Monday, July 29, 2013

July 29, 2013 Another week in Texas!‏

Hey there family and friends :)
How're y'all?! It sounds like everybody is doing great. It makes me so happy to here. I am doing great here is well! In fact, for the first time yesterday I had a guy from Mexico tell me that I speak really good Spanish :) Totally made my day!! It is still crazy hot here in Texas but I can't complain because we have the car. Granted, we drive somewhere and then walk all around the area so it's still crazy hot but I'm just kind of getting used to being gross and sweaty all the time. It's been sort of adventurous here the last week because they are doing construction on our street. I'm sure Sister Whitley had posted pictures. We can't park on our street because of it. Have I mentioned that they are the best family in the whole world to live with? I told them that I want to live with them forever. They are just too funny :) I also made an agreement with Brother Whitley that whoever I marry I have to bring back and he has to give me the thumbs up. I can't believe that my first transfer is almost over. This week on Saturday we find out whether I get a new companion or not. P.s. Mom, I didn't get a new companion. I was just with Hermana Brown for one day on intercambios. (Exchanges) Now I am back with Hermana Ostler and I am anxious to see if I get a new companion or not! I don't want her to leave because #1 I won't get baseball updates from her dad and # 2 I don't know our area because it's huge and #3 because I lover her and shetells me super funny stories :) We have 5 baptismal dates so hopefully all of them will stick to it and be baptized :) Tomorrow we have a baptism of a girl named Megan! She is one of my favorite people here. She is part of the English/Spanish family that got baptized a few weeks back. Helma and Roger. She is the sister of Helma and I am so happy she is getting baptized :) A few days back she wanted to change her date but we went and taught her and re assured her and she is back to being baptized tomorrow! So crazy thing... we have seen all sorts of weird bugs and animals lately. I want to send pictures but the computer is acting super weird again today. So, I will try. But this morning on our run we saw a hawk fly off with a rat in its claws... cool and gross all at the same time. Not something you see every day. Also, two nights ago we were trying to find this lady named Rosa we were seeing bunny rabbits everywhere! It's been pretty entertaining :) This week our number of lessons went up and same with pretty much everything! We have been working super hard to try and get more lessons and have members with us when we teach. It's tough but so worth it. I am amazed how much my testimony is growing. A mission is one of the best/hardest experiences of your life. It's so cliche, I know. But really so true. Every day I am so humbled because I realize how little I know about how to do missionary work and how much better I could be but every day I feel the enabling power of the Atonement and am baffled at the love that our Father in Heaven and Jesus Christ have for us. I am so excited for David to be going back on his mission! How sweet is that we get to serve at the same time? Today I got to play volleyball and basketball again. It was lots of fun :) I sure love sports. I miss going to baseball games and things like that but I know this is exactly where I'm supposed to be and that there's tons of stuff for things like that later! You really do meet the funniest people on your mission :) It seems like not a day goes by that we don't meet someone that can make us laugh. Life is good here though in the "Texas Dallas Heaven" as my mission President likes to call it. P.s. Dad, I think he may have more than one book. I know one of them is called raising an all american. You can look on google. Mom, the shoes have been working good :) Every thing is great!!! My goal is to make it home from my mission and say that I gave it everything I have. So that's what I'm going to continue to do :) Also, continue to be my dorky self and pray for the Lord's help in making me the best missionary He can make out of me :)
I LOVE YOU ALL!!!! Until next week. (It'll be here before you know it.)
-Hermana Hadlock

My awesome district practicing our "astonished" or "devastated" faces as 
Elder Holland would call it when people don't keep their committments :) Hahah!

This crazy korean BBQ we ate at last week

And Look! Remember peas n' carrots from Forrest? 
I found a bug that was orange and green :) Haha!

A rabbit we saw :)

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

July 24, 2013 "Another Exchange Day"

from the blog

Yesterday Sister B came in exchange for Sister O.
Sister B is from Arizona.
She is finishing her mission in two weeks.
She will be returning to BYU.
There are so many different Sisters....
they are all so different...
but they are all sweet and kind and wonderful.
I'm glad we are able to house the missionaries.
It has been a blessing in our lives.
We have gotten more than we have given.
The Spirit is strong and the pleasure of bringing others
into the Church is a joy to me.

Monday, July 22, 2013

July 22, 2013 Como esta?!‏

Hola familia :)
This week has been another great week. I still can't quite get a hold on how fast time goes. It's the weirdest thing. The days seem to last an eternity sometimes but the weeks and months go so fast! It's so exciting to hear about all my friends back home that are leaving on missions still. I thought they were all gone by now but somehow I still keep hearing about more and more :) I have gotten more letters this week and that made me really happy! I've also gotten a few packages that totally made my day! It has still been raining here down in good ole Texas. I couldn't be more happy about that. We found a few new people to teach this week and I am really excited to see how that turns out. One of them, we found in a park. Her name is Esperanza and she is so great! We taught her the first lesson and she was willing to pray right there in the park for us. She didn't come to church sadly but hopefully we can get her there next week! We also met a family last night when we were knocking that said they were Jehovah's Witness. It was cool how we found them. Mi compa asked me where we should go knock and I felt like we should go on the next street over. Then she felt to ask this family if we could come in even though they had just barely told us they were Jehovah's witness. They let us in! They became our new investigators and the mom seemed really interested. The kids were really cute too! Haha, it was super funny... the little kids were joking and with each other and saying, "Well you're like(something a kid would say)!" They were just playing around with each other and then one of them said and dad likes to drink a lot! he's always drunk. the funny part was I didn't even know this because I couldn't understand their Spanish. Haha, he seemed pretty nice when we met him so we decided next lesson will be about the Word of Wisdom ;)It's amazing to me though how willing people are to change when they know it's true even though it's really hard for them. They said that when they knew these things were true that they would be willing to be baptized. I'm excited to get back and teach them this next week! Back to Esperanza. I really like her. She is about 50 and she actually has a daughter down in Mexico that is either married to a member or something like that. She told us that one day she wants her son to be an Elder like our missionaries. Such an awesome lady :)
Yesterday I got super frustrated with the language. Sometimes, I feel so confident and other times I doubt that I can ever learn it. I learned a lesson yesterday that Nephi talks about in the scriptures (Nephi 3:7) :) The Lord won't command me to do something that I can't accomplish. Without His help, you're right, it would be nearly impossible for me to learn Spanish. But with His help, I know that I can :) IF, if being the key word here, I'll put faith in Him and work hard. I have learned on my mission that we really can trust Heavenly Father with everything. I know a lot of people say that and I know that before my mission I believed that I could say that as well. But I learned that during the hard times, it's a little more dificult to put full trust in Him. This is when it is MOST IMPORTANT!!! I once heard a story of a man who many people loved. I'm not sure if this story is real or not, I think it is, but either way the lesson of the story is great. He was very talented and had an unbelievable talent for balancing. Many people loved to come and watch him. One day, he had a great challenge lined up. He was going to cross a rope on Niagra Falls with someone in a wheelbarrow. Everyone believed in him! They had seen him do things that they had thought to be impossible so they had no doubt that he would be able to make it across... Everyone was cheering and couldn't wait to see it! He then asked the crowd, "Do you think I can do it?" Everyone was cheering and saying, "Yes of course!" He then asked the crowd an interesting question... "Who is willing to climb in the wheelbarrow?" The crowd suddenly wasn't as excited. They knew he could do it and they said that they trusted in him. But suddenly, it took them ACTING and TRUSTING in him with their own life. My question is, would you climb in the wheel barrow? I'll be honest, I'm not sure if I would. But I do trust God with my life. The man crossing the rope wasn't perfect. But our Savior and Heavenly Father are. We can TRUST them and ACT on whatever they ask us to do because we know they have infinite love for us and can make much more of our lives than we ever could by ourselves. I promise you with all my heart, I know this to be true.
Pues, can I learn Spanish? Si, puedo. Can you act on all that the Lord would have you do? Si, puede :) (Yes, you can.) I promise you you'll never regret it and that you will receive more blessings than you can imagine.
I forgot to talk about Ashton! Yesterday, while we were knocking we found this girl whose name is Ashton. She is 19 years old and takes care of people for her job. Right now she is taking care of an elderly couple who happen to be LDS. She is always with them and that means she takes them to church every Sunday. When we knocked on her door she was like oh yeah, I've heard of you before! I have actually been going to your church. We taught her the first lesson, answered her questions from church, and are currently finding a way to get her missionary lessons from English missionaries. The Lord most definitely prepares people! Sheesh, the mission is hard but then you find people like these after a long day of sweating and it makes it all worth it :)
One last funny experience before I have to go... so :) This last week we had follow-up training and interviews with the president! I got to see Hermana Kirkham and I was so excited! Elder Aidukaitis came to our mission a while back. He talked about on his mission when he would get on a bus and tell everyone on there that they were missionaries and had a message for them! So, after follow-up training on our way back home, Hermana Ostler and I decided to do just that :) We got on the bus and we were both SUPER nervous. Right as we got on, she said, "Hello everyone! This is my new companion and she has traveled a long way to Texas to share a message with you!" then I started talking and said something like, "We are missionaries from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints! We have an incredible message for incredible people! If you are one of those, please let us know!!" :) We got the funniest looks and no one wanted to hear from us. BUT, I sat down and this guy asked me where I got my earrings and then he told me even though he didn't want to hear our message he admired our courage and said we really brought a light with us :) Then, I got him talking... and sham bam taught him the first lesson before he knew what hit him! :) I was still talking to him and my companion got off the bus. The doors closed and the bus started to drive away. The guy and I were both yelling WAIT! I have to get off! So funny :) .. and scary! But I got off no worries :) Well, I love Y'ALL! Thanks for all your support and prayers.
Have a fantastic week!!!
Con Amor, Hermana Hadlock

Us on the bus! :)

For Erget!

My companion dropped her watch in the toilet :)

When I saw Hermana Kirkham again :) 
Everyone, including Jackson's friend thinks she's attractive 
and has asked for her e-mail! hahaha

 A crazy cool picture I took of the moon last night while we were headed home!

Me and my compa right now while we're e-mailing :)

Friday, July 19, 2013

July 19, 2013 "Mail and Packages, Rain, and More..."

from the blog

 The mail and packages are really rolling in.
This is what greeted them when 
they came in from teaching last night.
I think they are setting a record high
on missionary mail for the year
since we have been housing the missionaries.

 Hermana H's big sister sent her this
super-big package of goodies!
Those donuts are making me hungry.  

Hermana H is the baby of her family.
They shower her with all the love a family could
possibly shower on a little sister. 

This came today.
Hermana O is being showered with love by her little sister!
She got a wonderful package from 8 year old Leah today.
(which were especially hand made with love)
and she says she loves the LA Dodgers Logo picture, too! 

The rain made the Sisters a little goofy today.
As Sister O was telling me about their day of service
at the Senior Center, she was handling the scissors.
Then, she randomly picked them up and did this.
I said, "Hey, you are so silly!
Hold that pose...I have to get my camera!" 

 Then I decided to take a picture of rain -- in July.
This is such a rare treat that it deserves photographing.
I was trying to get a close up of the rain on the plants...
but I was not sure it would actually show.

 So I took a picture to prove that we are having rain!

 Sister H hit the jackpot in letters today...

they are getting a lot of mail,
they are teaching a lot of lessons,
and they are happy.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

July 16, 2013 "Baptism Reunion"

from the blog

Tonight a family was baptized that Sister O and Sister M
first talked to in the parking lot of an apartment complex.
A lady was waiting for her son to be dropped off by a school bus.
One thing led to another and they wound up teaching her and
her husband a couple of lessons. Because the family
spoke English, the Sisters passed them
over to the English speaking Elders.
The family decided to be baptized, so Sister M was able
to come (with her new companion) from Plano to witness the baptism.
Sister O gave a talk on the Holy Ghost.
There were 80 people at the baptism!
Sister M asked me if I could take her and her new companion
(who is another Sister M, from Idaho) back to Plano.
I was very happy to see and talk to Sister M again!
She looks so good and is so happy.
It was a brief, but lovely
baptism reunion.

Monday, July 15, 2013

July 15, 2013 "Mid Summer Missionary Happenings"

from the blog

While the cat is away the mice will play.
I was gone on vacation for 2 weeks. 
When I came back, I heard about this. 
Apparently the Sisters were anxious to play a prank on the Elders.
The Elders were going to come by the house to pick something up
while the Sisters were not at home.
The Sisters concocted a plan to hide the thing the Elders were
looking for... high up in the tree in the front yard.
They left clues for the Elders to follow in order to find it.
No one got killed, that is the good thing....
Sister H took this picture and Sister O was
the one in the tree. Oh MY!  

The July heat and humidity has been taking its toll on the Sisters.
One night last week Sister H walked in the house
around 9:30 p.m. and just FELL on the couch (like this).
I grabbed the camera to document it. 

 Sister O is taking the heat a little better.
I think she is getting used to it.
The past few days we have had rain and record low temps.
Both are very unusual for the middle of July.
It is very lucky for the missionaries.
The Sisters are happy about it.
They keep saying, "I LOVE this weather!"
I don't want to tell them that it won't last long....

The mailman has been good to the Sisters.
Sister H is ahead with more packages and letters...
but Sister O keeps her spirits up by remembering
that is because Sister H is a new missionary.
Sister O is hugging a big box of doughnuts they got
as a kind of "reward" for doing service at the community
food bank.   

 Sister H has gotten many special treats from her mother
and her father.
She was excited to show us this beef jerky
that her dad made for her from a deer she shot before
she came on her mission.
She shared a piece with us.
I have never tasted such flavorful beef jerky!

 Sister O made Orange Julius for us on P-day.
It was very tasty!

"Especially tasty," says Sister H!!
The Sisters are making many contacts
and teaching a lot of lessons.
There is a baptism tomorrow.
Life is good in the missionary world.

July 15, 2013 Hello to my favorite people :)‏

Hey y'all!
How's it going?!? I am so stinkin' happy right now! Why you ask?? Honestly, there's too much to put into words but I will try my best. First and foremost, it is raining here and that doesn't happen this time of year according to the locals. I have absolutely loved it! Second of all, I got to just catch up on all of your e-mails! I love hearing about how all of you are doing and the funny things that life brings :) I miss you all so much. When I start to get home sick or think that I can't do it I think of all of you. I know, I'm cheesy. It 's just how it is :) So just enjoy the love. But seriously, I think of all of you and I realize the cheerleading team I have back home and in the heavens and it helps me to keep going. I don't remember if I wrote this in my last e-mail or not (I think I did but it's so good you'll want to hear it again :) ) From the Other Side of Heaven, "There's a connection between heaven and earth. Finding it, makes everything meaningful. Missing it, makes everything meaningless." It is SO TRUE. We are in reality God's children. He loves each and every one of you. Our Father in Heaven and our Savior Jesus Christ are so tightly wound in the details of our lives it is an un-seperable bind. I would be lying if I wrote home and said the mission is bliss and I love every minute of it. There are times that it is so stinkin' hard.... but that's why we all keep going in life. Remember what we're living for :) Back to the reasons why I am so happy: Next, I just found out that one of my best friends has decided to go on a mission! :) I will talk more about it once I get her permission. Third, I found out that Brigham Peisley and Randy Ivins are both going to Tijuana Mexico with Jackson!!!! I honestly was jumping out of the library seat and doing fist pumps like crazy. They are two of our good friends and I could not be more excited for them!!!!! :) So if they somehow read this, congrats from your fellow Hermana :) and tell Jackson hi for me ;) The other reason I am so happy... we had some more investigators show up to church yesterday! They are the Rodriguez family. They have been looking into the church for a little while now. The dad and the two boys came but the mom had to work. I want to share a short little miracle that happened with them yesterday :) So pretty much every one we teach is from Mexico. This family is from Mexico City, Mexico. They correct and help my Spanish all the time :) I love 'em. Anyways, the dad was saying how he probably couldn't come to church this Sunday because he had to work. For most of us, we just say well you can take a day off. But it is sometimes really hard to tell these families not to work because a lot of them are struggling to support their families and if they don't work on Sunday could very easily lose their job. Nevertheless, as the Lord's missionaries we testify to them that even though the blessings may not come when or how we want them... they will come!! So we told them to pray and ask for God to provide a way for them to attend church the next day. The little boy (one of the twins) Kevin, there's Kenny and Kevin, said, "Dad, we can just do it on Monday." We were smiling so big when he said that :) Anyways, he said he would try but we weren't sure if he would be there. He works construction and his two boys help him. Well, we woke up yesterday morning and it was pouring rain :) Guess what, you can't work construction when it's raining :) Coincidence? Nah. I can't say for sure that he wouldn't have come if it was a nice day... but I know it was a little miracle yesterday that got him there. I'm not sure what he thought about church. We'll have to go figure that out this next week during our appointment. But what I do know is that we did our best to put him in a situation where he could feel the Spirit and that's what really matters. We can talk to people until we are blue in the face... but it doesn't do a thing unless they have the Spiriti testify to them that it is true.
Now to answering people's questions :) Yes, the BUGS here are so much bigger!! You would not believe the size of a regular yellow-jacket or hornet or whatever you call it. I think I may have talked about it last week. The heat was killing me but honestly I can't even complain seeing as how we have the car. Our area is huge. It covers Lewisville, Coppell, and part of Irving. But we live in Carrollton. Does it really make sense that we live out of our area? No. I'm not really sure the reason for it but that's okay. The work goes on! Oh, one more exciting story too. Right before I got here my companion found this English/Spanish family one day. The mom and the sister were really into it but the dad didn't believe in Joseph Smith and thought it was just kinda sketch. They have a little boy with autism and you can tell it has been really hard for them. BUT this last Monday after I emailed y'all we got a text that said "Guess who's getting baptized" it was from Roger the dad!! I was so excited. So as a family, they are going to be baptized this Tuesday :) We had to hand them over to the English elders half way through because they are English. They speak Spanish but for their kids they want to go to the English ward. So they're not techinically "our" baptisms but I am so happy :) Since I passed out during the lesson last week there hasn't been any problems. It was honestly just because I was fasting and we were teaching outside. I am totally fine and back to my Jennay Gump self though so no worries :) My Spanish is still slowly but surely coming. I get really frustrated sometimes because I can't express what I want to say, and lets face it... we all know how much I love to talk, and with not being able to it gets hard sometimes. But I am understanding more and more every day and talking a little better every day. The Lord called me Spanish speaking for a reason so I know that I will be able to learn it all in time. Mama, thank you for the packages you have sent me this last little bit! I was super excited and I think that the shoes will work well :) The treats are definitely going to keep me and my companion going :) Thank you Papa as well for the Jerky! Yum :) I was stinkin' excited! I shared a little bit with Brother Whitley (the member I am staying with) He loved it! So did my companion and I. I teared up when I just read that was the last of Michael's deer meat. I have loved getting letters and e-mails from all of you as well! Every time it's mail day and I get a letter I am so excited! Let alone to get on the comp. on Preparation-Day and see all your e-mails. The Texans here are so funny. Last night we talked to a lady that goes to a Catholic church. She was super nice to talk to and as we walked away she said, "Stay blessed!" Even though not all of them are Mormons here, MANY are Christian and you gotta love it :) I am learning so much everyday. It is so humbling to be in a completely new situation and realize that you basically know how to do just about nothing. My trainer is great :) She loves baseball and therefore we were meant to be! She teaches me a lot in Spanish and one day I hope to talk as well as her. Amanda, your stories cracked me up! I can only imagine. Our cat is so funny. We actually have a cat here too and I saw her kill a lizard the other day. Gross. But that doesn't compare to a bat! Heather and Erget, your yard and cabinets look SO awesome! I seriously am so excited to see them :) Hehe, Erget it sounds like you better be careful of the sun too! David, I am so excited for you to get out here in the field with me :) I know it can be unbelievably hard, but I promise you with all I got that it's worth it. Trust in the Spirit and in Jesus Christ. You will NEVER go wrong. He will make more of your life than we could ever make of it by ourselves. Thanks for all the updates from home from every single one of you :) I hope all is well!!!!
Thank you for all your love and support. It means so much! You're all in my prayers and I can't wait to see you again one day. But believe me, it'll be here before any of us realize it. TODAY marks 2 whole months of me being on my mission! WOAH! Keep reading, praying, and doing the basics :) It brings us a whole lot of happiness in life.
LOVE Y'ALL from down here in TEXAS!!!
-Hermana Hadlock

This is the last picture of me in Utah at the airport and

The Lady named Jody that I gave the B.O.M. to and 
a pass along card with my testimony in it :)

Hermana Kirkham enjoying the AC.

The first time I got a taste of AC in the van being picked up at the air port! 

 Also, the Dallas Temple :)

Our last picture together as compas :) Muy triste! 
But I love my new companion :)

Also, Jyllian this picture is just for you :)
 My sunglasses I bought when I was with you!!

This was an egg toss we did for district meeting! 

This shake had my birthday on it :) So I knew it was just for me.

 I accidentally super-glued my glasses to my finger when I was trying to fix them. 
I broke them earlier that day :( 

My foot tan line! Might I add this was a week ago and 
it has gotten worse since then :) 

Also, in this picture you see the only mountain in my mission. 
Where is it? Exactly my point. See that little hill behind me?
 It's a land fill that we call our mountain :) Haha! 

This is me and my companion Hermana Ostler :) 
We spoiled ourselves and bought go-gurts the other day. 
We both love them as a frozen treat when we get home. 

This is my companion on the day that she hit her half way mark!!!! 
Over half way done baby :) Where does time go?? 
We celebrated getting ice-cream at the marble slab. It was SO good!

So, it's been pouring rain for the last two days... do I love life?? 
Why yes, I do :) It has been in the 70's and I don't know quite what to 
do with myself I am so happy about it.

So, dad... I thought this would make you laugh :) Look at the street signs. 

 Also, this is what I would like to call the "Sweat Stache". 
It's something I've obtained in my time here in Texas :) 
Pretty good lookin' aye? Just a normal day in July in Texas. Bring it on :)

Here's a really pretty sunset the other night :)

 Also, this is where I currently reside during my sleeping hours, ha. 
See that door knob? I have a sore spot on my eye brow from 
rolling over and hitting it... for the 2nd time in my sleep!

This is the coldest we have seen our temperature gauge so far! 
Can you believe it??? Me neither!

This is me enjoying the weather yesterday :)

Also, this is Bishop Moala :) He played for the Bronco's and is one of the neatest men I know. Since I've been here, we've been doing a study with him every P-day and he takes us to Chick-Fil-A after. We don't get to do them anymore but I just want to say what an amazing man he is and I'm grateful for the things he's taught me about the Gospel.