Wednesday, December 28, 2011

A Wonderful Christmas!

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Hey Mom,

Wow that was really fun to Skype and see ya'll on Christmas Day! And do you want to hear a miracle story?! Well at Brother Stone’s house it was a miracle because all three of us missionaries got to Skype with our families and it was all under his internet that isn't the best internet source at all. He tried to use his neighbor’s internet but couldn't do it. While the two Elders and I were Skyping, Sister Higley did a three way call on the phone with her family and her brother who is on a mission in Alaska! When we were all done Brother Stone said, “It is just a miracle ya'll could be able to do that! The Lord was really blessing ya'll to talk with your families!”

Mom it was really great to talk to Wade and Cadi and to hear their voices. I miss them lots! I love the advice Wade gave to me because it gave me hope that I can finish my Mission strong and that I'm going to see wonderful things happen! It was great to see the girls too! I can't believe how much they have truly grown! Wow when I come home it's gonna be super crazy! It's sad but funny; I can't tell Kadie or Ella apart, it's been so long since I have been around them! I loved their primary songs they sang! It totally made me cry! It was really great to see Rachel and Jackson too! I can't believe how long Rachel's hair has gotten! Holy Cow! I love the new nursing scrub outfit you bought her for her new job! It's super cute! I'm excited for dad's new Dutch Oven too! How fun! When I get home I want some of Dad's famous Peach Gobbler! Yummy! :) So ya'll got a new vacuum! Why, did the old one break or something! It was probably really warn out from Buddy's dog hair uh! Well super awesome ya'll got fun stuff for Christmas!

I loved all the gifts that I got for Christmas! The Young Women and Men sent me a stocking with some fun stuff and made super cute Christmas cards and there was some of the Young Men and Women who wrote to me too! I wrote to them back because it made my Holiday Season twenty times better! :) I also got a gift from Aunt Amy! She got me a cute small journal that I'm gonna use for my Study Journal the last months of my mission! I like it! I also got a darling watch from Grandma and Grandpa Cavalier. And today I noticed I have a package from the UPS and I have to sign for it, so I have to go in the UPS store and tell them I will pick it up tomorrow. I don't know who it's from but I'll let you know when I find out who sent me a package! :) I loved all the stuff you sent me for Christmas! I really love my CTR sign language ring! Thank you so much! I just love showing it off and I showed it to Karen and she thinks that is cool and also Sister Gentry who helps interpret for Church!

My Christmas!

My CTR Sign Language Ring --- Love it!

Christmas morning ... we went to the Spanish speaking
Sisters' apartment and opened our gifts together.

Elders new Christmas ties

Gifts I gave the Elders

So I'll tell ya what I have been up to this last week! We had choir practice this week and we are singing my favorite hymn, “I know that My Redeemer Lives!” We are going to sing it for the fireside that we are going to perform in February! They were asking people to do solo's or a duet so after practice I went up and told the choir director that I would like to do something so maybe next practice I will know if I'm gonna sing by myself or with someone so we will see! I'm pretty excited for these mission firesides that we are going to do! I think we will be able to teach more people and to just bring the spirit stronger to our areas and to have the people in Texas be more excited about Missionary work! :)

Well something really cool happened the other day that I didn't tell ya on the phone that I totally forgot … silly me. That probably means I needed to share it today in my e-mail. We were at an investigators house and were watching “Joy to the World!” It's a movie that has the Mormon Tabernacle Choir singing and telling about Jesus Christ’s Birth! It's really good! Well we were watching it with our investigators and then they had a friend stop by who also sat down and watched it. She really liked it and was commenting on the choir and the beautiful scenes from Salt Lake City. She asked her friends if she could borrow it. Well then I spoke up and said that if we could get her name and number that we could get her a copy of her own to keep! So she did!!!! She isn't in our area though but she gave us her information and she did borrow the movie until we get the information to the other missionaries to go see her. She also started to ask questions and we were answering them and she then told us her son is looking for a church where he is going to collage at ATM. She wants to learn more too! So I was really excited and super grateful! It's been neat going to their house because we always meet new people and we are coming in contact with them and spreading the Gospel Message everywhere! :) So that was pretty sweet what happened this week!

Well mom I had an interesting week with Sister Higley. She hasn't been herself lately so I asked her what was going on and what I could do to help. Well she broke down and said she felt like she hasn't been the best missionary she can be and felt like she hasn't been working as hard as she could and she said she is homesick and misses her family. I listened and just let her talk and I told her it's okay with all the feelings that she is having right now. I told her it's normal and that every missionary I know goes through that same problem! I told her it's okay if you’re not strong sometimes and that is when the Lord is here to help us. I just talked to her and gave her examples from the beginning of my mission and just told her that things are going to get better. I told her we just got to keep working really hard to find those who are waiting for us to teach them the Gospel of Jesus Christ! I bore my testimony to her about the power of the Priesthood and suggested she get a blessing. After some more convincing she ended up receiving a blessing! The Blessing was beautiful and it was all the things that she needed to hear and I felt the spirit there and if felt great! I love the power of the Priesthood! It's the best thing ever in the Gospel because it can truly bless our lives so much! And later on in the day, she thanked me and she really appreciated what I did for her that morning! :) And so I was still on a mission to help her out.

I really know that being homesick is so not fun! So I was like hmm... What family can we see to have fun at and play games for a while and not focus so much on missionary work because she was missing her family so much and the fun time of Christmas! Well the Stones popped into my head! I called them up but they were not home but we were blessed later that day to run into Sister Stone. I pulled her to the side and told her I needed her help! I explained how Sister Higley was struggling a bit and was missing home and was homesick! I then asked her if we and the Elders could come over later that night to play a few games and have a fun time! And of course she said sure! I thanked her a whole bunch and told her I really appreciated it! Sister Higley didn't know what was going on and neither did the Elders; they just knew that we were going to the Stones that night after a dinner appointment! :) We had a fun time! We all were laughing and we played Phase 10. I was grateful for this blessing that everything worked out great! :) It was so much fun and I could tell that it helped Sister Higley a whole bunch. Later that night she really thanked me for all the things I had done for her that day and then asked what she could do for me and I said, “Not a thing! I'm doing good.” I told her I just needed to help her right now because I know what she is going through because I have was there a year ago. I then told her, “It gets better after this I promise you!” And so it was a neat day on Wednesday with all things falling into place! The Lord really did hear my prayers that day to help my companion out and to give me inspiration of what to do! So grateful!

Also this past week we got to be with a family and watch “The Testaments.” It was really cool as I haven't watched that video in a long time! Near the end where Christ is atoning for our sins in the Garden of Gethsemane and also being beaten and spit upon, I just felt so much love towards my Savior Jesus Christ and it was a very sweet thing for me to have! I loved it! I loved what I felt and it made me want to become more like Him and to do all I can for my Savior! I love that movie! It's so powerful!

I can't remember if when we were Skyping if I told her about Karen this week but it was a really neat appointment. We couldn't find a member to come with us so that the Elders could come into her home and so what the Elders did was sit on the porch and signed to Karen through the window. It was so sweet of them because it was cold and raining. But the coolest thing was that when they were teaching Karen about the Birth of Jesus Christ for Christmas, I just loved how much more I was understanding the Sign Language. I just focus so much on the person who is signing so I can learn all that I can so I can be able to help Karen at church. This last week I didn't have to interpret for Karen but when Sister Gentry was interpreting I was really paying attention to her and I was just watching her and really not listening to the speakers because I was understanding it all in sign language! I don't know how to explain it and I love talking to Karen because I can sign a whole lot better with her and it's just been a really fun thing to learn the language! :) So it's pretty sweet!

Well Christmas Eve was fun! Brother Stone invited us to his house and we had breakfast for dinner … well not me … I had a chicken breast, green beans and fruit! Then we made a whole lot of different cookies, even sugar cookies, and we laughed and just had the best time ever! They had Christmas music playing and it was just lots of fun! Brother Stone took some pictures for me because it seems like I take pictures but I’m never in them! So that was pretty sweet! But it was so much fun! We chose to wear our new Christmas Pj's to their house and the Stones whore their Pj's too! It was so much fun! We just had a blast and I just felt like we were family and it was lots of fun! And not to make you sad mom, but I didn't even think of ya'll during that night, I didn't miss ya'll like I did last year. I did think of you helping dad out on Christmas eve and how busy ya'll are! Super crazy! And also during the day I did think about you making the yummy Christmas breakfast casserole! Hmmm... I miss that, but it's a blessing that I have really overcome my homesickness and that I'm not scared anymore and I can be anywhere and not freak out like I did when I was younger! Just a wonderful blessing!

Christmas Eve at the Stones!

I'm truly grateful to my Savior Jesus Christ and for all the blessings that He has given me over this past year and for how much He has truly helped me to overcome my weaknesses! It's just the neatest thing ever and just a big blessing! I can't wait for ya'll to see me and to see how much I have changed! I can't believe it's almost here, but I do hope and pray the time goes by slow so I can continue to enjoy the last couple months left!

Well I don't have much more to say but I love ya'll and am so grateful that I had the opportunity to see ya'll on Christmas! I love you lots and thanks for all the love and support ya'll give to me! I hope to hear from you soon! Love ya!

Love Sister Hawkins!

Decorating a cake at Sister Galaviz's house

I cut those strawberries in the middle ... pretty cool!

Cool picture!

Me at Meme's house


Me and Sister Henson at Zone P-day

Cloudy, rainy day!

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Serving during Christmas ... loving it!

Apparently missionaries are allowed to Skype now so instead of a phone call from Sister Hawkins on Christmas, we are going to be able to go online and skype with her.  She is pretty excited and so are we.  Let's hope all the technology works!

Monday, December 19, 2011

Hi Mom,

Well this week has been super crazy but it's been lots of fun! I had a long week and I feel tired from all the things we had to do for the week! So where do I begin?! Well we did some service for a lady by helping her decorate stuff! That was fun as we helped her get ready for a work Christmas party! It seems like we have been doing lots of service and it's been lots of fun!

Tuesday night was really fun because we had Sisters come spend the night! Sister Higley went to bed early but Sister Tanner and Sister Cocrin and I had fun visiting. They spent the night since the following day was our Christmas Mission Conference. We had fun talking and getting caught up on stuff about how life is going and lots of fun stuff! It's always fun to have sleepovers with other missionaries because then we can see how the other parts of the mission are! It was fun, but man, having four Sisters get ready in the morning, wow that is lots of work! Lol, I'm just glad that I got up really early and showered and got to take my time to look nice for the Christmas Mission Conference!

Sister Sleepover!

Wow mom the Christmas Conference was truly amazing! I loved every minute of it and it was so much fun. I got to see all my friends and all the other missionaries. I ate only salad and fruit even though I wanted the other stuff but I know it's for my health! We got really neat gifts at the party! There is an Elder serving in our mission and last Christmas his mom made us all stockings … well this year she made us Christmas Pillow cases! It's the coolest thing; don't worry I will send you a picture! It's super cool! I love it!

We got a sweet movie of all of us missionaries that I will be sending home with a package at the end of the transfer that ya'll can watch and it's pretty sweet! We also were given a pretty cd that a member in Vidor made us. This member is really musically talented and President Crawford approved it for us which is awesome! I love it! And mom we watched a really good movie too! It was a tear jerker! You and Dad really need to watch it! Heck the whole family needs to watch it! It's called “17 Miracles” and man that movie was truly powerful and really good! I loved it!

Mission Christmas Conference

Sister Black

Sister Henson

Sister Naufahu

Sister Maloki

Sister Bouwhuis

Sisters of the Mission

Guess what? Last year we had Elder Nielson of the Seventy and well he was here again this year. I didn't get pictures with them this time as they only had time to talk and then had to leave. It was so cute; his wife kissed him in front of all of us! The Sister Missionaries did the Aahhh and then the Elders were like whistling … it was so funny! But I learned so much in the conference and I got to hear the farewell testimonies for those that will be going home before the next conference and that was really neat. I got to hear Sister Kinikini's testimony! Man she made me cry. I'm gonna miss her so much mom! I hope ya'll go to her homecoming as that would mean the world to me! So please go, I will give you the information when it gets closer! Well I just had a great time at Conference!

Sister Kinikini

This past week we also had our ward Christmas party but I didn't take any pictures because I forgot and plus I was too busy because I had to interpret for Karen during the party! I'm so excited because I have been getting really better at my sign language! I can't wait to go to school to do that; I really need to see what Colleges teach sign language so I can come home and get going with school! So be on the lookout for schools for me will ya! :) I also had to interpret all day at church on Sunday and it was the coolest thing mom because sometimes I would realize that I was just signing and really going quick on it! Super cool! I wish Melanie could see how much my signing has improved!

Well guess what … the Elders had a baptism this last week and I had a really neat experience with their convert! She is such a sweet lady and she has some anxiety problems with large groups of people and so we helped her to get ready and to feel comfortable. She attended the Ward Christmas party the day before she was baptized and she wasn't gonna stay at the party but she did. At the party she asked me why everyone was so excited for her to get baptized! I said, “Well they are just so happy for you for the choice that you are making and that you are going to be blessed even more with the decisions that you have made! And you are going to get much closer with our Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ, and you are going to receive a special gift of the Holy Ghost that is going to bless the rest of your life.” I just saw this glow in her eyes that was really sweet!

At her baptism, us missionaries sang “The Spirit of God” and she really teared up! Sister Higley and I followed her into the font area and she was so overwhelmed with the Spirit. She was like, “I feel so good right now and just overwhelmed! And mom I just felt the Spirit and I knew the Spirit was helping her to now be scared and giving her comfort! It was a neat thing to experience and she got baptized! And it went so well! :) And it was cool because President and Sister Crawford came to the baptism and afterwards they took us all out to eat for lunch! So that was fun to spend time with President and Sister Crawford! I love the time I get to spend with them! They are just the coolest!

President and Sister Crawford

Well mom I got to run. It's Zone P-day and I have lots to get done before the holidays! Thanks for all the love and the support and I can't wait to see you in a week on the laptop! I'm so excited! I love you! Have a great Christmas! :)

Love Sister Hawkins!

My friend Elder Rasmussen with our gift from
President and Sister Crawford

This Sister goes home next transfer, she is Spanish speaking
and came out with me on the plane.

Us and the Elders making cookies
to hand out to families and investigators!

Almost done!

My Christmas Tree!

Sister Hawkins has a question for you .....

So what is the greatest gift that you have gotten over Christmases past? Is it toys, new clothes, a new car, or some other thing? Sometimes in life we forget the greatest gift of all … The Birth of our Savior Jesus Christ! This Christmas Season remember what the Lord has done for us!

The Savior Jesus Christ has given us the Atonement and has made a way for us to go back home to our families and to be forgiven of our sins. Alma 7:11-12 talks about the Savior's suffering. Read it and think about what the Savior has truly done for you! I'm so grateful for the Gospel of Jesus Christ and I am so grateful to be out on a mission and to serve Him and to share this amazing gospel that blesses so many lives!

Ya'll have a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! I love you!

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Tis the Season for Service!

Monday, December 12, 2011

Dear Mom,

Wow what a crazy week! I just felt like I was at home! Why you may be wondering … well this whole week we did so much service and it was so much fun and I had a BLAST! It made me think of the times that our family did service around the holidays and it was great! I did so much laughing and I was just so happy and really busy this whole week, it was great fun! I loved it!

So to start at the beginning of the week … guess what I ate? I had some fish! Yep, I had some trout and it was the fresh stuff! I had it at MeMe's (Sister Schaumbergers) and her roommate Kevin and Vince made it and it was good. But by the second piece I ate, well the texture kinda got to me! But it didn't upset my stomach at all and also the doctor said I can have fish but you know me, I just don't like sea food! Yucky! You know me … steak, chicken and BBQ with some good home made baked potatoes are totally my thing -- not sea food stuff! Well that was a neat thing to try and I liked it for the most part!

Tuesday morning was fun because Sister Higley, myself and the Elders went to a place where the elderly can hang out, play games together or make quilts and different stuff like that! We decorated a Christmas tree and we set some other Christmas decorations up and we had a good time together! We were laughing a lot and we got to hear some Christmas music in the background because it was on speakers so we couldn't turn it off! It was so much fun! It was my first tree we decorated this year, expect for the one I made with Sister Galaviz! I was wearing my service clothes and not in proselyting clothes because I didn't know what kind of stuff we were doing that day! I took a cute picture of me! Super cute! And I was impressed … I tried on my jeans that I haven't warn in so, so long, because I like to wear my running sweats, and I could still fit in my jeans! I was pretty excited! Yeah!

Me and the Elders

Look at the BIG ornaments!

Me and the tree!

Also that day we got to go help the elders build a dog fence and it was bitter cold outside! BRRR!!! Elder Tracy was holding a metal pole and Elder Taney was hammering it into the ground and then all of a sudden Elder Taney missed the pole and got Elder Tracy's hand! It was so funny! Luckily he was wearing gloves but it was so funny and I was laughing so hard … you just had to be there! But we got this cute fence made; I didn't get pictures, my bad, but it was fun!

That night we got to go to the Harris's house and we did a lot of decorating there too! Sister Higley and I got to decorate the Christmas tree and the Elders put up the mangers scene! Sister Harris has a manger scene made of the wooden people that don’t have faces and it's so pretty! I am gonna get one when I go home and get money because it's so pretty! I love the people without the faces …I'm talking about that card I gave you and it was a mom and daughter holding each other … remember, it's those wooden people you can buy at the LDS bookstore! It was just so pretty!

At the Harris home!

This week we did some other service for this lady named Diana and all of the missionaries were helping her pack up and move. It was some hard work, I must say! While the other missionaries took a load of stuff to her new place, Sister Higley and I stayed behind to help out more and had the opportunity to visit with Diana. We explained more of who we were and what we are doing and all that fun stuff … and guess what … she wants to learn more! But the sad thing is that she does not live in our area and she is in the other ward so we hope she will get taught the lessons and become a member of this amazing gospel! So that was cool this week! She is all open to hear and learn more so that was pretty cool. I told her why I was on a mission and why I am here and that I am grateful to serve my Heavenly Father! It was just so cool! So see … you do service and then other people come and love the help and want to learn more! That is what I have definitely learned on my mission! You serve and love others and the Lord prepares those who are waiting to hear the gospel!

We met this new awesome family in the Ward and they are the Meyer Family! Super cool and lots of fun and it's just the best! I love going to see them. They are converts to the Church of 3 years and they totally remind me of Wade on his mission of how much he loved the Swagler family! (Sorry Wade I didn't spell there name right.) But I just totally feel the spirit in their home and I know that they are going to touch my life in so many ways! They still have that strong desire to serve God and to continually learn about the Gospel and do all they can to continually get closer to Him! I love this new family! It's the best!

So mom do you remember me telling you about the Walter Family? Well their 8 year old daughter had a birthday party this last week! I wished I had taken pictures but there was too much going on! But we surprised her on her birthday. Sister Higley, myself, the Elders and the Harris family all went to surprise her. We got her princess fingernail polish and she was so surprised. We sang Christmas carols to her and her friends. Just the look on the Walter’s faces and of how grateful they were that we had taken the time to come and carol to them was so awesome. The Walters then asked us to come with them to carol to there new neighbors so they could give them some cookies and we told them yes. That was lots of fun too! Sister Walters who is not a member gave me the biggest hug ever and thanked me for coming and doing this. She then whispered in my ear how grateful she was that I didn't get transferred and how she is glad I am still here! So that was a really special moment for me. I hope that we can teach her more about the gospel so she will receive more blessings from our loving Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ!

Going Caroling!

Well mom we got a phone call from a lady who we call her A-rod. She is so sweet and we haven't seen her in a while because we have been busy but I felt prompted to text her to see how she was and to get her new address for the missionaries. Well she called during our lunch time and she was crying and she asked us to come and see her. It was so sad because she was in the hospital again as she has been having a hard time with her health lately. So we went to go and see her and mom when we got to her room, she didn't look well at all. She was so glad that she could see us! We let her talk and just vent and then we shared some scriptures with her. I shared one of my favorite scriptures Ether 12:27 with her and she liked that. And the neat thing she said to me before we left was that she could see my halo shining brightly around me and then she told me that my mother is very proud of me and is happy I am serving a mission. It really touched my heart so much and the neat thing is mom, people on my mission have commented on how I have a bright shine around me and that I shine bright. To hear that after the hard time I have been going through was just really amazing and truly wonderful to hear!

Well I have lots to do today and I need to send some pictures to ya too! I am sending you a picture of me sewing for the first time on my mission! All my buttons were loose on my green shirt and I knew if I didn't sew them that they would fall off and I would lose them and I don't have any extra buttons. So Sister Higley took a picture of me sewing and it was fun to figure out how to do it since I have never sewn before but it was lots of fun! LOL! So I'm grateful we bought that sewing kit for my mission because if I didn't have it I would be in big trouble having all my buttons gone! So thanks for getting a sewing kit!

Me sewing ... first time ever!

Have a great week and thanks for all you do! I love ya lots and I can't wait to hear from you and it was great to see all the Santa Night pictures … they were super awesome! I can't believe we have been doing this for 14 years! Wow I'm excited to be there for our 15th year … we are going to have to make it super big!!!! :) Well I love you mom and have a great week!

Love Sister Hawkins!

Painting at the Stone's home!

Me on a really tall ladder ... I felt like I was
going to fall but I had pretty good balance!

All done!

On the back of the Galaviz's door!

Look, my stocking for Christmas ... aint that cute!

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Transfers today ... Still serving in Baytown!

Monday, December 5, 2011

Dear Mom,

Howdy ya'll! LOL. Well just to let you know I am still in Baytown, pretty crazy uh! I think I am going to finish my mission in Baytown. Sister missionaries seem to love to stay 5 transfers here and I'm on my 4th transfer now in Baytown so we will see what happens if I stay or leave at the end of this transfer! But I'm in Baytown and Sister Higley is still my companion. It's been a rough road for the both of us but it's a work in process and things are getting better and I think this transfer is going to be great! :)

This last week was kinda rough and kinda hard trying to find myself again and to make those steps to be that happy person again but it's also been great! So this week was good; we did fun things and helped out people with service but I want to tell you something crazy that I experienced this last week. So do you remember me telling you about the Gladys Knight and Saints Unified Voices Fireside I went to? Well there is a lady whose name is Laura and she is in the Baytown 1st Ward.  She had a friend who isn’t a member and they went to the fireside together and after the fireside he signed up to get a Book of Mormon and a Restoration DVD and a cd by Gladys Knight with some of the songs she sang! His name was Gene and well we met with Gene and Laura and did a 1st lesson and well it didn't go to well and this was at the beginning of last transfer! Well this last week we went to Gene's funeral … he died about two weeks ago of a heart attack.  His friend told us Gene had started to read the Book of Mormon and that he wanted to meet with us again to talk to us and ask questions but he never got the chance to because he was sick and in and out of the hospital and was busy with work. So this last Monday we went to his funeral and it was different but it was good to hear about Gene and his life and about his family and his kids.  We got to meet one of the kids because Laura introduced us to him and he was nice and he thanked us for coming to his father’s funeral! I was kinda bummed out because we didn’t get to talk to Gene again and teach him more but I know that we started to prepare him for the Gospel and that he is being taught it on the other side which is cool! Now I just hope that the Book of Mormon that Gene had will be picked up and read by one of his kids and that they will learn more about the Gospel of Jesus Christ and know that they can be a family forever and that there is joy and happiness in this life! But we will see!

Well mom I don't know if I told you but our mission is having a Choir! Yep, I'm in a Mission Choir and we have practices and we are going to do firesides for different things and even do recordings from my understanding over the year and put the recordings on the internet so everyone can hear us and print posters off.  Of course I probably won’t be in recordings or firesides because we are just starting and I go home soon but I know I will be in pictures lol, because we did pictures this last week so that was pretty cool and lots of fun! So if I get a picture I will for sure send it home to you so ya'll can see it!  We have our Christmas Conference coming up and we have to practice some Christmas songs to perform in front of our mission so that will be fun! I'm excited! I know I'm not a good singer but the people in charge are helping our singing improve and I love to sing so it's been fun!

Also I have been working with a part member family this week and they are struggling right now with a daughter who is having a tough time.  This daughter wants help and wants to be stronger in the gospel and so we told her that we would come to her home once or twice a week to check on her and to read the Book of Mormon with her.  The first night when we went there, man it was tough to hear about the daughter and the life she was going through and the hard time she had growing up and it made me think of all my trials that I have been through and all that I am going through right now.  I just bore my testimony to her that I know that the Gospel is going to help her and that the Book of Mormon, if she takes the time to read it 10 minutes a day, will help her and that her life will start to change and that things will be better and that she will feel a lot more happier about herself and that she will grow closer to God and Jesus Christ.  It's been neat to work with her and to help her.  We told the family that there was transfers coming at the end of the week and when the daughter said the closing prayer she prayed for me to stay! No Jiving it was cute. Afterwards I told her not to be disappointed if I did go and I told her I would still be in contact and things would be okay. Well they weren't at church on Sunday so we are going to go try to see them tomorrow or tonight to surprise them and let them know I didn't get transferred!

Mom do you remember me talking about the Walter Family? Well we have slowly been working with them and this is the family that owns the mailing and shipping place and helps us missionaries with mailing stuff. Well we offered to help them set up this nativity scene that is pretty big and it took a couple of hours.  Their daughter Delana wasn't there and Robert was at the shop and so it was just us and Denise.  We just bonded so well and it was totally awesome! We talked and had a good time getting to know each other.  Then when Robert came home from work he helped us out.  They kinda live on a farm and they sell fresh eggs. While we were there, some members in our ward pulled up in the driveway to buy some eggs.  They haven't seen us out of our church clothes so they were looking at me weird because they really hadn’t met Sister Higley yet and when I said, “Hi Guilbou Family,” then they knew it was the missionaries and they asked us why we were at the Walters.  I told them that Brother Walter is a member and then Brother Guilbou asked Brother Walter, “Why haven't I seen ya at church?” Brother Walter said, “Well I'm less active or inactive, whatever ya'll call it.”  It was neat because then Brother Guilbou was like, “You should come to church, it's great!” :) So that was neat. Then we saw the Guilbous on Sunday and asked them more about the Walter family and they told us they are going to keep buying fresh eggs from the Walters.  We have a Ward Christmas Party coming up soon and so I asked the Guilbous the next time they go over to buy eggs to ask the Walter family to come and they said they would so that was cool! So the work is just starting to get moving again! It's cool!

Well Mom I saw Lauro on Saturday, we had a Stake Christmas Concert and Lauro came because he knew I was in Baytown.  He told me he loves the Ensign you ordered for him and that he was so surprised when it came in the mail! I told him it's gonna keep coming for a year and that it's a gift from us to them! And he was just glowing and was just so excited to see me and thanked me! I hope you get to meet him mom, he is pretty awesome! I miss Lauro! I miss all the people I taught and saw in my last areas and it's so nice to hear from them to see how they are doing!

I sent you some pictures; I hope you get all four e-mails. But I'm gonna run and email some family but I love ya'll and good luck with the Santa Night tonight and have fun and take lots of pictures okay! I will be there next year to help out for sure! I love ya'll!

Oh I'm almost forgot to tell you, I got my hair trimmed and layered. I know you can't really see it in the picture but it looks cute.  My hair was really long; I cut 2'' off, just a lot of bad ends, but I like it! I trust her with my hair! LOL! Well love ya!

Love Sister Hawkins!

Pretty view from Baytown by the ocean!

So beautiful!

Me and Erica ... I am wearing her cool hat!

The Elders in my old district just before transfers

See my new blanket, meme aka Sister Schaumburger
made me a blanket crochet it for me I love it!

Helping Sister Schaumburger quilt 
the Texas style way ... not using equipment!

Sister Galaviz had a John Wayne mug ... so cool!
Made me think of Grandpa!

These are my meals ... like all the time!
Sister Galaviz knows how to make moist chicken
 that I am gonna teach ya'll when I get home!

Look! These cars are from "It's A Wonderful Life!

Sister Bouwhis and I ended up dressed alike for the
Stake Christmas Concert we both attended! 

Here is the new Baytown District! Yeah!

Sister Higley and I at IHOP eating breakfast the day of transfers!
(I ate a bowl of fruit while everyone else ate lots of yummy stuff!)

Getting my hair cut!

Sister Harris cut my hair ... it's super cute and she curled it too!