Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Feliz Navidad!

The Bouchers
Thursday we were able to have our zone Christmas party at the mission home with the Bouchers and their cute family that was visiting. Hna Boucher made a wonderful feast of delicious food and we were able to receive our presents from "Santa".

Saturday night (noche buena), a family here invited us over for dinner and we were able to eat all of the typical Puerto Rican 
Christmas food- arroz con gandules, pasteles, lechon, and flan! It was great and I loved being in a family atmosphere.

Sunday morning was Christmas and my comp and I were finally able to open up our presents!! My family sent me a cute "Utah" package and I got a bunch of things that are only found in Utah. After church we ate lunch and then we were able to go Skype our families!! It was great to see everyone but strange to see them bundled up in coats!

I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas y les espero mucha felicidad en el ano nuevo!

Hna Larsen

on our way to the party with the Caguas sisters
Hna Keith and I with the Boucher's nieta (granddaughter)
Christmas clothes
Hna Turner

Hna Turner and Tirado
Hna Guevara
me with a group of people that are going home

Monday, December 19, 2016

This Week in a Minute

I had my first zone meeting on Tuesday and I had to speak in front of our whole zone and teach them about charity with my comp and the two zone leaders. I was soooo nervous and we spent our entire day on Monday preparing for it! But as soon as it was my turn to teach, all of my nerves went away and I remembered how much I love public speaking.... I must have studied that in college or something??? 

After the zone meeting we had our exchanges with the sisters in Aguas Buenas and I stayed in Guayama with Hna Chavez who is an outstanding missionary and I learned a lot  about teaching clearly and being direct from her. 

On Friday we had the ward Christmas party where the members put on the nativity scene. My companion tried to get me to be the angel but luckily a sister from the ward offered to do it for me!

This week we will have our zone Christmas party and my mission president's house and I'll also get to have my usually Christmas call home!!! I hope that you all have a wonderful Christmas and that you enjoy the cold!!!

Feliz navidad!

Hna Larsen

Hermana Chavez


The spider we found outside our door

Jose (the son of our recent convert)

Typical Puerto Rico Christmas food

The adorable Mary and Joseph Gladielis and Carlos

Monday, December 12, 2016

A Birthday and a Baptism

Tuesday was my birthday and My companion made me cupcakes and we brought them to district meeting! We were supposed to be eating dinner with a member but she called and cancelled on us but another sister from the ward called and invited us over for dinner and cake. It was delicious and she bakes cakes professionally so the cake was to die for!

On Wednesday we had a mission leadership meeting and it was the last MLC for several of the missionaries there, including my cute companion. I was able to talk to some of my old companions and friends and I took a picture with Elder Hana (one of the APs) who was in my district in Caguas and who is also going  home after Christmas!

Friday-Saturday I had exchanges with the sisters in Caguas and it was sooo weird working in my old area again. I was able to go visit Elba and Marcos and I just adore and miss them! It was fun being able to work with Hna Tirado again and see how much she has grown as a missionary. She's adorable!

Saturday night we had a BAPTISM!!! It was for Joan, our investigator that we have been working with for this whole transfer. It was a miracle and I just love seeing how much the gospel can change people and families!  After the baptism we talked to her 13 year old son and he told us that he wanted to be baptized as well!!! He had previously told us that he didn't want to so that was another tender mercy and he'll be baptized on the 23!

That's about it for this week! The work is coming along here in Guayama and I know that I was put here for a reason!

Love you!

Hna Larsen

Birthday cupcakes at District meeting

Awkward "I'm standing next to a boy" picture!

Hermana Keith

Hermana Tirado

Joan's Baptism

Joan's Baptism

Monday, December 5, 2016

The Real Thanksgiving Feast!

Well good morning/afternoon (it's afternoon here)!

This week was a really great week full of the usually ups and downs. Last Monday we had a real thanksgiving feast with all the food that my dear mother sent to me. I has been sooooo long since I've had rolls and last week we fulfilled my deepest desire to eat rolls!! It was so great!! It made me thankful to have such a loving mother who obviously knows my love for Lion House rolls!

We also were able to have intercambios (exchanges if you speak English) with the sisters in Humacao and I was able to work there with Hna Onince for 24 hours. She is a newer missionary, fresh from her training, and she showed me how to be courageous and talk to everyone you see! I have a lot of faith in her and her companion! While I was with her we were contacting a street and it just seemed like no one wanted to talk to us. I saw a lady sitting outside her house in a hammock and I felt really strongly that we needed to talk to her. Right as we go to talk to her it starts pouring rain!! Luckily she invited us into her house and we were able to share the church's "light the world" Christmas video. At the end of the video she started crying and told us that she had be praying that the Lord would send her angels to help her feel his love and that we were answers to her prays. I felt so blessed to have been able to help that lady in her moment of despair.

This week I turn 21 years of age......wait, what??? It still feels unreal but maybe one day I'll act my age!!! 

Have a great Monday!!! Les Amo!!

Hna Larsen


Monday, November 28, 2016


Wow what can I say? Thanksgiving in Puerto Rico was quite the adventure!! Well I guess I should start from the beginning.

So last Tuesday we had a tri(that means 3)zone conference with the area President of the area, Elder Gonzalez. It was so fun to be able to see some of my friends and past companions that are serving in the Toa Baja and San Juan zones. We were taught about following the example of Christ and teaching people as individuals, but still testifying of the Restoration of the gospel. After the zone conference we had a couple hours until all of the STLs and zone leaders were to meet and the mission home to have another meeting with Elder Gonzalez, so we decided to go on splits with the sisters in Trujillo Alto. It was great! It rained the entire time and we looked slightly homeless by the end, but I enjoyed my contacting experience with Hna Garcia!

I just thought it was really cool that I was able to be in two meeting with a general authority! It was something that I will never forget and I learned so much that I wish I could have known at the beginning of my mission!!

Ok so Thanksgiving. Here it is really common for people to eat a Thanksgiving lunch instead of a Thanksgiving dinner. Well we ate thanksgiving lunch at the house of a cute little less-active members house and then later that night we decided to go visit one our investigators where we were then fed thanksgiving dinner. Hahaha ok so for dinner our 'gator' was explaining all of the typical Puerto Rican food that she had prepared and she mentioned a dish that I had no idea what it was. Well me being the curious person I am, decided to try it. Have you ever heard that curiosity killed the cat? So yes we pray and start to eat and I realized that what I had served myself was LIVER. Yes, you read that right. I had given myself a good helping of Liver. Well our investigator sits across the table from me and tells me that she hopes that I love it and that she is known for her liver-dish.....friends, I had to give all of my effort to eat all of it!!! The rest of the food was delicious but I will never forget my Thanksgiving '"Liver" in PR!!

I hope you all had a great Turkey day and that you stay warm!!!

Les amo mucho!!

Hna Larsen

Monday, November 21, 2016


Buenos Dias!!

This week I arrived at my new area, Guayama, and started working my Hna Keith. It has been an adventure to say the least. I have so much to learn about the members, the investigators, the area, and how to be a STL. It's a good thing that my comp. is so patient!!

I had to say goodbye to my trainer last week which was sad but I'm really happy for her. I'm sure that her family is really happy to have her home! I also had to say goodbye to Hna Tirado but I'm now her STL so I will still be able to see and work with her!

The members in Guayama are awesome and I know now why this area is known as Zion! They love the missionaries and they work so well with us. I'm really excited to spend the next part of my mission here!

So this week is Thanksgiving and I've been thinking of all the things that I am thankful for. The list is too long to write out, but here's a few.

I'm thankful:

To be a missionary for la iglesia de Jesucristo de los santos de los últimos días here in Puerto Rico.

For the restored gospel

For the atonement and the chance to repent and become better

For my cute companion and her superhuman patience.

The Leaders of my mission and of the church.

And for My family and all of their support and sacrifices.

Feliz dia de pavo/acción de gracias/thanksgiving!!

Hna Larsen

(Mom note:  This email has been translated from its original Spanglish format. Some words were intentionally left in Spanish because I think she meant to do those!)


Last day in Caguas with Hermana Tirado

Saying goodbye to Hermana Garcia, my trainer

Me, Hermana Keith, Hermana Allan

First Sunday with Hermana Keith

Monday, November 14, 2016

Is this Real Life?

This week has been an exciting one but I just skip to the good stuff! Last night was our transfer calls right? Well I was sooo nervous because I knew that I would probably be leaving. I managed to make it through the entire work day without having an emotional break-down (I really love my area) but as we were starting our nightly planning session, the phone rang. I looked down to see that it was President Boucher! My companion and I began playing a game of "hot potato", passing the phone back and forth, trying to convince the other to answer the phone. Finally Hna Tirado answered the phone and shortly afterwards she passed it to me. Well I have been called to be a sister-trainer leader  in Guayama!!! I'll still be in the same zone which means I'll be able to visit Caguas during exchanges!

I'm so grateful for my time with the Caguas ward and I have learned so much! The members here are amazing and I will never forget them!! I'm still really nervous but I know that the Lord will provide a way for me and that my time in Guayama will be a great experience!

I hope you all have a great week and that you remember to help the missionaries! (That means more than just feed them, mom)

Here some pictures from my week!

my abuela

My going away dinner from Elba

My going away cake from Elba

District photo

Lizmyra and Helen Lebron

Hna Caraballo

Elba and Marcos 

Elba and Marcos

Monday, November 7, 2016

One Year Down!

So for Halloween last week my companion and I decided to decorate pumpkins, right? Well about half-way through this process I noticed that my companion was using a lot of Yellow and white paint. After about 30 minutes of painting her pumpkin, Hna Tirado looks up at me triumphantly and declares "Mira, es usted!". Sure enough she had painted an Hna Larsen Pumpkin, it looks just like me!!

As the title of this email explains, I've officially been out for one year!! Wha, what? I'm actually kind of sad about it!! Here is a list of a couple things I have learned is this last year:

#1 The celestial language, aka Spanish. If you don't believe that Spanish is the celestial language just ask any Latino missionary and they will tell you off.

#2: To love eating rice.... lots and lot of rice.

#3: How to live with a companion 24/7.

#4: How the gospel changes lives.

#5: To consider Crocs as socially acceptable footwear.

#6: Patience....haha yeah I'm still working on that one!

#7: How to love the people here with my entire being.

Like I said, I'm sad that I only have 6 months left but I'm also really excited to see what else I will learn from the people of PR. Here's a couple pictures from my Halloween experience and of my one year mark.

Feliz Lunes!!

Hna Larsen

Hermana Larsen pumpkin