Wednesday, December 26, 2012


This is a recipe from Hermana Becerra, and it is enough to serve an army.  It is a fairly common food here to be served, and I am sure that there are other recipes that make less, but this one was really tasty.  Don't be afraid of the chiles, once everything has been put together, it is really tasty, and not spicy.
  • 7 lbs Pork Shoulder
  • 2 thighs chicken
  • 2 legs chicken
  • 3 cans of pozole blanco (white hominy)
  • salsa
  • 1 bag chile guacillo o cascabel
  • 1 onion
Boil the chiles and then blend them in a blender.
Put the liquid chile in a large pot and add all of the meat (bones, and everything included).  Boil
Add salsa and pozole (hominy).
Makes a soup.
Serve in bowls.  (The natives don't pick out the bones when serving it.  You just leave the bones in your bowl after you are done eating.)
Top with (They just put all of these things out on the table, and let each person put what they want on their own Pazole):
  • diced radishes
  • shredded lettuce
  • diced onions
  • diced peppers (japeleno if you are brave, others if you are not)
  • Limon (limes)
  • crema (this is kinda like sour cream, but better, you can find it on the Mexican Aisle)
  • Hot Sauce
  • Tostados (You don't really put these on the soup, you just eat them with it.  The Red kind are the best!)

Habichuela Gisadas

This is a Puerto Rican recipe, and it is really tasty and not spicy at all. 
  • 1 can habichuela (bush's beans)
  • 1 can water (use the same can as the bush's beans for measurement)
  • sazon goya (co cilantro y achiote) (these are special spice packages that you should be able to find on the Hispanic Aisle in stores)
  • 1 chicken buyon cube
  • some diced potatoes
  • sofrito (this is a special sauce that you might be able to find on the Hispanic Aisle.  It has cilantro, onions and garlic among other things.  If you can't find it, just throw in some cilantro, onions, and garlic and it will work out.)
Put everything in a pot and heat until the potatoes are soft.
Serve on a bed of white rice.
Optional: serve with pork chops.  Season the pork chops with Adobo All purpose seasoning (again, it will be found on the Hispanic Aisle.)
This recipe is thanks to Hermana Luna.


This recipe is from a nice family that the elders are teaching.  They are from Puerto Rico, and so is this recipe.
  • fried platinos
  • ajo (garlic, the fresh kind, several lumps (can't remember what the word for these things are... :| ))
  • mantiquillo (butter)
  • olive oil
Put everything together, and squish and mash them really well.  Scoop some of it into a small cup and apply pressure then remove from the cup and serve (this part is kinda like the way you build a sand castle, it is just to give it a pretty shape.)


2 fillets of Tilapia
15 key limes
1 bunch of cilantro
1 red onion
clove of garlic (or garlic powder)
hot red pepper
palta (Avacado)
Cut fish to 1/4 inch chunks.
Juice limes over fish and let it sit 20 minutes or overnight, but make sure the fish turns opaque.
Chop red onion enough for one cup and rinse with water and salt.
Drain water from onions and mix with the fish.
Put of handful of cilantro leaves but mush them in your palm.
Mince Garlic and add.
1 tbsp of hot red sauce/ pepper
salt to taste
put diced avocado on top and serve.

Chicken Tamales

Many hispanic families make Tamales during Christmas time.  They are a traditional Christmas food.  This recipe comes from the Mejia family.
  • boil several chicken breasts.
  • Mix maseca (corn flour), a little bit of salt and the chicken broth (from the previous step) to make a dough.  Add water if necessary.  Consistency of not quite runny oatmeal.  mix well with your hands.
  • Make a salsa in the blender.  (chili (pepper), aqua (water), cebolla (onion), ajo (garlic))
  • shred chicken with hands
  • Put dough on corn husks, smooth out to have a thin layer over the bottom 2/3 of husk.  Don't put dough on the top part of the husk.
  • Put chicken and salsa in the center of the layer of dough on the husks.
  • Roll up.  Fold the part of the husk without dough up
  • Put water in the bottom part of a double boiler.
  • Put tamales on top with the open end facing up.
  • Cover, and boil for 1 and a half hours.

Nancy's Salsa

Making salsa is one of the easiest things ever, and most of the natives have a slightly different approach to making it.  This Salsa was very good, so I thought that I would share it with y'all.
fry dried "chili de arbol" in oil for a little bit.
tomatoes, chili, oil, oregano

Atoli (also known as Champurrado)

This is a hot chocolate type drink that is typically served with Tamales. This comes from the Mejia family.
  • agua (water)
  • canela (cinnamon) sticks
  • chocolate (the Mexican chocolate used for making hot chocolate, Abuelita is the best)
  • azucar (sugar)
  • maseca (corn flour)
  • leche (aqua)
This recipe makes approximately 4 gallons.
1 part water, and 3 cinnamon sticks.  Heat on stove, until the water is red.
Add 2 chocolate pieces.
1 part water, and 1 part maseca. Mix together with a whisk in a separate bowl, then add to the pot on the stove.
Add 1 part milk.  Continue to whisk the Atoli regularly.
Add approximately 4 cups sugar to taste.

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Hola Todos!

We are starting to see some fruits from our labors (well blossoms really, but I know that they can turn into fruits).  We are starting to find people who are interested in the gospel and we are starting to receive referrals from the members.  We have set 3 baptismal dates for January, and miracles are starting to happen.
We set a baptismal date with Luz!  We have been working with her for a while.  She has been regularly attending church for the past 5 months.  We have been encouraging her to pary about a baptismal date for the last few weeks, and she has always been very reluctant whenever we started talking about baptism. 
But Wednesday night, we were talking about the blessings that come from being baptized.  We read Moroni 8:25.  Her kids were being very loud and distracting, so our exchange followed the impressions of the spirit and took them outside to play.  (Members really are the best!  Normally it is the testimonies of the members and friendship by the members that make all the difference, but this time it was a member helping to provide a atmosphere where the Spirit could be present.)
Luz read the scripture again and we started talking about what remissionof sins means. Hermana Facer talked about how all your sins are washed away and you are clean, when Luz asked about what happens if you mess up after you are baptized.  We talked about how there is only one perfect person and the church isn't a place for perfect people; it is a place for sinners who are trying to come to God.  We also talked about how the sacrament renews our baptismal covenants, if we partake of it worthily, then we are clean once more. 
And then someone we set a baptismal date.  I'm not sure exactly what happened.  But Luz said something about not wanting to get baptized ahorita.  I asked her why not, and she said that we wanted to do it when all her family is there, and with the Holidays, many of them are going to different places.  So, we set a date for the middle of January when all her family can be there!
We asked Luz what had changed, because she has always been so reluctant to even talk about baptism, and she said that she guessed that the Spirit has been working on her!!!  
We were able to set another baptismal date as well with Javier on Thursday.  We just met Javier this week, and taught him a 5 minute lesson outside his door.  We came back with a member to teach a full lesson, and the Spirit was super strong during the lesson.  Javier is from Honduras and is here working two jobs to save enough money for his wife and 4 year old daughter to come here as well.  He is super busy, but he has a sincere desire to learn more and follow Christ. 
Yesterday, Friday, was a crazy day.  It was the day that the world was supposed to end according to the Mayan calendar, and there must have been something in the air, because it seemed that all the people we were talking to were a little bit crazy.  One man starting trying to convince Hermana Facer that she needed to marry his son in Mexico.  Another one started telling us all about his life, and something about declining a $50,000 job because he found Jesus. 
Hermana Facer and I are getting ready for Christmas.  I am super excited for Christmas here in Denton.  It is going to be amazing!
Merry Christmas Y'all!  Feliz Navidad!
-Hermana Julie Anna Sanchez

Monday, December 17, 2012

Feliz Navidad!

Feliz Navidad!  Ojala que todo este bien por ustedes y sus preparaciones para Navidad!

Denton is still having a bit of a dry spell, we know that there are people out there whom God has prepared for the
gospel, but we still haven't found them yet.

The good news is that we have the support of the members.  We had 15 member present lessons this last week, and we know that when we do find the people that God has prepared for us, the members will have no problem fellowshipping them.

Denton is a very mixed population.  It seems to me that there are a lot less Hispanics here than there were in Waco, and they are much more spread out.  Denton is also a college town, and there are a ton of apartments and trailer parks.  But the apartments and the trailer parks have been tracted and tracted some more by the missionaries before us.  We want to find the people who are kept from the truth only because they don't know where to find it, so we are trying to expand our missionary work and find the hispanics who live in areas that haven't been tracted by every companionship for the last 5 years, in other words, we are trying to find the Hispanics who live in houses.

This is proving to be a difficulty because there are always one or two Hispanics per neighborhood, but we don't know which ones are which.  Plus, with it being Christmas time, it is harder to pick out the Hispanic houses, because everyone has their Christmas lights up.  Now, we are looking for mops on the porches, but they are much harder to pick out from the street.  Also frogs and pots and bunches of plants are good indicators of Hispanics.

Anyways, speaking about how Denton is a mixed population, it really is.  There is everything from broken down trailer parks to nice trailer parks, apartments, run down homes, middle class and everything in between, as well as rich classy houses as well.  It is really interesting to see so many different types of people in the same place.
Speaking of different types of people, we ran into two different types of Hispanics.  The first one is that we met a family that is half Jewish and half Hispanic.  The dad is Hispanic and the mom is Jewish and the children are both.  They are Messianic Jews, which means that they believe that Jesus is the Messiah, and they read from the New Testament as well.  I have never heard of Jews that believe in Jesus as more than just a prophet, so we aren't really sure how their religious background will affect our teachings.  They told us that we could come back and share more of our message after Hannakah, so we will see what happens in a few days when we go back.
We also ran into a nice African American man, and we shared a pass-a-long card with him, when we learned that his wife is Hispanic, which means that we don't have to refer him to the English Elders, but can come back and teach him ourselves.

It seems that the world is going crazy right now.  We have only heard a few snippets of what it going on, but seriously people are going crazy or something.  I am really glad that I am serving a mission right now, and don't have to worry about what is happening in the world.  All I need to worry about is the Gospel.
Go check out  Seriously, the Christmas website is super cool right now.  It is definitely worth a few minutes of your time.

Y'all have a blessed day now,
Hermana Julie Anna Sanchez

Hermana Facer and I (yeah for awesome companions!!!)

Lots of Hermanas!


Sunday, December 16, 2012

Denton, Texas!!!

Hola Everyone,
I arrived in Denton Wednesday, and my new companion is amazing.  Her name is Hermana Facer.  She is from Tremonton, Utah, and is a super amazing missionary.  She is a missionary with a purpose: to find, teach, and baptize.  I definitely have a lot to learn from her, and I am grateful for the chance. 
We are whitewashing into Denton, which means that we are both completely new to the area.  We are replacing two elders, and we aren’t really sure what they were doing for the last three months, but we don’t think that it was missionary work.  They haven’t left us any records of what they have been doing for the last 3 months.  Essencially it is like they weren’t even here.  We feel like Denton has been in cold storage for the last 3  months, and know we need to thaw it out.
We are really picking up where the sisters left off 3 months ago.  The elders left the apartment a mess, and we decided that our goal is to clean up the apartment and clean up the area.
We did have 1 investigator at church; Luz has been attending regularly for the last 5 months.  We are also working with Claudia, with whom we just set a baptismal date. 
We found an amazing family last night!  German, Claudia, Wendy and Carmen are wonderful.  They are looking  for the true church, and they know that they haven’t found it yet.  Wendy and Carmen are young women age, and the whole family is interested in learning more.  It is a huge blessing from Heavenly Father.
We left Waco on fire.  The Waco Spanish Area just made the top 8 this week for companionships in our mission.  Unfortunately, all of our hard work gets attached to the elders that replaced us in Waco.  Pero, esta bien.  We are all on the same team.
We left Waco with 9 baptismal dates and over 40 investigators.  They had appointments every night, and tons of support from the Ward.  I will definitely miss Waco and all of the amazing people there, like Guillermo.  But, now it is time to move on to Denton.
Ojala que todos tengan un Navidad muy feliz!

 Hermana Julie Anna Sanchez

Hermana Facer, Me, Hermana Martinez

Monday, December 3, 2012

Navidad tiempo!!!

Hola Todos!
Well, it is my last few days in Waco.  I will be leaving for Denton, Texas soon.  I am really sad to be leaving Waco, because Waco is the coolest!  But I am also really excited for Denton!  I am sure that there are great people there too.  My companion is going to Arlington, and two elders are coming to Waco.  I am sure that they will do a good job with the area, cuz there are awesome things waiting for them here!
The church is starting a month long Christmas campaign on  Y'all should check it out!  They are encouraging members to use social media to share the word!
It invites all to consider their feelings about Christmas and Jesus Christ and is part of an ongoing effort to help others understand how we worship Jesus Christ.
Members should go to and post links on Facebook and other social media sites, as well as in emails.
There is also free music for download here. 
It is a beautiful 78 degrees today outside in Waco.  We love not having to wear jackets in December.
We have been teaching so many lessons.  We are trying to teach every person that we meet, instead of just contacting them.  As we ask to say an opening prayer a few minutes into each contact, miracles have been happening. 
Our numbers of lessons and new investigators has exploded here in Waco.  We had 41 investigators on planning day, 25 of whom are keeping commitments, the others are new investigators that we have only taught one lesson to them.  We weren't sure how we were going to teach that many people, but now all we have to do is tell the elders who are coming about them, and they can do the rest. 
Feliz navidad!
Hermana Julie Anna Sanchez


Hello everyone!
It is transfers week and I am going to be serving in...
drumroll please!
Denton, Texas!!!
I will be serving in the area known as Denton 6th - Spanish East!
My new address is:
3232 N. Locust #1521
Denton, Texas 76207
Have a blessed day,
Hermana Julie Anna Sanchez

Monday, November 19, 2012


Hola Todos!
This has been an awesome week we feel like we are on fire.  We taught 28 lessons last week and got 13 new investigators!  Since Elder Bowen came we have been trying to teach lessons everywhere and remove artificial barriers.  It was an amazing week!
We have been having a problem of not having enough supplies to give out.  We only had 6 Libros de Mormon to give out in the month of november.  So we have been giving members the free LdM card and asking them to call for one through the mail and then write their testimonies in it and give it to them.  We have also stopped by a few former investigators to see if they still have their books.
We have been teaching and teaching and teaching.  I love missionary work!  It is the best thing ever. 
We had an awesome lesson with a family: Imelda, Raquel, and Alejandro at the church after a ward party for el Dia de Accion de Gracias!  We taught Lesson 2, the Plan of Salvation, and the spirit was so strong.  They committed to get baptized and we set a date with them!  I love the children Raquel and Alejandro so much.  They both love the scriptures and love to read from them. 
Nancy also wants to get baptized.  We are working on setting a date with her.  She was talking with some of her extended family about what happens after we die, and her prima asked her what religion she is.  Nancy responded by saying, "I'm Mormon. ... Well, not officially, but I want to be."  We are super excited for her!
We have been teaching Alberto for a while now, but we keep getting distracted and going off on wild tangents. (Like women praying in front of men and the difference between a spirit and a soul.)  We had a whole lesson on "How to Begin Teaching."  And we decided that we are going to read the Book of Mormon with Alberto, starting at the beginning, and looking up a lot of the references at the bottom of the page.  We had our first lesson with him reading the Book of Mormon, and we got through 9 verses. ...
As I was studying for Alberto in personal studies, I decided to look up all of the footnotes at the bottom of the page (except for the Topical Guide references, cuz those would take forever.)  It took me two days to get through Chapter 1, but it only took me 3 verses, before I knew (once again) that the Book of Mormon is true. 
We are finding people to teach every where we go.  There is so much missionary work to be done out here in Waco, Texas!  I love it so much!
Y'all have a blessed day now,
Hermana Julie Anna Sanchez

Feliz cumpleanos a mi!

Hola Todos,
This has been a great week.  We have been teaching some super awesome people.  Being a missionary is the best thing every!  I love it so very much.
I had my 22nd birthday this week.  I am pretty excited to be 22 years old!  I got three different birthday cakes from super awesome members.  I opened up my presents from home and got a GPS and a super cute quiet book.
Nos vemos,
Hermana Sanchez

My birthday cake from the Luna Family

Opening Presents

Spanish ABC book

Game day shirt

my new GPS, named KITT

My birthday sunrise

Hna Martinez getting cowboy lessons

My birthday sunrise

My birthday cake from the Landeros Family

Guillermo bought me flowers and a birthday cake.

The House of Israel and The Abrahamic Covenant

Hello Everyone,
So yesterday, we had the privilege of being taught from a General Authority, Elder Bowen.  He taught to two zones, the Waco zone and the Killeen zone.  It was such a privilege to be taught from a General Authority in such a small group.
For the last month or so, he has asked us that we study the Abrahamic Covenant, the Baptismal Covenant, the Oath and Covenant of the Priesthood, and the House of Israel to prepare for his visit.  So that is what we have been doing and it has been a delight to study those topics.  We have learned that all of the covenants are essesentially the same thing, and they are all a part of the Abrahamic Covenant, more or less.
So anyways, here is some of the things that I learned yesterday from Elder Bowen:
  • Compare and contrast D&C 11:20-21 with Moses 1:39.  Moses 1:39 is God's work and glory.  D&C 11:20-21 is our work.
  • The gospel is not easy, but it is simple.
  • Preach My Gospel should be used for the rest of our lives.  And we should start using it with our children as soon as they can read.  It would be a shame if we were to get home from our missions and put it on a shelf, and say those were 2 great years. 
  • Obedience + Work = miracles
    • Work = faith
    • Miracles don't happen when you don't act.  Miracles come when you've done all you can do.
  • doubt + fear equals not faith
    • if dark, can't be light
    • if light, can't be dark
  • Obedience brings power
  • Nothing will change unless you do.
  • Finding should be a way of life instead of a missionary activity.  Finding ought to be enjoyable.  Get creative and do it with a smile.
Who am I? so I can act accordingly...
  • God is a title
    • 3 things that I need to know
      • 1. know that God lives
      • 2. know his characteristics and attributes
      • 3. know that the course that I am on is in accordance with the Father.
    • We pray to God the Father.  Answers normally comes through the Holy Ghost.
    • God isn't gaining knowledge, he is gaining glory.  As we are perfected, it adds glory to him.
  • Abraham is our grandfather, and so we should all be happy because he is rich and our inheritance is through him.
  • You have the potential to become like your Father in Heaven.
  • chosen = obedient
  • The Melchezidek priesthood is the same priesthood as Christ used to create the earth.
    • The Priesthood is not men, it is the power of God.
    • The plan of happiness requires a man and a woman. 
    • The Priesthood blesses both of them equally.All of the prophets up to Malachi had the Melchizedek Priesthood.
    • The Nephites had the Melchezidek Priesthood.
      • Alma 13
    • D&C 107:18-19
      • in many ancient documents mysteries and ordinances are used interchangeably. ...
    • authority = right from God
    • power = personal righteousness
    • keys = the right to direct the kingdom in your geopgraphical area.
  • "If we don't have priesthood authority and keys, then we are a big club that does good things."
    • Aaronic priesthood => ministering of angels
    • Melchezidek Priesthood => communion and presence of God
      • D&C 84:19
  • Baptism without the temple isn't worth a lot.
    • If we stop at baptism, or even our endowment, we won't be able to enter into the presence of God.
  • Where is Abraham now?
    • D&C 132:29
  • "prepare every needful thing"
  • What can this world offer that can compare with all that the Father has?
    • If we could part the veil and understand who we are the temptations of this world would seem laughable.
  • The temple is the connection point between this life and the next.
    • This life is not reality.
    • The temple is reality.
    • We will only be here for 80 or 90 years and then we will go back to where we belong.
  • What do I need to change in my life right now to be a more effective instrument in God's hands?
So, yes, yesterday, was an incredibly edifying day.  We are all children of Israel, children of the covenant, and some of the noble and great ones in the pre-earth life.  Now, that you know who you are, act accordingly. 
-Hermana Julie Anna Sanchez

Tex-Mex Sandwich

1 hoagie roll
refried beans
lunch meat ham
1 hot dog cut into 8ths (1/2 the short way, and 1/4 the long way)
1 slice american cheese
sliced avocados
sliced tomatoes

Monday, November 12, 2012

God Answers Prayers

{This was written on Nov. 5th. I forgot to post it... Oops.}

Querido el mundo,
We taught a lot of cool people this week and met even more cool people.  Missionary work is so awesome!
We have been working a lot with Alberto.  He knows his Bible really well, and we have to make sure that we never Bible Bash, but always just teach with the Spirit.  He has a sincere desire to learn and find out if what we teach really is true.  I am really excited for him, because I know that if he prays with real intent he will get an answer. 
On Halloween we met a really cool woman, named Shamika.  I locked my bike to her fence, while we were trying to meet someone across the street.  She came out trying to figure out whose bike it was.  So we went over and apologized, and while we were there, we taught her the gospel.  She committed to baptism and I am super excited for her.  Unfortunately, she speaks English, so we had to refer her to the English Elders, but it was still super cool to be able to be a part of that process.
We had district meeting during Halloween night , so that no one would confuse us with Trick or Treaters.  Hermana Martinez and I made squished witches for all of the elders there.  They loved them so much.  We also switched name tags for the night.  I dressed up as Hermana Martinez and Hermana Martinez dressed up as Hermana Sanchez.  We thought that we were so clever.
Planning for Saturday, we realized that we had not found as many investigators as we would like, so we decided that we would do everything in our power to find new investigators.  We also realized that if we could find and teach a father with a wife and 3 children, it would do a lot to help our numbers.  So we started praying to find a family with a father, a mother and 3 children, over the age of 8.  We went up to contact one of our referrals, for a man named Guadalupe.  He has a wife and 3 children over the age of 8.  We found a family with a father, a mother, and 3 children!  God answered our prayers.  We weren't able to teach Guadalupe at that time because he was literally running out to work, but we set up an appointment for next week.
I feel like Spanish is coming along, I am getting more comfortable at reading spanish.  Hopefully listening and speaking will come over time.

Today, we went to the Masonic Temple, well, actually the guy called it a lodge.  It was really cool.  There were a lot of cool symbolism.  We thought it was really cool that some of the symbolism is similar to symbolism in the church, like the sun, the moon, and the stars.
Y'all have a blessed day,
Hermana Julie Anna Sanchez

All of the Spanish Sister Missionaries currently serving in her mission 
Attending a special training meeting

This was one of the math teachers at the high school we went to.
Julie was excited to see her.

At the Masonic Temple (lodge)

Monday, October 29, 2012

Great Joy

Hola Todos,
This has been an awesome week!  I absolutely love my mission!!!
The most exciting news is that Guillermo got baptized. I feel so privileged to be able to help out in God's work and watch Guillermo make a mighty change in his life.  We didn't do much, if anything, but somehow we were privileged to be able to help Guillermo come unto Christ.
The baptismal service was wonderful.  The spirit was so strong, and I am so excited for Guillermo.  He is an example of excellent faith!  We forgot to arrange for a piano player, so I got to play the piano for the baptismal service.  I played Come Unto Christ for the opening hymn and Choose the Right for the closing hymn.  Thanks Sister Martin for teaching me to play the piano.  And Thanks Merrill Ward for giving me the experience playing in front of people during Relief Society!
Tania, Guillermo's girlfriend, came in from Utah for the baptism, and she gave the talk about baptism.  I talked about the Holy Ghost.  Well, actually, I prewrote my talk and read about the Holy Ghost.   The spirit was so strong!  Baptismal Services are so cool, as is Guillermo.
Then on Sunday, Guillermo got confirmed a member of the Church.  He has such strong faith, and such a great testimony.  This was such a great begining for him and his progress towards the celestial kingdom.
This whole week I have been thinking about the scripture that says, "And if it so be that you should labor all your days in crying repentance unto this people, and bring, save it be one soul unto me, how great shall be your joy with him in the kingdom of my Father!"  (D&C 18:15) I don't know what I did to be privileged to have this great joy, but I feel so blessed to have been able to invite Guillermo to come unto Christ. 
We were also able to teach many cool investigators, like Abel y Jacobo, Maribel y Carmen, and Imelda.  We are also teaching Celia y Delia, Manuela, Gabriel, Alberto, Nancy, and probably many others. 
We are also teaching Sammy, a little 7 year old girl "member" who is preparing for her baptism.  Last night we taught her the Plan of Salvation, using a sheet of paper for each part of the plan.  We layed them around their living room floor and moved around a lot while we taught the plan of salvation.  We laid down pictures of Jesus at every part.  It was a super awesome lesson. 
The branch had their Halloween party and Hermana Martinez and I changed name tags.  We loved our costumes and thought that it was super funny! 
Have a blessed day,
Hermana Julie Anna Sanchez

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Fort Hood

What a wonderful and marvellous week!!!  Waco is awesome!  (So, is Killeen, but more about that later.)
Last Monday, I went to Cavendar's for the first time. It is a really nice boot store, and I really want to get some nice cowboy boots.  I am definitely becoming a Texan!
On Friday, I went on my first companion exchange.  I went to Killeen, which is about an hour and a half away from Waco.  It is by Fort Hood.  I spent the day with Sister Brown, and it was slightly weird to be teaching in English.  In Killeen, I felt like I had left the Bible Belt behind.  Everyone there is military, and they don't have the same Texas Christian foundation that everyone in Waco has.  In Waco, we contact a lot by saying, "Do you believe in Jesus?" and everyone always says yes, and then we go on to talk about Jesus and the Restoration and stuff.  But in Killeen that failed me.  I felt like I was in a completely different mission, with different strengths and challenges. 
We taught some cool people in Killeen.  The sisters there serve in the Singles Ward as well as the family ward, and I taught a lesson to a single army guy.  It was a completely different dynamic of teaching than what I am used to.  There were three YSA members present, and we were at the church.  Counting us, there were 6 of us all in a circle.  It was very different from the lessons that we teach in people's homes to families.  And it was weird cuz we were all the same age. 
Also, while I was in Killeen, a crazy black homeless lady just walked up to our car and knocked on the window.  We were with a 19 YSA girl, Mercedes, who was driving us around, and getting super excited for her own mission.  She rolled down her window and the black lady said, "Can I get a ride to the Jack-In-The-Box?"  When we told her no, that we didn't have a ton of time, she looked like she was either going to cry or hit Mercedes.  We gave her a pamphlet, rolled up our windows and drove away.  But we had to take an alternate route, because the black lady walked in the middle of the road and we couldn't turn left without hitting her. 
Then when I got back to Waco on Saturday, we taught Gabriel, and I was super excited, because when we met him at the door, he said that he believes in Science, and that he won't believe anything unless he doesn't have proof.  It was the first chance that I have had on my mission to talk about the "Great Experiment of the Book of Mormon!"  I love explaining religion and science together.  They both complement each other, and are part of the same great whole!  I talked about how just as gravity is a law, and if I drop a ball it will fall.  So is the experiment of the Book of Mormon.  If you read it, and pray about it with a sincere desire to know, God will answer you.  (He will do it in his own time, and in his own way, but he will answer you.)  It was an awesome lesson.  The spirit was super powerful.  I love love love talking about science and religion in the same setting, because they are both true!  AND I KNOW IT!!!
We met a family Saturday whose last name is Niño, which means Child in Spanish.  They are really cool, and I think that we are going to see cool things from them.  When we said the opening prayer, the father gathered all of his children and had them put their hands together.  He understood that prayer is something special and important.
Yesterday, Guillermo and Celia and Delia came to church!  In sunday school, they talked about the Law of Chastity, and in Relief Society, they talked about the Word of Wisdom.  I am sure it was a great review for Guillermo, because he is getting baptized on Friday.  But I hope that it didn't overwhelm Celia and Delia.  We have been taking our lessons really slow with them, and we haven't taught either of them.  During Relief Society, Celia leaned over and asked me why we can't drink coffee.  We explained it to them, and gave them a pamphlet, and I think that she is going to start living the Word of Wisdom, but I think that Church might have overwhelmed them.  Next time that we teach them, we are going to teach both Chastity and the Word of Wisdom to follow up from what happened at church, and to make sure that they understand. 
I am super excited for Guillermo's baptism this Saturday!  Wish me luck with my talk on the Holy Ghost in Spanish.  Ojala que todo este bien.
Y'all have a blessed day,
Hermana Julie Anna Sanchez

Queso Fresco Burritos

  • corn tortillas
  • queso fresco (this is the most wonderful kind of cheese ever.  I never had it until I started eating with Hispanics, but it is so wonderfully marvelous.  Y'all should try it)
  • shredded lettuce
  • fresh diced tomatoes
  • potatoes
  • optional: salsa, limes
Lightly grill the potatoes, and lightly fry the corn tortillas.  Wrap the tortillas around queso fresco.  Place 3 or 4 on a plate, and top with lettuce, then tomatoes and potatoes.  Serve with rice and black beans. 

Queso Fresco Burritos should really be called Queso Fresco Flautas, and they are attributed to Hermana Requena.

Tuna Tostado is attributed to Hermana Rameriz

  • fresh diced tomatoes
  • fresh diced onions
  • 1 can mixed vegetables (the kind with potatoes in it)
  • tuna fish
  • mayonese
  • hard corn tostado shells
Mix everything together (except for the shells :D).  Serve cold on tostado shells.
Es muy muy bueno y muy rico!

Monday, October 15, 2012

"Me Cae Bien"

Hello Y'all,
Tuesday, we were walking outside our apartment, and there was a huge bug on the ground.  And I mean huge.  It was like three inches long and an inch wide.  And it was such sitting there.  I thought that it was either dead, but I really thought that it was a fake bug from walmart or something for Halloween time.  Although I could figure out why anyone would put it where it was. 
My companion came outside and said it was called a Cicadia, or something, and then went to step around it, because it wasn't moving and it really looked dead.  And then it screamed at her, and I screamed and ran backwards.  Welcome to Texas, Hermana Sanchez.  Huge bugs that scream at you! 
We gave Alberto a church tour this week, and talked about the Atonement.  He came to Stake Conference, which was super cool!  They talked a lot about missionary work, and some people shared their conversion stories.
We set a baptism date with Celia and Delia for November 3rd.  They are so sweet! 
On Friday, we were able to teach Nancy for the first time since I have been here.  She is so cool!  She has been reading and praying and going to church, even though we haven't been able to teach her, because she is super busy. 
Oh my goodness, Guillermo is amazing!  We called him up on Friday, because we realized that we wouldn't be able to make it to his appointment, so we needed to reschedule.  During that conversation, he said that he wants to be baptized, and wanted to know when he could be baptized.  We had already been praying and thinking about what date we should set with him, so we told him October 27th, and he said that sounded perfect. 
When we taught him, he asked me to say the opening prayer, because he likes my spanish, which I think is super funny, because my Spanish is super broken, and is more like me throwing words together and trying to make them come out is some semblance of order, rather than anything that actually makes sense.  But it did make me feel warm and fuzzy inside. 
Then we set up the program for his baptism, and he asked me to give the talk on the Holy Ghost.  I am super honored, it will be a great opportunity for me to give a talk completely in Spanish.  
Then at the end of the lesson, Hermana Martinez asked me to pull out a chastity pamphlet for Guillermo, because that is the next lesson that we will be teaching him, and he likes to study the lessons beforehand.  While I was pulling it out, he said something directly to me (You have to understand that I don't understand most of what takes place during the lessons.  I try super hard, and just follow the spirit and hope that I am saying something relevant to the topic of conversation most of the time.), but I didn't understand it, because he said it super fast, so I looked to my companion for a translation, and she was like you will understand it, and then asked Guillermo to repeat it.
And he said, "Me cae bien." to me.  Awwwwww.  How sweet.  For you English Speakers, Me cae bien is how you say that you like someone.  It litterally translates into "you fall well for me."  But telling someone "Me gusta" is like telling them that you really like them (kinda like falling in love.. :D).  So, yes it is opposite in Spanish, but I like the expressions!
Well, I had a chasity pamphlet in my hands, and I wasn't sure what to do with it, so I was just like "Pues, Castidad."    And then Guillermo told my companion, "I hope that she knows that I don't mean it like that."  and then we all fell into a fit of the giggles.      Just some advise for all you future missionaries:  If ever your investigator tells you that they like you, don't reply by saying, "well, chastity."  Although it was muy chistoso. 
Hermana Martinez got to translate parts of Stake Conference.  And she did a super good job!  Yesterday she wrote in my journal for me (muy chistoso, I know), and here is a snippet of what she wrote: "I love being a missionary so much.  I also LOVE SISTER MARTINEZ SOOO MUCH  SHE IS SOOO COOL AND SO MEXICAN!!"  I really do love Hermana Martinez.  and I think it is so chistoso that her biggest goal in life is to be Mexican.  Here goal in life is to be able to pass for a Mexican!
Anyway, I love Texas so very much!  Waco is so cool!
Y'all have a blessed day,
Hermana Julie Anna Sanchez

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