It was so wonderful to talk to all of you!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
!!!!! I love you so much! I am so grateful for Skype!
Congratulations to Adrienne and Joe! I was thinking about you all day! I'm sure the wedding was amazing!
This week has been a little more laid back than most weeks. We had zone conference (which is spiritually exhausting!) and it was really wonderful. Sister Thomas inspired us by telling us to work more with the primary children (a story on that later). President Thomas told us a lot of things but one that I really remember is he talked about stress and how when we don't love what we do it is stress, but when we love what we do it is called passion. Wow! I just loved that! President Taylor said a lot of amazing things. He told us that our mission is being proved. The Lord proves his servants in order to find out how far they are willing to go for him. All the prophets were proven all through out their lives. This life is a time where we are proven! He talked about Abinidi from the Book of Mormon. We don't know a lot about Abinidi. In fact we pretty much don't know anything. But President Taylor pointed out that it was most DEFINITELY NOT his first assignment to go and preach to King Noah in a way that would end up requiring his life to seal his testimony. Although we don't have the records- Abinidi was surely tried and proven throughout his life in order for the Lord to be able to use him in his work in the way that he did. We watched a clip from the movie Ephraims Rescue where President Brigham Young asks Ephraim to go and shave at the party for no reason at all! Except he did it to see if he could trust him. Later in the story when the pioneers are stuck on the plains and Brigham Young asks who is ready to go and help them, all these people say "ya I will be ready in a week." "Give me 2 days". But Ephraim says "I am ready now". He was proven before he was sent. We have to stay strong in ALL of the little times.
It's gotten me thinking. People like to be complacent. That's not what this life is about. In fact I don't know if anywhere in the eternities we have a scheduled "easy nothing" time. We will always be doing because when we are doing we are happy. FULLY happy. Don't forget that your work is not finished. THIS work is not finished. The missionaries are still out there and so members still need to be out there.
I'm learning from this area that the members in the ward are EVERYTHING. If tracting is easy.. it's the ward's doing. If it's hard.... It's the ward's doing. Please help the missionaries wherever you are at. If there are missionaries there-there is work to do and so we CANNOT be complacent. It's too hard. We can't CAN'T do this alone. Trying to do it alone makes it so nothing happens at all.
Also at zone conference we had a sweet sister talk. She served 4 months in the Phillipines and then the storm struck and she was then was among the 10 sister missionaries to be stuck in the apartment and then on the roof etc. It was all over the news. She came and told about her experience and showed pictures. It was a nightmare. They were really protected. Well. Nothing we will go through will ever be that bad. I can't exactly tell you what we learned in words. But the spirit was there when she was speaking to us.
So this week we had some interesting experiences. We were out talking to people and we walked past this store thingy and this group of people waved us over. So we went. They claimed sober but.... they are just a little more wild maybe. But ya we talked with them and they had a TON of questions. One of the guys was asking us a question after quite a while of talking with them and he started asking it and it was like "so beep beep beep beep did the beep beep beep..." (beep as in he was swearing) His question was like 7 words but he made it quite lengthy. At the end instead of answering I just said "Wow. You've got some foul language there." I'm not exactly sure why people like swearing, or smoking, or dressing sloppy, or living a wild life. It's just immature. Why would you do that? That's got to be an awful lifestyle and yet everyone seems to live it. Whatever. That's why we preach the gospel right? Anyway...
So on to the story of talking to primary age children. Usually we just pass them mostly on the streets. Especially since it's summer. But this one day (probably) We talked to EVERY kid we saw! And at one point we were talking to this sweet girl named Nicki. She led us to her house. She showed us some things she likes to make (craft stuff). She told us she LOVES to read and so we gave her a Book of Mormon. She told us she wants to be baptized someday but her mom said she has to read the bible first! Awesome right? Well she told us she had a softball game and she REALLY wanted us to come. She kept mentioning it. So (since it is a small town we pretty much know where it's at) We went to her game after dinner for 2 innings. She was way excited to have us there! She kept looking over at us! Even though she didn't get to do a lot while we were there. She was SO excited! I don't think her family is very supportive. We told President and Sister Thomas that night and they were glad that we went to that. Awesome!
Then the other day we were out visiting someone in this parking lot... ya they live in the parking lot. And we see this lady just sitting at this apartment place. Well it turns out she was baptized a couple years back and hasn't been to church in forever and her life is awful and she thinks she wants to come back to church. We ended up visiting her almost every day since then and she still likes us coming over so that's a good sign! But we are really excited to get to reteach her and her daughter and hopefully get them coming back to church. (p.s. her name is Laurie)
We went to visit the new apartment! Well. I thought it was going to be WAY worse than it is! We where hearing how dirty it is and all this stuff. But no. Elders are reasonable :) They just have a TON of random furniture and random objects. Like SAT prep books, AP history books, puzzles, weights (AHHHHHH! Love it!), 5 sets of speakers, tons of chairs, 10 baseball bats.... etc. Lot's of stuff. And they were so kind as to leave all their old food (yuck! It all went moldy!) But ya. Not to bad. We just have to figure out how to get rid of a bunch of weird furniture and get a real bed. One of the beds is just a pile of boards, a thingy (can't think of what its called) and a couple mattresses! (Probably Princess and the Pea style :). Anyway. Not bad! We moved in today so we will try and get stuff figured out eventually.
WellSister Major threw up at our dinner appointment. So we ditched the rest of the day and went home. Then I was sick and we still had to go to some appointments and I was struggling through those for sure!
Speaking of one! We were at this lady's house that we finally got to see. And she has this cat that likes hair....? Weirdo! So the cat would come and rub her face to our hair. But the cat wouldn't leave me alone! And then as it's rubbing it would start biting my head! Not cool! Stupid cat looked all cute.
But anyway we are all better now! That's a blessing!
We talked in church like I told y'all. Then we went to Young Womens and it was AMAZING! The lesson and also. I was able to learn all of the young women's names in literally 3 minutes and they have quite a group! It was really awesome! I can't say I've been blessed that way with the ward yet but it was amazing with the young women! I am so grateful!
Well happy anniversary parents! I hope you have quite a celebration! and happy birthday Dad! Can't wait to send you this card! You are going to love it! (well first I have to find it in the suit case mess!). And Happy Mothers day! I just love you all so much!
St. Helens is going well. And will continue to get better as I get to know everyone. But ya you are right! I get homesick for home and also for Oakhurst! I miss them all so much! It's crazy! I love you!
Oh! And fun story! We got to roast marsh mellows at President Thomas house last night after we came in for the night. And it was so fun! The stars are pretty and you can see them here!
Sister Kaitlyn Beard
|The Longview Bridge! Going to zone conference|
|Welcome back to Washington!|
|I met Hermana Porter Grandma!|
|We made quite a pile of eggs for a sandwich! Yum!|
|WE ARE STRONGER THAN MASHED POTATOES! (a visual president Thomas was using at zone conference- from Elder Holland's General Conference talk:)|
|There's Sister Major with the close up on the goose :)|
|We found a goose! And it almost charged!|
|We went to the dock today!(ops! I look weird in that last one sorry! I promise I was happy and excited!)|
|Part of our district minus Sister Lammi|
|The dock! And the river! Yay!|
This is the sisters! Sister Johnson, Sister Lammi, Sister Major and I
|Riding the dog! haha!|
|Trains around here drive A LOT of lumbar!|