Monday, October 24, 2011

Somos las Hermanas de Michuacan!

Hi All!!!
Well, here is the news you've all been waiting for. *drum roll* I've been transfered to La Joya, in South West Phoenix. We have part of our area in Tullison, and part of our area in what I think is Phoenix itself. I'm with Hermana Wells. I don't know if you remember but five months ago (or so) we went on exchanges out in Wickenburg together. We're the two sister missionaries in the mission both from Michigan. Hence the title of this e-mail. Michuacan is a state in Mexico, and it's always fun to joke and say I'm from there, so now we say we both are. Actually, we started of with me trying to tell people I was from China because we both didn't want to say we were from the same state, but when people find out I don't speak any Chinese they don't believe me. Now I've dropped back to saying that I'm from Michican... and sometimes I add that my family doesn't live there any more and see if anyone takes the bait.

Now for some news about the area, we're both new here... until Wednesday morning there were Elders serving in the area we cover. It's a pretty interesting experience getting moved into a new area. We've certainly been busy. The first big "project" of coming here was cleaning up where we live. I remember Mom talking about getting moved into an apartment at the end of her mission where Elder's had lived, and now I understand what she meant about all the cleaning they had to do. Thursday morning I was up at 5am (I couldn't sleep...) and cleaned from 5 am until about 2 in the afternoon. Friday we got up early again and cleaned for a few hours, and then this morning we finished the last of the deep cleaning by about 10 am. To say the least it way pretty gross. But, now it's all clean, and we quite like the apartment.

The area we work in reminds me a lot of my first area down in Aguila. I really am loving it here, and it's fun because the ward is super excited to have sister missionaries again. There were sisters here about a year ago, but they got pulled out to open a different area. That's pretty normal for the Spanish sisters areas, There's about 10 or so Spanish Wards across the mission (by my best count) and 6 companionships of Spanish sisters, so they tend to rotate us through the different areas every so often. We are teaching a lot of people here. We've been here for 5 days now and we're still trying to meet everyone. It's really going to keep us busy, and we're trying not to drop the ball anywhere.

Now for a little about my companion, it turns out we have a lot more in common than just being from the same state. We'll start at the begining... Our dad's have the same career (chemical engineer), we were born in the same hospital, we both went to the same university (BYU), we were both in the same college in the university (School of Fine Arts), we've both been on the mission for around a year, and when we get home we'll both go back to BYU to finish school. There are a few other things that I'm sure I'm forgetting, but it's pretty funny to see how much we have in common. Hna Wells served the first part of her mission in El Salvador, but had to come home because of health complications. So last December she came here to finish her mission. I was a little surprised when we got put together, mostly because we are some of the "oldest" sisters on the mission. But I'm super excited. She's a really good missionary, and I'm excited to serve with her.

I'm not sure what else to tell you all about. It's really just been a lot of trying to get ourselves pulled together and to figure out what is going on. We're really really busy and absolutly loving it. President told me at transfers what he is planning for my last 4 transfers and I'm pretty happy with what he is planning on. So I guess that means there are probably no more surprises in store for me, but I think I'll keep you all in the dark so that atleast someone is surprised. I will tell you though that Hna Wells will finish her mission here with me in La Joya (she goes home in January). We're super excited to spend all of the holidays together and to work like crazy here. This is one of the busiest areas for the Spanish work in this whole mission, so we've got a lot to do, and really big shoes to fill. We both love being out and working, so this should be fun. It's also fun because this is a bike area... except at night. We've been told to use our bikes until it gets really dark and then to use the car. I've done so much biking in the last few days and it is so fun. We run into so many people out on the street, and the majority of them speak Spanish! I've done more Spanish contacting in the last week than I think I did in my entire time in Agua Fria. I'm also back in an all Spanish district, so we get do to everything in Spanish... and my entire district all serves in La Joya. This is one of the wards in the mission that has 3 sets of missionaries. It's a lot of fun being with the other missionaries and working with them, and there's a lot of combined effort here between the different sets of missionaries.

I think that's about it for the exciting news of the week. There will probably be more next week as we get to know the people here in the area. We'll see what we find. This is going to be a super busy transfer!

Love you lots!
Hermana Okeson

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