Hello Dearest Family and Friends!!
Guess who's dad officially has TWO of his kids in their 20s??? This girl! Hahaha sorry dad, but you are getting so old... ;) Actually I really was sad to turn 20, I loved being the youngest sister missionary and I had to kiss that goodbye this week. Oh-and we hit 10 months out on my birthday. HOLY COW! I'm one of the OLD sister missionaries!!! I liked being a young one only out a couple months and now I'm 'seasoned'! Oh goodness...
We had a lot of fun this week! I forgot to go through my journal so I'll probably forget a lot, but it was good! On Monday we met with our investigator Dasia at Burger King and it was just awesome. She's my favorite. I mentioned her last week, but she is actually due with her baby in February, not April. She is still free-spirited and hilarious though, during the lesson my face hurt from smiling so much and my abs hurt from laughing. She's great. We taught her about the Book of Mormon and she said she would start reading it that night with her boyfriend, Sunny. The next day she told us that they read the testimony of Joseph Smith and she said Sunny didn't believe it. That was kind of sad, but here's why Dasia must be prepared--she was like "Well I told him maybe we needed to keep reading and see more.." haha. She knows. We also talked about prophets a little bit because if you look at the prophets of old, there were plenty of people who didn't believe in them either. And when Jesus Christ came, people didn't believe in Him. This is where prayer comes in and we have the ability to ask and to know for ourselves, because the Spirit will tell us. "By their fruits ye shall know them."
What started out as ringworm clear back when I was in Waynesboro got a lot worse the past week and a half so we went to Vidalia on Thursday to see a dermatologist to see what he thought. Funny story--so we're not supposed to watch tv but we were sitting in the waiting room for forever and I was trying not to watch the news channel that was on and then I hear "A court in New York has decided NOT to give human rights to a group of chimpanzees." What?! Are you kidding me? This is news??!! Clearly I'm not missing much. Then the guy was like "The vote was unanimous." Well I would hope so... Goodness. But that did give us a good laugh. Everyone in the waiting room was staring at us like we were idiots but we were like come on, no one else finds this pathetic/hilarious? It was great. Anyway, they scraped my arm and did whatever test and they said what looked so bad was an allergic reaction, probably to the presciption they gave me to treat the ringworm. Haha, well that's ironic.... but we're figuring that out and we'll get something to cure it all. Five months in the making, no worries ;)
Friday was fun, birthday time! Thank you for the cards and packages, I really appreciated them! I have to laugh because as we are passing out the new 'He is the Gift' pass along cards our zone leaders told us how members would be getting them in their Ensign magazines and how if they tried to give them to us we were NOT to take them-the members were supposed to give them out. So I open my card from Grandma and Grandpa Applegate and in it is nine of the 'He is the Gift' pass along cards. Hahaha. Well.... I guess we have extra to pass out.... haha. So just so you know Grandma and Grandpa, YOU were supposed to hand them out! :) Love you guys.
Sister Cottle and President Cottle called and wished me a happy birthday and that was really nice, and Sister Richardson took me out to lunch. She also decorated my study area before I got ready that morning. She accidentally popped a balloon secretly getting it ready and was so glad I didn't hear. I actually did, but I didn't know it was a balloon. Haha. There was a mix up with a dinner appointment with some members so we had a surprise dinner appointment and the kids were excited to have koolaid and the mom said that they only have koolaid when the missionaries come over or it's someone's birthday. They didn't know it was my birthday, so I was like "Oooh double whammy.." haha. So we had a fun dinner with them making home made pizzas. We had ice cream cake later that night (of course) and it was fun, just a good day. Happy birthday to me and 10 months to me and Sister Richardson! :)
Saturday was sad....transfer call time. Bleh. Sister Richardson is being transferred so I will have a new companion tomorrow... we knew it was coming, but I still don't like it. Sister Taylor's companion just finished her mission and went home today so she came to stay with us yesterday until tomorrow. MTC reunion! We're having a blast it's so much fun, we've been planning this for the past 12 weeks :) She brought me stuff for my birthday though too and I'd have to say it's very accurate ;) Hahahaha. You'll understand when you see the picture. :)
Sunday was really good. We had an awesome service at church, a great testimony meeting. Cindy, a recent convert, bore her testimony about missionary work and she really told us and the elders directly to never give up. She talked about the new perspective she's gained and how she doesn't know why it took her 31 years to understand that what she does/teaches in the home matters. She talked about having to be the example, and much more. Her son is a convert of about 2 or 3 years, he recently moved to Utah. From what I've heard it sounds like the missionaries met him when he was drunk but they left a dvd about the Restoration and it changed his life. He stopped drinking and smoking and Cindy said the change in him was night and day. She said the things we are doing truly do matter. She got emotional as she talked about her husband Junior and how the last two times Sister Richardson and I have gone over there he has stayed for the lesson and participated, which is huge! Not once since I've been here has he sat in but the past two times he has, and he has a lot of good things to contribute! "Never give up." We really don't know how many lives we are affecting and changing. Dad's email to me today said that we won't know much of the difference we make until the eternities and I know he is right. That doesn't just go for full-time missionaries though either, none of us ever know how much good we are doing. We don't know the results of all of our good efforts. No good effort is ever wasted. Ever.
So Sunday was good. A lot of running around so Sister Richardson could say goodbye to everyone and that was really bittersweet, but it was okay. Everyone in the branch was so kind in assuring her that Heavenly Father was placing her somewhere where she was needed the Christmas season. I love this small branch of members because they make you feel so loved. President Hester is the branch president and I have never felt more welcomed and loved, he makes every person and every missionary feel like they are truly what matters. I will miss this branch when I have to leave. Very different from our huge wards in Utah, I like the extra-closeness here. I have a dear love for both, they're just different. And different isn't bad :)
Well, I hope y'all had a great week as well, looking forward to another good one! Sister Richardson and Elder Holt are being transferred so we'll have a new elder and sister in this area, a new zone really. We have our Christmas Conference this weekend, so look for pictures on Facebook! Should be great. Remember to share the gift this Christmas season, Jesus Christ! #HeIsTheGift
Discover the Gift, Embrace the Gift, #Share the Gift <--- I hate hashtags but hey, the Church is even using them now... gotta join the bandwagon. :)
All my love,
I can't believe y'all really sent that birthday card back to me, hahahaha
Package from Haylie :)
Present from Sister Taylor-accurate shirt, right? ;)
Best friends in the mission reunited
Us by our town's Kaboose (not sure how to spell)
Ok, had to show the 'birthday shoutout' I got from Brother Cartmell back in Waynesboro on Facebook. Hahaha, I miss that family! Be careful what pictures people take, they keep them! :)