Monday, August 9, 2010

Far, Far Away on Nebraska's Plains

Dear Family,

Sophie's Super Suppers look amazing! I am very impressed with how professional the brochure and everything looks. I wish I could have some super suppers ... actually, the members feed us very well out here. I've been spoiled recently with a lot of Iowa and Nebraska sweet corn (on the cob ... yes, I like it again).

I'm glad you had a good time at the fair. It looks like I'll be going to the Nebraska State Fair near the end of August! That's right, I've been transferred to Grand Island, Nebraska and the members we live with are just a few blocks away from the state fair grounds. So, we'll have to go one of these p-days. My new companion is Sister Bonelli. She's from southern California, was studying vocal performance at a community college, and has a wheat allergy. That means I get to eat her toast/bread whenever we go out to eat! She's great and has really helped me get more familiar with the area and the people. Singing with her is way fun because she has such a beautiful voice.

To answer mom's questions: the release date on my ministerial certificate says 01 March 2011. I'll probably extend my mission for another transfer though. And I've decided that I'd prefer flying home over you picking me up. Since I am now far, far away on Nebraska's plains I no longer serve in the Trail Center. But when I did, we would be in there about 4 days out of the week for half a day. Apparently, I just missed seeing the Welch family by five minutes last week. I got a nice note from them though. Do you remember seeing Katie (who plays trombone) in Nauvoo last year? Well this year she saw me at the Trail Center and I took her and her friends on a tour. I thought that was a fun little coincidence.

Tell Julie thank you for the package of clothes. I got it Thursday morning and opened it during our long drive out west in the transfer van. I wore my new skirt and shirt on Friday and it was so fun to wear new, cute clothes. It kept me smiling all day!

We are teaching some great people out here in Grand Island. Ann is preparing to be baptized on August 21st and should be able to quit smoking by then. She's probably in her late 40s, has a husband and 2 kids, and has been meeting with the sisters for a little while now. I love teaching her because she'll start bearing her testimony spontaneously. Apparently she was really angry with God in the past because she felt like he had taken her loved ones (her parents) before their time. Every time we go over she'll say how much happier she is since she started reading the Book of Mormon and praying and having us teach her. She says everything used to be gray, but now she can see the color. Now she can laugh and find joy in the little things like taking her dog for a walk. She even came to church for the first time in years, and even though she didn't have an amazing experience, still wants to keep coming. I just love hearing investigators and recent converts share their testimonies and pray to express gratitude and love for their Heavenly Father and the gospel. It is the greatest thing.

I hope you all enjoy the rest of your summer! I love you and pray for you daily.

Sister Bailey Mortensen

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