Monday, September 26, 2016

Oh Mann, You're Wright - September 26, 2016

Priscilla didn't send any pictures this week, only this video. Mom grabbed a screen shot at least. She said, "This is all I got this week. In my defense, it was a short week."

                   Hello and Happy Monday again Friends and Family. Our mass email title this week comes from what I daydream someone sometime within the next four weeks will say to Sister Mann and me. Because our lives have been founded on the puns born from our last names. But we continue to missionary here in Saco. And quite honestly since I wrote just last Tuesday I do not really feel like much has happened these last six days. We taught as often as we could, Fall/Autumn has begun (and won't let us forget it. Seriously, it's set to be in the 60s all week and Sister Mann is already cold. We are doomed), and had the General Women's Session of General Conference which was really great! Seriously, so much revelation from that meeting. As always, President Uchtdorf's address was stellar and has made my life. Now who doesn't want to go to the fourth floor, last door? But that was Saturday, I'll try to share some experiences we have had since then.
                    Because of the training Elder Bennett gave last week at mission conference we are working hard on helping our investigators through daily contact. So Sister Mann and I (after hearing one of our members stopped by this investigator because we accidentally forgot to tell them the appointment had canceled.... Whoops... But apparently had a great time just socializing on the investigator's porch so fellowshipping points to them) stopped by Mark's (our investigator with a baptismal date and still wanting to have his family learn with him) and we use followed up on the commitments we extended to him and one of his daughters ended up offering some corn chowder she had made because it was supper time. I said sure and Sister Mann said she had never had chowder before so the experience seemed that much more exciting.... Until we realized chowder was made with cream.... And
Sister Mann is dairy intolerant... Needless to say I felt like a horrible senior companion after the fifth bite and we realized this. She powered through it though because she's a super hero. Mann, the things we do for investigators.
                    As for an update on Dave we saw/taught him Saturday. He's still not dropped because he still wants to learn but he doesn't want to feel rushed. He also said baptism is a goal of his, he just doesn't feel ready for it now. Oh well. We are giving him another weeks break which hopefully will help him.
                    The coolest things this week really mostly happened with less active sisters. Two of them came Saturday night to the dinner and broadcast put on the Relief Society and the sisters did a great job including them. Sister Mann and I ended up helping the primary president put together general conference packets to give the kids the next day. It was a mess because we were running out of papers for copies and we realized the packet was made for April 2014 conference... So there were Easter eggs and three different apostles then there are now... The Easter eggs became pumpkins and the apostles magically turned into the new ones so it all worked out. It was just probably the most hilarious packet producing part ever.
                    AND AND AND another less active sister who is now actively attending her church meetings and preparing to do baptisms for her family members meetings not only has found housing within the ward boundaries but just received a calling!!! We are all so excited so good things are really happening out here.
                    Well I hope you all are as excited for general conference as we are! I can't believe this is my last one on the mission. I've been studying the talks given this April and even reviewed the questions I brought to conference a year ago and I'm truly in awe of the things I have learned over the past year. I am so excited for autumn (even though the colors won't be the same as they were last year because of the drought), the next 15 weeks, and just being in Maine. As of next week I will have been in Vacationland for a year and I really wouldn't want to be anywhere else. The gospel is great, am I Wright?
Love and miss you all and enjoy conference!

Sister Wright 

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Basically Italy - September 20, 2016

"New District" Aren't they all so cute?

                   Hello and Happy TUESDAY friends and family. I trust you missed me on your regularly programmed Missionary Monday lists but yesterday we had a [half] mission conference with guest stars Elder De Feo and Elder and Sister Bennett of the Quorum of the 70. Elder De Feo is cool because he is the first general authority called from Italy (hence the email title because I literally couldn't think of anything cooler than the fact we had an authority from Italy this week so ta da) and Elder and Sister Bennett served as mission president of the Russia Samara mission so got some cool stories from that. And good spiritual direction. Hopefully I can take all that I've learned and apply it for the next LESS THAN FOUR MONTHS WOW OW OK WHATEVER. Just realized that now. MOVING ON.
                    So on the sad news train we got a call from Dave yesterday telling us he wanted to take some time from learning and going to church for a bit which kinda hurt, especially since we had just had training from Elder Bennett on how to better help our investigators come closer to Christ. I also made this deal with him that I would quit drinking soda if he would quit drinking coffee. And I haven't broken that promise, even when I had an opportunity to have a free soda Saturday! But we respect his agency and agreed to let him have his space and we are hoping he'll recognize that he feels better when he does keep him commitments so it will work out. We have another investigator named Mark that has a baptismal date set for October so we will just continue to pray things go smoothly with him. Just thought I would give everyone an update on the teaching pool.
                    We will also get a special segment on cool food I had this week because we all know Sister Wright loves food. So this week we had lunch with a member who grew up in Japan and made us a Japanese (with a Chinese twist as she said) dish of ramen noodles (not the gross cheap college kind, like actual curly thin noodles) with scrambled egg, ham, and cucumber. We also had to eat it with chopsticks which I did surprisingly well at. Probably the healthiest, nicest lunch I've had on my mission to be honest. Another cool food I had was while we were helping at an antique car show we were helping serve food and one dish was spanakopita from a local Greek place. Just an FYI, spanakopita is delicious. Would recommend. Can't lose with spinach and cheese friends.
                    Compared to the weekend, the week was pretty boring. Saturday we helped at an antique car show as I had afore mentioned. It was good but we just served food to people. Probably not the best use of service time because we didn't get to talk much about the gospel. But Saturday evening we went to the adult session of Augusta Stake Conference. That and Sunday Morning really felt like a gathering of the saints. And we got to hear from Elder De Feo and his experiences! Sunday morning he focused on the account of Jarius in the New Testament and while on the way to his daughter the Savior stopped to help the woman with the issue of blood. I liked his point that if he was Jarius he would be somewhat frustrated seeing Jesus stop to help someone while he clearly NEEDED his daughter to be healed. It shows me that we shouldn't see other people blessed while we are reaching out for help as a sign of Him not caring because he does care, we just need to wait our turn. Because He does care. He cares about all of us.
                    Besides that we have really just missionaried here in Saco and it's going pretty well. I hope you all have a good upcoming week and know I love and miss you all!
Sister Wright

"Sister Mann as stately. Or evil....."

"Planner #9"

"Planner #10"

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Now Departing the Struggle Train - September 12, 2016

              "You know me and kitties"       

                 Hello and Happy Monday friends and family! I hope you all had a fun week because we sure did. As always, it had its ups and downs and quite frankly I don't know how I got here but here we are again on a sunny Monday, writing you from Maine, and telling you the wonderful tales of the Super Saco Sisters. In all honesty we had some of the coolest adventures this week, mostly with a quest down to Kennebunkport with Buffles and her daughter on Friday. But that doesn't scratch the surface of the excitement because Sister Mann and I are staying together six more weeks! There, I said it! I was actually going to make you all wait until the end of the letter to hear transfer news but nope, the Super Saco Sisters are taking on Old Orchard Beach and the beginning of autumn for six more weeks. I honestly can't explain how pumped I am. This is my first and only four transfer/six month area and I really couldn't be more blessed. I have seen how a lot of my time in my other areas have prepared me for my time in Saco and having the most super missionary as a companion is another huge blessing so I really am so excited for the next six weeks, which include: General Conference (MY LAST ONE AS A MISSIONARY AH), Stake Conference, following Stake Conference next Monday Zone Conference with a 70, Interviews with the President, and potentially/obviously a baptism! So go Saco Squad! But as far as the email title goes, we in the WinCo district (Windham, Cornish, and Saco) are losing a bunch of the original what we call "The WinCo Struggle Train" passengers, so I wanted to give them a shout out. We will miss you all!
                    As far as the week went, we had a lot of appointments that fell through which was lame. But we found people that we at least gave some materials to so no effort wasted. Monday was mostly finding after P-Day. Tuesday we had set up a lunch with a member who moved here from the Philippines. She is an RM and a really great cook. And when she makes a meal, she really makes A MEAL. So Sister Mann and I in the moment enjoyed the wontons, stir fry, and rice she made for us. But it was only us two and she and she didn't want leftovers.... So we ate some more.... And more... Until we inevitably regretted setting up that lunch but the food WAS SO GOOD. And now she and her husband are called as ward missionaries so guess who we will be working even more closely with! Woo, more wontons!
                    We saw Dave three times this week. He is doing really well trying to find his answer that the church is true but doesn't want to read the Book of Mormon with us and he accidentally slept through church yesterday. He felt so bad! Besides that he really likes what he's learning and even wants to come to Stake conference this weekend which we are sure he will enjoy.
                    Wednesday was, as I said, saying good bye to my favorite district ever which was hard. Gotta love those missionaries. But they are going on to great things so no tears! Thursday we had lunch with the newly called Relief Society president. She is a nurse so working with her is a lot like working with my mom. After lunch and the meeting Sister Mann also commented on how well I work with ward leaders. That was a huge compliment to me because I love working with ward leaders and feel it's a great skill we need to have as missionaries. Thanks Preach My Gospel Chapter 13! We also went visiting teaching/delivering cookies with the Primary President so ward counsel points to the Sister Missionaries.
                    Friday we went to Kennebunkport! Like for reals Kennebunkport! In retrospect it was probably a better P-Day activity than a lunch trip for a crab cake sandwich on the ocean with a 107 year old on a Friday but we had fun so.....  We got to see the President's House and St. Anne's Cathedral from the car. And the Wedding Cake House. If none of these things mean anything to you, Google their back stories because they are pretty rad. And the crab cake sandwich was good. Sister Mann got the closest she had ever been to the Atlantic which was fun and she got some shells. So that was a fun trip.
                    Saturday we started off the day with an investigator canceling on us half an hour before we went over which was sad. But really when it's transfer call/The BYU v. U of U game day you realize you should get the bad stuff out of the way at the beginning of the day so things did pick up. We ended the day with five total lessons and the news we were staying together. Blessings!
                    Yesterday we went to church and while Dave wasn't there we had 4 less active members come to sacrament meeting, which was awesome considering we had only remembered to invite one of them this week. So we were happy. And today we already had a fantastic P-Day and spent over an hour writing a definite outline of Harry Potter and barely made it through the first book. There's apparently a lot of Harry Potter before Harry himself is even a thing. We realized most of the teachers aren't necessarily integral to the plot as a whole which was disappointing. Anyway, I hope you all have a good upcoming week! I
Love and miss you and enjoy September!

Sister Wright 

"Why is Elder Dortch eating corn? We will never know"

"Don't talk about the corn"

"Coolest District ever"

"Silly District"

"The ocean from St. Anne's"

"St. Anne's cathedral, where the Bush's worship when they are up here"

"The Bush House (also known as the President's house)"   

"The Wedding Cake House"

"Rich people boats"

"First ocean sighting from the van"


"I was just so pumped to see that water"

"Sister Mann hunts seashells by the seashore"

"Sister Mann shell hunting"

"The ocean!"

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Wait, it's September? - September 5, 2016

                  "Us and the Yarmouth Sisters"            

                   Hello and Happy Monday Friends and Family. It is I, Sister Wright, your favorite missionary serving in the wild expanses of Northern New England, specifically Saco, ME and Old Orchard Beach. We heard more French today at the grocery store and are basically staying inside on this beautiful Labor Day holiday because we live in a tourist beach town so there is really nothing fun for a missionary to do besides wait for next week when they all leave and then see the beach. But Sister Mann and I are still having fun. We had grilled rosemary potatoes for lunch, rosemary and potatoes grown in our old landlord's garden. That's something I realized today: If you want to really New England, you will have a garden and this week is the week to harvest and eat all your garden goods. We have homegrown beets (no idea what to do with those), baby tomatoes, mint, and purple + green beans.
                    Yesterday at a spontaneous member dinner the family had a soup with all the ingredients coming from their garden. On exchange we helped a lady in her MASSIVE garden and ended up with fresh chives. Anyway, enough about gardens, let's talk about this week!
                    Monday we got to see the Blairs. I got to have a good chat with both of them but particularly Sister Blair. She's hilarious. That's all I can really say.
                    Tuesday we were doing our usual finding adventures in Old Orchard Beach while on our way to our car we saw the Old Orchard Beach museum by the Old Orchard Beach Historical Society. A member had recommended we stop by to ask if we could help them with any service and after finding out from the President that they didn't really need us she somehow ended up giving us a tour of the "fire room", honoring all the fires that have affected Old Orchard Beach. That was fun. We also handed out two copies of the Book of Mormon in that time. Not at the museum but on the street so. Woo.
                    Throughout this week we got a chance to see Dave our progressing investigator. By all "technical" standards he isn't progressing because he couldn’t come to church yesterday but he has the most sincere desire of anyone I've ever taught. He really wants to find the answer to the church being true and is praying about it. He texted us his testimony yesterday and doing really all he can. Seriously, Sister Mann and I can't wait to see him be baptized. Eventually.
                    Wednesday besides District Meeting in Windham we had this really cool miracle where we stopped by a less active member way out where on our way back to Saco and she said she'd love to have us over to teach her daughter. The only problem is she lives way out where and we don't really have miles to teach her that often so we walked away excited but frustrated. Later that evening though we had dinner with a member family and Sister Mann and I are making an effort to help the Relief Society with their visiting teaching (QUICK SIDE NOTE: Yesterday they changed the entire Saco Ward Relief Society Presidency. Are you serious?? This is the THIRD TIME in the FOUR AREAS I have been in. Note to future area Relief Society Presidency: I'm sorry if you like your calling but I'm coming...) and asked the mom who she sees. Lo and behold she is in charge of visiting that same sister we saw earlier and is available the times we wanted to see the daughter! So once we get things set up we will have rides to get to way out where. Awesome blessings!
                    Thursday was mostly finding. Friday we spent a lot of the day with a member (Buffles' (the 107 year old member) daughter) who not only drove and came with us for a lesson, but also got us lunch at KFC/Taco Bell (Buffles favorite fast food is Taco Bell Chalupas). She is so totally awesome and hilarious and we made plans to go to Kennebunkport for lunch next week with her and Buffles so pray that follows through. Friday night (I drove on a freeway/toll road at night. YELP) to Saturday evening we were on exchange with the Yarmouth sisters. Sister Rogerson and I were temporary companions again and had a lot of fun.
                    We spent most of the morning helping in a woman's giant garden, pulling weeds and clearing things out for actual plants to grow. A huge spider with an egg sack hung off the lady at one point and I really wanted to kill it but she wouldn't let us. Ew. When it was just Sister Rogerson and I, some quotes to highlight include "I forgot to grab a leaf because I was too busy worrying about my chives". We mostly were freaking out because some leaves think it's cool to change color like fall is coming upon us. Whatever. We aren't leaving anytime soon. Nope.
                    Yesterday we had many cool experiences, notably the spontaneous dinner with members and the vegetables from our old landlord's garden. Who doesn't love fresh food, especially when you're a missionary on a fixed budget.
                    So in synopsis this week was pretty grand. Sister Mann and I are having a lot of fun and are averaging about one nonmember lesson a day. We are so grateful to be here in this area. Everyone pray I go one more transfer strong here!

Sister Wright 
"Exchanges with Sister Rogerson again"  

"Leaves that think it's cool to change colors"