Thursday, May 26, 2011

Another Week!

 Hello family!! well another week has gone by i cant believe it! it sounds like all of you guys are doing good!! Well i will start with my week! first off, last wednesday was our p day and we kinda relaxed that day because my knee has kinda been hurting..  but when our p day was over we met with this member emma, and she asked us to teach her about the plan of salvation... which was weird because our first meeting she said she believed in reincarnation... haha so we taught her and the whole time she was sooo interested! we were kinda scared at first becaue we didnt know if she wanted to argue with us or what when she asked us to teach her that, but the whole time she just listened and at the end we asked her to pray about it because and this is what we said "if this plan is true then reincarnation is not..." haha it was kinda bold but she agreed so we will see!! then we just met with a few other people during the next couple of days and on saturday my knee has been bugging me and pretty swolen so sister aland said i could take a day off, so we went to her apartment and she let us watch movies! haha we saw tangled and how to train your dragon.. (so not allowed) however, we had to sit there anyway and we had to preview the movies so the youth can watch them at a conference.. haha but it was a good day because i got to be off my leg for a little bit...then on sunday we met with our investigators lida and masha.. and we cant count them as progressing anymore because they didnt do what we asked them to do so that was sad, but we will still work with them, and once we have done all we can, we are going to have to tell them that as missionaries, we cant do anything more.. that they have to do it themselves! it is really hard! then monday... and this is what made my week soooo interesting... we woke up  at 5 because we were going to see this member and she lives in a village and the only bus that leaves in the morning leaves at 615... so we woke up, bought a bus ticket and were on our way to ribavovo... weird name i dont know how to spell it in english.. it takes only about an hour to get there so we got there at 715 and we met with olga... and shes kinda a crazy women.. shes a great member but crazy... and she lives in this village and everyone in this  village basically knows eachother... anyway we get to her house and its so sad.. she has like nothin, and what she does have is broken.. and her apartment is soooo dirty and gross..and keep in mind.. the only bus that leaves this town leaves at 2!! so i was like " i seriously have to be here for like 7 hours.." hah but i guess thats missionary work..then we helped her son with english cause he isnt doing wel in school and he left and we taught her, then we had brought stuff to make a cake.. and this is improtant too.. i went to the bathroom at olgas apartment and i almost threw up.. so... thats important for this story.. but she didnt have an oven, so she called this lady and she let us go get her oven.. so we went to this ladies house.. taeese.. weird name too i know.. and she had this oven, hard to explain.. but it was like a pan with a lid, and the lid heated up.. and you heated up the lid and cooked the top of the cake first, then you put the pan on a burner and it cooked the bottom, i have a picture i will have to send it to you.. anyone.. something i havent ever seen but kinda like a dutch oven that was electric..THen.. it was interesting because she let us come in and teach her? and we had NOOO  idea! so we taught her about joseph smith and the book of mormon and she was interested so we gave her a book of mormon and she said she would read! whcih is soo great! so that was a good meeting but by the end i really had to go to the
 bathroom! so i asked her because i didnt want to go at olgas because it was gross.. and she said "Oh its not working but you can just go outside!" haha so i was like "thats great, i would rather go outside then in olgas house.." so she leads me to her backyard which you can see from the road.. and the fence is about up to my chest and made out of wood so you can see through it and she opens the gait and says "go right here nobody will watch or see you!" hahaha and i was like "right here?" and in my head, i was like "EVERYBODY CAN SEE ME! THE GAIT IS SEE THROUGH! and its only up to my chest,. and at this point sister is dying laughing.. and then all the sudden, about 20 chickens come running out of the chicken coop! haha and i was like, i cant go here because the chickens will attack me... anyway.. she asked why i wasnt going and i just said laughing "i cant go
 here!" hah so she took me to the back of her house in this little abandon barn thing and it was so nast and gross but it was hidden from everyone.. so yep.. i went there! haha but.. it was better then going in the gross
 toilet... ahaha so if i get diseases you know what! haha this barn was just old and who knows what was in there, i should have been scared but it was kinda like going when you are camping, except i was in a skirt?,,, haha
 anyway that was my crazy story this week!

 Then on tuesday we met with galina.. and she needs to be baptized she has been a 12 year investigator.. but she is working on a river cruise ship this summber so friday we actually get to see her... on the boat its going to be so cool! anyway, i will get to answering your questions, but other than that.. this
 week wasnt too bad..
 and this week should be busy tooo!

 ok! tell telicia and courtney thanks for the letters! courtney i wish i could send you a letter to thailand but i am so happy you are doing that! haha the living situation sounds crazy! but i can understand where you are
 coming from! hahah love you i will send you a real letter soon! telicia! your belly is so cute! i wrote you a letter and it should be getting to you soon! amy and brooke i wrote you too!> mom, it sounds like things are good! i will see if i can figure out my account here in russia...
you asked if people had freedom? ya they do here, its hard to leave the country but other than that things are pretty normal... and ya we see the missionaries here in tomsk almost every day so thats great
 too! we all teach english club together because there are 3 groups so thats great..
 i am excited the summer for you is starting! that should be great.. i cant
 believe summer is here!

 dad... thanks for the email! it sounds like you and gainer swim a ton like you did last year! haha its always fun to hear gainer stories and the things he says!
 i love you dad!

 grandma! it sounds like that concert was amazing i hope to be able to see them when i come home! and grandpa is a priest! thats awesome! tell jamie congrats for me too for graduation!
 love you grandma!

 ok.. i am sorry i dont have much time i will send pictures hopefully next
 i love you guys and i really do appreciate when you write me! it helps
 soooooooo much! i love you guys! talk to you next week!
 mom make sure you send some to amy ok? the ones i sent to dad and you! love
 you soo much!

Sunday, May 22, 2011


FAMILY!!!! helloooo!!! thanks for your emails!! i am going to start writing
 my week first and then i will send emails back to you guys!! ok first off, finland was AMAZING! seriously.. the missionaries here call it the fairy land because first of all.. finish is the strangest language ever and they sound like fairys when they speak it.. and secondly.. its the most beautiful country ever.. its europe which makes it way different than russia.. its so clean and the people are all beautiful.. they all like ride
 bikes and look so happy! haha then they all speak english too!!! its like the perfect place to live.. sister trottier and i were like "um,... why didnt we get called here?" haha no no.. russia is a good place but yes,
 finland is amazing! i would actually hope that if you guys came and got me that we could fly to finland after and do the temple there together!! you guys would love it!!!
Ok! to start off, last wednesday i got on a bus and got to novo around 9, I  stayed the the makalys house, and then woke up at 5 to get on my flight to moscow! it wasnt too bad its like a 4 hour flight,  then i saw all the missionaries there waiting for me in moscow! including sister trottier!! which was sooo fun to see here! it was me sister trottier sister margelies and then 5 elders! 4 of which it was their last visa trip! then we got on a
  flight from moscow to finland and its only and hour flight which is so nice!! then we landed in finland and got on a bus which takes us to this mall thing... which i sent a picture and it has an H&M haha so next time the
  sisters decided we would shop.. we then walked to the temple cause its only about ten minutes away and got in our into our rooms, the temple housing is right next to the temple so its nice.. and its way nice too! then we were off for a little adventure.. the elders knew where they were going so it was nice! so we took a tram into the center of finland where there was the big church i sent a picture of.. and let me tell you, the center is amazing! its just like europe, lots of cafes and nice shopping and cars!! it was so fun!! so we walked through the center to the fairy, which took us to this island in finland! and its just an old island where people live, but i think its  like a war island or something, anyway, we just walked around the island all day and took pictures and everything! it was soooo fun! its funny being with elders cause they are hysterical! I am not used to hanging out with 21 year olds! hahaha it was so fun and so pretty! and they have amazing food there.. they have this yogurt that like.. the best thing ever, and their chocolate is amazing too!! hah basically finland is amazing! then after our adventure on the island we got back on the fairy and headed back... we got some food and made food then went to bed.. it was funny cause we were sooo tired cause 1030 there was like 2 in novo! haha but sister trottier and i still managed to wake up at 615! haha it was crazy! but we work up the next day and this was kinda a day to relax.. we got to spend the day until 1 in the temple and we did a session and finland temple is beautiful! man, i didnt realize how much i missed the temple until i went there.. it was such an amazing experience to be there.. in our session we had it translated into 4 languages i think.. english, finnish and russian and i think spanish! it was crazy! (we just have little headsets) but it was so amazing! i loved it! then we were back on a bus to go to the airport! we all flew to moscow and then we waited about 4 hours for our flights and then i was off to novo.. at this point it was friday night and i arrived in novo sat at 5 am.. i waited at the makalys again until my bus left at 8 am.. then i got on a bus for tomsk and got to tomsk by noon! haha it was quite the fast trip but  definetely great! it was an amazing experience! and right when i got back we  had a meeting and sports night! haha so i was dead exhausted but we got
  right back to work!so all in all.. finland was amazing! seriously.. we will HAVE TO go if you
  guys come here! seriously.. so plan on it!! then saturday night sports night.. we play ultimate frisbee and about 20 or  so people come! oh! we got new misisonaries and elder haynes./.. who is in don and traceys
  ward is in tomsk now! haha small world! he graduated 2009 so we went to high school together!

 Anyway, we now have 6 elders here in tomsk and then us sisters,... two elders set 2 baptismal dates!! yay!!!!! we were sooo excited for them! anyway.. then sunday the alands got back from their adventure, they were gone for 2 weeks in turkey and moscow and finland too! so we saw them, then monday was an awesome day! we had FHE with the lee family.. i have mentioned them before... and they brought all their kids! so there were about 6 kids there and then 6 missionaries! and it went really well! the family had so much fun and the dad said they would do that at their house  now! so it was a success!! we want to get them baptized... and it was crazy, the little girl mika, she is about 7 i believe, and she was asking sister all these questions about christ.. like deep questions, like she just knew everything, she even said "so, its impossible to live without christ right?" and thinking about it.. ya it basically is,... it was kinda an eye openeing experience because we know she knows a lot.. we want them to be baptized so bad! the three little girls know they need to be we just need to get the  parents on board! so hopefully!!! and then yesterday i cut hair and had english club... overal it was an interesting week.. it was kinda a crazy week what with talking to you guys and going to finland and coming back to missionary work... but it was amazing!! we are starting a new transfer and have set some goals so hopefully  we can achieve them! let me tell you, missionary work is challenging but its definetely an experience i wont get anywhere else.. i have learned a lot being here, and i have grown in ways i couldnt have without this mission... and the gospel has completely opened new avenues of learning and looking at life for me..

I want to let you guys know that i know that this church is true... i know that only our church contains the fulness of the gospel... only our church contains the fulness of gods plan for us and the only way we can return to him...  i know that we have a prophet who holds the keys which we need to have the whole gospel... i know that the book of mormon is true and as we read it it can open new windows of understanding for us and can answer our questions we have at that> very moment...I cant tell you guys how this church just makes sense to me.. i can only tell you that its something i feel.. and i know i couldnt have felt it  without this mission... i know that this is where i needed to be now...

thanks for all of you guys support!  i love you guys and i am grateful that> you love me enough to support me!! i am sorry i dont have time to answer emails.. pictures took too long! but keep writing me! > tell amy and brooke i got their emails and i am sending them a real letter!> thanks for writing me friends!! i love youuuuu!! grandma i got the pictures thanks sooo much! i love themmmmmm!!!!
  tell telicia i love her and to send me pictures to me email! i dont know my  address in novo!
  tell court to have a great time in tailand! so random! hahahahaha> tell leyla i love her and am praying about her!!!

  dad and mom i love you guys so much! keep up the work you are doing at home!
  you guys are amazing i love you!!!!
  and i didnt get to send the package so hopefully soon!
  ok i love you guys! all of you! talk to you all next weekkkkk!!!! LOVE YOU

Friday, May 13, 2011

Temple soon!

o this week was a pretty fun week!! it was great to get to talk to you guys! i am so happy that i got to talk to everybody! Its strange to think that i wont talk to you till christmas though.. that seems so far away.. but summers always fly by dont they? i am thinking that it will be the same on the mission.. and keeping in mind that i really only have one month of a real summer.. they say that it only gets really hot for one month? so we will see! after i talked to you we went over to the alands apartment and met all the missionaries there.. the elders there were cooking lunch! hah it was great to see four boys making food.. we had chicken and mashed potatoes and veggies... then we watched chronicals of narnia, the third one.. but they didnt have it in english so we watched it in russian,... then i made crepes for everyone, then we got to watch another movie and we watched toy story 3.. this time it was in english, so i understood all of it.. haha and then the mongolians came over because one of the elders here, elder Gushin, got transfered so they wanted to say goodbye.. and we all just hung out and played phase ten.. it was a pretty interesting day because i am not used to not doing anything! haha then the next day we had a lunch planned with this family, the lee family,and guess what we did again.. tacos! haha and guess who was in charge again? me! haha for some reason they thing i am like mexican or something, little do they know i usually bought everything when i made mexican food... but i can tell you guys that i have made probably 600 tortillas in the past week! i am not going to come back russian, i am going to come back mexican. haha anyways, this family is great, they picked us up early to take us shopping to get the food to make and we went to this store called metro.. and its like a costco because you have to have a card to get in, but then its probably more like wal mart with the stuff there... its pretty cool here in russia because there arent many stores like that around.. and guess what i
 bought there.. MANGOS! haha so mom you dont have to send any.. even though i would still love them... anyway we bought everything there and then we went to the bus station to send off elder gushin... everyone was so sad to see him go because he goes home in 2 months and hes from ukraine. hes a way
awesome missionary so everyone loves him... and then we went to make the food. all the missionaries who were here in tomsk went and it was really fun. THe mom, yana, loved the tacos... (this family ps arent members... ) we are doing what we can to make them members because they are soooo perfect! they have 4 little girls and 2 little boys.. (which is a ton for russia) and the dad always tells his girls they are going to serve mission. so we just need to build their testimonies... And then after that we met with this lady emma.. and we got there and she said "i was just about to color my hair" haha and so i did it for her, except she just bleaches her hair all over... and i HATE doing that.. but thats what she had and she was going to do it herself anyways so i just did it.. i would usualy NEVER just bleach someones scalp.. it was funny cause sister vasilevskaya talked her into doing a new color.. anyway she is great and she loves us which is awesome, cause before we went to her house and helped her clean and she didnt think i knew how to clean cause i was american, and she didnt like me so much haha but now she does..then english club again! and yes, we still do english club! the osama thing hasnt stopped us at all.. it was fun i taught my class popcorn popping because they were all little kids.. and then they sang it to the older groups...

Oh and for everyone who doesnt know, i am staying in tomsk for another transfer with sister vasilevskaya... we will be together for 3 transfers which is a 4th of my mission.. crazy huh? haha its ok.. we get along.. we
 have fun most of the time its just differernt because we are from 2 completely different parts of the world. but we dont have problems at all...we just have lots to work on as missionaries.. but we are doing what we
  can...aynways, yes we are staying and we are actually getting 3 new american missionaries... which is there will be a lot of americans here and so english club will be way better.. and we will actually have 6 elders here cause one of the elders here will have a mini missionariy... so this should be a way fun transfer! anyways.,. the big news today is that i leave in about 3 hours to go to novosibirsk and them tomorrow moscow and FINLAND!!! i am so excited to go to the temple.. its crazy when you dont get to go for a while! and i am so excited to see sister trottier too... this should be a way fun trip because we have 8 people going.. all the rest of the people going its their last visa trip... so we will see what happens next visa... i am pretty sure we will be with the missionaries who come in today... we have 3 new elders coming today and one will be serving here in tomsk.. anyway, i guess that i will be flying to moscow by myself because the rest of the people fly out of the cities that they are in... so i will leave tomorrow(thursday) to fly to moscow,... i get on a bus here and drive to novosibirsk.. its about a 5 hour bus ride.. but i have to go alone and i dont want to  cause who knows who i will sit by next letter should be a packed full letter...

  well... i dont really have much to say... ive been reading about alma and amulek lately and when i was reading about how alma went to preach to the city where amulek lived and they rejected him, and when he left the lord told him to go back... and i love how in the scriptures its says something like "he immediately went back"... and i think about alma, and how strong of a missionary he was... and i compare myself to him and think "i have a ton to work on..." because alma was rejected and spat on and hit and all this crazy stuff and yet he still tried to preach to them, and when he thought he had done all he could.. the lord said no.. go back.. and he didnt even question it.. he just went back (i love how it says he went through the city a different way cause he probably wanted to go unoticed and not get kicked out again ahah) and then he went and amulek was there waiting because the lord had prepared makes me think about how sometimes.. i just want to give up on someone, or not do something because "oh.. ive already done that" but the lord work in mysterious ways.. and sometimes, things dont happen immediately.. we have> to go back and try it again...

  If i have learned anything from my mission so far is that the lord definetely has a plan for each of us, and sometimes its not what we want, just like alma probably didnt want to go back and teach a city who already completely rejected him... however, if we do what the lord says, and in his ways.. we will be the people he has intended us to be.and i have realized that the best things in life are deffinetely not easy to get... as missionaries, if we want something we have to work for it and  have learned that the hard way.. but i am glad i have learned it now and not> later in my mission...

  anyways... i hope this all makes sense! i have nothing more to say really but i love you guys and i hope all is well... tell my friends i am disowning them for not emailing me.. even though i send them keychains too.. haha and that i want pictures of the new dog and ashtons wedding! tell them to email them to me!

I get to talk to you soon!!!

Well i will start off with my week again, it wasnt as crazy at last week so wednesday i went to that family i told you, the lee family and did their hair, i did three haircuts and a color. it turned out really well and they
  loved that an american was doing it. they actually own their own little salon so they showed me around there first.. the mom said she liked the way i cut her hair.. this family is amazing though.. they are investigating and
  their one daughter who is 18 is a member and then they have like 6 little kids (which is really unusual for russia) and the 3 little girls do gymnasitcs. We were hesitant to teach them because we thought they just
  liked americans but now the dad said that he is starting to read the book of mormon and he is understanding it.. its kinda funny cause this family is kinda a joint effort between the missionaries.. we all go and teach them and  they love to have us over... and every time we come they always feed us this huge meal! so we are hoping they come to know the truth sometime...  then on thursday it snowed!!!!! we thought it was going to be hot so we  didnt wear our coats and yep... snow! its like utah weather here you never
  know what you are going to get.. i have some pretty funny pictures in it  though.. it was the kinda snow that it just sticks in your hair... then we met with this lady, galina,... she has 2 daughters her served missions and
  comes to church every week and does all a member does but isnt a member... kinda sounds like you mom huh? haha so we go and teach her and we are just waiting till she is ready. she knows she needs to be baptized we just dont know exactly what to tell her to help her find that one answer she is looking for.. we hope it is coming soon though... i love her though.. she always worries about me being cold outside.. haah she is always like "wear my jacket wear my shoes! you are going to get sick" haha even when its 90
  degrees outside... she is great oh! and on thurdsday i played all of we thank thee o god for a prophet on
  the piano! haah i will play the piano when i get home! haah then friday i went and cut sister alands hair (she is the older couple) and she wanted to give me something so we went and picked out material cause she
  wants to teach me how to make a skirt... she is so nice i love her.. i told her if her son isnt married when i get home that i want to be in their  family hahaha they are so great. They left this week for 2 weeks so if i get
  transfered i wont see them! i am sad! hopefully i stay here, i like tomck...  Then on satrday we went and met with this armanian girl who is a member of  the church, she came to church on easter with her husband but her husband  isnt a member and the whole situation was strange, well she invited us to come see her, but we couldnt go into her house beceause her family didnt accept that she was a member of a different church... anyway, so come upto her house, and it is an apartment on top of a grocery store.. and there are 3 apartments next to eachoter and they are 3 brothers who are all armanian and who all run businesses together.. well she lives with her husband and his family in one, and they have an arranged marriage, so she is basically told what to do which is so strange so her family doesnt accept the gospel... but her cousins family, who lives next door, are christian and she totally welcomed us in and she wanted to learn more about the gospel. and side not, these apartments are super nice! really wealthy fmaily.. anyway..we taught her the first lesson and she is interested and we are excited to meet with her again... its just interesting cause one brother doesnt agree with the church and the other is compltely open to it.. and i had heard about the whole arranged married thing but i had never seen it,.. but i saw it first hand! but this girl who is a member is such a  good missionary..even though her family doesnt accept she does all she can to come to church and be a missionary to her family.. so we are hoping things go well for her and her cousin! then after that we went to the alands and prepared mexican food because we promised the mongolians we would cook them food! so sister aland and i made enchiladas.. and get this, we had no tortillas and there arent any in  russia.. so gues what! i made my own! hahah they were just like the ones at costco (ok not really) but i was so proud! and they worked! so i am going to learn how to make them better so i can make them really good when i get home... and that meeting went really well.. they brought 3 mongolians who werent memebers of the church! one of them, ghana, had a baptisimal date and then decided not to be baptized, so we are really working with her.. other  than that the two who are members, sonsar and mogy are amazing members.. its interesting being there cause we have 3 languages going when we teach we have enlgish and mongolian and russian because they know english just as well as russian.. so its interesting... then sunday was my 5 month mark! when i wrote may first in my journal i was shocked!!! i cant believe it! well then we went to galina.. the lady that i love who had 2 daughters serve missions, and we made mexican food there, she loved it cause she was a cook and likes to learn different things.. it was really fun! then we went home cause i havent been feeling well lately.. i think alergies are getting to me and my head has been pounding! then monday... yes we heard osama bin laden was killed.. it was interesting cause just for percausiion here, because there are lots of islams, the area  70 wrote us a letter telling us to take our nametags off and not to speak any english at all.. and we have to do that until they tell us.. it was kinda scary at first cause it seemed like a huge step right? but its ok i realized the church just really protects their missionaries.. its just weird being in a different country when things like that happens.. cause i am on their side of the world... so i hope everything goes ok.. we are safe though nothing to worry about... then we sewed my skirt! hah really simple pattern but yes, i made a skirt (with sister alands help) its really cute too.. haha that or my style has just gone way down.. im guessing its probably my style but i like it.. haha i laughed because i am going to come home knowing how to sew, play the piano and make tortillas.. haha maybe this isnt what a mission is about? haha no dont worry we are helping people too...then yesterday we had a meeting with a member family and they live like out in the country. it was like 5 hours to get there meet and get back, and i havent been feeling well so we went back and i went to bed, i just dont want to get even more sick but i am ok dont worry! anyway, that was my week! hopefully this week goes well too! i get to talk to you sunday! yay!!! and then i leave to finland on thursday! I am soooo excited! i miss the temple so much! and i am so excited to see sister trottier! haha and then we have transfer calls on friday! so we will see if i stay in tomsk or go somewhere else! i love it here so hopefully i stay... oh! and ps... if you can send me dried mangos from costco please do.. i dont know why but i have been craving those like no other! hahaha i know so weird right? hahah but please! birthday present please! and i am sending you a package from finland! with dolls and stuff..hopefully it isnt too much! and pictures.. i htink i am going to buy another picture card cause its so hard to get my pictures to a cd.. anyway... i love you guys and i appreciate your letters.. i miss you but i am excited to hear your voices.. i am going to cry right away so just  beware! haha tell my friends i love them but i am sad they dont email me.. brats haha i hope ashtons wedding went well!!!! and kristin!!! send me a cd if you can! of you and your beautiful voice! i listen to church music and i want to hear you! miss you love you!