Monday, December 29, 2014

December 29, 2014- in Salina Cruz with Elder Rodriguez

"the Christmas tree we put up on the 24th"

"our nativity that Abby made"

It was great to be able to talk to and see all you guys Christmas! It looked like you guys all had a great time with lots of family and fun stuff. We had a great Christmas here with lots of work and LOTS of food. We were also able to set a couple of baptismal dates and just talk about Christmas with everyone!  On Tuesday we had our mission activity with the Madsen’s, where we ate turkey and mashed potatoes and played games(I’m sure you’ve seen pictures) and talk about Christmas traditions in family. I learned that fondue doesn’t have a real direct translation, so everyone just thinks the Sawyer family sits around on Christmas eve and eats buckets of cheese and little hot dogs. The next day/Christmas eve we had like 7 food appointments. It was a tough day. But at the end of the day we ended up at the Canseco’s house where they made a big turkey. Christmas morning Mario came down to Salina Cruz for a visit and to take us out to lunch. From there we went back to the Canseco’s to eat reheated turkey and talk to you guys. Christmas here is a lot different than in the states. Lots of fireworks and drunks and parties. It’s more like new year’s than Christmas. Thursday we had our ward party and broke piñatas and ate even more turkey. So ya it was a good week, a little slower though cause we have to be in our houses earlier every night for these 2 weeks but it’s all good! Have a good happy new year’s!
 Love you guys!!
Elder Sawyer

"Christmas eve turkey dinner- raisins and pineapple, but it tasted like a normal turkey"

"Mario came for Christmas"

Thursday, December 25, 2014

December 25, 2014- Christmas Day phonecall

the family's parrot, named Kevin-
Andrew said they are everywhere and that the little kids catch them and sell them for $8.

every once in a while we would see these cute little kids on his shoulder, Andrew would pan the computer over to them and said, "they're just sitting here eating a torta and watching me speak English, they've been here the whole time, it's like a movie to them."

Andrew and Carson also got to talk to each other.

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Monday, December 22, 2014

December 22, 2014- in Salina Cruz with Elder Rodriguez

"these are the 2 puppies we may or may not be raising in our house.
they still haven't opened their eyes"

"bishop took us to eat cubaños"

"by the front door to our house"

"today me and my comp bought ourselves Christmas presents. the hammock on the right is mine"

"I  couldn't find a Christmas tree so I settled for the Virgen Guadalupe instead. it's probably more Mexican than a Christmas tree anyways..."

hey I'm not gonna write much cause I'm dead from playing soccer all day on full fields, but I'll send some pics and talk to you on Thursday. what time should I call? also can you resend those 4 videos that you sent me please? they didn't make it thru.  pictures are on the way..and when is Carson gonna be on so I can figure this out with my comp right now?
talk to you guys Thursday!
Elder Sawyer

December 22, 2014- Christmas Dinner/FHE with the Salina Cruz Zone

Monday, December 15, 2014

December 15, 2014- in Salina Cruz with Elder Rodriguez

getting the anesthetic shot
this is the craziest thing ive seen in my life.
remind me to tell you guys the giant tarantula story at Christmas

view of our house balcony

the sky here is super cool

baptisms of Pablo and Gracia

baptisms  of Adelfina and Kevin

Hanna and Kevin

stake activity. these are the hermanas in our Ward that danced

Pablo, Gracia and Marta at church

this is something very common here they do for Ward activities.
Jamaica juice in a garbage can
Today are changes- me and Rodriguez are staying the same here. the thing is though is that both our zone leaders got moved, so I got put in charge of changes here so I won’t get a lot of time to write, I’ll try to get pics sent right now and I might get some more time later.

This week we had 4 baptisms! Adelfina, Kevin, Pablo and Graciae. We found Adelfina my first week that we got here to Salina Cruz. She takes care of her 3 grandchildren. The family situation there is just a wreck, but she’s awesome, she does everything to help her kids have a good life and go to school and just have food to eat, but they had been going thru a lot of problems when we found them. We taught them little by little consistently over the last 3 months and they eventually started coming to church and to activities and started opening up little by little. They are really shy, but they’ve changed a ton. They decided they wanted to get baptized. When we asked her right before her baptism why she decided to do it she told us because it gives them a reason to live and a reason to keep moving forward. Pablo and Gracia are two kids we found when we were looking for another family. Their mom is a member of the church since she was born. She went to Benemérito, married a return missionary and got sealed in the temple. Then her husband got excommunicated, they got divorced and it went all downhill from there. Their mom fell into some pretty bad stuff, but has a goal to get back to the temple. Her kids are really helping her get back on the right track. Emma, our other recent convert, is going to the temple to do baptisms with our Ward this Friday and is going to be the first councilor in the primary. She is super awesome, always the first one to get to church. I also just picked up Elder Muir from ADO (bus station). He has been in the bosque for the last 7 months (he was my replacement). He had some Christmas presents from Armandina for me and said that Armandina and Soledad are doing great! So ya that’s just kinda the update on things.....but ya I hope you guys have a great Christmas!!!!!!!!! Enjoy it!!!
Elder Sawyer


1- What did you do about your tooth? 
1. I went to a member’s that is a dentist. A filling had split and I had a pretty big cavity where the split was. She took out the filling, drilled out the cavity and put in a new filling. She only charged me 400 pesos (for the anesthesia and stuff) What happened to your teeth, Mom? I’ll send you pics of mine... maybe you can just wait and have it done for cheap in Oaxaca haha 

2- need anything?
2- nope

3- do you have a picture of your paper tree?
3. We don’t get our packages till Christmas, Hna Madsen is hoarding them all  haha

4- Do the Oaxacan people have tattoos like Americans do?
4. haha ya but there so bad quality its actually pretty funny

5- I want you to buy me a Nativity - please look for one.
5. I’m  looking but there’s not really things like that here. Now if you want a Virgen Maria that’s a different story.

6- How are the grocery stores different from the US?
6. We shop in Walmart, it’s pretty much the same. kinda, but you’ll see.

7- Have you used your "medical kit" that we made?  What are you so glad we packed?
7. ya, I’ve used all the medicine not really Band-Aids or stuff like that though.

8- spoken in church recently?
8- ya, last week

9- What did you eat this week? list at least 10 things.
9. rice, beans, eggs, rice, beans, eggs, rice, beans, eggs, rice.

10- Do you the time for the Christmas call ? 
10. ya I need you to send my username and password. I have no idea where we’re gonna do it from, what time is Carson doing all that?

Monday, December 8, 2014

December 8, 2014- in Salina Cruz with Elder Rodriguez

"baby iguana"
"Elder Cameron, 30 seconds before getting bitten by an adult iguana
and having to go get 2 stitches"

this week we had an awesome week with the cherry on top -being 6 progressing investigadores in the church yesterday.  4 of those are going to get baptized this Friday-  Pablo, Kevin,  Gracia and Adelfin. We have been working a ton with menos activos because almost all of our área (and Oaxaca in general) is already members but inactive. It’s a pretty common thing to stop someone in the Street to contact them and to already know a ton about the church and get super excited and then ask them how they know so much and have them tell us they were an ex missionary. We have 9 ex missionaries in our área and 8 are inactive right now. we’re working on that, slowly, but surely....
Last night we got to go to the first presidencies Christmas devotional, the best thing about it is hearing hymns in English, its crazy to think that its December, we walk around sweating buckets all days. The wind is also getting ridiculous, it literarly  broke one of our Windows. I always think some of the houses are just gonna fly away.
We also had interviews with prez this week so that’s always good. it’s looking I’m gonna be finishing my misión out in Salina Cruz.
ooh, big question I almost forgot to ask, I got a pretty good cavity, there is a member here that could fill it and clean my teeth for 300 pesos?
Armandina emailed me the other day and told me she just got her patriarchal blessing. Ema’s  planning on going to the temple on the 20th to go do baptisms for her family members so that’s great for her too.
Hope you guys are enjoying Christmastime there in the AZ!
Have a good week love you guys!
Elder Sawyer
1. Are your neighbors friendly or scared of you or do they just avoid you?
they’re friendly but want nothing to do with the church

  2. do you have a vacuum or sweep with a broom?
haha, I haven’t seen a vacuum in 21 months

3.How do you spend most of your time on the computer on your P day?
answering your questions

4. Are there any good restaurants in town?
Burger King is the fancy one here in Salina Cruz

 5. Who cuts your hair? and how much does it cost?
sometimes companions, sometimes the barber down the street

 6. What kind of decorations do people do for Christmas?  lights on houses? trees? those blowup things in your front yard? reindeers (for tipping haha)?
usually pictures of their favorite virgins
I’ve seen one little tree and one house with lights

 7. how much money do you get each month?
 2000 pesos

8. what is the most expensive item you buy?

9. 6- what is the name of the kitty on your porch in your last pics?  you feed it?
It died, we called it la cosa

"Jose Mario (who was probably the most excited about the bracelets Abby made"

"Vanessa, Kevina and Jana"

"Pablo,  Gracia and Valeria"

"Jose Mario"

"a tarantula we found in our house"