Monday, June 17, 2013

Helloooooooo Family!!!!!!!
I just love all ya'lls guts! I loved reading Julie's Sacrament Talk and hearing about how Fathers Day/ Mom and Dad's Anniversary went! Love it! We're doing emails, next to me Sister Atkinson seems to be laughing and crying at the same time reading things from her family. She hasn't had a P-day in a week and a half and has only been out a couple of days. I love her guts! She's an amazing missionary.
Sister Atkinson (like Atkin's Diet) is from Washington State. She comes from a family of six children with her being the oldest. Her family lives ten minutes out of a small town right next to the Canadian Border. She doesn't like to call it a farm, but with a bunch of cows, 50 chickens, and pigs off and on, that's what it sounds like. She is in love with Golf, and played it at BYU for a year before coming out. On one hand she's so excited to be in Florida, since there's a Golf Course in every other area, but on the other hand she's mad about it because she can't play. She is a very bold, blunt person where most of the time I think she came out with six months experience already. She's really funny and hates wearing skirts. We get along just fine :)
I need to get the biggest thing that has happened this week out of the way before I can continue... M came to church yesterday, and she set a firm Baptismal Date for June 30!! She even brought her parents to church! Sunday was all about the Preisthood, and we haven't covered it much, but after Young Womens, she said that she didn't get half the words that were said, but she felt really good. Yay!
Another interesting thing, we actually dropped Sister May (the 95 year old lady) last Saturday. Right after explaining that we won't be over to her house anymore, she gave us doughnuts. Then the next day, she came to church as well.Don't know what to do with her. She loves the church, but just doesn't want to be baptized again. We'll leave her up to her family, the Ward, and the Lord and go and find those who are ready to act upon our message.
Our new District Leader's name is Elder Gao. He's from mainland China and was baptized four years ago when he was in the U.S. for school. He hasn't been on his mission for a year yet, and he is still shaky on what a District Leader does, but he's doing a really great job :)
Saturday we went back to see the LA lady who lives on that farm where we did the service project at. She herself referred to the piece of land as the 'Crazy Farm'. I can see why. She has a horse that thinks it's a dog - it walks around the front yard, chases the Aflack duck around, and the dogs practically run themselves into the front of your car. We talked a lot with her about how our families can be together forever. She had thought because she was the only member in her family and that she was single, that wouldn't happen. We talked about Patriarchal Blessings and about how those blessings are promised to us, even in the next life if we are true and faithful.
Another cool story about a LA: Tuesday for P-day, we were shopping at Dollar Store for some last minute things. Our cashier was a nice man who asked what church we went to. We started talking with him and it turns out that he lives out in Newberry, and is a member, but hasn't been able to go to church because he doesn't have a ride. We got his number and gave it to the Elders, who went to visit him. Automatic re-activation. Apparently, his records were in the wrong ward and so no one knew where he was or where he went. We have it all straitened out, and he will be getting a home teaching assignment presently.
On the note of other Investigators... we haven't seen the G family this last week... they keep cancelling. Ben has been going through a rough spot and we haven't seen him this last week either. L is out of the care facility and walking on her ankle. We saw her Yesterday and read Alma 32 with her and talked about how she can gain a testimony of the Book of Mormon by 'experimenting upon these words'.
It's been a crazy, but good week. I'm really missing Sister Pettingill and Sister Major, but the Lord helps out in so many ways! Sister Pettingill wrote me a ton of notes and hid them all over the place before she left. But I love my new Companion Sister Atkinson! We're gonna have a blast :)

Love from Florida!
~Sister Carlson
P.S. Could yall send me a printed version of my Farewell Talk? I want to be prepared in case Bishop asks me to speak. Also, feel free to send me other talks. (My Grace is Sufficient...ect) Just make sure you don't write them into your actual text in your letter or I can't read them during the rest of the week.