Monday, January 15, 2018

Prophets are Rad!!! (week 64)

Heeeeeeeeeeeeeeeey fam!!!!! What's new? Nothing much is going down here in Popayan.....same old same old!!!!

This week was both good and bad!!! The district and I have WORKED our butts off and we had all planned on a "white night" with our baptisms for the 27th......all was going well until our fecha (date) decided that he wanted to go to the pool with his friends instead of coming to church SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO now everyone has dates except us.......greeeeeeeat!!!! Hahahah agency has for sure been the hardest part of the mission but its good to have difficult investigators sometimes because you can learn how Heavenly Father feels about you!!!

Our area is just hard because Elder Padilla literally left Elder Parez and I like 10 investigators and yeah that's it.......it's just hard and stale. We have been working soooooo hard but its been hard getting some results but as long as we are working hard and being obedient it will work out!!! Elder Perez is awesome though.....we have a new way for studying language basically we get out a Liahona in English or Spanish and have the other just read. If they read part of the paragraph in a feo (bad) way then we have to start over, it's basic but it works sooo good.....nothing is more motivating then being paused and hearing "otro vez" (once again) over and over and over hahaha

The district is a whooooole other story......my calling is so hard!!!! But it's another good thing for me. President Whitesides and I had a chat about all of the challenges that I have been having but he told me "but I feel from all of your letters that you are enjoying this challenge a little bit" and yeah it's true. It's not that I enjoy challenges but I have noticed that being a district leader enables me to think about other people a little bit more...I have noticed that my prayers have been more sincere and longer and por eso me encanta mi llamamiento. (That's why I love my calling...I think...that's what google says!)

Interviews were INSANE. We talked about a lot of things....mostly the district. I told him about all of my challenges and I how I have been struggling....it helped though because President told me that he trusts me. It was good to hear I needed it!!!! Hermana Whitesides had my hearing aid all ready for me......I have suffered a tad from a headache because I am not used to it buuuuut poco a poco I am doing better.

In my house I found a July 1996 Ensign in English and I loooooooooooved it. There's something about old Liahonas and Ensigns that I love so much. You can literally just entertain yourself by looking at the way people dressed and all the "new exciting things that are happening in technology!" BAHAHAHAHAHAAHAH but anyways I read an article about this family that started to do family history, so they went to the family history center in their stake and got all kinds of precious information on a tiny DISKETTE ;) They talked all about how they found 22 names to take to the temple and the feelings they had while doing them........and it was bad for me......with all the Baranquilla news I hear about I am veeeeeeeeeeeery trunky for the temple.....in other words GO TO THE TEMPLE.....can't wait to hear your temple experiences that you'll have this week....next week ;)

We also had the opportunity to watch Thomas S. Monson's Funeral.....I took my gringo crew outta there and we went into the secretaries office to watch it in English because the way they put Spanish over English makes me wanna throw up......¡QUE FEO! Buuuut anyways it was sooooo GOOD!!! I really liked his daughters talk (they were twins....like she is her dad hahaahha!) She talked about how she would go visit people and help them with her dad and after her dad would always "Ann, I think we have done some good today!" I LOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOVE that!! Elder Gardner also lent me his "On the Lords Errand" or the movie about Thomas S. Monson and it was cool. If you haven't watched it DOOOOOOOOOO ITTTTTTTTTT!!! It's sooo good! Thomas S. Monson literally dedicated his entire life to helping and serving others, he was such an awesome President. We just need to learn how to follow his example, Heavenly Father has given us prophets and apostles to help us learn what we need to do to become more like him, in preparation to RETURN and live with him. It's seriously such a GOOD promise but sometimes we have this idea that the prophets "don't understand us." Like we were reading the proclamation the other day with a less active family and I just kept thinking "this is actually really cool......I bet when this came out a bunch of people were weirded out because it didn't fit the time......but this is exactly what every family needs to hear TODAY!!" Prophets are RAD because they receive revelation that can help us ahead of time. I will miss Thomas S. Monson but I always think of his last talk......we need to treasure the Book of Mormon and we read it (even if its 5 minutes everyday) we will be strengthened!!!!

Anyways this turned out a little longer then expected buuuuuuuut that's good, it doesn't happen very often!!!  Loooooooove you guys have the bestest week!!! Mmmmmmkay? Mmmmmkay!!!

Stay Rad,
Elder Olsen


 When there aren't any minutes nearby and the public telephones are crap hahahah


 The Occidente crew at the Morrow!



 Selfie Stick in action!!!







Some of the zone at the Morrow

Monday, January 8, 2018

DIFFERENT CAPACITY (week 63)

HEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEY YOOOOOOOOOOOOOUUUU GUYS!!!! This week was pretty CRAZY!! Pretty stressful and lots of firsts hahahaah

This week I had to be a good leader and take some of the other elders for divisions.....they needed help visiting some people that they haven't been able to visit in awhile and it was CRAAAAZY!!! I felt sooo grown up like I had evaluate them and talk to them about what they could do better.....which is weird cause both Elder Carrion and Elder Lopez have more time in the mission than I do, buuuut it was fun.

This week was also CARNIVAL here in Popayan and in Pasto! Basically people get a bunch of plastic bags and soap and throw them at everybody.......it's basically if Syracuse had a giant citywide water balloon fight.....and yeah we got to work in that! It was a fun time, we were able to avoid everyone......except the members hahahahahahah!

Those same elders had a baptism this week.....Hermano Pedro!!! This guy is hilarious and has been investigating the church for over 2 different years and has quite a few sets of missionaries. He wasn't able to get baptized for a loooooong time but now he is......truly a testament that with the Lord we can truly overcome just about anything!

Elder Perez is the best companion ever!!! We just get closer and closer like this week I had a bunch of blackheads in my ears that he didn't like so he literally took some tweezers and just took them right out hahahahaha! He has been helping me a ton with my Spanish....he will have me read and if I don't speak in a good accent I have to start the whoooooooooooole thing over......it's frustrating but I love it soooo much!

We have a really good investigator named Daniel.....but our ward this week switched from 8 to 10 so he went to church with all the other Elders hahaahahahahha but the LZ were able to show him the filled baptismal font and I guess he got all excited and told them all about how he wants to be BAPTIZED! Sooooo yeaaah, I am excited for that!

Being a DL, is a hard job but I am enjoying being able to teach and serve in a different capacity....I am learning a lot through the struggle and its been good for me!!!

Sorry this letter was chichi, I just have a tooooon of stuff to do and not a lot of time to do it!!!

LOVE YOU ALL
ELDER OLSEN


Family Night with Hermano Sergio



The Bojorge family gave us a selfie stick for christmas so when we get bored we just take pictures like this hahahaah









My first set of divisions as a LEADER



ELDER PEREZ AND I LOVED CARNIVAL.....NOT 









 Waterbags all over the street hahaha



 Playing around waiting for a baptism














 TEEEENAZ :(


I am so happy for Hermano Pedro
















 MALL CHINESE FOOD YAAAAAAAAAAY!!!!





Unpacking My Adjectives: 
Okay so I keep talking about jet so I figured that I should write about it. 

Chocolate: 
Jet chocolate is easily the most popular chocolate in the country and there are a bunch of different kinds. There is the basic regular chocolate, Cruj (kinda like a crunch bar), cookies and cream, and even raspberry kinds. But a lot of them don't come with stickers so the basic kind is the most popular. You can buy the basic small size bar for $400 which is super cheap or a bigger bar for $1200. They also have jet ice cream bars, I've never tried one but some of the other missionaries really like them. As far as the taste goes the chocolate is pretty basic...I don't think a lot of Americans would like them because they taste plain haha I really like them though...I like to put them in the freezer and eat them (: (Of course Garrett likes them! He doesn't like chocolate back home so it makes total sense that he would like the "basic" chocolate!)
The Album: 
About every two years or so Jet comes out with a new jet album...every year the album has a different theme. The last album was the "surprising planet" album which had photos of the planets and animals from all over the world. That album was a little more cartoony and had 300 stickers to collect. The current album is the "live the adventure Colombia" album. It's actually pretty rad, and there is national parks and animals from all over the country. The album is also divided into mini sections: marine adventure, adventure in the mountains, desert adventure, adventure in the forests and archaeological adventure. It's such a sick album and it shows places from all over the country. It also shows how you can get to them and endangered species in the area. They worked with National Geographic and the National Park Department of Colombia to make the album. It's rad! Something I have noticed about the album is that once they come out you have to buy them FAST...those suckers run out so fast! Pero VALE LA PENA! 
The Stickers:
The album is chevere...buuut a lot of it is black and white and you have to use the stickers that you collect to color it all in. There are 250 stickers in the new album...and I plan to collect them all. That's easier said than done considers some are more difficult to find than others. The stickers come packed in with the chocolate, it's literally a golden marketing scheme because nobody buys Jet for the chocolate....but for the stickers! Almost everybody that has a Jet Album also has a pile of repeat stickers that we use to trade. I have about 35 in my pile. The back of the album has a tracker to be able to see which stickers you have and what you are missing. 
Conclusion:
Soo yeah, it's a pretty rad system! And it's pretty addicting but it's something unique to Colombia and a classic! I know I'm always going to have memories of walking to the tienda "yo neiesto 4 chocolatinas Jet por favor" ;) (Garrett writes his unpacking my adjectives by hand and then I type them! There is another Spanish word in that sentence but I can't for the life of my figure out what it is so I'm sorry for all you Spanish speakers if that doesn't make sense!)



















































Monday, January 1, 2018

NEWWWW YEEEEEEARSSSSS (week 62)

HEEEEEEEEEEEY FAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAM!!! I hope everybody is as excited as I am to be starting a new year with a clean slate!!! 2018 is gonna be the beeeeeeeeeest!!! Some of my goals for the year are 1.) study the scriptures better 2.) forget English and 3.) come home and get my butt in school and relearn English.......all in all it should be a good year :) (News flash for Garrett...he has totally already forgotten English. I have to edit his spelling so much haha! He has never been bad at spelling so trust me, he has forgotten. In his defense he says that the keyboards there are hard to work with. But still...during our Christmas call he was having the hardest time speaking in English, it was hilarious!)

This week we had the new years conference and it was super chill, we basically talked about how we need to let past experiences behind and only LOOK AHEAD towards the future. It was really something I needed to hear, just because there are some things that I JUST NEED TO LET GOOOOOOO!!!! We also talked about how we are FULL TIME missionaries....it's something Presidente and Hermana have talked about a lot lately. We had practices about how we can contact people using the holidays and stuff to our advantage.....easier practiced than done haahahahaha!!! I was also able to talk to President alone real quick and leave my hearing aid with him......AGAIN!!!! Makes me so mad!!! But another really cool thing that happened during zone conference is that they announced some changes to the mission rules and WE CAN DRINK COKE!!!! GAAAAAAAALDSHLFHSDLFHLDFHLSDFHLSDAFH BESSST CHANGE EEEEEEEEEEEEEEEVER!!!!!

New years was tricky.....basically Elder Carrion and Elder Lopez didn't pay their bills so they lost power and had to come sleep with us....which was haaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaard!!! Having more missionaries with us on a holiday just makes it sooooo much harder.....but I woke up to hearing DIEZ......NUEVE......OCHO!! And then it hit zero and I just heard "WHOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO" and then Elder Perez came up to my bed.....gave me a hug and said "feliz año hasta mañana" soooo yeah I guess we could say it was fun hahahahaha

I have had lots of interesting experiences with my companion lately.....he says weird stuff in his sleep all the time and I make fun of him for it hahaha and the other day he was studying in Jesus the Christ and he turned to me and asked "Elder Olsen it says right here Jesus was circumcised.....what does that mean?" thaaaaat was a fun conversation to have bajajajajajaja!!!! 

We have actually find some really cool investigators going through our area book and contacting on the street.....so hopefully we can get some progress so we can help them :)
With all the new years stuff I just keep thinking about goals and goals and goals and my plans. It's good for me but I think too far ahead sometimes. But I would encourage you all to do the same....make some plans about how you can become MORE CHRISTLIKE this year. If we aren't constantly giving ourselves pressure to do better......well, PAILAS we wont do better hahahahaahah

I love you all soooo much!! Hope you are all having a good time, and your safe, and happy, and doing well!!

Elder Olsen

P.S President and Hermana Whitesides made this gift to give to you all.....hope you enjoy it :) 




 Some photos of where we had new years conference











In the treehouse with Elder Echevarria



 Views from the top






 ELDER PEREZ!!!




 ELDER SMITH!!!




 Some more photos of this place







 A random flower




 PRESIDENT WHITESIDES!!!!




 Mission Jeopardy




Whose district won Mission jeopardy? MY DISTRICT WON MISSION JEOPARDY!



 This place was called the amaranta




Rule changes and salchipapas make me FEEEEELIZ!!!