Monday, December 29, 2014

12/29/14 | HNY


I'm emailing you from my couch. :) cause I can. We moved into our new apartment on Friday and let me tell you, it's the nicest thing since our new car. I'll send some pics...maybe. Anyways we love it here even though we don't live in our area anymore and we had to leave all of our Russian neighbors which is ok because we traded them for the best Peruvians in America. 
Ah, it was so good to talk to yous on Christmas! Seriously fun and guess what (mom) I didn't even cry after either! I was on cloud 9! Happiest missionary in the united states! So that was fun, I would say lets do it again but I guess we can upgrade in a few months instead. 
Lets see, lets seee....what has happened this week...We finally got our new area book since the switch up and in turn gave all of our investigators to the Elders. We spent christmas at the Menezes, our favorite Brazilians! They are so wonderful. Sister Menezes made the yummiest dinner! Don't worry I'm stealing all of her recipes so yous can get fat too. 
Speaking of the Menezes, let me tell you about their daughter, Bruna's, boyfriend: Tyrese. Tyrese is the greatest and is always at their house, he comes to church with them every week and he works at 5 Guys. He's a manager there so he always tells us to come in and get a free burger. Anyways, we assumed he was a member because everything pointed at that. Wrong. On friday in coordination we found out that he is not a member! What?! So on Saturday we interrupted our weekly planning session for some free 5 guys. We get there and Tyrese comes to the register, we exchange hellos and then point blank ask him, "Tyrese! you're not a member of the church?!" he laughed and said yeah. We told him we had no idea...bla bla bla how crazy is that..."Do you want to get baptized?!" yes! he said. So we are starting to teach him next sunday at the menezes. yay! And yes, 5 guys is better when it's free :). 
Sister Cost told me she had the best christmas of her life. and I am so so happy :) that was my goal for the day :) 
At church on Sunday, a less active member introduced us to his friend Kevin and told us that Kevin wanted to be taught and baptized. AH! ok :) so we set up an appointment with him on Tuesday (plot twist, i looked up his address and he lives in the elder area soo we had to turn him over Unfortunatly but it's still a cool thing. 
Last night we spent some time at Sister Mirochnick's. She is the sweetest lady! She has had cancer a few times but it went into remission over the summer, she just found out it came back again and is now all over her body so she is starting chemo again in a couple weeks. It's super heart breaking. While we were there the Mauer's showed up and we all ended up eating (the best russian food everrrrr) together. It was really great! The Mauer's have been one of those families that we have been trying to win over for a while (a little bit of the judgy type I think) and I think we did it!!!! Because they invited us over for NYE! YEY. They are super cool and he has the STRONGEST Philly accent I've ever heard. I wish I could bottle it up and send it to you. I'm not super good at the Philly accent but I'll keep working on it so I can show you later :). Unless I've already picked it up and haven't realized it!?!?!? Did I talk funny the other day?!!??. ha. 
We have to teach in Zone Training again this week. Apparently we did too good of a job last time and so they want us to teach again for longer....I'm not super excited about it but I know it will work out. 
GGuys! this is really random but I found something really cool today, It's called Plum Vida (you know the squishy baby food stack we like) and it's Pineapple, Carrot and Mint. Yum. I'm reallllll excited. I'll let you know if it's good. ok as I wrote that I thought that maybe the thing I found should have been a spiritual thought so here's a good one.. by elder holland “You can’t separate Bethlehem from Gethsemane or the hasty flight into Egypt from the slow journey to the summit of Calvary. It’s of one piece. It is a single plan. It considers ‘the fall and rising again of many in Israel’ [Luke 2:34], but always in that order. Christmas is joyful not because it is a season or decade or lifetime without pain and privation, but precisely because life does hold those moments for us." 

II liked that because people out here seem to have an easy time remembering christ at christmas time but then he is gone only to brisk their thoughts again at easter. The Christmas spirit is something we need all year round. Maybe keep that in mind as you set some goals and plans for the new year. Remember the "wise men still seek him" mormon message?? that's a good one too. 
Now for some follow up: What page of the Book of Mormon are all of you on??????? it's not too late to start if you havent yet but remember you only have till March 17 till I come and you get to be tell me face to face weather you have compleated it or not :) 
also did you watch the angels we have heard on high piano guys video??? tell me if you liked it! (ok i already know you loved it so I guess you can tell me how many times you watched it :)) 

Love you all a million hundred. Have a happy happy new year!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Sister Bailey Loves YOU!

Monday, December 22, 2014

12/22/14 | Merriest of Merries!

Christmas is coming!!!'s practically hereeeee!!!
Whoa, this week was a good one, we were able to be a part of the most
incredible lesson! Last Sunday Bishop Ackerman invited us to come to
his house on Thursday for dinner and a lesson with a member and his
non member girlfriend named Sara. (whoot! IBM). Fast forward to
Thursday night when we arrive at Bishops house, Then Ardit (the
member) and Sara arrive! We greeted them and Sara was all like, I am
so glad it's you!!! uhhh what?? Turns out she was at church last week
and heard us speak in sacrament meeting, she had been worried which
missionaries would be the ones teaching her that night. haha. We had a
wonderful meal and got to know Sara more. She and Ardit had been
dating for a while now and she finally decided that she wants the
gospel in her life. We sat down for the lesson and said a prayer. The
spirit was so strong. Literally the strongest I have ever felt it in a
lesson. We taught the restoration and even though we are not perfect
teachers, the spirit was testifying of everything we taught. Bishop
helped us teach a lot and it was just wonderful. I invited Sara to be
baptized and she said yes!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! WE ARE SO EXCITED FOR
HER! She was trying to describe what she was feeling (the spirit) and
said that it felt like she was finally home for the first time. I
thought that was cool. We explained to her that it was the spirit and
she said it was such a strong feeling you could cut it with a knife!
:) Wow it was good. Then bishop was like, Now, we need to talk about
where you live sara. And I'm all thinking "oh no! They live together
and aren't living the law of chastity and this is going to be a
problem because she can't get baptized until she moves out bla bla
bla...." Then she tells us she lives in Norristown. (wayyy out of our
area, clear next to west chester) So I'm all like "oh thank goodness"
and sister cost is basically crying in the corner because we can't
teach her. Anyways, we were so so sad that we can't teach her but i'm
so glad that she is going to get baptized and that we were able to be
apart of her first lesson. Oh how I hope all of you get an experience
like that in your life time. :)
We also got to teach my new best friend Greg this week. He's 10 and
we're pretty sure he has ADHD. Oh it was a wonderful lesson! We
brought the primary president with us because greg thinks primary is
boring so we brought her to convince him otherwise :). we're sneaky
like that. The lesson went so good, he is a super genius. We taught
him the gospel of Jesus Christ with the gospel nails object lesson. He
loved it! I'll have to show you that one sometime, it's pretty neat.
He also came to the ward christmas party on Saturday!! yay! (but was
sick on Sunday so he didn't get to come to church but guess what that
his (LA) Grandpa came! yay)
We called a girl named Nicole this week to set up an appointment with
her (we are taking over the other  sisters area since they got
transferred and she was in their notes), while we were talking with
her we invited her to come to the ward christmas party and SHE
CAME!!!!!! WHAT?! that never happens! We were so so so excited and she
has 2 of the cutest baby girls I have ever seen! She didn't make it to
church like she planned on but we are meeting with her tomorrow. I
guess her husband is in prison and is a member and when he found out
she was in contact with the missionaries he was so excited, so that's
really good.
We've been meeting with a less active family named the McCrory's and
they are fantastic, they had us over for dinner this week. It will
take a while for them to be reactivated but I'm sure some day it will
happen. Unfortuatly with the boundary changes we have to turn their
teaching over to the Elders. Oh well.
We also got to meet with the Rivera Family. He is a member but none of
the kids or his wife are. We taught them the plan of salvation using
my little cut out buddies and it went so well! I've been making Sister
Cost lead out all of the lessons this week and she's been doing good!
Even though she dosn't think so. At the end of that lessson we invited
them to be baptized, Sister Rivera said maybe but that she wanted her
kids to all be baptized. YAY, maybe isn't no! We have to give them to
the elders too but hopefully we'll see them at church.
I am oh so glad I get to talk to yous this week! Ah I can't even
believe it :). We have christmas conference tomorrow so I'll be
getting your packages then :)! yayyyy. k I don't really have anything
else to say since i'll be talking to you so soon! hootie hootie!

LOVE<3 Sister Bailey

Monday, December 15, 2014

12/15/14 | Hello from Pennypack

Happy Happy Merry Merry! 
I am SO excited for Christmas! We had a super week filled with Christmas Spirit and pass along cards. The coolest thing happened!We were leaving an appointment with a less active and were headed to the car. We saw a woman moving around her garbage cans and stopped to help her. I introduced us as missionaries, we got talking, and I asked her if she celebrated Christmas. She said she "sort of did Christmas." I chuckled a little and asked her what on earth that meant! She then went on to tell us how she really hated how Christmas has turned into such a commercial holiday that came with so much stress instead of joy and peace. We readily agreed with her and went on to tell her about the message we have been sharing with everyone this season. She was very excited to see 'He is the Gift' and invited us over the next day to show her and her eight year old granddaughter! (They had to reschedule because they got sick, but we've been in contact with her and she is still really looking forward to having us over.) 
After our conversation with that woman, we continued down the street, away from our car for some reason. Just a few houses down, a woman (Johannah) emerged and asked from her porch, "Hey did you girls say you were missionaries?!" (she had heard us talking to her neighbor down the street and had gone in her house and waited patiently for us to walk by) "Yes! we are missionaries!" we replied as we walked through her gate and up to her door. She sat down on her stairs and told us that her mother had died within the past year and she was having a really hard time with it. We were able to teach and testify of the plan of salvation right then and there! Then she told us about a friend she has who the missionaries found, taught and baptized. She has been able to witness the complete turn around he has been able to make in his life with the gospel and wants the same for herself. We will hopefully be able to meet with her this week. 
Ah, this was just the coolest experience for me because I usually don't introduce us as missionaries. I try to tell them that we are servants of the lord or messengers of god because people get freaked out by the word 'missionary.' But for some reason I said it that day. I am so grateful I did! If I hadn't, Johannah wouldn't have stopped us! And I have no idea why we even walked down the street instead of going to our car. I guess the spirit can prompt us to do thing without us even realizing it sometimes. 
We had Golden Retraining on Tuesday, It's this 5 hour meeting that trainers and golden's get to go to and it's the best! President and Sister Anderson and the AP's taught us 100 good things! We watched a talk called "It's better to Look up" by Elder Someone Cook. New favorite. Also, when we first got to the meeting, I went up and played the prelude music cause no one else was. People were bustling around getting settled and President came in. He walked right up to the stand and leaned over to me. Right up in my face he says to me, "You have been hiding that  from me your whole misssion!?!" haaaa, well most of my Zone's know I play, I told him. " Ah! just keep playing!" he instructed and walked away. Looks like I've got to watch my back at missionary meetings from here on out :). Oh then Elder Tarry was conducting and announced the song and prayer bla bla bla, then turns to me and is like, Oh and sister bailey will you play? And that is why I don't play at missionary meetings. because then they ask you to play and you've got to say, uh yeah, no I can't read music. and everyone stares at you real funny like you are a lying lie face because clearly you can play the piano. Yeah so that happened :). 
On Wednesday the YW had young women's in excellence thingy. They asked me to speak at it and it went pretty well.Thursday it snowed!!! and stuck but then melted so still no snow on the ground up here but I'm not sad. We had district meeting in Jerettown so we had to go pick up the elders (they don't have a car) and drive for an hour, which is strange considering that it was supposed to me 15 min away. We had the best meeting. Elder Millerberg taught us about Elias and how he is a person back in Noah time but that Elias is also a title meaning forerunner or  restorer. Look it up in the guide to the scriptures, there is some pretty cool stuff in there. We also learned about family history work. I got on family search and guess what, Reva Petersen isn't on my trree. mom, can you do me a favor and go in to my family serch and get that sorted out??? I dont want to break it :). After the meeting we got to have lunch with the Carrs! They are the ones overseeing the temple sight. They fed our whole Zone a Christmas feast! It was wonderful! 
I gave a talk yesterday about sharing the gift. It went rather well, sister cost spoke too. They are changing up our area this transfer, The other sisters that were in pennypack are being doubled out and our district leader is now our zone leader which leaves our district without a district leader and I highly doubt they will put more elders into our ward so we might be experiencing some zone boundary changes this week. Our area is probably going to be doubling in size so that should be a fun take over. The Pennypack ward is awesome! We seriously love it here! 

Love you all 100

Sister Bailey 

Monday, December 8, 2014

12/8/14 | Hellooo

Dear Family 

How are you all doing?! I'm good because I'm eating hi-chews as I type this. We had a really quite memorable week :). Lets start with...
MONDAY: We had the most smashing day in Center City Philadelphia! We took the subway and Sister Cost was freaking out with excitement (she had never been on the subway before) We got off at City Hall (its a super cool station, it comes up above ground in the middle of city hall...just google it, it's cool. We made our way across the street to Love Park to find the Christmas Village. That is my favorite christmas thing ever! I think I'll come every year. We went and saw all the vendors and marveled at their very costly things before we settled on buying some foreign cheese and calling it quits. From there we made our way to the temple! Oh my goodness it is coming along so nicely!!!! Its so big! Here is something fun to know about it, when the church was working with the city of Philadelphia to get the building permits and other tedious things sorted out, the Catholic church threw a fit and said that the temple couldn't be taller than their cathedral just a few blocks away. The church complied and made it the exact same height, but because of a slight incline of the land, our temple is a wee bit taller :). thats all. Anyways, as we were walking up the block to the temple, guess who we saw......Sister Bettilyon!!!! WAaaahooooo! What a coincidence right?!  Just kidding there are no such things as coincidences, especially when you invite your favorite people to meet you in the city on p day :). So we made our way back to Love Park with her and her companion (Sister Larsen from Alpine!) and then we met up with Sister Shaia! oh my goodness right?! thats way too many fun people in the same place to be allowed. We took 100 pictures and then went to grab some foods at Reading Terminal Market. YUM. There we found Sister Manson! here is a fun story about running into her: We had planned on meeting her and had called her earlier to see where they were. they were still doing chores and said they would call us when they were done. Our phone is very special and decided not to do anything when they called 100 times. :( So they gave up on trying to find us and were starving to death so they moseyed their way to the Market. Sister Manson was having a sad day and really wanted to see me badly, so she closed her eyes and said a little prayer pleading to Heavenly Father to let them find us somehow. Right when she opened her eyes, there I was waving vigorously from  across the way! Happy Happy Happy! After Lunch we made the trek to the rocky steps and marveled at what a beautiful city we were in at the top. Ah, Philadelphia truly is beautiful. (Mom and Dad, you know...NYC is just a short train ride away, haha) Oh I forgot to mention what a warm day it was too! all the way up in the 60's! I didn't even wear a coat :). Night was falling, so we made our way back to the subway station to findd that  sister cost had lost her subway token, unfortunate. We ended up having to baack ttrack to the station that sold tokens but it was all good. That night we taught a leess active  familiy.  yay. 

We had interviews with President Anderson!!! I Love President Anderson. We had a wonderful chat. When I first got in there, he looked at me and said, "Sister Bailey, Sister  Cost thinks you walk on water!" Ah I chuckled a bit and said "I know, its the worst" He smiled real big and said that he agreed with her. He went on to contemplate what he was going to do without me when I go home. I told him to just let me stay!!! but he can't, oh well it was worth a try. He has some big big plans for the pennypack area. He had me draw our the ward boundaries and the missionary area boundaries on the chalk board and we discussed possibilities of changes to be made. Our ward has too many mmissionaries so he wanted to pick my brain on how I would change stuff. It was good.

That night we taught a new less active that contacted the bishop because she wants to ccome back!!! Her name is Belinda and I think she is secretly a model, but her cover is tthat she works at a bank. She is so ready to come back to church it is incredible! and she wants to get into family history! 

Thursday: Zone Training. We were asked to teach for a portion of the training about Repentance and Companionship Unity. It went so well! We had been preparing when we had spare time through the week and I was wondering how it would all come together. Let me tell you how it came together: the Holy Ghost! We had prepared as much as we possibly could and just jumped into it with faith so the holy ghost helped us and made up the difference in our message. Me and the Holy Ghost came up with the 7 Be's to a Happy Companionship during one of my personal studies earlier in the week :). They are:

Be Meek
Be Humble
Be Honest
Be Patient
Be Sorry
Be Repentant
Be a Listener 

We taught some other stuff with it too and everyone loved it! The Zone Leaders had asked me to do the musical number too so I whipped up a little mash-up of "when I am baptized" and "let zion in her beauty rise" and roped sister cost, sister clark and sister ricks to sing. It went really well! I just love the spirit music brings! After the meeting we had trainer accountability with the Zone Leaders and gave them a double in list before we hit the pavement. 

Friday: Exchanges 
Sister Manson came to work in Pennypack with me for the day. We had the most incredible day! Sister cost and I had identified a street we wanted to knock (due to all of the christmas lights we saw on it) so I took sister Manson there and we started knocking with little success. So we switched to talking to literally every person that we saw on that street, weather they were just walking by or getting in or out of their car etc etc. It was incredible! We ended up staying on that one half block for at least 3 hours. One girl, named Becky, we knocked on her door and used the he is the gift approach. she was interested and we showed it to her right there on her doorstep #iPadblessing. She wants to meet with us again! Elder Millerberg (our district leader) came up with a facebook project for our district. With every person we talk to about he is the gift, we are to take a selfie with them and the card, post it on facebook, tag them and have them share it on their wall. cool huh, so we took a selfie with becky and are super excited to meet with her again. Then we talked to a man named Tom who was getting out of his car with his son, his son was rude and stomped into the house but tom stayed out to talk with us. We shared the he is the gift video and he wants to come to church! We gave him a Book of Mormon and he was so excited to read it1 (he didnt end up being able to come to church this week because of his work but he is coming next week!) Then we ran into a rude woman to told us to bug off. very rude. (I'm telling you this for a reason, remember this lady). We went about our business talking to everyone. Lots of rude Philadelphians, lots of nice-ish (nice by east coast standards, which apparently isnt nice but I can't tell anymore) people. We stopped and talked to a woman smoking on her porch. She wasn't interested but somehow found herself walking from the cover of her porch (it was raining) down her sidewalk and to her gate where we were waiting to talk to her. Turns out she is Puerto Rican and lives down there for half of the year. She recognized our tags, put two and two together and told us about the Elders that visit her in Puerto Rico. She said she sees them all the time and always invites them in for a break and drink of water. I asked her if she knew what they taught people and she said no. She still wasnt interested in hearing it from us but I asked her if she would do something for me. I pulled out a restoration pamplet and told her that we teach people about the restored gospel of Jesus Christ. I asked her to, whenn she was in puerto rico next week and saw the elders, to pull our this pamphlet and ask them to teach her. I explained that they would be so shocked and thrilled! I wrotte our  name and phone number on the back and told her to call us and tell us their reaction to our little prank :) She laughed and delightfully agreed! Now when the elders teach her, she will feel the spirit and be baptized before the returns to the US! After that eencounter  we made our way back down the street. We ran into that mean woman again, she was clearly still angry and trying to wash her windows. We opened her gate and approached her, she assured us that she wasn't interested but that we could knockk on her door and see if her boyfriend was interested. We watched her struggle for a moment, then I told her that I would be washing her windows today. She looked att me like I was mad but agreed because of my height advantage. As I washed her winddows  we were able to talk with her and get to know her. Let me just tell you taht  sservice  seriously softens hearts because by the end of or talk with her. she was hugging us (liek  5 times each) and saying that she knew it was no coincidence that we ccame to her her that day. We had a return appointment with her on wednesday  :). That night we taught Ross (after our dinner appointment where the members made us wwalk ttheir ddog...) oh my she is a hard one to teach. She is all over the place! First we get there and she makes me heal her bleeding cat with some ointment..the cat seriously hated it and tried to kill me. Ross kept bringing up strange hebrew and jewish books and dead sea scrolls and weird stuff I dont know about. It was rough. 

We got to watch the devotional! Want to know my favorite part?? The part where everryone sang together and I couldnt help but think about all you hooligans singing at tthe same time with me :) Guess what! Before the devo, there were people practicing sinnging for the mesiah sing a long in the chapel, and I knew most of them!! they were all from the morrisville ward! It was so fun to see them all!

Well family, I love you so so much. all the way to the moon and back (speaking of, did you see the moon the last night!? it was incredible!) I hope you happy week. I get to speak at young womens in excelence on wednesday and then speak again in church onn sunday so wish me luck! You all mean the world to me :) mmmmwwaaahh! 

Love, Sister B. 

Sister Bailey Loves YOU!

Monday, December 1, 2014



Family!! I love you all so very much do you know that?? We had a wonderful holiday week here in Philadelphia. Thanksgiving day was spent delivering thanksgiving cards to members and investigators and potentials...I know thanksgiving cards aren't really a thing...but we did it anyways :) we had lunch at the Vega's, ohhhhh boy it was so scrumptious!! We had rice and beans instead of potatoes and 100 other yummertonness. The elders were there too. We delivered more cards and visited lots of happy and some unhappy people. Ha one lady was an investigator that had been on our list since we got to the area. We had tried to call her a couple times but she hung up both was awkward. So we decided to be so niiiiccceee and write her a thanksgiving card so maybe we could see what her deal was. we knocked on her door and saw her get up from her table through the glass door. She walks over to the door, stares at us and walks away. Ha, ok fine we'll just leave this really nice card for you byeeee! So that happened then we went to the Menezes for thanksgiving dinner! They are the coolest family and they live like a block away from us. They are super in sister Menezes grew up in the Amazon jungle and ate orangutan because her dad was a hunter. But don't worry we didn't eat that for dinner, we just had turkey :). The most beautiful turkey I've ever seen! That dinner was soooooo gooooood but the best part was getting to know the Menezes better. They invited us to come for Christmas too! Wooohooo. When we were leaving, Gustav (their son), goes "oh! I finally figured out who you look like!!" So I'm like lemme guess Jennifer Lawrence. Yep. So they pull up pictures of her and the girl from divergent I think and they all decide that I'm a cross between the two. Lovely.  
This week we had our first snow day :). That means that the cars get grounded and we get to be cold and creative :) luckily we had a lot of work to do on the area map and organizing the Ward list in LDS tools. I had the whole Ward pinned and organized into area lists then my app deleted itself...which doesn't sound like a big deal but it took be a solid 5 hours to do. But not worries, I just started over and it's all finished now! We have our whole area map covered in color coordinating dots that represent members and other people. 
We were able to use it for our Sunday plans and because we were able to be more organized in our plans, things ran much smoother. The work we've been able to do this week has mostly been finding members. We have so many members on our Ward list that no one knows. We've ran into lots of "they moved 20 years ago" and a few "my husband is against the church" but finally Sunday night, the lord blessed us to had a glimpse of the fruit of our labors. It was 5:35 and we had a dinner appointment at 6 about 15 min away (according to the gps), we weren't sure if we would have enough time for one more stop by but decided that we may as well because we were close. We knocked on the Barton's door. I love how you can always tell if the person answering the door is the less active member you are looking for. There is something in their eyes, almost like "you found me!" Thats the look sister Barton gave us as we introduced ourselves. She was pleased to see us but didn't let on much else. Our conversation was short, but I know she felt the spirit when she agreed to have us come over tomorrow night! Yay! 
Well that's about it from my neck of the woods. Except for that I LOVE sister cost. Seriously she is the best best best. You will all love her too :) I'm on my way to center city for the day so I might be able to send pics on our way home. Byeeeeeee

sister b 

Sister Bailey Loves YOU!

Monday, November 24, 2014

11/24/14 | Happy Birthday Jenna!!!!! (and happy thanksgiving too ;))

My sister is the oldest sister I have! HB to you sis! (I put this at the beginning because you are the most important item of business) 

We had another incredible week in the PPM. We found 3 new investigators!!! Listen to this:

Pam White: 
I got a facebook message from Sister Baluyot (I have no idea how to say her name either) saying that she has an investigator in Jersey who has a friend that is interested in meeting with us. YA! So we went to contact her but she was really busy so we set up an appointment to come back. When we came back she was so happy that we were there (even though she had forgotten about our appointment). As we started the lesson with some HTBT, she was interested in hearing our message but made it clear that she was baptist and not interested in changing religions or anything. We said ok and continued to share. The lesson went great, sister cost is already a really great teacher!!! As part of her 12 week training she is required to invite someone to be baptized. Before we went into the lesson I told her that this was it :). And she did it!! She invited her to be baptized at the end of the lesson and Pam said yes! She went from not wanting to get involved in our church to accepting the invitation to be baptized! It's a spirit miracle! She's going to come to church next week and we are super excited to be teaching her. She is fantastic and super teachable. 

We've been doing a lot of finding this week. Chasing down potentials and a little bit 'o tracting here and there as the spirit directs. While we were paddling through our potentials, we stopped by a Liberian woman named Jenneh. We're guessing it's pronounced 'Jenna' but I prefer to call her Jenn-eh. It's funner that way. Anyways, so we went and knocked on her door and she answered. She was happy to see us but was busy too. We were able to quickly teach her a little introduction to the book of mormom and the restoration, commit her to read from it and set a return appointment. She is super special. We are meeting with her on Tuesday

Best for last:
We were out cold knocking by Frankford street, Sister cost was not a fan. We knocked a couple, no one answered, someone was rude, someone just declined but thanked us for our time, then a little hispanic lady invited us in! Which I thought was weird because she didn't seem to speak english but I usually do ok with the combination of my broken spanish and their broken english. She insisted that we come in and sit on her couch, I told her her casa was bonita! She tells us she doesn't speak english 100 times so I pull out my handy dandy spanish restoration pamphlet that I carry around for such a time as that! I was super excited cause I thought I was prepared....Then she gets out that she only speaks Portuguese. I'm really glad my mission president hasn't assigned me to learn that language because it's...kookoo. So then this awkward thing happens where she calls her friend who speaks english and chats with her for a bit, then hands the phone to me. I explain who we are and she says that her friend would feel comfortable if we would leave. Super awkward. It's still not clear to me why she invited us in in the first place...either the spirit compelled her to, or its some weird brazilian cuture thing. Strange. So that happened, and I laughed, sister cost didn't think it was very funny though. She's not into the 'I'm a missionary and feel awkward all the time' feeling yet ;). We continued down the street. No positive answers. Sister Cost starts up with a bit of thanks, so I stopped right in my tracks and had a little teaching moment. I told her that no matter how worthless tracting may feel to her, I've met too many people that were 'tracted into' to loose faith in it. I said that the spirit led us to this street for a reason and that we were going to knock it until we found the one. I told her that I had faith that we were going to find someone today and my faith was enough. She didn't seem to pleased with my speech but on we went. 3 doors later we knocked on the door of Roz Hernandez. She was so please to see us and invited us in. Turns out she knew a little bit about us and our religion and had 100 questions. IT was incredible!!! We were able to teach her about the book of mormon, temples, eternal families. prayer and the holy ghost! She is so prepared to receive the gospel! At the end of our lesson she committed to read from the book of mormon and pray about it. Sister Cost said the closing prayer and it was so much filled with the spirit!!! When we left, right as the door closed behind us, she turned to me and said she was sorry for not having the faith to find. I told her it was ok because it was a huge faith building experience for the both of us :) yay for faith. 

Today is the most beautiful day on the planet! It's 70 degrees outside!!!!!!!! I am just over the moon about how warm  it is! I'm not even wearing a coat today. We finally got all unpacked this morning and went for a taco to celebrate. Then we decided it was so nice outside that we were going to have a picnic and my favorite river in the whole world....THE DELAWARE! So we drove just a little bit and found her! Oh my I was so excited to be there I jumped for joy! We saw a tug boat, a US coast guard ship and at least 5 seagulls! I haven't seen Seagulls since I was home!! It was such a beautiful sight! 

Sister Cost is the best best companion. She is so wonderful and we are seriously just like sisters. Here we are now!: 
aren't we just cute!? so so happy. 

We have 2 thanksgiving dinners to attend on thursday, both with hispanic families!!! yayyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy! So yes we are being taken care of :) 
The pennypack ward is super the greatest, we had a ward thanksgiving dinner on saturday and I met Sister Vega! She is the one that is friends with Leon Shwabb....or whatever his name is :) crazy small world, she just came up to me, checked my name tag and gave me a biiigest hug and said "this is from your mom!!!" I was super confused, "Sister Bettilyon??...or my real mom??" hahaha I think she will be at one of our thanksgiving dinners :). 
The He is the Gift thingy is so good! You will love love love the video :). WE are getting special pass along cards to go with it but we've already started with the joy to the world cards (the first presidency wants us passing out 10 a day!) 

OK, times about out on my computer. Love you all. I am thankful for every single one of yous :) LOVE LOVE LOVE<3
Sister B 

us at the delawareeeeee! 

I taught her some object lessons!!! ;) 

Monday, November 17, 2014

11/17/14 | Hello from Philadelphia!!!

Happy day to all of you!!!!!

What a wonderful week it has been! Monday we packed packed packed and said 100 goodbyes. It was really quite heart breaking but that feels like 100 years ago now. Sister Palacios mended tons of my skirts and dresses because she is the nicest human in America. I hope yous can meet her someday :). We had dinner with the Leitz and they kept talking about dad and what a wonderful person they thought he was just from their brief encounter. Brother Leitz asked me if he was the stake president, I chuckled and told him that dad was the bishop (for one more week!) and he said that he could just tell that he was either the bishop or the stake president :) Dad, you must have a reallll shiny countenance. Linda cried a lot when we had to go say bye to her. I cried too because I don't like seeing people sad. But it's amazing how quickly the Lord can turn your love towards your new area when you are transferred :). I LOVE MY NEW AREA. I'm serving in the Pennypack ward in Philadelphia! It's in North Philly and right below Morrisville. It's the same ward but different area that Sister Bettilyon served in while I was in Morrisville so I've already got an in with the ward because everyone LOVED her. Perfect :).
On Tuesday Sister Casey and I made the trek to Broomall for transfer meeting. I was soooooo nervous to find out where I would be transferred too. I think doubling into an area is more stressful than training. (unless your golden is cray...mine's not but I'll get to her later :)) I was so so so excited when I got called to the middle of the gym with Pennypack in big letters on the screen! I'm finally in Philly and it is truly, truly an adventure. After the meeting the two elders that were just here came and found me and airdropped me some notes on the area, gave me the area phone and apt keys and then he pulled out a SEPTA pass. That's the bus system of Philadelphia. boooo. So I made my way to my good buddy, Elder Jones', office to inquire. 5 min later I had the keys to a brand new car!!!! WOOOHOO! Then we had trainers meeting and lunch. Just lovely. We got put into trios for the night, I was with Sister Twitchel and Sister Ririe! Some of my favorites. We loaded up my stuff in Sister Twitchells truck (she's serving in the north end of the mission where it snows all year round....I'm pretty sure it snows all year up there anyways...:)) and brought my stuff to pennypack. The apartment was...well....grubby but nothing that a little elbow grease and sister love wouldn't fix! After that the three of us headed to sister ririe's side of philly to teach an English class to some lovely African women. It was quite the experience. Did some other stop by's and hit up the wawa for dinner.
Then it was Wednesday! Golden Pick-up day!!! We went back to Broomall and headed into the gym to wait for all the little babies. They came in looking sooooo scared, I was talking to Elder Jones when they came and he told me to go greet them because they actually were as scared as they looked. I went and gave all the baby sisters a big hug and introduced myself. I think that helped a little bit. They all looked pretty nice so I was pretty hopeful that I'd get a good one. And a Good one did I get! Her name is Sister Cost. She's from Preston Idaho, a convert of two years this February and seriously the best best best. She has had a hard, I mean hard life but is so optimistic! She's so strong and has a huge testimony. She is the most prepared golden I have ever met. So basically training her will be the funnest thing. We're already the best of friends and have gotten some good work done!
Our first night here one of our investigators called us and somehow mentioned that there was YW at the church that night. So we got a hold of the YW president and asked if they needed any help. She said they would love for us to come! What a perfect opportunity! We got to meet all of the young women and they are all super solid and great. Then the Bishop showed up! We got talking to him and ended up getting to have a meeting with him later that night so he could give us a run down of the ward and give us assignments!!! What a set of miracles!!
Our first lesson was with a recent convert named Boymah. We brought the bishops wife with us and the lesson went really really well! We got to know him and committed him to go out teaching with the elders and prepare to go to the temple. We are going to start helping him prepare in our up coming lessons.
We taught a woman named Dusica (doo-si-ka), she is Sirbian. The lesson went so so well but she told us that her husband didn't like the idea of us meeting with her. So we've been praying that his heart will be softened (his name is Zoran Catovic if you want to join us).
Then when we were working on finding some of the Less Actives bishop sent us out to find, we came across a Jillian. She walked right up to the door and answered with a big smile, "sisters!" she exclaimed then spilled her whole story, then she asked us if we would teach her boyfriend sometime! She still has a testimony after all of this time and wants him to feel the happiness the gospel brings. Then she told us that her boyfriend's mother lived down the street and her husband had just passed away--so down the street we went to share a message with her. She wasn't home but we plan on trying again next week. Sister Cost is so cute, we'll be out working with no real success then we'll run into someone like Jillian and she's on cloud nine! She jumps and skips and gives me a big hug. It's adorable. She is the best golden ever.
Our area is filled, I mean seriously filled with Russians. We even have Russian to English dictionaries and other Russian books at our apartment. Our entire apt complex is Russians! So I decided to thumb through the how to learn Russian books the other day. It didn't take me long to decide that that language is bogus and that I will not learn it...probably ever. I even looked up Moliko for some context on what on earth their letters look and sound like...yeah it didn't help. But could you ask grandma and grandpa how to say hello?? What does dos-v-danya mean again?? none of my very little russain is coming in handy yet....haha.
The rest of the population of our area is made up of Africans (mostly Liberians, like Kollie!!! remember Kollie from west chester?) and 100 other people that I can't remember right now. Our ward has 3 sets of missionaries in it and it is just going to be wonderful. This area is seriously going to explode within the next 2 transfers!!!
I love you all dearly!!
signing off from the City of Brotherly Love,
Sister B

Monday, November 10, 2014

11/10/14 | ok bye!


Well, the time has come for me to leave the City of Reading. No more stopping at the corner store for a 1$ empanada and nibbling at it while we skip down the gnarly brick sidewalks of downtown Reading. *sigh* No more pink guava tang or adobo. No pagoda or hiking Mt Penn (which actually is not a mountain). ahhh well though.  Sister Casey is leaving too. We are being doubled out and I don't think we are being replaced. I guess the ward wasn't utilizing the missionaries so they are taking one of us out. It's ok though because we had a pow wow with the Elders where they asked me everything about everyone so they would be prepared to take over. I think the hardest thing about missionaryness is leaving areas. You get so attached to the people you serve and then you have to go and tell them that you are leaving. It's especially hard when they cry. We had to do that to Linda yesterday. I really really didn't want to tell her, but eventually we had to. She cried a lot but then said she didn't want to think about it. So we are going over today to spend some p day time with her. She will be ok. Her sister Carmen (our purple hair investigator) was really sad too. She was so so so excited to have us teaching her. Sister Pickett and I taught her on exchanges back in September when she was visiting Linda. She finally moved here from Queens this week. When we went over to see her, she was so happy! "MY SISTERS!!!" she yelled when she saw it was us at the door and came and gave us big big hugs. We were able to have one lesson about the book of mormon and get her a copy of the children's book of mormon (she is an 8th grade drop out and struggles with reading) She was so excited and started reading it immediately. Linda saw it and decided she wants one too :) so we'll have to get her one. We went down stairs after our lesson and Linda (Carmen's daughter) was down there. We got talking with her and she wanted to do my hair. Ok! It was actually a miracle! She's pretty quiet and shy so while she was doing my hair (in her comfort zone) I was able to talk about the gospel with her! She agreed to read the book of mormon!!! yay! Awkward moment: The Zone Leaders stopped by to contact Carmen (Linda and Carmens mom, she is a less active and speaks better spanish) while we were sitting in their living room with Linda jr doing my hair…."yep! This IS actually how sisters do service and open doors for teaching opportunities…" They didn't say anything about it though..haha. Anyways, when we told Carmen we are leaving she was so sad, "right when I move here my sisters have to leave!?!" super sad. But she has a super strong desire to be baptized so all will be well. Oh want to hear the story behind her purple hair?? So she was super sick with cancer and stuff and ended up being in a coma for 8 months. When she woke up, all she saw was purple..strange but since then purple is her color. purple hair, purple shoes, purple clothes, purple purple everything purple. She is a gem. 

The rest of the good bye parade was good. Stopped by Rose's after church, had some big hugs and laughs and the best part is that it's not actually good bye :) wellll because of that whole plan of salvation thing where we get to see our friends all later AND because I'll be back for the temple dedication :) and all roads for the pennsylvania mormon lead to utah :) From there we went to Carina's. Bless her! She is my favorite! She magically had some fresh home made empanada's waiting for us :) soooo scrumptious! Apparently she made them for the spanish elders who were coming by later…the same elders that came while Linda was doing my hair…needless to say they just think we go around playing with our hair and eating all their empanadas….don't worry we left tons for them :). Then we went to the Palacios!!! Sister Palacios found out my favorite food was curry last week and insisted that she make me some before I left. I didn't protest. So we wen't and shared a wonderful meal of slightly hispanisized curry, she is also a master seamstress so we watched as she magiced out some wonderful scarves for us and fixed some of our clothes :) she is simply fabulous! 

Today we are going to a late lunch with Sister Bright and her daughter at Panera!!! Halleluja!!!!  Then we are going to Lindas, Then we get to go to the Leitz one last time (I love them so so much and they were so happy to have gotten to meet you dad!!! They said you were wonderful) Their daughters house is like 5 min from our house so I'll surely be seeing them in the future ;) yay!!! After that we have a stop by at the Fultz. We had a random opportunity yesterday (aka sister palacios ran into us in the library after sacrament and didn't have a teacher for YW, naturally we volunteered…just like she knew we would) to teach the YW. It was on helping the poor and needy or something so we found one of my favorite talks by President Eyring "opportunities to do good"  which coincidentally has the BEST mormon message that goes with it. Here's the trick with using Mormon Messages (Annie I hope you are reading this) although you will be tempted to save if for last for time's sake -- Don't always show it first. Mormon messages have a way to bring the spirit so nicely (especially to a room full of children or teens), it captivates their attention and allows them to open up to you after. So we showed the mm first and shared some of our thoughts. We ended up having a really good discussion about small ways they can "do good" whether it be "bringing someone a pizza" or "texting someone HEY!!" (those were there top two idea…I thought they were good because both of those things make me happy) One of the girls, Delilah, told us a funny story. We were talking about just texting people to let them know you care and she shared an experience of when her mom was scolding her for something silly, right in the middle of a grounding sentence--her mom received a text from us. I don't even recall what we said or why we randomly texted her but according to Delilah, her whole demeanor changed that instant with just a few nice words from the sister missionaries. After the lesson, Ashely Fultz asked us if we could come over today and meet one of her friends!!! That is a huge step! So I hope all goes well and that we can invite her friend to meet with the missionaries. After that we have an appointment with the Resnick clan, the part member/less active family! They are super great, I think the Elders are going to come for a hand-off lesson. 

That's that. Reading is a special place. You all would love it…probably. Actually most people that live around reading steer clear of the actually city, so it's been rather hard to get member presents. Oh well, Reading is my jam. 

On another note of news. President Anderson just called me and asked me to be a trainer. BAHHHH. That means me and baby golden will be doubling into an area. What an adventure this will be!!! So I'll be spending the next couple days in Broomall with the Jones' yayyy! 

Love you all. God Bless.
Sister B. 

Monday, November 3, 2014

11/3/14 | Winter is Here


Daylight savings ended yesterday. That means winter has begun! Coldest day in coldtown was yesterday. You know that bitter bone chilling wind you hear about…it's real and it was vicious yesterday. But today is a little better :) and it won't snow until after Thanksgiving! 
We had a pretty good week. On Tuesday we volunteered at St Andrews church to make candy! They sell it for christmas. It was so fun! I sprinkled crushed up nuts on to the freshly coated chocolates. The lady I was working with was super nice! I asked her a hundred questions because old people like that :) She was from Polish decent so she had some really cool stories. We walked all over the read city that day and it was actually real warm for some odd reason. We took a mini break for a min at a billion year old cemetery. super pretty. 
Wednesday we volunteered at the library in Birdsboro. That is always a joy. The librarians love us :).  That night was the ward halloween party. Perks of having a companion that is the opposite of you is that you can dress up as them for halloween. So we did that and it was quite funny. Everyone who realized what we had done laughed pretty hard and everyone told sister casey she should do her hair and make up like that every day, which is funny because I did it for her :). 
Thursday was our last district meeting of the transfer (we have zone training next week). It was really good. I have super loved having Sister Menlove and Sister Pickett in my district :) They are such a joy! Our district leader, elder petersen made us pie because he is really nice like that. 
Sister Casey met with President Anderson that afternoon. I suppose their talk went well because she's been…I guess a little happier. While we were waiting for President (he was doing an exit interview with an elder) we waited in the hall with Elder Bunker (the elders companion…actually they were on exchanges…so his temporary companion). We got talking to him and guess what. Elder Bunker is from St George and went to Dixie High and had Uncle Dave and supperrrrr loved him! He said 100 wonderful things about him and that he is sooooo smart. (His full name is Kragun Bunker if you want to tell Uncle Dave). When the elders left, sister casey went in, leaving me by my lonesome (which isn't actually lonely, it's actually quite refreshing when you are a missionary) Then out of nowhere comes Sister Broadbent, the mission psychologist. Random. She was waiting for her next appointment so she came and sat with me. (she know's me because I've had lot's of comp's work with her) We chatted, she's just realllll funny and wonderful. Makes me wish I was mentally unstable so I could chat with her every other week…just kidding. bad joke. It was Mischief Night so we had to be in at dark. 
Friday we cleaned the baptismal font. Correction: I cleaned the baptismal font. When we went to turn on the water, we found that there was a padlock on the water controls. No bueno. It was one of those number combo ones so I tried to guess for a while. We texted the WML and bishop and some other missionaries to see if anyone knew it. We waited and waited for replys, no on seemed to know. I got a little bit sick of waiting so we went to go try again. I tried some more random combinations and got frustrated, closed my eyes jumbled up the numbers real quick and said in my head "please open please open please open!" and it opened. When we found out the combo later, it turns out that it wasn't even on the numbers it was supposed to be on when it opened. So I guess the Lord takes care of his servants and makes sure they can accomplish their work, even if it's cleaning the baptismal font. 
We went to teach Linda ( a less active we work with, the one that always posts on my Facebook wall) that afternoon. The elders came over to give her mom a blessing. Her mom has been quite cold to us in the past but has been warming up lately. She's hispanic and pretends to not speak english. But when the elders came and gave her a blessing, the spirit was so strong and I know her heart was not only softened towards us but also to Linda (they don't get along). We ended up teaching her about the book of mormon (she was baptized in 1997 but doesn't remember much) and she agreed to read from it! (if we got her a large print copy in spanish..) And we are sending over the spanish elders to teach her (she understands spanish better). yay! 
Saturday morning we got up realll early to go fill the font for Dominic Koch's baptism (he is the cutest tiniest 8 year old boy in our ward) It was a miracle we figured out how to open the water controls the day before, otherwise there wouldn't have been a baptism. Everything went well. I love baptisms. That afternoon we met with Sister Rayford (LA). We invited her to invite over her nieces and nephews that live next door. She did and we taught them the plan of salvation! it was wonderful! They were so intrigued and asked so many good questions! They want us to come back next week and also want to come to church!!!! yay! 
Hope you all have a super week! Love yous! 

A little piece of Reading

Our happiest district