Prepare to Serve

Monday, June 29, 2015

Queen of Wrocław!

This week was transfer week, and if you couldn't guess it from the subject, yes, I'm staying in Wrocław with Sister Calrson! By the end of this transfer I will have spent 5 out of the total 8 transfers in the country, in Wrocław. It's a good thing I like this place :)

This week was pretty fun, and of course kind of stressful while we were anticipating transfer calls. On Monday we had a really funny lesson with Lucyna. It wasn't intended to be funny, but it became funny when sister Carlson pronounced a word so wrong, that it became hilarious, and we couldn't stop laughing for about 2 minutes. Then, just after we had composed ourselves she asked me how to say "have" but I thought she said "half". The word for half is "pół" which sounds exactly like "poo" after I said it sister Carlson looked at me in utter disbelief and said "poo?!" and then we both just lost it again. Lol, it was really funny, even Lucyna was chuckling a little. And, even with all of that it still managed to be a really good lesson.

We went to Legnica two times this week and talked to some really great people. Sister Call came with us and along the way we ran into some of her friends who she had wanted to refer to us and we were able to set up a meeting for this week, it was really cool. I got to pet a few more cats while I was there as well, Legnica is full of cats, and I got to play with the Calls' brand new puppy, Bumi. He is the cutest little puppy in the whole world!

We also had a really cool thing happen while we were in Legnica. We were out tracting at some of the houses we had dropped off letters at. We came up to some of the houses we were planning to tract at and saw a woman putting something away in her car. We weren't really planning to talk to her because we didn't know if she was about to be leaving or if she would be going inside, she was about halfway into her car and we thought it would be kind of awkward. As we were about to pass her to try some different houses first and come back to her's, sister Carlson suddenly found herself talking to the woman (she wasn't planning to say anything but the next thing she new she had said "Dzień dobry, Pani!") It ended up being a great lesson and she was super interested in more scripture and in coming to church. We gave her a book and invited her to come to church in Wrocław. She was really nice and really cool though, her name is Ewa. We weren't able to set up with her for a specific meeting, but we're going to check back this week to remind her of church and see what she has read. I looked back once we had reached the end of the street and I saw her standing outside her car reading the Book of Mormon, it was so cool!

Wednesday was Elder Garcia's birthday so we got him a tie and made him a funny picture collage and went out for Ice Cream, it was tons of fun. And the tie we got him is beautiful, he's already gotten a lot of comments and compliments on it :)

This weekend was the 25th anniversary of the church in Poland so we had a big conference in Warsaw and all the missionaries and a lot of the members came up to see it. It was great, we ate some good food, heard some cool stuff about the history of the church in Poland, and we got to see all the other missionaries in the mission. And you know what that means! I got to see Sister McCleary again! Together in Warsaw. It was so much fun. Bydgoszcz (the city she's in) was like the last city of missionaries to show up, so I was wandering around, looking for her for hours before she finally got there. When she showed up she basically tackled me, lol. I think I'm getting used to being tackled by my former companions, but I'm not sure if that's a good thing or not. Sis SMith has a history of doing it to me, in fact, on Saturday when I noticed that the Gdańsk missioanries had arrived I promptly moved away from the wall because I didn't want Sis Smith to tackle me right through it, lol. The Conference was really good too. There were a lot of good talks, and the choir was pretty good, if I do say so myself... I was in the choir :)

After the conference was over, Sister Carlson and I, and Elders Connelly and Lanterman sat on a cramped, hot train for 6 hours to return to Wrocław :)

And that's basically it for the week. It's the start of another new transfer, my second to last 0.o and I'm really excited :)

Kocham was!

Monday, June 22, 2015


This week was pretty jam packed with cool, funny, and odd stuff that happened. I'm going to try and write about as much of it as I can :)

Monday Sister Carlson and I had our art P-day. We bought some fun new art supplies, I bought a fancy pencil, and then we just drew stuff all day, it was so much fun, and it put me in an arty mood for the rest of the week, I've been drawing a lot more since.

Tuesday morning I ran my first district meeting, as district leader of both Wrocław and Legnica :) It was a really good meeting, if I do say so myself. We basically just had a discussion on how we can be strengthened by our burdens and how we need to walk by faith. It was cool. After that we had an exchange with Kraków, but Sis Carlson and I lost track of time and didn't end up leaving for the train until a little late. My train was at 16:54, we left our house at 16:33, got on a tram at 16:41, the tram stopped by the Dworzec at 16:51, and I sprinted to my train and made it at 16:53 :) Once I was on the train I turned around to see Sis Carlson catch up to me on the platform, and as the train started preparing to leave the last thing I said to her was "Let's not do that again". New mission goal, I never want to come that close to missing a train ever again, it was awful. I told the office elders I might not make it, so they were all freaking out. They called once I was on the train and when I told them I'd made it Elder Wilcox was like "OK everyone, she made it, crisis averted!" And I could hear cheering and other voices in the background, it sounded like I'd just managed to launch into space, lol.

On the train to Kraków I decided to draw some more. Some ladies came into my compartment at one point and saw my drawings, they were like "Och! Ładnie!" (oh! Pretty!) They were funny babci. They talked to me about me drawings a bit, and asked why I was here, so I told them I was a missionary, and then they started talking about how I shouldn't have to travel alone. They only rode with me for about 1 stop but they were really funny.

When I got into Kraków I was greeted by Sis Allowitz and the Senior couple, the Daltons. They got us food and we had a fun talk about the sketchyness of subway's tuna, lol. Then they drove us home. The Daltons are really nice and really funny. On the way out to their car we were wandering around for a while, following Elder Dalton, looking for the car, for about 10 minutes. Every once in a while Sister Dalton would call out something like "Maybe it's over there, did you check that spot?" After about 8 minutes I realised that she was kind of laughing to herself, she totally knew exactly where the car was, she was just messing with Elder Dalton, lol. Once we got into the car we were on our way out of the parking lot and Elder Dalton said "I'm not sure how to get to your house from here, but don't worry, we have a GPS that doesn't work, we'll find it!" Lol, it was so funny.

Wednesday was tons of fun, I had a great time with Sis Allowitz, she is straight up hilarious. Sister Holden has this really funny calender on her desk, it has all of these pictures of Jesus that are just kind of weird. Sis Allowitz and I couldn't help but laugh at some of then, and at one point we were messing around with the "magic frame" function on my camera and we took several really funny pictures of the camera using the magic frame. We also decided to try tying a shoe with our feet and we both got it... I'm not sure how we got onto the subject of tying shoes with feet, but we did, and it happened...

For English that day we decided to play catchphrase, and it was the best. In Catchphrase you have a word that you have to describe without using the word or the other words listed on the card, and the others have to guess. The class got really into it and it was really funny, especially because sister Allowitz kept laughing and everytime she did I would start cracking up. The first word was "Cereal" the guy who got the word started with "So, when you eat breakfast" and the guy next to him immediately guessed "An egg!" And then sister Allowitz just lost it, and i in turn busted out laughing. While we were dying the rest of the class kept throwing out guesses, before he'd even managed to say anything. People were throwing out various things they eat for breakfast and then one of the guys, Paweł said "I don't, usually". It was basically like that the whole time and Sis Allowitz and I could not control ourselves. At one point Sylwia, a recent convert in Kraków got a word that she didn't understand, so she consulted with Elder Everett for a minute, then turned to say something, but before she even said a word the class was throwing out guesses left and right. We were beside ourselves with laughter.

At the beginning of the class Elder Ahlander had me introduce myself. So I did, and the class asked what my hobbies are, so I told them that I draw. Well, after class one of the church members that came to the class came up to me and told me that he's a professor of art and he asked to see my drawings. Thankfully, because of art p-day, and because sis Carlson suggested I draw on the train, I had been sure to bring two of my sketchpads. It was really cool, He really liked my drawings and was saying that it was too bad that the semester just ended or he'd invite me to come draw in his class (There's also the problem of me currently being a missionary, and that I'm not serving in Kraków, but it was really cool).

On Thursday I had a fun morning with Sister Allowitz, we just talked and laughed a ton all the way until I got onto my train. I then spent several hours on a train before getting in to Wrocłąw to see my baby Carrot still alive after being babysat by the elders all day. Oh, I forgot to explain, Sis Carrot is Sis Carlson. Elder Garcia couldn't pronounce her name at first for some reason so he called her Sis Carrot and it's kind of caught on.

Friday was downright the funniest most jam packed day of the week! It all started during Comp study, sis Carlson and I were talking about what we'd studied in personal study when suddenly we both stopped and realised we both felt weird. It was like we were feeling the spirit, but we didn't know why. Suddenly Sis Carlson said "We need to leave the apartment!" We had no idea why, but we just gathered the things we'd need for the day, dropped everything and left. We Joked that the apartment was going to blow up or that a serial killer was going to come by our house. We still don't know what that was about but we decided to just roll with it and not question it.

We were planning to go to Legnica and we had to get some things from the chapel first so we dropped by there. We then went out to the tram-stop near there. As we started walking down the street toward the tram stop we suddenly heard a loud squeal. We looked forward to see a Yorkie rolling around on the sidewalk in front of a nicely dressed couple. Sis Carlson and I though the poor thing was having a seizure, but then we noticed the couple and all the other people around them were looking up. The poor little dog had flown out of the window. It looked like he broke a leg, but mostly he was OK, and the nicely dressed couple and several babci quickly ran to help him. It was really upsetting, but I'll admit, it became just a little bit funny when our tram arrived and one of the babci walked to the tram and as she passed us she turned had shouted "Wylecie z okna!" (He flew out the window!) Just the way she said it was really funny. The little Yorkie was in good hands though, he had a whole bunch of people to help him. It was really sad at crazy though. I don't know how he managed to fly out the window, but I've seen people lifting their dogs up to windows to see out of them and I've always though, someday someone's going to drop their dog and it's going to be really sad.

We had a lot of funny things happen once we got to Legnica. We were there for about 10 minutes and all of a sudden it started to rain, so we decided to drop off letters for tracting. I saw tons of cats too and we had lots of things happen that made us die laughing. Probably the best thing was toward the end of the day and we were walking back to the dworzec. I had just told Sister Carlson how the word for luck is "fart"... no joke... We were walking through the rynek-ish area when we saw the cutest little girl come running up to us. We both smiled really big at her and sister Carlson said "Cześć!" The girl got so excited and shocked that she dropped the sucker she was holding. It hit the ground and straight up shattered. Her parents were like oh no! and we were both like shoot! And so we swerved around then and started quick walking away, trying not to laugh when we pass this man talking to he son and all we hear him say is "fart, FART!" Rolling his r like crazy, we straight up died! We couldn't even contain ourselves. We were laughing so hard we were weaving like drunken Larries! It was so funny!

I can't even describe all the funny/crazy things that happened on Friday, there were so many and I just don't have the time! I'm sorry, but basically the whole day was about as ridiculous and funny as that last story. Straight up, frenzying pigeons, I tripped and almost ate it hard, a larry in bootyshorts emerged from a bush like a character from a commercial for breakfast cereal, gangs of roving 12 year olds, a cake with Mr. Bean's driver's license on it, seriously tons of cats, it... was... AWESOME!

Saturday Sister Blake was visiting with her brother and her mom, so we met up with them and went contacting for a while, then we went and got lunch. It was a lot of fun. Sister Blake's mom knows Dad too, apparently they met at BYU, so that was really cool. After that we went to Legnica again, but this time for a BAPTISM! Samuel Zań the oldest Zań boy got baptised this week, and it was beautiful! The baptism happened at a lake too, which was awesome, I got to check off "See someone baptised in a lake/river" from my mission bucket list. It was freezing cold though too, Samuel was freaking out. After his dad dunked him he burst out of the water and was freaking out, and then immediately leapt forward and started swimming away, it was so funny!

Then that night when we got back to Wrocław Sister Carlson and I met up with Sister Whiteley on the rynek! It was awesome, and really strange to see her in normal street clothes. We got food and BLT and Flatbreads, and talked for a while, it was really cool!

On Sunday Sister Whiteley gave me the package you guys sent with her. First thing I did was pull the card out in the middle of sacrament meeting. I saw the picture on the front, of Becky carrying the cross in Drop Dead Gorgeous, and I died laughing. Thank you guys so much for the awesome package. I already used some of the vanilla and brown sugar to make some of my "Hot Dang cookies". Sister Whiteley added a little bottle of Maple syrup too, so I'm really excited to make french toast or waffles sometime soon.

Well, that's basically all I have time to write about for this week. Dang, a lot happened, it was a really great week.

Also, I made my planner cover finally, it perfectly describes the transfer, with the back beign the Sis McCleary half, and the front being the Sis Carlson half. Sis Carlson Hates it 

Kocham was wszystkich!

Monday, June 15, 2015

District leader of Legnica

OK, before I start this email, I should probably explain the subject of my last email, "Fetta, the Staple of Life" because I forgot to last week. It's because I've literally been living off of Fetta cheese for like the last 2 weeks. It's so dang good, and not at all expensive!

This week was pretty crazy. On Monday night Prezydent Edgrin called us and told us he wants us spending more time in Legnica. Legnica is a city about 45 minutes from Wrocław and it's where about half the members in Wrocław live. They really want to open a branch there, but they needed more members, so Prezydent wants us to start working there so we can see what its like and he can decided if he can go ahead and open the city or if it needs more time. What's pretty cool about it, and the reason why I named the email "District Leader of Legnica" is because It's just me and Sister Carlson working out there.

Prezydent is actually thinking he might want to open the city for Sisters first because most of the members who would be helping with the missionary work there are women. So I am officially, unofficially the district leader of Legnica :) I even said that to Prezydent and he didn't say I wasn't, I count that as a sign of agreement ;)

So, a lot of the week was spent making plans and preparing to go to Legnica to do a whole lot of contacting! We went there on Friday and Saturday and it went really well. Legnica is a beautiful city too. It has a massive park right in the middle of town. It's not so small that we'll see the whole city within a few days and get sick of it, but it's not so big that we can't walk the length of it is a single day (which we basically did on Friday).

Also, I got to pet a cat which was amazing! I've seen so few cats on my mission and it's super frustrating! There were some other cool things that happened this week. We had some good lessons. One of them was with Agnieszka, one of the less active members here. I kind of threw Sister Carlson into the deep end with that one, heh heh. I told her she was going to take the lead on the lesson, and then I let her teach almost the whole thing by herself. It was really good though. I made comments, and I helped her when she didn't know a word, and Agnieszka helped her too. But I wanted to give her a chance to really practice her polish, because she doesn't always get a chance to when we're talking to someone on the street.

Wednesday was my year in the country mark! Me and Sister Carlson celebrated be going to BLT and Flatbreads! Because how else would I celebrate!? lol. It was a really fun day, Sister Carlson and I laughed a lot.

On Saturday after we got back from Legnica we managed to get into our house just before the skies opened up and started dumping rain everywhere. It was crazy, the streets were basically flooding. So, we decided to stand out of the balcony and watch it rain for a while. it was really cool, and the balcony didn't flood enough to get into the house, which was good :)

That's basically it for this week. Today Sister Carlson and I are going to have an art p-day. We're just going to draw the whole day, I'm super excited.

Kocham was wszystkich!

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Feta, The Staple of Life

This week was pretty good, not a whole ton happened. Sister Carlson and I are getting along great. She is so much fun!

On Monday it was Dzień Dziecko, child's day, basically like mothers day or fathers day, but for kids. So I bought myself a present :) and we went to go bowling. But when we arrived there was a surplus of dzieci, meaning that the bowling alley was packed to exploding point with children. SO instead we went and played pool for an hour, until the children cleared out and then we went bowling. It was really fun, and I learned I'm not very good at pool :)

On Tuesday we had a whiteboard with the Elders and we talked to a girl who knew someone who knew one of the Calls in our branch. I'm not sure which, but I think it was probably Cindy. She also turned out to be the nicest Jehovah's Witness I have ever met. She wished us luck and told us that she thinks it's so great that we are learning Polish so we can communicate with the people of Poland in their own language. It was a really nice experience.

On Wednesday Sister Carlson had to go to Warsaw for legal work so I spent the day being baby-sat by the Elders. Then we had English, as usual, and Elder Garcia taught with me, which was a lot of fun because he's from Austria, so I had to correct his English a couple of times and help him with pronunciation along with the students.

This week we worked a lot on advertising for English, they've had a lot of cool things happen with English in Szczecin and we want to do more with English too. So we made up some new more professional looking fliers and posters. It's cool because Sister Carlson is also an artist, so we've been doing a lot of artsy things :)

We also put together and delivered a lot of letters for tracting on Friday. We found this really nice place near our home. It's a gated community, so we have to be kind of shady to get it, but we feel really good about it. We tracted there yesterday and so far didn't get a whole lot of response, but we're going back this week.

That's basically it for the week, I feel like a lot happened, but looking back I can't really remember what it was. I laughed a lot too, but I can't really remember what about, so I only have one funny story this week. We have a Korean family in our branch, the Lees and the dad and the mom both have trouble with Polish, the daughter is pretty good, and the son is fluent. So generally they rely on the son Woohoo (no joke) to translate when they aren't following. Yesterday, president Cieleński called Brother Lee to secretary... something, frankly I missed the calling. At first, when president asked him to stand he didn't know what was happening, so he looked at Woohoo, who told him to stand. then, after he was sustained he sat down and the entire family converged on Woohoo, trying to find out what had just happened, it was really funny because I don't think Brother Lee remembered he was getting a calling and they all looked super confused, lol, I know how they feel :)

Kocham was!

Monday, June 1, 2015

Crazy Week

A LOT happened this week, at least at the end of the week. At first it started out pretty slow and easy and then it snowballed.

At the start of the week we had some cool experiences. A member from North Carolina (I think), Sister Shields, came to town and wanted to see the chapel and take us out to lunch. So we had a fun time with her. Then we had a whiteboard with the Elders and I saw a woman that I swear I saw in my dream the night before. I didn't get a chance to talk to her though, she was on the other side of a huge crowd of people, and she was hurrying to cross the street before the light changed. I'll have to keep my eye out for her.

Then on Wednesday we had an awesome lesson in English. We didn't really expect anyone to come because Ewa and Kasia, our most loyal English students, were going to be at their kids' school for a Mother's Day celebration. So Sister McCleary and I brought Uno cards and planned to play Uno while we waited until about 30 after, and if no one showed up, we'd do something else. However, about 10 minutes in Mateusz, a semi-regular, who's brother is a member in Gdańsk, showed up. So we had the lesson we were planning, which was basically read an article from the Liahona and talk about it. It was so cool though because after he finished the article Mateusz started asking all of these really great questions. It was such a great discussion.

That night, when Sister McCleary and I got home, was when everything started to snowball. I was writing a text to Agnieszka, trying to set up a lesson with her for the coming week, when suddenly I heard the Imperial March coming from my phone. President was calling us. I was too chicken to answer, so I held the phone out the Sister McCleary. As she was talking to him suddenly her eyes got really big (bigger than usual) and she looked totally shocked. Then the next thing she said was "Who will be my companion?" That's right, surprise transfer in the middle of the transfer!

Thursday was mostly spent helping Sister McCleary pack and send packages and do all the things she needed to do in Wrocław before leaving. And on Friday we went to Poznań for zone conference and our last day as companions :(

Now sister McCleary is in Bydgoszcz with sister Woodward and I am training Sister Carlson. It's been pretty crazy and even though it's the middle of the transfer and we only have a month left, it still feels like a whole new transfer.

On top of everything else that happened, the surprise transfer, suddenly being a trainer, having to say goodbye to Sister McCleary and having Zone Conference, Prezydent Cieleński called me on Thursday, and asked me to give a talk. I had so little time to write it I ended up not finishing until an hour and fifteen minutes before church started. It went well though. My Polish has improved to the point that translating it wasn't to difficult at all. The hardest part of the talk was actually writing it.

A funny thing happened while I was giving the talk though. I had written page numbers on the talk so I could easily move from one page to the next. As I finished page 4 though, I looked and couldn't find page 5 anywhere. So I stopped in the middle of my talk and was looking around for a while trying to find it. Asking Sister Carlson if I'd left it was my seat. It was ridiculously embarrassing, and in retrospect totally hilarious. Right around the point when I was ready to just give up and wing it I realised what had happened, stupid past Sister Lillywhite had written the wrong numbers on the pages so they went from 4 to 7... I don't know what I was thinking. I was able to finish the talk just fine though and I think it was pretty good.

That's basically it for the week. Same city, brand new crazy experience. Sister Carlson is pretty great though. She's really funny and bold, which is really good when talking to Polish people :). So, even though this is new and different and I miss Sister McCleary :( I'm sure it will be great.

Kocham was