Monday, December 26, 2016

Christmas and Stuff

Christmas Day we got to Skype with Daniel. It was wonderful. I didn't realize how much I had missed hearing his voice. I was surprised by the reactions of his siblings. Except for the youngest they all teared up when it was their turn to talk to him. Joseph could barely even speak. We were probably on longer than we should've been. He is doing very well. Determined to make the most of the time he has available to help the most people. We learned that Subway is the same in Brazil as it is in the US. We even got to say hello to his companion, who is from the south of Brazil where it is not nearly as hot as it is in Belem. (81 degrees and rainy today)  Here is his letter today with LOTS of pictures.

Hey! So this week was eventful. We had a ward christmas party and there was a birthday(Mine) and there was Christmas and a phone call to the family and all that cool stuff right? Right. So The week itself was fine. We went around talking to the peoples and stuff. And then on the 22nd we had our ward chirstmas activity. Some pictures of my companion and I are placed below. 

But that was cool. There were a lot of people there. A lot of people there actually that weren't members. So yeah that was cool. but then the next day was my birthday. My Companion(being awesome) Bought me said 3 chocolate bars which we ate in about 2 days. 

And because our Lunch appointment was to be some money that day I made tacos. my companion is from South Brazil which s super big on meats and stuff, and he decided to let me make the taco meat. Even though(as I later found out) didn't trust that I was a good enough cook to be able to do so. Then he tried out my taco meat and was like "WOW, This was waaayyyyy better than I was expecting." So thanks for trusting me on that one right? Right.(Except if I was him I probably wouldn't have trusted me either). 

But then Saturday night there was this one sister who sent us food to eat cause she's awesome. She also made a bunch of stuff for my birthday but we got super delayed at the chapel that night by an appointment we had with someone that was super important and we couldn't miss and we ended up missing out on the partyish thing for me. But she forgave us so it's all good. (i think). 

Then it was Christmas which was spent at the Bishop's house to call our families. Sacrament meeting was pretty cool. The 2 Bishops of the 2 wards spoke and our mission president was present. After lunch we went to Bishop's and talked to our families for a while. Which was somewhat strange because I was looking at mine, and like, half of them are different then they were before. Like, Sarah and Hannah were the same. but everyone else was different among my siblings. I'm probably gonna get back and not recognize them, I'm almost positive of that. 

How 20 years old and 1 year of the mission looks like

 How it feels like.

I love you guys. Talk to y'all later. Any thing you need just let me know and I'll try my absolute hardest to help

Monday, December 19, 2016


Anxiously counting down to Christmas Day when we get a phone call from our missionary. In the meantime here is his latest news:

This is my new companion. I'm his trainer. He's new. This is his first P-day in field. 

And this is from his first day. 

When we missed the stop on the bus and went wayyyyy too far, got late to our zone meeting, our lunch appointment didn't work out(we ate at subway instead), and then after suffering in the blistering heat for a while we became completely drenched walking through the rain. SO you can say that his day was certainly interesting. On top of it he was rather grateful for an interesting first day. But he's pretty cool. 

This next week we got a ward Christmas activity and Christmas on Sunday and a lot of stuff. It should be pretty cool. But it's also kinda funny. He's from the south of the country and is DYING out here in the heat. Like, the high temperature in his state(that he thinks is hot) Is like a very very rare low here. So yeah. Everyone's like "you got here at a good time, it isn't that hot and whatever". His reaction "If you guys think this is cold I'm gonna die whenever hot gets here" So yeah. It's kinda funny. But it should all be good. I love you guys. MERRY CHRISTMAS

Monday, December 12, 2016

The Mission Christmas

It's been a year now since our son left for Brazil. We miss him at the same time we are proud of him. He is doing well. We received a message from Sister Stasevskas (mission president's wife). After apologizing for her broken English (which really wasn't bad) she let us know how wonderful our missionary is doing. Here is his latest letter and a lot of pictures.

So we had this MASSIVE Christmas activity this week. All of the missionaries in our mission were there. Which is in and of itself a feat seeing as how there are like 3 zones that you have to catch a plane to get here in Belém. But everyone was here. It was awesome. We started out with this dinner Wednesday that also had some zone skits that were pretty cool. Although honestly, to tell the truth I think that our zone did the best. It was just hilarious. So yeah. But anywho, after all that on Thursday we went to this sports complex and played Soccer, Basketball, and Volleyball. Also there was a rather small playground which some missionaries were playing on(Truthfully I started the playing on the small child sized playground with swings and slides and stuff everyone else was just kinda, Monkey see Monkey do). We also did this giant gift exchange with everyone having a secret santa sort of thing. That was cool. Although Ifeel as though most of the Elders received ties but whatever. Other than that I've been in a different area every day since then. Cause my Comp Elder Gann went off to his new area of Guanabara, Amapa, and my new companion doesn't get here until tomorrow because he's still in the MTC in São Paulo. So yeah. Being somewhat thrown around from area to area but it's fine. Elder Fonseca(My borrowed companion) and I are making the best of it. We like, super cleaned both of our houses. And now All is well. I think. Just gotta wait until the kid gets here. PORQUE VOU SER PAI!!!! MUAHAHAHAHAHAHA. Don't worry. It'll all be good. ALSO we had this awesome regional conference transmission to Brasil with Elder Holland, 1. I think he speaks Spanish. 2.He speaks very broken Portuguese. But it was all really very cool. I liked it a lot. 

Monday, December 5, 2016

Luciano! E vou ser Pai!

Cold and rainy here in Texas. Hot and rainy in Brazil. The missionary seems to be doing well. It will be a year this week that he has been in Brazil. Honestly, I think that fact impacts us more than him. Here is his latest news:

So this week we had been working with this guy Luciano. He got baptized this last Saturday. We took him out to eat at this pizza place afterwards which was fun. I enjoyed the time there with everyone. We've honestly been working pretty hard to get to this point with the people in general. I don't know. There are the people that say this area is harder but i kinda plan on changing that. Especially seeing as how this next week there will be another rather large change for the area. So this week we are having a Christmas activity(essentially super party) over 2 days with the WHOLE mission. So because of that there are some people that will be flying in from the far places to Belém. And because of all that we all know about the transfer today. So My companion Elder Gann is getting transferred next week. he's going to a far away place. I honestly really like the guy. he is awesome. Plus being from Texas is also super awesome. But I am actually going to train someone new. ENTÃO VOU SER PAI!!! So I gotta work his shoes off  his feet. Then whenever he has a companion that doesn't really work as hard or doesn't know how to he can give them a kick in the butt and get it all moving. So it's gonna be cool. I'm actually pretty excited for that. But it's gonna be new. i hope I can help him like he needs. I love you guys. Talk to you all next week.

Monday, November 21, 2016

Bright Lights and the...Oh Wait.

Another entry into the saga of our missionary. While we are enjoying a little cold snap in Texas, it is 88 (feels like 97) in Belem.

You know. Sometimes you don't really get just how convenient some things are until they have been snatched out of your reach. They cut the power for our apartment. Apparently other previous missionaries hadn't paid their light bills and whatever and it just so happens that it all ended up falling on us. SOOOO. We went. We paid the bills but unfortunately it should only be today that they are going to turn our lights back on.  Let's hope it all goes through well. But this week we had a big zone conference with the President. Who is somewhere in the middle of this picture. Also Challenge. Find me in the picture. It's like a giant Where's Waldo and i think it might be in a different form than most are expecting, But I'm there. So Good luck. I hope all accept. But it was good. I really liked it. And we started talking to this, like family, they're pretty cool. They were some old investigators that we decided to go back to. They were apparently from all we know going rather well. Not entirely sure what happened that they stopped visiting. But maybe whatever it is we can fix it. So Yeah. But I love you guys. 

Did you find him? I'll give you a clue. He's wearing a suit. He didn't take a suit with him. Of course I had to ask him where he got the suit.

Elder Green. The guy who was here before me in the area, had 2 and left one of them in the area. It's a bit long in the sleeves and his pants are 36x32 but other than that it fits fine. 

Monday, November 14, 2016


The picture commentary is the best. Love that boy! 

So I was needing some socks right. Cause my others were wearing out. i asked my family about it and they were ok, we will send socks. I now have 3 new socks. Because my family decided it would be a good idea to send the socks 1 at a time in different letters. I got a matching pair at least. And seeing as how they are getting here and we have a meeting this week I rather expect that I will get a lot of socks this week in like 20 different letters. So in homage to a great guy, he always tried to help people(even though his efforts were somewhat misguided at times) I took a few pictures. So yeah. Pictures below. Enjoy. I did. But the week went well. My companion started off with the whole worm thing but it's all good now. He's feeling a lot better. So this coming week should really be even better than the last. But yeah. I love you guys. Have an amazing week


ALSO I just found out it's International Bible day. So HAPPY BIBLE DAY!!!!!! We like the Bible. It's great. Usually. and yeah. So read your Bibles. 

If you are now thinking you should send this cheeky monkey a sock, his address is:
Elder Daniel Monzingo
Av. Nazaré, 532 Sala 412 4º Andar
Nazaré Royal Trade Center
66035-135 Belém - PA

Monday, November 7, 2016

Fun in the Hospital

The boy is not in the hospital. He is fine. His companion, however, was having some issues. In other news, he was made district leader, received one sock in the mail and was accepted to BYU.

So. Saturday I went to the hospital. Then we went back. At like 2:30 in the morning cause there were these really big waves of pain. So we took some blood tests, there was a pee test as well, and they gave us meds to treat what we are all pretty sure of. My companion has worms. he says it's not very fun and that he feels like crap. But up until now with the whole worms thing he's a pretty cool guy. Like I said last week (I think) he's from Texas. But he isn't having fun at all with the whole worms thing. And like we stayed home pretty much all day yesterday. So Like. hopefully tomorrow or Wednesday it's all good. He is really a hard worker though. He is doing a lot the time that he feels good to really work. Teach the people, find the people, all that stuff. This week taking out the works was cool. Our Bishop was President Stasevskas' first counselor until he got called as a Bishop. He is waaaayyyy excited to be doing all this missionary work in the ward. So I'm pretty excited to be working here. I feel like this place is about to explode with all the stuff. They are really focused on working together with the members and everything. But i am rather happy with this. This is gonna be rather fun I think. So lets enjoy the ride. I love you guys.

Tuesday, November 1, 2016


OK. Good news. Elder Monzingo did not get eaten by crocodiles, piranhas or large snakes. He was transferred to a new area and couldn't send his usual email yesterday.  Here is the latest from him.

SO I'm a little late. I think. I sort of kind of got transferred and didn't really get to do anything yesterday. Now I am in Marambaia, it's a neighborhood here in Belém. But My Companion is surprisingly enough from Texas. Elder Gann. He's from Pilot Point. That was a bit of a surprise but it should be fun. As displayed there is a giant Texas flag on our wall that he has. I'm fairly happy with that. 

But this week before the transfer I got to baptize Breno. He's going to church for a while. It was really cool. He invited a friend to the baptism and the same guy and another one to church the next day. That was really cool. But I'm gonna miss Bragança. That was an awesome place. I hope that I get to go back someday. It would be really cool to be able to do so. But yeah. I love you guys. 

Monday, October 24, 2016


So, he also sent a video. I will post it later. It's pretty fun. Can't understand much of what he is saying since he is speaking in Portuguese. Until I get that posted enjoy this update:

I Just came back from this Mexican restaurant (the only one I think that exists in Brazil) Which is owned by this guy from the Dominican Republic. AND IT WAS AMAZING!!! Those were some of the most satisfying Fajitas that I have ever eaten in my life. Like seriously. You guys have no idea how happy I am with this.  Like seriously.

But this week went well. We ran into this lady the other day, taught here the restoration and Sunday she brought a friend to church with her. That was really cool. It could be something along the lines of "I ain't going alone so drag her along too." But whatever the case may be they were there. 

We have been working with these 2 guys to be baptized this week. One of them is going really good. The other one, although he likes the messages and he enjoys learning and everything, he plays in the band of his church. And because of that he has a bit of a problem with wanting to stay more in the band with people he knows than following an answer. What I don't like is that we aren't exactly sure what else we can do. We have ideas but at the same time there are moments when you feel like you've done pretty much everything with one person that you could do and now the choice is up to them. And this is one of those moments. But we are looking for even more things to do than we have even though we aren't sure. But yeah. I love you guys. 

Here is our Mexican restaurant.

Monday, October 17, 2016

Our Cooking Show

News from the missionary. If you are thinking of sending him packages for birthday/Christmas better mail it soon. The last package took about 2 months to get to him.

So Me and one of my roomates made a cooking show in portuguese. Just that I'm speaking Portuguese in an american accent, which is honestly really hard to do, and I would send it to you guys just that it's really big. And doesn't want to upload. So We'll figure it out and probably send it next week. But this week was good. We were working a lot on finding people. Because the other people we were teaching stopped really wanting to do the whole gospel thing. Which sucks. A lot. But it is what it is. So. We found some people. there was this guy we were teaching and we invited him to church. He said this week he wouldn't be able to make it because he had a business trip this weekend. No sooner than the words left his mouth he recieved a phone call that told him his trip was cancled. And in the end he didn't show up for church. But that was awesome at least. Because that was definitely God saying "go to church." Which was cool. He likes us usually. Also Brazil has daylight savings time. Just Pará, the state I'm in, has decided that it doesn't care and that daylight savings time is for sissys. Especially seeing as how no matter what it's blistering sun. The heat miser has total control over this place. SO yeah. That's it. I love you guys

Also this is a funny but true sign. (Jesus wants to help but you have to want it too)

Also this is us on Children's Day

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

One Year

This time last year my oldest came to me.

"Mom. Zoe Hastings is missing."


"Zoe Hastings is missing."

The idea was so incomprehensible. I couldn't understand what he was saying to me.

"She was going to mission prep and never showed up."

Something must have happened. We prayed.

"Please find Zoe."

There was a little part of me that hoped that she was hiding out with a friend, but that was a very thing hope and would've been completely out of character for her.

Hardly had we any time to wrap our brains around the fact that she was missing, when the news came that she was found. It was not the outcome we wanted. Her body was found inside the family's wrecked minivan. The reports stated "obvious homicidal violence".

"Who would hurt Zoe?" I asked.

"Who would hurt Zoe?" my daughter asked.

It is the question everybody wanted answered.

I've known the Hastings family since shortly after Kermit and I were married. I worked with her grandfather when I was on an activity committee for our church. Two summers ago her mother was camp nurse at our Stake Young Women's camp and I had the great joy of getting to know her. The summer before that Zoe was a Youth Camp Leader at camp. That was the first year I worked with  the 4th year campers. Zoe was one of the youth leaders assigned to our group. She made the adult leader job much easier.

From what little time I spent with Zoe, this is what I know. She was a bright, happy light in a dark world. She was always smiling. Always helpful. She exuded happiness. She was always willing to serve, to help anyone. She was kind and loving and was loved in return. She radiated joy. It was felt by many. There were well over 1,000 at the funeral. Friends. Family. Classmates. People she had never met. All were touched by her goodness.

It's been a year since Zoe was taken. I am grateful that I knew her. I'm grateful that my kids knew her. I'm grateful that her goodness lives on. She was so wonderful and I know that Heavenly Father welcomed her warmly home. Life does not always go as planned, but Heavenly Father turns all things to good.

Monday, October 10, 2016

The Other Side

The latest news from Elder Monzingo. Also, noteworthy but not included in this: He spent 2 days renewing his visa and it is always hot in Brazil. Oh, and a big shout out to the Activity Day girls (8-11 yr olds) from the Kaufman Ward. He finally got the care package you sent.

So this week the other side of the couple that needed their records
redone decided to be rebaptized. That was cool. Talking with him was
very cool. He really knows quite a bit about the gospel and has a very
strong testimony of it all. I don't know why exactly he waited as long
as he did but I was very happy to be able to see him make that next
step. They told us that they are trying for next year to get them all to
the temple. I hope I get news about that. That will be cool. 

Also I got a box from the Kaufman Ward Activity Day group. We ate PB&J seeing
as how my companion had some Pineapple J. Also sour patch kids. Also
I'm not sure when but we will be brid like and eat the sunflower
seeds. That was cool getting the stuff. 

But this week was good.
Although now we are unfortunately going to have to let go Ademar and
family. The only people that are actually doing anything are the ones
that have been baptized(which we aren't letting go) Everyone else just
seems to have lost all interest. SO yeah. That's gonna be interesting.
i'll tell y'all how it goes. I love you guys.

Monday, October 3, 2016

Conference Miracles

From Elder Monzingo:

Welp nows the part where you all tell me if you went and  watched
conference cause i's like, important and stuff so yeah. But I liked it
a lot. And it really does bring miracles. There was someone that
during the preisthood session he was passing the chapel and decided to
see what it was like inside, saw a friend of his, stayed, watched,
liked it and came back the next day to watch the other 2 sessions. So
that was rather cool. I hope that he decides that everything else is
as good as conference. But one of the talks that I really liked quite
a bit was Elder Rasband's. He talked about not forgetting who we are
and our heritage and the things that have happened in our past. Always
remember that you are all children of God and that he is here to help
you. Also I really really liked President Russell M. Nelson´s talk. He
talked a lot about joy. ANd how it is that we need to have joy in
every moment. Even when we soffer. ANd also one thing he said that I
rather liked was "if we follow the worlds standard for happiness we
will never have joy" At least I think that was it seeing as how I
listened in Portuguese. But really there are things in the world so
much more happy than you can imagine. But the gospel has the most
happy things. ALWAYS. I love you guys. Choose the Right

Also I didn't like any of these photos but this is what happens when
you go on a split with your district leader and he got a box from home
and the actual mint ones he likes but prefers strawberry and he was
happy with stuff you did in his area with his companion. So yeah. Also
it was almost full and it was pretty much all gone like one day after.
So yeah.

Thursday, September 29, 2016

The Prophets

From Elder Monzingo:

So this week I ended up talking a lot about prophets. There were a lot
of people that we taught that didn´t quite get what a prophet is.
You´d honestly be surprised at how many people don´´t understand like
what a prophet is. And so there were like 3 people this week that we
shared the first lesson with that were shown a lot of scriptures
telling them what is a prophet and that yes we should have them today
and yes they are rather needed in our lives. which is cool. It´s
really awesome being able to show people in the scriptures the stuff.
But this next week everyone here has an assignment. For those who
don´t know this weekend there will be this thing called general
conference. It´s a conference transmitted on the internet and by
satellite where the living prophet, Like Moses, Noah, Isaiah,
Abraham,etc.etc.etc., and the living 12 apostles, like Peter, James,
John, Matthew, Luke, Judas, The other Judas, Thomas, Andrew, the other
James, Phillip, Bartholomew, Lebbaeus, and Simon. And I´m inviting you
all. Go to look for general conference to see what times there
are and then go watch it in one of those times. I can promise you all
that it will be some of the best 2 hours of your life. I love you guys

Also this is me and my companion eating açai a few weeks ago

Monday, September 19, 2016

All Good Things to Those That Wait

So the transfer was yesterday. Elder Wilzbach that lives with us got
sent out of here. But Elder Steindorf and i are still here to work in
Bragança. But this week a cool thing happened. Ananda finally got
baptized. After this strange back and forth of wanting to and then not
doing it with people talking stuff and getting her uninterested and
then being interested again and on and on and on, she finally decided
to do it. The awesome part wasn´t necessarily that but that when she
did it she was more firm about her decision than she had ever been
before. So it was really cool to be able to be here for that. The next
part of this family will be the parents. They are sending in the stuff
to get married this week (at least that´s the plan) and then whenever
they are officially married they want to be baptized the same day
after we do some sort of wedding ceremony in the church. So it should
be cool.  But this week was like, a little bit weird, I was on splits
with other missionaries for the largest part of the week and then as
part of that I was on a bus for the largest part of the morning just
about every day. But it was cool. This week was honestly very
interesting with some interesting things that happened on the other
side of the city with the other missionaries. And I overall liked how
the week went. But now it´s the start of a new transfer and time to do
even better now than we ddi these past 6 weeks. I love you guys

Tuesday, September 13, 2016


No. He didn't get eaten by a snake.

Alright, I guess like no one read email stuff that I sent last week or
something like that because I got like 3 emails from people that were
like "WHERE ARE YOU!?!?!?!?!?! Did you get eaten by a snake?????" So
evidently they didn´t see the part last week that said "Also my P-day
next week will be Tuesday because we will have an area seventy here
talking to us Monday." But talking about the guy Elder Sergio
Antunes. he was really cool. We spent the whole day with him which was
really cool. He was very funny and knows a lot about the scriptures.
He talked a lot about the sacrament and different things and there is
the necessity for 2 cures. Water and Blood, Better known as baptism
and the sacrament. I thought the guy was really awesome. it would be
cool to some day just like sit down with somebody that has that much
knowledge and just let him teach ya stuff. Also I have like 9 months
in my mission so we celebrated with pastels. Which was good. They
tasted good. One was almost like a doughnut, which don´t exist here so
it was great. But I also got to see Old companions and people I knew.
So we have a picture here of everyone that arrived in Belém with me
minus a few because they are in zones rather long from us. Also with
all of my companions minus the MTC one that went to the Curitiba south
mission. But yeah it was really rather cool. I love you guys!

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Interesting Encounters

This week's email from Daniel:

SO this week I made alfredo! It was AWESOME!!! Waaayyyyyy better than
the last time. Because I bought cheese that worked for the stuff. Also
it had chicken and was just rather good in general. I don´t have
pictures though. Although we did take some. Because everytime we make
food in house it´s a moment to be celebrated. Usually. But this week,
or more like the end, was rather interesting. We ran into this guy
from israel. Somehow he´s lost in brazil. Speaks broken english, much
better spanish and also french and aramaic and hebrew. SO yeah.
interesting stuff. And yeah. he´s an interesting guy. But he´s
probably heading out of here soon so yeah. But this week was good. We
had alfredo. And everyone in the family of Ademar is travelling. They
went to a city close by because(I´m forgetting how to phrase sentences
in english guys. I don´t know how to do it I just know that how I want
to do it isn´t correct) o pai da irmâ socorro(espousa do ademar)
morreu. SO yeah. The family isn´t exactly the best off but We are
going to do the best we can to help them out with that. Lots of fams
enternal. But i love you guys. Also My P-day next week will be
Tuesday. Cause there is an area seventy doing a mission tour here in
Belém Monday. So yeah. that´s like, it. Bye bye.

Can You Feel So Now?

So. I totally forgot to post last week. So, It will be a two for one kind of day. What I think is most interesting is how he is forgetting how to say things in English.

This is me, my companion, and Irmã Fabiana.

 And this is Irmã Fabiana with her family. 

Irmã Fabiana was re-baptized Saturday and Confirmed
Sunday cause her records were lost. Like, didn´t exsist. And honestly
this is probably one of the only times that I can say I´ve seen this
and that I´ll get to see it. But I think it is awesome that she
decided to do this again. Talking with her was really kinda cool. She
said that she honestly doesn´t feel like the first time she was ready,
at least in part because she understood almost nothing of what the
missionaries were saying because it was all in spanish and not
portuguese (she ran into the church in Bolivia) But now she feels
really ready for it. I shared the scripture Alma 5:26 with them at the
baptism. "E eis que eu vos digo, se haveis experimentado uma mudança
no coração, e se haveis sentido o desejo de cantar o cântico de amor
que redime, eu perguntaria, podeis agora sentir isso?" (That´s mostly
memory with a few corrections after looking at the scripture, also I
can´t do that very well with the English one) Because she really has
that desire to continue and this was a moment where she needed to ask,
"Can I feel so now?" So I really hope that you guys can all feel so
now. Even if you have a lot of time in the church I hope that Right
now you can feel it. I love you guys. Keep going. Look for the best.
Eat pancakes.