Monday, April 21, 2014

Easter, Cinnabon, Crashing Birthday Parties

okay so a spelling lesson first (don't worry i just figured this out myself): it is Kiev if you are spelling it the russian way or Kyiv if you are spelling it the ukrainian way. for the record, i prefer russian, so i will call it kiev. yes, i am SO happy that i am with sister nash still, although transfers are in a week and a half and we are pretty positive that they will split us up because they are trying to integrate us into the mission. yeah we haven't gotten any new missionaries for awhile, and none of the missions in ukraine are getting any new ones, so i bet the kid from colorado will get reassigned to russia or the baltics. yes 10 elders from our mission (5 of whom i have served around) are going home a transfer early and 7 i think from the kiev mission. now there are only 2 groups older than me left in the mission, so if they keep sending people home who knows what will happen. we still don't know what will happen with the lochheads and the senior couples. the sisters would totally share their investigators with us if they could, but they only have one to begin with so sister nash and i are doing our own finding. we actually already found one investigator and she is awesome!!!! she was a former investigator awhile ago and she is about our age. her name is oksana and we were worried that she was just interested in english, but when we had our lesson with her she told us that she wanted to meet with us because when she was meeting with the sisters awhile ago she was much happier and she is looking to find that happiness again. she is so great. she is one of those people when you meet them you can just tell that they are a good person. she already knows how to pray and has received answers to prayer before, so basically she is SO prepared. she almost agreed to be baptized, but she is going to l'viv for the weekend (that's where she's from) and she wants to meet with us again when she gets back later this week. pray for her to get her answer that the book of mormon is true! it has helped me so much to know that there are people here i am meant to help. even though i miss donetsk like crazy, i know i'm supposed to be here right now. 

this week i got to be with sister rohrbaugh and willerth for a day!!!!!!! it was literally the best. so the sisters from kiev that we live were going on exchanges with the sisters that sister willerth and rohrbaugh live with and there wasn't enough room for all of them in one apartment, so sister rohrbaugh and willerth came to us!!! it was so much fun. we took them to KFC and Cinnabon and their lives were complete. oh yeah ps we literally live in the center of kiev AKA our area is the richest area in all of kiev which i'm pretty sure it means is the richest area in all of ukraine. yep. we were in culture shock for the first few days. the malls here are fancier than the ones in america! so weird. anyways, the bishop called us and asked us to visit a less-active because it was her birthday, so we just showed up at her house with flowers and of course she invited us in and we accidentally crashed her birthday party! for the first time in kiev i felt like i was back in donetsk because the apartment was tiny and dirty and smelled bad and it felt like home. of course there was a crazy guy there (there's always one) he was wearing a super fancy suit and he had this paper that he showed us and said that whenever he meets someone from another world he has them sign his paper hahahaha. then he was showing sister rohrbaugh pictures of rocket ships and saying all sorts of crazy stuff. gotta love ukrainian crazies. anyways, we got 3 referrals from the birthday party and a new investigator, so i'd say it was worth the NASTY cake. let's just say it was 95% whipped cream, there was all sorts of random fruit on top and around the edges were i kid you not CORN FLAKES. yummo. 

ok so easter in ukraine: i didn't hear a ton about the traditions, but this is what i gathered. people walk around with baskets pretty much like in america, just plain brown wicker baskets, and they have specific easter cakes (i'll send you a picture) which actually look a lot better than they taste, and they all go visit the graves of their family members to clean up the graves, so it's actually more of like a memorial day type holiday. for sacrament meeting they had all the new missionaries from donetsk (8 of us, 4 sisters, 4 elders) bear our testimonies which i was kind of skeptical because it was easter i thought shouldn't they have like real talks or something, but the members loved it.

other than that this week has mostly been inviting all of the members (active and not) to our ward activity on friday. we're having a culture night that the missionaries here have been planning for so long. i feel bad we kinda just showed up in time for the party and didn't really do anything to prepare for it, but it should be way fun. i'll let you know how it goes next week. 

okay that's all i have time for this week. i want you to know that i am happy and safe in kiev but praying for donetsk every day because it is still home to me. i am just grateful to still be a missionary and still be in ukraine. i love you and miss you all!!!!!
Easter Cakes

Working on the Rapunzel braid

Donetsk District

Graffiti

Pillow Pet

Spotted Cinnabon!

With the Lochheads

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