Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Cyclone.... more like PSYCHlone

Sister missionaries sang as they walked and walked and waaaaaalked
Palm trees... blue skies.... paradise :)

It’s been a CRAZY week everyone.

We have been stuck in the house allllll weekend long because of a cyclone warning. It was awful! Haha. I JUST WANTED TO GET OUTSIDE AND WORK SO BAD but also it was pouring rain as if God took a jazillion power washers and pointed them all at Kone at once on and off about every five minutes for three days straight. Wahoo. Then the kicker is the actual cyclone never touched down. How exciting!

We still had church on Sunday morning. This time we had bread for the sacrament because I made some. What else do you do when you're stuck in the house for two days? And a cute inactive young mother came with her adorable baby!! We were all super pumped. But the BEST part of this story is when she asked us if we could come over and teach her sometime, because she "only has a few lessons left before she can get baptized." Uh.... WHAT! Yep. That awkward moment when Elders have been here for the past seven months and NO ONE KNEW SHE WASNT BAPTIZED. The elders just assumed that she was inactive because her husband is. So we have a baptism coming up real soon!! We will be teaching her today! Wahoo!!!!!

Then yesterday we got out porte a porteing once again. Walking outside feels like walking through a sauna while someone is pointing a flamethrower at your face haha. Anyways, after walking about a mile and a half to actually get to the neighborhood, and we start yelling bonjour at houses. And everyone just ignores us!!! Even if they’re outside and DEFINITELY can hear us, they just pretend like we aren’t there! How rude! I’ve never seen anything like it. Anyways... After about an hour or so of that we didn’t have a ton of hope left. But we kept going, and kept on getting rejected.

THEN. We stop in front of this brick house with a car parked in front of it that I recognized. I remembered that I had waved at the beautiful black lady that had been driving in that car earlier that day! I knew that Heavenly Father had led us to her. Lucky for us she didn’t ignore us when we yelled and she came out to talk to us. :) After presenting our message, she was kind of trying to say goodbye when I asked her her name, Wilmida. :) Then I asked her where she was from, the West Indies. Then she started asking questions about us too. Then she asked us if we needed some water, and YES, we desperately needed some water!! She was soooo sweet and asked us all about our beliefs. Turns out, one of our inactive here is one of her best friends! So cool. She said that Soeur Clarque had talked to her a little about the church before. Then as Wilmida took care of feeding her baby we cleaned up the kitchen and did the dishes and helped her out. Then she even made us a milkshake, which she is working on perfecting because she’s going to open a milkshake/smoothie/juice place here in Kone, which will be SO cool because there’s nothing like that yet here. Anyways, SHES AWESOME! And we didn’t talk really to her husband because he was weed whacking outside, but he seems super cool too. MIRACLES HAPPEN! There are people here prepared for the gospel! God WILL lead us to them!!

I couldn’t be happier right now. I LOVE BEING A MISSIONARY! And I love you all :)


Soeur Gardiner

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Para, para, paradise :)‏

 Welcome to the hotel Konéfornia
 Isn’t our backyard gorgeous?
 After your average day of prosélytisme
You know just your average pack of horses in the field you walk through to get to the village every day when you live in Koné

Welp, hello everyone!

First of all... I AM IN LOVE WITH KONE! It is so so gorgeous. Everyone is so so friendly! I couldn’t be happier! :) I don’t want to jinx myself but I really wouldn’t mind staying here for the rest of the mission. :)

First of all, Zone Conference was awesome. I had an awesome interview with President. He gave me lots of good advice. He is such a wise man. Then in the actual Zone Conference, he really laid it down. He told all of us that we could do better. It was awesome.

Funny story... At Zone Conference, the Zone Leaders told us that we wouldn’t be able to leave for Koné until Saturday or maybe even Sunday. So Friday we are sitting doing our studies when all of a sudden we get a phone call from the Zone Leaders telling us they’d be there in 15 minutes to pick up our stuff because we were leaving to Koné right then. AH! Haha, we definitely weren’t expecting that. We threw everything together as fast as we could and off we were!!

The house was a greasy mess when we got there. There was just this sticky layer of gunk all over EVERYTHING in the kitchen. President told me that the first thing I needed to do was get the house in order, so we did. I scrubbed that stove for a good three hours straight and it still isn’t perfectly clean. 

Sunday was pretty interesting. None of us had bread so we just used crackers for the Sacrament. We do have one active member, the annex president, President Mukadi. Hes from South Africa and hes super cool. He left his family in Africa and came here to work in the mines on a contract for two years.... that contract ends the end of March. It’s a huge bummer he is leaving. We will definitely need to reactivate our inactives so that we aren’t left completely on our own! We have appointments set up with two inactive families tomorrow :)

Other than that, we have just been trying to find people! We started with our neighborhood just to try and introduce ourselves. Then we’ve been contacting and porte a porteing and all that good stuff. Nothing quite miraculous has happened yet, but I’ve learned to just be patient and keep working hard. :)

Have a great week! Love you all!
Soeur Gardiner

Sunday, January 18, 2015

How many sisters does it take to kill one cockroach?

 Saying goodbye to Josie
 Cleaning off in the Stake Presidents river after doing service on his ginormous jungle property.
 Corossol.... the weirdest yummiest fruit I have ever tasted. You can’t compare it to any other fruit. It’s amazing!
 Triooooo. :)
 Because I guess it’s normal to see wild parrots all the time when you live on an island.

Here’s the answer: one. The other four are on the other side of the room standing on chairs and screaming. Haha, my two companions are both deathly afraid of bugs, and so are Soeur Gauthier and Soeur White. Needless to say, I’m the one that has to take care of the cockroaches.

So here’s the scoop: We aren’t in Koné yet. Super lame. We have Zone Conference with President Brewer next Thursday, so they don’t want to go all the way up to Koné just to come back down. Gah so frustrating. I JUST WANNA GET TO WORK IN KONE!!

So we are stuck staying in Dumbea Sur Mer until next Friday. Not that I don’t absolutely adore Dumbea or Soeur White and Soeur Gauthier, it’s just that I want to get to work so badly!!!!!! Argh. That means that by the time we get to Koné, two of six weeks worth of work are automatically down the toilet. Huuuuge bummer.

Trying to stay a little positive about the situation though! One fantastic part of being here was yesterday I got to see Vaiarii bless the sacrament. My eyes may have watered a little bit :) He’s already doing missionary work too! He invited a friend to church last week, and he came again this week! He wants to be taught by the missionaries!! Wahoo! I’m so so proud of him :)

Sorry this is lame. I promise next weeks will be a whole lot more exciting! I’m so so so so so excited to get up to Koné and get to work. If I ever get there, that is.... Ha.

Oh yeah, and today is my 10 month mark. Double digits... we are really getting down to the wire here. Why does time fly so quickly? I just want to be a missionary forever.

Love you all!!!

Soeur Gardiner

Sunday, January 11, 2015

The other side of the other side of heaven...‏

We love the bishop’s wife!!!
The thing I made for the thank you party our ward threw for Elder and Soeur Pecqueux, who have finished up their missions. It was a hit!
I may good at writing but look at what the Tahitian sisters did for the party! Wow... It’s incredible. I tried weaving one myself but it did NOT turn out the same haha

I look kinda crazy heh but this is me with Soeur Pecqueux!

So I have some good news and some super crazy news.

Let’s start with the good news first. I'm staying with Soeur Tellus!!! Wahoo!! I’m so happy! We have gotten sooo much better at teaching together and the fruits of our labors are just starting to show, so I am so happy we get to keep going! En plus I just really love Soeur Tellus. :) Aaaand we have a new addition to our team as well! Soeur Westerlind. She is from California and she got here right when Soeur Tellus came. Wahoo!

And now for the super crazy news...

We aren't staying in Motor Pool. We aren't even staying in the south. That's right....
WE ARE GOING TO KONE.  Yes. Did you hear that right? Koné. The one up NORTH. The one where sister missionaries have NEVER gone before. The one that doesn't even have a branch, but an annex to a branch with no active members except for the missionaries. (There will be a set of Elders up by where we are as well.) We are going there. Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh.

Mom, please don't freak out :) It is actually pretty civilized up there. It’s like the capital of the North. There are stores and streets and things. And the internet I’m pretty sure!! But I mean... It won’t be anything like Noumea. I’m so excited!!!!!!!!

Heavenly Father has definitely prepared me for this. We will be whitewashing from Elders and literally starting from scratch all over again. I am so grateful for the experiences that I have had here in Motor Pool to get me ready, because I couldn't have gone straight from Mont Dore to Koné without learning a little more about how to build up a secteur first. It feels good to know that President trusts me enough to put me up there. We are sooo PUMPED to take on this challenge.

But of course we are getting moved right as things are going perfectly. Last Wednesday we set baptism dates with Lovina and with Josie! It’s a huge bummer that we can’t continue to work with them but it is super cool to know that fruits are coming from our labors. Wow!! Elders will be replacing us.

Welp... there ya go! We head up there on Friday. It takes about three hours to get there. Ah I am so excited!! Ready or not, here we go.

Love you all so much! Next week I’ll be emailing you from the wilderness!!! :)

Soeur Gardiner