So for this week, we went to Klieberts!! It's an Alligator farm in Hammond, Louisiana. It is where the Swamp People originated! Say what? It was pretty legit. Especially because our tour guide was missing all his fingers and just had his thumb. We learned some pretty cool alligator facts and I got to hold a teenage alligator. I was kinda nervous but wanted the experience. So when I was holding it the tour guide told me it was peeing on me so I threw it....... Not good. I threw and alligator on the ground! The whole zone won't let me live it down. They keep saying that that was there favorite part of the day. It was so embarrassing. Needless to say I am still my oober dramatic self. I also got to hold a snake, around my neck! It was so insane. I had to do it twice, the first time I had an anxiety attack and wanted to die and my companion was sure to capture the moment. Then I got it off me took a breather and tried again so I could get a cute picture.
Bethany, our less active with the three boys called us and told us she wasn't feeling well. She asked if we would come distract her kids so she could lay down. We debated because we aren't supposed to babysit but then we decided it would be fine because her bed is on the living room floor, where we would be distracting! haha So we taught a primary lesson on prayer and on the Holy Ghost. Then we taught about Abinadi and when he testified to King Noah and his priests (Alma). And through the power of the Holy Ghost Alma knew that what Abinadi was preaching was true. It turned out so cute. Those boys have really stolen my heart. Sadly they are moving to the Covington, LA ward this month. We brought some boxes from the grocery store over yesterday and helped tape them together for her.
We went to see Ms. Carolyn in the nursing home. Poor things feet were terrible swollen! When the nurse came she told her to elevate them and got her a 6 inch stool. Like that is going to help! Her feet are huge! So instead of the stool I had her put her feet on my lap and I iced and rubbed them for her. The swelling went down a bunch just in the hour we were there. While I did that Sister Smith read from the Book of Mormon. Ms. Carolyn prays so hard for us and she is so lonely. Every time we walk in she says "Thank God, I prayed y'all would come to see me, God answered my prayers!" I'm glad we were able to serve her the little that we did.
We went on exchanges this week. I went to Albany, LA. hahha not NY. And Sister Blaylock was sick so we stayed in and she slept. So meanwhile I read the General Conference Ensign. It is so good! It was so weird to just sit on a couch and read though. I kinda felt guilty. But it really did feel so amazing. We changed back at stake conference. One of the speakers at stake conference shared a story. It started off about a Sister Fisk and a little primary in Liverpool, NY. It went to say that they went on a temple trip to the Palmyra temple they laid out blankets and ended up stirring up a wasps nest. Every kid got stung and so when it came time to touch the temple they were afraid. So the parents formed a protective gate around them so they could one by one go up and touch the temple. I thought how in the world does she know the Fisk's from the Liverpool ward? I ran up and asked her at the end of conference and she laughed and said it was just a story she had found online! I told her that that was a lady from my stake :) It is such a small world!
Amanda and Jimmy texted that they were cancelling their appointment with us and that they need to pray about meeting with us. I knelt down and just cried and prayed. I then sat up and thought well one thing I know is God answers prayers. I know God will answer theirs and this out of my hands. They will be directed back to the Gospel of Jesus Christ, I know it! We went and saw Brianna, Tasha's step daughter. We went and saw her at her real mom's house and her mom is amazing! We ended up teaching her mom about the restoration and we left her a Book of Mormon. So exciting to share such good things. Then she prayed for us. The way southerners pray is so different!! We all stood in a circle and held hands. They are so grateful when they pray its amazing. throughout the prayer those who are not saying the prayer say "yes God." every time they agree with something the person praying is saying. It's really really cool. I have started accidentally every time some one prays I say "Yes God" in my head. It makes me pay attention to prayers so much better. But anyways she was praying for us and she said "Lord I ask you to be with the sisters, to guide them, protect them, and to take them to those who are searching. Help them Lord to to thy will and to help all those around here to come to your word." and all at once all of her family in the circle said "Yes, Lord". It is really spiritual! I love being apart of these people! Later that night we found out about transfers so we went to see Tasha. We got there and Sister Smith told her she was leaving and we all three just cried. Then we sang primary songs to Sister Smith's Ukulele and then Sister Smith shared her favorite scripture. Talking about the journey we go through to know Christ, and once we know Christ we must follow Him through baptism. She bore her testimony about how this gospel is for Tasha and that it is specifically designed to bless her. Then Tasha said "I've been thinking a lot about being baptized." She just said it as a whisper. the spirit was so strong and I could feel her true desire. The Book of Mormon is amazing. I wish y'all could see her progression the spirit truly is astonishing! We told her goodbye, stepped out on the porch and closed the door behind us. Then Sister Smith and I hugged tight and sobbed. My heart is seriously broken. But it's okay because God needs her elsewhere and has something in mind for me!
Well I for certain know this church is true. This mission is molding me and it really is hard. It really wasn't what I expected. I'm not sure what I expected but it's different for sure. And I am grateful for that. Y'all have a blessed week, I love you so much! Thanks for the pictures and encouraging words.
Playing headbanz for district meeting!
Bethany and her boys!
Randy and I... That kid is crazy!
Look how many turtles!! Holy Cow!!
Look how beautiful the swamps are!
Panicked snake picture.
Snake picture take 2.
Baby Alligator time!
Our tour guide... with one thumb!
Alligator farm! And Sitting on a tortoise.
The Alligator I threw!
Alligator eating a rotting steak.
I can do that sweet yoga move that I couldn't do back in January! I am getting flexible!!
Us super sad........