I Definitely Can’t Speak Russian

Hi everyone!

It’s been a super productive week! Yesterday we went to an activity with the young adults in the area and it was a lot of fun! We got to know the woman that the Elders have been teaching. She is really nice. We also got to know some of the new younger ward members; they are great people!

A big highlight of our week is that yesterday, when we were driving back from visiting a ward member in Kongsvinger, we saw beautiful moss in the forest. Sister Benedict asked if I wanted to stop. She knows how much I love moss. We stopped and lied in the moss. It felt like 4 inches of memory foam. It was amazing and I will remember it forever! I will include pictures.

We’re helping a new member of the church with her wedding preparations. Last week I mended her wedding dress and this week we’re helping her sew her bouquet out of satin flowers. So that will be fun! I had no idea that all the sewing I did as a kid and in college would come in handy almost every single day as a missionary!

I posted in a group here in Lillestrøm (which means “little stream,” I think that’s cute) that I am willing to mend clothes for free. Now two people want me to replace the zippers on their puffer jackets. So I need to figure out how to do that by hand. :/

Two days ago, we had a miscommunication with the Elders; they thought they had told us that we had a service project with them to help a ward member. They hadn’t! So we had ten minutes to change into service clothes and eat and get on the bus. When we got to their house, they had us scrub the walls. Then, both the mom and dad drove off for different things and left us with their young daughter. Her grandmother was there, but she was outside, and only spoke Russian. So I had to look up “As missionaries, we cannot be alone with children” in Russian on Google Translate. I showed it to her and she understood, so she worked inside the house with us! I definitely don’t know Russian, but Spanish has come in handy three times already in Norway. I never thought that would happen!

Today, our preparation day, it snowed and then started to rain. Sister Benedict had the great idea to put hot cocoa in a thermos and bring it with mugs, popcorn, our duvets, and a little DVD player to a nearby lake. We watched the Testaments, a movie about Jesus Christ visiting the Americas after His resurrection, in our car. It was very koselig (a very common Norwegian word that means cozy).

It looks like I will be doing a musical number in our meeting with missionaries serving near the Oslo area, so I’m a bit nervous about that! It’s in a week and a half. I’m planning on singing “Savior, Redeemer of my Soul,” and maybe doing the violin intro too, we’ll see. 🙂 
In other music news, it looks like I may be making a music video for a song from Phantom of the Opera in Norwegian with a ward member. Yes, it’s approved by my mission president. 🙂 So, stay tuned. . . It’s going to be fun!

When we visited a ward member this week, she said she had some clothes that had gotten too small. She wanted us to try them on, and now I have some wild clothes that I can maybe use for Christmas music videos.

I’ve been thinking a lot about a talk in the March 1981 issue of a church magazine called the Ensign that’s entitled “To Love the Things God Loves.” We all read it before we met as a district (our district is 6 missionaries who serve nearby and Sister Benedict and I). It talks about how we should make good decisions because we love the things God loves, not because we feel like we should or that we have to.

It also says that Jesus Christ was perfect not because of His amazing powers of self-control, but because He wanted the same things that God wanted. I love that. For me, it is a lot easier to do things that I know are good when I want to do them, rather than feel forced. I’m getting better at feeling true joy in prayer, reading the scriptures, and showing love and kindness to others like Christ did when He was on the earth.

Hope you all are doing well!