Monday, January 23, 2017

week 73

Hey, this week for us was kind of rough at first. I was pretty sick for the most of the week. I'm not really sure what it was, I had a pretty high fever for a night and then I had like the worst intestinal troubles of my mission a couple days after. I was the only one sick that I know of, I think it has to do with parasites but I'm not 100% sure. So we had two days lost. But I got better, so no problem! I feel pretty good, or at least normal for the mission.

We had a couple of days without any real success. I think we had a day where we contacted for like 5 or 6 hours and we got into one house. So that was a little discouraging. This picture was after we got rejected like 25 times in a row and we passed a tienda and were just like...let's get a coke, haha. I am going to have to go back to root beer once I get home, the coke in the States just doesn't compare.

We did find a couple people that I think will progress and also some good references we are excited to contact. Just one showed up to church, she is the daughter of Mario but I don't think she lives with them. I hadn't met her until now. With both of her parents and her brother as members I think there will be a lot of family support for her. She looks like she is about my age but I haven't asked yet, we met pretty briefly.

Elder Ibarra is awesome! He is excited to start working out with me, today was day one and we survived okay. I didn't work out last week because I was sick and he waited for me which was dope of him. We get along really well, it is kind of like when I was with Smart, just a little different because of the language. But it is awesome. 

These drinks are called Isomax, they are like bags of fruit juice and the best thing ever. I am going to order them from here once I am back home haha. 

The picture was taken on our way to Canlun during the week. We went on Friday I think to make sure that little girl got confirmed last week and to contact and visit a little bit. Next week I might be going to El Estor to see how they are doing. It seems like everyone is doing ok, but there were a lot of changes and a lot of new people came in so we are still seeing how that is going. In our zone there are two districts, eight areas and sixteen missionaries. We communicate with them pretty consistently, but the companionships mostly talk with the District Leaders, who report to us, and then we talk to the Assistants to the President.

This picture was also taken when we were on our way to Canlun. 

Yes, I have a selfie stick. It came with a box of cereal, it definitely won't be used back home haha. It was some kind of special promotion and when I saw that they were selling Trix and a selfie stick, I knew I had to buy it! That was my first Trix in my whole mission! It is nice because we can use real milk on our cereal here in the valley. If we eat it fast it doesn't expire. Other than that we have to buy milk in Polvo and that stuff is pretty nasty. When we are in the mountains without a refrigerator that is all there is and that with cereal is not my favorite thing.We have a fridge here, thank goodness, it is so hot I think we would die without one. It has really started getting hot. One of the days when I was sick, I tried to leave to work. We were waiting in a truck to go to Canlun and the sun was so strong I started to see black spots and almost passed out. I was probably dehydrated, but I always try to drink like three liters of water in the morning so that doesn't happen. We have a filter we use, but we buy a lot of bagged or bottled water too.

It sounds like the Sisters are hanging in there, I met them today when we went to La Tinta and they are all nice. Everyone says they are doing good at the end of the week so that is good. We just went to La Tinta to buy food for the semana (week), we started cooking lunch together to try to save money. We actually had a shopping list and everything, it was weird. We make rice and beans, or pasta. We can buy tomato sauce but it has like zero flavor here, I miss the spaghetti mom used to make.

I started running this week too and it is not pretty. I haven't gotten to run consistently my entire time here so I am REALLY out of running shape. I'm not going to lie, I think my knee is pretty wrecked, I think the year or so I have had in the mountain kind of made sure of that. But that torn meniscus does pretty well most of the time!

My spiritual thought this week comes from two things. Number one, we taught Mario's family about temples and I just want to say that temples are the best and I am so grateful and blessed that I can be with you guys forever because of temple sealings (you can read more about this here.) The second one is just how sweet Priesthood blessings (explanation hereare. I was sick for a couple of days, and then I think Thursday night I got my blessing. My companion did it, good to know that he is ready for any situation.  The next day I was able to work. The church is awesome! I love all of you!

Love, Elder Toolson


  1. Dear Joe, even when you are ill, your focus is in your goals, your families and the people you work with.
    Be sure to drink your water throughout the day, not just in the morning, to stay hydrated. Also be sure to add protein to each meal, so you will have sustained energy. For your meniscus, and just some overall health you might want to consider collagen supplements. Perhaps this is something your folks could send to you, if you cannot get it there. My prayers are with you- to remain healthy. God bless.

  2. Take the canned tomato sauce, and add seasonings and herbs...
    Salt pepper oregano or Basil - a little red pepper, even some cheese- or red vinegar, lemon juice etc.... doungbthis will add the flavor. IF you have access to onions and garlic- saute them and then add the tomato sauce, seasoning herbs, etc. Adding a bit of tomato paste will also add more flavor.