First of all, I received so many letters and packages these past few weeks, so thank you so much, everyone! I feel truly blessed.
Sorry I was not able to email last week. We left for the field on P-day. So yes, I'm finally here in California! Woohoo! I'm in the La Quinta area, and everyone is so nice here! There are a lot of Latinos here, and Latinos seem to be especially nice. Also, the weather is amazing! I laugh though, because I see everyone bundled up in their coats, and I'm like, "Forget that! I'm not in Ohio anymore."
I really love my trainer! She's so cute. :) Her name is Sister K--- P---, and she is perfect for me! She is very obedient, and always on top of things. I definitely learn a lot from her. We have a lot in common, but she's a lot more athletic than I am, and she doesn't like chocolate. So whenever people give us chocolate, I get double the amount. Pretty sure I'm gonna be sick of chocolate after this...(Ha! That was a lie).
So far, we have about six solid investigators, and two of them have already committed to baptism; S--- and D---! Woohoo! One day, her sweet 6-year-old daughter was asking D--- for a pencil so she could do her homework, but they didn't have any. That's when I thought of the brand new package of pencils Mom had just sent me the day before. I reached into my bag and gave them to her. D--- started bawling, and thanked me over and over again. Good thinking, Mom!
The first day in the field, Sister P--- and I made cookies and gave some to a bunch of our neighbors. One of them is now an investigator. Her name is M---, and she is the sweetest lady you will ever meet. I got to teach her the Restoration, and she invited us over for breakfast the next day!
Another one of our neighbors bought us some flowers because we gave him some cookies! He said when we brought him the cookies, it just opened up his heart. Aww, that's so cute! :)
Umm...I saw my first cockroach yesterday. Luckily it wasn't in our apartment. Sister P--- has already told me all of her scorpion, black widow, and tarantula stories. Yay...
I love our ward! Everyone is very friendly and I think the members think we're starving or something because they are ALWAYS feeding us! We have dinner at a member's house pretty much every night. I feel so spoiled out here!
My last week at the MTC, we were in a class where we were training for when we go out into the field. As our teacher was talking, he looked right at me, then stopped..."You look just like Anna from 'Frozen!' Stand up so everyone can see!'"
I slowly stood up, all embarrassed. I had two braids in my hair, and was wearing a purple cardigan. He also had my companion stand up. She was wearing all blue and had a side braid in her hair. ELSA!
For the rest of the week, the whole MTC called us Sister Anna and Sister Elsa. Four different companionships even wanted pictures with us so thy could send it to their families, and say they met the real, live Elsa and Anna. We're MTC celebrities.
When we were exiting one of our classrooms, an Elder in front of me shut the door on me.
"Oh my gosh, I'm so sorry!"
"Elder, love is an open door."
He and his companion got a good kick out of that. :)
Sister L--- and I were standing in the lunch line, and an Elder offered us some mint truffles.
(sniff, sniff) "What's that smell?"
"Chocolate!" Sister L--- and I said at the same time.
I guess you could say we're pretty clever on spot. ;)
We got to see Elder Christianson from "The District." He's so funny, and a pretty cool guy! We also got to hear from Elder Zwick, Sister Esplin (she spoke in last General Conference), and Lexi Walker! Lexi Walker is a 12-year-old singer who has sung with David Archuleta, she's been on Good Morning America, she's sung for Obama and Romney, and she's sung at Carnegie Hall! She was AMAZING!
I also ran into the Freeze's (the Anderson's grandparents), and Elder Nathan Sweet! He went to EFY with me. That was awesome.
Throughout my experiences at the MTC and out here in California, my testimony of listening to the spirit has grown tremendously! I've learned to first put all of my focus on the investigators, then just listen to the spirit, and the right words will come out. I have felt the spirit before, but not as strongly as I have felt it while here on my mission. What a great blessing that is!
I can't wait until Christmas! I get to skype my family!! Woohoo! :)
I love and miss all of you, and hope you all have a wonderful Christmas! And if you haven't seen it yet, or would like to see it again because it's so awesome, look up the video "He is the Gift." It's a beautiful two minute video that will fill your home with Christmas spirit. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uzjFEMmM0Xs