Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Spread Christmas Cheer

Lenise's sister Sharee knows what she likes to do
Sing Loud for all to hear, spreading cheer.
Dearest Family and Friends,
     HAPPY CHRISTMAS! It's getting closer and the spirit is definitely in the air! We've been treated super generously as missionaries and it's been a really good week!:)
     So for starters, I am NOT getting transferred. WAHOOO!!!!!! YAY! Christmas with Sis Gulbranson!!!! So my address isn't changing and life is dandy and grand and marvelous!!!! Although I'm a little sad I don't get to go to the transfer meeting because a bunch of people I know and served with are going home! Like Sister Megan Nielson, Sis Albrechtsen, Sis Nomo, Elder Guthrie, and a bunch of others, so it will be sad that I don't get to say goodbye! I'm going to say goodbye to Sis Nielson today though. 
     Last Monday was a fun day! We had dinner with this awesome family with 10 kids. All of them played stringed instruments, so before we left they serenaded us with some Christmas music! It was so epic! Sis G and I discovered both of our loves for instrumental music and I have converted her to the ways of Pride and Prejudice piano music :) We also tried to go to an FHE Monday night so that we could meet an investigator, but we ended up not being able to talk to him while we were there because the activity was learning how to waltz and cha-cha....yup awkward...we are SO not allowed to do that as missionaries! Although if we were he wouldn't have been able to get away from us and we could have totally cornered him! haha! But yeah, that was interesting. 
     Tuesday was another busy day!  We had a lot of people to teach and we got to go see C at her job in the car wash because we needed to get our car cleaned for car inspections (we won first class car award btw...) That was fun! We taught J again and we think he's slipping...which is really sad. He hasn't made it to church the last two weeks and we think he's closing off. We will have to try and see what we can do to help him.
Standing in a downpour.
     Wednesday was a crazy day! We had an all-day Zone Conference from 8am to 4pm with Elder Clark of the 70. It was like spiritual information joke. He had a lot to say about retention and conversion and how to keep our converts active. It was really cool because they had one of my Zone Leaders Elder D Taylor come up and share his conversion story and while he told it Elder Clark would interrupt and give us new insight on what our role as missionaries is in conversion. It was cool to get an inside scoop from a convert turned missionary. But what was kind of weird....was that only about half of the zone conference was focused on that....I bet you can't guess what practically the whole other half of the day was spent on. Go ahead. Guess. I dare you.......Yes, Eternal Marriage, and raising families....I'm not even lying. I was stunned that we talked about it so much. Elder Clark even showed a slide show about it. Pres. McCune, got up and talked about his wife and what an example she was and how we need to be our best selves if we ever want to find someone as good as Sis McCune, (she really is amazing and a sweetheart!) They talked a lot about how setting patterns as missionaries, really sets patterns for the rest of our life! 
      Thursday and Friday were busy teaching days. So was Saturday. So funny story about Saturday! We are teaching this less active named B who is a super sweet guy and so nice, and we are helping him get over an addiction, and we were having this really powerful lesson at the church, when right in the middle of it our fellow shipper (Maddy McMullin. She is super cute and so nice!) screams! We all jump and she points over at the curtains in the primary room and there is a silhouette of a mouse climbing the inside of the drapes. Brigham knocked it out of the curtain but it ran away and hid....the whole rest of the time we had our feet up. And right in the middle of baring my testimony at the end I stopped mid-sentence and squeaked because I saw the mouse run behind Maddy! hahaha! When we left, we put a sticky note on the door saying that there was a mouse in the room and that somebody should probably try to catch it....But even funnier was the next day at church we met up with one of our Relief Society Presidents to coordinate visits with her and she wanted to visit in the SAME ROOM! She saw the sticky note on the door and just brushed it off and said "I'm guessing that's part of a game they are playing later with the kids..." And just walked into the room!!! Sis G and I were trying so hard not to laugh and were watching constantly for the mouse to pop out but it never did. We think it got away somehow... 
     Saturday night we went Caroling as a district which was super fun! We all thought up some names to go and see, and we had a blast contacting people and setting up appointments after singing for people. It was awkward though when we went with the Spanish Sisters to their places because we didn't know a lick of Spanish...but it was still super fun! At the end of the evening we went and caroled at the mission home for President and Sister McCune. They were super happy to see us all and welcomed us in and gave us cider and cupcakes. I had no idea President McCune could play the piano, but Sis McCune offered for him to play us some songs that we could sing along to and it was really cool to watch him play! They are seriously the BEST! I love and respect them so much! It was funny because when we showed up, President was working on transfers and trying to decide what to do. It was good to give him a little break.
Lenise opened a present early - naughty girl!
     Sunday was super awesome because we got to go to two Christmas programs! They were amazing and the majority of it was music and singing which I love!!! It was sooooo spiritual...Sometimes I wish that was all they did every Sunday! There were some beautiful variations of Christmas hymns and this guy and girl did a piano cello duet to Oh Come Oh Come Emanuel, and it was absolutely gorgeous! Later that night we went to a dinner with a bunch of YSA from one of our ward and we got to play Uno for a little while with them. And guess what? I won twice in a row! Yup twice against 14 other YSA. I am the master. Enough said. 
     Last night we taught a lesson to two of our investigators B and K. They are living together and not married and K is somewhat interested and B pretty much ignores us the whole time.  We had this great lesson about the Savior, and watched an amazing Bible video called For God So Loved The World...and they weren't even paying attention. It is so sad to me sometimes to watch people totally ignore the innumerable blessings that are right in front of their noses.
     This week I have been so grateful to be a representative of Jesus Christ and sharing his word. Each night when I take off my scuffed constant name tag, I get to look at my name right next to my Saviors and report to Him on how well I am upholding His name. Another thing Elder Clark taught was that I don't need to know everything. Intelligence is nothing. It's diligence that really matters. If we work hard enough we can accomplish anything.
     So let me know around what time you want to FaceTime! I'm thinking in the morning, like we did last year! That's around when Sis G wants to do it too, so let me know! Oh and I also got your package in the mail!!! THANKS!!!!
    I love you all and hope all is going well! Miss you and pray for you always! Send me some fun Christmas pictures!
Love,    Sister Lenise Diane Volmer 

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