Sunday, October 12, 2014

"Trust in the Lord"

So so sorry I haven't been doing very well keeping up with the blog but here is Nikki's letter from September 29th!! She had some difficulties uploading pictures so no pictures from that week!

Well, to be honest, this week was a little trickier for me, but it was still a good week. I went on exchanges and got to go to Zoetermeer with Sister Spencer (aka Josh's future wife...for reals). It was really cool to see an older city--and we went to Bagels and Beans, which is probably my new favorite restaurant--they have bagel sandwhich things, but the bagels are way smaller here and I got one with hummus and tomatoes--yum! Then we had Zone training which was great--I saw Sister Adams! She is in my district so I'll see her once a week while I'm in Almere. I got the package and some letters too--thanks SO much. The comforter has been so nice to have--it smells like home and it's the best. For packages, I don't think there are restrictions on size or anything, if you send it to our apartment, it should be able to fit in the slot if it's about 1.5 inches thick. Also we will be going to the mission home on October 11th for a sisters conference, so I will be able to get packages then too I think.
Anyways, the rest of the week has been interesting because Sister Packer's bike loots of walking and busrides. We had great lessons with both of our progressing investigators and we got to do some service for a member in our ward. We do a lot of strengthening of ward members here, which is new for me. There are a lot of members who are struggling with their testimonies and other things. We are working with one woman in our ward in particular and it's been a really cool experience. So our two investigators are first Aimable, who is from the Congo and speaks English kind of, and he's really cool. Our other investigator, Adrienne, lives with a less-active member, and her and her husband came to church yesterday!! We've done some contacting and have met with less active/struggling members.
Also, there are some things I forgot to mention that you're probably curious about:
1. I inherited a bike from my companion's previous companion who went home when I came in. The brakes aren't super great, so I'm trying to figure out what to do. It works fine right now though
2. Things that are different here: the toilets, the door-locks for the bathroom, the peanut butter (it's growing on my's pretty good actually), the sinks/showers, in the grocery stores you pick the produce you want then way it yourself and a sticker prints off right there at the scale with the price for your amount of that kind of produce....there are a lot of different things here! People eat with two utensils in their hands--fork in the left hand knife in the right, or spoon in the left and fork on the right...
3. Things I've tried here: stroopwafel (yum!), speculaas (cookie butter pretty much...the speculaas cookies are yummy though), chocolate (um yeah, really good.), ice cream (it's really different here! But it's pretty good) and I think that's pretty much it for sweets. Sister Packer and I are trying to be healthy, so all of these have been spaced out. The members have fed us really yummy food too-I've had Greek food, the best macaroni/groundbeef thing I've ever had, macaroni and cheese, chicken and potatoes, etc.
4. General Conference--we will watch it at the church I think, and the time change makes things messed up a bit. We won't be able to watch the last session because of the time difference, but that's ok I guess because we'll get the magazine later.
Ok, JOSH HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!! Are you feeling 22 and singing the Taylor Swift song? Ok, here are some of the things I LOVE about you.
-You are a super hard worker but you are also great at making things fun/funny
-You love Batman
-You helped me prepare for my mission, and the things you taught me have really helped
-You make me want to be a better missionary/person
-You are determined and make time for the most important things
-You served a wonderful mission and I can see how much you loved it and how much you gave to the Lord on your mission. I've learned here that you can come on a mission, serve, and go back home and look like you were a great missionary, but it's all about your individual committment, effort, work, and conversion. I can see that you truly served the Lord on your mission and will continue to do so.
I love you all, I miss you tons. It can be pretty frustrating at times, but Heavenly Father always blesses us. There was one day that I was feeling pretty down, and we were on a bus and a young mom with her new baby got on. We chatted a little, and for some reason it just lifted my spirits. Also, the sunsets here have been so beautiful, and I can't help but think sometimes that Heavenly Father is sharing one of His paintings with me.
The language is ok, so many people speak English here, especially in our ward, so it's really hard. I feel like I speak English most of the time, and I really need to change that. It's an easy habit to slip into, but I'll do better. I really am trying to do my best and to serve the Lord with all that I have and am. I love this work and I love the people here.
I love you all!
Zuster Thomas

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