Sunday, December 22, 2013

Cold In California

Dear family,                                                                           December 9, 2013

This week has been a good one!  I'm getting more and more adjusted to Laguna Beach, and it really is a nice place.  But I have to tell you, it is getting cooler here. I even brought out my coat, which I haven't worn since the MTC, this week, and I've been wearing it at night! :) So that’s been fun, and weird! It also has rained here, no snow ;)  haha, but sure doesn't feel like December, now it feels more like...hmm October.  Or early November, so really I can't complain.  Plus I can see the ocean every day, but it is still weird to not have snow this close to Christmas.

So a little about my week.  

As an STL, (Sister Trainging Leader) I go to many, many meetings.  It is quite...great. I used to think I had a lot, but now, I'm just learning to love meetings ;) thankfully they are all great and all about doing God's work, so really, they are wonderful, but there are lots!  

We had our mission leadership council on Thursday, and that was just great! :)   It was an all day thing though,  but it was really powerful and really spiritual. We talked about a lot of things, but one thing that really stuck out to me was this "Satan is the master of complexity, and the Savior is the master of simplicity."  It was said by someone in a conference that President Orgill attended a few weeks ago. But, I really liked it just because we as people do tend to complicate things, and we just need to remember the Savior, because He is our perfect example, so I want to do better at following Him.   This is His work, and He knows what will work best, and I just feel so privileged to be an instrument to Him at this time! This is HIS WORK!   And His gospel.   I love that He has called me to share it with others. I love that we are able to find those who are ready, and that they  are just willing to live the gospel and you can just see the Atonement at work!  So amazing!

So, an amazing Story!   So, last week Brian got baptized, well his grandma, "Grandma Joyce" is now taking the lessons (in another ward, but still, awesome!!!)  So that is great, it was such a powerful baptism, she totally felt the Spirit, and is just ready to accept!  And then, Brian’s parents came to church today, cause Brian was getting confirmed, and then they invited us to come over on Christmas, after we had called from Brian and Kristy's :) So, I'll be taken care of on Christmas, by nonmembers, which is just cool!!! Miracles happen everyday!

So lets see...what else.  Oh, so our ward does this big event every year called "O, Holy Night."   They have people donate nativities that other people can walk around and see, and music and a live nativity outside!  So it is just lots of fun.   But anyway, on Friday we, as a missionary choir, sang that night, and since it was our ward we were there long before we sang.  And then...Sister Kimball and I got asked to be in the live nativity for a while.  We didn’t have to do anything, just stand there.   But I was an angel,  and Sister Kimball was Mary.  And our assistants were Wisemen.  And a few other Elders were shepherds and Joseph.   But we were out there for like 45 minutes, and it was pretty cold, so that was an adventure.  And not something I ever expected I'd do on my mission! haha, but it was pretty funny. I’ll try to get pictures from someone, cause that will probably be an awesome picture.

Saturday was a weird, but good day!  We had a sister’s lunch with all of the sisters that Sister Kimball and I are over at the Mission Home, and that was just a lot of fun!  We had lunch, and then did a short little training/thought about unity. Then we did a little white elephant gift exchange.   So it was a good way to get to know the sisters before we start going on exchanges this week!:)   So that should be exciting. :) Then we had a choir concert in Newport, so that was a different part of the mission that I hadn't been in yet!  So that was good, but it was just a weird day cause we didn’t do a lot of normal missionary work.  

So that was my week!! Getting colder here, and it is weird, it kinda is starting to feel like the Christmas season as we see Christmas trees in people's homes and we watched the Christmas broadcast last night, but just isn't the same.  But that just means I won't miss it as much, cause it doesn't feel like Christmas,  in the normal way, but I'll get to talk to you, so that will just make the day really special! :)  But, this year I have been more focused on the Savior, and how without him, we wouldn't be here, so I'm grateful that we have a set apart time that we can really celebrate his birth and what that can mean for each of us! :)  

Your week sounds good!  Funny that you had a birthday celebration for me and Kaytlin and we weren’t there, but ya know,  we were there in spirit!   It is weird, hearing about all the things that you are doing, that I usually am doing, and I miss it, but at the same time, I just feel like I'm having a really long summer vacation, with a few cold days.  haha. :)   SO that’s me!  But sounds like things are fun, be careful driving in the snow! :)    Glad to hear that you've been safe so far! :) I’ll look out for the packages mom!  Speaking of packages, did you get the 2 I sent home for Christmas? Just wondering, cause you never mentioned them!

I'm so glad that you took my challenge!  I love that you are trying, and I know that it is hard! But hey, whether the gospel conversation is with a nonmember, or a member, or someone who fell away, or someone returning, it is the same, because we are helping them, and how great shall be our joy (D and C 18:15-16)  :)   So keep it up, just be aware of the people around you, and pray to recognize the opportunities. Be a friend.  Post a quote.  Really anything and everything that will help someone feel the love of the Savior! :)  Especially at this Christmas season!!!  I love you all!  And I can’t wait to see your beautiful smiling faces on Christmas!  It'll be great! :)

Also... funny story, the other day an elder asked me how long I'd been out on a mission, and I said 10 months. Then paused and felt a little shocked that that is how long I’ve been out!! Crazy crazy!!  Anyway, I love you!

Have a good week!  Also, in your next letters, could you share your testimony with me! :)  Love you!


Sister Taylor Burningham

Sister Macey from my ward in San Clemente came to a Mission Leadership Council that we had.  She sent these pictures.  

Me and Sister Macey

Me, Sister Macey and Sister Drinkwater

Sister Jackson, Sister Macey, Me, Sister Drinkwater

Sister Macey and President Orgill

Sister Jackson and Sister Drinkwater teaching

Me and my new companions with Sister Orgill

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