Monday we went to Sister Olsen's house to do some watercolor painting with her. It was fun and relaxing. Then we had a great visit with Maria Mortalez that evening. She gave us a bunch of mom advice and talked a lot about how much she loves the free English classes at the church. It was awesome.
my watercolor fruit
Hermana Tolliver being cute
Sister Olsen's studio
Tuesday we had a lunch and language study date with Bea Garcia. She is the cutest and we sure love her! Then we went to do some service for Sheila and Esther. We went to a few local nursing and retirement homes after that to find out about singing/piano/talking to lonely people opportunities. Then that night we had a lesson with Yesena. Turns out she's been taught a lot more than we thought! It's a little frustrating because usually as missionaries we try to take really good notes about the people we work with so that the next missionaries who come along will know what the person has been taught, but there aren't many notes about Yesena. She's actually thinking about baptism right now, so that's exciting! But she can't go to church because of her boss. Can everyone please pray for her? Either that she can get a new job, or her boss can be more understanding?
Wednesday we knocked into Yesenas sister, Amor! Haha it was actually pretty funny because their trailers, even though they are in separate trailer parks on opposite sides of Ellensburg, are painted the exact same shade of blue! I thought that was kind of cute actually. After that, we went to Rosa's (bae/calabaza) and had an amazing lesson about God's love and the power that comes from reading the scriptures daily. There were tears involved. I love her so much. After Rosa's lesson, we went to Pacifica (local rest home) to sing! It was so fun and so refreshing. Afterwards Hermana Tolliver and I were both just like, "WE LOVE SINGING! WE'VE MISSED IT SO MUCH!" So we made it a weekly thing! Every other Wednesday we'll go to Pacifica, and the other two Wednesdays we'll go to the Meadows (other rest home in town). I'm excited. I love old people!! This one little lady named Shirley was so sweet and cute and actually started tearing up when we sang "Be still my soul". CUTE. After Pacifica we went to help out at the Hispanic food bank (APOYO). It was great as usual. There's a new guy that's volunteering there now who is 6' 5"!!!
That night we went to see Edumundo. He's doing pretty well, but we're not sure the desire to actually change is there. He loves everything we say and says it's "interesting" and "makes sense" and he reads the Book of Mormon every day and prays, but for some reason just doesn't want to come to church...
Thursday we had District Council. It was pretty fun because Elder Vejnar told us all the day before to dress up old-fashioned. So I did my hair and makeup kind of retro (but not too much because I didn't want it to be distracting the rest of the day). Sister Michalek dressed up like an old lady, it was funny. And a lot of the elders decided to mismatch their suit jacket and trousers because apparently that's retro and also something old men do. Haha.
me before district council
Sister Michalek and Sister McCourt
all of us at district council
That evening we FINALLY got to meet Bishop G from the 2nd ward. It was funny because we got to his house for dinner and he was like, "So, Hermanas, how long have you both been in Ellensburg?" When I told him 5 1/2 months he was like, "Wow I really am a slacker." Haha turns out he speaks Spanish too! Gah. They were super different than what I was expecting but they are really cute. Sister G is 43 but looks like she's my age or younger! It's freaky how good she looks! That night we visited the Reina family. Sister Reina is so sweet and helpful. We were having a hard time finding these people's house because we thought it was on strange road, but it was actually on Strande road. Turns out, Carina (the lady we were trying to find), works with Sister Reina so she texted her for us to help us figure out where she lived!
lab puppies at the Reina's!
Friday at Bishop S's company we ate Mexican hot dogs. MEXICAN HOT DOGS = GROSS. No me gusta! But all the employees are starting to feel a lot more comfortable around us and talk to us more, so that's good! That evening I had veggie lasagna for the first time ever and it was really delicious! Then we went to Fred and Carina (because now we know where they live) and had a great visit with them. We didn't end up getting to teach much, but we got to know them pretty well. We actually took the twins with us and it went well! They were nervous because it was their first time going out with the missionaries but they did so good! Also we figured out that Carina and Fred are related to like everyone we know! Fred is one of our other investigators, Lena's brother, and Carina is the aunt of Edmundo! And Israel is Carina's nephew, which means he's also Edmundo's cousin. Also our other investigator Martha, is Carina's niece, and also her husband is Carina's mom's godson.... I could go on and on it's crazy. Also every single Hispanic in this town knows Rosa!
Saturday we went tracting in Millpond and met a couple of new families. They actually used to go to a popular local church, but their Spanish-speaking pastor moved to Royal City, so now a bunch of people are looking for a new church to go to... When we got home and started doing studies we heard a knock on the door and it was Sister Richland with a bunch of groceries for us! She is SO SWEET. We were like, "Oh my goodness, you didn't have to do that!" And she said, " I just love you girls." We felt so loved! Then we went to eat lunch with Rosa at her store. She's such a good cook! Her food is always so simple, but delicious! Then Brother Reina and his nephew Miguel (also an investigator) showed up to buy some tortillas and they started teasing Hermana Tolliver so hard! It was cute and funny though to see how much Rosa was defending her. They are like best friends. That afternoon we finally saw the Gonzales' again. We'd been trying to get in contact with each other for 3 weeks! That's forever in missionary world. Then we ended up seeing one of my former investigators, Lauren. Sister Shewell and I taught her like 4-5 months ago. It was crazy to see her like a huge feeling of deja vu or something. That night we stopped by the Hernandez's. They are struggling. Please pray for them!
a painting at Rosa's store
new piñatas at Rosa's store!
pinky promise with Rosa that she will read her scriptures every day
Sunday was pretty rough. The actual church part was good, but before and after was hard. In Relief Society we did speed dating/friendshipping! It was pretty fun and a good way to get to know some members I hadn't had the chance to talk to much before. Then last night we went to the Garcias' house for dinner and she made us POSOLE! It has been so long! I'm pretty sure the last time I had posole was at least 9-10 months ago. It was so good. It was Hermana Tolliver's first posole, she likes it a lot!
I straightened Sister Michalek's hair!
I guess that's all for now! We get transfer calls this Saturday so we'll get to find out if I'm dying in Ellensburg or going to have one more area before I'm finished!