Tuesday, June 30, 2015

training, again?

Before my transfer with Sister Robinson, both of my companions trained after they served with me. Of course I was excited for them; it was like they had such a rough time with me, training was going to be a breeze;) After 5 transfers, the Lord somehow felt that I had enough knowledge to pass it on to a younger missionary. IT FREAKED ME OUT!! I WAS NERVOUS OUT OF MY MIND!

The way transfers worked at the time, you found out about a week ahead of time if you were training. (I think). You got the chance to study the 12 week program, ask missionaries for all the advice you could remember, and freak out. This didn't exactly go well when there was one Sister freaking out about going home and the other freaking out about welcoming a new missionary. The day of transfers, all of the babies sit in the front, the trainers sit facing them, then the rest of the missionaries. We heard this all in my first training post. Then you anxiously wait to hear who your training. You run up and give them a hug (practice makes perfect) sit down next to them, head home, and get to work!

So that day, I was place with the lovely Sister Cox. Fresh from the MTC and Queen Creek, Arizona, she set off to a new adventure, the greatest adventure, where she got to share the BEST NEWS IN THE WHOLE WORLD!

We had lots of crazy adventures. We got to stay in the Pikes Peak Singles Ward with all of our favorites. (It's quite a lengthy list;)

 Megan. My heart. An amazing teacher of teachers, friend for eternity, funny, down to earth, awkward (it's why we got along) and fabulous in every way. I hope whomever she marries knows how special she is and makes her feel as good as she makes everyone else feel! I love you!

MILLIE!! Aw man I love Millie. Funny story, one day she's going to have a baby, who will ACTUALLY go by Melanie. And scripture study is more important than sleep. And her mom is a fire dancer. No big deal. Millie was such a supporter of missionary work. I love you so much.
 Jeralynn. Tuesday dinners, always. (I think it was Tuesdays.. We had them every week, I know!) She was so great! She has like a million siblings who went on a mission, and so did she, so she always had people over for dinner. She just rocks! 

 I DONT KNOW HOW PEOPLE GO THROUGH LIFE WITHOUT PEOPLE LIKE MYRANDA! I know life isn't easy, for anyone, but when you have the gospel on your side, it works out. She makes life great. Keep on moving forward girl. Stay confident! Laugh lots. Be happy. I LOVE YOU!!

It's not like INSANELY intimidating, (but like mostly) I'M STANDING NEXT TO A SOON TO BE OLYMPIC GOLD MEDAL WRESTLER. I mean, no big deal.. Amy is so cool. She is a convert, with a super strong testimony. And arms. And legs. And I'd probably get knocked out in like 5 seconds or less. I bet Sister Cox would have lasted longer, but we never really gave it a try;) I hope you know how special you are, and as you keep going, you will touch many lives, just like you did mine.

 Heidi received her mission call while we were there (I'm pretty sure it was with Sister Cox!) She was called to serve in Spain and was supposed to leave last December. I haven't been in contact with her, so I still assume she left and is doing wonderful things. Even if she didn't, she was so great for us! Heidi would teach with us, and had such a powerful testimony. Missionaries need people like that!

Micah!! Oh my goodness, he's perfect. (Okay, lets just assume everyone in the singles ward is perfect, but on like a dude level, Micah is the best!)
I don't know how many times I wanted to give Micah a hug because
1) He's the president of the missionary fan club
2) He's everyone's best friend
3) He's hilarious
4) He's perfect
5) I finally did give him a hug, and the "Micah gives the best hugs" was TRUE!

He's the best, and whomever he is going to marry is going to be the luckiest woman in the whole worlds and she'll laugh every day and obviously they'll have beautiful children.

Love your face Micah.
Oh the Anderson's. I'm not even sure how the singles ward sisters found such a wonderful couple, but I am certainly grateful for it! These two were so supportive of us. They knew that my brother had cancer, and Sister Anderson had suffered from breast cancer, so sometimes we would make posters together and send pictures to my family. They would keep in contact with my parents to make sure everything was alright during his treatment. We were so grateful for this wonderful family. I will never forget their kindness!

And of course, the Sherwood's. They were such a wonderful family to live with! They gave us strength and a place to find peace when you had no idea it was possible! They were fun to be around and the sweetest people you would ever meet. I love and miss them dearly, and am grateful their dog was well behaved even if their daughter-in-law's dog was less so;)
(I don't know that I told that story! It'll have to be a guest post or something!)

Obviously, Sister Cox and I were surrounded by the best. I sure miss those crazy days of pizza making (which I promise Elder Moala did not do, he's just wearing my apron) and laughing at my inability to say words. (I'm grateful I'm amazing, I mean.. Sister Cox is amazing.. oh gosh)

From Day One, you were an amazing, beautiful woman. I know the migraines sucked and missionary work was hard, but I am proud of you for doing your best. Your ability to love others is contagious. I wish you the best in all of your life. Never forget how amazing you are! Love you!

Thursday, June 25, 2015

the beginning and the end

Transfer five and six months in brought one of the best transfers the YSA has ever seen. Although it was literally my biggest fear going in, I couldn't have asked for anything better. I started my service with the wonderful Sister Sophie Robinson. She is the epitome of perfection. She trained 2.5 times, was a Sister Training Leader for EVER, and she became one of my greatest friends. (I promise, ALL of my companions were wonderful, I was just scared out of my mind going to teach people my age/older. Sister Robinson helped a lot!)

This was our family. We did everything we could together, in like a cool missionary way. (Right to left: Elder Latu, Me, Sister Fauatea, Sister Robinson, Sister Toone, Elder Winborg, Elder Moala, Elder Bryan, and Elder Barron) We did service together, taught together, had district meetings together. The picture of Sister Robinson above was at the zoo. The bird actually sat on her shoulder for a bit, but we missed it, so Elder Winborg held it up one more time. We made those bird feeding sticks! I have a scar from the hot glue.. haha

 The Fourth of July was something special. First, we got to be in this amazing parade and hand out pass along cards and candy. But then we had dinner in the car.... You win some, lose some as missionaries. Win some was that we had our dinner calendar COMPLETELY FULL for the next month!! We gave up the Fourth of July for a YSA miracle. I was there for two more transfers. NEVER. HAPPENED. AGAIN. haha

Another miracle we saw was that we made what was called the "standard of excellence" every week for those six weeks. On a mission, we have goals we set for the number of lessons we teach, how many lessons have a member present, all that good stuff. We worked hard, and exceeded the mission standard EACH week! It was special:) And we had fun. One time we got free ice cream! Even though we totally made a wrong turn, and it was the sketchiest place we had ever seen, it was beautiful ice cream.

Of course, the big adventure, chopping off my hair! After finding out Kyle had his second round of cancer, I jumped on the bandwagon and donated at least 12 inches of my hair. To be honest, I never measured it. It could have been 18 inches, and I will never know! I'm sure it wasn't but obviously, my hair was REALLY long! I was blessed with wonderful missionaries who wanted to support though, so this is what we had.

#teamkyle #always

One of the best days ever was when Joh (Joe with an H) got baptized. It was good work and a beautiful service, even though he had to be dunked 5 times.  He was just so tall and the suit kept floating up! OOPS!

From the top of Graffiti Falls to the bottom of Fountain, the adventures Sophie Robinson and I had together will be unforgettable. It was her last transfer, and I was sad we had such a short 6 weeks together, but I couldn't have asked for a better example, or a better friend, than her. I love you darling! Thanks for everything.