Monday, June 26, 2017

SERVE (week 35)

HHHEEEEEEEY FAM!!!! (omg it's just like sophomore year of high school)

What is cracking? I have had a raaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaad week, so many crazy and interesting things happened this week and I am stoked to finally be able to talk about it.

For starters we had part of our district meeting in English again....yeah, I cannot speak English. I can but suuuuper sloooooooow, ughhh. But it's good we were able to set some goals which I will talk about a tad bit later. Tuesday we went over to Hermana Lidia's house to eat lunch....nothing unusual but she stopped us before we went in and said "boys I have some youth that in special classes to become "padres" you want to eat with them?" Me, being ignorant me, literally thought she invited some kids with pregnant girlfriends to eat with us BUUUUUUUUUT NOOOOOOPE. This whole week we ate with the Catholic missionaries...that was fun. I guess a padre is a like an LDS bishop...but like with more rules...these kids are only 20 and have committed to not get married and stuff like was pretty cool learning experience. (I am dying of laughter over this story. Seriously...that is hilarious. I love funny ignorant Elder Olsen!!)

WE HAD A MULTI-ZONE Popayan. I didn't tell you guys about it last week because I knew mom would have freaked out!! We slept with some of the other elders which was good. It was good...Elder Florez was there which was less than ideal, we didn't even look at each other the whole time. The whole conference was about how to begin teaching, how we are all seeds and need to develop our talents. Hermana Pricoli gave us these lamented seeds from Uruguay which was cool. And Hermana also had a giant rant to the Latinos all about how they need to keep studying English.....only the sisters do though. Speaking about the sisters there were only TWO in the whole conference...they are getting rid of them fast. We also had to take these safety reports this last week which was fuuuuuuuuun....pretty sure the First Presidency is worried about this mission, they have reason though. During this conference we learned that there will be another conference with President Whitesides in 2 weeks!! STTOOOOOKEED. It was also the last time that we will ever see President Pricoli so each missionary got 30 seconds in private to say bye. Hermana Pricoli made a note to Hermana Whitesides about my ears. I don't know it was just a little sad and little weird...but change is good. SPEAKING OF MY hearing aid got clogged BAAAD in Popayan. Ugggh it was so hot...everyone says that it's perfect weather there but that's a bunch of crap. (We can always count on Garrett to tell us how he really feels, huh? Haha!)

On the way home from Popayan there were no buses back to Pasto...sooooo we were stranded in the terminal from 4 to 10!! Ugghhhh it was horrible!! I just read my Liahona and chilled with Elder Corbett and Elder bishop and had tons of good conversations and practiced was good. We finally got on the bus and at about 4 in the morning our bus and another car scraped xD We almost died but it's all good!!

Yesterday, Elder Corbett told us that we had to get 7 new investigators to meet our goal....I was pumped because at the end of his text he wrote "SI O SI VAMOS HYPE SQUAD" (YES OR YES LET'S GO HYPE SQUAD....according to google translate.) Soooo fudge yeah! We worked our butt off yesterday and we got 6 new investigators....we didn't reach the goal but we have so busy with our progressing investigators that new ones aren't our main I was happy.

Today for P-day we played soccer and kickball....I OWNED soccer. I suck with a lot of Latinos but in the district I am pretty decent, I scored 6 goals. During kickball Elder Flores kicked the ball over the fence into someones tiny yard. Elder Corbett climbed the fence and the lady opened her window and started screaming at us and threatened to call the cops.....she didn't was a chill P-day.

I wanted to write a little bit about what happened at the terminal....Elder Bishop left for a minute and me and Elder Corbett had a minute to talk. He asked "Elder Olsen, how is the mission?" And I just kinda shrugged my shoulders, and then he was like "noooo Elder Olsen, HOW IS THE MISSION?" I really don't like it when people I like and trust ask me those questions because I went into INSTANT RAAAAAANT MODE. He was able to share some experiences and pep talk me a little bit, BUT WHAT WENT DOWN NEXT WAS THE BEST PART. Elder Corbett was like "Elder Olsen look at Elder Carrion....he's had a little bit of hard time in the mission but he is trying to do better. We have had like 5 hours here and he's the only one that tried contacting anybody...and I feel bad he is sitting all alone." Then he turned to me and said "vamos practicar nuestro español y hablar con el." (Let's practice our Spanish and talk to him.) Sooo yeah we went and talked with this Elder...and yeah know what...I felt a trillion times better. I had never met this Elder before and he was way chill. I learned a good lesson from that....I can complain about whatever I want but it really doesn't matter. I came here to serve and make others happy.....service makes me happy!! That being said's your writing prompt "what can I do to forget about myself and make others happy?" It's a legit thing I promise. Whatever we are going through it can easily become so much better if we try to help other people and forget ourselves....I promise.

"I will share my saviors love by serving others serving I am giving I receive."


Service project with the bishops wife. 

My hands were REEEEED, and hurt so bad after that!



I didn't have a window seat so i couldn't take pictures of the cool's probs a good thing though mom would have freaked out.

Fast food at the conference


With Elder Corbett and Mendoza

Being stranded is fun.

Being stranded is waaaay fun.

Elder Bishop catching some zzzzzz's

Hahaha the lady yelling at us and deciding if she wanted to call the cops.

Monday, June 19, 2017

A Prayer of Gratitude (week 34)


This week was really really just flew right on by, I feel like I just got to Pasto but lol NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOPE!!! Also before I really get into writing I want everyone to know that ELDER MENDOZA IS A TON BETTER!!! And he has left the hospital :) it only cost Hermana Pricoli like 10 million pesos, but no big deal!!

BUUUUUT YEAH, our investigators are progressing, progressing, annnnnnd progressing. Y estoy muy feliz acerca de eso!!! (That means "and I'm very happy about that" according to google translate!) For starters, WE HAVE A BAPTISM DATE!!!! FUUUUUUUUUDGE YEAAAAAAAH!! Sebastian Caizero is the nephew of a member of our bishopric and he LOVES the church. We have only been teaching him for like 2 weeks and he only has tithing and all the little commandments left to go, he will be ready for his baptism the 1st of July....we are very excited for him!

Miriam is doing well but teaching him has become very complicated. Long story short she lives in the area of the zone leaders and they want to teach her, but she and her family like us better xD Yeah we are actually splitting up and going on divisions with the LZ tonight because they wanna teach her, but we have the relationship we them.....IDK it frustrates the crap outta me but whatever.

Yamilet is doing very well (the mom of Jhon) she basically has all the knowledge but refuses to accept a date because she wants to get baptized with her husband and her other son, but they are totally not interested :/ She actually came to church with her other son yesterday and it was a DISASTER!! We went to go get them so they didn't have to come alone and the little boy was walking so slow purposefully so we would be late (luckily we were not), and then he would not go to primary so he came to principles of the gospel with us. He and would not sit still, and then third hour the bishop wanted to interview Yamilet and little Daniel was running up and down all over the gardens on the inside and outside of the church. All the members probably thought I was crazy holding up my golden oreos saying "usted puede tener algunos oreos si used VENGAAAAAAAA" hahahahah it was soooooooo hard.

I was also able to buy PEANUT BUTTER!!! Gaaaaaah it's some weird Colombian brand and it was expensive, but it was worth it!! I was able to make a peanut butter and jelly sandwich for Hermana Lidida and she LOOOOOOOVED ITTTTTT!!! I also shared some Hot Cheetos with her....she didn't like those, they were too spicy for her xD A lot of other people in the ward liked them though.

The youth are getting ready for youth conferencia, so we had to invite all the investigators to a party in the chapel but it started at 7:30 though so we could not go :( I do not think that I have ever talked about that. Normally in our mission we have to be home at 9 but if we are in an lesson 9:30, but in Pasto we have to be home at 8 STAT!! I am not sure why....Cali is tons more dangerous but whatever.

Also, when I bought my camera we got a rebate type deal at Alkosto so we got to spend 210 thousand pesos worth of food FOOOOOOOOOOOOR FREEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE! It was literally the BEST thing EVVVVVVER!!! Annnnnnnd they had goldfish so of course I had to get on that because the last time I had goldfish was in the CCM, soooo yeah I was STOOOOOKED ABOUT THAT.

Yesterday we finally got a new phone, Elder Galvez left our other one in an taxi on the way to the hospital last week so we have to use minutes all week long to send our numbers which was a pain.

We also had our district meeting in English this week andddd ohhhhhhhhh man....I cannot speak Spanish....I cannot speak English, I am just in this weird Spanlish state xD A lot more people in Pasto can understand me but I still sound super white and that bothers me. Somebody do me a favor and ask Bishop and Mike Zaugg to write me how to have better pronunciation and accent because things wouuuuuuuld be soooo much better with those skills.

This week Hermana Lidia gave me an OLLLLLLD Ensign in's from like 2001 one or something like that. It's so weird, it talks about new Duty to God requirements and a new for the Strength of Youth pamphlet (lol it's not one I ever had, sooooo old). But there was an article that I liked.....A TON!! It was by this lady that had lots of problems in her life with finances and stuff....and she decided to pray, but with prayers of gratitude!!! I read that and I was like "WOOOOOOAAAAAHHHHH I NEEEEED TO DO THAT" annnnd yeah what a difference that makes. There are different feelings between "Heavenly Father I really need the gift of tongues, please help me" and "Heavenly Father thank you for all the Spanish that I currently have, for all the lessons that I am able to teach, and for all things that I can understand" and then ask for help. Our Heavenly Father is ALWAYS helping us and we just need to realize that, and talk to him about it!! My prayers have gotten soooo much better and I really have felt the Spirit strongly this yeah this is this weeks challenge....try it!! And write down the differences in your prayers because ohhhhhhh!! It's better!! You guys got this!


Hermana Lidia with our Hot Cheetos

annnnnd with her first PB and J EVEEEER!

The young men's presidency getting ready for a fundraiser.


Elder Galvez and I!



Monday, June 12, 2017

TEAMWORK (week 33)


This week has been kinda's a complicated story! So basically Elder Mendoza (Elder Corbett's comp) was not feeling very good and the LZ were in Cali for a bunch of meetings with President and Hermana Pricoli, soooooo at 9 Elder Galvaz and I took them to the clinic. That clinic could not do anything about it, so we had to take him to the hospital....the sucky thing was that we could not go inside so we had to sit outside in the FREEZING COLD until about 2 in the morning. That was on Tuesday and he has been in the hospital ever since because he has meningitis. The whole zone has had to take turns watching over him....not speaking Spanish has its benefits because I never had too. Elder Galvaz had to watch him all night last night and I was with the LZ and Elder Corbett it was a good time. But we had to take soooooo many taxi rides and I don't have like any money left. We get paid in 3 days though so I think I will survive.

Our investigators are doing well...they are progressing but not really coming to church. The nephew of one of the counselors in the bishopric is really interested and wants to be baptized so we have been teaching him a bunch. Hermana Lucy Santendar has given us a reference so we will see how that goes.

Today was really good...I got my haircut and the dude did not listen to me so I have a buzz cut now so that's always fun. Then we went to the center and I bought a speaker for music and a COLOMBIA JERSEY (always wanted one) and yeaaaah, now we are still in the center writing.

We had early transfers today, but not a ton changed in the area was closed in our zone and a bunch in all the mission because they are slowly but surely getting rid of all the sisters. I think for safety reasons!! President Whitesides should be here in about 2 weeks so I am very excited about that!!

This week I have learned a lot about teamwork, if we did not work as a team with Elder Mendoza he would not be doing well....we all just love him!! Poor kid only has 3 weeks in the mission and one of them was in the hospital. This weeks challenge is to work together with those that we work closely with....use your challenge journal to make plans! 

Sorry this place is closing so I didn't have a ton of time!


Left to Right: Hermana Lucy, Hermana Lidia, Angela (Hermana Lidia's daughter), John Cardenas, and Elder Galvez y yo

Another one for funsies

Elder Corbett xD

This week I asked Hermana Lidia if I could send some pictures of my food, since I got ten trillion questions about it

Monday, June 5, 2017

Ether (week 32) is June....time on the mission just flies right on by. (I decided to try sounding like everybody else for once.....never again!)

This week was good....we are making some progress here in Mariluz. All of our investigators are progressing and doing soooo goooooood, the problem is that they do not come to church....uggggh.

Yamilet (mama de Jhon) is doing good...she basically has just about all the lessons. But she will not commit to a baptismal date because she wants to get baptized with her husband and her other son. I am not sure if they are really interested or not BUUUUUUUUT, I have faith that all will work out.

Juan Camillo and his grandma are doing really good too. We have started to teach his dad...and they are doing really well!!! The problem is that we figured out they live in the area of the zone leaders so we had a lesson where we introduced turned out way good!! The LZ are leaving this week for meetings in Cali, so we will be teaching them all this week which is good.

We have also found a bunch of new people to teach through the list that the Hermanas left us, and some references from the members. This area is kinda hard though, it is hard for us to find directions and even when we do most of the time the people are not even there. It's good though, we always have people that will come with us to teach. There are a few boys with mission calls that always are willing to help us, which is good because sometimes we need all the help we can get!!!

My relationship with John is good....he has quirks but unlike all my other companions he like actually helps me sometimes sooooooo, all is well.

Our house is soo great.....PERO there is one slight problem, our stove cannot even boil water. My diet at home has consisted of picante chicken cup noodles (Mom have you tried those? They are sooooooo gooooood!) (Mom has tried them, she also says they are sooo goood!) chips, grilled cheese and lots and lots of Gatorade and la cigarra! (It's a soda that you can only buy in the Colombian state of Nariño and it's soooooooooooooooooo gooooooood!) Buuuut yeah if anyone has any ideas on good food I can eat without a stove, that would be way rad!!!!

I am really liking Pasto so far.....really liking my district too!! I met Elder Corbett during the Christmas conference and I have always liked him. He is doing a rad job as a district leader so, nothing to complain about.

Today for P-day the Elders went out and played some indoor soccer.....if I am being honest I really do not like playing soccer with Latinos....I always feel like
A.) I am REEEALLY bad at soccer
B.) I am going to die.
Hahaha the soccer hit me in the chest today really hard and my name tag literally went up and SMACKED my face and then landed on another court.....on the other side of the field xD It was intense!!! After that we met up with the Hermanas at the church and had a BBQ type thing because today was Hermana Espinos last P-day of her mission. (We are having early transfers because our new Mission President is coming soon!!) Yeah, I guess yesterday our Bishop told Elder Flores that he could have a BBQ at the church, and then today he said we only could outside. Soooo Elder Flores had the BBQ grill moved to the back of the building (savage LZ) and some of the meat was grilled back there and some of it was grilled in the building hahahahaha it was a good time!!!

How are guys doing? Like spiritually.....I worry about you guys mucho. Like you guys better be doing everything that you are supposed to be. I know that I have worried you guys a little during the mission but I am doing just fine, I am a lot better right now...I promise!!! But really it's really not about me, I am not here for me. I am here because I know that my Heavenly Father has reserved special people that I need to teach......and by doing so I am growing and growing and growing. That's just kinda it, it all works when we align our desires and our wants with those of our Heavenly Father, and we receive SOOOOOO MANY BLESSSSSINGS!!! Sometimes it's hard, sometimes it takes a ton of faith. But without faith and sometimes without the suck we cannot learn, we cannot grow, and we cannot become like our Father in heaven. I have 2 scriptures for you guys this week....the challenge is to 
A.) Read them.
B.) Write about them in your challenge journal.....MAKE GOALS!
C.) Put those goals into practice.
The scriptures are
Ether 12:6 and Ether 12:12 (because lets be for real ETHER 12 is rad!)
You guys got this.....cannot wait to hear all about it.

Elder Olsen

"Have Faith...Have Hope....Live like his son....Help others on their way"

Our district meeting!

 Here's pictures of the house...

 By far the cleanest and nicest apartment I have lived in here in Colombia.

An extra because I know Aubrey loves to see my face!
(Good boy!)

 "I´m a night sky......I´m the fire in your eye"

The soccer field we played at today

Getting the fire started

HERMANA HERRERA! (Not sure if you guys remember her but we were in Ciudad Modelo together, and now we are in the same district again!)


Chillin :)