Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Week #36 - 2015 Jul 27 - When It Rains In North Carolina, It Pours.

Hola amigos!

This week was great. It was a little bit slower...but it was still good. It's always good! My favourite saying recently is -- "All is well in the Kingdom of God." I say it all the time..when times are good, when times aren't so good.. pretty much just every 2 seconds....Haha! Sister Park can be the witness of this. ;) But it helps...because everything IS well in the kingdom of God! It may not seem like it at that very moment...but it totally is. The Lord has a plan and He's got it covered...we need not worry. 

Anywho. We got the elders back last Monday. We got a window marker and wrote "Just Married" on the back of their cars. HAHA. You don't mess with sisters...I'm just saying ;) It was pretty funny. We laughed hard hahaha. And they thought it was funny too XD

On Tuesday! Tuesday was SUCH a good day. Definitely the highlight of the week. We had Zone Conference in Wilmington but this time President and Sister James were there. Man, it's been such a blessing to have seen them so often this month. I say this every time I'm sure - but they are seriously a blessing and an answer to my prayers. Wow I just love them so much. And every time I see them my love for them grows exponentially. :) But yeah we had a super spiritual meeting. It was SO motivating and it gave me that extra little boost I needed to get me through the rest of the week (yes I know at this point it was only Tuesday....hahaha). And then after Zone Conference we went to this little shaved ice shack thing..I can't remember what it's name is...."Surf" is in it though. But it's pretty much just these super good snow cones. AND the best part is - they were 100% free. Yes that's right. The owner's are members and they're like, missionaries orders are free! There's even more benefits of being a food anyone? #beamissionary ;) Haha! But yes. And then after the meeting we went on exchanges and I went with Sister Anderson from the Jacksonville 2nd ward. SHE IS SERIOUSLY SO GREAT. Oh my goodness...I just love her so much. We had SUCH a good time. And we both needed it :) It was a tender mercy to be with her for that time. I loved every second of it. 

On Thursday we were planning on doing a TRACTING day. A full on knocking on doors goodness day. Yeah. But then! After studies as we were moving into our 'lunch hour' we realized that it was super dark outside and we're like "what the...." So we go and check it out. Oh my goodness hahaha it was super sketch! The clouds were all crazy looking and at one point they were spinning and we're like uhhhh. tornado? Haha and then one of our neighbors who we talk to every so often was like hey girls! Do you have a tv that you can check the weather on? Or a radio? Or something? And we're like nope we don't! And then he seemed shocked hahah but once he picked his chin off the ground he was like, alright, well let me check what the radars say because this doesn't look so good. And we're like sounds good! So we wait outside for him, in awe because of the clouds/weather. (ALSO SIDENOTE - it was actually kinda July in NC. Yeah. TENDER MERCIES OF THE LORD. Haha! It was that's why were standing felt so good to be outside and not sweaty after 2 seconds of being out.) So Ron (our neighbor) comes back out and he's like yeah...we're in the "red zone" which could mean a number of things. It could mean just a general thunderstorms, tropical storms, the start of a hurricane coming towards us, orrr a tornado. So we're like oh kay..! I guess we're not tracting today! #yikes. So we say thank you to him and go inside to get our cameras (hehe) and then we check the phone really fast and apparently we get weather warnings? We had a "tornado warning" text message and we're like whooaaa! And then we both really wanted to see a we're like THIS IS AWESOME. Hahaha. So then we took some selfies outside and it was great. And then we went inside and decided that we would weekly plan instead of knocking doors. And good plan too because it started POURING outside haha. And it was windy and all that fun stuff. Needless to say, there wasn't a tornado....sadly. Haha! 
But it was awesome being in the middle of that storm! Ha! 

The rest of the week was good. We had a pioneer activity on Friday night. That was fun :) Sister Park and I had to share stories about our ancestors. So HUGE shout out to Grandma & Grandpa Cook for sending me that story about Grandpa's 3rd Great Grandpa - Solomon Hancock - around Valentine's Day this year! It was perfect!! So thank you thank you thank you! 

And that's pretty much it. All of the investigators we have are like on pause or something. I feel like I'm a curse haha cause this is what it was like in Fayetteville too. Yikes. But they're all not wanting to progress anymore....they're at that point where they need to change how they're living but they don't want to change. So it's been pretty tough. If y'all get the chance, pray that Joe will have that desire to want to have faith and strengthen his faith and that it will be okay if he does change. He's so stubborn haha. But we love him anyway! He's a 74 year old man ( I can't remember if I've talked about him before with y'all.) But he's great. Just a little hard headed. But he'll come around I'm sure. Polly and Deborah just had a death in the family...but I really feel like Deborah is ready for the gospel. She's really receptive to our messages now. More on that later. Buttt that's about all we got. So if y'all want to pray that we'll find people that are ready, or they will find us, that would be great. :) 

I hope y'all have a great week! I love you! Don't ever forget that :) Hey y'all the church is true, k? There are so many things that are witnesses of the restored gospel. We just have to keep our eyes open for them. God is real. Keep a tender mercy journal and you're faith in Him will increase. You will start to see His hand in your life more. It's amazing everything that He does for us. I love this gospel. I love being a missionary. and I love you all. Stay strong in the gospel and stay close to your Father in Heaven and His son, Jesus Christ. I promise it's worth everything. 

Y'all are the best. 

Sister Blumel

xoxoxo <3

That's the car prank hehe.

(that's my back....just in case you were wondering hahaha.) 

Andddd then I found Mario and Luigi on a huge window and I immediately thought of Matty and Ben so Sister Anderson took a picture for me  (this was when we were on exchange). Hahaha it's a super awkward picture of me BUT the window is awesome!!! I love you boys! :D

Tornado Warning on the cell phone

Me and Sister Park

This is the explanation of my email subject line haha. Seriously I've never seen it just 'lightly rain' here.

It's always just poured. Haha! But this was on Thursday.  I mean there were tornado warnings and big D! ;)

Sunday, July 26, 2015

Week #35 - 2015 Jul 20 - At Zone Training, We Nap.

Hey one, hey all! 

This week zoomed by. I feel like the longer I'm out, the fast time flies. I mean it sorta makes sense....but then again at the same time it's like whattttt is even going on right now. You wake up in the morning and then you're like....gosh if I blink, it'll be 3 days from now. And then bam. It happens. Ha! It's crazy. But anywho, this week was good! 

So on Monday we had the sketchiest dinner of my mission so far hahaha. This family signed up to feed us and I mean...she sits on her kids in sacrament meeting so I was already freaking out. And so we go into this house and there's STUFF everywhere. Like oh my goodness. I have a confession - the mission has made me into a clean freak. Like not a word of a lie....messes irk me. Haha. So the fact that we could hardly see the floor I was like ahhhhhh I just want to cleaaann! And then she's like, y'all feel free to sit down! And so we go to sit on the couch. Sister Park sits on the end of the couch and then I go to sit beside her and there's a book in the way, so I go to move it and then under the book there's goldfish crackers EVERYWHERE. Yeah. I was like ooooh kay. So i put the book back down on the couch and just sit down on the edge. Ha. And then the husband comes out with this spaghetti stuff. And it's like mexican spaghetti. Yeah I didn't know it was a thing either. But it was like spaghetti sauce with chilis and salsa looking stuff, and other mexican things that you can put in stuff...and you know it doesn't sound too bad...until you eat it. And then you're like praying for the strength to get it all down haha. And then he brings out ANOTHER plate of spaghetti with sauce that just came from a can and then he brings out a huge bowl of peas and then he brings out these no bake peanut butter cookie things and then he brings out this avocado thing with eggs where the pit is. And the eggs weren't even cooked. I was like ahhhh how bout no. So we tried to eat all we could but honestly..we were both like...they're trying to poison us. It was awkward. hahahaha but we survived....probably because we took the avocados and the rest of the spaghetti and cookies home and just tossed them....hah. Ohhh the things you go through as a missionary ;) it was terrifying at the time....but now we can look back and just laugh :) 

Wednesday we had a zone training meeting. It was really good. Sister Park and I had to teach, you know being the sister leaders and all. Our topic was "What is so hard about getting investigators to sacrament meeting? Why? What do we do about it?" And for our joke at the beginning (because if you know me, you know I like to throw in a cheesy joke at the beginning of all my schpeels) was awesome. I was like "We are SO excited to teach y'all today! Actually we're sorta terrified, but mostly excited! Because! We're going to do an experiment. We tested this out earlier this week and it seemed to go pretty well. So we want to try it on y'all! Alright, if we could turn to Alma 34:4. *i read it*. Today we're going to test out a new learning technique. Learning by osmosis. Now what we want y'all to do, is get as comfortable as possible. But make sure that your head is laying on top of that scripture in Alma...and think hard about your investigators and sacrament meeting. We'll wake you up in 10 minutes and we'll discuss what y'all have learned. Consider this the roleplay. Goodnight!" Andddd oooohhh my goodness! It worked!!! All the missionaries in our zone (including the senior missionaries) had their heads down! I wish we would have gotten a picture of it because it was HILARIOUS. Hahaha so after a couple moments of silence, we're like JUST KIDDING! Hahaha don't fall asleep! And it was great. And then we actually got serious and the spirit was super strong. It was great. A lot of people told us we did a good that was good to hear :) 

The rest of the week was pretty good. I mean it flew by so it had to be right? Haha. 

Oh...I guess the sad part about the week was - Deborah, our new(ish) investigator, her son just passed away in a car accident. It was a hit and run. He was walking alongside the road and then a car came and hit him and didn't even stop to see what they had hit. They found him in the ditch the next day. It's heartbreaking. She's doing as well as she can be. She's a strong woman and I know she will get through this with the support of her family and friends, us, but most of all God. She has a strong faith in Him and this hasn't wavered that faith. But if y'all could keep her and her family in your prayers that would be wonderful. 

AH. Onto a lighter, more happier note! It was my birthday!!! I turned 20 this week! Wooooo! My birthday was SO great!!!! I was able to go out to dinner with one of the members here. They took us to the Santorini Grill (I have no idea how to spell that....sooooo that's the best y'all are gonna get hahah) which is this REALLY amazing greek restaurant. Wow. I love it. For birthday cake I had their famous Tuxedo Cheesecake. It's magical. It's like 3 layers of chocolate but it's not super rich that you can't eat it all. But it's so goooooodddd. Like pretty much the best thing ever. Oh yeah and for my main meal, they got me to try lamb chops over rice haha! It was actually pretty good. I've been hesitant to try lamb because I'm like lambs are so cute and fluffy and little! But then I was like no, I'm on a mission! I need to try all that I can! So yep! I had lamb on my birthday :) And I actually liked it a lot...haha it tasted different than I thought it would, but it was a good different. :) Overall, my birthday was fantastic. 

ALSO. Speaking of that, THANK YOU again to everyone who gave me birthday love!!! It meant a lot to me and I love you all so much. Y'all are seriously the best. I really do have the greatest family and friends. :) 

I think that was pretty much the jist of my week! I hope y'all are doing well and having the best summer ever :) I know I am! 
Take care and remember that I love you tons. 

Much Love,
Sister Blumel
xoxoxo <3

Birthday food----I mean fun!

This is the Cunningham's! And they're grandkids haha they jumped in last minute so that's
why they're blurry. In this picture you can also see the glorious Tuxedo Cheesecake.

That's the view at the Santorini Grill :)

And then that's after me and Sis Park's teaching at zone training. 

We matched! Haha we didn't stay matching though....
I changed cause that blue skirt is falling apart and has
grease stains on it and stuff. But yeah it was
 fun matching for the few hours that we were! :)

AND we wore jeans today just to wear jeans. Hahaha 
but then I got sick of them a couple hours later and 
put on leggings....hahaha. So funny. 

And then! In Relief Society we got to colour! Haha the teacher told us
 to draw a picture of our family. And yes I had to add the elders ;)

I took the opportunity to write some things i love about my fam jam!
So here you go! Thought y'all would like to look at it. 
I love y'all! I love being a Blumel!

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Week #34 - 2015 Jul 13 - "No, I don't want Sweet Tea.....or Wine..."


This week was great! It was a bit of a slower week but Sister Park and I had a lot of fun together. So that's always good :) 

Oh. Right quick before I get into anything else. The amazing family I mentioned last week, the Schetter family, they dropped us. They said they prayed about it and now is not the right time. So that was super depressing. It broke our hearts. But you can't force someone to learn about the gospel. As much as you want to sometimes! You have to respect their agency. So it's okay. I just have to remember that the Lord has a plan and He loves them even more than I do, so He's got it taken care of. 

We had Hello Zone Conference on Tuesday. We were able to see President and Sister James again. It was fantastic :) I loved it. Super inspiring and spiritual. And we were given the opportunity to talk to President and Sister James with just our companion. So it was a super personal time to get to know each other better. It was great. I'm pretty sure I said this last week, but I am SO excited to work with the James', they're incredible. 

We have been doing a lot of ADministering. You know the side of missionary work that nobody tells you about....They just talk to you about the ministering part....And then you get out and you realize how much paper work actually goes into missionary work. Haha. Oh man. But it is so important. So we've been focusing on getting the area book and the roster cleaned up. It's been good. We're getting to know the ward better! It turns out Sister Park doesn't know a whole lot about the ward either because her last comp did everything for her, BUT! It's great because we get to learn it all together!! Hoorah! So that's been fun :) We're on the same level and it's good. We have the same goals and our companion unity is actually super great. 

I'm trying to think of something interesting that happened this week....

Oh. We met with our investigator named Joe last night and he almost dropped us...but we didn't let him haha we talked him out of it. Basically we just bore testimony and answered his questions and he felt better about continuing the lessons. The adversary is a butthead. Ugh. But it's okay because we have the Lord on our side!! And He's much more powerful :) But we had a really good lesson with him. Testifying is the best way to teach someone because it brings the spirit so strong and the spirit is the teacher, so it's the best way to teach :) Least that's what I've learned on the mission. Testifying is the best. We all need to do it more often! 

That's about it. I'm doing well, I have an awesome companion -- we get along super good. The area is great. Things are looking up. Things are always looking up though :) 

Life is good. 

I hope y'all have a great week. I miss and love y'all TONS. 

Sister Blumel
xoxoxo <3

PS - The prank wars have started here in J'ville. The elders parked their cars in such a way that they blocked us in. See picture 1. And so we got them back by moving our car out and blocking THEIR car in. AND! Saran wrapping it. We also wrapped them in like a table cloth wrap thing. It's funny. See picture 2. Y'all just don't mess with sisters....I'm just saying ;)

Our car is the silver one in the middle of the dark grey and red car.

{OOOH K. Update. We just witnessed them getting us back. Haha so funny. The other sisters' accidentally left their car unlocked so they put all the saran wrap and table cloth wrap stuff in their car. And then they put pass along cards ALL over the cars. Oh my goodness hahaha so funny.}

PPS - The story behind the subject line! Everyone in the south drinks sweet tea and we got offered it all the time. It's like hmm, actually.. have y'all heard of the word of wisdom? Haha. And then today we went to Olive Garden for my birthday and the waiter asked if we wanted wine and before he finished his sentence we were all like Nooope! It was funny. But yeah, that's it :)

Prank on Sisters

Prank on Elders

There was a little frog in our big recycling bin. It was cute :)

Friday, July 10, 2015

Week#33 - 2015 Jul 06 - "MY GIRLS! MY GIRLS ARE HERE!!"


This week was great. There was so much that happened I don't even know where to start. Also, I picked the computer with the extra special keyboard and sometimes the letters don't want to hopefully this makes sense..cause I don't really feel like correcting everything! Ha! 

Last Monday, we had dinner with a nonmember family, the Schetter's, that we had just met 2 days before. And it was a BLAST!!! Oh my goodness. They are sooo great.They are a young family, they have a 2 year old daughter. Who is just the sweetest little girl ever. I just love this family SO MUCH already. They're fantastic. The husband actually grew up in the church, but has sorta fallen away. BUT! They (Hubby and wife) want to learn more about the church and they want Paisley to grow up with the same values and morals that Perry (the husband) did. So they know that baptism is going to happen...they just don't know when. It's awesome! They already have the spirit in their home and it's just perfect. AND! They have a pet pig. Named Harley. Haha it's a mini pig and it's litterbox trained and it's super cute. It's 12 pounds now and it will get up to about 30 pounds. So it's going to stay pretty little. It was awesome. That was  the miracle of the week. :) (Meeting this family and getting to know them is the miracle...not the pig...just realized how weird that sentence was and thought I would clarify hahaha).

And then throughout the week we met with this other family. There is Deborah, Polly, Danny, Eddie, and Dyna (Deborah calls her "Dyna-mite" hahah). And they are ALL over the age of 60. And they're all family. They're like your typical southern family hahaha. And everyone except for Dyna smokes like a bazillion packs a day..IN the house. They don't smoke when we're there. BUT! Whenever we leave their house, we smell like we smoked 3's gross ha. So we try to see them last..that way we don't have to see other people smelling like cigarette smoke....cause that would be awkward...haha. They're a fantastic family though. They all have a solid belief in Christ and that's a great start. Teaching them will be a super slow process because we're pretty sure Deborah is always like high on something and Polly likes to talk and Dyna just hates the situation that she's in because she doesn't agree with what everyone else is doing (the smoking and drinking and who knows what else), and Danny and Eddie come in and out throughout the visits. But! I can totally see them progressing. And I want them to so bad because they need that light that the gospel brings into their lives. They know it's missing and we, as representatives of Jesus Christ can help them find what they're missing. I hope it works out. I just have so much love for these people already and I so desperately want them to feel the power of the Atonement and the gospel. Keep them in your prayers :)

{Also, quick sidenote. Whenever we come in, Deborah goes, My girls!! My girls are here!!! And she does a little dance with it. It's super cute and it makes my heart smile. So that's the story behind the subject line! <3}

We had MLC on Friday (Missionary Leadership Council) and it was amazing. We met President James and Sister James and they are GREAT! They are so awesome!!! I love them already! Sister James is such a sweetheart and President James is so full of wisdom and he's hilarious! [for example: "I'm going to be a lot more mean than President Bernhisel. Because let me tell you something. He's a doctor....he's trained to believe everything you say. I'm an attorney...." hahaha so funny.] He's great. I'm excited to work alongside them. :)

The rest of the week was great and full of smiles and laughter. :) Life is good. It's always good when you put the Lord first. 

I hope y'all had a great week and I hope this next one is even better. I love you all so much. Be safe, take care, and remember God loves you. 

Much Love,
Sister Blumel
xoxoxo <3

And here's a picture of a frog/toad thing. Ha! Cause why not. 

Me and Sister Park on the 4th of July! (zoom's funny.
That's our district leader photobombing in the back.) 

And then we took an awkward "what the..." selfie. 

And me and Deborah!

And that's Dyna and Polly. They're sisters. Deborah is Polly's daughter. 

Sunday, July 05, 2015

Week #32 - 2015 Jun 29 - Canadian Spy

Hola amigos! 

So this week, I was transferred, became a sister leader, learning a new area, and still loving missionary life. All in all, this week was pretty great. This email might be a little on the shorter side, just because emailing at the library is A LOT different than emailing at the family history center at the church. It's okay though!! 

Tuesday was transfer day. AKA a driving day. It took about an hour and a half to get up to transfers and then we had the meeting and then it took like almost 3 hours to get back to our area after transfers. BECAUSE! I'm even more south! Haha. I am now serving in the Jacksonville 3rd ward. So we cover Jacksonville, Camp LeJeune, Hubert, Midway Park, and Swansboro. (I probably missed a couple) And besides Jacksonville and Camp Lejeune, those are all pretty small little town things. Haha. It's a busy area. Anywho, at transfers we got to hug President and Sister Bernhisel again. It'll be weird without them here. But I'm excited to have President and Sister James come :) They're going to be great. We get to meet them on Friday at our MLC meeting (Missionary Leadership Council...or something like that hahaha). 

Oh! My new companion's name is Sister Park. She's from Washington State. She came out with Sister Peterson, so she's still pretty new in the mission. She's fun! We're going to do some great things together with the Lord's help here! I'm excited to be working with her. :)

The rest of the week was great. We are focusing on 2 investigators here. Their names are Margie and Joe. And they're both older. I love them already though! They're great! I'll probably have more info on them next week as we've only met with them both once this past I'm still getting to know them and their story :) 

I'm excited to get to know this area and meet everyone. The mission has taught me and will continue to teach me how to love people the second I start talking to them. I love meeting new people and getting to know them. I hope that's sticks with me for the rest of my life :) I'm sure it will though. As long as I keep it up! 

I love this gospel. There's nothing quite like it. And there's a special spirit and power that comes with prayer. It's real and I know it. So just remember that when life gets a little too tough, you can ALWAYS turn to the Lord and ask for help and He WILL help you! Maybe not in the way you think...but He answers it in the best way in the long run :) Just trust in Him and His plan and everything will work out the way it's supposed to. 

Remember, I love you all and I miss you like crazy! You're all always in my prayers and I hope y'all have a grrrreat week! :D 

Y'all are the best. Sending hugs and love from NC. 

Sister Blumel 
xoxoxo <3

PS - The email subject line - There's a running joke that I'm a Canadian spy because I keep getting sent to the military parts of the mission ;) Hahaha. Actually I think I explained that last week....but here's a refresher. :)