Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Happy MLK Day

Hey family!

Hey so I'm pretty sure Sister Beesley recorded the training on her thingy, maybe I can get a copy and you can watch it, mommy :)

And I got some froofy colored tights in a package today!! hhahaah. I will have to figure out how to wear them so they aren't terribly distracting. Sis Claspell said I should wear them under another pair of tights when it gets colder. I think that's a great idea. Yay. Thank you so much. i love colors. Every day I wear my Breast Cancer awareness pink bracelet, my bright orange watch, and my turquoise earrings, and I love my foxy red camera.

So we have big plans to start planning a stake musical fireside on the Love of God, because we need new investigators and hopefully we can get the members excited about missionary work. We have an appointment with the bishop tonight to talk about it.

So we organized this area into smaller, color-coded sections and have been meeting with all the auxiliaries to go over the ward list. It has helped a lot for us to both get to know this area and to learn about those people that don't always make it to church. Working with the auxiliaries has been very valuable, especially the relief society, the presidency is awesome and has already contacted several of the less active sisters on the list and found out which ones do not want visits and have gotten slightly tired of telling that to all the people that come knocking on their door. Working with the leadership of the ward means we are a lot more organized---doesn't make sense for the missionaries to go and visit someone when they don't want to be visited, and then the relief society visit them a week later cuz  they didn't know the missionaries already tried, and so on.

We just met with the elders quorum president last night and went through all the men on the list. Several he knew nothing about, so he told us we just gave him a lot of homework, bahaha.

Sister Claspell and I both keep getting the feeling that we're getting this area all organized and all the info all caught up so that new missionaries will come to this area and have it all done for them. Bahahah. But who knows, we don't find out if we're getting transferred until the middle of February. Sister Claspell would be very sad to leave this area. I'd be sad too, but I am having a hard time getting attached to anything ever since I got back from Petersburg. Sigh.

So I went on exchanges with Sister hatfield on Tuesday. Her companion went back to Eagle River with Sister Claspell. Sister hatfield and I spent almost the whole day (well, from 2pm to about 6pm and from about 7pm to 9pm, and then we had a phone conference with Nome, Bethel, and Barrow elders at 9:30 that night) at the mission home planning for our weekly Thursday training, cuz she and I were kinda presenting "Island Training" along with Bethel, Nome, and Barrow (three areas way far away, so you were right Mom, the reason they were so quiet during the thing was that two of them were using PVC which is this video chat thing and one was using Polycom). We got to the mission home and gathered around Sister Beesley's white board outline of how she wanted the trianing to go that she'd already got figured out. Oh and by the way in the car on the way to the mission home all Sister Hatfield and I could do was laugh and joke and unsurface all a zillion of our inside jokes and be completely crazy. We are like CLONES. We had missed each other so much and were SO HAPPY to be back in each other's presence. We were slightly scary.

Sister Beesley, who loves music, said, "I just wish there was some hymn or something that could tie our training together!" She wanted it to have 3 segments --- The first one was "Creative Planning," or what creative ideas do we use to fill our daily schedule when you're on an island? The second once was "Service with the Spirit," or how do we make sure that even when we're doing service we are sharing the gospel and making sure we're not just being used. The third was "Being Faithful"---being obedient, basically, to the mission rules and God's commandments, cuz it's easy when you're in the bush to get lazy and disobedient cuz you think no one is watching you. Sister Hatfield thought of a hymn (it was the Spirit): "What about 'I Have Work Enough to Do'?" She and I love that hymn, we discovered that it was actually a beautiful song one day in Petersburg and I whipped up some piano accomp to go with it, and we have loved doing it since. But check out the lyrics:

1. I have work enough to do,
Ere the sun goes down,
For myself and kindred too,
Ere the sun goes down:
Ev'ry idle whisper stilling
With a purpose firm and willing,
All my daily tasks fulfilling,
Ere the sun goes down.

2. I must speak the loving word,
Ere the sun goes down.
I must let my voice be heard,
Ere the sun goes down:
Ev'ry cry of pity heeding,
For the injured interceding,
To the light the lost ones leading,
Ere the sun goes down.

3. As I journey on my way,
Ere the sun goes down,
God's commands I must obey,
Ere the sun goes down.
There are sins that need confessing;
There are wrongs that need redressing
If I would obtain the blessing,
Ere the sun goes down.

They are perfect, and fit perfectly along with what Sister Beesley had already planned. We named the first segment "All My Daily Tasks Fulfilling" cuz it's in the song, and talked about how we fulfill our daily tasks and what sort of weird things we thought up to do in Petersburg. We named the second segment "Evry Cry of Pity Heeding" and talked about helping those who need help. The third segment, "God's Commands I Must Obey," and I love the last line--"If I would obtain the blessing"---because like D&C 130:20-21 says we get blessings through obedience.

It was funny cuz when earlier in the day I remember telling Sister Hatfield, "We have to reminisce about Petersburg tonight before we go to bed." She was like, "Done." And then it was cool, cuz we spent the day planning for the fireside and THAT ended up being what we needed.

So, that was cool. Good closure.

One of our investigators is a 14-year-old girl, the daughter of a recent convert who has a learning disability and a son with autism. The girl is in a behavioral corrections place. We were able to go see her on Saturday with her mom. She's a sweet girl. Very tough. Sister Claspell told me that day was the happiest she had ever seen her! So cool.

I love you lots and I hope everyone is happy and healthy. The Church is true and as Sister Claspell says, CTR is good for you.

Sister Ashbrook

Oh p.s. our fridge died yesterday and we got a new one today! The landlady is very nice. We lost everything in our freezer and most of our food though. But it was okay, cuz I hate having a messy fridge full of forgotten food from previous missionaries. Hahhaa.

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