Wednesday, August 2, 2017

"White-out can't erase your FAITH!"



Aloha Fam! This has been quite the week in the self-finding journey and the dealing with crap journey. Some good things happened and some bad things happened. It's been interesting how it's been evened out lately. 


First off, someone paid for our lunch at Costco. Thank the church members of Boise Idaho x1000000 (lol I always write about someone paying for the foods). Also we discovered AMITY and I love it up there - so full of grass and dirt and real stuff. 

Second, something I really learned this week was the importance of asking good questions. Something Hermana Allen always did in lessons was stop, listen, and ask really good questions to our investigators. As I've been a missionary, I've been confused about a lot of things - I'm always confused about what's going on in the Book of Mormon, in my studies sometimes I have no idea what's going on in what I'm reading, and at District Meetings, other missionaries are talking about an experience and I'm like whoa - that's a thing? SO - I've learned that if you're confused, just ASK. I wish I would have done this more while I was growing up, because all you have to do is ask! I remember always sitting in Sunday School and in Seminary and it seemed like everyone else knew exactly what was going on, so I was toooooo shaaaaame to ask any questions. THIS IS THE WORST. You should always feel free to ask and it's a part of the learning process. 

I've been really homesick this week, and I can't figure out why. It's been really weird - should get easier as you get further in, right? I guess not. Something that Aunty Sarah wrote in a letter to me really stood out, and I remembered some important things. 

"Calm down and remember that God's got all of this. All of it is in His hands." 

As I knelt at my bedside and prayed this week, I just cried. I cried because for some reason, I didn't want to be here. And I don't know why - I love these people! I love Idaho! I love Boise! But there is this weight in my heart that I hate. But I remembered that Jesus Christ knows how it feels to be homesick - he knows what it's like to just want to eat breakfast with my Dad and to just want to laugh with my Sister. He knows what it's like to be frustrated and to be sad. This is what we teach as missionaries. This is the power of the Atonement of Jesus Christ. "All of it is in His Hands." And so when we come across these rocks in our hike, He helps us get around them and jump over them and throw them out of the way. 



I hope everyone's doing cherrehhhhh. I love you all! I remembered this week all of the support and love I have back home and in other parts of the world - I am inspired by you and the people around me and who have been a part of my life have helped me more than they know. Let me know if you need anything! If you love me, shoot me an email! Tell me about your life! 

Keep smiling, keep laughing, keep juicing. lol. 

Lots of love & goob foods,
Hermana Elkington

P.S. For breakfast this morning I ate a bowl of oatmeal with a can of root beer and realized that I am a combination of my Mom and Dad in one person. Lol. 

Juicing

Someone send me some workouts cuz I'm gaining weight like a freaking walrus (not joking) we've been given ice cream like every day this week from members (bless their hearts). 



I've never felt so Mormon in my whole life. I listened to MOTAB yesterday and actually like 12% of me liked the song? What's going on? Who am I? What am I? There's no turning back. Send help ASAP. 

But in all seriousness, I love being a missionary. There are things about it I don't love, there are people that are hard to get along with, there is difficult leadership and a constant feeling of inadequacy and ALL THAT JAZZ but I love it. Yesterday I was reminded how happy it made me - guess who came to Church:

        - Charlene and Angel! These kids make my day every time I see them. They love reading in the Book of Mormon, love spicy Mexican candy that I forreal can't handle, and are always happy to see us. 

         - La Familia Cortes! Mario and Ramon came again and guess who showed up with them:                    THEIR MOM CECY. She worked extra this week so that she could get work off on Sunday and she loved it. The boys had fun as well and got invited to go on a campout this week! 

The Spanish Branch here welcomed our investigators with open hearts and open, loving arms. It was SO COOL to see how loved these people were, even when the Branch had just met them that day! And again and again, I am reminded that the gospel and Missionary work is about LOVE. That's it. It's just love. There's so many dumb rules, so many dumb missionaries, and some crazy freaking people here in Idaho, but I'm here to love and to share love. 

Here's some things that made my week:

- Hna. Quezada showed me a pic of Rachel and Abby Shumway performing in Utah or something! I love those girls!
- I saw a license plate that said "Got Rice" 
- IT RAINED

Lastly, our Ward Mission Leader told us to chill out on P-Days and go "juicing," where you each bring a lawn chair, bring some juice, and sit and cruise as a District. I'm the biggest believer that you gotta take some time to just remember that you're okay and that the World is a beautiful place *Boise hippies gettin' to me*

Love you all, let me know if you need anything or have any questions! If you love me, write me back! #JESUSFORIDAHO

Lots of Love,
Hermana Elkington 

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Free Pandas for Everyone!

Haiiiiiii Fam! How are your lives?

We've been busy as crap, which feels super good. We come home and just get all floppy and die and go to sleep early because we're so exhausted. Highlight of the week: a member paid for us at Panda! BLESSSSSS

Guess who came to Church! Mario and Ramon! It was so cool to see them there - they seemed to really enjoy it and the Spanish Branch welcomed them warmly. We talked to them afterwards and asked them what they learned, and Ramon said, "Well, pretty much all the same stuff you've been teaching us!" And I was like *yusssss I can kind of speak Spanish jajajaja* and we joked and laughed and it was great. They feel like family to me. 

I got to play my uke at a Relief Society thing and all the old ladies came up to me afterwards and said "Sweetheart, you have such a beautiful voice!" and I was showered and overwhelmed by old lady niceness. Also, the priesthood representative guy who was there was the spitting image of Shawn Spencer and asked me, "So, if one was going to plan a trip to Hawaii for a friend, what would one recommend doing while there?" and I felt like I was in an episode of Psych. 

We have plans of getting a bike rack this week so we will be ballin' in Boise soon enough. 

One of the people we work with, Hermana Cevallos, had lots of questions about the Plan of Salvation and getting sealed in the Temple, and I didn't have any answers for her which was frustrating. I started my own search in my studies this week and have been praying and hoping for answers, but haven't found a lot. When it comes down to it though, I know that what I feel is right. When I have that feeling of peace and love, I know God's gonna work it all out and sometimes, we just don't need to worry. 

We also started working in our new area, with one of the Elder's old investigators named Roy. He and Paola have a little baby named Jared who is the cutest bundle of honey bunches of oats I have ever seen - we taught him one lesson, but we love his family so much already. 


Hope everyone has had a great week! If I can help you with anything, or if you have any questions, shoot me an email! I love to hear from you and know what's going (and what's not) in your life. 

Lots of super happy joy,
Hermana Elkington

No chill in Boise


Aloha mi primos! 

Here's how I've seen the hand of God in my week:

- I got another Watermelon
- Hna. Sundstrom knew I love 4th of July more than anything and made me a little flag
- We got the privilege to teach 6 new investigators
- I got a Dairy Queen Blizzard and was reminded of BURLEY (also Hall&Oates was playing)
- Our 1st counselor in the Branch talked about Lion King in his Sacrament Meeting talk
- Our Ward Mission Leader's wife knows the SHUMWAYS


So if y'all know me (#youknowme) you know I freaking love 4th of July. And I was about to die because I wasn't gonna be able to jump in the water this 4th - but I had some wonderful people make up for that, and my day was just golden. We got to have a BBQ and hang out with the one and only Elder Price and Elder Burgess and play Redneck Life with them (loling), got to ride bikes, and I made Hna Sundstrom lay on the grass with me at 10pm to watch some fireworks. I think Heavenly Father was full on taking care of me and it was pretty gosh dang bueno.

Here's my transfer news - I get to stay in Boise with Hermana Sundstrom! Super stoked - we not only have our old area, but a whole new area to work in! So we get to whitewash half of Boise and keep the other half! They took the Spanish Elders out of the area, so now we are officially the only Spanish-speaking missionaries in all of Boise. I feel pretty trusted by the Lord and am still kinda thinking braddah my braddah can we really handle TWO areas? Our area covers 7 stakes and it's a little overwhelming, but I also feel blessed with this new opportunity to work even harder. We've already found new people to work with and joke that we are like the Sister AP's because we get to go wherever we want heh. 

Hermana Sundstrom gave me my favorite compliment I've maybe ever gotten haha - she said to me, "You're suuuuper chill but you say deep stuff all the time without even meaning it!" She then told me that she loves how I share my testimony with people through the things that I love to do, and that I share my testimony by being who I am. I was so touched by this - I've tried SO HARD to incorporate who I am to the mission work and share with people this gospel that has meant so much to me and made such a difference to me, and I was crazy cool to hear this coming from my companion. 


Lastly, I was reading in the Ensign about the first branches that were started in South Aftrica (when apartheid was still a thing) and how the branches were a mix of different people who had different cultures and different views. I thought it was beautiful how they handled their differences:
    
         "They opened their misunderstandings to discussion and improvement - they listened and learned from one another's differences."

I loved this! I think if we have misunderstandings or issues with the gospel or the church, or how things are run or ANYTHING, we need to be open enough and willing enough to resolve these issues. We need to be open to "discussion" and "improvement" and learn from one another and accept one another's differences. This is 100000x easier said than done, and it's something that I've been trying to do better - but I thought it was sweet. 

I love you all and hope you had the bombest 4th of FREAKING JULY ever. Keep on loving! Keep on chilling! Keep on cruising + working hard! 

Lots of super happy amor,
Hermana Elkington 

"Hermana Elkington, you're a good athlete." -Elder Burns

Aloha Fam! 



This was the eternal week! This week was a YEAR - this transfer has been a CENTURY, not even joshing! I feel like I was 5 when I came to Boise and now I'm literally 80. Me and Hermana Sundstrom will find out if we are getting transferred tomorrow night (because on the mission they don't support you using your time to say goodbye to people before you get transferred #supahsalty) but are both expecting to stay here in Boise. They don't move around the Hermana's very much because there are only 8 in the mission, and not actually a lot of places that we can serve. So we'll see! Come what may and love the crap out of it, right?



The week started out tough. Hermana Sundstrom got some bad news from home, and I was wondering how the work would go this week - but as long as this week felt, I think this was the funnest we've had yet. We were laughing 24/7 *and also almost crashed the car multiple times*

One thing my Dad taught me is that if you ever make Sweet Bread French Toast, you never make it just for yourself. I woke up on Tuesday feeling homesick as heck and didn't want to be in Boise anymore - you can hear the freeway from our house and it makes me want to throw up hahaha *dramatic* - so I made myself some Sweet Bread French Toast. And then some for Hermana Sundstrom as well - and the week began. And we just balled our way all the way to Monday! We were happy and working past hard things, but laughed our way through it and helped each other and loved each other! I have learned so much from her, it's been amazing. 

We visited one of the Menos Activos that lives in our area, Virginia, this week. Last week she had about 50 gallons of milk sitting on her table and this week she had about 200 packages of QUESO FRESCO in her fridge. We had just dropped by to say hi and she made us sit down and eat a ton of her cheese. Elder Parker, one of the missionaries with me in Burley, had lost 30 lbs by giving up cheese and all I could think was welp. There goes that plan - Blesssss!

Here's some of the pieces of Ted's Bakery pie from this week:

- Charlene and Angel came to CHURCH! We knocked on their door and Charlene comes out in her dress pants and a blouse and the Book of Mormon we gave her in her hands.
- We found a new investigator - his name is Armando and we call him the "Fish Guy" cuz every time we've seen him he's been cooking fish
- Karen is this Sister that has been a member for a while but isn't going to Church. We got to teach her and meet her this week, she's from Columbia! Her daughters did our makeup.
- Hermana Gomez, one of the members in the branch, bought me a watermelon.

Last week after we played basketball, one of the AP's, Elder Burns, said "Hermana Elkington - you're a good athlete." And I thought, "Do you think I'm an athlete? Because I think I'm an athlete." (Little, you better get that one) And let me tell you about Elder Burns - he is a LEGEND. He is possibly the most soft-spoken missionary I've met, and out of nowhere he is the best athlete in the mission - he played college basketball and coached basketball and played soccer and is even a beast at ping-pong. So I heard him say that and just thought I CAN DO ANYTHING CHEEEEPONO


Lastly, me and Hermana Sundstrom have decided to take on the Home Depot motto and "Let's do this" *in the deep Home Depot guy voice* and just go with it. A lot of crazy has happened this transfer, but we're still going. We're still working hard. We're still having fun and laughing - and we love the people here more than anything. 



Keep on loving! Keep on laughing! Write me and tell me about your lives! I love you all more than I love the ocean! 

Lots of love,
Hermana Elkington

Monday, June 26, 2017

Come what May, and Love the crap out of it

Aloha Fam!


Here's some of my favorite quotes of the week, some things that I either heard or read:

- "If Idaho isn't giving you all the sunshine and smiles, you gotta provide fo your brothers and sisters." -Jo Tueller
- "When we're friends, everything will be better!" -Elder Melo (from Braziiiiiil!)
- "I'm not here to receive praise and appreciation, I'm here for my Savior. And when I trust Him and work hard, I'll see miracles." -Sister Hansen
- "Come what may, and love it" -(A talk that I read - don't remember the speaker lol)

Before I left Burley, Hermana Allen told me over and over again, "You're gonna see so many miracles in Boise!" And (of course) she was right. Every week since I've been in Boise with Hermana Sundstrom, there have been absolute miracles in the mission work here. We have been running around like crazy, trying to find people to teach, running out of miles, exhausted, and yet are so full of happiness. I was talking with her last night - we had 6 people make commitments to come to Church and only one showed up - and although it wasn't our goal, we were sooooo incredibly happy that this one investigator came and felt the Spirit! We said to each other, even if no one had come, we still would have been happy. Because we know that Heavenly Father is proud of the work we are doing. 

This week we were blessed to be able to set a baptismal date with the Familia Cortes - the Mom, Cecy, and her two sons, Mario and Ramon. They have decided to read the Book of Mormon each day as a family on their own. Que milagro, right?! I don't know how these things happen, but it's way sweet to see. They are an incredible family and I have finally realized that Boise Idaho is exactly where I need to be serving (took me long enough right?). 

Also, me and Hermana Sundstrom had a hard day and didn't have a dinner, so we went and ate at the Cheesecake factory (I don't think I'll ever stop talking about the goob foods in Boise heh) 

Here's some things that I saw this week that reminded me of home!


- I went to Dutch Bros and got a smoothie and the guy that was working was Hunter Hancock's brother (or cousin or something) from the North Shore and he had just gotten back from Oahu like 2 days ago. And he gave us these huge mango smoothies fo free, how blessed?
- I saw someone walking in Downtown Boise that looked exactly like Pam Palmer! And I was reminded of my L2 family!
- I taught some Pidgin to Hna Sundstrom. She is actually like one native Pidgin speaker cuz she has picked it up pretty fast. Going be one native hayn soon ahhhhhh


Love you all! Thank you for all of your prayers and support. The talk that I read this week was entitled "Come what may, and love it" and I took this as my theme for the rest of my mission (let's see if I remember it next week haha). Because you never know what's gonna come! But just love it! It sometimes seems like the end of the freaking world, but you're gonna be okay in the end! So laugh through it and love through it. My heart is full of straight up cherreh love for you all - if you love me, write me back! 

Hermana Elkington 


Monday, June 19, 2017

Mongolian BBQ & other Nuggets of Magic



Aloha Fam,

First off, Hermana Sundstrom and I got gift cards from the crazy members here in Boise and she took me to this magical place called Mongolian BBQ and I exploded with happiness. It was awesome - you put all the stuff you want in a bowl and they cook it on this rock thing and push it around with some sticks and it was some goooooooooob food. 


Some other cool things happened this week as well - we got 2 of our investigators on a Baptismal Date for August 12th! They are awesome and love having us come over. This week, if you could keep Charlene and Angel in your prayers that they will want to come to Church and feel the spirit, that'd just be greeeeeat haha - It's been so cool to see the Lord's hand in the work here.

Another cool thing - while I was on exchanges, I found this family that lives behind one of the Menos Activos we teach and we went and talked to them. Me and Hermana Sundstrom taught them this week - we did the Restoration and while we were talking, I just saw in their eyes that they were feeling the spirit. They are from Mexico and have been here for about a month now - when we asked them what they thought about all of the things we were telling them, the Mom replied with a simple, "That feels right to me." It was super neat to be able to be in tune with Heavenly Father and feel for myself that the things that we were teaching were true. 

We've had a crazy, stressful, miracle filled week - here's some of the ways I saw the hand of God in my life this week: 

- We got to see Elder Melo! He is from Brazil and cracks us UP
- A lady we had dinner with brought us cotton-candy flavored grapes the next morning just cuz she thought of us!
- We got 3 jars of applesauce from a family
- We had an awesome sidewalk-chalk lesson with one of our Investigators
- We didn't get lost ;)



Lastly, our Ward Mission Leader came with us to a lesson this week and after we were done, he came up to us and told us thank you for how hard we are working. He said that it's been hard to work with some of the missionaries in the past and that he's so thankful to have us here, and just said thank you for being such great missionaries. It was definitely something I needed, because sometimes you do all this work and no one really sees it but Heavenly Father - so it was cool that Hno. Quesada took the time to thank us and inspire us. We are really blessed to be able to work with some great people in (crazy) Boise. 

Hope everyone had a stelllllllar week - let me know if there's anything I can do to help you, or if you have any questions about the work here! Thanks for all of your prayers and support #DOITFORIDAHO #JESUSFORIDAHO

Lots of love,
Hermana Elkington

Becoming the Quesadas

We have had a lonnnnnng week - a good week, but a long week. I don't think I've ever been so tired in my life haha, but it's a good, fulfilled kind of tired.


I got some advice from friends for finding people and teaching while you find and guess freaking what - we found 4 new investigators this week! One of them was Emanuel. And holy crap, this guy was just such a huge blessing in the work here. He was a referral from some Elders and he just is the coolest! He has a construction company and is from Mexico, and has only been in the US for about 2 months now. We knocked on his door and HE was the one who made the return appt. So we go by on Friday with our Ward Mission Leader and his wife, the Quesada's, and we teach him. And the Quesada's just owned the lesson, invited him to church, and even extended a baptismal invitation and I'm like what? When they teach you this stuff in the MTC you don't think it actually works like that, and I still think about 90% of the time it doesn't, but Emanual just loved it. He committed to coming to church and wants to learn more.

So - our new transfer goal is to BECOME THE QUESADAS. They are goalzzzzzzz x100 I kid you not. (Also, they are super cute and got married like a year ago and are still like fresh of the mission kind of, and they are super chill and just help us a ton and also make us ono grindz)

Another miracle that happened this week - we got invited to attend a Sealing of some people in our Branch. It was actually so neat to go to the temple and see them get sealed - in Spanish! It was really simple (I had never seen a sealing before) and it made me just feel so special - I hardly know these people, I just got to Boise, and they invite me to go to their Sealing? It was really cool, and I can't believe how blessed I am to serve around these people and learn from them. 

Thank you for all the love and the support and the prayers and everything - I got some letters from some Laie friends and man, it just makes my day and reminds me of my roots and why I'm out here doing this. I love the mission so much - no matter how HARD it gets (and it gets suuuuuper hard haha), the miracles that I see somehow always make up for it. I dunno how it works, but it does. 



Hope everyone has a baller week. Don't forget to breathe! Don't forget to listen to music! Don't forget to have FUN WITH LIFE! (lol things I tell myself everyday haha) Let me know if you have any questions or if you need anything! Love you all SO MUCH

Hermana Elkington

PICS: 
- Me and Hna Sundstrom at the Boise Temple
- Finding the only freaking cows in Boise (I miss the countryyyyy!)

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

#losthermanas

Howzit my braddahz! 


Me and Hermana Sundstrom have been taking on BOISE and I keep saying, "Hermana, we're not 'Las Hermanas,' we're 'Lost Hermanas!'" It's foreal classic. We are always lost, but have witnessed a crapton of miracles this week.

First off, Hermana Sundstrom is incredible. She is super happy, energetic, willing to work hard, doesn't judge me for being salty about rules, and is an awesome teacher. She teaches with her heart and she makes everyone we teach laugh and the people love her. I am suuuuuuuper #blessed (lol) to have her as a companion, and it makes the tough work here in Boise just that much easier. It has rained a couple times here in Boise and we've just gone outside and ran around in the rain together, being happy! 


This week we have found a buttload of potential investigators, as well as 2 new investigators. Hermana Sundstrom said "I've never had this big of a list of potentials before on the mission!" We are both here to work hard, to get to know the area and the people, and FIND people to teach. Every day is a challenge, but it has been getting easier and easier, and we have definitely just been relying on God to give us a little push here and there to know where we should go. 


Here's one milagro for ya - we felt like we should go visit a less active, Hermana Copinger, and she lives in Boise East, which is pretty far, but we went anyway. We visited her, had a great lesson, and then left, wondering how we should use the last hour of our day, and we saw a name of a less active that neither of us knew. We dropped by her house and knocked, and this lady answered the door - not the less-active we were looking for, but someone who is now on our potential list, who is really excited for us to come back and really wants to talk to us. And here I am standing in the rain like HOLY CRAP God, how does this stuff just fall in my lap?! He is definitely looking out for me, just like always. 

I know there is just chooooke work to do here in Boise, we just have to find it and work hard. We have a great branch and great members who aren't suuuuper excited about mission work, but we're going to try to change that ;) 

Geeeeez this is hard, but this week I received some emails from Aunties and Uncles back in Laie that just warmed my heart and reminded me of my L2 roots! I have so many examples of crazy-boss missionary friends that I love and am trying to incorporate their strengths into my own. Thank you for the advice and the love - know that I love you all so much! 

Hope everyone has a stellar week! Let me know if there's anything that I can do for you, or if you have any questions about the work here in Boise! 

Lots of Love,
Hermana Elkington

Saturday, June 3, 2017

BURLEY TO BOISE

Aloooooooha all you GUAVAS! 


This has been one of the hardest weeks of my mission so far. I keep reading all of my friend's emails on how great mission work is and how many people they're helping, and it is so wonderful and makes me feel inspired. But today imma be a little real with you all - because this is one of the hardest things I've ever done. 

I got the call that I was getting transferred from Burley to Boise on Tuesday and hooooly crap did my heart hurt. I remember getting to Burley and just thinking, "what in the WORLD am I doing here?" And it was cold and there was no grass - and then Burley just squeezed it's way into my heart and the leaves and flowers came out and I met some of the best people I've ever met in my whole life. And to leave that was so hard - I had only been there for 2 transfers, about 3 months, and it was so hard! Saying goodbye to people just was killer, but I got a hug from Juan Trinidad (my homeboy) and Araceli and had some great last days with my wonderful companion Hermana Allen (we were #compgoals this transfer and had a buttload of fun while we were together).



And here I am in Boise!

There are cars everywhere and so many people and places to eat and shop and I guess I'm not meant to live in a city because it's crazy and I'm not used to it. It is beautiful here as well though - we have explored downtown Boise and had a BBQ with our little Spanish Branch in a park that was just golden. 

Since I've been in Boise, here are some fun things that have happened:
- I walked some dogs of a Potential Investigator
- Me and Hermana Sundstrom got lost and drove outside of the Mission Boundaries #rebels
- We ate dinner at 5 GUYS
- We were way late in getting home one night (also #rebel)

The work here is so different. We are both new to the area and Hermana Sundstrom, my new companion, has the BIGGEST heart in the whole world and is also the most direction-challenged person I have ever met hahaha so we are just getting lost everywhere we go. I am ready to work and ready to FIND some people to work with, and although the mission sometimes just sucks crap, we are going to help this area become better (with a buttload of help from God). 

Lastly, here are some thoughts that I wanted to share. I received some emails/letters from good friends that I've been reading (to try and help me through this effing mess that's me haha) and here are some things that stood out to me that really helped me:

- "Let go of what you think it means to be a missionary and be YOU"
- "We spend too much time doing things because it's what others expect from us. This is why our love lacks His power - we have to love as HE loved." 

I have a hard time being obedient. I have a hard time figuring out how to balance being a missionary and being me. I have a hard time working with new people, staying with a companion 24/7, and remembering the names of everyone I meet. I have a hard time not being able to go to the beach whenever I want and feel the ocean around me. It's a struggle! But this week I've learned to take a step back and just LOVE. Because we are here as missionaries to spread a message of love - we are here to love. That's it. To love people, to love areas, to love missionaries, and to love God.



Thanks for listening to my rant. I love you all so much, and have learned so much from each and every one of you! If you want to tell me how much you love me (lol) write me or email me! If any of you RM's out there (or missionaries in the field) have any "finding people to teach" techniques, hit me UP! Here's to IDAHO my braddaz! Keep on keepin' on!

Lots of love,
Hermana Elkington

Saturday, May 27, 2017

Somos las Misioneras, we want to be your Friends!

Guess who had a baller week! Hanatea did! 


We finally got two of our investigators, Ismael and Nathan on baptismal date. Me and Hermana Allen were like okizayyyy - we need to do something different. So we had an awesome lesson with them in the Chapel and were like, hey, we'll play basketball with you guys after the lesson! The Mom is a Menos Activo and the Dad isn't a member. We taught the lesson, decided on a date, and we just felt the spirit so strongly. Then we all played basketball together and their whole family was just playing and laughing and having fun and I just kept thinking this is what it's all about. Is having fun as a family, no matter what your situation is. It was a super cool day and reminded me of why I'm here and how much I love these people. 

Right after that, Hermana Allen had a leadership training and came back and told me that we're not allowed to play basketball with less-actives or investigators or pretty much anyone and that crushed me a little, because that was just super effective and totally fun and just GOOD. So here I am pissed about mission rules again haha...angst.  

I also got to go on an exchange to Rupert, and do some English work. I met a less-active named Brother Schawl and he played his guitar for me on his porch outside during the sunset and it was so magical that the hummingbirds even came out and said aloha. It was just a straight up slice of pie in my soul. Also super cool to do some English work! Rupert has a lot less members than Burley and there is a lot of people to talk with there who are more interested in learning!

Last thing that made my week - In Rupert, we had lunch with one of the WML's there and they had just come back from a trip to Hawaii. They stayed in Laie and just LOVED it there so much, and freaked out about musubis and all the goob foob you can get at 7/11 and how pretty the hikes are and the ocean and I was just full of super happy joy for my place! I miss the ocean. 


I miss you all! Thank you for all of your support and love - I feel it everyday. If anyone needs anything, let me know! If you love me, write me back (lol Isaiah)! Hope everyone has a great week and knows that I love the crap out of you. 

Hermana Elkington

Hanatea finds a Trombone to play!




So the Mother's day skype thing is the best thing in the whole world. It was soooooo good to talk to my parents and get some advice and just talk about their lives and what's been going on with them! Really really sweet. Also the member's house that we skyped at, he had like 60 guitars and a soprano sax and also a trombone which I jammed on for a bit haha. SUCH A GOOD DAY


Me and Hermana Allen have had a GOOD week. We are really close to setting a baptismal date with the Magana kids, we've talked to them about it, taught them, and they are currently praying about June 10th. Keep them in your prayers that they will continue to progress towards baptism! They are super smart kids and just know their stuff.

We found 5 new investigators this week - A family of 5. They actually came to US and asked to be taught, which was this huge fatty miracle! What even! That never happens!

We also had to turn one of our investigators, this lady named Jenny, over to the English Elders here in Burley. She was pretty dang golden and really interested, but said she would prefer going to Church in English - so we took the Elders by and introduced them to her and oh my goodness gracious, that was the most awkward thing I've ever experienced. The Elders were just sooooo awkward and said weird things and I was just like what! Nooooo! And Jenny kept looking at us like "ummm....are you guys gonna still come by?" So we'll have to go check up on her once in a while haha. Ohhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh Elders. 



We had a big district lunch and Elder Montgomery made us all this thing that he calls "Tongan pancakes" and I have no idea why but it is a halfway-cooked packet of ramen with a tomato, ranch, and taco sauce, in between 2 pieces of white bread and we were like uhhhhooookayyy but hey - I was pretty stoked. Not as bad as it sounds lol. I also had a good hot dog this week, so spirits are high my friends. Oh and also we had crepes. So spirits are REALLY high. 

Keep on working hard and being nuggets of gold and goodness! I love each and every one of you! 

Lots of love,
Hermana Elkington 

ft. sick pics of city of Rocks and goob missionary experiences and a reeeeally dark pic with the trombone cuz my flash stay broke

Monday, May 8, 2017

Jawaiian Jams and the Sun

Aloha PRIMOS,


We got our car back and have been cruising this week! I fo sho miss being on bikes because I feel less air and less free, but now we can do all of the work we have been needing to do in Paul and Heyburn, the places that are too far to bike to. But HERE'S A MIRACLE THIS WEEK.....IT HAS BEEN LIKE 80 DEGREES! Me and Hermana Allen have been studying outside and helping Araceli fix her deck and (shhhhhh smallkine playing in the water cheehee haha) and getting slightly less white than we have been. I've just been jamming! I love the sun.

We have been working a lot this week with the Familia Magana. Nayeli, the mom, is a member and has become really good friends with us - we took her to a lesson and all of a sudden she's wanted to really come back to Church and have lessons with us. We had a Noche de Hogar with her and her kids and her husband, who isn't a member and it went so good! We had fun and talked about baptism and the Gospel of Jesus Christ! I'm really stoked to keep on working with them and hopefully we can help them get their kids baptized soon. I really love them a lot. 

We have also found 3 new investigators and a TON of new potentials around Burley, just by being on bikes last week. It's hard to find people that are really interested in learning about the gospel, but it's such a blessing to have so many people around the area that we can visit and teach, and our days are busy and full. 




We also helped clean Tina's house this week and she jammed some Jawaiian music for me and BLESSSSSSSSSS I miss home! So funny how you hate Jawaiian until you leave the Island. I got a package this week that was full of letters from my L2 family and it made my day with happy tears.

There are always struggles in the mission life, but we keep on keeping on! Trying to have as much fun as we can while we do it and help as many people as we can. If you guys have any questions, feel free to shoot and I'll answer them in my next email! Hope everyone has a great lovely sunny happy wonderful week - let me know if there's anything I can do to help! Love you all!

Hermana Elkington 

'Aina timezzzz

Aloha jarritos!


Me and Hermana Allen had a tough week. We had so many scheduled appointments and almost all of them fell through - and we made other appointments and then THOSE ones fell through. And I was like what! Burley! What happen! 



But here's the cool thing - our car has been taking longer than we thought. And so we have still been on bikes, just being cruzahs through Burley, feeling the 'aina, and we have met tons of new people. Yesterday we saw this Mexican family having a BBQ and we stopped and just talked to them and this guy hands me this huuuuuge piece of carne asada wrapped in a tortilla and is like "you have to take some food! Just take it!" And Hermana Peterson always said, "never say no to food" and so I'm like "gracias amigo!" and let me tell you, that might have been the best thing I have ever eaten in my whole life. 

We also went on a smoothie run on one of our rough days, and I got a mango smoothie that cooled down my soul and made me happy so cheeeeeeeeeeeeepono

We have found 2 new investigators and they are pretty open and happy to hear from us, which always makes the work fun. 

Hope everyone has a great week, keep being happy! By the way, it snowed this week - and it's APRIL! lololololol Idaho



Lots of love,
Hermana Elkington

Sunday, April 30, 2017

Corn Dogs and Earth Day



First off, HAPPY EARTH DAY I hope you all got out and breathed some goob air and felt the wind and hugged a tree and sat on some grass! For Earth Day here, we got to do a huge service project and do a bunch of yard work for a member here in Burley. Made my LIFE foreal - we were weedwacking and pulling weeds and mowing the lawn and chopping down trees and it made my hands feel busy and my soul a little more happy haha. Good stuff - we also saw a Pelican fly across Snake River! A real live Pelican! It was like an effing National Geographic documentary but with my own ojos! 

We also got some 99c corndogs this week that were meeeeeean! Surprisingly! Me and Hermana Allen had a dinner cancel on us so we were like welp. Corndogs it is! Best decision of the week. While we were there Hall&Oates were playing on the radio and I was like BLESSSSSSSSSS 

This week has been tough visiting people. Almost all of our appointments fell through and we visited tonnnns of houses, but no one was home. So we haven't been able to teach a lot, which can be discouraging - hopefully this was just a bad week. I'm trying to know everyone's work schedules too and after being in the area for only one transfer, it's really hard to remember everything. 


Our car is in the SHOP this week, so we are on bikes! And guess what! It's actually a huuuuuge blessing I kid you not! Being outside in the wind and rain has brought us to like 4 new houses just in the past day, and we have been able to just stereotype some Hispanic houses and knock on the door and set up a bunch of appointments! Bomb stuff. Feeling real close to da aina this week haha.

We also had a dinner with Juan and Araceli last night which was hilarious - somehow the conversation got turned into how to make alcoholic drinks (me and Hermana Allen learned a lot!) and then turned into not smoking weed and I taught them the word "pakalolo" and Araceli is just walking around now saying pakalolo all the time and I just was roooooollling laughing. 

Hope everyone's week was good! Love you all with all of my corazon! Remember to stay happy and BREATHE

Lots of love,
Hermana Elkington

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Hanatea leads the Area!

Mi Amigos! Como estaaa!? 


This week was crazy! I had to lead the AREA in Burley! I have a new trainer, from Arizona, Hermana Allen. We are suuuuper different and I am doing my best to know who to visit out of the 40+ people we visit weekly. It's been a ride - but a really great one so far. I get to drive the car too! Haha not safe!

This week I had the best Sunday. Juan Trinidad got to come to Church and Araceli was there too! Me and Hermana Allen had to teach the Principios del Evangelio class and it actually went really cool. We had most of our recent converts there, and even got like 3 of our Menos Activos to come to class! We also had a few investigators. And we just had a good, solid, chill conversation about the gospel. It was bomb times and I loved it. I also gave a talk which was fun haha in my broken Epsanol. 


We got to see so many people this week and because I am leading the area, I have gotten to know the people here that much more. And I love all of them so much! I learn from the people we teach every time we see them and talk to them. My testimony of the importance of this work is strengthened every day. 

It was hard to leave Hermana Peterson, but the mission is full of challenges - right now I'm just feeling like I'm jamming and it's the best feeling ever. I feel like I could face anything and I love it. I'm stoked about the mission life, and it gets easier every day - there will always be hard times, but I think if you can have a positive attitude through it and just have some freaking fun then todo esta bien! 


Love you all and hope everyone has a great week! One member made us these meeeeeean homemade tortillas filled with chicken and cheese and mole this week! SO ONO I DIED

Food, Family, and Friends,
Hermana Elkington