Monday, September 29, 2014


Well, this week, I feel like a ton happened. I can´t really remember any of it, and to be honest this week was one of the most stressful OF MY LIFE so maybe it´s a good thing I can´t really remember what happened.  But it´s also been a very good week. 

We had another activity! I proposed a few months ago that we do a CHOCOTALENTAZO, just like we did in Valencia. A talent show with chocolate. But it sounds cooler when you say CHOCOTALENTAZO. My "thing" in the ward is saying chocotalentazo while waving my hands in a rainbow shape. The members know that if they´re going to say chocotalentazo in front of me, they have to do the same hand motions. So we had the activity and it was a success! I´ll include some pictures. The ward mission leader´s three year old son did the dance from Risky Business. Or at least I think it´s from Risky Business. I´ve never actually seen it but the dance where the guy dances in his boxers and yeah. It was hilarious. But there was a chocolate fountain and fruit and chocolate cake and brownies, but we missionaries didn´t get to eat any chocolate because the activity was scheduled to start at six, and so naturally it started at 8, and we had to leave before it was finished.

I cried when the little girls from South Korea were singing. And I love that these last few women´s conferences have focused on the temple and covenants. I imagine that with so many girls going on missions, there could be too big of a focus on preparing for the mission instead of the infinitely more important preparing to enter the temple. But I love it. The temple is awesome. I got to go to the outside of the temple because we´re doing a new thing where we take our investigators to the temple. It was so great because there were a ton of people there from Peru. I talked to little kids that were baptized with their families a year ago and sealed to their families the day before. Their accent was so beautiful, and they live close to Piura, in a town called Paita or Payta. Were you ever there Brandon? I think Peruvians definitely win the prettiest Spanish award. I remember the boys fighting about whose country had the best Spanish, and I´m definitely on Brandon´s side. But it was precious and they were so excited to be in the temple, and they´re more excited because they´re building a temple in Trujillo that will be closer to them so they can go more often. 
So yeah. Temples are great.

My dear Hermana Rosario is just firm as a rock in the church. She just got called to be second counselor in the Primary and is doing baptisms for the dead regularly. She wants to go once a week. She also came with us to a couple teaching appointments and invites the people to come to church and bears testimony without us having to prompt her to do so. It has been very gratifying to see her progress. I´m going to have her add you on facebook Mama because she´s got some pictures of us with her that I want to share. The gospel is just great.

Who else is psyched for general conference?!
I love contacting the week before general conference, because we get to tell people straight up and right off the bat that there´s a living day prophet of God, a modern day Moses, and twelve apostles, just like in the times of Christ, and that they are all invited to come listen to them speak. Cool huh?
Love you all! 

This is the son of one of the investigators of the other Hermanas in the chocotalentazo. He was so precious, but after taking pictures with me he started lifting up my skirt and then he wasn´t too cute anymore.

 Me and Hermana Deforest with Sunday lunch. You can´t really see just how big that pile is, but there were A TON of crabs. I ate one entire crab and then 8 legs more. I would have eaten more but church was going to be starting soon and we had to go. 
Yo y Hermana Deforest (ella no es mi compañera pero servimos en el mismo barrio) con nuestro almuerzo ayer. Yo comí un cangrejo entero y 8 patas más. Yo quería comer más pero asistimos a la iglesia después de almuerzo y no pude seguir comiendo....  

 I made friends with an incarcerated cat. 

She wasn´t done bringing out all the crabs yet. 
 Went to the temple with Rosario!

Monday, September 22, 2014


Goodness gracious I have been thinking of Grandma a lot this week. Poor thing, tell her to hang on, she has to help me with family history work when I get back and roadtrip to Monterrey!

What can I tell you about this week. Thanks to some silly misunderstandings, I am writing late. We all four went to the mission office this morning (first time!) to chat with the president. All you need to know is that we haven´t done anything wrong, we just had to go to clarify some things. But it turned out being wonderful because 1) every encounter with President Riggins is like a mini general conference, because he is just a doctrinal beast and 2) Hermana Flores was there! She goes home tomorrow, so she was having her final interview and all that stuff. I mentioned that Hermana Flores was my companion without knowing that she was there and he told me to wait and pulled her out of the meeting she was in and we got to say goodbye again. It was really awkward because the asistente was sitting there watching us cry AGAIN (he was also there when we said goodbye in the meeting with just the hermanas). I sure love her!! So we had five minutes to cry together and remember the good old times and then we left. So yeah. This day has been weird. I´m absolutely exhausted. 

This week has been another week of planting seeds. To answer your question, transfers aren´t anytime soon. The word on the street is that President Riggins likes to keep us all in our sectors more time so then we can work with families that aren´t progressing as rapidly. So I´m pretty sure I´ll be here a few more months and MAYBE have one more area before I´m headed back. I don´t know. 
But this week was nice too because it was Rosario´s birthday, and she made us earrings, and we helped her decorate for her party, and also she went to the temple this week to do baptisms for the dead. How great is that?!

It´s always fun when your investigators and converts have spiritual experiences and bear testimony to you about them. If I´m only in this sector for Rosario, I´m happy, because I know she will stay firm. She´s doing family history work, she went ot the temple, she´s already friends with all the members. She´s doing everything that a convert should be doing to seguir adelante.

I´m learning patience here (well, at least I hope I am. I know that the Lord wants me to learn patience but I´m not sure how well I´m doing it haha.) This area has been one big learning course. But one thing that I´ve been thinking about a lot lately is that as we come unto the Savior, he shows to us our weaknesses, and you have to suffer a bit, but afterwards, that weakness becomes a strength. Coming unto the Savior isn´t easy, but it´s worth it.

That´s all I got for you, sorry for not writing more, my time has run out!
I love you all!
Thanks for sending the pictures and keep the prayers coming!

This photos a little odd, but my zone was in the bus and we were bored.  

Sunday, September 21, 2014


* Written Sept 15th

Hello Familia! Well, what can I tell yáll this week. I´ve officially been out a year. I don´t like that. I still feel pretty new in the mission, so on thursday morning when they referred to me as an old lady in the mission I wasn´t pleased, but I guess it´s almost true now!

This week was fun, because it was really different. Our stake had a family history fair, and it was a big deal. Like, they went all out. I wish I would have taken pictures of the actual activity but I was busy welcoming people and doing stuff so I only took a few funny pictures and that´s it. But I really love my zone! We have lots of (appropriate, mostly dignified) fun together. Also, I´m really excited to be able to do family history work! Are they putting as big of an emphasis in family history over there as they are here? Every week we hear a ton about family history work, and I am stoked to go do some ordinances for my ancestors after the mission! They did a play where all the people were dressed in white looking for whoever had their name and there was one hermana that they still hadn´t found her name and she was an amazing actress, so she was weeping and talking about how she´d been waiting for her work to be done for so long. It was really dramatic, and lots of people afterwards were tearing up. But it´s important! I´ve got a laptop, I feel so silly for all the time I wasted on things that don´t matter! I´ll send a couple pictures from the activity. 

On Thursday, I got woken up by the other hermanas holding a cake, a bottle of Polaca (a drink made of oats, sugar, milk and vanilla that is highly addictive and ridiculously delicious) and a happy birthday banner. We didn´t take pictures though, because I´m not too keen on pictures at 6:30 in the morning. 

Also, this week I had an intercambio with the same hermana that was my hermana leader 6 months ago, which was really fun because she was able to notice how much I´ve progressed and it was fun for me to see the difference between my intercambio with her six months ago and the intercambio we had this week. Sometimes I feel like I´ve really changed a lot! I´ve definitely learned a lot.
Well, this week wasn´t too busy either. We´re working, but still not getting the results that we´re wanting. I guess the Lord really wants me to learn patience and long suffering haha, but we´re alright. We don´t get too down on ourselves because we know that we´re working, and if the numbers don´t show our efforts, at least the Lord knows what we´ve been doing with His time. So now we´re just waiting for the fruits of our efforts! 

It´s starting to heat up again! We had about two months where in the night time I´d have to sleep with one or two sheets, and it was just lovely to be able to cuddle up a bit, but now we´re back to drenching ourselves before laying down because it´s just too hot and having a fan on you doesn´t cut it. Today is nice though, the sun didn´t come out and it´s kinda misty. Still a little hot, but every once in a while you will feel a TINY TIIIINY raindrop.  

Oh yeah, my ward mission leader added you on facebook Momma. His family reminds me of the Bolton´s, because the parents are amazing, but there´s one kid that is ridiculously adorable but he´s got a little bit of Tasmanian devil in him. But Hermano Oswaldo (I think on facebook it´s Stanly) thinks it´s hilarious that I openly love food which is why he may be posting lots of pictures of me eating. But just let it be known that the green mayonnaise sauce here is DELICIOUS and garlicky, and I take full advantage of delicious garlicky goodness at every available opportunity. I´m starting to get chubby again (they´ve told me so). But it´s worth it I figure, because when am I going to have another opportunity to eat Ecuadorian food?

Anyway, that was my week! I love you all! Thanks for everything!

Story behind this photo: We asked the Elders to clean the baptismal font because it smelled a little funky. So naturally, instead of emptying it out and cleaning with bleach, they dyed the water blue. So we took a photo in front of the blue font,.  
You can´t really see the water in the blue font, but it was BRIGHT BLUE. Like, the blue hawaiian punch color. Or the exact color of blue raspberry jolly ranchers. 

Another older photo of us on the bus. I really love living with 4 hermanas. We have a ton of fun. This was Hermana Deforests first PDay in the mission, about 4 weeks ago.

 This is my zone with the BonIce man. Bon Ice is a brand of 15 cent frozen yogurts and popsicle type things. They´re delicious. I´m not really sure why we took this picture. This is actually an old picture, but I´m borrowing Hermana Deforests camera right now and sending the pictures that I want to keep. 

Monday, September 8, 2014


Where do I start? This week was swell! As you might have already seen, I saw Hermana Flores and it was the happiest day ever.

On Thursday, we had a meeting in the mission home with all the hermanas in the mission. So I saw Hermana Flores and Hermana Chil and I was so happy! Tears were shed. It was awesome to be in a smaller, more intimate gathering of missionaries being taught by the mission president and his wife and even better because it was just hermanas. And they gave us breakfast, lunch, and cookies. It was just the pick-me-up I needed, and it was really special because Hermana Flores goes home in two weeks and it was her last  hurrah. I´m really gonna miss her, but I promised that I would do everything I could to go to her wedding. She wants to get married in the Monterrey temple so I figure me and Grandma Skousen will go roadtrippin´ to Monterrey. She´d come with me, right?
So yeah. We talked about the doctrine of perfection, and how we don´t need to be perfect right now (apparently that´s an issue her -  that the hermanas feel a lot of pressure to be perfect. I´m glad I got over that). Hermana Riggins also talked to us about how the numbers don´t matter, and if she had only taught and baptized this one particular family, she would be 100% satisfied with her mission labors and that it would have all been worth it. (It´s been wonderful to listen to people focusing on the importance of teaching families and not just about numbers).
I don´t have too much to share this week. I was sick in the house for two days, and staying in the house is the absolute worst thing that can happen in the mission. I had some sort of funky fever that I couldn´t get rid of and it made me feel ridiculously weak and really pale, but what really worried people is when I said I didn´t want to eat haha. That´s when they knew something was wrong. So yeah I was a pale mess.  That´s what everyone told me at least. I went to the zone meeting and when I shook hands with the Elderes they all basically said"Hi Hermana Rust, you don´t look good" or "Hey Hermana Rust, you should probably sit down" So I called the mission nurses and they said that it´s a virus that a couple other missionaries were dealing with too, and that all I could do was rest and take tylenol. So I slept all day for two days. It went by really fast for me, but I feel bad for my poor companion. She was bored to tears. But I´m fine now! That was Wednesday and Thursday and on Friday was the conference with the Hermanas. 

So yeah. Not too much to say. We´re still looking for people to teach, but we´re thrilled with the faithfulness of Rosario. She asked us for help yesterday with paying her tithing because she wasn´t sure how the donation slip worked. I love it when they pay tithing, it shows that they really are exercising their faith! I decided that tithing is definitely my favorite lesson to teach. 
So yeah. That´s what I got! I don´t have more pictures because my camera died and I lost the charger (I found it though) but the other hermanas are going to send me pictures from the Hermana meeting.
I love you all! Thanks for writing me, 
Hermana Rust

(Guess what landmark I hit in three days? Time goes by so fast!)

Monday, September 1, 2014


 HOLLY STARTED HER PAPERS! Her availability date better be after I get home or I´m going to be TICKED. But I´m so happy for you Holly, you´ll enjoy serving in Chile or Argentina (I´m sticking with South America).

I learn a ton every week in this area. Even though this is a really difficult area, I am enjoying myself a ton. I figured that this week we have probably knocked on a hundred and fifty or so doors. Out of these doors that we´ve knocked on, probably 6 have talked to us and 3 accepted another visit.  Of those that accepted another visit, one of them was actually in their house for the appointment. But this has lead me to think of what I can say in the first sentences that will catch their interest. Most of the time, we talk about 1) eternal families or 2) modern day revelation. We are really blessed to know about the Plan of Salvation and SO BLESSED to have a prophet. People think about how cool it would have been to listen to Moses or one of the apostles talk, and we can say that we´ve listened to the modern day Moses equivalent and all 12 apostles. I´m really excited for general conference.

We had a baptism this Saturday! Her name is Rosario, and she is a hoot. She´s fifty years old, and super feisty.  She lives alone with her mother, who has Alzheimers, and all of her brothers and sisters are rich, so they pay her to take care of her mom, and that´s her job. She goes to zumba classes every night, and she´s been attending church the last 4 months or so, but she never wanted to get baptized. She said that she wasn´t too sure about the commandments, and she didn´t really see the need to get baptized, but we told her to put a goal of having a testimony by August 30th and she did it! She wasn´t really too sure of anything beforehand, but then we felt to stress the importance of the Book of Mormon. While she was making us juice, I secretly wrote READ THE BOOK OF MORMON and DON´T FORGET TO PRAY on a bunch of post-it notes and stuck them around her house when she wasn´t looking. She took the hint, and she remembered to read the Book of Mormon, and that´s when everything started changing. She started feeling sure of her decision to be baptized, she invited friends from her Zumba class to her baptism, she was willing to keep the commandments, and all of this thanks to the Book of Mormon. The Book of Mormon has power to change lives, and even though even Rosario might not realize it, we know that it is thanks to the Book fo Mormon that her life changed. It was fun to finally see her get baptized, because all of teh sisters already knew her and lots of them already thought she was a member, so when we invited them to her baptism they were all excited. She´s fun. She will be a great teacher in the church

What else... Hermana Isama hit her one year mark, so we had a little celebration. I´ll send photos. It´s really fun to live in a house with 4 sisters, each night  is like a little 20 minute party. We have a few pounds of dark chocolate in the fridge, and I lost some mini bananas for a while, and then yesterday I found them, and I wasn´t going to be able to eat all of them before they went bad, so I made chocolate covered bananas. It was a mess, and the chocolate was super dark and not sweet at all, so I figured I´d put sprinkles, but we didn´t have sprinkles, but we did have sugar and I went through and dug out the taffy kit that you sent me Momma with the food coloring, and made blue sugar to put on the chocobananas. The final result was disturbing. They were mini bananas, so they looked like dog droppings, and the blue sugar didn´t really help either. But we all had a good laugh and we ate em up. that wasn´t really that interesting of a story but I don´t have to much to share this week. 

In order: Me, Hermana Deforest, Hermana Isama, Hermana Espinoza, Hermana Rosario, Rosario´s mom, Hermana Mireya (Presidente of Sociedad de Socorro), and unnamed child who decided that she loves me yesterday.  

 Let´s appreciate how tan I am please. I never get good pictures of any of my baptisms. But this is Hermana Rosario. 

 The wife of the bishop, the bishop (he´s super young), Hermana Pita, Hermana Karla, Me, Rosario, Her mom, Hermana Isama, Hermana Petita, Andrea, Hermana Digna (she is an amazing cook and the best relief society teacher I´ve ever had), Hermano Oswaldo, his son Matias (who is the most precious thing ever), unnamed niña again, Hermana Mireya, and Hermana Sandra.