Monday, February 24, 2014

Another Great Week

Greetings from Canada! Did everyone hear that both the women's and men's Canadian Hockey teams won gold? Everyone around here was pretty stoked about it. The stereotype really is correct.. Canadians LOVE their hockey. We obviously didn't see any of the hockey games, but we heard all about it. So I feel some pride in the fact that Canada won! 

Haircut time

Another good week! Janet and Norm were confirmed yesterday, which was exciting. They were very touched by the whole experience and I think they are excited to be able to move forward in the church. Sacrament meeting was really good yesterday. One of the members just got back from his mission this past week (he was serving in the same place as Grant Clunas and knew who Grant was) He gave his homecoming talk and it was very powerful. He talked about the Light of Christ and also experiencing a change of heart. He shared different experiences of how people he taught on his mission experienced a change of heart, and then he talked about the most important change,  the change that he saw in himself. He had a very sincere and powerful testimony. I am sure everyone in that room felt that Spirit. Max, who was recently baptized, came up to me after and told me that he thought it was very powerful and there were multiple people in tears. It was cool. Church is always just the thing I need to keep me going for another week.

The Meyer Family - members in our ward

Last night we had a cool experience. Some of Brother Mitchell's coworkers have had questions about the church,  so he invited them to meet with us. We had dinner and then were able to talk with them after. All 3 of them are from Mennonite backgrounds and one of them could, "thump a pastor in a Bible Bash" as Brother Mitchell would say. haha  Anyway.. we visited with them and were able to teach them the Restoration and a bit more about our beliefs. If a year ago someone would have told me that I would be able to sit down and hold my own in a conversation with people who know the Bible like the back of their hand,  I would have told them they were crazy. But... here I am.. able to do that. It is pretty cool.. Amazing what some study and the Spirit can do for you.

That is just more proof of how much I have grown and changed in a year! It is pretty cool what can happen when we apply ourselves and take the time to let God shape us into the people that he needs us to be. 

We will be having another baptism this weekend, his name is Ethan. We really have been so blessed lately with success in our work. I will talk more about Ethan next week.

I just sure wish the weather would start to warm up around here. We have had a few days where it has felt like it might warm up, but it is always short lived. I am beginning to think all of this snow will never, ever melt. It does feel like Spring is coming.. the days are getting longer and that makes this Sister Happy!

I hope that everyone has a great week!

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

This mission really has changed my life

This was another great week full of a lot of exciting things!!

First off I hit my year mark and so we did some fun things to celebrate that. (I don't have much time so I will just let the pictures explain some of the things that we did. :)

It still blows my mind that I can now say that a year ago I was a missionary. That is a long, long time!

Janet and Norm were baptized this weekend, and it was the greatest experience. The day before the baptism we met with them, and hearing both of their testimonies brought me to tears. They are so amazing and so grateful for the Gospel in their lives. I can honestly say that if not one good thing happened on my mission except for meeting them and seeing their progress, I would have still said it was all worth it. I could not stop smiling and was so happy to see them so happy. Thankfully I have had a lot of wonderful things happen throughout my mission but it is amazing how just one thing can really make all the hard days 100% worth it.

Sister Colvin and I have really started to see so many blessings in this area. The work just continues to progress and I feel like the ward has been pretty excited about it. We were able to achieve the "standards of excellence" again this week and we saw a lot of really great things happen. It almost feels like I worked hard for a year and then the week that I celebrated my year mark Heavenly Father just poured out the blessing upon us. Pretty great!

For Valentines we bought some roses to give away to people and then someone had given the Chinese (speaking) sisters roses so we decided to take some pictures

So I feel like this is all over the place and the computer here at the library tells me I only have 18 minutes left, so I will wrap this up for this week and then when I am back to the Family History center Monday I will write something longer. But I DID take a lot of pictures this week so that should make up for it, right? :)

Burning stuff at the Mitchell's to celebrate my 1 year mark

Only they would leave dead ducks hanging in the tree. haha Brother Mitchell says if I ever need a good dose of Redneck that I just need to come on by. haha

Brother  and Sister Weber - members of our ward

Good old Canadian Humor
These houses have "a" and "b" sides.. a member lives on the B side of this and their neighbors are apparently pretty funny. haha They said missionaries always get a picture of this

This mission really has changed my life and I am seeing that more and more lately as I compare where I was a year ago and where I am now. I don't know what I would do without these experiences and all the wonderful people that I have met!

I hope that everyone has a great week! :)

Monday, February 10, 2014

1 Year Mark !

Well... it has officially been a year since I gave my farewell talk.. and tomorrow it will have been a year since I was set apart as a full time missionary for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.. and Wednesday it will have been a year since I put on a name tag and entered the MTC... and that is pretty crazy. :) It doesn't feel like that long ago that all of that happened, but a whole lot has happened in that year! It is fun to look back on how far I have come.. I could have never imagined how great and also how hard a mission would be, but I don't regret for one second coming on a mission and I am so grateful for all of the things I have learned in this past year.

Last time i took a picture here it was SO hot‏

So since Sister Colvin and I started out our missions together in the MTC and are now here together a year later we are going to do some celebrating this week! Not exactly sure what we are going to do but... hopefully next week I will have some pictures of nice adventures we will have! 

This week was good. Janet and Norm are still on track for baptism this Sunday.. Elder So'o interviewed them yesterday and said the interviews were probably the most spiritual interviews he has ever done. Janet and Norm truly do love the Gospel so much and are so grateful for it in their lives and I am very excited for their baptisms this Sunday! I even agreed to sing a song with Sister Colvin at the baptism.. I am turning into a little singer here! 

Well, once again, I wish I had more time to write... but I don't :) so..... Have a great week! And everyone go and do something to celebrate my "1 year Mark!" 

Skogstad Family

This is Anne, I just thought this was the cutest picture ever. She is 78 and I feel like she is one of my best friends! 

Brother and Sister Sellars

Monday, February 3, 2014

Busy Crazy CROWDED Week!

February has arrived! And... in 10 days it will be my year mark!! We are trying to plan some fun things to celebrate.. Crazy that Sister Colvin and I started out together in the MTC last February and now we are together this February... My how time flys!

Sister Tofa and I last pday... She went back home
 to Australia this week. :(

The Rowden's had a "Welcome Back" party for us when they found out we didn't get transferred! The party was complete with a banner, balloons, tiaras, feather boas, and cake with candles! They are the best! It was so much fun!

This has been another busy/crazy week! 

Thursday we got a phone call from the Chinese speaking sisters saying that they would be moving in with us.  Apparently they were supposed to be living with another set of Chinese speaking sisters, but the apartment manager wouldn't let them so... we were the next choice.  Sister Colvin and I hurried and tried to make the apartment so everything would fit, and then about an hour later Elder Parker and Elder Prochnow show up and they just start hauling loads of huge furniture into our house. Being a missionary really teaches you how to "go with the flow".  One minute we were living in an apartment all to ourselves and the next minute we were cramming beds into a room.

It was pretty stressful and it has been a weird couple of days,  but things have settled down and it feels like we can move on with life. It has been fun having Sister Willoughby and Sister Mak with us! They have been teaching us some Chinese and that seems to make the whole "sharing a bathroom with 3 other girls thing" worth it. ;) We don't know how long they will be staying here, but.. I am glad they are here so... It will be good if they stay forever. It makes things more fun to have more people around! And... you know me.. I love to have fun! :)

Sister Willoughby, Sister Mak, me and Sister Colvin
after moving all of the stuff in

During all the chaos of the Thursday move, the Bishop called us and asked us to meet him at the church because he had some good news that had to do with Janet. So we hurried to the church! Now a little background.. we had been praying and doing everything we could to figure out how we could find Janet a place to live. Nothing seemed to be working.. Both Norm and Janet had been praying and none of us could think of anything... but.. our prayers worked because the Bishop said that there was a sister in the ward who would let Janet rent a room and so... just like that.. Our prayers were answered! Now another cool part to this story is that the night before Elder So'o had been on the phone with Elder Prochnow and Elder Parker and they were brainstorming how this could all work out so that Janet would reach her baptismal date. They weren't coming up with anything until out of nowhere Elder Prochnow goes, "Woah, I just had an impression that there is someone in the ward who has a place for her to stay." And he couldn't have been more right. :)

We went and told Janet and she was SO excited! And Norm too was so excited... Now Norm has moved his baptismal date to February 16th and they both will be getting baptized! It has been a serious blessing and I am SO glad to still be in this area so that I get to be a part of it. They are amazing people and I am very, very excited for them!

It snowed some more this week... everyone here is amazed that there has been this much snow. It has been a fun week, just very busy. Things are still going very well with the area. We have hit our goals again this week and are seeing a lot of great things happening. 

Just staying busy, which I guess is what it is all about! :)