Monday, August 26, 2013

Monday, August 26, 2013

Family!
I did go to the doctor twice, first visit I was prescribed the penicillin, second visit was the azithromycin and gargling of a strong steroid. After all those antibiotics my stomach ended up feeling like it was eating itself every time I ate food, so when Sister McMurtry went to the doctor I talked to him, and he said to get on probiotics/ take Claritin D everyday/ eat yogurt with the probiotics. I hate yogurt. I have discovered that the only good flavor is Boston Cream Pie. I had about a month's worth of probiotics from Wal-Mart, and am nearing the end of them. My throat still doesn't look normal, but I figured at this point it's like whatever. Haha but once the probiotics are through, I will reevaluate my health and possibly go back in for a follow-up visit.
One family that we started teaching when I first got here was looking ready for baptism, then they backed way off. We had to give them some space for awhile. Fast forward to now, and they are at a much better place. Much more committed to the gospel, but still struggling with reading the book of Mormon. The dad's baptism is once again being pushed back. Reading is the biggest hold-up, but we've helped them make it more manageable. Baby steps :) We've talked with the dad about not being overwhelmed with what he doesn't know, but until he starts reading, picking a date for baptism is still going to be a struggle.
We are finally going to meet with the R family this week, which I am super excited about. Christina R was the second person I ever tracted into, and has been a promising potential investigator ever since. We consistently stop by and talk with her, but she had never really progressed from that point. Christina was open to learning more, but because we had never met with her husband she was having reservations. We have finally introduced ourselves to her husband, and he's actually a nice guy. We were worried. Instead of focusing on just her, we are now focusing on the family, which we should have been doing all along. I'm excited!
We had Zone Conference in Monroe Louisiana on Wednesday, and Elder Kopishke of the seventy came to speak with us. It was super cool, and spiritual. He addressed a lot of the problems the mission has been having, and it was all through question/answer. He is really cool, and the road trip was pretty fun, but now we are sunk for miles. Each car has an allotment, and basically everyone but the sisters is over. So now even though we did really well this month, we are stuck biking too. Like, I biked five miles to the library for emailing. It was a million degrees. McMurtry's chain fell off. I had a baby asthma attack. So fun. We're going to have to bike to the church for district meeting on Wednesday (about another five miles), and never touch our car. I'll tell you if I survive next week.

Love you all!
Sister Markle

Monday, August 19, 2013

Monday, August 19, 2013

Dear Family,
I got both letters! Yay! Maybe stick with gmail, or try both accounts next week and we'll test if the other is still not going through.
I've determined that mission life involves every week being weird in its own unique way. This week was weird, because not only is Sister Harker gone, but we've also started upping our tracting. I've never been super excited about tracting, and Sister Harker either refused to do it, or would only do a little bit, but the mission has really pushing that we get out and do it. We had five hours total this week, which I'm pretty sure is more than my previous two transfers combined. Definitely not very good at tracting yet, but as we've been doing it, we've been getting better at it. It's one of those skills that will require consistent effort, but we're already being blessed for our efforts, and have found people to teach.
Cool story. Yesterday we went to follow-up with a woman who said we could come back Sunday, and Sister McMurtry said we should just drive over because we were already in the car. I felt like we should drive back to our apartment and walk. I explained it wasn't a super strong impression, but that it just felt right. She was less than enthused, but was game. I felt like the pressure was on, and so I prayed that God would make the walk worthwhile. He did. Sister McMurtry was speed walking straight to the house, but I said we should turn and walk down this other street which circled to the street we were headed to. She asked why. Honestly I didn't have a good reason. I was actually kind of hoping we'd see this older couple that were referred to us by temple square my first transfer (they told us to "let it alone for a while" on the phone after dodging appointments) who lived on the street. I was being stalkerish, and felt ashamed, but as I was explaining the situation to Sister McMurtry, we came upon a house with a woman and her teenage daughter sitting on their porch. We said hello, and slowly made our way through small talk to their porch, and then sat with them for an hour talking about the church, missions, and answering questions. We have a return appointment for this week with the L family. ALSO because we were walking we were able to meet the husband of the lady we were originally headed to follow up with. He is actually more open to learning more than her, and set up a specific return appointment for this week. Blessings. The Lord truly works in mysterious ways, ways which, as it turns out, include walking preferences and stalker tendencies.
It's definitely weird being senior companion. A lot of responsibility, and more pressure, but more power. I liked being junior companion. I don't know if I will ever really be totally game with this senior companion thing. Also the training this is still weird. A little less weird, because now there's not two trainers/ two trainees, with me being the awkward trainer but still pretty much trainee. Hopefully things will start feeling normal soon. Love you all!
Sister Markle

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Tues., August 13, 2013

Dearest Family,
 
Today was transfers! Luckily we didn't have to drive Sister Harker to the Shreveport transfer point, otherwise I would dead tired right now. We got the ok for her to drive with the Zone Leaders, so she got picked up at like 4:30 this morning. Harker is actually being transferred to Shreveport where she will be follow-up training Sister Ray whom we already know from our repeat sleep overs there my first transfer. Their area is being split into two, and the two sets of sisters are sharing an apartment. Luckily there are two bathrooms, and Harker will now have a bed instead of an air mattress, so it will be definitely an improvement for her. The Ashdown area in our ward was closed, and one of our Zone Leaders just finished his mission, so there are lots of changes for the Texarkana ward! We went from having 8 missionaries my first transfer, to 10 last transfer, and now we will be down to 6! Weird. It was weird waking up this morning after shipping off Harker, and realizing that I was now senior companion. Talk about stressful. I hadn't figured that this was going to happen until a ways away, and even though I knew it was coming, it is much more different to actually be living it. Definitely going to be "Livin on a Prayer" this week ;)
 
The package came this week, and it was the best thing ever. I wore the polka dot shirt on Sunday (with my striped skirt of course :), and listened to Joseph on my way over to the Library, and really everything is getting very good use. Thank you so much!
 
Last quick update, our apartment got the ultimate prank on Saturday night. Like a million pranks all in one, courtesy of all the elders. The STLs had accidentally taken our spare key, which they gave to the mission president's wife, which she then gave to our Zone Leaders on the good faith that they would get it back to us. Which they did. Along with a bunch of hidden fake coackroaches, creepy posters, balloons on our fan, popper attached to the door, strobe light, like a hundred old gross fundips scattered around, weird quotes taped up, jello in the toilet and spaghetti sauce, apartment lowered to 50 degrees, and more. They are ridiculous. It was really funny though.
 
Hope you all have an amazing week!
Sister Markle

Monday, August 5, 2013

Monday, August 5, 2013

Family,
Did the Slap Yo Mama come yet? Also thanks so much for the soon to arrive package, y'all are the best :)
Big take away from this week? Members are the bomb. We had a lesson with the M family on Saturday, and were finally able to bring the fellowshipping family that we've had in mind. The two families are the same. Like ridiculously so. So many of Sister M's concerns were resolved by Sister Woodle, and it seems like they will be good supports for each other. Sister M has grown SO much since we've been meeting with them, and she just seems happier. She told us that without Brother B and us they wouldn't have made it, which was really humbling to hear. I know that God had prepared the M's, and with the wards help, they are there to stay. I'm so excited for them.

K's situation is still at a standstill. I know that from this experience her family has the opportunity to learn and grow, it just breaks my heart that K has to keep waiting. It's God's timetable though, and I know that if her family aligns their will with God's, they will be blest.

I'm the official driver now. That's right. Be scared :) hahaha I started driving today, and it was ridiculously exciting. I'm glad that I could start driving while Sister Harker is still here, she's an expert driving instructor. I nicknamed her Olga. It kind of feels like I'm 16 all over again. I'm definitely a spoiled missionary.

I'm going to miss Sister Harker. A lot. I'm glad we were able to build a friendship, but now it's time for Sister McMurtry and I to work together.
The Lord works in mysterious ways. I feel like that is applicable to my life.
Love you all!
Sister Markle

Monday, July 29, 2013

Family,
 
I'm pretty sure I maybe got Sister McMurtry sick... Just maybe... She has all the same symptoms as me, and so now we need to go back into the doctor again. I still have the bumps and weird colored throat, but I don't feel as sick so I just kinda ignore it, but Sis McDonough said I should go get my throat swabbed :( it's probably a virus since the antibiotics didn't do much/ the steroids helped/ it won't go away. Who knows though. I'll keep you posted.
 
We actually haven't ridden our bikes for a while, when McMurtry first got here her bike had fallen off the bike rack on the freeway from Shreveport, so we had to wait for it to get fixed. We have been lucky, and have been able to use the car without going over miles. It also hasn't been insanely hot yet, so no worries. Humidity is blah, but everyone keeps saying it's been a mild summer so I am counting my blessings.
 
Tell Kami happy birthday for me, and good luck with the uke! I sent her a birthday card so hopefully it made it in time? I also sent you guys some Slap Yo Mama seasoning, which I hear is the best Cajun/ spicy seasoning here, but I've only ever had the brand Tony's. It's really good on mac n' cheese, so maybe try the Slap Yo Mama on some :) Good work on the bike race! First place finishers!! Haha pretty impressive stuff :) Tell CC to not get married while I am gone. End of Story.
 
The ward council this week turned into a "Ward Blitz" with all the leadership in the ward taking a missionary and going to go see some of the less actives that were scooped in from the New Boston ward (there were like 50 names..). So basically the whole ward got involved in helping out us sister missionaries, and it was fabulous. They really wanted to take advantage of how many missionaries they have, and it was a success. The work is forwarding! Haha these past two transfers have been really focused on seeing less actives, and the part member families we have been working with, so it will be interesting to see the focus of next transfer. Still loving the work, and loving the area. Being a missionary is the greatest blessing, hopefully some blessings will rub off on the rest of y'all ;)
 
Love you!
Sister Markle