How are you family?
I hope you are all doing well. As for me, I have been busy...
So last Monday night we went over to pick Sister Luft up from the mission home (we had her companion while she was at her funeral dinner) and while we were there Sister Tew started making comments about how she wished that there could be sisters at the airport along with the assistants to welcome the new missionaries... we all got talking about who could possibly go and Sister Tew turned and said to me, “You’ll already be at the office and you are such a great greeter... will you come with us?" I said "okay" And secretly inside I was jumping for joy because I love seeing the poor new missionaries walk off the plane like the walking dead. Ha!
So I went with them to the airport and everything was so disorganized. The APs got there first and Sister Tew and I got there seconds after them. We were all late because of traffic so when we got to the place where we were to meet the new arriving missionaries, the plane had already landed. The elders were waiting for us (President was still not there lol). The elders went with the APs to get the luggage and Sister Tew and I waited for the sisters to come out. The Elders were arguing with me trying to convince me that the sisters had already come. I kept trying to assure them that they just got off of a 2 hour plane ride and they all needed to go to the bathroom, and girls take longer than guys... they didn't believe me. But guess who was right?
I loved seeing Sister Tew's reaction when we saw them coming. She was SOOOO excited! We welcomed them to the Great California Long Beach Mission and gave them big hugs! They looked a lot better then I imagine myself looking in that moment 4 1/2 months ago...
So we get their luggage and walk down to the loading dock, and while we are waiting Sister Oler (one of the new missionaries straight from the MTC) starts talking to a lady named Christine. She is doing an awesome job by herself but I could tell that she didn't really know how to bring the Gospel up so I went and helped her out. I told her how we were missionaries and she told us how she has relatives that are Mormon (let me remind you that I had the Presidents wife and the President observing my contacting skills... stress!) We talked a little bit more but then our van pulled up and we had to start loading luggage, so we ended the contact and went on loading. After our luggage was loaded and on its way back to the mission office we started walking to the parking garage and I mention to Sister Tew that I wish I had a Pass-a-Long Card to give to that lady (I left my bag in the car) and Sister Tew stops in her tracks searches through her purse and immediately starts to run in the direction of this lady. She is so awesome!
So we get to the parking garage and all the new sisters, Sister and President Tew, and I file into the elevator and just when the door is about the close a little old couple named John and Maria ask us to hold the door... We hold it for them and welcome them in with big smiles and happy hellos. We start talking and it turns into another contact but now I was in the spotlight (not the same spotlight I like to be in....) and I have all these new baby missionaries watching me along with President and Sister Tew... Even more stress! I made the little couple laugh though and I invited them to stop by the church building in Fountain Valley. I walked away feeling good!
So then we get back to the church and feed the new missionaries breakfast while President Tew is figuring out their temporary companions, then off they go!
While we were waiting for the vista waiters and Spanish speakers to get in (they all came in at different times which never happens and is super annoying) my new companions and I loaded all of my stuff into the car. We then went and chopped up fruit and got lunch ready. Sister Fulgham and Mickelson would have rather been out doing missionary work but we are white washing (which means none of us have been in the area before) and the elders we share the ward with are the APs, so they were busy and couldn't give us any information about anything until 6:30 pm..., so my companions helped me get lunch ready and then we went to our apartment and cleaned (It was the most disgusting thing ever. I swear to you the elders that lived there before never cleaned ever, not once.) I had to clean the bathroom and I wanted to shoot myself in the face. Later that night we went to meet the APs at the office but they were an hour late so we just sat outside and got to know each other. When the elders finally showed up we were able to learn about our area and that was fun. They gave us a bunch of potentials and tips on how to work the area.
So the thing about the El Dorado ward is that it covers two stakes the LBE and the Cerritos Stakes. We are over the entire Cerritos Stake boundaries which to every other mission is small, but to this mission... its super huge! The elders have always just focused on the LBE side so Cerritos has really been neglected.
The area is awesome though! I love the ward. I would be okay serving here for the rest of my mission!
XOXOXOX, Sister Brown