Monday, June 29, 2015

Week 41 - Death, Hermana Sondrup, Heart Break, New, Truck, Melting, I cant think of a title..

Well this week my heart broke a little, OK more than a little, a whole heck of alot!!!!!! But don't worry I'm a survivor!!!!!! 

So last week I told you I was excited to have a baptism, well sadly neither one we had planned went through!!!! The one for Monday cancelled and Saturday's miracle baptism found himself in continued legal trouble and he is now in Jail in Kemmer, which is not only out of our area, but out of our mission, and we cant see him! :( AHHHHH MY HEART!!!!!!!!! We got the text Monday night and all i wanted to do was cry!!!!!!  He is so amazing!!!!! And so ready for the Gospel!!!! Thankfully it just sounds like it was a glitch in the system and he should be getting out sometime this week, which would be amazing! I am really grateful though for the missionaries in the Salt Lake City East mission serving in Kemmer, because though he isn't their investigator they have been over every single day to see him, talk to him, and offer him the support that the Gospel brings into our lives!!!!! I've never met those Elders, but I am so grateful for their hard work and dedication to the work!!!!!! That is a true disciple of Jesus Christ to me!!!!!!!! 

So that was the major heartbreak of the week, and then I had to say goodbye to Sister Kolbo Wednesday which was rough!!!! It's funny how close you get to a companion when you literally have nobody else to talk to!!!!!! It was hard to see her go, but Sister Parker is great! She is from a city in Colorado called Bay field, which is right outside of Durango. She's almost done with her mission, and this will more than likely be her last area. But we'll see. The work is continuing to progress and move forward and we have some great things lined up for the month of July!!!! The Lord is so aware of this Valley and he is definitely preparing it!!!!  

Speaking of may wonder why I called myself Hermana well, apparently there is a huge Hispanic population here in Star Valley, and we happened to discover all of it this week. We got tons of new investigators, all of them except one being a Spanish investigator. But because Star Valley has no branch it's up to us to teach them. So my lunches are now spent eating and Studying Spanish. My goal is by the end of this week to say a basic prayer in Spanish. But I don't know how realistic that is. But thank heavens for translators!!!!! The members here are great and they are so willing to help us out!!!! I am so appreciative of that!!!!!! What's even cooler is in return for teaching the Gospel they're going to feed us Mexican food!!!!! LIKE REAL MEXICAN FOOD!!!!!!!! I cannot tell you how excited I am to have a real taco!!!!!!!! I might cry out of shear excitement!!!!! 

So this week starts the beginning of something new, a new mission president!!!! It's funny because everyone in the cities are like "Oh my goodness whats he going to change this is going to be so different!" and I am just like "I am pretty sure he wont even know we exist out here" Haha it'll definitely be a change to have president Hancock, but it will be great!!!! A quote I love from Elder Martino of the 70 is "If you always do what you've always done, you're always going to get what you've always got". Don't get me wrong our mission is doing amazing, but there is still more, and we don't want to stay stagnant, we want to improve and better ourselves, the members, the work, the mission in general, and while things will change I know they will only be for the better. After all President Hancock is called and set apart as our mission president, he is called to receive revelation for us, and I know anything he changes will ultimately be because it's what the Lord needs him to do, so it will be the best change ever!!!!!!! Thursday we are driving down to Pocatello to met him, and I am so excited!!!!!

Speaking of Stagnant...I hate having water near by!!!!!!! The mosquitoes are killer!!!!! Literally I might die!!!!! I kid you not this is no exaggeration I have OVER 30 mosquito bites on me right now, a little excessive? I think yes!!!! I even have them under my clothing! I don't know how they managed it but they even got through my G's apparently mosquitoes aren't aware of the promise of protection given! How rude!!!!!!!! My skin is itchy and gross!!! I have never been more grateful to have grown up in a desert than now, but it's alright, if this is the worst of my problems then I am doing pretty good right?! 

Also it's like high 80's here and I am dying I might not survive next summer at home, just as a warning you may need to get the coffin ready... 

On Wednesday I got to drive the Elders truck all the way back to the valley!!!! It was so cool!!!!! Except it was sketchy!!!!! We took a dirt road the entire way back because it saves 40 miles, which was fun, but I thought I was going to die!!!!! I don't know how the Elders did it they were flying!!!!! I was so worried the were going to crash my precious jeep! But alas we survived! It was fun, but by the time we got back to the Valley I smelled like Stinky Elder. GROSS!!! But it was worth is for sure!!!!!!! 

So funny we lost our phone in Freedom Wyoming this week...Have I ever told you the story of Freedom? No? Well here you go! Freedom is the border of Wyoming and Idaho, in fact the state line runs right through the middle of the town, and way back when the polygamist used to live there, so when the Idaho police would come to arrest them, they would cross to Wyoming, and when Wyoming would come they would cross to Idaho. It's pretty funny, so Sister Kolbo wanted to take a picture, so we did, the funny thing is she ended up not even being in the selfie, and then she forgot the phone on the hood, and then no more phone for us...thankfully we were in Pocatello the next day and we just grabbed one from the office. PHEW!!!! that could have been bad!!!! But now we have no contacts which is a struggle, but it's better than nothing right?! 
 (I promise my companion was sanding right next to me, she just got cut out of the selfie, which is funny because she is the one who wanted it) 

Well this has been long and really scattered!!!! But welcome to my brain!!!!!! I will end with one last thing though!!!! We had the most amazing miracle this week!!!!! We have been working with a less active who is super Anti, like super, he wouldn't even talk to us when I first got here, but slowly but surely he has been talking more and more, and he even started reading the Book of Mormon!!! Which is MAJOR!!!!!! But anyway, yesterday we walked into church and low and behold there he was sitting in the pew, with a bright smiling face!!!! We didn't even invite him to church, he just came!!!! And he loved it!!!! It was so amazing to get to see him take the sacrament, and just see how the spirit worked on him!!!! SO AMAZING!!!!! Seriously he was the last person I ever expected to see in church and yet there he was!!!! What a miracle of the Lord!!!! It just goes to show that everyone has there own conversion and it's never to late to find out for yourself!!!!! How truly great this work is!!!! Well sorry this letter is everywhere but I only had a small amount of time today because Saturday is going to be an all day p-day due to the 4th of July. I hope you have an awesome week, and don't have to much fun in Mexico without me!!!!!! 

The main attraction of Star Valley!!!!!! 

we formed a search party for our phone on the way back into the Valley, nothing :( 

Sister Kolbo decided she wanted to be just like me!!!! So she dyed her hair!!!! OK not really, but a girl can dream right?! 

Sister Kaycie Sondrup 

Friday, June 26, 2015

Week 40 - Safe!!!!

OK so this week was long!!!! It was hard!!! But so good!!!! We were doing so well, and only panicking slightly as we prepared for transfer calls on Thursday....And then they came...

So I will be staying here in the Valley!!!! But Sister Kolbo will be leaving, she'll be going to Ammon, and be companions with Sister Smith who goes home in 7 weeks. It was sad to hear to say the least! Never have I met anyone who loves the area more, or missionary work more than Sister Kolbo, my heart broke a little as the Assistants told her she was leaving. She truly has done a great and marvelous work here and  I know she will grow to love Ammon as much as she does Afton. But as for me I will be receiving Sister Parker as my new companion. Sister Parker was in my last district, and Sister Kolbo's last companion is currently companions with her. It's funny how small the world is sometimes!!!! Sister Parker has about 3 months left on her mission so it sounds like I might be sending home another missionary, but only time will tell! This transfer will be 7 weeks long seeing as this one was only 5 weeks, that way we transferred before the new president comes. 7 weeks transfers are the worst!!!!!! It sounds bad but that one week really does make a difference, 6 weeks is good, 7 weeks drags!!!! But hey, how can I really complain when I am in the service of the Lord? So tomorrow night we'll be driving down to Pocatello, spend all Wednesday there, and come home with just enough time for a lesson, and to go to bed! It'll make a long day to say the least, but it'll be good!!!! 

So this week because of transfers we had to say goodbye to the district one of the Elders (elder Thomas) will be returning home to Mesa, and the rest of them are all being transferred. Out of the 6 of us I am the only one remaining in the Valley! It's a little sad, but good! I am glad i get to stay! I love this area so much!!!!! We went and had a barbecue for our dinner appointment this week as a going away party, it was sad but I was loving it!!! The Hamiltons (who cooked for us) are ward mission leaders and they asked Elder Thomas what he wanted to which he replied "steak and lobster" so we had steak and instead of lobster he went out and caught some crawdads, doing things the Wyoming way! I love it!! 

Not to much else happened this week, seeing as we have been packing, and had a couple of sick days, but it's been good!!! The work is still going, and great things are happening!!!! We were supposed to have a baptism tonight, but sadly it canceled :( it's been my first and hopefully ONLY canceled date. But thankfully it didn't drop because of lack of desire, but just simply lack of family availability, we're working on rescheduling a time to have, so pray it happens!!!! And pray specifically it can happen next week!!!!!

This weekend though we have the most amazing thing happening!!!! A wedding, AND a baptism!!!!!! It is so amazing to me to get to be apart of!!!!!!! He is so prepared and so ready! Just thinking of where he had to come, he spent 14 years in prison, and has faced a ton of trials and addictions in his life, and now, after knowing him for only two weeks, he's changed, and truly ready to make this step in his life!!!!!! It's going to be so amazing! 

Well sorry I dont have to much time today so I have to get going!!! Thanks for being so awesome though!!!! Love and miss you all lots!!!!!! 

Sister Kaycie Sondrup 

So at my house right now we have chickens, and we get to go get the eggs at night!!!! and we have adorable 

I woke up this morning to this...and dont worry we are eating that for dinner tonight..,yay? chicks!!!! 

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Week 39 - On the Edge

Well Hello!!!! 

OK so this week has been fantastic!!!!!!!!! LIKE AMAZING!!!!! So many Miracles, so much exciting news!!!! But first I feel I should probably give you an update on last week seeing as you didn't get one.

So first things first, no, we are not apostate rule breakers, but yes we did drive to Utah, which is about 45 miles outside of our mission boundaries...that part of Utah at least. It was a little nerve racking to say the least when we all looked up and saw the Utah sign, but being girls all of us were like, LETS TAKE A PICTURE!!!!!! So we did, oh the memories! Now I know what you are thinking, how the heck did you end up in Utah? Before you make any jokes about my sense of direction know I was not the one driving, that falls on Sister Kolbo's shoulders... But it's funny because none of us were trying to drive to Utah but it just happened. Ultimately our biggest problem was not lack of knowledge, two of the sisters in car had driven that path multiple times, and trust me it's a straight line, we shouldn't have gotten lost. But our biggest problem was lack of focus. None of us were paying attention as we should have been. I was updating our phone, Sisters Hunt and Wooten were sick in the back, and Sister Kolbo was in her own world pondering on feelings and impressions she had received earlier in the day. None of us were thinking about when we needed to exit until Sister Hunt looks up and sees Malad, she causally asks "Have we passed the McAmmon exit?" since none of us were looking none of us knew, but we figured nah we haven't missed it yet...But in the back of my mind I was thinking Malad isn't in our mission...Next thing we knew we were in Utah...

The more I have thought about this experience the more I have thought about how it applies to life. As I said earlier our biggest problem wasn't lack of knowledge, but lack of focus. Being born and raised a member of the church I, and many of you who read this have always had the knowledge of this great and true restored Gospel. It's never been a question as to whether Jesus is the Christ, or God truly is our loving Heavenly Father. We've always known. Yet I look around, especially serving in heavily Mormon populated areas, and see so many who have the knowledge, but have fallen off the path. How can this be? How can you know the truth, and yet be so lost? Agency of course plays a huge role, some simply choose to go astray, to live their life in ways contrary to what our Heavenly Father has planned for them. But more often--I have found at least--it's not that people choose to do wrong, it's not that they purposely choose the wrong path and begin to go down it. But rather they learn the Gospel truths, and get complacent, just as we did, they lose their focus, and all of a sudden they end up somewhere where they don't want to be, they end up going down a path they would never have chosen to take. I feel that sometimes we truly get in a rut, we get to the point where we attend church every week, we live God's commandments, we go to the temple, and we pray before meals, or maybe just before dinner (guilty, don't worry I've gotten WAY better). We do what we are supposed to, but do we truly allow those things to touch our hearts? Or change us for the better? Do we fall into the routine of doing it because we have to or we feel obligated to, or do we continue to do it because it's truly what we want to do? As I said earlier we did not want to drive to Utah, but we got into a routine, and we didn't realize that even though we were trying to do what was right our with our decisions, our lack of focus was leading us down the complete and wrong path. When we realized where we were, it was seemingly to late. We were truly where we didn't want to be. I have seen this same principle happen so many times, we get going, and because we are seemingly doing whats right we think we are safe from the adversary, but in reality we are not, and when we finally realize it, we are down a path we never intended to take. We are in Utah. I truly believe that lack of progression is one of the greatest mistakes we can ever make, because when we stop progressing we lose focus, and when we lose focus, eventually we will lose our way. But thankfully, just as we were able to turn around and drive back, eventually getting us back to where we needed to go, we to in our lives can turn around, and get back to the path we originally intended to take. We can apply the greatest gift ever given to us, we can apply the Atonement. It's not easy, and just as we had an extra hour and a half added to our drive, it will take you time to get back on the straight and narrow, it's not an instant fix, but it's more than worth the time and effort to get back. The path isn't always easy, and it's much easier to get lost then to find your way, and along the way you will run into road blocks. For instance, we almost ran out of gas...we didn't plan to go an extra 90 miles, and in between the Utah Boarder and Malad our car started to struggle, the light was on, and we were praying to make it to Malad, and thankfully we did. But it was another set back we had to face on our journey home. We have been promised numerous times in the scriptures that the path will not always be easy, but it will always be worth it. We made it back on the right path, and so can all those who have been lost, whether it be by choice, or by lack of focus. I think that's the greatest thing about this Gospel, you are never to far gone, you are never to lost to be saved. There's a quote by Elder Holland that says "It is not possible for you to sink lower than the infinite light of Christ's Atonement shines" I am not sure there has ever been a truer principle than that. We all get lost at some point, but we can all get back. But we first have to realize we are lost. We have to truly look and evaluate what path we are taking, and correct based off our evaluation. So I guess what I am getting at is a question, it's one I had to ask myself, even as I am serving a mission. But the question is when was the last time you looked up to truly see what path you are taking? Are you still progressing? Or have you fallen victim to the adversary because you are in a rut? If your answers to these questions are not ones you like then don't fear. For the Atonement is there, begin to apply it, and once again begin progressing down the true straight and narrow path, the one that will lead you to the greatest happiness possible, the one that will lead you home to your Father in Heaven, your Savior Jesus Christ, and your family. Ok sorry, enough preaching from me. But think about it!!! Maybe it was just me, but my mind was BLOWN!!!!! 

OK so funny story, I may have instead of driving out of my mission, driven in...confused? Well more on that later, but I may be finding myself in Utah more often...AHHHH 

Ok, so we also went to Jackson Hole last week which was great!!!!!!! But SO SCARY!!!!!! I am in so much trouble to go home and drive in a city, I was struggling in Jackson, TO MANY PEOPLE!!!!!!! Seriously I am to the point where Star Valley seems big, how am I supposed to go home?! Alright it's decided I wont!!!! Are you cool with that?! But it was so beautiful to go an hike the Tetons!!!!! They are magnificent!!!! But it was killing me to see all that water and not being able to go swim in it!!!! Torture I say, TORTURE!!!!!! But it was worth it, so beautiful, and it just gave me a greater appreciation for God's creations, and how he truly loves us enough to give us this, how truly great he is!!!!!! 
We also got to witness an amazing baptism!!!!!! Her name is Gina, and the sisters were teaching her, until they took one set of missionaries out of the valley, and we got put in the Elders area, but it was a team teach pretty much, because we were at Gina's once a week teaching her son, who's our investigator because he's a YSA. This family is so amazing!!!! They have definitely faced some trials in this life, but they have been able to overcome them, and together as a family they found the straight and narrow. Dan her husband was able to receive the priesthood after years of inactivity, and he was able to baptism and confirm her! Truly it was amazing!!!!! 

Ok so now we are to this week!!!!!! Well let me tell you! Star Valley has tons of success. LIKE TONS. Together Sister Kolbo and have in just 2 months of serving together have been able to see 5 (it'll be 6 next week) people come unto Christ. 5! That's more than I had the whole first 7 months of my mission!!!!! But I a problem we had been finding is all the people we had been working with are baptized, and we didn't have to many new investigators. it's hard to bring people unto Christ with no one to teach...But thanks to the miracles of this week things are really looking up!!!! 

Miracle after miracle, after miracle, just kept happening, and I can only thank the Lord for his greatness, because I truly know without him none of this week would have been possible!!!! The crazier thing is most of these miracles all occurred in one day!!!!!! 

So on Wednesday we went to help some people move, which was torture!!!! They were moving from a basement apartment to the second floor, and I am blaming it on the elevation but by the time we were done I never wanted to look at another set of stairs again!!!!! HORRIBLE!!!! Don't get me wrong I was so glad to help, but it was a struggle!!!!!  After we moved we went down to the temple welcome center where a sweet senior couple named the Helser's (from Mesa Az) work, they recently had a family come in and ask for missionaries, so we were getting the information from them. Miracle number 1, people were asking for us!!!!!! While we were in the Welcome Center though a youth from one of our wards texted us and said he had a friend who wanted to learn about the Gospel and that they would get in touch with us soon. Miracle number 2, members finding us people to teach!!!!! And right after that we saw miracle number 3, which was......the friend actually calling us!!!!!! Usually we have to hunt them down, but this time they came to us!!!!! As we talked to her we realized just how much she wanted the Gospel!!!! Which brings us to miracle number 4, she actually met with us, she desperately wanted to meet us, but we had appointments for the rest of the day, so we said we want to meet you today, but it's now or never (ok not really never, but we get the principle) and she choose now!!!! BOOM new investigator!!!! Hannah!!! She is so awesome, and so prepared for the Gospel!!!! What's so different about her though is that she doesn't have any foundation in Christ, we are literally teaching everything from the very beginning, it's such an eye opener for me to see that even people here in America don't know of their Savior still, such a great testimony builder to me, of what I have been so blessed to know about my whole life!!!!!! Even cooler with Hannah is she has a notebook of questions she has always wanted answered, and every single question in there is something that can very simply be answered because this gospel holds ALL the answers! She is so amazing and I am so excited to get to keep teaching her!!!! After her lesson we had dinner, not as exciting but they family was hilarious!!!!! then we went out and things slowed for awhile, until....WE SAW MORE MIRACLES!!!! So we were driving around in Smoot which is TINY!!!! Population 145, so small!!! But we were trying to contact some referrals when out of no where one of our investigators who has a baptism date, but has kind of dropped of the face of the planet comes out of nowhere!!!!!! BOOM miracle number 5, we were able to talk and reset his date!!!!! He's great!!!!!! Then we started to talk to this random guy next door, and turns out...we had been looking for his house the whole time!!!! He has a granddaughter who lives there and inst a member, and neither is his wife!!!!! Originally he wasn't going to let us in, but then we offered service, and it started pouring down rain, common courtesy, he let us in his house!!!!! Miracle number 6!!!!!! Even cooler part of the miracle as we talked with his wife about doing service (they needed a horse pen cleaned out, and a bunch of heavy stuff moved, and they are elderly and couldn't do it alone) she told us, that she had been praying for help, and we showed up at the exact right time!!!! They had  to have it done by the weekend, and had no means to be able to do it, but we did!!!! And we knew tons of people to help, and we had it done in a few hours on Saturday! Miracle number 7 comes because they both became new investigators!!!!! By this time we had to go home for curfew, but as I drove one of our ward mission leaders called, and he provided miracle number 8 of the day (although this miracle was a little delayed, the bulk o fit happened Friday) he had met a new move in earlier in the day, and turns out this new move in had been taking the missionary lessons in Colorado right before he moved to Wyoming, and he wanted to have the missionaries again! So he gave us his name, number, and address, and told us to go meet him as soon as possible. I went to bed so exhausted, but so overwhelmed with just how great the day was!!!!! Then Thursday we cleaned our house. Lame, but we had just moved in, and had to settle things. Friday we drove to Soda Springs and had Zone Training, which we were running late to, and the AP's decided to show up, dang!!!! Oh well they understood it was hard to be on time when we live 2 hours away! Zone training was great, but it kept us from being able to proselyte most the day, we did get to take some pictures though!!!! Welcome to Wyoming!!!! 

That evening we got to go out though, and here's the rest of the miracle!!!! That man who had moved from Colorado, well his name is Dennis, and never before have I met anyone as prepared for this Gospel then Dennis. HE IS AMAZING!!!! He has been doing everything he needs to do without knowing why he's doing it. He was taught in Colorado but it was hard because he felt he had to many distractions, but now he's so prepared. We knocked on his door, and we didn't have to say a word, the door opened, and we were welcomed in, no introduction nothing, just a warm, come in! As we sat down and began to talk we realized how read he is, and amazingly, he stopped and began to cry (if you saw Dennis you would understand how crazy this looked, he's huge with tattoos, and piercings, and he's the last person you would expect to cry) (Side note, have you ever seen the district? If you have imagine a Jackie, and German situation combined, that's how his lesson went) he then proceeded to ask us when he could get baptized, he said he wanted to do it as soon as possible, so because he had one last Word of Wisdom thing to overcome, we set the date for 2 weeks away, which if he lives the Word of Wisdom for the whole time is the first date he qualifies for baptism. CRAZY!!!!!! Even more amazing, he will not only be getting baptized in 2 weeks, but married as well!!!!!! That's right I am throwing a wedding!!!!!!! I am so amazed at how prepared he truly is, and the intense desires of his heart to do good!!!! He is truly a miracle from God, and I feel so incredibly blessed to get to be here to witness it!!!!! 

So this week was amazing!!!!!!! So many miracles!!!! To many to count! I feel so blessed to be here!!!! But I do have some news that I may have eluded to I have no idea what is actually going on, and this is probably all just rumors and in case you haven't noticed the church likes to gossip, and there is a bunch going around the Valley right now. So come July 1st the church is creating the Utah Logan mission, I have no idea why, but they are. We know for sure they are splitting the Ogden mission in half, but we have also been told that areas from surrounding missions will be pulled into the new mission boundaries...Pocatello happens to be a bordering mission. My zone which goes from Grace/Soda Springs up to Jackson Hole (but Jackson isn't included in this) once upon a time was in the Utah Ogden mission, it wasn't until about a year ago it got pulled into the Pocatello mission, and seems that it we are once again up for a move. Now this is of course hearsay, but the more we think about it the more it makes sense to move us. We're closer to Logan than Pocatello, and if they only put Logan in the mission it'll be tiny, plus, we've heard the mission next to ours is being dissolved meaning some major changes are headed our way! The way it's sounding is that they will take Montpelier and down and put it in Logan, but there is a real possibility they could come up and take Star Valley, so if I find myself here next transfer (which starts next Wednesday) I could ind myself in a whole new mission come July 1st. They wont release maps until then, and our mission president says he doesn't know anything, but we know he had a meeting in Salt Lake Tuesday that he wasn't not permitted to miss, he even had to miss the departing temple trip for it!!!!! It was his last trip, and the only one he missed!!!! So either he is getting a calling in the church, or our mission boundaries are changing, but who really knows at this point?! But that's where my title comes from, it seems I will be on the edge of the mission, but whether I'm on Pocatello's edge, or Logan's I don't know yet!!!!! It's a bit stressful to say the least!!!!!!! 

Well this week was great!!! I'll end with one last thing! Siser Kolbo played the worst prank on me this week, she made a your mom joke so I was like "Oh yeah?! text my mom!) and I started spiting out moms number...well a couple minutes later  asked, who are you texted? She replied "Your mom" no joke this time though! When I look at the phone I see a message sen to moms number and I started freaking out!!!! SHE CANT TEXT MY MOM!!!!!!! That's so not ​OK!!!!!! but she was just like I thought you weren't allowed to text her...the rule says nothing about me! I was so anxious!!! She tested my mom!!!! I was so close to calling the zone leaders because I seriously had no idea what to do!!!! But then when I looked at it closer I realized she changed the district leaders contact to moms number, and she really had texted him, not her!!!! PHEW!!!!! I was so nervous for a minute!!!!!! I was pretty mad at the time, but now I just think it was hilarious!!!!! Well thanks for always writing! Have an awesome week!!!! and always remember to smile!!!!!

Love always, 
Sister Kaycie Sondrup 

Week 38 - Email ate my letter - Gone Rogue

so I typed out a letter, then I accidentally deleted it before it sent. And the library is closing. Sorry. This week was great. I'll have to tell you about it next week. Highlights, we accidentally drove to Utah, and we went to the Tetons(we hiked all day!)! Have a great week!!!!  

Monday, June 1, 2015

Week 37 - I'm melting

Ok so today will have to be quick, we have to drive to pocatello for a conference tomorrow, and we are staying the night there in the mission home, Sorry!!!! 

This week was so great though!!!!!! We had yet ANOTHER baptism! Why the Lord has blessed us so much I dont know, but I am certainly grateful for it!!!!!! Monika, has been meeting with the missionaries for almost 8 months now, and we are the first set of sisters to teach her. She has had a baptism date since the first lesson the elders taught 8 months ago, but she faces some struggles and alot of trials in her life, and it kept getting pushed back. Nobody thought she would ever make it. Yes they all wanted her to, but it just didn't seem possible, it had just been such a long time. It just goes to show that we shouldn't give up on anyone!!!!!! Monika is so great, and I know without a doubt this Gospel will bless her life, but also she has so much to give to bless the lives of others with the Gospel!!!! We never know the Lord's timing, and when it will truly be someone's time, and I am so amazed that I got to be here to see when it was finally Monika's!!!! She's great!!!!!! 

So this is about to be really sad, but today we were out walking trying to find people to teach (because we'll miss out on 2 days while in Pocatello) and it's like 70, 75 outside, and I swear I AM MELTING!!!!!! Holy Hannah!!!!! How am I supposed to ever go home?! This is the worst!!!!! Even worse I lost all of my tan, and now I am white as can be, we walked for like and hour, and I have a sunburn!!!!!!!!!! It's a little pathetic I know!!!! But in my defense we are at a higher altitude.....Ok I am a bit of a loser, but it's so worth it to teach the Gospel!!!!!!! 

Well this week was amazing, I wish I had more time to write because I have so much to say, but sadly we have to go pick up some sister in Montpelier, and then head to Poky!!!!! Thanks for always writing, and keeping me informed!!!!! I've hit hump day now!!!! HOW SAD!!!!!! I am on the down hill, but I am so glad that I got to be here at all that it doesn't bother me to much!!!!! I love this gospel, and just how much it blesses our lives!!!! Have an awesome week!!!!! 

Sister Kaycie Sondrup

Week 36 - River Water, Rain Water, BAPTISM WATER!!!!‏

Hey all! 
OK so this week was great!!!! It was long but great, why you ask? Well good question, to which I will respond I dont really remember...OK so I am starting to understand why journaling is so important because after while you really just don't remember, good thing I am like a month behind on journaling right?! Halla at my talents!!!! OK so I have improving to do, but I'll get there don't worry!!!!! As for now I'll rely on my companions, maybe this is why they send us two by two...Alright we all know it's really because I need a full time babysitter, but a Sister can dream right? 
Anyway for what I do remember of the week, which is actually alot don't worry! It was AMAZING!!!!!!! So this week we had the pleasure of seeing 2 people come unto Christ and be baptized this week, and we set yet another baptism date for the month of June!!!!! We have now had 3 baptism's in May, and assuming our investigator withstands the temptation to smoke we will have another this weekend making 4! With 2 preparing for June!!!! It is insane to me how prepared this area of the Lord!!!!
So funny story of the week, Sister Kolbo has been really sick lately. She needs he gallbladder taken out, but is petrified of surgery, and doesnt want to take time away from the work to do it. So she just eats a really healthy diet. Like pretty much only vegetables and really lean meat. But the members havent been super good at this lately and this week she was SO sick!!!! I felt really bad, but she's an awesome missionary and kept going despite how hard it was. Anyway, Peanut Butter is her all time favorite food, she LOVES IT. But it makes her so sick, like super sick, her body doesnt like the fats. So I have peanut butter in the house, but I have to hide it from her, or else she's eat all of it in like 5 minutes. So this week she was already really sick, and so she was like well if I am going to be sick I might as well eat what I like! (did I mention sister Kolbo hates, like hates hates hates vegetables?! Well she does) So she started searching the house for my peanut butter and I hid it so well, but she was determined and still found it. I was washing my face and she comes in and asks if she could eat a slice of my bread, and sister kolbo hates my bread, she's says it's to healthy for her. The only thing she eats with it is peanut butter, or nutella, so I ask her what she wants it for, and she says just to eat. Yeah right!!!! So I ask again, what do you want it for, then I started walking towards the kitchen, and she took off running, so I to followed suit. She had an enormous scoop of peanut butter and was about to shove the whole thing in her mouth and knowing we had baptisms the next day, and she would be to sick to move if she ate it, I tried grabbing it from her, and she didn't like that, so then she holds on as tight as she can, and we begin to have a wrestling match in the kitchen for the peanut butter. It ended with me tacking her, and since I couldn't get the spoon out of her hand I scooped all the peanut butter off the spoon into my hand, and emerged victorious. Sondrup 1 Kolbo 0. As soon as I had the peanut butter in my hand sister Kolbo just looked up and was like I've never felt more pathetic in my life" Sad, but it wasn't because I was mean to her, she was just sad she didn't have more will power. This probably makes me sound like a major bully, but she asked me to do, really she did, so it was all good, and really funny when you look at it. I can only imagine what people would have thought if they saw us. Oh well I get a pretty good crack out of it!!!!!! 
So last story, like I said earlier we had 2 baptism's this week, and thankfully the font was full enough!!!!!! But this whole memorial day weekend has thrown us off like crazy and everything in the Valley was closed!!!! We were running around like Chickens with our heads cut off trying to find somewhere to print programs because every public place was closed!!! Even today we are at the airport emailing because no where else is open!!!!! (don't be to surprised star valley has an airport) But the baptism's went great!!!! Shelby's went perfectly smooth, Keidon's was a little different story...they family showed up like a half hour late, (better late then never right?) and he's petrified of water, and of course the person that's super scared has to get dunked twice. The first time they forgot to say his name, and as soon as he was up out of the water he was trying to bolt out of the font, but they had to pull him back in and do it again. I felt so bad because he was crying, but he knew what he needed to do. While the water scared him he knew the importance of baptism, so he still did it, what a stud!!!!!!! And he's is so excited and happy he did!!!!! 
So one last thing we asked Shelby and Keidon the baptism questions before their interviews, and they're both 9, but we asked if they had ever committed a serious crime, and both of them said yes!!! What is Wyoming making their kids do?! they were joking of course but it was super funny!!!!! When we asked Keidon about Chastity he said "that's where I let girls chase me until I get married, then one girl can catch me" Which is good, but then he followed up with "But I really like girls, I want them to catch me now!" no no Keidon, you don't want that. It was super funny though. Chastity is always a good subject with 9 year olds!!!!! Anyway that's all I have time for thanks for writing me!! Hope you have an awesome week!!!!!! next week we are probably going to Idaho Falls for food, and then to Pocatello for Zone Conference, so if I don't email you'll know why!!!!! 

Week 35 - Discovered by the Police


Ok well this week was awesome!!!! Long but awesome!!!!! The apex of course being Thursday! We had an amazing baptism, and it was so great to see Joe enter the waters of baptism! It was a little funny though...we might have allotted 2 and 1/2 hours to fill the font, but apparently it needed 4! Because about a half hour before it wasnt even half way full!!!! So we had to start filling buckets in the kitchen, and pouring them in!!!! And it still wasn't good enough!!!!!! Joe is about 6ft and the water wasn't even to his knees!!!!! He had to be baptized twice, and honestly I am surprised it wasn't more!!!!!! But hey he did it, and that's all that matters!!!!! But even funnier we forgot to have someone unplug the font before they got out, so I had to climb in in my skirt to drain it!!!! The water was barely at my knees!!!!!!! It definitely gave us something to laugh about though, and now we know what to do!!! We have two baptisms planned for this weekend, so hopefully they go a little smoother!!!!!! 

Are you ready to crack up?! I got pulled over by the police! As a sister missionary!!!! Seriously we have a picture of Christ in the back window, and the police was cracking up the whole time he pulled us over!!!!! But it wasn't to bad, I just hadn't turned my lights on yet and he wanted to make sure they worked, that and we have a Utah License plate, and apparently anyone not from Wyoming is suspicious! It was funny though he was so excited to see he caught the missionaries, I wanted to take a picture with him but he got called away before I could...:( Didnt think the first time I got pulled over would be on my mission, but hey I didn't think I'd be serving in little ol' Star Valley Wyoming either, I guess there is a first for everything!!!!!! 

To add to the humor of the day we went and talked to this really cool, kind of crazy guy in the middle of the woods!!!!! He lives out in the middle of nowhere but he has tons of fences surrounding his property way up in the hills, and we surprisingly have keys to them!!!!! His drive way is like 2 and 1/2 miles long and it was a crazy adventure to get up there! Not to mention it was snowing so that just made everything better!!!! We were bouncing around like no body's business!!!! it was crazy we had a member with us and at first it was so scary because he's a little sketchy, like his house was built to look like it is a 100 years old, it literally looks like an ax murders cabin in the middle of the woods. SKETCH. He also has some interesting theories he was telling us while playing with a was a scary beginning to say the least...but it turned out alright he is actually really nice, gave us some eggs, and some mushrooms...The way he presented we thougt they were to smoke...but thankfully we were wrong!!! You eat them!!!! PHEW! I dont know how much I trust eating them though...I guess we'll just have to wait and see though!!!!!! 

So the only sad news of the week I didnt get to go back to Idaho Falls to see one of my all time favorite investigators be baptized! President gave me the option, but let me know that it wasnt really approved, but I that I should pray about it and decide that way. It was seriously one of the hardest decisions I've made my whole mission which sounds lame, but it was. Seriously if I didnt see any other person accept the Gospel on my mission, if I only touched Sydney's life as much as she has touched mine, it would make my whole mission worth it. Seriously anyone else is just a bounus, extra work done for the Lord. She is that amazing, but for whatever reason the answer was loud and clear, I needed to stay here, and not go back to see her get baptized!!! It was the worst!!! But having to make that decision really helped my testimony. I am no here to do what I want to do. Sydney's baptism would have gone through with or without me there, and as much as I would have loved to have gone, I know that the Lord was testing me to see if I would truly do his will. Ultimately nothing huge or major happened here in the Valley that night, but I think that was the point. Will we truly follow the Lord's will despite what is going to happen? Will we obey even when we dont understand the reason why we need to? I am so not perfect at this principle, but I am working on it, and it is getting easier and easier everyday. Yes I do ultimately still wish I could have been there, but I know there was a great purpose in me not going. I dont know what it is yet, but I know I will be blessed for following the Lord, even when it was hard! 

Well that's about all I have for the week!!! Thanks for being great and I hope everything continues to go well at home!!!!! 

Sister Kaycie Sondrup

Week 34 - Mothers's Day

No message this week, since we spoke to her on the phone.  She is doing fantastic in Star Valley and loving every minute of it.  Enjoy the photos.

Hiding behind the organ at the Paris IdahoTabernacle

Paris, Idaho Tabernacle

Bear lake with the zone.

My sister training leader trying to get me wet!

Dingle, Idaho

What is this white stuff.

Week 33 - Siberia


OK well story of my life I don't have to much time, we go to Idaho Falls the first Monday of every month to go supplies shopping and so we have to run and do that, and then get back to the Valley, so today will be a rush, but it'll be great!!!!! 

So Star Valley is amazing!!! I love it so much!!!! I cover a whole stake again, but this time it's only nine wards, so not to bad!!! All in all we cover 6 cities, Cotton Wood, Salt River, Osmond, Smoot, Fairview, and Afton. It's crazy to think that most of those cities have less than 500 people in them!!!! Except for Afton of course, it's a booming metropolis of 1,911 people!!!! HUGE RIGHT?! the city has 0 stop lights, and 3 fast food places (which I am not to sad about!!!) My new companion is Sister Kolbo, shes from Tyler Texas, and has been out for almost a year, she's awesome!!!! The work in the Valley is BOOMING!!! We have 4 people preparing to be baptized in May, and they are solid as rocks!!!! Their dates are going no where!!!! and then we have one person already preparing to be baptized in June, in the first 20 min. I was in the Valley we set a date, which is insane for me to think about!!!! What's even crazier is that Sister Kolbo hadn't even met them!!!!! We came in the city, talked to them, and 20 min. later he's preparing to be baptized in May, NUTS!!! Miracle of the Lord for sure!!!!!! I am a little bummed I missed the Star Valley Temple ground breaking by two days, but it's all I heard about all week, everyone is so excited and so honored to have the temple be built there. It shows me how much we take ours for granted, they are just so humble and so excited and are continually thanking the Lord for the bounty he has given them, it's such a great learning experience for, they are awesome!!!!! 

Ok so I really have no more time, but I want to leave you with one last miracle, one of our investigators who's getting baptized next week has been struggling with the Word of Wisdom, so finally sister Kolbo and I went to teach him and his wife wasn't home, so we stood on the doorstep, and we literally were like give us all your coffee and tea now, SO HE DID!!!!!!! We now have coffee in our house which is weird...but it was the last thing keeping him from being baptized, and now he is so excited, he is so ready, and his baptism will be next Thursday!!!! What a miracle!!! and just an amazing experience!!!!! 

Last thing, I titled this Siberia because we are 
​litter ally the Siberia of the mission, the closest missionaries to us are 45 min. away, our district goes from Jackson Hole, to Afton, it's huge!!!! The closest major city is Idaho Falls, and that's an hour and a half, and our zone leaders and sister training leaders are in Soda Springs, which is 2 hours away!!!!! It's a good thing I like sister Kolbo or this would be awkward!!!!!!! Alright well Skype Sunday?! it's crazy it's that time of year again!!!! I think it'll be around 7:30, so 8:30 for you I believe....I cant remember if we're ahead or behind or together...I hope that's not to late, it's the only time we could really make work, I'll have someone shoot you a text or email though if it changes!!!!! Well hope the week was great sorry it's short!!!! 

Sister Sondrup

Evidently the Elders left a few samples, Ooooh!!  I washed my hands don't worry.

Hydra V. the world