Monday, December 21, 2015


Well Fredi, after that amazing lesson with Hna Maritza, FINALLY ACCEPTED TO BE BAPTIZED HERE IN PUNO ON THE 16TH OF JANUARY!!! 

 Oh my gosh I cried. I just was so happy. Like before he just was like "Hey yeah I wanna get baptized but I wanna wait and do it in Lima." But in our lesson I asked him, So Fredi have you thought more about baptism and the things Hermana Maritza said? And he told me "yeah Hermanas. I've been thinking a lot. And praying a lot. And meditating a lot. And after all that, I've decided that yeah, why should I wait? I want to get baptized here. Before I leave to go to Lima." Can I get a WHOOOP?! Like I actually whooped in the lesson. It was totally necessary. And I asked him if we could plan a date right now and he said " Yeah. When can I get baptized?" And we set a date, taught him a great lesson, he came to church, and everything is just going swimmingly. By far the happiest moment of my mission. Like when Maxi got baptized, it was equally happy, but it was just such a fight with  Fredi and we finally won!!! It was a good day that day. Super good.

Other good news, Gaby, the one who was going to get baptized like 3 months ago, finally is going to get baptized. Next Saturday!!! We finished her papers yesterday and she's already had all the lessons for months and we're finally gonna get er done! So January is looking to be a pretty good month. I'm really excited!

In sad news, our one baptism that we had planned, she decided to get up and head off to Arequipa without telling us and she was supposed to get baptized this week. But alas, that did not happen. And because Arequipa. I'm bummed. 

I don't think I really have anything else to say... just one more thing. Today was pday de zona and I went to go get the volley ball that fell in the puddle, slipped and fell and got all wet. It was really lame. 

Well family I will see you so soon! And so we'll plan for saturday, 12:00 your time. I can't wait to see you all! Love you!  

These are some cute kids that I just adore. Ian Paul, Erik, and Fabrizio 

Long live llama sweaters. It's seriously my favorite thing I own

That's a rabbit that the elders had that they were going to kill and eat. I don't think they ever did. 

District chanu chanu! Me, Elder Pearce, Elder Bravo, Elder Reyes, and Hermana Rodriguez. Well Actually, that's not our district anymore. But yeaaaah. Oh elder Flores is in there too next to elder Pearce. 

We love integrackers. 

And last one, that's me living up to my momma leading the missionary choir in good ol Puno Peru! 

Monday, December 14, 2015

#29 17 Miracles (well like 4 really)

Well this week started really lousy, got really great, and then today, got kinda lousy. Because today are transfers. And our whole zone is changing. I'm particularly bummed because Hermana Baker has had a transfer. And I don't know what I am going to do without her. We've been together for 7 months, living together no less, and now she's off to Abancay as an Hermana Leader! I can't believe how quickly she is being called to positions of leadership! It's seriously so fast. People usually aren't Hermana Leaders until their 8th or 9th transfers. And she's already there. I'm so proud of her. She is going to be great. But I'm really sad for me. She's been my best friend here through everything. I feel like I'm leaving home again. Like leaving family again. And I know she's bummed about leaving so I don't want to say anything, but seriously my heart is breaking. I'm going to miss her so much. And I hope and pray that we can serve in the same area again. Soon.

 Also Hermana McMahon is leaving. Other piece of my heart. Gone. And everyone else that was in my original zone when I got here is gone. Elder Pearce, my zone leader, Elder Bodily, we shared a ward, and now I'm the oldest here in Puno Central. Like by 2 transfers. So that's weird. I'm kinda jealous. Like I'm going on my 5th transfer here in Puno. By the time I'm done training Hermana Rodriguez, I'll have almost 9 months in the mission. And I don't get how that is possible. I'm convinced that it's not and that this is all just a weird coma. I just feel like I'm starting the mission all over. Transfers stink. But you know it's a good thing. I know I'm not done here yet and the month of January is going to be jammed packed of baptisms and weddings! Yeah now we're to the good part. The miracles of Christmas! 

So this week we were like hey you know what we're just going to be awesome. Well it didn't start off like that. Awesome I mean. Hermana Rodriguez came down with a bug and was walking dead for a couple days. So we didn't have a whole lot of work that we were doing because she just wasn't doing so hot. But we always left in the afternoon to try to have something and boy did we have something.

 We'll start off with Fredi. Fredi is a 6 ft 4 19 year old Peruvian (duh) who is just awesome. Like in our first cita with him, we challenged him to be baptized and he responded with "Oh Hermanas. I would LOVE to be baptized" and we were all whoop and hallelujah. But then things got kind of weird. Like he still wanted to learn, but he was really closed off about it. Like we freaked him our or something. So things got reeeeaaaallly slow with him. He told us he still wanted to be baptized but that he wanted to wait until January (he told us this in October) and that he wanted to get baptized in Lima. And it's like well yeah we can try to convince him to get baptized sooner and to get baptized here, but he was like a mule and so we're like yeah we'll keep teaching him and hope for the best. But yeah nothing really changed. We kept teaching him but he was like nope. Lima. Bummer right? But This week something changed. He's a young single guy so obviously we can't go alone to teach him and our usual plan A, Gaby, had classes and couldn't come with us. So like 2 hours before the appointment, we called in a moment of desperation our Bishop's Wife, Hermana Maritza! She is awesome! I remember like my fist transfer here I compared someone to sister Bolton, well I retract that and now I'm saying that Hermana Maritza is literally the soul sister of Hermana Bolton. They are the same! Hermana Maritza is just really short. But yeah she's like hey lets go. So we went and she just told him straight up "Fredi, I know that you are an awesome kid, and I know that your going to get baptized. So just do it. Don't worry about anyone else. Just do it. because you know. And I've never seen you in the chapel, so this week we'll see ya in church. Listo?" And he was like uhhh what? But guess what, HE CAME!!! AND STAYED ALL 3 HOURS! That never happens! He always goes to Juli in the weekends and never goes to church.But he came. And I almost cried. He's going to Lima the fines de Enero for  vacations, but we're going to try to get him baptized before se va! 

Miracle number 2. 
Remember Maribi and Giomar from last week and Giomars questions that kind of killed me inside. Well this week holy cow our lesson was awesome. We brought this time our Bishop and his daughter (the bishops family rocks) and in the beginning we confirmed with them that they were going to come to church this week. Well Maribi was still a go, but Giomar told us that he wouldn't be able to because he was going to travel (People here always travel. Always.) And we were like Dang. We don't want that. But what can we do? So we just kind of left it. And then the Bishop just talked to them and gave them the fellow-shipping of a lifetime and they talked for like 45 minutes with us just watching and usually that would bug me but in that lesson, I was so grateful. Because Giomar, who is a less active, told us before he didn't want to come to the church because he was worried that people would judge him and wonder how he wasn't married and already had a kid and he just didn't want to go for that. But the bishop just opened his arms and his heart to this family and the whole spirit in the house changed. It felt like a big happy family reunion. And at the end of the lesson, Giomar asked us again at what time our meetings started. We told him 9 to 12. He said "Yeah. I'm going to do all I can to come. You can plan on me too with Maribi". It took all my strength to not scream and jump for joy in that moment. Because before  he was always like "yeah the next week hermanas. I promise" and that fell 2 weeks. But yesterday I had the pleasure of watching him, all suited and tied up, walk into the chapel hand in hand with Maribi and their little son Evan in tote, also in suit and tie. It's the first family that I have brought to the church services. And it was seriously the best feeling in the world to see them there, take the sacrament, and sing the hymns. We gave them both Books of Mormon with our testimonies written in them. During the sacrament, they both read in their Book of Mormon our testimonies. I wrote in Giomar's and Hermana Rodriguez in Maribi's. I was sitting behind them so I couldn't see Maribi very well, but Giomar was diagonal to me so I could see his face as he read. And I swear I saw a tear. He laughed at a couple parts, I don't know why, maybe I'm funny, or my grammar is still really bad, but you could just see a brightness about him. And I just watched as they read. and they showed each other their own and it was just such a precious moment for me to witness this family learn and feel the spirit together. I loved every minute of it. I can't wait for them to come this following week.

 It's just so amazing to see the impact that really the members have in this work with the investigators. I think that's the thing I learned most this week. That wow it really does make a difference. These two things that happened this week I am convinced would have never had happened had it not been for the members, in particular the Bishop's family, that helped us. Before I shrugged my shoulders at the members. Like no pasa nada. But where was my faith? Where was my faith in the work that God has for them? I am not doing to this obra de salvacion alone. Nor should I. I just have to get off my high horse and accept the help that is so ready to go with me. That's what I learned. That the members aren't the problem. It's my pride that's the problem. Humility is an interesting thing isn't it. Cuts you down right when you need it, but blesses you more that you can imagine. I studied that this morning; that if I am not humble, no pasa nada. And God really humbled me this week. And I had more success this one week then I have had in months.
 Love you! 

Monday, December 7, 2015

#28 Angels We Have Heard On High

So we have started a missionary Choir! And guess who is the director? Yours truly! Haha mom you'd be so proud of me! We are singing two nights a week in the main plaza of Puno and contacting as we do so. And our first night was Saturday night! And boy can we not sing. But it was still so fun and because Puno is a super touristy place, we had people from all different countries watching and listening to us! It was the best! And they enjoyed it! Everytime we stopped, they begged us for more! Don't ask me why because we sure weren't angels, but maybe we had a couple accompanying us that day. I like to think so. And then at the end, we were geting ready to leave, and a mob of moms and little girls came up to me "Perdon senorita, pero una foto por favor? una foto por favor?" and you know me, I like to please the fans so I posed and smiled and did all that famous stuff. So yeah I think it's safe to say I'm Puno Royalty or something. I'm going for it. And they didn't ask anyone else for pictures, just me! (insert hair flip here) 

Ok my moment of pride is over, we'll get back to the good old missionary work. 
So this week was kind of slow... We have two investigators that are just awesome and I love them both so much but they are driving me crazy! Neither of them will accept a baptism date! No matter what we do, they both just say no. All the time. WE fasted for them both yesterday and now we're hoping for a miracle. One is  Isabel and she just wont talk to her husband about marriage. I don't understand why nobody here is married. It's really getting on my nerves. She's afraid to talk to her husband about it and she knows that she has to because she has to get married before she gets baptized, and she knows the church is true, but there's something else wrong that we've gotta figure out before she can take the plunge into marriage and the baptismal font. Right now I'm just really hoping for a miracle of extreme measures for her.

 The other is Julio and he's been attending the church since... Julio. Since like my second week here. And he too knows that the church is going to bless his life, but he doesn't want to accept a date until he knows everything. We're trying to get him to understand that he doesn't need to know everything yet, that what he's got is enough faith to be baptized, but that's not good enough for him either. He's not reading the Book of Mormon a lot, so we're trying to put more emphasis in that so he can really get a testimony. But those are our two, stubborn, investigators that I just love with all my heart but they are really driving me bonkers. I guess that's true love though,. right?
This week we also had a a great and terrible lesson with this new family we are teaching. Their names are Giomar and Maribi. Giomar is a less active of... 12 years. He lives with Maribi (They aren't married of course) and she is an investigator. They have a 2 year old son named Ivan and they are going really well. We've only had 2 lessons with them, but we've got big plans for a wedding and a baptism. But this past lesson we had was just kind of... rough. you see, Giomar has a lot of... doubts. And one of these is why all the people, all the leaders, of the church are from The United States. And he is very vocal about it. It's one of the reasons he fell away he told us. And I've never even thought about that before. It never even caught my attention. I mean we know that there are leaders from all parts of the world, but his beef is that the 12 and first presidency, with  the exception of President Uchtdorf, are all American. And I didn't have a clue what to say. I mean its a bit awkward because I too am from the United States and I felt almost a little attacked, and I wanted to fight him on it. But I didn't because what good would that do? So I just told him that I had faith that God knew what he was doing. I told him that I had faith that God loved all his children, not important where they are from, what language they speak, or how they looked. I told him I had faith that God was preparing people in all parts of the world to be instruments and leaders in his hands. I don't know if what I told him gave any peace to his mind on the subject, but he did back down and accept what I said. I told him to pray to find peace in this; to find a way to maybe not understand, but to accept. And at the same time, I received peace and comfort from this too. Because it's easy to get caught up in these little things. To think that God doesn't love me as much as others because I don't have the priesthood, or because I was born into a certain family, or whatever the problem may be. But we can't let our faith lessen in respect of how much our Heavenly father loves us. How he loves all of us the same. That we are all his children. So that was our interesting lesson with Giomar and I hope that he can receive peace from these feelings. 

Well that's all I've got for you now folks! But I just want to wish a very very happy birthday to my Beautiful mother who prepared me for this moment of fame I had as choir director. I learned everything I know from her! I love you mom and I hope your day was awesome and that beebz was nice to you! Also Happy Birthday to Danny Boy. You've got a beautiful son thank's to your beautiful wife (you're not too bad yourself) and I just hope that you guys are having the best time as your little family. Seriously that boy is beautiful. I can't wait to meet him! Oh and it was so fun to see Emily in the Christmas devotional all up close and I screamed when I saw her and all the missionaries got mad at me but I didn't even care because I got to see PB!!! It was the best. Well I love you all and hope the spirit of Christmas is all a glow in  your homes and Hearts! Two more weeks and I'll see ya'll real soon! Love everyone! 
Hermana Rust

 This is from when I got my hair cut and it's just to show the monstrosity that are my roots. 
Hermana Baker was a little scissor happy
 Selfies and Cuteness
 We went to an inca and The condor. The condor at 3 in the morning. Why do I do these things?

Monday, November 30, 2015

#26 Of Risks and Riots

So this week was a really interesting one. We'll just jump right in ok?

So I was getting really tired of my ratty hair that I flat iron all the time that would literally break off if I even touched it so I handed Hermana Baker my paper cutting scissors and she just went to town. She cut off a good 2 inches and now my hair is a little less ratty and a lot shorter. But hey she didn't do half bad! I kinda butchered my bangs, but hey when in Puno! So that was fun. I'll attach some pictures. 

 Theeeeen Wednesday, I was in divisions with my beloved Hermana McMahon and we were just doing our studying, feeling the spirit and all that jazz, and all the sudden, we hear yelling and glass bottles breaking. I thought it was just a couple of kids having fun the Peruvian way (well really in any way. Breaking glass is fun) But little did I know, there was a huge group of women sitting outside our apartment breaking glass and stopping traffic and starting fires and I was just like.. hmmm this can't be right. Well, supposedly, there was a big paro planned for Wednesday because the price of water and electricity went up. And this isn't just your normal everyday riot or strike,. Nobody had their cute little picket signs with offensive but clever names. No this was angry Peruvians with glass bottles and ignited tires. It really was something to behold. They had stopped traffic completely, which is nuts because we live on a pretty busy highway, and if anyone tried to pass on their motos or in their cars, it was rocks and bottles to the head. It was kind of scary! And the weirdest thing was that the majority of them were women! With babies on their backs. Rioting. We watched for a little bit because come on. It's a riot. I didn't take any pictures. Tells us not to in the white bible. But it was just nuts. We were stuck inside for a little bit because we were scared to leave. But it passed after 2 or 3 hours and then we went on our merry way again, preaching and testifying.
Later that week, one of the members of our ward (she actually lives in the other stakes but she comes to our ward) Invited us and the Elders to thanksgiving. She and her family had lived in Utah for like 7 years so they got really good at american traditions. But it's a little harder to complete the traditions here in Peru. So we didn't have turkey. Or potatoes. Or Cranberry sauce. We had a good ol fashioned Peruvian meal complete with Inca Kola. But it was fun to just be with a family on Thanksgiving. WE all went around and said what we were thankful for and I was just thankful to feel somewhat at home. Hermana Silvia is a Peruvian Version of Natalie, and her son would have some fun conversations with Travis and Derrick if they had the chance. So it was like I was in a regular old Thanksgiving sass battle with the family. I liked it a lot. Then that night, Hermana Baker and Tirrell treated us to instant potatoes with a mushroom soup that tastes freakishly like gravy and canned chicken with bread and jam (kind of like rolls...) and no bake cookies. It was actually really satisfying and almost tasted like thanksgiving. But it was fun to share it with the Hermana's . I'm so glad they're here. That was thanksgiving. 

Then we had some of the greatest lessons of our companionship!!! We have this lady named Isable. She's kinda a stubborn one. She's not married (not a big surprise) and we've been trying to  get her to introduce her husband to us for like ever she we can plan a wedding and get this girl baptized! But she's been refusing because she knows that he's going to say no and doesn't want to ask him and it's been super frustrating. Buuuuuut this week, we were leaving and as I was walking down the stairs, this man starts frantically waving at me. Now I just thought he was a renter there too , but he shakes my hand and gives me a big kiss (this part was unexpected and I didn't have time to react!) and tells us "thank you so much for visiting Isabel!" And I'm just like Hey no big deal who are you? And he tells me he's Isabel's "husband" (partner... whatever) and we're like SWEEEEET! So we're going to have an appointment with him because he just seems super nice and receptive and now we're gonna get them hitched and baptized in one fell swoop (that's how that goes right?) and it's going to be sups chevs. (Super Chevre AKA super Cool. I can't remember if I've already explained that or not... but it's gonna be big in Peru. Imma start a slang.)
And then other miracle this week : WE GOT THROUGH A WHOLE LESSON WITH JULIO!!! This is unheard of! Julio looooves to talk and give us the philosophies of life and the heavens and stuff, which don't get me wrong is really interesting and cool, but not exactly why I'm here. So we just went in thinking si o si, he's going to listen and we are going to teach the restoration (probs not the best mindset to go into a lesson, but oh was it necessary) so we start, and we talk, and we ask him questions, and he responds in a normal amount of words, and we testify, and we move on, and repeat! And we finish! And it was a really great lesson. HE told us before that he didn't want to get baptized yet because he doesn't know anything (because we could never get a word in our lessons) But now he's learning more and faster and we're going to challenge him again and pray he says yes! Because he's attended the church pretty regularly since my first transfer here. So since July. That's a ton of time guys. AND he went, all by himself, to the Priesthood session of stake conference this weekend. Just up and went! Like is that not amazing? So we're just gonna teach the daylights out of him ( I don't think  I used that expression correctly...) and the he's going to be ready and I really feel he'll take the plunge this month. Like for reals. It's gonna be awesome.
Well everyone, my time is far spent. I think I covered everything I wanted to cover with you guys and I hope you enjoyed it just like I enjoyed my makeshift thanksgiving. Well I hope you enjoyed it more than that actually! Hey how great is the Christmas video? Super simple, but really powerful. Do me a favor and spread that thing like wild fire. Don't let any of your friends leave your presence with out putting it on first. And then tell them to share it. and before long the world will feel of the blessing that a savior is born. For unto us a son is Given. I love that line. He was given. To us. And how can we go through life living with people that don't know that. So help a sister missionary out and help all your loved ones out. Share. Share! SHARE!!!! That's your homework. And send me your ideas and experiences of how I can share it too! I need some ideas. There's a zone competition and mama's gotta win! Thank you all and I'll see you real soon! Christmas is just around the corner! It's actually coming a lot faster than I expected.Slow down! Love you all share it and preach it!
Hermana Rust

That's how much she cut off! 

Monday, November 23, 2015

#25 This is real, this is me.

I feel like all the Disney channel movie songs could be weirdly turned into christian music and you know what, I love it! But really this song (from camp rock, sung by Mitchi, aka Demi Lovato) really has defined my life this past week. "Like do you know what it's like, to feel so in the dark, to dream about a life, where you're the shining start. Even though it seems like it's too far away, I have to believe in myself. It's the only way. This is real this is me I'm exactly where I am supposed to be now, I'm gonna let the light shine on me! now I've found who I am there's no way to hold it in, no more hiding who I want to be, this is me." And now before you all shake your heads in disgust because I quoted an original Disney channel movie song and close out of your emails, just give me a few minutes to explain and you too will be converted to Disney channel Christianity (that might be a big load of apostasy, but hey we're gonna go with it...)

 So I'm like really happy with out numbers this week. I know numbers don't matter, but hey I can still be happy with them! This week we found 2 new families where the dad is less active and the mom is an investigator! I was really excited about these two because also, with one of the families, his mom is also a less active and he introduced us to her! So we found in total 5 new less actives this week. We've been trying to really focus on what our president said about looking for the less actives and the different points we should use to help them reactivate and give us references. And the promises are already starting to fulfill themselves!

It's just really cool to finally see something I do make a difference. I guess the reason I've been so down on myself is because I'm still trying to figure out how I am qualified enough to be training someone when I still have little to no Idea what I am doing. And so I was forced to take a hard look at how I was as a missionary and I just couldn't really see the fruits of my labors. I felt like I was really trying, like I was doing everything right, but nothing was coming from it. I thought "there's no way I can be in this ward for another transfer after this. I'm not changing anything. Barrio Central would be much better off without me." And it's really how I felt. I just felt like I was going to mess everything up that the other missionaries had established and that there was really nothing I was good for. And at the same time that I was going to mess everything up for my companion. Because I really don't want to ruin her. Everything just seemed to be crumbling around me. I felt like the members didn't trust me, that everyone couldn't understand my Spanish, that everyone thought that I couldn't understand their Spanish. I was calling My district leader at every moment to ask questions to make sure I wasn't doing anything wrong, and that made me feel incompetent and made me feel like he thought I was incompetent. I was just kind of in a dark place. (Do you know what it's like to feel so in the dark?)  Like I had no idea where to go and couldn't even see the different options of where I could go. 

But then something changed this week. Things started falling into place. Spanish became a teeny tiny bit easier, and my relationship with my companion got even better. Halfway through the week things changed. I received a blessing from an Elder and in it he blessed me to be able to make it through "this trial of faith". And when he said that, it didn't really make sense to me until later. And I realized, and am realizing right now, that maybe it was a test of the faith I have in myself. To help me see that yeah, I don't know everything, I am far far from knowing everything, but that I know enough to be able to do this work. It's something that has been said to me a lot, that I know enough. That I know enough to help another person know enough. And that's enough. I just didn't believe them until now I guess.

 And I know the numbers don't matter. But the numbers this week, and the people behind the numbers, the lessons, really helped me to figure that out this week. That I'm doing ok. That God and my mission president trust in me, so I need to trust in myself. And that's what I learned this week I think. That if nothing else, out of my mission I will still get a whole ton of people added to my family, who I love and know they love me. I also learned that. And hey, love is pretty good right? All you need is love, as the Beatles once put it, and that's all I need too. But hey, numbers are still a great thing to have!

So I've figured it out. I've figured out that this is real. The mission is real. And that this is me. I am a missionary. I am exactly where I am supposed to be. That this ward is for me and I am for this ward. And now I'm going to let the light (or love from god) shine on me. And I'm not going to hide it anymore. I'm not going to hide behind the fact that maybe I don't know a whole lot. I know where I want to go, and I'm figuring out little by little how to get there. I'm not alone. Never will be. And now I hope you understand the analogy of my use of a Demi Lovato song. And I hope you forgive me for it. But hey I'mma keep on singing it!

 Well that's my spiel for hoy. I don't really have any funny stories or anything, just did a whole lot of growing this week. I hope that doesn't bore you! I hope everyone has a great thanks giving and I will be dreaming of sushi and corn hole all week now. Thanks mom. I love everyone, including you whoever you are reading this. I love you! Happy thanks giving and I'll talk to you all real soon yeah? Chao Chao! 

Hermana Rust 

Monday, November 16, 2015

#24 Manan Canchu Colque

Guys I'm learning Quechua! And it is legit! That phrase up there means "No hay plata" Which in turn means " There's no money" or mejor dicho "I'm broke". When we went to Cusco two weeks ago, we went contacting in the plaza, and all the little street vendors assumed I was a tourist and didn't know Spanish, let alone Quechua and assumed that I was white (ok, well I a white... ) and that I had a lot of money so they're just all in my face (well not really, they were all actually quite kind) but they would say "Comprame gringa! Comprame amiga!" which means buy my stuff, and then when I would reply with Manancanchu Colque, they would all get really surprised and then laugh and then walk away. So now I just say it all the time! I love it! I've also learned a little bit, tiiiiny bit of Imara. Imara is more common here in Puno because it's the language of the sierras, so people here speak it. I've learned Camisaraki (That means como estas) and then you respond with wakili (and that means bien) Imma be coming back to all y'all 4 lingual (what is bilingual but with four?)!

Well this week was a little slow. But I guess that's what you get when you put together a gringa that just barely got out of her training with a Latina who is in her training. But I'm just thanking my lucky stars that I'm not having to teach someone how to speak Spanish. Hallelujah! But as for my Hija linda preciosa, she really is quite something. The first week she was reeeally quiet. But this week holy cow she just broke out of her shell and we're just having a grand old time! It's the best! I mean we still have a huge communication barrier, but with a little Spanglish and some charades, we can usually figure it out.

 One of (our only actually) baptisms fell through because she didn't come to church and now she doesn't have enough attendances to be baptized so that's a bummer. Also Gaby still hasn't tied the knot and we're not sure when that is going to happen. But in happier news, Julio, from like four months ago, is doing really well! ]On Saturday he came to a baptismal service and he really enjoyed it! It's actually the second one he's been to! But here's the kicker, I have an English class that I teach Saturdays at four. So I invited Julio to come again, and he said he would. But I had forgotten that we had a baptism at four. So in comes Julio half way through this baptism because hey 4:45 is the new 4:00, all ready to English it up, but it wasn't English class! Hahah it was so funny to see his face because he was all... que? But he stayed all the same and really liked it! So hey investigator in the baptism gratis!!! I was a big fan.

 My comp is great. I'm still figuring out training. Luckily I have a book that gives me all that I need to know and luckily again, (but also unluckily) I just got out of my training and I know mas o menos what is up!  I really don't have much more to say about it specifically. Like I read a book and it tells me what we should do and then we do it... And that's training. But it's fun and I am learning a lot! 

Well I've gotta go now but I love you all and hope everyone is finding happiness in all the things that they do! Les Amo, y chao! 
Hermana Rust! 

This is elvira. She was a baptism from the elders in our ward. And then Saturday, her husband and son got baptized! Whoop!

This is just funny because she got stuck. Lol.

Monday, November 9, 2015

#23 ...and then I punched her in the nose!

Well people who read these emails (and thank you for sticking with me!) do i have just a ton of stuff to tell you. This week has been like a roller coaster, with crying in both extremities, in the super lows and the super highs. But it's been a really good week and I can't wait to tell you all about it!

I kind of left my last email in an abrupt ending (cliff hanger hanging from a cliiiiff! And that's why he's called cliff hanger! I hope some of you got that...) but it was understandable because, hey I'm a mom now and it was kinda a surprise to me too. But I will get on to the good stuff.

 So approximately... 27 minutes after i left ya'll hanging, I had quite the experience that I will add to the book I am currently writing called "Mission Misfortunes that would ONLY happen to Hermana Rust" (No I am not currently writing this, but it's got a nice ring right?)  So we were walking in the plaza waiting to go eat because I was starvin marvin from fasting the day before (But I was spiritually full!) but we were waiting fooooorreeeeevvveeer for these other hermanas to print some pictures. I had just gotten the news that I would be expecting soon (my comp) and I was all flustered and trying to figure out how my name had even been suggested for this calling and my mind was a mess and I think it caused my limbs to go a little... wonky. You'll find out how so soon. So I was hanging on Hermana McMahon's arm because I was just a tad faint from lack of food and understanding, and I looked at her and whined (yes dad I still whine...) "Hermana McMahon lets go eat I'm Hungry!!!" at the same time I swung my arm, rather strongly, in the direction that I wanted to go. Well When I did that, I felt my arm hit something, or mejor dicho, someone, and I heard a crack. I whipped around and behind me I found with what, or who, my arm had crashed. A poor tourist had walked up behind me at the same time that I swung and I totally punched her in the nose! I was so embarrassed and so worried that at first I didn't even know what language to speak because I'm a white girl in Peru who punched a tourist in the face! Like what do you do to that? So I spluttered out something like "Oh my gosh! I'm so...  Perdoname! Sorry! Ahhh!" And then I covered my tag because it's like I don't want her to hate Mormons because of me! Well she didn't say anything, just held her nose, and then walked away. It was bien uncomfortable and I felt foolish all day. Because I totally punched a tourist in the nose. The adventures and mortifying moments continue.
Well there's that. Now I'll get onto the more important stuff. Like how I have a daughter! First things first, her name is Hermana Rodriguez. She is from Trujillo and she is 22 years old. My daughter is older than me... awks. But she's really sweet, really quiet, but doesn't hesitate to correct my Spanish. So she gets straight 10's from me! When I got to Cusco to pick her up, I was soooo nervous. Like I wanted to cry. Before I left, I had our zone leader give me a blessing and he told me in it that sure, right now I didn't think I knew a lot, not sufficient to train another person, but that I would find that I knew enough. And that we would grow together. Well when I heard that, I was a little stubborn and was like "Well yeah I know I don't now a lot! But how am I gonna learn from someone that knows even less than me?!" but then, when we were sitting in the chapel, waiting to know who our comps were going to be, they brought in all the newbies and asked them what they expected from their trainers. And one of the girls, not my comp but another, said that she wanted someone who also expected to learn, not just to teach and be in charge. And that really hit me. I was like, hey that's what my blessing said, so you know, I can do this. I can teach someone and they can teach me. That's how the gospel works right. We help each other in the areas that we lack. So after that I felt a little better. And then I felt a wave of relief when I found that she was Latina and could speak and I wasn't left solo in that area. But yeah that was good. And she's super into doing everything right, she wants to work hard, just walk slow because she isn't quite used to how thin the air is here yet. Which I totally get because it happened to me. But I reflected on how little I knew when I got her almost 5 months ago (can you believe that?!) and how I couldn't speak Spanish in any way shape or form and how much I really have learned in this time. And now I can really see that it is a miracle. That I can understand my companion and she can understand me, that I can converse (is that a word) with the members here, how I can challenge people to be baptized, how I can give our breve informe (I don't know how to say that in ingles) every Sunday, how I know how to set goals and work toward them, how I know how to get off the combi in the right spot and I know where Jr. Carabaya is. Like its literally incredible to me that I can do these things. And there my promise has been fulfilled. That I know more than I thought I did. And I know it's all through the grace of my Heavenly Father. I know that he is with me through 100% of this. And its incredible. It really is something special to recognize the miracles in your life. The miracles you have had for bastante tiempo and just didn't notice hasta ahora. It's soooooo coool. 

Well that's all I have to say about that. And now I'm going to focus on myself because IT WAS MY BIRTHDAY AND NOW I HAVE 20 YEAR AND I KNOW THAT'S NOT RIGHT BUT WHO CARES!? My birthday was interesting. First , because It was the day  after I got my hija and she didn't know it was my birthday until Hermana Baker ran into my room Friday morning with breakfast and screamed "Happy Cumpleanos!" So that was a little awkward, but then she was really sweet all day. But Yeah Hermana Baker and Tirrell made me breakfast, pancakes with chin chins (Peruvian equivalent to m&ms) and mango! It was really good. And then later that day we went to our pension, Hermana Eli, and she had a cake for me there and they all sang to me and it was so sweet I love them so much. She like taped balloons on the wall and bought me Inca Kola Because I crave that stuff in the worse way and yeah it was super sweet. She just kept taking pictures of me and yeah. And then they have you take a bite out of the cake right? Well my comp shoved my face in the cake and I had it all up my nose but it was fun! Theeeen that night we had our ward mission night and that all went normally until the end. The Elders, Elder Bodily and Elder Tucto, left before us and I ran after them because I needed to give them a card that one of the Hermanas Left for a member. So I run out and call out to them and I see this giant carton of eggs in their hands. It's tradition here that when it's someones birthday, you just attack them with eggs! So I saw the eggs, screamed "NO!!" and took off! Someone grabbed me by my jacket, but I ripped it off and ran and in the process one of my shoes fell off. I'm a regular ol Cinderella. But instead of a prince delivering my shoe to me with an engagement ring in tote, I had to run back and get my shoe and found that there was an egg cracked in it. In my leather shoe!! Because I ran into the church,and obviously the elders couldn't throw eggs in there, they decided it was still fulfilling tradition to put an egg in my shoe. I wasn't amused. But yeah those were the adventures of my birthday! Oh also today we had a zone conference this morning and because the zone leaders and the hermana Leaders were in Cusco on my birthday, they brought a cake to the zone meeting, in which Hermana Baker shoved my face again. I'm going to have such bad acne. Well that's all I got this week. IT was a fun week and I'm looking forward to training and learning From Hermana Rodriguez and all that jazz.

 Thanks for the prayers and words of encouragement from you guys! Because this email is so dang long, I'm not going to have anytime to respond to people personally, but thank you for the birthday wishes and I love you all and hope everyone is avoiding punching tourists in the nose and eggs in their shoes. The Gospel is true, and we're all gonna work real hard to share it to everyone right?! Right! Well have a lovely week and remember who you are and what you stand for and to make good choices and don't do anything Lauren wouldn't do (that's for you Ansley!) 
Con mucho amor, 
Hermana Rust con 20 anos!

First dinner. I remember this moment in my own mission... es bien rarro. 

Salchipapa. it's a staple here. 
My Hija!!! 
Us in the plaza de Armas in cusco! 

This is the breakfast Baker and Tirrell made. I'm a hot mess, but hey... that's all I got. 

En la casa de Hna Eli 

Queremos que muerda la torta! 

Oh quick explanation about this! Hermana Gonzalez knew that she wouldn't be here for my birthday, so she made this sign and then took it to Manchu Pichu and took a picture with it! Then that night the hermanas gave me the sign and this picture! How sweet is that!? Oh and that's Elder Zerillo. He also went home. He was my district leader. 

This is Silvia! Last night we went to her Despedida! She has come with us in our citas since my first day here, and now she's leaving on her mission today! She's going to Guadalajara ( I have no idea how to spell that) in mexico! 

This is a dog that the elders gave me for my birthday because a dog bit me all that time ago and they still think it's funny. 

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

#22 Wait what??

Well I am still awaiting my email about whether or not I will be transferred tomorrow so hopefully I will get it by the end of my email time. If not, you will all be waiting in anticipation for a week. How fun will that be!

Well my comp died yesterday. She headed back to the motherland. It was sad. I can't imagine the mission without her. I mean she's all I've ever known. But I'm excited to learn from someone else, and if absolutely necessary, in another zone that isn't Puno Central. But only if absolutely necessary. Because holy cow I do not want to leave yet. I just love this city and these people and this ward and our zone and I can't imagine leaving yet. I mean sure I've had 4 months here and maybe that's a lot, but to me it's not enough. Hermana Gonzalez was here for 9 months. That's what I want! And now I'm just kinda trying to fill up space because I don't know what else to say... I'm sorry this is a super lame email but I'm feeling a little anxious because I don't know whats going to happen yet and I don't like that! 

I guess I can tell you about Isabel. Yeah I'll do that. So in our Mission we have a goal of 1200 baptisms before the end of the year and right now we have something like... 700. So we lack 800. But our president gave us the promise that if we search out the less actives then we will get references and new investigators that will progress quickly and really well 

And hold up we're just going to take a break right now because I just got the news that I am going to train this transfer and I'm kinda freaking out and I don't know what to do because holy cow I am not ready to train and I feel like someone just punched me in the face. Like with a lot of love and stuff. but holy cow I'm terrified. But yeah I'm staying in Puno and I don't know who my comp is yet and won't know until Wednesday so I will keep you posted. OH MY LANTA!!! I can't believe 'm training. I'm going crazy and that's all I've got for you but yeah pray for me! I love you all!
Hermana Rust. 

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

#21 It's a small world after all....

So I had two cool "It's a small world" moments this week.
The first is for Grandma Skousen! Grandma, I met someone that knows you! Our stake president! His name is Presidente Soto and he's only 32 years old (and he's already been in the stake presidency for 7 years! how crazy is that?!) and he served in Cochabamba 10 ish years ago and I told him "Hey my grandparents served in Cochabamba 10 ish years ago!" and he was all like "Oh cool what's their name"! And I said "Skousen" and he paused for a moment and then said "Oh did they work in the temple" And I was like "Heck yeah they did!" And it was this cool little reunion and all joyous and it was a good time.

The second was today actually. You see, my companion is going home this next Sunday so today, for her last Pday, we went to Juliaca, which is an hour away from Puno. Its kinda really dirty and loud and smells kinda funky, but it's near and dear to Hermana Gonzalez's heart all the same. So we went to go say goodbye to some families with whom Hermana Gonzalez served. And one of these families is Familia Rivas. And while we were there, the Hermana (I don't remember her name) asked where I was from. I just say Vegas because who doesn't know Vegas. And then she tells me that there was an Elder here that was from Vegas who liked to cook and dance and who had already gone home some years earlier. She said Elder McCan. I was like yeah have no idea who that is. So she offered to show me a picture. I just thought there's no way that  I could know this elder, Vegas is huuuuge. But I took the picture all the same and when I saw it, low and behold I knew who it was! It was Grant Mecham! I had no idea that he served here in Cusco! I mean I knew about Kade and Alyssa Ramos, but holy hannah montana this mission has gotten a lot of moapa valleyites! But yeah I told them he was from my stake and the hermano (I don't know his name either...) started crying and just asked me to tell Grant how much this Hermano loved him and that Grant was very close to his heart. He started crying and  it was all very sweet. But sadly I don't have any contact with Elder Mecham, so if facebook, or mom, could do your magic and get that message to him. I also have a picture with the two that I will send right now. But yeah it was kinda cool.
 This is the Rivas Family that knows Grant Mecham!

As for this week, I'm sorry I really have nothing to report. It was kinda slow. Oh wait, Julio is back in business! We decided to actually give him his teaching record so he would know that we actually do have things to teach him and stuff, because
before it was really hard to teach him because boy is he a chatterbox! But now we've got it going and he's going to pick the things from the record that he wants to learn first and we'll just go from there. He's a real cool guy and we know he's going to get baptized, just not sure when yet.... But yeah that was a fun time.

Well I've gotta be heading out now. We've got to go visit some more families here in Juliaca. But I love you aaaallll! Ask the missionaries how you can help! Go on visits with them! Members in lessons make alllll the difference! Thanks for the love and support and prayers and examples you are to me! 
Con mucho amor,
Hermana Rust

PS. I have a new drunk man story. But this one wasn't fun. Usually they're all romantic and just want to marry me, so like they're not scary. But yeah this week I had a run in with an angry one and he punched me in the chest. Like not super hard, but the air got a little knocked out of me. But I guess it was nice not to have a proposal for once. This one shook things up a little bit. 

 This is Haley. She's the cousin of Ruth. I sent a picture of Ruth last week. She's getting ready to dance the Waka Waka. It's a dance about bulls. That's all I know. 
 This is Juliaca. It looks a lot like Puno. 
 This is a cat that I found in Juliaca. 99% sure its Carter. Because Carter lives forever. 
 And another one because I like selfies and cats. 
And to all my Sharons out there.... (I don't know any Sharons and I really wish I did.) 

Monday, October 19, 2015

#20 It's an Eternal Joy

Hello friends and family and people of the virtual world! How ya'll doing? I'm swell. 

Well Hermana Gonzalez has made her excursion to Machu Pichu to do that whole Inca thing, so I am currently with my favorite gringa, Hermana McMahon. I luffff her.  But fear not because Gonzo will be back tomorrow and we'll be back to our cute little companionship of a giant white girl and a 5 ft nothing mexicana!

 So today during our companionship study, Hermana McMahon said something that was just super profound to me and kind of made me think a lot differently about the mission. For all you out there who don't know, the mission is not a walk in the park. It's really hard actually. Everyday, you're feeling pushed to your limits emotionally and spiritually, and sometimes physically, and it's a lot to deal with. This is by far the hardest thing I have ever done. But's its the most fulfilling. Its the most rewarding. Its the most I've ever learned and grown in such a short period of time. And it's something that I will never forget.

Hermana McMahon said "These aren't the best two years (or eighteen months). It's not the happiest well will ever be. But it's a different kind of happiness that we gain here. It's a different kind of joy. It's an eternal joy that we come to feel." An Eternal Joy. I just love that. Because I know its true. I know that this will bring me joy into the eternites, as well as other people. To be able to preach this gospel and help others learn and learn ourselves, this joy is just too much. And something that I will have forever. It's a joy that comes from surviving trials and from hard work and overcoming things that seem impossible at the time, but work out only through the help of Jesus Christ and our Heavenly Father. It's a joy of learning and falling and picking ourselves up again and starting something knew. I'm a new person now. I've learned so much. I've experienced a lot of sadness. But I've experienced a new kind of joy that I didn't know before. And eternal joy. And if I can think in this perspective, it doesn't matter what trials might befall me. It doesn't matter the problems that I will face. It just matters that I will be able to feel this joy forever. So thats my food for thought this week. Thanks to Hna McMahon. 

Well I don't really have anything new to report regarding our investigators. The wedding has been postponed again and it looks like it won't be until November which is kinda a bummer. But there still will be a wedding. Besides that, we haven't had a toooon of success this week. But we're looking forward to this coming week with hope! We had a pretty good turn out in church yesterday and Julio finally came back to church (I wrote about Julio once... a long time ago!) but yeah that was really good. Besides that, kinda a slow week. This coming week will be better and I'll have lots of stories and good stuff to tell you all! Deal?

Well I love you all, I love the gospel, I love the mission, I love joy.

Happy Birthday Shout out to Avonlea this week. Love ya Gupta! So that's a wrap. I'll talk to ya next week! xoxoxoxoxo
Hermana Rust

Four gringas waltzing around Peru. what could go right? 
That's Hermana McMahon (my temporary comp), me, Hermana Baker (my ex comp) and Hermana Tirell (The daughter of hermana Baker) 

                               I'm absolutely in love with this little boy. that's him praying. His name is Alvaro.

And here's a super awkward picture with president and his wife. 

Monday, October 12, 2015

#19 Voy a reir, voy a bailar, vivir mi vida lalalalala!

Shout out to our very own Phat Knat for introducing me to this song before I left. I thought it was pretty cool before, but now that I understand Spanish its kinda the bee's knees and my self proclaimed theme song. Y'all should look it up and listen and then look up the translation. I actually have no idea what it is called, but it's by Marc Antony (or however you spell that) and I just really like it. That subject line means "I'm going to laugh, I'm going to dance, live my life lalalala!" My favorite part is the la la's. Po.

So this morning I went running with a German shepherd at 6:00 in the morning in Peru. Yeah what'd you do? Because I'm jealous of anything else. But yeah that's the truth of how I started my p-day. I guess it was kinda fun and now I know that I can run faster than a German shepherd so, bonus! His name is Shadow and Hna Gonzalez is absolutely in love with him. I'm a little less fanatic about him ever since the whole dog fiasco that has since made me the joke of the entire mission. (Not an exaggeration. Everyone, EVERYONE, knows.) He's a police dog and the dog of the brother of one of our less actives. You guys remember Angela right? I wrote about her once. Well yeah that's her!
So this week has been... normal. Just preaching and praying and walking. And I don't mean for that to sound like I'm bored or think it's lame. Because I have neither time to be bored nor time to think stuff is lame. It's mission life right? And it's super cool and I'm super cool because of it I think. But one thing that happened this week is that we had a multizone conference! And that means Pres. Harbertson came to town! And it's way better than Santa. But I'm looking forward to Santa too. But yeah suuuper cool conference and I have a super cool story that may not be super cool to any of you, but I was kinda over the moon when it happened so I'm gonna share.

 So one of the zone leaders from BellaVista was conducting and he forgot to ask some one to lead the music. I was sitting in the front row right in front of Pres and his wife, so when we were getting ready to sing the opening song and nobody got up to lead, President looked at me and motioned for me to lead the music. I was like yeah normal and I walked up to the stand and got ready to lead (#another shout out to Sister Maughn who gave me and Mckenzie Hauver leading lessons when I was like 12!) President beckons me to walk over to him, so I do obediently, and then he leans over to me and says, and I quote "You sing really well so I knew that you would be perfect to lead." Can I get a holla at your Hermana! I don't know how he knows that I sing really well, because like, I do, but some how he knew and knows that I'm a boss leader (once again, thanks Sister Maughn) and I just thought that it was legit. Once again, I understand that you might not understand why this has significance, but oh boy does it. 

This week was the 26th birthday (yesterday actually) of one of my favorite ladies in our ward. Her name is Veronica and she is awesome. She got baptized like... 2 years ago and she's still super strong and lovely and the best. Well they (her and her sisters and cousins, one of which is Maxi whom we baptized) invited us to celebrate her birthday. so last night we went and it ended up being like this super spiritual family home evening complete with lessons and songs and the whole shebang. And I was so impressed by them, because here they are, a bunch of young girls, celebrating a birthday in the way they thought best. Talking about the savior. And I just thought geeze. My sisters and I would be watching Harry Potter or something like that (not that this is bad. Harry Potter Rocks.) But I just felt such an appreciation for these girls. Because really they only have each other. None of their parents are members and all live like 8 hours away, but they are always together and supporting each other and I just think they are a great example to everyone. A great example to show that family is so important. And whats more important is to live the gospel as a family. And that is what they are doing. I thought it was awesome. 

Well I think that just about covers it. We're not going to have a wedding this week... boo. But we're trying for the next week. So keep your fingers crossed. I love you all and hope all is well with everyone. Remember the little things in life. Prayer and scripture study are the foundation of everything. So build it up. 
Con mucho amor de Puno,
Hermana Rust 

 Also today we made real Mexican enchiladas. Take notes pops. Also, why yes, I do open my mouth really wide in every picture I take! 

 Running with Shadow. 

And that's maxi. I don't know if I have shown a picture of her yet. Well there she is. 

  Veronica ( Birthday girl) and Ruth. I love them. Oh also, if anyone wants to look up the words to that song I was talking about and send them to me, greatly appreciated. I don't know all the words and I want to learn. Tanks!
Ignore my horrible acne. It wasn't a good week for my face. But this is a very common Peruvian meals called... panchuto or something like that. Its just a hot dog cut in a spiral. I think they build things like way up in Peru. 

Monday, October 5, 2015

#18 The 10th day (plus like a month) The Sequel.

Ok remember how I had a little incident with a super lame dog a few weeks ago? Well for those who do not remember, I had a little incident with a super lame dog who bit me when I was trying to help this poor old lady who dropped a bottle of juice. There you are caught up. So I had to receive treatment of 5 different injections in the course of 2 ish weeks because after the dog bit me, we couldn't find it again to see if it had rabies. So I finished my treatment last Monday (I forgot to tell you...) and I was feeling pretty good because I was done being injected and I didn't have to visit doctor creepy (my doctor was an uber creep) and I was rabies free! So yeah feeling pretty good. So Tuesday, one day AFTER I finished my treatment, we went to visit the same lady who we were with when I got bitten by the dog. She has a little store (wagon) on the coast of Titicaca. So we're sitting chatting, selling, all the above, when out of the corner of my eye, I see a dog, lounging underneath a bench. I gave the dog a closer look and, sure enough, its the little booger that bit me!!! I found the dang dog that caused me five days of pain and creepiness the DAY AFTER!! I don't know how the dog knew, but oh that dog new that I had finished my treatment and the day after he decided to come out of hiding. I was ticked.This dog has forever soured me on dogs and I will now not permit my kids to have a dog. It's all your fault demon dog!!

Well on a happier note, we've just about completed the marriage papers we need to get Gaby and Victor hitched!! Their date is for the 17th of October and right after the wedding, Gaby is taking the other plunge into the font. It's gonna be a great day. So yay for next Saturday!

Ok how great was General Conference! Do all the women out there feel as pumped as I do?! Between Holland and Nelson, I'm convinced that I'm basically the best thing to walk this earth (along with all you other lovely ladies out there, you know who you are) Like holy Hannah Montana I just want to be a mom and go talk in everyone's ward councils (I won't do either of those anytime soon, but boy am I ready.) Super great talks. Also I felt a little nostalgia (literally have no idea how to spell this word... help mom! Or Nat!) seeing good old Kim B. Up on that screen. Felt a little BYU-I pride coursing through my veins. You go Kim B.! And the three new apostles look like little babies compared to the others, but I know they're gonna be stellar too.

 Oh and mom I am all down to Ponderize with ya! But right now I have a goal to memorize The Living Christ in English and Spanish, so paragraphs are going to be my scriptures. I hope that counts! I decided to start doing this last week because I felt that my testimony of Jesus Christ needed some more support. So I just started memorizing. Right now in both English and Spanish I have the first 3 paragraphs. It's really been something that I love and I can already feel my testimony growing ten fold. So my ponderizing this week will be in the fourth paragraph of The Living Christ. 

Well I can't think of anything else that I want to share... I hope this email makes up for my lame ones... I vowed before my mission to not be a lame email writer! But I think I might be failing a little. But I will repent and do better I promise!

 Well I want to leave you with some words that I have been thinking of for the past week. I don't know who said it, but I remembered it during one of the conference talks and it's a quote in the CCM. it says "You are not called for who you are, you are called for who you can become" And then another that a sister shared in here testimony also in the CCM. I actually think I already shared this like.. in the CCM, but I just loved what she said "You are enough. You are SO enough! Never forget how enough you are." And I add my testimony to both of these little quotes. That God knows our potential and that for now, we are enough. Just don't stop learning, don't stop progressing, and you will always be enough. That sounded really good in my mind, but I'm not sure it makes total sense. Put on your spiritual ears and maybe it'll make sense... Well I love you all, the Church is True. God is our loving Heavenly Father, Jesus is the Living Christ, and through these three things, we can have eternal happiness! 
Con mucho amor,
Hermana Rust

Me and a fish that is indigenous to Lake Titicaca

THIS IS THE DOG OF SATAN! I will forever hate this dog. 

 I was just really into photographing little boys in a not creepy way this week. These are Andre and Alvaro. They are the sons of a recent convert named Nellie. I call this picture "Brothers". Yeah I'm not that good at naming stuff... 

This is the little boy of Gaby and Victor. His name is Aaron and he is two and he is a chunk. Like Riley when he was a baby in Peru form. I think this picture is artistic. Go art.