Monday, January 30, 2017

the southern belles

Holllla yall!
Hanging out in dear ole s-Laughter town with my girl 
So we got Belnap and Bell. 
the 2 southern belles. <3
Fun Facts about Sista Bell:
1. from Filmore, UT
2. went to Snow College! (s/o to dastan)
3. she adores her 3 younger brothers
4. she is super sweet and kind and loving!
5. she's in her 3rd transfer
6. she was MTC comps with Sister Henrie!
7. she reminds me SO MUCH of Emily my investigator from Covington!
(sorry I stink at these)
Anyways. I love Sister Bell. She's so humble and ready to work! I'm just really pumped for this transfer! We have potentially alot going on!
whats going on in s-laughter town??
1. Ms. Kellie Jo: a returning less active. she is so great. I love her alot.
experience this week: she came to church and happened to get there the same time as another returning less active, Clifton, and they were standing, a little nervously/awkwardly in the hall looking for a place to sit. (lots of our seats were filled this week!!!) we went out to the hall and greeted them. Clifton asked if Ms. Kellie Jo was investigating, and I said looking at her with a big smile, "No sir, she is coming back to church!"
and Clifton says, "Oh me too!" :)
we pointed out a row of seats that we could all fit on and was about to head in, Clifton, still a little apprehensive. 
Ms. Kellie Jo turns to Clifton and says gently with a smile, "Come on. Lets go in." 

Miracles and the Spirit comes when we love and support each other yall. its amazing. the Spirit is STRONG.
the new crew #holla

2.  Cowboy: a returning less active that is getting prepared and taking steps in his life to go to the TEMPLE!!
This is one of my favorite people. He is hardcore on the outside but very sweet and gooey on the inside! haha Cowboy and I have connected from the very start and have gotten to be really good friends. He has been through alot in his life and has overcome alot and changed a TON! Its cool to see that the little choice he has made in the past ten years have mostly all prepared him to start preparing to go to the temple. aka stop drinking, smoking, being in the party crowd, coming back to church, caring more for his family. 
So when we first met him we knew he was ready to start preparing! We talked about it with him, helped him recognize and feel the Spirit and encouraged him to take the first daunting step. Talk to the Branch President. Its been 3 weeks in the making. 
So this week when he came to church and tried to sneak out after Sacrament meeting, we caught him and 'reminded' him. I know he is a tough guy and didn't want to make it seem like a big deal, that he wasn't nervous or intimidated... but I know it was. 
>> yall. let me tell you. watching my dear friend Cowboy and our branch president walk down the hall to his office with his hand on his shoulder.... was one of the [ sweetest ] moments <3
I really felt the JOY in my heart that even though the repentance process is hard and intimidating.. it is where true happiness lies and it is so so soooo worth it. 
3. the Browns/Amber: our most progressing investigators!
they are seriously the sweeeeetest ever. 
the Brown fam <3
Ms. Leena, Amber & Brantley, Sister Henrie, Mr. James, Ms. Nancy, ME!
We saw them several times this week, Sister Henrie saying goodbye, saying hello to Sister Bell, and then a real lesson. 
They were the SWEETEST when sister henrie was leaving. Sister Henrie was really sad and emotional about leaving and the Brown's got attached to us as well so they were really sad about her leaving as well. They are so kind to us and bought us a small bunch of fake roses and a card!! 
Amber is our most progressing and promising right now. She lived in Utah for 7 months and so she is a little familiar with da Mormons. She has been going through a rough time and its so perfect that we are meeting together at this time. #godstiming 
But this week we committed her to baptism and I know its going to happen February or March. We are super pumped about that. 
The bummer deal is that she was coming to church on Sunday and Sister Bell let her borrow some skirts for church. We were so excited told all the branch that she was coming, got someone to sit next to her and everything. 
and she didn't come :( 
But esta bien, life of a missionary, moving forward we still have February!! But keep tuning in for a baptism in s-Laughter town!!
4. Also we might be moving to St. Francisville!! aka plantation country
If you have a minute, just go google St. Francisville. 
#holla we are pumped.
I am super pumped to be edified and uplifted x 100000000 this week by that!!
Last pic with Sista Henire girl!

last pic with dear sista cornia aka corndog. she's home!!!

its party time. 
not only because its mardi gras season
but also because the field is white already to harvest! 
and we will be harvesting this town!!!
sister sades

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

holy castles

last week we went bowlllinnggggg!!!! for MLKjr day. it was fun. we are all really bad at it but hey. we laughed and no one got hurt. badly.
Its a love/hate relationship. 
I love the adventure but my heart breaks at the outcome.
Transfer news:
Sister Henrie is leaving me in my dear little s-laughter town!
My feelings:
wow. Its going to be alot different. Its going to be hard for me. 
I love my dear s-laughter town alot but it has been hard for me! Sister Henrie really has been my rock during this time to help motivate me to continue and keep pushing and moving forward. 
So it will be a test for me to show Heavenly Father how diligent and motivated I can be by myself!
We got to go to some castles this week!
number one being the glorious, incredible, wonderful, 
BATON ROUGE TEMPLEEEEE!! the true Castle of the Lord!
we love to see the temple <3
my temple crew. my people
 I loved it alot. I adore the temple and it really means the world to me to be able to go and feel the spirit and peace there. 
Glorious experiences yall.
next castle was the old state capitol in Downtown Baton Rouge! 
We just walked around a bit and looked but it was a beautiful area. right off the Mississippi river, the Levee, the old governors mansion. It was fun. Its been a minutes since I have been in a city!! I enjoyed it alot :)
sight seeing in DT BR!
old state capitol
old gov mansion
Well yall. I know God is aware of me at this time. I have learned alot from my bbygirl Henrie and am sad to see her go. I'm ready to tackle this s-laughter town and give it a love punch. 
love yall much!
sister sades

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

sweet sweet rejuvenation

Yall it was a glorious week this week :)
It was a miracle this week because we went on exchanges! I adore exchanges. it is such a reboost and energizer. 
but exchanges this time was unlike an other!! beeecaaaauuusee I got to be with the one and only Sister Steve! 
catch up: Sister Steve is a gem of an individual and I was blessed to be companions with her early on in my mission. She has been a shining, shining example to me in faith in God's plan to work through the craziness of life and mission life, staying positive, CHRISTLIKE LOVEEE, and just pure friendship. 
It felt so good to be together and so natural and easy. It was like we never left each other being companions because we are the same with our same actions and sayings and habits, but it was just so evident that we have grown immensely through our time we had been apart, more experience to share and stories and just wisdom. 
We had the coolest experience together! 
Sister Steve had met Sister Erickson on exchanges in Albany when she in Covington a looonnggg time ago. She was a darling less active sister and Sister Steve had always wanted to go back to see her but it just had never happened yet. 
So off to Sister Erickson's house we went! 
We show up to her house, unannounced like we always do and just like Sister Steve said, met the most darling lady ever! We started visiting with her and one thing lead to the next and it turns out to be the MOST POWERFUL SPIRIT FILLED LESSON OF MY MISSION.
It turns out that Sister Erickson lost her husband to cancer and that night was the 9 month anniversary. This dear sister is s t r u g g l i n g  with grief. 
She told us how much misses him. and its alot.
She told us how much pain she is in. and its alot. 
She told us how much she loves him. and that is alot alot.
She told us that she would do anything to be with him no matter where he is. Literally anything. to be with him. 
And after we listened to this child of God tearfully express to us her confusion and hard feelings toward God then soon after her complete remorse for feeling negatively toward God, and desire to end her life so she would not have to live alone without her husband for another day..
then Sister Steve started speaking. She bore the sweetest, most spirit filled testimony that hit us all right to the core.
She explained to Sister Erickson that God is aware of her right in this moment. She boldly told her that it is not her time to leave this earth, that Sister Erickson has a purpose right here right now. She helped her understand that God wants to know all the feeling in our hearts, even the ones that may be sour, that He listens to it all and understands it all. She bore the sweetest testimony of the Saviors Atonement and the power He has to understand what she is feeling and buoy her up and fill the holes she has. She then shared Mosiah 16:7-9 which testifies of the resurrection and the power of Christ. 
The Spirit was unbelievably strong yall. 
Sister Erickson was just crying away and feels the spirit so strong. 
She then goes on and tells us the sweetest stories and experiences she had with her husband. How they met, what he was like, the love they shared, how the cancer effected their family, the 24 hours before he passed, and the extremely sacred, sweet, tender moments before he died.
And it was in those moments when we all cried together, is when God was truly with us.
This work is the truest thing I have ever taken part of in my life. This gospel answers and fills all the holes in our life. And I feel so incredibly blessed to be apart of it to see it change others around me. And sometimes be the means by which the spirit can witness and work in them that God loves them, that He is aware, that He has a true purpose for them, and that His gospel.. is the only way that we will ever have true happiness and peace.

my person <3
Walking down the driveway of Sister Erickson's house next to one of the sweetest friends I have ever made after this beautiful spiritual lesson... was just rejuvenating
It has been a good minute since I have sat down and had a lesson let alone such a spirit filled and guided lesson. 
It has been a good minute since I have felt the real passion of the gospel working in mine and others lives.
It has been a real good minute since I have felt the passion of missionary work. 
A reminder of why I am here on a mission, reminding me what mission work has the potential to be like and feel like, reminding me of what my purpose as a SPIRITUAL BEING is. 
"We are not human beings having a spiritual experience, we are spiritual beings having a human experience." -Teilehard De Chardin
Doesn't this quote change everything??
We are children of God going through this earthly experience. Spiritual beings going through a human experience. not just a person going through life with an occasional spiritual experience. 
Make these spiritual experiences part of your daily! This is your true nature!
Isn't that amazing. We have so much divinity and potential. We just need to access it. 
That is why I call this week sweet sweet rejuvenation. 
Sweet friends, sweet experiences, and a rejuvenation of the mind. powerful yall. 
moments and weeks like these are what change us forever. 
I love this work yall and I'm so grateful to be apart of it!
sister sades
chilling wit da district homies!
We got to go to the BR ZOOOO this week!
got to see these besties. <3 these are my people
tis the season yall! Mardi Gras shakes are in! ALMOST TIME TO PAR-TAYYYYYY

Monday, January 9, 2017

chilly adventures

Well yall this was adventure week! 
It was a really really fast week. 
We survived the storm last week, took a million pictures of all our adventures this week, had a blast and then now I'm sickly. thats what I get I guess, right? :(
1. We went to ROSEDOWN PLANTATION!!! It. was. incredible. and beautiful. 
It was a classic southern plantation that was beautiful even though it was the middle of winter and most of the grounds were brown some green it was still INCREDIBLE. I loved it SO much and I cannot wait to go back! 


2. We had ZTM! our zone meeting! Its always great to see all the friends and being spiritually fed :)
when we were on our way home we got a text saying that we would be on lock down because there were severe ice storms across the state and in some places SNOOWWWW!!!
AND IT SNOWED!!!!!! in alexandria... We tried to make ourselves believe that it was snowing here.... but it never quite made it sadly :(

3. It was Elder Farnsworths birthday on Saturday so we got permission to go to an LSU basketball game!!! It was so fun. 
It felt very very weird to be back in the real world and hearing new songs playing that I have never heard before and going to a basketball game and just being a real human again!
but then I was very ready to go back to my sheltered missionary life. being a human is exhausting!! 

4. I know good ole IDAHO is getting rocked with some serious snow.... 
It is unbelievably freezing. wayyyy colder than Idaho. 
You can try your darned hardest to put on layers and layers to stay warm but it does no goood!!! As soon as you step out that door it just sinks right into you. and you are an icicle. 
In ID you can go out in the snow and go outside for a while and then gradually get cold. Here? nope. Instantaneous froze. its.. wow. an experience.

But it was a very good week!
We have one investigator family that we are very very excited about. They are literally the sweetest and encourage us more than we encourage them sometimes. :)

life is still good yall. 
We are still living and breathing and doing the Lord's work.
We are still trying and still relying on God. 
We have those rough moments, days, weeks, months, transfers, and years but keep it all in perspective :)
Its all going to be worth it. 
I'm very grateful for this opportunity I have to GROW!
I love yall bunches!


Monday, January 2, 2017

severe stroming and hard days

wow. I hope yalls new years festivities were as fun as ours!! :))))
so this week it has started to pour. 
I swear yall. The weather here. Its crazy.
There is a saying in Louisiana that goes like this.
"If you don't like the weather, wait a couple days. It'll change."
and wow. Ain't that the TRUTH.
(except in the summer when its consistently almost unbearably hot)
The week before Christmas it was insanely COLD.
Christmas was really HOT. 
and now all HAIL is breaking loose. It has been raining for the past 3 days and thundering and storming and we are on 'nado watch and flood warning and all sorts of stuff is going on. We are sitting here together as a district in the library just listening to the rain pouring down and seeing the flashes of lightning light up the pitch black windows in the middle of the afternoon and then hearing the thunder CRASH REALLY LOUD less than a second later. 
Its quite an experience :)
(update. the librarians told us all to save our work on the computer in case the power goes out.)

But that was our New Years as well! The rain all started on Saturday and most peoples New years celebrations got rained out. but that didn't stop the diligent few who still insistent to send off the loudest fireworks I've ever heard :) I guess you can do the big fireworks when there is no dry spot to light fire.. the opposite problem than Idaho!

So our New Years Eve celebrations were coming in early because of the rain and end of the month = no miles. So we played Phase 10, got a bit more caught up on our Christmas cards (sorry I know.. we're the worst.) and then got to go to bed early!!! 
Don't worry. I set an alarm for 11:57 and woke Sister Henrie with a flash picture and was going to silly string her up.... but we were just too tired. 
Yay. Happy New Year :)
My new years eve
But seriously and honestly yall.....
Its been rough. 
Its been real rough in this area and we are just trying to rely on God immensely to make it through. 
This has been my first area where people very openly do not want to talk to us. 
We have had a very extraordinary amount of rejection this week. Very hard rejection. and its been really difficult this week not to get discouraged, to stay motivated, and to endure and push on. 
But it is a thing of life! 
We get hard rejection. We aren't having the success we think we should be having. We feel we are at a stand still. We see our weaknesses exemplified. 
And what do we do about it?
Well.. I don't know exactly. I'm still trying to figure that part out.
But what are we currently doing about it??
We are finding little things to make things FUNNNN!!!
and God helps us have little things to help us keep going. 
for example. We had a God wink on Friday.
Friday was a really really rough day. 
We were headed into Zachary to get some FroYo. 
We called the Zachary Sisters on the off chance that they weren't busy that they could come hang out for a couple minutes. 
We call and lo and behold they are on exchanges and guess who's in Zachary!
Sister Steve and Sister Cornia!
And they got to come be with us for a bit.
Can you say HUGE bucket filler upper. huge cheer up. 
It helped me make it for the rest of the week. 
Best day ever
Not a big update for this week. 
Just letting you know that some weeks in the mission are really hard. 
sister sades