Monday, December 26, 2016

Alto Cinco!

It's been such a good week!  Merry Christmas everyone!

Me and Hermana Tolliver

Monday was a great P-day. We went down to Selah and played VOLLEYBALL with our zone. It was really fun. We also found out where the Target is......yes.

We had a meeting later that evening with our SGL (Spanish group leader), Brother Robins, and he's a genius! He suggested that we start practice teaching a few people and it's been working so well! Miracles are happening because of it.

Tuesday I had personal breakthrough. I don't know why I was just kind of in a little slump the last month or so, and finally broke out of it. I started looking back through old journals and notes and stuff and started remembering everything I have learned and it's just been wonderful since. I feel like me again finally.

Wednesday- I have been reading through the Book of Mormon in Spanish, and it's been helping a ton. When I find a word I don't know (which is a lot in scripture language), I look it up and make a flash card for it so I can learn it. So I was reading in 1 Nefi 5:9 and it said "y ofrecieron sacraficios y holocaustos al senor" so ofrecieron- that means, they offered. Sacraficios, that means sacrifices, but I was like what does holocaustos mean? It looks just like the word "holocaust" like WWII.... so I looked it up and it means BURNT OFFERINGS......Then my mind blew up. I was like whoooaaa..... who would have thought reading an ancient book of records from the Americas like 2600 years ago would help me understand WWII better? It was crazy.

That afternoon we had an amazing breakthrough with Rosa. We finally understand each other! We're having open communication and honesty now. Turns out my resting mad face is still a problem even though I'm trying SO HARD to always look pleasant! She thought that I just didn't like her at all and that Hermana Tolliver thought she was crazy! She was just reading our facial expressions wrong. But if you think about it, it makes sense. You basically make the same face when you're confused/lost trying to keep up with a foreign language as when you are disgusted and or think someone is crazy.... Poor Hermana Tolliver. I'm just so glad Rosa finally opened up to us. It was so cool because the reason she did was because of Practice teaching! (Thank you SGL!) We were like, "We'd like to ask a favor of you," and she was  like, "Okay, what is it?" We said, "Can we practice teach the missionary lessons to you? We really are trying to improve our teaching skills and it will especially help Hermana Tolliver as a new missionary. We just really respect your opinions and know you'll give great feedback." She was so shocked! she was like, "Wait, you guys actually care about what I think?" then the honesty came out! I was SO grateful for that lesson. Now she's like our best friend. and the lessons are going much, much smoother.

We saw Aria (potential investigator) again that evening and had the chance to give her a Book of Mormon! It was really cool. Then that evening we had dinner with the Walters. They are so, so sweet and gave us all a pair of gloves, a bunch of food, and four rolls of toilet paper! Ha ha! It was a missionary dream come true.

After dinner we had the COOLEST EXPERIENCE EVER WITH HERMANA REINA. We started practice teaching her as well, and it was crazy how much she opened up to us too! She told us about a big doubt/question she's been having in relation to some deep doctrine. I ended up sharing a personal experience with her that I've never shared with anyone, about a really hard question I was faced with during my mission.  I talked about how faith is usually defined as believing in something you can't see, and then acting on that belief. But how it's also believing in things you can't fully understand right now and just believing that God will help you and give you the answers when you really need them. It's trusting Him with His timing. It was such a cool experience, there were tears and a little bit of shaking! And the gift of tongues is real! I'm pretty fluent by now at Spanish, but there's still a lot of vocabulary I don't know or don't use very often. But I remembered words while sharing my testimony with her that I didn't even know I knew! It was so cool.

Thursday we started focusing our TAMs (teaching active members) lessons a little more on member missionary work again. It was a huge push and focus in our mission over the summer, and I just remember how wildly successful it was in White Salmon. I shared all the trainings we received over the summer with Hermana Tolliver and we started teaching it to the members again. It's already been going really well. So many members just have fears about member missionary work, and it's so nice to be able to identify and resolve those concerns.

That evening we visited Rosa again, and the coolest/cutest thing happened! We were teaching her in the back corner of her store (like usual) and one of her friends came in to bring her a bunch of bread to sell from Yakima. They were talking as friends usually do, and then he was like, "Oh, hey…who are they?" gesturing to us. And Rosa said, "They're Mormons." We were a little sad, thinking, you're a Mormon too, Rosa! But we didn't want to impose or do anything to make the situation weird, so we didn't say anything about her being in our church. We just told him a little about what a mission is, etc. Then right as he was about to walk out the door, Rosa just blurted out, "DO YOU WANT A BOOK OF MORMON?" and he was like, "......Sure!" Then she just started bearing her testimony about it, and we taught and explained a little more about it--what it is, where it's from, etc. We gave him a card with our information and an invitation to church on Sunday. It was SO AWESOME. After he left we were all like "ALTO CINCO!!" (high five!) Jumping and dancing around and so, so, so proud of her! It's not too hard just ask them! If they say no it's no biggie!

Alto Cinco!

Friday I got a couple of unexpected Christmas packages from my mom, so that was awesome.

Most of our plans that day fell apart, then we made new plans, then they all fell apart! It was because, of course God had a better plan in mind. We ended up having an amazing lesson with our investigator, Amelia. She gets talking about all this random stuff sometimes, and it gets really hard to direct the conversation back to the spiritual and gospel-related subjects we want to teach about. We were sitting there on her couch while she talked on and on about something random and I just said a prayer in my heart that Heavenly Father would open some sort of window for me, some random subject would pop up in her story that I could somehow tie back to the gospel and get the conversation back on track. I promised that if an opportunity arose I would take it, and then as soon as that sentence went through my head, it popped up! I was so grateful for the power of the Spirit, helping me to be bold but not overbearing or offensive with her. We had a very loving conversation after that addressing what exactly all of our expectations were regarding our visits. She said, " I really want to talk about God and learn more about Him and what He wants for my life, but somehow we always end up talking about other things." We were like, "that's totally what we want, too!" Then we formally invited her to take the missionary lessons from us (something we usually don't do, we usually just go straight into teaching) and she said she would love to do that and that she wants us to teach her kids, too.

Saturday was Christmas Eve. We had a great day making some stockings and cookies and little thank you cards for our investigators and members who help us out so much and who we love so much!  That evening we went to dinner with the Bergs, then Christmas caroling with six other missionaries in our district. It was so fun! All the investigators and less-actives we visited really enjoyed it and felt so good to see their happy smiling faces light up when we sang and gave them cookies. :)

 Gift exchange with the District

 I got a Razor Scooter! Ha ha!

 Me and Sister McCourt

 Sister Michalek and I


Sunday was CHRISTMAS! We woke up at 6:30 (like regular) and opened up all of our presents! Good job everyone! We loved them thank you so much. It was so cool and funny because I mainly asked for some new music, and I got ten new CDs!! Woo hoo!  I finally got some new jams. :)


Church was good. We were a little stressed, because even though we reminded our investigators like a thousand times that church was going to be at 10 that day instead of 12:30 like usual, they still forgot and missed it because they were planning on 12:30! Gah! It was still good though, Lebron and Rosa still came, so that was good. Also, the musical numbers were really, really good! We have a lot of talented people here in Ellensburg! After church we went to lunch at the David's house. They were so nice, and gave us so much food! Thank you Davids! After that, we went to the Roberson's and Facetimed our families! It was so great. I got a little bit of 1-on-2 time with everyone. Ha ha! I split the time up so I could do couples--Mom and Bobby, Emily and Hannah, Libbie and Adam, and Grandma and Grandpa, then after that I Facetimed my dad. It was so good to catch up and see people's faces! AND MY SISTER LIBBIE IS ENGAGED! Woo hoo! So exciting.  Also MY SISTER HANNAH IS BRUNETTE. Apparently that's not new, but I don't get told anything out here! Ha ha! also my Dad got his dog a really funny punk rocker jacket.


After Facetime, we ate dinner with the Robersons. It was actually a huge gathering! It was so fun and there were a bunch of non church members there! We got so many referrals for the elders! My favorite was this super sweet girl named Janelle. She just loves Mormons so much she said. She moved in the middle of her senior year of high school and that the Mormon kids just came in a took her under their wing and they are just the nicest people ever. She even got a little choked up just talking to us about it!

Dinner with the Robersons

After dinner we visited the Gills, they actually did this really cute 12 Days of Christmas for some of our Spanish members, and we just thought it was so sweet. Then we visited the Allreds. Brother Allred told us the craziest story about one time when he went hiking alone and almost died. DON’T GO HIKING ALONE! Ha ha! They also have this super cute little girl, Nola, who loves Harry Potter, and she showed me so many cool things that she got! She got the Marauder's Map, Luna’s wand and glasses, and some liquid luck! So cool.

Well I guess that's it for this awesome week! I hope everyone is doing well. I love and miss you all.

Monday, December 12, 2016


I did Hermana Buss's makeup
for the Christmas Party. Fun!

I have the best news in the whole world! I am training a brand new missionary again! That rarely happens! I'm so, so, so excited and so honored! It was funny, because we had totally forgotten that transfer calls were on Saturday, until like Saturday morning at about 9. The Sisters mentioned it, and we were like, "Oh yeah!" Then like 10 minutes later, Sister Atkinson and Sister McCourt's phone rings. (We only get direct calls from President Lewis on transfer calls day if someone is getting called or released from a leadership position. Otherwise, we just get 1 mission-wide voicemail that talks about leadership changes, and a second one from the APs that says specific changes within our zone.) So, Sister McCourt yelped! And then Sister Atkinson got released as an STL for her last transfer and got news she is transferring to Moses Lake :( I will miss her so much, I love her. Then President told Sister McCourt she would be receiving Sister Michalek as her new companion, which was so crazy and cool because Sister Michalek is her "Mom"! Very rarely are trainers and trainees ever companions again so that's a huge blessing for them! Sister McCourt is very excited.

Then after all that, we figured the call was done, but then president was like "Can I talk to the Spanish Sisters, now?" MY HEART ALMOST EXPLODED. He said it was really cool to get to have transfer decisions on the same week as the Christmas Gathering, because he got to observe all the missionaries and companionships and relationships while being in this prayerful state and that some unexpected changes were made. Then, he said "Hermana Knight, we want to ask you if you'd be willing to train a new missionary." Tears welled up in my eyes because I literally LOVED training so, so, so much, and very rarely do people get to train a new missionary twice! I was so surprised! I laughed and said "Oh my goodness! I totally will! Thank you so much for this opportunity! I love training!" He said he knows that one of these three new hermanas coming in really needs me. It was so shocking! We thought we had heard that 11 Elders were coming in, and no sisters! So we were definitely not expecting any of us to get called to train! Then Hermana Buss got news she will be leaving on Wednesday to go to Ephrata. She gets to serve with Hermana Clark, which will be so awesome! I love Hermana Clark.

In other transfer news, Hermana Luevano got released as and STL! I'm glad for her because now for her last two transfers she'll get to see what it's like to be a normal missionary! She got trained, trained me, and then has been an STL for the whole rest of her mission! It will be a cool experience. I don't know where she's headed :( but she's been in the Englewood Branch for 5 transfers now! So we weren't surprised to hear she's leaving. Hermana Hull is staying in Englewood Branch as far as I know. Sister Hirsche is "dying" on Tuesday! It's so sad when all your mission friends die. I'm starting to realize how old I am, too! I only have three transfers left, and every time I think about it I just really want to cry. I want to stay on my mission forever. Things just make sense here.

Some other Highlights of the week:
 Tuesday I went on exchanges with Sister McCourt, and it was so awesome! She's seriously cute and fun and we actually have a ton in common that we didn't realize before. I'm glad she's not leaving because she's a really good friend :)

Wednesday was the Mission Christmas party!!! It was so fun, and of course I loved ,loved, LOVED seeing my mom, Hermana Luevano, and my daughter, Hermana Hull. I love them so much. One of my favorite moments of the day was when the Yakima Valley Zone was doing their musical number (each zone shared a musical number and a message) and Hermana Hull sang a solo! It was SO beautiful, and I was so proud of her. She's like an angel. She gets really nervous singing in front of people and has never done a solo before, so I'm so, so, so proud of her. Her heart is so big, too. Also, can I just say that Hermana Luevano looks SO DANG GOOD WITH LIPSTICK ON. She is so cute. I love and miss her all the time. I got to see Hermana Shewell, too! It was so fun. She was pretty sad to hear about Fernando, but she sounds like she's doing great in Hood river and really loves it down there! We also got to watch a newer movie (new since I've been out, but I've been out for like 14 months so that's not saying much.) It's called "Ephraim's Rescue" and it's so good! It was equal parts inspiring, funny, and super sad!

 Three Generations!

 My hija and me!

 My mom and me!

 Sister Young and I

Sister Andrews, Sister Hernandez, Sister Young and me

This week we were blessed to find FIVE NEW INVESTIGATORS. That rarely happens, too! It was crazy because it was one of those harder weeks when you feel like you're working really hard, but have nothing to show for it, except 12 referrals (not bad) until Saturday and Sunday, when we were finally able to contact some of those referrals and turn them in to new investigators! They are actually showing a lot of interest in the Church. One of my favorite moments was yesterday with Rosella and Paulo, at the end of the lesson we said a prayer with them and Paulo just sat there for a moment and said quietly "Wow what a great birthday present from God." and then Hermana Buss was like, "Is it your birthday?" He said, "Yes, and it's so amazing because two of God's servants came to my house and said a prayer for me and my family. It's the best present ever". BEING A MISSIONARY IS THE BEST THING EVER.

Another cool little miracle happened yesterday, because the Reina's nephew, Miguel has been showing a little bit of interest lately, and always asks us a lot of questions, but we never know when he's going to be at their house. He just shows up there randomly sometimes. We talked to Hermana Reina earlier that week about what she would think of us teaching Miguel, and she said she thinks it would be really good, and that we should definitely try it. Then, we went to stop by the Reina's house yesterday afternoon, because they didn't come to church and we wanted to make sure they were okay. No one was home, but right as we were pulling out of their driveway, Miguel pulled in!! It was a miracle for sure, we were able to stop and talk to him for a minute, and ask if we could set up a time to talk to him and answer more of his questions and he was like "Yes! I was hoping for that, but I didn't know how to ask". MIRACLE for sure!

One last cool miracle, before I sign off. So on Tuesday Sister Buss and Sister Atkinson had gone to our investigator, Rosia's house for a lesson and talked a lot about the Book of Mormon with her, and especially about how when we read the Book of Mormon and the Bible it brings us a lot of peace. Then yesterday Rosia texted us and told us she had gone out of town to Mexico for a little trip and that she was super nervous to fly in a plane, but that she remembered what the sisters had said about the Book of Mormon and decided to read from it while she was on the plane and she felt a lot of comfort and wasn't afraid anymore. So cool! #scripturepower

Well, that's it for now, I have a lot of stuff to do to prepare for my new baby to come in a couple of days! I love and miss you all!


Monday, December 5, 2016

"Ah Nuts!"

So this week, our super solid, awesome recent convert/ lifeblood of the Spanish group, Fernando, decided to up and move to Utah randomly. When we texted our group leader about it, all he said back was "Ah nuts" Same, Brother Robins, Same.

Goodbye, Fernando!

Really quick rundown of this past week:
Monday was great! We finally got to play volleyball! I've been wanting to for like 10 weeks but we couldn't find a net! Patience. We also had an awesome FHE with the Adams family in 1st ward. They invited one of our Spanish members, Lebron to come, too! It's so cool to see the support.

Also Sister Atkinson and Sister McCourt wrote an awesome "Missionary 12 Days of Christmas" 1 awesome package from home, 2 tracting shoes, 3 name tags, 4 pros bags, 5 rolls of toilet paper, 6 meals this week, 7 new referrals, 8 hundred miles, 9 leather watches, 10 p-day hours, 11 planner covers, 12 hours of sleep!

Tuesday we were in a trio with Sister McCourt because Sister Atkinson had MLC in Yakima. We had an awesome lesson with our investigator, Alex, and then went to a delicious taco truck for lunch! It was a suggestion from a member that we go there and it was so good. We gave them a bunch of Ilumina el Mundo cards too! After that we accidentally found a new trailer park we didn't know was there before and ended up finding a new investigator, too! She was so nice and actually really loved the Book of Mormon. She said it just made sense.

Wednesday we said goodbye to Clemencia (our investigator). She's going back to Mexico until February, but it was a good last lesson. We read Alma 20 together. Then we did some service for some elderly people. It was such a struggle at Sheila's house because she was watching LITTLE HOUSE ON THE PRAIRIE and it was so hard to not get distracted and watch it!!

Thursday I went on an exchange with Sister Atkinson. I love her so much! We started off with lunch at Hermana Martinez' house and then we taught her how to do family history! It was so fun. Then we went and anonymously raked all the leaves at the Institute Building for the Light the World Kickoff Day! Dec 1 worldwide service day. After that we went back to that trailer park we had found earlier in the week, and it turns out Sister Atkinson had been there before a long time ago on exchanges with the hermanas and she was able to tell me where these former investigators live who we have been looking for a long time! It was a definite miracle. We picked them back up, turns out they were looking for us, too! they've still been reading and praying this whole time.

 Raking leaves at the Institute Building with Sister Atkinson

After that we went to the Reinas (love them!), and Sister Atkinson shared a really cool Christmas message with them using the Parable of the 10 Virgins form Matthew 25:1-13 Usually people connect that story with preparation, but she connected it to service and how when we do service that's when we really come to know Jesus. Light the World!

Friday we had some delicious carnitas Tortas at Bishop's work. It was so delicious! We also go to go to 2nd Ward's Christmas party. It was really fun and good to get to meet a lot more members of that ward. It's hard because we don't go to church in the same building as them, since there are two here in Ellensburg. So it was nice to get to see them in a group. We also got to participate in the program with the English elders serving in their ward.

Saturday was Zone training meeting. One of my favorite moments was when we all went around and shared a little bit of why we decided to go on missions. The Spirit was so strong! you just never know what people have been through!  We also practiced our song for the Christmas gathering on Wednesday! I'm so excited! More details on that next week. That night we went to 1st Ward's Christmas  party. It was also fun! and we got to be "waitresses." Ha ha It was so nice having an excuse to go around to all the tables and talk to and see everyone. Everyone in our group came, except Rosa, because she had to run her store. Even Brother Roman came and he hasn't been to church in 20 years! Wow!

Our zone at ZTM!

Yesterday was such a great day at church! And how awesome was that First Presidency Christmas Devotional?  Especially the 3rd song that the Mormon Tabernacle Choir sang was SO beautiful.

Today it's snowing! Woo Hoo! First snow of the season.

Excited about snow!

Merry Christmas ya’ll!