Family!Sounds like everyone has a lot of exciting stuff going on, so that's really cool :) I was sending Katie a congratulations email, but then I realized that all the siblings had cool stuff, so to not leave anyone out they all got "good job" emails. Haha they were really lame emails, plus all basically the same, but it's the thought that counts, right?
We had Zone P-day on Monday which was lots of fun. We started out in the gym, but no one could get the nets lowered, and there were too many people to keep tossing around a football all day, so we all ended up going to these soccer fields, and playing you guessed it, soccer. It was just frigid-death-cold outside, so no big deal. One day I'll find a new way to describe the cold, but today is not that day. We slept at the STL's apartment, and went on a quick exchange with them since P-Day ends at 6, and we had no where to proselyte... I went with Sister Devenport who looks kind of like Katie, so if I squinted my eyes, it was almost like serving with my sister :)
Zone Conference basically took all day Tuesday, but it was really really good. They had both the Clinton and Jackson Zone Leaders teach, as well as the Assistants, one of the Senior couples, Sister McDonough, and President. Loooooong, but good stuff. We didn't get home until 9:00 that night, so sometimes living off in the boonies just equals being able to work your area less.
With all the traveling we have to do this month, we did the math, and it only left 10 miles a day. Cue freak out, and two days completely on foot. The Elders have since decided that they wouldn't go down to Jackson tomorrow for transfer-point fun, which means that we are back in the clear. BUT because we walked a crazy ton, we actually met some random dude who randomly showed up to church yesterday! Good, right? Uhhh... sure! While walking Thursday Sister Welch asked which route I wanted to take. My head said the second option she proposed (I wanted to creep on Sheila, because she's still avoiding us, which is dumb since now we can't help her quit smoking and get baptized by correct authority, and such. People these days), but the first option felt right so we went with it. 2 miles into our 3 mile journey, I look up and see this dude ahead standing on the side of the road, and immediately I had the thought pop in my head "he's waiting you." Weird. I looked back down. Looked back up, same result. Rinse and repeat. He was a little rough looking, so I was kind of hoping that my "hello" would suffice my duty to talk to everyone, but then he said, "Are y'all Christians?" Cue us actually talking to him. He's an addict, but we assured him that Christ can help, and left him with a pamphlet that had the church's address/ meeting time in it after Sister Welch had the prompting to scratch our number off it, and put the Elder's on it. Cool experience, but I figured that Kevin would just forget about our meeting, and maybe one day find the pamphlet again. Wrong. While the Sacrament was being passed Sister Welch peeked down the hall (we sit on the back pew) and her eyes got all big, and she said I would never guess who showed up. I got all excited thinking it was one of the other like 10 people we invited that always bail. Nope. It was Kevin. Our ward mission leader was really nice and sat with him and listened to all his ramblings, and the Elders have a return appointment with him this week. Bless those Elders hearts.
Yesterday was Ward Conference which equalled another really funny Ward Council. The Young Men's President of the non-existent Young Men's group argued with the Stake President over his metaphor about missionary work, even though they were both essentially saying the same thing, it's just the Stake President is not a native English speaker, and the Young Men's President was feeling rather uppity. The meeting ended up going twenty minutes into Sacrament meeting's time, on account of the fact that the Young Women's leader had a meltdown about being sick of hearing about missionary work, when hypothetically speaking an active member may be struggling and nobody knows it. Solution? Home and visiting teachers that actually visit her. I think some of the ward may eventually revolt against missionary work altogether, but yesterday thankfully wasn't that day :)
I've decided that our teaching pool changes a lot more frequently here than anywhere else I've served, probably on account of the fact that it's ghetto. Even though some people filter through quickly, those that stay are great. We're teaching two old black Baptist ladies, and they're my favorite. We can only see both of them once a week, so that's a little lame, but they're chugging along slowly but steadily. I just realized that my description makes it sound like we're teaching them at the same time, but we aren't. They live across town from each other, one in the hood, the other in a middle class neighborhood. All you really need to know is that old black ladies are the greatest people on the face of the planet.
Sister Welch likes making a big deal out of month marks, so on Saturday for my 10 months, she really tried to make it special. We had ice cream and everything, BUT the happiest thing that day was when we FINALLY saw a car home at a house we had tracted into like two weeks ago. We zipped right on over, and were able to teach Dreamer and JaNautica again. Great names, right? They're really awesome. JaNautica is 17, and is looking for a stronger relationship with God before she heads off to college in a year and a half, and her mom is really just struggling right now. We're seeing them again tonight, so hopefully we can keep meeting with them, and then they'll progress, and then they'll get baptized, and then they'll stay active in the church, and then they'll go to the temple, and then they'll just progress for eternity, and they'll live happily forever after. The End.
Love all y'all!Sister Markle