Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Skyping at Christmas was great!

I LOVED skyping. It made me so happy to be with my family again. It was like I was really there also, not that I was just talking to all of you. I went over time a little bit...but that is okay! It was funny because I was trying to hurry to get out of the room after I was done skyping, so that Elder T could use it and I had makeup all down my face and looked like a wreck...and there was a room full of people. It was kind of funny. Everyone was worried about me, haha. I love it!

Oh by the way, I am not transferring! I am staying and so is Sister Gale! I think she was a little surprised because this will be her 4th transfer in the Gooch, but we are ready to make the best of it. She has only served here her whole mission so far. Hopefully this transfer will be the lucky transfer that I get my VISA! You think? My MTC companion that was serving here in Virginia leaves for Brazil tomorrow! Cool, huh? I am excited for her and heard from a lot of my MTC crew and a lot of them aren't there yet either, it is kind of sad but it was so cool to hear from them. Yes, we emailed today instead because of New Years and stuff. We have our Pday today and have to be in at 6 which is when Pday ends....so basically a whole day Pday! And it is a zone Pday. So that is sweet! We get to spend the last time with our zone! I will miss the people that are leaving but I am super duper stoked to have new people too! I love getting to know all the missionaries in the mission and it will be cool one day to have said that I was in two missions and I get to go to two mission reunions. I have to say though, it will be sad one day when I leave Virginia because I love so many of the missionaries here and I love so many of the members here, but that is okay! It will all work out, right? You asked what we do as a zone. We play oomph-loompa.....everytime. It is a game that is played with a football and it has ultimate Frisbee rules and is played on a basketball court.  You would think we could come up with something new and creative, but boys will be boys. I mean Elders will be Elders. Haha, but is is okay because it is just fun and awkward to be around all the missionaries. Elders are sometimes very awkward....hahaha, but whatevs!

I am proud of Ryan heading back to Provo before New Years. I remember spending New Years last year with him in the McDonald's drive thru. I was telling Sister Gale about our New Years last year! Ryan and I were being crazy and you and dad were stressed about the breakfast thing at our house! Haha, I remember that perfectly!

This last week was good. Christmas actually was not as hard as I expected it to be. People loved us so much and did so much for us. I am so grateful for them. I only cried twice! You should all be proud. I missed you all very much, but it was so fun to talk to you all and hear all about what went on at Christmas. I was proud then R (a pretty recent convert and B husband) said that from the room I was skyping in he could only hear laughing. I LOVE THAT! That is one thing I love about our family is that we know how to laugh. I hope that one day I can have a family like that.

We had exchanges with the Sister Training sisters and that was super stressful... It had to be in our area with them. It was scary. Haha, but that's okay. We are still looking for new investigators and sad to hear that our best ones are now in Florida for five months! FIVE MONTHS!!! Haha, but that is okay! We work a lot with less actives and that makes me really happy! I wish I could just tell you all that goes on in a week, but I never have enough time.

Lastly, there is a couple in our ward that is going to Ghana Africa on their mission. They gave their farewell this week. She said something I really liked, "I have taught Kindergarten for almost 20 years and all those years I taught the kids that there was seven days in a week, but now I am aware that there are eight. Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday,Sunday and SOMEDAY." I love that because it is true! I am so grateful that my someday has come and I get to be a missionary. I am grateful to look back and think that half of 2013 I am serving the Lord on a mission. How cool is that? Thanks for loving me and making skype so fun!

LOVE YOU!
-Sister Siepert

This Katie's mom I want to add a few pictures of some special Christmas gifts she left for her grandparents and brothers:) She bought them and wrapped them with a special note before she entered the mission field. She always makes us laugh:)
 Fedoras for her brothers to attract the "Ladies"
 Cat shirts for the Grandparents:) 
Skyping Christmas Morning!

I don't have a picture but she gave her Sister and family a Slurpee maker. What family wouldn't love Slurpees every day of the year?:) She also gave her Mom and Dad a beautiful picture of the Temple.

Monday, December 23, 2013

Merry Christmas from Goochland!

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

I can't believe my cousin Annie is married and I also can't believe two of my friends from BYUI are engaged. I can't believe it! That blows my mind, but also makes me very Happy! Who am I going to hangout with when I get home?!?!

I AM SO EXCITED TO SKYPE HOME ON CHRISTMAS!! It is kind of funny because the other day I was thinking about the beginning of my mission and always telling myself that I had to make it to Christmas and then I would be okay. Haha, guess what? It's here!! I can't believe that the transfer is almost over? Where has the time gone? I feel like I wake up and it's Monday and then the next thing I know it is Sunday! Haha, and I feel like I sleep for like 5 minutes and then wake up. I am exhausted! That's a good thing though because I would much rather be exhausted than know I didn't try my hardest. It is exhausting for me to talk to so many people. I think I am getting better at it, so that is cool. It will really help me when I go back to college:)

So this is the plans for Christmas! We will do our regular study time in the morning and then we will open presents:)  We have been given a ton of them and that makes me super pumped! Then we are having breakfast at some members home and then lunch at another home. We are going to be skyping from there. Soo I don't know if that interferes with your plans...but I am more important! haha. I will be skyping around 1:30-2 your time! I get to text you Christmas Eve to give you exact times:) The rest of the day we will visit other people. We have been invited to drop by ahead of time. It will be a great day! I mean I miss you all a lot, but i have to say Christmas on a mission is da bomb dignity. I love it! I feel like this year I actually am having Christmas more centered on Jesus Christ. 

The weather here has been soooooo nice. SO NICE! Two days ago it was 75 degrees and I was sweating. But now it is raining and the weather is dropping, so that is not all that nice. No snow for Christmas and that is okay with me!!! 

I am so glad to hear that Ty is finishing his Eagle Scout Project. I know it has been a long process but then he can say he is an Eagle scout, SWEEET!

Mission Conference was probably my favorite part about this last week!!! I LOVED IT!! It was full of musical numbers and spiritual thoughts. Then we had lunch together and had more musical and spiritual thoughts. It was so cool. Oh, best part! We sang the EFY medley and all cried like babies. It was so cool to sing that together and to see how many Sisters and how many Elders there are in this mission. It was such a powerful spiritual experience. I got to see Sister Bunnell!! It was so nice to talk to her. We cried when we saw each other. We are embarrassing...but yes, I love her!! She told me all about the Chippenham ward. That was so sweet!!

This week has been super sweet. We heart attacked one of our investigators. She had been super busy and it was hard to meet with her. Later that night she texted is and thanked us sooo much and said she really needed that. She invited us over the next day and it was so great! We taught her the restoration with her two kids and it was really awesome!We asked her to read the introduction to the Book of Mormon and then the witnesses too!! three house later she texted us and said she was done with her homework. Solid right!!! She is so awesome and we are very excited for her:)!

I guess I will talk to you soon!!
Love you,
-Sister Siepert :)
 Another Day in the Gooch!
 Me in my Christmas Sweater!
Look who I ran into:)

Monday, December 16, 2013

9 days til I get to skype home:)

It was so fun to hear about all the people getting engaged! I hope they wait for me to get home. Haha Don't they know I need to be there! haha.

I was so happy to hear about K getting his mission call to Nebraska. It's sad but I don't even know where Nebraska is on a map. He will be a great missionary!  There is a family here who have a daughter serving in the DC mission...how weird would that be? That is like me going to the Portland Oregon Mission! They say she loves it!! You never know where the Lord will call you to serve:) It doesn't really matter where you serve it is that you are serving!! Being a missionary is Awesome! I wouldn't want to be anywhere else:) I love Virginia and I am sure I will love Brazil if I ever get there!

I got both of the packages you sent. They made me really really happy! I LOVE THE HEAVENLY HASH CANDY THAT YOU MAKE! I died almost eating it because I just couldn't stop. I am going to get fat here. People are always giving us food. I am not complaining it makes me happy! 

The people in this area are almost all country folk. I mean there are some Rich areas that we mistakenly tracted earlier this week and got a bunch of doors slammed in our faces and told that we were doing something illegal. We are spreading the gospel and trust me that is legal. Who doesn't love Jesus! COME ON! Haha, people are all very different. I like to go in the more humbler places because they are mostly very nice. Oh, we got yelled at this week. This man and his wife are very nice people and we knew they were not interested, but we went and we had like a solid chat for an hour about Jesus and about the similarities in our religions. It was way cool until we went to tell them that they were more than welcome to worship with us, just so they know. Anddd this man started yelling. When I say yelling, I mean YELLING. I mean really yelling. He was straight up rude and I wish Dad would of been there because I know that he would of never let anyone talk to his daughter like that. I mean he didn't have to freak out, but of course he did. And then started cursing everyone of our beliefs right after he had just finished talking about how we should respect all religions. It made us cry, but hey! He was yelling at a 19 and 20 year old that HE let into his house...but yeah that was a bit of a struggle this week. Butttt most people are very nice and are Jesus loving people. Sure most of them don't want to hear our message, but at least they love Jesus Christ.

The plan for Christmas is that we will have breakfast with a family in town and then we will have lunch with a family out here in Goochland. Then we will skype from the families home out here in Goochland. We have permission to text you on Christmas Eve to set up a time to skype, soooo look for that. We get to spend the whole day with the missionaries from our ward, so that will be fun! I love when we hang out with the Elders in our ward because they are way fun to be around! And they understand my humor, haha.

I have no idea when we will get Facebook, but it should be soon. The iPhone thing is a rumor even though it would be sooo nice. But, I am way stoked for us to get iPads. Maybe they will announce it at Mission Conference tomorrow! I am sooo excited for that! When times get hard during the week I just think, hey, I have to make it to Tuesday and then I will be okay, haha. I am way excited to see everyone there and to see all of my old companions! I have been very excited about that!

I can't believe Ty has finished his college apps. When did this happen? It blows my mind that he could be gone on his mission before I come home...and it blows my mind that this time next year I will be home....haha, where is the time going?

This week was what we call the "Mission Presidents challenge". We were to find as many investigators as we could and we found six new ones! Don't ask me if they are all solid, but we found them and they listened to us. It was a cool experience and definitely the hardest I have worked all of my mission so far. I am exhausted, but I am proud of that. We timed it and it literally took us two minutes to fall asleep. Haha, but we did something so fun this week. We volunteered at an old folks home/ rehab center and painted the older ladies nails. I LOVED THAT! We had so much fun and they loved it. There was this old lady named Peggy and when she said her name I thought her her name was Eggy and she laughed and laughed and told me that I was a wreck...haha, but I loved her. She told me that I was the prettiest girl and that I should be on TV. They were all sooo sweet and we are going to try to be there once a week and hopefully Christmas also. We also had a miracle with a media referral this week. We went caroling around were the referral was and decided to stop by. They weren't home so we sat down to write them note and the wife came home. They were there and had been hurrying to get home all day because she thought she left pork chops out! And when they got home, SURPRISE we were there! They let us in and gave us hot apple cider. They are the sweetest couple who lived in Salt Lake for a long time and their friend sent us there. we ended up teaching a lesson and they said that if they came to know it was true they would be baptized!! How cool is that? It was a good week. We taught lots of lessons and saw a ton of less actives (my favorite part of missionary work!)

Well, it has been another week in the Gooch. I am excited to start another one and moreee excited to hear from you on Christmas! Nine more days! NINE MORE DAYS! I am glad that this call home is a happy thing because for some missionaries it's a hard and sad thing, due to family issues. I feel so blessed that mine is happy. Thanks for all your doing for me and my companion! Keep us in your prayers. :) LOVE YOU ALL!

-Sister Siepert:)

P.S. Sorry no time to send pictures this week:)

Monday, December 9, 2013

The storm that never came:)





Hello y'all!
Your snow weekend sounds crazy! All that snow has to be the best! Haha, I loved the story about dad backing all the way down Garden Valley Hill because I can see him doing that, actually I can see him freaking out. Haha, we were supposed to have a storm....but I don't know where it is. It was kind of funny because everyone was freaking out about this crazy storm that was supposed to happen and calling us and giving us candles...then it never happened. Haha, I shouldn't say that out loud, it could still happen, but yeah. Yesterday we had Ward Council at 7 am, yes I said 7 AM. and it takes us 30 minutes to get to the church. We left earlier because we picked the elders up on the way and because we were scared to drive on the roads..but they weren't bad at all. Then at ward council they decided on only having Sacrament Meeting. So we did and it was sooo great! I am sad that half the ward was gone because of the "storm". We had an investigator come names L and she loved it. LOVED IT! There was a great talk that really touched her and the whole ward introduced themselves to her. It was really cool to see the ward come together. This ward is pretty nice and I have met a ton of nice people in the ward. But that was cool and thennn the roads weren't even bad sooo it was basically for nothing so that is okay! Haha

The Christmas Devotional was great! I love Elder Nelson.! I love him mostly because I remember him at the hastening the work broadcast and he kept turning around and waving at all us missionaries. He was soo cute! I loved the chessy part when he was singing with all the primary kids. But that was great and it was a little different than previous years. It is kind of funny how devotionals like that mean so much to missionaries. I don't think I have ever been so excited about watching a devotional in my whole life...haha, but I was excited and we watched it all at a members home because"the roads were bad". But it was fun because I got to cuddle with her little Chiwawa's the whole time. SO I was happy:) I am always happy when I get to be around animals and they are everywhere!!!:)

We went to a thing this week called the "Bethlehem Walk" It is this thing put on by the Baptist Churches here (yep they hand out Anti-Mormon literature) and they make a huge set that looks like Bethlehem. It looks very real! Then they take you through Christ's birth with music and such. It was really cool! and interesting because we got a lot of weird looks (due to our name tags), but hey, we were nice! I really enjoyed it and if you are ever come out here during this time of year you should do it because it is worth it. We also went to a creche exhibit at our church this weekend with a member and that was very well done. I have felt the Christmas Spirit so much on my mission and it is awesome! I mean the other day I was just sitting at our kitchen bar and started crying because it just like hit me that Jesus Christ was born. Missionaries have a lot of experiences like that...but it was cool! It makes me feel bad about all my other Christmas's before my mission....haha, oh well!

Funny Story: this week we were coming home one night and we pulled up and we park right in front of the trash can. On the trash can was this thing moving and Sister Gale didn't see it, but I did and you know me, I screamed There was this nasty possum on the trash. He was gross looking and we were so freaked out. I was like there is no way I am walking past that thing to get inside. I told Sister Gale we were sleeping in the car. We had to call M, the lady we live with, and asked if we could go through the garage, haha. She let us in and laughed really hard with us. I LOVE M!! We have started going walking/running with her in the mornings and she kills us! But I love it!! She is so sweet:)

Spiritual Thought: Read Luke 5:2-8, it is all about when Christ comes to Peter and the fishermen after they had been fishing all night. Peter and the fishermen are cleaning their nets, which if you think about it is really hard and time consuming, but then Christ asked them to throw them out again. Luke 5:5 is what Peter says, "Master, we have toiled all the night and have taken nothing: nevertheless at thy word I will let down the net." Think of how applicable that is to us all. We are all striving to do our best to be like Christ, but we all come short because we are human. Sometimes we get so weighed down that we just don't want to do it anymore. But after Peter did what the Savior told him to do "their nets brake" because they had caught so many fish. Sometimes we just need to trust a little bit more because the Savior can make our nets brake with happiness. He want's us to be happy, so trust him. 2 Nephi 4:20 "My God hath been my support; he hath led me through mine afflictions in the wilderness: and he hath preserved me upon the waters of the deep. "2 Nephi 4:21,"He hath filled me with his LOVE, even unto the consuming of my flesh."

Check out this link! Lots of good stuff:)
http://www.mormonchannel.org/video/mormon-messages

Have a great week! I love you all and have fun in the snow!:)
-Sister Siepert



Pictures from the Bethlehem Walk


Monday, December 2, 2013

Happy Thanksgiving!!

Hello!
 Happy late Thanksgiving! I had a really great one and some REALLY good food! We ate lunch at this family's house names the M and that was fun to be with all of them. They are full of energy and loud! They have a daughter who is a year older than me and she knows like everyone in the YSA ward. So we talked about that for a long time! We hung out there for a while and listened to Christmas music. It was fun! Then we went to an investigator/part-member family house. Fun fact: They are from Oregon and his parents are from Tigard and they were there visiting. So that was cool to be with them and their cute 2 kids for Thanksgiving. Then we went home and did some planning. I honestly was not homesick all day...I impressed myself! But like everyone in the ward invited us over for Thanksgiving, so we felt very loved. we obviously didn't make it to all of them, but it was cool that they took the time to invite us! So Thanksgiving was fun! It was also so fun to see Megan and Eric. We had a good time and ate at this little place that was..alright. Haha, but it was really fun to be with them and a little weird too. I was surprised that it didn't make me homesick at all...it made me work harder and that day we worked almost the hardest that we have ever. So that was fun!

Here are some answers to some of your questions (mom's questions)
1. I have been out longer than my companion. my companion just finished training so she have been out for three months and I have almost been out six! I can't believe it is six months....I think she might be senior companion because this is the third transfer she has been here soooo...but we really have no idea.
2. We email every week from the Goochland library.
3. My companion drives because she knows the area better, which is a little scary sometimes...haha. We always laugh because she tries to multi-task while she drives and that just doesn't work. But most of the time is okay!
4. There are a few members out here. We feel bad for them though because it is like 30 minutes to get to church for a lot of them, so there are a ton less-active families out here. If we can get more priesthood members out here we can start a branch. So we are trying to work really hard!

I have been out six months on Thursday! Can you believe it?! I can't! It started out slow and now is speeding up! 23 more days til Christmas! When we skype on Christmas I will be getting close to seven months and that blows my mind. I can't believe that it is Christmas time already...you will be proud to hear that we have a puzzle table in our apartment and during lunch and at night we try to put it together! I told my companion all about that tradition and I wanted to keep it. So we did! Our house looks cute with that little christmas tree and another 4 foot Christmas tree that a member gave us. Also the foam nativity scene is sweet too! I love this time of year and people here get really into it. Earlier this week we helped a member set up her Christmas tree and that was fun because it was huge!

Cool story: So this week I was asked to train (or speak) in zone meeting. I was sooo scared because I am new to this zone and that is kind of a lot of missionaries who are a little more experienced than me, but I was asked to train on the daily schedule in the white handbook. I read some sweet scriptures about not wasting time here on our missions and how Heavenly Father is molding us faster on our missions than anywhere else. After giving that talk I decided that I would try even harder to live EXACTLY the daily schedule. I wasn't doing anything wrong, but decided that I would try it. So the next day I did everything exactly how it is said in the daily schedule and later that day we were going to see a less-active. We went and saw her and the coolest thing happened! Her brother was in town and he is not a member. He has been through a lot in his life and she had tried in the past to talk about the church with him. So we tried and he accepted the Book of Mormon. It was way cool! He doesn't live here, but it was a miracle that came from exact obedience. Cool, huh?

Another cool story: There is an Elder in my new zone from BRAZIL! I make him speak to me and it is so cool!

Haha, well I love it so far here and we are trying our hardest to get this area working. It is sweet to see how much the Lord blesses us and how much we need him in our lives!

The church is true and the book is blue!
Have a great week! Love you!
-Sister Siepert


I love being a missionary at Christmas!
 Interesting That there is a Baptist Chinese Church in Rural Virginia.
 Look mom I am doing a puzzle at Christmas:) Keeping the tradition alive!

Monday, November 25, 2013

New Beginnings:)

Yo, yo, I am emailing from the Gooch! Goochland is quite the place to be...you know they have trees, trees, and trees, and trees and a carl Jr. This is literally all that is out here. It was quite the culture shock for me to come out here from the streets of Richmond. The first two days I suffered a bit of culture shock, but it is all starting to settle in. I will always have a piece of my heart in Richmond. I loved the people there and the city it self. Oh well:)  My area is huge! Like when I say huge, I mean HUGE. I think it  is the size of Africa. No joke, and we only get to drive 1500 mils a month. So that is kind of a joke..haha, but we are trying our best to get rides. It is pretty here and does look a lot like Oregon. It is really funny sometimes. They all have thick southern accents, but they do have some finger-licking southern cooking! I hope I don't get fat here....I like it a lot! We get fed a lot here. We got fed quite a bit in Chippenham but this is good ole home cooking. Oh No!

It is cold here! Like Bone chilling cold. Thanks to Sister Jepson (my old training leader) she let me borrow her winter jacket. She goes home in February, so I will borrow it until she leaves. well hopefully I will be gone before she leaves....but who knows! We actually live in a former investigators home. Interesting, huh? she is way nice and we live in her basement, which is cool! But it is pretty chilly down there. like the space heaters do a little bit, but not enough...haha. I just put on all I own and I am fine. It is a way nice apartment though. She owns a ton of property so it is kind of fun to walk around. It's a beautiful area. It's kind of funny because some of the houses are WAY nice and some of them are trailers. So, sometimes it can be a bit sketchy. There is also a women's and men's prison out here. I actually think some of the area here is more dangerous than downtown Richmond....but I am pretty dangerous so that is probably why I am here.

We serve in the Gayton Ward and my companion and I cover the country side of the ward. There are Elders that cover the city area and more around where I used to be in Chippenham. So there are only two sets of us and I have only met them once. Since we are so far out we hardly ever see other missionaries which is a big change for me. I am used to seeing them all of the time. I didn't get to meet a whole lot of the ward since it was Stake Conference this week. My new companion is Sister Gale. She is from Utah (surprise!) and is 20 years old. She just finished training in this area, so it is nice because she knows a lot of different people. We are getting along pretty good. I have learned so much from all my companions. we are never exactly alike but we grow from each other. We have big plans for this transfer, so pray that we can make it all work out with the little amount of miles that we have. We have been invited for Thanksgiving Dinner by four different families and we plan on going to all of them.  Haha, really, it will be great!:) I am excited for some good ol' southern cookin'!

We have one investigator set with a date. She has been set for a date in the past and didn't quite make it. I sure hope she can make it this time. She has a heavy smoking problem, but we hope she stays on track. There is not to much else going on. We are hoping to change that this transfer.

I was thinking that it would be way cool if once a week every week, you post something from Mormon Messages or something about the church or even about Christ til Christmas. They were talking about how we can use social media to do good missionary work. So you should all do that! President Wilson spoke at the Stake Conference and said that we can pray to show God we love him, but if we act we can show him that we love him in a deeper way. So do it! :)

Have a very Happy Thanksgiving and it is 30 days until Christmas......just saying!:)

Love,
Sister siepert
 Goodbye Sister Bunnell!! I will miss you!
 My new companion Sister Gale and I!
my new area! Goochland! I call it the Gooch!  Very Pretty but very country:)

Monday, November 18, 2013

Time to move on:(

Hello Everyone!

I have news. I am leaving the Chippenham YSA Ward....I am sooo sad! I am kind of in shock that I am leaving and I am so sad that I am leaving also because everyone else is staying together and will be here for the Holiday Season. I cried a lot...but I will do it because I know that there must be a reason. I cannot express how happy I have been to serve in this ward and to be around so many great people and so many great examples. I have learned a lot here and kind of have grown up here...It's like leaving my home ward. I have no idea where I am going yet because I find out on Tuesday, but all I know is that I am not staying. I have had so much fun and it has been so cool to see progress in the people we are working with. I am very nervous that I could be moving to a family ward because I do not know how to be a missionary in a family ward. I mean...I have to be normal. Haha, but I guess it will be a fun adventure.

 And I always wanted to be a 2 Nephi 33:3 missionary.  "But I, Nephi, have written what I have written, and I esteem it as of great worth, and especially unto my people. For I pray continually for them by day, and mine eyes water my pillow by night, because of them; and I cry unto my God in faith and I know that he will hear my cry."

But I am so happy Sister Bunnell is staying because I trust her with all my heart to keep this ward and things going.  It was cool because last night we were in the area of the Bishop and so we stopped by with cupcakes (food always works! Haha) and we talked to him for a little bit and he was so nice to me. He told me how proud he was of me and that I have been really good for this ward. He thanked me for my service and said that I have done a great job. It was really cool to hear that from him and to feel like my service has been enough:)

Anywayssss, this week has been a good week. Minus the fact that the Richmond Marathon was this weekend and Sister Bunnell and I were smart and were downtown driving. We got stuck in traffic for over an hour. It was probably the worst thing. You know how I like to drive in traffic. I was so hungry and I was angry because people are mean and don't let you in. I honked at an old lady...then I felt so bad. Haha, it was a mess, but luckily we got out of it alive and well. For a while I was not sure that was going to happen...haha. Then we also had another funny experience when we were walking downtown to do a hot chocolate stand. Elder Thomas was carrying the table and he accidentally hit a pole and it really startled us and sounded like we were being shot at. We laughed really hard because you never know in Richmond. Man, I am going to miss this place! Good ol' downtown Richmond. Where all the people I love live:( But that is okay. at least we had a good week to hit me off in a new area. Missionary life is so funny. Elder Thomas says, "We live an inconvenient life" which is true. I mean as a missionary it is bad to get to comfortable because that means change is coming.

On a spiritual note, this week we had a cool thing happen with a less-active we met. She is the sweetest thing. She loves animals and actually has swam with manatees....I know,  I almost cried. But, we had a lesson with her at her house and her friend was there and her boyfriend. It was cool because when we were just talking her animals were going crazy and her boyfriend was not paying attention or her friend. When we started to read The Book of Mormon, they all listened and you could feel the spirit so strong. We hope that something happens with that and she comes back to church because she has a testimony of it still, just hasn't been coming. We hope we can make a good impression with her and remind her of the reasons that she joined in the first place.

I am sad to be leaving, but I do know that there is a plan. Sorry this isn't all that happy,  I promise that I am happy. It is just hard to leave so many people I love and go and start over somewhere new. Who knows, maybe I will be in brazil soon! Well, I love you all and I hope you have a good week!:)
-Sister Siepert:)
 Love the Art of Richmond!
 Nothing like a little Pedicure on Pday:)
 Favorite Yogurt of Richmond!
 Just a little drink:)
Gonna miss these sisters:)
The Best District!

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

RVA is the Greatest!

Querida Familia e Amigos,
Sorry i didn't email yesterday. But actually I am not all that sorry because we got to experience something way cool! Elder Sitate and his wife came and talked to my part of the mission yesterday. He is one of the seventies. We were in a meeting with him from 9 am to 3 pm. It was WAY long, but WAY good! I was so stoked! We all got to shake his hand and he greeted us by name. It was such an honor! He is so amazing and He and his wife are from Kenya, Africa. He told us all about how the church is growing in Africa and such. One of my favorite quotes from him was, "Heavenly Father is not expecting us to be perfect, but he just expects us to move in the right direction." He was so wise and just so humble. I was so impressed with him and how he handled himself. He and his wife are actually converts to the church too, so that was way cool to hear their conversion story. Another quote he said was, "The seed will only germinate (break the soil) in its time. It won't come before or to late." He is just such a righteous man and I was so impressed with him. Another cool thing too is that he came to FHE last night in the YSA ward! He spoke to all of them and I was so stoked about that! They needed it! What an honor, huh? And you know I love Africans!

Well, this has been a great week and full of funny moments. Everyday really is an adventure. Let me tell you about a few weird, but so funny things that happened this last week all within two hours. So we were out downtown just talking to everyone and such. And we first saw a girl walking her rabbit in the park and then some old Arabian man pulled parrots out of his car and we got to pet them and then he asked us out on a date. And then I got bit by a homeless mans dog. He was like trying to eat my skirt.....hahahaha, I LOVE DOWNTOWN RICHMOND! It is the land of the hipsters, so whenever I talk to people we always talk about how Oregon really is where the original hipsters started. They love it and people find it so cool that I have been to Portland...haha, I talk about Portlandia a lot here. It is so funny! But cool thing happened this week! We did a hot chocolate stand down at VCU and I get really nervous with those and I am not the best because they like bring me so much anxiety because it is right where everyone is on campus. And I was kind of praying in my heart that Heavenly Father would help me open my mouth and that he would help me be lead to those that are the elect and ready to receive the gospel and within five minutes this young man came up to me and said, "I have been searching for something. I really need something in my life." He then gave me his number and we actually set up an appointment. It was so cool and I feel so blessed that Heavenly Father knows my weakness and wants to help me make them strengths. I love when cool things like that happen. I really hope things go well with him and that he shows up at our appointment. Pray for him! His name is H B! Oh and K is doing great! She is so sweet and loves us and is really making friends with the ward. Last night after FHE she went for tacos with all the people in the ward! It made us so happy and the ward is really supportive to us! I love that! We met a new investigator this week. Her name is K and she is in the hospital, so she is not going anywhere! Haha, no she is the sweetest and just thinks that she has a million diseases, but they test her and she doesn't have any, but she is in a lot of pain and we got to pray with her and give her a Book of Mormon, so it is all good! I hope she comes along. Please pray that she will get better through the gospel and that she will be strengthened through the gospel because I promised her that.

Jo is gone:( It was so sad to see her leave, but I am more than excited for her! She will be an amazing missionary in Salt Lake. It amazes me that she has only been a member for just a little over a year and she is off on a mission of her own!! I got to see both my trainers this week. Sister N was at the meeting yesterday and I saw Sister R at a Sister training meeting. I can't believe that next week is transfer week already! I think though that I will stay here and I really actually hope that I stay here! It is the greatest place and if I had to leave from any ward I would want it to be Chippenham YSA! Also, I just love the people here way to much to leave this ward. It is going so great and the number of missionaries coming this next transfer is lower. Because of this I hope I get to finish training Sister Bunnell. We get along so great and we are just now in the flow. We are actually exercising. So that is good! Haha, we get up and go on a walk at a park near our house. I love her and I love all that she has done for me. I have learned so much from her. Last night we were parking downtown and I don't know if you know, but I do not know how to parallel park...I was freaking out so at a light we did a chinese fire drill so that she could park. It was funny and fun. We are just a good pair! I hope we stay together also because then I can see Megan when she drives through Richmond at Thanksgiving. Another perk would be that you can meet Sister Bunnell on Christmas through Skype. Do you realize how soon Christmas is?!! I cannot believe it!

We now have a YSA Center in the Downtown chapel. The Senior couple Brother and Sister Chuntz run it and are in our ward. It is the upper floor and truly an inspiring thing. We use it a lot and it gives VCU students a place to be and meet. It is located close to the VCU campus. The Chuntz's do a great job. It is truly a blessing to the students:)

It has been a great week and we are looking forward to another one!! Please pray for all our investigators! Love you all!

Have a good week!:)
-Sister Siepert :)
five months as a Missionary
five months and 3 1/2 months in Beautiful Virginia:)

 Jo on the left heading out on her mission to Salt Lake City. Sister Bunnell, Halina and Me:)


 Our newest ward Missionary, Hilary and me:)

Monday, November 4, 2013

Tudo Bem?!

I can't say this enough! VIRGINIA IS BEAUTIFUL IN THE FALL!! There are these big yellow trees and it makes my day everyday when I see them. We had a really fun P day last week! We carved pumpkins and we did a very missionary thing....We carved Mormon.org in our pumpkins. We also had a good Halloween. We stayed home and handed out candy. We have so much candy. It is really bad because now all we want to eat is candy. We are trying to eat better, but it just has not happened yet. It will! I mean I think the stress has made me lose some weight though. I am stressed like 80% of the time. You know me...haha, but It has been good and I was lucky enough to go on splits this week and talk to the Sister Training leader about it and she told me that I need to slow down. I just want to work so hard and go so hard, but I have to be careful to not burn myself out. Haha, but hey, I would rather go home exhausted right?

We only have a few investigators right now but they are the GREATEST! K is the greatest thing that has happened on my mission so far! It is so cool for her to really see how precious she is to Heavenly Father. I feel like that is something I teach a lot, to members and to non-members. Everyone needs to know that they are loved and that Heavenly Father is the greatest person to turn to when you don't feel it. K went to the "Fall Ball" and loved it! Mormon dances bring all the people in, I tell you!! Haha, everyone should invite their friends to the dances and I promise you that you will have a ton of baptisms and new recent. great. converts. She is so cool and I am so excited to see her progress towards baptism. R is also coming. She is still reading the Book of Mormon. At first she thought Sister Bunnell and I were nuns, ahahah. She said she was so surprised that nuns could wear normal clothes, but she is so cute and so great! She wants to bring all her Indian friends to church, so basically we will be baptizing all of India soon. Hahaha, both Sister Bunnell and I are both having dreams about Indians....Odd. We have some members in our ward working on referrals for us and that is great! I am excited to see how those pan out. Mission work is great!

We had Stake Conference this weekend and it was really good. Our Mission President spoke at it and asked for help from the members. It was way cool to hear him talk about that. Also the cutest thing ever was that the Young Men of the church were parking us and they all had sunglasses on and those things that they use to guide planes. I loved it! It was so funny and they also parked all the cars according to color! I was so happy! In our stake here we have 27 missionaries and in our ward we have 10 of those missionaries and every single set of missionaries have someone or a few set for baptism. Exciting stuff is going on around here!

Last Friday we went to a thing called "first Friday", it is crazy and I think I have talked about it before. This man told a few of the missionaries that he was Jesus Christ. He was yelling out all of these bible verses and had the scars...it was way weird and I was just a little freaked out about it. There is some crazy stuff that goes on in Richmond, for sure! Haha

I love the Ward I am serving in! Trying my best to keep working forward because this is the Lords work! We need to keep looking forward with faith.
LOVE YOU ALL,
Sister Siepert

P.S. My Mission President told me that all the Visa waiters before my group are now gone. I guess we are next.......I will keep you posted:)

P.S.S. I emailed a bunch of the Guys from the Roseburg Stake on Missions. I heard back from all of them! They are all doing great! So fun to serve at the same time as those awesome Young Men I grew up with! I am so thankful for the age change for Missionaries! Changed my life!!!!




Monday, October 28, 2013

Fall is Beautiful in Virginia

It is finally getting cold here and I love it! I am so grateful my mom sent me some sweaters from home and such. They are basically all that I wear these days. Fall is beautiful in Virginia and the trees are beautiful and the leaves are beautiful.  It looks like Oregon and feels like Oregon! I love it, but it also sometimes makes me miss home. Richmond is still good and dangerous. Haha, I found out this week that Richmond used to be ranked high in crimes and murders.....that is comforting, huh? I should emphasis the word USED TO! Like I know I have said this before, but you would be impressed with how not scared I am around downtown. I mean I am fearless these days, haha.

We had interviews with our mission President this week and I kind of was like I love this ward and hinted to him that he should leave my companion and I here for the rest of our missions. Haha, we will see:) Highly doubt it will happen but I would love to stay as long as I can:) At least til my VISA comes.

It is so great here we are getting fed like crazy! It is so great and we always have such a good time. I love being with the members and talking with them about life and laughing with them. I like that they think of me as a real person not just a robot missionary. It is such a good thing! We got a new senior couple in our ward! They are so nice and they had us over for dinner last night! There were some other members of the ward there too! I can't believe that J is leaving on her mission so soon! It blows my mind because I was here when she opened her call and now she is heading out so soon! She will be a great missionary! So Awesome!!

We set a baptism date this week! So exciting! She is the greatest!! She is roommates with another member and I love her too!  It is the coolest thing to see her recognize that Heavenly Father loves her and that he truly answers prayers!! She is super artsy and sweet! I love that! I love that she has a baby kitten named Gatsby that walks all over us:) Makes me think of kitty at home!

We have a new investigator from India! She is Christian and just wants to learn how to get closer to Christ so she doesn't feel alone. She is so far away from home but, she loves it here. She is a Dancer!! She dances contemporary and BOLLYWOOD! I am so stoked because she is going to teach me some Bollywood and she is going to make us some Indian food. She gave us some Indian coins, so that we would not forget her! How sweet is that!? I love her already!

I have come up with TEN things I have learned on my mission so far:

1. It is so much more fun if you are easy going. People are different than me and that is okay, there is no reason to freak out just because of differences.
2. I am really good at laughing. I mean two weeks ago was rough, but laughter made it better.
3. None of it is actually me doing it. Everything that is good that happens to me is either not me or is done to make me happy. Like when I teach and it goes well, it's not me. It is the spirit. And when we are in a restaurant and my favorite song comes on, it is a tender mercy from the Lord.
4. Trust the Lord. Since being here it has been hard not to call home after a bad day, but I have learned that I an pray for all things.
5. Be Happy. Things sometimes are out of our hands. If things don't go as planned it is okay!
6. People aren't all that scary. I can talk to strangers and be fine. Just be myself  and if they don't like that then that is okay.
7. We should always look around for people who look sad or down even if they are strangers. Go to them and take time for people. Love them like Christ would love them.
8. Driving in Richmond is hard (for me).
9. Love your companions through it all. They should be your best friend by the end of your mission.
10. Don't underestimate the Lord. He has our backs and if he wants something to happen then it will happen.


Well, as you can see I am loving it here and things are going good! I love being here and having the time to find the spiritual side of myself! I love you all and I hope you have a great week!

Monday, October 21, 2013

Yo Yo, Friends and Family

It's me! I am still here and I think I might just be here forever....haha, but whatever it is fine:) I Love this Place! I know I have said that quite a lot, but I just love this ward! If I was in a YSA ward my whole mission I would be way happy! They are so fun and I get to be weird with them and they love it. I mean I am kind of scared to get put in a normal ward because I don't know how to act normal and mature yet....haha, so I hope I just stay here. I really hope I get to complete training with Sister Bunnell too! We are like the same person. We both have strengths and weaknesses to help each other out. It is just so perfect and I could not be happier.

This last week was quite a week...tested my patience a lot, but hey! That is what missions are like right?! Well at the beginning of the week we had six lessons in stone and we were so excited for them and guess what? Every single lesson that we planned fell through. It was great. Hahaha, it was kind of funny just because like we tried so hard and all of it didn't work out..but we did get to see a lot of other people. We visited a lot of less active, or recent converts this week. I guess the Lord just needed us to work with them. I mean we we had a busy week still, but it was busy in a much different way than we expected. But hey! Missions are that way and that is what makes it so fun! Sister Bunnell and I work just perfectly together so there was never any tension or weird stuff. I could not thank Heavenly Father enough for that.

Today I heard from a lot of people from my MTC district and it was just soooo great to hear from them all! four of them are now in Brazil. I am so happy for them and sad that I couldn't be there right now with them. Then again I Love it here. Being a Visa waiter is the most confusing thing. Like I am super stoked about being here, but then again I want to get down there to see how it is how things are going. Weird, but I will just be grateful that I have everything I need right now here in Virginia.

We have been working with the Bishop here a whole lot. It has been so great! We have a great relationship with him and it is so helpful! I love the ward and all they do for me. We get fed way more than we did when I first got here and people will just come up to us and bring us food or give us cool things. Like they want to spend P days with us and it is so cool to be around so many people who really love us. It feels so good to be trusted in this ward and I am so happy to be around so many strong people and to be uplifted on Sundays as well. It is just so great and I can not explain how great it is.

I found this really cool scripture this week! It is 1 Peter 4:12-13 and you should all read it! It is a very different way to look at trials and such. I love you all and hope all is good.


Monday, October 14, 2013

New Beginnings:)

Well I do have a new companion and I am training a new sister straight out of the MTC!! When President Wilson told me I would be training I kind of freaked! It makes me nervous but I am doing it! Her name is Sister Bunnell and she is the Greatest!! She is from Utah and her Birthday is today! We had a little Birthday party at companionship study! I really love her!! We have found we have so much in common. Like we like all the same movies, music and we both worked in the Special Ed in High School and come from very similar families. Basically all kinds of stuff. I don't feel like I am training her...she basically came trained! For example the first night she was here our friend M took us to dinner and she was talking to the server and just got all of his information for us to come by. I was sitting there and was just rooting for her!! She is so great and an awesome missionary! She is so excited about the work and that makes me so excited too!!

I am now driving, yep right downtown Richmond. It is kind of scary, but it is all good. Right now we are borrowing J's GPS for a while. It is so nice of her to let us borrow it. I don't know if Sister Bunnell will get one or not, but it is all good and I am not worrying. Something else cool happened at the Missionary Trainer meeting I sat down and guess who came in and sat down next to me?! SISTER ROMNEY!!! How cool is that? I sat by one of my trainers at a training meeting. We are just going for it and I am scared, but I feel like it will be  Okay. I mean Heavenly Father calls us where we need to be, right?! I feel way honored to be training too. It is so cool that President Wilson and the Lord trust me so much to allow me to be training.

Oh and yesterday I gave a talk in church. Yeah, this week has been kind of crazy...I mean we found out Sister Nelson was leaving on Sunday. Then on Tuesday night President Wilson called us to tell me that I was training and to tell Sister Nelson she was headed to Charlottesville!! She is companions with a Temple Square Missionary from Taiwan. She was so excited because she spent 5 months in China teaching. She has been wanting to learn Mandarin so bad! We now have two Mandarin speaking Elders in our mission and the work for them is EXPLODING! She is serving in the same area as those Elders. Then Thursday we had a day full of meetings. Our meeting was from 9-3. I have to say I loved it because we get to see all of the other missionaries! We came home and went straight to work!

Guess what the topic of my talk was???...Missionary work of course:) I was asked to teach the first lesson to the ward as if they were investigators. It was actually not all that bad! You know that I get super nervous and stuff, but I didn't even really write much down and I just went up there and spoke. It was so cool! I mean this whole mission thing has really made me brave! I don't even really know what it is? I just have been able to do all of these things that I never ever thought I would be able to do. Like I just spoke and I really was able to follow the spirit. I just let it guide me and it was fine. Afterword, the bishopric came up to me and just said the nicest things about my talk. I made me feel so good. you know there is no way, NO WAY I could do this mission without Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ. They really carry me through the day and help me to keep going. Missions are way harder than I ever thought they would be and they are nothing I would ever suspect them to be. It is cool though how often we see how much Heavenly Father loves us. Just in the little simplest things. Like moments that are so unexpected. It is the greatest thing! We see it all the time!

We have some new investigators and that is so awesome!! I love them all so much!! Our ward had a baptism this week. It was soooo great! She is so sweet and my old Zone leaders came down for the baptism because they taught her. I was so Happy to see them. They were awesome and it was cool for them to see me, and know how I was when I started and to see me now training.....what the heck....I am training!

I am just working hard and trying my best here. My companion and I get along soooo great and I am so excited to start this transfer strong! We are finding with faith!
 Happy Birthday Sister Bunnell!
I love Richmond!

Monday, October 7, 2013

Will I stay or will I go?

Well Last night President Wilson called to let us know what was going to happen at transfers this week. Well.....Guess what? I'M STAYING! Sister Nelson is going to get transferred. We have 37 new Missionaries coming in this week! There is a huge possibility that I could be training and that makes me nervous. I sometime feel like "I don't know what I am doing." Let's be real I have only been out four months. So kind of a funny thing happened when we got the call. We were super surprised because we don't usually find out until Tuesday. So we were really taken by surprise. Well when the call was done I set the phone on the floor. We both started to freak out! I mean Sister Nelson was freaking out, I mean screaming and being a 20 year old girl and I was freaking out being a 19 year old girl. Then I picked up the phone and we had been recording a minute long message... To the Mission President. I hung up right away and I told Sister Nelson. We couldn't stop laughing. In the end we called the President Wilson and he said yeahhh, I listened to the whole thing. Hopefully he doesn't think I am a bad missionary or undignified.....ooopsie. Sister Nelson and I are sad to be separated...but new things are in store and I am SO HAPPY to still be in the ward.

Conference was soo good! We watched conference at the church because we weren't allowed to watch it anywhere else. It was kind of fun it was basically all missionaries. kind of like a reunion! I loved it!  I mean as a missionary you get so SO excited. My favorite talks were Ulisses  Spares, Dieter F. Uchtdorf, Timothy Dyches, Jeffery Holland, Henry Eyring, President Thomas S. Monson, Adrian Ochoa, Terence Vinson, and Russel M. Nelson. I think that is like almost half of the talks. One thing I loved about conference were all the accents! I think that is sweet because that means that the church is really growing around the world! My favorite quote from Conference was, "Doubt your doubts before you doubt your faith"- Dieter F. Uchtdorf. So good!

Something cool happened at conference though! We have a neighbor named D. She is soo great! She loves us! She always comes out with her dog and talks to us about Jesus and about how blessed she is to see our smiling faces everyday. She says that we have this glow that she loves. She is very Baptist, but loves us. Sister Nelson and I were on exchanges with the sister training leaders on Friday, So I was not with her, but she brought some pumpkin bread that I had made to her and got the courage up to invite her. And guess what!? She came to the evening session of Saturdays conference. We sat next to her and she kept saying Amen, Hallelujah and all that jazz, it was so great!! When it was over we looked over at her and she was just in tears. She sat there and told us of this overwhelming peace she felt watching that and sitting near us. She basically explained what it was like to feel the spirit. She felt it so strong. We talked with her for a while and she told us we were a blessing to her a million times. She was sooo great! We saw her last night as we came in and she said that she told everyone at her church she came and watched conference with us. She talks about us all the time and it is just so cool! She loves her church but who knows. Keep her in your prayers.

I had a fun thing happen this week! I got to go to lunch with Mariela from Roseburg. It was sooo nice to see someone from Roseburg. I was a little afraid it would make me homesick, but really it made me the opposite. It was interesting in high school we never talked about God. We talked about God and Jesus and how we both have become closer to him. We will probably get to have lunch again. She just happens to be going to college here in Richmond. So fun to see her!

I am working hard and this morning we got a media referral, which is sooo sweet and my first one ever! I love it here and I have the craziest Deja vu...it is so cool, because I think the Lord really has been preparing me my whole life for this moment. Thanks for all the love and support, I can't wait to read the conference talks all over again!

Love you all,
Sister Siepert:)

Oh and I am starting to read Matthew, Luke and John to get ready for the Christmas season, maybe you could start too.


Monday, September 30, 2013

Another week in Richmond!

First I want to say thank you to all who are writing me and taking time out of your day to say hello and to make my P day extra special!:)

This week we watched the General Relief Society Broadcast and it was great! It really was so much about how much God really does love us! If you didn't watch it at least go back and watch the part when President Thomas S. Monson spoke. He told a story of a woman who needed to be shown God's love desperately and she got it. It is so good and it is so reassuring to me that he does really love us! The broadcast made me sooo excited for General Conference because it is going to be great! General Conference is like candy to the missionaries and we just soak it all in! Watch it and love it because I am pretty sure Richmond Virginia is getting a Temple:) Haha, well I hope so!

www.lds.org/broadcasts/watch/general-relief-society-meeting/2013/09?lang=eng&vid=2703019840001

Our Investigators are coming along. It is cool to be able to go on this journey with people. It is cool to lead them back to Christ and to remind them how much he loves us and everyone on this earth. It really changes their lives and it is so crazy how much you can love strangers. We have one who was a devout Catholic and is really coming to find that it is true. She is reading and praying and all that jazz. She cried to us yesterday because she was afraid that it was true. It is moments like those you don't forget. Here it is hard to keep up with investigators after a while because they are really good at disappearing, so pray that we can find some of ours again, soon.

Every week we write our Mission President. We actually do it during this time that we write everyone else. It is really cool that we get to really tell him about our week and what is going on in our lives. He is so great! He loves us so much.

We have district meeting once a week and we have what we call "zone portion" before we split off for district meeting. It is fun to meet with everyone and to really get to know everyone. We moved someone this week and it was just my companion and I and the Zone and District leaders. I twas cool to have that time with them to get to know them better. I love both the district leaders and my zone leaders so much! They do so much for us and would really do anything for us. The love my "Marcel the shell" voice and make me do it every time we call them. I have made some wonderful friends here. They are the best!

We get to meet as a whole mission once a year. That is happening in December so who knows if I will still be here and as sisters we meet twice a year. We had sisters conference the other week and it was the greatest thing! I loved every minute of it! We got to see Sister Romney and I got to see the two other Visa waiters from the MTC too. I loved it!

We had sort  of what you would call a rough week with a whole bunch of appointments and such falling through, but what always picks me up is music. It is cool, how the week can be not so great, but I can listen to music that reminds me of my Worth and reminds me that I am not alone and I feel alright again. I am so grateful for music and how it can help you get through everything. It doesn't just work at home, but it works out here in the mission field!

Love you all!

On a side note. We have dinner appointments every night this week!! That doesn't happen to often. Have you been praying that we get fed?:) Keep it up, it's working:) It feels so good to be loved:)

Monday, September 23, 2013

Short and sweet:)

Transfers are coming around again in a couple weeks and I am a little bit nervous! I could be moving out of Richmond and I could train because I will be done with training. Sounds kind of scary! I guess if I was training in this area I would be ok. I would however have to buy a GPS...I think I won't even think about it! It just stresses me out!!!

Well we did get two new investigators this week. We had thirteen referrals and two out of thirteen isn't bad:) They are really interested in what we believe and want to know more about Jesus. It is so fun to meet with new people because we get to just talk more about what we believe and what we know. Lessons make the weeks so much more worthwhile and after a great lesson you just get so pumped! I love that feeling! Most of the time when the person is out of sight I just have to scream:) Then we laugh and talk about how great it was.

Another miracle happened this week. We went to dinner with a girl names A who was baptized in June and her boyfriend just left on a mission. Cool thing is she is preparing for a mission too!  She took us to the cafeteria at VCU and swiped her card for us. She brought a long a friend and while Sister Nelson and I were getting more food because it is all you can eat we came back she was just teaching the Restoration! Haha it was great and so awesome! I loved it! The girl was very interested and may be meeting again with us this week. So, we have been seeing miracles after miracles. Our president told us that last week the mission gained 362 new investigators. Miracles are happening and we are working hard and doing the best we can.

Since I am a missionary and we ask people to make commitments all day long I thought that after every blog post I would post a commitment that people could do. Yes, it may be cheesy, but I am a missionary and I love cheesy.
Commitment: "Jesus Christ is not our last chance. He is our only chance. He will show us the way because he is the way." Sheri Dew
This week think about this quote and think about how it applies to you. How have you seen that Jesus Christ is the only way through life? Or how can we make him the only way?

Thanks for all the love and the support! Love you all!!! The church is true and the book is blue!:)

Monday, September 16, 2013

Things are starting to cool down! Finally:)

I am still here in Beautiful Virginia and loving every minute of it! The weather is finally cooling down a bit which is nice and makes me pretty happy because I was burning up here for awhile...but it is all good!

Since we are in the YSA ward we don't go tracting to much. Our tracting is on campus when we hand out free lemonade. I love doing that because it is so funny. We get a lot of crazy people out there and a ton of foreign people who have no idea what we are saying, but the other day we showed up early for a dinner appointment (yes, I said a dinner appointment!) and so Sister Nelson took me on my first tracting experience and yes it is as awkward as it sounds. And yes it was actually way more awkward than it sounds. Haha, it scares me because you never know who is going to come out behind the door...haha, but it was fun minus the sweating and the nervous shaking.

We did have a sister's conference last Tuesday! It was the bomb! All of the sister's in the mission got together and let me tell you, there are a ton or sisters! It still blows my mind how many sisters there are out here and actually that I am one of them. Haha, but something crazy happened at the conference. Well, we had different rotations and one of them was a Mary Kay Makeup thing. It was fun and the ladies teaching it were not members. So after all the rotations we all got back together and President Wilson and his wife gave some words and then he opened it up to questions and one of the Mary Kay ladies raised her hand right away. Then starts Bible bashing and just being kind of rude to the Mission President in front of all the Sisters in the Mission. It was a very intense 15 minutes of her asking questions then interupting President in the middle of his answer. But one thing that I did learn from that was how to handle situations like that. He was so calm and so kind. Surprising enough people try to do that to us daily. Maybe not as intense, but same none the less. But we are not here to Bible bash, but to answer any questions others have about what Mormon's believe in. We are here to set the record straight for all the rumors that have been spread about us as a religion. We learn that by being kind, we have been able to open a bunch of doors that we never thought would be open. But I am so grateful for my Mission President's example and for all he does for us as a Mission and especially for what he does for my companion and me. I love it!!

This last week have been very very good. It was a week full of miracles!! We worked harder than ever before and it payed off. We received 13 referrals and picked up two new investigators. Crazy!! I didn't even know that was possible. We were certainly blessed in many ways! I love being a Missionary right here in Richmond Virginia!

We have not heard anything about using Facebook and all the technology stuff. The only thing we know is that maybe it will start in January. That will be sweet!! But in all honesty I kind of hope that I am in Brazil by then. If I am here I will just embrace it!! I have been reading the Book of Mormon and I am almost done! I am so excited about that and it still blows my mind that any scripture that I read from the Bible or the Book of Mormon can help me daily. "When you want to talk to God, pray; when you want to get answers, read the scriptures." love you all and keep working hard! Oh, and keep writing me because I LOVE IT!!!:)




 Sister Nelson and Sister Siepert
 This is my city, Richmond Virginia
Richmond Virginia

Monday, September 9, 2013

Life is Good!

Hello everyone!
Well, I am still here in Richmond and I still love it! It is kind of crazy how you can fall in love with a city. I love it here and all the uniqueness it has. It is full of all sorts of people and really honestly I have met people from all over the world here. It blows my mind constantly! I have met so many people from the Middle East and honestly most of the time they are the nicest!

My companion and I, Sister Nelson are working hard. We have two people who sincerely seem interested in learning more about the gospel. It is cool when people come to you and really want to know about what we believe. Cool thing too is they both are dating/friends with less active members. Two birds with one stone? Haha, no, but it makes me happy when people really want to know. We also have had some cool meetings with people of other faiths. We both talk about what we believe in. It is so cool to learn so much about other people and their backgrounds. I love hearing testimonies of Jesus Christ from everyone on the street. It is cool to see how much Jesus Christ has done for them and also how much he has done for me. It is cool to compare those and even cooler because they are not from the same exact religion as me. Think about this for a minute. Every single person on the street that you drive down everyday or the people you see in the post office have a story. It is cool that as a missionary we get to hear all those stories. So, everyone who is reading this someday take the time to talk to different people. It doesn't matter if you are doing errands, they can wait, just take the time to really get to know a stranger. It is cool all the things you learn from people like that. This is probably my favorite part of being a missionary. We are required to talk to everyone. It is very intimidating, but very rewarding. I have actually started to enjoy all the time I get to just stop and talk to someone.

I have made so many friends in our ward and I love it! It is so awesome when you go to Church and people want to talk to you. I love that! I love sundays, speaking of Sunday I sang this past Sunday. I sang with my companion and the Training Sisters and two other ward members. I even got to sing the second verse as a duet. I think it turned out nice. It was so fun and it is so cool how calm I have gotten singing in front of people.

We don't do splits with people in the ward, but we do do splits with the Sister training Leaders. They are like Zone Leaders in Female Form. I love them and they are of great help to me and my companion. They are so much fun too, we laugh way to much. I have found that my talent of talking like Marcel the Shell with Shoes on, has really helped me out..hahah, I love it! They think it is so funny and then of course I'm like hellloooo I am funny! Hahah, but really we have a good time together.

I was thinking that the season would be changing, but it hasn't yet...it is still so hot...and everyday I just sweat so much and I get so grossed out. Haha, but then again I am kind of grateful for the hot weather because I don't have clothes for the cold weather.....so yes!

I LOVE IT HERE AND I COULDN'T ASK FOR A BETTER TIME! seriously I get to be awkward everyday and hey I am so good at that. We laugh so much because it is so awkward and that's what makes missionary work fun! Just embracing my awkward side and think everyone loves it...everyone loves me, what can I say? Haha, naww I think it is all in my head, but it does make me feel good about myself. Life is good!


Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Change is hard...........but makes us grow

Well Sister R got transferred last week:( We cried a lot, we didn't want to be split up. Sister R went to a new area, she it training and opening it up. She called us yesterday though, she was with J. She moved until she heads on her mission in November. We both screamed!!! I love both of them so much! She will be an awesome trainer! Things really got mixed up in the Richmond Mission last week. There are no more trios of missionaries. The APs are now in our ward. There are a total of 4 companionship's in our ward now.  The training sisters are also in our district, and I LOVE IT!! They help us so much!  I am surrounded by awesome missionaries! I can learn so much from all of them.

The area we cover is huge!!! My companion and I cover three stakes and only teach young adults.  Every transfer we get a ton of travel miles. The other day we drove an hour and a half to meet with a less active man. It was so good!! Our Ward consists of about half students and the other half are just working here in Richmond.  I LOVE the ward I am in!! We have such good relationships with all of them. The more people we meet the more we are getting fed:) No we don't make friends to just get fed! It is a nice bonus though:) I did not imagine in my wildest dreams I would love a ward, or people so much. I have to say I cried about the changes, not for me, but for the ward and the missionaries they were losing. It is amazing how you grow so attached to a group of people and a city. I absolutely love Richmond. There are so many different and amazing people here.

We aren't allowed to go on splits with the ward members unless there is an emergency. When we meet with men we always have to have another female present. So that is kind of interesting. We are glad the students are back and will rely on them a lot for help.It is actually getting fun to talk to complete strangers now! It was so hard for me at first. I mean missionary work is awkward and that is what makes it fun!! It is however interesting when the guys try to talk to you and not about missionary work. But oh well no biggie:) I love what I am doing right now!

We are meeting with a guy names A and he is actually in the military. He lives on Fort Lee. It is pretty cool when we go on Base and kind of scary. They are very serious there. They stopped us for a while and we were freaking out a bit. He is in the Army. Well yesterday he found out he was being deployed to Afghanistan He is showing a brave face however I can tell  he is a little bit scared. I feel for him. It is so cool to meet with people like him. He makes his own guitars and makes his own music. He is awesome!

We have another guy in out ward that is names M. He is from China and has been in America about 8 years, I think. He takes us to dinner every Thursday, I mean real dinner like Cheesecake factory and stuff. He drives a sports car and he is so funny! He always tells us what is going on in the world. It is always fun to be around him. He is one of the funniest people I have ever met!

We have a lot of Medical Students in our ward.  It is so funny. You know how I have that huge birthmark on my arm? Well they always ask me about it.  So funny. They even pull out their Anatomy book to see what is going on. So so funny. I am sure dad will get a kick out of that:)

Well this is going to be a super hard week!! Please to anyone who reads this blog please keep my companion and I in your prayers. It is amazing how we can help others deal with hard things and cry with those we love! It makes the world a lot easier if we help each other. The Lord can really answer our prayers and help us through some tough times. With him we are never ever alone! Most of the times in life the Lord answers our prayers through the service of others. What a blessing to have people around us that listen to the Holy Ghost and act on it! I absolutely Love being a Missionary and have grown so much in every way!! Remember there are miracles everyday just keep an eye out for them. They are everywhere!

I love you all and I am working hard and trying my best to make a difference here. Thanks for all the support!

P.S.- No one has received their Visa's yet! I am a little bit shocked but embrace it! I know I am in Richmond for a reason. I am thankful for this experience on my mission. Everyone needs to hear about Jesus Christ where ever they are:)


Monday, August 26, 2013

I ABSOLUTELY LOVE IT HERE IN RICHMOND VIRGINIA!!!




The week I have dreaded is here. It is transfer week. We will find out tomorrow if any of us will be transferred to another area. I sure hope not! I ABSOLUTELY LOVE SERVING HERE IN RICHMOND!! I really love serving in a YSA Ward because they are da bomb. It is so fun to have people around who are my age. They are super supportive of us, I Love That! I have made so many new friends and it kind of makes me regret not getting very involved in my ward at school...I wish I would of gone to ALL of the activities and really tried to get to know people, but oh well! I will do that when I get home! 

The students are back!! The campus is bumping and I am having the time of my life! We had a lemonade stand in the middle of campus the other day and we ran out in 20 minutes....that is a lot of lemonade! There were swarms of people everywhere! We filled up lemonade after lemonade!! It was so fun! It is fun having the students back! There are so many new faces in the ward. The other night we had this thing we called "Girls Night" and we invited people from the ward and investigators to the church to watch "Legacy" and to eat Ice Cream/Popcorn and to paint their nails. It was so fun and it just makes me laugh about how excited I get to watch church movies. One of the things I love about my mission is all the awkward moments that happen. It is awesome to meet all these people from all over the world. I could not be happier and sometimes it makes me wonder why...haha. I mean I am exhausted, but I am so Happy. How does that work? I guess it comes from serving the people around me and serving the Lord. Service is the Key word!

Well two sisters headed to Argentina got their Visas today. They are super excited, but they have been waiting for six or seven months. So crazy! I am just so mixed up with feelings about that.

We are hoping that our teaching pool grows but the last few weeks have been kind of hard. First the students were gone and now the first week is super busy for everyone. We pray that we will be able to teach more next week. In the mean time I am enjoying the experiences I have each day.

Today a miracle happened. We literally had no food and had spent our money for the week. We were a bit worried what we were going to have for lunch and bam. I got a box from home full of goodies. I am learning so much from my companions, I love them very much! We are so unified and were unified from the first moment we were together. We laugh everyday too much and we get along so well! 

It makes me happy that people ask about me and write me. I kind of thought that I would go away and be a little bit forgotten. THANK YOU ALL SO MUCH FOR ALL YOUR THOUGHTS, PRAYERS, EMAILS AND LETTERS!! I LOVE BEING A MISSIONARY MORE THAN I EVER DREAMED I WOULD! THE LORD HAS TRUELY BLESSED ME! YOU ARE ALL IN MY PRAYERS AND THOUGHTS! Til next time, have a great week!

 Ready to clean the church

 Love my companions