Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Christmas time.....

Christmas!  Yay!  My amazing mother sent me a Christmas tree for the apartment and it is happily sitting by the non-functioning fireplace. Reminds me of Charlie Brown.  Also, we hung a bunch of snowflakes from the ceiling so our apartment looks like a department store.  They're fantastic.  So, the Christmas feeling isnt quite the same, but its fun to see the Christmas lights on houses and the feeling of joy.  But of course, theres no snow!!  There's FOG!!!!  I looooove fog!!!!!  Its so fun to drive around at night in the mystical clouds!  I dance around in our car every time we turn a corner and we can only see 5 houses down!  Its so fun.  

 Thanksgiving was grand.  As I said last week, we had a fancy Thanksgiving breakfast and then a lunch with a different member.  I love the members here, they are so supportive of the work.  They love us!!  

My back: improving. Its MUCH better than it was 3 weeks ago when I was crying out in pain just to stand up.  Doctor Armstrong is a GREAT chiropractor and I need to go back for the next few weeks until I'm better.  Every time I go, he re-sets my back so it can heal properly.  He told me yesterday that he had two different brother-in-laws who had to be sent home from their missions from Sacrolitis because they didn't get it fixed and after a while they couldn't walk anymore!  Lucky for me, I caught it near the beginning stages and am on my way to a full recovery and once I'm healed it will never happen again.  Such a random injury.  

Ashlees baptism had to be postponed again...every 3 days or so she has a breakdown and takes a few puffs but she really is doing so well because she used to be pack-a-day!  so I'm not complaining at 3 puffs every 72 hours!  BUT!  We have MIKES baptism this Saturday!  Mike has such a strength about him, We met him 3 weeks ago and he just sucked up everything so fast.  He told us last night on the phone that he was so grateful he met us,and that he was going to be a part of this for the rest of his life!  ITS SO EXCITING!!!  I LOVE THIS WORK!!!  

 The work is going forward as usual here in my area!  Transfers are today, but I already knew I was staying in Carmichael because I have another 6 weeks of training with Sister Williams (lucky me!!)  The zone is all leaving and we get new elders here, so its kind of sad, but I better get used to this because it happens every 6 weeks!  We all play zone sports together every P-day and we do Sunday night exchanges so we get to know all the elders pretty well who serve in this area.  

 We also scheduled ANOTHER baptism for December for a woman named Anne.  Anne is the most wonderful school teacher, she's in her 50's and she is going through a divorce.  Shes been surrounded by Mormons for the last decade, but her husband was so anti that she never checked it out!  With the recent separation and divorce, she decided that it was finally her time to be baptized.  Lessons with Anne for the last month are very different from other investigators because she already knows so much!!  She's been to church countless times and to Relief Society activities.  Shes so great and she's set to be baptized on December 17th!  YAY!  I'm so happy for her!  

One of our less active members expressed the other day that shes always had a hard time with prayer.  She won't pray.  She feels like an idiot because she feels like she's talking to a wall.  Because she won't pray, she has no relationship with her Father in Heaven and lacks a LOT of happiness and blessings.  I am so glad to be raised in a family where prayer was a regular part of our daily routine.  I love talking to my Father through prayer.  It has brought me so much peace and so many answers to trials.  I know He wants us to talk with Him regularly.  He doesn't expect us to do all of this alone!  He WANTS us to rely on Him!  That's the truth.  

 Random: Pomegranates right off the tree are amazing.  My birthday is in 2 weeks!  What the?!  Where did the time go?!  Yay for turning 25!!  Half of a century old for me!

I love all of you.  I can feel your prayers so don't stop them!  Sister Williams takes good care of me and she's still the greatest companion I can ever imagine!  WINK!!

 Sister Wilson

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving

Yay for being thankful for EVERYTHING THE LORD GIVES US!!!!  Its so great!  
Update on the back: its terrible.  BUT!  I went to see a FANTASTIC Chiropractor, Dr Armstrong, this week who properly diagnosed me!  Yay!  I have Sacrolitis.  Basically, I messed up my ligament (in my sleep?) and he wants me to come back for the next few weeks to fix it.  Doctor Armstrong says its the 2nd hardest back problem to solve (the hardest being a herniated disc) but he is going to do it all pro bono for me because I'm a servant of the Lord!   hmmm... But Ive been to him twice and feel much better.  I mean, just look at that picture!  Something was definitely wrong.  So, here's to good healing!  Im just being lazy and not working out (like he told me) and hope my back can come back to normal!  No pun intended!  haha.  

 We have 7 investigators!  Ashlee is doing well! (Ashlee is hearing.  Sorry I didnt clarify)  Shes all set to be baptized the 28th and shes been without her smokes AND patches for 5 days!  yay!  The Lord is helping her!  We have 3 baptisms set up for December right now and one more that is a possibility!  Our Heavenly Father is blessing us to have A WHITE CHRISTMAS!!!  ITS SO AMAZING!!!  I love being here and seeing all these miracles!  Can you imagine?!  We might have four baptisms this December!  Its so fantastic.  

 Me and Sister Williams sang a duet last Sunday for the ward, a song called "When Love Came Down."  Both of us knew that song from previous choirs and we figured it would be easy to throw it together.  That was a mistake.  Everybody LOVED it and we are currently scheduled 3 more times to sing during random occasions in the month of December...oh boy!  

Me and Sister Williams have another transfer of training before I could get transfered.  I love being so close to the mission office here and serving in the Carmichael 1st ward.  The members are SO loving and they all invite us into their homes to eat dinner every night.  They are forever going to have special places in my heart!  Come to find out, Sister Williams heard me sing a solo at a concert in 2009, and I worked her sisters wedding at Wadley Farms.  Who knew?  We met many times before we were companions!  I love her so much. She is so patient with me and even though she's very short, shes always there for me to cry on if I need it!  Shes a wonderful example to me and I'm glad shes from Spanish Fork so that we can still be friends when we come home.  Sister Williams is definitely what I needed in a trainer.  She helps me obey all the rules and work hard!

I am so grateful for this gospel!  We have met many a confused individual here in Sacramento, but we are helping some of them come unto truth and light!  Its the greatest thing I could be doing right now!  I am mostly thankful for my Savior, Jesus Christ, and His sacrifice for me.  I love being His representative and testifying of Him daily.  

Happy Thanksgiving loved ones!

Sister Wink

Monday, November 14, 2011

back issues

Hello everybody!  

Something I learned this week: backs are very important to everything we do. Without a functioning back, you cant do much!!  For some reason, I randomly woke up last week with terrible back pain, like something was out of place.  After struggling through 2 days and still being in intense pain, we went to see a chiropractor.  Lucky for me, she's a member and saw me for free!  But...she used this kind of strange little clicky tool and didn't do any back-popping.  When she "finished," I told her I was still in pain but she said it would get better over the course of the day, so we left.  Not better.  After another day of no relief, we went and our bishop gave me a blessing.  The next day we went to a member of my ward here, Uva Harris.  She's a massage therapist and she helped my muscles feel better using UV rays.  I'm currently doing a lot better than 4 days ago, but I'm still whimpering every time I have to get out of or into the car.  Depending how I feel tomorrow, I might see a different chiropractor who actually cracks me into place and maybe that will be better.  Pray for my back to heal!!  

 Here's a miracle, though, after that deep tissue massage and UV Ray treatment, we had to go directly to stake conference to interpret and I was able to!  We did the Sunday morning session, too, and I was able to be efficient enough, despite the back!  The lord is watching out for me!  

I also had the most DELICIOUS fish and chips I have ever tasted in my LIFE.  Seriously, if any of you come to Carmichael, you MUST stop at Tugboat Fish and Chips.  Its a South Korean couple that fry their food in tempura.  Ive already decided that Im going back for my birthday.  :)  Why doesnt Utah have good fish and chips places?  Its sooo delicious!  

 We also had a Sisters Training this week.  All 24 sisters from the whole mission came together and were uplifted and edified by our leaders.  It was wonderful. It took a while to get there, though.  We do a lot of driving as ASL sisters.  We spend a lot of our days in the car driving to see the deafies who live far away.  Another thing that shocked me about the mission.  I also didnt know how many MEETINGS are involved in missionary work!  my goodness!  We are constantly having meetings.   meetings with the district.  meetings with the zone.  with the ward mission leader.  with the bishopric.  with the deaf bishopric.  with all the sisters.  Its just busy!  but I love being busy and I always have!

Ashlee has started her patches and went from a whole pack a day to maybe HALF of a cigarette!  She's doing great!  Her baptism is set up for a few weeks down the road and she should be good to go!!  YAY!  

SO!  Guess what?!  We met this guy last week on the street who's name is Mike.  He invited us back.  We've taught him 3 times and he says he wants to be baptized December 3rd!  Its so wonderful to be able to see these miracles.  To see people like him who just EAT UP the gospel.  yes!  Hes been reading the book of mormon for like 3 hours a day.  Its so great. He recognizes the spirit every time we see him.  He came to stake conference and loved it.  

I love all of you!  Thanksgiving next week should be fun.  Its going to be a P-day, and we actually have a Thanksgiving breakfast as well as dinner, so I'll be eating a lot with the members.  Im so glad to have members to care for me while I'm here!  They make me so happy.  

 I love all of you!  The church is true!  

--Sister Wink

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

all is well

Hello All!

I love this work!  I love every minute.  Its so wonderful to help people change their lives!  I am helping these people come to Jesus Christ, my Savior!  There is no place I would rather be right now.  I know without a doubt that THIS is the place I was supposed to serve!  And NOW is the time I was supposed to serve!  I am meeting people that I need to help!  Its so wonderful.  The members in our ward and out here are so involved in the work.  When members help, the work goes exceedingly better because that investigator automatically has a friend to sit by and answer questions when missionaries arent there!  I'm so grateful to serve where the members love and support us missionaries!

We get fed dinners every night.  :)  Its so wonderful.  Watching 17 Miracles last week was so sad.  I cried through the whole thing.  Happy Halloween to me.  Sat on a couch and thought about those amazing pioneers.  

You know whats interesting about Utah?  Everyone knows their neighbors!  We go door to door and ask people if they know who the next door people are and nobody does!  Its really sad!  How could you have never met your next door neighbor??  Also, I am REALLY seeing the effects of the economy.  We meet very humble people out here every day who cant seem to find work.  We have a new investigator who has been praying to get this job at the Dollar Tree around the corner.  He's 30.  No schooling, no girlfriend.  I am so grateful for the schooling Ive been able to have and that Ive always had income!  

We had a zone picture last week.  Dont even worry, they put the sisters in the front row....uhh.....Sister Wilson CANT be on the front row!  It was a massive problem.  I can see over the heads of ALL the other sisters I serve with.  The average for sisters is 5'4".  It was so awkward for me, though, because the short elders who were standing behind me couldnt see.  yay!  Ive never been in the front row of a picture before!  What a great and rare opportunity for me.  hahaha.  

You know what Im thankful for?  Jehovah's Witnesses.  Who would want to join a church that doesnt even celebrate Birthdays?  Or a church that has already "chosen" their 144,000 who make it to heaven and the rest of us dont get in?  Our church invites ALL to come unto Christ and everybody has opportunity to live with God again.  It just makes more sense that way!  Why would our loving Heavenly Father limit the amount of souls who returned to live with him? He wouldnt.  :)  Thats what I love about this gospel.  It just makes so much sense.  And when I meet people I am able to tell them that they CAN make it back to Him and they CAN celebrate all Holidays and Birthdays.  Hahaha.  Its a benefit to us to have such crazy opposition.  

I saw a miracle this week.  We have an investigator who has been taking lessons for SEVEN MONTHS.  She's been struggling with quitting smoking.  Ashlee set up a baptismal date goal once and wasnt able to be baptized that day even though she wanted to because she slipped again on her addictions.  She has a testimony and comes to church each week.  We set up a new baptismal day for her and she is going to start Nicotine patches to help her stop.  Only problem is: they can't afford them.  Come to find out (I didnt know this) Nicotine Patches cost about $80 for a 2 week supply.  And Ashlee and her husband BOTH need patches.  So here's what happened: She was waiting for a check to come in but in order to be baptized on her chosen day, she would have to have that check by the 12th, and even then, they were going to split a box and do the rest cold turkey.  Here's the miracle.  We had an anonymous donor give us a $100 donation to give to Ashlee!  Sister Williams and I cried all the way to her house when we gave it to her.  She was shocked and went to buy the patches that day!  YAY!  And now she's super excited to be baptized!  She's so ready!  Now more determined than ever because she knows someone sacrificed for her to be able to do this!  Its such a great miracle that someone would be willing and giving enough to do such a thing.  It means all the world to her soul (quite literally!).  

I am doing well my family and friends.  Just out doing the work of my Lord and Savior every day.  I'm so happy and free.  I cant believe Ive been on my mission for 3 months!  I'm already sad that so much time has passed because I love it so much!  

Love, Sister Wink
No more eating squirrel for me.  That was a one time thing.  Promise.