Email received May 20, 2013
Gosh I was just barely picturing Spencer in the DR and Emma driving (two pretty crazy but super sweet things!) and I realized I´ve kinda been gone a while, but it really doesn´t feel like it. I still try telling people I´m new but they tell me I´ve been here long enough to not be new (I talked to one of my zone leaders right before he went home and he said he still felt brand new, so I guess this feeling doesn´t really go away, but luckily it´s not that I´m nervous or lost and confused or anything,I just feel like I barely got off the plane and poof, now we´re 9 months down the road!) It´s kinda weird that things keep happening at home even when I´m not there. I´m glad Grandma is okay, let her know that even the best fall down sometimes. Happy birthday last week Emma, in a few years I can sing happy birthday to you in Spanish, Guaraní, and English (we do that at every zone conference, speaking of which we have one tomorrow and I´m super stoked for it!). So this week was pretty dang crazy, but we still had some success. First off Diego got baptized! It was on Saturday and that day and Sunday just happened to be the only days of the week where it wasn´t raining (coincidence, I think not). And what was even better was that Diego´s mom and sister and cousins all came to the baptism and confirmation in church the next day! They also all said that they also want to be baptized! There were some serious miracles that took place down here in the Paraguay with lots of prayers behind them. I thought I prayed pretty well before my mission but I noticed that now I´m pretty much always praying for something, whether it´s saying thanks for a miracle that just happened or asking for another one (usually both), but I honestly think that that´s how it´s supposed to be. Mom I´ve often thought about how you would want to bring all of the little Paraguayan kids home with you if you were here and I´m not going to lie, there have been a couple that I´ve wanted to send home. You have to love the people but realize that the absolute best thing that you could do for them is bring them the gospel and teach them how to live it. I always have to think about that when I see little kids or families struggling because really that is what the Lord has sent me here to do and that´s the best thing for them.
So one funny story that happened this week. We´ve been teaching this girl named Juliana, she´s Diegos sister-in-law. She´s come to church a couple of times now and is getting ready for baptism, but yesterday we went and visited her and she told us she doesn´t want to get baptized anymore. Elder Williamson and I got super scared and we asked her why. At first she said she wasn´t sure so we started trying to help her all of the reasons why she had wanted to be baptized. She finally told us that Diego told her that she had to get baptized in just her underwear and she didn´t feel very comfortable doing that! Haha Diego that little jokester! It was pretty funny and we explained to her that she will be wearing clothes when she gets baptized and that she has nothing to worry about, then she was all excited about baptism again. Haha. She should be getting baptized in a 2 weeks but we sure need some miracles there too.
Like I said this week was pretty tough because it rained Monday to Thursday (I don´t remember if it rained Friday) and the work really slows down in the rain. Then on Friday we moved into our new apartment (it´s a much nicer place than where we were living and all of us seem a lot happier for it). So that pretty much shot our day then we had Diego´s baptismal interview that night than it took all morning Saturday filling the font and doing a few other things in the new house so we just didn´t have a lot of time to work. I was pretty stressed out about everything but luckily Elder Williamson has a pretty good ability to not stress too much about things until we need to so he´s always telling me to just relax and not worry so much. So then on Sunday when we reported our numbers I realized they were still actually pretty normal for us so all the stress was in vain. That´s one of the biggest reasons I feel like I was called to Paraguay, it is a very stress-free country (the most common word here is tranquilo for crying out loud!) and I am definitely learning how to work hard without the stress, but it is a process. Also I may have been called here to introduce me to the wonderful ketchup they have here. I´m turning into Spencer because I put ketchup on all sorts of stuff now, the ketchup here is just so good (Elder Williamson puts dipping sauces to a whole new level. He puts barbecue sauce on everything, even his pancakes!).
Well I love you guys and hope that you have awesome weeks and that you can finish up the school year strong. It keeps getting colder and colder here so it´s so funny to me that you guys are entering into the heat, but luckily we´re getting our winter blankets tomorrow at zone conference so I´m set. Be strong and be smart and remember I love you and pray for you often.
Elder Hulsey numero uno
Here´s little Dieguito at his baptisimal service. Also we were walking the other day to the cyber to send out some pictures of our new house to the Hna. Madariaga and these guys called us over to help them with this tree. They were just joking because they thought a couple of Yankees wouldn´t know the first thing about chopping down a tree but they didn´t know which Yankee they were messing with. I took the axe and surprised them all by knowing how to hack away at the tree! It was pretty funny and they were yelling at my comp to take pictures and since we were on our way to send some pictures he actually had his camera so he took one.