Behold I say unto you, that by small and simple things are great things brought to pass. ~Alma 37:6

Behold I say unto you, that by small and simple things are great things brought to pass. ~Alma 37:6

September 26, 2011

Más Querida Familia,

Sounds like everyone had a good week! Dad told me you guys ate chicken heart! ha ha. Congratulations to Alexis for her try-out. And I wish Emily and Hannah could be here to teach me more piano. I am thinking about buying a toy piano so I can practice in the house.

My new Companion? Ha ha ha well I have a funny story about that. So Elder Gaitán left Tuesday afternoon in a plane to Managua. And Wednesday our new companion came in a plane at about 2 o’clock. His name is Elder Nybo!!! A chele from Logan.

What is even awesomer is that he came with me on the plane to Nicaragua. He sat right next to me! He was my airplane buddy. So I was astonished that President sent me a gringo. I was actually a little worried too because Elder Nybo is pilas (strong) and maybe President lost his confidence in me or something so he sent a pilas elder to be my comp.

So this end of the week has been one of the best weeks every. Elder Nybo is a great Elder and was willing to do everything we had to do to work as hard as we could in our area. The past couple of days have been some of the best we have had in Bluefields. And we put a baptismal date with an awesome family and they came to church yesterday! ha ha almost too good to be true right? ha ha well yeah.

Saturday, I called Elder Heward our AP to ask him a question about our phone. Well, he asked me how was my new comp. and I said "Awesome, Elder Nybo and I are working really hard." And he said, "Oh... Elder Hardy, I have to tell you something..." Ha ha and I knew what he was going to say.

Well it turns out due to the communication block here in Bluefields, we never found out that Elder Nybo was supposed to be Elder Jimenez´s comp and Elder Lopez was supposed to switch over to my area and be my comp ha ha.

Well, I thought us two together was a weird companionship, too powerful ha ha. No, but I am glad to have Elder Lopez as my companion and we are going to work just as hard. And Elder Nybo is going to help a lot in the other Branch I am sure.

So my REAL companions name is Elder Hans Bladimir López Garcia he is from Guatemala and has 9 months in the mission I think. Oh and a big coincidence. He is my Brother! Ha ha of the mission. Elder Coj trained him right after our two changes together.

The work is going great. Like I said, we have a very positive progressing family and a couple more on the way. Yes there are a couple of really cool members that like to help us. One is named Francisco. He has about 3 months as a member and is already the honorary secretary of the branch. I say honorary because technically he can’t be it because he only has 16 years!

An awesome experience happened yesterday. Well, it started Friday when we contacted one more family before going home for the night. We passed by a green house with the door open, I saw inside as we passed by on our way home (missionaries are very nosy). I saw a man inside and I felt like we should go back and try to talk to them.

So we did, and ended up getting to know and teach a little lesson to the family. The man I saw was the dad and he actually kind of ran away from us, but we got the chance to invite him along with his family to church Sunday. The weird thing was that even though he was least positive of the family, he came to church.

I was impressed because we only even talked to him once and left a pamphlet. We went back to his house later Sunday and he came out set up some chairs and a table and asked us, "Would you like to eat before or after the lesson?" Ha ha so he gave us a little dinner and then we taught him. He had read the entire pamphlet and opened it up to the first vision part pointed to it and said, “I liked this part most...”.

Wow, so in the end we challenged him to prepare to be baptized and he willingly accepted. The only objection he said was that he didn’t know when his work would be and if it fell on the day of the baptismal service if he could do it the day before. Ha ha so that was a good lesson.

Last Pday or the Pday before that we built a house. Ha ha. Well we helped put the roof on. (I helped pass up the tin laminas, no I did not climb up the roof to nail them in.)

What do members do for a living here? Fish. No, that’s not true. That’s what most people do, or the work on cruise ships every couple of months. Presidente Blass has a fruit and vegetable store. Presidente Martinez works for the government like a supervisor of the traffic control or something. Stuff like that.

A bike? NEVER, will I get to ride a bike. And I am bummed. "This is not a bike mission." That’s what president told me when I asked him for one ha ha. The place in my last photo is in the Alcaldia de Bluefields. The City Hall or something like that. But no, it’s not my bike in my photo. We are not allowed to touch bikes.

Hannah asked how far we walk every day. Ha ha lots and lots Hannah. But it is fun. And good exercise. I think that is what is keeping me from getting fat. But I think we walk less here than in Monte Fresco. But there are still lots of hills.

Thanks for the Journal entries Dad.

Thanks Mom. It sounds like bowling and everything is going good. Say hi to Grandma and Grandpa for me, they still have to hold on a long time for me. Hey I want a pumpkin if there is an extra!!! You could carve a missionary name tag in it!

Hmm, Emily, why is school just "alright I guess" huh? Ha ha and even more questionable that he is a Canadian boy. Is he a member? Ha ha that is funny you have to do another float!!! ha ha I luh ya. Good luck with the piano recital and dance.

Wow, riding your bike to school Hannah? Lucky. I am jealous. I wish I had a bike. Keep up the good work in school. P.s. I love you!


Elder Hardy

September 19, 2011

Ha ha ha ha is this a REAL moose photo?

(Sue's Note: This is the moose photo
we sent him from our hike.
And yes, this is a REAL moose.)

I’m sorry but ever since the last Yellowstone trip (that I went to) I will doubt every moose photo for the rest of my life. You should have had Hannah in the photo too to prove it. And even so, how do I know it’s not a horse with a bump on its back haha... But sounds like the hike was fun, thanks for the pictures. Hannah is already really big isn’t she...?

Hey and GOOO UTES!!! Ha ha I am glad to hear about Emily. But ouch that wasn’t very nice to Dad (to change from being a BYU fan to a UTAH fan).


Yeah, I will send my chips in "la bolsa" (the bag) to the mission office. I don’t think anyone will touch it on the way, and the Elders in the office are my friends. Ha ha the Secretary Elder Fabricous will take care of them for me. Ha ha I can’t take during changes, because plane tickets are expensive so I have to stay here... Oh! But I could send it with those that have changes! That is really nice of Brother and Sister Bentley. Are you sure that it is not going to be too big of a pain for them?

Ha ha I know it was Día de la Independencia, same for all of Central America. But we didn’t get to see the celebrations. Here in Bluefields they have all the schools do marching bands and dance. But it was in the morning in the park and we didn’t go. But it was cool. We didn’t do anything special.

Yes, this week is Changes and my companion Elder Gaitan has transfers. I was answering this question when I realized that he could take the SD cards to Managua. It was a good change with Elder Gaitan, I think we helped each other a lot, and we also helped 6 people come to the waters of baptism. I hope he gets to go to a good area with a great companion to keep up the good work.

I will look for a photo of just me and Elder Gaitan. Or take one before he leaves!

Well, this week started with the Vela and Funeral (seeing and funeral) of Harold Blass. I was very impacted by the faith of his family. As well as with the influence of being a representative of Jesus Christ.

Monday was the Vela, and we only passed by to pay our respects and comfort President and his family and then go. (It’s called a vela because everyone stays up all night). When we got there, we waited to talk to President and when he saw us he got up and asked us to go to another room with him. He was waiting the whole time for us to show up so we could give him a blessing.

The next day at the Funeral, during the procession to the cemetery, (everyone walks in front of the car with the casket to the cemetery) the President asked that the order be first the family, then the missionaries, then the presidencies of the branches and then everyone else. I am very touched by the love the people have here for us.

Ha ha well I have never seen a movie theater here. So I don’t know what movies they play. But I doubt it, because in the street stores they have big shelves of copied DVDs and they are like a dollar each (not that I have bought any, or looked at any). And I don’t think we are ever going to go to one. Ha ha but when we were eating dinner, I heard someone casting spells on the television in the other room and had to close my ears and go lalalalala. But I imagine that Harry Potter is coming out isn’t it...

Oh I am sorry Hannah. You take a sick day then. But no I haven’t ever been very sick at all here in the mission. And I am very thankful to our Heavenly Father for that, He has protected your big brother very well. Feel Better!

Hey Dad! Um, I would test out the bike before you go... ha ha I seem to remember faintly that there MIGHT be a problem with the front tire and the back alignment... ha ha. And it doesn’t have shocks either so it gives you a good massage if you are going on a bumpy trail.

Congratulations about the DUP mom ha ha. I didn’t know you have been a DUP member for 12 years! ha ha ha

Hey, Alexis wrote me an Email!!! But he was from BYU... well there’s your problem ha ha just kidding.

Hey Emily, your creativity amazes me. Very good work. But why is a senior asking you to homecoming? Xander is a questionable name.

Tell Hannah that Ps I love her.

I love you All,

Elder Hardy

Ps Go Utes!

September 12, 2011

Dear Mother Honey, Family... and all of you,

(Sue’s note: I call him Jonny Honey sometimes that's why he is calling me Mother Honey. I can’t help it. That’s what mom’s do :)

This week was a very good week but also a very sad week. Good because the missionary work is going forward, and here in Bluefields we understand the Plan of Salvation that God has given us.

But very sad, because the son of the Recent Branch President (was released the week before) had an accident. There is a boxing club here in Bluefields for all the kids. One of the sons (they are twins) of President was in a boxing match, and everything was normal when the match ended.

But a couple minutes later they found him unconscious. We found out a few hours later and went to the hospital to give him a blessing. But they wouldn’t let us in because he was in the emergency room. But his Family was already there and his Dad had given him a blessing. He was in a coma I think, and passed all Saturday night without responding.

Sunday they sent him to Managua, but we found out today that he didn’t recover. It is very sad, but very touching to see the small Branch here uniting to comfort the family.

The good thing is, President Blass is a very faithful member. And while all the Branch here is very sad, they all have hope, because they understand God´s plan, and that this family can return to be together, forever. If you could say a little prayer for the Familia Blass, that would be nice.

Well mom, we don’t teach lessons... we teach people. Ha ha but to answer the question we try to have unity as we teach. It always seems like the Latinos talk more, (Spanish is their first language), but at this point the language is not a barrier at all, and everything I want to express I can. My companion actually knows quite a bit of English... or Creole (one of the two) and when people talk to us in Creole he tries to participate too and does a pretty good job.

Hey, you are in luck! FINALLY, I got to try a more traditional Bluefields dish. Rondón. Ha ha it is tortoise! With a couple of other things, and gallo pinto with cocoa! It was really good... although there was one piece (only one piece, ok!) that I couldn’t quite stomach. It was Sunday afternoon and I hadn’t eaten anything, and I was feeling a little stomach sick. But I think it was a big vein or something, but it was super hard and chewy and with the seasoning it had I thought best just to leave it there.


(Sue note: Rondón is the traditional plate of the city of Bluefields. It is prepared with tortoise meat, fish, beef, or wild boar. Often they combine two of these meats. In the preparation, they boil the meat with pepper, chile, nargan (mushroom), onion, chiltoma (sweet pepper), banana, yucca and quequisque tuber).

Bugs? No, no I don’t get bit too much. Maybe they have just gotten used to me. I would have put up the net anyway, but my Comp. didn’t want to. But mosquitoes are not a problem.

Hey thanks a lot for your prayers! I know you helped. We actually did find a new family. Well, I think we contacted them last week, but they weren’t very positive. They are investigating another church, and had a lot of questions and doubts and didn’t really want a return cita.

BUT, when we passed this week, there was a significant change in their attitudes. They were much more accepting, and we taught them about a few questions they had, (like how Jesus Christ is Jehovah) and they were a lot more excited for us to come the next time. So thank you for your prayers, ha ha please kept it up!

Well, last night we had a really spiritual experience. One of the most pilas (strong) members in the ward didn’t come to church. Hey is our recent convert so we went to see what was up. (I don’t think he has missed a Sunday since he got baptized, and he has a calling in the Branch).

When we went to talk to him, at first he seemed pretty normal. But as we started a lesson, we could tell something was wrong. That’s when my companion asked him to turn to a scripture and read it out loud. Well, he didn’t want to read it out loud, but as he read it to himself, he started to cry.

Turns out the scripture really hit the spot, and my companion continued with a few more of his favorite scriptures and everyone was crying. Well in the end he was really disanimated, and is going through some personal trials.

I am grateful to have a companion that was able to follow the spirit in that moment and help share with that young man what the Lord wanted him to hear. When we walked out of there, our friend was a lot more happy and had been comforted. And is going to continue being pilas preparing to serve a full time mission for the Lord.

Yes Hannah, I do see pirate ships! But now days they have motors too! Ahh.

The corn in Nicaragua? Excellent question Grandma! Well yeah, it’s a little different. It isn’t as big. But it still tastes pretty good, (Not as good as your corn Grandma) but they sell it on the cob in the streets boiled or grilled and it’s called "elote". That is great that the corn harvest is here. I wish you could send me some to do a comparison.


Hey Dad, take it easy, I didn’t know you could run 6 miles. That’s too bad that you don’t have any journal this week. I have to confess to you Dad I have been slacking off on my journal writing too. But I am determined to do better. Maybe I can remember some stuff that I haven’t written too and write it down.

Ha ha ha I LOVED hands on science at Highland Park. You have to do it cool mom! But don’t hurt anyone. It is hard to do a lot of stuff with the little kids. I remember one time we held hands in a circle to connect a current and light a light bulb. And one of my friends touched the metal chalk board stand (which we were told not to do) and everyone got zapped. Ha ha.

Good luck with the U vs. BYU game too Mom. I still have my U of U football here. Maybe I will carry it around in my bag Saturday ha ha.

...Make Alexis "Walk the Plank"

(For not sending her brother an email. But alas, she got one to him while he was still signed in to his account! Cutting it a little close matey! :)

Wow Emily, sounds like dance is going great! Good luck Friday!

Hannah! Congratulations on being Molly Mouse again this year, you stage Diva. (Thanks for sending me an email)

Love you,

Elder Hardy



September 5, 2011

Hello Awesome Familia,

My week was Awesome. We did lots of stuff. The biggest things that happened are we had a baptism, and President Monestel came to visit and changed the Branch President on Sunday. But we got to eat dinner with him Saturday night, it was pretty nice.

I am doing great. I hope you liked the photos. I actually have about 4 4gb SD cards full of photos that I would like to send you.

Hey, but Felicidades to Grandma and Grandpa Weiler!!! 64th Wedding Anniversary! That is quite an accomplishment isn’t it? The tradition here is to buy silver plates when you hit 25 years and golden plates when you hit 50 years. And not too many people have them here so congratulations Grandma and Grandpa.

Say hi to all the family from me. I will try and think of some things that they can help send in a package. It is very nice of them.

Hey, and how was the Bingo Bango Bongo Game?!?! I am going to need a lot of practice when I return to get back into the competition!

Hey, you should eat the duck eggs!!! We don’t have a breakfast appointment so I decided to buy eggs. I bought a big carton of like 30 and it almost lasted the whole week. But the eggs here are different... they aren’t the pure white steroid enhanced eggs I was used to ha ha.
Why were we wearing white shirts on PDay? Ha ha, oh well, on PDay we still wear white shirts and ties the whole day, unless you are doing something that you just can’t wear a tie to do. But since we were just going to take photos by the rock I figured I would wear the tie. Ha ha even though, we went back on a trail by a creek and got lost in the jungla. So it probably would have been better in normal clothes there haha.
My favorite snacks? Bueno, this is always tuff for me. Ha ha but at least I have learned that I don’t have to have personal revelacion before I make all the miniscule decisions. God blessed me with an intelligent brain that can decide what snacks I like. And there is actually a lot less stuff here in Bluefields than there in Managua. We have like one supermarket, and it doesn’t have anything ha ha. That is why I am only eating pure eggs for breakfast.
So, as far as the drink flavors, we will just talk in powders right? Really my favorite Gatorade flavor is grape. I always like the Smiling Back Goldfish. I do like the jerky, but the Latinos aren’t too fond of it so maybe something else. I do really like those nature valley bars, I think the oats and honey were my favorite. You know what would be great with my egg omelet in the morning is a bag of bacon bits ha ha. Kind of random.
Really, without fail, the cliché classic send your Elder a tie is Awesome. You can never go wrong with a tie. I have actually grown to be quite fond of them. Ha ha I think I have achieved the goal to be able to wear a different tie everyday for the change... ha ha ha and I even like the ugly ties.
The great thing is you don’t have to worry about being pretty as a missionary, just look respectable. So the "Grandpa ties" are really in for me. And a tie is something I always like to give my comp before we separate, but the majority of my comps don’t like grandpa ties, they like the stylish sleek ties. Well, remind me next time if I thought of anything else.
The funniest thing that happened to me this week was probably last Monday. Because lots of funny things happen. But from the side of gringo jokes and funny things happening with bolos (drunks) on the street (they are pretty funny) I can only remember Monday.
When we were taking pictures by the creek, we took a picture that looks like my comp is pushing me in the water. As I was leaning back for the photo and I slipped! I almost fell in but at the last second I grabbed my comp (ha ha) and he went flying over the top of me and almost fell in too but jumped and saved himself on a little rock and I did a spider man move to balance myself on the rocks laying down on my back. We didn’t fall in. (Water is bad for Elders). Everyone was like wow, what just happened, and we laughed.

Challenges? Hey, I really am doing Awesome ha ha I wasn’t joking! Of course the mission isn’t the color of roses (cliché phrase here: that the life isn’t "el color de rosa") But it really is Awesome. It’s the best time in my life right now.

I am learning lots and gaining many many attributes of Christ. Really any challenges or difficulties that come my way all get blown away (ha ha even though it might not be easy), because I have a testimony, I understand why I am here, and I love all my brothers and sisters that are around me, therefore I must do my absolute best so that I can be a worthy vessel of the Lord to bless them. So everything is Awesome.
If you really want to know one of the challenges más grandes (larger) that I have found in my mission, it would definitely have to be trying to help other missionaries that haven’t quite yet understood why they are here yet. But you just need to have patience, humility and love and try to be a good example and everything works out. 
No, I don’t have to pay the rent. Since we live in a house with the other companionship they are receiving the money for the house. It is 3 hundred dollars each month for the rent. It is pretty expensive here. Usually it has to be less than 100 per companionship, but they justified it this time because there used to be 3 companionships. We have to pay the energy bill too. Which is like 300 cords each month. But we have become quite energy efficient.
Am I learning Miskito or Creole? Ha ha ha kind of.  I haven’t really talked to enough people that speak Miskito. But Creole is cool. It is pretty much a really slanged version of English. They usually understand me if I speak English. And I can understand most of it when they talk.
Hannah's Question: Did you see any snakes on your Jungle Cruise?
No, only the Hippos! And the tour guide had to shoot his pistol to scare them away! Ha ha no. But I did see a big tortoise on a log in the river! But we passed it too fast and I couldn’t take a picture.
But sounds like the family is doing great. Dad, if you get Jacob all riled up, you have to tire him out before you stop! haha. I hope the campout was fun.
Hey Mom, congratulations on your following. I guess you are famous now. But what does it mean when the Daughters of the Utah Pioneers ask you to speak? Thanks for praying for me mom. Hey, can you pray that me and my comp. can be more unified and find more families to teach? Family baptisms are pretty hard to find here. I love you so much my mom
Hmm, well say hi to Alexis for me. But if she doesn’t have any homework she has time to write, right? ha ha. I love her too.
Hey!!! I can’t wait to get the letters from the Young Women!!! How is school going Emily? It is good to hear that the football team is doing good. I luh you.
Hey Hannah. I am glad the quack is good. And yes of course I still have the silly band you gave me. It is my lucky charm. P.s. I love you.
Thanks for the news family, I hope you all have a great week.
Don’t forget to pray for us here in Bluefields! I am praying for you guys.
Elder Hardy