Thanks for sending me that Christmas card in advance! Grandpa's note made me tear up. You are all too good to me.
This week has been good. We didn't quite get our 50 lessons, haha, but we still did really well! We're traveling a lot this next week, but the week after that we're going to try for it again :) For some reason our Sister Training leaders canceled our exchange. I was really looking forward to going to Tuzla! It's fine though, because I love Sarajevo! This transfer has gone by too fast, but we got our transfer assignments on Friday and our whole district is staying here! Such a huge relief. I definitely don't know my way around at all yet, so I was worried about how I was going to survive without Sister H. I love that sweet girl so much! She really is such an angel.
We wanted to show the Christmas Devotional from this year to our branch and investigators, but the Church doesn't really ever translate those into Bosnian... so we ended up spending a whole day translating the talks! Holy cow. We had natives proof-read them before the activity and it made me realize how bad I am, again, and how much more work I have to do. It was an exhausting day, but it was a great event, so it definitely paid off!
I'm really not that good on the computer, but our records for English classes frequently get lost because they're just in a stack in some of the closets randomly throughout church. After church cleaning, I decided to organize all of the documents. It was pretty inefficient, so I decided to put them in an Excel document and kind of use it as a live document that we would update every week with who we were going to focus on teaching, and we've gotten a lot of lessons out of doing that. President called us this week, and is having us give a presentation at our mission conference this week with Elder Croft, a senior missionary here. He's a former professor, and loves presenting, so I told him to just give the full presentation, since you know how much I hate speaking in large crowds, haha. I've spent a lot of time refining and updating it this week, but I thought that was pretty cool, because it's something that President wants to start doing on a mission-level. Also, Sister H and I are going to train a sister currently serving up in Slovenia next week about how to use it to find more people to teach. President said he was keeping me and Sister Hendricks together so he could "milk the cow" haha. I thought that was funny. I guess we've been leading the mission in terms of lessons taught every week. We work hard, but we also have a lot of fun, and we laugh a ton.
E, our taxi driver, and his family are great! His wife made us a beautiful dinner and we got to spend some time with their cute kids. After dinner, some of their friends showed up, another married couple with two children. They walked in with some beer and both couples started lit up and started smoking and drinking right away. I definitely wanted to get out of there, but they started asking us a lot of questions about our church, and so we just taught a full first-lesson right there with both families. It was a really powerful lesson, they progressively stopped drinking the beer and smoking, and then they both asked for copies of the Book of Mormon and asked us to write our testimonies in them. E's friend speaks fluent French because he used to live there, so we were also really able to bond and explain things a little bit better in French than I would have been able to in Bosnian. They are so sweet, and they all seemed really interested in meeting again, which is great! #blessings #twofamiliesinone
We had a lot of crazy things that happened this week. The first, and probably the most dramatic of which: a person who has come to church before is a bit crazy, and he burst into our English class of 25 people and yelled some really inappropriate things. Sister H had to go talk to him, concoct the fib that I had a boyfriend, and then he threatened to kill himself. Ahhh. That was really stressful.
Another sad thing, Sarajevo has really bad pollution right now, because of all the coal and the inversion. Our branch president's wife told us it was one of the worst in the world, currently worse than Beijing!
I'm so excited to be going to Zagreb this week for the Christmas Mission conference! We get to stay with Sister M for two nights and we're going on splits while we're there. I'm so excited to be able to serve with her again! She is one of my favorite people and we're planning on living together after our missions at BYU since we get back at the same time. I already told Hannah, who's taking care of our housing when she gets back next year. I hope you get to meet her someday, Mom. You would love her.
As far as Skyping goes on Christmas day, let's plan on 4pm my time, 9am in the morning your time? I think that's the right time difference. We haven't received any information so far about how long we can talk for or anything on the 25th, but hopefully I can give you more information next week. I'll try to figure it out by then. So excited to see all of you! Are Grandma and Grandpa coming over at all so I can see them too? And Skippy? Be sure to hold him up to the camera for me too! I really hope you all get my package by Christmas day.
I found this scripture last night in Doctrine and Covenants section 64:33. I had read and heard it before but it really resonated with me when I read it yesterday. "Wherefore, be not weary in well-doing, for ye are laying the foundation of a great work. And out of small things proceedeth that which is great." The little things we do everyday make the difference. I know that we sometimes feel so small and insignificant in this world, but I know that we have great potential and that those great things can happen with the Lord. Perfect scripture, right?
I love you! Have such a great week and talk to you so soon!!
S ljubavlju uvijek,