The Butte: I've now lost count of the times I've climbed this mountain. Though compared to the majestic mountains that surround it, the Butte looks like a little hill. Though it is still a challenge for me but doable and by far the easiest hike. I'm glad that we have the opportunities to go hiking as much as we do, because the other areas in the mission won't have nearly as much; maybe only one or two. The rest of the P-day we were going to go play at the park, but ended up just chillin' at the church and talking.
President Toone: Oh my goodness!!! We have the best Mission President ever !!! He has so much love for all of us and is so passionate about the gospel. His voice gets louder and louder the more passionate he gets. It is awesome. We had interviews with him, which were wonderful. He asked some questions about my family, asked for advice and then asked if I had any questions for him. I talked with his wife previously and she said for me to talk with President Toone about teaching Seminary and Institute. I asked him about it and he is the sweetest. He said that at the close of my mission he would talk to me more about it and get my feelings on some things and would personally call some connections he has to get me interviews with the right people!! Because we kept talking about this and about the teaching program in general, our interview time went way over, but it was so worth it. He and his wife are truly amazing. Zone Conference was a blast. It was a bit shorter than what we normally have, but so many amazing training's were packed into this conference.
Member Referrals: We had gone to mutual with the Young Women a couple of Wednesdays ago. We talked to them about missionary work and sharing the gospel. They had given us a verbal list of young women in the ward who are less active and wanted to go and visit. We finally followed through on that commitment a week later. Some weren't home, some we didn't have an address for, and one was not happy with us. We get to one member's house and the two daughters answered the door. Normally we talk to the adults of the house, so we asked if their mom was home. They said no and then we asked abut their dad. We were making sure we had the right house by asking them if they were so-and-so and all of a sudden their mother came around the corner asking us who we were. When we told her we were missionaries of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, she flipped. She told us to leave and threatened to call the cops the next time we come back. She apparently is not a member but her husband is. We didn't know; we were just following through on our member referrals we received from the ward. Soon the Bishop called us saying he heard word from the Stake President about our visit and then the Relief Society President wanted to give us a list of Do Not Contact (DNC), so this doesn't happen again to us or anyone else for that matter.
Lessons with the Hensons: We got a call from Brother Henson saying that Jamie wanted the lessons. We had recently passed him and his sister Kemalie over to the Knik Fairview elders who actually have stewardship over them because they live in their area. We decided to both teach them together one evening as we went and taught the Ten Commandments. We do it with hand signs so it is easy to remember and even in order. Jamie got really distracted the first so we only go through the first half of them. A few days later, we went back with the elders to have another lesson teaching the latter half. Jamie was much improved and remembered quite a bit of them. We promised them if they were to recite them all to us at Church the following day we would give them candy. Both came to church and now we need to buy some candy!!
Flat Tire: After service on Friday at Hannah's, we were heading back to our apartment to change and have comp study when we get a flat tire. Neither of us knew how to change a tire so we called the elders who weren't too far behind us leaving the service. They came and Elder Masters put on the spare tire for us. Though we found out later while at Alyeska Tires that he had put it on backwards. Haha. We called our vehicle coordinator who told us to go to Roger's Garage, but when we got there they had sent their crew home. We then tried another place before we were able to get help at Alyeska Tires. They said the tire was slashed and because they didn't have a matching tire and also because the car is an all-the-time 4-wheel drive, they would have to replace all four times - $$$$. Though he did say it had to do with the road conditions and nothing that I did wrong as the driver. That was good to hear. We are all safe, which is the most important part and hopefully nothing like this happens again.
Peonies: We wanted to visit one of our less actives we had not visited with in a while and we chose the perfect day to do so. She grows her won peonies she wants to sell in the future, but is just making sure the flowers are what they are they were and were of good quality. She had just cut a whole bunch off the plant earlier that day and wanted us to deliver them to members we felt would really appreciate them. We chose to give a bouquet to the Ronnes, the Evans, and the Hafens. We completely forgot it was McKinnley's birthday today, but just felt we should bring her flowers anyway. Her and her parents were so grateful to receive them. It was super fun to just stop by bringing gifts for people. It brightens their day, which in turn brightens ours.
Sent from Alaska!
Sister Shelley Willden