Monday, January 26, 2015

Snow, Bunnies and Bears

Sis. Botts and Sis Aukuso
Snow and more snow
So after I last emailed and planned to bike for the day... we went outside of the library into some freshly falling snow! It was so pretty! We ended up visiting a bunch of people but not biking home, and walking our bikes home instead because it was so snowy and foggy! That whole night and all of the next day snow just bucketed down. We spent all of Wednesday walking through the snow to visit people. Despite almost landing on my not yet shrunken butt a few times, I was still just super happy because.. SNOW!!! Of course this meant we'd be walking for a few days because we can't ride in the snow...well we can but I value my life far too much to attempt it!

This place is so PMS! By Thursday it was sunny and hot, and we ended up, once again, shovelling Snow in our T-Shirts. But I Love it! The mountains all around are just Wunderbar! Seriously! Saturday we eventually got the courage to bike around again and even though I was pretty much dying because I'm less fit than a 90 year old dead woman. It was still just so awesome because the view is great!! And also.. I'll admit, it's kinda fun when you're riding over a wee bit of snow and it's like... oh crap I might die!!... oh no wait, I made it!

View from apartment balcony

Icicles everywhere

The hill on the way to church - not yet biked
 It might make some of you happy no know that I haven't completely changed... Friday night we played Volleyball and I, going for the ball, managed to slip and land flat on my back and destroy my elbow. Black and blue for daaays!

ALSO!!!!! There are Bunnies flipping hopping everywhere!!! And... as we left Church yesterday to visit some more people we walked past a bunch of wild deer just chillin' on the side of the road! Sweet!! I feel like I'm a little bit in the Game reserve sometimes! sometimes it even smells like South Africa here!! That's totally a thing...

This week has been like a world travel as far as dinners!! Thursday night we got taken to a German restaurant, Friday we were taken to Mexican and, Saturday this Japanese lady that we've started teaching made us Sushi!! Mmmm the best sushi I’ve ever eaten! For real!!

There have also been sightings of a bear and mountain lions. We haven’t been lucky enough to see either though... or maybe unlucky? Ii imagine that either on foot or on bike we'd probably still be slower than both of them... but I feel like I could take a Mountain Lion right?? Sure I could! I feel like today's post is rather short and not as eventful as having a flight cancelled or anything cool like that but it's been a good week and I'm so happy here

Beautiful sunset

I realise that my grammar and spelling are probably something that I'd cringe at if i saw... but ain't nobody got time fo dat right now!!


Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Colorado Springs - at last!!!

MTC Group

Monday, 12th January. Leaving the MTC... slightly terrified, mainly because I was the designated travel leader and had no idea where I was going... nevertheless we made it to our first train, and then our second, and then checked in our stuff. We had plenty of time at the airport so naturally... we stuffed our faces.

Flights went smoothly until we landed in Denver and waited for our final flight to Colorado Springs. 1 hour delayed, 2 hours delayed, 3 hours delayed... FLIGHT CANCELLED!!!!

We managed to find a phone and contact our Mission president. Then we had to find our luggage... which would usually take 4 hours to get. But first.. more pressing matters... we stuffed our faces once again! mmmm food!

Then off to find our luggage. I spoke to one of the people from the airline and she was really nice, took our names and actually went down to put our bags on the belt so we didn't have to wait 4 hours! Then we had to use the phone again and call the Mission President to find out where to meet him. My companion and another sister went up to ask for the phone while I waited for my bag with another missionary. There was a super rude lady at the desk and she wouldn't let her use the phone... by the time my companion came back I had my bags and so I marched to the front desk, ready to politely tell her some very impolite things... when this gentleman says (after looking at my badge, and inquiring as to why I didn't pray for divine intervention in Colorado Springs) of course you can use the phone, please let us know if we can do anything else for you. I arranged a pick- up area with the Mission President and off we went with our trillion bags to where we were to meet him. Then a man came up with a massive trolley and offered to take our bags and show us where we were to go. Sooooo grateful! Of course he was only working for tips but it was the easiest 10 dollar tip I’ve ever given, I was just so grateful!

Fast forward..... we meet our trainers.. here I am worried about exactly how young my trainer is going to be... She is older than me! Ha how great is that? I knew they chose by inspiration who to put with who, but I wasn't fully aware until I got to our apartment and saw a giant tub of Milo on the fridge... yup!! True revelation that was haha!!
Mmmm Milo

Sis. Aukuso - First Companion
So we've been out teaching people and visiting with less active members all over out area. It's such a beautiful place. I love it!
We are currently teaching a man whose wife is a member and he has been investigating the church for about 15 years or so... never wanted to be baptised though. Until now! :) Awesome!!!

It's super hilly here so I'm sure I'll die today when I start biking. My bike came yesterday! I'm slightly terrified!!

My companion and I plus 2 young women sang at ward conference on Sunday...I wanted to die!!

Yesterday for Preparation day we went to the Olympic Training Center! It was pretty awesome. It's where a lot of the athletes go to train for the Olympics and so on. I guess with the higher altitude, if you're good up here you'll be good anywhere.

At the Olympic Training Center

Speaking of altitude... it's kicking my behind! For real!!! I can't even sing a hymn without gasping like I just ran a marathon...

But it's good!! I'm loving it here and the people are great!

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Early days at the MTC

First things first... London Heathrow... do you know a Brother Stainton that is a temple worker sometimes? Well, I'm sitting on the computer in the airport trying to email you... on my lds mail... then this sister says hey are you a missionary and I'm like yeah... so she just returned from her mission 3 weeks before, Brother Stainton is her grandfather and she's going to Seattle too... so we chatted a bit and talked about missions and stuff... then we say let’s see how far we are seated from each other... her seat ... 37D my seat........wait for it........................37E!!!! What!!! So yeah, we sat together on the flight, calmed me down a bit bearing in mind that I had to take a train to my terminal with all my bags and no trolley, then when I had a trolley for 5 minutes all my bags fell off... then I was slowed down and all that happened managing to get me to check in at the right time to get that seat!! Cray cray!! We land in Seattle and I have 20 minutes to clear Customs, re-check my bags and then catch a train to my terminal to get to SLC. Needless to say I cried all the way through the security line, sure that I would be late, ran, ran, ran from the train... last person let on the flight... so cry, cry, cry on the plane because I was so happy to make it.

As it says we're descending into SLC... Waah!! It just hit me. I was like... what are you doing Christi!!??? What the HECK are you doing?!?!?! So as I come off the flight and down the stairs... the Neeleys are there HAPPY DAYS!!! That was so nice! Mel was so nice and funny and made me feel really comfortable and walked with me in to the MTC building... then I slept!!!

Tears on seeing the Neelys
Mel Howlett and Sister Jayne Neely

Bro. Mike and Sis. Jayne Neely
Safe and sound in the MTC

The next two days were quiet.. just preparing to get started and classes and all!

Friday went to SLC... live session's not all it's cracked up to be!

Had a member lesson on Monday... we had planned a lesson but when we went in to talk to her that wasn't the lesson the Lord had planned... we started talking about FHE for her non-active sister and her kids, and we really felt the Spirit. She then told us her son isn't active really either, and she wanted a solution and she was really excited for it and said she'll email us to follow up so yeah, was on a total high!! Then we taught an investigator.... although we will only find out after we leave if he was legit or actually a member... again went so well we really felt the Spirit and he said he would read the BOM and pray about it and the restoration of the Church... so yeah that was great. Went to bed that night on a huge high, feeling great!! Ready for our Skype member lesson on Tuesday morning.. feeling like I could do anything..... and Tuesday's journal entry started with "I have been rebuked by the Lord" yup... Skype lesson went awful, connection was bad, my companion and I (we are zone sister training leaders too) had to share a computer and a mic and it was just bad, and it totally pruned me back down to my size, humbled me almost instantly!! Today... we went to the Provo Temple and it was nice... but you can tell Gill and Fran that their laundry ain’t got nothing on Preston! I got TWO RIGHT SHOES today hahahaha!!! but it was still nice,, I like Preston more though.

So yeah, I'm learning a lot and having a good time. My companion is cool and so is my district... I definitely need to be humbled a little more "Divine chastening" I guess is what I need haha
With Elder and Sister Condie
MTC companion Sis Ashley Tucker from North Carolina