Monday, June 30, 2014

Missionary Life Keeps me on my Toes!

Hanging out with some cute kids.
Dearest Family.
I don't know where to begin....
     This week was kind of nuts...But good. But blah on some days, but like stellar on others and I was just like "Oh missionary you keep me on my toes!!" 
     Wednesday was the best! We got to go to the temple for the first time in three months. And can I just say it felt so good!!!!! I miss the temple. I always learn something new while I'm there and it always makes me feel so uplifted and so much better. I've missed going so often and at the beginning of the week I was beginning to feel super over stressed and overwhelmed and everything seemed to be accumulating and then I walked into the temple and it was just was such a relief and felt so good to feel the spirit there. I need the temple. It makes me sad that I can't go as often as I would like...I'll just have to get more people prepared to go so I can go more often!!!
        We got to go shopping afterwards like we always do when we go to vernal and we had some fun trying on crazy dresses at D.I. and going to Walmart to stalk up on cheap stuff! (Everything in Roosevelt is insanely overpriced!) 
     Thursday was crazy busy! We had zone training meeting which went pretty well! I sang an “I am a Child of God” duet with Elder Davis. Except afterwards I feel motivated to do so much more...and then it turns into being stressed because I feel like I'm not doing enough. It's an overwhelming happy but worried kind of stress.  I just always wish there was more I could do for people. Just more and more of me to give. I wish some people would let me help them, but they're stubborn...After ZTM we had a bajillion appointments. I think that day we had a total of 9 lessons. That night both Sis Nomo and I felt so tired. 
Missionary Band pose....goofy kids.
     Friday we went to the C. I think I've told you about G and W. G is a recent convert and has picked up his smoking habit again so we are trying to help him overcome it. But his wife was having a back problems and so she got to go get a shot in her back...and while we were there she totally mooned us!!! to show us the bruise on the top of her bum/bottom of her spine. Sis Nomo was laughing so hard and I was trying to tell her to be quiet but I was also trying really hard not to laugh hysterically too. 
        Sunday was awesome. We had one of the 70 in our stake, Elder Randal and he wanted to meet with us missionaries specifically and with our stake presidency. He was such a powerful speaker. I sang with a small group "I'll find you my friend" in sacrament meeting with him there in the Roosevelt 9th ward, and then he asked Sis Nomo to bare her testimony. After when we met with him and the stake presidency he talked to us about how the first presidency wants to double the number of baptisms in the church...which they said wouldn't be possible unless the members get more involved...and he said there is a grand total of 3% of members in the church who are involved in their local missionary work... so to double baptisms all we need is 6% members involved! He then read D&C 29:7 with us "And ye are called to bring to pass the gathering of mine elect; for mine elect hear my voice and harden not their hearts;" and asked who the elect were. I said "Everyone has the potential to become one of the elect." and he said "yes, but there were some of us who were trained before this life to be doing what we are doing right now. I'm sure all of us in this room met together before this life and trained together to be exactly where we are right now." I got chills. As we were leaving he said "Gather the elect Sisters. When they see and hear you they will recognize you." It was amazing! He was so great!
     I've been hearing a lot about family history out here and have had a real drive to do it! Except as missionaries we are discouraged to do it because according to the first presidency our "work is for the living not the dead." So let grandma Merkley and Volmer know I'm going to be attacking them when I get home about family history stuff and temple works. I'd love to just read some of the stories about my ancestors and get to know them more...dang.. I need to get better at journaling. 
      Well I love you all to death! I'm sad everyone has been so sick! :( Hope they all get better!
     I'm so stoked to parade this week and watch FROZEN! Thanks for all the videos and letters! Just remember, because you guys are all together doesn't give you an excuse not to write me! Keep me in the loop! I love you lots and miss you lots! You are always always always in my prayers!
Sister Lenise Diane Volmer!

Monday, June 23, 2014

Investigators! Will they? or won't they?

Nice message & lots of chocolate under it.
Dear family,
Another week down.
     Man this week felt like it went on forever and ever and I don't know had a lot of good moments though! Lots of great moments! But this week especially I've been feeling extra exhausted. Sis Nomo and I would start getting drowsy and tired around 4:30pm...which mind you is pretty darn early to start feeling like you need to get to bed...haha. Especially when you still have dinner and three more lessons to fit in. Every night I've come home ready to pass out and every morning I wake up and feel like I've been hit by a bus and can barely open my eyes. Its nuts. The days start to blur together. Everyone says you get more and more exhausted as time goes on... If that's true I'm going to be like a zombie by the time my mission is through! Haha. I still love it though. It's still the work of God.
     So last Monday Dusty took our district to pole creek. Which was really just a sketchy truck ride up the side of a mountain. But once we got to the top the view was stellar! It was fun spending time with our district. We rocked out to missionary-appropriate jams and got to ride in the bed of the truck for a while. We started playing that one game where one person tells a line of a story and then the next person makes up the next part and then the next person, and it goes around the circle. We got laughing pretty hard about our story that included a fairy named sugar spice and her fairy prince Cashew Muscles and their battle against swarms of bees and trolls....random yes, boring no. Haha it was a grand old time. After we went back to Dusty's and all though the elders and sisters had to leave, we stayed and had dinner with Dusty and his parents and also the Millers (the millers are awesome fellow-shippers and good friends of Dusty.)
     Tuesday was interesting. It was fun because we went on exchanges, so I got to spend the day with my new sister training leader Sister Lyle. Sister Lyle is an awesome missionary and a great example. At first I was nervous to have her follow me around Roosevelt all day and access my teaching, but when it came down to it she was just super nice and fun to talk with. She was actually Sister Megan Neilson's companion last transfer, and apparently Megan told her a lot about me haha. But we got along great and had fun talking that night as we fell asleep.
     The next day was back to work as normal. So here is the thing about Sister Nomo that I love. She is very open and forward. So Wednesday morning when we had a little misunderstanding and tension followed, I was worried it was going to just sit there like a rock and effect both of us... Because honestly I'm a weenie and hate conflict and confrontation. But after a little bit,  Sis Nomo came right up to me, apologized, openly shared her feelings, and what was bothering her and I was able to let her know what was really going on in my head, apologize too, and she just gave me a huge hug and let me know she loved me. And after that our relationship improved by 100%. Not that it was bad before, but we both just understood each other better which led to laughing, inside jokes, and long talks. For example, Sis Nomo has discovered my ability to make heinously ugly has been rather fun to see her reactions. We've had a few funny conversations about how people miss-pronounce our names, and we've started referring to each other as Sister Nemo and Sister Voldemort.  Having a companion is constant adjustments, but I love it. No experience is quite like it...except maybe marriage...except you don't switch spouses every few months and have to readjust...haha.
Will these three get baptized?  Yep, if Lenise has a say in it!

  Thursday was a super busy day and we were running everywhere. There is this family that we are teaching that is less active and they have an 8 year old daughter they want baptized...but the mom blatantly refuses to come to church. She wouldn't even set foot in the building to do a chapel tour with us...then we taught the C family that has three little boys, they are the cutest and I love them to death! But they aren't progressing exactly and their baptism is coming up...which might mean we'll need to push their date, which we've already done like three times...ugh.  But they are beginning to show some real potential and I would love to see their family make it to the temple someday!
     We finally got back with Bri.  She is an investigator we started teaching a few months ago but lost contact with. She lives with the crazy White Family that I love! And she is amazing. She is really taking her decision to join the church seriously. Her mom and sister just got baptized in the other stake that we aren't over, so we are teaching her. She knows that she will get baptized eventually, she just wants to make sure that when she does she is wholly committed and has made all the necessary changes. . There is no doubt in my mind that she will be baptized one day. And if I can help her in any way I will.
     So this weekend...was really slow...nobody wanted to see we went and made cookies for our investigators at the Felkins' house during the afternoon and then we made more at the Wilda's later that night. It was fun! I love both of those families and it was fun to spend time with them and their kids and just catch a breather. At the Wildas we played with the little kids. We talked a lot about singing and musicals and how much I missed singing...which seriously has been a major problem for me lately...I have had zero opportunities to sing over the last few weeks and it feels like I'm starving... I don't think it's healthy to feel so attached to singing. Its driving me NUTS! Gosh...
      Yesterday we got back in to see V. She is someone we've been teaching for a loooong time. Since even before I got here. She has been investigating and coming to church but recently has been canceling on us over and over again. We finally got in and her less active husband was there and talked to us for a long time. It went really well and it seems like she's getting more excited to be baptized! Ah! Yes!
       Also we got the agenda for the Fourth of July! So spread the word to any family or friends living in Utah! I will be walking in the 4th of July parade in Provo with our whole mission! So if they want to come and catch a glimpse of all the missionaries on display (including yours truly) we will be parading that morning! Also we get to watch a movie for the 4th of July and we just found out what it is...........FROZEN!!!!! I'm soooooooo stoked and excited!! But all the missionaries made this dumb rule that you can't sing along while we are watching it...haha it's actually a practical rule...but i wanna SING!
Saturday the Sumner twins got baptized! They are the cutest best mannered little boys. I would adopt them if I could! They have these super soft little voices and they hold the doors open for us and are so polite. They were so cute at their baptism! Gosh. I've loved teaching them over the last few weeks. I'm so proud of them. They both have testimonies and talk to us about how they want to serve missions. Stalwart little young gents indeed.
 Well I hope you have all had a great week!
    To answer some of moms questions. Yes I liked Carl comment about my fiesta dress...and I shall continue to wear it when the occasion arises!! My back is doing fine. Only if I sleep on it weird does it give me any trouble. As for my birthday we shall not discuss it until we really have to... I really don't want to turn 20...that sounds too old.... 
Love you all!! Miss you all to pieces! 
Sister Lenise Diane Volmer

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Highs and Lows

Dear Family,
8 months.
Today marks 8 months solid.
     Can you believe it? I can't... It is so weird to think it's been that long. In some ways it doesn't seem that long at all. It's weird to think that exactly 8 months ago from right now I had just gotten off my flight, had just made it to Aunt Mindy's house, and was trying really hard to take a quick nap before being taken to the MTC in two hours. (The whole nap thing didn't really work... I was mostly trying not to hyperventilate...) and yet, here I am! 8 months down, Sitting behind a computer screen in a tiny family history center in the middle of nowhere Roosevelt Utah. I think the weirdest thing to think about is how much I feel like I've changed in that amount of time. I'm still me. But I feel better about myself, more positive, I feel more whole,  more solid,  more happy, and I feel more me. I also feel more stressed, more overwhelmed, and more desperate to just do more. It's a vicious cycle really...haha.
     This week has been insanity. I've hit some lows and I've hit some highs and I've been all over in between.
     I had another one of those awkward days where two different people made us dinner on the same day...and I felt so sick... That was an adventure... At one of the dinners there was a little boy who had a pet bunny that he carried around everywhere with him in a laundry basket... He even arranged for it to have a place to sit at the dinner table! Afterwards he was flinging the basket around the floor making race car noises...poor bunny...haha!
 Wednesday night was a rough night for me... You know how in my last email I told you about a couple we were teaching and how they got in a major fight and guns became involved...well the thing is... I love that couple. I've written to you about J and T before. I was the first one to start teaching them and I've always had a close relationship to T. I've always felt the spirit really strong while teaching her and I always felt like she was one of those people I was meant to meet. Well she has been struggling really badly with the whole thing... Obviously. After I heard what happened she wouldn't talk to us or contact us so I had no idea what was really going on or if I would ever be able to see them again. Then Wednesday night she texted us and said "I need a blessing. It's time." So we called her bishop and brother B the ward mission leader. After coordination that night we headed straight over to  Parkside Old Folks home where she works, and went into one of elderly lady's rooms that we all knew really well for the blessing. When I gave T a big hug she just started crying.  I just hugged her. She was saying the saddest things about how being around a violent abusive person for so long had turned her into one and she didn't want to be. I was so so sad for her listening to the things she said and how hurt and lost she was. Bro B gave her a blessing and it helped but she is still struggling to figure everything out. So I had another one of those times when I couldn't help it, I felt so useless because I felt like there was nothing I could do to fix it.
     I've lived a good life. With a loving family and nice home and a lot of love. I didn't know how much so many people really just hurt all the time until I came out on my mission. So I ended up crying the whole way home even though I really didn't want to. Sis Nomo was a good sport and didn't make me talk about it or even acknowledged it. Because honestly, who really wants to talk and cry at the same time.  I've only cried a handful of times on my mission, and it's amazing to me that most of them have been for the pain of others...I cried because of my back but I was in yeah. There are just so many other things I could do to fix problems than cry...But mostly now I feel like I don't have a right to whine and cry in self-pity anymore, because so many people have it so much worse than me...
       As a missionary, a lot of people treat you like a super hero, but sometimes I really don't feel like one because I can't force people to accept the gospel and let me help save their lives. And even if they do accept I can't stop Satan from throwing everything he's got at them. But I had to remember what Kayla wrote me about last time I got upset about this same thing. I can't help everyone. That's Gods job. I can't take the pain away no matter how much I wish I could just feel it for them so they don't have to. That's the Savior's job. I can just do my best to do what I can and trust that God will make up the rest.
     But T said something that night that struck me really hard. When I was giving her a hug goodbye, she is a lot shorter than me, so I had to lean down. She laughed and said "it's like you're my big little sister!" I know she meant it like "you are younger than me but a lot taller!" But the spirit hit me over the head. I am her big sister...really truly. I might be in a younger body. But I was sent here to help lead and guide her...spiritually speaking I feel as if the spirit was telling me I was older and needed to fulfill my duty and help bring her home. It was a strange experience. But impacted me a lot.
     This week I was able to get to know Sis Nomo better :) we talked a lot and got to know each other better. I think she still isn't used to Roosevelt and doesn't like it very much here...which is sad for me because I LOVE Roosevelt! She is super spunky, and has her own views on everything. She's interesting to talk to because she is super smart and well...about 5 years older than me. A lot of the time I forget she's closer to Sharee and Kayla's age than to me. But the age gap is there haha. This week she discovered the fact that I am blonde...and sometimes say stupid things without thinking. She laughs at me a lot now, which I'm okay with, as long as she is happy! :) if you don't remember... I say stupid stuff a lot and I’m Really gullible...and Sis Nomo has this quote book that she keeps of funny things her companions or people she is teaching say... Yep I've made it into the book 3 times in the last 48 hours... Simply because I asked her how long it takes her to get a sunburn (she's black...) and I also said I had portable sunscreen (apparently all sunscreen is portable...go figure)
      Thanks for sending me that back healing book! I’ve started using the stretches. Thanks Kayla for sending me Cardio too! I loved the chain letter when everyone wrote two lines! I about died laughing and I think my companion thought I was a weirdo because I kept cracking up reading it! Sharee telling me funny quotes about Hannah, Kayla talking about her birthday, Leisha trying to arrange my future marriage, Kelsy telling me about planning her own future marriage, Carl talking about basketball (always), Riley telling me the family keeps beating her up, moms own comments on everyone, and lastly Steve telling me about a burrito that changed his life... Classic. Loved it and it made miss you all a lot!
     This week Dallin Foote was baptized which was a great blessing! I've been working with him since I first got here. He is a sweet little boy and smart as a whip! His mom is super supportive but his dad... not so much...we want to work on his dad. So hopefully that works! This next week is going to be crazy busy and stressful. We have exchanges this week and also the twins I told you about are getting baptized next Saturday! So we will continue to teach them as fast as we can! They are cute little boys too! We also went and saw one of my favorite families, who we are also working with. Bro. F is trying to quit chewing and he has finally started to stop!!!!! He says he's done! And he seems pretty resolved! They want to go to the temple in August, which I'm so stoked about! It will be amazing for him to reach this goal! We've been working with him forever!  To see him really start progressing is sooooo amazing! 
     So today after emails we are going hiking as a district with DUSTY!!! I love Dusty he is hilarious! I've told you about him, he's the funny one who used to be a rocker and stuff? I'll send you guys pictures next week!
     I'm sorry this email is obnoxiously long... I've come to realize how long winded I am... gosh. But I hope all is going well! Tell Carl he's a boss hippy freak for being great at basketball! I can't wait to watch you play when I get home, Carly-puff! I hope all is going well at home with all the family! I loved the little video you sent of Hannah talking to me! I've loved seeing the cute pictures on Facebook of all the baby cousins together! They are the CUTEST! I love you all lots and miss you a ton! I love hearing from you guys! Thank you all for your support and love! 
Love love love you guys!
Sister Lenise Diane Volmer


Tuesday, June 10, 2014

UFO's, a cemetary, and Chumlee

Dearest Darlingest Momsie and Popsicle (and the rest of you crazies!)
     Well this week has been scattered and crazy and good. :) where do I even begin...     Oh I know! So I keep forgetting to write you about this... But a few weeks back something happened...and you are going to think I'm nuts...
     So in case I haven't already told you, Roosevelt is like #1 in the world for UFO sightings. Seriously you could ask anyone around here and either they have seen something strange or someone they are close to has. Well you will never guess...but I have joined the ranks of those here in Roosevelt who have seen strange things. So obviously, us being the only sister missionaries in our mission who cover an Indian Rez we were bound to run into something right?
So yes. I saw a UFO. Don't judge.
     I was driving down a back road with one of our splits for an appointment and we were driving west, and the sun was setting. Suddenly in the sky I saw what I thought was a star...but it was still too bright out for there to be stars...ok it looked like a dot but more like a short strip of light. So I turned to my split Sister Haslem and was like "do you see that?" Pointing out the windshield. She squinted and was like "see what?" As I began to describe it, IT BEGAN TO MOVE! And then it just vanished....and I was like "What the heck!" She made me describe it to her and then she was like "oh no. Not you too."
     So yes. I saw an unidentified flying object.It was weird and it happened.  Great, you're probably searching your minds for mental hospitals and strait jackets now... And where to lock me up. Any who... Lets not dwell on it.
     This week was Sister Nomo's first full week here...and I felt really bad because she has super bad allergies and here in the basin it's terrible! She's allergic to pine trees and she's also allergic to cats and dogs....which the fact that we have a little scruffy dog named Buster living with us doesn't help at all.  She's had to stock up on a bunch of allergy meds and try them out. At the beginning of the week,  I think she was pretty miserable, but now that she has found some medicine that works she is doing a lot better.
     I really like Sis Nomo! She is super funny and we talk a lot. She loves things like Tennis, ballroom dancing, shopping (she loves to shop!)  It's always a new adventure adjusting to a new companion. You feel like you've finally figured out how to do and interact with your current companion, and then they transfer them and you have to relearn all over again. But I'm beginning to really like the changes. I get to meet so many amazing people and get to know them on a personal level.  You also learn the magicalness of awkward silences. haha  Each person is so different and it has really strengthened my testimony of our Heavenly Father who has created us each so differently and uniquely. We each have something to contribute to the work of God. 
Lenise visited the graveside of her Great Great Grandparents
        So on Thursday we were at a lesson in Neola and the topic of relatives and families came up and I told Bro Crozier that I had family over here in Roosevelt and that Grandma Merkley told me that some of them were buried in the Neola cemetery. So after the lesson we had some extra time and Bro Crozier took us to the cemetery and we found Great great grandma and Grandpa Workman's grave! Pearletta and German Workman. It was really cool to see! It just felt really neat to know that I have roots in Roosevelt and to see firsthand the places where my ancestors once lived. No wonder Roosevelt feels so much like home in some ways. 
     So another cool fact! I'm teaching a woman named Terra Rich...and guess who her brother just so happens to be.... Chumlee from Pawn Stars!!! Hahaha I about died laughing when I found out! She was telling us all about it. Apparently he comes to visit Roosevelt once in a blue moon, but I told her that my dad was a HUGE fan of Chumlee and that Sharee had once bought Chumlee t-shirts for Dad, Carl, and Steve. She thought that was super funny and ended up calling him and getting me something... That I shall send for Father's day for dad.... If it doesn't fit...oh well frame it or something... I'll wear it! 
     So something crazy happened this week. A couple that we've been teaching on and off for a while (wife less active, husband nonmember) got in a huge fight... and somehow the husband ended up getting shot in the back of the calf while trying to wrestle a gun out of his wife's hands that she had grabbed to protect herself...and now they are both in jail and we aren't allowed to go over anymore...Just because I'm in Utah, doesn't mean crazy things don't happen people....
     Yesterday we met with the R family again and somehow got on the topic of little kids and how as missionaries we aren't allowed to hold them or pick them up. Their little 1 year old son K is adorable! Somehow we got on the topic of pregnancy and I think I learned more than I ever wanted to know about pregnancy, labor, and post labor....I think I'm scarred for life ...oh my gosh... They kept laughing at my facial reactions to what they were saying....Too much information.... gosh.
     We've been trying to do more service and we got the opportunity this week to help wash cars and windows and sort clothes for a garage sale. Hopefully we'll get more!
     The work has been picking up here and it's been great! We met twin boys this week who were adopted this last year. They want to get baptized in two weeks and are so excited to learn more about the gospel. Their new parents are active and so the next two weeks will be a marathon of teaching them the lessons every day and preparing them for baptism. They are great kids and super cute little boys. We also have a nine year old boy named D being baptized this next weekend and it should be a lot of fun. He's a cute little kid too! I'm so excited that the work is picking up! There are always ups and downs, and we've been in a down for a while, but the Lord truly does prepare people for us and places them in our path! It seems like we've been flooded with these people this week. This next week should be super busy! 
     So life is great. Life is grand. I love this missionary work and this life I live! I missed you all a lot this week especially know that you were all together, but I know I'm needed here. You should send me a huge group letter or something! Hope you guys are having a blast and looking for people to teach the gospel to over there! Congrats to Kelsy on Graduation and Carl for making the team! Riley is a superstar!!!! Seriously get her into some voice lessons and let her shine. She rocks! 
     I love you all and miss you all! Have fun at the baby shower! Have fun with all those babies! 
     I love you all to pieces! Miss you loads! Have a great week and end of school!
Love forever,
Sister Lenise Diane Volmer


Monday, June 2, 2014

Keep Keeping on!

Lenis's new companion Sister Nomo
Dear family,
Well it's been another long crazy week!
     Last Monday and Tuesday we spent all day teaching and going around visiting people so Sis Balero could say goodbye to them. It was a surreal two days. It didn't feel real that Sis Balero was leaving. I felt like I had been serving with her for forever. I know that transfers are all part of the experience and I know that she lives in my home town, and out of all of my companions she will probably be the one I stay in contact with and hang out with for years to come...but what i didn't expect was how much I was going to miss her. She's like a sister to me now. When you spend every waking moment of every day for three month straight with someone, how do you not get close to them and love them! I never even spent every waking moment with one of my own siblings or parents...but you get to know someone really well as a companion on a mission. I miss our inside jokes, the looks we could give each other and just know what each other was thinking, singing together, going on adventures and teaching together. She could just look at me and know when something was bothering me and the same went with her. I'm sure we both had pet peeves and sometimes we would disagree but that's life. I miss her a lot and I hope to be able to serve around her again sometime soon!
     So Wednesday rolled around and we headed out early to transfers. We stuffed the car full after packing whenever we got the chance the day before. The two hour drive is super nerve wracking when you know that at the end of it you'll be separated and put with a stranger and sent off. So we did our best to distract each other. We listened to music (even though it was the same CDs we've listened to over and over again...I really need new ones....) and Sis Balero told me the whole story of the movie Quest for Camelot, because it's been years since I've seen  it and couldn't remember it at all. Once we finally got to the transfer chapel we lugged everything inside. I've been told I'm not allowed to lift heavy things for a while so I wasn't much help... But I got to see Sis Jones and give her a big hug! We sat next to her at transfers and she is still a bubbly ball of fire, as always. Because I'm serving in eastern Utah, they always call us first so we can leave first, eat lunch, and head back out to the east side of the state. So I was one of the first companionships called. So I stood up and President McCune called out my new companion’s name!
Drum roll!!!!!!!!!    My new companion is Sister Nomo!!
     Sis Nomo is great! She is originally from Cameroon and Togo Africa but moved to the states as a refugee with her mom when she was young. She lived in Washington D.C. For a while and Maine. She was devout catholic all growing up. When she was 16, she would watch the BYU channel and had no idea it was even an LDS channel. One day she came across the Round Table discussions that they have on early in the mornings and she listened as they discussed the doctrine and covenants....and she became curious because she had never heard of D&C, so she invited the missionaries to come teach her. At first she didn't like them, but her mom did. Her mom went to church by herself for a year, before Sis Nomo decided to look into it more and get baptized with her mom. Her home town is now Mesa Arizona and she misses the heat a lot. She's 24, so I feel like a youngin' serving with her. Oh yeah, and she's fluent in French....which is legit! I don't think she was too thrilled to be called out to Roosevelt, and she is still adjusting, but I think she will do great here. She is super funny and has all her own opinions on things that she openly shares...which makes me laugh. I'm excited to get to know her more and become better friends :)

     But here's the thing. She doesn't sing...hahahaha! I feel bad because everybody here asks her if she can sing too and she is like "No! Not at all! I do not sing" I feel bad that she gets asked so often about it, but Sis Balero and I got asked to sing everywhere, and also had so many people talk to us about it, that now Sis Nomo is getting the after effects. But I'll keep singing. I'll try at least....
     Thanks a million for the summer shirts you sent me!!! They were all perfect and really cute! The floral one from Walmart you sent, I tried on before and really liked but talked myself out of buying it because my debit card wasn't working at the time. Thanks so much! Super cute! And also the pics you sent were great too! I'm sad I'll be missing Sharee's baby shower and also Kelsy's graduation party, but maybe there is someone who will really need me those days, so have fun! Wish I could be there! I'm sad I'm missing our family reuniting this week! But just send me pictures and I'll be good. I love pictures. They are my favorite for reals. That and when I can feel your prayers working in my life. It's like they literally carry me sometimes. 
     This weekend was Stake Conference in the Roosevelt West Stake, and they got a new Stake President. Elder Walker and Elder Jensen of the 70 both came and it was awesome to hear them talk. President and Sis McCune also came for the Saturday night meeting and spoke. I had no idea they were even coming so when Sis McCune walked in and gave me a big hug, I was like "Oh! You're here?" haha President was like "Yep! And when we saw you talking to people it felt like seeing family so we came to say hi" I love them so much. I swear that man could be a general authority himself. He is so powerful and humble and full of the spirit. I always feel comfort when he is around. After the meeting he came up and talked to me about my back. He told me again that I need to be more honest about any pain I'm in and made me promise to tell him immediately if it got bad again. I explained to him that I was grateful that he had called off the epidural, and that honestly I had been scared and overwhelmed when everyone started blowing my back pain out of proportion. It made me think it was worse than it really was, when in reality it's usually just my leg being numb. Stupid ironic life decided to make me sleep on my back wrong a few days before my appointment and scared everyone into thinking it was worse than it was, even me. My back really doesn't hurt that much anymore at all. I wear my back brace and take my meds and I'm fine. President made me promise to get a blessing so I'll be getting one today from my district leader Elder Davis. The whole experience scared me more than anything and I've just been a little sore. Sleeping helps a lot. And I've been working out more regularly and eating right more.  The doctor never gave me exercises but I stretch and do the palates that Kayla sent me.  I don't know who Doctor Crane is by the way....He's never spoken to or met me...but apparently he's the one who helped veto the epidural...which I'm glad about. Thanks Doc, whoever you are! :) 
     I hope everything is going well and Kelsy enjoys her graduation!!!! Hope Sharee has a good trip and gets there safely! Kayla sent me a video of Elsy dancing and it was the cutest! Thank you for all the letters. They mean so much to me and always make my days a lot better. Thanks for the back help and everyone's concern. I didn't mean to scare everyone so much. I'm just so grateful the pain is mostly gone and I can get back to work. The worst feeling in the world is feeling like a useless missionary...
I love you and miss you all so much!!!
Sister Lenise Diane Volmer