Monday, April 27, 2015

April 27 Cienega de Flores

Dear mom,

Thanks so much for the words of encouragement. I´ve been doing a lot better this week. It´s still been pretty rough. Here we have a lot of investigators come and go really fast, they love to listen, but don´t want to act. We did have two people in church this sunday however, which was exciting. There was one wonderful experience that I had this week, but it´s more personal and I don´t want to share it publically. In Preach my gospel, It says that we shouldn´t share spiritual experiences as if they are pokemon cards. Ok it doesn´t say THAT, but similar. They´re sacred moments that we have had and we should only be shared for the benefit of others, to help build their testimonies and feel the spirit, not to brag or anything. One thing that I have talked about a couple of times is the economic difficulties that our familty has had in the past, in general, and how as a kid I really didn´t feel afraid because my parents were faithful and strong in the church. Everything turned out better than before and now they can spend all of their time breaking our house (hahaha.) But, I´ve been trying to be really sensitive to the spirit to know what I should share and what I should hold onto, especially because I have never been asked to give a talk in church...with more than a five minutes notice. ahahahah it really is a dandy thing though, I feel that I´m always prepared to share something and give the members some cheer and uplifted spirit through what I say. I think my spanish is best behind the pulpit.

Anyway, I got my birthday package, that book from grandma, the blanket too. I got the journals and the book and the hymn book out, and the hi-chews too(everyone enjoyed those) Remember I won´t write you next monday, but wednesday. We don´t know what we will be doing for mother´s day because there is no good place(or member´s house) with good enough internet, so we might have to get permission to go all the way to san nicolas(sweet) to go to a special cyber cafe to do it, and it might be on the monday right after mother´s day. We´ll figure it out this week and let you know next wednesday.

Birds birds birds. Lots of birds here in Cienega. I FINALLY SAW A CRESTED CARACARA! I saw a bunch actually in some field, it was awesome. I also saw a painted bunting. I was never too eager to see one before because in the illustrations they always have the red eye-ring and they look evil, but this one was seen on top of a bush singing, super gorgeous. There are also many Pyrroluxia here, the "Desert Cardinals" a couple northern Cardinals, Some cool Common Nighthawks, and many other birds.

Ok here is a cool experience I had (to share with everyone) I was on divisions in a different area with Elder W. We were walking down a  road and passed by two people hacking at some giant log (actually one of them was a lazy 25yr old and the other was like a 50 yr old lady) I asked, "Hey can we help you?" Sure! We started cutting the giant log, sweating a bunch, getting blisters and all, super awesome. We cut that one and moved on to the next. as we rotated in cutting it, we taught them about the gospel of jesus christ, and introduced the book of mormon, they were really receptive. We got nearly done with the log, and then stopped and I said "You know, cutting this log is a lot like the gospel, you guys can watch us finish this log and feel good because the job is done, or you could finish it yourself and feel even more accomplished. With the Gospel, we can listen to the word of god and feel the spirit, but even better is to follow said teachings and recieve unexplainable joy." Elder W set an appointment, and we left about 1/4 of the log to finish. It was pretty awesome, but then we had sore backs hahahaha.

Sounds, and looks like nathnaiel is doing great. tell him that starting the first lap by telling a joke to someone is fun(hahaha i don´t know if he should do it or not, I did it a couple of times, but i don´t know if it affects the race.) Anyway, I´m doing great again, still.

I love you all,

Elder Garner
This is a photo from the National Wildlife Refuge to show what Crested Caracara look like.  Davis didn't take this pic.

Monday, April 20, 2015

2015-04-20 Cienega de Flores

Hey Mom!

(this week was a hard week)

I got transferred to the little branch of Cienega de Flores, It´s about 2 hours north of San Nicolas by bus, and it´s a pueblicito (small town). It´s actually still in the stake of San Nicolas (not in the same zone though), even though it´s still super far(my branch isn´t even the farthest one away). They whitewashed Elder J and I, so He´s not in Nicolas Bravo either, he went to be a zone leader in a different zone, which is cool.

My companion is Elder H. He´s from the stake of Pachucha Hidalgo in Mexico. He knows as much english as I know the names of cars (barely

Well the first day when I arrived here, we found a giant freakin’ spider in the corner of the shower Shooot! The next day I killed a black widow that was hanging around the folletos [pamphlets] and then after that we found a small tarantula stuck between the window and the screen, about the size of a regular sports´s still there. so...LOTS OF SPIDERS! Bleh, I´m not really fond of them, but at least it´s not like Ron Weasely and Aragog. 

oh here´s another thing...We´re on Bikes. We´re one of the very few areas in our mission with bikes, our area is super big too. This saturday that past, we were waiting for the zone leaders to show us where we were going to eat (Our branch consists of 2 areas, cienega de flores and real de sol, the zone leaders are in the other one and we eat with them sometimes.) and all of a sudden my tire explodes! The tube blew through and ripped the tire! Sheesh, I had to go buy another one of both. Let´s just say mom that this area has been pretty...crazy I guess in this first week.

I have seen some new birds though (for my mission list) I saw a hooded Oriole, the ones that live in our palm trees, I have seen a lot of scissor-tailed flycatchers, that one bird that nested in san paula last summer, and I found a zone tailed Hawk, never seen one before. Yea.

The branch is very nice though, Even though it is small all of the members are super loving and awesome. They really want to build up the branch spiritually and phsyically, so We´re going to help them do that.

It is pretty green here though, a pretty place. Oh, so one of the zone leaders (Elder S actually [Davis’ trainer], he´s my zone leader now how strange huh) told me that i got a package. It´s probably at the offices still so I´ll probably get it when we have zone interviews or something, but it got here! And, this cyber isn´t bad, so maybe I´ll send some pictures next week. I´m going to the Temple on the sixth of May, so I won´t email you on the 4th, but the 6th, and that´s when We´ll get everything figured out on how we are going to talk for mother´s day. We are going to figure that out.

Well, I´m growing mom, I´ll tell you that, I´m giving it all I got, it´s tough sometimes but I know that the Lord can help me do it. I know that I couldn´t do this myself. Everyday I find myself more and more dependant on the Saviour. When I get discouraged I think of the talk "The good news about the gospel of Jesus Christ is that our desires can be transformed." I read Alma chapter 38 often. []

I love you so much

Tell Nathaniel that I say keep going, you´re doing great! (No!!! Second place, really close second place!! -Mr. Incredible hahahah)

Elder Garner

Monday, April 13, 2015

San Nicolas, April 13, 2015

Hey Mom!

This week has been super awesome! so much happened and yet it went by so fast!

firstly, no it was the other toe, thank goodness, and it is a ok. [Ingrown toenail report.]

The mural stayed around for about 4 days before rain washed it away, it was awesome. We would see people walking super slowly by it, and then they´d stop to read hahahah. I can send you all of the steps of it so you can post the whole thing. The time lapse should be really cool.

So I will probably get transferred tomorrow, I´ll find out where I´m going and with who tonight (but you´ll have to wait till next Monday)  but I´ll be able to write letters to O and Sister F and K. E literally disappeared, kind of upset about that, but it´s good that I´m leaving this area because if I found him again I would probably yell at him(no not really)

I just got an email from CS and from RW [high school running buddies]. CT writes me now and then, I get emails from JB, SE and MB, CN writes me, I talk to Elder KS [serving in a different part of Mexico] and Cousin Garner [serving in Germany]. Elder GK [serving in Lyon, France] is too happy-go-lucky in his mass emails so I haven´t gotten a reply from him yet. hahaha.

Thanks mom, I´m actually going to go get a haircut right after this, so I´ll get something nice. I think I have a pretty modest haircut as a missionary, but I use gel now so it doesn´t bother me, should I go without? [Mom says yes.]

Anyway, K GOT BAPTIZED FINALLY. And let me say it was a LOVELY baptism. Let me give you the story:
So in the morning there was a youth conference for 2 stakes, and it was a missionary activity that we participated in. We did little workshops about Preach My Gospel and Elder J and I taught about chapter 5: The Book of Mormon. We did a fun little activity and the youth got super excited about the book of Mormon. I also saw Elder L [MTC companion] at the conference too! After it finished at about 12pm. We prepared for the baptism. Since all of the youth was still there, all of the youth from our ward stayed and then some for the baptism. I played some prelude music on the piano and it was super reverent! When we moved from the chapel to the baptismal room for him to get baptized, everyone was very quiet. Once K came out of the water, we was beaming and super happy. Everyone moved back to the chapel and to keep the reverence, Elder J played an arrangement of hymns on his guitar. Then, O gave a super awesome talk and shared his baptism experience! When it ended and people were eating cupcakes, K´s mom, M, came up to us with tears in her eyes, she was so happy to see K get baptized and that everyone in the ward loved him. The spirit truly touched her heart. Now she wants us to teach her. It was such a wonderful experience for me.
K's baptism

Davis, Happy and wet K, Elder J

 Anyway, that same day around 8:15pm, we were buying crepes and a lighting storm strikes! Raining super hard, lightning struck super close and the power went out for a minute hahahah. We finished our crepes and booked it for the house, WE WERE DRENCHED! The roads were almost 9 inches full of water! And then the next day it cleared up and was sunny and bright...until 8 o clock, It was an even bigger storm! Lighting was super strong and the thunder was way loud, the power went out in our area for about 2 hours, probably because it actually struck a electricity box this time, super windy. It was super cool. It´s sunny right now...but who knows what it will be tonight. We were safe thought because we were in our house and we said a prayer. 
Soaked by a thunderstorm.

 I have had such amazing experiences here in Nicolas Bravo, and with Elder J, but we´ll see what happens tomorrow! hahahah when I told the bishop´s wife that I was probably going to get changed, she said "¡No se vaya!" (Don´t Go!) and invited us over for lunch for today hahahah. It´ll be a little sad to leave the people in this ward.

I´ll try to write my grandmas and grandpa. Do you think you could ask grandpa if he could find me a "New Testament" alone in spanish, as in it´s just the new testament nothing else. [I thought he had the whole bible in Spanish; not sure why he’d need just the New Testament”]

I love you guys!

Elder Garner

sorry, I shouldn´t be sending so many pictures, But I´m not sure if I´ll have a safe ciber in my next area, so if I don´t I won´t send pictures to you ok.  love you,

Monday, April 6, 2015

San Nicolas April 6, 2015

We´re still having a bit of commotion with K, I still don´t know if he will be ready to be baptized tomorrow, he needs to have the interview. Fortunately he still desires to do it and so we´re gonna make it happen. 

I was also thinking about you and dad during that one general conference talk that mentioned that "I can teach you the dance steps, but you need to hear the music" I´m very grateful that I have you two as such wonderful parents getting skin cancer and noses chopped off...uh I mean I am grateful for you teaching me the dance steps, teaching me the gospel, through example, taking me to church, wholesome and funny family home evenings, dad helping me with my priesthood duties, and all of the love that you have for me. I was definitely able to hear the music for myself. I´m glad that you would yell at me when I wasn´t doing what I was supposed to, I guess I wasn´t very rebelious because I´d eventually do something(except clean my room...sorry) and I´m thankful for all of the wonderful encouragement I received for everything.

I want to tell you all of the things I am thankful for, but I don´t have all of the time in the world.

There is a sister missionary in my district who is finishing her mission this week and she is returning home to Long Beach CA, she said that she has a lot of room in her suitcase and she can send some of my things to you. I´m probably going to send my journal that I finished, so you can read it and see my thoughts and all, and some other things like letters, ties for dad, shirts for thanny, whatever else.

 Oh, another thing. This morning Elder J

and I did a mural of the plan of salvation in the park with chalk! It is awesome and a member let us borrow his GoPro to make a time lapse of it. I´m going to send you the micro SD chip and ask nathaniel to figure out how to make the Timelapse, tell him to put a good song to it, maybe just some classical music

I love you so much,

Elder Garner

San Nicolas March 30, 2015 (email delayed a week)

Hey I forgot to tell you that I got ingrown toenail!!!! Guess I can´t play in the turkey tornament again! [Note to reader: Davis had an ingrown toenail in middle school that prevented him from playing a Thanksgiving soccer tournament.  He was very disappointed.] Nah it´s ok cuz I just got it cut out and it was super fun! I got the shot and blood and everything. I got a funny video. Now my toe kind of hurts, oh well.

Davis at the doctor's office fixing his ingrown toenail.
K´s baptism got postponed because he hasn´t come to the past few lessons we were going to have with him...bummer. It´s ok though he still wants to get baptized, but I think we´re going to try to do something special to animate him, because honestly...I bet the missionary lessons are a bit boring for a 13 year old kid. We´ll figure it out. I usually just eat a banana and a ham sandwich, for both breakfast and dinner. I´ve been eating a lot more fruits and such.  We only eat lunch at 2 with a member.

Sounds like Nathaniel is doing very well. Hey he´s using my backpack! I said that right when Elder J said Hey my brother is using my suit! hahahaha.

I spilt chocolate milk on myself two nights ago...I still have the curse.

Chocolate milk on his shirt.
O already wants to be a missionary! so he has been going with us to a couple of visits, especially this boy named L. He´s 12 and he understands everything that we teach. He´s the one with the mom that has the foot problem with diabetes. We took him to church this sunday and we was all ready in a shirt and tie. He could only stay an hour because he had to go back and take care of his mom (I love you mom) but after sacrament meeting he said "next week I want to go to all of the classes so I can learn more" Awesome! Well next week is General Conference and I´m super excited for it, although it´s not as fun to here the dubbed over spanish because you don´t get the authenticity of their voices. no matter. I´m going to try and watch with a question in mind. I invite you and dad and nathaniel...and everyone that reads the blog as well. LDS General Conference

Elder D from San Diego.

Hmmm, there were quite a few things that have happened this past week, we had a zone conference, where we talked about the importance of baptism in life  and how to really be an excellent missionary by always inviting everyone to do something that will help them get closer to christ and strengthen their faith. I have been super stoked and my desires to serve the lord and just help people find the truth has skyrocketed!

Do you have any more questions mom?

I love you!

Elder Garner