Saturday, December 27, 2014

I've been here a really long time

Well, my dear and wonderful family, this is it!! I can´t believe this is the last email I will ever write to you all as a full time missionary. My mind is blown. I had my final interview with President this morning and oh what a sweet experience that was. President Wright is a good man. I´m gonna miss them. He talked to me about so many things - so many goals and so many tips for the future. He gave me a blessing and then sent me on my way. It really became real in that moment. I think I might be believing it a little more now. And oh what a strange emotion this is. I have never been so incredibly happy - so incredibly excited and giddy with joy... and sad at the same time. haha
A few weeks ago, my sweet trainer, Sister Weyandt... er... now she´s Celeste... but anyway. She sent me a quote from someone who... I can´t remember his name or really what it said, but a few of the words have been playing thru my head all week as I´ve tried to work harder than ever before, tried to take advantage of it all. The quote said something along the lines of "You´ve gotta soak this all in. Don´t let anything pass you by. You may not realize it now but you´re gonna miss this. You´re really gonna miss this." ... I´m really gonna miss this.
This last week has been pretty tough. It´s been good just ... tough as always. haha I had so many "lasts" that I´m pretty excited to get to have some "firsts" again. Thursday was my very last ever district meeting. Now, I´m not gonna lie - district meeting hasn´t always been my favorite thing in the world because of the practices. So I was spending the morning all excited knowing I´d do my very last ever practices that day. Then I got there and did my practices and everything was about to end and the Elders got up for the special musical number. They introduced it by saying it was a "song of saying goodbye cuz it´s Sister King´s last meeting" and whooosh I burst into tears. haha I had to say the prayer and wouldn´t have even been able to make my English understandable with crying like that. haha I never thought I´d cry over that. I clapped my last doors and felt oh so sad. I did my last contacts and didn´t feel quite so sad. haha! But overall, it was a good week. Like I said, I´m pretty excited to have some firsts.
My companion is pretty sad cuz we just found out that we´ll close our area with me leaving. Ketlin and Tiago will be married and baptized next week so ... she´s a little devastated to be missing that. Sometimes mission life is hard-- HAH that´s a joke. It´s always hard. But anyway, we´re not really sure what to do. But everything always works out.
I don´t know what much else to say except for that I´m so so grateful to all of you for all your help and advice, emails, letters and packages over this past year and a half. I have been such a spoiled missionary. I´ve learned so much. My relationship with my Savior has grown more than I could have ever imagined. I´ve seen so many miracles, made so many friends, and I´m so grateful for all of it. Even the hard times. I can´t even express the gratitude I feel for this last year and a half of my life. This church is true. The Lord himself put it on the Earth. We are so blessed to be a part of it.
I don´t have much time, but I hope you all know I love you so much! I am so so excited to see and talk to you all day after tomorrow!!! :D I LOVE YOU!!

Sister King

PS.  These words have also been playing thru my head - I don´t know the song but I love the words. haha

I’m coming home
I’m coming home
Tell the World I’m coming home
Let the rain wash away all the pain of yesterday
I know my kingdom awaits and they’ve forgiven my mistakes
I’m coming home, I’m coming home
Tell the World that I’m coming
I´M COMING HOOOOOOOMEEEE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Last Full Week

Oi Minha Familia!!

This week has been good. It has been so insanely hot I can´t even believe it. haha No one is sleeping anymore - it´s not just me! It´s impossible to sleep when you can´t stop sweating. So that´s been fun. haha 
Our awesome view.
There´s a huge festival going on close to our house and they have fireworks. \
I was so proud of this pic.

This week we had our mission Christmas Conference! :) It was pretty fun and I didn´t have to do a practice so that was just the best christmas present ever. haha We had trainings by the Assistants and the secretaries, we heard from President and Sister Wright, then watched district presentations. My district lamed out and just sang a song but the other presentations were incredible!! I recorded a few for you guys to watch when... next week!!!! haha ai que trunqueza! Then, we watched a slide show from the year in pictures everyone sent in, and my umbrella picture in Passo Fundo was the very first picture of the whole slide show!! I felt pretty cool. haha in the background was the trunkiest music ever - Michael Buble - and I´m pretty sure I´m not the only one who wished the slide show was a little longer. haha!! It was fun to see everyone again but made me kind of trunky cuz no one just said hi. Everyone was like "Hey Sister King you´re going home!" haha it was kind of funny. Anyway...

A big kitty.
I love that kitty.
Im pretty sure they made Garfield after meeting this cat. 

Anyway, besides that it was a pretty normal week. We got to do divisions on Sunday and I went out with one of the YW in the ward. She´s super cool and we found some really cool families! :) It was pretty happy. Then, I got the craziest phone call ever. Which was from the office wanting to schedule my final interview with President. It will be next Monday morning before emails so... pray for me!

Yesterday was so hot. Everyday is so hot. Today isn´t quite as hot actually but it´s SUPER ... abafado... wet? Like it feels like I´m swimming in the air. haha but it´s nice to have a break from the sun. We´re going to the temple here in another hour or two so I´m so excited!! 
Christmas conference! Me with Sister Phillips who served in Sequim!!! 

I honestly can´t believe this is my very last full week of being a missionary. I´ve fought a nice long, hard battle and I´m just so exhausted. I´m so grateful for the time I´ve had to be here, for the people I´ve met and the experiences I´ve had. I´m so grateful for the chance I´ve had to serve the Lord. 

Thank you again for all your sweet emails and support! I just love you all so much!! Pray for me this week - I´m gonna need it! haha I LOVE YOU!!!


Learning to make salgados at Ketlin and Tiago´s house! so cool.

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Oi Familia!

Hello my dear family!

This week was a good one. This week was a HOT ONE. Oh my goodness it´s so hot here in Novo Hamburgo. But we are one of the lucky ones and have a fan in our house, so ... at least there´s that. I´m back to the days of lathering in sun screen and bug spray 45 times a day and I still have a sweet tan and a million bug bites. haha BUT... I do what I can. 

Thanksgiving here was just completely normal. I actually forgot until the very end of the day when I realized with was Thursday and then I bought myself Ice cream. 

I also am one of the lucky ones and forgot to tell you last week that I have a bed!!! It´s a bunk bed. So that´s pretty chique. Even with a bed tho, it´s been hard to sleep. I was wide awake one night and decided to write in my journal a bit. My companion saw me awake and came and sat by me - totally drugged by sleepiness - and in her sleepy glory all she could think to do was sing to me. "Soft Kitty, Warm Kitty, Little ball of fur!! Happy Kitty, Sleepy Kitty, purr purr purr!!" hahahahahahah I almost died laughing and thought you guys would appreciate it. She´s pretty hillarious. Especially in English. Anyway - totally made my day... er... night.

We finally got some rain tho!! And man - the rain is sooooo much happier in the summer! haha We were walking home one night, it´s about an hour´s walk home, and JUST as we stepped outside the door of our last investigator for the night, it started POURING. And oh how it poured! Niether of us had umbrellas so we just let it rain. Within seconds I was drenched and literally felt like I was taking a shower in all my clothes. Actually, I think it was probably raining with more force than our shower head. haha Anyway... we were wet monsters but oh the rain felt so good after so much heat! We saw a car stalled at the stoplight and had a few minutes before 9, so we decided to help. So, in this pouring rain, we pushed a girls´ car all the way to the gas station, then booked it home in time for ... 9:00. haha it just felt like a cool scene from a movie. 

Have you guys seen the new video the church made? It´s SO GOOD!!! We had an entire training talking about this video and we are now telling EVERYONE about it. It´s so cool! We have pass along cards with this site and are supposed to share it for every lunch message with members, then challenge the members to share it on facebook. So - this is me telling you to watch and share. :) I´ve seen it a million times, but it just gets better every time. I just think it´s so cool what the church is doing! 

Anyway, it´s´been a good week. We´ve found a lot of families and some really cool people that I´m excited to work with. We´re gettin this area up and runnin and ... it´s been cool. :) We met all of our goals for the month so today is Pdayzão for us!! That means we have Pday ALLL DAYYYYY!!!!! It's like the happiest thing ever. haha 

Next week I get to go to the temple so my Pday will be on Tuesday. So, you wont hear from me till then - just as a warning. :) It´s been almost 7 months without going to the temple, so I´m pretty stoked! 

I love you alllll!! Thank you for your wonderful emails! I miss you like crazy and can´t wait to see you sooooon!! :) I hope you all had wonderful thanksgivings! :D


Monday, November 24, 2014

My Last Transfer

Well - week one is OVER!!!!! Man I´ve forgotten how slow the weeks go when you´re totally and completely lost. All the time. And don´t know anyone. Farroupilha already feels like a dream and it makes me sad. I miss that place. hhh... anyway. Things are good. I really am enjoying my new area, new companion and everything... it´s just been a loooong week. haha

Well, for transfer day, Bishop and Nice took us to Caxias to catch the bus at like 5 AM. Transfer time changed from 11 AM to 9:30 AM so we had to leave a lot earlier. It´s crazy. Anyway... they were wonderful and helped us get there in time and oh I was sad to say goodbye. But, it was "goodbye for now" so that is better. haha I got to the Rodoviária in Porto Alegre and met a Sister - Sister Phillips who waited for her visa for FOURTEEN MONTHS. Yeah. That´s insane. But the even more insane part was that she served IN SEQUIM!!! I wanted to hug her just to hug something that´s been to Sequim more recently than I have. I forgot how much I miss home. But anyway, it was fun talking to her. She said she saw my plaque, mom and dad´s plaque and even saw our old house!! She said people still talk about us and... that made me happy too. haha It was cool. That poor thing tho - only 4 months in Brazil. I don´t know if I would have switched that close to the end.

Time is just a crazy crazy thing. Everything feels so incredibly fast and slow all at the same time. At transfers I met an Elder who I served with in Passo Fundo. He was in his first area there (here on the mish we say "I watched him be born" AKA... I was there when he came on the mish) and told me he's at almost a YEAR!!!! My mind was completely blown. haha he just got here!!! I JUST GOT HERE!!! haha The time sure flies when you´re looking back at it.   Anyway...

I guess I should prolly tell you all where I am now, right? Yeah, so I´m in a city called Novo Hamburgo I´ve actually always wanted to come here so I was pretty happy. (Novo Hamburgo) And that´s about all I know. haha BUT the crazy part? I´m in the dead center of the city AGAIN!!! That makes five out of my six areas in the dead center of the city. haha ooooh I love the city. My companion is Sister Rodrigues (eyyy Hannah!) and she´s really cool. She´s from São Paulo, and is just returning to the mission after being home for 6 months recovering from a shoulder injury. Or something like that. She was trained by Sister Loss and was living with Sister Cleveland right before she went home so - we have some fun connections. She speaks absolute perfect English so she´s decided her new mission is to break me back into English so I don´t make a million English mistakes when I go home. haha BUT. I already speak English good so... hahah

The ward here seems pretty fun. It´s weird to be back in a real chapel. They have a REAL PIANO!!! I almost cried. haha it´s so weird to see a real piano. Anyway, I got asked to speak yesterday... during the meeting. haha But I had fun. It´s gonna be weird having to speak in English again someday. We're teaching a really fun family, Ketlin and Tiago, and their three kids. They´re so much fun! Ketlin and Tiago will be married just shortly after I leave, and so I get to plan a wedding again! I won't be there to do her hair, but I get to be a witness in the civil part... er something. It´s confusing. haha but anyway, they´re the only ones I´ve really gotten to know, but we seem to have a good group of people to teach. There´s a lot of crazy steep hills here too so... hopefully I wont come home too fat! haha 

Being transfered is a funny thing. I´ve forgotten the things that always happen at transfers. 1st of all, everyone ALWAYS thinks you´re in your first area. And they talk to you really slowly if they can tell you´re American. Then, when I start speaking back they´re like "Woah! how did you learn so fast?" And you explain you´ve been living in Brazil over a year and THEN they realize it´s not your first area. haha Also, I think I´ve said this, but everyone always says I have a Portuguese (from Portugal) accent and it makes me so happppyyyyy!!! Sister Furtado went home this last week and she said the same thing when I went to say goodbye to her. mwahaha! I love being trained by a Portuguesa! And the third thing I get every time I´m in a new area is "why aren´t you sister queen?" And I have to laugh every time and pretend I haven´t been hearing that since the day I was born. hahahahaha. ha.
Two other questions I always get when I get to a new area: "Do you know how to make brownies?" and "Are you rich?" which is a really tough question cuz if you say "Yes." Then you´ll probably get robbed. But if you say "No." They argue with you and say "yes you are!" hahah oooooh this place is weird.

Anyway, it´s been a good week. I´m living with Sister Lima and Sister Cook (actually, funny story. I was living with Sister Cardoso at the beginning of this week. She´s going home around the same time as I am. She stayed in Novo Hamburgo a grand total of 3 days and was transferred again! OH my goodness. It´s crazy. So, Sister Cook is here now and she´s cool. Anyway...) I´ll make the best of my time in Novo Hamburgo and I will definitely keep you all posted. :) I love you all so much and hope all is well!!!


Monday, November 17, 2014

Another piece of the house to build

I woke up this morning excited cuz I knew this would be the last time I´d ever have to stress out about transfers. I really don´t like transfers. Especially this one. *sigh* I´m leaving Farroupilha and I`m sad to spend my last four weeks with people I don´t know, in an area I don´t know, with members I don´t know... no one to send me home... Que Maldade.

BUT. Tis this mission life I live and I guess I better have a good attitude about this or the end of my mission is just gonna be sad. And I don´t want it to be sad. I have had SUCH an amazing six weeks with Sister Ribeiro and... I´m so sad to leave her too, but I´m grateful I got to be with her here and that I got the time I did. We´ve been through a lot together, and I truely needed her during this time in my mission. In my life. Farroupilha has been a home away from home and, though I´m so sad to leave, I´m comforted recognizing that 1) I´ll be back here in just a few weeks and 2)... it´s all in the hands of the Lord right? Maybe it´d be too easy to stay.

This last week here has been incredible. Last monday we had FHE with an awesome family here. We taught her to make brownies and she taught us to make Pasteis. MMMM... so good! I ate 7. 

Learning to make bread with Irmã Lourdes

Pasteis with Rudineia

THEN I hit my one year mark in Brazil and Nice, Bishop, Jen and Tiago took us all out for pizza!!!! It´s Rodízio pizza which means it´s all you can eat and pretty much delicious. I ate 16 slices. And I´m pretty sure I gained like 3 kilos just this week. haha woops. It was an awesome way to celebrate the survival of an entire year here in Brazil! haha

Sister Amorim made me a cool 1 year poster

I did her hair.
Friday, we got permission to go with Amanda to pick out her wedding dress in Caxias and we spent the day preparing everything with her. It was SO much fun. I just love her so much. Saturday was the big day and Oh I cried like a little baby. I just love that little family and I am so so grateful I got to be here for their wedding. I´m so grateful the Lord let me stay at least a little longer here so I could see this part of their story. I got to do her hair, Sister Amorim did her makeup and it was a beautiful, beautiful day. That night, Rodrigo received the Melchezidek (I still can´t spell that) priesthood and was sustained in Sunday´s Stake Conference. :) 
This is a double intertwined french braid and Yes, I´m a pro.
The happy couple

The happy family!!

What a week. :) I feel so blessed to have gotten to stay three transfers here in Farroupilha. Though I´m sad to be leaving now, I am just glad I got this third transfer here. This has been one of the best transfers of my mission and OH I wish this transfer didn´t have to end! haha but... I need to start getting excited for what lies ahead. All the new people I`ll meet, the new friends I`ll make and ... well... who knows. I sure don´t. But Jen sent me a good CS Lewis quote this week that I´d like to share with you all. It describes pretty well how I feel sometimes as a missionary. Like just when we feel like our house is built and thriving, He sets fire to it and makes us rebuild, higher, stronger, and better. That came out a little more pyro-maniac than I wanted it to, but you get my point: 

“Imagine yourself as a living house. God comes in to rebuild that house. At first, perhaps, you can understand what He is doing. He is getting the drains right and stopping the leaks in the roof and so on; you knew that those jobs needed doing and so you are not surprised. But presently He starts knocking the house about in a way that hurts abominably and does not seem to make any sense. What on earth is He up to? The explanation is that He is building quite a different house from the one you thought of - throwing out a new wing here, putting on an extra floor there, running up towers, making courtyards. You thought you were being made into a decent little cottage: but He is building a palace. He intends to come and live in it Himself.” 

So - off I go again. Another adventure, another piece of the house to build. I love you all and I thank you for your support and prayers. I hope you are all happy healthy and strong and ... I´ll keep you posted. :) 



Monday, November 10, 2014

Week 5

MY goodness how the weeks are flying. I can´t believe we´re already in the very last week of this transfer. Next week we´ll find out where I`ll spend the remainder of my mission and boy am I nervous!!
Cartório with Amanda and Rodrigo!

We started this week in the Farroupilha Cartório... the place where you get birth certificates and... mark weddings!!! Amanda and Rodrigo will finally be married this saturday at 10 AM and I am SOOOOOOOO EXCITED!!!!!!!!! An unnamed member in our ward paid for everything and I pretty much bawled my eyes out when I found out. Totally teared up at the cartório and ... I´m just hoping I don´t make a scene at their wedding cuz just thinking about it makes me cry! haha I`m so excited. My entire mission I´ve wanted to help with a wedding, but I always had to leave the area just a few weeks before. But this time... NOPE!  :)  Anyway... Twill be good. 

My Zone

We continued the week as normal, and Saturday we had another Mãos que ajudam project. Which is Helping Hands. We went to Bento Gonçalves for this activity and it was super cool. There was SO MUCH preparation that went into it and hardly anyone showed up. They had a health center that you could do different health tests, a financial adviser, beauty salon, missionary work room, nutritional advisor, and other cool stuff too. And the members had a great time. haha all the missionaries went out on the street inviting everyone to come in. I invited prolly 40 or so people on the street and no one came. BUT - twas a fun activity and afterwards the let all the sisters get their nails done. haha

Mãos que ajudam

THEN! Sunday, Milena was baptized! She is someone who was taught by the Elders a while back and our ward mission leader remembered her family and brought them to church again a few weeks ago! So cool. The rest of her family is also preparing for baptism. :) She´s awesome tho. She´s 16 and I just love her. 

Milena's baptism

Besides that, we just worked our brains out, got nasty sun burns on our heads, and oh, it´s good to be a missionary. :) Vou aproveitar meu tempo aqui porque sei que não tenho muito mais tempo. 

I love you all so much and hope all continues to go well!! Thank you for your emails!