Monday, September 9, 2013

Hello Iowa!!!

Hey All!!
Well.. I get called to Nebraska and end up in Iowa!! Crazy stuff!
Umm.. this has been a MUCH longer week than usual. Lots of crazy changes! I honestly don't even know where to start.
Last Monday, Sister Brough and I moved into the Denkers home. They are amazing people that I love so much. And their basement where we stayed was like the best place ever. Referbished to look like an old diner and M&M stuff everywhere with all you can eat candy.. Woah.
Thursday morning was when we found out about transfers! We had just had exchanges with our sister training leader the day before and I had gained some AWESOME advice from Sisters Vance and Schrader. I love those two. We saw many miracles that day on exchanges. Sisters Vance and Schraders stayed overnight at our place that night and Thursday morning was intense! We were all scared and nervous for transfers. The 4 of us went out and exercised and then when we came back, Vance and Schrader got "the call". President was on the other end giving them their new training assignments. We finished getting ready and Sister Brough and I both started to feel SUPER calm. We both had this strong feeling that we wouldn't be getting transfered.
(p.s. when I get home, I want to learn to quilt-- the quilt show is in the Trail Center right now and they are GORGEOUS. Call me crazy-- but I want to)
We worked at the trail center that morning, so we drove there and right away we were super busy, so I had lots of tours. It was transfer time for a lot of different missions, so the two tours I took that morning were both different senior couples who were traveling home after finishing their missions. The first were driving through on their way home from Canada, and the second were driving through on their way home from the Palmayra Mission. It was awesome to take these senior couple missionaries on tour. The couple driving home from Palmayra were MTC friends from one of the senior couples that are serving at the trail center, so after we finished their tour, they asked if they could hear the song about one of the Pioneers that Sister Brough had written, so her and I performed her song for them.
After they left, I was so excited that I would be staying at the trail center for at least another transfer. By this time it was about 11 O'clock and we hadn't received a call yet, so we knew we would be staying. I went into the prayer closet and offered up a prayer thanking Heavenly Father for giving me another transfer at the trail center to be around all the other sisters and senior couples. I was so excited. When I got out of the prayer closet, Sister Brough came up to me with a sad look on her face saying that we just got "the text message". She took me in the other room and told me where I was heading. She would be staying in Millard and I would be leaving to Red Oak Iowa and finishing my training with Sister Carpenter.
I started crying... ya. I was so convinced I was staying that it came as a shock. And I miss Broughy!
I took my last tour at the trail center-- it was the best tour ever. This man named Jim came in and he was on a vacation by himself because he wanted to visit the last 4 states in the U.S. that he had never been to. It was "a bucket-list thing". He was super interested in everything that we told him about the restoration and about God. He had never thought about asking God, himself about the truth like Joseph Smith did. He literally GRABBED the BOM out of my had and said "I want to read that book!". He said he'd pray about it, and I committed him to baptism right then and there. It was the cooelst thing ever. I cried after he left thanking God that he gave me that last tour. I recieved Jim's contact information so that I can keep in touch with him. He left with a big smile on his face saying that that was "such an uplifting experience".
That night I did all I could to make the lessons that we had with the people in our area the best that I could do. I stepped up in the lessons and became more bold that I have before. That night, we committed a LA who hasn't been to church in YEARS and her two younger daughters to go to church yesterday. I'll still have to text Sister Brough to see if she went *fingers crossed*.
So I'm happy with how I ended in Millard. I wish I could have done more though.
So here I am now! In Iowa! And man is it a culture shock!
Whoever told me that you didn't have to go out of the country to get a culture shock -- was exactly right.
The ward building is in Shenendoah- about 30 minutes from where we live. It is a smaller building and only has 1 ward that attends. Apparently it used to have a branch as well- but after going to church yesterday, I don't see how that is posssible. There MAYBE 50 people or so in the ward.
The food here is a little sketchy, so I have to watch what people feed us. Which is a good thing because after being fed SO WELL in Millard, I could use the controlled diet ;)
When the church building was dedicated, apparently it was prophesied that one day it will be a stake building.--- that means we have A LOT of work cut out for us.
We visited a member yesterday in whom we are teaching to read and write. He had a granddaughter there with him that I absolutely adore. She's 12. She was the sweetest thing I have ever met.
I love you guys SO MUCH!! I think of you everyday and pray for you always. Please keep writing me! My new adderss is:
700 N. Broad
Red Oak, Iowa 51566
-- if you write there, things will get to me MUCH faster for the next 6 weeks. If not, just keep sending stuff to the mission home and I'll get it eventually.
-Sister Checketts
The picture is me and Aleeya (the granddaughter) and her grandpa (that we teach reading and writing to- Richard)

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