Monday, June 23, 2014


What can I say...
Everyone said that now that it`s June, it`s going to start cooling off and the sun isn`t going to be as strong. I`m here to tell you that they all lied.
The old man husband of a member gave me a funky fruit. I thought he was carrying some sort of dead animal, so I asked him what it was, and he told me it was a fruit that made delicious juice and then he gave it to me. I peeled it, and the pulp inside had the exact same consistency and coloring of phlegm. But I went ahead and ate it anyway and stuck parts of it in the blender with sugar and somehow the juice ended up being brown. So yeah Ecuador`s got some freaky fruit going on. I´ll include a photo. The skin looked like dragon skin. I pretended I was a student in Hogwarts in potions class. It was fun. My companion was a little weirded out I think but I enjoyed myself. 

 So there`s a sweet little hermana in our ward that is a convert of 20 years or so. She wants so badly for her family to all be members, and she`s invited us to teach family nights in her home with her grandchildren that aren`t members, and yesterday she invited us to another family night (we actually didn`t know that we were going to be teaching, her granddaughter told us that she invited us to eat hotdogs [which were delicious]), and the hermana invited her daughter and two of her sons in laws and a few other youths that were already members. We had no idea what to teach to such a wide audience of members, non members, less actives, adults, and children. Luckily we are always prepared and she started to teach from the Proclamation to the World. When was the last time we all read the Proclamation? The Proclamation is awesome. Super direct. I like that. We taught parts of Law of Chastity, temple marriage, parts of the Restoration, and parts of the Plan of Salvation, just with the Proclamation. And the adults that weren`t members really liked it. They really liked that we talked about families and that it was bonito I´ve never been too good at telling stories but what you should know is that the Spirit was really strong and I really love that families can be together forever.
We`ve had some people wanting to Bible bash this week. Sometimes it`s really good that I was called to serve speaking Spanish, because I can`t always translate what I`m thinking, and when dealing with people that have whacky ideas, it`s a good thing I can`t say what`s on my mind. But I really like disproving the doctrine of other churches with the Bible, but I do it in my personal study, because I don`t let myself Bible bash, no matter how much I like being right. 

We made t-shirts as a zone. I don´t know why but everyone wanted the t-shirts to be in English on the front. I was against the idea but oh well. The back is cool though. Our name is across the back with Ecuador Guayaquil Norte.

What else.....
Things are great. Everyone is all giddy about the world cup, and they tell me how things are going with the us, even though futbol is the last thing on my mind haha. My companion is just about dying though that we can`t watch the world cup. She`s really big on futbol and she prayed this morning that Mexico would win their game today. I love her. This morning when we heard the alarm the first thing she said was WE DIDN´T HAVE TRANSFERS! (Because if we have transfers, they call us around midnight on Sunday). So were still together! We`re surprised that they`ve kept us together so long, but hey, we`re not complaining! 

Monday, June 16, 2014


HAPPY FATHER´S DAY PA! They celebrate father`s day here, but it`s not as big as a deal as mother`s day. Almost no early morning serenades. The truth is that I forgot until the bishop asked us to take some funny pictures for him as his gift for father`s day.
Yeah we had a baptism on Saturday (miracles all three of them). One of them was the son of an active member who got baptized hace two years. He never wanted to get baptized because his parents are separated and his father is super catholic. Missionary after missionary have visited him for the last two years and finally he decided to get baptized. His mom was so happy, it was presh.

I was 100% sure I was going to have transfers this week, but the night passed and we never got the call. It`s kind of awkward though, because last night we were walking to a lesson and all the youth that I love were together and I bid them all farewell (complete with tears. I`m not the only one that cried. I really love everyone here - they love me too). And so yeah I`m probably going to see them all again today or tomorrow so this is going to be awkward. But I love my companion and I wanna kill her off (missionly speaking) because she only has 2 months left.   We went to the doctor yesterday (we`re so united we got sick with the same symptoms and everything at the same exact time) and the doctor told us "it is easily noted that you two get along very well" and that we were twins with our matching symptoms so he gave us matching medications and what not. We`re not like gravely ill, we just can`t shake the colds that we`ve had for the last week and a half, so the President told us to go to the doctor. He gave us some nyquil-like pills that have us falling asleep every few minutes so this week is going to be interesting. We`re a little loopy. I hope this letter makes sense. 

President Amaya already gave his last farewell to us. I would send photos but Hermana Scott assured me that I would look great in her red lipstick and she was gravely mistaken. So yeah we`re going to keep those pictures in a nice dark place. But he said lots of things in his final training that reminded me a lot of the things you guys told me growing up. Like, he told us that the names of our companions have to be safe with us (their name is safe in our home!) and obedience with exactness and there was something else too but I can`t remember. 

What else can I tell you? Me and my companion have been lending service. My only pair of jeans is now covered with four colors of paint. I like how here, if you want to paint the outside of your house (where lives 5 men and one women) bright pink, that is a-okay and not tacky at all. I can`t figure out how to word that sentence right, but you get me right? I am having severe issues remembering English.... 

THE GOVERNMENT WANTS TO KIDNAP US. A lady came up to us and asked for all of our information, she told us that she worked for the Valencia government offices and that the president wanted all of the information about teh foreigners currently living in Valencia. She didn`t have identification and it was super sketchy, but she made us come with her to her office and give her our names. We may or may not have lied to a government official because we told her that we were new here and we didn`t know our address (Hermana Flores didn`t know, but I did, but there was no way I was telling her) and that as missionaries we don`t have email or telefonos (which we do), so we just gave her the address of the mission home in Guayaquil. And then she started asking us about the other hermanas in Valencia and we told her we didn`t know anything about them because seriously the whole situation was super sketchy, and then we called the other hermanas and told them that if some sketchy lady starts asking them about their names and passports and addresses and all that jazz, tell her that you don`t have phones and all that stuff so then our lies can at least be coherent. Luckily we`ve both seen Taken and we already have planned out what we`re going to do if someone breaks into our house to kidnap us and sell us to drug lords. We also told our lideres de zona. 

I really love everything right now. Our zone is fantastic, my zone leaders are some of my favorite people ever, we made ourselves some t-shirts and everything. Everything is great. Every night when we give our daily report they ask us how our companionship is and they already know that our companionship is perfect, so I told them that we have huge fights and yell at each other in front of investigators and that Hermana Flores hits me so they think I`m funny.

This computer isn`t reading my memory card, so I can`t send pictures. I`ll have to do it next week.
This week was pretty great too because not once for lunch did they serve us pasta with a side of rice. There is seriously nothing worse than pasta with rice so I`m happy. Also, today is going to be a good day because I`m going to buy myself a jalapeño hamburger. Wooo!

Monday, June 9, 2014


*This email is basically a glimpse into the ordinary, run-of-the-mill aspects of a South American missionary, written in true Nataliesque style of course.  - Admin. of the Blog (mom)

What do I have to say this week?

I learned this week that de-parasiting yourself is just one of those things that you gotta do. It´s apparently not weird and it´s a-okay to ask the stake high counsel representative how often he deparasites himself. The whole conversation grossed me out big time but I was also really intrigued and so me and Hermana Flores are in the middle of a deparasiting treatment right now. So wish us luck with that... Also we´re both sick with cold/flu (again) because of the climate changes. Apparently it´s going to start being "cold". I´m thinking their idea of cold is a little bit different because I´m still sweating. Also, I continue talking in Spanish in my sleep! Success!

We haven´t had transfers yet, next week it is incredibly likely that I will be leaving. I´m going to be really sad, I really love the members and it breaks my heart to think that I won´t see them or Hermana Flores again (Hermana Flores only has 12 weeks left in the mission). We have had lots of laughing moments this week and we are determined to enjoy our final week together the most we can.
The carnival came to town again and now they´re leaving. I´m happy, because Ecuadorian carnies are 200% more creepy than American ones. One of them (a young carnie) followed us and sang to me about how I¨m a princess, and now I sing the song he sang to me to my companion and she thinks it´s pretty hilarious.

This week I tried cacao, and not chocolate, like the actual plant pod thingy. You break it open and suck on the seeds. It was pretty tasty, even though it had nothing similar to chocolate as far as taste goes.
So we were writing earlier today but the power went out. So we had to look for a new cyber to go to, and we walked all over Valencia. But yeah anyway the semáforos (you´re going to have to look that one up, I can´t think of the word in English) were out too, so the streets were in free-for-all mode. That was kinda scary.

In two days I will be at the halfway point in the mission whaaaaaaaaaaaaat.
Time passes super fast.
Sad story, the bishop got robbed. They hit him and stole his phone, and he had lots of pictures of us that he was going to post on facebook later, but yeah they´re all gone.  But we´re excited because their visas got approved!

There´s not really any rhyme or reason to this email. I wish I had more to tell you all, but I´ve settled into a routine and things aren´t new and exciting anymore. I feel like I´m never going back to the US and that this is just my life now, so I don´t really recognize what things are interesting and what things aren´t, not it´s just... life.  I got nothing else to say! Love you all!


Here´s a picture of me that Hermana Flores took. We were in an area called la Cadena. It´s super green, it´s in the middle of the bananeras and cacao fields. Breathing the air there is like eating a salad.

We painted a house this week. We sanded down the walls and errythang. The paint here is superwerid though, you mix it with water and they you have to paint 400 coats.  It seemed to me that we could have just painted it once without water but no one was really feeling that idea. 

Monday, June 2, 2014


* Random excerpts of Hermana Rust's letter this week which was more for family than blog.     Sorry for the choppiness. -  The Hermana Natalie Rust Blog Administrator (her mommy)

 I´m tempted to just tell you guys all about my study of the general conference Liahona because the conference Liahonas are the best things ever invented. I`m pretty sure Boyd K. Packer is going to die though because this last talk was so amazing and so BAM powerful testimony of the Salvador that I`m pretty sure he can`t top it again so he´s going to have to leave that as his final testimony. 

 Everything is swell! We´re not going to write much time today because we´re going to go on an adventure with Lina. 

We´ve been travelling a lot this week to a place called El Vergel that´s a tiny little town in the middle of nowhere. It`s beautiful, and I think I`m the first gringa that`s ever been there. It´s surrounded by bananeras and we travel in giant trucks with benches in the back, so everything´s open and you drive with the wind in your hair and it´s swell. I have a curse though, which is that I absolutely cannot be in a truck or bus more than six minutes without falling asleep. I don`t know what it is, I`ll be fine, with lots of energy, and all the sudden my companion is waking me up and telling me that we´ve already arrived.

Speaking of sleeping, I scared my companion because I was singing in my sleep. She asked while I was sleeping if I was okay, and then apparently I started telling her that I couldn`t go with her, because I had to go to church the next day. So it`s kinda fun to know that 1) I observe the Sabbath Day in my dreams and 2) I`m dreaming in Spanish. 

I haven`t taken more photos yet...... I`m really bad and taking out my camera, but I feel like the bishop and Lina take enough that I don`t need to worry about it while I`m here. Bishop told me that he chatted with you momma on facebook. How´s his english? He told me he just uses google and hopes for the best haha. But they are 100% serious about this visiting the US thing. They already have a buddy that promised them tickets to general conference, and it´s cheaper to fly into vegas, so they´re going to visit us and then I`m going to drive them up to conference. And they wanna learn to make Chinese food. 

We might come back and write later, but if not, I love you all!