Monday, March 24, 2014

A Year Since My Call

Well HEEEELLLLLOOO 11 months!!! What a wild time this has been! I cannot believe that I have been on my mission for 11 months!! (: How exciting is that! So we had a really good week! Here's how it went!

Tuesday was the year mark for receiving my mission call to the Pennsylvania Pittsburgh Mission!
 Wild right?! We looked for service opportunities in the community. Turns out there aren't a whole lot! d: Which is a bummer but we will make it work somehow! Then we tried Rae Ann but she was taking a nap so she said it wasn't a good time. Wendy was out of town so we ended up at Carol's. We read Mosiah 5 with her and talked about her granddaughter Lacey who wants to be baptized! So hopefully we can start teaching her soon! We headed to Ruthe's for dinner and Sister L. Neeley was there. We talked to them about modesty and who the world's standard is so different from the Lord's. We can find a lot of hope through following the Lord's standard; even when it doesn't seem like that big of a deal. We tried to visit Lacey after that but she wasn't home so we set an appointment for Sunday afternoon.

Wednesday was district meeting and it was pretty good. Before that, we had gone to the Genealogical Society that is across the street from our apt to look for service and they were really happy to see us; so maybe that is something. After District meeting we were laughing and joking at lunch and took some really funny pictures. It was a good time with some friends! (: Sister L. Neeley picked us up and we went to Renea's house for a lesson. We talked a lot about the Atonement and the Restoration. It was pretty good. Renea is really serious about the gospel now and I love seeing her make changes that help her feel the Spirit more!

As we were walking out of the lesson, we got a text from our district leader, Elder Vassallo saying that we needed to pray for the Cranberry sisters because they had gotten in a head on collision and were in the hospital. We quickly got the details that nothing was broken and they were ok. They were on a hill and at a stop sign. When they started going up the hill, it turned and the car going the opposite direction of them didn't turn and hit Sister Gate's side. They are doing ok right now.
So we did exchanges and Sister Walborn and I were going to Butler and we told her about the accident. So we went to the hospital to see them. They were sore and bruised but they were ok. After that we went to Butler's correlation and then took the Elders home

Thursday was a really good day!! Sister Walborn and I had an awesome personal and comp study then we tried to visit people who weren't home. We did get in one door with a less active named Stephen. He served a mission in Las Vegas and hasn't been active in a really long time. Those are always so heart breaking!! But we had a really good conversation and they have a lot of potential to grow in the gospel again. Sister Walborn and I went to lunch and just talked and it was so good for me. We got a lot of things cleared up and I felt the best I have in a long time!! We tried an investigator after that but she wasn't available to meet with us at that time so we came home, tried more people then came back to Beaver. Sister Hanseen and I went to dinner at the Antel's. She made proud of me! I ate it! Gagged? Almost, but I got it down! haha! Fish is not my thing d: On the way home, Sister Antel said she lived really close to the West Virginia border and we should go see it. SOOO we did hahaha! Didn't leave the mission, but stood on the border hahah! It was pretty sweet! We tried to visit Barb afterwards but no one was home ):

Friday we did Weekly Planning then some time. We went to Barb's house and had a lesson on love that God shows us on a daily basis. She really enjoyed it and we had a pretty good discussion.

Saturday was pretty random! Rasheda cancelled our appointment so we went over to the Weeks' house and helped put together the lobby decorations for the musical at the high school. They are doing The Wiz and so we cut out Z's and attached them to O's to make OZ. We'll probably end up helping again. haha! Plus we learned that Bishop likes to scrapbook 0.o never would have guessed that one hahahahaha! It was so funny! His wife showed us and they were really good actually haha! Clearly he made them, but they were really cool haha! We got invited to a wedding but we weren't able to go because we didn't have the address...and we didn't really know the people haha! Paige's sister was getting married and Paige wanted us there. Her mom said we could ride in the limo...ummm no thanks haha! Could you imagine? "Hi! How's your day going? Oh you are getting married! That is so exciting! What was your name again?" Yeah, maybe not haha! We did try some Beaver Falls names, but no one was home (shocker) haha! We went to the Stapleton's for dinner and made up a game by combining 2 games. We played The Game of Things and Apples to Apples. We played the Red cards in Apples to Apples and used the Thing cards to describe it. I dunno it was really fun though. We shared a spiritual thought then tried Wendy who was still out of town and then headed up to our apartment in Beaver.

Sunday was pretty average. We went to church and had 6 less actives at church!! Little victories! (: After church, this little boy Ozzy who is 6-7 said "Mom! I accidentally bit Rusty's knee!" hahahahaha! Little kids are so funny. (: We tried Lacey again but she still wasn't home so we went to dinner at the Neeley's house...the OTHER Neeley's d: haha! We celebrated Linda's birthday and then headed over to Stake Choir. I love being able to praise God through music. Truly it is amazing. I don't have a great voice, but the words and the music bring the Spirit and that is what truly matters.

Well, I hope you know how much I love you and how much you mean to me! You are such examples to me and your prayers help me. I know that God is helping me every second of every day but sometimes I am blind to it. He never leaves me alone because this is His work and His glory. I am just a little instrument by which He can bring to pass the immortality and eternal life of my fellow man. I hope you have an amazing week! Love you!! Keep it up!!


Sister Kaitlyn Crockett

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

20 Years

Well this is weird. I am like old now....20?!? oh man. What a trip! This week has really been up and down. We didn't teach a SINGLE lesson. Strange right? I've never had that happen. We did get a lot of good work done though! It was a pretty great week!

Tuesday we went to correlation...and well, after that meeting...things may be changing soon with our ward mission leader...not good. But we just keep moving on. We tried Rae Ann and basically watched her son throw temper tantrums. Greeeat. haha! What can you do? It was impossible to ask her if we could start with a prayer, let alone read the scriptures with her! d: Ya live and you learn. The rest of our day was taken up by visiting Sister Swingholm (I will explain this later). During dinner, I started flipping through my study journal and reading through my old entries and it seemed that Heavenly Father had compiled everything I needed to hear right then and there. It was amazing. I am so grateful for the Spirit and the inspiration that Heavenly Father gives us. After dinner, we went to Lorraine's and just when things didn't seem to be going anywhere...she opened up to us and explained that she hasn't felt connected with God and wants that again. This is a huge step for her!! We were so excited that this development took place!

Wednesday was POURING all day long! It was so awesome!! Until it turned to ice...that was less awesome. We went back to Lorraine's after doing some time and helped her get her computer set up. I got my birthday package from Mom and Dad. I was SO stoked haha! (: It was sweet! Sister L. Neeley came with us on team-ups but everyone we wanted to try cancelled! Or just didn't answer the door ): We did see Vicki and have started sneaking in spiritual thoughts by talking to her grand kids about Jesus. When we first got there they didn't even know who He is. Now, we can some them any picture representing the Savior and they get it. They know who Jesus is. Baby steps all the way. Vicki is becoming more open and happy to see us. It's ever so slightly but it's going somewhere. We then started "Pruning the Vineyard" and cleaning up the area book. We didn't get in touch with a lot of people, but the ones we did, weren't interested. This guy, Albert, said that he was "strapped" and had tried for 2 years to get his family to come around, but they wouldn't. We offered to try and he declined. You can only do so much. We went to Sister DeBaker's for dinner and it was a blast! We had pizza from this trending shop called Marco's and it was so good!

Thursday we started weekly planning because we had zone conference on Friday. After that it was time to prune again. The one person we got in touch with had moved 6 years ago...mmm. that's rough. Then we went to the Relief Society activity and it was a "Favorite things" party. We had dinner then everyone brought a "favorite thing" and Sister La Fond started explaining what she brought, then drew a name and that sister got what she was describing. Then that sister would describe what she brought would draw a name. Etc. It was so much fun! I got a bracelet made from an old Utah Transit token and some silver spoons. Oh and chips and salsa. SWEET. The bracelet sounds weird...but it's actually cute so I'm happy haha! Then we went to Cranberry to stay over for Zone Conference. Apparently our mansion wasn't cool enough to house people for it so we had to travel d: Just kidding haha!

Friday we had Zone Conference and it was a blast! I got to see so many people that I love! Sisters Moore and Holmstead and Elders Rasmussen and Moylan!! It was so awesome!!! I love these missionaries!! They are so great! The whole zone conference was about how we are outting tracting and that we need to be doing more service if at all possible! Great right?! I was stoked! I talked with President Topham afterwards and we had a really good talk. (again, I'll explain at the end.) We went straight to the Green's afterwards and their friends Susann and her daughter Emily and son Matthew were there. We have been working on building a friendship with them for a while. We started talking about what we had learned at zone conference and Susann asked what we did as missionaries. That got into transfers and stuff and she said she didn't want me to get transferred...What?! Even non-members don't want me to leave! Haha! That is a supreme feeling! I love this area so much!

Saturday we finished weekly planning then worked on the area book for a little bit. WE did some cleaning of the records to make them up to date which is helpful. We did some service for the Greens (I am sure they are sick of us by now haha!) Then we went to the Tame's for dinner. Hamburgers and Hot Dogs. I LOVE SUMMER!!!! (: haha! We tried to visit Lorraine to address her concerns but her grand kids were over so that wasn't going to happen anytime soon. We were talking to Jaz her 4 year old granddaughter and she said that a boy kissed her in preschool and we asked what she did. Her answer? "Kissed him 1st!!" hahahaha! What the heck?! So weird haha! It was hilarious!

Sunday....well. It was my birthday. And Sister Hanseen took it upon herself to tell EVERYONE. It was so awkward because I tried to not make a big deal of it d: We were asked to participate in Primary and read a little script pretending to be different people from the scriptures. Sister Hanseen was Mary Magdalene, Elder Adamson was Thomas, Elder Waddoups was Cleopas, and me? I was a Nephite woman. I didn't get a name hahaha! what is worst is the script said "Man or woman"! So I am not really sure what I was haha! d: We went to the Goettman's for dinner and they were already having a party for a family friend, named Ramon so they figured it was perfect for me too! haha! So I got a birthday party d: We had fajitas and ya know, cow stomach. Cuz that is a normal thing haha! Ramon is from Mexico ( i think) and he loves it. I wouldn't touch it but everyone else ate some. haha! One of the granddaughters, Kate, is 6 and loves to dance. She always stands by me and shows me her iphone 0.o what? haha! She is so funny. She was doing a chin stand last night and put her heels against her shoulders. I'm still trying to figure that one out haha! She is hilarious. After that we went to Bishop Weeks' house and hung out with their family for a little bit and talked about the situation with our ward mission leader. The thing is getting resolved luckily and the work will move forward I am sure! They got me this sweet present with all sorts of candy in it and some good smelling stuff (: And they had less than 12 hours notice d: hahah! I love them!

So, this week was a little hectic. The reason that I was talking to Sister Swingholm and President Topham is that I have been struggling with depression for almost 5 months now. It's been a beast and because of some of the things that have happened, I was contemplating going home (it wasn't originally my idea). I am so glad to say that at this moment in time, I will be home in November. I have had to rely so heavily on my Savior's arm. I know that He has been with me every step of the way. Although many times I have struggled without feeling a break, the sun always rises and a new day comes. I can always rely on my Heavenly Father and Savior for Their love. I know now more than ever that the Atonement is real. I haven't had large sins that I have had to repent of, but I have needed to repent and use that part. But there is also the healing part of the Atonement. He carries our burdens willingly. Every Sunday when I partake of the sacrament, I read Hymn 193, "I Stand All Amazed", because truly I do.

    1.    I stand all amazed at the love Jesus offers me,
Confused at the grace that so fully he proffers me.
I tremble to know that for me he was crucified,
That for me, a sinner, he suffered, he bled and died.
    2.     I marvel that he would descend from his throne divine To rescue a soul so rebellious and proud as mine,
That he should extend his great love unto such as I,
Sufficient to own, to redeem, and to justify.
    3.    I think of his hands pierced and bleeding to pay MY debt! Such mercy, such love and devotion can I forget?
No, no, I will praise and adore at the mercy seat,
Until at the glorified throne I kneel at his feet.
    5.    Oh, it is wonderful that he should care for me
    6.    Enough to die for me!
Oh, it is wonderful, wonderful to me!

I love you all!! Stay strong, no matter the trials you face. God is good.

Love, Sister Kaitlyn Crockett

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

A Rough Week

How on earth is it MARCH already?!? I swear, New Years was just the other day! Time is flying by so fast, I can hardly believe it. I mean, I'll be 20 in no time d: weird...

Well, I am sure you are DYING to know how our week went. Lemme tell you, if I never have another week like this one, I'll be ok. yikes.

Tuesday...mmm where do I even start?! We cleaned our apartment and Brother Yovich came to inspect it...with the Elders...awkward to have 3 guys in your apartment after spending all your time with one other girl in it? Yup. Definitely. So they were all acting super weird about how the smoke smell wasn't "that bad", the ceiling could be fixed, and the rodents removed....umm yes. Yes they could. So we got in a little "discussion" about how the new apartment in Beaver will just be better for us and they finally saw our point. Men. hahahaha! I guess the Elders were afraid we would start working in their area?? Umm we have our area and there are plenty of things we need to get done there! No worries. Mission drama is the worst. After that fiasco we saw Vicki and I talked with the 3 year old twins, Gia and Lucas. They are so sweet and just want to be loved. Vicki has a hard time with that with her cancer and treatments and all. It's crazy how I feel like I am going to some adults' houses just to make sure the kids feel loved and appreciated. I just hope that I am making a difference in their lives. I told the kiddos to say "I love Jesus Christ" every time they felt bad or sad or even just happy and they were excited. I hope they remember. We went to dinner at the Green's and it was good as usual. We then went with Sister Goettman to visit some people but only were able to see the Lion's. Despite the fact that I didn't feel like we were doing much good there, it made an impact on them which is the whole point.

Wednesday was District Meeting and our district is the same...much to our dismay. We now have 3 different wards in our district. It's an interesting dynamic now that they have split Cranberry and Pitt 4th to make the Wexford ward. The Cranberry Elders, Elder Vassallo and Elder Ashton, are now in the Wexford ward and the Cranberry Sisters, Sister Gates and Sister Aston, are working their ward by themselves. Crazy when a ward splits from a missionary perspective. It's crazy that Sister Aston is from Gilbert and went on a date with Spencer...0.o ummm ok. haha! small world. But we had a super awesome District Meeting and made some awesome plans to involve members more and get that Home/Visiting Teaching DONE! (: Sister Neeley came with us after to visit some people and we ended up seeing Elsa then rushing to Renea's appointment. She is doing SO well. She really is recognizing the Spirit in her life and her home. Although she is struggling with some things, she is making great progress and recognizing her short comings and trusting in the Lord. Our focus in the lesson was faith and the Atonement; two spectacular intertwined principles. After dinner we saw the Watt's and told them that we are moving and they were really sad, but glad that we promised to come back and visit them.

Thursday...I'd really rather not relive Thursday. I definitely counted my blessings that day! We were so emotionally spent by the end of the day that we went to Sister Smego's (we had extra time) and then to Dean and Andrea's for dinner. We had steak salad and it was SO good. It really helped us survive the rest of the night ha. What. A. Life.

Friday was not a super great day (but a lot better than Thursday). We did weekly planning and tried to visit Anthony but on the way there, he cancelled. Rough. We tried Carol. Not home. And our team up had to push the time back. So we started packing/cleaning our apartment for the move. We went to Lisa's for Eli's birthday party. It was so funny. In the middle of it, Sister Green invited us for a "Girl's Night" and we definitely needed one of those. We went over after the party and talked with Sister LaFond and Sister Roy. We talked about books and movies and it was a blast! When we went to say goodbye to the kiddos downstairs, they were watching Secondhand Lions. Good movie.

Saturday, was the move day. Sister K was moving from her old place to one by the church and man it is TINY. It was a rough day. Afterward, Sister L. Neeley took us out to lunch and we came home and showered and napped a little bit. We really couldn't have done anything else because we were so exhausted from it. For dinner we went to the McBride's....and well, Brother McBride was out of town and didn't tell Sister McBride that he had signed up to feed us...awkward. haha! She wasn't even home when we showed up so we sat outside in the freezing wind haha! When she got home, we ended up helping make dinner, which totally works for us. haha! We had spaghetti and salad and some garlic knots from a little wood fire pizza place. It was really good. They were crazy and it was fun to be around family. Crazy, but ya gotta love em.

Sunday. Mmmm. Fast Sunday. What a day we had to! Wendy came to church!!! Out of no where!! And in bad weather too!! I was SO happy! She looked so pretty too and stayed the whole time! It really made my day. We visited Sister Smego afterward, but it's harder to stay a long time on fast Sunday. We went to Bishop Weeks' house for dinner and it was so good! We had pot roast and mashed potatoes (these potatoes are so creamy!). We had gotten Haley a One Direction Notebook that we saw at Walmart and she was THRILLED. Her room is so decked out in One Direction stuff haha! She's funny. After dinner, we talked a little bit then went through the whole ward roster with Bishop and it was really good for us. We have a lot of new names we can try. At the end, we asked him if there was anything we could do better and he said that we were doing everything he expected of us. He said this group (Elder Waddoups, Elder Adamson, Sister Hanseen, and I) were the best group of missionaries he had seen during his time as Bishop...and he's been Bishop for 6 years. It really meant a lot.

So that has been my crazy week. I know that Heavenly Father hears and answers our prayers, because He really answered mine. As I have been dealing with some stuff, I've really seen Him reach out in love, mostly through other people. I am so grateful that He loved us enough to send His Only Begotten Son, Jesus Christ, to Atone for us. Christ knows every little feeling that we have. Think about how infinite the Atonement is, because as we go through our trials, Christ relives those things because He remembers what we are feeling at the moment. How wonderful that He would be willing to not only suffer it once, but over and over and over again. I truly stand all amazed at the love God offers me.

I hope you have a wonderful week!! I love you so much!! (: Stay strong!


Sister Kaitlyn Crockett