Thursday, March 17, 2016

Week 23: Sassy salamanders!‏

My 5 month mark!
Sisters p-day! Sister Giles (back middle with black shirt) is home now! :( 
Zone temple trip


St. Patrick's day mystery box!!! Four leaf clover
A churchmember made us these potstickers and I knew exactly which ones they were right when I had them and then I was about to start crying at the table. It's the little things that make you think of home. Anyway, she gave me the rest of the bag because I was so weird about it! :D
Tyler Sterling's MTC teacher! Oh yeah, and I had salmon and liked it!! Didn't even taste the fishiness and it was just butter and lemon that they cooked it in! I will like fish if it kills me.
Temple again! 

Monday, March 7: Today was a good p-day!
We had a sisters activity over two of the zones (since our sister training leaders cover two zones) and Sister Ursaga made us authentic Filipino food! (Is that how you spell that?) It was super fun except I had a pretty bad migraine (first one of the mission woop woop!) so I signed journals from the couch for a bit and then I felt well enough to have some delicious food. We had a lesson with Michele too and she's engaged!!!!!! Her and Rick!! We're so absolutely excited for them :) she had some hard questions for us during the lesson, and I kept feeling like we needed to wrap it up but I squished the feeling down. Never squish a prompting! We ended up being late to our next lesson (with Chase) and weren't able to have a full lesson. We had a good message for him though and set up a time to come back. Our ward mission leader told us that he apparently used to be a rapper and that he has a Facebook page? Chase Million? (Not his real last name so I can put it :) ) let me know if you find it

Tuesday, March 8:
We got to go into Salt Lake today for Sister Nielsen's doctors appointment! It's always nice to go into the city after being in the same neighborhood for so long. And to get a breath of fresh air (someone told us that the area we're in has some of the worst pollution in the nation! Definitely the worst in the mission). We had a lesson with Bill, a less active man in our area who lost his wife in a car accident a few years ago. They had been sealed in the temple just a bit before that so its pretty intense talking to him sometimes. You never want to overstep your bounds and tell him something really insensitive. But we were able to talk a lot about a ton of really important gospel topics, including the importance of taking the sacrament and using the atonement. Overall really good lesson. We had dinner with a family from Peru that has been through some STUFF. We had dinner with only the mom and some of the kids and she told us about how about a year ago their house (old house now) had been crushed by an unstable mountain. What. There were so many miracles in that story, the Lord was absolutely looking out for them. They lived kinda on the side of a mountain and it seemed kinda shaky, but the authorities told them to stay there. They all woke up in the middle of the night at the same time (she woke up because she had a dream about her great grandma telling her to get out, the kids woke up because a rock flew through their window, the grandpa woke the grandma up, who had taken sleeping pills, and the dad was just up for some reason). When they went downstairs they looked at their backyard and it was gone. It was completely covered by the mountain and the mountain was moving fast. So they all get out of there and pull the car out, and like 2 seconds later the house is completely crushed. Crazy!!! They're all safe. But we also had a really really good lesson with Rachel that night too. Ernie, her roommate, got really bold with her about how she has felt the spirit and knows that she really is investigating the church and it was exactly what she needed to hear, and it couldn't have come from us.

Wednesday, March 9: We went to the temple as a zone today!
My first time at bountiful temple and it was beautiful! Such a great temple for pictures, that's for sure. The Lund's (an MLS couple) took us home and Elder Lund said, "you have my granddaughter's eyes! They're sparkling and happy! Do you like soccer? (I said no, not really) Do you play the violin? (Nope) Nevermind, you're not her." Lol what? Haha they're fun. We had a lesson with April (a less active)'s friend named Val. We were supposed to come over there and pretend that we were there for April and casually talk to Val, and then once we got ere April said, "Val I brought you the missionaries so you could learn more about the church" lol it was pretty funny and direct but so much easier to work with on our part. April was so funny during that lesson, because we were starting pretty basic because Val (she's YSAish age) has no religious background so doesn't know any of this at all, and April would get really mad when we didn't cover something complex. But it's okay, because the rest of the lesson another lady came by and then they were talking on the balcony and that was necessary haha. Val is so quirky though!!! She starts off by saying that she's really spiritual and she had this amazing spiritual experience 7 years ago but that she's not comfortable sharing what it was because she hasn't been able to paint it yet. Not even scratching the surface of the journal-quality lesson this was. She talked about how she tried this thing called sun-gazing where you don't eat anything, but you stare at the sun for 10 minutes in the morning and 10 minutes at sunset because you can get every nutrient you need from the sun. She said that after about 2 weeks of doing that (2 WEEKS) she "was able to see a dragon in the sky". And she was like, "and it was weird..." And we were thinking yeah it was a bit strange of a hallucination but then she continues, "because dragons usually aren't this far west." and we were like OH of course! THATS why it's weird hahaha! (No where near done). She said the dragon looked like a salamander and said (yep) to her, "Are you okay? Because you better be." And then she said, "This dragon had ATTITUDE!". I'm loving this lesson so much at this point. Like, best lesson ever as far as I'm concerned. She keeps talking about her philosophies on life and how we're all Russian dolls, and how there's a bigger, more solid her, that is sitting at a campfire right now. Life is pretty good I've gotta say. We had a lesson with Randy (that we remembered!) and didn't have a lesson with Nikki, Rob, and Maddy. We even confirmed with them in person two hours before, but they canceled 5 minutes before. Classic sass :)

Thursday, March 10:
We had a training from President Spendlove today that we thought was going to be on the new Easter initiative (that is officially out now!! Go watch it!) but the whole thing was on how we shouldn't be doing so much less active work unless it's going to help us get a referral for a nonmember! There was apparently a time when missionaries didn't work with less active people at all, but they only let us have that back if we use that for finding. Super interesting stuff, it totally changes my perspective on the mission. We had a lesson with the Ocompo family, where I got to practice more of my terrible Spanish! Haha the mom only speaks Spanish, but her 4 kids who want to learn about the gospel speak English so it works out. We taught them the restoration and it went too long!! Our next lesson was with Ayla and it was super far away and we were already late so we literally ran there. Sprinted. It was the Lord telling us that we weren't taking morning exercise seriously enough, I'm sure of it. We had to sprint from Ayla's lesson to dinner, and one guy offered us a ride (we couldn't do that because it was a single guy) and one woman offered us a plate of cupcakes (if only those were swapped) but it's okay because we got there only like 8 minutes late! And had really good fajitas. I don't know what's up lately, but we've been getting a lot of multicultural food and it's pure heaven. So wonderful. Our next two lessons cancelled (3rd lesson of the day to cancel) 5 minutes before we would've started the lesson! Come on!! We tried to see Mana again, but she told us that there was both bronchitis and pneumonia in her home right now. So we turned around haha. But we still got to have a great lesson with Mike, and it had to be at Brother Thompson's home because Jen wasn't home, and we correlate with Brother Thompson after, so Mike just stayed. Honestly it was like he was a ward missionary with all the input he was giving. It was SO AWESOME. I love seeing recently converted members just jumping in the deep end! So much courage!

Friday, March 11: Today was probably the best district meeting I've had on my mission so far. Since this is a 7 week transfer, our district leader was allowed to give a training on whatever he wanted to this week. We talked a lot about the love of the savior and the atonement. Everyone was getting really personal with their experiences and Elder Alford asked me to come up and share about how I've felt the Savior's love in my life. I totally made a connection with hadn't seen before and it was really amazing to feel of the Spirit that was in the room. Everyone in our district has had really hard things happen to them and I just respect them so much for it! Because they're all still smiling and pushing forward even if each step is like walking through wet concrete, they keep pushing. What an amazing example to me! I also got mail!!!! I'm known in the zone as someone that always gets mail (which isn't actually true, but they're a bunch of exaggerators). Someone sent me a st. Patrick's day package and I don't know who!! Thank you!!! It's sad to have St. Patrick's day on my own this week, but my parents (hint hint) BETTER be throwing the annual party in some way. Or at least celebrating on their own. I told everyone in my last area that st. Patrick's day was my favorite holiday and I was thinking about it and it's because we had so many traditions and so much fun together as a family that we made this random holiday that no one cares about into the most fun and happy holiday of the year! We did our weekly planning today and had a lesson with a family that has a daughter that will be getting baptized. She's 8, so we don't actually have to teach her, but the appointment was set up for us by our ward mission leader, so who are we to turn that down? The primary president ended up taking over the lesson and I loved it! It made me realize that in this ward, the leaders are on top of it!! And that's all we want in each ward, is for the leaders to be fulfilling their callings, and then it makes everything so much smoother for us.

Saturday, March 12: We got to go to the temple today! Scott, one of our recent converts, wants the work done for his mom in the temple, so we got to do a session. He wanted sister Allen to do it so we got to see them again! Sister Deem (Sister Allen's comp) and I always joke that we're going to buy matching rings because of how much we see each other and have to awkwardly stand to the side while they hug haha. We got lunch at great harvest after, and HUGE slices of their bread are 75 cents each. Heaven. We all ended up getting the same bread without even planning it haha! We had dinner with Tyler Sterling's MTC teacher!! He was like, you're from Renton/Kent? Do you know Tyler Sterling? I about fell off my chair because it's so rare that when someone says a name that you actually know them. It's like 1/60 times people ask. We laughed about how small of a world it is in this church and then I took a picture of them and their adorable crying baby. Hilarious. We had a lesson with Kandi and her son, Aidan, after that. I've officially taught a Linda, Leo, and Aidan now. Sorry Ayden that I'll never find someone with your spelling. This Aidan was kinda hard to teach though because he has some memory issues, but we were able to teach him the restoration and then play go fish with him after. :) at one point their dog, Kina, went crazy. She was barking and growling and if she were human she would be screaming. Kandi was just laughing the whole time and was like, "oh this is what she does when she needs to go outside" which is insane, because she was like a rabid monster animal and starting running around the house and coming towards sister Nielsen (not a fan of dogs) and I had to lean over and slap this charging dog away from my beloved companion like 4 times. (I didn't actually slap Kina, I just had to hold my hand in front of sister Nielsen while Kina slammed into it haha sheesh, I take my responsibility seriously of protecting my companion! She promises to take care of me if anyone has rabbits because those just freak me out)

Sunday, March 13: Sunday's are always insane.
We of course went to 3 wards, and I did a lot of drawing for some reason. Sister Nielsen told me about something called Zen Tangle where you do like random triangles and fill them in with different patterns. I can never remember what it's called and usually just end up calling them karma doodles. Not sure why. Not much happened at church, except we helped Mike and Jen teach a primary class and this girl comes up to us, points at sister Nielsen and says, "I like her better" and I'm like rough, but okay that makes sense haha she's been here longer and she's awesome. And then the girl comes back and says, "I like her better because she's prettier" knife to the heart. So much pain. Haha primary kids tell it like it is though because Sister Nielsen is a straight up painting! Haha that was supposed to be a better compliment, but eh. We also went to great to be 8, and it was super cute. After that we went home and finished up weekly planning! Pictures! 1- sisters p-day! sister Giles (back middle with black shirt) is home now! :( 2- my 5 month mark! 3-5- zone temple trip 6- st. Patrick's day mystery box!!! Four leaf clover 7- a member made us these potstickers and I knew exactly which ones they were right when I had them and then I was like about to start crying at the table. It's the little things that make you think of home. Anyway, she gave me the rest of the bag because I was so weird about it! :D 8- Tyler Sterling's MTC teacher! Oh yeah, and I had salmon and liked it!! Didn't even taste the fishiness and it was just butter and lemon that they cooked it in! I will like fish if it kills me 9- temple again! 10- one of my karma doodles from Sunday

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