Sister Katie Garff

Sister Katie Garff
Bolivia Cochabamba Mission

Monday, August 28, 2017 what brings us together today...

The family of "the sweetest member in the ward": Hermana Leonor. They have a bunch of rabbits, chickens and puppies, which is SO COOL because during the lesson, Leonor made us egg sandwiches using the eggs that literally came right from her chickens! Talk about eating super fresh haha:D
Our first baptism!!! haha jk, we just saw this happy, Catholic couple taking pics in the park, and we totally photo bombed at least 10, but then we ended up asking for a personal pic, hah!

Marriage is what brings us together today..I HAVE DECIDED TO GET MARRIED.....not! This week was absolutely amazing in my different ways, but also FULL of lessons and experiences concerning marriage and dating....more on that in the cultural category;D
 One of the families that we are teaching right now. They are awesome and we totally love them, but they are just a bit crazy sometimes and forget the importance of going to church;)
LOL, this is one of my favorite pics. In the mission, it is pretty shunned if you walk around with an umbrella or if you wear a hat, because that's how OTHER missionaries yes, I was technically a representative of another church this week, because the sun was BURNING hot and my skin was absolutely roasting.
Funny: There are tons of funny pics, but I think the funniest thing that happened is that our trio now has new names. Hna Renovato is the Lamanite, Hna Garcés is the Anti-Nefi-Lehite and I am the Nephite....purely basted on the colors of our skin. We are definitely not racist in our companionship;D
Now, this seemed a little strange to us at home.  Apparently, "mission lingo" would mean that Katie (Nephite) and Hermana Renovato (Lamanite) are the mission moms of Hermana Garcés (Anti-Nephi-Lehite).
These Hermanas are having a great time serving together
Yup, still looking for a house, but the newspapers didn't help us much as they were all VERY nice houses
....that are advertised to have water too;D
The family of our pensionista. We LOVE them!
Cultural: To be honest, I have not even THOUGHT about marriage for the course of my entire mission and it is still something that I avoid like the plague, BUT it is not uncommon (apparently) to be thinking about that during the mission. Below I have attached a photo of an elder who is practically already engaged and his fiancée is planning the wedding right now. Also, my two companions talk about marriages constantly and one is already planning the date for when she will enter the temple with the love of her life.
THIS is Elder Babbitt, and YES he was practically engaged before coming on the mission, haha!
We also taught a lesson on marriage this Sunday, and let's just say that I didn't have much to say, haha! AND, we helped a bawling young woman after the second hour of church to cope with her current break up....YUP! I will not be getting married for at LEAST 5 more years AND the only thing I know about my wedding is that we will be eating lots of chocolate;D
One of the sweetest members of all times:D She works all day, every day,
 but separates 3 hours every Sunday to go to church.
It was the birthday one of our neighbors yesterday and they invited us to eat with them.
It was super nice, but we had just come from eating lunch, so we literally ROLLED the rest of the day, haha!

Spiritual: We have been praying to find a family of 5 who can all get baptized together before Hna Renovato leaves in a few more weeks, AND we have 3 families of 5, all of which can be baptized, but we are working on it. So cool:)

Love ya´ll!:D Have another great week of school!
Hna Garff
We made TACOS for a family home evening and I LOVE them:D..the people and the tacos;)

Monday, August 21, 2017

Welcome Hna Garces, Heart Attacks, and Finding Gru's House

This is something super cool that we do in the mission. When new missionaries arrive, the secretaries, assistants, presidents and capacitadoras sing "Called to Serve" in the airport:D
Hey Everyone!

First of all, happy International Animal Day:D (it was earlier this week), but really, enjoy;) It is so funny here, they celebrate their animals every year by putting special collars on their dogs and giving them baths, cutting their hair, etc. It is a party! (but maybe that's why we don't have any water in the house to bathe ourselves...;))
Finding a house that has running water at least three times during the week;D 

Looks like Gru's house from Despicable Me so of COURSE it is an option;D)
Also, TONS of CRAZY things have happened this week! Cambios were a bit different because the new girl that arrived is super sweet but it extremely shy (and her trainer was the exact opposite). Because they didn't get along too well, President Montoya assigned us to be her MOTHER:D Hna Renovato and I are so excited but a bit uncertain about how we will still do intercambios with the other Hermanas, but hey:) It is all good and we are going to learn lots of great things being in a trio and serving the other sweet Hermanas in our zone:D
The trio:D - At a Fútbol game:)

Te quiero mucho Hermana Garcès:D Gracias por ser mi gran amiga y compañera:D ¡Trabajemos duro y con el Espíritu Santo esta semana


¡Todos nuestros amigos!
My companion pulling one of our investigators home so that he wouldn't leave to go drink, hahahaha
Funny: the pictures sort of tell it all this week, haha! But we had a blast eating lemon pie, pulling drunk investigators home to their houses, saying goodbye to Hermanas with destroyed shoes, taking a super serious photo shoot and attempting to do service for the members in our ward by "heart attacking them"
Ring n'runs, lol, they really don't work here;D
Cultural: Heat attacks have the great intention to show one's love by decorating somebody's door, leaving a treat and running to hide...the issue is that the people here really aren't accustomed to having someone knock on their door and hide because there really aren't policeman here and people don't often open their doors to strangers during the night. We nearly caused an old man in our ward to have a heart attack, haha! BUT, we had a blast, especially because we did it with some of our investigators who are usually locked in their house because their parents are out drinking:(

Spiritual: This week really was absolutely crazy and FULL of emotion for all of the sisters that were involved with the cambio to accommodate the new Heramana. But, through the midst of all of the trama, I really came to respect our new president because he was extremely preoccupied about our well-being and showed his love and concern for us every step of the way. I know that he receives divine revelation from God and that he has a genuine love and concern for all of his new hijos y hijas:D
Sister missionary shoes after 18 months of good service!
It was Lemon Pie Day the other day, so of course we had to carve out 5 minutes to find some pie....The pie, however, was so good, that we ended up eating it over the course of 30 minutes...the pictures show the process of the heavenly moment (including a pic when we had to divide the pies in half because we both wanted to savor every bite that we could, lol)!

A party that we found in the church before attending a district meeting. (We always tend to find the fiestas;))
I love you all, but please make good choices;D
Hna Garff

Monday, August 14, 2017

More Happy Moments in Bolivia

Probably my favorite picture in this UNIVERSE because it is so funny!
As missionaries, we are literally untouchable;D
The Last Supper;)
Some of our friends are going home today, so OF COURSE we had to celebrate!
One of the Elders that is going home gave us his protein powder that he didn't finish. Since Hermana Renovato is about to go home, we made it a definite goal to make sure she goes home with muscles...haha!

This week was incredible, so I hope that everyone at home is doing well too! And, I realize that school will be starting again soon, so good luck:D Personally, I feel very lucky to still be out in the mission field, haha!
The other day we had a bbq with Rubèn and David.
They are so awesome, but wow! I forgot how much meat boys eat, haha!
Funny: Angelo and Rodrigo's dog is the absolute best, but mostly just because she smells good. Out of curiousity, we asked them how often they bathed their dog. After finding out that she gets bathed twice a week, we burst out laughing because we realized that the dog bathes more regularly than we do;D
This is the lovely smelling dog that I mentioned above...
you know, the one that bathes more regularly than we do;D
Cultural: We were visiting this sweet old lady named Antonia the other day, and that visit was so eye opening, because it made me realize that there aren't any rest homes here to help the elderly. Antonia is literally blind, but lives by herself (so she does all of the cooking, cleaning, etc.) and in Bolivia, all of the stoves need to be lit with fire. Because she is nearly blind, she nearly lights herself on fire every time:0 However, she is one of the most faithful members of the church and has a firm testimony, SO God blesses her and I am here to witness that there are literally angels in her house helping her to do the things she needs to do every day to stay safe.
This sweet old lady is the one that I described above. She is absolutely amazing and is the exact type of grandma I want to become: firm in the faith and faithful to how much cake she makes every week;D
We went to a dance concert that various kids in our ward were involved with.
It was so cool because we got to see dances from Bolivia, Peru and Chile. So cool!
And...this is me dressed in the costume of the little girl that we went to see in the concert, haha:D
Spiritual: This week was special because my personal studies were AMAZING:D I was able to learn so much more about Christ and I would just like to share how much I admire that Christ healed, walked with, uplifted, talked to and cared about absolutely everyone! EVERYONE was important to Him and I LOVE that!
My favorite member of the church!
Angelo and his special gift...the only thing I can do with my tongue is make a hot dog,
so I really respect him, haha!

Have the best darn weeks of your lives! I love you all and I really hope that you will make good choices;D

Hna Garff

Monday, August 7, 2017

Happy Bolivian Independence Day!

So this wasn´t exactly a good picture of anyone, but YES:D The baptism went so well and Rodrigo is the best! 
Something rather dumb, but before filling the faunt, we forgot to clean in desparation,
I tried to clean the faunt by individually picking up the floating garbage, haha
I just wanted to wish you all a Happy Bolivian Independence Day:D It's crazy, because hardly anyone has their stores open today, everyone has flags adorning their houses and nearly all of the cars are decorated with the Bolivian colors. It is awesome! Also, it's crazy because this last week I completed 1 year in the mission. I definitely don't feel like I have been here for a year, but when thinking about my awesome friends and family back at home, it most certainly does feel like a year, so time is crazy in the mission, haha!
To celebrate 1 year in the mission and also, to appreciate Ice cream sandwhich day,
we, OF COURSE, ate ice cream sandwiches during intercambios! (exchanges)
We had an awesome dinner with our neighbors, but it was weird,
because usually we don´t eat dinner, haha!
Sometimes when the food is really good, one can´t help but lick the plate;D
Funny: The mother of two of our recent converts came to church which was AWESOME! She is such a great person, but the only thing is that I guess I was a little too excited because I accidentally spilled some of the sacrament water on her pants, haha! But the BEST part was that after I apologizedd perfusely, she just laughed and said, "Don't worry, now I am blessed", Haha! I love her!
Hna Renovato and I decided to clear the house of the old clothes from past hermanas.
But before doing anything, we had a pretty grand time playing dress-ups;)
We usually buy and eat the same food every single week, and here is a picture of evidence:)
This is Hna Jordan, eating the same breakfast of papaya, milk and granola
that she has eaten for the vast majority of her mision, haha!
Cultural: We helped our zone leaders change houses because they had tons of mold growing on their wall. But, because they live in the city, their water is also a bit dirtier and comes out yellow and sometimes with cute little insects. YUM! But, honestly, it was also a culture shock, because it was so AWFUL to enter the home of was like entering a fraternity house...but without the beer;)
What the Elders buy on p-day...
What the Hermanas buy on p-day
Chilenos talk like what did we do?
We gifted two parrots that squack at the speed of light to their rightful owners;D
These parrots were imported directly from SLC - we knew that Katie would help them find a great home.
Spiritual: Rodrigo got baptized:D He is such an AMAZING person and it was so neat to hear his testimony at the end. He heard a lot about the blessing side of things from our lessons, but really, he got baptized because he loves God and wants to show his love for Him. I love being a missionary!
A family home evening that we had with a recent convert (Ruben:)) and our pensionista....
we decidded it needed to be programmed, because we are planning their salvation little by little;D
Probably one of the spiciest things on this planet for me to handle, but for my companion, aboslutely NOT! 
She eats at leats 5 of these pepers every day! But seriously, when I eat them, my throat BURNS, my nose runs like crazy and my face starts turning bright purple. Yup, probably not the food for me.

My companion after eating too much;D
Have a great week! I love you all!
Hna Hey!:D
Katie had the opportunity to see Hermana Lopez once more.  Hermana Lopez was kind enough to send this photo to us.  Katie loved serving with her and we are so grateful to her for all that she taught Katie and for the joy that she seems to carry with her always.