Monday, May 31, 2010

A Chile Week

I’m so happy to have no clinical today for Memorial Day! Of course, Brad is out of town again. Ugh. Oh well, still nice to have the day off. Yesterday in church a bunch of moms with missionaries spoke in sacrament meeting, it was so good and made me think of my own mission to Santiago, Chile. I have been home for almost 3 ½ years! Every once in a while I’ll remember a dear friend, a taste, a smell, or a random memory that just takes me right back to the year and a half that I lived there. It’s like a whole other life I lived, one that helped me prepare for the one I’m in now. I’m going to share some of my favorite Chilean recipes this week, and maybe even work on my mission scrapbook a bit. Hopefully that will keep me occupied while Brad is gone. This is what my mission was like and what I miss:

It all began when my parents were called to be missionaries in Alaska for 3 years. I always thought missions weren’t for me, but the Lord changed my heart and out of nowhere it started to sound really fun. I went up to Alaska with my parents and we toured the mission, travelling by plane, boat, and train all over Alaska and the Yukon. It was an incredible adventure and great preparation for my mission.

THE MTC: I chopped my hair and took off. In the MTC I loved: the amazing spirit, trying to learn a whole language in 2 months, becoming friends with Tamara, being silly with out district, outstanding weekly firesides, and anxiously awaiting with thousands of other missionaries for our chance to get out into the world and make a difference.

My first area was Lampa, in the campo (country). I understood just enough Spanish to know what people were saying when they’d say “ella no entiende nada” (she doesn’t understand anything)
I had to re-learn to ride a bike and pretend to overcome my fear of gnarly dogs.
 We had a“White Christmas”, which made my first Christmas away from home a little easier. I had the mission Christmas routine down by the second one.
Random things happened everyday, things like goats coming up to you and licking your hip.
Chile has the cutest kids in the world, I would have taken them all home with me if I could. Teaching families was the best, seeing how their lives changed so that their kids could grow up in a happy home with the spirit instead of alcohol and violence.

Then I served in the city. I was there during the Santiago temple open house, so we got to help out with the tours. It was so beautiful and an awesome experience.There were a few more modern conveniences in the city, with the trade off of less beautiful scenery and blowing the black out of your nose at the end of each day. Still met some of the most amazing people. You're actually so happy on your mission, sometimes you don't even realize it.
I ended my mission in one of the most beautiful areas, Santa Maria. Basically, when you eat grapes in the winter, they came right from Santa Maria. I served with the Elders (that is their last name), they are such amazing people and totally became my second parents. All of the sudden, my mission was over. Not gonna lie, sometimes on my mission I looked forward to that day, I imagined how fun it would be to go home and be with my family and relax. I didn't realize I was probably closer to my family when we were 1/2 a world apart than ever, it was so fun serving at the same time as my parents and those weekly letters to and from family meant everything. It was so much harder to leave Chile than I ever expected, hard because I knew that I would never have that same experience again. I was leaving something I couldn't just go back to whenever I pleased, and if I did go back, it wouldn't be as a missionary. I want to go back and visit all my favorite people sooo bad. Hopefully next year I might be able to visit my Chile.

Missions are pretty dang hard, so remember to be nice to missionaries. Most of them are paying their own $ to be there, and get nothing out of it except the satisfaction of coming closer to Christ and sharing that happiness with others. There were so many nice people in Chile who would at least let us step in their house and say a prayer with them, then they'd give us juice. That was awesome.


The Oborn Supremacy said...

Katie, That is such a nice post and such fun pictures. I have to say that you look way cute with your hair short. You have such a pretty face. What a babe! Hmmm. Nice memories and hopefully some yummy recipes to follow. Have a nice week and if you need someone to hang out with call me.

Brad said...

You're so awesome!

Emma said...

i loved reading about your mission!

M+H said...

I loved reading that post too. Such amazing memories for you. It reminds me a lot of my 8 months in China and I miss it all the time. Your yellow dress is soooo cute too! :) See you tonight!

Kimba said...

katie, it was so fun reading about your mission and seeing some pics. what a beautiful place! and only you could manage to look so adorable in such remote places. :) as always. love all of your recipes! i can't wait to try some, especially while living in an area with some of these spices on hand...


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