Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Last Letter in 2014

Dear Family,

After our phone call for Christmas, I was feeling great. I felt like I could take on this mission like no big deal! But then of course the next day the language was really discouraging again. But I prayed a ton and the next day was much better. I was able to feel that my patience is growing- which is a huge miracle. 

Anyways, Dad thanks for your letter. I need to remember to forget myself. Hahahaha it is so hard. When you said I’d work all day you weren’t kidding.  We just work from morning to night... This is a small struggle. So I am trying to forget myself and realize it is only for 18 months! Well 16 now:) hahaha 

I love you all so much. Talking to you on skype was the best thing ever.

Cool story!-- So my companion said in Mexico they only have 1 kind of garment and it is the cotton kind. She asked if she could buy a pair from me.  I, being selfish, told her no.  I need mine because I need them to last my whole mission right.... Well after noticing that she needs garments way bad I decided I would give her my best pair for Christmas. So I did. She was super happy and then later that night she skyped her family.  She told her mom and her mom said she was worried about her garment situation and was praying that her daughter would get some garments.  She (my companion) needed garments way bad. So I was able to answer my companion’s mom’s prayers! How cool is that? It is comforting that I am able to help make a small difference.

The other day I was feeling super bad about the language and we were in a lesson and my companion said the Spirit told her to ask me a question and share it with our investigator... I don’t know if my story really helped my investigator. But just knowing that the Spirit told my companion to have me say something meant a ton to me because it shows that God knows I am here and wants to use me as a tool in His hands. I don’t know, I just loved that. 

Anyways, I love you all so much and I am soooo grateful for our family. We are so blessed. 

Love Hermana Bailey

 My goal this week is to forget myself and my wants!!! It’s my last week in 2014. I need to enjoy it:)  

Friday, December 26, 2014


Making bread for Christmas party

Yes I eat this

Skyping for Christmas

Monday, December 22, 2014

Two Months Today!

Dear family,
Wow! I can't believe I have been on a mission for 2 months today.  My companion is so nice. She wrote me this cute card and gave me this cute headband from Mexico.  Wow, thanks for the letters. The one from Uncle Ron was incredible.  I needed everything he wrote. I can print but I can't today so it would be good Mom if you could send me the letter from Ron in the mail. I know it will take a long time to get here. That is ok. Just send it anyway and I will also try to print it. 
This week was so much better than last week. I am still not good at Spanish but every day I am getting better. It very slowly and very very gradually comes. I have really learned to rely on the Lord. When I feel so sad and like I can't do it any more, a simple prayer really helps me through. It is amazing. My simple testimony of prayer is strengthened 10 times.  I could in no way do this without the Lord's help. This week has been a lot about Christmas and it has been fun to see people's traditions and see how things are so different here. We had a Christmas party with the ward and before the ward party all the missionaries in the ward (and there are 8 of us) we all made tons and tons of bread from scratch.  It is the funniest thing how they made the bread.  I will try and send some pictures. 

I have learned a lot about trusting the Lord. I felt so inadequate yesterday. We were teaching a lesson with these 2 ladies and one of the ladies was way against baptism. My companion and I were teaching the lesson with another girl who just got home from her mission and they were both teaching this way awesome lesson.  I could feel the Spirit but I  felt there is no way I will ever be like them. How can I do that? I am only 19 years old. In that moment I felt so inadequate.  I simply prayed and told my Father in Heaven that  I can't do this on my own- you have to give me the words to say and you have to help the people understand what I am saying. Well when it came time for me to talk,  I trusted the Spirit 100 percent.  I started to cry a little and the Spirit was so strong. The lady who was way against baptism agreed to be baptized on Jan 17 and after the lesson she gave me a big long hug and she said I love you. It was so tender. I am so tiny and so unqualified but through the Lord I can do what he wants me to do.

Well surprise surprise.  I have to speak in church on Sunday! Pray for me. Ugh I will need a miracle. Hahaha It is crazy how the spirit works.  I woke up that morning and told my companion, "I feel like I am going to be asked to speak today." Well low and behold,  yep I am.  On missionary work... Oh and of course I have to play the piano for everything - Sacrament meeting,  parties, all the time- right on the spot. I don't even have time to look at the music before the meeting.  I hear the page number in Sacrament meeting and I play it right after the Bishop says the page number.  And the songs are in Spanish and so I have to guess what tune it is because the words are not familiar. Hahaha, tell Serenity, Hope and Brayden to practice practice because if you go on a mission and they hear you are from Utah, you are expected to play whether you are good or not. hahaha It is so bad. But oh well, I can do hard things. I will come home a professional because I play so much. haha

I have gained a strong testimony of the importance of this gospel and I am so grateful for everything I am learning. 

Okay, anwers to extra questions:
The stores here are pretty similar. Milk and yogurt come in a bag - a little weird. Hahah, last week I put something pointy on the bag of milk in the store. Ummmm yeah, bad idea. Milk everywhere in the store. A little embarrassing.  We buy our fruits and vegies in a store that just sells fruit. Remember that time we did that cleanse and I needed to buy cactus from that little Mexican store? Yeah that is exactly what the stores are like here. Everything is super old and they sell the food old too. Yep I buy brown bananas -Hahaha. But the breads and cookies are to die for and they have these churros with dulce de leche inside. Sooooo good! I wouldn't be surprised if I get fat off of those. On P-days we clean the apartment and shop and write home. Then the missionaries in our district go buy ice cream and then play soccer! Pretty fun! Church is actually one of the biggest churches in our whole mission. Kinda funny because it is nothing even close to the wards in Utah.  But the doctrine is still the same.  I love the members. They are all so great. Well I love you all! Can't wait to talk to you all!
Love, Hermana Bailey

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Come What May and Love It

Dear Family,

So I have been talking to other missionaries and they say that they don't have to pay to receive letters so send lots and lots of letters in the mail!

Thank you for fasting for me. I need all the help I can get. Lets just say that when people said the mission is hard, they were not kidding. I hate mornings because I am so sad in the mornings. So every morning I am so homesick.  I am sad in the morning and if I pray for strength then I go throughout the day and I love it! Whenever I don't think about home or what I miss then I love love love what I am doing. So i just need to focus on why I am here. It is just hard because in the lessons I have to focus really really hard to have a small idea of what is going on. And doing that all day is very draining. By night time I am pretty happy but mornings are so hard for me.  The language is discouraging and hard but the hardest thing is homesickness.

I understand most of what my companion says but with other people it is still a struggle. It is starting to sound more familiar which is good because when I first got here I had no idea what language the people were speaking. 

We had our first zone conference and I had my interview with President and I saw Hermana Parris my old companion, (because she is in my zone).  Did you get to see pictures from the zone conference? I am not going to send pictures today. Sorry I am almost out of time and I haven't even told you everything I want to.

President was really nice and he told me that I don't have to feel alone. Grandma was right. I feel so alone mainly because I can't talk to anyone. Hahaha but President said I can call his wife whenever I want! So shoot, I think I will whenever I am sad. 

But on a positive note... so whenever I bear my testimony in the lessons I usually talk really fast and try to get it over with really fast. My companion told me to take my time, listen to the Spirit and look in the investigator's eyes. It was crazy. So I did that. We were in a lesson with a less active member. I didn't really know exactly what the lesson was on but I felt the Spirit way strong. It came time for me to bear my testimony. The member said, "This girl can't speak Spanish" and I said, "Well I will try my best". I just simply spoke what the Spirit told me and the words just seemed to flow. And he started to cry. This 30 year old man started to cry. He shook my hand and said thank you and something else, but I don't know what. And then I cried a little-it was so cool. I now know what it is like to be a literal instrument in the Lord's hands. 

Answers to Mom’s Questions:

Tell about your Companion:
My companion is 22.  She has been out 1 year. She has a boyfriend in Mexico and is very excited to get married. hahaha

Is it just you and your companion in your apartment?  How close are other missionaries?  Do you see them?  Yep It is just me and my companion in our apt.  My area is a city so the other missionaries are all pretty close. We see them a lot. When we are walking we will see them. We see them on P day and also for classes or meetings in the week.

What is your bed like?  Your shower? Can you send pictures of your apartment? My bed is just like the ones in America.  haha It is so hot at night I just sleep on top of the sleeping bag.

My shower...Wellll hahaha it is a shower but nothing like America. Oh and my bed here is better than the one in the MTC.  I will send pictures later if that is okay. I am almost out of time and sending them is super complicated. Sorry. Oh we don't have any carpet.

Do you cook at home?  What do you cook and eat?  We eat lunch in the members homes. In Argentina lunch is the big meal and then for breakfast I eat cereal and bananas and for dinner my companion and I make pasta or eggs.  She loves spicy food so our food is very hot. 

How was travelling with your luggage?  How long did it take?  Did you fly or bus to Neuquen?  We flew to Neuquen from Buenos Aires.  It wasn't that bad but it was something I wouldn't want to do again. We were so tired and stinky. My little suitcase handle broke. That was sad but good thing it was only the little suitcase.

Is it hot?  
It is hot. They say in January it gets even hotter!  

How do your clothes compare? My clothes are great. Sometimes I feel a little over dressed but that is because people have nothing. But we did fine. Don't worry about my clothes.

Describe the cat calls -Ugh- Everywhere I go it is another cat call.  They make a kissing sound and say something in Spanish and my companion was like "Oh my Heck! That was bad!"  But I have no idea what they are saying! I hate it!!!

How are your feet?  
My feet are great. My shoes are awesome- no blisters. 

Where do you find a computer?  For computers we go to this place 5 min from our house and there are a bunch of computers and we just pay some money and that is it. 

I am out of time. Sorry I will answer more of your questions later. I love you lots. Thanks for your prayers.  Don't worry about me- just pray. hahaha I am definitely living an adventure so it is exactly what I wanted. And plus- hey only 16 more fast sundays.  Love you all. Tell the family I said hi and love them.

Love Hermana Bailey

Tuesday, December 9, 2014


Okay Family,

Time is so short and I received 58 emails so my time to write is super short!
Thank you all for your support. It is so great that you all are there supporting me. Okay so I have to pay for letters to receive them and so if you are going to send letters from home, put them all in one envelope so I don’t have to pay for 7 letters.  I only have a certain amount of money a month so by next month I should know how much extra money I have. But as of right now, I am so confused on how much things cost because of course the money is different here. 

So my companion is Hermana Guzman.  She is from Mexico. She does not speak any English! It is soooo hard! Because I don’t speak very much Spanish!  People here don’t even speak Spanish. It is Castillano. It is like Spanish but it sounds different! What the heck was I even studying in the MTC?! Hahaha So, the President and his wife are super nice. Dad, President didn’t ask me to talk about myself in our interview so he doesn’t know that I pluck strings and ducks hahaha. My companion is super nice and patient. I ask her so many questions. We have a goal that I will be fluent in 2 weeks.  hahaha Maybe if I keep telling myself that, then it will happen.  I have already learned so much. But people talk so fast-it sounds like one word. And people look at me and say something, then I just look at my companion and then my companion explains that I don’t speak the language. Then they all start laughing and they start pointing at me and start talking about me... But I have no idea what they are saying. So I really am hoping I can learn the language in 2 weeks. 

So my first day with my companion we arrived at our house at 1 am.  I was so confused at what the heck was going on. The first thing I saw when I walked into my house was a huge spider!!!!!  It was bigger than a quarter. It was like 4 quarters. Then I got in bed and the next day I unpacked. But all I wanted to do was get out and start teaching haaha. Yesterday we started teaching a family and it was the first lesson. I had the prompting to invite them to baptism but I was afraid I would say it wrong so I didn’t say anything, only my testimony! Ugh I am so sad I didn’t listen to the spirit. Oh well, next time I will. The people here in Argentina are all Catholic. They are, on average, pretty willing to let us teach them, but they don’t want to join the church because their family is all Catholic and they can’t break tradition.

Uncle Ron was right!  Everyone drinks mate! But my Mission President won’t let us drink it. We can’t even have Coke!  Crazy huh? 

The food here is pretty good, but it isn’t as good as the food in America. But they have these really good desserts!  It is hard to know what water I can and can’t drink because my companion drinks everything. So how long does it take before you get sick after drinking bad water?

So my apartment does not have a washer so I wash my clothes out of a sink. Ugh it wasn’t as fun as I thought it would be. Ugh Be grateful for a washer. hahaha

It is so crazy when I bear my testimony in lessons. The people stop and look at me because “ohh the Gringo is speaking Spanish!” hahaha

I stick out way bad here... I get all the cat calls, ugh- which I hate! Anyways I have to write more people! Ugh the time goes by too fast.

Sorry if you can’t understand what I wrote. The keyboard is so hard to type on and it is a little different and everything I am writing says it is spelled wrong because the spell check does not recognize English words. 

Hahha I am doing great. Loving this adventure.  Pray for me to receive the gift of tongues and to not want to be home.  I need help to care more about others rather than what I am feeling.

Oh and Dad, the toilets do flush in a different direction.  hahaha. 

Love you all! Thank you all for the letters. Sorry I don’t have time to write you all back individually. 

Hermana Bailey

 Oh and right now we as missionaries are really focusing on teaching others why we have Christmas. We invite everyone to watch this Christmas video. You should watch it. It is great.  Navidad.mormon.org 

Love you all

Time in the Mission Home

New Companion, Sister  Guzman

Getting to Know Companion

President and Sister Lovell

New Companion, Hermana Guzman

Monday, December 8, 2014

Information from the Mission President on sending letters and packages

Dear Missionary Families,

We know that missionaries love to receive emails, letters and packages from home.  We realize how important it is for missionaries to feel loved and remembered.  To help avoid problems in this regard, we have the following recommendations for your consideration:
1.      Place “Gift Money” on your missionary´s personal credit or debit card.  This is the easiest and safest way to give your missionary a gift for Christmas, his or her birthday or any other occasion.  There is no postage charge, no customs fee and no risk of a package being lost or arriving late.  Many missionaries have told us how much they enjoy being given money to buy a gift for themselves while here in Argentina.  We strongly urge you to consider this safe, inexpensive and convenient option instead of mailing a package to your missionary.

2.      Letters and Small Padded Envelopes.  If you send letters, cards or small padded envelopes to your missionary, it is best to send it to the mission office at the address below.  It normally requires two or three weeks for letters, cards or small padded envelopes to arrive in Argentina.  It may take an additional two weeks to be delivered to the missionary´s area of service.  Letters and small padded envelopes are not usually required to be screened through customs.  Please use this address to mail letters and small padded envelopes:

Elder or Sister Full Name of Missionary
             Misión Argentina Neuquén
             Zapla N 24 – Casilla de Correo 321
             8300 Neuquén
             Neuquén Argentina

3.      Large Padded Envelopes and other Packages.  The Area Presidency has requested that parents, family and friends refrain from mailing large padded enverlopes and other packages at this time.  Argentina is experiencing issues with importation of non-domestic products.  As a result, the country has imposed very strict regulations regarding packages sent from outside of the country.  The best way to mail gifts or other momentos is by using personal debit cards and placing the money in these accounts.  Please do not send large padded envelopes and other packages until further notice.

Thank you so much for considering these guidelines.  Please share these guidelines with family and friends who might be sending letters or packages to your missionary.
We love your missionaries and are so grateful for the privilege of working with them.
Best personal regards,
President and Sister Paul R. Lovell
Argentina Neuquén Mission

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Argentina on Arrival

Bethany has arrived safely in Argentina.  Here are pictures taken earlier tonight by her Mission President's wife.