Monday, June 13, 2016

I came here to die

Well, ladies and gents. This is it. This is most likely my last area. 
Tuesday evening, I got the call that I'm going to Raymond with Sister Black! So here I am, and we're pretty sure it'll be my last area before I "die" or go home from my mission. Which is kind of a surreal thing to think about. It's so strange haha. 

Anywho. This week has been super crazy. Ah, I think I lost my brain somewhere there in the mix of everything. 

Monday: Was our last p-day as a zone before transfers broke us apart forever. So sad. The Gardiners, the senior couple in our zone, brought food for us all and it was fun to spend some of our p-day with them. They're so sweet. We did the usual stuff, groceries, played games as a zone, yada yada yada. For FHE, they did a BBQ/clean the institute parking lot. So that was fun for my last YSA thing before transfers. Got a ton of photos and it was super hard to say goodbye to some of them. It's like leaving my friends all over again. Man, I love YSA. We also went and said goodbye to one of my favourite families from the area. Ah, goodbyes. What a drag. 

Tuesday: Was our last district meeting before transfers broke us apart forever. SO SAD. Transfers are the worst, you guys. Gah. Anywho. We took tons of photos, again, and then a member from Airdrie came down and took us for lunch. She was in our ward, but the elders, Elder Parker and Elder Jewkes, lived with them. Neat enough, both Parker and Jewkes are in my zone, so we all met her for lunch and it was a cute little reunion. So fun. 
We took our recyclable bottles to the bottle depot and made like $35. That was cool. We heart attacked a girl for her birthday, and then went and watched our recent converts, Kelsey and Scott, do baptisms in the temple. That was so fun(: 
We had supper with Brendan at his mom's house and then I had to kick my rear in gear and get to packin'. Let's just say, I didn't sleep very much that night. Or Wednesday night. Yikes. 

Wednesday: Was chaos. We went and picked up the new sister that Sister Sears is training. My little grandbaby has RED HAIR!!! She's the cutest thing ever. We ran some errands, made sure she had bed sheets and all that jazz, helped her unpack and make her bed while I finished packing. We took her to Brendan's house for our last lunch with all the sisters and we took some posterity photos. Me with both my "daughters" and my new "granddaughter". So cute haha. We then took her to the Pitcher's house where we pretended Brother Pitcher, this 84-year-old man, was a referral we were going to contact. We let her do the door approach and he challenged just about everything she said. She held strong, though, she stood there and testified. What a gal. She's gonna do great. Anywho, she passed, and Brother Pitcher let us in and it was all fun and games. We went and took photos with Kelsey at the temple and then had a lesson with J.R. My last lesson with him! He bought me this sweet bracelet as a parting gift, and we took some photos. He's progressing great, I'm so sad I'll miss his baptism, but it's going to be great for him(: 
We had supper at the Heinzlmeir's and Lewis spent, like, forever preparing this awesome meal for us. What a guy. Love that kid. It was rough saying goodbye to their family. Heck, it's rough saying goodbye to everyone. YOU GUYS I HATE GOODBYES. We met Brendan at the temple and he had a bag of parting gifts for me. Aww. Not to mention, my most favoritest cheese buns in the whole galaxy. Mmm. You'll be missed, BMD. #shoutout. And then we went home, got the grandbaby all settled in for real and then I really really finished all my packing. And, again, I didn't sleep a ton. Especially because I was on the couch. Roughin' it. haha. 

Thursday: Was insane. This week was insane, you guys, in case you haven't caught on. The AP's didn't want Sister Sears and Sister Lane (that's my grandbaby) to drive all the way down to transfers and use their clicks for no reason. So they had me go down with some other sisters, but they didn't have room in their one car, so we had to go get their other car, go back to our pad and get my luggage, and then book it to the transfer station. All before 9am. So that was fun. We got to the transfer station, gave hugs and said goodbyes to missionaries I'll probably never see again (sad) and then headed down to Lethbridge. On the way down, we convinced Elder Thorely, our fleet coordinator, to stop at the 7/11 and get fried chicken. Woo hoo! Got my new companion, Sister Black, and headed to good ol' Raymond! And then some other stuff that I can't remember because my brain got lost in the mess of transfers. 

Friday: I can't remember. I think we saw some people. I don't remember any of them. Yet. I suck, haha. But there was this one lady who has all these collectable Barbies. So that was neat. 

Saturday: WAS SO COOl! President Nelson came and had a conference with us and it was just the coolest thing ever. I love him. He's hilarious. I wish I had time to include all the things he said, but I don't. It was great, though. We watched a fireside with his wife and it was great, as well. She's from Raymond!

Sunday: We had a stake conference with President Nelson. He's seriously so cool. I just love him. Got to shake his hand twice! His hands are super soft. So that happened. 
And last night, to celebrate P-day eve, we roasted marshmallows and made smores. Over a candle I have from Bath and Body Works. hahaha. 

Ok, so sorry, this is super brief, but I love you all and am running out of time. Idk where it went. Awkward. 

I love you all so much! 

<3 Sister Pipkin 

Sunday, June 5, 2016

Raindrops keep falling on my head part.2

AHHHHHH I love the Calgary Temple!

Aaaaahhhhh I love the Calgary temple. It's seriously so so so so pretty!!
This week, for zone conference, we got to attend the temple with our mission president and his wife and a bunch of other missionaries. Best thing ever. But I'll talk more about it in a second. 

Monday: We ran around doing a bunch of stuff before zone conference, mainly cleaning our car because we had car inspections during our conference. So that took forever. But dang, our car looked sooooo good after! I found out, however, that I'd been putting RV plumbing intifreeze in our car instead of the correct coolant. Awkward. Luckily, it's all good. No damage done. That we know of. We did not, however, win the cleaning inspections. Even though we left them fresh homemade cookies for them in the front seat. I think it was a rigged inspection, but that's just my opinion(; 
Tuesday: Was our zone conference. Ohhhhh my goodness it was so amazing. Like, there's nothing better than doing a temple session with a ton of missionaries and your mission president and his wife. Like, it was the coolest thing ever. The Spirit was SO strong. Over the past few months, President and Sister Miles have had us read a booklet full of talks by apostles and the prophet about the Atonement. As part of our conference, we talked about our thoughts from those talks and how it's helped us increase our understanding of the Atonement. You guys, the Atonement is so stinkin' cool. If you don't understand it, study it. You'll probably never fully understand it, because it's just not really possible, but we should always strive to learn more about Christ and His atoning sacrifice. He truly is our Saviour and Redeemer and loves us. 
So, we also gave President and Sister Miles some cookies we made to try and bribe the car inspectors. It worked on the Miles'. (:
We also took a ton of photos in front of the temple, and yeah, it was awesome.

Wednesday: We went to ESL again and had sandwiches. We also helped out with an activity at the retirement center for this cute little carnival thing they were putting on, so we got to wear these cute hats(: It was a ton of fun. I was in charge of the bean bag toss and some of those elderly folks get pretty competitive. They were trying to convince me to let them have a second turn and most of the time it worked on me haha. It was a fun activity. They even had deep fried Oreos, so that made it amazing. We had a lesson with a less-active and were talking about becoming temple worthy again. He told us about when he went through the Calgary temple for the open house, he felt the Spirit so strong. And we were like, "Do you want to take the steps to being able to go to the temple again?" After thinking for a bit and what we felt like was truly pondering, he said no. So that was that haha we're trying to decide if we should continue to meet with him, seeing as he has no desire to change or repent haha what a guy. 
Thursday: We had District Meeting. Normally, it's on Tuesdays, but we had zone conference, so it was moved to Thursday. Elder Schenk, our District Leader made us chocolate chip cookies. Aaaaah. So good. We did a ton of weekly planning, and then had a lesson with J.R. We'd planned to teach the Law of Chastity, but then he sat and talked for a straight hour. We literally didn't say a word. But it was what he needed. He had a lot of stuff to tell us about the changes he's trying to make in his life. Ah, J.R. What a guy. Has such a desire to make these changes and follow Christ. I just love him. 
After our lesson, we were talking to a member who asked if we had a supper appointment. We didn't. So he offered to take us out for supper and it was super sweet of him. We got greek food! Opa! (that wasn't a pun, that's actually what it's called haha). Then we went to ESL and it was just super fun. I LOVE ESL!!!

Friday: We had a meeting with all the sisters in the zone about finding ideas and then we had lunch with them. Sister Sears and I brought basically all the leftovers in our fridge and we made guacamole. It was a feast! We went on exchanges after that, I went to the Bow Valley area with Sister Trimble and we just had a blast and a half. I just love her. It's so weird to be with someone who's been out as long as I have, we basically talked about our plans for after the mission (which I have none) and all the fun things we plan to do together. It's so crazy how fast things go. After our supper appointment, we were walking to the car and this guy was walking behind us and Sister Trimble said, "Talk to him." So I whipped around really fast and he was RIGHT THERE and it was awkward and then I made it even more awkward, but it ended good because he said he wanted to learn more! It was SO COOL! We're meeting with him on Saturday and I'm stoked out of my mind! Woo hoo! We were at the stoplight and this Asian guy was walking across the crosswalk in front of us and it was raining and Sister Trimble goes, "What are the odds you give him a passalong card." And so I rolled down my window and screamed, "HEY! HEY YOU! COME HERE!!" He looks at me like, "who, me?" And I said, "Yeah you! Come here! Hurry! Before the light turns green!" He runs up to the car and I give him the card and screamed, "There's a video about Jesus! Watch it!" He gets this look on his face like, "Are you freaking kidding me. I ran over here in the rain for this? Yeah right." And walked away. Hahahahaha it was the greatest thing ever. I'll never forget that look on his face. 
Saturday: We did a ton of service and it was cold and rainy and that was basically it. And Sister Sears gave out her first Book of Mormon(: My lil' baby girl! So proud. We tried to do a finding activity with our ward mission. We had planned to watch Meet the Mormons in the gym at the institute building and invite a TON of people and have food and stuff. But the video didn't work. So we had a bunch of people there, eating and socializing and no movie. But it turned out great. They all had fun and ended up doing some other stuff after we left. It was great(:

Sunday: Was a good day at church. J.R. was there again, our awesome guy. After church, we had lunch with the Cuckows. Their daughter is on a mission, she just left two weeks ago, and their son is in our ward. Brother Cuckow is a family history nut and so we did some family history with them after and I found like 5 names that needed all their ordinances done!!!! Two were a couple that need to be sealed to their daughter, two were men, and another was a female I'm keeping for myself to do next transfer when I can go to the temple again. The other ones, I gave to our family history consultant for their ward family history relay, so they'll be done by the end of this week. I've been bit by the family history bug, I want to do more!!!!! So fun. We went to ESL and Elder Chen made me a necklace! A bit of a back story on this necklace. I was the oldest sister on the mission in the district when Elder Chen first came into the mission, making me his "mom." So he made me this necklace with the chinese character for "Ma". But It's Ma squared, with the little 2 up top, so it's ma-ma! SO CUTE I LOVE IT.

Probably the coolest thing about this week was the amount of reflecting I was able to do while on exchanges with Sister Trimble. We were companions in the MTC, so we can both see how we've changed so much from our missions thus far and were able to share with each other what we've noticed. It was really neat to see how we've both been able to apply the Atonement in our lives and change for the better, trying to become more like Christ. He truly is our Saviour, and He has led a perfect example for us to follow. What an amazing gift our Heavenly Father has given us(: 

I love you all so much! Hope you have a great week(: Hope your weather is warmer than ours, it snowed a few inches yesterday and it's been cold and rainy all week! Yay! Love you! (: 

<3 Sister Pipkin 

1&2) Sister Sears and I in front of the Calgary temple
3&4) the sisters in our zone
5) ESL
6) Sister Sears, Sister Trimble and I 
7) Sister Sears and I at the retirement center activity 
8) the necklace Elder Chen made me
9) Sister Trimble and I