My Companion is a Mermaid

You probably noticed that my subject line was not a hashtag.

I will explain. My companion uses the word human in place of people so she’ll say “Let’s go OYM some humans,” or “Humans!” When she is frustrated with drivers on the road. Or things like that! And I told her it make it sound like she’s a mermaid! So I guess mermaids can go on missions! She is the best mermaid companion I ever had!

On Tuesday…

We had our district meeting and our district activity. For district meeting, we learned about how to have a good study. I learned a lot and I even said something awesome. I said that we need to study so that we can prepare spiritually for the day so that we can have the spirit with us and be able to share that spirit with others.

For our District Activity, we played Volley Ball, Frisbee, and other outdoor games. It was a lot of fun! (And I did that all in a skirt…thankfully it was long!)

This week a Sister came to Lake Placid on exchange

It was a ton of fun! I really like her. We talked about books a lot, and she likes to quote movies! She is going home at the end of next transfer with my prior companion. She told me a few books that I need to read when I get home and they sound really cool.

During the exchange I learned how to take control of lessons so that the spirit is always present in a lesson and so we can get out of a lesson in a timely manner.

We also got our A/C to work in our bedroom!

So now we won’t die of heat in the middle of the night. Except last night we had to put more blankets on because is was cold. New York has some really weird bipolar weather.

On Thursday…

We had a really good Bible Study. The spirit was present and I felt edified. Here are a few quotes I wrote down from the other missionaries:

“As we work in the gospel, we will have joy.”

“As long as we are living what we know to be true, that’s what we need to do.”

“If God can forget it, surely we can to.”

“It’s not about the past, it’s about the present and what we can do and become.”

On Sunday…

Two of our investigators came to church! It was really exciting! We also had a lot of visitors on Sunday. It almost felt like I was in a ward. I couldn’t believe how many people were there.

Today, we tried washing the car at home

Well, I was trying to fill up the trash can with water using a dustpan. It didn’t work very well, and  my companion was out washing the car.

Time Flies!

I got a letter from Mattie (Or I should say Sister Mortensen this week!). I’m excited to write to another missionary! I can’t believe all my friends are now old enough to go on missions!
My prior companion is going home next transfer and that is really weird! AND President and Sister Wirthlin are going home! I can’t believe I have been out for almost six months now! On Saturday, we get to meet the new Mission President, President Rogers and his wife. It’s also the Fourth of July parade.

I’ve been studying all the war chapters in Alma

It’s getting pretty intense! I love reading the book of Mormon. Not only is it a book of scripture, it is also a very intriguing book full of amazing stories. Sometimes the language is a barrier but there are also some funny parts too, if you look closely. I love it!

I hope you all have a fantastic week!

Zone Conference and a Happy Birthday

This week was the fastest week in the history of my mission!

But then again, Zone Conference, feels like it was 5 weeks ago! It was a good week! It was Zone Conference, my companion’s birthday, and I reached my 5 month mark! CRAZY right?

I have been excited for Tuesday for three weeks now!

We had Zone Conference! (That sounded anticlimactic… but whatever!) We learned how to teach, using a new(ish) teaching method. I really learned a lot and I feel more comfortable teaching.

We had chicken for lunch and we ate at the “Sisters” table. One of the Elders (he’s an AP) didn’t like that, so he ate at our table and asked us what Sisters talk about. That was an interesting conversation… we talk about the randomest things! And I might have told everyone that it was my companion’s birthday on Thursday (the story will come later).

After lunch, President Wirthlin gave a presentation of his time as a mission president. Not a single eye was dry. I am so sad that he is leaving! However I was able to get a picture with him and Sister Wirthlin. I’m going to miss Sister Wirthlin too! She always gave the best trainings. This time she gave us gold fish so that we could be “Fishers of Men” in missionary work and with your companion.

That night we went to a BBQ at the branch. We played volley ball. I remembered how to play it. Our team won! We also played Ping Pong and a quick game of Apples to Apples!

GUESS WHAT! Liz White watches some of the same shows that I watch. She loves Wicked and she loves Merlin. I think we would have been best friends, if we went to high school together. I get along with her so well.

I was my companion’s birthday on Thursday!

In the morning, I made her a cake. I also made my yummy frosting, but I realized that we didn’t have any food coloring so I put orange jello mix in. It actually tasted pretty good! It was convenient because my companion likes Syracuse (the collage). Their colors are orange and blue, so we had orange frosting and blue candles. We tried to light the candles outside (we can’t have open flames in our apartments). It didn’t work, so she just pretended to blow them out. Later, we took the cake to bible study.

I also bought her a card, I told her that I was trying to find a card for Maggie (her birthday is the next closest) so I could buy it secretly and I also bought her a Lindt candy bar (the skinny kind that is really good). The next morning, I found a thank you note from my companion. 🙂

As a result of me telling all the sisters and one of the APs we had three birthday phone calls. The APs called us in the morning, the Norwood Sisters called us during weekly planning, and the Zone Leaders called us right as we were about to leave.

The night before my companion’s birthday, a member called us to take us out to lunch the next day, she had no idea that it was her birthday. It was definitely a tender mercy for her!

 

Something really special happened on Saturday…

We were able to meet a former missionary who served in Lake Placid about 18 months ago. She was Sister Lambert when she was on her mission, she’s married now. The White’s had a BBQ for her so she could say hi to everyone in the branch. She served here for 9 months! That’s a long time! She spoke at church on Sunday, about how the church is one big family that is broken up into smaller families (wards or branches). She was very cute and very loud! We also had dinner with the White’s on Sunday so we were able to talk with her again. I am glad to see that the branch still remembers who the missionaries are even when they go home. I will always feel welcome in this branch (especially at the Whites house) 🙂

I have finally figured out how to budget my study time in the morning.

I have been learning so much! My companion got a Book of Mormon Study Guide for her birthday so she let me borrow the one from the church. It is really fun to use the study guide. I am also learning a lot more from Preach My Gospel. I really love studying in the morning!

Service, Tracting and Spiders

This week was pretty slow…

On Tuesday we had district meeting, I played the piano again. 🙂 We learned about how to use the Book of Mormon more when we teach. At the beginning of the meeting we did a fun activity, we had to act out a Book of Mormon character and the rest of the district had to guess, some of them were really easy and some of them were really hard! After that we did a really fun role play where we had to answer a question using only the Book of Mormon. It was really interesting because the question might have been hard but in the end the answer was in the book. It was so cool!

On Tuesday night, we helped a young mother clean her house (us, the Elders and several people from the Branch). Her baby has really bad eczema and she needed to deep clean her house, so we washed the walls, toys, furniture and other things with vinegar water. I really enjoyed helping her clean. It made me feel good!

For the majority of the week, we tracted…

Followed up with people who have told us to come back at a better time. We haven’t had a lot of success, but I know that if we try a bit harder every week, we will be able to find those people who are prepared.

On Saturday…

We helped a Sister in our branch. We helped her with her spring cleaning to. It was really fun! Not only were we able to help this sister clean her house, we were also able to get to know her a little bit more.

On Sunday…

We taught Young Women’s. This time we had two Young Women. Liz, the only YW in the branch, has been bringing her friend to church for the past few weeks. It’s really fun to be able teach young womens. This week we taught about the responsibilities women have in the priesthood. It was a really good lesson.

There are spiders everywhere here!

Yesterday, we had a huge spider catastrophe! There was a big spider in the corner of the window and we didn’t want to smoosh it, because we didn’t want it jumping on us. So we started spraying it with Clorox. After we decided it was dead, my companion was wiping it up and it started crawling out of the paper towel. So we started spraying it again. And finally my companion flung it on the ground and stomped on it. So now it’s dead…

I am really grateful for my companion!

I have learned so much from her! She has a really great testimony and she relies on the spirit a lot. She is always willing to help me, and she always has my back. She is really great. This week it is her birthday… I am really excited for it!

HAPPY FATHER’S DAY NEXT WEEK!

I will keep singing with my companion! 😉

Watch Out NY… I’m Driving!

This week was pretty good!

It went by really fast… I don’t know why… nothing to exciting happened…

We had District Meeting on Tuesday

We learned about how we need to ask inspired questions that are specific for the person we are teaching. It really helps to understand the needs of our investigators and the concerns they might have.

We had dinner with members a few times this week

We were able to go to some members that we haven’t been to before. I was able to get to know those members a little better. AND they made really good food. We had a spicy Mexican rice thing and chicken with green chilies… I don’t think I have had anything Mexican since I have been home. Then we had pancakes for dinner… twice… Once with the White’s of course.

We are teaching this older couple who progress pretty frequently. They have been reading the Book of Mormon, and they participate in the lessons more. AND she was able to come to the Relief Society Activity! We made a baby quilt, and she did tie a whole row. We didn’t finish the quilt so we had to maneuver the quilt into the relief society room while it was still attached to the four 2 by 4s with a low ceiling. it was really hard but we did it. And we had egg salad sandwiches… So you probably think I’m crazy because that paragraph made no sense… sorry…

A Catholic Church

A lot of people told us to look inside the Catholic church in Lake Placid, because it’s very beautiful inside! I’ve never been in another church’s chapel that I remember (I’ve been in lots of church kitchens!), so we thought it would be cool! I guess you can just walk right in! so we did. It was very pretty inside, but I wish there was someone there to tell us about it! So we might go again to find someone to tell us about it!

We were tracting one day (I don’t remember what day…) And a kid answered the door. We said “Hi, how are you?” And he looked at us and said, “Hold on,” and he rand to his older sister and said, “I don’t know what to do! Come to the door!” He got very frustrated and her finally got his sister to come to the door… Yup! I remember those days when I ran from the door.

My companion likes to sing randomly when we are walking down the street…

Mostly “How firm a foundation” she even has arm movements for it. Once I was in the shower and she started singing at the top of her lungs! When I got out she asked me if I hear her singing to me… I didn’t. So the people next door to us probably think we are crazy…

It was Malea White’s birthday on Saturday

So on Sunday we had dinner at the White’s. We ate pancakes, we learned about the how the line of a royalty works, and scorpions. I think that is a typical dinner at the White’s house. Then we ate cake and ice cream, except no one liked the cake. Well, the ice cream was good! The White’s are really awesome!

I CAN DRIVE NOW!

So this transfer I am the designated driver. There is this thing called Tiwi in the mission cars that monitors your driving, your speed, how aggressive you drive and the RPM (I think that’s what it’s called). It’s a little tough to get used to it, especially since you can drive a lot faster in Utah than you can in NY. If you go 75 on the freeway, you will get pulled over.

​Sister Gass is scared of my driving...she shouldn't be, I'm a good driver right?

​Sister Gass is scared of my driving…she shouldn’t be, I’m a good driver right?

Black flies! Aargh!

I have a million black fly bites now, but they are dying so they should be gone by the end of June!!

I remember when I was in youth Sunday School, sometimes we didn’t have a teacher and so Brother Chamberlain would come in a use a magic trick in the lesson… or bribe us, he use to say, “If you let me teach you I will show you a magic trick! He’s pretty cool!

The other day we were trying to see people, and it rained while we were in the car, but as soon as we stopped, it stopped raining. Every single time we stopped it stopped raining, or at least let up for a minute! Isn’t it cool how the Lord show his love for us? In those small moments and tender mercies! And we don’t get rainbows…

It seems like Sisters are in areas longer then Elder because there are fewer of us… And I know that there is something here for us to do still, or else they would have closed this area for a few transfers. This is the slow season because all the missionaries who came out two years ago after school got out, are home now and the new ones aren’t coming until July. So we have set a goal to have one baptism this transfer!

President’s Farewell, Moving and More Rain

A LOT happened this week!

And that is why you didn’t get an email from me yesterday!

Let me tell you about black flies.

Black flies are about as big as a grain of rice they are small and easy to squish (when they aren’t flying). And they bite. They bite hard. So hard that they make you bleed. AND they draw blood from you. They are worst than mosquitoes! The North Country (that’s what they call northern upstate NY) even have their own bug repellent because the normal stuff doesn’t stop the black flies from biting you. Thank goodness it has been raining here non-stop all week! The black flies were temporarily gone…

Potsdam and the President’s Farewell

So on Saturday, we went to Potsdam (about an hour and a half away) for a farewell for President and Sister Wirthlin (they are going home in July). On the way there, we literally drove into a rain storm, we could literally see the rain coming down before we hit it! It was super crazy! Well, we still made it to Potsdam safely. The farewell fireside was great. There were several heartfelt talks from the members of the Potsdam district, many of which had a close personal relationship with President and Sister Wirthlin. They will be greatly missed, not only by the missionaries but also the members in #NYUM mission!

On the way back from Potsdam, we were driving home, and we hit another crazy rain storm. It was coming down hard. I am grateful that we made it home safely.

This week our vacuum failed us…

Again… We’ve tried fixing it several times. But it still won’t work so we called the mission office to get a new vacuum and Elder Larson, who is over all of the housing stuff, called us back and said, “I hear that you have a love affair with your vacuum.” We said yes and he told us, “Get used to it, because it will be like that with every boy you date!” HAHA! I thought that was funny…

The Lake Placid Branch is really small and everyone is pretty close, not like in Utah, where you mention someone and I don’t know who you are talking about half the time. So on Sunday, we had a pretty crazy sacrament meeting. A Sister with small children was giving a talk (she’s the branch president’s wife). Her 2 year old was giving her a hard time, so her husband sat him in his lap. Well the 2 year old was pretty grumpy so someone from the congregation threw a blanket across the chapel so the baby would calm down. Yup, that’s what happens in a branch!

We helped one of our investigator move.

She is moving to Saratoga Springs, and she needed help loading up a moving truck, it took us four hours plus three hours today to help her load everything up. I know that she is very grateful for our help (and the Miskins and the Elders). So that is why we are not emailing until today!

 

Well that’s about all for the week!