Sunday, June 18, 2017

it is beyond windy in Monticello today luckily i have an extra long skirt on but i have dirt in my eyes and the truck door was almost ripped off due to the wind. good day good day. This week has been good, it went by fast like I knew it would but we still had fun! On Monday we worked our tails off to clean our truck. We didn't care much at first but then the Elders got all competitive so of course we had to beat them so we scrubbed and cleaned and waxed and LOST. our tire pressure was too high I guess, we didn't even place. shame shame shame on us. The elders didn't necessarily win either, but they got 2nd place. but thats ok, our truck still looks good. 

We had a lesson with Amalio on Monday which was a lot of fun, we made a "word of wisdom" headbands where basically we all had different foods or something on our cards and we had to guess. Now remember that Amalio moved form Mexico like 2 years ago, so his little accent is still pretty thick and he doesn't understand all of english. But one kid had a "taco" on his card and he looked at Amalio and asked "have you had me before" and Amalio just chuckles and says "ohhh yes!". Another time the same kid had a raisin, Amalio looked at the card and looked at us confused and said "i don't even know what that is!" it was funny. He also asked if he was a "salad" and he literally said salad just like Spongebob on the episode where Pearl takes over the Krusty Krab. it took all my  might to not mention anything but nobody would have understood anyway, but i laughed inside. On Tuesday we had interviews with our mission president, which was good. He is concerned about how the work is going in Monticello because it is slowing down a good amount. I've been concerned about it all transfer, so I knew he would mention something. He also told me my time in Monticello was winding down (which I've been in denial but) but he said he couldn't remember if that meant i would be leaving this upcoming transfer (which would be next tuesday( or if maybe i have 6 more weeks. of course i begged to stay longer but that doesn't change God's will. It would be really hard to leave here, I really really love these people. So I'm preparing for that, which is stressful and hard but i've done it once adn I can do it again:)

 One thing I will say though, especially being a Utah Missionary: MEMBERS MAKE SUCH A DIFFERENCE. MISSIONARY WORK DOES NOT EXIST WITHOUT THE MEMBERS HELP. I don't know how often you see the missionaries, but ask them to share a message in our home, or offer our home for lessons with investigaotrs, or think of people you know (because i know you know people) who need the gospel because you can trust the misisonaries and they need your help. offer to go out and teach with them or to give them rides somewhere or to come over to our house whenever they need water or food or the bathroom or anything. PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE think of your Sister Nilsson here in 70% mormon small town Monticello who needs the help of the members, be the members that are involved with missionaries. PLEASE. :) just trust me on that one. 

on Wednesday we traveled over to Cortez for zone conference. It was fun to see everyone, and Sister King and I survived doing our roleplay in front of everyone and singing. of COURSE Sister Adams put the microphone right in my hands for the song, just my luck. Sister King and I have been struggling with finding lately, and the whole theme of zone conference was finding. There was a lot to take in but we managed to take pages of notes and have been trying to apply what we've learned in our work. We were challenged to find 8 NEW INVESTIGATORS before the end of the transfer (so by this Sunday) and that made our jaws drop, as well as the Elders in Monticellos jaws drop. Of course I trust God and his ability to make anything happen, but thats gonna take great faith. So we were kinda overwhelmed after zone conference, then we were walking around trying people and a member who owns a greenhouse gave us a basket of flowers to give to some sick lady who has a non-member husband. so of course we walk over to the trailer and knock on the door, and the man literally yelled at us for bringing flowers over. "where the *bleep* am i supposed to put these?" i was just speechless that somebody could be so rude! all because of the nametag. after we told him the flowers weren't from us, he chilled out a little bit and apologized and explained how his mouth hurt. we were already feeling discouraged and that was like salt in the wound. i mean being yelled at by people is like a daily thing but ya that wasn't fun. so lesson right there- just be nice to people. i don't care who they are, be nice to people. thats a lesson i'm learning a lot here.

We also had exchanges in Kirtland this weekend, that was fun. It was a weird exchange where both Sister King and I went over to Kirtland and they double worked their area. Luckily one of the sister we exchagned with has her cosmetology license, so Sister King and I got haircuts! Of course just a trim on my part (i haven't changed) but my hair is much happier and curling a lot better. you were right mom. We also got to go to a baptism in Kirtland and I got to see Sister Dowd! She gave me a huge hug, she is doing so much better! It was so good to see her, she actually got moved to Farmington and is companions with Sister Hillam! (i think i told you this but) so I got to see Sister HIllam as well. She goes home at the end of next transfer which is CRAAZZYYY to me, thats when Garrett gets home too. time is zooming. I also hit 10 months on Saturday ? don't ask me how that happened. i feel like i was just celebrating that i hit 6 months. wowowow. on Sunday we finally saw Hector! he is doing good. :) he is working towards the priesthood. I'm pretty stressed about transfers but what else is new. Not ready to leave but i don't think i ever will be. 

wow this is a long email you better appreaciate this. all is well, this week should be good! we are excited to work hard and get things done. i love you all! I hope you are having lots of fun in Lake Powell, I heard it was windy there too just be grateful youre not in a skirt:) I got a farmers tan this week! lucky me!
Sister Nilsson

Summer Summer Summer

I can't believe its JUNE? how did that even happen. Sister King tells me that the summer flies by and it already does. the Transfer ends mid-June, then it will be July, then August? WHAT IS HAPPENING? This week was good, glad Memorial day is over because we spent the whole Monday evening knocking on vacant houses, we found one family to teach so that was a nice tender mercy. Tuesday was the same, lots of knocking, less answering. Dove creek is slowing down so we are working with the Branch to pick the work back up! Probably include lots of tracting, which I've started to enjoy less and less but whatevs. do what you gotta do. Ha oh ya funny story, so Monday night it was ROASTING hot in Sister Codners house, Sister King watched her flip the thermostat to 80 degrees! Sister Codner gets really cold because ALL THE HEAT RISES to our room upstairs, so we were dying. So turned on our fan full blast, opened all the windows, then turned on this floor fan we have. (oh i think i wrote about this already but i'll tell it again) anyway we got this fan from a member, and at the late hour of 3 am i was FREAKED OUT awake by this terrifying noise, i thought it was some crazy person scratching at our screen or something I had no idea, and i woke up in a sweat wondering what in the world just happened, and i looked over to see that our fan had basically like exploded! I guess one of the blades had broken off previously so the member just glued it back on, but it broke again and got jammed in the fan then snapped off all the other blades and pieces went flying! Sister King like didn't even move or anything so I thought she hadn't heard it, but she told me later she thought the cat had flown through the window and broke the fan hahahaha she said her tired brain could'n't compute what was happening. anyway we found pieces of fan blades in our beds, laundry, in the hallway, everywhere. it was crazy and terrifying and funny all at the same time. We'll be getting another fan because its still nice and toasty in the Codner home.

 on Thursday we did some service for the Monticello College (hippie college i told you about) and Sister King was worried we were gonna get like kidnapped and trapped there because its kind of excluded up the mountain. but we didn't, we just weeded the greenhouse and I got free spinach! So it was a win-win. Sister King thought the college was pretty weird, if they have a website you''ll have to look it up. still funny. It also randomly poured rain for like 5 minutes on Thursday, right when we were trying a trailer where an older Navajo man lives. We went over to talk to him and mid-discussion he reached over and wiped all the rain off my face. Then he thought i was wearing fake eyelashes and that they would droop off because of the water, so he examined my eyelashes as well. Sister King thought it was hilarious, and luckily he was just a nice old navajo man otherwise I would have thought it was much weirder than it was. Still a little too close for my enjoyment but funny anyway. 

on Friday we were heading out to teach and we say the cats all gathered around something, so i looked over and saw a little chipmunk and had to look away quickly due to my animal sensitivity, and i was just gonna run away and try to forget about it, but Sister King took a closer look and said "its alive! we need to save it" so we grabbed a little shovel and scooped it away from the cats and held him on a little glove, of course he had to be a BABY chipmunk so it made it even worse,  he was breathing so fast and he kept his eyes closed, he was so scared. so now we had this cute baby chipmunk and we couldnt just put him down cause the cats would get it, so we found a little box and filled it with tissue and gently placed him in there. Luckily Sister Codner is also an animal lover so she let us set the box in her house and watch it while we went teaching. Well we came home and the box was empty, so we asked what had happened to our chipmunk. Sister Codner explained that he started perking up, and next thing she nknew she looked over to the box and it was empty. So then she was like "oh crud i have a chipmunk in my house" then her DUMB DUMB OBESE DOG finds the chipmunk in the corner and crushes him in her mouth! Sister Codner said he was gone by the time she figured out what happened. we went through all this effort and stinkin missy killed our chipmunk. We were mad at her the rest of the night, stinking dog. We were also volunteered to sing a song with the Blanding Sisters for our zone conference, so we've been practicing that this week. we are freaking out and not excited but whatever. pushing comfort zone. 

Zone conference is on Wednesday, we're excited. we washed the truck to win the competition and our shoes are soaking wet. on Sunday we had a dinner mix-up and accidentally had two people sign up for dinner, but we felt bad and didn't want to cancel so we ended up going from one dinner appointment to another. we really practiced portion control on Sunday. also exposed my Comic Con secret to the Boyle family (active member family who helped with Amalio a TON), we had dinner with them and their 14 year old son named Joe started talking about Marvel, so of course I get excited and join the conversation, then Joe asks how much I really like Marvel stufff so i said "well have you heard of comic con" and Sister Boyle, just laughed and said "Sister Nilsson, you are an actual NERD!" so now they know the truth. I threw Quinn under the bus too though and said me and her did it all together. Joe wants to join us for comic con sometime quinn. Amalio also blessed the Sacrament on Sunday, he messed up 4 times but is very humble and was able to laugh about it. very proud of him:) This week like I said, Zone conference, exchanges, interviews. its gonna go fast. Thank you SO MUCH for the package, it was an amazing surprise and i love every thing in there. already changed my sheets and have worn some of the clothes. Enjoy Lake Powell, boat a whole lot for me! I'm loving mission life, its going really fast! I love you all!
Sister Nilsson

so there is a  college in Monticello. this is the campus

fan explosion

Memorial Day

hello hello! We got to email in the family history center due to memorial day (which by the way you all should do some family history) so hooray! i got a booming 8 emails today, how popular am I? it's highschool all over again. just kidding actually it makes emailing less stressful:) this week was a  lot of fun! it went by really fast, i say this every email but the transfer is flying. we are going into week 4 (out of a 6 week transfer) so it will be interesting to see what happens, I'm emotionally preparing myself for a possible transfer but maybe the Lord will smile upon me and let me stay here with Sister King. We are having a lot of fun together:) So on Monday we stopped at the Helquists to see how Trish was doing. Charlie is in jail currently, facing a possible prison sentence for something silly, so its been hard on Trish. She was doing good when we stopped by on Monday, her 20 year old son was "faded" (what is classified as being both drunk and high) so he waltzed in as happy as can be, thinking everything was hilarious. hahahah it was really fun to listen to him talk, and then he hopped in the truck and drove away which was super illegal but he does what he wants. sweet Trish just has to roll her eyes but it was sooo funny. I love that family. Meeting the Helquists and spending time with them has really helped me learn how important it is to NOT JUDGE. its scary to realize that Utah Mormons are a thing. it's real that they have a more judgement attitude, i noticed the difference when i was transferred from Cortez. so promise me you will get rid of that attitude, because good people are everywhere, they just don't get the chance. Its been hard to see people judge others without even getting to know them or see them as God does. SO DONT DO IT PLEASE. charity is so so so so important, and I'm very lucky to work at developing it as a missionary, I have met and fallen in love with so many amazing people.

 I will be heartbroken to leave here if thats what the Lord has in store for me, but again, we still have time. anyway, on Tuesday we were in Dove Creek and went to read the scriptures with James  (the one that hacked the lougie last week) but they were busy hauling out an old broken bed. so of course we offered to help, and they let us join right in. what a project! but it was so much fun. we carried out this HUGE mattress with a weird smell and questionable stains on it into this shed that i don't even know how we fit the mattress in there, then we tried to build this complicated bunk bed for the grandkids to sleep on. we had no idea what we were doing but managed to figure it out anyway, James didn't hesitate to give sassy remarks such as "hurry up" or the occassional joking curse word. it was funny and his wife is a non-member and REALLY appreciated our work. so hopefully she will have a softer heart towards our message, she hasn't really been super interested before but baby steps. anyway that was fun, Sister King and i were exhausted afterwards. on Wednesday we hit the jackpot at the thrift shop, some rich farm-wife is ADDICTED TO SHOPPING and donated like 10 bags worth of BRAND NEW clothes that were super soft and super expensive and super cute. and the lady who owns the store is a member and we always help her out so she lets us take anything we want, so we stocked up, in fact i even sent some home:) its cute huh? it was an amazing day to be Sister Nilsson and Sister King. we also got to see raylee. she is dong amazing as always but her dad isn't really stepping up to help her progress towards baptism, so we might have to do the saddest thing I dont want to do and let her go for a little bit to help her dad recognize that this is important and urgent. ah it breaks my heart to even think about it, but I have good hopes. on Thursday one of our returning members brought us shakes from this really good shake place in Blanding, it was so nice of them.

 On Friday we had a CAT PARTY! Siister Codner has 3 cats as you know which stay outside but Sister King and I wanted to snuggle with them so we snuck them upstairs and locked them in our study room as we planned for the week, they were so cute and fun. We also were blessed with a new investigator who already READS FROM THE BOOK OF MORMON EVERY DAY. THATS BETTER THAN MOST MEMBERS. so we were excited to visit with him. unfortunately he is moving to Grand Junction in a couple of weeks but we will teach him while we can. tender mercies every day. on Saturday we had dinner with Trish again, and found out that Charlie will be coming home in a couple of weeks! Right before the end of the transfer thank goodness, but he shouldn't be going to prison. very very grateful for that. on Sunday I met a kid who lives in Draper and who knows Greg and Garrett, it was weird. then today we went on a hike! We went to Bridges National Parks, it was a lot of fun! Lots of pretty rocks and hiking and such, Sister King and I nearly died walking back up but we managed. The Elders probably are super ashamed that we are that out of shape but whatever, we had fun anyway. I'll be sending pictures. 
That was basically the week, this week should be good as well! The weather is getting warmer and warmer and I'm debating on getting a haircut (nothing too short but) so give me ideas cause I'm going through a mid-mission crisis where I need a change. I LOVE YOU ALL LOTS AND LOTS, HAVE A GOOD WEEK
Sister Nilsson

Week 2 is already over

This week went by really fast! Monday was one of the funnest P-days I've had in a while, I don't even know why we just messed around and shopped and I convinced Sister King to buy a cute 30 dollar dress and she did and was regretting it the rest of the day but she wore it yesterday and it was SUPER CUTE. but it was really fun, we went to clean our truck and the people who cleaned their car before us washed a whole load of HORSE POOP off their vehicle, so we were leaping around piles of horse poop trying not to step in it while we were cleaning our truck. On Tuesday we were in Dove Creek, that special place, and had a lesson with one of the less-active members there named james, who is the epitome of Dove Creek. Mid-lesson he coughed up this huge lougie (lugie?) anyway you know what I'm trying to say, anyway ya mid-lesson he hacks it up and spits it over the deck, SO NASTY but Sister King and I were dying of laughter, luckily he has 0 shame so he was too. We also picked up a new investigator named Liz, she is super nice and a sweet lady. Both of her daughters are members, so hopefully she can make some good progress! 

On Wednesday it SNOWED. SNOWED SO MUCH. LIKE A FOOT. heard it snowed there too? we weren't expecting that much snow so we were definitely not dressed for the weather, Sister King was wearing this cute but not fit for snow canvas shoes, her feet were soaking wet all day. It just snowed and snowed and snowed. but anyway we finally got to see Aleighya (Amalios cousin who wants to be baptized but her family situation isn't permitting that right now) and she is so sweet, I haven't seen her since like February, Sister Dowd never even met her! So it was good to see her again. We also got to do a missionary mutual with the 3rd ward this week, the kids did a great job and it was fun to hear them teach and learn. Hopefully at least one of the kids gets something out of that, we had fun doing it though.

 On our way home Wednesday night we experienced a pure miracle. So we live in the middle of nowhere, on a dirt road that nobody drives down, surrounded by open field so the snow blows from the fields right onto the road, so the snow is even DEEPER on the road, and it has no tracks so we have no idea what to expect. Anyway, we were driving home Wednesday night and the snow was a lot deeper than we though, but we couldn't like stop or turn around or anything so we just keep trekking to Sister Codners, and then we started drifting and sliding, right towards a ditch. My only though while i clung to the steering wheel was "i really don't want to sleep in the truck tonight" and Sister King was absolutely silent as we slowly started to drift, then by the sweet grace of God i somehow corrected ourselves and we were able to dip into the ditch but pull right back out, don't even ask how our tires got traction or how I, as the non-pro driver I am, was able to correct us out of there, but we were slipping and sliding but made it safely home. We were both so stunned and then started laughing because it was terrifying, but still. made it safe. gotta sleep in my nice warm bed. on 

Thursday we had district meeting, where we eat PJ's after District meeting for lunch. and THEN some members took us out to dinner and we were gonna eat at a different restaraunt but it was too busy so we went to Pj's, and Sister King and I had foolishly gotten PJ's the day before for lunch, so we had pj's 3 times in 2 days. it was terrible,. we are scarred form Pj's right now.

 on Friday we finally saw the Hickmans again! AND SO EXCITING THING HAPPENED: so Amber (the only member in the family) told us they would probably never come to church, so i think i told you a while ago we invited them to pray about church and were worried they would kick us out or something. but anyway, we asked if they had been doing that on Friday, and Amber told us she had been thinking A LOT about coming to church, and that she wants to discuss it with her family! IT WAS AMAZING i love this fmaily tons and church would bless them so much. so i was internally freaking out but hopefully the spirit continues to work on her. Sister Codners daughters came for a daughters weekend this weekend, they are all just as sassy as Sister Codner. Nancy(whos son i graduated with) should be bringing a package to you sometime mama:) anyway, they cleaned out the entire pantry and got us a new fridge to satisfy Sister Codner ( so now we have a nice new fridge) and it was fun to see Sister Codner so happy.

 ON Saturday we ate with the Helquists again, their experiencing some challenges which always breaks my heart but hopefully things will get better. We went mudding kinda because we have an investigator who lives on a road off the highway and its all dirt and rocks, so we drove through giant mud puddles and our truck looks nasty. even the Elders were like where did you even go, they are jealous because our truck looks cooler than theirs. just kidding we are washing it today. Sunday was a normal Sunday, hope Ian had a happy birthday! Sounds like you did. and now Monday again. already week 3 of the transfer, time is flying. anyway thats the week, it was a good one. luckily spring weather is back so I'm enjoying letting my pale pale legs get sunlight.
Sister Nilsson

Already Halfway through May?

I can't believe its already May 15. Mothers day was aamammamaaazzziinnngggg, made me very very happy to see you all. glad to see you are all doing well and life is good:) This week has been good! again, sorry i wont have a lot of pictures to send, I'll make it up next week. :) But yes, so Monday was Sister Dowds last day in Monticello, so of course the Helquists had a big BBQ with their whole extended family. It was really hard for Sister Dowd to leave, I don't want to have to do it. But all a part of mission life. So that was fun, we had a good time and had a good lesson with one of our investigators so all was well on Monday. 

On Tuesday we were off to Farmington to swap, Sister Dowd was a little nervous and her stuff was super heavy but we got everything packed in the truck and ready to ride. I got to see Sister Hillam in Farmington, she is now serving in the Farmington YSA ward! She was excited, sad to leave Cortez and now I don't have any connections there anymore but luckily I will see the Cortez sisters at Zone Conference so I can bother them about the work there. Sister Dowd was off with Sister Anderson and Sister King joined me, it's always fun to adjust to a new companion. It's even more fun when the adjustment phase is over and you're just good friends. Sister King and I get along really well, we broke that adjustment phase pretty quick. it was POURING rain in Dove Creek and Eastland Tuesday night, and her bags were in the bed of the truck and she didn't want them to get wet, so we pulled off on the side of the highway and in the mud and pouring rain tried to shove her huge bags into the back of the truck. It seriously looked like we had taken a shower by the time we got it all situated and hopped back in the truck. We should have taken a  picture, but it was really funny. 

Sister King is really easy going and fun, so rather than that being a terrible experience we were laughing the whole time,good way to break new companion ice. Sister Codner was excited to have another new sister, she never remembers our names but loves us still. on Wednesday i hit 9 months! So weird to me, already halfway. The last half will go by even faster! But Wednesday was good, Sister King is a hard worker and its so fun to work hard. She is a confident quiet which is fun, it's teaching me how to enjoy and embrace silence in lessons, it will take me a minute but I'll adjust and figure it out. :) on Thursday we got to see Amalio, he has officially finished the Book of Mormon and is going to start round 2! he even compared the events towards the end of the Book of Mormon (everyone killing each other and sadness) to the beginning of the Great Apostasy (when the priesthood was off the Earth) and I haven't even made that connection yet. He was so sweet, he gave us an extra thank you towards the end of the lesson and expressed his gratitude for missionaries. he says "people dont recognize how hard you guys work and I really appreciate it, because it probably isn't easy" SO SWEET we were exploding inside.

 We also FINALLY saw Courtney (Raylees dad) (Raylees an 11 year old investigator who was on date for baptism) and we had to lay down the law and tell him church needed to be a bigger priority in order for Raylee to be baptized. So it was really hard to take Raylee off of baptismal date, but it's better for her. I probably won't be here to see her get baptized which makes me sad, but I hope everything gets sorted out so Raylee can have that support. Courtney agreed and understood what he needed to do. So that is good. Saturday we had our Helquist dinner, SIster King enjoyed it and loves them already of course. Charlie is trying to think of a name for his glass business but nobody is creative enough for him. I used to be creative but now I"m only creative in gospel aspects. then of course, skyping on Sunday was amazing! It was hard to not think about it all day! But we knocked out some fun lessons on Sunday and then I got to see my amazing family. Thank you for all your support and love, I miss you every day but I looovee being a missionary. Stay safe and heatlhy and all that good stuff, I love you!
Sister NIlsson

Transfer #7

time is going faster and faster, i hit 9 months in 2 days and that is really bizarre to me, I love being a missionary. can't believe second skype is on Sunday! we have it schedule in for around 4:00. so be ready at that time. :) so excited! hopefully i wont have "chocolate" on my face again. but this week was good! I can't believe it's already May? How in the world did that happen?

 anyway, on Tuesday SIster Codner took Missy to the vet (she had been drinking an excessive amount of water) and Missy has DIABETES! who knew dogs could even get diabetes? The beauty of it all is that now we have to give Missy 2 shots every day! and Sister Codner does not enjoy shot giving. so this will be an adventure for us all. on Wednesday we went to Cortez for Zone Conference, which was amazing as always. I got to see Sister Withers and Sister Hillam! Lots of fun to see my companions, they are doing well. we also had interviews with President, where he basically told me what was going to happen this next transfer, Which transfer news is: Sister Dowd is being transferred to Kirtland New Mexico! She has been having health struggles so they want to move her closer to Farmington. We've done our exchanges in Kirtland, so she is familiar with where she is going, and her new companion, Sister Anderson. 

We will be heading to Farmington tomorrow afternoon where I will pick up my new companion. Her name is Sister King and I'm pretty sure she's been out just a transfer ahead of me. She was companions with Sister Hillam and Sister Hillam loves her, I've met her like twice and she seems sweet, so I"m excited. I'm really excited to work super hard an just go go go go go go, which I'm sure President is relieved because I kept on telling him how much I just wanted to work work work and I can't even count how many times he's rolled his eyes at me. Glad he gets my sense of humor. Thursday was a sick day for Sister Dowd, as was Friday. Luckily it was pretty nice outside so I helped Sister Codner weed. She has a HUGE garden and we were out there for like 3 1/2 hours. i was sore the next day and she wans't even. she is a warrior. Nancy Head and her family (Sister Codners daughter whose son i graduate with) came up this weekend, it was fun seeing them. Nancy is really nice and always cleans the house super spotless and has neat food ideas, so i like talking to her and getting new food ideas.

 We also had dinner with the Helquists on Saturday, Charlie is doing much better!:) He talks about how much the missionaries have been a help to him, which I wish we could do more fo rhim but we can't really. pray basically and send him scriptures and eat dinner every satruday with him and Trish. Trish is doing good too<3 oh exciting miracle, i have been praying AL WEEK for a new investigator (our finding has slowed down) and lo and behold on Sunday night we were blessed to find a cute little couple and their little boy who let us share a message! They don't believe in God (yet) so minor setbacks, but it was so exciting to receive a nice answer to a prayer:) hmm i thought i had more to email about, but guess not.  
love you all very much
Sister Nilsson