Monday, August 5, 2013


Ahhh it's been a FAST week! It seems like just yesterday I was typing ya'll.

I LOVE IT HERE!! Every day I catch myself thinking things like "I love where I'm at"
Although I miss you all TREMENDOUSLY and think of you often, I know this is what I am supposed to be doing and I know it is changing my life.

I LOVE MY COMPANION, Sister Brough! (or as we like to call her, Bruffy!) I just sent a picture of us out. She's the absolute best, I can't say it enough. I mentioned her beautiful singing voice! Well we're planning on working on a few songs to sing in these missionary concerts that they've been doing for a while. We're going to sing in sacrament soon and then in one of our trainings next week too! Excited:)

So this last week was a TAD depressing and hard... most of the investigators that they had been working with before have dropped us... so we really aren't working with a lot of people right now. We have made goals to start out fresh and refocus on the WARD. We're focusing our efforts on keeping the actives strong, and helping the less actives come back. Our Millard ward here is the absolute best! And it's been fun to get to know them all as we travel from house to house for dinners and such. So many people in this ward are converts and I just LOVE listening to their stores. I could listen all day long.

We've been working with the lovely woman named Maria. I love her so much. She wants to get baptized, but she needs to get married first! So we're working with her still and we hope she'll get baptized while we're still here. But she makes the BEST mexican food! She's from Mexico and she had us over for lunch on her birthday this last week. She made us authentic Tostadas and some type of Mexican soup which was delicious. She said on one of our next p-days that she will take us shopping and teach us how to make it. I'm ecstatic!! She really is the biggest sweetheart. She has two adorable children and I love going to see her. Hopefully we see great things!

So Sister Brough and I had to be REAL missionaries this last week. On the 31st we realized that we had gone over on our miles for the month of July, so we had to go this day without a car. We made arrangements with members to drive us a little, but with us being about a half our from our area, it was a little difficult. But the members here are terrific. So we got rides into our areas, but we had to walk all day and this was the hottest day it had been since I've been here. It was probably SUPER funny seeing us walking on the side of the road. I'm tall... Broughy is small and we didn't have backpacks... just shoulder bags and me carrying our big lunch bag all hot and sweaty.. it was a good time. Made me super grateful for our car.. I love cars. Speaking of cars.. I drove for the first time in a bout a month yesterday! Obviously I didn't drive in the MTC, and it's the senior companion who drives. But Sister Brough didn't feel so well last night, so I drove to our dinner appointment. With it being a month since I've driven and the last car I drove was my stick shift bug.. it was kind of funny.

...... I've been out a month. Does it feel like it? NO. It's gone by way fast.

So we still live in a little apartment right by the trail center. But President is trying to get all of the missionaries settled in members homes. So we might be moving to Millard here soon! That will be cool, although I'll be super sad to leave our ghetto apartment and it really is fun living by all the other sisters. Slumber party every night! -- not really, but kind of. :)

Had my first crazy Nebraska storm this week! We were visiting a member when it started to POUR and the sky was flashing like crazy. They turned on the news, (to which I awkwardly turned my chair around) and saw that a tornado warning had been issued. They told us to cut our message short and to get heading home. They were so serious about it and kind of forced us out the door- tornado warnings here are super super serious. So of course I was jumping up and down proclaiming how excited I am for my first awesome storm!!

We got home... and the rain stopped. I was super disappointed. But it was exciting none-the-less.

So... here at the trail center I had some AWESOME experiences!! Naturally, with all our investigators dropping us, I haven't had really any good teaching time. So as the days kept passing and passing my confidence in my teaching abilities kept slipping more and more under the carpet. I was praying that an opportunity would arise that I could just take over and teach. Sister Brough usually does a lot of the teaching so I've been trying to lead more and more--but all our lessons have been falling through.

So this week at the trail center (we do tours on our own- no companionship's because it gets really busy and we need everyone giving tours) I had teaching opportunities! With the tours that I had given in the past, they were always members. But a couple came in and I was next in line and they were nonmembers.. I was so dang scared. Not only would I have about an hour with them, but I would be by myself! I got to know them a little, put them in the 17 minute long video and then prayed and prayed and prayed that I would know what to do. On this tour, I was able to give the full story of the restoration and as we went around to each stop in the gallery, I always had something to say, a story to tell, or something to expound upon. They asked a lot of questions about the pioneers and what we believed and I was able to answer most of them. They were REALLY good to listen to everything I said, even if they didn't agree with everything. The tour ended up being 2 hours long.. at the end, there is a replica of the Salt Lake Temple (makes me feel like home) and I stood by it and just bore my testimony about how much I know and love this gospel and how much the pioneers knew it was true too or else they wouldn't have faced ALL the challenges they did. I continued with my testimony of the Book of Mormon and the power that it has. The man super LOVED the fact that our church sends out so many missionaries and he said he wished other denominations would do more of that.. but he thought youth going on missions was a mandatory thing for our church. I explained that we do it by choice because we want to share the truth that we know and his heart softened. At the end I gave them a Book of Mormon, the woman was skeptical and said she wouldn't read it, but the man said that he would like to. He said "it doesn't hurt to try and see if it's true" SO I HAVE HOPE! It was the coolest experience!! They were so great and nice.
Then right after their tour was done, I took another nonmember couple and went through about the same thing. I offered them a BOM at the end too and they also took it.

THE LORD ANSWERS OUR PRAYERS!! And He doesn't just answer them, He goes ABOVE and BEYOND. My confidence boosted and it was just so great. My heart has never pounded so hard before, but it felt so good to look into someones eyes and give my testimony of the truthfulness of this gospel. I felt the spirit so strong and I know they felt it to. They didn't want to give me any contact information, but I can only pray that I may have planted a seed.

Anyway, that was the excitement of my week <3  This trail center is the best and I feel the pioneers around me every day I'm here. I love the pioneers.

While I've been at the trail center, I've had a few surprises! The first day I showed up, one of the sisters rain up to me and said "You're choir teacher wanted me to tell you hi! She was in here last week and said that you would be here soon, so I'm here to deliver the message!" Mrs. Cazier had been here!! That was fun!

Then this week one of my favorite high school teachers, Mr. Berrong, for history-- I took his sister in law and her family on a tour! She took a picture with me and sent it to him.

And then... Sam's Aunt was here!! I was in the back on CHAT and a sister came running in saying that someone was here that knew me. I got a picture with her and she said she'd send it to Sam. That was way fun and made my whole day! So Sam, I hope you got that :)

Also Sam, thank you so much for all the journals/stickies/composition books etc. I'm using them all! You're the best:)

Hey mom, thanks so much for the Vera Bradley bag!! You would be happy to know that I get compliments on it every day:)

There are SO many people from Utah that come through here. Everyone here in our ward has ties to Utah too. And dad, EVERYONE asks me if I'm related to Gus Checketts and his family. I guess Gus is in the stake presidency or something in a stake near us and EVERYONE here just LOVES them. So I'm excited to meet him and figure out again how we're related.

I got ONE letter this week!... from Stacey Park! Thanks so much Stacey! It sounds like you and the family are doing great:) I really appreciated your letter.

Hopefully I have more coming..? ;) haha you guys are all great. It might take forever for me to get mail, because it goes to the mission home, then either comes to the trail center or gets forwarded to my apartment. I never know where it's going.

I'm stoked for dinner tonight. A less active family that we've been working with is making us Steak and Lobster.. so yes mommy and daddy, I get fed well here :) Everyone is SO generous and I'm being well taken care of.

So I just want to express to you all the importance of prayer.. this week especially I have seen it work miracles in my life. Heavenly Father is listening and is aware of us. And He'll send us answers to questions that we didn't even know we had. <3 He lives.

I love you all! Try harder to pray your hardest this week! Thank you for all your prayers to me.. i'm sure feeling them! I really am so happy and although I miss you, I know that because of the things i'm going through, that i'll be a happier person for the rest of my life. Help the missionaries in your ward!! Go missionary work!!

Have a great week!

Happy Birthday Kelly and Annelise!! And happy LATE birthday, Wyatt!!
-Sister Checketts

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