When life gives you potatoes, make latkes! And,Oh, Happy Thanksgiving

I can hardly believe that transfers are next week. This transfer has flown by so quickly, I feel like I’ve been here but a week. You don’t believe people when they say your mission flies by, then it does before you can blink. On Thanksgiving I will hit my three month mark. Insane.
Irish kid was happy finding a spot of clover.  Owners probably were not.

Irish kid was happy finding a spot of clover. Owners probably were not.

After I emailed last week, we went as a zone up to Calabasas to the only point in the mission where you can see the ocean. It was a blast just hanging out with the zone, I love them. We probably have some of the best elders in the mission. They laughed when they found out I could identify a naval cruiser from where we were at down in the water. The elders turned into little boys, climbing all over the boulders and down in the scrub brush. We caught the sunset, which was beautiful (five points to California), and sang happy birthday to Elder Hansen up on the rock. I love my zone!!
Palm trees are so weird

Palm trees are so weird

The first ocean is 3 months!! Missed you.

The first ocean is 3 months!! Missed you.

Sunset from Calabasas

Sunset from Calabasas

I love this shot!

I love this shot!

On Tuesday we had what I would consider one of the best district meetings I’ve had since I got here to the Valley. The spirit was so strong! I love how committed each of our elders are, and how conscientious they are of their calls and their duties as priesthood holders. We did a series of role plays as companionships that really illustrated well our purpose as missionaries not only to find people, but to serve those we work with, especially our fellow missionaries. Tears abounded, and not just with Sister Attanasio and I.
Sister Attanasio, my companion

Sister Attanasio, my companion

We had lunch with Beverly and she has begun to teach us to sign. Sister Attanasio and I have learned over 50 signs this week, and are on a roll. We will be able to interpret meetings for her relatively quickly. The Lord has really blessed us, because I know we couldn’t learn so quickly without His help. I love signing! We have ASL sisters in the next district over within our zone, but it’s a real blessing to be able to sign for ourselves and interpret for the members of the ward that need it. Beverly is so sweet and patient with us as we learn and ask questions. I feel like signing is definitely something that the Lord prepared me to do here in Chatsworth. I had prayed so often to be assigned the signing area, and I love that although I’m not an official ASL missionary, one day I will be fluent enough to do deaf work full time without the help of a translator.
Chaos during our organization

Chaos during our organization

Sister Attanasio and I organized our materials in the apartment this week. I don’t think it’s been done for at least half a dozen transfers, because it took FOREVER. We found a dozen copies of the Book of Mormon in assorted languages (Lithuanian, Hawaiian or Arabic, anyone?), tons of pass along cards and pamphlets, and enough Ensign magazines to paper the walls. It was chaos, but we had fun doing it and organizing it. And we found pictures to put on our walls! We joke that we ought to give our new elders the picture of Samuel the Lamanite on the wall with a note that says “welcome to Chatsworth!” Just kidding, we won’t.
LA traffic bites!

LA traffic bites!

Missionary yoga with Elder Mount

Missionary yoga with Elder Mount

Elder Hanson playing King of the Rock

Elder Hanson playing King of the Rock

We had a lesson with the less-active sister we knocked into earlier in the week, Betty. We taught part of the Restoration with Brother Summers, and the Spirit was so strong in her home. She’s got such strong faith, it’s incredible. She asked for help pruning her roses, and I foolishly offered to do it. Then she told me she has over 50. I will definitely be waiting til our new Elders come so they can help out. I honestly love doing less active work. So many of the members in our ward are less active and just need someone to invite them back. I love working closely with the ward to bring people back to activity. People just need love.

The Chatsworth ward is so strong and is so willing to help us with the work. They are so loving and incredibly hard working. Even if they think I’m from Canada, and have a new name for me each time I see them, I love them all dearly and am so thankful for each of them. I love our dinner appointments because it gives us an opportunity to get to know them better, and to show them a little of what we teach and how we teach it. I feel like my family expands each transfer, and it’s absolutely incredible.
Flora with me.  She is pretty spiffy for 95!

Flora with me. She is pretty spiffy for 95!

We did a TON of contacting this week, and we’re really on a roll. The work is still slow, but miracles are beginning to happen, and it’s such a blessing. I am hoping to stay in Chatsworth for at least another transfer, but will willingly go where the Lord directs. I love this work so much, and am thankful every day for the opportunity to do it.
Happy Hannukah

Happy Hannukah

I’ve been thinking a lot this week about gratitude, with Thanksgiving coming up, and about miracles, with Hannukah beginning on Wednesdaynight. Gratitude really works incredible miracles. Gratitude and prayers of thanksgiving for the blessings we receive often magnify those blessings in our lives. Gratitude for blessings, big or small, is a blessing in and of itself. “Thank you” is one of the most powerful things

I am so thankful for the love and support I have received since starting my mission, it means so much and is such a blessing to me. I love, love, love you all!
I am thankful for the scriptures and for the guidance that they give us.

I am thankful for prayer and for that constant line of communication we have with our Heavenly Father.

I am thankful for families and the fact that they are forever.

I am thankful for the opportunity I have to serve, and to work alongside some of my closest and dearest friends in the Lord’s vineyard.
I am so thankful for the wonderful, beautiful life, no matter how hard, no matter how tiring.
I am thankful for you! Love you so much!

Sister Red

PS – enjoy the pictures!!

Picture 1 – Palm Trees. They’re weird.
Picture 2 – Oh, you know, just the District Leader (Elder Hanson) playing King of the Rock.
Picture 3 – The first time I have seen the ocean in three months. Love it!
Picture 4 – Sister Attanasio!! I love my companion.
Picture 5 – Just some missionary yoga with Elder Mount.
Picture 6 – I love this shot.
Picture 7 – Sunset in Calabasas.
Picture 8 – Los Angeles Traffic BITES.
Picture 9 – Flora and I. She’s the spiffiest 95 year old woman I know!
Picture 10 – Irish kid was happy with a spot of clover. Owners probably weren’t.
Picture 11 – Chaos of organizing our materials.
Picture 12 – happy Hannukah!



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