Tuesday, January 2, 2018

don't look back braddahz

This was a good week of feeling at home and being happy. Up and down always? Not sure how healthy this is. Me and Hermana Corona visited some good families this New Years - the Aguilar's had us over to listen reggaeton and eat some good foods and Hermano Aguilar told us how thankful he is for us for being fun and laughing with his family. I think the best way to feel the spirit sometimes is to laugh and have fun with family and friends. At MLC the heater was broken and we were all wrapped in blankets and friended each-other on facebook (we are turning into a smartphone mission soon) and it felt like we were all cruising in a living room together. 

We've gotten a lot of advice about teaching this week and we've been wondering how we can teach better. Hermano Gutierrez and his wife took us out at 8:30 on Friday for tacos and we practised teaching them the Restoration at the restaurant and I've been wondering how I can be better. How do we teach more like Jesus? We love like Him - and as we do this, we increase our joy. We sacrifice, we serve, we love, we judge not, we have patience, and we are filled with the warm, cinnamon french toast feeling that fills you to the brim and leaves no space for bad thoughts or sad hearts. It embraces you like the homemade tortilla on your midnight burrito. As we've practiced teaching with love, we've felt more love in our own service.

This has been a pretty incredible year. I entered the MTC on January 18th of 2017 and here I am in Twin Falls Idaho, happier than ever (through all the crap and snow and wind and irrits, but still happy). Don't look back! Don't go back! Move forward & go to the beach! #dawnpatrollllll (one day...) 

I'm thankful for you love. Someone go eat some chicken katsu for me. 

Hermana Hanatea Elkington


Highlight of the week, we had a great lesson with Chris and he's the only reason I'm still alive here in Twin Falls. (Reminder of Chris, he's 17, just moved here from Costa Rica and went to church in Nicaragua with his Grandma when he was little) We invited him to the Naylor's house for a lesson and had some great real talk with him, and talked about all the challenges he's faced in his life. 

We go to Church on Sunday and pick him up, he gets out of the car and is in this super fly black button-down shirt and got his chains on and even changed his earring to a little cross for Chruch. He sprays some cologne on and is like "well, I gotta smell good right?" and we just laughed and cruised with Chris at Church! We sat in the back with him in Sacrament meeting and he was like "this is really long" and I was like "yeahhhhhh" but he gave some really good comments in Gospel Principles and I know he felt more comfortable in the Spanish Branch. It's been a while since we've had some people come to Church, and it was just a good reminder for me of how happy the gospel can make you and the good people that come into your life because of it. 

Have a dope Christmas my friends! Keep Hanatea in yo prayerz cuz I not built for diz kine winter! Love you all loads,

Hermana Elkington 

I am a rock. I am an island. *merry christmas!*

Aloha Fam, this was one of my favorite weeks on my mission! Doesn't stop going up and down right? "This was the worst day of my life!!" ---> "THIS WAS THE BEST DAY OF MY LIFE!" 

One of our investigators, Rosa, drove us to a Christmas Concert called "Come to Bethlehem" and we cried together and felt some good Christmas feels and ate a lot of bread. It was way cool and I think It's so sweet to just be good friends with people on your mission. We got to just spend a night cruising with Rosa which I think is valuable as we teach the gospel - we like to cruise too! 

The Luna Family, a Spanish Family the Buhl Elders were teaching, got baptized this week and me and Hermana Corona were able to teach the Restoration at the baptism. Afterwards Hermano Luna got up and bore his testimony of gratitude about how happy the gospel has made him. Elder Baccarini gave a short, simple talk about the Holy Ghost and how it guides us to make the right decisions and how it comforts us in times of need. It was a sweet day. 

 We got permission from President to go to Buhl and contact the Spanish families that live there! I drove up to downtown Buhl with Sister Reisinger (we went on exchanges) and I am in love with that tiny town. It felt like home (except cold as balls. sorry for my non-missionary language. can't help it). We knocked on some former investigator's doors and were welcomed in warmly by several families and shared the Light the World video with lots of people. They were so grateful for us to stop by and said, "We don't know why the missionaries just stopped coming!" We'll see what we can do to get Spanish missionaries back in Buhl. I realized that it's pretty much my dream area ....merry christmas to Hanatea?? *pllllzzzzzzzz*

The Gutierrez family also had us over for dinner yesterday and we just hung with them, it's always good to find those good homie members that are just good to the missionaries. Hermano Gutierrez just got back from his mission in Mexico and had tons of sweet stories to tell us and we laughed and had some good foods. 

I am reminded every day that this season is about love. I've seen so much love from others on my mission and so much love shown from the Spanish Branch here. It's frustrating a lot of the time being on a mission - it'll always be frustrating. But we learn to handle that frustration with grace and love, and then focus on the really important things, serving others with our hands and with our feet. 

Love you lots friends & fam - email me if you need anything! Can't wait to get back and cruise on the beach with all of you and be a good member missionary and get a coke from McDonalds and take some good pictures and have some good fun. 

Lots of Love,

Hermana Hanatea Elkington 

da wurld iz lit

aye fam are you doing light the wurld? if you 'aint go do um !

This week wasn't the easiest. I'm grateful for this opportunity to serve. We've been talking to everyone in Twin Falls this week and it seems like no one wants to talk back! Prez. Uchtdorf, the biggest homeslice of all slices of homies, said that as "disciples of Christ, we are bearers of light." As we invite people to participate in Light the World and as we reach out to serve others, we're spreading light - spreading it like cream cheese on a bagel! 

Me and Hermana Corona are having some baller times and laughing and crying a lot. Emotional rollercoaster! I just want some malasadas today because Idaho stay coooooold. Shoutout to the best of all besties Sala & Sister Amani for sending a package of all da goods w/ mochi chrunch and strawberry belts #blesssssssss

Aunty Manda sent met his quote a while ago, and I thought it applied really well to my week. Here it is:

"Faith in the dawn rises from the faith that God is good and is just. When one believes this, he knows that the contradictions of life are neither final or ultimate. He can walk through the dark night with the radiant conviction that all things work together for good for those that love God. Even the most starless midnight can herald the dawn of some great fulfillment." -MLKJ

The work is hard, the work is fulfilling. What matters are your efforts - your results are your efforts, not your numbers. Just love others, that's all we're asked to do. Love like Jesus - love that guy you see at Church who is sitting by himself, love the aunty who is smoking across the street, love the kids that are crying in Wal-Mart, love yo neighbors. It changes the world. 

Email me if you need anything fam! Thanks for being some goob homies! 

Lots of Love,
Hermana Elkington 

Sunday, December 3, 2017

Hanatea turns 21!

This has been one of the most stressful weeks of my mission - but it included Thanksgiving and a birthday! It's been a while since I've been too stressed to actually sleep. 

We've been working hard in this area in Twin Falls and trying our best to talk to everyone and find new people to teach, and it seems like nothing has been working. We've been struggling to find and to work with members, and I'm thankful for you all that sent me advice and some extra fry sauce on the side love, we'll see what we can do differently and new. "We're not stuck...there is traction."

Anyway I was feelin' pretty down in the snow and not super stoked to be here, but I had some good people around that brought me up again. Me and Hermana Corona went to Sushi-Ya when we didn't have a dinner and had some ono foods. At 8:00 that night, I was wondering "what the frick am I doing in Idaho on my 21st birthday?" and Sister Hansen and Sister Reisinger came and picked us up in their red Toyota Corolla and took us to see the most magical display of Christmas lights I ever did see in Filer, had 2 bottles of gatorade in the car, and played me some Sufjan Christmas jams. Doesn't get better than that, right? This year, I'm grateful for the good people and good friends that I have surrounding me. God works through people. 

Love you fam! The holidays make you sentimental anyway, but the holidays on a MISSION make you like a freaking can of Mexican coke that you shook up, ready to explode with sentimental-ness. 

Lots of Love,
Hermana Hanatea Elkington 

2 much bless 2 b stress

Here's some things that made my week:

- I found a Sammy J song on my companion's usb 
- It rained
- We got to watch a YSA Face-to-Face and feel normal
- We put up Christmas lights

Here's some things that I miss like craaaaazy in my life:

- Onoyo
- Sunsets @ sunset beach
- Thai food from the food trucks ACROSS sunset beach

I've been having a pretty dope time here in Twin Falls. Me and Hermana Corona got rear-ended this week buy someone going 45 mph and had to go to the ER (don't worry Mom!) but are fine and our car is a little beat up. This week we also taught this cool kid named Chris from Costa Rica, he's 16 and gave us some coke and bday cake for his birthday, so you could say he's a homie. 

I had an experience this week that reminded me of of "You've Got Mail" when Tom Hanks is the reason that Meg Ryan's book shop gets shut down and he says, "It's not personal..." and Meg Ryan says, "Why does everyone always say that? What's so wrong with being personal?" At the Face-to-Face, Elder Oaks and Elder Ballard answered some real questions in real ways, and were personal with us. I think the relationships we form here on Earth should always be personal - being on a mission, I've had some pretty sweet opportunities to form some personal, strong, relationships with people I would have never met here in Boise, Idaho if I had not come on a mission. It's a beautiful thing. 

Lastly, I was reading something my Dad wrote me and here's something that he said:

"Success does not often come without struggle and effort, not to mention a fair amount of failure."

It's been tough to work in this area in Twin. Not a lot of progression, not a lot of people that seem to want to learn about the Gospel. But we often don't see success without failure, failure, and more failure. It's always a process and up and down, and that's okay. We can't expect to always be succeeding all the time - I think sometimes failure IS success. It's just hard to see. 

Love you all my primos! Me and Hermana Corona's quote of the week is "SO SAVAAAAAAAAGE!" Hope everyone has a stellar week filled with sweet-bread french toast and smoothies! Email me if you need anything!

Lots of Love,
Hermana Hanatea Elkington 

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

love & homies & mexicans

Aloha primos! 

We got transfer calls, Hermana Cox went to Burley (THE PROMISED LANNNNNND) and I got Hermana Corona here in Twin Falls! I am more stoked than stoked, and sad to say goodbye to Hermana Cox. Hermana Corona is from Ensenada Mexico and we've been having wayyyyy too much fun here in Twin #brownpriiiiiide

Got an update on Fredy and Alexis from Boise and they went through the Meridian Temple Open House and loved it. They both want to be baptized and have the blessings of the gospel in their lives. Dope! 

The work here in Twin has been tough, so I got a question for all you RM's or Missionaries or anyone really. How can I work better with members to find people to teach? How can I help members do their own member missionary work? I'm a huge fan of member missionary work after serving for 10  months here in Idaho, and we've been working with a lot of people and have seen no progression. I have this dream in my head to find and work as hard as we can, but any advice would be welcome fam. plz & thnkz (also shoutout to Elder Clarke for sending me workouts, you know who the tru homies are) 

Hope everyone's doin' fly and being happy :) Remember to take breaks, love like Jesus, and someone pleeeease go on a hike for me k homies? Email me if you need anything! 

Hermana Hanatea Elkington