Monday, January 26, 2015


AH!!! Enter new companion: Hermana Ibarra!!! She is SO awesome!!! Ibarra here is a Brand of chocolate, and so one of the members has nicknamed our companionship The Best Chocolate. Im having flashbacks to my companion from Costa Rica Hermana Cascante for several reasons, and one being that it is my companions LAST TRANSFER. Apparently there is something I need to learn about how to finish your mission haha. Missionaries in their final transfers bring a VERY distinct, special spirit with them into the house and the área. Similar to my experience with Hermana Cascante, our first night of planning we ended up talking a TON about what we want to see in the área, what Works, and what doesnt. She has a lot of experience with different companions and áreas, so i have a ton of trust in her. Shes showed me a method for planning and teaching that has been working SUPER well to allow both companions equal time teaching in the lessons,and the lessons have been some of the most spiritual in my  mission.
She also is teaching me a lot about how to feel more in tune with the Spirit with what state the house is in, and how we use our time. For example, our house wasnt bad at all when she got here.  But today, our first p day, we switched a ton of stuff (like not sleeping in the cold room with our heads right by the window) cleaned really well, and are going to paint and buy nice curtains that actually cover the doors and Windows. When we finished it all i felt like i could breathe. The house is now a place i want to be when im in it, and this makes a surprising difference in missionary work. Hermana Ibarra was joking that she has a reputation in her áreas for 'remodeling' houses, and sometimes people dont see the point. But after we put her plans into action everything looks and feels so bright and peaceful that i totally get it now! I know this is something ill take home with me after the mission, because technically our home should be a 'Little piece of heaven' and the only thing that compares with the temple.

Hermana Best with her new companion, Hermana Ibarra
One thing i'm very excited about this past week is our investigator MIGUEL!!! Oh my gosh he is so awesome. I knew he would be great since we met him my last transfer, but maybe we didnt give him the time he needed, so now were meeting with him a ton. Miguel is the epitome of the 80s in America. We always show up and hes wearing something like a John Elway jersey, listening to The Clash and bobbing his head in a total 'dad' way, and trying to speak to me in english haha! Total goofball/jokester. Hes never been to America but I think he would love it there. Hes listened to the missionaries for a few months,a nd it doesnt hurt that hes a referral from the bishop. He said in the past hes felt pressured to be baptized, but weve been having super great lessons with him and we have set a baptism date of Feb 14 for him!!! One thing that is super touching as a missionary is when the investigators talk about their baptism on their own. For example, sometimes when you invite someone to be baptized, the next time you go over youre thinking 'do they remember the date? do they care about it? did they just say yes but really arent sure?' but the other day during a lesson the bishop swung by miguels store where we teach him and he was talking about 'when im baptized' and also referred to members of the church as 'us' instead of the usual 'you guys', which i didnt realize until my companion pointed out after! :) :) :)
One sweet thing that also happened in this chat with bishop is that Miguel said he had a big question for us.  I braced myself for the usual questions we get on the mission, something outlandish like do my companion and i share a husband or something like that. after a lot of beating around the bush he asked us...'are they gonna ask me to cut my hair for my baptism?' awww hahah it was so sweet. he has this salt and pepper hair like in a just for men add but hes growing it out to this weird  mullet thing that we dont approve of haha (total 80s) and we explained to him that being a member is a lot of different changes, but no ones going to forcé him to do anything. only that we think that he will actually end up wanting to cut his hair himself, because as members we know that our bodies are temples and we strive to look and feel clean and well groomed. we were halfway through our response when he said 'ok ok you know what im just going to go tomorrow and cut it so it wont be harder later' hahaha i was so proud of him! ive attached a pic of me and miguel pre-haircut.

Pre-haircut Miguel
Well ive really been feeling great in this stage of my mission. there are funny stages, lonely stages, difficult stages, but at the end of the day its wonderful to be a missionary. i can feel myself becoming a MUCH better person than when i stepped into the MTC last year. ive come to value the things that are ACTUALLY important in life, especially our relationships with other people. the material stuff doesnt matter. in our house i have 2 suitcases of belongings, and i dont feel that im lacking anything. every day i get to study the góspel and understand more and more things than I ever have in my life. then i close my scriptures and see all of your smilings faces in the pictures of us that i have on my Wall and know i have a wonderful support system of family and friends. the Lord has blessed me in so many ways I cant even count them!!! I pray that we can seek for truth and light. i know the world is filled with a lot of temptations and ways to distract ourself. only the góspel can keep us on track and bring us lasting peace. I love my Savior, Jesús Christ, and I know this is his church. I love you all and hope you have a wonderful week!!!

Monday, January 19, 2015


Well, I blinked and 6 weeks passed by again and its time for ...transfers!!! (I have never said the word transfers in my mission, that was weird. we say cambios). But this time Im staying and my comp, Hermana Hernandez is leaving! 

I am so grateful to have had this cambio, it was one of a LOT of personal and spiritual growth. My comp and I are two extremely different people, but we shared the same faith and same love for missionary work, and I learned a lot from her!!! She is a very hard worker, and even though this area doesnt have as much success as a lot of other areas in this mission she keeps working hard until the last minute of the day. 

You should have seen me in weekly planning trying to memorize where everything is. The hardest thing about this area is when I got here it was the holidays, and people were selling things every day and they put these tarps over their little areas, so you actually feel like youre indoors. as soon as 6 of january passed they took it all down and i was like 'where are we?' and my comp would tell me 'its the same street, it just looks different!' OH NO hahah. so in weekly planning i was looking like a crazy person, scribbling a bunch of different maps A Beautiful Mind style, circling things and sketching lines 'if i go here do i turn HERE or is it later?!?!' hahah. I know if I do my part the Lord will make up for the things I dont exactly understand here. 

One super fun part of the work right now is that were working on a Ward Mission Activity. In Xmas we had a choir of 100 voices and we were pleasantly surprised that a lot of people walked in from off the street to listen to it, and now a lot of us missionaries in the zone are teaching them. Our ward mission leader decided now on a sketch type thing. Usually Im skeptical about this sort of thing, but he wrote a decently funny spin on Back to the Future about visiting prophets. The most hilarious part ist there are literally people in our ward that weve secured as 'actors' that look exactly how you would imagine Moses, Nephi, Joseph Smith, etc. Weve been working like crazy on the invitations, props, etc., hoping that everyone in the ward will INVITE their friends and that we can get some more references from this activity!!!

"Super weird two person workout machine at a members house, trying it out with my companion. Supposedly the part I'm on is for love handles, you stand and spin on it."
Yes, i am looking really different with my hair growing out. the other day the ward mission leader said 'hermana best i need you to....are you hermana best?' (dead serious, not a joke) me 'yes...'  him hesitating 'oh....have you always had brown hair?' haha YES I KNOW PEOPLE. 

im excited for what the next cambio will bring!!! tomorrow my new comp gets assigned to me!!! wish me luck navigating through these crazy streets. The church is true! The mission is the best!!! 

Hermana Best wanted to add these photos of her OLD district, not the current district with transfers tomorrow.
"We were super International! Dominican Republic (leader), Federal District (Mexico), Peru, Chile, Argentina, U.S.!"
"My fave district"
"Describes us PERFECTLY"

Monday, January 12, 2015


Well all the holidays are over and were back to normal here in Atlixco. The p days here have been super crazy and different from my other area that when i sit down i cant remember anything from the week! I figured id share about some of the awesome people here.

"A picture of how crammed it was the 6 of january, the 3 kings holiday. SUPER easy to get around and talk to people about the gospel hahahaha"
Investigator wise we have some really sweet people. One is Ernesto, a hilarious and caring grandpa. He has had the craziest life ever, its straight out of a movie. But his life has since calmed down, especially since he lost most of his sight a couple of years ago. He likes to remind us that he's partially blind, not partially stupid' hahaha 'yes, Ernesto, we know'. The last time we taught him we were chatting after and he did impressions of his family and friends because they freak out ever since he lost his sight. he showed us how he sets a glass of water down completely normal and they yell out WATCH OUT ITS GONNA SPILL! or he sits down on a stool completely fine and someone will say 'CAREFUL OR YOULL FALL OVER!' his wife, my comp and i were laughing so hard, i couldn't breathe.

Fun fact about Ernesto, he never had any interest in religion until last year when he prayed to God to help him. That day, people from 7 DIFFERENT RELIGIONS approached him haha. A stake president that eats breakfast in his restaurant every day for years randomly started talking about the church, his catholic godfather called him, a Jehovah's witness started talking to him on the street, and on and on. The good news is were the only ones he's listening to haha. A lot of people have wronged Ernesto in his life, so he told us he wants to learn how to forgive those people. i think thats really  noble that he realizes that its not good to have those kinds of feelings in his heart, and that he just wants to let go of whats happened. 

Who else..., the mom and brother of my comps recent converts here are showing more and more interest in the church!!! even though the 3 daughters in the family are baptized, this mom and son have been a little more slow going. but now theyre going to church and activities! i got hit with food poisoning really bad this weekend, and they came to visit me, it was super sweet! its really cool how the mission bonds you to people. normally i would be horrified if someone came in while i had my pale face crazy hair and was sweating under a bunch of blankets, but they just came and sat on my comps bed and talked to me and made me feel better. i lent the kid, whos 10 my guitar because he wants to learn how to play and theres a group of kids learning in the church for a ward talent show. i barely have time to play my guitar and he was really stoked so im super happy that its being put to good use!!! :) :)

"Nadia, one of my favorite kids here. She is fascinated by America, and blonde hair hahahah. We like to play barbies and practice english. she says i am the only missionary that has gone on the swings with her haha." 
We had a really awesome lesson this week with a kid here that just got called to Tijuana, MX mission and leaves in February. we found a cool youth video of a byu basketball star leaving everything to go on a mission. when it ended the mom, my comp and i were in tears haha. it was so hard to watch a video of a missionary packing up his stuff and saying bye to his family!  but it was SO sweet because the mom of the kid that we visited served a mission and she just started bearing her testimony to her son about how great the mission is and how much it changes a person, it was such an incredible lesson! we are excited to help Abinidai as he prepares for his mission!!!!!

Im so happy to be here in the mission. even though its REALLY hard sometimes, theres always one little miracle in the day. one thing that pulls me through and says YOURE DOING GOOD, KEEP GOING!!! I know that the Lord is watching over me and my loved ones as well. Thank you for sending emails that lift me up and remind me of the awesome people i have in my life. I hope those that read these updates that aren{t members can learn more about the church and how much HAPPINESS it brings us members!!!! Until next week!!!

Monday, January 5, 2015


This week I have a crappy keyboard so forgive any errors (and randomly no one can forgive me and everyone holds a grudge...)

I hope everyone  had a WONDERFUL NEw YEars!!!! I actually really enjoyed my New YEars!!! I think apart from talking to family on xmas it was better than xmas for me. this cool couple invited us and the elders over for a dinner especially made for us.  This may shock you, but the tradition here for new years is a lot, and be with your family hahah pretty much every holiday here is the same. The couple told mission stories that had us in STITCHES laughing, some of the best mission stories ive ever heard. the sister also made us these little hand wrapped baskets of candies, it was super thoughtful.  

Playing the organ in a member's home
OK but one thing that happened that night is that we were all snug as a bug in a rug when at 230 in the morning we hear. GUERRAAAA. which means WHITE GIIIIIRL. over and over and over and over, every minute or so, like an alarm. im thinking....its kids from the neighborhood that know i live here making fun of me or something? i let it slide for about a half hour until im just done with it. i look out the window and its a mom and her daughter. theyre calling out to their family apparently. (if the people here have light skin they also use this word to identify t hem. ) we went down to let them into our little group of houses, and then it was so hard to sleep after that. i kept hearing the way she was shouting it for a good while. we were so tired the next day and NO ONE WAS AROUND. i thought christmas would be empty, but no, on christmas people were selling and buying stuff. on new years it looked like the set of a western movie here. cue the tumbleweed!!! 

also tomorrow is ANOTHER holiday. its really pointless if you ask me. its the  3 kings? i have no idea how to say it in English because it doesnt exist. picture that they celebrate xmas, and then because the 3 kings brought gifts, on the 6 of january they celebrate by giving the kids gifts. ive had a lot of conversations with moms here like 'isnt that just a ton of money?' and theyre like 'yes!!!' hahah. all the celebrating makes missionary work a  little tougher than usual.  for example tonight we were going to go with one of our investigators but we just found out that a huge parade is going to block his business and that he will probably be busy serving food anyway. we are ready for life to go back to normal here!!!

The volcano
Ive been digging this Brigham Young quote about persecution in the church.

"Every time they persecute and try to overcome this people, they elevate us, weaken their own hands, and strengthen the arms and hands of this people. And every time they undertake to lessen our number, they increase it. And when they try to destroy the faith and virtue of this people, the Lord strengthens the feeble knees, and confirms the wavering faith and power in God, in light, and intelligence."

Awesome. well keep up those emails!!!! i love you all and am thinking of you all the time!!!