5/13/2013

Anna’s letter:

Hey y’all! How y’all doin’? Sounds like life is crazy as usual, which makes sense with so many people all under one roof and spread out over so many different stages of life. I was just thinking the other day about how before the mission I just wanted to get out on my own and be independent, now I kind of wish the opposite. ha ha! I mean I love the independence and I don’t want to give that up, but I miss the big crowd of people. I love Zone activities because it is closer to what home feels like for me.

Last Preparation day we waxed our cars and ate pizza (I had 4 slices Sarah will be surprised to know 😉 and then we went to a park and we played kick ball! I was a little nervous at first about playing with the elders, especially because I have been feeling a bit chubby and haven’t really run a lot lately… but I had my Alabama shorts and my Auburn T-shirt on and I felt awesome!

park

I always feel way bad at sports until I start playing and then I realize/remember that I am actually pretty good… I had some great kicks and runs and helped my team out a bit. I also couldn’t resist quoting Brian Reagan like the whole time, that made some people, especially my companion, laugh. Then I was standing in line to kick next to a Samoan elder who is from Orem and he said “run home!” and I thought of Hook and started quoting that, “Run home Jack! Run home jack!” then he quoted the part that captain Hook says “No stop you idiots, Switch! Home run jack!” “Home run Jack!” etc… It was so great! I was surprised but so pleased that he knew that movie! That is kinda how I connect with the missionaries out here… we talk about and quote movies… don’t judge me! Mostly we quote church movies like the Best Two Years. It is so great!

There were a bunch of water balloons that we could throw after and that was fun, then we had to pick them all up… lame! But it was good! As an end result you had a large group of young men and women who stunk from sweat, were sun-burned (even though they didn’t know it yet) and soaked (ish) all walking across the park to their newly waxed cars. We stopped and took a picture (I am sorry I didn’t get one with my camera but I am sure you will live).

park-2

We have an awesome zone! I found out a few days later that there are little tiny bugs down here in the grass and in the bark called chiggers who bite you and nestle in your skin and lay eggs. I got a few of those on my legs. They are not fun! They look like regular bug (mosquito) bites, but they get big and hurt and they don’t go away after a few days like the other kind do. I just put some nail polish on and it looked like I had huge moles or freckles for a while.

Sad news! Cathy called us this week right before we were supposed to finally meet with her and told us that she can’t meet with us anymore. Her husband told her that they weren’t going to do this again, they met with the missionaries last summer but they didn’t understand the Book of Mormon very well and then they moved here (they were in another part of AL) He husband said that it wouldn’t change anything. She sounded so sad on the phone. I wanted to cry, I was so crushed! I wanted to serve her. I told Sister Houston to ask her if there was anything we could do to help her and she said that was very sweet but they were fine.

In our training, president told us to write a letter/note to anyone who drops us and thank them for the precious time that they took with us and allowed us to get to know them and to teach them and then to tell them that we respect their wishes but hope that they will be able to listen to the missionaries in the future and that the missionaries will always be here to help anyway that we can. I told Sister Houston that we needed to do that for Cathy, so we wrote a letter and we mailed it to her. I hope and pray that her husband’s heart will be softened and that he will allow her to take the lessons and meet with the missionaries in the future because she is so ready!

All of our appointments fell through this week. We are able to meet with people more by just showing up then by setting appointments! It can be so frustrating and just sad. I am sure all those who have served a mission know what I am talking about! I am very grateful for the tender mercies that He gives me every day that help me keep my head up!

Yesterday we went and saw an older member who is now in an assisted living facility. He was one of the original members who helped start the church out here. He is the sweetest man I think I have ever met! We talked with him about peace and he shared with us that people ask him if he is afraid to die, since he is so old, and he tells them that he is not. He knows where he is going, he is just filled with peace and keeps living his live and still shares the gospel and helps all who he talks to, to be happy and cheerful! Being there felt so great and it made me miss my job as a CNA, especially all of my residents who I got to know and love while working there!

I am so grateful for the Plan of Salvation and the peace that it brings to my life! I am so grateful that I get to share it with these wonderful people! I love the people down here! We are starting to get more dinner appointments and are being fed quite well. I love the food down here too!

driving

It poured rain this week and there were areas of the mission that had mud slides and flooding, but we were fine. We biked for 7 miles the other day in the rain, it was awesome! I could not believe how hot and sticky it was! I can’t even describe it, except that you are wet all of the time and it feels like you are in a sauna or in the car with the heat going on a warm day. I almost stopped ridding, threw down my bike and ran around screaming, but I didn’t. Good thing. The work is great! I love it!

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