Sunday, December 2, 2012

Monday, November 19, 2012 - Another Year Older...YIKES!!!!

Hola Mi Familia! My, my...what a busy week you all have had! Mine was....sort of the opposite unfortunately...dead! So, like I said, we left last Monday night for Agua Prieta for the interview with the President Tuesday. It was pretty fantastic! We got there and called our district leader and he assigned us a companionship in Agua Prieta to stay with. Arriving in Agua Prieta, it was FREEZING!!! It is much colder there than her in Nacozari! Oh it was chilly! When we arrived at the house, we knocked on the door and who answered, none other than my "pa": Elder Melchor! I mentioned a few weeks ago that during transfers he was put as Assistant and they were there in Agua Prieta with the President. They stayed in the house with the other companionship and us. It was so good to see him, finally and catch-up. I've wanted to see him for the longest time! We talked a bunch with them and after a while the companionship whose house we were at arrived with pizza. All 6 of us stayed that night and talked a good bit. It was fun to talk with the Assistants (Probably since one of them was Elder Melchor!)! The next day we got up and got ready and all for the interviews and left for the church. We had the interviews and all went well. I love interviewing with the President and tell him all my thoughts and everything that is going on. It was also nice to be with the whole zone and see everyone. One of the other missionaries told me that the Pres. said they want to make Agua Prieta a stake and to have that, they need to have wards obviously, and to have a ward, you need to have at least 20 Melchizedek priesthood holders, and well, we don't have that so what they may do to create a ward is combine Nacozari and Esqueda and either the members in Esqueda would have to come here, or the members here would go there. Interesting things happening. I also heard that for the small areas not to close this next transfer, the branches need to have a complete branch presidency with councilors, a mission leader, and a family history program. Well, we don't have ANY of that so I guess we're gonna be closing then...Afterwards we were on our way to the bus station, but I wanted to stop at a department store, Coppel. We stopped and I purchased myself a new tie for my birthday. It is a lovely various shades of blue and black, it is quite awesome and I wish I had more money with me to buy more presents for myself...oh well! Maybe we will have to go to Agua Prieta again sometime and I can stop by again. When we were in Agua Prieta, I picked up my other two packages! Thanks Cole for the paper figure of Darth Vader, My name plate, and card as well! Unfortunately, Mom, my Thanksgiving package wasn't there, so maybe the family didn't come to Agua Prieta this past week. Also, the District leader didn't go to Agua Prieta yesterday because they didn't have a meeting, so it could be there waiting for me. Btdubs, thanks for my cookies and brownies and ingredients for cookies, and cereal, and all the other goodies! I'm enjoying them! The day before my birthday, the 15th, was the birthday of Hector's sister, who we have been teaching for a while too. We were thinking of what we could get her for her birthday, but we couldn't think of anything. I then remembered the ingredients that mom sent me, and so Thursday I made cookies! My, was it a chore! Let's just say I don't like to make things without machines, like beaters, to help me. I didn't have any vanilla and so we went one street over to the cake shop to ask the sister for vanilla. I was hoping that she would offer us her kitchen to make the cookies and use her machines, but she wasn't there, just the house help. So we still got the vanilla, but I had to make the dough using my hands and cook the cookies in a cake pan. They turned out delicious of course! My comp LOVED them! Everyone else enjoyed them too! Thanks for sending the stuff, mom! Now we get to good ole Friday the 16th....I woke up and put on my favorite grey dress pants, a good looking long sleeve shirt (thinking it would be cold, but it wasn't...) and my beautiful brand new blue tie I bought for myself! During study time, I received a phone call from President and Hermana Hernandez wishing me a good day. Elder Graves in Esqueda also called and he wished me a happy birthday, and I wished him a happy one year in the mission! After studies, I opened my package! I had Elder Alvarado take a video and I tried to send it, but it is too big of a file...sorry :(Thanks a ton for everything! I especially like my new watch and my CD. Unfortunately the DVD player we have just broke and so I haven't had a chance to listen to it until this very second while writing. I brought all the cake ingredients that you sent me to the lunch on Friday to have the family that we were eating with make the cake for me....MISTAKE!!!! Haha! I should have just made it myself! Supposedly this sister makes cakes to sell, but she is nowhere as good as the sister who has the cake shop. I gave her all my ingredients and the recipe and went to do something and when I came back she had put everything in her kitchen aid was mixing it all. I was a little surprised. I was going to make it all and since the recipe was in English...she didn't exactly follow the recipe exactly. I was getting quite excited to eat my favorite chocolate cake that my mom makes on my birthday, but when she took it out of the oven, it deflated a little and the edges rolled in a little. That was a little depressing. We put the candles on and I blew them out (again, another video, but again, too big to send...sorry!). It is Mexican tradition to bite the cake before cutting it. When I took a bite, it was good, but I thought I could taste a bit of egg or something and it didn't seem like the ingredients were mixed up well. So it was a little depressing. It was still good and a little reminder of home...but just not as good as mom! We later went with Hector and his family and they all gave me presents: cupcakes, mini hostess snacks, etc. It was cute and a nice gesture. Afterwards, we to the branch president's house and shared the left over cake with them. That was really it as far as birthday activities go...kind of lame, but hey, what can you do? But, I am freaking 20 years old!!!! That was the weirdest feeling! Telling myself that morning, "Dayne, you're 20 years old today! 2 whole Decades!" Geez! That is just the weirdest think to think of! I am no longer a teenager! Mind blowing I tell you! Whatever! Life goes on... and is WAY TOO short! As far as missionary work, this week kind of sucked! We really had nothing to do. It is the hardest thing when we don't have investigators and people to visit and your work depends on the members and references, but when they don't give you references, you don't have anything to do....We just visit the same small number of people every other day. There were WAY too many times where we just asked ourselves "what do we do?" So that has been hard. I fear for these remaining 4 weeks of this transfer. Luckily we had a branch council meeting planned for last night. We showed up with the President and waited for like 20 minutes for people to show, but no one was coming. Right when we were about to leave and cancel it, everyone showed up. Only the Elder's Quorum Pres., Relief Society Pres. and Primary Pres. showed, but we had it. I was hoping to talk about a branch mission plan we could implement to get more support and help from the members. We began and the meeting with the Pres. saying that they are going to close the branch and I thought it would lead into how we can prevent that (by helping the missionaries!), but then people started talking and it shifted more into helping reactivate non-members instead of how the members can help the missionaries so the area won't close. We BARELY touched on that subject. So I was a little disappointed in that. Oh well, their choice. But we are still left without work. Just 4 more weeks I guess. So everyone is asking about my nutting comp. Well, we sort of broke the ice and are getting friendlier. He is a hoot. To give you an idea: he reminds me of Urkle from Family Matters, just a tad bit less nerdy, but not too much less. He makes me laugh really hard. Tomorrow is the day to celebrate the Mexican revolution, but today they celebrated it with a parade and all and we went and watched it. I felt a little bit out of place being big, white, and gringo, but it was cool. I got a whole lot of Mexican culture thrown at me, but it was enjoyable! Well, that is about all I got about this week. Hopefully something exciting will happen this week. I will be thinking of you Thursday while you are stuffing your faces! HA! Thanks for all the birthday stuff! I appreciated it a lot! I love and miss you all tons! Have a nice week! Just think...ONE MONTH from this next Sunday we will be chatting on the tele! Woah! How fast! ¡Yo sé que vive mi Señor! Con Mucho Amor, Elder Joyner

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