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Monday, April 18, 2016

Nov 16 2015

Hi Everybody!  How are you doing?  For those of you who haven't heard yet, I had a pretty interesting week.  Here's why:

Experience #1
I went to go to my follow-up appointment for my foot surgery on my toes a couple of weeks ago, and I got a little thrown off.  They said the two that they had worked on looked perfect and that I took excellent care of them.  BUT... He looked at me and said, "Now, there is a third ingrown toenail that I hadn't seen before.  We can take care of that today, or you can let it get worse and come in and fix it later."  I was like, "You have got to be kidding me."  So, since I can't call my parents, I called the mission nurse and told her that she should call and let my parents know that I was probably going to be doing a third operation and that they should expect another co-pay. It was ridiculous.  And Dr. Shapiro was busy that day, so he had Dr. Zapazoti do it for him.  She was really nice and does a good job, but she was less careful in certain areas than Dr. Shapiro was.  For instance, when numbing my toe, she struck a nerve and I wanted to kick her.  It hurt so bad!  But I got over it.  Then, she went to test my toe to see how numb it was and I could still feel everything.  So she had to give me even MORE numbing agent.  It was ridiculous.  She finished the operation and we check out and as I was walking on my foot, I realized that the top half of my foot was completely numb.  Oh well.  If it was numb, I couldn't feel pain, right?  So I went about my business for the rest of the night and it didn't actually hurt too bad in the morning.  It was a little sore, but you know.  Whatever.  I did find out though, later in the week, what happens on a long-term basis.  I found out from a member that has had the same surgery done that when they put the chemical in to prevent it from growing back, it also kind of prevents your toenail from growing back on the sides.  So I have a smaller big toe nail on both feet now, permanently!  But it's good!  They hurt a lot less, so that what matters.

Experience #2
We were out tracting one night this week and while we were walking to a potential appointment, Sister P had the thought to turn down one of the side roads instead.  There was a woman out on her porch who we began to talk to.  We talked about the regular family situations, religion, faith in Christ, etc.  Then randomly, she said, "Do you want to come in and smell these soy candles that I make?"  We said we would love to because obviously it would get us into her house.  She is actually really good at making them.  She had all kinds of scents like pumpkin (which she gave to us for free), Christmas tree, pecan pie, one after an alcoholic drink, and many others I can't think of.  But I looked at her after smelling all of them and said, "Well, since we are in your house already, can we share our message with you?"  She said yes and we were able to share a really great Restoration message with her.  The worst part though, is we got to the Joseph Smith Story and someone pulled up into her driveway and she said that it was someone coming to get her and that she had to leave.  Sister P and I just looked at each other and thought, "Satan."  But we figured there was nothing we could do about it.  So we got a return appointment to finish the lesson and let her go.  We have really high hopes for her though.  So that is exciting.  Even though she got home from a Christmas show last night and said she was too tired and cancelled our appointment.  But she does want us to check back with her after the twenty-second when she will be done with shows for a while.  So pray that a woman named M will be able to meet with us and accept the message.  I mean, she has already read the entire Book of Mormon.  So she may be prepared for the gospel right now.  Fingers crossed!

Experience #3
We were at a member's house for dinner this week and I was dying of laughter all night.  They are just so funny.  They made "taco soup" for dinner.  Unfortunately, because of the stewed tomatoes in it, I couldn't have any because it had dehydrated bell peppers.  But her husband kept calling it chili all night long when giving it to their kids.  At one point, she looked at him with a weird face and said, "It is not chili.  It is taco soup, obviously.  I put taco seasoning in instead of chili powder.  Duh."  He just looked at her with a facial expression like, "My bad!"  And he just said, "Ooooohhhhhh."  Then later in the dinner, she asked him what was different about the soup.  You would have thought she had asked about their anniversary and he forgot by his reaction.  He grabbed the pot and looked intently at it. He was so nervous that he was going to answer wrong.  He started naming all of the ingredients in it that he saw and he could never get it.  So she grunted and grabbed a spoonful of it and showed it to him over his plate.  She pointed to something and said, "What is that?"  He was like, "quinoa."  And she gave him a look and nodded as of she were saying, "Duh!  I am so creative and I have been waiting for you to notice that all night long!"  He was like, "Oh.  Nice honey!"  I was dying.  Just shows us how much some males pay attention, I suppose!  ;)

Experience #4
So... also.  This week we decided that one of my first zone leaders, Elder B has just been an assistant for wayyyy too long.  So we were joking with the Elders that on every facebook post, we just need to hashtag, #prayforb on everything.  Because he is just TIRED!  I mean, we are all tired, but he is an eternal level of tired.  But then, randomly, we got a call from Elder C on Friday.  He said that Elder B would be coming to Mountain Island for 4 days on exchange.  We were so confused because this NEVER happens.  But we figured, since he has been an assistant since February, he just needed a little 4-day break.  So we went about our business.  When we got to Ward Council on Sunday, everyone freaked out because Elder B's second area was Mountain Island.  He was here for 8 months and everyone is crazy about him.  So they started asking all these questions.  We found out the same time as everyone else that they were doing an mid-transfer transfer.  So now, Elder C is going to be our Zone Leader with Elder P, Elder P is going to be an Assistant with Elder K and Elder H, and Elder B are going to be our District Leader here in Mountain Island.  He is really excited because this is the first time that he has ever been a District Leader.  He shot straight from "normal missionary" to Zone Leader.  So this is definitely a new adventure.  But we are definitely not going to be fed as much because Elder B is back for a transfer until he goes home.  ;)  It's okay.  The members still love us.  ;)

Experience #5
We went over to a member's house this week to check on her and to share a message with her.  She told us this hilarious story.  So I thought I would tell you.  She and her husband were out with another couple in the ward and her son walked up to the other couple and said, "I don't like it when women marry women.  You know, like the sister missionaries."  The other woman in the ward looked at her and said, "Ummmm... You should probably clear that up."  She just started laughing and laughing.  Because we are the only ones that ever go to their house.  The elders have never been over, so her son doesn't know any better.  She responded, "Yes.  I will fix it.  But that is HILARIOUS!!!"  We just laughed and laughed and laughed.  Poor thing didn't know any better, but from a four-year-old perspective, I was dying of laughter.

Experience #6

This week has been interesting in the way of the law.  This week, we were listening to one of the songs on the flash drive that you sent me last year.  Well there is a part in the very end that has some intense clapping in it.  We both just tensed up and got really quite as it played.  We didn't talk, we didn't look at each other, we just sat in awkward silence.  As we pulled up to our destination, the song got cut off because we turned off the car.  I just put my hand over my heart in relief and said, "Oh my gosh.  I thought someone was getting shot!"  Sister P looked at me and said, "ME TOO!"  We just laughed hysterically.  Then I said, "You know you have served in Charlotte when..."  I still cannot believe that both of us instantly went to that thought instead of any rational explanation.  Oh wait.  That is the rational explanation here.  Luckily, we live in the somewhat safe area of Charlotte.  ;)  Then a few days later, we went to a certain area and we were trying to find some potential investigators.  We knocked on this one lady's door and her son came to the door.  He started telling us that his mom wasn't home, but that he had some limitations as to what he could do because he had just gotten put on house arrest the day before and had to wear an ankle bracelet.  We still taught him though.  Because all of God's children need the truth.  Then that same day, we were in a different area and I heard the phone going off in my bag.  So I pulled it out and looked at it, realizing that I had accidentally hit too many buttons and it had called 911.  So we got a call from emergency services asking if we needed assistance.  We told her no, that it was an accident.  She sounded a little irritated, but just got off the phone.  Then a few days later, we were driving to Huntersville, and this cop was in a left turn lane.  Then all of the sudden, he just stuck the nose of his car in our lane.  We were going fast enough that we were about to hit him.  So I gasped and Sister P moved quickly into the other lane and slammed on her brakes.  Then the stupid Tiwi marked her for Aggressive Driving.  It was so ridiculous.  Yeah.  Run-ins with the law.  What the Sister Missionaries are known for.  ;)  Hence the title of the email.

I am so jealous that you are getting snow!  Honestly, I have been in a very Christmas-y mood.  But there is no snow today.  It is getting colder, but it is still sunny almost every day.  I am so jealous!  I want it so bad this year.

My companion is great!  I just love her!  We get along so well and we are constantly laughing!  We work hard, it is just being a struggle right now to get appointments because we don't really have anyone solid to work with.  But we keep going along.  We know that they are here, we just have to find them.  My district went to the zone activity today.  But it ended up being pretty lame.  Don't get me wrong, we had fun.  But it could have been a lot more fun.  We played sand volleyball and the elders played football.  I got sand all over my toe though.  Luckily, not in the incision, but all around it.  Tender Mercies.

Like I said, the work is slow.  But it keeps going.  We are finding a lot of people, just not many that are willing to keep commitments.  We are kind of excited for Thanksgiving to pass because the people of North Carolina are so much more willing to talk to us because of the Savior on their mind.  But I have never been in Charlotte for Christmas and there is a lot of people that get transplanted here.  So maybe they will be receptive, maybe they won't.  I don't know.  Hopefully.  And I am sure the magnets will help.  I am so glad that you got to go to that Fireside.  And I am so jealous that you got to go to the building that Elder Oaks was at too!  That is so crazy!  Interesting that he didn't speak as much as people thought about Christmas, but I love the message about the temple's significance with the Plan of Salvation.  I don't think I really connected that until my mission.  But I think that is vital to remember because of the symbolism and importance behind it.

It sounds like so much fun that Grandma and Grandpa Irwin got to go to Tahoe.  Bummer that it was in the middle of a huge storm, but it warms my heart to hear that she met someone that you and Donelle grew up with.  That is so exciting and such a small world.
I definitely think you should go to the Tijuana Temple Open House.  It looks so pretty.  I just got a glimpse of the photos on Facebook the other night.  Plus, you are going for a righteous purpose.  The Lord will protect you and make sure that nothing happens to you.  But if Bethany can't miss class, just see if y'all can go down and maybe she can drive/fly later.  But I definitely think that you should go for Thanksgiving and go to the temple.  If you want my input at all.  But there it is.  :)

Let me know what happens with Girl's Camp.  I would be curious to find out.  :)  Hopefully the stake gets their act together.  It's about time they do.  Geez.

The other toe went well.  It isn't hurting as much as the other ones did.  But it should heal just as well as all the rest did.  The head is good as well.  It isn't hurting as much anymore.

I am looking forward to being able to Skype you as well.  I can't believe that is only like, 40 days away.  Crazy!  It goes so fast.

Thank you for the picture of the royal family and keeping me updated on everyone.  I really appreciate it.  :)  I love you so much!

As for Christmas, I am really good with whatever y'all want to send.  The only problem I am facing is, I am going to be home like 3 months after Christmas.  So like you said, I need not to clutter my suitcases up too bad.  But I am running low on skirts and shirts a little.  I would more appreciate shirts.  Because, even if you buy them big, I can still wear them when I lose weight at home.  But if you buy big skirts, they won't fit once I lose weight.  There are some pictures I will send you with ideas of what I want for Christmas, but I am pretty open to whatever you and Grandma want to send.  :)

Yes -- I do want to build a snowman!  But I guess it'll have to wait till next year!  I love you to all the Disney's all over the world!  That's a lot!  ;)

Ash ;)

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