Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Merry "late" Christmas

Hello everyone! I hope you all had an incredible Christmas and stayed nice and warm. Haha I heard it snowed muchas in Utah on Christmas! Here in Ohio it was 60 degrees the day after Christmas, and all the slush/ice we had melted. Now we have mud :) 

Our week was pretty low-key, visited some less actives and a few non-members. Thursday we made cookies and delivered them with a picture of Jesus and John 14:27 to a bunch of different people.

 Friday was "training for the trainers" meeting at the mission office. Sister House, another sister that is training, and I drove down together. The meeting was really good, we mostly just talked about how important this calling is and how it'll be a good learning experience for all of us. Made me nervous and excited! I had the elders give me blessing yesterday to help with the stress and gain some guidance, and that really helped! Whoever this new sister is, I'm excited to love her, have fun and serve with her, and accomplish "the thing(s) which the Lord hath commanded (us)."

Saturday was pretty interesting, we took a few more plates of cookies around. Cookies and Christmas honestly do miracles in contacting people that we've tried over and over again to meet that never answer the door! It's like they know we're bringing them haha. We also went tracting for about 2 and a half hours, and it was SO FUN! Who knew knocking doors on Christmas Eve would actually be a good experience? :) People were SO friendly, and even though no one let us in, it felt good to tell them about the #ShareTheLight video and give them the opportunity to remember what Christmas is really about!


Sister Rock and Sister Maughan making some Christmas cookies
 - wearing the aprons I sent them for Christmas !!  

That night we had dinner with the Lehmans (I know! They're family... maybe. They say their last name lay-man instead of lee-man. ?) Love them, and they had some really good food.  After that, we went to a Christmas Eve service for the church of the family we went to Kirtland with a few weeks ago (wow that was a long confusing sentence.) It was really interesting! They had the electric guitar playing, and a lot of standing and singing. Plus, their pastor talked about how WE are the light of the world. Heard that somewhere before? Haha it was really fun, I'm glad we went, just to experience how others worship. 

Sunday of course was Christmas! Thanks everyone who sent me a card/gift/email/prayer/thought! I appreciated and felt all of your love, and I needed it! I am so grateful for the amazing support system I have in all of you. You are incredible.

Sister Rock spoke in sacrament meeting, then we just visited widows throughout the day, talked to the fam, and tried to go caroling with the elders at night but no one was home! It was a pretty good Christmas, felt like a pretty normal day for a missionary. 

And now it's a new week, soon to be a new year, with a MILLION new experiences! I LOVE new years! Looking back on the experiences I've had, setting goals to help me through whatever may come in the next one. This year has truly been a year or learning and growing, that I wouldn't change for anything. That's something that I say EVERY YEAR though, because whether you are a missionary or not, Heavenly Father is still testing you, teaching you, and loving you through every second of every day. I KNOW that He is involved in the details of your lives, and that as you put your trust in Him this year, your lives will be filled with JOY. 

I love you all, and I will see you next year! :D

Love, Sister Maughan



Sister Rock and Sister Maughan in their Christmas PJ's.
We sent Abby some Ohio State sweats for her PJ's !!
This is also the cute Christmas tree we sent them to cheer up their apartment ! 


Monday, December 19, 2016

TRAINING calls!!!! :D :) :/

HELLO!

My emotions are in a state of static right now (I'm not sure WHAT I'm feeling), because President Brown called me up at 8:54 last night. I've basically known  and felt since I left Perrysburg that this call was coming, but it didn't make it any less crazy that it's ACTUALLY happening. President thought he was so funny, he says "Sister Maughan, I hear you are going to be losing a companion this next transfer". "Sure am, President." "I'd like to extend the calling to you to train a new missionary." "I would LOVE that President." "Thank you. I know you'll do a great job."

So if things go smoothly, I"ll be here in Tallmadge another 3 months with my greenie :) I'm actually really excited, and I know we are going to see NEEDED miracles in that time! It's definitely a little nerve-wracking, but I know I have all of you as support, and I would love ANY advice you have for me! So NEXT Wednesday we'll head up to Kirtland to drop off Sister Rock, and to pick up whoever my new companion is! There are only 4 sisters coming out this transfer, and we don't find out which one will be my companion until we're all in a big room together and President Brown introduces us to each other. Exciting, right?

Anyways, that being set aside, MERRY CHRISTMAS! It will be here and gone before we know it, sadly. I love how unified everyone is this time of year in that we are more focused on helping others and enjoying "the spirit of the season". That doesn't really happen any other time of the year. So keep "Sharing the Light!" 

This week was good, the first half there is nothing to report. Thursday it was FREEZING. School was cancelled, and we were honestly wondering if we were still supposed to go out or not, but we sure did! Luckily, it was weekly planning, so we were in the apartment until 1 anyways. After, we ended up shoveling (or trying to shovel. The snow in Ohio is weird. It's more like ICE) a member named Alan's driveway and then going to a members home for dinner. Kind of a weird day. But we survived the cold!

Friday was Zone Conference, it was really good. Helped me to get some more motivation back, which is really important. I love being with the other missionaries and just hearing all our struggles, and helping each other through them. The spirit always teaches us what we need to know, even if it's not even said word for word. 

Saturday we had our ward Christmas party breakfast. Then a miracle happened that made the whole week an AMAZING week. We met someone named Jamaica a little ago, and we were able to teach her and bring Sister Peila with us Saturday afternoon. I can't fully describe what happened, but the text our member sent us after it was over about sums up what happened. "She was incredible! I loved sitting with her and hearing about her impressions. The pressure of the spirit was so strong and her desire to know more is something I've personally never seen. She's amazing. Let me know if you need me to go again. I'd love to get to know her more." One of those moments I hope I never forget. This gospel IS true, because it can change people's lives in minutes- if they let it. If WE let it!
Because that's what this gospel is all about. It's even what Christmas is all about. CHANGE. It's the hardest thing, and the natural man in us despises it and does everything it can to avoid it. We tell ourselves we can still find happiness and growth where we are at, we don't need change. It's the biggest lie I know I fall for everyday. When we allow ourselves to recognize the need for something different, and ACT on that, we are no longer getting in the way of our progression towards our Father in Heaven. He is in charge at that point, and I KNOW we can trust Him to teach us and help us all along the way. 

The birth, life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ CHANGED the world forever. He understands how hard it is, and it's Him we can turn to in any circumstance. 

Love you all!!! Talk to you again on Tuesday! (Then starting the new year, preparation days will be on Wednesday.)

Love, Sister Maughan

Monday, December 12, 2016

I love this Roller Coaster! (sorry this is a long one!)

I think if I videoed every moment of my day, from the minute I wake up to the second my head hits the pillow at night- you'd probably be able to understand about half of what mission life is like. :)

So how are you all doing? Things are actually going pretty okay here in Tallmadge, saw lots of little miracles this week. I told President Brown I think I just need to work on my faith that these miracles are actually going to continue, and not just be a one time thing! I'm getting there though. And I'm learning, especially this week, to be grateful FOR the hard times, not just in spite of the hard times.
Monday was fun, we got to play volleyball for like 2 hours with some of the elders and sisters. That night all our plans fell through, I honestly don't remember what we ended up doing. :)

Tuesday we finally had a District Meeting, we haven't had one this transfer yet because of Christmas Conference and other stuff. It was really fun! The elders here are a good balance of working hard and having fun. It's also nice, because we all are basically finding 24-7, so we can relate to each other and help each other. 

Wednesday was one of those days where things fell through... and miracles happened because of it! Our first lesson  with our investigator Nyaka worked out, we brought a member and taught the Plan of Salvation. Our member brought her kids, and they were playing with Nyaka's son the whole time, so it was a little crazy. But the fellowship was SO important, and totally worth the crazy moments. :) Our next appointment fell through, so we started driving to our back up, drove right past their house, and decided we should go see someone else on that street anyways. Sister Rock and Sister Henry had taught her the Restoration awhile ago, and just have never been able to get a hold of her since. Well miracle of miracles, she was home and let us right in! I love those moments. That happened AGAIN later, when someone we planned to see wasn't home, so we contacted an old investigator nearby and read the Book of Mormon with him. I really like teaching people, it makes mission life so much better haha!

Thursday it was FREEZING, we mostly wandered around trying to contact people. But at around 5:30 at night, we were wandering around this apartment complex, trying to find a specific apartment and it was NOWHERE. We were ready to give up and get back in the warm car... when we realized we parked right next to the apartment we were looking for. Whoops :) So of course we went and knocked on the door, and we were able to meet this sweet older lady named Jerry who loves Christ and loves serving others. Once again, people make mission life so much better. 

Friday was CRAZY. We spend all morning helping an older lady named Marlene clean out her basement. Her and her husband are Jewish and not really interested, but they are neighbors with a member here in the ward, and we service for them off and on. A cool moment was they fed us lunch, and while we were eating they asked us a TON of questions about our church. We were able to talk to them a little about temples, and even shared the First Vision with them. Who knows if it helped at all, but it was fun just to do that really in just a conversation with someone instead of a specific "lesson". 

Then Friday night, we were planning on going to Kirtland to see the nativities and lights with a family we are teaching. But last minute, our ride canceled on us! Luckily, we talked to the family and they were willing to drive two separate cars so we could all go up anyways. Once we showed up to their house to leave though, things were kind of in crisis mode. They had just found out ten minutes before that the husband was being laid off for awhile, for a "government shut down". Basically, they have no source of income for the next few weeks... so driving two cars to Kirtland might not be the best idea anymore. We let them talk it out, and they decided they STILL wanted to go, if just to get their mind off things. So we started driving, and it started SNOWING. The roads were so bad we got to Kirtland way later than we originally planned. We still got to see the lights and nativities, and I think they liked it. It was just kind of a stressful night. Survived it though :) 


                                                     Pictures from their trip to Kirtland !!  








Sister Rock and Sister Maughan in Kirtland


Sister Maughan in front of a snowy Newell K. Whitney store !


Alright we'll end this novel with another miracle that happened Saturday haha. We had texted someone Sister Rock and Sister Henry had met awhile ago... fully expecting him to either say he was busy or just ignore us. But nope- he let us come over! He told us he is searching for faith, and hasn't found it in some of the churches he's already been to. We talked to them for about an hour, longer than we expected, and will hopefully be going back sometime this week. 

The downs of this roller coaster are completely erased by the ups. Even if NONE of these people continue learning or ending up fully accepting the gospel while I'm here, these moments are still miracles. I have had the opportunity to see God's hand in the lives of all His children, and that has changed MY life. 

Love you all! Sorry if that bored you to death ;)

Sister Maughan



This is the Christmas tree we sent her the stuff to make.  
They did a great job putting it together !!  
Glad they have some Christmas Cheer in their apartment !! 



Monday, December 5, 2016

Kirtland !

Goodness, the weeks are just flying by this transfer! This last week was a good one, started out with Christmas Conference at Kirtland Tuesday morning... so of course that was amazing! I love my mission (so here comes the bragging "my mission is the best"). Who can say they got to meet together with all the missionaries, in the place where priesthood keys were actually restored? Just our mission! :D We are pretty spoiled here. 

The spirit was incredible there! We drove up to the visitors center with another set of sisters, pull into the parking lot and it's just FULL of missionaries! They let us just chat for about an hour and a half, go see all the nativities they have set up this time of year. It was fun just to see LITERALLY everyone... catch up with missionaries/companions I hadn't seen in awhile. 
Then we did a big lunch at the stake center, watched a slide show of a bunch of pictures from the year. THEN we got to meet together in the Kirtland temple and do a devotional. It was mostly a lot of singing Christmas hymns, sharing testimonies, and hearing from our mission leaders. I was pretty much crying the whole time :) Some of it was homesickness (Christmas music just makes you think of home!), and a lot of it was just feeling God's love for all of us- and for me! It's one of those experiences I hope I remember forever, or at least remember the feeling forever. 

The rest of the week was full of service opportunities! Helped one family rake leaves, another family clean out their basement, another family clean their windows. #LightTheWorld :) 



Sister Maughan and Sister Rock, raking leaves --doing service !!


More service opportunities !
Sister Maughan and Sister Rock cleaning windows.

We were also able to have a few good lessons with some new people that will hopefully continue learning! The work is picking up slowly. It's been really hard for me not to get frustrated and to be PATIENT. But Sister Rock and I were reading in Alma 29 today, about how Alma just wishes he could share the gospel with EVERYONE... but that he realizes he is doing what God needs him to, where God needs him to be. I'm always amazed by what I can relate to in the Book of Mormon as a missionary, that I don't think I can any other time of my life. I love it!

Struggles and all, I'm still doing well, and every day I learn something that changes my life.

Love you all, enjoy all the Christmas music and movies for me (next year!), and I"ll talk to you again soon!

Sister Maughan

p..s quote of the week- "Do you want to be happy? Forget yourself and get lost in this great cause. Lend your efforts to helping people... stand higher, lift those with feeble knees, hold up the arms of those that hang down. Live the gospel of Jesus Christ."- President Hinckley 
(I think I maybe already sent this one week... so just pretend it's new and inspiring anyways haha.) 

Monday, November 28, 2016

Here in the OCM (Ohio Cleveland Mission)

Hi again! Can't say I have too much to report this week, since I feel like I was just writing you yesterday. Things are still kind of slow around here, but I was FINALLY able to meet some of our investigators! One of them is named Amber, she's a cute single mom. We just stopped by one night and she let us right in, I can tell the Sisters have definitely made her feel loved and important. We also went to help a family we're working with paint their house!! I've been wanting to paint forever, begged people in Perrysburg to let me come help but they never would. :( I love painting walls for some reason. So we went over to their house Friday and Saturday, just talked and painted- it was a really good opportunity just to get to know them better! Service always makes the whole week feel better. 

Speaking of service, go check out the Christmas Initiative on mormon.org if you haven't already! And commit to do it :) And share it with your friends. #LightTheWorld :D We have been using the video to tract with, and people are loving the idea! They still aren't letting us teach them... but they are nicer than usual haha. We did meet a guy that knows Utah pretty well the other day, he said we could stop by again sometime so that was good. 

I love the initiative this year though! And I was reading Mosiah 4 this morning (go read it... it's PACKED full of good stuff) and now I love it even more! 

The only other random thing I can tell you is people have been putting up their Christmas lights here, so it's fun while we are driving around at night to see all the decorations. People here have projector lights or something, that you project on the side of your house that are red and green that sparkle and swirl around. Kind of hard to explain, but I like it! 

Tomorrow we get to go to KIRTLAND! It's our "Christmas Conference", so the WHOLE mission is getting together at the Kirtland Temple and the visitors center. They feed us lunch, we sing some songs, and I don't know what else. But I'm excited! It'll be fun to see all the missionaries in one place. 

Talk to you all next week!

Love, Sister Maughan

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

*SNOW*

Brrrr! One day it was 70 degrees and SO NICE, the next day we had two inches of snow stuck on the ground, and it's been freezing ever since! We're emailing today because the library is closed on Thanksgiving and we don't have time Wednesday.

Haha but YES i made it safely to Tallmadge. We' actually cover an area called Stow, and that's where we live. Wednesday we went up to Kirtland to do the switching up, went out to Panera for lunch with the Toledo sisters, then Sister Rock and I drove back to our apartment. Which is actually a condo... sweet! It's pretty boring though... no decorations on the walls, and we have to go back to sharing a bathroom :( Other than that, I love it! 

Sister Rock is great! I'm sad we'll only have 6 weeks together, since she's going home next transfer :( She's obsessed with cats and diet coke haha, and she's so fun to talk to!  So far the ward is really awesome here, a lot smaller than Perrysburg, but ANYTHING is smaller than Perrysburg :) Plus, there's two more sets of elder in this ward, so that's fun!

The other thing that's different here is how much finding we do! Most of our investigators are busy for the holidays. So the past few days we've spent about 6 hours just contacting old potentials or tracting... :l Something I really didn't do a whole lot of in Perrysburg, so it almost feels like I've gone back to Strongsville! The sisters did actually just "shot-gun" this area, or take it over from the Elders, so it's a lot like when I first came out- still getting used to where the borders are and where good places to contact are and places to avoid, etc. People are actually really nice here, most are willing to let us come back at least once, which is great! 

It's actually been a rough few days, but somehow we still keep working and have fun in the midst of it! I seriously don't know how sometimes, but Heavenly Father works miracles! That's something we've been focusing on, just recognizing His hand in all of this. For whatever reason, we are experiencing this tough time, and there's always something to learn from it.

A couple days ago I had the WEIRDEST realization that I really have been out for forever haha :) It didn't happen on my "hump day", that day just felt like any other really, except I got to wear my cool shirt aunt Valerie sent me around the apartment. It happened just when I was looking through the old Ensigns in the apartment, and found the one from last December. It's one I LOVED and remember reading as I was preparing for my mission... and that's when it hit me. I felt like I was just reading that Ensign a month ago, not a whole year ago! This time last year I was submitting my papers and wondering where I'd be by next Christmas. So crazy how time goes by so fast. When I think back on the experiences I've had since then... my mind is just blown. Mission life is the best thing that has ever happened to me, and every hard moment really doesn't seem hard when you look back on it. It's full of miracles and learning and gaining a stronger testimony that God is there and loves all of us. Why wouldn't I want that? :)

I hope you all have an amazing Thanksgiving and are able to spend time appreciating the people you love the most in your life! I'll miss you all. Thanks for listening to my rambling stories and thoughts for the past 9 months. Hope you are looking forward to the next 9! I know I am :D

Love you!

Sister Maughan



One of the last pictures of Sister Maughan and Sister Heer !!  
Glad to see they find time to be silly ! 


Sister Maughan with Lisa and Phil, 
some of the people she worked with and grew to love in Perrysburg.


Abby with Brother (aka BroLo) and Sister Long.


Sister Maughan with Sister cooper and Sister Child. 
More people she grew to love in Perrysburg.


Abby holding the "Hump Day" picture book I put together for her. 
Also, she is wearing the "Hump Day" Shirt that her Aunt Valerie sent her !! 


 Abby with her thank you to all of those who sent pictures for her book.  
She loved seeing your cute faces! 


Sister Maughan with her new companion, Sister Rock ! 


** Snow in Stow !! **




Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Adventure is out there.... In Tallmadge !

Yep, getting transferred my friends! I'm still in shock for the most part... not that I didn't think it would happen. I just realized once I found out how much I wanted to stay! I LOVE the people of Perrysburg so much, I don't want to leave them! I have seen so many miracles occur in the hearts of people here, and it's hard to just leave it behind. Thank goodness I know Heavenly Father is going to take care of all of them- and that Sister Heer and her new companion are exactly what they need right now. My heart is just breaking into a million pieces though :( Never thought I could love these people as much as I loved the people of Strongsville... but I sure can! 

That being said, I'm excited to see what Tallmadge has in store for me. It's in the Akron stake, and on the map it's one of the smaller areas. My new companion is Sister Rock- who has been companions with Sister Gibbs and Sister Heer. Sister Heer says this is Sister Rock's last transfer, so I"ll be taking over the area in about 6 weeks! It's always a little scary to know that going in. 

Honestly, I just feel a little disconnected from everything this week, so I probably won't write much. It just almost feels unimportant now that I'm leaving. Which is NOT true. We were able to teach new people this week, Phil and Jacob are doing SO well and are preparing for baptism. The ward has been giving us treats like crazy :) The weather is a little a lot chilly. 

We did a big Family Home Evening at the Weyandts last night with a bunch of members from the ward. We talked about gratitude, which we hear about ALL the time this time of year. But this time around, I'm realizing HOW grateful I am for gratitude :) One morning this week, I was not in a good mood (actually it's kind of been like that all week haha. Transfers stress me out!). So Sister Heer and I decided to say something we were grateful for and draw it on the back of this envelope we had. My artistic skills are AWFUL, so by the time we were done we couldn't even tell what some of the things I had drawn were. But my attitude had totally changed. I was ready to get out and work, and I was looking forward to it. Gratitude causes miracles to occur in our lives, big and small miracles. 
Alrightly, well I have no idea when we'll be emailing next with the whole Thanksgiving thing coming up. So I"ll talk to you all again, when I do. Have an incredible week and take time to recognize all the blessings Heavenly Father has given you. I promise it'll make your week even better :)

Love, Sister Maughan 


Abby wrote this about this picture !!  
"Our awkward district pics as usual.  Elder Frandsen, Elder Cortez, Elder Wheelright, Elder Nichols and us --Sister Heer and Sister Maughan. 



Sister Heer and Sister Maughan out doing some service !


Below are some pictures of some of the people she grew
to love so much while serving in Perrysburg.


Sister Maughan, "BroLo", and Sister Heer


Sister Herr, Sister Younger and Sister Maughan.
Sister Younger is one of the sisters they visited in the nursing home. 



Sister Maughan aka Abby, Colleen and Sister Heer.  
Abby wrote this about this picture ---
"This is pretty much my favorite person here.
Not something I can even begin to explain over e mail :)
Colleen is definitely my "mission mama".
She's a normal, crazy, Ohio-an, was less active for YEARS
until the sisters found her in January, and she's been coming ever since!"

**Thank you Perrysburg for being so good to Sister Maughan while she served there !! 




Thursday, November 10, 2016

Quick e mail - Temple Day !

Just pictures this week, we have about fifteen minutes to email. We left at 9 this morning to go to the Detroit temple with Sister Sawaya and got back at 5! It was AMAZING and so needed. 

This week has been a roller coaster, as usual. SOOOO many miracles... and so many moments when we just want to give up and go hide in the apartment and sleep. I say this every week, and I'll say it again- I cannot adequately describe mission life to you. Unless you've experienced it... I just feel like it will make no sense.

We've been raking leaves this week a lot! So far so good, and the rakes we bought make it easy as pie. Love it! 

One of our investigators came to all three hours of church without us even inviting him. So that was a miracle. 

And in the down time moments we've been organizing the crazy mass list of potentials missionaries have stopped by since like 2005. It's been good.

I love you all and I'll talk to you again Tuesdsay! Transfers... ahhh. We'll see if I get to stay one more transfer in Pburg or if I'll be off to the next adventure. 

Ether 12:6
 6 And now, I, Moroni, would speak somewhat concerning these things; I would show unto the world that faith is things which are hoped for and not seen; wherefore, dispute not because ye see not, for ye receive no witness until after the trial of your faith.

Byyyeeeeee! <3 

Sister Maughan



Sister Maughan by the Detroit, Michigan Temple 



Sister Heer and Sister Maughan at the Detroit, Michigan Temple 



Abby with Sister Heer and Sister Sawaya, the ward mission leader's wife, 
who made time to take them to the temple.  --Bless her !! 
 I'm so thankful for kind people like her 
who make it possible for Abby to go to the temple again.  



Two things that make me SMILE !!!  Abby, and a Lighthouse !!  
She knows that I LOVE Lighthouses.  --Love this picture ! 



This should be on a calendar !  So beautiful 



Sister Heer and Abby by the Lighthouse.  
Even though I don't think it's a "real" lighthouse,  I still love it ! 


Traditional Jamba Juice picture !!  
I love these pictures because I know that Abby is totally happy at this moment !!  
(Sister Maughan and Sister Heer)


Abby modeling the Halloween stockings that I sent to her !!  


Sister Maughan and Sister Heer enjoying (??) walking in the dark 
because of Day Light Savings Time. 



Monday, October 31, 2016

Happy Halloween

First of all, I am dying of heat here. The computer in the library is RIGHT in the sunshine, which is why i choose to sit here ( I love me some sunshine). But I had to spend like the past half hour writing an email for the mission for a Christmas Conference thing we're doing in November, so it's a little warm. 

Second of all... Hello! One more week in the lives of all of us, huh? Who can't believe October is over today? I sure can't! I'm 100% positive this month went by faster than any other in my life. 

This week was a pretty good one here in Perrysburg! We've been doing a lot of service AKA raking leaves because of all the million and a half trees here! The leaves never stop falling, so we're constantly raking. Sister Heer wants to try "service tracting" soon, where we go around in our service clothes, knock on doors and ask if we can rake their leaves or do anything else for them. We'll see if we end up doing it and how it goes, we'll probably need to borrow some rakes first. :)

Wednesday night was really fun this week! We had a HUGE ward activity called "The Chili Cook Off". We (missionaries and ward members) invited everybody and anybody, whether they are members or not, to bring their famous chili, and they have judges to decide which is best in certain categories. And there's of course a people's choice one. I had heard it was well attended, but WOW there was a lot of people there! Bigger than any activity I've been to- including when i was back in Utah :) We also had three of our investigators there, plus a few potential investigators, so we were on cloud nine the whole time haha. It was just good to be in a setting where we can be normal, where they can see who we are and how we live not on Sundays as a church. Spent most of the night there, ate some good food, and helped clean up. It was also fun to see all the kids dressed up in their costumes! (They did a trunk-or-treat after dinner.) 

Thursday we had exchanges with the Sister Training Leaders after planning, and it was a BUSY day. We visited with some members, stopped by a few former investigators, did some tracting. Finished out the night at the Weyandts (Phil our investigator and Lisa his member wife). They had kind of a crazy week this past week, so we mostly just loved and listened. They are awesome though, they just keep moving forward! We set a goal baptism date with him for January, and he keeps telling us he is really looking forward to it! Sometimes I forgot how huge of a miracle it is that we are teaching him- and how far he's come since we first started teaching him. This truly is Heavenly Father's work, not ours!

Friday was Zone Training Meeting in Toledo. They asked me to do a musical number, which epically failed because I haven't been able to practice anything besides hymns for the past 8 months. But I did it anyways, cause that's how my mother raised me :) The meeting was good, I'll be honest I was exhausted and probably didn't get as much out of it as I could. What I did get though was LISTENING is really important when we are helping people recognize the spirit. Hearing their thoughts and ideas really gets them to recognize it themselves, without us having to directly point it out. 

Sunday, was the primary program! Another cool opportunity for people to invite their non-member friends to, and they actually come! They started with a song called "If I listen with my Heart" that is beautiful! It was an awesome way to start the meeting, especially for those who have never been to our church. I think it was sung at this past General Womens Meeting too.The spirit is so strong with those kids, and it's those basic truths they know and teach that are really what this gospel is all about. I was reminded that I really am "a Child of God" and he loves me! That's a simple truth that it easy to forget sometimes.  

Alright, sorry again for the novel. Love you all, have a Happy Halloween, and enjoy the start of a fresh new month! 

Sister Maughan

p.s. sorry no pictures again this week. We took some, but they are random and blurry, I"ll try to take some better ones soon! :)

Monday, October 24, 2016

"Don't put yourself down - Let others do it for you !"

This week went by SOOOO fast! Probably because a million things happened. When you have lots to do, time goes by faster!

So last Monday was good, we had dinner at a members house, then went to visit Sister Cooper again. She gave me a bracelet she made (she makes BEAUTIFUL jewelry with another sister in the ward and sells it!) that says "I ❤ Jesus". Best thing ever, I wear it every day now! :) Then we get home, and one of the counselors in the bishopbric wanted us to call him. Long story short, he asked us if we could give talks the coming Sunday. Woot! Yay for 6 days notice. Haha I bet you can all guess when I actually wrote my talk though. (Yep, Sunday morning.)

Tuesday I was DREADING, because Tuesdays are usually a struggle to find things to do. We tried to contact an old referral in the morning, but we're pretty sure he just ignored us knocking on his door. We had one lesson with a less active member in the morning, and then the typical NOTHING for a few hours. We were struggling, and by the time 5:00 rolled around it was raining and we were not in the mood to do finding time. But we worked up our motivation by telling ourselves motivation follows action, and went to contact a family we talked to the first day Sister Heer came. They were outside on their porch, so we got to talk to them for awhile! Fun fact- they spend every summer in LOGAN, UTAH. Yep, pretty cool. We invited them to learn more, and they said sure! So keep them in your prayers!

The miracles didn't stop there though. "When it rains, it pours" I guess. We were about to go contact another old referral, when our phone came through with two messages at once. That usually means we received a media referral! Sure enough we looked, and there was a name, address, phone number, and a note that said this person WANTED to actually hear the missionary lessons, that's why they went online. Sister Heer and I were like "what, this never happens?" haha. We called him (Jacob) right then (we are supposed to contact media referrals ASAP) and set an appointment for that Friday. 

Right after that, we were actually able to contact the other old referral and she was super nice, gave us her phone number, and said we can come back. 

So the day went from meh- to A-MEH-ZING in like an hour and a half! Haha yah I know that was cheesy. It was just cool, because we seriously had NO motivation, but because we went out and worked, Heavenly Father showed us the miracles that were waiting for us!

The rest of the week went really good, we had interviews with President Brown Thursday morning. After lunch, we tried to stop by a lady we'd talked to before, but she wasn't home... but their SQUIRREL was! I get out of the car, and this squirrel starts coming straight for me. NOT normal. I always thought squirrels were cute and would joke about catching one and keeping it, but having one actually not be afraid of me was terrifying! Sister Heer thought it was hilarious, and we basically spent 15 minutes trying to take a selfie with this squirrel haha. We think they probably feed it, so it was coming up to us for a treat. We sure didn't have any, but Sister Heer was holding a leaf in her hand while trying to take a selfie with it- and the squirrel took it out of her hand! It was crazy! Random moments like that make the whole day sometimes :) 


Look closely, the squirrel is right up by the tire of the car ! 


Sister Heer feeding the squirrel a leaf !

Friday went really well, another huge miracle happened with Jacob's lesson. Since he's a male, we have to bring another adult women with us in order to meet with him, and we'd been trying to find people all week... and NO ONE could come. Friday morning rolled around and we had one more member to call and ask... but she ended up being busy. Needless to say, we were a little stressed out. HUGE tender mercy was one of the sisters we'd asked the day before texted us saying that her plans got cancelled because of the rain that morning, so she could come if we needed her to! Wow, made me be grateful for the rain for once. And members that are willing to sacrifice their time! The lesson with Jacob went really well, I'll keep you updated on how things go!

Friday was also painting nails day at the nursing home. That's always a highlight of my week. This week we had a TON of ladies come, so we were there for quite awhile. 

Wow, sorry this is super long this week. We'll jump to Sunday, where we gave talks in Sacrament meeting! It went well, except everyone was basically asleep. Makes me wonder if we always look like that, or if it was just a rough week for everyone. The quote for my subject line is from a lady that we talked to Sunday night, she's roomates with one of our less-actives. We were just talking about how we need to be nicer to ourselves and forgive ourselves, and that's what she threw that quote out there. Haha we laughed so hard... because it's SO true! There are so many people in the world already bashing on you, so why do it to yourself too? 

Sorry that this was all over the place this week. There were just so many little miracles it was hard to know which ones to write about, and actually remember all of them. 

Love you, talk to you all again next week!

Sister Maughan

                               Some fun Fall Pictures of Sister Heer and Sister Maughan








Monday, October 17, 2016

"I am a Child of God --But a work in progress."

I was looking through my notebook this week and found that gem of a quote by a member in Strongsville. Wow I needed that reminder, to remember who I REALLY am... and that I'm still learning to become more like my Heavenly Father! Sometimes I forget, and that's when I tend to struggle.

This week was pretty okay honestly. Per usual, new transfers tend to feel like we are starting ALL over again, so there were lots of times we just had to go out and tract this week! Probably took one too many stress breaks too, but I never seem to really feel guilty about that. :) They are so needed sometimes! 

Haha so this was my week: Monday was a pretty normal preparation day. Got the laundry, groceries, etc done and went to play soccer with the Zone. And got a smoothie, yum! Tuesday (Happy Birthday dad!), nothing really happened. We had district meeting in the morning, then all of our appointments fell through as we went throughout the day. So it was a relief that we had a Relief Society activity that night we were bringing one of our returning members to! It was a cute activity, focused on service in the community. And the food (giant pretzels with cheese, and home-made orange julius) just made it all the better :)

Wednesday made up for the lack of nothing happening Tuesday, because we stayed pretty busy. Did some service, met with a few people. One miracle that happened that day was we randomly decided to stop by someone that the sisters had taught before- and she was really struggling, so we were able to help her find peace. Little moments like that make up for ALL the hard times. 
Thursday and Friday were pretty average. Saturday morning we got to help at a place called "Hannah's Socks." They donate socks to homeless shelters and such, and the ward has done a bunch of service there before. Basically, we were just in this warehouse, unpackaging socks and counting how many pairs there were for about an hour. It was actually really fun! Haha the things we find fun as missionaries :)

Sunday we had a Halloween dinner at out bishop's house. His wife had the house all decorated spooky, and we ate rolls in the shape of bones, Jello that looked like brains, and some other fun Halloween food. Love the members here! 

Well, that's probably all this week. Love you guys!

Sister Maughan

Monday, October 10, 2016

Miracles

This week has been SO fun! Wow transfers are an adventure, but Sister Heer just is magic or something, so much has happened in these last few days!


Sister Maughan and her new companion, Sister Heer 


So first, transfer day (Wednesday) was so much fun! Sister Strand and I rode with Sister Gibbs and Sister Sorenson in the red mini van to Cleveland :). Takes about 2 hours, so we just sang Mo-tab and talked about #missionlife. Once we got to the mission office (Cleveland- I love it!) it's usually chaos for a little while. But it was SO fun to have all of my companions in one place! Sister Henderson is leaving Strongsville, so her and Sister Barnes had to be there. Then Sister Gibbs was with us because she was getting transferred. And Sister Strand and Sister Heer of course were there. Haha we went to Panera with ALL the sisters after... probably about 20 sister missionaries. One group of elderly people stopped Sister Heer and I and asked "where's the event going on?"- wondering why there were so many of us dressed up in one place. So the first hour of being with Sister Heer we had a cool missionary opportunity to explain who we were and what we were all doing! It was awesome :) 

That first day- we were just walking around Perrysburg for finding time, and talked to two people who were willing to have us come back! That hasn't happened in awhile around here. It didn't even stop there though. Later that night we were teaching Phil and brought a member with us. We were leaving the appointment, about to get in our car, when we notice the member that came with us talking to someone outside on the street. She's waving us over, so we get out and talk to them. Our member invited this total stranger to come to a Chili Cook off our ward is doing this month and told her who we are and why we are teaching Phil. It was AWESOME. Kind of made me feel guilty- because our member was being a better missionary at that point than I was. 
I LOVE little miracles like that.

The rest of the week went really well. Mostly just normal missionary stuff, but we kept really busy. We also celebrated Sister Heer's half way mark one day at Chick-Fil-A. Now she only has 9 months left! 

Sunday, the miracles kept going. We had a random former investigator show up at church. Also, one of the members that hasn't been in months, if not years showed up. So incredible! I kind of felt bad, because I wanted to introduce Sister Heer to everyone... but we just didn't have time! I'd been praying for peace (because I can get pretty stressed out during transfers), and then Heavenly Father was like "Here, have some people to take care of." Haha not my definition of peace actually... but ended up being just what I needed of course. It took my attention off myself, and I realized that whatever happened that day would be what Heavenly Father needed to happen. I just had to let go and roll with it. 

Long story short (haha not really that was kind of a novel), I am grateful it's preparation day today, so I can have time to breathe. 

They truly are there, you just have to slow down. "take time to smell the roses", and see God's hand in it all. He loves us, and is involved in every detail of our lives.

Love, Sister Maughan

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Hi Again !

Hello friends! 

This week was FOREVER long... and super fast per usual- mission life. But we FINALLY have transfer information!! Sister Strand and I have been so stressed about transfers this time around for some reason, so it's a HUGE relief to finally know what's going on.  I'm staying here in Perrysburg! Sister Strand is headed out to Lorain (in the Cleveland stake! I'm so excited for her! I heart Cleveland!), and my new comp will be Sister Heer. Rumour has it she came out the transfer before me- I think with Sister Carter. I'll get to meet her tomorrow and will send you pics next week. I am so excited for this new transfer and for all the miracles it will bring. Things have been slow and rough around here lately, so it will be great to get a new mind and new ideas for how to do the work.

As for this past week, it was a little bit crazy! We had planned the whole week out, had our lessons scheduled in and it was a pretty full week to be honest. Then we got a call from the Sister Training Leaders telling us they wanted to do a double exchange on Wednesday, where all four of us go to their area for the day. So that took a whole day of lessons out of our schedule.

Tuesday, we drove to district meeting at the church... and NO ONE was there. Called the District Leader and he informed us there wasn't any district meeting, because we have a Zone meeting on Friday. What? No one tells us anything! Haha so Tuesday we ended up going to Toledo to have our car maintenanced (is that a word?) instead of having district meeting. Then had to reschedule our lessons we had planned for Friday, because we had a meeting for a few hours. Oh planning... sometimes I wonder why we do it because half the time it doesn't work out anyways! :)

Then we had GENERAL CONFERENCE! Wasn't it amazing? If you haven't watched all the sessions yet... you better get on it ASAP. The spirit was so strong, and I learned more than I can even say. I especially loved the talks on missionary work. Elder Anderson I think and Elder Oaks closed both Saturday sessions with encouraging us to just TRY it- and to pray for missionary opportunities! I loved what Elder Oaks said about "we all need to do all of these" and then he listed a few principles. 

We watched all four sessions at the church. Saturday we were there with our district. Sunday morning it was just Sister Strand and I, plus 2 other members of the ward. Saturday afternoon we had the whole chapel to ourselves! Definitely different than how I usually watch conference. The music was incredible, the talks were incredible... I just love conference. :)

Alright, well this week should be an adventurous one! I hope everything is going well for all of you, and if it isn't... that you are still pushing on. I love you all! 

Sister Maughan 





Abby said --"We went to the Mall in Toledo last Preparation Day... 
and they are putting a jamba in! 
So of course... pictures by Jamba signs are necessary!"



Abby made Fruity Rice Krispy Treats for her District.  
We sent her the ingredients in a package !




Abby's District in Perrysburg

Abby said --"Umm... I never know what to do with these kids. They are dorks."
Back left to right is Elder Wheelright, Elder Nichols, Elder Durrant, Sister Strand, me. 
Elder Frandsen awkwardly off to the side. --And Elder Clawson and Elder Edwards in front.