was Thanksgiving in Grandma's destroyed house and people having to wash the dishes in the sink. Haha I'm so glad the traditional perfect thanksgiving was broken. Seriously. The crazy makes it that much better :)

So this week was another eventful one in the Texas Houston South Mission. Our car no longer smells like turkey but now smells like sour cream and onion chips... But nasty ones. Haha it doesn't make you crave chips. Just in case you guys were wondering about that.

So lesson wise this week was a little slow but not only were we spiritually fed.... We were physically fed.. a lot. Allie made a joke in her last letter about how that one thanksgiving we weighed ourselves before and after thanksgiving and we gained 10 pounds... Well I gained 10 pounds after my FIRST thanksgiving dinner.. With that being said, we had 2. Hispanic Thanksgiving is not gringo Thanksgiving if you know what I mean. Let me lay this out for you a little bit.. We had a SPICY turkey, rice, beef mixture(or suprise.. haha she said it was her version of stuffing haha) and tamales with some mashed potatoes within the 2 dinners that was completely normal for them. Sometimes it's not hard to miss the holidays while you're on your mission.. because literally they don't feel like the holidays. It's actually pretty lucky! I love it, it's really cool to see how those who aren't from around here try to start their own family traditions.  It was really good we were able to share a nice dinner with the Molinas and the Liburds and really build our relationship with them, so that was good :)

We had our zone conference this week and I feel  like my study went really well. I ended up focussing a lot on faith and sacrifice and how as we truly sacrifice the things that mean the most to us we receive blessings basically out the yin yangs. Maybe I felt like it went really well cause I started crying and basically all the hermanas were crying. Touching them right in their hearts? I believe so.

With it being the end of the month you know that we rode our bikes more than usual.. It was great. I'm seriously so glad they gave us mountain bikes and not street bikes because the city of Houston doesn't even feel bad about just stopping a sidewalk in the middle of a path. (Am I going to start a petition? You betcha! I'll get all those other crazy people out on the sidewalks [other missionaries?] to sign it haha) Anyways we've been trying to use bikes as a way to find people to teach and with the new christmas thing the church is doing... (check out this cute video :) so watch it and #sharethegift We've been able to talk with a lot of people about this. It's so cool.

So we were going around the other day talking to a few people before our dinner appointment with an Hermana in our ward and this dog kept following us around so we were trying to shoo it before we got to her door, Hermana walked out to take out the garbage and was like "who's dog is that?" we said we think it was a stray so what did she do? She took it into her home! It was so adorable to watch her 2 year old daughter play with this dog. She named it Jelly. She's so stinkin cute I couldn't get over it!

Martha had her baby shower this week and only us and a few people from the ward came. We felt super bad because we both only had like 3 dollars left on our cards when she invited us.. So a pack of wipes and a bottle from fiesta will just have to do. Haha. But she was so grateful that we were even there so it was all good. 
Yesterday I beat the champian (Ian Tacam) in memory. His family basically hoisted me up they were so happy. This kid is 7 and has not lost a game of memory in 2 years.. and he knows it. haha So they were so happy when I gave him a taste of losing. Haha

Well I hope that you all had a great week! I love hearing from you all, sorry I don't always respond but I always read. You guys are amazing and I'm lucky to have you in my life. I love being a missionary. It's the best. Have a great week! I love you!!