Sunday, December 29, 2013

No, I want to watch this on TV

Oh, my goodness, gracious. This week was much like last week, but worse and better, all at the same time. For some reason our trio unity went down the toilet this week and we struggled to pull it out of the abyss. Luckily, the Lord knows all and He knew that we were struggling, so Sister Whiting, our Sister Training Leader, and her companion set up exchanges for Friday and Saturday. They set it up so that I would go with Sister Whiting back into her area for Friday night into Saturday morning. So, I packed up my stuff and went off to Beachlands. They weren't messing around when they called it's seriously like right on the beach. Anyway, so we drove up there, and it took like an hour, so we got there around 9:00. Then we kind of got to talking and I was able to vent a little bit about the week and what I was struggling with. And it helped immensely. I was able to sort out my feelings in my head and in my heart and Sister Whiting gave me some really really awesome advice.

Funny interjecting story: Their flat is pretty old, but pretty nice. And the toilet is like in between two sliding doors, one of which Sister Whiting's bed is pushed up against, so you have to go all the way around into the kitchen and through the shower area to get to the toilet. Well, anyway! When we got to their flat, the first thing Sister Whiting said was this, "I hope you're not shy because whatever business you take care of on the toilet echos through the whole flat." Holy crap, I lost it laughing. And she said it all nonchalantly, like...yeah, anyway, it was just really really funny. (:

Anyway, so onto the next day, it was pretty awesome. Exchanges went really well and we saw some miracles happen. When Sister Miggin, Sister Lamoureux, and I were together we had a mean lesson with a Maori girl named Teno. She really wants to stop smoking and drinking and so we taught her about the Word of Wisdom and how the change she would make in her life would also benefit her little daughter, who is cuter that pie. So, we're going to keep teaching her and hopefully we're going to set her for baptism tonight. I think that that lesson really helped Sister Miggin and I to connect. I learned some pretty personal things about her and what her past is like and I feel like from then on we became really close friends. But still not without trials, praying, crying, laughing, a little bit of yelling, and more praying. I have grown so much closer to the Saviour, even since last week. But that is what this work is about, the Saviour, and I think for a minute, I forgot that. But now that I've figured out what I'm doing, and remembered why I'm here, I have started to grow and learn even more about myself.

So, something wonderful about Sister Miggin, is that she is really motivated. She is pushing us to meet our goals and then shoot for even higher goals. So, yesterday, our goal for "talking with everyone" or tracting was to talk to 40 people. So, we went to one of the neighbourhoods that we haven't been to and knocked on every house and every door. For 4 or 5 hours, we knocked and knocked and it felt like we were just talking to rocks. But we hit our goal and went passed it! 47 TWEs later, we were tired, wet, and hungry. (: It was all good though because then it was dinner time. AND we found a shortcut home. So, moral of the story, you can work as hard as you can and have no success, but Heavenly Father still loves you enough to get you home quicker. (: It's the little things in life that make me happy. (: Like, pictures...I really want more pictures. From all of the people!

So...Christmas. My first one away from home...I think that it's a tender mercy from Heavenly Father that New Zealand has warm Christmases. I think that if it had been cold and snowy for Christmas, I would've been a wreck. So, having a warm Christmas was a tender mercy that it was warm. Well, it was actually rainy on Christmas, which ruined a lot of families plans to have barbeques at the beach, but no big deal. (: Anyway, the Coopers, an awesome family in the ward had us over for lunch. And holy cow. holy cow. holy freaking cow. In Over the Hedge, when RJ is explaining to the animals about how much food the humans have and where it comes from, well that is an accurate descpription of just how much food was present at this meal. I'll attach photos. I think I've probably never eaten the quantity of food that I did there, and I'm actually quite ashamed to admit that, but I ate heaps and then there was dessert. Oh, my goodness, don't even get me started on dessert. Okay, I'm already started...they had these delicious "chocolate shots" in little shot cups and it was probably the most heavenly thing I've ever eaten. (: It's a pity that I was so full because I could've eaten 10 of them. Which is pretty embarrassing, but it is true. (: (:

On Thursday my time, I got to Skype my family! Holy cow, it was so good to see them! It was so good to see familiar American things! Like the fact that our house only has one door and it is really clear that it is the front door. You can't tell here...they have like 3 doors and they are all potentially front doors, so you just kind of knock and hope that it isn't the bathroom door or something else really embarrassing. (: But, yeah. It was awesome to be able to talk about this land that I have grown to love so much with my family that I also love so much.

This week, on Thursday, a woman very dear to my dear is turning 25 and since I am not going to be there to celebrate with her, I want you all to make that day extra special to her. I love my mommy with all of the energy of my soul and I probably wouldn't be here without the example that she has set for me all of my life. She is such an amazing woman and so compassionate. So, make her day special. Make her feel like she's 20 and she'll probably love you forever and ever. (: I LOVE YOU MOM! You'll always be my role model. (:

So, tomorrow we have MISSION CONFERENCE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! So, the whole mission is meeting in Hamilton and we're going to be hanging out with all of the other missionaries and President and Sister Rudd. And then all of the Senior couple missionaries as well. (: I am so excited!!! I can see all of my MTC friends and meet a lot of the other missionaries. (: I love being around other missionaries! It is one of the best things ever to happen to man kind. (:

You wouldn't believe how tan I am. Me, the whitest white of the white people, and my skin is tan. Can you even believe it? Now I'm even blonder and tanner. (: And my hair is supa curly. All the time. No stopping it. Even straightening it is a waste of time. Haha(:

Well, I love you all! I hope you are all doing well, and that you are healthy and happy! I am loving it here in New Zealand! The people are really awesome. (: And I really love my companions and we are growing together in unity and in the gospel. (:

IMG_4259 -> That is just one of the many tables that the Cooper's set up for dinner in their garage.
 IMG_4261 -> This, my friends, is the dessert table. I think that it might be self explanatory. (:
IMG_4262 -> They had pretty ornaments hanging from the ceiling and it was like a summery winter wonderland. (: And then there's just Sister Holmes making a crazy as face in the corner of the picture. (:<
IMG_4264 -> Okay, this old guy is probably one of the greatest men I've ever met. He rides around on his little Jazzy all day and we've become some of his best friends...his only friends really. His wife just passed away three weeks ago and he's really lonely right now. But I'm telling you, he is the cheekiest old guy with the most warped sense of humor you'll ever meet. He's such a sweetie.
IMG_4265 -> This is Beachlands where I went with Sister Whiting. (: So, pretty. I can't even believe that I'm here in New Zealand!
IMG_4267 -> This is a little duck pond that we found tracting the other day. It was so pretty!
 IMG_ 4272 -> This is Sister Me, Sister Holmes, and Sister Miggin. (:
IMG_4281 -> This is Sister Miggin with different flies on both of her shoes. We probably killed about 20 flies the other day and our flat is still over run.
(Ghost Writer - i.e. Dad received this photo with no description - I think it has something to do with sheep!)

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