Saturday, September 13, 2014

Christmas in August


Wow does time sure fly, I feel like just yesterday I was sitting at the computer emailing you.  My week has been super fun. As for the weather...funny I thought serving in such a 'normal' place as Salt Lake City that I wouldn't get that question too often. Apparently, a lot of people want to know this week haha. I have loved the weather. It's been a bit bipolar, really hot one day, stormy the next and then back to the heat. It's like the weather is trying to decide if fall should come but then changes its mind, again and again. The thunderstorms have been amazing (and yes mother I did just say that). I never new moving away and going on a mission would make me love thunderstorms. It must just be that I always think "Mom would love this weather right now". Really though, we've had lightening and thunder, thunder so loud I'm surprised we aren't all deaf. Sister Bomgren doesn't like the rain that much though, she loves the sun! I always go through this internal conflict when it starts to sprinkle
and get cloudy because I just want to stay outside and jump in puddles and well Sister Bomgren sticks to her umbrellas :D

It's been another miraculous week. I'm super excited for next transfer because we should be given more time to be in the Teaching Center since summer is over and basically the square is just dead. It seems all of our miracles recently have been happening in the TC. We got some referrals from the Odgen Temple Open House and I contacted them this week, they both requested local missionaries so I already sent their info to the local missionaries but then tried to call them. One didn't answer but the other did. Turns out he's a member and doesn't even remember filling out a referral card requesting to learn more from missionaries..a bit awkward, but he then goes on to refer his inactive little sister. Yay. Before we said goodbye he made a comment about how he never thought to refer her before but that her name just popped in his mind when we asked if he knew anyone we could teach. Inspiration from the Holy Ghost! A Coincidence? I think not. Amazing how the Spirit works. We haven't got a hold of the sister yet, but we don't give up so easily. That's the only thing I don't like about the TC, a lot of people just don't answer their phones. We hear a lot of answering machines lately. I even think I could quote the Swedish answering machine I hear it so often. My roommate, Sister Tiritelli (Southern California) keeps reminding me that our investigators have lives. Haha it's true, I think I tend to forget that individuals who are not missionaries actually have lives. Woops. So I'm trying to keep that in prospective this week while we are in the TC. Another miracle, we have started taking chats while we are in West Gate because it's so much slower and just yesterday a lady came on and just told me that she visited a LDS church and now wants to meet with local missionaries. She then just gave me all her information. Piece of cake! Unfortunately the chat disconnected on accident right before I could testify and invite... but I have her information and we send the local missionaries to her house. Every time experiences like that happen it just increases my testimony that there really are people who are prepared for this message. They are ready and willing to learn about the gospel. I think I sometimes forget that because there are just as many people who either feel like they don't need religion or that they are 'already saved'. That's why it is so important to just open your mouth to everyone. You never know who is ready.

Christmas, Christmas is everywhere :) we started listening to Christmas music this week at home. So fun, it feels like I'm back at home singing Christmas songs with Sean. I don't know if I told her but
they are already putting up Christmas lights when I got here. Awesome! Each day I see them working on another tree. I'm trying to figure out their order but it doesn't seem like they have one. One day
they will be working on the east side and then the next they will be working on a completely separate tree over near the west gate. They also have started the lights at the conference center. That's super
fun, it's rare that we walk home when it's dark because we leave so early but this week and a few times last week we did studies on the square so we got to see some of the lights. I keep wanting to sing "It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas.." :D And believe it or not I bought a Christmas present today! And I won't tell who it's for but they are going to love it!

A funny story from West Gate this week, I'm not sure if I shared this from a few weeks earlier but there's a man who came up to West Gate to talk with us, he reminds me a lot of Brother Gallacher. Just super sweet, funny and talkative man. He just about talked my ear off the first time. He told me all about his son and how he's an RM who is now living in Texas in the Air Force. Okay yes, it did seem a bit like he was trying to sell his son but it was still super fun. He asked me if I like hiking and things and of course that led to a whole new conversation about hiking and camping and how his son loves the outdoors. Well he had a stack of postcards that were already stamped and addressed and he has been asking different sisters to write his son. (what a classic dad) and he gave me one to write. Well yesterday he walked past West Gate again and came to talk to me and see how everything was going. He asked a few questions about what the mission was like and what we did. He then gave us a super sweet compliment, he told us that he believed that the Lord only sends the best spirits to serve at Temple Square because so many people come from all over the world and sometimes being at Temple Square is their first experience with the church, and sometimes they just walk through but it's the smiles of the sweet sisters and the spirit that they carry that leave the impressions for them to learn more. Super sweet of him and it just made my day. He then went on to tell another story on a conversation he had with an anti. Those conversations are always the best because when they are not
missionaries they can even be more bold and he just rocked it haha.

Can I just say that we are super taken care of in this mission. It is awesome. Tuesday was President Poulsen's Birthday, so we all surprised him and sung and had a mini party in the mission office. That was super fun. President is so funny, I just love it. After singing he thanked us all and gave us cake and ice cream and then said 'hey look, everyone is here, we should have a meeting' We of course all agreed and chanted to have another zone conference because everything he shares with us is always amazing. Of course we had work to do so it was a short and quick get together. That evening I did get to go to Lyon House for dinner to celebrate passing off. It was so delicious! We went with 3 other companionships of sisters from my class. We had so much fun. How blessed am I to be in a mission where you see the same sisters everyday. I see the sisters in my MTC class almost everyday. It's fantastic, because we'll be together for our entire mission.  Which will make it even harder when we all go home, but who needs to think of that yet haha.

Thursday Mornings we have Relief Society and this week we had to have it super early because it was also the outbound meeting. So fun. We had two sisters who are professors of nutrition over at BYU come and talk to us about eating healthy. It was super fun, there's something about the subject of nutrition that is super interesting to me. I'm grateful though because they were able to apply it to us as missionaries. They told just the basic things we need to make sure we eat everyday but then they were able to show us how since we literally have no time to cook. I cook on P-days to last me the week. I don't know if I told you that I made enchiladas last week. The sisters in my apartment freaked out because it was so good :) So to answer Grandma, I am eating food other than goldfish haha. Actually Sister Bomgren eats super healthy so it's kind of hard to eat badly. I haven't even been able to open any of the sweets people have mailed me yet. And believe it or not, but cooking isn't so bad. (wow mom, a mission really does change a person) It's probably my favorite part of P-day. But I'll admit I've been cooking the same recipes over and over. The professors that talked to us on Thursday though gave us a simple recipe book thing on how to cook different meats and what you can do to them. So that will be what I am trying today. As for the outbound meeting, that was super fun. Filled with lots of screaming and tears. I learned about how our outbound assignments are made. I don't know how I thought they did it before but what happens is President will pick the sisters who will be going outbound the next transfer and he will submit all their names and their information and it all goes back to the missionary department and the apostles assign us a mission. The same way that we got called to Temple Square, super cool huh? So we literally get two mission calls. I made a comment to Sister Bomgren that the Apostles must get super familiar with our faces then since they see it twice. We serve outbound for two transfers, so 3 months and then come back to Temple Square. President likes sisters to have at least 2 transfers left when they get back from outbound so it's common to go in your 7 or 8th transfer. But because I'm serving for 13 transfers I might go a little later, but we'll see.

Oh and the transfer is over on Wednesday... weird. So just a warning, I may miss a P-day next week. Pray and cross your fingers that I don't, but I've heard that things change pretty frequently each transfer. I am confident that Sister Bomgren will still be my companion though because President Poulsen really likes having trainees with the same trainer for the full two transfers, but it's not uncommon to be given a follow-up trainer; but President also likes other sisters to be together for two transfers, never usually more than that. Everything else has a tendency to change. Your given assignments for about two transfers in a row, so I'm hoping I'll still be in West Gate next transfer but this is Sister Bomgren's 2nd transfer in it so maybe not. We are for sure moving though because the
apartment we are currently living in was only rented for the summer because we have more sisters on the square during the summer season and because so many sisters are going outbound the apartment just won't be needed. Yay for moving.
So that's my week. I know more happened, I need top get better at
righting things down or bringing my journal to email.

Love you all!

Sister Fluckiger

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