Monday, June 6, 2016

Surprise Sleepover!

This week was actually really good!  Some fun and funny adventures! First of all to start with a quote from one of the people we OYM'd this week:
"Saying you're a Christian because you grew up going to church is like saying you grew up in a garage, so you're a car." 

We had another fun time doing service for the thrift store on Tuesday. Also, an awesome lesson with Emma and Sis. Hall. The Spirit was so strong! We also met this really nice lady named Dolly! I was especially excited at her name.

Wednesday we finally got to catch up with our recent convert, Shaylie. She was out of town for about a month, she did a lot of family history while she was gone, though! We also had a super intense lesson with one of our investigators. He almost dropped us! He was doing really well and was even on-date for his baptism in a couple of weeks, and then he randomly stopped talking to us for a couple of weeks. He has a lot going on right now and is really stressed out, so he decided the easiest thing to drop would be church. WRONG. It never works! I know it sounds crazy, but if you keep doing those things that God has asked us to do, it makes everything else easier. Just adding the simple little things like reading a verse or two in the morning, and saying a prayer makes all the difference. We ended up talking to him for over an hour, and he almost dropped us several times. Fortunately we have become good friends with him over these last months, so I think that helped him realize that we are only here to help him. There's a quote from one of my favorite members in Royal City that came to mind: "God does not always lighten the load, but He does strengthen the bridge." Maybe your load is still going to be heavy, and you have a lot of stuff to deal with, but if you do the things He asks, it will help you! It's not meant to be a chore, it's meant to help us.

Wednesday night we ended up with an extra half-hour to kill, so we decided to go knocking over in a neighborhood by the church building. We met such a nice girl! Her name is Leila, but unfortunately she actually lives in the Dalles, which is some other missionaries' area. She said she sees the "guy missionaries" walking past her house all the time to visit people in her neighborhood and she always wonders, “Hey, why don't they stop at my house? I want to meet them, too!” So she was just dog sitting here in White Salmon, but we got her address and phone number and gave it to the Elders that are over the Dalles. Hopefully they can start visiting her soon! 

Thursday we did some service for Larissa. She's in the process of moving houses (same neighborhood) so we were helping her clean out a bunch of her old stuff she doesn't need anymore. I ended up getting a cute new skirt out of it! And we got a fan, which was a miracle because it got SO HOT HERE. Like triple digits! It was crazy, it was in the 80s last week then all of the sudden it got extremely hot! I was expecting it to stay fairly cool on the gorge, but nope! We didn't have any air conditioning in our house either, so that was totally miserable trying to sleep. Fortunately upon further exploring of our house we found an old window air conditioner in the back of a spare closet. Mama and Papa Abken came over and helped us set it up. Thursday night Mama Abken went with us up to Trout Lake, on the edge of our area, to visit a couple of less active families and a couple of new referrals! We were so grateful, because she drove so we could save on miles.

 I love my new skirt from Larissa!

It's SO HOT!!!

Trying to keep the house cool

I also got a letter from the Dallas YSA (Young Single Adults church group) on Thursday! Hi everybody! Thanks for your card! Shout out especially to Adam, for writing me a full on letter.

Friday was INSANE. We had to go to the Dalles in the morning to the Jeep dealership there to get a couple of things fixed on our car, and on the way home we saw a fire right off of the freeway. It looked pretty fresh, we could tell because the smoke wasn't that high in the air yet. We drove past the emergency vehicles on the way there. We could not have imagined on the way home how much that fire was going to affect us later! That afternoon after weekly planning we were out working in White salmon, then we had dinner and asked the members if they knew what the fire was and turns out a train car got off track and exploded! There were 11 more cars filled with oil that exploded since So traffic was kind of bad going towards Mosier, where the crash was, because they had to close the freeway. We were planning on going that direction in the evening for a lesson with our investigator. We asked how bad it was and the member said when she was driving home from work it wasn't too bad, like only tacking on about 10 minutes to her commute. We were like, Oh that's not too bad, it's not worth cancelling an appointment. WRONG we ended up leaving the investigator's house about an hour early just in case, because usually it takes about 15-20 mins to get home from there, so we thought it would be plenty of extra time. WRONG! 40 minutes later, we are only 1.5 miles down the highway and now parked and everyone was out of their cars.... we called our district leader because we were going to be so late! We don't know what to do! We had 3 options, stay on the highway, where it was estimated to take until about midnight or 1am, turn around and follow this local guy who offered to let us follow him on the back roads, which would have been good except it was dark and there's no cell service, so that didn't sound safe, or we could stay with a member who lives in Lyle, the town where our investigator lives. So the district leader talked to the zone leaders, who then talked to President Lewis! He had been watching the news because it was so bad, and said that we should just stay the night because the cars were not going anywhere. So we had a surprise sleepover with the Hovinghoff family! It was pretty stressful but pretty fun when all was said and done. We were SO grateful they were willing and able to drop everything and help us. Plus, Sis. Hovinghoff ended up having a couple of extra nightgowns that were too small that we could wear and they had some unopened toothbrushes. So that was crazy!

 View of the fire from our house


Modelling our nightgowns at the Hovinghoff's

Saturday morning we woke up in the Hovinghoffs’ house, which was pretty hilarious, because I legitimately was thinking it was a dream! We walked out of the guest room and the hovinghoff's son and daughter-in law were sitting on the couch. Sis. Hovinghoff Jr. Was like "Hey! I thought that was your car outside!" Then we had to explain everything. Haha it was pretty funny and a little awkward. Then we all got ready for the day and went at 7am to go to breakfast. Fortunately the Hovinghoff's son is a policeman, so he was able to check and said the traffic was all cleared up. We headed home and even got there at 8:05, just in time for personal study! It was really crazy but kind of fun in a way. 

So happy to be back home after our adventure!

Not too many exciting things happened on Saturday after that, but we did have the adult session of Stake Conference in the evening, which was really fun, because we got to see President and Sister Lewis! They gave some really awesome talks, and we got to introduce them to some members on Saturday night, and also on Sunday in the general session. Of course we made sure they met the Hovinghoffs! Also mama and papa Abken, just because they take such good care of us, too. 

So that's pretty much everything exciting from this week. I hope everything is going well for all of you! Love and miss you all! 

 Cherry Trees!

 "So, have you ever heard of the Book of Mormon?"

 Spring Festival was this weekend. Really fun but not fun,
because our apartment is right by this park and
people were playing music till like 3am! Hard to sleep!

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