Monday, December 30, 2013

Email 12/30/2013

Well Christmas was good since I got to see and talk with all the family. That was much needed for what came after.
Our water pump to our house broke so we didn't have any water for 3 days. That sucked because I had to take a shower using water jugs. Then to get the pump fixed I had to pay $10 and I'm pretty sure the church won't reimburse that.
Well this week has been pretty good besides that. I'm over my sickness and we have contacted some new families to teach. So it's all good.
This week we had our first changes but luckly my companion and I are staying where we are. I relieved for that since my Spanish still sucks. Our District leader finished his mission this week and went back home to Mexico. So we had his companion with us for Sunday and Monday.
Oh my companion got attacked by this little dog. It was freaken hilarious. So we are both just walking down the street when four little dogs run up to us while barking. But the thing is they all just walked right past me and went in to bite my companions ankle. And they only bite his ankle once then walked away like nothing happened. Hahaha that was great.
Ugh what else. Oh so our bedroom door got jammed and we could not open it. We tried everything even tried to jimmy it open with a knife. So being the Spiderman I am I climbed up to our second story apartment and jumped onto the balcony and went inside to open the door. So all was well with that.
Also for Christmas I bought a little soundsystem to listen to some music. Having music is so nice.
Well now the New year is coming up. In Ecuador I guess they make giant paper mache people and burn them in the streets on New Years. I don't know why.... Anyway it's pretty cool to see all the different characters that they make.
Well thats all for now I guess.

Love you all
Elder Ivan Rodriguez

12/25/2013 First Christmas in the Mission Field

Elder Ivan Rodriguez was able to Skype his family in California & Arizona on Christmas Day. When Ivan saw his brother Jordan he cried. Ivan loves his older brother. We passed the phone around and we all got to see, talk and wish him a Merry Christmas. 

Tuesday, December 24, 2013


Email 12/24/2013 First Christmas in the Mission Field "Feliz Navidad"

Hey everyone Merry Christmas. I hope everyone is having a happy one.
Well we had a Christmas dinner in Quito last week and that was great. The food was great and the company was good too. We did a white elephant gift thing and I got this sweet Ecuadorean coin purse. Coin purses are super useful for the busses here and since the money is mostly coins.
So the drive from Quito and back was a long one. But they show movies which is so cool. I saw the movie Grown Ups 2 and some horrible Stone Cold Steve Austin movies. I thing Ecuador really likes his movies. Its horrible.

Anyway I'm still kinda sick but now with a cough. My companion called the mission nurse and complained that I'm getting worse. I'm not. Everything is fine but I think he's just annoyed because he can hear my sickness now. 
Anyway I hope everyone is having a good Christmas. It's going to be boring here. There is no one really to teach because they all are away with family then today which is the 24th and tomorow we have to stay inside after 6 becuase it gets really dangerous during the holidays. Well thats all really.
I'm excited to call my mom and dad and I wish I could call everyone but nope hahah.
Anyway I love you all and wishy you the best.

Elder Rodriguez

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Email 12/17/2013

Okay so this week was really bad for me and the greatest week also. First is I have been feeling sick in a different ways everyday. From just head aches to puking my guts out in the middle of the night to horrific stomach pain to a sore throat today. Its great..... Oh and I sharted one time and if you don't know what that is, I'm not gonna be the one to explain.

Oh and I guy tried robbing me. It started out with me and my companion walking as we usually do then a tall black guy walks up to my companion and starts talking to him. Then the man looks at me then at my watch. He politely asks me what time it is, so I politely tell him. Then he tells me to take it off. oh sorry he yells and curses at me to take it off. So i laugh and say no and begin to tell him that I don't speak spanish. So at this point I can understand everything he is saying. And he is mad so he begins to yell and curse at my companion. But my companion tell him he only speaks this native language anddoesn't  understand. Hahaha who asks someone to take off their watch. Yeah so we just walked away and it was fine.

Well this week I had my first baptism. It was the most amazing experience baptizing little 13 year old Jose Ignacio. I taught him all the lessons and he asked me to baptize him. Oh I should tell you his story. So one day me and my companion are walking and we walk past a lady and think nothing of it. Then she calls us back and asks us randomly to come and teach her family. She has two girls, 9 and 16 and Jose Ignacio. All of them are amazing investigators agreeing to be baptized in the first lesson. The whole family reads and studies all the pamphlets that we give them. When we gave them some Books of Mormon Jose Ignacio read the whole book of 1 Nephi. Thats incredible for here in Esmereldas. Especially since if the person can read they will only read like one verse in a week. So anyway the rest of his family was supposed to be baptized on the same day but they wanted to push their date back. But not little Jose cause he's a champ. After baptizing him and feeling that joy I can truely say I know why people serve missions and I know what the joy is that the scriptures talk about.

Anyway sorry I didn't write yesterday. Our Pday was really busy. We did a soccer game with our zone and our apartment got all new supplies so we were moving a whole bunch of stuff. 

Well Christmas is coming up and I'm really excited to call my Mom and Dad. I wish I could talk to the rest of the family but alas...
Anyway tomorrow we are driving 7 hours to Quito for a Christmas dinner with the Mission President. That should be cool.

Then on Christmas eve and Christmas day we can't leave our Apartment with the exception of going to call the family. I guess its super dangerpous on those days. 

Well thats all I guess. I love you all and wish you a Merry Christmas.
I'm really missing the cold haha. I don't like sweating in December.
Anyway love ya all
Elder Ivan Rodriguez

Monday, December 9, 2013

Email 12/09/2013

This week has been a whole lot better. Especially with my companion. This week we both got 12 people commited to Bauptizm. It was a very cool experience and I just hope they continue their progress.
Oh I just wanted to clear something up. Im not sure everyone understands why its humbling to be here. Its not becuase they are poor. Sure they have dirt floors and houses that could be kickerçd down. Its just humbling for the things that I appreciate in the world. For example sometimes they dont have food to feed there kid but their kid is playing with an Iphone while watching TV on a flatscreen with an amazing sound system. Its my values of whats important that is so humbling for me. 
This week on sunday we had a stake conference and I was so surprised as to how many members are in the stake. Oh and our mission president came down from Quito for it to. During the meeting the stake president called for 2 missionaries to come up and talk about how to get the members involved. None of the other elders went up so my companion decided to go up. So ofcourse I had to go up and speak infront of everyone.
It was amazing how well I spoke infront of all the people. The presidente was so impressed. He was bragging about how I only had 3 weeks there. It was wierd.
I also saw the Christmas devotional video but for some reason the gift of tongues want with me during that. So I didnt get much out of it in spanish.
Something not so cool happended to me this week. So me and my companion were walking as we do. And as we are walking a man infront of us holding an empty beer bottle smashes the bottle into this other guys face. So me and my companion just turn around and walk faster. It was pure sketchiness.
Everything else is going good. We get new investigators everyday. Im still struggling with the language but everyday is an improvement. I cant wait to call home on Christmas. Then a couple days before Christmas we are going to the Presidentes house in Quito for a big dinner.
Oh and Im continually doing better with the food here. Everyday I like something that I have never liked before which is a huge blessing.
I miss everyone alot and I love you all. Please email me alot and give me some updates on the world. Well thats all I got for this week.
Much love
Elder Rodriguez

Monday, December 2, 2013

2nd Week in Ecuador

Okay so this week has had its ups and its downs. 
The work here is great and for some reason everyone seems to want us to teach them. This week I already got 5 commited for baptism. I just hope they go through with it. We had a service activity this week as a zone but I didn't do much of it. See I was smart about it and broke the shovel right away so I could just sit and relax. Then the people fed us the most awesome meal. It was some bomb chicken with rice and beans. Oh and I actually like beans now..... Pretty impressive I know. Then we began teaching this 16 year old kid and hes awesome. He already has such a strong spirit about him. And he said that after he met me he has been having reoccuring dreams of an angel visiting him. The only thing is he does'nt know what the angel says to him. It gave me the chills when I heard that but it was awesome. Then we had a really difficult lesson with this less active member. He has two little kids and his wife wants a divorce. But that wasn't the difficult part of it. He asked us what happens to people who commit suicide. That was a difficult point. But we just reassured him to stay faithful and rely on the Lord.
Okay what else. Oh I think...I forgot to mention how weird the shopping here is. We went to a store today and they make you put bags in lockers. Then there little hand baskets are like roller backpacks. Its so weird. The fruit here is also really weird. Next week I´ll try to take pictures cuz I can't describe it. Oh and they don't sell milk in cartons. Its unrefrigerated milk in bags. I have no idea why. When We did service me and a missionary I knew in the CCM ate some cocua. Its the fruit they make chocolate out of. Its about the size of a football and has these little balls inside. I don't know how to describe the taste but the texture was like yogurt. It was really sweet and left me wondering how chocolate comes from that because the taste and the texture and color where no where near. Okay thats all bye. Love you all and wish for the best. Pray for me out here as I pray for all of you everyday. 

Elder Rodriguez

**Elder Rodriguez's mom sent a quick Email to Ivan. Elder Rodriguez was still online and sent this Email to her....
Oh hey mom Love You. And I forgot to tell you about how random people on the streets yell at us and call us Comegratis which means free eaters. Because they always see us eating at the Mamitas houses.

Some of my area. 
The walk to this place was horrible!

If we could all just remember to include Elder Ivan Rodriguez in your daily prayers. We, his family would greatly appreciate it. The first couple of weeks in the mission field can be hard. A new country, living with someone new who also is from a different country & learning a new language can be a hard difficult adjustment for anyone. Ivan is doing good & happy but needs some extra prayers. Thank You!!

Monday, November 25, 2013

First Email from the MISSION FIELD

Okay I finally arrived in Ecuador. All the new missionaries stayed in Quito for three days just for an orientation type of thing. I really liked the city of Quito it was actually really nice. Then I met my new companion. Elder Luque is a nice guy from Peru and he speaks English (which is really good for me right now). Our area is about 8 hours away from the city of Quito by the coast. The area is called Esmereldas. I can't really see the coast from here though. Now when we drove here on a bus it took us 10 hours instead of the usual 8 hours. I still don't know why that is. So my area is known to cause a lot of missionaries to go home early. Now let me describe why that is. Well this area is the most dangerous part of Ecuador, it's hot here, and the people don't wear alot of clothes. Its actually really gross. Like yesterday we went to teach this new investigator and a little kid walks up to her. I'm still not even sure the kid was hers. Anyways during the lesson she just popped out her boob and started feeding the kid. I was just like "What the heck!?" If I were to describe this area I would describe it as a Spanish Africa. This area is known to have all the black people and it's dirt poor and freaken hot, like I said before. It's so wierd because there are dogs everywhere. Like the people don't even notice. Seriously random street dogs and cats walk into peoples houses and the people dont even care. But then again they do have random chickens in their house as well.

Ha but its actually pretty neat here. Very humbling. Alot of the houses that we visit are either made up of cinderblock walls or thin wood walls and then usually just sheetmetal for the roofs. The people here are really nice to me and I'm like a teacher to the little kids. I help them learn english and they help me learn spanish. Just the other day I did this girls english homework. Her family was so amazed at how fast I finished it but I didn't tell them that it was 1st grader level.

The food here is known to be the best in Ecuador. Ive had some good food. Like the other day when I was eating in these members shack of a house I had the best chicken and rice. with evey meal you can expect to have a full plate of rice. Some of the foods are hard for me to swallow but I have no choice. If you turn down anything here it is a big diss to the families. 

Me and my companion live in this apartment on the second floor. It's pretty nice except for the fact that there is no hot water. I never realized how lucky I was to always have hot water. Seriously it hurts me that it is so cold to shower in. But I must endure. 

The people here don't have much. There is only one paved road in this city. i haven't seen any houses with windows and some houses don't even have doors. But the members are all super friendly and willing to help the missionaries. And of course i have to explain to each person why I don't already speak spanish and why I'm not Mexican. 

But everything here is good. I don't really have any pictures of the area right now but you can expect some next monday

My old district was split up when we all got our new companions but I still see and Elder Lindeman. Its always cool to see him and see what crazy things we have experienced here. 

Everday here so far feels like an eternity but at the end of the day it feels like it was just an hour. Its the wierdest thing to wrap my head around. 
Anyway what else should I talk about???
I don't really know.

Elder Rodriguez


Last Day with District - Mexico City CCM
Landed in Ecuador
New Companion

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Email from Mission President and Hermana Richardson

Dear Rodriguez family,


We wanted to let you know that we are delighted to have met and spent the last three days with Elder Rodriguez.  He shared his great love and appreciation for his family; we congratulate you on raising a wonderful son!


We assure you that we will do everything possible to help him have a positive experience here in the newly formed Ecuador Quito North Mission.  This mission experiences a high number of baptisms, and success in reactivation. Our boundaries include coast, jungle, a native Indian area, as well as the highly populated city of Quito so our missionaries have a wide range of experiences.


The theme of our mission is translated “The Center of the World; Centered on Christ,” and we have a wonderful group of 24 missionaries that arrived with him.  He will be serving in the coastal area of San Rafael with one of our newer but fabulous missionaries, Elder Luque from Peru.


We know you’re already planning on it, but we want to remind you to write your son a weekly letter.  His preparation day will be on Mondays.




President Brian and Hermana Susan Richardson

Misión Ecuador, Quito Norte


Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Elder Rodriguez has landed in Ecuador

Okay I made it to Ecuador and everything here is great. Later today I should get my new companion but right now I'm just here in Quito. It reminds me a lot of Puerto Rico. Alright love ya & I'll email again on Monday. 

Elder Rodriguez

Monday, November 18, 2013

Elder Rodriguez leaving for Ecuador TODAY!!!

So right now it is Monday and we have to be at the airport at about 10:30. But our flight leaves at 1:15 in the morning. Yeah that's gonna be rough. Well here is my itinerary.
From Mexico City Juarez Int´l Airport
To: Bogota Eldorado Airport(Columbia)
From Bogota Eldorado Airport
To: Quito Mariscal Sucr Airport
Well that's it. I´m going to be so exhausted when I finally arrive in Ecuador but I really can´t wait. I'm also really excited to have a little lay over in Columbia. That will be a cool experience....hopefully. At this point I´m just really hoping we don't get straight to work when we arrive in Ecuador. I´m going to be in need of a little nap time.

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Email 11/14/2013 Maybe the last Email from the CCM

Well this is my last week here in the CCM. I might be leaving anywhere from Friday to Tuesday but since I haven't been given an itinerary yet I have no idea. I'm actually really excited to go out in the mission field and teach the people of Ecuador. I'm also a bit nervous because I know the moment I step off the plane its going to feel like a new language. 
So far these last couple of days have just been a bunch of Spanish and review since the time is ticking down. Also our teacher Hermana Olmos left because of her schooling but she asked her old mission companion to teach for her. So that's pretty cool. Oh and she is the same age as my brother which is so weird to think about.(Happy Birthday Jordan, Ill send ya something nice once I'm in Ecuador). Then there is our other teacher Hermano Vera. He´s only been off his mission for 10 months, already has a wife and a baby on the way. He knows how to get work done hahaha. All our teachers are really cool and help us a ton.
So anyway today I went to the temple again. It was great because they finally got the new video in Spanish. That old one was pretty bad. Then after the temple me and Elder Rubisch did some laundry, bought snacks at La Tienda(which I had to spend my own money because the CCM won´t put more in my account) and now I´m emailing. Later we´ll have to teach another lesson as well.
So yeah all is well here as I'm sitting here emailing and drinking my orange Fanta. So what should I talk about. Oh I know I´ll talk about how my whole district has Diarrhea. It brings me so much joy to know that the code word (code Peach) means that someone has the runs. I have been lucky enough to not get that as well. And that´s the really weird thing to because I´m the one eating the stranger foods here in the CCM. Just the other day during our bathroom break we walked up to a stall that had poop everywhere. I mean EVERYWHERE!!!! On the floor, on the seat. It was so horrible. When I beheld those horrors I almost puked. I actually feel bad for that poor soul.
Alright I´m really sorry about that last part but it is forever imprinted in my brain. Okay lets talk about the weather. Its usually really nice here but yesterday was the coldest day. I wore my long sleeves, my sweater, and my suit jacket and I was still freezing. The CCM even gave everyone 2 more blankets.
Once again its really good to hear from everyone and I hope everyone is doing good. Especially Baby Ridge, Jordan as you come up on your graduation (wish I could be there for ya) and my mom having surgery. I always think about everyone back home. Once I'm in Ecuador I´ll start sending stuff when i can. 
If anyone was wondering how long packages take its about 2 weeks, as well as letters.
Love all of you and pray for the best

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Email 11/07/2013

Hello everyone I'm down here in the Mexico CCM and everything is going great. The food is good, the language is coming and the spirit is strong.

Its really good to hear from all of you. I enjoy seeing how the world is doing without me. So this week our district found out that we are going to be teaching 3 investigators every other day. The first, which is in the morning, is our Teacher. Shes a native to Mexico and a tough cookie to teach. She really doesn't give me and my companion anything to feed on. The other two which we haven't taught yet are some Hermanas from our class. So they're class mates. Oh and I have to be an investigator to some other companionship as well. On the bright side I'm actually looking forward to some more work. 

Speaking of work last night we had another TRC. Me and my companion went in expecting to help someone with spiritual needs. Yeah not really because the guys only problem was as he said " I don't have the patience to express my feelings." That was quite the tricky problem for us. So that lesson started off a bit rough but the spirit slowly started to come to us. As we were talking I slowly had a voice quietly tell me that I need to talk about Moses. At first I was like what the heck why would I do that? But then it all came to me, Moses also had a problem expressing his feelings verbally so God sent him the help of Aaron. It felt really good to have that revelation come to me in that time of need.  

I have been striving to be guided by the spirit so much while i have been here and I can now say that I'm receiving that guidance. Just on Tuesday for example. An Elder Daniel Johnson, an are 70 member, came and spoke to the CCM for our devotional night. He challenged all of us to pray that night and ask God 5 questions. Those questions were 1: Do you really exist? 2: Do you have a body of flesh and bone? 3: Do you know that I exist? 4: Do you know my name and were I came from? 5: Do you love me?
     So that night i knelt down in humble prayer and asked these 5 questions. As I started the prayer my head spun. I recall that the whole room felt like it was spinning as I struggled to collect my thoughts and ask those questions. As i came near the close I finished with "I need to know tonight". As I uttered those words everything just stopped. The room was still, quiet and my heart was at peace. I'm so grateful that my Heavenly father loves me and hears my prayers. 

Anyway everyone should try that.

So the rest of my week was filled with the usual lessons of being taught and teaching. I'm having an amazing time here in the beautiful CCM. Every Wednesday the CCM gets a new flock of fresh missionaries and it is the funniest thing looking at there faces. 

Well that's all for now. I sent some new pictures of things around the CCM and I hope you get them all. The Elder in one of them is my Companion. And the weird spire things, i have no idea what those are they are outside of the CCM.
Please send me more pictures everyone. I feel like I'm forgetting your faces hahah.

I love all of you and every-night,every-morning and every afternoon I pray for the best for all of you.
Elder Rodriguez Signing out.  

I forgot to tell everyone about all the mosquitoes. Oh they are just the greatest thing. I have yet to be bite by one this whole time while all the other Elders are bite at-least 5 times every night. I think they might bring me the most joy watching everyone else suffer Mwuahahaha.

Oh and here's my Address:
Elder Ivan Rodriguez
Ecuador Quito North Mission
Mexico MTC
Ave 510 #90
Colonia San Juan de Aragon
07950 Mexico City
Distrito Federal Mexico

Pictures of the CCM (Mexico Missionary Training Center)

Thursday, October 31, 2013

Con't Email 10/31/2013 Oh one more thing...

Send me some letters too. It is always nice to get things in the mail. ( Especially from the ladies). But seriously a letter from anyone would be much  appreciated.

Email 10/31/2013

This past week has been really great.
On a daily basis we teach two investigators and I'm feeling really good about it. It truely amazes me how I understand most of the things they say and now I'm actually able to give a lesson all in spanish. Its pretty fun teaching now even though our investigators are our two teachers. When we teach them they go by different names and refuse to speak English to us. Teaching them is fun because they take on this persona of real people that they taught on their mission. Oh and our teachers have only been off there missions for less than a year. I don't know how they do it.
This last week I have been rocking the gospel teaching and the language. Just yesterday i was  practicing a lesson and a random teacher came up to me and was so surprised that I had only been there for 3 weeks. Then he asked if I was in the intermediate classes to which I answered no. Boy did his eyes go big after that. Teachers are always telling our District how great we are doing in Spanish. I think tomorrow I'm going to try to speak spanish the whole day.
Also this whole week I have commited to follow any promtings that I have and I can truely say that it is paying off. I am feeling the spirit in an increased amount. All of my lessons are benefiting as I have followed my promtings even if I have no idea why or were I'm going with them. They have really paid off.
Last night we had another TRC (we teach random members not teachers) and going into it I was really nervous since the last one bombed. But everything went great. Infact I was the one leading the lesson out of four Elders and I understood everything the lady was saying. It blows my mind still that high school spanish couldn't teach me anything in two years and now I'm having conversations in Spanish.
Well today was yet another P-Day in which we went to the Temple. Going to the Temple is such a great experience here in Mexico but it eats up practically our whole day. Today I was brave enough to go through the temple without the translations. Yeah it was scary but all in all it was a very good day. It was really funny becuase I walked up to one of the temple workers and asked in spanish "please help me word by word" and he just laughed and said I had nothing to worry about.
Its really good to hear that everyone is doing so well. It was funny becuase today on the bus to the temple I was reading the Emails. Hearing that my brother bought some random kid a holloween costume because his father couldn't afford it made me cry. Luckly nobody saw me.  I really love hearing things from back home. Don't get me wrong I'm not home sick at all but it really is nice to see what's going on in the world.
Okay sorry but I don't have any pictures this week but I'll try to explain some from last week. The picture of me in the huge group was my district. The picture of just me and that Elder is my Companion Elder Rubisch. If you were wandering about the huge B on the mountain, I really don't know. That huge B is everywhare around the CCM too. I think I heard it's for remembrance of some Mexican hero.
This last Wednsday the CCM got some more newbies and it is so funny. We can always tell because they lug aroung every possible book they can have and even when we say "Hola" they have no idea what to do. Its funny because now I know how dumb I looked.
If anyone wants to send me some candy or regular chips from the states that would be sweet. Don't get me wrong La Tienda is a good store filled with all kinds of snacks and sodas but all the chips are spicy stuff. I don't like that.
I heard my Companions mom is going to send me some new stuff and that is really nice. seriouslyshe doesn't know me but is buying me stuff. Last week my Companion got some candies sent from his mom and there was even a little baggie of goodies for me. So nice.
Well I don't really know what else to write now. So I'll just leave you with my testimony.
I have come to know this gospel so much more. This whole experience has been really humbling and spiritual. Just the other day one of the Elders in my district Elder Linderman talked about how we need to follow spiritual promptings. During his whole little speech I was just thinking about Jordan (my brother). I shared a little experience about him as I felt prompted to. During my whole ordeal tears rolled down my cheeks but I felt the spirit so strong. Seriously I have never felt the spirit so strong like that, that my whole body was shaking. All I shared was how he was a good example for me. I know this gospel is real. I know that Heavenly Father answers our prayers becuase he has answered mine. Now I don't know if this will help anyone, but I needed everyone to know that I know the work that I'm doing here is true.
With much love
Elder Ivan Rodriguez

Friday, October 25, 2013

More Pictures

Elder Rodriguez at The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints Temple in Mexico City, Mexico

Mexico City Missionary Training Center

Photo's of Mexico City

Oh, somebody is in trouble.

New hair cut for Elder Rodriguez. He looks scared but his hair cut 
looks great!! 

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Finally P-Day Email 10/24/2013

Alright this week has felt like forever and at the same time its speeding by. I sent multiple pictures containing what it looks like here in the CCM part of my visit to the temple last Thursday, the earthquake circle and me after my new haircut. Oh yeah I got a haircut today and it was super sketchy since all the ladies don't speak English. I have seen some pretty bad haircuts come out of there so I was really worried. But the lady did a good job. And since I felt bad that we cant give tips i sweep up their whole floor. SERVICE BABY.
 This week has been a lot of fun but also really challenging. Most days we teach lessons to two people only using Spanish and for some reason I have been just freezing up. And yesterday we taught a old little Mexican lady and I felt like I was utterly demolished during the lesson. I didn't say more than a sentence the whole lesson. The only thing I said was, "My life is hard because my father is not a member". That was a lie my life is easy. I just had no idea what to say, I was lost. Every word she said just bounced off my head into oblivion. Even my companion said barely anything in that lesson.hahahahah It was bad. Luckily we were doing like a coop teaching with some Hermana's in our district and they totally saved us. Both me and my companion have kinda struggled this week, spiritually. I even fasted for a day but I'm just finding it hard to teach with the companionship of the spirit.
But I know as I stay faithful and put my shoulder to the wheel, Heavenly Father will help me out. anyway last Tuesday we had a devotional by an Elder Lester Johnson from the seventy. It was nice of him to come down and speak to us. He was hilarious and was really inspiring with the whole language thing.
Evey day I spend roughly 16 hours teaching, reading my scriptures and studying Spanish. Everyday I'm finding my knowledge of Spanish increase and I can say more.Its truly   a blessing. Its funny because any latino that sees my last name asks if I speak spanish. So i obviously say no. Then they ask which one of my parents are Mexican. So i tell then neither then I have to explain my heritage. Its annoying but they always light up when they see my last name. I enjoy it because I get to use my spanish.
 Uhh okay weather. The last two days it has rained. And thats not bad, Im not complaining but it did suck when the second I use my umbrella the first time, it flipped inside-out bending the bars. So now I have to bunch up with Elder Rubisch. Im sure he doesnt mind but it does kinda suck. Oh and its getting freaken cold here. Im so happy I bought that sweater, its a lifesaver.
It blows my mind to think that the CCM experience is going by so fast. It is the wierdest experience seeing new missionaries come in and think "I was like that a week ago. I had no idea what to do or say just like them".

 Well anyway what else......... Oh today we are going to play baseball with our whole district. Our district president, Presidente Torres( a fat little man with the funniest baby face) invited us to play some ball with his 8 yearold son. Im super excited and everytime Presidente Torres talks about it his face lights up.
The food here is still good and now they have SALT!!! I have never been so happy to see salt in my whole life. I have been getting more sleep every night also. I think its just out of exuastion. But Im glad that i can fall asleep fast becuase those crazy Latinos have parties every night. I know Im gonna have to join them one of these nights.
Every now and then I get a littile home sick just when someone reminds me of someone back home, but Im good. Im doing great here and I love the mission life.
I have the greastest time just buying stuff at la tienda. I feel like a rich man with all these pasos. If your wondering it takes about 13 pesos to equal 1 dollar. And almost everything in La Tienda costs only 8 pesos.
If anyone wants to send me something in the mail that would be great. Just dont send it through UPS for some reason they have problems with that. If you need to know my adress just ask my mom at 
Please also send me lots of emails I really enjoy seeing how everyone is doing and how the world is moving on with out me :)
I really miss all my friends and family (especialmente mi madre) and I hope everyone it doing okay.
 With much love- Elder Rodriguez