Tuesday, October 25, 2016


October 24, 2016

Hey family!

  Well to explain the subject line, for pday today we went to a little park thing called Malecón.  It has a miniature replica of the "old Managua" which is basically just Managua before the earthquake destroyed everything in 1972.  And they have an old 737 there that you can go in and look around and stuff and that was really cool.  It made me kind of trunky though lol.  But I took pics!!!  

  We found a really cool new investigator this week named Nathan.  He's 28 and lived in North Carolina for like 5 years so we teach him in English and it's pretty weird but Elder Evans really likes it:)  He's really positive but on Sunday morning he got pneumonia which threw a bit of a wrench in things but he still came to church.  Unberto didn't...  I`m not sure what happened there, he just kind of disappeared at the end of the week.  Church was interesting because it was at 8 in the morning and our ward was combined with the neighboring ward and the power was out so there was no light.  But the backup generator kicked in and powered the mic and the AC which I guess are the essentials.  

   It's still a bit of a fight to find new investigators but we did a bit better this week, but Nathan was the only one that ended up going to church.  

  We did see a really cool miracle  yesterday!   We were teaching some really cool converts and they got up to go buy us a coke.  We politely explained how we prefer not to buy things on Sunday and explained the doctrine of the sabbath day in a little better detail to them.  In there defense this was the first time anyone has ever explained that we don`t buy on Sundays to them but they accepted it wholeheartedly and agreed completely so they didn't get us anything to drink.  Well... not ten minutes later this guy's grandson comes up with a two liter bottle of Pepsi and a bag full of cookies that his mom had him bring to this guy for no particular reason.  We decided that God was confirming that we are blessed for keeping his commandments and he`ll always provide for us.  It was cool and it was a cool miracle to point out to this family. 

  What else... umm... I bought more Rootbeer to make sure my awesome deal I found doesn't go out of stock and run out.  I'm pretty sure I`m getting it cheaper here than it sells in the US (less than 20 cents a can).  I'm going to get fat.  

That's about it I think... Sorry you didn't have any luck with the deer hunt family but good job braving the elements and chasing them around.

Love you!!

Elder Smith


They don`t celebrate Halloween here but some stores sell a bit of Halloween decoration stuff.  They have dia de los muertos on November 1.  

We've had a tone of rain the last month but here in November the rainy season ends and the dry season starts.  It'll cool down a bit and not rain at all for months.  That's the difference in seasons, half the year is rainy season and half is dry. 


Wednesday, October 19, 2016


October 17, 2016

Hello family
  Well you guessed it, we had interviews this week and they went really well!  I felt the spirit really strong and President answered some questions I had been having about some ZL stuff. 
   But we had a pretty ok week.  We're still struggling a bit to find new people but we´re finding some.  On Saturday I did divisions with Elder Turner in my area and he's a cool kid.  He's in his training.  We found a really positive lady and put a super easy fecha with her.  When we came back on Saturday to recommit her to church she was sitting outside and when she realized we were coming she scurried inside and hid even though we were twenty feet away from her when she left and we obviously saw her.  Then her family told us that she wasn't home.  It was.....  kind of irritating.  She didn't go to church.
  Guillermo, Guillermo Jr., and Katherine went to church but we had to sit down and have a talk with them because they actually live in the boundaries of another ward and we aren't allowed to baptize them outside their boundaries without weird special permission that´s almost impossible to get.  So they agreed to start going to the other church.  So now we won't be able to baptize them but their in the APs area so they got an awesome gift.  It doesn't honestly matter, as long as they get baptized.
  Also we have been teaching the dad of a recent convert named Unberto and he went to church this week and the ward really latched onto him and he had a great experience.  Literally every member of the ward shook his hand as they entered the sacrament meeting room.  And he left the church with a teachings of Howard W Hunter book and a Gospel Principles book.  Pray for him.  Since the other investigators will go to another ward now Unberto is basically all we have left.  But yesterday we found a cool guy that we taught in English that lived in North Carolina for a while.  He was awesome and asked us when church was and if he could come before we even invited him.  His name is Nathan and we're excited for him.  But ya... Please pray that we can come across a lot of new people to teach.  That would be appreciated.  

  What else happened...  Well I've been wanting to go out and get to know the zone a little better but I can't find a stinking bus card so I can't go on the buses and I finally found a store today that had them and they were out. 
Ummm mom don't worry the house is pretty nice and there aren't any weird dirty secrets that I'm not telling just to not scare you.  Everything's clean and nice and our shower is decent and we have a sink and we don't have all of the mesquito larvae.  I sleep on the top bunk of one of the beds and Elder Evans sleeps on the bottom bunk of the other because it's the best way to work with the fans and the limited outlets in the room.  The apartment is the bedroom, the study room, the kitchen (with fridges and sink and cupboards) and the bathroom (with a toilet, shower, sink, and mirror),  The rooms are all fairly small but it´s not that small.  With just two of us it´s really good.  There used to be four in the house because there used to be two zls and their comps in this area but it´s so small they took out the other zl and put him in the next door area.  That´s where Elder Bachez, the other ZL is.  There´s a parakeet outside and two cats. 

  Today the zone got together in the church and we made Baleadas, which is a Honduranian food which is like a burrito but without meat and with eggs.  Or better said, tortillas with beans, cheese, and scrambled eggs.
Well sorry, that´s all I can really remember from last week.  Sorry if I left out some vital piece of information!

Love you!!
Elder Smith


Some zl duties are...  Do divisions once a week, verify district meetings and once a month do zone meeting, take numbers and report them every other night.  Get macheted by the APs if anyone does anything stupid in your zone.  But we do get a little more money every month.  Oh and a highlight of today is that I found AW rootbeer at the store for only 5.75 cordobas a can.  Which is cheaper than water.  So I bought 40 cans.  Its around 20 cents a can.  I think the store just made a mistake with the price.  

Sorry I forgot my sd card converter so no pics today!  Sorry mom!!  

Monday, October 10, 2016

This is weird

October 10, 2016

Hello family!!  Happy birthday yesterday mom!

  Well...  a lot has changed haha.  I'm not in the office anymore obviously.  

  My new area is Las Palmas, which is just like two wards to the North of San Judas, still in Managua.  My new companion is Elder Evans.  I'm finishing his training.  He got to Nicaragua last change.  I'm a ZL now in Zona Managua so I'm  learning a lot about my responsiibilities and stuff very quickly.

  Elder Evans is from Fresno california and studied at Arizona State University for a year before coming out.  He's actually like a month older than me.  He's awesome!  I couldn't have asked for a better son.  His spanish is pretty dang good for the time he has on the mission and he works really hard to improve it, he doesn't have any fear or anything of teaching, he just goes for it and it's awesome.  We get along really well.

  The area is a bit of a tough one.  It's pretty hard to get people to let you into their houses and teach them but the members and ward here are awesome!  They love giving us references and helping us out.  Las Palmas is actually the first ward and chapel that was made here in Nicaragua.  The chapel is really big (it's been rebuilt already since the first one that was constructed) and has AC (hallelujia (sp?))  We have some investigators...  A bunch that sucked yesterday and wouldn't go to church and then a really cool guy named Guillermo and his two kids, Katerine (age 19) and Guillermo Jr (11) that comes to church on his own every Sunday.  Unfortunately we can't teach them during the week due to a home situation but they study the pamphlets we leave during the week and we also teach them in the church on Sundays.  The two kids have a fecha for the 22nd and the dad will be a bit later.  The ward meets at 10 and another ward meets in the same building at 8.  I'm happy we get to go at 10 and not 8:)  For how great the ward is it's pretty small, only 60 people were in church on Sunday.

   The house is really good for a normal missionary house.  It's just me and Elder Evans in there so it's a lot quieter than I'm used to.  The food isn't nearly as good haha.  I'm back to rice and beans and meat, and I'm remembering very quickly that I don't like rice anymore.  But I still like beans.  It's not a big deal that I don't have a hot shower anymore because now that there's no AC either a cold shower is very refreshing.  And it's really not even that cold.  We live on the same property as some pretty well off members.  We pay them to make our lunch and they usually just throw in breakfast most mornings as a treat.  I've also noticed that I'm way more hungry now that I'm actively working so much more every day instead of sitting in front of a computer or going everywhere in a taxi.  For dinner I'm pretty  much still on the same chips and coke routine I've enjoyed my whole mission.   You can't beat it.  

  Today for Pday the zone got together in a restaurant in my area and we had lunch.  I just got burgers, fries, onion rings, and ice cream.  The onion rings were the best part.  

  Tomorrow we have interviews with President Brown which I'm looking forward to.  President Brown is awesome.  

  I'm sure I left out some sort of vital information so make sure you just respond with some specific questions so I can fill you in.

Well, have a great week!

Love you!

Elder Smith

Elder Evans and Elder Smith

Typical Lunch

                                 This cat was watching us eat lunch

Zone eating lunch

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Goodbye San Judas

October 4, 2016

Hello family!

  Well, it's been a bittersweet week.  I'm optimistic to be able to start a new  chapter of my mission with lots of opportunities, but it was sad to say goodbye to those that I drew so close to over the last 9  months.  The highlight of the week was obviously general conference.  We were able to listen to all of it, three sessions in Spanish and two in English (priesthood and Sunday afternoon).   There was a designated English room for the white missionaries but if we brought investigators we sat with them in Spanish.  Spanish was great still, I understood it all no problem.  Mario, Berta, Jessica, Tania, and Allison all went plus someone in the ward brought her 13 yr old nephew Mitchell.  All of our investigators really liked conference and the talks talked to them about what they were fighting for.  Elder Cook's talk was really good for Mario.  I had an awesome experience in conference as well.  I went in with four questions and as I received answers I wrote them during all of the sessions.  I designated a sheet of paper in my notebook and all of the sheets were really full for each question I had.  It was awesome.  I loved the emphasis on the restoration and Plan of Salvation.  Dad, I thought of you in the opening prayer of the priesthood session when he prayed on how men can better serve their wives because we always joked to mom about how they just talk about how men need to be better to their wives.  But you're a great example of that dad:)  Also I loved the reference to Gothenburg with Elder Renlund.  The talk that I liked the most was the Book of Mormon talk by Stevenson, I also loved sister McConkies talk on prayer, Cook's, Holland's, Bednar's, President Monson's.  Everything was great.  It was definitely my favorite conference so far.  It really helps to go into conference prepared. 

   It was also great to see and take pictures with several converts that went to conference.  Rosa and Coco went and are doing great, so did Noel.  Veronica and Mel came and Mel just received a great job he had been needing.  I think from that blessing he's thinking a lot about how it came from God and he's going to be more open to getting baptized and stopping smoking.  I know one day that family will go to the temple.  Also Hazel and Jazmin came which was super cool since they moved to a different ward in the stake right after their baptism.  Their ward over there is doing a great job of keeping them involved and included and active. 

   Yesterday and a little last weekend we went around saying goodbye to people.  Berta and her daughter Nathaly (I finally verified the spelling on that name) did something really cute and made a sign that said "Gracias Smithis 1 y 2" because we always called me Smith 1 and my comp Smith 2 since I´ve been here longer.  And they made us a nice little dinner.  I brought them a can of rootbeer and had them try it. They actually liked it, which is rare for Nicas. They think it´s really sweet.  Last night we also said by to Familia Cruz which was hard because they´re like my second family.  

   Well, I´ll let you know where I end up and who my comp is.  Wish me luck.  Also pray for poor Elder Smith, they´re coming in and doing an audit in his first week alone as finance secretary.  That´ll be rough for him.  I got lucky and never got audited.

Anyway, love you!!

Elder Smith