Monday, September 30, 2013

Letter #48

Dear Family!
We had an awesome week! Sister Kitchen is such a huge help, and is making the work FUN :) She is always down for whatever... and she makes it a good time. We are missionaries, and we are offering and teaching people about the Plan of Happiness SO we need to be happy! We have the knowledge of the beautiful plan! :0 This week has been really exciting . The work is defiantly hastening :) We are getting busier and busier :) I love it when our plans are full and we are running from appointment to appointment :)
We are working a lot with less active and returning members. We are helping them get solid in their testimony and conversion :) We have been helping a lot of people prepare for the temple. This is probably my favorite thing to do :) I love the temple! I miss it everyday. That is the first thing I want to do when I get home; go through the temple! So family; will you please go for me and enjoy it since there isn't a temple in my mission :( Also can you commit to go at least 1 a month? Mom has always been the best example of that by going every week. I hope to keep that tradition going with you mommy when I get home too! :)
So this week we had a conference with our area 70; Elder Tye. It was so great! I love getting together with other missionaries and getting to feel the spirit we all hold... there is no greater feeling :)

I love this work, and love to hear that people are catching the wave and spirit of missionary work! This is the Lord's work :) I know and can testify of that. Sometime's you may feel like your not making a difference, but if we are trying the Lord will concert our effect. (not sure what she was trying to say at the end of the sentence here; sorry) Did everyone listen to the Relief Society Broadcast on Saturday? It was so good! We need to remember our baptismal covenant!!! We promised the Lord so much! We are going to be judged accordingly. We need to feed him sheep! We need to find those lost ones and bring them back to the fold! Trust me; there is so much work to be done. We can always do so much more with the help of the members. I love that you are feeding the missionaries! That is so great; now you need to work on giving them families to teach! Member referrals are the best!! Mom and Dad, actually everyone... You need to pray and ask for help in doing his work. Pray for names to come to mind of people that are prepared, for missionary experiences... I know first hand sometimes that it hard to do.. but it is so worth it! Open your heart and your mouth!! Share the gospel with those around you. I just love the promise from the Hasten the Work Broadcast!
If it is all out of the Pure Love of Christ, we can not go wrong. I love you guys so much!! I am so excited and love to hear how great you guys are doing :) I LOVE YOU SO MUCH!!! AND MISS AND PRAY FOR YOU DAILY!!  God be with you till we meet again :) Love You!!
Sister Sharon Andersen
P.S.  I thought of a few things if you haven't sent that package off for Christmas. 
First of all; new clothes or some of mine. I am beyond sick of my clothes!!! Please send me some colorful things that will go with multiple things? 
Second of all; Stamps :) some cute ones preferably :) 
Third of all; snacks and cookie butter :) Sister Kitchen made me try it, and it is amazing. I'm kinda addicted haha. Well love you guys :)

Monday, September 23, 2013

Letter #47

Dear Family!!
This week has been so great!! I forgot how much I enjoy training. I love "greenie fire"!!  I love serving with new missionaries :) They are so excited and ready to work! It get's me excited and wanting to work even harder. It can also be a very reflective experience; being able to see where we all started out. I sometimes get down on myself because I feel like I should be further along coming up on my year mark. I should know more, and be doing more! I kinda think I need to be the "perfect missionary" but then I look back from where I started and I have changed and grown a lot! I don't have a problem talking with random people now! hahaha I sometime still get nervous teaching, but I think that is normal. I love the people though! I try to picture everyone how Christ sees them; as my brother and sisters! :0 I also always picture them in white :) 
I may not be where I want to be, but I think that's how it will always be. That is just the way of life we are all here learning and  growing. We are just at different stages of moving forward. There are only two ways of moving; I choose forward! I want to continue to grow and improve myself everyday! :)
So about my new companion :) She is the best!! I love her already :) Her name is Sister Kitchen and she is 19! She is from Fruit Heights, Utah. She is super excited to be out here and so funny. We have been getting along great :) She like sports and baking so... we have kinda been baking up a storm! hahaha! I am getting a little worried about my "6 months to sexy." She is a very bad influence on me in that regard. hahahaha! Well I forgot to mention she is freakishly tall. Like really really tall!! She is 6- 1 and makes me look really short! :( But she is great and ready to work.
I was a little worried about taking over the area after 2 1/2 months. Even though I'm the one driving, I still have no idea where I am going! hahahah. At least I know the people... that's what is most important. So this week because I'm still getting used to training again has been a little on the slower side. We didn't have a ton of set appointments, it was a lot of drop by's. That means we drive around and hope ~1) that  people are home ~ 2) that people answer the door for us. It's breaks my heart when you hear people inside and they are shhhhing their pets acting like there not home. :( * But we do have a funny story. We were visiting this recent covert of about 2 years and we rang the door bell. His little daughter come to the window and runs to tell her dad who is there and she says " I think it is the preachers" Sister Kitchen and I couldn't help cracking up to that one! hahaha! We have been focusing on visiting the less active members or the returning members with the new "To The Rescue" program. Have you head much about it? We are really focusing on strengthening the members we already have. As we do that, the Lord will bless us with more people to teach. We have already seen it working here... after visiting some less actives we have starting to teach their family :) The Lord defiantly has a hand in this work and is preparing people evey day. I keep reminding my self even if all I do is just plant a couple of seeds for other missionaries or members to harvest in the future it will all be worth it! It is all the Lord's work!! I signed up to do whatever is asked of me...
 I love you guys so much!! God be with you till' we meet again! :)
Love, Sister Sharon Andersen
P.S.- mommy still thinking what i want for Christmas. :)

P.S.S- I love that Grandma and Grandpa Andersen are coming to Florida for their mission!! I wish they could have been come to my mission but that's alright hahaha!  LOVE YOU GUYS SO MUCH!!!!!! HAHAHAHAHAHAHA! (my fathers parents have been called to the Tallahassee, Florida Mission; they enter the MTC at the end of October)

Monday, September 16, 2013

Letter # 46

Dear Family!
So... It's transfer time already! I can't believe how time flies! So the news is...
I'm staying in Brooksville AND I am training again!! :/  I  kinda can't believe it. President Summerhays told me I'd be training the rest of my mission; but then I got assigned to another area with Sister O so I though maybe that be just while he was president. Then President Cusick said that would probably going to be the case. So... I'm excited, but also nervous. It's weird because it has been a couple transfers since I've trained. I think I feel a little rusty! hahhah. However, I am also excited. "Greeny Fire" is always good :) It is great to see the excitement of new missionaries :)
Sister O and I are kinda bummed though. We had kinda figured that since she's been in Brooksville for about 6 month now, and she always says we have WAY TO MUCH FUN TOGETHER so they are not going to keep us together much longer... and she was right! :(  Transfers are a little different with President Cusick; now we do not know where you are going, or who your new companion will be. It is all a big surprise so it's kinda nerve racking! Sister O had been freaking out all weekend. The last couple of days have been a ton of goodbyes :(
I just hope to make an impact on this area, and that people are sad to see me leave too. I kinda took all my time sending pictures, hahaha So I am already out of time :( Sorry for the short email.  I love you guys so much!!! Mommy~ I'll start thinking of Christmas presents. I just don't really need anything right now. Let me know once you draw names! Daddy~ I love how mission minded you've become. I bet the missionaries love it. Great job being a member missionary :) I Love you guys!!! God be with you till we meet again! :)
Love, Sister Sharon Andersen

ENJOY the Pictures ~ 

 Care Package sent by the Bird Family for her "Hump Day".
 It was a little box of Sunshine to brighten her day, all little yellow gifts!!
This is a picture of her wearing the yellow headband and painting her finger nails yellow!!
 This is a care package from the Ray Family for her Hump Day!
 Sister O and Sister Andersen looking cute!
 NOW jumping up on the bed because they are so happy it is Sister Andersen's "half birthday"!!
 Sister O and Sister Andersen looking ADORABLE in the car on the way to the Baseball Game!
 Sister A and Sister O at the Ray's Baseball game!!
 SIster Westburg and Sister Andersen at the game!! She was SO happy to see her!!
 Sister O and Sister A on their way to a Baptist church. They told an investigator they would go to her church if she went to their church!
 Sister Andersen holding a turtle. She says they are ALL over the place!!
(can you tell she it TOTALLY freaking out about holding it!)
 This is Sister A and Brother Popaloto. She says he feeds them every time they visit him, and he always tries to "hit on them" (as in flirt with them)
 Sister A, Sister O and Brother Popaloto.
 Another visit Sister A and Brother Popaloto.
 Sister O, Brother Popaloto and Sister A.
 Sister A and Sister O trying to stay positive... this picture was taken after their ride to get ready for the baptism ran out of gas. She said they had to call the Elders to go an fill the font for them...
 But obviously it was fine because the Baptism still happened...
 The Elders, the Sisters, and Family and Friends of Kyler at his Baptism.
Sister Anderson, Sister Andersen (the missionary), Brother Anderson, and Sister O. 
She say's that they are great people! :) He does "Santa Appearances" she said. They are teaching them the lessons right now. He was able to take them to see the Weeki Wachee Mermaids... see pictures below... 
 at Weeki Wachee Mermaids... haha
 What a beautiful place to go and visit!!
 Sister Andersen sure makes a beautiful Mermaid!!
 Sister Andersen, Hannah and Grace, and Sister O. 
(she said sorry it was fuzzy)
 Sister Andersen holding a gift that a mission friend sent her. 
A PINK tool Kit! The Perfect Gift for a Sister Missionary!! 

Monday, September 9, 2013

Letter #45

Dear Family!!
The days are long on a mission :) I get home exhausted at the end of the day. I have never felt so tired in all my life :/ ........ by the time Sunday comes around is when it really hits you; because your sitting down for 3 hours and your falling asleep in class. hahaha. P-day is always MUSH needed... this week has felt extra long and we were totally thrown off because we had p-day on Tuesday. We have been really confused about what day it was. hahaha. One thing I do absolutely love about the mission is how organized it is... and makes you. You are on such a schedule that you become very organized. I am going to be honest here; I'm still a "hott mess" but more organized. hahaha. I can see that the Lord's church is a house of order. I want my house to be just like that.  This week we had Stake Conference! I love Stake Conference gets me ready for General Conference! And General Conference on a mission is the best!!! I always enjoyed conference growing up, mostly because mom and daddy put a LOT  of effort to make it fun. Thank you mommy and daddy for all you do!!! (I could never thank them enough for all they do) I do still miss Conference Bingo though :( hahaha.  I don't feel like I have ever gotten more out of Conference than on my mission! Being able to teach people about this church has helped me fall more and more in love with it!! :) Just like I said last week I'm not just converting and bringing others to Christ, I'm also converting myself :) This gospel is so true and it just makes sense!!!

I heard a story about how someone was telling their investigators about General Conference coming up and explaining that our prophet was going to speak to the whole world. They explained that it was worldwide broadcast; for anyone to watch. So the little boy they were teaching go so excited and couldn't believe that the Lord was going to speak to the whole world through one of his servants; the prophet of the church. If you really think about it... How lucky are we ? :0 Every 6 months we have a living prophet that talks and teaches us what we need for our day. It's pretty much the coolest thing ever :) The Lord loves us so much, and he wants to help us in any way possible.
Anyways... back to Stake Conference. hahaha. It was so good!! I love being an adult now and getting to go to the extra sessions of conference. (still cant believe I'm considered a adult hahha) It was so awesome the whole Conference was all about missionary work !!!! And I LOVE MISSIONARY WORK!!!  Duh that's what I do all day everyday. It's just to neat seeing the work progress. The Lord is definitely  hastening his work for a reason. We are in the Latter Day's! :) We are preparing to meet our maker and It's our responsibility and privilege to share the gospel with EVERYONE  around us. We covenanted  to do that when we were baptized. We promised to be a   " witnesses of God at all times and in all things, and in all places" (Mosiah 18:9) 
Well I'm again, like always short on time. Maybe once I'll get all the way done before I have to get off. :) I LOVE YOU GUYS SO MUCH!! Thank you for all you do :) I love you guys so much!! :) God be with you till we meet again :) 
Love, Sister Sharon Andersen 

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Letter #44

Dear Family!!!

This has been a great week :) Very exhausting; but GREAT!!! :)  I am pretty sure I told you, but just in case the highlight of the week had to be Klyer getting baptized! (I'm pretty sure I told you a little about him a couple weeks ago.) He is 16 years old and just the sweetest young man. He is very polite and well behaved. :) He say's "Yes Mam." which I honestly don't like only because it makes me feel old :(  He just showed up at church one day (BTW I love that when it happens) with his grandma. :) She is the loudest Italian Grandma you'll ever meet. hahaha! She brought him and he really enjoyed church and he wanted to learn more. He hes been researching different church's for a while I guess. He just had not been able to find one that fit... until he came to ours! :) He was raised Catholic and that didn't fit, he tried Lutheran, some Southern Baptist and even tried being a Jehovah Witness. He said he loves that our church actually practices what it preaches. :)
We taught him and he was ready to get baptized since the first lesson, he is just so great!! :) I love seeing how the Lord prepares people... he gives us experiences so we will be ready for the next part of our plan :) It was so neat while I recited the first vision to him... he was so great! I've never had anyone react like he did. His eyes just got wide during the lesson and I could tell he was just soaking and taking it all in :) He was saying "WOW" when we got to the part about Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ appearing to Joseph Smith. It was very refreshing for me... not everyone reacts like that. hahaha So this baptism was great. :) I wish we would have had more support from the ward, but it ended up fine.

It might just be in my case... but the day before a baptism is always crazy and hectic. (maybe it's just some missionaries idk?) We have the craziest day before the baptism. It started off that we were out of miles for the month for the car. (and that's part of the reason this week been so exhausting) So we have been biking and tracking a lot! Oh yeah I have been meaning on telling you for a while; in Brooksville we are on full time car. I hate it... I've gotten really fat! Well... not really fat, but my clothes are getting a little to tight for my liking! hahaha I have to do "6 months to sexy" before long, have you heard about that? I guess some of the elders do it, when they are getting close to getting home so they want to look good. So they start working out hard to get rid of all the mission weight. hahaha  I have heard that missionary weigh just falls off. I'm banking on that so hopefully the Lord will bless me :0  Well that was a weird tangent. ANYWAY..
I have learned I get easily distracted or I get off topic easily... What was I saying? hahahahaha... Saturday the day of Kyler's baptism. We didn't have any miles left so we got a ride with the a member. Her car broke down and we had to walk to go get gas. We ended up having to stall for the baptism font to fill up! It was crazy but great. We got to spend all day with this awesome lady that just move into our ward. We got to hear her conversion story! Those are my favorite stories to hear.
So Monday we biked and it felt so good to be on a bike again. It's weird but for whatever reason I don't feel like a missionary being on full time car. However, everything is so far between in Spring Hill area that we biked around all night and didn't get as much done. (so I see the advantage of being on full time car; it just doesn't feel the same) Oh, and we got lost in the dark; Sister O's GPS died. It made for an interesting night to say the least! hahaha
On Tuesday we got to see one of my favorite investigators :0 Disha! :) She is so fun, I just love teaching people close to my age. :) Sometimes we get off topic and talk about boys! hahaha She has got a lot of boy troubles. I keep telling her she needs to find herself a "good Mormon boy" :)  ahahah
Then Wednesday was the craziest. I almost to a ticket!! We were parked on some guys lawn... (btw everyone does that in Flordia) however this guys called the cops on us. I was freaking out! Luckily the Lord was watching over us and sent us the nicest cop I have ever meet. She just gave us a talking too... but really she just turned her back from the people's house and told us it wasn't a big deal, and not to worry about it to much. :) After that we went to the best Chinese Buffet ever!! Seriously it was good! They had a make your own chow mein! We may have skipped breakfast and lunch so we could eat more! haha 
I have been trying to read more General Conference talk throughout the week. I was reading last months Ensign and found the best article. It was called Move Forward With Faith... I took a little part and wanted to share it with you :) 
"During my time in Finland, I taught and baptized three people. Up to that time I had never experienced the great joy I felt as I watched someone accept the gospel of Jesus Christ. But the truth is, there was a fourth convert—me. Had I labored all my days and converted only myself, the experience would still have been worth it to me.
The Lord needs you on a mission, but perhaps even more important, you need a mission for yourself. It is there you will feel and understand the sweet whispering's of the Spirit and learn the lessons you need to know to be a good husband or wife, a good parent, and an outstanding member of the Church.
If you are worried about serving a mission, follow the Savior’s call. You will need to exercise both faith and courage to leave the roundabout of indecision, but choosing to serve a mission will be one of the most important decisions you make in your life."

I just really loved it... it just really hit me and it is so true!!!!!! I have learned and have grown so much from my mission. I have gained a testimony and feel like I have converted myself to this gospel. I know it's true with all my heart and couldn't deny it. I always say it's the reason why I am so happy.
Well yet again I'm running short on time :(  I love you guys all!! Thank you for all the love and support you give me :0 I love you all so very much :0 God be with you till we meet again :) LOVE YOU!!!! 
~Sister Sharon Andersen