Monday, January 13, 2014

January 6, 2014 - Happy New Year

Happy New Year!

Hello my dear family:) I hope you enjoyed the pics I sent:)

I love you all so much!! can you believe that I have been out for 3 months now? Haha I definitely can but I am learning to love what I am doing more and more each day:) Transfers is this week so that has us all on the edge of our seats as we wait patiently to find out what will happen to us for the next 6 weeks of our lives:) A mission is teaching me how to accept and handle change better:) that hasn't always been one of my strong points but I am grateful that a mission is teaching me this:) I hope that you all had a Happy New Year this week:) I know that I surely did.

We didn't have any plans initially for new years eve besides a dinner apt and a list of members to go and try to see that night. Right before our dinner was supposed to start we got a call saying that they had to cancel because someone in their family came down with an illness right before. We were a little discouraged because we made a few calls and either no one answered or they weren't able to have us over. So we were stumped on what to do. We went home to make ourselves some food and just as we were getting home, the Fredericks were heading out to go to their daughters house. They invited us to come along with them so we accepted the invitation with a lot of excitement and went over there to spend new years eve with them. We had a pretty good dinner with an array of choices of appetizers and had a chocolate fondant (is that how you spell it?) party!! It was yummilicious!! haha:) we also had played apples to apples with them (don't worry we got permission:) ) and it was so much fun! It was nice to play a game like old times:) but I wouldn't trade being a missionary for having my old life back:) this is much better:) anyways, about the game, I got 2nd place! I was going to win but someone came out of the blue to beat me by one point.. Oh well.. I guess playing games with Bishop and Dad and having them "win all of the time" prepared me for that loss:) haha our curfew for the night was still between 9-9:30 and I was in bed by 10:30. It was a pretty quiet New Years Eve for me:) but still really great:)

Guess what?!?! it will be a miracle if I come home in a form other than a frozen popsicle by the end of this:) It is freezing here!! I mean freezing!! take today for example:) the high is -2 degrees and the low is like -11 degrees:) the wind chill is -40 degrees!!! that means any exposed skin outside within 5 minutes will be frostbitten.. yikes:/ !!! but all is well:) the spirit keeps me nice and toasty inside:D

So I also wanted to give you an update with what I found out at the drs this past week. Yes I do still have TMJ. He gave me a couple of exercises to try to do each day for the next couple of months to see if that will help.  Don't worry about me though. I promise I am doing just fine and Heavenly Father continues to bless and strengthen me each day:) I know that He is very aware of me and is blessing me in so many ways:)

OOh last Preparation day I bought a single serving blender to make smoothies in the morning:) I was pretty excited about that and it has been really nice to have one:) haha Merry Christmas to me:)

I had some pretty cool experiences this week with being able to feel of a small portion of the love that Heavenly Father has for His children. There were several points this week where I just felt an overwhelming feeling of love for the people that I am able to serve. It was incredible!! S is an active ward member that we are working with very extensively right now. She has been smoking for over 53 years now and is really working at trying to stop so that she can make it to the temple. She has tried and unsuccessfully stopped many times now but we have not given up on her and Heavenly Father is never giving up on her either:) I am confident that she can do it and change as she relies on the Atonement of Jesus Christ. It is such a blessing to witness the power of the Atonement in others lives each day:) I LOVE HER!!

We have also been working with Mari, a young woman that is getting ready to go on a mission in March. She was having a very difficult time because the stress, worry, doubts, and fears came crashing down on her (as they always do at some point to pre-missionaries) as reality hit her with what she was deciding to do. It was very interesting being on the other side and being the one to offer support and encouragement. It has been such a blessing!!! I could see myself in her is so many ways so I was able to connect with her very well and she is on track again and excited for a mission. Yes it is difficult. Yes it is the hardest thing I have ever done. Yes it has stretched me past my breaking point. BUT... It is the most incredible experience and I would do it all over again in a heartbeat knowing what I know now:) I have been blessed and strengthened more than I thought possible and the Savior has always stood by me:) I am truly grateful that because I chose to serve a mission, I have come to know my Savior.

Mari, her mom and her brother.

Have a great week!! keep your heads up!!
Love you!!!

Sister Christensen:)

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