So, I heard you guys got so much snow that they closed all the freeways and schools and whatnot. Is that true?! The kids here went to school for a total of, like, 4 hrs this last monday and then left early because the snow was getting too bad. The difference here was that we only got a whopping 6 inches; my comp. and I went out and did missionary work and they didn't even go to school. Sheesh! We went out on tues to visit the less actives from the ward and one of them had their 4-wheeler out towing people around on a sled. I had yoga pants on under my skirt so, skirt and all, I jumped on the sled and was towed aroung the neighborhood! So much fun!
On Thanksgiving, we went all over the place. First, we went to the Ferrin's house and had some chocolate hoapia (Hawaiin for coconut) pie and we wrestled with the 5 Ferrin boys. Then we went to the Wooleys and talked with them for a while. And then we went to our house and ate our first meal there with Sis. Swanson's family. We had helped her prepare the turkey earlier that morning and it was delish. She also had the most yummy mashed potatoes. So GOOD! Then we went to the Haskett's house where they had fake mashed potatoes (two thumbs way down) and played uno. AND THEN we went to, like, 4 other houses and had pie. One of the houses was having a PIE FEST and the winner was a pumpkin pecan pie. Wooee. My companion accomplished her goal of getting seven pies, one for every day of the week. So, overall, it was a good Thanksgiving!
As for Christmas, it was pretty much the same story. We went to so many houses and ate so much food! I was so sick by the end of the night! There was also a very nice Christmas program put on by the stake the sunday before Christmas and it really helped put me into the Christmas spirit! It even had a live nativity! I got to pet a ram, an alpaca, and a donkey. It was really fun :).
We've also been blessed with alot of miracles lately. This last week, we were able to make a part-member family from the ward we are serving in our new investigators! The bishop had gone over there and the member mom had said she wanted her eight yr. old to be baptized and that she wanted to make sure the missionaries knew so that she could taught. So, we went over there and invited non-member dad and their 11 yr. old son if they wanted to be baptized and they became really excited right away, even making jokes about what their baptisms would be like. I can tell that satan is hard at work at this family, but I can also tell they are ready.
Another miracle was that we were able to baptize Robert, a boy we met in the last transfer and were able to teach for two months. He was baptized on Dec. 19 and his non-member even came and was very supportive. I was also able to give a really powerful message on the restoration while we waited for Robert to change. The spirit was so strong! It was a great baptism.
Third miracle of the week happened when we were knocking on doors in the Sunrise ward and we knocked on the door of Becca. She was so excited because her best friend is a member and lives in Utah. She has been so prepared by that same member friend to receive the restored gospel in her life that she came on a church tour with us on sunday after the baptism. She is our same age, in college and looking for a place where she belongs. We took her to the font and asked her if she would commit to learning more and being baptized, and she said YES! It was an incredible miracle that I am going to record in my journal if I remember. :)
As a poor missionary, I can't give many gifts but as I share messages and talk to people at the door, I really start to realize what Christmas is about. I love my Savior Christ and am so grateful he was worthy and willing to save my life. I also am now realizing the comfort The Savior can give as we let Him take on our struggles and truly, with a full heart, turn it over to The Lord. I love you all and thank you for all your prayers and support! Please keep my investigators and newly baptized members in your prayers. Love you!
-Sister Emily McRae