Monday, August 14, 2017

His Plan for Me (week 42)

HEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEY YOU GUYS!!!

Soooo yeah I was transferred and right now I am currently working in Popayan!!

My last week in Pasto waaaas awesome. Hermana Yamile bought us cuy....it was nothing special though. It really tastes the same as chicken....everybody says that the fat is the best part...but I thought it was NAAAAAAAAASTTTTTTY :P We spent a lot of time with the members though our last week...I was not worried much about it though because I thought for 100% I would not be transferred buuuuuuuut here we are.

I am currently serving in a BRANCH called Recuerdo Norte....I don't know much about the area yet so I am sure next week I will have much more to write. I am currently serving as senior companion with Elder Chacon from Peru. We were in Villa Colombia together (that was my zone in Cali) soooo thats cool. I don't know him very well but he seems chill so far, he came from Jamundi and he had 5 baptisms there so he has to know a little bit of what we are doing!! It's gonna be so hard this transfer....I already know it!!! It was so hard to leave Mariluz...when I called Hermana Lidia she was crying and was like "I THOUGHT YOU WERE GONNA STAY!" :( What made it worse was that Elder Galvez was really proud to be staying in Mariluz training. "I am going to baptize this person.....and this person....and I am training a gringo.....and you have to pack your bags and I don't." I don't know I didn't really appreciate that but knowing Elder Galvez I am not really surprised!! Elder Corbett came to Popayan with me and is going to be my ZONE LEADER...gaaaaaaaaaaaah I am very happy about that!

Sooo yeah, I am not sure how I feel about my transfer.....I am a little worried about being senior comp....opening an area (but this will be the 3rd time soooooo) and being in Popayan. The heat and rain here WILL LITERALLY SLAUGHTER my hearing aid :( however, I have lots of faith and I know that I have things to do here. Heavenly Father has plans for me, and who knows maybe I will like it better here buuuuut it all just comes down to attitude and faith!! We get put in certain areas to learn certain things and help specific others do the same!! That's my challenge for you guys write down your blessings everyday this week....review them when things get hard...you got this :)

Love you all TONZO!!
Elder Olsen

Monday, August 7, 2017

MAKE THE EFFORT (week 41)

HHHHHHHHHHHHHHHEYYYYY YOU GUYS!!!! Hows it hanging? Espero que todo bieeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeen :)

This week was pretty good....last Monday we went to a family home evening with Yamilet and the Morales family. At the end Yamilet was like "and we are all here for a very special purpose......ELDER OLSEN'S BIRTHDAY" and I was just "¿QUE?" Sooo yeah we had a pizza party...and then the next day we went to Lidias for lunch and she had streamers and tostis (THE BEST CHIPS NOMMMMM NOM NOM) and cake for me.....and then she was like "with respect to God....and to you and to your companion" I didn't understand the next part but after that she walked up and gave me a kiss on my cheek......cant even xD So yeah my 19th ending with 4 different parties so I guess it was a good birthday....I guess!!

I was able to go to my doctors appointment...my hearing aid is all good!! She didn't have me tested instead she let me pick my own hearing aid settings based on my old ones bajajajajajajajaja not sure that's allowed but i'm not complaining I HAAAAAAAAAATE those tests.

As far as the work goes it didn't really go really great this week. It was a harder week for finding and teaching new investigators and we have a lot of investigators, buuuut it has been a challenge getting them all to progress....algun dia!! Yo tengo fe.....YO TENGO TODA LA FE!!!! The family Santacruz is progressing great going to church and everything.....except for the youngest daughter PERO she told me that I made a REALLY good impression when I talked about everything Japan soooo yeah winning.

Pricilla...well that's complicated, they are never home and when we asked Johanna about it she was like "well you muchachos know that we are never home sooo yeah" soooo yeah that's that!!

Yamilet still is waiting for her husband to accept a date buuuuuut she has been talking to us a lot about having Daniel be baptized....I don't know!! She's the type of investigator that will introduce all her friends to the gospel, give them our pamphlets, tell them all about how shes a Mormon and the church, but she wont accept a date!!! Like I said before FEEEEE YO TENGO TODA LA FE!!!!

This week was really rough for the ward because Jorge Torres had a really big surgery and his head was cut open and he turned purple and yeah lots of things :( I love the Torres family every time we go to their store Hermana Torres is always "muchachos you can have this for free...and this for free....and this for free!" They literally are the best family and everybody is worrying about them :( sooo yeah, everyone including us fasted for them :)

Today was literally the BEST PDAY EVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVER!!! We hiked to the cross!! (Literally every city with mountains in this country has a cross i swear.) Buuuut it was a HARD hike....part of the trail was pure stairs....part of the trail was straight mountain and didn't have a trail....it was rough!! Elder Florez and I were side by side the entire time....and we were the first ones to the top....well the first missionaries in the group anyway...we had a little bit of members with us. On the way down we didn't take the trail we went another way straight down the mountain and it was a blast. Elder Corbett had to catch me a few times hahahaha otherwise I would have died!!! But it was a blast!!!

This week I bought the New Testament storybook and I have been studying the CRAP outta the Bible....I love it sooo much!! I love studying with the storybooks because it doesn't start in the beginning...it starts at the part that the Bible should have started in. It's great, I learned all about Mary and Elizabeth and how they were pregnant together, and how Mary visited Elizabeth for months and months, and about Jesus in his childhood and how they had to take him to Egypt because king Herod was freaking dumb, and how they went back and how they lost Jesus one day but they found him teaching and XY and Z....the point I am trying to make is WHEN YOU REALLY MAKE AN EFFORT to not only learn the scriptures but anything about the gospel....YOU WILL LEARN THE GOSPEL...because I couldn't tell you a bunch of that the other week tbh xD There are way too many people that have this "God isn't real attitude" without trying. We can't learn the mysteries and the things that we need to if we don't put in our effort. That being said CHALLENGE make some goals about your scripture reading...and MAKE THE EFFORT...because if you do you will learn the things you need to know and receive divine revelation...I know that to be true.

LOVE YOU HONEY BUNCHES OF OATS 
ELDER OLSEN


The birthday Party that Hermana Lidia threw for me





 The pizza birthday Party that Hermana Yamilet threw for me






Helping some of the investigators of the leaders move



Hermana Lidia always buys me the bananas that have two in one peel (yes that exists) because she knows that I love them!!!



Fuuuuudge yeah gonna get my bible study onnnnnnn!


Yamilet fixing all of our ties


With Sebastian and Roger


The start of our hike


RUN ELDER CORBETT RUNNNNN


Love these Colombian mountains



PASTO PUES


"It's okay Elder Florez, podemos hacerlo"



The trail


Almost there!! The cross in the distance.


WE DID IT!!



Goofing around!
 


SOY YO


"Okay say gringoooooo!"



Look at that good looking group!


ELLDDDDER CORRRRBETT!!



"WWWWWWWWWWWWHOOOOO"



Sonrisas :)


 Hermano Lucho going down the mountain


Elder Florez got a stick up his butt


With Elder Florez



Elder Leon totally broke his shoe xD


No comment :p


Love these people


Some weird sign in Pasto


MUCHO ELDER GALVEZ



My LZ is a dork!!







Monday, July 31, 2017

Christ-like Attributes (week 40)

HEY MUCHACHOS!!! ¿Como Estan?

Before I begin I just wanna say that I have 19 years now :)
(HAPPY BIRTHDAY (YESTERDAY) TO OUR MISSIONARY!!!)
 
Hahahah this week was a lot better....we are making some progress slooooooowly but surely :) 

Something I wanna talk about real quick before I forget is that my hearing aid is back in Pasto from Bogota soooo yeah, the LZ are leaving tomorrow for a leadership meeting in Cali so Elder Florez is gonna come get me reaaaal early. I am not really excited though I have to have it reprogrammed so I get take the EXAMS....AGAIN, this is literally the 5th time in my mission ugh. 

My birrrrrrthday was gooooood!!! I was just casually chilling in the shower when I heard "BOOOOOOOM" "BOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOM" "BOOOOOOOOOOOM" and I was like "what is Elder Galvez doing" and then I heard Elder Corbett's voice start to sing and I was like "ohhhhhhhhhhhh hecccccccccccccccccccck no!" Hahahahah so I hurried out of the shower and everyone was there and they all had cake for me and it was a good 10 minute party! They would start singing in Spanish and then Elder Corbett would shout "REMIX" and then they would start singing in English hahahah it was good!

In the ward we started a weekly activity to help our investigators feel welcome in the chapel. We planned a scavenger hunt and divided everyone into 2 groups....and tied everyone together while they went to find clues...(they were scriptures) at the end the last clue lead to this rock at the top of the hill next to the church and everyone was trying to move this rock to find "the golden plates". Then Elder Florez stood on the rock and was like "you're trying to find material things...but the real reward is eternal life" and everyone was "aaaaahhhhhhhh c'mon!!!" It was pretty awesome.

Our investigators are doing good.....we are making progress with the Santa Cruz family!! And Yamile said that she wants Daniel to get baptized on his birthday in August!! we are struggling with Pricilla but we will get there!!

Interviews were sooooo good!!! I love President and Hermana Whitesides and I feel like I can be myself around them :) They are lot more chillaxed then President and Hermana Pricoli. But something that Hermana Whitesides said in her interview with me thaaaaaaaaaaaat I loved is "it's important that we develop the attributes of Jesus here in the mission.....so when we go home people can see that....even though we don't have our name tag they can see in our hearts" annnnnnnnnnd woooooooah that's teeeeeenaz the truth. That's my goal after the mission to be a more patient Christ like person....soooo CHALLENGE pick an attribute of Christ and study it....study the scriptures and make a plan to develop this attribute!!! You got this!

Loooooooooooooooove you guys so much, sorry this was short my pictures took their sweet time!!
Elder Olsen



Elder CHIIIIICAIZA


Getting ready for the ward activity!





The ward activity











Mucho Elder Leon


Baptism in Bachue


The district singing to me



My birthday cake

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Expectations from Heavenly Father...Expectations from Myself (week 39)

HEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEY FAM!!!! How's it hanging....espero que muy bien!!!

This week was kinda hard...lots of things made it difficult. For starters, we lost our baptism date which bloooooooooooooows but it happened. Prisilla thinks that her baptism date is too soon, soooo yeah we have to work haaaaaaaaaaaaaaard with her. We always make appointments and then they are never ever there and then we go visit their family store and ask Johanna's boyfriend where they are at.....and he never knows, and he always acts grouchy because he doesn't like his girlfriend and her daughter talking to a bunch of young boys (caaaaaaaaaaaan't even).

We are making progress with the family Santa Cruz though!!! Like I said before the dad is coming back to church and progressing.....the mom is a little tougher but I have faith. Maria Fernanda is doing really good....she went to some YSA activity and made friends with a member and we have ran into them hanging in the street sooooo thats good!! I really wanna meet the other daughter..I guess she is really into anime and studies Japanese and has plans to move there after shes done with high school......I guess Hermana Sandra tried to visit her and she hid under her bed for the hour she was there.

OHHHHHH Elder Florez and I went to my new audiologist!!! It was good....but she is from the coast so I cannot understand a word that she says because she talks soooooooooooooo fast ugggghno. But my hearing aid is currently being fixed in Bogota and we need to call the 27 to see if it's back in Pasto or not but I am crossing my fingers.

John and I have a few (lol alot) of rough patches this week, we both have had things that we struggle with and need to fix....but its been hard!! I have been trying my hardest to have patience, and in some situations I have very much succeeded and in others nooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooope!!! We are better now but I don't know we will see how that all works out.

Today was eeeeehhhhh Elder Galvez literally had to convince to get out of bed soooooo if that does not explain the kinda morning I had I do not know what will. Then we played soccer and kickball as a district.....Elder Florez kept on asking me "are you sick....something is wrong....whats wrong Elder Olsen" and I just sat there like "nooooooooooooooooooooooothing" buuuuuut yeah and then we ate with Hermana Lidia she made us hamburgers and they were actually pretty decent so that's fun. Then her daughter cut Elder Florezs and Elder Galvezs hair and yeah now we are here.

We have interviews with President this week so that should be fun. Hoping to get some packages buuuuuut we shall see. We also have to memorize article of faith numero 13 in preparation for interviews....I have most of it down but I still need to practice a little bit. But Elder Florez told me that he has heard lots of improvement in my Spanish since I started reading...I am currently in 2 Nephi 10....I think.....somewhere around there. I think I am gonna try to finish it with a pencil in my mouth....what a rad way to finish LDM for a second time in Spanish.

Sooooooooooo yeah...this week was rough PEEEEERRRRRRRRRRRRO YO TENGO FE.....YO TENGO TODA LA FE!!!! If I am being honest I am not really looking forward to this week. I just don't feel like I am meeting expectations that have been made for me....but that's the great thing about missions it's a time of learning and growing. I have been reading my Patriarchal Blessing BASTANTE lately.....it paints a pretty clear picture of the things that my Heavenly Father wants me to learn during my time here, and I don't know.....I kinda just thought that I would learn those things without any part of my own.....and that was very ignorant of me. But yeah I'm going to make goals.....annnnd I have high expectations of myself sooooo I will meet my goals. That's the thing though when we have humility and we come to Heavenly Father he will tell us things we need to work on....the hard truth sucks but it is so important that we learn how to become more like our Heavenly Father in preparation to return to him. It's a big reason why we have our life on earth. Soooooo that's my challenge for you guys, seek revelation, find the things that he wants you to work on.....and if necessary CHANGE some things. I promise things will be better if you do :)

LOVE YOU ALL TONZO
Elder OLSEN

Love those volcano cotton candy Pasto skies!


With the LZ with hermana lidia and Hermano Lucho Montenegro


HAMMMMMMMMMMMMMBURGERS



(Garrett wrote another handwritten letter and asked me to put it on the blog! He has terrible handwriting so forgive me as I misspell all of these Colombian words and areas!) 
Unpacking my Adjectives: Mariluz

So it's Sunday night and I have literally no photos...again so I figured I would write something to make things more interesting and give you guys some more details about my area. 

The Area:
Okay so we are apart of the Mariluz ward and it is divided into two areas, Mariluz 1 and Mariluz 2, we are Mariluz 2. Because our area used to be the sisters area it is tiny and the area that the zone leaders have (Mariluz 1) is huuuuuge! We have Barrios (or neighborhoods) Mariluz 3, Gualcalona 1, Guacaloma 2 (okay we have all the Guacaloma's), Colon Sindamanoy, Anganoy, Panoramico 1, 2, and 3, San Vicente, Rosates 1, 2, and 3, and a tiny part of Las Alcacias. So yeah that's our area...it's not very big but it feels bigger because it's all uphill. Our area is literally the mountain...well, that's a lie our area is literally the volcano (it's active and everything!).  Our area is pretty safe the only place we kinda have to avoid is all the "panaramico" neighborhoods during the night! They are a little sketchy...but this place is soo safe compared to just about everywhere in Cali so don't worry about me mom ;) 

Pasto Culture:
I wanted to write about the few differences in culture here in Pasto compared to Cali...
1) The Spanish here is very different...and if I am being honest I like it tons better. It's a lot slower and there is a lot less slang. People here say the word "pues" a lot...translated it's kinda like "well" or "hmmm". So when people say "pues si" it's kinda like saying "well yeah". They also add "ito" a lot to the end of words...it just means it's something smaller. For example saying something like "do you want aguita" is like saying "do you want a little bit of water" The Spanish here is different but I like it. 
2) The "cold"...everyone here thinks it's freezing cold but not really. It's exactly like Utah spring weather! If it's windy then yeah it's cold buuut only then. The weather is pretty unpredictable Here so I always have a short sleeve white shirt and a sweater because one minute it's perfect and then BOOM, tons of wind and tons of rain. I love the weather here though and it's tooons better for my hearing aid. 

The Ward:
I love the Mariluz ward! All the wards here in Pasto are pretty strong despite the missionary work being harder. People here are very good about working together, they are very committed to helping us. Especially the youth...we ALWAYS have somebody from the young men's group with us. Roger has his mission call to the Mexico Tijuana mission so he is always teaching with us. Jose (Hermana Lidia's son) always helps us when Roger can't. Hermana Lidia, the Morales family (aunt and uncle of Sebastian), and the Montergro Family always help us plan family home evenings and activities to help our investigators...they are really helpful and we are lucky to have them. Julian Montengro is our ward mission leader. When I got to the area he had only been home for two or three weeks from the Peru Lima Central mission. He is a really good ward mission leader though and we have been planning lots of activities to help our investigators and the less actives.
Conclusion:
Soo yeah there's a quick little rant about the area, I really like it here in Mariluz. It's a good area with tons of good people!

Monday, July 17, 2017

Set Plans. Make Goals. WORK HARD. (week 38)

HEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEY FAM!!!! What's happening?

Sounds like you all had a very exciting week.....I kinda did too...lots and lots of work but it's good to be busy!!

Sooooo before I begin writing about anything else I wanted to talk a bit about my hearing aid because literally everybody asked me about it. So basically what went down is that President called me and was like "we called your audiologist and talked to her secretary, but she has been out of town for a little while (she probs went to Bogota.....shes always in Bogota, RME). But Hermana Whitesides and I wanted you to know that we did not forget about you." Hahahah yeah so that's that!! Elder Florez has been super worried about me though so he took upon himself to find me an audiologist and he made me an appointment for tomorrow. He was like "I just need to get permission from President and after that we should be good" I caaaaaaanot even with this child hahahahahahahhahah we have lots of problems in the zone because Elder Mendoza has had to have lots of exams lately....and Elder Florez is having heart problems...and Elder Galvez lost his cedula (ID) and Elder Bishop is sick and I don't have a hearing aid. The LZ literally do not have any money because they are constantly paying for somebody's appointments....not only that but we have divisions every two seconds ugggggh I swear. Like today I had to take Elder Mendoza to get his x-rays taken and right now I am with Elder Gamboa while Elder Galvez is at migracion with Elder Florez, soooo yeah there's a rant xD

We are making lots of progress here in Mariluz....we have another fecha!!! Priscilla is the daughter of Johanna...a less active member who recently decided to come back to church, soooo yeah we have been teaching her daughter and getting her ready for baptism!!!

The family Santa Cruz randomly decided to come back to church as well, well the dad at least. They were inactive for ten years. Yeah so we visited them and the dad is soooo ready to come back to church but the mom is something else....she was like "I believe that you need to follow your heart and mind and one day in 2006 my mind was not in the church....but I always visit the church website and listen to general conference and do a ton of stuff members do not do." They have two daughters one is 19 and the other is 14 so our plan is to work hard with the whole family and hopefully get them all into church.

Sebastian is doing GREAAAAAAAAAT!!! And his mom is ready to be baptized but President Whitesides told us that we cannot baptize her because she lives in Bachue. Sebastian was a rare exception because he lives with his aunt half the time...the problem is that she had problems with members in Bachue and does not wanna go to church there....I don't know, I wanna help her but I do not know how!!

I asked Hermana Lidia if she knew how to make chicken empanadas anddddddddddddddddd she does!!!! She literally kept giving me more and more and mooooooooooore! I was like "mamita I cannot eat anymore" and she was like "no Elder Olsen you love empanadas here is another one!" I literally ate a thing of rice, a thing of sancocho and TEN....EN SEDIO TEN EMPANADAS! Ugggggh my poor stomach was not having it that day.

I am learning to really work hard.....I have had few problems with some of my new investigators not being able to UNDERSTAND ME. It's sooooooooo frustrating but Elder Florez has really been encouraging me to try and start reading LDM again with a pencil in my mouth. Right now I am in 1 Nefi Capitulo 17....I have not noticed much improvement yet buuuuuuut I have set goals, I am making plans and I am going to work hard. It's easy for us to take our challenges as something "too hard" but in reality our Heavenly Father gives us trials and adversity to help us learn and grow....I don't have perfect Spanish....and I am not going to if I do not take the time to practice, it's the same way with all things of life.

CHALLENGE......have the attitude, write your goals write your plans and think about the things you can learn from your challenges.

I love you all sooooo much....praying for you all everyday.....do not be stupid.

ELDER OLSEN
P.S Congrats to AUUUUUUUUUUUUUUBREYYY AND DANESY for having the cutest baby evvvvvvvvvver!!! Proud of you guys!!!
(Insert picture of Adleigh here) (Happy to have any excuse to show off my baby!)


Now back to Garrett's pictures!






JEEEEEEEEEEEENGA con Elder Gamboa



My case for my English scriptures....front and back!!!





 My cases for my Spanish scriptures front and back!!







We were knocking doors in Mariluz 3 and literally everybody has this sign on their door!!!



FACT: Mamita Lidia makes the best empanadas!!!