December 31, 2013


December 30, 2013
Hola Familia:
Christmas was wonderful. Hermana Flor invited us to eat with her when we came back from Chavin. We had a Christmas dinner of turkey which was great. Then we went upstairs... watched the fireworks go off...it was like the Deer Park show on steroids haa...and went to bed, it was great.

Thursday we invited our new friend Rafael to baptism. He looks a ton like Brother Wright and it´s really weird haha. But he´s really cool, studies the Bible, has a 5yr old son who is his life, and he is preparing to be baptized on the 11th. I have faith that he´ll follow through and be baptized on that day. 
Saturday was a beautiful day. I think I told you all about Kati. My second week here I was given the courage to contact a girl by myself, only to find that she lived in the area of the elders. Well this Saturday she and her sister got baptized. It was beautiful. It was a testimony to me that the Lord is still using me to bring people to the fold, even if she doesn´t count as one of my baptisms, I still had a part in bringing the Gospel into her life and that is such a beautiful thing to me. I was ridiculously happy at that baptism. That evening we went and visited Hermana Nanci. She´s having a really hard time. I´m heart broken because her inactive husband doesn´t want to see us anymore. The three of us were crying as we shared words of comfort with her. That night WE FOUND THE RECORDS OF HERMANO ANTONIO...shucks I guess we don´t have a baptism with him haha, but I´m grateful we have a record of his membership. 
Yesterday in church we were able to teach the Young Women. Now THAT made me the happiest person ever. We taught them about Spiritual Gifts and Hermana Cueva invited me to share with them my experience of developing the Gift of Tongues. I felt the Spirit more strongly than I have in a very long time as I bore testimony that we can develop Spiritual gifts when we pray for them and work hard to recieve them. The Spirit whispered to me that I do have this gift and that it´s developing more each day. That was a beautiful experience for me that I really needed. After church all the girls hugged and kissed my cheek and asked me a million questions about my hair. They can´t believe the color and curl are natural haha. 

I didn´t get the chance to thank you guys on Skype on Wednesday because I was already near tears and didn´t want to be a blubbering mess when we were face to face...but thank you for your support and your love. I could never do this without you guys. There are so many people here that don´t have the support of their families and I don´t have a clue how they stay so strong and happy, because I´m having a rough time as it is...but I have the knowledge that I have a beautiful family backing me up, sacrificing SO much for me to be here on my mission. Thank you for your testimonies and for your love. Dad, thank you for your prayer on Wednesday. Let´s make that a tradition. I needed that family prayer so much and when I closed my eyes, I felt like I was at home....it was more than perfect. I love you so much. I´m so grateful for your firmness in the Gospel and your examples of love and service for others and for me. I do know the sacrifice you make to have me here, and I am so grateful for it. It keeps me going every day. This Gospel is true. It DOES bring happiness. This is one of the hardest times of my life, but I think it´s also so worth it. I am learning more about the Gospel, the world, and more importantly my relationship with the Savior on a daily basis than I have have done in my life. 
I love you all so very much. Thank you for our time together this week. Thank you for being worthy to be married in the temple mom and dad, thank you for letting me be born in the covenant. THAT is the most amazing blessing for me and I´m so grateful for the knowledge I have that our families are forever. 
Love always and HAPPY 2014. 

Hermana Carr

Kati and us at her baptism

                                                   Going down into the tunnels at Chavin
                                                             Me with Andrea
                                                       Hermana Cueva and Me at the temple at Chavin

December 9, 2013

December 9, 2013

Hola Familia!

So, I´m in Yungay today...we spent the morning helping Elder Garcia and Elder Castillon move to a different apartment...so I´m at a different internet cafe that DOESNT have an English keyboard. So, sorry for my terrible punctuation. 

I am SO glad things went well for Sheri and cute baby Spencer! I absolutely LOVVVEEE the name! I can´t wait to see pictures of the little guy, and I love seeing the pictures of Belle! Thanks for sharing. I´m so glad that they have a sweet new little baby. I´m sure the kids are having a blast at our house too! 

I LOVE all the Christmas prep going on, it´s definitely universal! Hermana Flor is letting us use some of her Christmas lights in our window and I´m so excited. You know this has always been my favorite time of year, and I just love being able to blast my one Christmas album and sing my carols. We have an activity coming up this month in Huaraz with the Stake, we´re caroling in the Plaza de Almas and it´s going to be SO magical. I´m stoked. Sorry it´s SO freezing at home! We´ve been dealing with major rain storms all week...like rios en la calle kind of rain. It´s been an adventure. I´m seriously so grateful for my Northface jacket from Delaware and my winter coat, Hermana Cueva and I have kept warm and dry with those two. 

I´m so grateful to EVERYONE for their thoughtful emails and advice. It seriously boosts my moral SOOO much. So thank you for that! I feel the support and I love it. And YES Christmas at 12 ...or 1 my time, not really sure yet but just stay by the laptop or dads phone during that time, I´m going to either skype you at Hermana Flor´s house...or maybe our ward mission leaders... he has all the fancy technology! 

I didn´t get to watch the Christmas broadcast...the bishop decided not to have it at the capilla...so we didn´t get to see it. You´ll have to email  me the printed versions of their talks, because I was really hoping to watch it!  LOVE YOU MAMA. And thanks for the package, I´m so excited to get it THIS WEEK! 

Anyway, it´s been...another week in Caraz haha. I´ve been dealing with some sort of stomach bug this week, so that´s been fun...but I´ve kept trudging along and working hard despite it. People have been so kind to me this week and I can´t even describe my gratitude to them. 

We´re having a rough time finding new investigators. Everyone we contact is from a different city, or if we are lucky enough to teach them...they don´t show up for their second lessons. It´s really frustrating to be honest, and our numbers are AWFUL. We have one girl, Miriam, who´s an absolute doll that wants to be baptized on the 21st, but she needs to go to church first and work some things out with her ``esposo``. Here people are husband and wife...without being married...and she´s working on separating from him...anyway it´s a challenge but she´s great and I have hope.

This week the Elders in Yungay had a family baptism! Our whole district got to attend. With all the rain the river was really strong, and cold, and dirty...totally different than last time. It was a member father, and his wife and two daughters were being baptized. Andrea, an eight year old, was first. Poor thing was clinging to her father in such a way that they had to repeat the ordinance three times. She was bawling. I don´t have much of the language down...but I DID have my winter coat with me. I pried it from Hermana Cueva, gave her my sweater and went up to Adrian. I wrapped her in the coat and hugged her and helped her to get warm. She was crying to me and I didn´t understand everything but I said what I could and just held her close...twenty minutes later after the others had been baptized, she changed and kept my coat on...she was beaming and we´re best friends at church now. After the service, we went to a luncheon in Yungay. I was so worried, I have been sicker than sick this week  with my stomach and I literally could not eat. Hermana Flor came up to me after the prayer and whispered to only eat what I could because I´ve been sick. I was still worried about offending the family. Elder Arnett overheard and asked me what was going on...I straight up told him I´d been sick. Well I started eating my massive bowl of beans and rice and mystery meat and had hardly made a dent in it. About ten minutes into the meal, Elder Arnett whisper-yelled ¨Hermana Carr¨and held out his empty plate to me. He told me to switch him haha. I didn´t want to, I felt so bad... but he insisted and before I knew it, I was sitting with an empty bowl and he was chowing down my food. I´m pretty sure the poor guy is going to die thanks to me. It´s so bad, but I´m SO grateful because I know I wouldn´t have survived the night. And all of the Castillo family thinks I ate all my food and THEY can´t figure out why I´m not dying haha. I can´t even tell you how grateful I was for that act of service.

Sunday was good. We ended up having to teach RS last minute which was an adventure, and really cool. The first contact I had ever made by myself, CAME TO CHURCH. She´s in the Elder´s area, but I had born testimony to her earlier and given her reference to the elders, and now she and her family are getting baptized. I can´t tell you how happy it makes me.

Well this is ridiculously long, sorry, I guess I wanted to write today! haha. Happy Birthday to Jakey. Much love to my family. Congrats to Julian and Sheri! I LOVE ALL OF YOU AND KNOW THIS CHURCH IS TRUE! This is the work of the Lord!

Love always,

My district @ the baptism


The Elders in my ward

November 30, 2013


November 25 2013

 

Hola Family

 

So this week has been CRAZY (when isn't it a crazy week?). We had training in Baranca on Tuesday. What that means is P-day we traveled to Huaraz, and then straight on to Baranca---6 hours in a combi (minivan) is NOT fun. Especially when you're on windy mountain roads and you end up sitting on a row with two elders...you can't even play Jell-O and you have to try really hard to stay in your seat, seriously it was like a four hour rollercoaster ride ha-ha. But we finally got into Baranca at 1am Tues morning and Hermana Brown and Hermana Mendoza took us in. They were so sweet and let us sleep in too. Then we got ready and went to training with President Archibald. It was really cool, and I was the only new North American there---but I was able to understand most of what he was saying. It was a little embarrassing because I struggle to think in Spanish and English at the same time, so when he directed a question at me in English I was totally caught off guard...still trying to translate what we had just been talking about, and gave a really simple answer. I'm sure he thinks I'm such a ditzy sister missionary ha-ha. That's okay though. I learned a lot about the importance of our purpose and how important it is that we BAPTIZE here. After that meeting Hermana Cueva wanted to meet with him and talk to him about some of our concerns. He basically just told us to keep on trucking, love the ward, and remember our purpose. Things are pretty hands-off here, which are good in some ways but in others I struggle because I'm still trying to figure out what the expectations of me are and what all the little rules and traditions are. We rode a combi back to Huaraz, stayed the night, had a Zone meeting and didn't get back to Caraz until late on Wednesday. So we only had Thursday, Friday, and Saturday really to work--more about Sunday in a minute.

 

But Saturday was really rough. We went to a reference from the Elders. They had given a blessing of health to a really sick little boy and the family said they wanted to learn more. When we got there though the mom was super exhausted and the little boy was in a terrible state. Moaning in his sleep, high fever, and there were flies everywhere. It was really hard to stomach. We taught a short lesson and did what we could to help. We taught her to use a cold wet rag to help with the fever, she didn't even know about that. The poor boy was boiling. I just kept thinking about the Lord's timing and the faith that's involved in blessings. I don't know what the Lord has in store for the family but I pray for a miracle for him. Also, there's an elder here that I think has typhoid fever, Elder Olsen. Please keep him in your prayers.

 

Yesterday I had to give a TALK. My third Sunday. I was so nervous, because I never know how the people here are going to take what I say. But I fasted and prayed and I can testify to you that those two things are so powerful. I was nervous and we were sitting in Sacrament meeting when I suddenly remembered Dad's joke/story about the Sister missionary that accidently said embarasada instead of embarasoso, so she said "I'm pregnant and it's all his fault" pointing to the bishop ha-ha, I smiled thinking about doing it...of course I didn’t  ha-ha but it instantly took away all of my nerves. I was so grateful. I got up, spoke about charity, and everyone understood it, people kept mentioning it in other lessons and I was so grateful the Lord helped people to UNDERSTAND ME! After church we had to go to Huaraz AGAIN for regional training. Things are a little unorganized sometimes, and the elders told us last minute we were coming here and staying the night for Zone Pday. What they didn't do was tell the Sisters we were coming...so that was an adventure, and we had to give up some good appointments because we had to be here. It's hard when we have a goal and want to reach it but don't have a lot of opportunity to actually work. It was good though, we went on splits last night and Hermana McCleud and I were able to have some really good conversations, IN ENGLISH. I love that. She's had a really tough life but she's such a light and she's a total inspiration to me.

 

HAPPY THANKSGIVING. I love you all and I hope you know how grateful I am for you. I have more and more gratitude every day for the way I was raised and the love that I feel from all of you. I've been so blessed to be born in the covenant and ALWAYS know who I am. I'm so grateful for loving parents that have taught me the truth and have strived to keep their covenants and followed Christ all of their lives. I'm grateful for younger siblings that have taught me so much and have strengthened my testimony. I'm so grateful for great bishops and leaders in the church all my life-- I never realized how perfect our ward has been for me, and how blessed I have been to grow up in the area I have. Thank you to everyone that has impacted me in this way. Please don't take your Sundays for granted, don't take our ward for granted, and Kacey, Brett, TJ, Jake- don't you dare take your parents for granted. They love you so much and they work so hard to help you to know the truth and to become good Disciples of Christ.

 

This church is true. I am so grateful for the Lord and the blessings he has given me. This work is HARD, I'm not going to lie to you ever, I will be very straight forward when I say this is the hardest thing I've ever done. I often feel like it would be so easy if the Lord would have called me state-side, because at least I could speak my own language, but even then I know every missionary faces challenges in their areas. I'm just going to keep trusting and keep praying that the work moves forward and I can be a good instrument in the hands of my Savior.

 

Thank you for everything. I hope you have a fun, crazy, busy thanksgiving with all of our family coming to town. I hope that you eat some cranberry salad (A LOT OF CRANBERRY SALAD) and pumpkin pie for me...dang I miss that good stuff ha-ha.

 

Love you with all my heart.

 

Hermana Carr

https://mail.google.com/mail/u/0/images/cleardot.gif

 

November 19, 2013

November 17, 2013

Hola Fambam! 

I LOVE YOU ALL. 

So here's some of the stuff with my crazy week. I feel like we left a part of the spiritual battle and went into the physical for a while. In all honesty this week was not very productive in the work, which bugs both of us...because believe me when I say Hermana Cueva and I WANT TO WORK. 

Tuesday and Wednesday were pretty productive days, we were able to teach lessons and help strengthen some of the members with their understanding of the scriptures. The understanding of the Gospel here is a little bit limited and so we're trying to focus on working from the inside out. I've had all the weird foods this week too, I don't know WHAT happened there...but yes I ate guinea pig, I'm trying to send a pic haha, and I also had cow heart, pig intestine soup, and a little bit of tokkush----rotten potato mash....yumyum. It's been a food adventure and it's been a dog adventure.

Thursday was awful. We spent the majority of the day planning and trying to work through some things with our area (Hermana Cueva and I are TOTALLY fine, we get along really well and even with the language barrier we're learning to understand each other). So we spent most of the day creating plans and goals, then we went out to teach. Well a few of our appts. fell through so we decided to go visit an investigator we hadn't been able to get a hold of lately. It was getting dark, and his street isn't the most well lit, but we know it pretty well and felt fine. We were walking and talking when all of the sudden Hermana cueva screamed out....I turned around just in time to see a dog attacking her ankle and running away. It was a really deep bite, and I felt TERRIBLE. We had to go to the Huaraz clinic the next day and she is still having trouble walking. I've been her living crutch all week. To make things worse there is this EVIL dog named Rocky that lives right by our pensionista (maid). He is this giant doberman thing that hates us, and he tried to attack us too. We don't know where he came from because he wasn't there the first week....but yeah it was scary when we couldn't run or fight because of her wound. luckily little Javier saw us and chased him away with rocks.  Scary haha. 

Yeah...so the rest of the week has been a bit of a struggle because Hermana Cueva can't walk and this is a walking mission. We've done a lot of studying and visiting people that live close to us, but our numbers tanked this week...not cool. She's healing up though and things will get better.

Yesterday was a really frustrating day. We had Ward Council and I felt the strongest need to speak, and not about something easy to swallow...and all in Spanish. I was scared out of my mind but it was one of those moments when the Spirit was pressing me so much that my heart was pounding and I couldn't stay silent. When it was our turn to get up and speak, Hermana Cueva asked if I wanted to add anything and I said yes. I talked to these leaders about keep their baptismal covenants in Mosiah 18, and the importance they are to the retainment of the people in their ward. I spoke with all the love I could and through the Spirit. Hermana Cueva said I made perfect sense, but it wasn't well received. It's a little difficult and frustrating but we're trying to figure out what we need to do. 

Yeah, so that's my week. I love you all VERY VERY MUCH and I'm so grateful for your examples, prayers, and fasting. Last Monday was perfect because my sister trainer, Hermana Brown...the same girl I blog stalked before the mission, was at our zone activity and she and I just talked for an hour, I swear she's my twin, she's awesome and it helped me so much.

I love you all. This Gospel is true. The enabling power of the Atonement is REAL and I am so grateful for the Savior in my life. This really is His work and I can feel His help when I ask for it. Use the ENABLING and REDEEMING power of the Atonement in your lives every day. The Lord loves each of us and is waiting for us to come unto Him.

I love you

Hermana Carr 


Me and My companion H. Cueva, enjoying some grilled Guinea Pig.  If you look close you can see their little legs....yummmmm



November 15, 2013


 November. 10, 2013

Dear Familia- 

So I'm actually in an area called Caraz. Apparently it's a sister city of Mesa, Arizona. I'm in the sticks. Like really, these are the MOUNTAINS of Peru. I don't think I have time to try and send pictures, but I'll give you a little update on my week. 

We left Huaraz and got to our EMPTY apartment monday night. We live with the Castillo family and they have two kids, Daysi- my new best friend 15, and Jean Paul 4. We couldn't have been put with a better family, they are fantastic and Mama Flor takes great care of us. We didn't get mattresses until tuesday, and we didn't get much furniture until Saturday, but it's all good. Our Pensionista is Hermana Juana. She has a two kids at home and one on a mission. Her son Javier is a great example of serving his mom. He's Tj's age, always willing to help us, and he kind of looks like and acts like the Peruvian version of TJ. He's a blessing for sure. H. Juana is a great cook but man...I don't know how long I'm going to be able to eat everything people feed me. She gives us mountains of food and I constantly feel sick to my stomach, my body can't handle all this stress :P. It's all good though. It's Hermana Cueva's birthday today and we're going to have Guinea Pig for dinner! I'll take a pic! 

The ward here is struggling, but we're going to figure out how to help. We've met some really kind people. I've never been called "gringa" more in my life than I have this last week haha. We've found some miracle investigators, and we're still trying to figure out the area. We've been focusing a lot on menos activos as well. This place is crazy. Mototaxis are INSANE, but they're kind of fun haha, I've seen sheep tied to the trunks of those things, and just crazy stuff like that. And since I'm in the mountains, this is cuye (guinea pig) central. I see women carrying home...not so living guinea pigs haha, it's quite the sight. 

Hermana Cueva is seriously a miracle herself. She doesn't speak English but she is EXTREMELY patient with me and is a great missionary. I feel bad that I'm not able to help her very much, but I'm trying the best that I can. 

We went to a baptism on Saturday. In this area, I think it's the only area in the mission, people are baptized in a river about 30min from where I preach. The river is overlooked by the ANDES! Yeah, giant snowcapped gorgeous mountains. It was breathtaking. I didn't have my camera, so next time we'll go and take a picture :) 

Study the ENABLING power of the Atonement. ...I don't remember who wrote it, but it was an article in an ensign from this Spring. You have no idea how much I needed to read that and it was a miracle that I was given an English ensign with that very article. I'm trying hard to give my burden to the Lord. When I pray for it, I do feel a little more strength, a little more resilliance to see the good in the world and the people I serve with, to see the miracles and to work harder with my Spanish. 

Also. If you are posting...thank you EVERYONE that emailed me this week. I can't even tell you how much it meant to me to open a full inbox. I need those testimonies, those kind words, because this is tough. 

I love you all so much. I'm grateful for your examples and your prayers. Thank you for everything. I hope you have a wonderful week. Work hard, pray hard, follow the principles of the Gospel. This is the most important thing in the world, because it's not of the world. 

<3 Hermana Carr 



PS: TJ great job with math! Jake great job during your game! BRETT, WIN IT ALL! That's so awesome! Kace, I'm glad you had so much fun! Keep working hard in school. I love you all a TON. 

November 6, 2013

Stephanie Carr
Nov. 4, 2013
7:53 AM (2 hours ago)
https://mail.google.com/mail/u/0/images/cleardot.gif
https://mail.google.com/mail/u/0/images/cleardot.gif
https://mail.google.com/mail/u/0/images/cleardot.gif

https://mail.google.com/mail/u/0/images/cleardot.gif
Hey family!
 yes EMAIL me! I go to an internet cafe on MONDAYS and the internet speed is great and everything. I get packages and letters every six weeks, so i would definitely prefer email. MONDAY is my pday 
Thanks for emailing me! Tell Dad I love him and that I missed hearing from him this week. Im so glad you got to go to the temple with Caleb, and i am so excited that youre having all of those cousins come over, thats going to be so much fun! Thanksgiving doesnt exist here but thats okay, I am definitely feeling blessed and Im trying really hard to focus on the daily miracles in my life. 
Keep stalking haha, I met Hrmna Brown on Saturday and it was hilarious, the first thing I told her was that I stalked her blog and we were laughing about it. All of the sisters are way cool.

OK. I hope the Christmas package gets here too, in our welcome packet we got some important package info. I dont know how you sent anything, but Im praying it gets here too so that my comp and i can have a little something for Navidad haha. ONLY SEND PACKAGES THROUGH THE US POSTAL SERVICE. Also do NOT send= money, cameras, electronics, used clothes (need to have tags on them), jerky, or action figures haha. Make sure that the address is=

Peru Lima West Mission
Carlos Salaverry # 3664-Los Olivos
Casilla de Correo 39-054
Lima 39
Peru

YES I FOUND THE ENGLISH KEYBOARD. This is awesome. Okay, anyway...thats that on packages. Pray that it gets here :)

Okay...I guess I'll try to tell you all about this crazy week haha, hopefully I can pull it off! 
Last week I was pretty sickly. It was bad. But the elders offered me a blessing and it helped so much, nothing short of a miracle. Elder Allen and Elder Kaelin were the ones that administered and offered and they were so nervous, I forgot that for most of these boys it would be the first time. The power of the priesthood was apparent though, even through their shaking hands and voices and within a day I was feeling functional. So, Friday and SaturdayFLEW by. Saturday was a full day of field preparation, learning the ropes and sitting in the same chair ALL DAY LONG. It was awful...but really helpful haha. After that, my amazing district decided to do blessings for the field. That was an experience we all needed, and it was great because each of the elders had an opportunity to give blessings. The spirit was so strong there. My blessing said that I would pick up Spanish quickly and that it would be a talent that would bless others, I'm trying to have faith in that because right now it just seems like an impossible task. Elder Smith also said that I would have companions that needed my understanding and my help with their problems, that I would be able to help them stay motivated and feel comforted. It's amazing how much the Lord loves us and knows us, and how He is constantly connecting blessings- this week he has connected my patriarchal blessing and setting apart to every prayer and every other blessing I recieved. After those blessings we sang God Be with you and it was SO sad. I was doing fine until we were all looking at eachother during the chorus and one of the elders I had become really good friends with was crying. I lost it, and then I had to offer the prayer...I was a blubbering baby...it's hard when you've become like a family and everyone is going to a different mission than you are! Goodbyes were hard, I think mostly because we were all so nervous. But it's okay, a lot of them will be in Utah when they get back and It will be a blast to catch up with all of them!

Okay...now to the juicy, in-field info :)
 Saturday I met the Archibalds. GREAT family. My president is a really spiritual, really funny, and really focused man. You can tell he loves the missionaries and though he's only been doing this for a few months, he has a routine down and this mission is functioning really well. Sister Archibald made us all a delcious breakfast, we had a little orientation and then the other missinaries came for cambios (transfers). I have been called to OPEN A NEW AREA in Huaraz with Hermana Cueva from ...dun dun dun....Trujillo! I am SCARED. OUT. OF. MY. MIND. Hermana Cueva doesn't know English, and I don't know Spanish...so it's been interesting. But she is a DOLL. So nice and so patient. After we found out who our companions are, we said goodbyes, I tried not to cry saying bye to Hermana Stirling, and then I had an interview with President Archibald.

My interview went really well. He got to know me a little better and then he told me a little more about what my purpose is as a missionary and gave me some fantastic advice about learning the language and serving the people. He helped me to know just what I need to do. He told me that Hermana Cueva is one of the best he has, and that she has the top baptisms out of the sisters most of the time. He said that she fits the scriptural definition of meek...quiet courage. He said I would learn a lot from her if I opened up my mind and worked really hard. Then he told me about the area that we are working in. There haven't been sisters in this area for a VERY LONG TIME. The elders found us a place with some recently less active members. He said they are a fantastic family, the wife has been RS pres, the husband a counselor, they are just going through a rough patch and need to be reminded of their testimonies and the reasons for going to church. .. It's going to be a challenge. Especially when it's my first area, a new area, and I don't know Spanish.

So Huaraz. The furthest area from the mission home. My area is 10 hours away. I didn't get any sleep the last night at the CCM for a lot of reasons...and then we didn't get on a bus for Huaraz until 11:30pm on Saturday night. We arrived at 6am in the area of some other Sisters, Hrmna Bark and Mccleud. They are so great! We stayed with them yesterday and will stay with them for most of Pday before going to our area because our house isn't quite ready for us. The sisters were SO kind though. We were able to go to church with them and their investigators, one was a fifteen yr. old that told me I looked just like Barbie...that made me feel good haha. In the afternoon, their pensionista made us a delicious meal...but our mission is SO high up that I've got a great amount of altitude sickness...so that's been fun. The sisters let us nap at 3...but we didn't wake until 8. I got up and studied and chatted with the american sisters while Hrmna Cueva kept sleeping, she isn't feeling very well. It was so fun to talk to them and to hear their experiences right now in the mission, I'm so glad they're in my zone and can help me with the language barrier. I went to bed just a few hours later and I feel better today, I desperately needed that sleep.

Huaraz is BEAUTIFUL. The Elders from Trujillo were jealous because this is the place people think of when they think peru. Mountains, incas, all of that. There are a lot of people in traditional clothing, and the place is breathtaking. All of the elders in my mission say that THIS AREA is exactly like Emperor's new groove...so go watch that and you'll see my life.

I'm scared. I'm nervous. But I'm ready. The Lord has constantly showed me little blessings and miracles in the last 72 hours to help me know I can do this. I just don't see how he trusts me, a brand new gringa...to open an area when I can barely communicate with my companion. What I do know though, is with God NOTHING is impossible, and I have his special blessing right now. Read DC 84. We talked about it during our meeting on Saturdayand so many things were important. section 106...I read it while we were learning and immediately thought of Hermana Cueva. She is going to make me strong. She is going to help me learn. 
This gospel is TRUE. I know that my Savior lives because I have felt his presense in my life, especially during this week of constant change, struggle, and goodbyes. God loves his children, he has a particular love for his children in Peru. President Archibald reminded me that these are the children of those blessed in 3 Nephi 17. He told me to look at the picture of Christ in the Americas and notice the ANDES in the background. I'm IN the ANDES right now. These are his children and they need to hear his message. I will put all my trust and confidence in the Lord. This is a time when I have to rely on his merits COMPLETELY and it is so humbling to me. 
I love you all so much. Thank you for your support and for your prayers. I feel them and I love you so much. I'm grateful to have grown up in the church with such a beautiful, loving family. You're all the best.
 Con amor,

Hermana Carr

October 22, 2013

Hey family!

Sounds like you had a great week! Thanks for sending me some of the pictures from your phone Dad! Its fun to look back on stuff, and that was a pick me up that I needed! Mom! Way to go! If Sister Janney is asking you for shooting tips then that Vegas trip must have really paid off haha. I love it! Glad you had tons of fun with her and Sister Davis! Tell them both hi for me! 
Sounds like the ward harvest party was a ton of fun, and that your talk went well! Dad's right, he definitely got a keeper! Thank you for your prayers, I feel them and they're helping me so much, the language is COMING...today at the distribution center the lady that rung me up asked me how long I had been learning, and she thought that I had been learning for a few years on top of the CCM, so that was a great confidence boost!

I love you all and I am SO excited to tell you all about my week. This has definitely been the most eventful week since I've been at the CCM.

Okay, starting with an embarrasing story from last p-day. We were on the bus, the packed full body-to-body style bus.... and the moneychanger wanted all of our pay before we got off...this bus driver was terrible, starting and stopping in a way that practically bull-dozed everyone over in an instant. Anyway, so I was helping someone pass up their money when this driver just takes off without warning again, in an effort to catch my balance I had two options- steady myself on the wall of the bus, or ram into one of the elders in my district---so duh I'm going to try to steady myself. Well I forgot that I had a grocery bag in my hand, and when I flew to the side of the bus....the bag smacked some lady in the head. It was terrible. And all I could think to say in Spanish was "lo siento, lo siento" over and over again. Struggle bus. I got off and my whole district was laughing, yup they still haven't let that one go. Oh and I've been dubbed District Mom. How do I ALWAYS get the mom title?! haha 
So, I'm not going to lie to you, last week was tough for me. I wasn't really homesick, I wasn't really struggling with anything...just a little off, struggling to feel the Spirit. But thank goodness for Hermano Lazo. I don't know if I said it already, but if I did...I'll say it again.... HERMANO LAZO IS THE BEST TEACHER I HAVE EVER HAD. EVER. We were supposed to have a language lesson earlier this week, but he said that he felt prompted to share some experiences with us about other missionaries in our circumstances, very recent and very spiritual stories. I feel like they're the types of stories that I shouldn't share over email- but I just want to tell you that they brought me back. Zoned in, ready to go. I was bawling like a baby, it was embarrassing, but the Spirit was so strong, and I knew the ending of the stories before they were told. It was a really great experience for me and it reminded me that the Lord knows each of His children and that we need to trust in His timing.

A few nights later...I was having one of those really boring, typical dreams all about my "exciting" life in the CCM haha. I was just dreaming about my district eating lunch in the cafeteria when suddenly an earthquake hit in my dream. I was so scared that I woke up super fast...but everything was still shaking. I thought I was just groggy and still trying to wake up but then one of my Latina roommates flew up and yelled "HERMANAS!" Yep. I survived my first Peruvian earthquake, and it was awesome haha. Apparently there were three tremors in the night, I only felt the one, and a lot of people slept right through it. CRAZY. I guess that little tremors like that happen a lot around here.

Now, I'm super excited to tell you about the end of this week. The CCM is so cool. The Provo MTC is pretty isolated, but here we are able to go out every P-day and the church organizes REAL proselytizing activities for us. So on Saturday, I was able to go to the Lima Norte mission and teach less active members, and one investigator about the church. I was paired with a Latina companion named H. Aceituno. Dad, you know how we both have that thing where people tell us everything going on in her life? She told me everything. She has a pretty rough story...and she told me a lot of it on the bus ride there...but I think her telling me brought us a lot closer and helped us to be unified during teaching. As we rode the bus further away from La Molina, I realized why everyone looks at us in awe when we tell them that La Molina is where the CCM is. We live in the ritzy part of Peru. I can't even describe how humbled I was as we headed towards the outskirts of town. Nothing on the internet, no story I've been told could prepare me for what was laid out before me. A lot of my district taught closer in the city- but I was assigned to a branch in very humble circumstances. You know how we talked about the higher up the hill, the poorer people are around here? Yeah...I went to the top of that hill. Me, my companion, and a really nice- but hard to understand Sister from the branch began to make our rounds. I was so nervous. We knocked on the first door and the woman we talked to was really nice, but I didn't understand anything that was going on. They were talking SO FAST. I couldn't keep up and when my companion would look at me to have me say something, I didn't really know what to say, or what they were talking about. I just kind of bore my testimony and hoped for the best. The next house we went up and it was a woman and her baby. We were teaching a good lesson and I was starting to understand more and was able to contribute. Then three of her little boys came home from school. It was my opportunity to bear testimony about going to church and I felt like I needed to make some promises to this family....as I talked- all these little boys were staring at me, this little gringa in their apartment... I just felt like everything I was saying was a jumbled mess...it sounded slow and awkward. After we finished our lesson though, Hermana A. and the other lady both turned around and told me that my Spanish had been absolutely perfect in that moment. I couldn't believe it. The gift of tongues is an amazing thing. Another cool story, we went to talk to a store keeper that hasn't been to church in a few years. She was really hesitant to talk to us, but we convinced her to let us teach. I was able to offer the opening prayer and I just felt overwhelmed by the Spirit in that moment. It was AWESOME! I understood every word, and every concern she had. I was able to bear testimony and share an experience with her. By the end of the lesson she was amiable and open, and she even gave us all some inca cola as a thank you! It was humbling and amazing.

What a cool experience. Really, it was a genuine taste of what my mission will be like. It made me realize how much I need to learn, and it humbled me more than I have ever been humbled in my life. Think about everything our family has. Thank God for what He has given us. Hermana Aceituno asked me if we had areas like what I saw on Saturday in the United States. H. Stirling's companion asked her what her house was like. We would be some of the wealthiest people in the country by the standards here. I didn't even know hwo to respond to H. Aceituno's question. We have been so blessed, and so sheltered from the struggles of the world.

This work is real. God's work and glory IS to bring to pass the immortality and eternal life of man. I believe that. I believe that His children are the most important work he has. That's why I need to take my calling so seriously. I goof off so much with my District, but I LOVE when we all talk about our purpose, when I get to see the spiritual side of these young men. A lot of them remind me of Brett- super hilarious, obviously popular back home, but people with CONVICTION. You can tell who is here because they have a testimony. It's really amazing.

I love you tons. I hope that things are going well. I miss you but this is EXACTLY where the Lord needs me! 
OH YEAH! I got called as the CCM Music Director. Cool! There are only 3 leadership positions for Sisters, and I was really worried that my comp and I were going to be called as the Sister Trainers, just because of the girl drama that has happened around here. But nope, I get to do music instead! I am SO excited, I can't even tell you! I've become a lot more confident in my singing and in piano here, I love it.

LOVE YOU ALL!

Hermana Carr






October 15, 2013





Oct. 14, 2013

Hola familia:

Mom- sounds like you had a fantastic time in Las Vegas! I am so glad you got to go shooting and spend some time with your brothers and your cousin. Glad you're more confident in your shooting skills and that you had a blast! The thai food sounds like it was quite an adventure, I'm glad you both survived haha. How was NYNY? Despite all the nasty-ness of the strip, it sounds like you had a ton of fun. That was kind of how NYC was, just a lot of filth in the middle of the cool stuff.
Yep! That picture is one of my favorite. My companion is adorable and my district is amazing. I think it's funny, because the other districts in our group have 4 and 6 sisters...so I don't really know how we ended up only having two sisters in our group---let me just say I AM SO GLAD. No drama, and Elders that include us in everything equals MUCHO FUN. I am working hard and it is a blast. I can't believe I'm already half way through the CCM! It kind of makes me sad, though I'm TOTALLY stoked for Lima Oeste---apparently it is BEAUTIFUL and most of it is mountainous.... but I am kind of freaking out about the amount of Spanish I know, and super sad that I won't be seeing the Elders in my district again- they're all going to Trujillo which is the mission just north of us. Mom, Good luck on your talk. Dad says that you are inviting a ton of people. Keep working hard and pray/fast for the Spirit. It makes a world of difference. I don't really have anything off the top of my head about teaching in the home, but it sounds to me like that is a topic that would answer the questions all of your friends have.
You have a great week too! Don't miss me, just focus on what you're doing at home. I'm doing great :)

So it's only been five days and I don't have too much to tell you. Things at the CCM are pretty routine. My companion and I have been a little frustrated with one of our "investigators"' lately, but we had a really good talk by Elder Bednar about the importance of turning outward and not focusing on ourselves. I realized my attitude here has kind of been about ME learning Spanish for ME and ME being here for MY progression and MY experience. Really though...this isn't about me at all. I am learning Spanish to speak to people in THEIR language, so that the Lord can teach them the gospel in their own tongue. I'm here to prepare to preach the Gospel to people that need it. That really shook me up.

Another cool thing. I went to the temple today and I finally felt confidant enough to chat with a few of the ladies quietly. There was a woman standing behind me in line for dresses and I think it was her first time going through...she had come all the way from Arequipa. She was super sweet. And then there is this cute TINY peruvian lady that comes to the same session I do every week, she finally struck up a conversation with me and told me she was from Trujillo...the northernmost part of this country, and she comes EVERY TUESDAY to the temple! I was amazed by that. These people are SO faithful. They come from all over Peru because THIS is where the temple is. They sacrifice so much time and effort to come to a place that I take such advantage of... I mean really, I have been to the temple twice in five days. It was just eye opening to me, and reminded me that the people of South America really have been given the gift of believing blood. These people are SO faithful and such examples to me of what I SHOULD be, especially as a missionary.

Okay- not right away, obviously because I'm still at the CCM, but could you send me some printed photos of our family, and me and some of my friends or something? I realized that I didn't bring any... I just have what is on my camera and I would love some tangible photos. ALSO, just an FYI it IS okay for you to send me pictures of what you are doing :) So send me some football, basketball, dance, goofy pictures every once in a while. Mom use your gmail-photo skills, I KNOW you can remember haha. I just would love to see pictures too.

Fun fact: Peru has legit butcher shops in the middle of the calle. Like right next to the shoe shop there's just a bunch of meat hanging there...sick.

I love you all. Thank you for your continued support while I'm here. I couldn't imagine what it's like to be on a mission without family support back home.

This church is true. The Gospel of Jesus Christ IS on the earth again. Jose Smith fue un profeta de Dios. Yo se que nosotros somos Sus hijos. Dios ama nosotros MUCHO!

Love you tons <3


Stevie....Hermana Carr