Monday, November 24, 2014

Happy Thanksgiving!

           So, Transfers happened! Sis. Nance is now safely home and my new companion is Sis. Kylie Smith from Holliday, Utah! She is so great! I really love her! She is the funniest person ever ever ever and we are having so much fun! We actually go home at the same time which means I will be probably be getting transferred to one more area for my last transfer. So, that means I only have this transfer with her! Kind of sad, and I am crushed to think that I have to leave Chardon in just 7 short weeks!! I really thought I was going to finish out my mission here but "I'll go where you want me to go, dear Lord!" It will all be for the best I just know it!
                    So, We finally got to teach the Drabek's this past week! The lesson went so well! We taught them at their member friends home (The Arnolds remember:) and the spirit was there and it was just awesome! Okay so the lesson was actually a little crazy....The member just likes to tell soooo many stories!!! haha, the highlight was by far when we whipped out Joel 1:4 (go look it up!!!!!) It was so funny! Sis. Smith and I were dying!!!!!! But, like I said the spirit was still really strong! They came to church on Sunday! And then we were trying to figure out when we could meet next and we thought we had something set but then this morning he called us and said "hey, so my schedule is really crazy this week and things just aren't matching up with the Arnolds schedule too and with the holidays we are thinking it would be best to just plan on meeting next week, we will see you at church though!!"   well so we were really sad we weren't going to see them this week  BUT, like 30 minutes later he calls us and says...."hey so I was thinking, I loved meeting at the Arnolds but we don't HAVE to meet at their house right? Would it be sacrilegious to meet at a coffee shop right by my workplace???" Haha...we laughed and arranged something and were SO excited to see how eager he was to meet with us and learn more about the Gospel! He is so awesome!!!!!
               Ryan our investigator with a Baptismal date for Dec. 3rd, he is doing SO GOOD! He came to our branch harvest dinner and then to Kirtland, he ended up only being able to watch the Kirtland movie...he had to cut things short because he wanted to go to the YSA activity.....So awesome! haha...he couldn't have had a better reason!! I am so excited for this area! Things are going so well! And I know it is because of an increased desire and effort to be exactly obedient and to follow the Spirit! I love missionary work so much! 
              This week really was so awesome! We got to see and work with so many people! We did a lot of service for different members of the ward. And our Thanksgiving day is all falling into place! It was looking a little iffy for a while because no body had actually invited us over for Thanksgiving! AND! Things are 10x's more complicated now because our car w
on't be fixed until Friday!!!! Thank goodness for the Robbins!!! They have been our Chauffer's everywhere this week. I love them SO MUCH!!!!!! So, now we actually have like 4 invitations for Thanksgiving dinner. So we will see if we actually get around to them all before we pass out from eating so much food. I don't know what I am going to do! Its going to be the best/worst day ever! Last year we were in so much pain because we had eaten so much food! and now we have 4 dinners!!!!! AHHH! Its going to be so fun though! I am so excited!
           Oh we had Messiah practice again yesterday. The performance is coming up and I still don't know half of the songs!! oops! I sat next to this really good lady this time. She sang SO LOUD! So naturally I had to put my opera voice on and match her! haha. We had such a good time. But by the end of it I literally could not sing another note, my voice was so tired.
            Well. that was my week! Super awesome and this whole next transfer is just going to be a whirlwind!!! And, HAPPY BIRTHDAY EMILY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! (hey guess what. My companions birthday is actually the same day as yours! so we are going to be celebrating big time! I will think of you!!!!) LOVE YOU!
                    Have a wonderful week everyone! Be Grateful! Doctrine and Covenents 78:19....

Monday, November 10, 2014



      You know what the hardest part about writing an email home is.....the subject title. I can never think of a good one!!! So, hence the smiley face.
        This week we had two exchanges. Sis. Pugh came to serve with me in Chardon on Wednesday. It was awesome! She actually wasn't feeling very well all day but I was so impressed with her determination to just keep going. She was an excellent missionary and was so selfless, I would be like "how are you doing really" and she would just brush it aside "I am OK, lets keep going" even though I know she really wasn't. It was awesome. She is so wonderful!
       Then, I served with Sis. Hardy in the Perry area. I love Sis. Hardy. I feel like I didn't know her super well before that day but now she is one of my very favorite people ever!!! She was so happy and dilligent all day. I was in awe. She is so wonderful, At the end of the day I was able to talk with her for a long time. She is going through a really rough time actually. I felt so bad but just followed the Spirit and was hopefully able to help her. It was one of those moments that I think I was called to be a Sister Training Leader for. To be able to help that Sister in her moment of need. It was such a good feeling. I love her so much! The day I served with her has probably been one of my most favorite days on the mission! It was just so full of the Spirit, hard work, and friendship.

         Our investigator Ryan is still doing really well! It is so refreshing to work with somebody who has such a sincere desire to find out the truth! Now it makes me want to work harder at finding more people like that!
           The biggest miracle of the week was a member family in our area bringing a family to church!!!! They don't know them super well but the dad's have some connection and the Non-member emailed Bro. Arnold one day and said "hey I have a Book of Mormon on my shelf and I finally picked it up and read it...I have some questions" So they invited them over one Sunday for dinner and answered their questions and then brought them to church the next Sunday. So we got to meet them and hopeful will be able to start teaching them soon! Miracles happen!!!!  Oh I am so excited!!!!!!!!
            Well, serving at Kirtland this week has been awesome. On Saturday we had three big bus tours of youth from New Jersey come through. We took 4 tours!!!! That is a lot! This time of year you are lucky if you get 1 tour a day! I felt like it was summer time again, with the visitor's center so busy!
             On one of the tours I was feeling the Spirit especially strong, When we got to the school of the Prophets I felt prompted to hand the Testimony of John Murdock (Testimony of him seeing the Father and the Son in that room)  to one of the cool kids ( he looked and acted like one of the punks of the group). So we told them the story of how the Word of Wisdom came about and how they then were promised they would see Heavenly Visions if they humbled themselves. Well I had the all close their eyes and then the kid read the testimony. It was so cool, the spirit was so strong. After I asked him what his favorite part of the tour was and he said "The School of the Prophets and reading that Testimony. I just felt something..." I then talked with him about going on a mission for the rest of the time while we walked back from the tour. It was so cool to just be able to testify to him how absolutely amazing a mission is and how he can't miss it for the world!!! It was one of those moments that I could just tell God had allowed me to be an instrument in his hands and help inspire and uplift somebody else. It was awesome! I love youth tours the best because I just talk to them about how awesome missions are the whole time!!!!!!
            On Sunday we actually got to stay for all of church which was so nice!! Because we serve at the Visitor's Center on Sunday we often have to only go to Sacrament meeting and then leave. But this time we got to stay!!! I was so happy! I have been especially fond of Relief Society recently because I am reading the "Daughters in My Kingdom" book. It is SO GOOD! And it felt so wonderful to be able to sit there with all of my fellow sisters and worship and learn and inspire together! I think that is also why I love serving with all the other Sisters at the Visitor's Center so much. To just be around so many faithful and valiant Sisters, who are being so selfless and sacrificing so much and learn and grow from watching them and being with them is so incredible. Women are so strong!!! 
          We also went to another "Messiah" practice. It went well, still really over all of our heads, as we can only go to the practice every other week. Oh well, We've got God on our side so we will be fine:)
          Then we went to our stake corrilation meeting. President Vellinga couldn't come this time so it was just all of us Sister training Leaders and zone leaders for the two Kirtland zones, with our Stake President and President Everett (Pres. Vellinga's first councilor) It was such an inspiring meeting! We talked about the youth and how we are the ones who are closest in age to them and can influence them the most and get them on missions! We also talked about asking thought provoking questions more as we teach. It was just so cool to sit with our Stake leader and discuss with him what the Stake needs and what we as missionaries can do to help! I love being a missionary so much!!!!!
     This Gospel and this church really does demand the best of us. And sometimes that is SO HARD TO GIVE!!! But, I have been studying service recently and LOVED this quote by Elder Eyring.......... "Whenever am invited to be giver, remember and believe thelyrics “Sweet is the work, my God, my King.”2

        This work is truly the "sweetest" work we can be engaged in. I know it brings blessings unimaginable. I am so grateful to be here. Thank you for all of you who made it possible and continue to support and encourage me. It is making the most amazing and humbling difference in my life.   
               I love you all SO MUCH! I hope you have a fabulous week!
                      Go to Heaven!

Monday, November 3, 2014

Happy Fall!

Hey Everyone!!!

        Wow, time sure is flying! It is so crazy! I feel like just yesterday it was the beginning of the summer! And now winter is nearly here!
         Did I tell you the Robbins took us out to Bahama Breeze last preparation day??? It was such a fun day! Sis. Nance and I went shopping so that she could find a really good going home outfit and then we went out with the Robbins to celebrate Sis. Nance leaving! It was so great! It is by far one of my very favorite restaurants and I am so crushed that they don't exist in UTAH!!! ah. its awful! but we will go there when we all come back to visit k! I got the most delicious Salmon Salad. It was divine! You would have LOVED it Mom:) 
      After that we drove all the way out to one of the farthest away Less Actives whom we havn't been able to see in forever! We kinda warned her we were coming but she didn't respond. It was a risky drive as it was the end of the month and we were almost past our # of miles allotted for that month. But we felt like we needed to just go. So on complete faith we did and SHE WAS HOME!!!!!!!! It was a miracle! We got to have a great visit with her AND she is letting us go back tonight too!!!! yay!
    The next day we had Mission Leadership Council again. Doesn't it feel like I just went to that??!!!!! It comes around SO FAST! I loved loved loved it! We were planning for Zone Conference and it was awesome! It is going to be such an inspirational meeting! You will have to wait until after the 11th to hear about it though!!!!!!!                 

           We were able to see our investigator Ryan this week! It was so cool, we couldn't find anyone to come teach him with us and our appointment was the next day. Suddenly we remembered this member couple we have been working with and though "we should just try them" It was such a miracle!!! they said they would love to come and even wanted to feed us dinner before. They said " we were keeping our Friday open because we meant to call you and invite you over for dinner but just hadn't gotten around to it!" it was so awesome that they were available and it was perfect because we got to practice the lesson with them before hand and then when we met with Ryan it was perfect!! He is so ready! He agreed to be baptized and we are shooting for a date in January (he is praying about it) We are so excited for him!!!!!!
            This past week I also went on exchanges with Sis. Bailey Smith in Solon South. It was so wonderful! I love her so much and have always wanted to be her companion so to be able to go on exchanges with her was such a tender mercy! I learned so much from her. She is such a diligent missionary and we were able to really lift each other up and encourage each other to be even better. It was awesome!!!
       Oh the Sorenson's also had us over for an ice cream social on Halloween. We can't really celebrate Halloween so they called it a celebration for his "moms birthday" haha too funny! It was great!
         On Saturday we went to the Community of Christ Pancake breakfast (when we come back to visit we should try to make it on the first Saturday of the month so we can go to the pancake breakfast!!) It was the last one Sis.Nance will ever go to!!! crazy! She leaves so soon! like 2 weeks!!!!!
       Since it is November now they have officially begun setting up the NATIVITIES!!!!!!!!!!! yay yay yay yay yay!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I am SO EXCITED!!!!!!!!!!!!!! IT is my absolutely favorite time of the year!!!!!!! Oh yeah, and Sis. Best (she is the one in charge, I know her from the Perry ward) pulled me aside and asked if I would be in charge of putting together a concert with the sisters to be performed on various nights during the nativity season. So that will be fun! I will try to just keep it simple. Mosly hymns but also hopefully some cool christmas songs!!!! If you have any good ideas that would be appropriate for Sister Missionaries let me know!!!
     Last night we got to go watch the CES Devotional with Elder Hallstrom (who is the one who came to our mission with Elder Holland) at the Robbins house!!! It was SO Fun!!! I love them so much! They spoil us like none other and we just soak it all up!!!!

      Well, life is good!!!I love my mission and am so happy here!!! I hope you all have a fabulous week and I will talk to you again in 7 days!!!!!
                        Go to Heaven!!
                            ~ SisN

  ps...we have been raking lots of leaves. SO MANY LEAVES!!!
          The first pic is me with the Hartman's Less active/part member family
           second is me and Sis. Smith on exchanges!