Hermana Kiley Eliason

Prolongación Adolfo López Mateos #98A

Colonia Trojes de Alonso

C.P. 20116 Jesus Maria,

Aguascalientes, Mexico

My email address: kiley.eliason@myldsmail.net

Monday, June 30, 2014


Wet from the rain!
Blurry & soaked!
MONDAY:  In the evening, we taught the children of Hermana Teresita (Anthony & More).  We showed them The Restoration video - which kids always like.  :)  When we finished and walked outside, the sky was grey and it was sprinkling.  We live about 5 minutes away from Hermana Teresita and thought we’d return for good measure to grab umbrellas.  But during the short walk,  the drizzling turned into an absolute down pour!! We returned just in time to bring all our clothes inside and open the patio drains so it wouldn’t flood, and I have NEVER seen it rain so hard!!   The phrase, “It’s raining cats-n-dogs” doesn’t do it justice, because it was more like, “It’s raining cows-n-elephants"  hahah  :)  Hermana Perez and I got soaked and changed our clothes, then waited for about 25 minutes until it suddenly stopped.  It was totally bizarre how fast it went from thunder and lightening to clear blue skies!!  When we left again to continue our visits, ALL the street gutters were flooded, so it was an adventure to look for ways to cross the streets so we wouldn’t get our feet wet.

TUESDAY:  Our house was fumigated for all those nasty cockroaches!  Wahoo  :)  It only took an hour and afterwards, we returned to sweep up all the dead ones lying around.  Gross, but now we shouldn’t be having any more “visits” by them.
Some weird huge bug we encountered outside the church!!
I didn't have the courage to put my finger next to it so you
could see how big it was, but yeah...gross ;)

In the evening, we had companionship exchanges.  (Like when I spent the day with Hermana Romero in my other area.)  So, around 9pm, Hermana Anderson showed up to be my companion for the next 24 hours, and Hermana Perez left with Hermana Anderson’s companion for their area.

WEDNESDAY:  So, Hermana Anderson and I had a blast together!  What’s super cool is that before the mission, we were friends at BYU.  She is from Utah and has one transfer more than me in the mission.  We are crazy similar, and it is really amazing to see the ways in which we both have changed.

We clicked super fast and just talked with each other ALL day while we were walking to and from our visits.  The lessons went well - one family even asked if we were sisters.  :)

And she and I taught well and worked hard together, but at the same time had lots of laughs and shared mission experiences.  What we love about Mexico, how our perspective has changed, and our goals for after the mission.

She returned with her companion in the evening, and Hermana Perez returned with me.  After they left, Hermana Perez told me about her day, but then at the end of her recound said, “I really missed you today, Hermana Eliason.”

It is definitely an amazing feeling and opportunity to be a trainer.  I love Hermana Perez and although I enjoyed my day with Hermana Anderson, I was happy to be with Hermana Perez again.  :)

THURSDAY:  We had a reunion with the Mission President and his wife for all the new missionaries in Aguascalientes.  There were 5 companionships in total that attended and the trainers were separated from the trainees to receive instruction and kinda just check-up on how these first couple of weeks are going for the new missionaries.
Crazy Faces with my District!

Afterward, President Villareal and his wife took the 10 of us out to lunch at a delicious buffet!!  It was absolutely food heaven!  (I took advantage of this rare opportunity and stuffed myself with about 3 plates of a variety of food :)  haha)

In the evening, we completed several visits and contacted two ladies (one of which strikes up a conversation with us by asking if I was from England).

FRIDAY:  We did our weekly planning - which I actually love because we set goals and discuss ways in which we can improve.  Hermana Perez always has great advice and together we have been learning and growing for the better.

We taught Jaime in the evening and he accepted the invitation to be baptized!  I was incredible to see the Spirit teach him and his family and watch them throughout the lesson absorb gospel truths.

Here is More posing in front of the chalk board after and English class 
(she helped me draw some of the pictures to learn the alphabet)
SATURDAY:  In the morning English class went well - I like to see others learn.  :)   And in the evening was the baptism of Mercedes (the sister of Hermana Tere, who was baptized just a couple of weeks earlier).  Plus, their Mom is a recent convert of only 3 months, so it was touching to see the three of them all so happy.  The gospel truly changes lives.

SUNDAY:  So many of our less active members that we’ve been teaching finally came to church!  (for some, it had been years since they’d attended).  I was filled with pure joy to see them in the church and couldn’t stop smiling.  :)

After lunch we taught several families - including the Romero family.  The Romero family are members but their niece, Caro, who lives with them is an investigator.  She is super interested and has been reading her Book of Mormon to learn more.  I think she’s great and they just bought a St. Bernard puppy!  (I don’t know where they’ll have room for it once it grows up, but it sure was fun to hold him).

TODAY:  Yes, Hermana Perez and I colored our hair. 
Before Color
After Color

My previous color was bugging me because it was so light and sun-damaged.  So we thought a change would be nice.  :)

This is Caro with her new St. Bernard puppy!

Here I am with Hermano Arodondo with his
adorable son all dressed up in his church suit

Yes I am still me, and love to make funny faces!


Hermana Mora, and Huff with Hermana Perez and I
on Thursday for the reunion with the Mission President

Everything is going fantastic!  I hope everyone enjoys this week and thank you for all the love and support!

Love always,

Hermana Eliason

Monday, June 23, 2014

Blessings Are All Around!

No pictures this time :(

Monday:  After finishing our Preparation Day, we made several visits:  one less active member who is married & a young father happens to be one of the grandsons of the Vargas family back in my first area in Fresnillo!  Small world, right?

Tuesday:  Lunch was extra special with the Arodondo family because today was the game between Mexico and Brazil in the World Cup!  It had just started when we arrived and, of course, turning off the game was NOT an option.  The World Cup is HUGE here.  And all the televisions in all the stores & houses have been on constantly.  Hermano Arodondo even asked me why I didn’t pray to have Mexico win when I gave the prayer on the food! Haha, and I’m still not sure if he was serious or joking  ;)  We had carne asada, chips and guacamole, beans, rice, pasta, etc.  The Elders, the Arodondo family, and even Hermana Perez were all so absorbed in the game - it was hilarious to me!  It was like Americans and the Super Bowl & when I told them I’d never watch the World Cup, Hermano Arodondo gasped and jokingly invited me to repent!  haha  ;)  Soccer is like another religion here!

In the evening we had our 2nd lesson with Hortencia (the woman we encountered last week crying in the stairwell with her baby).  She was great during the lesson and we presented the Book of Mormon and asked her to be baptized.  She said yes, and the Spirit was so strong.  It was very special and just further strengthens my testimony that this is the Lord’s work and He is preparing the people here.

Wednesday:  We encountered several less active members to begin teaching, and when we ask why they don’t come to church anymore, 95% of the time it is because they were offended by some other member.  This is so sad to me because it is the doctrine of our church that truly matters.  Our perfect Heavenly Father loves each one of his imperfect children and we are all going to make mistakes, but regardless of the choices of others (which sometimes impact us), we will ultimately be judged according to our own actions.

In the evening, we taught the Romero family, whose niece is investigating the church.  After the lesson, they invited us (and even more specifically me) to eat hamburgers with them from their son’s restaurant.  They were huge!  Hermana Perez & I only ate half - and saved the rest for the following morning.  I’ve also learned here that food truly brings people together; when we eat with our members or investigators, they open up to us easier and we gain their trust.

Thursday:  So, Hermana Perez is jus absolutely incredible.  I am truly trying my best to be a good trainer, but regardless, sometimes I feel like she’s the one teaching me.  Although I have more time in the mission, she is almost 10 years older than me and has more life experiences.  She is wise and patient and we have each other’s trust.  We often pass the time walking, by just talking with one another - about anything and everything.  I am so lucky and blessed to have her as my companion.  :)

Friday:  We bought our fresh fruit & food at Tiangis again!  It was funny because even some of the vendors recognized me and asked me things like, “Do you want to buy more granola again?”  or “How many mangos do you want?”  Sometimes I forget how much I stand out from others :)   It must be a rare sight to see a tall white girl always walking around the city in long skirts and scriptures in her hands.

I love that the fruit here is so cheap!  I bought two ripe honeydew melons for just over a dollar!  (15 pesos)  I makes me even more motivated to eat healthy :)  And Hermana Perez bought a giant papaya the size of a football that should last her all week for 20 pesos.  

Saturday:  English class went well, and Hermana Perez even helped me teach part of the lesson.

We visited Hermana America with her 4 children (one of her little girls is named Nauvoo, after the city where the early saints lived!)  

Then we encountered a new investigator who cuts hair in one of the outer rooms of her apartment.  She was really interested in the way we pray and said she felt peaceful and different.  I know that the power of prayer can bring us closer in our relationship with our Heavenly Father.  He listens and wants to hear from each of us regularly.  We can all receive more guidance and direction in our lives when we establish the habit of prayer.

“I am mindful of you always in my prayers, continually praying unto God the Father in the name of Jesus, that he through His infinite goodness and grace will keep you through the endurance of faith on his name to the end.”  Moroni 8:3  I loved this verse in the Book of Mormon because it is how I feel for all the people here, and all my friends and family back home.  You are all in my prayers and I hope that all is going well.

Sunday:  It rained during the night really hard.  But I love rainy nights & the sound the drops make.  I slept so well :)  Church was great, like always, and afterwards we visited the Cadena family.  They have 3 older children who have all become inactive, but at the end of the lesson on agency and obedience, they expressed feelings to come back to church again.  We talked with them about the opportunity they have as a family to be sealed in the temple.  Next month as a ward, the members will travel to the temple in Guadalajara.  The Cadena family all said they have the desire to enter the temple together and be sealed for time and all eternity.  What a blessing it is in our church that we can be sealed with those we love, and know that we’ll all be able to live together again after this time on earth.  

I love my family and am so grateful for this gospel.  I am learning and growing so much each day and have a strong testimony that this church is true.  I love being a missionary and serving the people here.

All my love, support, and prayers,

Hermana Eliason  :)

Monday, June 16, 2014

Joy In The Work


So I am back to cleaning all my clothes by hand because we don’t have a washer.  But I don’t mind because I just turn on a General Conference session while I wash all my laundry.  :)  Plus my wrists have gotten super strong!

In the evening we taught 2 of Hermana Teresita’s children.  She is a recent convert and has 4 children who are all great!  (Brandon is 14, Michelle is 12, Anthony is 9 and More is 5).  The three older children really want to be baptized, but their dad won’t give them permission, so we are working with them / visiting them often.


In the morning we had our weekly district meeting, which went well.  I tested / helped our district leaders with a couple of chapters in their English books.  I think it’s great when the native missionaries truly try to learn English - and I LOVE to help them because it makes me feel useful and happy.  :)

Just to give you all an idea of how hot it is here, I sleep with the fan on HIGH all through the night and don’t use a blanket!   In the mornings, I shower with cool water and almost always have my hair up in a pony tail.
There are these super big trees that provide tons of cool shade and hang low!
Sometimes we sit under them for a water break.


Today we encountered 4 new investigators to teach!  One thing I really like about opening an area is all the people with individual and unique backgrounds / stories.

Today when we were a bit lost, we approached an elderly man sitting in the shade with a scruffy little dog on his lap.  We asked if he knew where a specific building was, and he gave us directions.  Of course we weren’t going to pass up the opportunity to “contact” him (or receive his house address, full name, and date / time for a lesson).  After explaining about our role as missionaries, … to invite others to come unto Christ and [for] them receive His restored Gospel … the elderly man said, “You both are really close to my God.  I could feel it when you approached me and started talking.  Here is my number, please call me when you have a chance to visit and share your message with me.”  This experience made me even more thankful for the Spirit which testifies to others that we are representatives of Jesus Christ and carry with us the important message of salvation for all His children.  I love being a missionary and I love this are of Boulevares, Aguascalientes!


We tried to teach a man named Orlando.  (The husband of a less active member who had a bad experience with one of the members).  And now he won’t listen to us or our message and won’t give the Gospel a second chance - all because of the actions of another person.

I know we must respect people’s agency, but as we walked away, I started to cry.  Hermana Perez asked if I was okay, and I tried to describe to her that it’s heartbreaking and sad to know how much this Gospel can bless others, but regardless, some people choose the harder road and reject it.

The more I learn of the doctrine of our church, the harder it is for me not to shed a tear or two when others don’t accept it - even though some of these people are practically strangers.


Happy Friday the 13th  :)  We bought all our fresh fruits and vegetables for the week from Tianguis (the once a week ginormous and super long farmers’ market / swap meet).  I bought raisins, mangos, bananas, apples, guavas, papayas, lentils with tomatoes and onions and cilantro and some candied peanuts and granola - all for 100 pesos (about 9 dollars!)  We have been having a lot of success in our area.  We encountered 2 new investigators today and set up dates with 3 less active members to teach.  Hermana Perez and I make a good team.  :)  


English class went well!  We learned and practiced the verbs To BE and To HAVE.  One of my students made me laugh when she couldn’t pronounce the word “fish” and kept saying “I have a fierce”  ha ha  :)  

At 6pm the Elders had a baptism, so we brought Anthony (our 9 year old investigator) so he could see what it’s like.  He said, “I can’t wait to be baptized!
Here is Anthony at the ward activity!
Doesn't he have a great smile?

Afterwards, we had the ward activity to celebrate Father’s Day.  It was so much fun.  The Relief Society sisters had prepared a variety of musical numbers.  Then the Primary Children danced and sang, which was cute.  Finally, we all ate tacos, horchata, and cake while taking turns at the Karaoke machine.  :)
Relief Society Sisters dancing and singing for Fathers Day
Here are the primary children singing


Happy Father’s Day to all the men and dads!  I am incredibly grateful for my wonderful Dad.

In the morning, we picked up Anthony and More for church.  I was so touched to see how excited they were to attend with us, all on their own.  They sat quietly and listened, and when we dropped them off afterwards, they said they liked it.  Lunch was yummy, and shortly after it started to rain.  It was more than a light drizzle, but I liked it because it was cooling and refreshing.  Plus, I love the smell of wet earth and wet asphalt.

We visited several families - during which time the rain stopped.  Then we entered a building and encountered a young woman crying with a young baby in her arms.  I asked what was wrong and she embraced me in a hug and cried on my shoulder for a few moments.  I asked her some questions to calm her down; like how old her daughter was and what her name was.  She then told me that her boyfriend had kicked her and the baby out into the street and she now had absolutely nothing.  She was waiting for her brother to return from work and thinks she’ll be able to move in with him for the time being.

Hermana Perez and I sang her a hymn and then taught her about the Savior’s love and the plan that He has for each of us.  We emphasized the importance of prayer to communicate with our Father in Heaven and said we can learn from all our experiences here in life and grow for the better.  She was really grateful and said we arrived just when she needed us.  

I know the Lord will never leave us alone.  He always wants to help us and hear from us. 

A little bit later as Hermana Perez and I were walking again, we heard the voice of a child shout, “Hey Misioneras!”  It was Anthony with his cousin and younger sister, More, all running towards us giddy and smiling.  :)        More said, “Let’s go to the park!’  to which I replied,       “Of course!  Come on.”  
Hermana Perez looked at me a little confused, but I said we would just stay for 5 minutes.  The “park” right around the corner consisted of a couple of swings, a basketball court, and a merry-go-round cage.  The 3 children said, “Hermana Alyson, push us on the merry-go-round!”  So I told them to hold on tight and I started spinning them.  Soon, due to their laughter, other kids in the park started running over to join in the fun … all shouting “Faster!  Faster!”  Hermana Perez was soon laughing at the sight of me - a tall white girl - spinning all these little children on the merry-go-round.  :)  We were all happy and had a good time.
Here are the kids that I was spinning on the merry-go-round at the park

This is just one of the examples of all the cool and crazy graffiti here that decorates all the sides of buildings and walls

I am truly happy here in Mexico on my mission and with my companion.  All is going great and I know this is the work of the Lord.  :)

I hope you all have a fantastic week.

How beautiful are the feet of them that preach of peace and bring glad tidings of good things.”  Romans 10:15.  We all have the potential and power to be missionaries and preach this gospel unto all!

All my love and support,

Hermana Eliason

Monday, June 9, 2014


This week was CRAZY!!!

Monday: We were still living with the other two Hermanas, so we cleaned the house quickly, washed our clothes and then went out to eat together. Think I mentioned this last week :)

Tuesday: We moved into our new house (which used to be the old house of the Elders in our district).  In the morning we spent most of our time packing and then unpacking.  The good news is the house is two doors down from the church and in the middle of our area.  So we will be super close to the people we are teaching and won't have to walk as far any more.  The house was fairly clean and the Elders warned us that there were cockroaches - but we thought they were just trying to scare us .... boy were we wrong!  

This is our kitchen
(you can see the window that connects to our bedroom on the left)
Wednesday: The day was normal and all went well in our new area. And at first when we returned home in the evening around 9:30pm everything seemed fine.  Before we sat down to do our nightly planning, I wanted to get a drink of water and that's when I saw a cockroach on the counter I called for Hermana Perez and we used the H24 spray to kill it.  Feeling all victorious...we returned to our planning desks and received a phone call from our District Leader asking how our day went.  As I was talking to him, Hermana Perez started checking the kitchen cabinets to see if there were any more cockroaches.  Due to her wide eyes and hand signals of more cockroaches, I quickly ended the phone call and grabbed the H24 spray.  She told me to open the cabinet under the sink and just spray for a couple seconds. While doing so, I was screaming and got some of the nasty spray in my mouth and started gagging (apparently the spray isn't too great for humans either).  Thinking we had accomplished the task, I ran to brush my teeth in hopes of getting rid of the gross taste in my mouth, and Hermana Perez followed laughing ;)

Oh and I learned my lesson the hard way ...
need to use bug spray here. Over 21 bug bites on my legs! Ouch!
[Nice shoe tan, Kiley!]
This is when things got really gross and scary. (Our bedroom window connects to the kitchen, so we can see everything in the other room). When we returned from the bathroom and passed by the window, it was like a scene from a horror movie!! Tons of cockroaches were fleeing from the kitchen cabinets and emerging from other small spaces We ran and shut the door- locking ourselves in our bedroom and watching with complete disgust and horror and the cockroaches kept coming We did not sleep well that night, but luckily none entered our room.

Thursday: In the morning we awoke to a grave yard of cockroaches in our kitchen/ study area Over 35 of the filthy creatures laid dead all over!!! EW EW EW! We bought a special paste/goo that we placed all over the house to kill any remaining cockroaches.

Hermana Perez in the area where we study
Friday:  We had a zone meeting which was fun! There are some familiar faces in our zone (Elder Aguilar who was my first District Leader in Fresnillo, Hermana Anderson who is a friend from BYU, Elder Arreaga who always helped me with soccer in my other area, and Hermana Martinez who arrived the same day as me and was companions with Hermana Flores in the CCM!)  I also got my first package from home! It was so great to receive something and it made me feel so loved! Thank you family!!  [*note, 1 package was send at the end of January that she never got and she just received the one we sent March 28th.]

Saturday:  In the morning we had english class! (8 people showed up and I taught the basics).  It was fun, but I was also a bit nervous Then we encountered some new people to teach and passed out two Books of Mormon :)  It was great, and the Lord truly is preparing the hearts and the minds of the people here to receive us and this message of the Gospel of Christ.  It is amazing! Then, in the evening was the baptism of Tere
Tere got baptized!! wahoo! She is so awesome!

This was the big party afterwards in their house
 She is the daughter of a recent convert  (Hermana Hernandez is her mom and we eat with her almost once a week).  They are a great family Tere was grinning from ear to ear before and afterwards, and the Spirit was so strong.  The Elders and Hermana Perez and I sang a special musical number :)  Afterwards we went to their house to have a big dinner with all their family and friends.  It was so fun There were about 27 of us all eating, chatting, and having a good time together.  It reminded me of a big family reunion!

Sunday:  Hermana Perez and I gave talks in church today I spoke about Obedience and used the General Conference talk by L. Tom Perry.  It went well, and I learned so much from preparing the talk. In the evening we continued visiting people and received 5 references for new people to teach from some of the members.  There is a lot of work to do here but I love it!

Here I am holding a bunny ;) haha

Hey Gael was baptized the saturday after I left my area in Fresnillo!!!
I am so happy for him and his decision! Hermana Flores sent me these pictures!

These are all the sister missionaries in our new zone

All in all, it was an exciting and adventurous week for me I love Mexico, and I love my area and time right now training Hermana Perez.  We get along so well and have a great time together!

I know this gospel is true and hope everyone has a fantastic week!

Hugs and BUGS,
Hermana Eliason

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

New area, new companion, new experiences!

Lots has been happening this week in my new area called Boulevares, Aguascalientes!  It is a lot different from Fresnillo - it is more developed (there is a Walmart!), there are no stray dogs walking around, and the streets are really clean.  It is hot like Fresnillo, but more humid here (and of course these are the hottest months of the year!) .... but I am staying hydrated and drinking lots of water ;) 

There is ton of "tenant like housing"
Another difference here is the living conditions: in our area there are two different types of living conditions.  First is the "sector style", which are clusters of 3-4 story apartment buildings. There are over 10 sectors and each sector has about 6 or more apartment buildings - so basically there are a ton of people living within a very small area. But it is nice for us because we don't have to walk super far distances to visit a lot of people, and there are always a TON of people outside. The kids like to play all together, and the adults sit in their plastic chairs talking or eating. 

This is the view outside our window
The second style of living is more like the housing in the common US neighborhoods- decent sized homes that are painted regular colors and are well built. There is a lot more traffic here (no dirt or cobblestone streets) and like I mentioned, a lot more Americanized (there is a McDonalds, etc.)

Opening a new area implies a lot of work. We have been doing a lot of contacting (talking with people in the streets, getting their address, and setting up a date and time in which we can begin teaching them). We also have been getting to know the ward members so they can have the confidence in us to share references (or people they know like family members, coworkers, neighbors, etc. that we can teach). The ward members are few (at church we only had about 45 people show up) but they are super friendly and so excited to have sister missionaries. We are the first sister missionaries in this area for over 25 years- and everyone has been commenting on how happy they are to have us here. Basically...we can definitely feel the love ;) haha

Me and Hermana Perez
My companion is amazing! I am training Hermana Perez who is from the state of Mexico and is 28 years old. Although I, at first, felt totally unqualified to train this native who is almost 10 years older than me... God has been helping me in so many ways and I have been learning so much this past week.  Hermana Perez is so kind and open to receiving advice on how to adjust to the missionary life.  She has been actively participating in the lessons and our contacting, and her testimony is strong.  She helps me improve my spanish (although she says it is about 95% perfect) and I help her with her english which she loves.  In fact, it was announced in the sacrament meeting on Sunday that I would begin giving english classes every Saturday from 12-1pm in the church and that all were invited and asked to bring their friends as well.  Hopefully it can turn into a great missionary experience as well as strengthen our connection with the ward members :)   I will be sure to update you all on how it goes this week :)   Kinda nervous though...

Right now we are living with two other sister missionaries which is a blast! Sister Mora is from Ecuador and is training Hermana Huff from Arizona. It works out great because we all help each other out and share in the responsibilities of the house. Today we ate together at Walmart - I got a footlong Subway sandwich with Hermana Huff, and Hermana Mora and Perez got Chinese food.  It was fun to sit and talk together about why we decided to serve missions and our future plans for when we return.  It has become a little weird to think about returning home in a year. The time here passes by so quickly and I realize more and more each day what a privilege it is to be serving a mission here. 
Here I am with Hermana Perez, Mora and Huff

I am so grateful for all the love and support I have been receiving and hope everyone is doing well. 

Hopefully next week I will have more stories because these past couple days Hermana Perez and I have just started to become more familiar with this new area and the people here :)  But all is going great and I am loving my time here with Hermana Perez!

Con mucho amor,

Hermana Eliason

[cute picture from last week I forgot to include]
Hermanas Winsor & Eliason