Thursday, March 27, 2014

Who woulda thought I'd become a horse whisperer on my mission!?

Week 7     3/17/14

Who woulda thought I'd become a horse whisperer on my mission!? I think I've taught more horses than real investigators on my mission so far. LOLJK. But, I spent another day at a ranch this week!! This time we were grooming all the horses and walking them around the corral. It was actually really fun!  I think the horses could tell that I was terrified of them on the inside so they got a little rowdy at times. My horse started head-butting my companion's horse while we were trying to brush them!! I saw my life pass before my eyes. But then I took charge and showed that horse who was boss! It's a lot of work to groom horses...I see why they have volunteers come and do it! Moral of the story...I can whisper to the horses now.  Parker has parts of town that are pure country with acres of land and horses and ranches and farms. It's super fun to drive around and see all the fields and red barns. So cute.
Speaking of barns and farms, last p-day we went and played soccer at a barn! Some of the elders in our zone live on a farm and they have in indoor horse arena. Since it was like blizzarding outside, we had to find somewhere indoor to play soccer. Naturally we turn to the barn. It was actually super fun! With my soccer skills, I ended up kicking more sand than soccer balls.

There is a lady in our ward who we are working with to get her family to the temple. Their family is so awesome, we love going over there. She is super intense and into kickboxing and all that jazz so one night we went over and she taught us some sick moves! She has some punching bags and stuff in her basement so we got real. It is such a work out! We were sore the rest of the week. Now I am all motivated to join a kickboxing class when I get home. It was so fun! Now we practice some of our moves in the mornings.

So we have been praying and searching for people to teach because we've hit a dry spot. One day this week we were leaving our house to go visit some less-actives and we saw the high school kids being dropped off at the bus stop. Then we saw some lady on the side walk chewing out some of the kids! She had pulled over her car and got out to yell at these boys. We were trying to listen but all we heard was her telling them how they should know better. Anyway a few minutes later we were still walking and we saw they boys that were in trouble earlier! My companion asked what they did to make that lady so mad...he reminded us that he is an immature teenage boy so he stopped in the middle of the cross walk, took off his shirt, and started to do push ups. The lady did not like that. We got talking with him and turns out he is super interested in the gospel!!! We gave him a Book of Mormon and he committed to reading every night for a week and praying about it. He has texted us a few times with questions about our church and our beliefs. Then we invited him to a baptism on Saturday and he came! He had so many questions throughout the baptism and we were able to teach him a lot about our church. He was going to come to church yesterday, but his service ran late so he couldn't make it. But we are bringing him to FHE tonight with another family in the ward!!! He is so interested and he has a genuine concern for being religious and doing good. I'm excited to see what will happen with him!

We were also able to teach another youth who was a referral from a recent convert in our ward. We've been trying to meet with her for few weeks, but she works and I guess she's always grounded...but we finally were able to have lunch with her and teach her the 1st discussion. We were so excited to finally have people to teach who are interested in our gospel! It's so exciting. Our prayers really are answered, every single one of them! Our Heavenly Father loves us a lot. I know that for sure!

Me any my companion spoke at the relief society dinner this week. That was fun....we had exchanges that day and things were crazy all week so we ended up preparing our talks an hour before the dinner! oops! And it turned out my companion wrote her talk on the wrong topic...that was hilarious. Things went smoothly and it was a great dinner. I love the ladies in our ward! They make me feel so loved and at home.

So before my mission, I literally had the same conversation 10 times a day. And Allie can attest to this. People would ask "Where are you going on your mission?" I'd say "Colorado Springs!" Then without a doubt, they'd say "Oh! I have a cousin/aunt/grandma/young men's leader/roommate etc. who is from there! Look out for my friend!" Literally everyone knew someone in Colorado. I thought I had escaped this repeating conversation when I came on my mission but it's worse out here! Now its...."Where are you from Sister Hoer?" I tell them Las Vegas...then they always say "Oh! do you know so and so?? I went to college with them...or they are my cousin!" It's hilarious. But it goes to show that it's a small world in the church! I have known a small handful of their friends. Most recently I ate lunch a good ole Julie Bay's house who grew up with Brent Bergquist!!! She knew all the Bergquists and the Burns and the Swainstons. It was fun to hear stories she had about them. I get some interesting questions about living in Las Vegas too.  It keeps things exciting!

Well, we had a great week and things are fantastic! The weather is still bipolar but that's okay. I'd rather have 70 one day and 30 the next than 30 everyday! I love you all and I appreciate all the love and support.

Stay sweet,        Sister Hoer

 PS~ Mom, tell Bro. Bergquist his friend Julie Bay says hello! So crazy, huh?

Week 8  3/24/14

#springbreak2014 !! LOL All of Colorado is on spring break right now and me and my companion were feeling we made our own spring break! But don't worry...we still worked really hard.

It started on p-day with a great BBQ at the park with a bunch of the other missionaries. That was a blast!!! The weather was sunny and warm and we played volleyball and grilled on the barbie. Some elder brought Elk heart which I was pressured into eating. I almost barfed. It was not good. But it was a good experience. Then it snowed the next we had to get creative. We had the other sister over in the evening and we made some delicious pina coladas. The lady we lived with got out her fancy glasses and gave us cherries to put on top. We got fannncccy. It was so fun! Then of course it was sunny and warm again (literally bipolar weather) so we rode our bikes everywhere and pulled out our sunglasses to pretend we were in california on Spring Break. We even wore our flowery skirts and colorful shirts to feel like it was vacation. Good times. We told a lady in our ward about our pretend spring break, so when we went to her house for dinner on Friday, she had it all tropical and spring braked out! It was the BEST! She also had pina coladas for us with little umbrellas in our drinks and she made coconut chicken. She even got out hawaiian dish ware and put on some tropical tunes. Oh

I'm a horse whisperer!

                                                         a.k.a My mom & dad (trainers)

                                                                           My district

                                                    Spring Brake 2014 non-alcoholic Pina Coladas


We pranked the Elders!

our ward is so great. They really let us have some great fun with them. So in the end, we had a fantastic spring break. I hope everyone else did too.

So in real news, I made it through my first transfer! I can't believe it's already over. But we won't get transfered because I'm still in the 12 week training we are safe for 6 more weeks! Then who knows what will happen. I had a really great district! We are only losing one member of our district which happens to be one of my favorite sisters..but I'm excited to get a new sister in our district! We took some pictures of our district and I also got a "family picture" with my mom and dad aka my trainer and my district leader. They're great.

We had a really good week! We were able to teach this adorable lady who has 4 kids. She just recently had twin girls so she has her hands full! We help her as much as we can...but we aren't allowed to hold babies. That drives me crazy! There are so many adorable babies here and I just wanna hold them all! The first thing I am doing when I get home is holding a baby...hopefully it will be my own niece or nephew ;) But seriously. So we help her out with her kitchen or entertaining her kids while she does other stuff. This past week we had lunch with her and then her kids wanted to go to the park. So we helped her load them all up and walk down to the park. It was perfect because we were able to sit and watch the kids and talk...and also teach her the first lesson! She is so great. We were sitting there chatting and she goes..."I want you to teach me. Teach me what you teach everyone else! I wanna know" I almost died. She is so sensitive to the spirit and she really agreed with everything we taught her! And better yet, she has a million mormon friends. They have all been so good to her and invited her to many events. We were talking about general conference and she told us she has them all recorded from last session on her TV! She's practically mormon already. She told us she heard a snippet at a friends house and she felt like the talk was specifically for her. So she recorded them all! We are hoping we will be able to watch this upcoming session with her! She's so great.

We've also been trying to teach our teenage boy but we aren't too sure that he understands what we are all about...he texted us the other day and said he could "hangout" with us on Friday...LOL. So we are gonna have his friend, a boy in our ward, coordinate with him so he doesn't get the wrong idea. He has been reading the book of mormon though! Hopefully we can help him understand it and learn more about our church. He was genuinely interested the past couple times we talked to him. And his friendship with the boy in our ward is a huge plus.

The help from the ward members is SO important. We have been talking a lot about how to establish a foundation for the people we teach and I am realizing the members play a HUGE role in that. With the support and love from their member friends, they will always have that person to turn to. It helps us out a lot too because then we have members to also invite them to do things and to learn more. Missionary work here would be nearly impossible without the members. We work with our ward a lot to find people to teach and to encourage those that we are teaching. Our ward is pretty amazing.

So things are going great here in Parker! I am absolutely loving it. If it were up to me, I would serve my whole mission in this area! I feel so at home in this ward. Me and my companion always leave our dinner appointments feeling so good because we get so much love from the members. So yeah, things are absolutely wonderful! And the Lord is blessing us so much in our work. I mentioned that missionary work would be nearly impossible without the members...but it is literally impossible without the Lord! I have been studying a lot recently about how I can give my will to the Lord so He can then sanctify and purify my heart as mentioned in Helaman 4. If I can be sanctified through the Lord, then I will be able to be a better instrument in His hands. I was joking around one day about how I can't be a monkey wrench in the Lord's hands...we wanna be the power drill that He uses to do His work! Being a missionary is so great. And being a member missionary is just as great! I love you all and hope everything is well.

xoxoxo  Sister Hoer

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

"If you don't like the weather...just wait until tomorrow."

The weather here is absolutely crazy. We had a snowstorm a few days ago...then it was in the 70s for a few days...and today it's freezing again with a 60% chance of snow. I never know what to wear! But it's fun because everyone here says "If you don't like the weather...just wait until tomorrow." Boy, are they right.

So they have this rule where you can only go to the mall once a transfer. (me and my comp think this rule might be because of us) But since the mall is out of our zone we can only go once. We were really bummed last p-day that we couldn't go to the mall so we decided we would make our own dresses. We hit up hobby lobby and got to work! We finished them just in time for our training meeting yesterday. It was funny because everyone made fun of us for making our own dresses, but they were quite impressed when they saw them. The mission is making me a great homemaker. I've learned more about sewing, baking, and cleaning in this past month than I have in a while!

We also found the best donut shop in the whole entire world. They are made fresh every morning so we stop by quite often to get the warm donuts. You could say we are "regulars" there. The lady knows us now and welcomes us with our favorite donuts. I love it.

This weekend was stake conference! It was great. Me and my companion joined the stake choir last minute but we had a great time singing. We might not have the best voices, but the songs were amazing! 
The theme of the conference was “Hastening the Work of Salvation”.  We are big fans of that. There was a heavy emphasis on missionary work in this stake and doing all they can as members to help the missionaries. It is so great. And the members really do help a lot. This is a very missionary minded area.

It is a little difficult to find people to teach unless they are found through a member. We tract here, but it really is not very successful. We have made some return appointments as we tract, but everytime, they tell us they are not intersted anymore or they don't answer. Major bummer. So right now we don't have any solid  investigators. But we have fasted and prayed much to find those who are prepared! I feel like something great is coming. Most of our work here is with the less active members. So they keep us pretty busy. But it would be great to find some new investigators we could help as well.

The other night we had dinner in Japan. It was great! Hahah, the father served his mission in Japan so we had dinner Benny Hana's style. They had grills in the middle of the tables with raw meat and vegetables for us to cook ourselves! And rice and noodles and the best sauce ever. It was so delicious. We had a good time cooking and talking. And the father also said the prayer in Japanese. My chopstick skills aren't the greatest...but it was way fun. The members feed us so well here! A little too well sometimes....I'm really impressed that every member here is like a highly skilled chef. 

Just a word of advice. Don't feel pressure to feed the missionaries dessert. They've probably had it every night that week. Last night we had dessert and then dessert again at our evening appointment. It's so delicious, but it's not good for my waistline. hahah!

We spent a lot of our week visiting less actives and tracting the neighborhoods. We found some high school kids playing basketball who actually seemed really interested in the Book of Mormon. They comitted to reading and praying about it, so we'll see how they did when we visit them this week. We also visited a less active who has been very active the past couple months. She is now serving as the girls camp director! She really opened up to us and shared that if it weren't for the missionaries...she would not have come back to church. She has been through a lot and her husband is not a member! So we continue to work with her. It was really neat to see that our visits and efforts are not wasted. She was so grateful for our time and love. That night we felt great and had so much motivation to keep going and caring even if we don't feel like it's going anywhere! You never know how you've impacted someone. We've had a lot of meetings this week too, so I feel like this week was all crazy. It was, but the meetings were great too. I got a lot of guidance and inspiration as to how I can be a better missionary.

Things are great in Colorado!! The work is moving forward. Much love to all of you!

Sister Hoer

Regulars for warm donuts... Our donuts shop stop!

Hang tight & b ball dunk...  at the same  time.

We MADE these dresses ourselves! Mom would be so proud :)

Dinner in Japan.

Saturday, March 8, 2014

Everything is going to be okay because they have PANERA BREAD in Colorado!!!!

Everything is going to be okay because they have PANERA BREAD in Colorado!!!!

Another reason why I am so in love with Colorado. It's really a great place. Me and my companion have both decided we would love to move back here with our families one day.

So this week was an interesting one. It seems like every hopeful person we had to teach decided they don't need the gospel. Our one solid investigator has been avoiding us for the past week or two and he called us the other day to tell us he does not want to be taught ever again. If only he knew what he just turned down!!! But that gave us the determination to work even harder to help people understand and become converted in this gospel. Our spaceship man has moved so we won't be meeting with him anymore either.

So we've had more time to tract which is scary... but great practice for me. We accidentally tracked into a less active woman yesterday who has been very against the church! But she let us in for a few minutes because it was so cold outside. That was one moment that I was thanking the Lord for this freezing weather. We also had some nice conversations with others in the neighborhood and plan to come back and visit them this weekend. Even though we had a discouraging week, we got back out there and worked harder to find those who are prepared. "Whatever the world throws at them, they throw back a smile, because they know they have the gospel of Jesus Christ." This is exactly how me and my companion felt this week. We could have easily been down in the dumps but we smiled and laughed as we tracked and planned how to become better missionaries.

So I did chores on a farm this week! That was actually incredibly fun. I pet the horses, chased a rabbit, fed some baby goats, and gathered eggs from the chickens. It made me want to live on a farm! But then I realized it was probably only fun for one day. We did get to take home a dozen eggs though! It was great. Service is one of my favorite things out here on the mission. It's so nice to help others out and see the joy it brings them as well as the joy we feel ourselves. This lady on the farm recently had brain surgery and has a hard time doing these chores by herself. Usually her kids help but they weren't home this night! it was a great opportunity and I had a blast doing it.

There is a lady in our ward who teaches continuing education for women, so we went to her class this week and it was AWESOME. She talked about the gift of adversity and how it truly is a gift. There is so much to learn and so much to gain from adversity. When you step back and look at the experience, it's a gift that you were able to learn and grow the way you did. I've thought a lot about adversity and trials as I am adjusting to missionary life. One of my favorite quotes is, "There is no comfort in the growth zone, and no growth in the comfort zone." How true is that!? We will never grow if we remain in our comfort zone doing the things we have been doing our whole lives. Once we get outta our comfort zone and do things that stretch us, we will grow. We have shared this message with many of our ward members because we can tell that everyone has very heavy trials on their backs. It seems like these last days can sometimes get the best of us. But with the atonement and the truth of the gospel, we can survive. And not only will we survive, but we will be better than we were before.

The mission is great and I am loving every single moment!!!!!!!!! I am blessed to be here.

Sister Hoer

First Zone Conference
Elder  Rawlins from Henderson is in there somewhere!

Doing Farm work & Service,
cuz...  it is Colorado!

Feeding the baby goats!