Monday, June 30, 2014

Apple Valley, California -June 30, 2014

Hey family,

Well I know this email is coming in quite a few hours later then normal.  Sorry mom for making ya wait so long.  Since our zone reached its baptismal goal for the first 6 months of the year, our zone leader, Elder Smith, told us he would make us all milkshakes.  So today for our zone activity, we met at the institute building at Victor Valley College and had milkshakes and played pool and ping pong.  It was a lot of fun.  But that was scheduled for 12 to 3 and so we didn't have time to email before.  So that is why it is late and now ya know what we did today as well.  

Here is a cool fact I found out today. There is an elder in my zone who we are related to. His name is Elder Jones and his great great grandpa is William Woodward.  I think his great grandpa is Clair Woodward...Does that sound right?  I dunno.  But we figured that out today.  He asked me if I was related to any of the Woodwards in Preston that had the chicken farm from Napoleon Dynamite....I had to say yes to that one.  

It sounds like Dad had a fun trip to Alaska, probably not what he had planned, but still fun.  Ian sent me a couple pictures from Harry Potter World as well.  I guess he had fun.  And now Mom Ian and the girls are off to Canada for the next two weeks.  When do Camille and Adam move?  Things are just crazy at home, like usual.  Congrats on the baptism Cameron! Good job.  That is wonderful.  

This week was better for us.  Sister Ellis' back has finally started to get better and we have been able to work a lot more.  We did a district blitz in our area this last week.  That is where all the missionaries in our district all come and tract in our area.  So there were 10 of them.  That went okay.  We have one return appointment from it. So we are excited for that.

We actually have 3 appointments set up this week with potential investigators.  One of them is named Thomas.  He is 16 and we tracted into him.  We left him a Book of Mormon and said we would stop by next week.  The next time we stopped by, we couldn't meet right then, but he told us he was already to chapter 8 of 1 Nephi.  We were pretty excited about that.  So we have a lesson set up tomorrow with him and his younger brother Noah who is 10.  We haven't met the parents yet, so I don't know what the family situation is yet.  I guess we will find out.  But we are gonna get some investigators this week.  It is going to happen. 

We had a lesson with the Villarruels this last week.  This is the family with 4 boys.  The boys and dad are interested, but the mom is catholic and doesn't want to change (doesn't go to church, just tradition)  So she has asked us to stick with lessons that both Mormons and catholics believe in.  We had a lesson on the 10 commandments, and the Holy Ghost, as well as a few about Christ and the atonement.  This last week we decided to do the Restoration.  Not quite what she wanted or expected, but it is what we were prompted to teach.  The spirit was so strong the whole lesson. We all felt it. We know the two older boys and Ana (the mom) all felt it as well.  We are just praying that Ana's heart will be softened and she will accept it.  We left them a couple copies of the Book of Mormon and asked them to read and pray about it.  We are hoping and praying the boys will do it.  The dad wasn't home for the lesson so I have nothing to say about him.   

On Saturday night, we were in our bedroom planning and we heard a lot of noise outside.  When we looked out, there were tons of fireworks going on a few miles away.  Both Sister Ellis and I, as well as Sister Ebmeyer and her granddaughter, ran outside to the front yard and watched the fireworks for a good 20 mintues.  It was a long show.  It was early for July 4th but we can't think of any other reason they would be having them.  That was fun.   

Well I think that is all for now.  It should be a good week.  I have been emailing Kenzii and things aren't going well for her.  She has broke up with the boyfriend again, but she isn't going to church either.  Hopefully things we change for her soon.  I just wish I could do more for her.  Maybe I will get transferred back to Santa Fe for my last transfer or something. 

Anyway, I hope you have a great week.  Have a safe trip to Canada.  Work hard and kick some butt! Don't get hurt.  

Sister Woodward

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Apple Valley, California -June 23, 2014


Things here are pretty good.  Sister Ellis is still recovering.  Her neck is better but her back is still not.  She has to rest it a lot, but she is sick of laying down so she doesn't.  Instead she will just play the piano in the house.  So we aren't doing anything because she is hurt, but she won't rest it and put heat on it like she has been told-sound familiar at all?  So this week has been a lot of in the house again. 

One day this week, the two sisters and their two week missionary from the Desert Knolls ward came over.  One of them stayed with Sister Ellis and I went tracting with the other two.  We actually found a few good potentials and have appointments with them this week.  So hopefully this week will be better than the last few.  On Saturday we did a district blitz, which is where all the missionaries in our district go to one ward and tract a bunch of the streets in a certain area.  We went to the Desert Knolls area.  It turned out pretty well.  So this week the whole district is going to come to our area and do it.  We are hoping this will help with our finding problem.  Most of the missionaries in our zone are struggling with finding people.  So we are working on that. 

The Desert Knolls two weeker also came with us for a day.  The Sisters she is assigned with went on an exchange with the Sister Training Leaders and that companionship is struggling slightly, so they didn't want the two weeker there.  They called us up and she came with us.  It was a lot of fun. 

I don't know if I ever explained what a two week mission is.  We don't have them in Utah.  So all the boys and girls 17 and older that are thinking about going on a mission can sign up each summer for a two week mission.  They then get assigned to a set of missionaries and stay with them for the two weeks.  They do everything with them-exercise, tracting, planning, shopping-everything, that way they can experience a mission.  They usually don't assign them to missionaries with members and since this time last year and this year I have been with members, I have never got one...sad day.

We spoke in church yesterday.  It was Morgan Lacey's farewell.  She is going to Portugal.  I spoke on the talk given by Sister Burton at the women's general meeting this last conference.  It was called, Wanted: Hands and Hearts to Hasten the Work.  Both Sister Ellis and I prepared a 10 minute talk, which is what we were assigned.  Morgan was supposed to have a 20 minute talk, but couldn't get that much.  After Sister Ellis' talk, she told me to try and take up a few more minutes because her talk was maybe 7 minutes long.  I stretched mine out to 15 minutes and she got the last 15 or so minutes.  So it turned out alright.  I think we all did okay.  I didn't mess up too bad. Didn't say anything super dumb like in my farewell talk...haha

Well that is about all for now.  I love you lots.  Have a good week! 
Sister Woodward

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Apple Valley, California -June 16, 2014

Hey guys,

Well my email this week will be relatively short compared to most emails I send.  On Monday Sister Ellis' neck started bugging her a little bit.  Tuesday it was a little worse and going down her back, and by Wednesday she couldn't get out of bed.  She was in bed all day Wednesday and Thursday.  On Friday she decided to go see a chiropractor.  There is a member in Apple Valley who is a chiropractor and he works on missionaries for free. So we went to his home.  He is a 80 year old man....Yeah  So Brother Winkel adjusted her neck and back.  She said she was all out of place.  By Saturday, her neck was feeling better, but her back was even worse.  I guess it has been out of place for a while and her body had got used to it.  So when he put it back in place her body didn't like that.  We managed to make it through Church on Sunday and that about killed Sister Ellis.  I don't know how much we can even do today.  She is doing a lot better, but this last week we barely left the house.

I found a 750 piece puzzle of penguins, so it was all white, black, and yellow.  That took me from Monday to Saturday to do.  It took FOREVER.  We also watched Ephraim's Rescue and 17 Miracles.  I played the piano a lot (our members have one) and did anything else I could to waste time.  It was a long, very uneventful week. 

We managed to leave the house on Friday because we had President interviews, and you don't want to miss those.  That was good.  Short and simple.  

It sounds like everyone at home had a good week.  The pictures all came through.  They did work.  It looks like it was a good day.  Everyone looks so pretty.  Kelsey stole my favorite flowers though....hmmm I guess that is what happens when she gets married first. 

Keep me updated on the World Cup.  Let me know how it all goes.  And don't leave out any details :)

I am also glad you got my card.  I hope you enjoyed it.  When I saw it I thought that it was perfect and I had to get it.  Can't find cards any better fitted for dad now can ya?

Well have a good week.  I haven't thought of any more good ways to scare my companion, but I will let you know when I do.  It will be even better this time!

Love Sister Woodward

Monday, June 9, 2014

Apple Valley, California -June 9, 2014

Hey family,

Well it sounds like the week went well.  I hope you had fun with all the chicks, and the audit, and the wedding and soccer tournament.  It sounds like a busy and fun week.  I am glad that everyone survived.  Good job.  I bet it was nice to have Grandma, Megan and Ben around again.   I know they sure helped a whole lot at Camilles wedding.  I wish I could have been there.  I hope you enjoyed my poem.  It was kinda dumb, but I had NO IDEA what to say, so that is what happened.  And I did it all by myself.  I asked a couple people for help and they couldn't think of anything.  I hope you actually ended up reading it and not just the part I put at the end.  If you didn't read that poem then I am officially disappointed in you all.  I hope to see pictures soon...

Our week was kinda just crazy.  On Tuesday we found the most golden investigator ever, or so we thought.  Her name is Lori.  We got her as a referral weeks ago and she never answered when we stopped by.  Finally we met with her.  She pulled up as we were walking away.  She let us in and we had an amazing lesson with her.  The spirit was SO strong and we know she felt it.  We asked her to be baptized and she said absolutely.  She loved that we have prophets and apostles because she never understood why God stopped talking to people.  She was so excited about the Book of Mormon because she always wondered if there were other books like the Bible for other people.  She even said, Finally I found someone that believes the same things I do.  

Then on Thursday night, she text us and told us that she didn't want to be converted to LDS at this time.  We were super bummed.  We stopped by the next day and she was sick.  She didn't let us in.  We left with her a Plan of Salvation Pamphlet, and the May Ensign with all the general conference talks.  We are going to go back sometime this week to see if we can figure out what happen and see if we can help her.  We are still praying that things will work out for her.

The Ebmeyers are out of town this week.  On Friday night we got home about 9.  It was dark outside by then.  I had to go change the sprinklers and so I went in the back gate to do that. I told Sister Ellis to come let me in.  We can only get in through the front door because there is a code on it.  So I changed the  sprinklers and went to the back door.  I didn't see Sister Ellis so I figured she unlocked then went to the room. I tried the door and it was unlocked so I walked it.  Then I had the thought that she was going to jump out and scare me.  I pulled out the phone and started shining it to find my way and look for her.  I got to kitchen and could hear her in the bed room.  I turned the phone to face me the exact same time that Sister Ellis came running out of the bed room to come open the back door.  She never unlocked it and had no idea I was in the house.  When I went in the door, she thought it was me just knocking.  So the house was completely black and all she could see was the phone light creepily on my face.  She freaked out.  She screamed SO LOUD and hard.  I could tell it wasn't a "Oh you just scared me" scream.  It was a "someone else is in the house and I am literally going to die right now" scream.  She fell to the floor just frozen.  I, knowing what was going through her head, froze.  I realized she had never unlocked the door and was scared out of her mind.  I tried to talk in a normal calm voice and let her know it was me, and the only thing that came out was a deep nasty man's voice.  So deep that I can't even attempt to make it again.  That sure didn't help.  She had no idea who I was and I sounded like a man.  I managed to find the lights and calm her down.  It took a while.  We were up a while trying to calm ourselves down. We then checked the whole house and no one was there.  We must have just forgot to lock the back door.  Probably scariest night of both our lives ever.  

Nothing else really happened this week.  We finally got permission to jump on the tramp for our morning exercise and I am happy about that.  I actually will enjoy exercise now.

I think that is about all for now.  The library is full today so I am not going to have as much time as normal because there is a waiting list for computers.  I hope you have a good week.  Love ya all.  Talk to you later! 

Sister Woodward

Monday, June 2, 2014

Apple Valley, California -June 2, 2014

Hey Family,

Well I know you are waiting for pictures from that baptism....they won't be coming.  Why?  Well because stinker Kenzii wanted her ex boyfriend to come live with her again only 2 weeks after kicking him out for "good"  So there was no baptism on Friday.  Kinda sad.

Transfers were this week.  Sister Ellis and I are staying together up here in the beautiful city of Apple Valley.  We are excited about that.  Other news you may be interested in.  My old area in Hesperia is getting white-washed, meaning both Sister Packer and Sister Beagley are leaving it.  My favorite Sister Ott is going in with a greenie.  Sister Packer is actually coming to Apple Valley and Sister Beagley is "going to a bigger area"  Which in mission terms means she is going home. 

So in a week, two of my former companions are going home.  Kinda crazy.  I still don't know what to think of it.  Of course I have a good companion and a good area, and Satan still finds something to do to get me down.  He is one evil spirit.  Can't say guy because he doesn't have a body.  Dummy

Well it sounds like you had quite a fun week, and have quite a busy week coming up.  Chickens, soccer, wedding.  Man good luck getting through it.  At least you will have Megan and Grandma around to help do I am not sure what.  Stuff.  Babysit.  Drive.  Decorate.  Keep everyone else sane.

Our week was good.  We are working with a guy named Josh Briggs.  He really likes the lessons and he reads from the Book of Mormon and prays.  He just hasn't come to church yet.  His wife is struggling with her faith and he 18 year old son claims he is an atheist.  He doesn't wan to offend them, so he is going slowly.  We invited him to be baptized, and he said he would think about it this week.  So we will find out on Friday.

Our ward had a Philly Cheese Steak Social this week.  That was fun.  It was for adults only.  There was so much food.  Ward socials are great if you like the ward.  Um lets see what else happened....We ate some gross teriyaki food.  I bought more socks today.  We eat smoothies every day and they are soo good.  I can finally fit in the skirt you gave me at Christmas for I have lost a probably 7 or 8 pounds.  No candy, pop and a healthy smoothie for at least on meal is helping.  I just hope I can stay somewhere where there is a blender for the rest of my mission.  We decorated our planner covers.  We did some tracting.  We went to a baptism for people in Sister Ellis's last ward.  We taught some recent converts and some less active people.  We helped our favorite recent convert move down-sad day.  We lost a ward mate as he got transferred down to Upland.  We are getting Elder Swan, who was my ward mate in Hesperia.  Life is good for us. 

I hope all is good at home.  take lots of pictures at the wedding.  I want to see them next week!! Love you all

Sister Woodward
Sister Woodward loves Joshua Trees

Joshua Tree in the California desert