Thursday, December 19, 2013

Singing to old french people, being a stalker for a little bit and avoiding bizing old men

Dear Family and Friends,
This week went by fast.
 We have eaten a lot of chocolate and nuts and dried fruit. (French people eat that a lot during christmas, that and sea food and that wierd ground up meat stuff and cheese and meat and soup etc. There are all these stands around Centre-ville that toast chesnuts and I've been wanting to try them since forever because they smell heavenly, but I didn't want to buy a whole package because I probably wouldn't eat it all and people say that they don't taste as good as they smell. You can see the big dilema( how do you spell that?) I had. Luckily, I asked a guy we contacted what he was eating and it just so happened to be roasted chesnuts and he let us try some. They were pretty good, I'm glad I finally got to try them. It made me very happy. This week we were on the bus feeling especially exhausted when I look out the window and ask Is that Kéjain? There he was crossing the street. it had been hard trying to meet up with him again so it really suprised me that he was right there. So I sprint to the front of the bus and jump off at the stop, I pull my companion behind me as we are sneaking behind our ami (after we caught up to him) trying to figure out how to talk to him without seeming creepy (which we were) I did feel like a stalker for a bit. Eventually we just walked up to him said hi, he jumped a little and said I was just about to respond to your text and how did you find me. We ended up having a lesson on the bench right next us and it turned out great. We also saw jacqueline this week, who is already in love with the Book of Mormon, which is great and the ward loves her. We also contacted this 100 old guy who wanted to talk about american politics and ended our contact with a suprise biz on the cheek. He moved fast, so far I've been able to avoid the bizes of men. I feel like I've lost a tournament or something, I was hoping to last my whole mission without that happening. Oh well, he wasn't creepy at all at least. We also had the ward christmas party, where the ward gave us huge boxes of food to take home. and we also sang at some old folks home. It was fun to sing in french and we sang white christmas in english. It was funny to hear the members try and sing the words.
I gotta run
I send pictures next week and info for skyping
Dieu vous aime
Soeur russell

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Tango invites, missed trains, and another transfer in Aix

Dear family and friends,
I'm staying in Aix with Soeur Bowman! It feels kinda weird to not be changing things up, but I'm excited to see what its like to stay in one place more than one transfer. And I'm happy to be with Soeur Bowman for another transfer, she is great. :) This week I had an exchange with the sister from Toulon, so in the morning, I got on a train with Soeur Bowman to drop her off in Toulon with Soeur Kupfer to be her companion for the day. And we arrived just in time to see the that I was supposed to return on drive away, with the other sister on it by herself. So I spent some time in toulon and got on the next train an hour later. So that was a weird experience, being in my old ville in a trio and then on a train by myself. The rest of the exchange went great though. The rest of this week was a lot of contacting. Right before going into the church, we had a great conversation with a man who used to be a famous soccer player who tried teaching us spanish and french and said he could teach us and all the other missionaries how to tango in the church parking lot. We'll see what happens with that.
This week, we met with one of our recent converts who is the sweetest women I have ever met and she is such a great example of someone who has embraced the gospel and became a better person because of it. The gospel really helps us in every way, in every aspect of our lives. I've definitely seen that on my mission.
I gotta go mais je vous aime et que Dieu vous benis!
à la semaine prochaine
Soeur Russel

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

weird miracle fountains, I love chocolate cake and being drafted into solos

Dear Family and friends,
This week has been really cool because all of a sudden, we have been able to meet with amis that we have been trying to see all transfer and we found a golden ami just a couple days ago. We were finally able to meet with an old ami named antionette, who came to the Elder's baptism and also church this week. And were able to meet up with an older lady named Jacqueline, who  wants us over all time and wants to help us plant wheat (its a french tradition) and is just a cute person all together. This week we also got to go to the Zone leader's Amis' baptisms. Two of them got baptized and throughout the entire meeting, everyone had a huge smile on their face and I could not keep from smiling, There was such a feeling of happiness in the room. Right afterwards, Soeur Bowman and I were contacting and we stopped at a crosswalk, waiting for the light to turn red and a guy pulled up on his bike next to us. I gave him a smile and he smiled back and then the light turned and he rode off. I could hear Soeur Bowman next to me saying over and over " I want to talk to him, I want to talk to him" and we happened to see him one minute later looking at a new statue. Both of us instantly felt we had to talk to him, so we went and stood awkwardly in front of the statue with him, trying to figure a way to start up a conversation. Thankfully he started it first, by explaining to us what the statue  meant. It was a really wierd statue. It had a few dates on the pedastal and it had half of a cougar on top who had water coming out of his mouth and there is a thing on the pedastal that sometimes is on fire and the cougar is hollow and it has a man upside down inside of it. Its a wierd statue. And he said its in memorial for some war and how it is always remembered in the cougars heart or something like that. He read it off of a sign. We kept talking and we invited him to church and he came and we are seeing him later this week! His name is kéjain and he is chinese and he asks the best questions ever. So we are really excited to teach him. 
my english is slowly getting worse and worse I have found. Especially today, I was trying to read something out loud in english ans I was replacing words with french words and giving things accents were there aren't supposed to be any. And I don't even Have an excuse because my french is by no means astounding. oh well. I got your package mommy and we loved the little christmas tree, its already decorated with the lights. This week we had thanksgiving dinner with some members at a restaurant and we had a thanksgiving lunch with yummy pie and homemade stew at our apartment with the other sisters. We loved the stew so much that we are making it again this week. I forgot my camera so I can't send any pictures mais la prochain foi. for the dinner with the members, we went to a restaurant where the server actually ended up being our neighbor and we had some of the best chocolate cake ever. It was great. We were there with two other elders and a member couple. the wife is american and her husband is from Belgium, but speaks perfect english and he is hilarious, between the six of us we were laughing all throughout dinner. 
Lately the ward has been volunteering me to sing at things. Sometimes I'm not even paying attention when they volunteer me, but next thing I know, I being told when we will be rehearsing this song or this thing. Its funny because there are other people in the ward that sing as good if not better than me. And it will be sad if I have to leave next week, because I won't be able to do all those things for them. Next time I'm writing, I'll be letting you know if I stay or not.
I gotta run, but I love you all and so does God!
Toute est possible avec dieu!
Soeur Russell

Happy late birthday to Zach and Happy early Thanksgiving!

Dear family and friends,
So has Zachy asked anybody out yet? Let me know when he does. This week, we didn't have very many lessons, but we did a singing streetboard for the music night that was on thursday, and made a lot of cookies for the music night. On thursday, we were helping everyone prepare for the activity, when suddenly, the elders in charge of it, came up to me. they are elders who want to become broadway stars and concert pianests and such, so we were all pretty excited to hear it as well. But apparently a couple of members were supposed to be a part of it and they didn't show up, so they asked me to be in a duet. So we ran through it once, and luckily I was just singing the melody, called it good and later, I got to sing in the soirée en musique in front of all the ward and their friends. I thought it was just ok, but now the ward is asking me to sing in retirement homes with them and to sing at the ward christmas activity. If I'm still here next transfer. But the rest of the activity was great. The elders did a great job. Poor things though, this is the eighth time they have done it and the elder who sings probably has the most sore throat ever. Other than that, we contacted a lot and had a crepe night with a french family. It was funny because half of the family spoke english as well as french, so every once in a while, a family member would launch into english, and half of the family members would join in with fluid english and the others would alternate between spitting out every english word they know and telling the rest of the family to speak in french. One of the family members is our dmp and he served in england. So he has a kinda english accent from his mission, a kinda american accent from the missionaries he served with and currently works with and of course, a french accent. We taught on the way home what the phrase rev' your engine meant. He wanted to talk about drag racing. That is so cool how many awesome things are going on in the Powell ward. This is definitely God's work and he knows what he is doing.
This week, we have really enjoyed eating lots of soup and hot bread and hot chocolate. This week we are going to try and make a pot au feu, a pot of fire, which is basically a really yummy stew. We will see how that will turn out. :) But we are very happy to have eletricity.
I love you all Happy thanksgiving!
Dieu nous aime plus que nous pouvons comprendre! Il vous aime!
Je vous aime aussi!
Soeur Russell