Thursday, December 31, 2015

Title: The craziest Navidad...

This week has been a great one. On Wednesday we went caroling with our
Relief Society Presidency. We were walking for almost 4 hours straight
delivering tamales and singing. We went to all of the houses of the
older ladies in our ward. It was so special and the spirit that we
felt was so strong. The joy in their eyes was beaming when we arrrived.

Christmas in this crazy country is insane! They start their
celebration on Christmas Eve. All of the members in our ward invited
us to their house. So we had appointments with members almost every hour
from 3-9. Well, my companion had warned me that on Christmas eve and
Christmas day we are going to feel sick because all the members feed
us and it is rude if we deny the food.. So we go to the first
appointment which was right after lunch. Luckily she just gave us a
ton of cookies and grapes that we could take home for later.
With the next member she gave us tamales (this is the food of Navidad
here, and these tamales are HUGE). She ended up having to leave so she
just gave us the tamales in a bag to eat later. Well, we
had a ton of food to carry and we felt weird taking to all the
other houses with us because it looked like we had gifts but they
weren’t for them. So, with shame we found a place in an alley where we
could eat the tamales and stuff the rest in our bags. We then went to
the next appointment, they gave us ANOTHER tamale, cake, grapes,
ponche, and papaya. When we left I seriously thought I was going to be
sick. But I had to suck it up because we had one more appointment..
We get to that house and they wanted to give us another tamale. We said
that we were extremely full so they just gave us stuffed bread
instead, but a ton of stuffed bread. Ahhh we finally got back to the
house and I couldn’t move.. I thought I stuffed myself with xmas dinner in
the states, but now I really know the meaning of being full.
Anyway, the last family felt really bad because we didn’t eat very
much so she gave us a TON of food to take home. We aren’t going to
need to go shopping for a week or so.. On xmas eve everyone stays
up until midnight and at 12 they do fireworks. I am not really sure
how I slept that night because there was sooo many fireworks and music
playing in the street.

Christmas day we woke up at the normal time, 6:30. We opened a couple
of presents and stockings that my mom sent. We then went to the church
to bake cookies because we wanted to carol and bring cookies to our
investigators. We then talked to our families which was difficult but
so great. Then… more food. We had close to the same experience that
night with the members and the food, but it was so great to be with
the members, they are so strong here in my ward!  The first xmas away
from my family was definitely hard. I miss them so much! But I have
learned that this is where the Lord wants me to be right now. And when
I rely on Him and do his will, I really can feel his love for me and
can be happy in the hard times. I am so greatful for all of the
wonderful things that I am learning here in Guatemala. Time is going
to fly by so I have to remember to enjoy every moment, even those
moments when it seems like nothing can go right.

I hope that everyone had an amazing Christmas! Enjoy the new year!

Feliz navidad, prospero año, y felicidad!

Hermana Baird <3

Friday, December 25, 2015

Title: Feliz Navidad!

Wow I cannot believe it is already Christmas! Time has flown by these past couple of months. I feel like it was just a couple of days ago when I arrived in Cerrito del Maiz. I am so excited for this week. We have a few fun Christmas activities with the ward and with the mission. I hope everyone has an amazing Christmas and takes some time to remember the real reason for this holiday!

This week has been a good one. My birthday was on Wednesday and was so much fun. We went to the church during language study to make a cake. We invited one of our investigators to come for a lesson and after celebrate! The young women were having an activity so we shared our cake with them too and then they invited us to eat lunch with them. It was a great gift and so much fun! That night the power went out, and when the power goes out we have to enter our house at 6 because its pitch black and super dangerous. So on our way to the house we stopped at the tienda which is right in front of it that sells fresh papa fritas (french fries but wayyy better than in the states sorrrrry). So that was my birthday dinner papa fritas from the street vendors haha. 

Again I am short on time. But i hope everyone has an amazing Christmas! I LOVE YOU ALL!

Con amor de Guatemala,
Hermana Baird

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Hola all!

Hope all is well I don't have much time to write today but I am going to attach some pictures! This week has been super good and we have been way busy. Christmas time is crazy here, there are fireworks everywhere, food everywhere, and fiestas every night in the central parque. The picture with the crazy people is at one of the events they were having for Xmas in our area. It is a tradition every year to have to "Combite" (the people in the costumes) to come and dance. The other picture is with Mayrena, our latest convert, and her family. We are making a tradition to have Domino's for lunch with our converts the week after their baptism. And yes I am a giant in this picture. I am a giant compared to all people here! 


Friday, December 11, 2015

Title: #HaNacidounSalvador

Wow Christmas is so soon I cannot believe it! It is a little difficult during this time because I miss being with my family. But at the same time it is amazing because I have the opportunity to remind people here what Christmas is really about. The church has a new video out Ha Nacido un Salvador (A Savior has been born). We have a portable DVD and try to show this to everyone we pass by in the streets.  Everyone should go and watch it! The website is This month of December has been much different for me than in the past. Not only because I am on a mission, but because of my mindset about Christmas. I have been thinking more about the true purpose of it. We all get so wrapped up in gifts and materialistic things during this time, when really the most important thing to remember is the birth our Savior Jesus Christ. He is not only our savior in the sense that we can return with our Heavenly Father after this life, but he is also our Savior during this life. It is through Christ that we can be happy during our time here in this life. It is through repentance and the Atonement of Jesus Christ that we can feel true joy and peace. I am so grateful for our Savior and invite everyone to take time to think about the true meaning of Christmas, and I know that it will make this season even better for you!

This week has been great! Our investigator Mayrena was baptized! She has 3 kids, two of them were baptized in September, and the other is only 6. They were such great example to her. And now she is a member too! She has such a strong testimony and is a great example to us. I love them so much. They are super fun to be around, and of course love making fun of my Spanish haha. 

We had the great opportunity this week to have a conference with Elder Ochoa, one of the Central American Seventies. It was so great hearing from a general authority here in the mission because they know exactly what we need to do here to have success. Something  I loved hearing from him was that it doesn't matter if people reject us. We are here to give everyone the opportunity to hear the message of Jesus Christ and we need to be bold and talk to everyone. Even if we think we are going to get a door slammed in our faces. I really needed to hear this because I got a little discouraged this last week. We were contacting in the street and we came upon a man who seemed extremely nice. He was smiling and seemed interested in what we wanted to teach him. He invited us in and we started the lesson. Well very quickly we learned he didn't want to hear it. He only wanted us to come in so that he could bash us. He would ask us what we though about something, and before we could even start he would tell us nope I don't believe it. He bashed us for about 1 hour. I wanted to cry, I felt so frustrated and angry! I didnt understand why someone was being so mean when we were just trying to share a simple messege with him. I felt discouraged but relized that this is just part of the missin and hard things happen so that I can grow. I learned that I need to develop more charity. So that I can love this people that reject us just like chirst loved those who rejected him. The mission is great! I am learning so much that will help me throughout all of my life. I am so grateful for this opportunity and for all of the support from my friends and family. 

Love you all!