Monday, November 28, 2011

Monday, November 28, 2011

Hello Everyone!
     Not much time today.  Which is okay, because there is not too much to update. 
     Let's start with Thanksgiving.  We had it in the middle of nowhere.  Lucerne Valley.  So empty.  So deserty.  TONS of joshua trees.  It was so fun though.  We ate with the family of a less active woman in our ward.  Her daughter lives out there.  Last March, they bought a turkey and raised it until last wednesday, when they killed it to eat on thursday.  Fresh turkey is really good.  Just saying. While we were there we got to feed their cow and pigs.  And they had to sweet dobermans.  Their names were Gunner and Rosalie (but they called her Rose).  Gunner could do some cool tricks.  They taught him to smile.  Apparently he makes a really alarming face, but he wouldn't do it for me.  They were so cute.  And big.  The family was awesome too.  They also invited over a couple elders.  I really appreciate the people who take care of missionaries during the holidays.  We had a lot of fun with them. 
     Aside from that, I spent a little bit of time being sick this week.  Not a lot happened.  We were able to set up a lot of appointments for this week.  We'll be meeting with a few potential investigators which is really exciting.  Ken and Kim, of course.  I am so excited to actually be able to sit down and talk with them.  And then also there is a family in the ward who's granddaughter will be living with them for a little while, and she seems like she wants to be baptized, so that is way exciting!  We had a woman approach us at church and set up an appointment with her.  She lives with a less active woman that we have been trying to see pretty much ever since I got here!  That was so exciting.  We're just going to be meeting with a lot of new faces, which will be good to have the change.
     I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving!  I'll email you upon next Monday, which is my birthday, the day I was born, 23 years ago.  Twenty-three.  Weird.  Bye!
This is the void that is Lucerne Valley.

-Sister Stacey

Monday, November 21, 2011

Email 11/21/11

Hello Everyone!
     The word has spread around the ward of my love of breakfast for dinner, so we have had it quite a bit and I LOVE IT.  The woman who's feeding me dinner on my birthday is excited and she makes the most amazing food so I am really exted to eat there. 
     Last week we had some really good lessons with a couple of the less active members we've been working with-Sister Burroughs and the Trenthams.  They all have the desire to go to the temple.  Sister Rimington and I came up with a great lesson on the temple and shared it with them and I really think we'll start seeing them progress soon.  Sister Burroughs has never been through before.  We found out what's keeping her from church so we know what to start helping her with now, which is great.  She really likes us.  About a month and a half ago, she invited us to her Thanksgiving dinner, so that's where we'll be this Thursday.  We're not sure how missionary work is going to go that day, so that will be interesting.  I don't see tracting going over too well, so we're not going to do that.  But another family in the ward invitd us over for dessert as well, so we're going to go there afterward.  I love this ward.  They take such good care of us.  I am pretty sure every single one of them has asked us what we were doing on Thanksgiving and if we had a place to go.  I feel so much love from the members here.  We already have a place to go on Christmas, and a couple other members asking if we had somewhere to go.
     Speaking of this ward, we had transfers this last week, which I survived.  I am SO HAPPY I get to stay here for another transfer!  Sister Rimington is still my companion, which is awesome.  We are so happy we get to stay. 
     OH YEAH AND THE BEST THING IS THAT DANIEL GOT BAPTIZED YESTERDAY!  We were so happy.  He was so happy.  It was awesome.  I am so happy we were able to be a part of it.  It was a very nice baptism.
     Other than that, this last week was pretty slow.  We're very hopeful for this upcoming week.  We have a lesson tonight with a woman who was about to drop us but we were like, NO YOU HAVE TO GIVE US A CHANCE FIRST and so she was like, yeah I really should, so now we have an appointment. It's frustrating because she has said a few times that she feels like she's being led to our church, but then she just denies it when we're not there.  I wish it wasn't that way.  Anothe woman dropped us last week because she's scared of the leadership in the church or something.  Oh well.  There are some people we'll be able to start teaching soon and it will be awesome.  Like Ken and Kim.  They're out of town this week, but he's so determined to be able to have time for a lesson next week. 
     Well that's about it from me.  Hope you all have a lovely week! :)
-Sister Stacey
PS MOM Sorry I didn't say something in the email last week about Matt.  I totally meant to.  It was so exciting.  I walked out of the place we email and was like OH NO.  I get so stressed about writing.  More than anything else.  There is never enough time for it, I never have pictures and even if I did there's not enough time to send them, I might leave something out, people feel ignored.  It's stressful.  And then I never never never ever have time to handwrite anything because my companion spends all day shopping.  I need to write letters.  Oh well.  One day maybe I'll find the balance.  In the meantime please just be patient.  You are, but please continue to do so, because I don't always remember everything I was going to say.
Anyway, we are definitely taken care of up here, so don't worry about that.  :)  The weather here is a little chilly.  It's been a little rainy and windy lately, but when it's doing neither of those, then it's a little warm.  I love California.  It's so nice here.  I love the desert.  I wouldn't want to live here, but I am happy this is where I am serving my mission.  About the packages, I think that if it gets there after December 1, I can call them and they will let me have it if I say it's for my birthday.  And just send it to the mission office, because they don't want us to use our residential address.  I am not sure why.  I actually don't even know what it is, because I've never had to write it.  I am SO EXCITED for my birthday.  This ward is awesome, and they'll make me feel like I have a home and a family on a day that I want it most.  I love you, mom.  Thank you for writing me so diligently.  Have a great Thanksgiving!

Monday, November 14, 2011

Monday, November 14, 2011

    We had a pretty good week last week.  We had our sisters exchange and like I said I was in charge of the area for a couple days.  It was interesting being the senior companion.  We got a lot of work done, though!  I was very happy with how well I knew the area.  I only needed to look at the map once!  We visited a lot of the referrals from the ward tract finally.  Some of them are not interested at this time.  A couple of them are not interested at all.  One of them was awesome.  Story on how they got found:  our former bishop (the bishopric changed three weeks ago) anyway, I told him what street we wanted him to tract and he said he wanted to go to a different one so I said if that was what the spirit was telling him to do he better go.  So while he and his wife were tracting that street, a man drove past them.  They heard the car stop and then start backing up.  The man rolled down his window and asked if the were mormons. Of course they said yes, then he said he has been thinking a lot about investigating our church and joining. He said he has a lot of lds friends and he's been very impressed with them.  Bishop told him what time church started and he said he would try and be there.  He wasn't.  He was out of town.  But then he said his friends told him that he would have to give up chewing tobacco to join the church and he was like, yeah, I know.  So that was exciting.  So I met them during sisters exchanges and they seem really excited.  I invited them to a church tour we were doing on Saturday and Ken said they would be down the hill for business.  He paused a minute then said, but don't think that means we're not interested, because we are.  (him and his wife Kim.)  I cannot wait to teach them.  Transfers are next week and I hope I get to stay in the area so I can teach them.  Can't wait to tell you how that goes.
    Nothing else really eventful happened this week.  Still just loving missionary work.  Well...most of it.  Yesterday, Sunday, as is the day that comes before Monday, was a new experience for me.  The bishop thought we had high counsel speakers, but it turns out we didn't.  So we're all content and happily existing at church.  Until after the sacrament.  Do we see where this is going.  Bishop stands up and explains the situation.  I knew exactly what was coming next.  He invited me and my companion up to the stand to fill in the time until the rest hymn.  Cute.  My companion didn't hear at first, but one look at my face and she knew exactly what they had just asked us to do.  Spontaneously called on to speak during sacrament meeting.  That was a first.  I am SOOOOO thankful that I am a missionary.  I realize that probably was read sarcastically.  But I am actually being serious.  Since I am a missionary, I actually had words to say.  How can you not when you study the word of God every single day, and have experiences every day that strengthens your testimony.  It wasn't so bad.  That being said, I hope to not experience that again.  But if I do have to I know I'll live to tell the tale. 
    That's pretty much it for today.  Just want everyone to know that my birthday is in 20 days.  That is all.
    Love you all!  Have great week!
     Sister Stacey

Monday, November 7, 2011

More Photos

I love the sisters that I live with.  They're really funny.

The crazy outfit happened while I was cleaning.
I kept picking up things that I didn't want to go put away yet,
but wanted to make sure I eventually would, so I put them on.
Makes sense, right?

November 7, 2011

     This last week was a bit of an odd one.  We were expecting it to be crazy busy, but really it wasn't.  We tried to contact all those people just about every single day, but most of them have not been home.  We went to go see Gloria on Tuesday, but she wasn't home, which was unfortunate.  But we ended up trying to see her on Friday, and she was home!  We talked to her for a long time and found out about her and her religious background.  She was raised Catholic, although she has not been to church in years.  As we were talking with her we just really felt like she had been prepared for us.  It was kind of cool.  She said that she is not the type of person to open her door when people come knocking.  But when she saw us walking up to her door, she instantly trusted us and just felt very strongly like she needed to open the door and talk to us.  She also told us that she didn't want us to ever leave.  We're so glad she listened to that prompting.  While we were talking to her we introduced her to the Book of Mormon, and read the introduction with her and a little bit of 2 Nephi 31.  She seems really excited to read it.  She said that she already believes it's true, but asked if it was okay for her to really know that for herself.  We were like, YES please find out if it's true for yourself!  We set up a return appointment for this Wednesday.  We'll see what happens.  She is going through a really tough time right now.  We just love her so much and I hope she feels that and knows that our message will bless her so much.
     So that was the highlight of the week.  One of the referrals we got from the ward tract was actually a lost inactive member.  It's so cool that they tracted into her!  They asked her if she wanted us to come by and she said yes please send me the sisters.  We went to her house and we caught her and her husband and children just as they were getting ready to leave somewhere.  She was really nice, and so was her husband.  We're excited to be able to sit down with them and talk with them sometime.  We're not sure if her husband is also a member or not.  I don't think so, but if he's not, then he seems really open to it.  We don't have an appointment set up with them, but they made sure we had all their numbers.  So that's cool. 
     We're getting excited for Daniel's baptism.  He seems like he's getting more and more excited to be baptized, and more and more nervous about what his mom and grandma are going to say.  I hope that he's able to stand up for his decision.  He's a good kid, though, and his dad and step-mom are really good examples for him.  We were at their house last night getting some stuff done for the baptism and he seems ready for it.  Guess we'll see what happens when Nov. 19 comes around.  That's so soon!  I can't believe I've already been gone from home for almost 3 months.  Time flies. 
     I don't think nything else really happened this week.  Sisters exchange is this week, so we're having our sisters activity today.  We're going to watch Tangled.  I'm very excited about that.  I get to stay in my area and be the senior companion this time.  I'm a little nervous, but also excited to see what that's like. 
     Last week, even though not much happened, was still great.  I learn new things all the time and my testimony of the gospel grows every day.  Testimonies are cool.  It's the one thing that the more of it you share and give away, the more you have. 
     Well that's it for today.  Love you all!  Have a great week!
     -Sister Stacey

Mom-Thanks for the updates on everyone!  I promise I meant to send a letter to Matt on his birthday, but time got away from me.  I'm still going to try and send him a letter with a belated happy birthday wish.  How's Bitner?  I just love that little guy.  I hope you're able to miss Tuacahn.  That would be so cool.  I also hope Matt uses both tickets. :)  I want to see pictures.  SPEAKING of pictures, here are some.  During lunches this week, we got bored.  So that's the weird face pictures. 

Monday, October 31, 2011

    This last week was so interesting.  It started off a little lame.  Samantha, the woman from Jordan, called us on Tuesday and said that the Book of Mormon is not from God.  She believes in Jesus Christ, and it is obvious that we don't.  Do not contact her.  Do not contact her neighbor.  Never call them.  Never go to their neighborhood...  Oh well.  Some people just aren't very respectful. 
    Other than her, though, this week was great!  We visited a few less active members, got in contact with a couple people we've been trying to see for months, and had a really awesome experience on Saturday.  Our ward put together a ward tract thing.  We had some people from our ward and also some missionaries from our zone come to our area and tract.  There were 14 companionships out there knocking on doors in Spring Valley Lake.  It was so cool!  We got 25 referrals, 14 of which have great potential, and 5 of those 14 completely solid.  On the street my companion and I tracted we met a woman named Gloria.  She was sort of on the phone when she answered the door and said it wasn't a good time, but that she needed us to come back the next day.  We were like okay what time, then she hung up the phone and started crying.  We didn't figure out why she was crying but just said that Heavenly Father loves her so much and we would love to come talk to her again and she said ok.  So we went and saw her yesterday and found out that we had knocked on her door just minutes after something really sad happened to her.  She is in a really hard place right now, and just needs to talk and to find peace and comfort.  We just had this conversation on her porch because it was her birthday and she had friends over.  She started crying again as she was talking a little about what was going on, and said she wants us to come back later this week.  She said she really doesn't want to lose touch with us.  So we're excited to meet with her again this wednesday and to help her in any way that we can.  We're so excited to share the gospel with her. 
    I can't wait to meet with the other people that were contacted.  Some of them sound really really ready. 
    Also, the ward had a Halloween party which was tons of fun.  We got to be the costume judges for the primary children.  Never again.  I wanted to give them all prizes because they were so cute.  If it was for the whole ward though, the prize would have gone to Brother and Sister Mazzola, because they came as He-Man and Skeletor.  It was so fun.  My companion and I put on a white shirt and tie with our skirts.  Just wanted to see what it was like to wear a tie for an evening.
     I am loving today because first of all it's pday and they rule, and we went on an awesome hike today, and we played games with our favorite less active member who will be coming back to church soon, and then at six we get to stay inside the rest of the night!  All day pday!  The woman who always feeds us on Mondays is still giving us dinner tonight, but she's getting a surgery tomorrow so she won't be able to eat with us. 
     Anyway, that's all from me this week.  Next week I'll have lots and lots of stories to tell, so be excited. 
    Love you all!

     -Sister Stacey