Week 17: Meet Me in St. Louis!

Dear Family and Friends,

That song has been stuck in my head since we went to the temple on Saturday. Haha Going to the temple was so great!! I love the temple! The peace you feel just being inside is so completely amazing! This week has been super crazy and I can’t even remember half of the things we’ve done this week.
The most exciting news is that we’re having a baptism on Saturday! Lisa is getting baptized! We’re so excited for her!
We met a really Anti guy the other day. His wife is an inactive member and her mom is a member as well. He blew smoke in our faces and hates Joseph Smith. It was sad. We won’t be going back there!
So after we went to the temple on Saturday we had a wedding and a baptism. Carrie and Jim got married at 7 and then Carrie got baptized at 8. It was awesome!
Today we are going to Mammoth Springs for a Zone Outing. So that will be fun. Sorry my letter is super short this week but we don’t have a lot of time today.
Mary and Bucky are in Utah for the week with the Stovalls so we aren’t able to see them for a while, but Brother Stovall said that they will probably be ready for lessons when they get back. They also took their secretary Kelsey with them and said she has to live by mormon standards while she’s with them. She was asking Bucky questions about the church the other day so she’s interested in the gospel! It’s so exciting!
I love you all!
Sister Moon
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Week 16 : I Love to See the Temple!

Dear Family and Friends,
We get to go to the temple on Saturday!! Woooo! Our ward has a new member baptism temple trip every month and we get to go because we have a couple of new members who are going for the first time! It’s so exciting! The temple is 4 hours away tho so it’s going to be a long day, a long awesome day! We’re going to the St. Louis MO temple. I’m so excited! I’ll send you pictures of it next week!
So this week has been crazy busy because of transfers and helping Sister Mordecai get familiar with the area but it’s been so good!
On Monday night we were supposed to eat dinner with the Stovall family, but it didn’t work out so their non-member secretary volunteered to take us. It was awesome. We’ve met her only a couple times but we all got along really well so she and her friend went with us to dinner. It was awesome. Now we are convieniently stopping at their office every once in a while to drop things off for them and just happen to talk about the gospel with her. It’s been really good and we’re hoping that the more she comes in contact with the church that she will be open to taking the lessons.
I think I’ve talked about Bucky and Mary before but if not. They are friends with the Stovalls as well. Bucky is a direct decendant of Joseph Smith and he has been friends with brother Stovall for a long time. He grew up RLDS, but wasn’t active in it for a long time. Brother Stovall was RLDS as well before he met his wife and got baptized. Bucky is ready to be baptized and really wants to but he is waiting on Mary. They have been engaged for about 3 months and they were planning on getting married in about a year when Sister Goodman and I got here. Then last week Bucky was saying that they were thinking about getting married in a couple months. Then on Friday Brother Stovall called us at about 5:00 and told us that Bucky and Mary were getting married at 6:00. I guess they decided at about 1:30 that day that they were going to get married. We had a dinner apointment that we couldn’t cancel so we were not able to go to the wedding even though we really wanted to. But we went to the reception after and got to congratulate them. It was so awesome! We were so excited when we heard the news. Now they’re one step closer to being baptized. We are just waiting for Mary to soften a little so that we can teach them the lessons and get them baptized. We know that they will sometime in the near future but we’re just not sure how soon that will be. We just continue to spend as much time around them as possible so they feel more comfortable with us and hopefully Mary will be comfortable taking the lessons from us. They continue to come to church every week with their family and they even go to all the service progects too and all the ward activities. It’s awesome!
We taught Emily and Jake this week and they have a date to be baptized on July 5. We are now focusing on her mom who is less active so that the twins can have support so they don’t get baptized and then just fall away and never come. It’s just really hard cause she works almost every Sunday but we are working with her on that and hopefully she’ll start coming on the days she doesn’t work.
On Saturday we basically did service all day. It was really great. So we went to the ward service project at the Bruces, mowed their lawn and cleaned up around their house, we got done a lot quicker than we thought we would because there were so many people there so we did the same thing at a less active’s house named Joni. Then we went home to change and did some yard work for Sister Weidemier and then we went to the Stovalls and helped them build their house. They are building a cob house. So we had to mix the clay, sand, and straw and put it onto their house. It’s so cool!! I’ll send you pictures of it when we go and help them build again. I forgot to take pictures again…. haha I’ll get better at remembering someday…
That’s all the exciting news for this week.
HAPPY FATHER’S DAY!! To my wonderful dad and all my wonderful brothers!
Hurrah for Israel!
Love you all
Sister Moon
Photos:
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Week 15: Busy Busy Week!

Dear Family and Friends,

This week has been a crazy week, but it’s been good! The beginning of the week consisted of saying goodbye to a lot of people, well.. Sister Goodman was saying goodbye.
Monday we went to Tulsa for Sister Goodman’s hand appointment. It was such a long day!! 4 hours there and back. But it was pretty fun. Sister Goodman just has to have physical therapy twice a week for her hand.

Sister Mordecai is awesome!! We get along super well and she is a really great missionary! She’s from Lehi, Utah and has been out for 16 months, so she has 2 transfers left. I hope that I will be able to stay with her till the end of her mission. Things have been so crazy the past couple of days getting everything organized and there were a lot of things that needed to be fixed and changed so that we can work really hard here. I’m excited to be with Sister Mordecai! We went through the ward list with the bishop yesterday for 2 hours! But it was so good! Now we are ready to work super hard to get people back to church. There are 428 members of the ward in Ava and about 200 of those are active. It’s so crazy! Half the people on there no one even knows who they are or where they live. It’s crazy!
So on Thursday we went to the transfer point to drop off Sister Goodman and pick up Sister Mordecai. We got there and waited about an hour for the transfer cars to get there, so we talked to other missionaries for a while and then I met Sister Mordecai and said bye to Sister Goodman. Once we got back to Ava we dropped off Sister Mordecai’s stuff at the house and then we went to Seymour for our dinner appointment and to teach an investigator who lives there. Her name is Pam. Her son is a less active member and she knows the church is true but she just needs to quit smoking. We met with her twice this week on Thursday and on Sunday. We set a baptismal date with her forJuly 12!! WOOOOO!! We’re so excited! We know she can do it! We put pictures of Christ on all of her cigarette packs. It was awesome! She came to church yesterday too which was awesome too!
Friday night we had dinner with the Shoults family, Bucky and his fiance, Mary was there, and the Simmons family. We had the lesson on the Restoration with them and it was so great! We were so glad that Bucky could be there. He and Mary also went to church on Sunday and they said they are going to get married soon! They were going to wait for a year to get married but for some reason are going to get married sooner! They are so prepared! He goes to service projects, church for the past 4 weeks, they went to Doran’s baptism and they have great friends in the church. It’s so great!
We milked a cow this week!! It was Sister Mordecai’s first day and we went to dinner with a family who has a farm. They had to go milk the cow right after dinner so we asked if we could help. It was so weird! haha I’ve milked one before but it’s been a long time. It was awesome. I’ll send the pictures of it.
Not much else was too exciting.. Next week I’m sure I’ll have some good stories and experiences. There’s just been so much shuffling and organizing so that we can help Ava grow!
I will send pictures next week cause I forgot my cord… ooops!

I love you all and miss you! 🙂

Hurrah for Israel!
Sister Moon

Week 14: Transfers. I’m staying in Ava!

Hey Family and Friends,

I am staying here in Ava and I will be with Sister Mordicai. Sister Goodman is going to Bartlesville, Oklahoma with Sister Southam.
I don’t have a lot of time today. We’re leaving for Tulsa in about 30 minutes. It’s been a pretty good week. We had a lot of Sisters in our ward come out with us this week. It has been great. The sisters in our ward never come out with us so we’re glad that their starting to warm up to us and get excited about missionary work.
Doran Simmons got baptized on Saturday and it was so great! He is turning 9 next week and his family has been less active for a while, but they turned things around and his dad was able to baptize him! It was such a sweet experience. His dad looks super tough, he has tattoos all over and has a beard. But he shaved it off just for Doran’s baptism, and he was crying the whole time. He got all choked up in the font and could hardly say the words. It was so sweet.
A cool experience that happened this week was while we were walking to an appointment and they weren’t home so we were walking back to the square and we passed a house of a former investigator and she was outside with a bunch of other people. One of them started talking to us and asking questions. He talked about how his wife and kids had been killed in an accident not too long ago and that he is living with his sister for a few weeks and that he would be interested in learning more. We haven’t been able to meet with him yet but we are going to soon.
Also we have an appointment with Ernie, he came to the church on Sunday and was filling out a food order and set up a time to meet with us. He said to Sister Michael, the one taking his food order, that if he had time that he would have stayed at church, he said he really wanted to but that he had to go to work. He’s a super great guy! I’m excited to teach him.
Bucky has been coming to church for the past 4 weeks. He and his fiance came to Doran’s baptism with all their kids and two of the girls came to church yesterday. He is such a great guy and he already seems like a member.
Not too much happened this week. We’re still teaching the same people, we haven’t dropped anyone or started teaching anyone new yet but I’ll let you know when we do.
I’m nervous to take over the area but I’m excited that I get to stay in Ava. Sister Goodman is sad to leave and I’m sad that she’s leaving too!
I love that mom sends scriptures every week and I think I will start doing that too. This week I have a couple to share. Alma 37:33-35 and Ether 12:27 Our mission has been focusing on Pride and being stripped of pride. It’s something I have noticed in myself and something that I need to get rid of. I love these scriptures!
I love and miss all of you!
Hurrah for Israel!
-Sister Moon

Week 13: Memorial Day

Dear Family and Friends,

Happy Memorial Day! I’m so grateful for all of the men and woman who have and are still fighting for our country! This Saturday is transfer calls. Again! I can’t believe how fast it has flown by. I’ve been out for 3 months today! How crazy is that? I’m not sure if I’m staying or not. I can’t decide what my guess is. Sister Goodman thinks I am staying and she’s leaving but I’m not sure. Sister Goodman’s hand has been hurting a lot from her accident and she has an appointment in Tulsa next Monday, two days after transfer calls so we don’t know what’s going to happen. In her interview with President Shumway he said that he felt pretty strongly about having her in Ava though, so I’m not sure. I’m just scared I’m going to train. I feel like I have no idea what I’m doing still, but it is better than when I first came. So we’re going to Tulsa next week for Sister Goodman’s hand appointment. Tulsa is about 4 hours away so if I don’t email next week you’ll know why. Don’t panic! haha It will just be an extra long email the next week. I’ll try to send a quick email just to say where I’m being transferred to if I get the time.
So I haven’t wished anyone Happy Birthday since I’ve been out here! So I want to catch up on those! Happy Birthday Nephi, Brandon, Mom, Ezra, Benson, Pierce, Jessica, Adri, Lauryn, Elijah and Melinda! I will be a lot better at mentioning birthdays in my letters! I love you all and hope you had great birthdays!
Crazy Ava story time. Warning this story might not be the best for kids. So we met a guy the first day that we were here and we see him almost every week in Walmart on Preparation Days. So last week we were walking in to Walmart and a lady calls out to me, “Sister Moon! My husband talks about you all the time” I was so confused cause I had never seen her before. She was with another girl and 2 kids. I just kinda stood there for a bit until I saw who her husband was, it was the guy we had met the first day. So we talked to them for a bit and then left to do our shopping. We didn’t think much about it at the time. Then we went to dinner that night and we were talking to the members who were feeding us and they talked about a girl who used to take the missionary lessons, but then she got involved with this guy who had a wife and 2 kids. Then we realized that they were talking about the people we met at Walmart. Apparently this guy has a wife and a girlfriend and they all live in the same house!! They are basically a polygamist family in Missouri! So crazy!! It’s disgusting! That’s Ava for ya! And it’s super creepy that he’s talking about me! blegh!
This week when we taught Delbert we talked about the good and the bad in the world and where it comes from. He knew that all good comes from God and evil comes from the devil, but he was wondering where the sickness and the sad accidents that happen. It was an interesting topic and I’m not sure if we ever came to a conclusion. I’m not sure what the answer to that is. It was a sad topic to talk about. There were a bunch of examples of sad things that happen just by accident. But it all depends on our faith and if we are going to stay strong even though all these bad things are happening in the world.
So Sister Goodman has been feeling sick for the past week and it hit really hard on Tuesday so she basically slept all day. So I went and did yard work with the Weidemiers, helped Sister Weidemier with some woodwork stuff, she’s making a desk for her sewing machine out of black walnut wood that they cut down. It’s really pretty! And I also got some sewing done on a couple of skirts that needed fixed. It was kinda nice to be able to relax and get to know the members with live with better. They are so great!
So apparently there were a bunch of emergency transfers this week. Our District Leader’s companion got emergency transferred and so he got a new companion and 3 other companionships got switched around. We don’t know why but we could tell our district leader and his companion weren’t getting along super well.
We had exchanges again this week. I was with Sister Stout in Ava. It was a really good day! We had a lesson with Yalonda and it went really well. She still hasn’t come to church though. We don’t know why.
So we have been working with a family, the Simmons. They got baptized about 3 years ago i think. They have been in and out of activity in the church but they are coming back and they say it’s for the last time and they are going to stay active. Their son is turning 9 in a couple weeks and hasn’t been baptized yet, He is getting baptized on Saturday! We’re so excited for them, and his dad is going to baptize him. He hasn’t smoked for 2 months! He had just stopped smoking when we first got to Ava. We net them the first day we were here. Sister Simmons is still smoking and it’s not going very well. We hope that as she becomes more active in the church it will help her to stop. We had dinner with their family on Friday, it was so good! They always make really good food! We had a lesson with them after, their kids weren’t there, and we talked about the temple. They have been through the temple and sealed but they have never been back. Sister Simmons said that she misses the temple and really wants to go back. It was such a cool experience. She got teary eyed and everything. I’m so glad their coming back! They are such great people. I might be sending a bunch of pictures this next week of everyone if I get transferred, then you’ll get to see all the people I’ve been talking about.
Well that’s about it for this week. It’s been kinda slow cause of Sister Goodman being sick and cause of Memorial Day weekend, everyone’s out of town.
I love you all!
Hurrah for Israel!
Sister Moon
Photos:
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Mist in the morning
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The road we go running down every morning
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Dew on the grass
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My first chigger bites (can’t really see them but they’re there)
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Our apartment
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The stream we drive by every day when we leave home
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Memorial day flag on a Tractor (welcome to Missouri haha)