Monday, March 21, 2011

It wasn't a dream....We got Sister T!

Hernandez, Tuaone, and me at transfer spots in Pensacola on Wednesday! We couldn't believe President was really going to let us all serve together! It was sweet!

Busy week... we spent the beginning of the week getting stuff for our apartment so we had it situated when we got Sister Tuaone (sounds like dew-ah 'oh-nah). We have three bed slammed in our bedroom and only about 8 to 12 inches between each bed! Needless to say we are on living in really tight quarters! It is a 2 bedroom and one bath so it has been pretty chaotic! It has been so cool. Sister T is from Salt Lake City, UT. She is number 7 of 11 kids, Tongan, a really hard worker, and is super easy to get along with. I think it will be really good. All three of us get along really well!

We decided to make a little something something for Sister T when she got here! We spray painted a sign for her of her favorite phase! "Dats wats Up!" she loved it! Huge success! I think my favorite moment was President Jensen smile on his face when he rolled up to transfer spots! He just laughed and stopped in front of it rolled down his window and took a picture of us! I was even funnier to hear him try and say "that's what’s up" the way it was written! Definitely awesome!

Our branch is really focused on bring back what we already have. We are finding that it is really strengthening the branch to have members walk in the chapel that haven't been in for awhile! It’s pretty awesome to see the branch embrace them! We are having some miracles happen in the rescuing department, but are struggling to find. Our attendance in sacrament meeting have gone from the low 50s to around 63 in the last several months, so people are coming back. It’s really cool.

The Bama adventure this week...BEE BALLIN! (Well that's what they call it)

It's exactly what it sounds like you play with Bees! We have big huge bees here called carpenter bees that are like the size of my thumb. They don't bit or sting you, but are intimidating! Well, they are a big pest because they eat wood and dig holes in it, which can ruin a lot of stuff. We were at a member's house and he has a saw mill like everyone else around here, so he has a lot of wood and a lot of bees. He asked us if we wanted to go bee ballin and we didn't know what he was talking about, so we naturally said yes! We go outside. He has this stick with chicken fencing on it (it looked like a fly swatter on steroids). He starts whacking bees out of the air and stomping them! We try it and before we know it we all found sticks and were whacking bees out the air and stomping them! It was so funny to watch us running around whacking bees! We would hit them to the ground and it would knock them out, so we would stomp them before they came to! We loved it! So so so funny! We all probably killed a total of like 50 bees! That's bee ballin! It was really just another Bama moment!

Hope everyone is well!!! I love you!!

Sister Whipple

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

March 14, 2011

We drove to Pensacola this week for a 1/2 mission conference . We had Brother Marshall from the mission department come and train us on I really enjoyed it. It was basically the behind the scenes, which is cool. I am really excited about it, I want to use it, but 90% of the members in the area don't have computers and don't have the Internet. We are really hoping all the members of the branch counsel will create their profiles. We will meet them at the church or their homes and show them how to do it. We are going to print out the basic information you need to create the profiles. We will have them write out their answers. We will then get on help them set up the profiles. We will, also, take the pictures of them on our cameras to upload. The beauty of having a small branch it's not too many for us to create, but it will be a big project, but very due-able. I am excited about Last night, we were at a family’s home. I was telling her about how excited I was about the future of missionary work. I explained about and the direction the church was heading. I saw her iPhone sitting on the counter, so I asked if I could see it. She said yeah sure. I picked it up and got on and showed her 3 of the videos of people's profiles. She was like wow that is really cool. She loved seeing and hearing from real people. It was a cool experience and the first time I have really got to see how can affect people. It made me really excited to share it more with people and to change my approach to sharing the gospel in a new way.

We had a really great week with service. We realize a lot of people in the community don't know us or about the church. We volunteer at the "To Kill a Mocking Bird" museum every week.

The author, Harper Lee, is from
Monroeville and lives somewhere around here in an assisted living place. The old courthouse at the center of the square here is where the movie was film and is now the museum. It's the towns claim to fame. They also run a few other museums in the area. One of which is the river museum that is at the Lock and Dam. They were having a small festival down there that was Indian and frontier camps. The museum was desperate for volunteers. We volunteered for Thursday- Saturday. It was really good. We got to talk with a lot of people and answer some questions about us. One lady who I was working with , I spent the whole day talking religion and answering her questions it was really cool. It was really good experience. It made for a very busy week, but it was really good.

We are getting a 3rd Sister, I am excited to be getting sister T, Tuaone! We pick her up in Wednesday, so another trip to Pensacola this week. We have gone to Pensacola every week this month! I have wanted to service with sister T forever and I am excited to do so.

Turtle hunting! A family we were visiting have a big pond in there yard. We could see something popping its head up in the pond. They had a fishing pole on the porch, so we were like let’s go fish. We grabbed our rubber boots out of our car (yes we keep them in the car! you never know when you need them!). The 20 year old daughter E grabs her 22 because they have a water moccasin problem, so she could shoot them. Hernandez has a rod and I have a net (I was planning on catching a snapping turtle!). We get down there and the water is super murky from the storm we had on Wednesday. I couldn't see any turtle close or small enough to catch. Hernandez caught a fish but it fell off the hook right before she got it up the bank. The best part of it was E was sitting there with her 22 just pick off turtles out in the pond! She shot easily 25 turtle in the hour we were out there! You could hear when the bullets hit the shell! It was really pretty fun! The only bummer was they sink when you shoot them and float up a few days later. It was fun! They have a huge turtle problem in there pond that is causing problems for there fish so they needed to get rid of some of the turtles! I loved it! Adventures in BAMA!!!

Monday, March 7, 2011

Monday 3-7-2011

Well, I really enjoyed the conference this week. We had Elder Packer of the Seventy. He was just a really sweet man. It was cool because he only had a few things that he felt he need to talk about. He mostly he just did Q and A! We just asked about whatever we wanted. It was a really relaxed and friendly environment. We set some goals as a mission. It really was motivating, we will do our best. It made me really have a greater desire to rise to the challenge. I feel really good about them and want so badly to meet the challenge. I was left with a greater desire to do better. I can do it.

Also, I am really excited because we got a ward mission leader after over a month of waiting. His name is Brother A. He's a really cool and funny old guy. He served a mission like 10 years ago with his wife in new Zealand. He loves missionary work! His wife is just super sweet, he is really excited about it and we love him. I think it will be really good. I am really looking forward to working with him.

I am looking forward to this week we are going to be trained on so that will be good, but it means another long day in Pensacola!


Sister Whipple