February 28, 2011

Howdy all! I know you are dying to hear about my new companion. Well, after just one day together I left her and went back to Motra Yourstone for a 2 1/2 day exchange. I know, great way to treat the newbie! It was necessary though because Motra Yourstone and I had to finish planning our training that we gave at the two Zone Conferences on Thursday and Friday.
Zone Conference - February 2011 (Kelsey and Motra Yourstone front row)
Our training actually turned out pretty good I think and it was good to spend a few more days with Motra Yourstone....she's just so awesome! Anyway, my new companion is Motra Hoxsie and she is really cool also. She comes from the great state of UT (Ogden) and is the youngest of 7 kids (yep, a Mormon through and through, I know!) And even better, she is a USU Aggie! So we are super pleased that our Aggies just won the WAC conference title for the 4th year in a row. Unfortunately she only was at USU this past year (the year that I was here in Albania) so we don't really know any of the same people like Motra Bentley and I did, but it's still all good.
I don't know how Motra Yourstone is going to feel about this though, because she almost had me convinced after this last transfer that BYU-Provo is the coolest place ever, but talking with Motra Hoxsie has reminded me how much we love Logan! Anyway, she is an awesome person and a great missionary. She is still so new here, so she is just on fire and is so excited about the work. Since she has to be training in just 5 weeks, I am doing all I can to prepare her and kinda let her take the lead. Sometimes it is hard because I can tell she is struggling to understand or to say something in Albanian, and I want to butt in and save her, but I think by letting her "run the show" she will learn a lot quicker. She is really doing great though, although I don't envy her at all being at the beginning and trying to learn this language. She has reminded me how stinkin' hard it was, so we try and talk a lot in Albanian. It's fun!

So about my new area.....it rocks! Motras are so
lucky here because all the areas are just amazing. And the awesome thing is that I know tons of the people here in the branch and even the investigators because I have met them before at District activities when all the members in Albania get together, or I have met them on exchanges or something. So walking into church on Sunday for the first time didn't seem weird at all because over 75% of the faces were familiar....probably more familiar than walking into the Yuma 1st ward. Haha! So needless to save I have had a super warm welcome from everyone which in some cases included some huge meals.
Also, it's also super nice that I know lots of people and have at least heard their "stories/situtations" from Motra Yourstone or other previous Motras who served here, because since Motra Hoxsie only had a month and a half here and is still super new, it of course isn't that easy to take over this large of an area and know everything and everybody.

Zone Conference - Returning missionaries in the front row!
So about this training that Sister Yourstone and I did....well we thought it was pretty cool. We were training on how to have effective Weekly Plannings (a pretty dull topic to be honest), which is the few hours we take each week to sit down and plan everything for the coming week like what we will teach people, how we can help them progress, when we are going to do what, etc. So we decided to try and make things a little more exciting so we had a little hands on competition. We had two volunteers come up and they both had an "assignment" to complete. They each had to make a batch of cookie dough. One person had all the ingredients measured out and ready to just be dumped in, and Motra Yourstone walked them quickly and simply through the steps of the recipe. The other person had all the same ingredients but they weren't measured out, and they didn't exactly have all the tools like a mixing spoon or the right measuring cups, and I was supposed to give them the directions and measurements but I was kinda just like "whatever just put in like a handful of sugar, etc." It was quite entertaining, and it of course helped everyone to see how necessary and how much better it is when we plan and prepare for our missionary work. Anyway, we then had prepared all the ingredients for cookies for each companionship and gave them as a handout (you know us girls, always thinking about the cute handout!) I guess we are just glad it is all done!

Well, I guess that is all I have for this week! I hope you all have wonderful weeks!

Love and Miss you tons!
Motra Hall