Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Monday, March 2, 2015

Two Baptisms and my Testimony

I only have few minutes to email today, but I thought I'd share a little about my week!  I have a lot to do today. I'm assuming that coming home Wednesday MIGHT make up for a shorter email ;)


This week T and E were baptized!! One of the Elders, who actually found T a few transfers ago, was able to come up and baptize her. Both baptisms went really well and they were very excited :) 




I can't believe how fast the time has flown. In the past 18 and a half months, I've come to understand the Atonement so much more than I did before. I know that prayer is a two way communication and that Heavenly Father answers the prayer of faith. I know that he will move mountains for us and our loved ones. I also know that The Book of Mormon is true. Through it, we come to know our Savior in a powerful way. I know that there is power in the basics of the gospel. If we will focus on gospel principles, we will be happy and find solutions. The gospel blesses families and leads us to happiness even if we have difficult circumstances. I love my Savior. He has strengthened me and always given me exactly what I needed. I have found so much joy in serving Him. By loosing my life in His service, I've found it. I know that Heavenly Father loved us enough to call Joseph Smith as a prophet. I know that he did see Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ and that he did restore Christ's church on the earth. The Holy Ghost has witnessed that to me many times throughout my mission. It is so important to keep the Holy Ghost in our lives. It is by so doing, that we are cleansed, and retain a remission of our sins throughout our lives. I know that Heavenly Father has given us all the tools we need to be happy now and to return to his presence clean and pure. I know that those tools are the Gospel, complete with priesthood authority. I have a testimony of sincere prayer, frequent scripture study, and of the power that partaking of the sacrament each week. The things that I believe about the Gospel aren't different from what they were 18 months ago, but my capacity to live it and the depth of my personal conversion has grown. I will always be so grateful for this chance I've had to be one of Heavenly Father's missionaries...because I love Him.


E's Baptism!


One Week Left

Wow. I can hardly believe that this upcoming week is my last! I know it's cliche to say, but it really has flown by!! I am so sad to leave this beautiful place and these beautiful people because this is my life now. But when I think back, I was always so sad to leave each area when I got transferred. Heavenly Father always had bigger plans and different experiences for me. So I know that He will continue to lead me just as he has the past 18 months. I feel so overwhelmed about going home, though. I don't even know what to say or how to feel. I don't feel ready to go home. I have pushed the fact that I was leaving so far to the side, that now reality is staring me straight in the face. When  I got my flight plans this week, it  was a sad, sad day on my mission; I had to just cry for a little while. Then I decided I'd better start thinking about packing. Mom, don't stress about making the house perfect or the days planned or anything else. I'm still just Ashlyn and things will be great no matter what. I'm excited to get off the plane and see you all!! :)

Last week we got the Craziest weather so the libraries were closed Monday and Tuesday!  We also had to stay in our apartment for 1 1/2 days until the roads were clear. I had driven in the snow earlier in the day before we knew we were supposed to stay in and only got stuck a few times. I managed to get through it, though. So, I will update you all on the highlights the past 2 weeks (and there are a lot!!)

Snowy Kentucky!! 


Monday the 9th Deanna got married!!! It was simple, but went really well for us having only 3 days notice. :)  (Thank you Relief Society!!)

The marriage! 


Tuesday, Linda and Deanna both passed their baptismal interviews and Thursday we had Zone Meeting. That night, we also taught the R family. They are relatives of another investigator, T. They are so wonderful! And I love it even more because they have 3 girls just like my family :) We taught the Restoration and it went really well! The girls all were reading scriptures and participating, even though they are pretty young (primary aged). They have a baptismal date for March and I am so, so excited for them!! Finding that family was a big tender mercy.

Valentines Day was amazing!! In the morning, we traveled to Louisville and Elder D. Todd Christofferson spoke to all the missionaries, as well as Elder Soares from the Seventy. Elder Christofferson definitely had a very strong spirit with him, but was also very funny. We had some Q&A and at the end, he bore his testimony to us. He told us that he wanted us to remember that we were there with him, and that "I know." He testified of how actively involved Christ is in the governing of His church. He also left us his Apostolic Blessing. It was probably one of the neatest things I've ever heard. The Spirit was very strong. 

Afterwards, I had Chick-Fil-A for the first time in 6 months-yay!! :)

Then we came home and had L and D's baptism!! D got to get baptized by her son, who joined the church 2 years ago. So that was very special for her. L's baptism was a little interesting since she has a Traech!! (Or however you spell it). Because it goes directly to her lungs, absolutely NO water can get in. We found out a few days before the baptism that there was no plug for it. She had to just hold her had around it as she went under the water. However, Heavenly Father provided and she not only went under once 100% fine, but even when the witnesses said she had to go under again, she had no issues with water getting in! It was definitely a miracle :)

We had another Sister go in the font while L was being baptized to assist her. 



D's son wasn't looking at the camera in any of the pictures we took. 


This week was good too. C (who will also be Ashlyn's roommate at BYU-I) who is planning on putting her papers in, got permission to stay with us for a few days to get a taste for missionary life. So that was neat! 

Giving C a taste of missionary life! 


This upcoming Sunday, E (L's grandchild) and T are both getting baptized!! We are so, so excited for them.

See you all soon! :)

-Sister Ashlyn Galloway

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

An Amazing Week!

Dear Family,

This past week was soo, soo amazing and also insane! Monday we got a TON of snow. It snowed even more today!! Kentucky is crippled by snowstorms, so the library was closed Monday and Tuesday. We were so bummed!! We have just a few minutes to email today. 

We have an appointment with T soon. She's getting baptized March 1st with her grandson and E. 

D and L's baptisms went great! Elder Christofferson's conference was amazing. You truly could see that he was an Apostle of God. I think I understand better the scripture "every knee shall bow and every tongue confess" because just shaking his hand you could SEE that he was an apostle. And I can't imagine how it would be to meet Christ. He was a very good speaker. The end was my favorite part. He told us that he wanted each of us to remember that we were there with him in person and that he knows. He bore a powerful testimony of Christ. At the end he gave us all an apostolic blessing and it was one of the most beautiful things I think I've ever heard. I didn't take notes or anything I was just focused on listening. Here is President B's comments on it from an email to us today:

"What a wonderful and great experience we had this week-end to hear from Elder Christofferson and Elder Soares. I hope each of you were lifted and edified as I was. I left the meeting with a renewed determination and desire to ensure I give the Lord all my heart, might, mind and strength as I serve him as his disciple, set apart as an extension of the living 
​A​
postles. I gain great strength in knowing that my family and friends will be blessed as a result of my service as a missionary and that the Lord will not hold back blessings for those I love.
 Please remember the apostolic blessing Elder Christofferson invoked upon us. He blessed us that we would find joy in our service and that we will each receive peace and a personal confirmation that the Lord is pleased with and accepts our offering of service and sacrifice. He further blessed us with protection, revelation and stated angels, which we may or may not see, will assist us in this great work. His final blessing was that we would be more capable in our missionary service. Wow! I am excited to serve as one of the Lord’s missionaries. What a great blessing it is."

​I wrote a long letter yesterday when we were stuck inside our apartment. ​I'm very, very sad at the thought of leaving my mission. I can't imagine life other than being a missionary.

Have a great week!
LOVE YOU,

​Sister Ashlyn Galloway​

Monday, February 9, 2015

1 Nephi 3:7

GUESS WHAT? GUESS WHAT? GUESS WHAT?

Miracles are everywhere! We have seen some amazing blessings this week in the lives of our investigators. 

I have truly gained a testimony that the commandments are here to make us happy and that Heavenly Father never gives us a commandment without providing a way for us to accomplish it.

One of the biggest miracles this week is D. As I mentioned a few weeks ago, she had a baptismal date for Feb. 14th, and was going to get married. We were sooo excited. BUT THEN, Satan got in the way and her boyfriend decided he didn't want to get married anymore. She was super sad and we were too. She wanted to find a job and earn money to move out, but honestly, she probably won't be able to get a job until this summer, let alone in a week. We prayed really hard for her and I was really confused because I didn't understand why things weren't working out. I knew that Heavenly Father could work a miracle, but it didn't look like that was going to happen. The chances of things working out were pretty much slim to none. I thought of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego in the Old Testament and how they had faith that if it was God's will, he could work a miracle and save their lives from the fiery furnace. However, they also had faith that if He didn't chose to work a miracle in their behalf, that they would still follow through in obeying his commandments and would submit to His will. (Daniel 3:17-18)

We decided to not reset her baptismal date yet and keep praying and exercising faith. We taught her Tuesday night and during the lesson I felt for a moment just how overwhelming Heavenly Father's desire for D's happiness was. It comforted me and helped me know that things would be okay in the long run because He wanted her to be so, so happy and knew how to give her that. Thursday, we got a text from D! She said that her and her boyfriend had talked about it and decided that even though they'd had their ups and downs they wanted to get married! AND, she wants to get married this week so she can be baptized on the 14th!!! We made about a million last-minute phone calls, and she is getting married at the church tonight at 6:30. She is so excited!! Even though her son was SUPER nervous about it, he said that he would baptize her!! And she was so happy. It has been just amazing to see her grow in the Gospel and see how Heavenly Father will move mountains for us if we exercise faith and are obedient.

Also, Linda is getting baptized this Saturday as well!! She has a glow in her eyes that is beautiful. :) She loves church so much! I don't think I've ever met a lady who loves church so much!! She also wasn’t sure if she was going to be baptized because she has a trache in her throat. However, she is ordering a plug and is so excited for Saturday!

Monday night we taught J and M. It was good, except we were late because there was a cow standing in the middle of the road on the way to their house. But we made it!

Tuesday we went with Sister W to teach one of her friends. It was a good lesson as well. Sister W gave us a cupcake and it was the best cupcake I have ever had in my life. (I thought this was an important experience from my week that I needed to mention!!)

The next morning, Sister J, my companion was pretty sick.:( So, she slept all day, and I doused everything in Clorox, read my BOM, got some much needed organizing done and also almost died of boredom. If coming home is anything like that day of boredom, I don't want to come home!! On the plus side, she is feeling much better now!

We also had Zone Conference this week and discussed the role of the Spirit in conversion. The word "understanding" really stuck out to me and I've been thinking a lot about how important it is. We also had Branch Conference this Sunday.

My last zone conference.


I have learned soooo much about faith on my mission. I can't even tell you. And
I was thinking about what I've learned in my areas and if I had to sum it up really  simply I'd say something like this:

Submit to God's will. Love Him. Don't quit.

Well, have a wonderful week!!!

Love always,
Sister Ashlyn Galloway

PS: I found out 2 people I taught earlier on my mission will be in SLC in June to go through the temple. I am so happy! I will HAVE to get there somehow!!

4 More P-days...

Hello!!!

This week has been good. Monday we taught J and M. We had met J while shopping several weeks ago and finally were able to see him and his wife this past week! Getting to their house was quite the adventure (multiple narrow gravel roads, cattle guards, and dark sketchy woods that made me feel like a serial killer was going to pop out!) But they were both really nice and we are excited to teach them again today! One thing we talked about with them was how universal truth is. Many people say that there is no ultimate truth, that everyone can pick and choose the truth that is right for them. However, this isn't correct. Heavenly Father is the source of truth. He never changes and neither does the truth. PMG points out that no one can know of spiritual truth without prayer and I have absolutely found that to be correct. When we pray for truth or confirmation of the truth, our Heavenly Father will answer us and communicate with us. 

Other things that happened this week include going on an exchange in Fairdale and also helping a member move. We also taught D again. She is going through a lot right now, but is staying strong in the Gospel and already considers herself a part of the church! :) We are praying for her and for some difficult situations that she's in right now. So keep her in your prayers :)

This week we also picked up T, an investigator that has a baptismal date. He has been meeting with the Elders in our ward, but moved into our area. She is wonderful, and we are excited to help her reach her date!!

Things I learned this week:
-How to check the oil and change the oil in a car. That was exciting!!
-Contacting is NOT effective during the Superbowl. In fact, that time gave me an excellent opportunity to work on being Christlike and NOT be tempted to want to punch rude people in the face.  

ALSO, you ready for the most exciting thing ever?! Guess who's coming to speak to us on FeBrUaRy 14th?!  

It's an apostle!! Elder D. Todd Christopherson will be here to speak to the GKLM missionaries.   

Isn't that cool?! I am SO excited that I get to hear an apostle speak in person--on my mission!! This will be the best Valentine's Day of my life. Elder Soares from the presidency of the Seventy is coming to the Hurstbourne Stake Center to speak with him as well. Then, they both are speaking at Louisville Stake Conference that weekend -yay!!! :)

I have my last Zone Conference this week. It is tradition for those departing to bear their testimony at the end. So that will be very strange for me. It's weird, but I feel a little nervous for it. It's funny- I feel 100% confident with sharing my testimony to non-members,  but sharing it in Sacrament Meeting or to other missionaries is a little unnerving to me, strangely.  How do I sum up and express everything I've learned and come to know  on my mission in just a few minutes??  I'll just pray I can have the Spirit with me I guess...

We have some really amazing people we are teaching here. I am constantly inspired by their faith and determination to follow Heavenly Father. 

Love,
Sister Ashlyn Galloway

Sunday, February 8, 2015

"Why Everyone Needs To Serve a Mission"

Heavenly Father needs more missionaries!!! REALLY. Each missionary really does make a huge difference in his or her mission and in the lives of individuals. Everyone should serve a mission because YOU CAN DO SO MUCH GOOD! And if you're not in a position right now to serve, help the missionaries in YOUR area!! Help make the most of the time and resources Heavenly Father has given to your location and your friends and your neighbors! Set time out of your week to go out with them, look for missionary opportunities in your life, ask them who they're teaching & what your can do to help them. Pray specifically fo those that your missionaries are teaching. Figure out what you can do in your situation now, to help the full-time missionaries & to do your own missionary work. Also, follow the Apostles' advice and "ask the missionaries--they can help you!' Support them, help them to serve & serve more effectively. 

Monday, January 26, 2015

My Old Kentucky Home

For the last 17 months, I've started emails the same, exact way. Today, I am changing it up a bit!

In case you were wondering what Kentucky is like:


People are very religious..

















U of K is everywhere!

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So, a lot of times Kentuky-ians get confused and make 2-way roads that are only wide enough to be one lane--at least that's what I tell myself. You just have to pull over when another car comes in the opposite direction and pray that another car doesn't come zooming toward you, while you're on a curve or a hill. It's like a video game---except way more scary and less fun. 


Inline image 2

Everyone and their mom has a dog. Or five.



Sometimes your companion has to come up with creative ways to not smell like second-hand smoke.




But most of all, Kentucky is just really gorgeous!



This week, we got our first snowfall since the randomly cold week in November. That was exciting and beautiful! 

Inline image 3


Speaking of exciting... miracles are happening in S! One of the highlights from this week was D. We have been praying that she will be able to find a way to live the Law Of Chastity by her baptismal date. (We had to move it to the 14th). She has been living with her boyfriend for 8 years and has been engaged for quite a while. She has been trying to find a job so she can move out. BUT, we saw a big miracle this week. Out of the blue and not knowing she was trying to find a job to move out, D's boyfriend told her that he wanted to get married and make it official!!! She was SO excited and we are so happy for her! They are going to talk about a date and have a small, simple ceremony before her baptism. It's amazing to me that when we are trying to keep the commandments of God, Heavenly Father really does provide a way for us to accomplish the thing that he has commanded (1 Nephi 3:7). He will move mountains for us as we pray in faith and do all in our power. 






My district.

After the creepy jail that the Elders  drug  invited us  to tour a couple of weeks ago on P-day.
Have a wonderful week!! :)

Love,
Sister Ashlyn Galloway

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Last Transfer!!

Hello!!!

This week has been really good. We have some great things happening in our area right now, and are seeing many blessings!!

Remember my "Starbright" picture? It arrived home in Arizona this week. A gift of the
heart from K!!


This week we taught the W family. We have been praying for the hearts of the other family members to soften to the gospel, and this week one of her sons came to church! He wasn't too excited about it at first, but said that he really enjoyed it and wanted his older brother to come! 

We also taught D the Law of Chastity. She's looking for a job, so that she can move out and make her baptismal date. She's really excited for it and is doing great.

We had FIVE people at church Sunday-yay!!! That included M, who is something else. This is how Sacrament Meeting went:

Speaker: "Wow, there's a lot of people here"

M (yells out): "Pretend we're all dressed like Mickey Mouse!"

Ohhh dear!! Sometimes I feel like being a missionary is like having children you can't control. Hahahaha!! He's awesome though. He has a super strong desire to get baptized and quit smoking.




At the 2014 GKLM Christmas Conference



We also had transfer calls, and found out Sister J and I are both staying here in S--- together. I can't believe my last 6 weeks is already here!! It doesn't seem real -missions fly by!! I'm not trunky--don't worry. I have tons of work to do here. Things are going great and it's going to be an amazing 6 weeks. All of our investigators are so close to baptism! 

I am so incredibly grateful for the past 17 months. Missions are hard, but they really do allow Heavenly Father to change you in ways that otherwise might take him years. Earlier on my mission, I asked a sister I was working with why she chose to serve. She said "Because I don't pass up once in a lifetime opportunities". Serving a mission really has been a once in a lifetime opportunity that I will always, always be so grateful for. I know that Heavenly Father has a plan for us. I know that there is power in being "anxiously engaged in a good cause" and I know that nothing we do will stop the work of the Lord -we just have to decide if we will choose to allow ourselves to be a part of it. He has a plan for us individually, and as we seek through prayer and study to know how we can help him, he will lead us. And as we follow those promptings and loose our lives in His service, he will refine us and bless us with so much happiness. 

At our New Year's Eve Bonfire

Me on a typical Kentucky road



Have a wonderful week!!!

Love,
Sister Galloway


Skyping with my family!!

Another week on my mission!

Dear Family,

I don't have much time today to email. 

Add caption


This week has been really good. We have seen a lot of blessings!! We had a guy call us randomly and ask us to pray for him. We were able to set up a return appointment and go meet him. That was really cool! Also, we have been teaching the W family. Sister W has been a Less-Active for many years because her husband (who is also a member) is really antagonistic towards the church. They have some issues and it's really sad, but she has a solid testimony and really wants her kids to be baptized. We taught her the 15 step program last Monday night and today makes 1 week since she's smoked!!! :D So that's awesome. It was all her, knowing she needed to quit and wanting to quit. Linda is her mom and she has a trache (hole in her throat she breathes out of and plugs to talk). She is just amazing and has a baptism date of Feb. 14th. We will have to figure out the trache thing so the baptism doesn't mess it up. There is a light in her eyes that's come since she's been learning the Gospel of Jesus Christ and reading the Book of Mormon. She really feels it and knows it's true. E is Sister W's 12 yr old daughter. E is tall for her age, very thin, and kind of quiet and shy, but really nice and sweet. Last week, L couldn't come because they didn't have any extra oxygen tanks for her to bring and she was SO sad! BUT, this week she was able to come and E came too. L was so excited to come to church that she didn't really sleep Saturday night! She loved church. I went to YW's with E so she would have a friend and know someone. She is really quiet and hard to read/get feedback from. She seemed to really enjoy church! It was so funny being in YW's again. There are 3 YW in the Branch and it was interesting hearing what they talked about. 

"To parents, explaining is back-talking"
"My boyfriend broke up with me on New Year's Eve because I told him my mom didn't like how much he was cussing on FB"


It was fun to go. But... all in all it made me glad that that's all behind me :) 


Sister J, my companion, is doing awesome. In the past 2 weeks, things have really clicked and she is ready to go. If she needed to take over the area again, she could do it. Health-wise she's been just fine, although the Zone Leaders have called us 3 times in about a week and a half to check up on us. I actually think they are mostly concerned with her health. I feel like we're really hitting our stride as a companionship. :) She is really awesome. She  might just be the only person I've ever met who is more stubborn than I am! But she's really turned it into a strength. In my interview with President B, he brought up the point that missions refine you in ways that otherwise it would take the Lord years to do. It is so true. Missions are a refiner's fire, but also full of so much joy. 


Today we are having a district P-day up in Bardstown. We are going to tour a jail (Yeah, I don't know why. Ask the Elders.), probably get food, and play volleyball. Since Sister J has her cosmetology licence, she's taking her scissors and stuff to cut hair.  

Here are my thoughts on Heavenly Father protecting us: Even though we have years of experience and maturity under your belt, it is legitimately only the grace of God that has kept us safe and continues to do so. He trusts us so much with his children as mothers, sharing the gospel as 19 year old missionaries and in so many other capacities we don't really deserve His "trust" in. But, He trusts us anyways, and leads us and keeps us safe. Sometimes we have to trust that others will make wise decisions (whether it's behind a wheel, or in important life decisions) and we need to follow Heavenly Father's example and trust them. Most importantly, trust that He will take care of them because they are HIS children and He loves them more than we ever can.  

Also, if you saw the roads I drive on and have driven on, you would probably have a heart attack and die. Not to scare you but.. if He has taken care of me he will take care of everyone else. Though after all the practice out here, it's going to be an absolute dream driving on roads out west).

Have a GREAT week!
-Sister Ashlyn Galloway


Washing the car on P-day! 


Quotes this week:
Us: "Have you prayed about the Word of Wisdom?"
Investigator: " Yes!!! I've asked God 'okay, so what is up with the whole tea thing?!' But I still don't get it!"

Recent Convert: "I'm not saying you're ugly or anything but I just think girls look so much better without makeup"

WML: "Alright Fine, you stuborn hilltopper. Freeze, for all I care!" 
(Brother D speaks fluent redneck and I am always learning new words/insults that I can't define. I think I need to start keeping a quote book)

Friday, January 9, 2015

Happy New Year!!

Hello!!!

Happy 2015!!! Where does the time go?? I can think back to last year like it was yesterday! I can honestly say that I think I've learned more in the past year than I have in any other year of my life. Missions are insane and everything in the past year has felt like it's been under a magnifying glass- the happy moments, sad moments, and everything in between. The amazing thing about Heavenly Father is that he really does love us and as we turn to him in every situation, He deepens our capacity to love, to feel joy, and changes us into someone more like Him (Moroni 7:48).

This week has been a pretty good week. New Year's Eve was non-proselyting. We went over to a member's house with a few other families in the ward and had a bonfire. It was a lot of fun. And I think going to bed at 10:30 and getting 8 hours of sleep made it even better! :) Kimberly's wedding sounded amazing. Jami and Chris sound amazing. I am anxious to meet Scott. 

We have been teaching some really amazing people!! Two of our most progressing investigators right now are D and L. D is in her 50's and is just barely coming back to Christianity. She went through some tough stuff and as a result felt like God didn't care about her and became a Wick-an for many years. It's really amazing to see how Heavenly Father has had such a hand in her life and how he has prepared her for the fullness of the Gospel. Her son was baptized a few years ago and all the changes that she has seen in him has made her want to find out more about the church. She has been coming to church and has a date for February!

We also are working with L, who is the mom of a Less-Active. She is SO wonderful and has gotten such a light in her eyes as she's started reading the Book of Mormon. She is on oxygen and has some health challenges that  kept her from coming to church on Sunday. She was SO sad about it! We are all very excited for her to come next week. Her daughter is doing very well and came, even though her mom couldn't, so that was really cool :) 

Another big miracle that we saw this week was with our investigator B. B has expressed a lot of desire to come to church and be baptized, but has been SO hard to get a hold of and hasn't kept any commitments. One of our transfer goals has been to get more investigators to church. Every Sunday morning this Transfer, we've knocked on her door, but she's never been awake. In fact, when we didn't have our car we walked 45 minutes in the freezing cold! So, we were a little bummed and felt like maybe we should stop trying to teach her for now. BUT, even though we can't control other's agency, when we use our agency to it's fullest Heavenly Father blesses us. Sunday morning, right after we started our personal study, she texted us and said that she was ready to get serious about coming closer to Christ and wanted to come to church that morning! It was a miracle and an answer to prayer, for sure. 

I know Elder M!! He was my second District Leader out here. When I was in J-town, he was in that same ward for a transfer. And, last transfer he served in my District as well! He's a good, solid Elder. What a small world! That's funny Grandma & Grandpa know his parents so well. 

Love,
Sister Ashlyn Galloway

Skype Call -- Christmas 2014

We miss her laugh so much! And we find humor in the things she laughs at---things we don't think are funny!!





We Love Sister Galloway!





Ashlyn's planner for the last transfer of her mission. Me: "Ash, who is that guy??" Ashlyn: "Huh? No one, of course!"





Not sure what she was talking about here, but she was excited about it!



The backdrop sign we made for the call!
This was the last Skype call for Ashlyn's mission. It was great to hear her voice and talk to her again. She sounded more mature and grown up. She seemed to glow with happiness and loves her mission. We asked her a question about coming home and it completely caught her off-guard, like she hasn't even thought about coming home in March. She also seemed to be checking her watch often.  At the end of the call, which always goes by too quickly, we asked her to bear her testimony. It was very sweet and the Spirit was very strong. Then her dad said family prayer & at the end of it,  happily, she announced, "See you Soon!" She was eager to get back to her work and this was the ONLY time it was somewhat easy to say "goodbye" and let her go serve the Lord.This was the BEST part of Christmas day for our family!

Christmas Week 2014

Okay, you ready for the crazy-scary experience of this week?? So, my companion had a seizure on Friday night at 7. We were in the apartment after dinner getting ready to go to an appointment. She put on her boots and I almost stood up to leave, but didn't. I just sat there for a whole extra minute or two. Something just felt kind of weird or off. I almost stood up and left anyways, but we didn't. Then, she started saying she felt weird and wouldn't really respond to me or explain herself. She was sitting in a chair in the living room and all of a sudden, she started having a seizure. I have never seen a seizure before. Her eyes were really blank. :/ I remembered she had Epilepsy and had told me if she had a seizure to just let her have it and not call an ambulance or anything unless she wasn't breathing. I jumped up and ran to the kitchen, knelt down and said a prayer for her. I had no idea what else to do. Then I went back into the living room. I made sure she was still breathing and just sat there while she finished having her seizure. She stopped, then ten seconds later had another short one :/ It took her about 30 minutes to fully regain consciousness. Finally, she started talking and said the last thing that she remembered was putting on her boots. She went to bed and slept for the night. I called President B and reported it. I keep thinking about what if we had left the apartment and it had happened somewhere where she would have been seriously hurt, like on the stairs or concrete. Heavenly Father was really watching out for her and helped us to stay in the apartment two extra minutes.  I'm glad that you put her name on the prayer roll this week. That was definitely inspired, too. I'm sure that definitely protected and helped her. And who knows? Maybe that's why we stayed in the apartment because I had no explanation for why I wasn't standing up and getting out the door. Tender Mercies for sure!!!

I went on an exchange Tuesday and it was so wonderful!!! I was with Sister B who was in my MTC group. It was fun to talk with her and catch up. It was nice to have someone to talk to about different issues or concerns I have with the work right now and get her insight.

And because our car was in the shop for like 5 days, we have soooo many miles now!! We had enough miles to go to Mt. Washington and meet with the RS president. We went through the roster and talked about who we should visit and focus on. I am feeling more organized. The Elders in this area are very good and on top of the work here. Pres. B released all the former ZL and DL's to make them trainers. 

Christmas was good. I got the package. :) Thanks so much!!!! I loved it. I also received many Christmas cards and that was great! I have bad news, though. My companion is a cosmetologist, so she asked her mom for professional shampoo/conditioner.  In the stockings she sent us, she put in these little things of Aveda shampoo/conditioner. It's amazing and I love it. Darn, it's not in a missionary's budget though. The mission Christmas Conference was fun. We had a program and then played "chubby bunny' (The winner won with 23 LARGE-sized marshmallows in his mouth---eeek! Our instructions were "play until you gag!"), a lasso game where certain missionaries were the cows and others were the cowboys and other crazy games that only Pres. B would think of! It was great!

At the GKLM Christmas Party! 



Missions really make you think about your future and what you want/don't want. Here are some life goals I've created since my mission:
-To NEVER live in a trailer. 
-To NEVER become obese.
-To NEVER smoke or marry a smoker.
-To NEVER have more animals than I have children.
-To NEVER have a nicer car than I have house. 
-To go to the dentist regularly. Also, I have created a life-goal to keep all my teeth and not let any rot.
-To always remember to tell others to "have a blessed day" and to remember that "praise the lord" is an appropriate expression of gratitude.
-And, I won't run away from the J-dubs anymore. 

Of course, the list is a work in progress. I'll keep you updated.

We went to visit a less-active lady with 3 small children. The conditions of the home was not sanitary, by any means and there were way too many pets in the small, unkept house. It was really sad. The little boy ended up having an accident on the table while we were there. I think the cockroach family in the corner were fairly comfortable, though. Sometimes being a mom sounds scary, but things like this make me pretty confident that I'm going to be super-mom someday. 

Have a great week!
I love you all!!
Sister Ashlyn Galloway