Thursday, January 15, 2015

The Not-At-All-Annual Alayna Health Update (or this is for all those questions Mom asks--SnailMail)

So I remember one of the things you said before I left was that you weren’t worried about me gaining weight.  That was really sweet of you and all, but maybe you should have worried just a little bit. ;)
The members feed us well and feed us a lot we don’t eat with them too often though, especially here in our trio.  With two areas, we just don’t have time for eating citas (Spanish word for appointment).  My companions are crazy about this pre-made salad thing, and when we eat in piso (apartment) I make a salad too.
We’ve made a New Years Resolution to work out more effectively.  We go out and run every other day and do cross-fit/P-90x or abb workouts on the off days.  So that’s good.
We eat breakfast well, Mercadona has this fantastic granola, I add frosted flakes, and it’s a delicious homemade Honey Bunches of Oats.
Lunch is late, 2 or 3 usually, but it gets big.  Dinner is either non-existent (a fruit) or leftovers.
No weird twitches.  I’m pretty normal, healthwise.  Being tired is just a part of missionary life, but it hasn’t been too bad for me.
My companions think I’m crazy because of how quickly I wake up in the morning and how ready I am to get going.
I . . . . occasionally zone out of church, and it was hard to stay awake in Sacrament meeting at first, but now that I’ve got more Spanish comprehension, mints, and a water bottle with me, it’s easier.
So I mailed the Lladro and no I’m mailing you the package tracking info.  I hope it gets there OK.  It was about 50 Euors to ship, and they don’t have insurance or anything so that’s why I didn’t have them ship it.
Did you know they have shelf-stable milk here?  It tastes . . . .different.  But good.  There were a couple of other minor adjustments in diet but, I’m game and it’s not too bad.
I’m healthy, happy (a little bit heavier, I think), and carrying on.
<3 Hermana Een (arrow to the heart “that’s healthy too.”)

From the Project Life cards she sent back for her scrapbook:
President & Hermana Lovell
Location:  Madrid, Spain
Companion:  Ashley Brooke Curtis
Favorite Thing about the MTC:  My district #Amulekforever!  The people I got to meet.
Least favorite thing about the MTC:  Hard to say.  The schedule was a bit rough.

District Meeting 13/1/15 My Trainer’s last. We sang sappy songs like “God be With You ‘Til We Meet Again.”  We did some practicas and talked about statistics.  Elder Grau is our District Leader, a native Peruvian (Paraguay?) and very hard to understand with his thick accent.  He asks if I understand and I feel bad but have to say “más o menos.”

BAPTISM 25/12/14 WHITE CHRISTMAS   Xiomara was the first lesson I had here in Valencia, now she’s my first baptism too!  It was a lot of running around and scrambling together beforehand but the service was perfect.  Afterwards she bore a beautiful testimony of how clean and white she felt.

Companion:  Ashley Brooke Curtis (ABC)
From:  Alpine, Texas (Nowheresville)
About:  One of the sweetest, most compassionate people I know.  Very Spiritual.  Struggled with confidence.
Date:  October 28th-December 9th
Area:  MTC or CCM

Companion:  Vanessa Manwill
From:  Holladay Utah
About:  A hard-working Sister Training Leader.  She said “Well Shoot!”  When things went wrong and always wore purple cardigans.  She swore they were red . . . .
Date:  December 10-January 20th 2015
Area:  Valencia 1C

Zone Conference:  My first one ever.  (12/22/2014)  Brought Christmas to the mission.  President answered questions, people gave lectures and talks, we ate paella and ended with a testimony meeting.  I wasn’t planning on bearing mine, and I didn’t know what to say.  But after a while I stopped fighting the urge and stood up.  Later, President said that I had been an answer to prayer, that he’d prayed I would speak.  I’ll never forget.

Remember to Look UP
We went to visit a family, but couldn’t get in so we decided to knock the building.  Top floor, last door.  Miraculously the door to the roof was unlocked so we snuck out and wandered a bit.  You could see the whole city from up there!  But even better . . . .I saw the stars for the first time on my mission—really seeing them.  And Orion is still there like an old friend.
[Explanatory note from home:  Eliza says when they walked to the Jacksons in the mornings for a ride to seminary it was usually dark and they’d see the constellation Orion hanging out above the Jackson’s home.  Alayna didn’t know what it was at first when Eliza would say, “There’s Orion” but came to recognize it.]

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