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

October 31, 2011

Happy Halloween!!! I hope it is fun tonight!

Wow, over 100 candy bars, that’s a house you have to mark on the map to go back to next year!

The Jack ´O Lanterns are awesome!!! Thank you for doing one for me, it looks great. And I have to guess who did the other ones. But it is going to be hard. I was going to say that Emily of course did the Ballerina, but I looked at the pumpkins and now I’m not sure. Because I was looking at the actual pumpkins and it would seem to me that Emily would be more likely to pick the second pumpkin with the Witch and Hannah the first. So I say that Hannah´s is the Ballerina, Emily did the Witch and Dad did the Owl. How did I do? And who helped with my Pumpkin?

Sue's note: Owl: Alexis, Witch: Hannah,
Ballerina & Elder Hardy: Emily

Sounds like an Awesome Ward Halloween Party. I’m jealous we didn’t do anything here. Great work Dad, of course I still remember when we did that in elementary school. I think Rob made a recording if I remember and Zach was in cahoots with me so he went first and made a huge act when he got to the ¨right hand.¨ And nobody believed him until they did it. I am pretty sure there was a girl crying in the corner and Taylor Gunst was trying to make up explanations like, "Oh its one of those mechanical hands that grabs you when you touch it."

Right now outside? OK! It´s raining. There are people walking by with umbrellas and some no (it´s not raining that hard). Also taxis pass by every few seconds. It’s kind of dark for it to be 3:00 PM but that’s to be obvious because it is raining. The store in front is green... and there is a guy standing in the door leaning on the door frame with a bag in his hand, oh he walked away.

I don’t have to worry about anyone outside seeing me looking at them because I am actually quite far away from the door (the door is glass and is the only "window" I can look out of). But I think the person working at the front desk might think I am crazy because I keep standing up to see above the division walls in between the computers like a prairie dog...

Do the members and investigators have a hard time pronouncing Elder Hardy? No, not really, once they get it. But at first lots of people always say "Elmer Harvey" and then I explain another time and they say oh, "Elder Harvey" Ha ha. Sometimes to help people remember I use the example of Hardy is like Jardín, (Garden in Spanish) and that you just have to take off the N.

The big majority religions in Bluefields are Catholic, Moravian and lots of different Evangelical Churches. Ha ha, well I haven’t seen any Voodoo people but an old investigator one time was telling us that his mom does voodoo and that she has a black book. Never got to get to know her.

The aspect of the Gospel that brings the most peace to me? Mercy. Really the most important aspect of the Gospel is the Atonement. And that is what I want to say when I say Mercy. Through the Atonement of Jesus Christ, I can repent and be clean and worthy to enter into the Celestial Kingdom one day. Through the Mercy and Love of Heavenly Father and his Son Jesus Christ I can make it, even though I know I can’t be perfect and make it on my own. That is why it gives me so much peace.

It would be like taking a really hard physics test. God the Father is the Professor. Jesus Christ is the Professors assistant (in this case his son too) and is like God the Professor too because he helped make the test and is going to grade my test in the end. So I am taking the test and even though I studied my best and am trying my best, I make a mistake. (And you have to get 100% on the test to pass the class).

And I realize it only after I make it and it is too late. Mercy is like the Assistant telling us as we take the test that he knows we are going to get wrong answers but he is going to give us the second chance and is going to help us correct our tests and if we have (faith) in him he will help us get 100 if we really try our best. I can imagine the relief and (peace) that would give me during a college Physics test to really know that was true.

Well, I think that maybe you can make a little sense of the example. I would definitely refine it, explain it better and make sure there isn’t any apostasy before I would give it in a ward talk.

A McDonald’s in Bluefields? Ha ha, no Hannah, not here. The only big franchise restaurant they have here is Tip Top (aka KFC) ha ha. Well we usually eat the normal Nicaragua food in our food appointment. But one time we went to eat tortoise (still feel guilty) and we went to eat pizza today. Sometimes we have gotten to eat really good fresh sea food soups of like shrimp, fish, crab, and squidys.

Hey, but you didn’t ask me about changes!!! Yes changes are this Wednesday, and... I have changes!!!!

NO!!!!! Ahh, I thought it would be impossible for me to have changes this time. I wanted to stay here until at least after Christmas. But that’s how it is, the Lord has called me to serve in another place and I know that it will be where I should be. And that there are people waiting for me there. I will just have to wait very anxiously for the email from Elder Lopez that says that the families we are teaching right now got baptized. I will probably head out in airplane tomorrow afternoon. Ha ha adios Bluefields!

Thanks Dad, I will try and write Blake, that would be nice. Hey, you all better keep practicing while you have the chance, Because the UNO Champ will be back to claim his seat in no time. (But not soon, maybe Mom will have the chance to catch up :-) ) Ha ha love you Dad.

The activities sound awesome Mom. Good luck with Thanksgiving and the mashed potatoes. I love you sooo much awesome Mom!

Emily! You have a friend crayon who is named Emily too! No way what a coincidence! I luh you.

Oh no Hannah! Wait, was this MY phone!?.... ha ha just kidding. Well I am sorry Hannah, I hope it shows up, but I pray for you every night too! Ps I love you!

Happy Halloween everyone!


Elder Hardy

October 24, 2011

Hey Familia!

Well I hope you all had a good "Staycation"! Sounds like it was fun. Tell Grandma & Grandpa Weiler, Rob and "Big Bertha" I love them too.

The Tropical Storm? Ha ha ha oh boy, well I´m thinking I would run to the hills if I have to evacuate. Nothing bad has come this way at all so far. But the last time they had a hurricane hit Bluefields (20 years ago) it wasn’t pretty. We will see how it goes.

Saturday we had a super super good lesson with our most positive family. I took the Branch President there to get to know them and to share about his family and how they have been blessed. The President has a very young family and they are preparing to go to the temple this December to be sealed. So he talked about that and his experience as an investigator and marrying his wife.

It was great because this family needs to get married too. Then we shared Una Familia: una proclamacion para el mundo with them and watched Juntos para Siempre. And the end of the lesson the Husband asked what they had to do so that his family could be sealed for forever. It was very spiritual and awesome.

My toughest challenge in Bluefields has been time. We never seem to have enough time to get everything done that we need to. Ha ha we are always a little behind schedule, so I would say my challenge is to manage my time better. But hey, when everyone wants to talk to you what can you do?

Argh, I wrote a very nice spiritual thought but the Internet errored when I tried to send the email and the last draft didn’t save it. But here it is again:

From Elder Maxwell's talk "Remember How Merciful the Lord Hath Been":

"Brethren, as you submit your wills to God, you are giving Him the only thing you can actually give Him that is really yours to give. Don’t wait too long to find the altar or to begin to place the gift of your will upon it! No need to wait for a receipt; the Lord has His own special ways of acknowledging.

"I testify to you that God has known you individually, brethren, for a long, long time (see D&C 93:23). He has loved you for a long, long time. He not only knows the names of all the stars (see Ps. 147:4; Isa. 40:26); He knows your names and all your heartaches and your joys!"

And from Elder Maxwell's talk "Consecrate Thy Performance":

"In pondering and pursuing consecration, understandably we tremble inwardly at what may be required. Yet the Lord has said consolingly, 'My grace is sufficient for you' (D&C 17:8). Do we really believe Him? He has also promised to make weak things strong (see Ether 12:27). Are we really willing to submit to that process? Yet if we desire fullness, we cannot hold back part!

"Having our wills increasingly swallowed up by the will of the Father actually means an enhanced individuality, stretched and more capable of receiving “all that [God] hath” (D&C 84:38). Besides, how could we be entrusted with His “all” until our wills are much more like His? Nor could His 'all' be fully appreciated by the partially committed.

"Frankly, it is our prospective selves we betray by holding back whatever the 'part.' No need therefore to ask, “Lord, is it I?” (Matt. 26:22). Rather, let us inquire about our individual stumbling blocks, 'Lord, is it this?' We may have known the answer for a long time and may need resolve more than His response.

"The greatest happiness in God’s generous plan is finally reserved for those who are willing to stretch and to pay the costs of journeying to His regal realm. Brothers and sisters, 'come, let us anew [this] journey pursue.'"

Ha ha yes these quotes come from the spiritual thought Anna sent me. But I can’t look up quotes to send so I am borrowing hers.

The point is that God has blessed us with a lot. And there really is only one thing that we can give back in return. Our will. I have to make my will His will here in the mission so that I can be an instrument in his hands, and I have to do it when I get back from the mission too, just like you guys have to.

It isn’t easy, it requires a lot of faith, confidence (in Him), humility and obedience. But it is the only way we will ever have everlasting happiness. Our Savior did it, now we have to too. Not our will be done, but His.

Hey! Oh no! Well I hope the Bentleys trip went well, but there is a big problem. The office doesn’t have the package! I called them this morning and they said that they never got anything.

They also reminded me that the office is closed Saturdays!!! AHH!!!! I hope it wasn’t too big of a pain for the Bentley´s to drive there and find it and find it closed. I feel bad, I hope they have a fun trip. I don’t know if you have their number or anything to call them and find out what happened.

No! I haven’t sent the SD cards. The office has not sent the bag in a couple of weeks. And I am not too happy about it. But I am going to send them this week in the mail. I already have them all on backup on the hard drive. And I think they will get there safe in a couple of weeks... or months. Maybe they will be a good Christmas present.

Well if the Office gets the package, the best would be that they send it with the new missionaries that will come to Bluefields this next change. (Changes are next Wednesday).

Ha ha ha mom, I wish I could see the face of the Insurance agent that receives your case. Ha ha Duck Assault. Keep up the good bowling Mom, Love you.

Sounds like everything has been going good Dad. I will write in my journal today. Love you. Good work on the Duck House.

Good luck with Dance Emily. And School! I Luh You too.

Hannah, ahh! A Vampire! Oh nooooo. Well I love what was your favorite part about the playcation. We will study the scriptures as a family when I get home too right? ps I love you!

Happy Halloween,

I love you.

Elder Hardy

October 17, 2011


Eating Tortoise

Wait... is it already almost Halloween!?!?! Oh boy, it feels like last week was Halloween 2010 en Boaco.

Hey that is a great goal, to read the Book of Mormon in the year. But you should also make it your goal to read it every day. That way you get the blessings every day! Even if it is only a little bit that you read. I also like the Disney World goal! Harry Potter Theme Park sounds good to me!!!

Hey that is neat that Aubrey is going to serve a mission. Tell her congratulations from me.

Arrrrr! Well the office didn’t send the bag this last week. So I have not shipped the SD Cards, they send the bag Tuesdays, so maybe it gets here Wednesday or Thursday and then I send it back the same day... I don’t know if it will get there on time but I will try.

For Sunday dinner we almost had Corn Flakes. But we ended up eating... Arroz, Frijoles, (not mixed) platanos fritos, rice, and lemonade. I can’t remember if there was a meat.

Ha ha well we’ve only been to the port were we get on the panga. And really I don’t think that it counts as the ocean. It is technically a bay. But it is really big and looks like the ocean! I don’t think I have taken any photos like that I will look. (The photo I sent is from on top of our house)

Oh we had some great lessons this week. Last night we taught a great lesson to our family most positive. In the closing prayer we kneeled with them and the Dad asked in his prayer for help so that they could get baptized. It was really sweet. So we have a couple baptisms coming up. The branch has been doing great here. We have had 12 investigators in Church for the last three weeks.

My comp says my shirt says 16 1/2. I don’t know I have lost a little bit of weight. Maybe a more fitted shirt would be good too ha ha. As far as clothes go I don’t need anything. But my shirts might be a little yellow.

Hannah, I don’t know if they celebrate in Halloween in Bluefields! Everyone has told me that Navidad is really neat but nobody has mentioned Halloween. I will have to ask today.

Good luck with deadlines Dad!

I am glad to hear your shoulder is doing better mom, you should stretch more.

Ha ha! Alexis already ran back to home base.

Mom, if I can’t send the cards to the office I am just going to send them in the mail. I am sure they will get there. For the pumpkin, you can surprise me! I think a cool idea would be a missionary name tag. But I don’t know how you could do that. Or the Nicaraguan flag or a map of Nicaragua or the Book of Mormon... ha ha etc. Love you mom.

Good luck in Spanish!!! ha ha and the PSAT Emily. Those kinds of tests are super important. I wish I would have taken the SAT but I didn’t. Love you.

AHH!! No bad grades in science Hannah! Haha I am sure you will be fine. And good luck with Molly Mouse and the busy life!
Ps I love you.

Gracias, I love you,

Elder Hardy

October 10, 2011

Gracias por el correo!

Wow, that is awesome that the Woodruffs came over for lunch on Sunday! You guys got to get to know them before I did! That would be neat if Elder Woodruff went to BYU. That reminds me that I have to go to school when I get home... Nah I don’t want to think about that right now.

Something funny that happened with me and my companion this week was when we were in Juigalpa. We were walking around a little bit lost looking for a place to eat and we passed this old museum. We looked in from outside the gate curiously for a sec. There was an old guard sitting by the gate and he told us to come in. He said there was a bunch of cool and freaky stuff in the museum and that we could go check it out. We said sure and went in.

Finally, I thought that we were doing something culturally edifying on Pday... well, we walked in and the receptionist looked up surprised as if we were the first visitors they had received in a couple months. We look around and it had a bunch of animals on display... deformed animals. There was like a three legged, two headed goat, a dog with like three eyes and two mouths, a cyclops hamster, a devil looking fish and well stuff like that. Ha ha the point is it creeped me out.

Luckily, I found some cool stuff like ancient bowls and corn mills the Lamanites had used. And some stuff like swords from the Spanish. Well the point in why it was funny is because I tried to do something edifying on Pday with my comp and I ended up being all freaked out the rest of the night.

(I sent some pictures of the cool stone carvings outside that caught (and tricked) my attention, I didn’t take any photos of the stuff inside...) (But my comp did if you want to see them tell me)

So my companion is a convert to the church. He and a few of his siblings joined the church when he was 15 (he is 21 now.) A great story about his family that he told me is that while he has been in the mission, his mom finally got baptized. I always like to ask him, after we go to write, how his family is doing. He tells me that they are doing great and his mom now has a very strong testimony in the Gospel.

I cleaned the FRIDGE!!! Ha ha yes, who knows how many years that fridge has passed in the house of the Elders in Bluefields without being cleaned. But it smelled bad so I finally did it today. And I did it good too.

Well this week was full of a lot of lessons macheteing families about the Law of Chastity. And some of them were pretty good. Lots of lessons about the Word of Wisdom too ha ha. But a lesson that I liked a lot was one that in the beginning didn’t seem like it was going to go well at all.

We were teaching a family of young adults. Brothers, sisters and a girlfriend that lives with them. So it is a little harder to keep them all focused and keep the spirit there (plus I was on divisions with a Priest in the ward). But even though I didn’t think the lesson went all that well, the young girlfriend proved me wrong. I managed to encourage her to say the closing prayer and it was great. She did it perfectly and asked Heavenly Father for help so that they could get married, and get baptized. She was very sincere and managed to change my entire attitude about them. I walked out of the house very pleased.

Ha ha oh Mom, the Ducks made you get a cortisone shot. Well at least it isn’t torn. I imagine that after looking at your joint and tendons they told you to stretch more right? You should reactivate your Wii Fitness account. Or is that totally out of date by now?... Well, I hope you feel better.

So the ducks aren´t going to fly the coop for winter? Hey, do you guys cut their wings so they can´t fly? Would they fly away or would they stay home?

Well, sounds like everyone is doing good. Keep praying that mom´s arm gets better. Hey our friends are coming to Managua soon right? I will try to send the chips this week in the bag.


Elder Hardy

ps. I love you

October 3, 2011

Oh no!!! Mom fell down! I would do the "did you fall down again" joke, but this sounds serious. Oh, I am so sorry Mom. We will pray for you here. You should eat Perry the duck for this!

Yes! They receive the conference transmission in Bluefields! I really liked a lot of the talks. And as well for a lot of talks I was busy regulating the Branch. A lot of investigators came, it was great.

I really liked a talk from Elder Kazuhiko Yamashita of the Seventy. He talked directly to the missionaries. And I liked what he said. He said he didn’t understand very much of the doctrine that his missionary taught him. What he remembers and never will forget is the smile he always had. The attitude and actions of his Elder is what helped him feel the spirit and taught him to be like Christ.

The Love, through my attitude, actions and service is what really matters. I am trying really hard to teach well, but I know in the end that it is the Love of Christ that emulates from us his representatives that counts.

Well last night we had a very spiritual experience. With the most positive family we have right now. The Dad is doing really great. He came to 3 of the 5 sessions this weekend. He is reading the Book of Mormon, always has questions and is praying.

Last night we watched "Together Forever" with them and talked about the family. They got a little emotional and set some goals to be a better family. The most important thing I emphasized was that they kneel and pray every night as a family. Even the Mom who has been a little harder promised to do it.

SO, I would like to challenge each of you to have a family prayer (kneeling if possible) EVERY night. Because I told them that family prayer has really helped me and my family, it has helped us to have more unity, more Love and to invite the Lord to help us be better. So, you better be doing it...

How many people come to Sacrament Meeting? Well, on average it has been about 60 people. But our goal this month is to have 70. Each branch meets in the same building. We meet at 8 am and they come at 10 am.

Something funny that happened this week was Friday, I think. They have a celebration here for the Feast of San Jeronimo. All the men dress up as women with masks and everything and walk around the street with fans... spanking people.

Well, I think in Bluefields it can get out of hand and dangerous, so we avoided it. But earlier in the day we passed two that were dressed up and they started hitting me with their fans. We got them to stop by promising them cold water (it’s hot in their costumes), and then we took pictures with them.

Hannah asked if I have eaten any strange fruits? Um yes! Fruta de pan, or Bread Fruit. No not fruit bread, but bread fruit. It is big and green and spiky. But they cut it up and fry it like french fries. It is pretty good.

Fruta de Pan

Good luck Golfing Dad!!!

Ha ha ha I am sorry the Ducks bullied you Mom. I hope your shoulder is ok. But Thanksgiving and Christmas are coming up... we will see who gets the last quack. Ha ha love you mom!

Well, Good luck with Homecoming Emily. (Be sure to be ready with the porch light for the drop off Dad). Luh you.

Hey Hannah! Keep working hard and good luck. Good work with Lego Star Wars. You will have to teach me how to play video games when I get back ok?

Thanks for the spiritual thoughts!

got to go,

Love you all,

Elder Hardy

Ps I love you.