Monday, September 29, 2014

Another transfer and I'm staying.

Nick tried to send pictures this week but it didn't week.  Hopefully, we'll get some next week.  

Hey so my transfers are a week after everyone else. (Meaning his sister)

Here's about what's happening, 

Elder W...... is leaving, going to his house
Elder T............ arrives

Elder G....... leaving after one transfer here, 
Elder A....... from L.A arrives

Sis. V........ leaves, 
An American sister arrives.   Sister T.........

But I guess we'll see, I've never heard of this girl before. 

I stay with my companion to finish off his training. 

Here are our plans this week. 

Tuesday, wait for new missionaries. Lose half the day with the meeting and the other half studying. 

Wednesday-Friday, normal. 
Saturday- General Conference, go to a buffet, more General Conference, ice cream maybe, more General Conference. 
Sunday- Go to Hermana Rubios house, make pancakes, General Conference, eat hamburgers, General Conference. Weekly planning. 

and yay, Monday again! 

I'll let you know if anything exciting happens from Wed-Fri. 

My budget this month 

500pesos-50 cans of canned tuna 
200pesos-tortas y tacos
100pesos-rolls (i found real rolls in Mexico... they're just a little dry)
200pesos-materials (pens, notebooks)
100pesos- internet for the month

We'll see how it works out because every time I get money it disappears magically in 10 days.

And don't say anything about the muñelocos. It's for the children :) (I'd like to know for what children.)

That's all I've got. Stuff happens but it's the same everyday, but I like it. 

Take care, love you

Elder Arvanitas

Monday, September 22, 2014

Happy Independence Day, Mexico


Todavía estamos chambiando. (We're still workin´) 

Monday night, day of independence... people played music outside our house until 4 o'clock in the morning. You know how much i slept, like 2 hours worth... 

We had another activity this Saturday and.... more than 15 people came! Actually around 80 people came this time! 

The only problem is almost all of my time was put into planning and preparing for this activity this week. You kinda have to do everything (buying materials, putting up decorations, finding projectors and speakers) because if you leave it up to... selective people, it doesn't get done-(He sounds like his mother, ha ha) 

what else... 

Got kicked out of an AA meeting.... of all the places. We went to go support this guy that's trying to quit alcohol, smoking, etc etc, and the people running it threw a hissy fit and told us to leave. 

...I beat the claw game that's in the grocery store!  I now have a stuffed animal that's half snail, half hippopotamus. 

That's about all I got for my week. Nobody took us out for a second dinner or anything...(He's referring to his sister's letter and teasing her at the same time) 

But I started reading about being more successful. (I guess that's what you do when your tired and depressed because it seems like nothing is working :p) 

It talked a lot about being perfect in things that only depend on yourself. You know, even though we haven't had a ton of success out here in Celaya, I love it here. It's honestly one of my favorite areas, and I've grown to love all the people. 

Besides the transvestites that say hi to me. They're creepy. 

I don't regret my time here, I know it's for the right reasons. 

take care, 

Elder Arvanitas 

Nick's claw game prize

Yay dia de independencia!!! 

Maybe this is from too much Independence Day partying.  

A church

Monday, September 15, 2014

One Year in Mexico

Happy Mexican Independence day! 

Yeah pretty much everyone is gone this week. San Miguel de Allende is right by us...(I think this is a big vacation area) 


...well, tomorrow.... 

But I honestly never thought I would get this far. It just seemed so far away when I first got here, but now looking back it's all gone by so fast. 

Yesterday I decided to read all my letters that I've gotten from all of you in my entire mission. I felt like a little girl who just had her first breakup, reading letters from her ex boyfriend while eating a tub of ice cream. 

Only instead of ice cream it was Toronja water (I don't know what Toronja is).(It's grapefruit, Nick.  Maybe he should ask.) And the fact that all the letters I read were from Christmas time... and the fact I was wearing hammer time pants with cheetah pockets (yes I have those :p) 

 (Brother Long told me to get a real job on my card....)

But speaking of that, tell everyone to write me a letter. But a nice handwritten letter. My address is this... 

Elder Nick Arvanitas
Oficina de la mision 
Ave. Pie de la cuesta no. 102
Esq. Bouldevard Desarolla San Pablo 
Colona Colinas de San Pablo, Queretaro 
Queretaro, C.P 76125

But what else. Things I've learned how to do in 1 year in Mexico.. 

1. Take public transportation. Let me tell you there's nothing worse than rubbing up against 2 chubby, sweaty ladies on a little tiny bus in Queretaro. 

2. Cook? Nope still haven't learned that one.

3. Sew. I mean half the time it looks like the Korean alphabet, but it works :) 


Maybe I've learned less  than I thought..

Spiritual experience... 

I was reading this one talk yesterday. It talked about how the work that I'm, well we're doing out here is not really our work. It's God's work. I feel like for most of my mission I've been worried about so many things that happen or don't happen. 

But I kinda realized if God wants something to happen, a person to be taught, etc. etc. it's going to happen with or without me. All that he asks is that we be worthy and willing to do what he says when he says it. 

And when you think of it that way, it all changes. And I feel a lot less stressed. So that's good. 

That is all I got.... I'll send pictures next week, my camera is messed up and doesn't work with uploading so I'll figure that out next week. Love you guys. See you soon

Elder Arvanitas

Monday, September 8, 2014

Praying to be better

Dear family, 

I have no idea what happened this week. All of our plans cancelled. I don't have pictures cause Celaya's scary. I'll let you know how it goes with my visa next week. 

The End. 

K maybe I have something to tell you. 

So I've just been thinking a lot about that family I told you about last week. Actually all the people I've met in my entire mission. 

There's been a lot of situations like that that are... well hard. 

I found myself reading the talk by President Eyring called Mountains to Climb. It talked about the trials in our lives that we face. But this time that I read it, one part stuck out to me that hadn't before, where he mentioned that he prayed to have harder trials in his life so that he could be a better person. 

So I decided to do the same thing that night, and told my district about it the next day, and invited them each to do the same thing... 

Out of every single meeting I've been in, in the past year here, that was the most powerful one. It ended with everyone crying. 

I know that trials in our lives will come that will make us think "Why? When I've done everything right, why me?" 

But I also know, that God knows us each individually, and that nothing will ever happen to us that we can't overcome.  

I love you all. 

Elder Arvanitas

P.S.  I had a guy pull out a razor blade to cut my sideburns today. Takin' in back to the 1950s.   Also, Happy Independence Day for Mexico! 

Monday, September 1, 2014

More lists


Awkward moments in my mission

1.  We were walking around Celaya and we found this one guy that was less active and blind. So we talked to him for a little while till he eventually told us he really didn't want anything at that moment. To which I replied "Okay so if we're close to your house again we'll stop by and say hi, Nos Vemos"

Meaning "We'll see each other again" 

My companion turns to me.. "bad choice of words"

2.  It's about the same when this old grandma told us she couldn't read, and at the end of the lesson I left a card and asked her to read what I wrote... 

3.  One time I bought the most delicious liter of coconut water. I drank the whole thing in 10 mins. I thought I wanted more. So, I bought another one. 
I drank that one too, but struggled to finish it. 
Then we went to eat. 
I went to the bathroom and threw up, but I coughed and an entire salad and 2L of coconut water came out my nose... 

4.  This lady told us that her dog got hit by a car and was having surgery, I had just started my mission and didn't understand so I thought she said it died. I'm pretty sure I told her not to worry cause she would see her dog again in heaven. She might of started crying harder. 

5.  Saying hi to people that you think you know but actually you don't know in the street. Lots of long awkward silences. 

Tianguis stores 

Today we found a tianguis store for military stuff. I can buy a military grade camelpak for 50$ and boots and stuff. 

Jerseys - 20$- 30$
Toms -8$
Sunglasses (ray bans, Oakleys, DG) 4$

Metal store- the weirdest store I've found in all of Mexico. It had a giant buffalo head, bottles full of swords to kill dragons, Giant Indian Axes. It was like if you pillaged the houses of all the rich Mexican grandmas, in all of Mexico, it would be in this store. 

But on the other hand we had one of the most difficult lessons this week. 

We were sitting with this family and this mom just burst into tears. About 3 months ago, people broke into her house and killed her husband right in front of her and her 2 daughters.   She told us, "We were trying to do everything right, why does God let things like this happen" 

We talked to her, bore our testimonies that God knows each one of us and that he loves us. That sometimes the choices of others effect our lives but that God never promised this life would be easy. But, he did promise us that we could be together forever with our families. 

It was really special. It's moments like these that remind me why I'm here, and how much of a blessing it is to help these people. 

Elder Arvanitas

Elder W......., Elder V......., Elder V...... (Nick's new companion) with a giant flag Nick bought