Dear Mommy Daddy and Kenna!!! March 12, 2013
Hello, It really is hard to believe that another week has come and gone, amazing!
This week has been good, I got a bad cold when I got here, and this past week I've been coughing A LOT but I'm getting better!! It is so good to hear from you! They do mail kinda funny here, so we get it on Monday's at our district meeting, so the letters I'll be writing you will be in response to the ones from last week, so Idk if we could get that changed, but it's ok. cause I love to hear from you, and even if we are kind of off, we still can share experiences and well... ya :) So keep writing!! Oh, but last week was weird, cause the first Friday we had a meeting, and got the mail. So yesterday was the first time we've gotten mail since my 3rd day here. I was trying to be patient, and not worry. What helped was turning to the Lord, and really trying to work!
This past week has been a little slow, and a little rough. But we've seen some miracles as well!!! So... let me see... A lot of our appointments fell through. We had days where by the end, we hadn't felt like we'd done much, because when your plan and your back up fall through, you turn to the Lord... But even then, it was hard! This week we've been going to see the part member families in our ward. Some of them welcome us in, but are not interested. Others say "just don't come back," and others do want us to come and talk to them. So we'll see what comes out of this! I've been a lot more comfortable this past week, I'm getting more used to the schedule, the people, and I'm just relaxing in the sense that I am becoming more comfortable with being a missionary.
The work is progressing (sorry I'm all over the place today, but I'll try to say everything I need to!). As I think you heard, there were 58 new missions created, or will be created. One of them is here in California. The Irvine mission. The top four stakes in Carlsbad will be joining 2 stakes from the Anaheim mission to create that mission. The area I'm in will be a part of the Irvine mission come July. We aren't sure, but we think that those of us who are already in the four stakes will be switched into that mission. So if I’m still here, I may be in a different mission come July! So I guess we'll see! But that is exciting! Also, because of that, our mission has set a goal to have 300 baptisms by June 30! How amazing is that? 300 more people coming unto God!!! We have 71 right now, so the average is about 3 per ward, so we are really working hard to reach that goal.
We've seen a few miracles this week. First, we are working with a man, Rich, who is engaged to a less active, we went over to their house, just to see her on Sunday night. Not planning to see him, since he was out of town this past week. But while we were there, he came home, and we had a lesson about the Book of Mormon. He was so...interested, he really wanted to learn more about it, he thinks that it is an interesting book, but he was asking about the Savior, and how he came and talked to the people here, since he didn't know. We read 3 Nephi 11 with him, and the spirit was just so strong! We hope he will be getting baptized this summer. He just needs to get married first :)
Also, on Sunday, we were just there, and this lady came up to us, and said her name was Dora. She had a man with her. After Sunday school she came up and told us that he is investigating the church, and he is ready for the lessons. We teach him Thursday night!!! But, the Lord is preparing people, and as we work diligently to find, the Lord blesses us, and we are given people!
We have one other investigator, Amanda. She really just needs to try her faith and come to church! We weren't able to see her this past week, cause she's been sick. But we hope to see her soon!!
I'm learning a lot of things on my mission. One is to like salad. We have dinner with members every night (except Tuesdays) and every night pretty much, we have salad with our meal. I can't say that it's growing on me. But it’s not terrible. :) I'm also learning about the Lord, and talking to Him through prayer. I love praying (which is good cause we do it a lot every single day!) And I'm learning to trust in Him, that He knows what He's doing, and what we need to learn from each and every experience! It is humbling, and remarkable! The spirit is an amazing gift that we all have!
I'm glad to hear that all is going pretty well at home! I'm glad Tyra liked my card! I cannot believe that she is 12!!! NUTS!!!! But also very exciting, I think that she will LOVE young women’s!!! :) Say hello to everyone for me when you see them next!
Can't wait to hear more details about Nationals.... What was the placing in team match? I'm sure you guys all did well though!! Kenna, I do love your hair, reminds me of when I dyed mine. It's pretty! But, however you choose to keep it is your choice! :) It is beautiful either way!
I love your letters. Like I said, we got mail yesterday, and I devoured them...thankfully, we'd already planned for the night so I could do that!!! I love hearing from everyone that sends me things! :)
I love being out here. It is beautiful (glad you liked the postcard. ;) I saw it and had to send it!) At nights it does get cooler, and I've actually worn my coat a few times. The cold is different here, it’s wet. But it has been pretty nice!! And a few of the days have been pretty warm! It's nice! :) But, I love the work. I love contacting. Not sure why, because it is scary, and most of the time, people ignore you, or say no thanks. But it pushes me out of my comfort zone. And well.... helps me grow!!
I'm talking more in lessons ;) now that I'm warming up! Which is good! I'm learning and progressing!!! And still not even believing that a month ago (seems like yesterday) I entered the MTC. But, wow. :) Missions are great.
we talk to a lot of people. We are trying to get the members of our ward more involved in missionary work, because Sister Longhurst and I cannot do it all alone. So we are calling on the ward. It's just hard because people here are so busy. If there is ever a free moment, they go to the beach to surf. But we are trying, and the Lord will bless us!!
Can't wait to hear from you again. I love P-days, by Monday I can tell that I need P-day so that I can get back to work without burning out! But it is great to be able to hear from you!
I'm excited for Natasha, she will do great! :) I will ask Sister Longhurst if she knows anyone where Ethan is at! Super cool! In the church, it is just such a small world. (The other day we met a member who asked if I knew Lauren Holmoe (I went to school with her) This lady was friends with her mom) Small world though!
My homesickness hasn't been too bad. I think it got bad Sunday night and yesterday morning, cause I felt like it had been awhile since I'd heard from you. I wondered what you'd been up to... It was just a little hard. But, I am good. In those moments, I pray and then get to work. My goal this past week, and to continue, is to try a little bit more each day, try harder to be a better missionary than I was the day before. I can see that it helps, and gives me a reason to push myself a little bit more!!!
OK, so I hope you haven't sent the package yet... cause I thought of a few things that I also wanted.... So hopefully you get this, if not, they aren't needed, so just whenever you get the chance. Here are the things: my blue shirt that I love (I’m going to wear it under my suit jacket), there is a spiral notebook on my bookshelf, middle shelf, towards the right. It isn't a regular notebook, but it has poems in it... that I’ve written, and I was wondering if you could send that so I could write some more in there!. Also, that pink scrapbook that Racquel gave me (top shelf of bookshelf) Because it is not very full, but I can print out pictures, and fill it, instead of buying a whole new one. Oh and also my wicked shirt... :) Please and thanks. But that's it. So not necessary... but I'd like those :) Mom-I got the 60 dollars on my card for food and such.... So that is how it is reimbursed.
Thanks for the emails, and the love that I can feel! It sounds like you are doing well, and I am glad! You are in my prayers, and close to my heart!! I'm so glad that we are able to talk to each other through email and letters!! :)
I love you all! The work is progressing! Look around you, and see people that you see or talk to everyday, think of what could help them in their lives, the parts of the gospel that could bless them! Share it! (even if they aren't members, or less active!) Talk to them. Pray for them! And keep working on being diligent this week! :) I'm glad you took that challenge!!!
I love you all! Stay close to the Lord, and recognize all those small tender mercies of the Lord! Write them down! In your journal. in a letter. Somewhere. So that they are recorded!!
I’ll be writing you this afternoon (letters) as well!!
Love LOVE love LOVE LOVE you!!!!
Love always, Sister Taylor Burningham
P.S. Can't believe Trevor has been out a year! Time flies! (also, do my emails get sent to him do you know? if not that's ok I was just wondering!)