Wednesday, May 26, 2010

News for the Week

Hello again. Thank you everyone for the fun birthday surprises! It was a good day and I ate soooo much that I wanted to be sick. We had an FHE with 3 of the families in the ward and it was fun. We played Do You Love Your Neighbor. It's a game where you sit in a circle and someone is in the middle and asks to one person Do You Love Your Neighbor? You can say yes and the people on your sides have to switch places before the person in the middle steals their seat. Or if you say no you have to say "But I do love...(everyone with brown hair) and everyone has to switch chairs and the person in the middle has to try and grab a seat. It was fun! Sister Shumaker made me a's still sitting in our fridge...we've been on overkill sweets, so we haven't even dived in yet. I want to today though, it looks appetizing :)

This morning we went strawberry picking with Sister Book. She is the lady who owns the house and lives below us. Her daughter Macina came too and she brought a friend Juliette with her. Juliette is a funny lady. Sister Book brought her because she has been talking to her about the church. She committed to come to church, but she is a believer in the gift of tongues, but not in the same way we believe if you know what I mean. It was sooo fun! We picked strawberries, peas, and cauliflower. They have all these produce fields out in the country, so it was so pretty to see the country. There were some huge houses out there. It was east of us somewhere. I think it's called Pungo or it's near there where we went.

After email we are going to go get our nails done. Yay! Thanks so much parents. I am excited about this and so are the other sisters.

We have a new investigator named Jessica who is just great. A lady from the Sanbridge Ward called us and told us about her. They have a mutual friend from N.C. where Jessica is from. Her husband just deployed on the Truman (and so did a bunch of ward members), so she has been bored and lonely. She is 20 and just got married in December, no kids. So we called her and she came to Bible Study with us last night and loved it. She is very smart and said she feels that she's been in the dark for awhile and is excited to learn more. She has the thickest accent. She is from a small town at the base of the Appalachian (sp?) Mtns. in N.C. I'll have to let you know more about how that goes.

Last Saturday we had the annual ward picnic and I got to play some softball!!! Yay! Well it was a few adults and a bunch of kids, so we sort of played. But it was sooo fun. The picnic was a good time. One of our investigators showed I guess but it was at the end and we were on the field. And we had this less active family come and they had a good time. Ward picnics at a park are a good activity.

Yay! Shekaylia was baptized last Saturday night. It was such a good baptism. Sister Jacob sang I Know That My Redeemer Lives and we had some great talks. And then she was confirmed on Sunday!!! Her dad came to both events, so hopefully he'll come to church with her again.

So on Sunday we had a member lesson with the mother-in-law of one of the recent converts who went less active. I've been asking about her since I got here and apparently it was weird when they went less active with the other sisters, so there hasn't been any contact for a few months. So when we were at this lesson we hear someone stop by and talking in the other room. And what do you know, but the recent convert shows up. We ran into the other room and she was happy to see us. She wasn't sure why missionaries stop coming, so hopefully this chance run-in will help her to come to church again soon. Her daughter turns 6 soon, so we are going to help her decorate on Friday.

I have 2 quotes for you. The first is by President Harold B. Lee on testimony. "Testimony isn't something that you have today and you keep always. Testimony is either going to grow and grow to the brightness of certainty, or it is going to diminish to nothingness, depending upon what we do about it. I say, the testimony that we recapture day by day is the thing that saves us from the pitfalls of the adversary." I like this quote and it makes me think of before my mission and also about after my mission and asking the question "Am I working day by day to strengthen my knowledge and testimony?" I found in my reading this morning these 2 verses: 3 Nephi 26: 9, 11 and I thought they were great. Sometimes we have to search (study not just read) in order to gain greater knowledge.

The other quote is by President Boyd K. Packer. "True doctrine, understood, changes attitudes and behavior. The study of the doctrines of the gospel will improve behavior quicker than a study of behavior will improve behavior." I LOVE this quote. I've taught a couple of women over the last few months that say they are amazed at how much more patient they are after they started reading their Book of Mormon. They've noticed their tempers don't flare as easy and they relate better to others and their kids. How cool is that?

Well I love you all and hope things are going well. I know that as you put God first in your life everything will fall in to place. If you don't know this for yourself, then experiment and try it out. Alma 32:27.

Sister Talbot

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Serious Rain!

Bro. Moldanado

Melissa Richardson, sister in NN2 that found me in Norfolk

                                            Shekaylia is the one not in white
Rainy day

 Hello everyone! I hope you are all doing just great! Things in Norfolk are going well. We are going to the Botanical Gardens today. I am excited because I haven't done really anything on P-Day except sports and the normal stuff. I am having issues figuring out how to send pics home from this new library, but hopefully I can figure it out to send pics of the gardens.

It rained Sunday to Tuesday, so when we were out and about on Monday we got drenched from head to toe. Yes, we had umbrellas, but it was windy, so they really were just wind blockers, not rain blockers. We started trudging through ankle deep puddles because well we couldn't get any more wet. We could ring out our skirts! It was so fun, but made missionary work interesting when we couldn't really go to people's houses and well not really a good tracting day.

Funny story that I wish I could send you a picture we're at this member's home and he is a funny old guy.  We are sharing a scripture and he interrupts and asks me if he could give me something. I look at Sis. Woodruff because he's not someone you jump and say yes to and this was my first time meeting him. Beforehand she was telling me how he makes these great cakes and he always gives them to people, so she's like "you can say yes" both of us thinking it would be cake. So I say sure and he quickly reaches up to his eye and pulls his glass eye out. Both of us are freaking out and his wife is just laughing and shaking her head. It was so funny!!! And to make it even funnier, we both look at each other and are like let's take a picture. So we have some hilarious pictures of Bro. Moldanado holding his eye socket open and holding his glass eye. Sounds so gross, but it was soooo hilarious.

So we have been teaching this girl named Shekaylia and she's had missionaries on and off for a year. She's only 19, so that's crazy! She was originally scheduled to be baptized last August and then they reset her for this August. Now she is going to be baptized on Saturday. She had her interview last night, so she is all set to go. She is so great! She doesn't want to go to the singles ward, so we just have to help her feel included in the family ward.
Well I need to go, so more next week! And I'll let you know how the birthday celebrations go :)

Love you all!
Sister Talbot

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Norfolk, VA - May 12, 2010

Has everyone recovered from Mother's Day weekend? I sure hope so. Sounds like it was a great time! Has it gotten too hot to be outside down there or can you still bear it? Sister Woodruff's family told her that it was freezing in UT. Haha I remember those days of being cold in May. I'm in a long sleeve today, but last week was melting in short sleeves. It's really random weather here, but I am so grateful, because from my exposure so far...I don't love the humidity!!! Well except that my hair is curly

I am learning the area slowly but surely! Norfolk is a totally different set up than Newport News, so it's going to be a little harder to learn. Newport News has 2 main roads (for example....Country Club and Alma School) and the whole city runs along those streets, so it's a skinny long city. Then you have a couple roads that connect them (like University...go for awhile and then Southern). Here you have a lot of main roads and not really any sense to where they are at. But things are looking familiar! And I've met a few more of the investigators and can actually match some member's names to faces. Haha, it's quite the process.

Elder Duke and Elder Hall are the elders in the ward. Elder Hall is from Yuma. They are great missionaries and so it will be great to have a co-effort in the ward again. They live with the elders in Norfolk 1 and we live with Sister Jacob and Sister Allgood who are the sisters in Norfolk 1. The sisters are great. We have so much fun and we all are lively and love the mission. It's such a blessing to have my companion and to be in the apartment with them. Sister Woodruff is so great. She came out a transfer before me and has been in Norfolk her whole mission. The first half in 2nd Ward and then the next half covering both wards with Sister Jacob. Then when Sister Allgood and I came, they split the sisters back up again. Her dad is a Seminary/Institute teacher, so she went from Cedar City, to close to Fargo, ND and then to Heber City. She definitely picked up the teaching from her dad, she is a GREAT teacher!

One of the investigators I've met so far is Carolyn. She is so cool. She takes pages of notes when she reads every night. She has the triple and bible, so she is cross referencing all over the place. Her struggle is her addiction to smoking and it's a bad one too. Why do people smoke? Ahhhhh, Virginia needs to pass a law against smoking!

So cool story. We have hardly any miles here for some reason, so we decided to walk to this place a few miles away. While we were walking on this random neighborhood street a car pulls up beside us and we hear "Sister Talbot" and we both look and see Melissa Richardson. It was weird because both of us were like who in Norfolk would call my name. Haha. Well Melissa Richardson is a member in NN2 who I've been teaching regularly for 3 months! I wasn't able to call her before transfers, so it was so cool to see her. Her husband is Navy and she was in Norfolk picking him up and they saw us walking. It was so cool to see her and of course get a picture. I can't email pics from this computer I'm on, so I'm going to try and trade we'll see about pics.

My companion shared with me some thoughts from 1 Nephi 8 and it helped me to learn and get a new perspective on Laman and Lemuel. One thing I never internalized before was that they NEVER partook of the fruit. They weren't those that ate it and then strayed, but never tasted it. Interesting eh? Well if you haven't read that chapter recently, you should pick up the Book of Mormon and read it. It's such a great chapter, I love it!

I hope you are all doing so well! I love you.
Sister Talbot

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

My New Assignment

So I never thought I would see the day when I would leave the city of Newport News, but that day is tomorrow. I am sad, but excited at the same time. As challenging as this transfer has been, I've loved the lessons I've learned and the people I've been able to teach. It'll be a bummer to not be able to see Tommy and Madie be baptized. They are two unbaptized youth I've been teaching since February and I LOVE their family!!! But happy day for the new elders who are taking over NN2. Yes, elders are being sent in and we are being sent out. It's an elder's area, so it's about time they sent them back in. Haha. Sister Anderson will be going to Jamestown and I will be going to................................................................ Norfolk 2nd Ward!!!!! My new companion is Sister Woodruff. I don't know anything about her except she came out the transfer before me and she's been in Norfolk her whole mission. Oh and she's tall. What's with getting tall comps? I've met her before and she's nice and Elder Kent said she's funny, so this should be so fun! Norfolk has 2 wards and each ward has elders and the sisters have been covering both, but I think they will both now have a set of each. I am excited to work with elders again. I have no idea of my new address, but you can always send stuff to the Mission Office address in the meantime.

We've had a great week and have had some great lessons. Ft. Eustis has been so fun and that is probably what I'll miss the most about this area. Tommy and Madie and their parents (the Wise family) came to church this last Sunday, so that was awesome!!!! We've had some really great member lessons too. We don't really get many member referrals in this area, so we've been working to inspire the members to share the gospel with friends and family members and invite them over for lessons and to the activities the ward puts on. It's been going well...our members have been telling us about people they've been inviting to things. They don't necessarily come, but they are inviting and that is where the success is. As members of the Church we should be inviting people to come unto Christ and invite them to learn about the restored gospel and then they have their agency to decide whether or not they will accept the opportunity.

I've been reading in Helaman, which is sooo good. Well not good because the Nephites are being silly and wicked, but good because a lot of inspiring verses. I really like Helaman 6:35-36. Mormon made this conclusion when he abridged the Book of Mormon and I love it. The Spirit will be with us more when we believe the words and then apply. How can we live this life without the Holy Ghost? We can't!!!! Another question is how can we live this life without the words of prophets to guide us? We cannot!!! We meet so many people who believe that God won't call more prophets to the earth. I know that He has and will continue to so that we can be prepared for the Second Coming and we don't have to depend on the wisdom of man to get us to the Celestial Kingdom.

Random funny things from this last week...these gangster guys roll up next to us as we were pulling away from our parking spot and one says to me "hey mommy". What kind of a pick up line is that?!?!?!? Hahahahahaha We laughed about that forever. He wanted us to come teach him, but we just left him with our website. I have a feeling his intentions were not to accept the restored gospel. Haha. And later that same day we were tracting in this apt complex and we talk to this man who was out with his grandson and we walk up and say hi and he looks at me and says "You're pretty." Okay what do I say to that?! Haha. So we talk about Christ and he just kept straying from the conversation. He then asked if I was single and I said I am a missionary and unavailable. Well he heard available and starts telling me that he is available too and then I was like here's a card, we've got to go. And he looks at the card and is like why isn't your picture on it? Can I get one with your picture? Hahahaha. And he was probably in his 40's. Saturday was a weird day. Haha