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Monday, August 3, 2015

August 3, 2015, from Mammoth, California

August 3, 2015

I normally do my emails from the Bishop chapel, but today it's from a library in Mammoth, a ski resort near Yosemite, we're going hiking afterwards as a district.

Last week for pday the district played volleyball for hours at the chapel, and at one point when all hope seemed lost for my team, I bumped the ball over the net and it went into the basket. I almost cried, it was something I see on AFV! 

This week started out pretty rough. We had 5 lessons in a row drop, and another 3 later on. We went proselyting but didn't get much success, and we were feeling pretty down. It reminded me of the plagues with Moses too. One person's house had a rat infestation, one hurt his back, one had his pipes burst. But I was reading in Alma 26, and it was like every verse was for me. It talked about having faith in the Lord and His plan, and said that if we bear our afflictions with patience then He WILL bless us. So that's what we kept doing, Kept knocking and walking and visiting people. Then on Friday we got to meet with Eric, who never went to church growing up and didn't know anything about his Heavenly Father or Christ. When we told him that God is our loving father, you could tell he was coming to know that was true, and the ate up the restoration lesson. we even got him to pray out loud with others for the first time! it was short and simple but extremely powerful. it's amazing to see his testimony grow.  We also got to teach Nick! He's half Paiute half Irish, his son has bright red hair and blue eyes and looks nothing like him haha. But our lesson with him was so spot on, we talked about the gospel of Jesus Christ and we didn't have to teach him anything! He has such a strong testimony, we just had to show him this gospel and what it is, he has an amazing relationship with his savior. He's set to be baptized on Sept 19, but he still needs to read and pray about the Book of Mormon. That's also the day before Alejandra and Maria get baptized!! Have I talked about them yet? Their mom is being taught by the elders but she wanted girls to teach her daughters, so we get to do that! Maria turns 8 on that day, so it'll be such a cool celebration, I'm excited!

We parked our car to go visit someone but they weren't home. When we came back to the car there was a police officer waiting for us. We both had a mini heart attack and were going through our brains figuring out if we parked illegally. Turns out he's Mormon and has a son on a mission in Argentina! He gave us his number so he can buy us dinner at some point. He's from Idaho but commutes here. Madness. 

We've been visiting a lot of people from the ward, and they're all so great! we get so much ice cream here, it's heaven. One lady we visited, Sister Landdaker, is less active. she doesn't come to church because her sister needs 24/7 care and can't be alone. but she is so spunky! she makes a bunch of quilts for orphanages in mexico, built a shed by herself, and tends to this huge garden. She listens to devotionals Sundays since she cant go to church and knows everything about all the modern day prophets. She let us raid her pantry and I almost cried, we got so much food! We didn't have a dinner appointment that night and were pretty much out of food when this happened. I was reading more Alma after dinner and it talked about how when we serve the lord and help hasten his work, we don't need to worry about food or clothing because somehow, He will provide. and he did!! He blesses us so much.

Our little pastime this week was CUPCAKES!! (I sang that song from MLP so many times). We gave  them out to some of our investigators and members who are really good to us, like sister Mclaughlin and sister Wilson and Bob. They loved them and said it was just what they needed. Sister Wilson is downsizing soon but she didn't pack up 3 cups so that when we come over all of us can have water. 

Sister King and Sister Liebelt enjoying their cupcakes.

And Sister Daniels is from Maryland!! She grew up in Glen Burnie outside of Baltimore!! We sat on her porch during one of the rare rainfalls looking out at the mountains talking about crabs.

We have basketball/volleyball Tuesdays and Saturdays for people to come. There are rafters below the air vents in the gym and we lost all of our balls and one of Elder Vakalahi's shoes to them. We're awaiting a tall ladder at the moment.  

We went out with Angie, a super cool member who's from Mexico, to go teach the girls since she can actually communicate with their mom. They forgot about the lesson and weren't there, so Angie took us to see her friend Trina and her grandkids and it's the same situation. The adult only speaks Spanish, the kids speak both, and want English sisters. So we had a lesson with them and they want us to come back! They also wanted to set me and Sister Liebelt up with their brother.  Ha ha.  8 year olds.

There are so many kids here and they all love attacking me. So do dogs. I'm not sure what it is about me that makes them want to jump on me and smack my face but it's really endearing actually. There's one young boy who is a mixture of Brandon and Jordan, he held my hand and said "excuse me, will you sit by me at dinner?" and led me to the table. But he's also nuts. It makes me miss Lily.

We had and FHE with the Romero's last night, a family who got baptized a year ago, and it was such a cool experience. Calie and Raymond are four and six, so we got to teach them about Christ and His love for us, and Liea and Jr. are 13 and 14, so we had more in depth ones with them. We all wrote our testimony down without our names and switched them around and read them, it was so cool! I had to help Calie and Raymond write theirs since they can't spell well. They wanted to write "I love Jesus and heavenly father" and drew their family. Children really are the purest and cutest things. Of course right after that they ransacked my bag and jumped on my feet. I love them though!

The mountains are a lot prettier here than in Provo. They're wider, I think taller, and there's more of them. 

We have a  washer and dryer in the house. 

Mrs. Guttman loves reading my letters?  She is so sweet omg!! Jews are the best!!

I'm giving a talk on the 30th on the third article of faith!  

I hope you have a great week! I love you all so much!!

AHHH I got your package, I love it, especially the ant traps, they are so  needed. Thank you soso much. I deff need to get more of those socks, I can at Kmart or something WITH MY GIFTCARD! I flipped when i saw it, thanks so much!! And for the ant killer! The one we have doesn't work, our house has been overtaken.

Mule Days, over Memorial Day weekend, is like a cult here, they looooove their mules.

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