Wednesday, December 28, 2016

In which the editor tries to make up for lack of posts with muchisimos photos....



I´m glad i got to see everyone yesterday, even though i did feel a little out of it and i feel like i didn´t say much. i´d like to do a redo honestly. I was really sad yesterday, i feel like i didn´t say anything of importance, and then we went to our ward mission leader´s house afterwards and i dunno, i like him and his wife (his wife is an angel) Ruben and Sara but i dunno, i was just in a funk because i didn´t get to say goodbye that all their jokes that they made just got under my skin and i just wanted to leave. I´m almost sort of relieved christmas is over wheich has never happened to me but i just want things to go back to normal honestly. i´ve been kind of in a funk lately this transfer. things are good then things are bad my companion is amazing but sometimes she makes me feel bad without meaning to. She´s going home this transfer, and she´s been hermana leader basically her whole mission and honestly she is amazing. life has chewed her up and spit her out but she´s still happy and doesn´t milk her dramatic past tyring to get sympathy like sometimes people do. there´s a bee that is bugging me in the internet place so hopefully i dono´t get stung. 
 okay now it´s gone. 

but president has been talking tome a lot about my faith and my prayers and stuff and i feel just sort of....stuck. in every sense of the word. i miss you. i can´t wait for may either. i love being a missionary it´s just i feel like i´m not very good at it. i don´t want to write to president i don´t know what to say. i just sort of want to go home. which is bad. because i´m sure when i´m home i´ll want to go back on the mission. 

this is in the villa iluminada which is famous here in atlixco. it´s like a fair and there´s a TON of christmas lights, and for the first time in history president gave us permission to go, from six to eight, not to proselyte or anything just to go. so we went with Dana and Meli (melissa) and their mom, a less active and two little girls who we´re prepping for baptism.

Last Week's email, in which Tory has a stint as a Hipster Model:

hermana peynado being my model

downtown atlixco

Add caption

quaint streets of atlixco

hipstering it up

alone on the love bench

supposedly these are roses but they looked like brains to me.

 This transfer has been good and bad. mostly good. it´s just the same battle that i think i´ve always had. well...i´ve had a few different ones honestly but the one i´ve been struggeling with a lot is feeling like a bad missionary. it´s not that i´m tired of being a missionary. that´s not why i´ve had a lot of moments that i wanted to go home. it´s that i´m tired of doing something i feel like i´m not good at. i know. i honestly i KNOW that baptisms aren´t sucess but it sure helps you feel sucessful when youvé got a few baptisms to report and you get to see your picture in the slideshow at zone conferences. There´s a lot of things that I feel like I know it´s just getting them from my head into my heart that it is proving to be harder than I thought. Believing those things that i know and i´ve always known. president was like ´i feel like you came onto the mission with a little seed of a testimony and i want to know how that´s growing´ and he´s very concerned with my prayers an if i´m learning how to get awnswers to my questions but my problem is i can´t even phrase my questions to myself let alone Heavenly Father. I just feel like I don´t even have time to properly pray. my prayers just end up being a long stream of me passing over my day in my head and thinking ´i´m so tired. why am i so tired all the time??? what am i going to do tomorow in our lesson with dana and meli? what am i gonna do with my life? what is the word for blowfish in spanish? who is older? jeff or melissa?' ect. (also i seriously don´t know how is older jeff or melissa. i also couldn´t remember for a lon time if andy´s full name was andrew or if it was just andy.....but my comp right now is amazing. life has chewed her up and spitten her out and yet here she is dying to be here a little longer (this is her last transfer) and i´m sometimes dying to be in her place leaving. she´s superwomen of missionary work. she´s a spectacular teacher and just so great at it all that i just am terrified what am i going to do without her next transfer????? president has high expectations. he told me that he thought REAL hard about who was going to be her last companion. he said i earned it,being her comp and that after being with her missionaries just ´flourish´ and i´m just like 😓 well i might shrivel up and die so....don´t get your hopes up prezzi. 

i miss you. i´ve been having a lot of weird extestential moments lately where i feel out of my own body kind of experiences. like i´ve been hermana mills for so long i don´t even know if i can be Tory again. or if they´re even different people. i look in the mirror and i´m just like. ´.....who is that even?´ My hair is LONG. okay, not that long but it´s definetly longer. I´m twenty years old. I speak spanish and walk into complete stranger´s houses on a daily basis. i´m living in MEXICO. EXTESTENTIAL CRISIES ABOUND. but whatever extestintial crises i´m gald you´re my sister. i´m glad i was born a mills and that i was born when i was and i for one am glad taht you went on a mission because without you i don´t know if i would have thought about it. maybe. probs not. 

Monday, December 12, 2016

In which the old ladies are angry....

So apperently, the twelth of december is HAPPY VIRGIN OF GUADALUPE DAY. I HATE IT. there are so many random explosions and i´m not sure why and a really good tamale place wasn´t open so i still haven´t gotten to try tamales with nutella. it´s not in our area and they sell out super fast so we could only go Monday. nutella tamales sound very interesting and maybe gross but hey. yomo. you only mexico once. Even so some times I get distracted thinking of home when i´m in comvis getting glared down by the little old catholic ladies carrying there little statues and a ton of flowers for their offering to the virgen guadalupe.

Being glared at  by them  makes me question my whole future. I´m not going to have any friends when I get back. Well, actually i´ll have a lot but they´re from honduras argentina and tampico mexico so....... that´s helpful. Really though, i´m a little worried about that. I literally will ahve no one. I'm going to end up a grumpy old mexican lady who glares at people on trains. halp. also, we have a bunch of people in this ward who could get baptized tomorrow but they don´t want to, or they wont´. i don´t know why. but they just won´t. there´s one who goes to the temple with her husband and she´s perfectly happy in the visiters center and she loves ith but she can´t give up drinking and there´s a doctor who will cite verses from the book of mormon but doesn´t believe in joseph do I do about that????

i also don´t know what to write pte.stellmon ever but we had interviews and it´s crazy how well he knows me considering i feel like i hardly ever talk to him. He was like ´you´ve got a non conformist personality that can do AMAZING things if you can learn how to conform to the will of the lord and let His will become your will. On the other hand, non conformist personalities can cause a world of trouble and doubt in a family so watch it´ (en pocas palabras) ....aight president. thanks for that. now what do i do with that?!

On a side note, so we don't end with that pronouncement of potential doom. there´s an ice cream flavor here called beso de angel and i said today ´puedo probar lo de beso de angel´ and then i realized waht i said and was like ´i hope there´s not chavos around here named angel or things are gonna get real awkward real fast´

Monday, December 5, 2016

In which Tory is a vampire...

So, Atlixco. It´s good. My area is huge (shocker) there´s lots of little pueblos. Atlixco itself is a ´city´ but it´s not very big. I think apart from Ometoxtla, Cholula, it´s my smallest area in terms of being a city or not. I said goodbye to walmart and little ceasers back in Tehucan 😥 also my new apartment is super tiny and the bathroom always smells weird, even after hermana Peynado scrubbed it from top to bottom today. But we bought some airfreshners and we´ve been sticking them all over the place so hopefully.....fingers crossed. But I like it. It´s cute. Next week I´ll have some pictures for y´all. (I´ve also decided i´m going to become southern, hence y´all.) It´s like a mexican version of a snow white cottage (although thankfully free of dwarves and the altoate guerita sí cabe so we´re good). it´s kind of funny cuz on our street, our two next door nieghbors have enormous gorgeous houses then smashed inthe middle is our shoebox of an apartment. Our neighbors are all members so it´s all good with that.

My street is full of stars, our ward mission leader has been on national geographic before, his brother, our other nieghbor is was a memeber of the 70 and there´s an article about them in a liahono from forever ago. (but just the pages pertaining to mexico but still, cool). The only thing is our ward mission leader is kind of.....cold. he´s insanely smart but he says we need to ditch our investigators who have drinking problems or who aren´t married (ie, 70% of our investigators) and find new people. Which, i mean we always need to be finding new people but still, doesn´t mean we have to give up on the old ones. I mean....we don´t have anyone who is progressing yet but, ay vamos. we´re getting there.

we´ve also started ´tracting´, but not really tracting because wére not allowed BUT, we can if we have a member with us, and that member is Hermana Oli, or Oliva (olive in english) she´s eighty three years old and she comes with us ALL THE TIME. Seriously, she´ll just walk the streets of our little pueblos with us stopping people in the street and being like ´hey you joven, stop what you´re doing and listening to these nice girls there gonna talk to you about jesus.´. She´s THE BEST. She´s so cute I love her so much, i´m going to name my daughter after her She lives alone but she´s super independent and super cute and i want to be hna oli when I grow up. She´s got such a strong testimony, and we´ve found quite a few new investigators thanks to her. it´s just getting them to progress that´s the problem. Hno. Ruben our Ward mission leader will also do that with us sometimes, he´ll just take us around the his neighborhood and bang on his friends doors and be like ´hey open up you guys need the gospel in your life´. He´s a fireball. 

I Think that´s all I got for right now...oh, and that some crazy old lady in one of our pueblitos called us vampires. We were looking for her son who is a less active and we asked if she´d seen missionaries like us before and she was like ´yes but you´re just vampires who go around sucking the life out of people.´ solo son vampiros, andando y chupando la sangre de la gente.´

alrighty then. merry christmas to you too crazy old lady. Oh, and my bishop was Bishop Sanders for a while but then this sunday my ward boundries got changed and he no longer lives in our ward 😢which was a shame cuz he seemed cool. well, the one time i met him. But, that´s all I got. Hope all is well back on the homestead and with luck next week i´ll have some investigators with a baptismal date to chat about.

Lots of love,

hermana mills.

I can see Popo again

I had avocado ice cream today...not too bad. actually it was pretty dang good. 

me and hna p in el centro today blowing some pesitos in el marcado and such. Atlixco is actually pretty cool.

Monday, November 28, 2016

In which Tory get's the boot... longer in Teahucan. So that´s a shocker. And no hints of sarcasm there because I was actually ligetametly surprised/stunned/angry/resentful about this. They weren´t emergency transfers or anything but i usually have three transfers así que no tengo mucho a contarles.....sorry. not much to talk about. I´m in Atlixco, with Hermana Peynado who is from Mexico but speaks English really well and.....that is all for right now.

the pamphlet one was there was an alcholics ananmsljsdlfjoejoj what is english stand with little flyers so we put a word of wisdom pamphlet in there cuz we thought we were funny. teh other is the last district meeting i had in teahucah with hna ayala, vargas and van rompaey.

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

In which Tory needs a humble pie... other letter got deleted so y´all are getting the readers condesed version. I have somehow turned southern on my mission, I´ve said Y´all more than I have in my entire life this transfer. 

Super Flash version of our week.

Working with members is hard. I´m not good at it and Imight have to take a slice of humble pie or try chowing down the whole thingbecause i´m convinced I can do this by myself. More so after I ask for help from our ward mission leader or the bishop and there like ´I only ever had ONE ward mission leader on my whole mission hermanas. back in my day ect. ect.´

thanks bishop but I wasn´t asking for an anectdote about your glory days I was asking for some friends for my GOLDEN INVESTIGATORS GOSH DANG IT. 

carlos and Monsi are still golden but they can´t be baptized this sauterday that we had originally planned on because they´re not married and we can´t get a hold of his ex wife........Why can´t I just go to guadalajara myself and hunt this chick down and force her to sign these papers!!!! You are standing in the way of somebody´s salvation lady!!!!!! 

suprprise surprise life is messy and missions are hard. 

I think that is a pretty good summery of my whole experince in this past year. 

I also have learned I can makepretty good mac and cheese with a few slices of that cheese that comes individually wrapped in plastic, milk and half a package of speghetti that I found in the cupboard of the apartment that who KNOWS how long it has been there...also,thisisthe first time that I´ve had cupboards on my mission!! it´s a miracle. cupboards are not a thing in mexico. also refridgeration. no one refredgerates anything.

well....nothing else to report ithink. all is well in tehucan. well......yeah we´ll just leave it at that.

lots of love

Hermana Mills

This is something called  bolis, it's basically ice creme in a bag. 

Tuesday, November 8, 2016

In which Tory is scared, despite having become an assassin in her spare time

I´ve officaly got a year in and that is terrifying. I go through phases of wanting to go home and wanting to be a missionary for the rest of my life. it´s confuisng for all parties involved. which is usually just me and sometime my comp. but usually just me.

I have found the most golden of all golden investigatores and i´m so scared that i´m gonna have transfers before they get baptized because THAT ALWAY HAPPEN TO ME.

Hermana Van Rompaey is really great but she´s gonna finish soon. We try not to think too much about that, both of us, but sometimes it gets the better of us. But she´s passed through a lot of the same difficulties that I have on the mission so that was good. We had comp exchanges and our hermana capaciatadora said I´m a good teacher but I don´t know.....I feel like I can never nail ´Inspired Questions´ or teaching like the Savior taught no matter how many time I read the new testament and chapter ten in pmg.

My cockroach hit list is steadily growing (i am the roach slaying queen) and I don´t know what-else has happened you, miss you and I´m living in a state of constant terror. just kidding i´m just sort of a drama queen.

The real world seems a lot closer on the OTHER side of the mission if that makes sense. Being a real adult with a job and a husband and kids all of that seems a lot closer with only six months left. I know there´s no rush, but it´s hard not to feel it when EVERYONE IS TALKING ABOUT MARRIAGE. We´re talking about marriage trying to get Carlos and Monsi married so they can get baptized (and they are litterally perfect like oh my goodness thank you thank you thankyou THANKYOU heavenly Father for letting me come to Teauchan and meet them they are so perfect and accept everything and come to church and they read and I LOVE THEM) And I dunno....i´m just scared. What is my life going to be like when I´m not a missionary?? I want an agenda still. A missionary daily planner. I need to know what I´m gonna do every hour or I dunno I´m gonna go nuts. I´m scared that I´m just gonna fall back into the person that I was and spend way too much time on the internet and loose the habit of prayer and scripture study and that all the progress I´ve made i´ll jut loose it.....Time running out. Me going home and I dunno......being different or not having changed at all.....And if I am different is it better? But am I still me? Maria wrote me ´My beautiful, sweet, spunky, snarky Tory.´  am I still spunky and snarky? I´m having an existential crisis. WHO AM I???? I´m also scared of getting back to the normal world I don´t know how the real world works! I don´t know what I want to do with my life! Well, I do, but it´s basically just rent a VW van and become a beach bum with my uke and drive down the pacific coast highway but I don´t think that President Stellmon will like that answer in our final interview...

so in a nutshell....i´m sscared. That is all.

Monday, October 31, 2016

In which Tory receives revelation confirming the importance of her call to serve

A note from the editor: So last week we had a lot of info from Tory in personal e-mails that we did not share on the blog. But since the whole e-mail this week is in reference to that event I will post my personal e-mail from last week followed by this week's e-mail. Sorry for the confusion. 

 it´s been a week with a lot of really high yups and one big scary down and what with having to go to puebla today tol renew my green card that put me in a weird intorspective mess. i´ve almost got a year now, and on friday, we passed by to visit an investigator that hna ayala and i had dropped to see how he was doing and if he was a ready to progress and actually listen to us and he was like ´oh hermanitas, que bueno que you came by. today is my last day here´
´really hermano? where are you going?´
´con el Señor.´
´cual señor?´ 

and he just pointed up and started crying. he was going to kill himself. he was up to his eyeballs in debt, his family had left him, he was an alcholic and had smoked since he was twelve he´d lost his job that he´d has as an electrical engineer and it was because he wasn´t right in the head. he had, i dunno. a little bit of everything. severe depression, anxiety, everything. but what i didn´t udnerstand until later (and don´t you DARE tell mom or dad this) he´d killed someone and he wanted to kill again so he said it was better off if it was just himself, and ya. nobody would have to suffer anymore. least of all him. and..... i dunno. there was litteraly nothing i could do and we can´t go back to see if he actually went through with it but i think he did. and i don´t know what to do. we called president that day and were like ´we can´t just leave him here what do we do?´ because it was late, well we passed by at like noon and he told us what he was planning and from noon to about three we were standing in his doorway trying to talk him out of it and we called the elders from a neighboring ward to come give him a blessing, it was good because they were mexicans and when he said he´d killed someone he used a word i hadn´t heard before so i had no idea what he was talking about. but i just felt like why do i have to be here for this. it was a horribly HORRIBLY selfish thought but it just reminded me so much of what happened with tyler trevort and i was just like ´no no no this can´t be happening, not again´ and i almost thought, not to me. well, i did think, not to me. this can´t be happening to me again. there are people who go through their whole missions without a hint of a situtation of suicide and me twice. why and i dunno, i have no idea what to do or what to say to resident this week i just don´t know. 


Geraldo didn´t kill himself. I was sure that he did but the other day we were walking around in San Rafeal, the colina where he lives and we saw him walking with his Ex Wife. He looked a lot better he said that his neighbors busted into his house and took him to the hospital and he is seeing a phsycologist and is reciving medication and he said it was all thanks to us because we told his neighbor, who is a member who we were going to eat lunch with, that he was planning to kill himself and she and a bunch of other people went in to his house and hauled him out and took him to the hospital. So he´s better. He said he needs time to organize his life but he was truly so grateful to us because if it weren´t for us he wouldn´t be there. That it was all thanks to us and he could see hope now. But we won´t be giving him missionary lessons because it´s like he said, he needs time to organize his life and he had killed somebody so that´s not exactly something we can work with as missionaries. but as scary as an experince as that was, everything turned out okay. I thought it wasn´t. And i was sort of angry, well not angry, but confused. I feel like a lot of people can go through their whole missions maybe their whole lives without having to deal with a situtation like that, like suicide and i´d had two different occasions on my mission and why me? why did i always have to find out too late? Why did i have to deal with it TWICE. at the begining and now this. I thought it wasn´t fair. Then i realized it has literally NOTHING to do with me and i shouldn´t be so selfish. But our zone leaders wanted us to pray and ask why were specifically here in our areas, why am I in Libertad in Tehucan? And I prayed and didn´t really recive an awnswer right away but i was thinking about it later when i was getting ready for bed that if there had been a white wash, two newbies.. they wouldn´t have known how to find Geraldo. His teaching record was burried deep in the former investigators section and they might not have known how to get there on the day where on a whim i said ´we´re gonna swing by and see Geraldo.´

it was a whim, or i was directed by the spirit i don´t know but either way. we literally saved a guys life. we didn´t bust in ourselves and take him to the hospital but we told the person who did what he was going to do and if we hadn´t done that, well. no one would have known. I´ve never felt like that before. Like a literal instrument in the lord´s hands. I´d felt the spirit testifying through me sometimes.  but this was different. I didn´t do much. But I know, honestly whatever happens here in Libertad, if Carlos and Monsi get baptized with me or not (but they better cuz they are literally the BEST investigators i have EVER HAD) if I go through my whole mission without another baptism, I´ll be able to go home knowning that me and my companion where instrumental in saving a man´s life. But, I know it wasn´t anything i did. Honestly, it´s like in Alma,
 ´do not boast in my ownstrength, nor in my own wisdom; but behold, my joy isfull, yea, mheart is brim with joyand will rejoice in my God.
 12 Yea, know that am nothingas to my strength amweak; therefore will not boast of myself, but will boastof my God, for in his strength I can do all thingsyea,behold, many mighty miracles we have wrought in thisland, for which we will praise his name forever.

Last week in my letter president said ´good thing you came on the mission right?´. Yeah, it´s a pretty good thing that i came on the mission. 

Lots of love,

Hermana Mills

And on a lighter note, here are some pictures and exerts from her letter to her mom:

Yes. My companion is pretty cool, I like her a lot. Kate Van Rompaey from Las Cruces New Mexico. Her parents are converts and her mom is mexican but she didn´t really know any spanish before she got here either. My first american. She likes collecting things. Like...everything. Note books, little toys, books of mormon, she´s a collecter. Which is good and bad because she doesn´t discourage me from feeding my note book habit but I couldn´t say no to a few here in mexico that are just so dang cute and she´s like ´they don´t have this brand in the states! just buy it! and it´s like a dollar fifty, (thirty pesos almost fourty)´ yeah i bought a lot of notebooks that i didn´t need but whatelse is new. I don´t know what else you want. She´s in her last few transfers. She says i´m probs gonna kill her. In the mission, your last companion is your murderer. I´m an almost assiasian. I´ve almost killed a lot of people on my mission. I was the second last to companion of my trainer, killed hna guadarrama, second to last of hna chauque and i´ll probably be the last comp of hna van rompaey. 

halloween makeup because why not. I´m never gonna be in mexico again for day of the dead. well. who knows. maybe. but sugar skulls are called catrinas here and they´ve got some cool story but i don´t know what it is. but trick or treating isn´t really a thing here. halloween just isn´t really a thing. but whatever. some kids have asked us for candy and i´m just like ´well....i got a mandrian orange and a book of mormon which one do you want?´ and he took my orange and ran away so that was fun.

in the mall they had these cool things on the floor they´re made out of a variety of materials. like, beans and rice and stuff like that or wood chips and flowers, all sorts. Day of the Dead is basically just a memorial day. They just put up their alters for their dead and leave a bunch of food on there, but you know. It´s cool.