Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Looking on the Bright Side :) July 21, 2014

Dear Mom, Dad, Family and Friends,
First off, thanks Mom and Dad for your kind words. They were exactly what I needed to hear, well, read :) This week was definitely better and things can just improve from here.
Oh, and before I forget, the other sisters in our house had to get something at the mission office so they stopped by and the envelope with the 4th missionary and the cute Old Navy shirt was there. Thanks so much! I´ve already started reading and studying the talk and I love the shirt! I also got a card that you sent me as well Mom. Thanks so much! I´m sure I´ll get the other packages soon! Probably at the beginning of August.
Oh and other news, we ended up having interviews with the mission president this week. It went really well actually and I asked President Nogueira to give me a blessing and it was very nice blessing. He also explained how it works if you guys want to come pick me up.  So, I was right, my release date is December 10th, which is Wednesday. He said that you guys need to arrive here in João Pessoa on that Wednesday, December 10th, and after that Dad, you would probably release me, and then we could spend as many days as we want touring my mission. The only thing is, which I didn´t know, is that the Church wouldn´t pay for my return plane ticket, I would need to tell the mission office to not buy my ticket and I would fly back with you two. But let me know what you guys think and we can start planning :)
Your email was perfect, Thank you so much. I really liked what you wrote about Nephi´s example. I had never stopped to think about how Nephi was truly an example of patience and doing the Lord´s will. Of course, if the Lord wanted to, He would have been able to deliver him from whatever trial but as you said, the Lord must try us and allow us to learn in different ways.
And like you said, the same is with Joseph Smith. He was tried in a myriad of ways and had to learn to follow the Lord´s way.
I think I´m going to start reading the Book of Mormon cover  to cover in Portuguese, I still  haven´t done so in my mission so far. And it will be especially helpful to read the first few chapters of Nephi with this in  mind.
Also, that´s so cool that you saw so many familiar faces when you were in England. Sounds like it was a great trip.
I wouldn´t be surprised if it´s true what you wrote, that maybe you had a harder week because you were feeling that I was having a rough week. It´s interesting how moms seem to have a special radar, or are so in tune with the Spirit to know what their children are needing. 
I loved the photo you sent of you and Amanda. You two look so cute. And I´m so proud of you that you were able to get everything working with your iPod! woohoo!
Wow, I can´t believe Jake enters the MTC this week! It´s so crazy how time flies!
haha, and I just about laughed out loud when I read that the baptismal jumpsuit pattern is called "Vintage 90s." I am really getting that old so fast?
Oh, and I´m so happy to hear that they have the Cherry Cordial ice cream again! What?! That´s really exciting! haha,  woohoo!
Oh, and I loved the photo from the Missionary Mom´s. the crazy part is that there are a few faces that I don´t even recognize! Wow, that´s weird to me as well!
Well, I hope this week goes well, and who knows, maybe I´ll have another niece next time I read my email!
And I hope everything works out well with the swim lessons for Norah and Alice. I think Norah´s competitive spirit will probably kick in a little bit. ;)
And if the baby comes this week don´t forget to send lots of photos to me too! :) I´ll be sure to continue to keep you in my prayers :)
Well, Saturday night we had a ward activity that went pretty well. The four of us missionaries planned the activity with the help of our Ward Mission Leader, Neto. The name of the activity was "Estória de Pescador" or Fisherman´s Story. So, Cabedelo was, and still is in some respects, a big fishing  town because it´s right along the coast and there´s a huge port here.  Well, there´s a joke that all the fishermen tell lots of stories and exagerate their stories as well. So, we had an activity where one of the games was that the members had to trade "fishermen stories" and the other group had to say if it was a truth or a lie. And we showed a few videos from YouTube from the Mormon Channel and it actually went really well.
Umm, well, in response to your questions Mom. We don´t cook that often. Sometimes the members can´t give lunch so they give us money and we make lunch at home. But the best part is that we usually make the same thing that we eat every day, rice, meat, macaroni/pasta...the only thing we don´t make at home is beans because they take a long time to make. For lunch on P-day, I usually make a salad and some rice and Sister Maciel knows how to skillet beef really well with lime and onions, it´s really good.
Taking the bus, well we have to grab the train a few times a week to go to lunch because the ward boundaries are really big. The train is definitely old and super squeaky but it´s only 25 cents a ride :) And the bus, we sometimes have to get on a bus to go to district meeting if it´s in a chapel that´s far from the train tracks.
Also, it´s nice to live in a house because there´s definitely a lot more room. We have 2 bunkbeds where we sleep, then there´s another room where we keep our pamphlets, Book of Mormons and other stuff, there´s a big corridor with our study tables, a bathroom and the kitchen, and they we have a porch area and there´s another bathroom in the back and a little backyard where I jump rope every morning as my exercises because no one likes to run here, not even exercise...haha.
But well, that´s about it, don´t have very much else to write,
Just know that I´m doing well and thank you so much for all your love and prayers!
I love you all the MOSTIEST!
Sister Hicks

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