Monday, January 30, 2017

Driving in Wide Open Spaces...

This week felt like it was full of improvement and progression--not in any big way, but in increments. As I mentioned last week, we are white washing 2 wards, so much of our time was spent meeting with ward leaders.  The Hazelton ward hasn't had missionaries designated over their ward for a while, so it's exciting how excited they are to help us out!  Because both of these wards are mostly "wide open spaces..." 🎵 there is lots of driving.  Last Monday we got a TON more snow.  Out here, the roads in the country take a longer time for the plow to clear them--our whole area is country, so by Tuesday afternoon, we were able to get out there and try to visit people.  It's so pretty to see fields of perfect snow for miles.

On Thursday we had Zone Conference where we watched the world-wide missionary broadcast where we had the opportunity to hear from the missionary council which included Elder Oaks, Elder Bednar, Elder Anderson, Sister Oscarson and 2 other General Authorities.  They are so inspired! The daily schedule for missionaries all over the world has been changed! Also, the key indicators that we report are different.  I think the changes are very inspired, and I love them.

Oh! I got to see Hermana Amberlee Cox from Heritage! So fun! :)

This weekend we got to see miracles and were told a couple of times that we were an answer to prayers.  Those are cool moments.  We visited the Tibbets family whose daughter, Kolbee, just got back from her mission! She is so so sweet and you can tell how much her mission means to her.  She is going to be a big blessing in helping her family make it to the temple.  She was able to go out with us on Saturday to see some people!

Yesterday we had a lesson with a family in one of our new wards whose kids are taking the lessons and want to be baptized.  They are way cute and I am excited to work with them more.  One of the daughters even reminds me of my best friend, Mary!! It's cool. :)

Ponderize: D&C 43:15-16
Again I say, hearken ye elders [and isters] of my church, whom I have appointed: Ye are not sent forth to be taught, but to teach the children of men the things which I have put into your hands by the power of my Spirit; And ye are to be taught from on high. Sanctify yourselves and ye shall be endowed with power, that ye may give even as I have spoken.

Our district made this scripture our motto.  "Sanctify yourselves!"  I can definitely feel a difference in the way the work goes when I really focus on being a more worthy servant to have the Spirit with me.  He directs the work!  The work is really awesome too.  Life as a missionary is great. :)

From Idaho to you,


Sister Carling

 Car selfie! 

Last P-day we fed some cows while it was snowing, blowing in our face!

Random pipes on the side of the road.

Hermana Cox!

Hazelton! <3 

 There are some big icicles here!

Monday, January 23, 2017

Goodbyes and Hellos!

Hello er'ryone!

Last week we got transfer calls and I said we found out that we're staying! Well....psych! Kinda... On Thursday we found out that we would be losing they Heyburn ward and the YSA branch.  I was first surprised and shocked but after a moment, started crying.  Last week I expressed how I love the people here.  I have built many friendships.  But one thing I have learned is that one of the only things constant in life is change.  It needs to happen, and although it may be sad or hard good things always come and growth comes with it, too.

We also found out that we will be gaining 2 new wards--Emerson 2nd and Hazelton.  We got to keep Emerson 1st. Yay!  Both of these wards have HUGE boundaries--more farm land, empty space and tiny towns! :)  So this leaves us with adventures to come!  I have never whitewashed an area, but I'm excited to take on this challenge/adventure.

Now let's back-track to last week before this all happened.

Last P-day we went ice-skating on someone's backyard.  Yes, it was cold outside!  Then we got to feed baby cows! It felt so good to put on my jeans and boots.  I feel like it's been forever since I've done that.

Fun fact update on weird Idaho weather: This week we had freezing rain.  It was strange.  It comes down as water but when it hits the ground/car/road/whatever it freezes--so there is ice er'rywhere! Weird!! But cool. :)

We met with Jackie and Brittnie--taught them about temples and family history.  Brittnie will be going to the temple to do baptisms for the dead this week! That was our last lesson with them because they are in Heyburn... :(

We said goodbye to lots of people.  One of the most special, satisfying feelings of my mission is when someone tells me that I have made a difference in their life.   could say the same things about them. <3

To end the week with a final hoorah in Heyburn, Jaycee was baptized!!  She is probably the cutest 9 year old in the world.  Her smile is adorable. She just glows.  I spoke on baptism using the "3 Bears" or covenants we make (taken from my Aunt Beth Carling's talk given at my cousin, Macy's baptism a few years ago:)  It really was the best way to end the week and our time in the Heyburn ward.

Ponderize: 2 Nephi 25:23

For we labor diligently to write, to persuade our children, and also our brethren, to believe in Christ, and to be reconciled to God; for we know that it is by grace that we are saved, after all we can do.

I know I've done this one before.  A new Mormon message came out called, "Where Justice, Love, and Mercy Meet" by Elder Holland.  Go watch it!! Christ is always there for us no. matter. what. We just have to leap to Him!!

From Idaho to you,


Sister Carling


Ice Skating!

 Baby cowwww.


 The Ashby Family! <3

Our new zone!

Jaycee at her baptism!!!!!

I love this adorable little girl! <3

Tuesday, January 17, 2017


People in Idaho always talk about the crazy weather here and for a while I just thought they exaggerated.  But weird things happen.

Last Monday I mentioned it was warming up and raining so the snow was melting.  Well, there was a lot of snow to melt.  This turned into flood warnings, and yes, many people's basements flooded a lot.  By Thursday it dropped back below freezing again and has stayed that way.  This means that the flooding stopped, or at least paused because everything is solid ICE now! ICE is everywhere! The fields looked like lakes before but now they are all ice rinks. haha It's all so crazy! I love Idaho. :)

Now I just want to jump to the highlight of the whole week/month/transfer...

JACKIE AND BRITTNIE WERE BAPTIZED! The whole program was wonderful.  There were 58 people who attended, including the mission president and his wife.  Sister Fitt and I each spoke.  Then the awaited moment arrived! They were both so nervous, excited, and anxious for it to happen.  As we stood on the side of the font watching them be immersed into the water, I could feel my cheeks so tight with a smile on my face, I couldn't wipe it off--that was the same with Jackie and Brittnie.  When they both finish they embraced and my heart almost exploded with joy!  To see them have this joy filled me with joy! It was just as wonderful on Sunday, too, when they were confirmed.  I LOVE THE HOLY GHOST!  Such marvelous feelings!  It has been a blessing for me to share this experience with the Ashby family.  They truly are different people from when we first knocked on their door.  The gospel has changed who they are.

I've re-realized this week how much I love people here--Not only the people we teach, but members in the ward as well.  They are amazing.  I'm so grateful to be serving here.  It's amazing.  I said it before and I'll say it again.  We just got transfer calls and I am staying another transfer with Sister Fitt! :)  I said it before and I'll say it again, I LOVE IDAHO!

Ponderize: 2 Nephi 31:3
For my soul delighteth in plainness; for after this manner doth the Lord God work among the children of men. For the Lord God giveth light unto the understanding; for he speaketh unto men according to their language, unto their understanding.

This made me think of what President Uchtdorf said: "This beautiful gospel is so simple a child can grasp it, yet so profound and complex that it will take a lifetime--even an eternity--of study and discovery to fully understand it."

God will continue to give us light for our understanding.  We've only taught Jackie and Brittnie for a couple months.  They don't know everything, but they do know the gospel brings joy.  And that is enough.

From Idaho to you,


Sister Carling

PS.  If anyone is curious, my count for potato dinners on my mission is 125.

 Sliding on a field of ice!!

Brittnie and Jackie's baptism!!! <3mis

Monday, January 9, 2017

Oh the Weather Outside is Frightful...

Let it snow! Let it snow! Let it snow!

It sure did snow this week, let me tell ya.  We couldn't really do much because it snowed so much!  No one else around here did much either.  School was cancelled.  Some people couldn't get to work.  Even church was cancelled by the area 70!!  That was weird because I have never had church cancelled in my life!

So because Sister Fitt and I couldn't do much or go very far, we decided to make some fun anyhow.  Becuase it is so windy here, it blows the snow in big piles called "drifts."  Well, there was a 3 or 4 foot snow drift outside of our window.  It looked so fluffy and perfect! We decided to jump out of our window.  Yes, it was cold, but it didn't matter because we were having fun! :)

The next 2 days were sunny, but I think it didn't even get above 5 degrees.  Instead  of staying cooped up inside, we got out to shovel driveways! We were layered up pretty well that it didn't even feel very cold.  By that night it was -18 degrees outside!!! Like, wut?  Yeah.  I can't believe I actually experienced that.

Although the snow and cold slowed things down, it didn't stop the work of Salvation.  Jackie and Brittnie had their baptismal interview and are prepared to be baptized this next Friday, the 13th! Lucky day! ;)  Jackie and her husband Woody have gone over a whole week smoke free!! It's going to be an exciting week. :)  We did get to teach some more lessons to investigators that will be prepared for baptism soon! 

That mostly sums up our whole week.  It warmed p enough yesterday and today to rain so lots of the snow is melting, but I'm sure more snow is coming.  Yay!

Here's a random tid bit! Did y'all (YSA peeps) watch the devotional last night?  President and Sister Nelson gave excellent talks.  I recommend you watch them. :)

Ponderize: 2 Nephi 4:15
And upon these I write the things of my soul, and many of the scriptures which are engraven upon the plates of brass. For my soul delighteth in the scriptures, and my  heart pondereth the and writeth them for the learning and the profit of my children.

The Idaho Boise Mission has started a 100 day Book of Mormon challenge.  Each day we learn how we can "get nearer to God by abiding by its precepts."  Nephi is a perfect example of dong that (even though I, personally, have a hard time understanding what he was learning from Isaiah. haha).  We can "profit" from the scriptures as we invest our time.  Like money, the more we invest, the more we will gain a profit. (Thank you Hank Smith:)

From Idaho to you,


Sister Carling

 The amount of snow in our yard.
 I find this picture hilarious.  This is right after I jumped out the window, then a big snow drift hanging off of our roof fell right on my face! I think the picture demonstrates how I felt. HAHA

Shoveling driveways...

Lots of snow drifts in the country!!