Wow lots to write to you about this week! Well it's been an okay week but it could have been better! But I did get to go to the temple and that was so much fun! Brother Stone took us Missionaries to help save on miles which was totally awesome and it was fun in his big van. I need to get a picture of his big van! It can hold up to 10 people and you just have lots of room to move around and not feel so crowded! It was so nice to go to the temple! As you can see in the pictures Sister Smith from La Porte drove the La Porte missionaries to the temple to help them save miles and also I think so she could see me! LOL! The Smiths are so much like family mom; I love them so much! I can't wait for you to see the Smith family! They are just the best! Love them! I got some pictures of the other missionaries too and that was fun! Well guess what? President and Sister Crawford went to our session and guess who sat by me and Sister Smith! Yep, Sister Crawford, which was really awesome! Loved it! And it was so cute because Sister Smith made sure she sat by me which was the best! It reminded me of you and me mom and of the times we would go to the temple! For some reason mom it really felt like you were right there with me this last Tuesday which was a real blessing because I miss my family and friends and home! So it was really good to feel the comfort!
I felt so much comfort in the Celestial Room! I was praying and when I was done Sister Kinikini showed me a scripture that just answered my prayers so much and I was just balling and I felt bad because Sister Smith was concerned about me and also President and Sister Crawford! They just saw me crying so much! It's just been so hard and just to feel love and the Spirit just made me ball! It was so wonderful! I love the Temple! I will always love the beautifulness of it and the Spirit that is inside and the joy you get when doing the Lords work! I'm so grateful that as missionaries we can do work for the Lord on our missions!
Well this last week we have been working hard with the Greenawalt family! Sister Greenawalt is progressing! She is really doing well mom, but she is having a little hard time praying and I think it's because she knows she will get her answer to her prayer and I think that she is just not ready to change yet, but in time the Lord will help her along! And Brother Greenawalt is just awesome and it’s just great how he is trying to help out his wife and how he wants to make his family stronger! They came to Church which was great but unfortunately they missed a lot of Sacrament because they were in the foyer with their small kids. Sister Greenawalt is pregnant also so she didn't stay for the rest of the church meetings because she was tired and plus she wants to take it easy! So it's going to be a slow process but the Lord is really going to be helping her!
Well mom I sent you some pictures of food; I think I already told you about eating dove right?! Well that was kinda good but very different! And then you saw the picture of the squirrel meat! Yep I have eaten squirrel on my mission! That is a Texas thing to do and that is common down here in Texas! And it's kinda weird to be driving around and seeing squirrels and knowing that I ate one of their friends or family members! Some of it was kinda tough to eat as there are a lot of bones so you have to be careful when you eat Squirrel! But it was fun that I got to try it! It was at Sister Schambergers house where we tried both meats! Next is alligator! For real! So excited, everyone says it taste like chicken! So we will see what it tastes like! I know that this stuff isn’t good for my stomach, but hey when are ya ever gonna have this opportunity to eat this stuff! Lol!
Well mom this last week was super cool with Karen! The ASL Missionaries were teaching her the first lesson and I had a prayer in my heart that I could understand what they were signing because I want to know what they are saying and telling Karen! And mom my prayers were answered! I learned and understood everything they were signing and that was so cool!! I loved being there! And it's funny, one of the Elders is partially deaf and I could tell he wasn't impressed with me and just thought I was there to waste time instead of be out working but when he saw me this last week, he was like, “You really do want to learn Sign Language and you really care!” And I was like, “Ya I really do want to learn! It's the coolest language ever to know in life!” So I think I won over this Elder to have him realize I'm not there just to waste time and not work but that I want to help Karen understand more about the Gospel of Jesus Christ and plus I need to be around Sign Language because every Sunday I have to interpret for Karen. There is a lady in the ward, Sister Gentry and she interprets for Sacrament, even though sometimes she is late, but for the classes I have to interpret for Karen. And let me tell ya, it's super hard and I just keep praying that I can learn and remember everything that I am studying. I won’t get much study time this week because Sister Gentry is using the Church ASL Book so she can learn church signs to interpret better at church. I wish I could get her one but I can't. (I am working on sending another book to Emily) But it's been fun getting to know more sign language as well as getting to know more members who know sign language. Sister Gentry wants us now to come to her home to help each other learn more sign language which I am excited about so it's gonna be super fun! :) But Karen is doing well and she is progressing and it's been so much fun helping her to learn and grow in the Gospel. I love how patient she is with me because I don't know a lot of signs, but she helps me a lot! Sister Gentry says that is good that Karen has accepted me and is willing to help me because she said some deaf people will accept ya and some don't want to take that time to do that and help ya learn more! So it's interesting and lots of fun!
Well I have one more week till transfer calls on Saturday night and we will see what happens! It will be sad if I go because then I will be leaving Karen and the other families that I am starting to be connected too! I think there is a lot of work to do here and I think Sister Hatch is tired of this area and needs a new start as she has been here for 8 months! But it's in the Lord's hands and he knows where I need to be serving! I just hope and pray that things will get better because I will admit, it hasn't been easy lately and I have been feeling really alone! This morning was really hard for me because I feel I'm not connected with the District and I'm not doing well with my companion. So it's been hard but I am learning lots. I have been doing my Doctrine and Covenants Countdown (when you have 138 days left on your mission you start to read one section every day and by the time your mission is done, you will have read the entire Doctrine and Covenants), lots of missionaries do this. Well I read Doctrine and Convents 3-5 today and boy, it hit me hard and there were answers that I received and it seemed like those sections were made just for me! The Lord really knows us and can really answer our prayers! Those sections made me realize the things that I need to do and work on! And there is a lot! I'm grateful for the Scriptures and the knowledge that I am getting from them! So very bless and excited we have the wonderful Scriptures that help us and gives us the comfort that we need!
Well mom I am sending you an early Christmas Present and its super fragile! And it's your choice to open it now or to wait for Christmas! I couldn't store it with me until the holidays, but I saw it and I loved it and it's a Texas thing to have in the home and I think you will love it! But let me know what you decide to do, whether to open it now or wait until Christmas time! But when I saw it, I just knew I had to get you one! I love it!!!!!!!! And I hope you do too! So let me know when you get the package because it's getting sent to your work because I don't want it out front of our home because it's too important to get stolen and I sure hope it doesn't get broken when it gets sent! I'm sending it through the Walters mailing business and they say they are the best wrappers! So I hope it gets to you in one piece and not broken! :)
Well mom I hope you enjoy all the pictures I have taken lately and I hope you have a good week ahead of ya! And thanks for the love and the letters and e-mails they just help me out so much! I love you mom! Well got to go write to President!
Love Sister Hawkins!
Sister Hawkins, Sister Rankin and Sister Hatch
(This sweet sister passed away a few weeks ago and I am so grateful
for the opportunity I had to get to know her. She was a wonderful lady
with a strong testimony. She loved the missionaries and we loved her.
I was blessed to attend her funeral and learn more about her.)
Sister Rankin --- I will miss her!
My basketball team during Zone P-day
Thought I would try curling my hair!
Within 15 minutes it was flat --- gotta love the humidity!
Large chalk picture that was on a wall at the church
where we met for a zone conference --- kind of cool!
Me, Sister Henson and Hermna Cheynee
Elder Warren and my best friend, Sister Kinikini!
Mocking Bird -- they are so weird and annoying!
Fun "Exchange Day" -- me with Sister Henson
and Sister Hatch with Sister Kinkini
This is Morris -- I taught him in La Porte and he was recently baptized!
I visited him when I went back to La Porte on exchanges.
Scheffer Family from La Porte
I ate Squirrel!!!!
Squirrel ribs and a lead bullet that killed the squirrel!!
Sister Schamberger -- she feeds us dove, squirrel and soon alligator!
She loves me like a granddaughter -- I call her Meme (that's a Texas thing!)
Karen and me
(This is the deaf lady I am working with -- just love her!)
The Greenawalt kids -- the family that we are working with!
Mission Zone at the temple this past Tuesday
Me and Sister Smith outside the temple - my La Porte Mom!
Maria Martinez and her husband
He is taking the lessons from the Spanish missionaries
Brother Ammron Stone -- Ward Mission Leader who drove
us all to the temple in his big van!
Sister Saile -- she makes great lemonade!
Maria Martinez's daughter - she is moving to Germany with her husband.
She is so much fun!
We got a brand new car this week and hit 101 miles!