Monday, February 24, 2014

Goo'day mate!

Hello Everyone:)
I hope you all are doing well:)
This week has been good! We're getting to know the ward a lot better-- I'm so bad with names... but I'm getting there!! It always takes me a while getting into a  new area to figure out everyone's stories.
WE DIDN'T GET TRANSFERRED!!! Sister Weber and I are still together in the Mahoney ward. YAY!! We did end up moving in with our members too! IT IS SOOOOO NICE TO BE BACK IN A MEMBERS HOME!!! I feel like we can finally get back to normal and get things going again. We have got the ward list all organized now so everything is all set up for us to just HIT THE ROAD RUNNING! I'm excited:)
With transfers this week, we were like the only sisters not really switching, so we got to help out most of that day with transfers- helping people move their luggage and actually being in a trio for a little while when everyone was getting shuffled around. It was SO FUN to see everyone. There are spectacular missionaries here... I love them so much!
Not tooooooo much to report on again! There is this awesome LA though that has a flying squirrel (Kelly, I thought you would appreciate;)) We got to play with it and had a super awesome spiritual lesson with her!
No one we invited to church came :(:( darn. But that's okay! They don't know what they are missing out on!
Church yesterday was awesome. The speakers and teachers all spoke directly to me. The best sundays <3
We found 5 new investigators this week!! For some reason we always find our investigators while they are just standing outside their apartment building. We just go up and start talking and  usually it's THOSE people that gain interest-- that's the ultimate kind of tracting:) We were driving down the road and I saw this man in a red hoodie just sitting on the steps outside his apt building. I turned around and we decided we'd go talk to him. His name is Trenton. He was waiting for his son to get home from school. The timing was PERFECT. We talked to him about the Book of Mormon and the Restoration and he gave us his number and set an appointment and then as soon as we were done, his son walked up. PERFECT. He is like 35 and has 5 kids. We're excited to work with him :)
There is this other super awesome Less Active that we are working with named Rebekah! She's from Africa and has a SUPER heavy accent. She has the sweetest kids-- they all speak Denka and she has lots of family still in Africa that is struggling with the wars going on over there. She's way cool and apparently the elders have been trying for like 6 months to get in with her-- and we got in the first time we tried <3 We're all placed in certain places for a reason. WE LOVE HER and are so excited to work with her.
Anyway, the ward is definitely growing on me!
I gave a training this last week in DM. It went pretty well and that DM was sooooo awesome:) SO MANY prayers answered and then we had a fun pot luck at the church afterwards. I love the sisters. Our district was just 2 elders and then 5 sets of sisters.. but because of transfers, we moved districts and so now we are the only sisters-- I'm actually super excited to have more elders, they are more fun! haha
Amy is still doing well! She finished the Doctrine and Covenants in 2 days and is now reading the bible. She just can't stop! AND she has dyslexia and has never really read before in her life until we came along. It's way cool:) The Jehovah Witnesses apparently came and knocked at her door this last week. She called us up after and was all "Hey! I've got 2 people I'm trying to convert! They are coming back on Wednesday and you need to be here! Also, I need help finding where all these answers to their questions are!" Haha so when we go to our apt with her on Wednesday we'll see how all this goes down.... haha Amy is the best little missionary:):) He family is constantly asking questions too. It's great :)
Anyway, things are well! I can't believe how fast time is going!!! I mean, it's almost MARCH!!! Woah.
The spirit is AMAZING!! I have realized this week just how much more guidance we receive when we are being exactly obedient! It's so great to have things back to normal again and to be unpacked:) Ahhhh so good.
I know that obedience brings blessings and I know that the Lord has felt EVERYTHING you always feel-- happy or sad, HE KNOWS. I love my Savior. I love His gospel, and I love you:)
Have a great week!
-love, Sister Checketts
PIC=My favorite sisters <3

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Philippians 4:13

"I can do all things through Christ which strengthens me."
That has been my theme this week. The Lord totally put that scriptures into my path this week.
It's been a tougher one! We're still living in the tiny apartment with the other sisters-- sleeping on mattresses on the floor and out of suitcases. It's beginning to wear on me a bit.. but no matter what happens with the REAL transfers this week-- we will for sure be moving on Friday-- where it's being transferred to another area or moving in with our new members. I'm excited:)
I hope you all had a very happy Valentines day!! Mine was actually quite enjoyable out here:) Our favorite person, April, took us to the mall and we got Sbarros for dinner (she's not in our ward boundaries but we're still having permission to talk with her) we love her sooooooo much.... I am totally coming back to hang out with her after my mission. So we ate with her and then delivered Valentines to all those that we've met so far in the ward.
It's been difficult because we really haven't met much of the ward yet. We didn't have really any dinners this last week because they didn't pass around the meal calander when we first arrived and so we haven't met many people! All the less-actives that we've tried, haven't really been to fond of us, so this is definitely a huge adjustment from any of my past areas where things have already been set up and established.
The Elders in our ward are good! Elder Brown actually came out with me-- and this is his FIRST area still. I've been out almost 8 months and this is my 4th area.... woah. And then his companions came out with my dear Sister Weber. The whole dynamic of the ward is just way different and I'm having a harder time connecting with it, but I know I'll get there :) Sister Weber and I keep saying "AT LEAST WE HAVE EACH OTHER!!" It's crazy how much I love her :)
We did go to a fun RS activity with the ward this last week. The ward is mostly elderly ladies, or young moms who are here with their student husbands and don't stay in the ward very long. So the unity in the ward is hard too. But the activity was a spa night and all these old ladies were walking around with face masks on. It was so funny:)
We had exchanges this last week and those were the best!! I went out with Sister Youngberg. She too went to Utah State and is amazing at playing the cello!! When we were shopping at Target last week, we met a cute Arabic lady named Amani who invited us to go to this restaurant that she worked at. So we went on Thursday and had Arabic food in Lincoln, Nebraska! Haha we cracked up!!
P-day was fun yesterday! The Fergusons (the people we lived with in Yankee Hill) actually came and picked us up and we went back "home" haha it was so good to be back in their house again. Melia taught us how to make her chili and cinnamon rolls YUM and then we made cards together (she LOVES scrapbooking) I felt like I was with my momma!! YAY!
We met this SOLID investigator named Sam this week. He is a single dad and has two little girls that mean EVERYTHING to him. AHHHH the spirit totally led us to him and it was such a great experience. We txted him last night to set up another appointment and he said that he wasn't really interested anymore... we spent like a half hour typing up this message to him and he said he'd think about it some more. So PRAY FOR SAM!!! Ahhhhh I want this for him and his sweet girls SO BAD!!!
Amy is doing amazing! She finished reading the BOM in less than a month and is now starting D&C. The ward donated her an awesome leather BOM and she's trying her hardest to quit smoking! Sister Weber taped a picture of the temple on one of her pack so cigarettes and she is FREAKED OUT because later that night the pack literally disappeared. She has tore her whole house apart trying to find it and it's not anywhere!! She totally loves Heavenly Father. Funny story. So Amy can do the splits still!! At 60 years old:) We have an awesome epic picture of us doing the splits together, and I would sent it except I left the chip from my camera at home :( I LOVE HER.
Anyway, it hasn't been the MOST successful week, but THE SUN IS SHINING TODAY!!! I'm wearing yellow and peach and it just feels like summer. NO COAT and it's the best feeling ever. Plus we've been able to go running again for the past two days!!! AHHHHH life is good:)
And thank you all for all your emails today.... MADE MY DAY!!! So much good news going on at home and around the world and I am so proud of all of you and feel so blessed to have you in my life!! <3 JUST KEEP SWIMMING!!!
And remember this scripture.^^^^ Christ can lead us through EVERYTHING and only through Him can we be strengthened!!
-Sister Checketts
since I forgot that memory chip, we're throwing in an older picture. US WITH APRIL!!! <3

Monday, February 10, 2014


Not sure if any of you saw Confessions of a Teenage Drama Queen, but that song just popped into my head as I typed the subject line.
Oh. My. Word. This week has been SO INSANE!!!!!
Monday night, we got a very crazy call. We are NO LONGER Yankee Hill Sisters-- we are now Mahoney Sisters!!! I don't even know if I can explain everything that has happened.... so the stake boundaries changed, the members that we lived with were no longer in our ward boundaries, so the ward was trying to find us a new place to live--- but they never could. So president (In the dead middle of the transfer) decided to move us into a different ward without any notice! One day we were Yankee Hill, then that night we were Mahoney and were told to pack up our stuff! It was so crazy sad!!
So we are still in the same STAKE, but different ward. So the next day we spent time packing all of our stuff and loading it into the car. We cleaned (we hadn't even told the members that we lived with yet because they were both at work). About the time that they got home from work, everything was loaded into our car. Melia walked in and started crying-- we all new SOMETHING was going to change, but we weren't expecting to leave quite so soon! We were saying our goodbyes when we got a text message from the ZL's-- it had been snowing ALL day, and so at this moment we found out that the cars were now grounded and we couldn't go anywhere because the roads were so bad. So we got to spend the rest of that night with our members-- they took us out to eat and it was a tender mercy that we spent one more night with them.
All day the next day, the cars were still grounded and so we spend most of the day inside trying to get things organized for our new area. Sorting out all the records that we needed to give to the Elders to take care of our people and everything. It was sad :( I am so grateful though that the Lord allowed us to take this transition slowly.
That night, we moved into the Trendwood Sisters apartment (Who are now the Holmes Lake Sisters-- they switched wards with us also, we are the only 4 that got changed) and we will be staying with them until the end of the transfer in 2 weeks. It was so sad to move out of our nice house into this TINY apartment with 4 of us. An apartment that Missionaries have lived in for YEARS and it STINKS!! The dishwasher had sooooo much mold in the bottom and it smells so so bad! S. Weber and I had a funny experience trying to get it to smell better and we ended up having soapy water ALL over the kitchen floor... I seriously don't know what I would do without Sister Weber though... she is the worlds greatest problem solver!!!
We were able to meet with our new Elders and WML. The Mahoney ward is a lot smaller and in many ways reminds me of my loving ward in Red Oak/Shenendoah! It's going to be good:) They have been waiting for YEARS for sisters, so we felt famous when we walked into church yesterday. A lot of younger young families, and then really experienced brothers and sisters. No middle ground-- there are like no teens. Just young, and experienced. We're happy we get to stay with our favorite sisters that we stayed with over Christmas though, and it's another huge tender mercy that we are all going through changes together!!
CRAZY STORY!!! So a few hours before we got the call that we were switching wards, we met with one of the LA"s, April, that we brought back and helped her through lots of legal things, and things are just going SOOOO well with her!! And then... AMY!!! In whom we love so much, (remember me telling you that she was moving??) Well we moved her Saturday INTO THE MAHONEY WARD!!!! We were so sad that she was moving, but now, WE MOVED WITH HER!!!! So we get to keep working with her. And it is CRAZY how the timing just worked out so well!! I KNOW we were sent to help Amy and April specifically, because being transferred in the middle of the transfer is super RARE and the timing with these too was TOO perfect. I love my Father and all the blessings He gives me <3
BTW-- Amy is going to FINISH the Book Of Mormon today!!! She started reading it about a month ago-- she's FLYING!! And yesterday, ON HER OWN she said that she is trying to stop smoking. We are so proud of her and the fact that we still get to work with her <3
We got to meet April's kids for the first time this week!! (We have been helping her through the process of getting her kids back). So that was amazing <3 They are sooo cute!!!
We showed up to church ALREADY yesterday with 1 Less-Active and Part Member family that we met in the Mahoney ward AND Amy came too!! So Bishop and the rest of the ward was already impressed with our hard work-- I'm not exactly sure how we did it, but I know we couldn't have done it without the Lord's help!
It has been a SUPER hard transition though, having to say goodbye to SO MANY people that we loved so much!! Goodbye to April, the members we live with, all of our favorite member families, our investigators... it has stretched us to the MAX. We were able to receive blessings from Bro. Ferguson (whom we lived with) and it was SOOO special-- just the fact that HE was the one who gave it to us. They took us out to lunch and dinner a lot last week and they already have plans to come and see us a few p-days ahead <3
The Lord is amazing though and has revealed himself to me many times in comfort this last week. I had a prayer answered from the wrapper of a DOVE chocolate.. I started bawling because I KNOW that the Lord KNOWS ME!!!!!! Yesterday, (it's always a tender mercy when my favorite song 'Nearer My God To Thee' is played) Nearer My God To Thee was the musical number in church!! And I know that these are teeeeeny signs from my Father in Heaven.
We met some sweet Mahoney LA and his wife is a nonmember-- they invited us right in, WE LOVE HER and she just gave us a bunch of clothes! We're excited:)
We met the member that we will be moving in with-- turns out they are really good friends with the Dahls-- a couple that I got really close with in Red Oak.. so that is cool!!! SO MANY CONNECTIONS!
PLEASE pray that Sister Weber and I stay together-- as cool as these changes are, I'm not sure I could take another drastic change in 2 weeks.. I don't know what I would do without her. She's seriously one of the greatest friends and I am SO BLESSED to have such a strong, obedient, beautiful, sister to be my comp!!!
Highlight of me week? Well there has been LOTS!! But I bought some pretty cool Harry Potter stamps... oh gosh I about cried!! They are the COOLEST!! So if you want one, you better write me!!
HAPPY LOVE WEEK!!!!!! I TESTIFY that our Savior and our Father in Heaven KNOW YOU and care about even your TINIEST needs and wants. HE WILL TAKE CARE OF YOU!!!
My learning from my study this morning? Because of the laws of justice, there HAD to be an atonement that would happen. But ONLY because of the mercy and love that Jesus the Christ has for each and every single one of us, ONLY because of His mercy and love, does His atonement WORK. Please know that you are SO LOVED!! Not only by me, but from our Father in Heaven and your brother, Jesus Christ. Remember that this Valentines Day!! They are my greatest love!!
-Sister Checketts
Pic-- HP STAMPS!!! Write me ;) .... Just write to the mission home, as we will be moving AGAIN in 2 weeks at the most. (I'm an expert at packing, cause WE move, and we move PEOPLE)

Monday, February 3, 2014

All Is Well, All Is Well !!

Hello all!!
This week has been a good one!!:)
First off... I LOVE THE MEMBER WE LIVE WITH!!!! They surprised me on Saturday by making my mom's famous Christmas Breakfast Casserole. S.Weber and I were getting ready for the day when a familiar smell was filling the house. They called us up and had set up a fancy breakfast for us with my mommas recipe!!! It was so cute:) Then last night when we were talking to them, they were all "We've been thinking, could we be invited to each of your weddings??" --- Awww they're the sweetest! So needless to say, we are still living with them for now!!
We had interview with President this week!! I love that man... he told me in my interview that we could possibly be switching wards before transfers because there are members in other wards that are wanting to house us! Which kinda is really hard.. but also really exciting because we have people that we were working with before the boundary change that got moved to each of the wards president is thinking of moving us to!! So we'll be able to go back and work with them again!!! Amy is one of them:) And our dear friend April is another <3
Interviews were really good though and President is super happy with our work, so that's a huge relief and I can stop stressin about being obedient constantly :) The work is glorious!!!
We had the opportunity this week to take one of our LA members to the trail center! We went with our ward mission leader, his wife, the elders, and their AWESOME investigators Kristine and her 2 daughters (they're getting baptized in a month after her and her boyfriend are married) and then our LA. It was so fun!!! We were all piled in a huge van that our WML had rented--- they are seriously the BEST at dropping everything-- all their plans to help do missionary work!! The trail center is the BEST!!! Turns out when we got there, I saw my momma Sister Brough and it was her birthday!! So it was like I surprised her!! Also, a couple of friends from my Millard area were there to visit sister Brough and I got to see them too! It was all a huge surprise!! The Millard peeps were Andrea and Kenny! Andrea had just gotten baptized right before I got here to Nebraska and I found out that Kenny actually got baptized in November!! SO IT WAS SO COOL!!!
Amy is doing awesome! We're going to help her move this weekend into her new apartment.. she's leaving us:( We're sad but we found her some AWESOME friend from her new ward. We had a lesson with them and it was SO FUNNY because they are these two little old SPUNKY ladies!! S.Weber and I were just sitting their laughing our heads off when they first met as the were just sharing jokes back and forth and taking their teeth out and just having the greatest old time. it was the happiest sight to see :) Amy is going to do fine in her new ward <3
We met a cool guy named Omar this week! (I thought of you Eliza:)) He was outside waiting for his friend to pick him up and we taught him the whole restoration, spirit so strong, in the falling snow! It was cool:) We're going back to see him this week!
We witnessed a drug deal-- that was exciting!!
The elders are teaching this SWEET guy named Kyle!! -- He reminds me of Al Fox-- he has tattoos allllll over but he his by far the SWEETEST man I've ever met!!! He's getting baptized on March 1st as of now!!:):)
We got a new Recent Convert from the boundary Change! Her name is Leqweshia! She's soooooo cool! Was baptized about a year ago. So fun:):) We're finding her friends in the ward!
Ummmmm what else???
We made bread today with Sis Harris in our ward-- holy cow she is the sweetest and it tastes so good!!! I better be making some bread when I get home from the mish <3 We had so much fun with her and our good friend Tina!!! (in whom I really want to come back and visit to do Downton Abby tea Party nights with... haha she makes me miss the show) The ladies all in our ward are such good friends!! They all get together at least once a week and just have these cool super fun get togethers. And they all join together at the Ymca to work out in the gym together. I wish we could join!! hahahaha :) <3
Our Beloved friend April is doing SPECTACULAR!! We just met with her and the bishop of her ward earlier today and It has been the COOLEST experience being able to help her through this tough situation that she has been in. I know we were sent to her for a very good reason and her WHOLE countenance has changed and I couldn't stop smiling as we all met together earlier today <3 <3 <3 This church is true and bishops are AWESOME!!!!
Ummmmm Super bowl was cool yesterday!! We went over to one of our favorite families houses. (we're going to end up teaching the daughters boyfriend, fingers crossed!). All the guys were downstairs watching the game and us and the girls were upstairs chatting. CUTEST family! The mom is the owner of the blog called "WhipperBerry" Check it out! I totally want to work for her when I get home <3 hahaha anyways
We got the opportunity to teach gospel principles class yesterday! We had quite a few returning less-actives at church and SO MANY members brought their friends with-- it's the coolest thing!!
With the boundary changes we feel like we have so many friends in like the whole stake now!! It's fun:)
Yesterday was cool! There is a family that is now in a different ward, but they are SUPER missionary minded!! (they are how the Elders found Kyle). Their young kids are all learning the violin and so yesterday, they had a little recital for 2 of their kids to show some friends that they had finished their books! They were all dressed up still in their sunday best and played a bunch of their violin songs! They had a little program all typed out with places to applaud and stuff, it was super cute! And they had invited a bunch of nonmember friends over to listen to their kids. They called us there because they just wanted their friends to be exposed to missionaries and we got to witness the recital in their living room and befriend their friends. A SUPER simple way to share the gospel!!! So now we are friends with their nonmember friends!! They had some refreshments afterwards and we got to chat with everyone... So people, it's SO SIMPLE to share the gospel and involve missionaries in meeting your friends! Just invite friends over to your house and casually invite the full time missionaries too! Then they don't feel as threatened! I love this family.... holy cow they are the best <3
Anyway, that's the exciting news this week! I hope you all are doing well <3 Know that I love you and think/pray for you often!! This gospel is so true and Heavenly Father is SO VERY aware of each one of us!!!!!!
All is well <3
-Sister Checketts