Monday, September 30, 2013

Kitchener Waterloo - a new experience

Old Area - The Julians
They usually fed us twice a week and it was THE BEST food.
Michelle, Brett, Darren, and Natalie
Natalie and I with the Happy Sad Day Cake.
We were so sad :(

Well I made it to my new area! I am in Kitchener Waterloo and things are pretty good.

Monday night we had a sleep over with Sister Taylor and Sister Bradshaw, and then Tuesday morning Sister Taylor and I woke up at 4:30 and drove to Brampton for transfers. I got to see some people there which is always nice. I saw Sister Tebbs for a second, and then we loaded everything up into the transfer van and headed for Kitchener where I met up with Sister Colvin and got to see Sister Tuia and Elder Dewey. And then Sister Colvin and I headed for the Kitchener Waterloo East area.


Elder Dewey was my first District Leader.
He was the Zone Leader over the zone I am in now last transfer,  but then he got moved.
We were both bummed. It would have been fun to serve near him again

Elder Skirvin and I
We served in the same ward when I was in Brampton. He is awesome.
He was getting transferred to Timmons which is like an 8 hour drive north

I got to see Sister Tebbs for like 3 seconds,
and yes - that Elder did kind of ruin the photo 

My Trainer - Sister Tuia and I
She  goes home after this transfer.
I am glad I got to see her one more time

We had a lot of appointments that first day which was good. I was SO exhausted by the end of the day, however. It was nice to finally go to bed.

The ward is good. There are a lot of families from Utah that live here which is kind of funny. It is just hard to learn all of the names and figure out who people are. After being in an area for 4 months and knowing everyone and everything it is a big adjustment to know no one and nothing. Oh well. I guess that is what being a missionary is all about.  We have a few people that we are teaching, but the sisters hadn't been seeing them progress in awhile so we are going to have to figure out what to do with that.

This is a shared car area which basically means we walk all the time. haha We have the car half of Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday until 7 so... we walk every other day. I don't hate walking,  but it is also not the most effective use of time. We haven't used a bus yet since I have been here. We are going to have to figure that out soon so we can get places, and I am going to have to find some new shoes soon because this much walking is killing them. 

Saturday was the General Relief Society Broadcast and it was really cool. President Monson spoke and it was wonderful!! It got me so pumped for General Conference this weekend. I really can't wait for that!

Things are going good. Everything is just new here and hard to get used to, but I am figuring it out. Just trying to get to know people and figure out how we are going to find some new investigators, it is a very residential and a small area, so we are going to have to get creative.

Hopefully now that I am getting more settled I will be able to provide a more detailed email for next week!  I can't believe that tomorrow is October! I know I say it all the time but... time really is flying by so quickly!  I hope you enjoy the pictures! They will hopefully provide a nice outline of my week!  

Sister Norells' dad - Brother Goddard 
I called him Grandpa. He is the sweetest man

    Monday, September 23, 2013

    Transfers........and I'm moving !

    Well... I knew I couldn't stay in Hamilton forever.... but I sure wished I could..... Either way... Transfer calls were last night and I will be going to Kitchener Waterloo and my companion is Sister Colvin, she is the sister that I served with in the MTC so that is pretty crazy! It should be fun! It will be nice to see a new area but I am sure going to miss this area... A LOT!

    This week was good, it is cooling off, 
    one day it rained the ENTIRE day. 

    Ummm... I can't really focus because of transfers on the brain but.... I will write more next week when things have gone back to normal. Hope everyone has a great week!

    District Meeting
    Elder Lasley, Elder Kenning, Elder Wihongi, and Elder Palmer
    Sister Bradshaw, Sister Taylor, Sister Puruganan, Sister Prescott

    Sister Bradshaw and I wore the same outfit to District Meeting - Awkward !

    Tuesday, September 17, 2013

    Busy Week !

    I never really know how to start these things so...... I guess I will just get right into it!

    This week went from super hot to super cold in a matter of one day. Tuesday was the really hot day. We walked around for hours talking with people.

    So..... Tuesday we chose to walk instead of use the car. Big mistake considering it was 35*C (that is a little over 100*F I believe) and SO humid. We seriously spent about 5 hours contacting and tracting... Sister Puruganan could have killed me!! (hence the look on her face) haha It was funny! We talked to a lot of people, though, so I thoroughly enjoyed myself (hence the look on my face). haha 

    One funny story from that... we were walking down a street and we said hello to an Italian family who were sitting on their porch and before we knew it they had called us over.  We talked to them for a minute, and they offered us some espresso... we politely declined. haha
    They asked if we wanted to sit down, and then they gave us some ginger ale and we just sat and talked for about 20 minutes about religion and their families. It was a couple and the husband's sister. They were 88, and 80, but honestly looked like they were 60. They told us why they moved to Canada and talked about how they have family in Italy who are priests and nuns. They were interested to hear what we had to say, but basically said they were Catholic and were always going to be Catholic. They were just really nice and so generous. The man even gave us some tomatoes before we left! Oh and he also told me that I had the most beautiful eyes! haha He said they look like Dolores Hart's eyes (not sure who she is but they told me she was in a movie with Elvis and then she became a nun) I just really love being able to talk with everyone, especially when they turn our to be such lovely people like that! After my mission I already know that I am going to miss being able to walk up to strangers and getting to know them like that.

    For lunch this week we ate with one of the sisters in the ward who is from El Salvador. She made Pupusas and they were SO good. She even taught me how to make them... I will probably just have to make them post mission, considering I have no time to cook these days. She is an incredible woman who told us so many great stories about her life. I am really learning SO much from everyone I meet here. We have been able to do a little bit of teaching but for the most part we are still finding! It can be hard and discouraging at times, but we can't control people's agency so we just have to do our part.

    At church yesterday both talks were on Faith, and then the lesson in Gospel Principles was about Faith. It is the first Principle of the Gospel and it seems like we talk about it all the time but it is still really nice to get a reminder. I felt like the things that were taught were a big answer to my doubts or concerns I have had. I love when answers to prayers come through other people. It is pretty incredible.

    After church we actually had a pretty interesting experience. We were walking out to get into our car and a guy pulls up and asks us what we do in our church and what you have to do to become a Mormon. He asked us what we do as missionaries and what "Our Gospel" is. Anyway we took him inside and had a really great discussion with him. He said that he used to not be religious until one day he was "saved" and he has been different ever since. It was a really great discussion, but I think his purpose in going out that day was to spread his gospel with people. He was a very good guy with such good intentions, he was just a little confused on some of his doctrine. It was nice to be able to sit there and bear testimony and know that the things we were sharing with him are true. The promise really is true that we will "not be confounded before men" He was so nice and I know he wants to do what is right, he is just getting a little confused along the way. I really think our discussion made him think and who knows, maybe he really will read the Book of Mormon that we gave him and hopefully he will give us a call. From that experience it just really shows me that the Gospel is simple, and that is how it is supposed to be. If we have Faith, Repent, are Baptized, receive the Gift of the Holy Ghost and endure to the end we will be saved. It takes grace, yes, but we also have to do our part. He felt he had just been "saved" and didn't think he had to do anything. Hopefully he will one day come to understand.

    Was I called to the Canada Toronto Mission or to a mission in the Philippines? Hard to tell by the looks of this photo. ;) #minority  We ate Pancit (noodles and vegetables), crab, and Purple Yum cake. SO good! No wonder Sister Puruganan misses the food from the Philippines. 

    Dinner last night was a lot of fun! It was with a family from our ward and a family from the Burlington Ward. They are both Filipino and are so wonderful! The food we ate was delicious and Sister Puruganan got to speak Tagalog which I am sure she was happy about! All I know, is I need to visit the Philippines at some point in my life because the food is great and the people are even better!

    Well... I passed my 7th month mark on Friday and time doesn't seem to be slowing down. Transfer calls are Sunday, so on Monday I will be able to let you all know if I will be moving or not! I hope everyone has a wonderful week!

    Tuesday, September 10, 2013

    A short week, but a really good week!

    We went to Zone Conference on Thursday which was a lot of fun. The night before we had 2 other companionship's of Sisters stay in our apartment so that was quite the adventure. Thankfully we had the room, and a member let us borrow their air mattress so between that and the couches, the Sisters had somewhere to sleep.

    I'm fairly certain that when you look up the word pathetic in the dictionary there is a picture of our refrigerator........ side note: that salsa actually needs to be thrown out 

    We had to leave for Zone Conference early because of traffic, and it was a pain getting to and from Etobicoke. What should have been a 45 min drive took about and hour and a half getting there and 2 hours getting back. Driving near Toronto is kind of a scary thing, I was just grateful that I was driving and not someone else. I like having my life in my own hands in those kinds of situations. haha
    A couple of good-looking missionaries from Morgan, Utah
    Elder Prochnow and Sister Prescott
    Learned a lot at Zone Conference. I got to see Elder Prochnow and some other Sister and Elders that I haven't seen in awhile. As always it was nice to see President and Sister Scott as well as the other couple missionaries. I really believe that part of the reason I was sent to this mission was because of President Scott. I feel like he is the perfect mission president for me and I am so grateful for him and his insights and everything that he shares with us and teaches us.

    We have a few new people that we are teaching which is always nice. We are working more with the members and helping them to do their missionary work. We're hoping to help them get excited about sharing the Gospel with their friends and family.

    #ToolPicTuesday :)
    Basically I love this ward, love this area, and time is flying. Transfers are in two weeks and I can't even believe it!

    Hope everyone has a great week!

    Wednesday, September 4, 2013

    A Busy Week - *Eh?

    Riley sent me a care package
    Finally, PDAY!!!! Monday was Labour Day, (yes "Labour" day not "Labor" day) In Canada they add that "U" in there for who knows what reason (I think it is the French influence??) All I know is that the word Color (colour) and Flavor (flavour) and many many more all do that.... That is one thing that I probably won't be bringing home from my Canadian experience. The expression *"eh" and "washroom" instead of bathroom are, however, going to be permanent fixtures in my vocabulary! 

    So really, longest week ever! I knew that P-day was going to be moved, but I thought it would have been Tuesday instead of Wednesday. Oh well, life goes on, just grateful I get today to recharge my batteries!

    This week was good. We had a Zone Training and then tomorrow will be going to a Zone Conference in Etobicoke (if you say the "k" Canadians will make fun of you, so... silent k??) I am excited because at Zone Conferences we get to learn from President and Sister Scott as well as some of the other leaders in the mission,  AND we get fed and get to see other other missionaries who I don't see all the time. I am pretty sure Elder Prochnow will be at this Zone Conference which will be good. We haven't been able to discuss Morgan, Utah in awhile now!

    We did A LOT of finding this week.... and had very little success. Most people are already religious and say that they will NEVER change. It is kind of discouraging, but we just have to keep going! School started back up here so now there are a lot more college students around. It is crazy to think that I have been in Hamilton the entire Summer. I was here before school got out and am still here when school started back up. Time is flying!

    The weather has cooled down a bit the past few days. Everyone says that after Labor day it really starts to cool off. That will be nice for a change, and it will just be good to have people back from their family vacations. It is really hard to find people when they are not even here all summer long.

    Still learning a ton! Having a few hours to study every morning is the best. If you haven't picked up a Book of Mormon lately you should definitely do so. You are going to like what you see :)

    The members here are the best. I am going to miss them A TON when I leave (which I feel like I will probably leave at the end of this transfer, but who really knows!?)

    Things are going really great, just can't believe it is already September! Hope everyone likes this blog post a bit more than the last few... I have been a horrible writer lately! I will try and start doing things more focused on something I learned from each week! I will prepare something and let you all know Monday! Have a great couple of days! :)

    *  Eh - (pronounced "ey", as in "hey" or "hay") A suffix some Canadians add to the ends of sentences, to ask for a response of agreement or disagreement, similar in meaning to "don't you think" or "right?"(Similar to the word "Huh?" Used in the states.) (eg. "Looks like a storm comin' in, eh?"). It is a way of being polite - to ensure that the other people in the conversation are feeling included. It is also sometimes used with "I know," as in, "Wow, the Calgary Flames really kicked butt tonight!" -"I know, eh?"