Monday, November 3, 2014

Happy Halloween :)

Hi!! Oh this week. Where do I even begin! 

On Monday, we flew down to Stockholm to sleep over with my trainer, Syster Hill! IT WAS THE BEST. I love sleepovers :) And the flight was a very pleasant hour of my life compared to the 19 it took to get here...(#notbitter) We had an awesome mission conference on Tuesday with the northern half of the mission! President and Syster Beckstrand are honestly the best. I loved every part of it! I love seeing my friends, I love hearing from the Beckstrands, and mostly I just love being around other people who understand what I am doing on a daily basis. Missionary-ing in Sweden is no cake walk, folks. But it's fun nonetheless :)

So Halloween!:) Swedes have a small bit of a struggle with this dear holiday. I had one ward member tell me it was a vulgar American tradition and that's why they don't celebrate it. Call me vulgar (and American for that matter), but they are missing out! It's fine, whatever, more candy for us ;) For Halloween, we tracted (almost like trick-or-treating but people aren't as nice to you and you have to bring your own candy. lame.) and had tacos at a member's house! The cute members, the Näslunds, tried to make us feel right at home with pumpkin pie and godis (candy) galore. Unfortunately, their dog got into the pumpkin pie before we could eat it...I was a little bit bummed. I may have made up for it by eating a bajillion pieces of candy, so it really did feel like American Halloween ;) The Näslunds asked us all about Halloween in America and what we do and if people actually decorate their houses all scary. It was fun to feel like I was the cool foreign person for a little bit :) But we had such a fun night! And to top it all off, I saw the Northern Lights!!!! They were too weak to get pictures, but I felt super cool. 
The extent of the Halloween decorations in Sweden
Halloween with the Näslunds
My Halloween costume! Going all out, you know me ;)
Instead of Halloween, Sweden celebrates Allahelgons Dag, or All Saints Day, on November 1st. They light lanterns at every grave in a cemetery so they shine at night! It is beautiful! I thought it would be kinda creepy, but Bolton and I were both impressed with how pretty it was. We need to adopt that too America :)

Lanterns lit at the cemetery for Allahelgons Dag (All Saints Day)
Missionary work this week has been interesting, to say the least. We have been dropped by like every investigator (even the cute Persian family :( we were so sad!), we weren't able to meet with Ehsan or Stefan at all, and we did a lot of swing bys. Aaaaaa lot. It was one of those weeks where you just need a fresh start! I have been calling every potential investigator in the area book, we have been going through old investigators...It has been hard to find interested people! However, we did receive the news that Stefan's mom has finally approved of him being baptized, so YAY! :) We are going over to his family's house tonight to decide a date and get things ready again :) 

I was reading in Ether this week, and Moroni is talking there about his weaknesses as a writer. He says he feels bad that his words aren't perfect, because he knows how important they are in the Lord's work. The Lord comforts him and says, "Fools mock, but they shall mourn, and my grace is sufficient for the meek, that they shall take no advantage of your weakness." When I read that, it made me feel so much better about my work this week. I put in my best effort, and the Lord was pleased. No one can hinder His work if they are putting forth their best effort. Everything happens in the Lord's timing. No one can take advantage of my weaknesses as a missionary. The same goes for all of you! :) No matter your situation or what you are doing, the Lord is proud of the effort, not the result. 

Okay sorry for the Serious Sally moment, but I have those sometimes because I am set apart to do that. Haha :) But! FUN FAAACTS
-...I am running out of these and I have only been on a mission 6 months. That is a little embarrassing but it's fine.
-The lakes are freezing over here! Apparently they get thick enough to walk on and even DRIVE on in December. You could say I'm a little excited for that :)
-We are having a surströmming party this week with the ward...Surströmming is rotten (okay *fermented*) fish that people here in Norrland think is the best thing ever. I have to try it on Saturday. Extra prayers would be appreciated. They say if you touch it, the awful smell stays on your hands for days after, no matter how many showers you take...yaaaaay culture

Haha xoxoxoxo love you all!!! Have a good week :)

Love, Syster Mod
Syster Mod and Syster Bolton
Erin lives at the little blue dot at the top of Sweden. That's Luleå.
She celebrated her 6-month mark with a balloon and a burger. Gotta love this girl! No burning tights. She needs those!
Erin lives in this beautiful place. It's gorgeous!

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