Monday, January 25, 2016

Samambaia - Week 17

75.000 misisonários em todo o mundo reunidos para esta transmissão.
[75,000 missionaries around the world met together for this broadcast.]

The thing that stood out most from the broadcast was the focus on repentance and baptism, it'll be super cool. I kinda feel like we're becoming more like the Book of Mormon missionaries, only declaring repentance unto the people :) It's neat. 

Speaking of languages, I decided after a little bit of thinking that the Lord helped me learn Portuguese so fast because I'm supposed to learn Spanish too! So I've been starting that, with Elder Medrano. I haven't learned hardly anything yet, but I'll report next week! :) 

So some news from this week, yesterday was Praia Grande's Stake Conference! Which was exciting! Unfortunately, we didn't manage to bring anyone to church, which was lame because who do we find waiting for us at the door except President and Sister Cabral! But it was really good. I played the piano for all of it (congregational and choir), and it was cool. The Cabrals spoke, it was really good, the temple president and his wife spoke (he actually used my Bible because he didn't have one. Score!) and Elder Antunes, the presiding Seventy, spoke. He's really funny, just kinda a short and funny man. So it went well. The If You Could Hie to Kolob that the choir did turned out super stinkin' awesome. I did some sorta ad-libby stuff, and it turned out nice. And I got to see a bunch of people from Vila Sônia, so that was cool. Anyways, that's pretty much it for me! Thanks for everything!

Monday, January 18, 2016

Samambaia - Week 16

[From his letter to me]

Hmm...things to teach Jake before he goes on his mission...I think that it's important to know how to sew, that's a good skill to have. As far as spiritual stuff...he should be getting good study habits I think. With Preach My Gospel, for sure, and also with the scriptures. Also, PIANO! :) It appears that I am now the official ward pianist of Samambaia. Well, not official, obviously, but yeah. We're doing more choir stuff too, they found a Portuguese version of If You Could Hie to Kolob, which is pretty slick. But yeah, that's pretty much it. Studying helps a lot. Also, if he could accompany the missionaries every now and then (I don't know how it works in CA), or just getting good at doing home teaching, that would help a ton I'm sure.

Let me see, something that happened this week...I think it was pretty normal this week. Stuff is going along as far as teaching people goes. We have this one lady, Ilsa, who is super old but super cool. She's from Paraguay, and speaks the Guarani or whatever language from the Indians. Also, we're teaching Tamires, who is super cool. She's 21 I think, has a 2 year old daughter, and she is really interested. The only problem is she works at the market every Sunday, so that'll be tough. Other than that, it's been normal. Also, putting together the wardrobe took up a while :) [The furniture] ended up just being two little end tables, and a GINORMOUS wardrobe, which me and Elder Medrano spent an entire day setting up, it was so big and complicated. I have pictures, dunno if I'll have time to send. But yeah, it was a blessing :) Everything is so much more organized.


I can't think of anything else super exciting that happened. We didn't do anything for my 13-month mark (AGH, it's crazy). I think today we're going to Subway for lunch, which seems to have become a tradition for P-day. Since it's close, actually in our area for once. But...yeah, that's pretty much it. Anyways. I feel like a lot of my stories are going to have to wait until I can read my journal to you guys, haha. Cause I just don't remember the stuff when I sit here to write. But that's okay, right? :) Thanks Mom! I love you so much! Have a great week!

[From his letter to Dayne: part-way through he switches to Portuguese]

We found out who our new mission president will be, Carlos S. Obata. I don't know what he looks like though. It's crazy that the Cabrals' time is running out...and not too long from now I'll have a new mission president. AGH, what is going on?! Time is going by super fast. I'll try to keep you guys better updated, I haven't been doing a very good job on that. Unfortunately, our time in the LAN House got cut to 90 minutes, so I'm not sure how well I'll be able to do that... :/ But I'll do my best. One other perk of being a leader...we had a reunião do conselho da missão hoje, e Presidente falou sobre muitas coisas que o Quórum dos Doze passaram para eles ontem, e aí também a gente vai ter um treinamento mundial da Primeira Presidência e dos Doze no dia 20 de janeira, vai ser bem legal :) Para todos os missionários do mundo, vai ser uma transmissão de satellite. E depois, (foi na casa do Presidente) a filha deles fez pretty legit American hamburgers, with maionese e tudo mais. Muito gostoso. É sempre muito legal estar com Presidente e Sister Cabral. Eles realmente são nossos pais aqui :) Não que vocês deixaram de ser meus pais, só que eles estão um pouquinho mais perto :) Anyways, assim foi a minha semana. Eu decidi que é mais fácil escrever em português, porque inglês só ficava me atrapalhando, então vocês vão ter muita prática de agora em diante :) Mas, você não tem que responder em português se não quiser, não tem problema. Eu acho inglês melhor na verdade, mas agora já era para mim :) Nem quero saber como vai ser quando eu voltar, se já tá assim com um ano só. Rapaz...mas é isso aí :) Love you Dad! Have a great week!

[Here's the quick translation...]

... we had a meeting of the Board of mission today, and spoke about a lot of things that the quorum of the twelve to them yesterday, and there too we have a global training of the first presidency and the twelve on day 20 of janeira, is going to be pretty cool:) To all the missionaries in the world, will be a satellite transmission. And then, (it was in the President's House) their daughter did pretty legit American hamburgers, with Mayo and everything. Very yummy. It's always very nice to be with President and Sister Cabral. They really are our parents here:) Not that you are no longer my parents, except they are a little closer:) Anyways, that was my week. I decided it's easier to write in Portuguese, because English just kept getting in the way, then you're going to have a lot of practice from now on:) But, you don't have to answer in Portuguese if not, no problem. I think better English in fact, but now it's gone for me:) I don't even want to know how it will be when I get back, if it's like that with a year. Boy ... but that's it:)

Legit American hamburgers

Monday, January 11, 2016

Samambaia - Week 15

Time has been passing by so quickly. I don't even know what's happening. Here in a little bit, the Cabrals will be going home, and then there'll be the new president, and I'll only have like 5 months left! Ack!!!! I don't even like thinking about it. There's so much stuff I still need to learn.

My biggest blessing for the Actually, on Thursday we got a delivery! The mission bought a bunch of new furniture for us, including a new washing machine (which is SICK! I'll try to get a picture, although it probably won't impress non-Brazilians, hahaha), and some tables that we had to put together ourselves. I'll try to get some pictures of our new and improved house to show you guys. And sorry, this week won't have pictures because we're here in Santos, and we can't use USB ports. Stinkers. Anyways, I will try to do better on pictures. So that was a pretty big blessing, because a lot of our stuff was just kinda breaking down. Like the iron/ironing board. 

The holes in my shoes are pretty small still, they're not a problem. I can deal with wet feet, and I would feel bad asking for a new pair of shoes. They're about the size of your pinky fingernail probably. So it's fine. If they start to open up more and get actually unusable, then I'll ask for new ones. Don't worry :) 

I never thought that I would speak a foreign language better than I speak my own! It's embarassing!! :) Actually, it's kinda cool, but whatever haha. 

My favorite thing to do on P-day is use the computer to talk to you guys :) It's really the best part. It's my 90 minutes of America time, which I cherish :)  Because the only other thing we do is shop and clean the house...and you know how I love to shop :) Hahaha, no, it's not that bad. So yeah, speaking of 90 minutes, I don't have that much time left. Sorry about the recently terrible updates, I'm getting super bad at that. I'll try to do better on giving an update of what I've been up to, but it's just craziness around here. Anyways, I love you and have an awesome week!

Elder Hesselgesser's birthday, Jan 6

Monday, January 4, 2016

Samambaia - Week 14

We did...nothing much to ring in the new year. Well, I made maple syrup actually, for the first time. It turned out super tasty! A bit thinner than normal syrup, but I guess that's to be expected. We used it as a dip for the fruitcake sorta things that we got from a member, it turned out really tasty! I think that was pretty much it. Also, we borrowed the DVD player from the sisters, because on Friday we had to stay in the house all day because of the drunkards and drogados [druggies] and stuff like that, so we watched The Singles Ward. Which I think was okay to do :) It was funny though. And I got some videos of the fireworks at 12, because...I was in bed but still awake :) Anyways, they're kinda big and not very impressive (more just super loud noisemakers, not too many actually pretty fireworks; although I think that maybe my many Disney experiences spoiled me :) ), but maybe I'll send them over sometime.

Cindy sent me a lot of stuff...a huge PB jar, Slim Jims, a load of regular/sour Jelly Bellies, Reese's Christmas tree things, socks...a Poke County Family Fair T-shirt, :) and some other stuff that I can't remember right now. It was super awesome, but unfortunately I forgot to take a picture until I had already eaten probably half of the stuff...oops.  

The rain is pretty hard-hitting feels like it's more too, because in about 3 minutes of any normal rain the roads are immediately turned into rivers, and you have to walk in almost ankle-deep water to get anywhere. Because their drainage is awful. But, it feels like you're in Venice :D No, just kidding. It's alright though, my shoes are putting up well. Although the two pairs have both got "wholes" now, so my feet are always wet it seems like. But they dry out well enough with a fan on them all night. So no complaints. 

So yeah, there was an emergency transfer on New Year's Day...because in one of the areas close to here (not in my zone, thank goodness), the assistants went to go do a division and they found some...not so great stuff going on. Nothing super bad, but a lot of the missionaries from there got transferred. So, only Elder Santos de Oliveira from our house got moved, and another American got put here, Elder Evans! I've already lived with him in my first transfer in Rio Branco, so that's pretty cool! 

And that's CRAZY about Grandpa and Grandma Bratsman's mission call [Uganda Kampala Mission]! What an awesome place to go! Also, the last place that I would've thought of. Actually, a missionary couple just got put here in Santos to help with the office stuff, so that's kinda cool! Hahaha, I'm sure they'll have good food there for the missionary couples. And I guess they'll be speaking English, right? Any other cool languages that they'll get to learn there? 


Daniel, from Aula de Inglês!