Week #3

Wow! I’m already halfway done with the CCM!! I cannot believe it! This week has truly flown by! My compañera have decided that in the CCM each day feels like forever, but when you get to the end of the week you can’t believe it has already been a whole entire week!!! Okay so this week wasn’t as eventful as last because we only go proselyting every other Saturday! But here’s a quick update of the weeks best events!

Sister Leaders-

My compañera and I were officially called to be the Sister Leaders, which means we are in charge of all the North American sisters at the CCM. We’ve loved it and have really gotten to know the new girls which are great!

Earthquake-

This past Sunday there was a tiny earthquake here that caught us all by surprise! It was really small, but the first time I’ve ever really noticed an earthquake happening… which was really cool!

New People-

The new people arrived last week & it has been so strange with so many North Americans here!! There are 9 North American sisters now and a lot more Elders! My Compañera and I really miss all the Latinas and our old roommates, but we’re starting to get used to the new people and it is fun watching them get used to Peru!

P-Day –

I love how close the CCM is to the Lima Temple because we get to go to the temple every Tuesday!! The people there are so sweet and all the old ladies love to greet us with hugs and kisses! The Lima Temple is located in a really nice part of Lima, but it still always blows me away how once we go through the gates of the temple and walk on the grounds of the temple, the spirit is so sweet and it feels like a much needed break from the constant classes at the CCM! Today, because we are the Sister Leaders, Hermana McReynolds and I had to lead the entire group of new missionaries to the temple and shopping! Oh my, it was so stressful! Not only did we have to explain everything about Peru to the new Elders but we had to be the time keepers and the español speakers! Even though it was stressful at the time it shocked me because I realized how much more used to Peru I have gotten and how Peru is my new “normal” haha

Soccer-

At the CCM Futbol is KING. At first we were the only girls that played, but now some other girls have joined! It’s so fun! I honestly think I get more of a workout from laughing at how horrible at soccer we all are than actually playing! We are only allowed to play half-court, no headers, and with sometimes 9 people on each team it’s a bit more like ping-pong.

Book of Mormon-

So my compañera and I decided to make a goal to read the entire Book of Mormon before we leave the CCM! We love it! Honestly, my comp and I just get so excited to read and we are flying through it! I’ve never loved the Book of Mormon so much! It has become such a necessity in my day and I’m discovering verses, themes, and applications that I’ve never thought of before! That’s the amazing thing about the Book of Mormon, every time you read it, there is something new you can gain! It’s such an amazing book and it really does tie everything in the gospel together!

Lessons-

Even though we didn’t get to go out and teach really people this week, we’ve had plenty of “investigator” actors! My compañera and I have been working so great with one another and both of us have seen a huge improvement in our Spanish and our teaching skills! It’s amazing how much you have to rely on the spirit when your vocab is as limited as ours! My favorite thing to teach about has to be the Book of Mormon and the Holy Spirit. Normally we have our investigators read John 14-26, where it talks about how to recognize the spirit, and then we have them read 1Nephi 13-40 where it talks about the need for two testaments of Christ. This has to be my favorite, because when you talk about the Holy Spirit, you can feel the atmosphere of the room change around you…. When you seek the spirit, testify of its truthfulness, and read about the importance of the Book of Mormon, the feelings of peace, happiness, and “tranquilidad” will manifest themselves in your “Corazon”. I love the feelings I get when I teach and I can’t wait to teach real people!

I love the CCM, I’m learning to love Spanish and I can’t believe in 3 weeks I will be out in the mission field!!!

Love you all so much!

Hermana Hansen

P.S. Excuse the punctuation… using Spanish keyboards is a bit difficult… especially when you only have an hour to email!

 

Granadilla fruit

Granadilla fruit

My reaction when first opening the fruit!

My reaction when first opening the fruit!

 

All the elders at the airport!

All the elders at the airport!

The Lima Temple

Week # 2

¡Hola!

Ahh I cannot believe it has already been TWO WEEKS! Seriously, I´m in this weird taboo of feeling like I´ve been here forever and feeling like I just got here! This past week has been filled with so many amazing experiences and moments that have absolutely shown me that the Lord is mindful of each one of us!

Investigators-

Okay so in the CCM we are each given fake investigators so we can learn how to teach lessons in Spanish. Because of our limited knowledge of Spanish, the lesson often ends up being a series of scriptures, pamphlets, and reading pre-written paragraphs. But this week Hermana McReynolds and I decided that we were going to teach our new investigator without any notes or pamphlets and just teach from what we knew in Spanish. As we began to teach I was shocked with how much I was able to say! Even though a few English words would escape at times, I was really able to speak to him and teach him the lessons. I was amazed at the difference and more importantly myself that speaking from the heart makes. When I spoke from the heart, I was able to say more than I ever imagined I could!

My Companion-

Okay, I know I´ve already said it, but my companion is seriously the best. As companions we´re together 24-7 so it’s so great to have someone who I can have so much fun with! Honestly, we are always cracking ourselves up and having the best moments! Latina´s Leave- The Latina´s left this morning!!! So sad! There are now only 4 hermanas in the entire MTC! It´s so sad! I sent some photos my and my comp with them! It was so fun talking to them and having them teach us Spanish while we taught them English! It was so funny to hear them talk about Justin Bieber and One Direction haha… oh they also said I looked like Britney Spears!! haha it´s so crazy we can live so far away from each other but still know the same celebrities and music!

Physical activity-

Each day for about an hour we have time to exercise and play games! The CCM has such a nice big turf field so we always end up playing soccer or ultimate Frisbee! My comp & I´s new favorite thing is ultimate Frisbee with a football! It´s so much fun and much needed after a day full of Spanish classes!

Spiritual Moment-

Okay, so this week was hard. I had gotten a little cold (it´s winter here in Peru) and I was basically just using it as an excuse to have a pity party for myself. I was loving the CCM, but it was hard and with my cold, the last thing I wanted to do was sit in a Spanish class for 6 hours. During personal study my companion and I decided to go sit inside the Chapel and study there. About 10 minutes into studying another sister came in and started playing the piano. The hymns she was playing were so beautiful and as I listened to the music I began to comprehend the words I was reading in the Book of Mormon so clearly. I was reading in 2 Nephi around chapter 3 – where Nephi devotes himself to the Lords work and promises to always trust in him, love him and rely on him. As I read this passage and listened to the beautiful hymns the spirit touched me and I began to realize how silly my pity party was. I literally felt the arms of the Lord encircle me and ensure me that where I was, was where I was supposed to be. As my comp and I walked out of the Capilla and to our next class, we both stopped and started bawling we had both felt the same spirit, and strong comfort as we had both been experiencing a negative day! We just hugged each other for awhile and thanked each other for being here and being each others companions. Ah it was such an amazing reminder to me that the Lord loves us, and he wants us to be happy and feel his love.

Proselyting –

Yay! okay so here at the Peru CCM every other Saturday we have the opportunity to go contacting and visit less active members in the surrounding neighborhoods! We each got matched up with a new Latino companion and then we were off! My new companion, hermana verdezoto was from Ecuador and was so funny and sweet but also didn´t really speak any English! We planned a lesson on enduring to the end and then went out in Lima with a member of the nearby ward and began visiting the less active members in their area! The first house we went to, we were let in right away which was kind of a miracle because most times they aren´t home! The parents we had originally gone to see were gone but their daughter and her two friends were there so they welcomed us inside! Oh my I was so nervous! I was in the home of real Peruvians, people who did not know any language, nor did they no me! After saying the opening prayer in Spanish! We began our lesson. Each time my comp would turn to me to say something my Spanish was slow and I was so nervous I would say something wrong! Looking back I was surprised how much I spoke in that lesson, considering it was my first. The most powerful moment in that lesson for me was when I shared my story of leaving my home in California to come to Peru I didn´t know the language or anything. But I knew that through the Lord and his gospel, I would be able to learn Spanish and teach the people who I need to teach! The girls were so sweet and gave me hugs and kisses goodbye! The next few houses we went to no one came to the door, but at our last house a kind older woman let us in! Now, before this lesson I had said a prayer that I would be helped to really know what I should say and that I would be able to speak in Spanish! And wow this lesson was amazing. My Spanish was clearer, faster, and prettier (I might add) I really felt the support of the Lord in my words! When I shared the story about me learning Spanish again, the woman complimented me strongly saying that my pronunciation was perfect and I spoke with the spirit! They all mentioned how in 4 weeks they couldn´t wait to hear how I sounded! It felt so good to not only be complimented, but encouraged that my Spanish will get better and I will be able to speak Spanish beautifully (someday) haha. proselyting was seriously the best and I cannot wait for the next Saturday we go!!

Food-

Wow… I´ve never eaten so much rice in my life. Seriously the food combos here are so funny, we´ll have rice, french fries, and chicken together most nights. haha also their juice is AWESOME! Everyday they have new flavors and they are the best!

Here are some other fun things I´ve learned about Peru:

1. Halls cough drops are like candy here! Seriously there are people selling them all over the
place and the Latinas go crazy for them
2. Here it is not impolite to knock or ring the bell 3 or 4 times before giving up! Seriously.
3. All the houses in Lima have big gates and you just use a ring to tap on the metal door and
they hear you from anywhere in their house and will pop their head out their window and
just talk to you from there

More to come later!
Love you all!

xoxo
Hermana Hansen

Week #1

Okay so I cannot believe I am in Peru! Here are some main points about my week….
The CCM is what the Peru MTC is called here! It is super small and in located right in Lima! One of my favorite things about this CCM is that Americans … or Gringas (as we are known here) are the minority! The CCM is probably 30% English speaking and 70% Latinas! I love the Latinas they are so much fun to eat by and even though they can’t always understand what I’m saying we’ve become fast friends!  The only sad thing is that they leave the CCM after only 2 weeks so they will leave next Tuesday!! Also with the CCM being in Peru most of our spanish teachers don’t speak fluent english so it really forces you to try your best and look up words so they can understand your questions!
Companion- I love my comp! Her name is Hermana McReynolds and she is from Oregon! We get along so well it’s crazy! Seriously, people here are constantly asking us if we knew each other before we came here! She’s a convert of only a year and a half, so it’s so inspiring to me that she already is so dedicated to service and going on a mission! We crack ourselves up on a daily basis and have been labeled as the Loud or Crazy Gringo Hermanas! Haha but we love it and having such an awesome comp in the CCM is a true blessing because not only are you with your companion at all times, you are also spending all your time in classes and studying together.
Spanish- Okay, so you know how much I hated spanish in High School, well I can’t believe I’m saying it, but I seriously LOVE spanish now. It’s still hard and confusing and annoying at times but I am so motivated to learn it and I’m growing to love it! It’s amazing how much spanish I remembered from my High School classes, and I’d never thought I’d say this… but I’m actually grateful for those two horrible years I spent in Prescott’s spanish class! At our spanish classes in the CCM everything is connected to the gospel! After learning how to “Meet someone”… the most basic thing to do in spanish, we learned how to pray and how to testify of Christ. Learning how to pray and testify in the first days of being in the CCM really reminded me how those two things are really of the utmost importance. They didn’t spend time on teaching us how to order at a resturant, but instead how to let Heavenly Father and those we teach, the contents of our hearts. Even though I still haven’t compleletly gotten the hang of it, I still feel the spirit so strongly each time I testify or pray, even if it becomes a form of Spanglish.
P-day-  Today was our p’day so we got to go to the temple and go shopping in Lima! The Lima temple is a bit away from the CCM so we had to take a bus there! OMG this bus was awesome! It looked almost like a toy bus and it was just stacked full of people! Everything in peru is a bit smaller and a bit more compact, and their busses are no exception! The Temple in lima is pretty small, but also super beautiful! I love it already! Then we got to walk around Lima a bit to pick up a few groceries and snacks! It’s crazy how crowded the streets are! Lima is a city of about 8 million people and you can tell! One of the scariest things in Lima is that the cars never stop. There are few crosswalks and pedestrians have NO rights! Every time we had to cross a street we had to run as fast as we could in order not to be hit!
District- Our district is the group of Elders and Sisters that you have all your classes with and basically spend the entire day with! I love my district! In my district, there are 4 companionships and me and my comp are the only girls! There are seriously no English Hermanas here! My comp and I are 2 out of the 4 English hermanas that came at the same time as us! It’s super small but super fun!
Food- The food here is actually suprisingly good! Every meal is rice and chicken… no lie. SO MUCH RICE. Every breakfast is eggs and desserts are interesting!! Apparently the CCM has had problems with girls gaining weight here … we even got a handout telling us to be careful not to gain weight here so hopefully I won’t go too crazy on the casino booms – they are these awesome cookies that have pop rocks in them! It’s crazy!
Well love you all and sorry this is so short, but I’m still not used to this spanish keyboard!
Much Love,
Hermana Hansen