Wednesday, October 8, 2014

New Area: West Colombia and Bar-x with one week to go! September 29 2014

Oi lovely people!

Well, its official! The new building is finished in Angleton and we have our new ward boundaries! We are going to be having a completely new area on the other side of Angleton that includes West Colombia and Bar-x!! We have a small piece of Angleton as well, but we are completely rooted out of Lake Jackson, which is a little sad. We have had SO MUCH success in Lake Jackson and that is where most of our area has been. I knew that this was going to happen soon, but it is still a little hard. We are going to have dinner tonight with the McCowns and that will probably be our last adventure to Lake Jackson, besides the occasional district or Zone meeting, but all is well! We have some new adventures getting Sister McBride accustomed to her new area before she gets a new companion.

A week from today I will be heading to the mission office to have an interview with President Ashton and then the next day I will be transferred to a new area called home. :P I don't know much about it, but everyone says it is a great place filled with people to love and teach. hah I hear it is different than anywhere I have served so far, but that is it where I am needed at this time so I am getting prepared to leave the things I have grown to love and embrace my new area... :) It will be good. 

This last week was exciting and completely unexpected. On top of getting a completely new area we were given a third companion. Hermana Parra who was serving in the Spanish Branch (who also was in my ward at BYU.. cool right?) went home on the 25th so her companion Hermana Hubbard was asked to be with Sister McBride and I until she could get a new companion at transfers. 

On Saturday the Spanish Branch had a beach party so guess what?? We got to go and see the Gulf of Mexico! (Don't worry we didn't get in the water!! ahah we just got to
see it and listen to the waves!)

We decided we needed to meditate... and then this happened.. :) 

​All of the houses near the beach are on stilts and they are all crazy colors. This is a lot like how the houses look on Galveston Island too only most of them on the Island are more than one color! They are so happy and fun looking! 

​It was suuuper windy, but still super humid! It was so weird. 

​Maria Barraza, Hermana Hubbard, ME, and Sister McBride

It was so much fun to be with the Spanish Branch. We got to play some football and volleyball and just jabber in some Spanish-Portuguese. On of the members even brought some of the "Cana" or sugar cane that they have outside their house so we got to try it! It was super good! You just bite it and suck the sugary stuff out but you don't eat the cane. hah It was good, but interesting!  

So we are still with Hermana Hubbard, but in a couple hours she will get a new companion so we will be back to just the two of us. I love love love Hermana Hubbard so it will be a little sad not getting to be companions with her longer. 

I just found out today as well that I will be able to go to the Houston Temple for the last time this next Friday!! I am overly excited to go and be with all the missionaries that will be transferred "home" with me. It will be a great time to reflect on how much I have learned and really thank God for my experiences as a missionary. 

On of the other missionaries asked me if I was going to take a "dying" picture. (When missionaries go home they call it dying) I didn't really think about it until I had this Banana Spider staring at me when we were coming in the library to email. So then I thought, yes. This will be my dying picture. Being eaten by the ridiculous bugs here in Texas!! (These things are everywhere!! and they are HUGE)

​Well just to close I would like to bear my testimony. I know that God lives. He is involved and He really cares about our lives. Sometimes He gives us hard things so that we can become something more than we now are. Sometimes He lets us know he is there when we least expect it and sometimes we need to really let our souls reach up to heaven to feel his light and grace. He uses us to help those around us and often the blessings we seek come as we learn to not focus on ourselves. Our Savior is the light that helps us see our weaknesses and how we can be better. He is the cure to all of our heart aches. He understands because He has been there. He has felt what is feels like to be me, Sister Earl. He knows the people I have loved and gotten to know here. He knows the way I feel as I teach people the truth. He knows the pure joy of seeing them understand and then how I am crushed when they don't. He fills me with hope for the future and patience in my weakness. He fills me with joy I can't explain. There is really no way to express the things in my heart. 

This gospel is true. :) 

I love this work.
-Sister Earl

Angelton: Ribs Steaks and Frog Legs September 22 2014

This past week was filled with some of the most random and crazy experiences of my mission. As I was sitting here thinking of all the experiences I just started to laugh to myself (the lady next to me probably thinks I am a little crazy)

​Random sign on an investigators house! :)

First of all we went on exchanges this week and I had the opportunity to be on exchange with Hermana Ricks! She is a super awesome missionary that is actually going home in 3 days! We have been acquaintances our entire missions but it was so awesome to actually get to know her! She is like my twin... really it was weird, but it was so nice to talk to her about our goals and plans for when we go home. We have had similar strengths and weaknesses in the past so our goals were really able to be refined as we talked and made more goals. She is awesome! 

While we were on exchange we had the most random day. We drove by a former investigators house and noticed a car in the driveway I didn't recognize. I had a thought that we should stop and offer to help. I didn't know why or what they would need so we stopped the car and got out. As we approached the car I realized I had no idea who was in this car and I really had no idea why we were there... so I just said a short prayer and tried to act like I knew what was going on. We stood outside the car but the lady in the car was on her phone. We tried to wave her and even did a little dance trying to get her attention (hehe) before we knocked on the window and scared the bejeebees out of her. haah 

After talking to her for a minute we found out that this was the former investigators best friend and she was here to help her pack because her house had been foreclosed on. 

So we ended up helping pack and clean it was awesome! And we are going to go back and teach. ;) 

This was this really weird tree that we found that had these huge green alien looking things on them. Sister Reddick (the Recent convert member that was with us had no idea what it could be... ahah) They were huge and really hard.. we tried throwing them and standing on them but they wouldn't break. haha There is no end to the random things in Texas.   

Hannah Jauregui came to church again this week! She even stayed for the entire 3 hours! She loves it. :) We are so excited for her! 

So also this week we got a text message that said, "This is my new number," we had no idea who this was so we asked and found out that is was the guy that we had taught at McDonalds a couple months ago. He said he wanted to learn more so we invited him to church and he came! :) He is so cool. 6ft 5in with a fro and came in a suit and everything. haha It was a miracle and he loved church!

So also this week our investigators Ken and Regina Bishop invited us over for a Texan BBQ! We had so much food I was going to die. Steak, ribs, and the most interesting Frog legs! I have heard everyone talk about frog legs down here but I finally got to try em! They are sorta like a mix between chicken and an oyster... if that makes any sense at all. haah They are also HUGE.. at least bigger than I was expecting. I found out they only eat the big Bull Frogs so I guess that makes sense. :) hah 


Anyway, it was a great week!! Love ya'll! 
-Sister Earl

trying on hats on P-day! 

This is our GPS. If you notice the little blue car is where I am at.. and the Saltillo is where my brother Elder Earl is at!! and then my cousin Elder Earl is in Torreon! (Sorry other Sister Earl.. I couldn't get it to fit... but I love you too!!)