Monday, March 21, 2016

"Ay up me ducks!"

Ay up me ducks! That's what you would hear if you said hello to someone in Nottingham!

Monday night we visited with some ward members. Then we went back to the STLs flat and helped Sister Banchini start packing. It's so sad to have her leave, but she will love Wales! And she gets to be with Sister Sharp, so lucky!

Tuesday we woke up really really early to help her finish packing and say goodbye. Then from eight to noon we volunteered at horse stables by our house! It was a very messy and stinky few hours of mucking stalls for service. Not exactly my idea of a fun service project, but Sister Butler has horses at home so she loved it. We were supposed to have a couple of lessons in the afternoon but they all fell through. And our phone was having issues so we couldn't call our friends to reschedule. We didn't think Blaise would come to our lesson because we hadn't been able to call and remind him. But we had a miracle and he showed up! We were able to teach him more of the plan of salvation and it was such a great lesson! Then we had dinner with our bishop and his wife! We went back to the STLs flat and got to meet the new STL! Her name is Sister Scherf and she is from Holland. She has already served with Sister Mousely so they were really excited!

Wednesday morning we had ward coordination. We tried to visit some less active members and other friends we met when tracting but none of them were home. We did set up a lesson with one of the people we met when tracting, so that was great! We've been sharing the Easter video for this year #HALLELUJAH a lot and it's so great! Go and watch it! I love it more and more each time! Then we walked an hour to our dinner with the stake president and his family. We took a public footpath
hiking up a big hill and we could see the whole village. It was beautiful and the perfect shortcut! Then we helped with a Faith in God activity for the primary! It was football (soccer) and it was fun to
play with the primary kids and bishop joined too! A member gave us a ride back to the STLs flat which was really kind!

Thursday we had our first district meeting of the new transfer. Our new zone leader is Elder Wagner and he is from Washington. It was a great meeting! We travelled really far to visit a less active member but she wasn't home. Sister Butler really had to use the toilet so we started stopping people and asking if we could use their toilets. And this young mom let us come to her house! She was so kind and really interested in what we teach! And she works as a conversationalist in the nature reserves so we are going to volunteer and help clean them sometime!  Then we traveled to our dinner with some members and it was really great! Our heating had been fixed so we got to go home! It was so warm and we were so thankful!

Friday morning when we woke up the boiler had broken again. So it was really cold and we had no hot water. So I took a freezing cold shower. And we studied and did our weekly planning huddled up by the fireplace. We taught our friend David and his member wife Alicia about temples and it was great! Then we had dinner with the Hulse's and the missionary stew was chicken this week, it was a nice twist! Then we played volleyball for the ward game night. We had lots of friends come
and it was so great! We figured it wouldn't be worth it to go to the STLs flat again because we had to be up early Saturday. So we pulled our mattresses downstairs and slept next to the fire. We even tried roasting marshmallows! It was really gross though! The mallows are much better in America! But we were nice and warm all night, even if we were a buy worried about the beds catching on fire.

Saturday we helped with the Primary Easter activity in the morning. It was lots of fun! The missionaries all taught about why we celebrate Easter and the story of Christ's resurrection! We helped play games and keep the kids under control. It was exhausting! We biked to lunch and had a beautiful English trifle for pudding (dessert)! I keep forgetting that pudding means dessert! Each time a more says they will go grab the pudding and then come back with cookies or something else I get really confused for a bit! Then we visited a less active member whose husband is going through radio therapy for cancer. She's been having a rough go so she just cried and we comforted her.

Sunday we biked to church. I still need to find a good bike! Sacrament meeting was on families and it was really great! We helped teach a primary class about missionary work and answer their questions. After church we visited Catherine. She's had some sad news in the family and was unable to come to the primary activity or church. Then we had dinner at our house. And the STLs picked us up so we could have a warm nights rest and hot showers. Even though we've had lots of complications with our housing, it's been fun to be able to spend so much time with the STLs! They are so great!

Thanks for all the letters and support! Hope you all have a lovely week!

Sister Aubri Cebollero

1. Exploring Nottingham castle

2. These cats like to visit us 

 3. Our boiler went out again so we slept by the fire and roasted mallows.
4. Sister Cebollero and Sister Butler at the castle

5. Nottingham City Centre

6. Robin Hood's castle

 7/8. Robin Hood Statue outside of the castle 

Monday, March 14, 2016

Broken boiler, strep throat, and pink eye...Oh my!!

The not so average life of a sister missionary continues...This week featuring the third week of a horrible cold, strep throat, pink eye and a broken boiler in our house! Wahoooo!

Monday night we tried to make it to FHE but we got stuck on a tram for a few hours due to a car accident so we weren't able to make it. But we met this really awesome girl who lives in Long Eaton by us so it ended up being a good thing! She is going to uni and we were able to talk to her for a long time about The Book of Mormon and our church. 

Tuesday I woke up and I was really sick. We were both going on the third week of a really bad cold and coughs and now my throat was beginning to hurt more and more each day. We prayed about what to do and we both felt that we needed to do what everyone had been counselling us to do and just stay inside in the warm all day so that we could get better and not push our health more. We spent a lot of time going through the area book and I spent a lot of the day reading Our Search for Happiness by Elder Ballard. 

Wednesday I was still really poorly but we travelled into Nottingham city for our zone meeting. It was a really great meeting though! Then we travelled back to our area and had ward coordination. We headed to our dinner appointment and on top of my cold and sore throat my eyes started to get swollen. And that's when we realized I had a really bad case of pink eye.

Thursday we went to Nottingham really early to see a doctor and I got lots of antibiotics so that I could get better. When we got back we realized our boiler had broken and we had no heat or hot water in our house. Then we visited with Flora again who is obsessed with missionaries. She set up a whole table of cakes and cookies and ice cream and pretty much told us if we didn't finish it she would be so sad. So we tried our best, but ended up taking a lot of it home because there was no way we could have eaten all of it. Then we went to Catherine's and made her lunch! We made her homemade macaroni and cheese and it was her first time having it! Then we helped out with a relief society activity. It was a spa night and it was really fun! 

Friday we woke up and our house was absolutely freezing and I was still really sick. Our landlord came to fix the boiler but they didn't have the right part so we just sat by the fireplace and did our weekly planning. Then we went out and did some tracting. Our dinner appointment was in the next town over and so we decided to take a public footpath shortcut to get there. These paths have been around for hundreds of years and they are really cool! We walked through an old church cemetery and then some fields. The last field was really wet and muddy and we had to jump over a little stream to get to the bridge that went across the canal. It was quite the adventure. Then we went to our ward game night for volleyball and I just had to sit and watch. 

Saturday morning they tried to fix the boiler for a few hours but they ran out of ideas and told us that it couldn't be fixed until Monday. The freezing house was making our colds even worse and we had been unable to shower since it has broken. So we talked to Sister Leppard about what we should do since we were still sick and she told us we needed to go stay with the sister training leaders again in Nottingham until the boiler is fixed and to rest more so we can get better. So we're back in the other sisters flat for a few days...again.  We also got calls about transfers and Sister Butler and I are both staying in Nottingham! It was fun to be with the other sisters when we got calls and hear about all the changes everywhere! 

Sunday we made the long travel from the city to our church building. We met this Italian bus driver that gave us a free ride because we were Americans and he wanted to talk about what we were doing in England. Church was really great this week! After church we had lunch with our favorite old woman in the ward. Then we did a lot of tracting because the weather was really nice! Then we traveled back to their flat for dinner and finished our weekly planning. 

I'm finally starting to feel a little better today! It's really frustrating being sick because we both just really want to work with all our heart, might, mind and strength but we know we can't do that unless we take the time to rest and get better. This morning we found out that they fixed the boiler but the real problem is in the pipes so they need a few more days to dig out and fix those and then our house will be back to normal! So we'll be staying with the other sisters for a few more days! Here's to a fresh new week and a new transfer as well! 

Love you!
Sister Cebollero 
 1. Public muddy footpath on the canal English!
 2. Today (P-day) we saw the Trent Bridge in Nottingham that Elder Ballard talks about in "Our Search for Happiness" book. I've been reading that book this past week.
3. Nottingham 4 District won challenge week. The bonus challenge was to buy something for under 2 pounds at a charity shop and wear it to zone meeting. I got the skirt I'm wearing.  Bargain and cute!

 4. Nottingham Zone March 2016

5. The Trent Bridge with the Sister Training Leaders who we are living with while they fix our boiler.

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

A trying week in Nottingham

I can't believe it's already the fifth week of this transfer! It's gone by so fast, it seems like I only got here yesterday! 

Monday night we went to our ward family home evening that they have in a Tesco which is like a huge Costco. They rent out a room and all of the older members meet for FHE there each week. Each week they have a really deep lesson and it always seems to end up with them worrying for our futures so we have quite interesting conversations with the whole group. But they feed us good sweets and we teach them American group games and they like that. 

Tuesday morning we were going to go volunteer at a riding school to help with the horses but Sister Butler still wasn't feeling well so we had to stay in for a bit. Then we went to visit Catherine and we taught her about keeping the Sabbath Day holy and talked about what she thought about coming to church last week. Then we went to meet our Nigerian friend Blaze! We started to teach him about the plan of salvation and it was such a great lesson! He's a year younger than me but knows the Bible better than anyone I've met our age! We went to visit some members in another them and they said if we came back in an hour they would feed us dinner. We had planned some other things near our home so we prayed and felt like we needed to stick to those plans and start heading home. When we got to the bus stop there weren't any buses coming for another hour so we were a little confused about why we got that answer. But we still felt that way so we decided to walk even though it would take a long time. We started walking and ran into Blaze on his way to play football (soccer), and he doesn't even live around that area at all! He's pretty much the coolest person ever and we walked with him for a bit and talked more about what we do as missionaries. 

Wednesday we had exchanges with our sister training leaders in Nottingham! When we got there Sister Mousely was feeling rather poorly. So I went out with Sister Banchini tracting and Sister Butler stayed in with her. We tracted this huge road in the pouring rain! One minute it would be nice and sunny and the next it would be absolutely pouring and hailing, it was so back and forth all day! Then a member of their ward took us out to lunch and it was really good. Then I stayed in with Sister Mousely and the others went teaching. Sister Banchini is on a healthy food kick and made some interesting mint and pea soup for dinner. It was pretty good but I couldn't get past the fact that it looked like baby food. 

Thursday was a bit of a rough day. We started off with a district meeting and then we traveled back to our area. Our phone has been having this problem where every week it just stops working for a few days and it has been so frustrating! This time it broke for good and we were told we'd have to go about a week without it and then we would get a new phone and a new number. We were going to bike to a part member family's house for a lesson but we got really lost and had no way to tell them why we hadn't made it. We were really upset because it seems like lately everything in our area than can go wrong keeps going wrong. We basically just sat on a corner and cried because we didn't know what to do. This woman saw we were upset and let us use her phone to let them know we weren't coming. Then we had to bike really far for our dinner with the Hungarian family in our ward. They fed us some Hungarian soup and we were a little scared but it was pretty good! And then we had crepes for dessert. We rushed back to teach Catherine with a member and when we got there she was sick!  She had texted us to let us know not to come but we never got her message. But the member offered for her husband to come give her a blessing and it ended up being just what she needed! 

Friday morning we were supposed to teach Daniel, which keeps getting cancelled each week due to everyone being sick. The member that was supposed to come with us cancelled earlier in the week and we had no way to get ahold of anyone else to come with us. So we just had to go and talk to him from his porch and set up another time to come back. We answered some questions and talked for a bit but we were sad we couldn't have a full lesson. Then we travelled to visit our favorite old woman in the ward and her Jewish son in law that we talked to awhile back. It went really well but it made us late for our flat check and dinner. We had borrowed a phone to let them know we were stranded in the other town and would be late but they never got it. We finally made it though and they fed us their missionary stew. That's soup three nights in a row! We went to ward volleyball but they had forgotten the ball so we ended up talking with a young man in the ward who really needed a friend that night. 

Saturday we traveled to visit a ward member but she wasn't home. Then we were going to go do some service for Catherine but she was still feeling sick. So instead we went to help an older man in the ward with his garden. We weather was really back and forth. We trimmed hedges for a bit and then every time it would rain or hail, we planted potatoes in the garage. Then we had dinner with our favorite family, the Thomas's. It was so great and we had some really good Ben & Jerry's for dessert! 

Sunday was "Mothering Sunday" in the U.K. so the primary kids did a musical number before testimony meeting and then the young men handed out chocolate roses. It was a really great testimony meeting! Then we were asked to bear our testimonies in primary so we went and helped with the lesson. Because Sister Butler goes home before Mother's Day in America she was allowed to Skype her family so we went to the Thomas's after dinner so she could do that. 

It was definitely a trying week so we're looking forward to a fresh new week :) 
Love you!
Sister Cebollero 

1. A cute bridge over a canal
 2. Our district: Elder Tukuafu on the left goes home next week
3. A piggy back from Sister Butler

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Preaching to the Baptists with the Leppards!

Once upon a time in the third week of my mission I taught a church full of Baptists with my Mission President and his wife. I still can't believe that actually happened, it was truly an amazing experience! We had been praying and fasting about what to teach and what to say when we found out that President and Sister Leppard's schedules for the night had cleared and they were joining us. And that was truly an answer to our prayers! When we got there and were introducing ourselves the pastor said that they had been invaded by Mormons for the night! Sister Butler and I taught all about the restoration, President Leppard answered all the really hard questions with the perfect scriptures and Sister Leppard backed it all up with the sweetest analogies to help everyone understand. We did our best to get our message across clearly and to answer all of their questions. I also got to teach the part where we recite Joseph Smith's description of the First Vision and I felt the spirit so strong as I quoted it. Even though we didn't all agree on everything it was a really cool experience and we were able to give out a lot of Books of Mormon and even made some return appointments to teach people more about our church! President and Sister Leppard are such powerful teaching partners and we were so thankful for their support! It was an experience I'll never forget! 

Tuesday we woke at four in the morning to travel to the mission office for follow-up trainers meeting. When we got there, President took us into his office and we all talked about how Monday night went. They told us they were really impressed with our teaching and could see all the seeds we had planted. He said that while we were teaching he felt like it was a great example of the "a bible a bible" prophecy in 2 Nephi 29 coming to pass. We've been able to see President and Sister Leppard a lot the last few weeks and it has been so great! For the meeting I got to see my MTC family again! It was so fun to see Sister Sharp and everyone else and hear about their areas and what they've been up to! It was exactly what Sister Butler and I needed after a rough week last week! We had some great training and all got to have lunch together too! Then we trained back to our house. When we got back we spent the night visiting with a part member family in our ward and talking to people in the street. 

Wednesday morning we had ward coordination. We were supposed to teach Catherine but she cancelled. So we went into the town centre to do street contacting. Then we biked to our dinner appointment and tracted some streets by their house. We had dinner with the stake president and his family and it was really great! It was really cold all day Wednesday, especially when we were biking home at night. 

Thursday we both woke up sick! But we still tried to work and we overdid it a little bit. We went to district meeting and everyone except our district leader was feeling sick so it was quite the struggle. For district lunch, I had my first chippie (fish and chips) and it was so good! It was really greasy and the portion size was pretty much American, it was huge! And they just wrap the food with a bunch of paper and give it to you like that! I was so stuffed when we finished it! Then we biked really far for an early dinner. They brought out steaks that were as big as the plates and I was already so full I didn't know what to do! I tried my best to finish it and when we were done I thought I'd never have to eat again.  We biked home in the frozen cold again and did some of my twelve week training. We really weren't feeling well so some ward members gave us a blessing and brought us medicine. It was a really beautiful blessing and it really brought us a lot of comfort. 

Friday we woke up and we were even sicker. So we talked to Sister Leppard and she said we had to stay inside out of the cold all day. We were really upset because we had some great lessons set up. We had to cancel the morning one and get some rest. But we were really determined to still teach Catherine at night because we had planned to teach her about temples. We rested all day and then we prayed about whether we should go and we felt like we should. And we were so glad we did! Her kids were supposed to go to their dad’s house for the weekend but he backed out so she was really upset and the kids were disappointed. So we brought them cookies and were able to cheer them up, and she really appreciated it. 

Saturday we had to get up early to travel to Nottingham city centre so that I could get some blood tests done at the doctor. We were both still feeling quite poorly and were trying not to push ourselves too hard the rest of the day. The sister training leaders came over and we made lunch and then did some mini exchanges. I went to our town centre with Sister Banchini and we spent a few hours in the freezing cold talking to everyone that would listen. We came home and some members brought us some soup for dinner that was really good! Catherine was having a rough time with the kids and wasn't sure if she wanted to bring them to church anymore. So we stopped by to talk about it and cheer her up again and she agreed to come. Then on the way home we met this awesome Nigerian named Blaze and taught him the restoration and set up a time to teach him again! 

Sunday was ward conference and Catherine came to church with us and brought her three kids! President Gray talked all about Lehi's dream and that's what we taught Catherine earlier this week so it was so cool! She really enjoyed it and so did her kids! We did some weekly planning after church and then traveled to the Uni for our dinner appointment. We had dinner with an American family from Indiana that are living in the England for a few months while the husband is taking a sabbatical from teaching at Purdue. They were so American and it was a little piece of home in England! We had so much fun getting to know their cute family! 

Even though we spent Tuesday out of our area and most of the weekend sick, we were still able to work our hardest this week and get a lot done! It was a really great week! :) 

Love you all! 
Sister Cebollero :)
1.  Off to an early morning meeting
 2. Robin Hood's County
 3. A very English Road
4.  First Real English Fish n' Chips...delicious!
5.  Our MTC group meets again
6.  So happy to see my MTC Comp Sister Sharp again!
7.  Silly Sisters!
8/9. Trainees and Trainers