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Tuesday, December 15, 2015

From a city girl, to a cowgirl, to the next Indiana Jones



Well, here I am sitting here in my cozy barn, eating some of Sister Jensen's homemade kettle corn and thinking to myself how I am going to be able to even know where to begin this letter.


The only thing that is going through my head right now the the Christmas song that goes ๐ŸŽถglory glory hallelujah! Glory glory hallelujah! ๐ŸŽถ
Probably because this week was jam packed straight all up in here with miracles!!!


No one is sick and the whether has been unreal! It literally feels like it is April. But this next week we are supposed to have ice storms, so bye bye my sunshine!


We have been buzzing around like little bees this week. Sister Jensen and I have really been trying to focus a lot on less active members and recent converts to help strengthen their testimonies and get them to the temple. I would guess around 60% of the members here aren't active in the church. A thought has kept coming to my mind is why would Heavenly Father let more of His children come into His church if we can't even keep the ones that are already in it.


Though we have a good amount of investigators, 3 of which are still planned for baptism, we won't be able to get anymore progressing towards baptism if the branch itself isn't strong. What's the point of baptizing if they aren't going to stay? So Sister Jensen and I have really made it a huge goal and priority to help all of these less actives.


We have made a special effort to help these people and one sweet lady who is near and dear to my heart came on Sunday for the first time in a year or so. She was the only one. But we know that the worth of souls is great in the sight of God. I fully believe that Angels were rejoicing and high fiving when she walked into the building.


Something that I have learned over and over again it seems like is that this gospel is for everyone. The gospel and doctrine that Christ taught when He was on the earth is what will bring us true happiness. Doesn't matter who we are, what we have done, or what our circumstances are. There is a place for everyone is God's kingdom and everyone is loved and important to Him.

I think you would all like to know that in addition to being a cow girl, I am now the new Indiana Jones. There is really no point in being in the boonies if you don't go on a few hidden off road adventures. On Friday night Sister Jensen and I were looking for a less actives house and the GPS got us lost. The first time we were lost we were heading down this one way dirt path. There was nothing but trees on either side of us and there was no where to turn around! The path was so skinny it was impossible to turn around, so we just kept driving until eventually there was just barely enough room to turn around. When we finally got back on the main road we looked at the GPS to find out that we had typed in the right address.. Just the wrong town. I could just picture God standing up there in the clouds shaking His head and laughing. So we typed in the right address and the right town and we headed on down the road, through the woods and up the hill to the less actives house. But then when we got to the road the GPS told us to go down is was closed and blocked off and private.


I right there felt like an old hill billy redneck from those old TV shows. You know, the one who is like 500 pounds, wearing a old tank top with grease stains all over it, only one tooth and one hair on his head. Scratching his head and saying, " Well, now whatta we gunna dew!"


So we banged our heads on the dashboard a few times, patted each other's shoulders trying to make each other not feel so silly and sang "On the Road Again." As we typed the address of our next appointment into the GPS.


Well folks, 3rd times the charm because the GPS took us on some unknown off road dirt path. One way, with deep ditches on each side and trees sticking out all over the place! As we went up the path it started to not be a path anymore. But a legit Indiana Jones trail ride. Just like the one at DisneyLand and everything! I felt like we were on an secret mission to deliver gold up Mt Everest to the king of a long lost ancient civilization.


Don't worry, we didn't die. And we made it to our appointment on time too! Woo!


Then the next day we got to go play with the cows again! Oh my goodness it was so fun! There were like 3 brand new baby calfs. It was sad because one of them was sick and not doing to good. But we fed them their milk and they had a nice warm heat lamp to lay under. I also made a new friend. He is a little mini goat that followed me all over the place. Every time I stopped petting him he would bump his head into my hand and try and get me to pet him again. I also got to pet the horses. Oh yeah and I put the little milker suction things they used on the cows utters. It was nasty and I can check that one off my bucket list.


We saw some great miracles this week. One thing that I have really seen is that God really does answer prayers. As we pray for miracles, work as hard as we can and the expect those miracles to happen, God really does provide them.


We prayed and prayed and fasted that our investigators would accept the word of wisdom so that they could be baptized, and they did. We prayed and prayed that we would get someone new to teach. And we did. We prayed and prayed that we would be safe. And we were. We prayed and prayed that we could get less actives to church, and some came. I could go on and on really about how I have been able to see my prayers get answered.


But that would take to long so I am just going to say that prayer works. Heavenly Father is there, He is listening and He cares. This Christmas season I have been feeling a newer and deeper love for my Savior and my Heavenly Father. They care for all of us so much and really do want the best for us. Because of the Savior there is hope and happiness in all of our lives. Discover why!
They are waiting, all you have to do is ask.


Love you all very much!
Sister Dickson












 

Monday, December 7, 2015

๐ŸŽ„๐ŸŽ„๐ŸŽ„๐Ÿ’ก๐Ÿ’ก๐Ÿ’ก๐Ÿ’—๐Ÿ’—๐Ÿ’—

Well jolly good day to you all my loved ones!

My week was great and I hope yours was too!

 Don't particularly have a lot to tell you all about this week because I was sick and stuck in the apartment for Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday.  We called the mission nurse and she said it would be best for me to stay in and get better. So I took a lot of naps and a lot of NyQuil, man that stuff is golden. 
Poor Sister Jensen though being stuck in the apartment with me! She was such a sweetheart though. She surprised me with yummy chocolate chip pancakes and she warmed me up soup. We made homemade kettle corn and watched Mormon messages as I slowly died on the couch and she painted my nails really cute. They are blue and she painted a snowman on them and made them glittery! And a sweet angelic member brought us dinner, she brought yummy pulled pork sandwiches and a salad. It was such a blessing! Sister Jensen and I sat and talked a lot which was great because we got a lot closer. She is such a sweetheart! I am so blessed to have her as my new companion. 

Friday I was, with the exception of a stuffy nose, a new women! All better and ready to get out there and do the work! We went out and worked our little bums off! We had a lot of lesson with less actives and then Saturday was awesome too! We helped a less active member with her family history and we found her long lost grandparents! Then we headed back to Milo to meet a member who was going to come to two lessons with us, when our first appointment canceled. We had about 10 minutes until the member showed up so we called all of our investigators to try and set up and appointment and none of them were able to meet! I was kind of stressing out when this sweet member showed up in our dooryard (otherwise known to the rest of the world as driveways). So we got in her car and explained the situation. We were all stumped and we had no idea what to do for the next hour and a half until our next appointment. 

Then a name popped into my head The Browns. I had remembered seeing the name Brown once before on the Branch Member list but I had no idea who these people were. So I asked the sweet Sister who was with us if she knew them. "Yeah!" She said, "they used to be very active and they haven't been for years now. I think that would be a great idea to go visit them."

So we went and they were home and let us in and we had a wonderful lesson about the Savior and the told us that they had been talking about getting back into church. It's so true that this is God's work and He will make sure the things He wants done gets done! 

Plus there is never really any reason to stress because everything always works out as long as we are trying our hardest. It's so cool seeing these miracles!

Then we went to our next appointment with our progressing investigators with the baptism date and had a great lesson about the Book of Mormon and how to recognize symbolism using the Tree of Life dream as an example. They told us how they really enjoy church and the Book of Mormon and they have just been happier since meeting with us. It's awesome being able to see them change and their testimonies grow. I love it!

Then on Sunday we had an... Interesting day. The Branch Choir Director had a great idea so have a Christmas concert with other churches choirs. So we got to go sing in that. It was really nice to see all these different churches unite together as we celebrate Jesus Christ. 

Then we went to a sweet members house and watch the Christmas Devotional. It was so good! I love devotionals like that. I love the spiritual high it gives me and I was just so full of gratitude for my wonderful Savior. 

I loved all the talks that were given but one talk I wanted to focus on today was Elder David A. Bednar's talk. I loved how we talked about the light of Christ in our lives. I loved how we are taught in the Book of Mormon that in the Americas on the night of Christ's birth the sun set but it didn't get dark. The heavens so light and it lite up the world! Then at His death there was 3 days of darkness. When Christ came to the Americas He brought the light back. Because He is the light of the world. 

This life is so hard. I don't have all the details about all of the horrific crap that has been going on, I just know that there is waaaay too much of that crap going on. This life is scary and dark. There is depression, pain, sadness, regret, and tragedy. But it's so wonderful because this time of year we celebrate the birth of a Savior who can take all of that ickiness away from us if we let Him. He is always at the door knocking and all we have to do is let Him in. 

So I would love to invite all of you to do the same invitation that Elder Bednar extended. To look at all the beautiful lights this Christmas and remember that we have light in our lives know because of Him. 

I love you all so so very much! I hope you have a wonderful week and be safe and have fun enjoying this Christmas season. 

Love, 
Sister Dickson 

Christmas Choir Concert

Having dinner at the church and watching Mormon Messages before watching the Christmas Devotional 

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

๐Ÿฎ๐Ÿฎ๐Ÿฎ I'm a real cowgirl no folks๐Ÿฎ๐Ÿฎ๐Ÿฎ

Well.. My long lost dream of being a cowgirl has come to pass ladies and gentlemen.

But more with that later because oh my gosh we had a baptism on Saturday! Oh my, it was a really great day. I had to play the piano and God really made up for my slack. I had to play a lot of songs that I didn't even know how to play. But He helped me so it all worked out. The only thing that went wrong though was that we had the branch president fill up the font before the baptism and when it was time to be dunked.. The water was freezing cold. But they pushed through the freezing waters and were baptized! Oh man it was great.

Oh my guess what I have more good news! Our progressing investigators have accepted to be baptized on December 26! Woohoo I am so very exited for that one, we will just have to make sure that the water is warm this time.

Thanksgiving day was not as terrible as I thought it was going to be. Yes, I did miss you family and all of your craziness and fun that you bring to the table, but I wasn't really all that more homesick. It was actually a really good day, the only bad result of it was that I gained 5 more pounds. Never have I been able to say that I have had two thanksgiving dinners in one day. Plus pie after pie after pie.


Our first dinner was with our sweet landlord and her adorable family. I have never met her family until that day so I was kind of nervous that I was going to be awkward but it wasn't. They were so sweet and kind. They made Sister Jensen and I feel right at home and my goodness the food was amazing. Here is a picture of all of them. Our landlord is the sweet lady in the brown. Her name is Fran.

The second dinner I sadly didn't get a picture with all of them. It was with a less active member and her husband and her son in law and his kids. They were so sweet and we shared a cute little thanksgiving Mormon message with them. Right when we got to the house all the lights went out. So we got out the candles and the lamps and thought we were going to have thanksgiving in the dark. But right when we sat down the lights turned back on! It's a Thanksgiving miracle!

Then we went to our investigators house (the ones being baptized on the 26) and had a lesson with them. They had their two oldest daughters there who were from out of town and we all taught them the Plan of Salvation. It went really well and that's when they accepted the baptism date. Then they fed us more pie after.

Oh you know, because we haven't had enough pie we of course were invited to go to our new recent converts home the night Before Thanksgiving. So Sister Jensen and I made pies on Wednesday for pie night and for some recent converts and investigators we had.

So much pie... But it was a wonderful holiday and I am glad that I got to spend it with these wonderful people.

So, the moment I know you have all been waiting for, I am a cowgirl. ๐Ÿฎ
After the baptism how do missionaries celebrate? By going and playing with baby cows of course! Our branch mission leader is a cow farmer and we went and fed all of his baby cows! They were so so so cute! But man those little buggers are stubborn. We had to fill up these buckets of milk and then go and try and get the babies to drink. We would have to let them suck on our fingers and then lead them to where the bucket is. It is the weirdest feeling having baby cows suck on your fingers and they do not let go!!
I know all of you will die when you here this because I got cow poop on my pants. You see, the baby cows were placed under a heater right in the middle of the barn. Where we had to go and walk through the lakes and mountains of poop to get through. We had on these big tall rubber poop boots and cows just go whenever they want to go... He had around 100-150 cows, so you can assume there was a lot of poop. Oh yeah, and the baby cows peed on my boots too.


It was worth it because we got right from the utter fresh farm milk to take home with us! And I got to play with cute baby cows๐Ÿ„
Here is me pouring the milk out for the babies

Notice how there is no poop on my pants.

And now here is me playing with the baby cows after feeding them

See of you can try and find where the cow pooped on me.

Never thought in a million year would I ever get to be a cowgirl and a missionary at the same time!

Any ways, I think it's that time for a spiritual thought,
What would the world be like without Jesus Christ?
Hopeless, hectic, and pointless.
Whether we choose to acknowledge it or not Jesus Christ is apart of our lives. He is the whole reason that we having meaning and purpose in our lives.
It saddens me to see so many people who don't recognize what the Savior has done for them, or when they fail to see the importance or even the need for a Savior.
In the Book of Mormon in Alma 7:11-13 it talks about the 7 things the Savior suffered for.
1: pains
2:afflictions
3:temptations
4:sicknesses
5:death
6:infirmities or weaknesses
7:sins
He know exactly how hard this life is. He went through and suffered for all of those trials individually and every single one of us, so that He would have empathy (not sympathy) and so He would know exactly how He can help us.
What is so amazing about Jesus Christ is that He didn't have to do it. But He did it because He loves us.
And by us I mean you. You personally and individually He knows and loves.
So let's all take a moment this Christmas season and think about Him, and celebrate that A Savior was born. Because of that glorious day, we are never alone and our lives are hopeful and meaningful.

I highly suggest you go and watch the new Christmas video A Savior Is Born. Discover why Jesus Christ matters in your life, and rejoice this Christmas season knowing that we don't live in a world without a Savior.


I love you all,
Sister Dickson











Monday, November 23, 2015

❄️❄️❄️miracles❄️❄️❄️

Well I just feel like the darn right most luckiest missionary alive right now. 

I LOVE my new area. ๐Ÿ’—๐Ÿ’—๐Ÿ’—
I looked out my window and what did I see? Not popcorn popping but snowflakes falling. It snowed about 2 inches last night. The first New England snowfall of the year... Dun Dun Dun! (Dramatic music) ๐ŸŽถ๐ŸŽถ the snow looks absolutely gorgeous out here in the woods, but oh man, I am not sure I am prepared for the snow yet! 

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Something that I really didn't want (but never admitted out loud) was to go to the boonies. I wanted to stay in the cities with my nice Target and street lights. 

But God has a sense of humor, so of course He sends me to one of the booniest areas in the whole mission. 

Milo, Manie. Population just around 200 people and trees. Lots and lots of trees. ๐ŸŒฒ๐ŸŒณ๐ŸŒฒ๐ŸŒณ

I am pretty sure there are more cats here then people.๐Ÿˆ Sister Jensen will appreciate me telling you all this but the other day she waved to a cat. In her defense she thought it was one of the kids in the window. I couldn't help but make the comment, you know you've been in the boonies for too long when you wave to cats. ๐Ÿˆ

They have one grocery store here in Milo. One Rite-Aid and one Family Dollar. The only chain restaurant in the whole town is a Dunkin Doughnuts. ๐ŸฉAnd it's located inside the grocery store called TradeWinds. 


The area that I am in is the biggest area in the mission. It's about four times the size of the Somersworth area and most of it is all dirt roads and pot holes. Man, I thought the pot holes were bad in New Hampsire, I had no idea what I was even talking about. Perks of being in the boonies here is that we get to drive a Jeep Compass. Four Wheel drive and them pot holes are NOTHING! ๐Ÿ™…๐Ÿฝ
I know for sure that all of you will get a kick out of this one. I live in a barn. Yupp that's right, you read me. A BARN. ๐Ÿ“๐Ÿท๐Ÿฎ๐Ÿด๐Ÿฃ 

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I LOVE my new companion Sister Jensen. She has been out for about 8 months now and she is a doll. Her favorite color is pink and sparkles and she went to nail school. Her and I share the same obsession of Bath and Body Works so you can assume our apartment smells like HEAVEN. ๐Ÿ’๐ŸผIt's so fun being companions with her. We just laugh and laugh and laugh. 

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Despite the lack of people here we are teaching all the time. The people here are absolutely the best. They really don't have a lot here. Most of it is trailer parks. But not like the nice trailer parks you see in Utah. Those are mansions compared to here. I am talking about like their roof is a sheet of metal kind of trailers. But even though they have close to nothing here, all they do is give. They are so willing to listen and help. I just love the people here. Some of the absolutely best people ever. 

So right now we have 12 people we are teaching, 5 progressing investigators and 2 of them are getting baptized on Saturday. It is AWESOME! We also have plans to get the other 3 investigators baptized this transfer as well. 

There aren't a lot of members here at the Dover Fox-Croft branch. And most of them are less actives. The funny thing about the less actives here is that most of them have really strong testimonies and they love the church. Most of them just don't come because they don't like leaving their houses. Most people here don't leave their houses unless they have to. Which is awesome for us because they are usually home for teaching appointments, it's just getting them to come to church that is the struggle. So we are doing a lot of work with the less actives so that we can turn this branch into a Ward! 

Speaking of less actives, who wants to hear a miracle?!?! 

So on Sunday we were having a lesson with a less active member who I love so much already. She has been having her doubts and says she feels she gets fed spiritually more at her old church she went to before she got baptized. She hasn't really been able to feel the spirit in our branch lately. But what is so awesome about her is that she is honestly trying to find the answer to which church is true. Just like Joseph Smith did. She has been studying out of the Book of Mormon and the Bible trying to find her answer and she expressed to us that she was being pulled back to her old church. Now don't you think we just said ok and gave up! I know that this is the true church that EVERYONE has a place in it and that the church will keep us on that right path as we journey back to our Heavenly Father.  I would absolutely would not be here if I didn't know that this was true and good. So we read with her the conference talk from the Oct 2015 called "The Joy of Living a Christ Centered Life" by Richard J. Maynes. After we read and discussed the talk I had a promoting to show her the Mormon Message "Wrong Roads" (if you haven't seen this one I HIGHLY recommend that you go watch it on YouTube or on Lds.org) this video talks about how sometimes God takes us down the wrong road for a bit until we hit a dead end so we can know with a surety that the other road is the right one. 

Well here comes the miracle, Buckle up and get ready for this one because it'll knock your socks off. 

Right in the middle of the video she got a text. She looked down and her phone, looked back up at us and down back at her phone with complete shock on her face.  I paused the video and she showed us the text and I couldn't help but smile as she told us to continue with the video. "You know," she said, "I was convinced the Mormon church was the dead end until I got that text." 

The text was from a sister missionary who had taught her before she got baptized. All it said was "hi! How are you, how is everything going?" 

God answers our prayers in ways that we will recognize them. At the beginning of the lesson we were discussing her concerns and we asked her if she has asked God which church is true. "Well, of course I have!" She exclaimed. "He just hasn't answer me." We asked her how she expected her answer to come and so told us that she really didn't know. 

Then BAM! Thank our lucky stars for fabulous return missionaries who follow promptings. 
"I am speechless." Is all that she could say at the end of the lesson. 

Guys, I hope you all just realized how freaking FANTASTIC that was. 
Because I came here on a mission and because I put my fears aside and decided to trust in God, I got to witness that tender moment in history where God answered her prayer. 

Seeing that change in people and feeling the beauty of our all loving Heavenly Father through our loving and wonderful Savior Jesus Christ as They work Their miracles through me and Sister Jensen. Two little completely unqualified, but willing to try their best, girls from Utah. 

Seeing that and getting that opportunity to witness a wonderful Daughter of God choke back tears because of the love she could feel from our God is so much better then sleeping in. So much better then watching YouTube on my iPhone and watching Pretty Little Liars and the Walking Dead. So much better then listening to all the awesome new music coming out, so much better then having free time to just hang around and relax. So much better then getting your hair washed and done. So much better then a 3 hour massage and a pedicure. 

Absolutely nothing is better then being able to witness that beautiful moment in time. 

Man, I am so glad I am here. It's so cool! I love it. 

I am so blessed to be able to serve in this beautiful and peaceful area. With these humble and wonderful people. The only thing that could possibly make this better is if all my friend from the Somersworth Ward packed up and moved to the Dover Branch๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿผ

Church is true my friends. God does answer prayers, and He will answer yours. 
Love you all a lot!! 
Have a great week. 

Love, Sister Dickson.

Hey ps if you wanna send me stuff my wonderful mother or brother or whoever posts my letters will be able to get you my new address!! 


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The ride to Milo
Dinner with a sweet member here sister Call!


Here is the sweet snowman Ginny gave me last week

People give us so many treats! They are awesome

Saturday, November 21, 2015

On the Road Again...

Well my fellow people,
The moment of truth has come...
I am being transferred.

Oh man how I am going to miss the Somersworth Ward. They have become
like my home and family away from my home and family.

But I am also really excited to make new friends too!

Finally this area is starting to pick up. We have 9 investigators that
we teach on a weekly basis and finally the mission work has picked up
and I am leaving. I have a feeling that is going to be the story of my
life for my mission. That's ok though.

On Wednesday we had a really awesome day! We were going and checking
on potentials and we were teaching lesson after lesson. I've never
taught so many lesson in one day my whole mission. I felt like I was
on top of the world and I couldn't wait for the next day. So Thursday
comes around and the morning started off great. We had a lesson in the
morning with one of our new investigators and then as the day went on
everything we had planned crumpled up, started on fire and exploded
right in front of us. So we basically walked around all day long
because literally everything had fallen through. Oh yeah, did I
mention that it was pouring rain?

You could assume it was a pretty rough day. And you would be right.
But of course, our God is awesome, so He provided me a little tender
mercy.

Ginny is a sweet sweet lady that we volunteer with at a service we do
every Wednesday. Though she is set with her own religion, she is
literally one of the most Christ-like amazing person I have ever met.
I have grown pretty close to her over the months and she texted us
that rainy dreary Thursday and asked us if we could come over.

When we got there she sat us down on her couch and then looked at me
and smiled. "I have something for you!" She picked up this adorable
pink glass snowman and handed it to me. I'll never forget what she
said. "I love this little pink snowman because it always reflects
light. Just how you do. You really will never know how much light you
bring into our service every Wednesday. All the people you're helping
and the light your bringing into these people's lives." My heart
melted. It was just what I needed to hear. I'm sorry but I packed my
precious little snowman away but I will take a picture of it and show
y'all next Monday!

Tender mercies are so real. Ginny was an answer to my prayer that day.

This week I got to talk in Sacrament meeting. It was kind of nice
being able to talk my last week there. I talked on Christlike
Attributes and how we can develop them. Attributes like faith, hope,
love, charity, patience, diligence, virtue, humility, knowledge, and
obedience. It is through the strengthen and enabling power of Christ's
atonement that makes it possible for us to change from good people, to
better people.

Just try a little harder to be a little better everyday.

A great scripture that I would like to share with you all is 1 Peter
5:7 Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you.

Give your worries and cares to Him. He cares for you so He will give
you the strength to endure and to have joy, especially through hard
times.

I love you all๐Ÿ˜€ thanks for all the support and love you are amazing!
Speaking of support I am leaving Berwick now, so if you are gonna send
something to me.. Don't.
Until next week when I have my new address๐Ÿ˜€ but if you just can hold
back and you need to mail me some goodies this very week, you could
always send it to the mission office. You'll have to contact my mother
for that information.. I should know what the address is, but I don't.
๐Ÿ˜Š

Have an amazing week love bugs, keep being wonderful
Love,
Sister Dickson

Duck Sauce

Here is our crazy district 

This was an actual sign in an apartment building.
 Look for white van.
I think I would pass. 

Yes this was a real sign we saw while out
street contacting.
Hurry Laurie, call Jonathan!

Thursday, November 12, 2015

PROM



Well this week has been pretty fantastic!


A lot of tracting and a lot of walking and talking and its just the life!(:


So something really cool is going on in our mission this weekend. We are doing a Social Media Split. So what that is, we are supposed to go out on splits with as many member as we can on the 13th, 14th and 15th. Then the member takes a picture of what we are doing and posts in on Social Media such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, Tumblr and etc. With the hastags #socialmediasplit #LDS #iammormon This is going to be a really cool event so I though it would be fun to tell you guys to search those hashtags on any of the social media accounts you have and if you see a picture of me share it on all of your accounts! This will being going on the Friday, Saturday, and Sunday! It'll be fun(: Thanks(:


Well missionary prom was pretty fantastic. You better believe it that I was pumped! When we got home on Thursday night I took a bath and put a deep conditioner in my hair, painted my nails, dried my hair all nice. it was pretty fantastic. The conference was soo nice though. Elder Nielson from the presidency of the Seventy came and talked to us about how to find more people and how to be better missionaries. We focused a lot on the enabling power of the Atonement and how that can help our investigators change and come closer to Christ.


We also got to see the new Christmas video that will be coming out in December. It was AMAZING! to sad that you guys have to wait to see it. Perks of being a missionary for sure(:


So on Tuesday we were out tracting and we were just about to head to our dinner appointment when we get a text from the person who was supposed to feed us that she was so sorry but they had to cancel. I was pretty bummed at first but because of that a miracle happened. Sister Maxwell and I decided to head to South Berwick and finish tracting this town we started. After knocking on like 20 houses which all said no we decided to do just this last house. And oh my goodness I am so glad we did.


So a little back ground info on New England. NO ONE here uses their front door. Its always a side door or the back door. They always put like a big flower pot in front of their front door. I don't know why they don't use their front door it beats me but oh well!


So we go up to the side door of this house and you can see through the door into their kitchen. We knock on the door and this lady comes up to us with a big frown on her face holding a metal baseball bat in her hands.


You can pretty much assume I just about peed my pants when I saw her. I was sure that this was going to be the end of my life.


So she comes up to the door squints her eyes and puts the bat down and opens the door. "Hi girls! I'm sorry I didn't realize how scary I must have looked with that bat in my hands. I promise I was just killing some bugs."


Boy, I was so relieved that I didn't get smacked in the face with a baseball bat. This lady was so so so kind and when we invited her to learn more she said "absolutely!" She let us in and we taught her the restoration while her two sons listened in too. She loved it and said she would read the Book of Mormon on the plane ride down to her sisters house and she invited us to come back next week.


CAN I GET A HALLELUJAH!


HALLELUJAH we found her! I've always had a really good feeling about this town that we have been tracting. I knew there had to be somebody there and it took about 300 no's to find her but we did!


God is real, friends, God is real.


So for my spiritual thought this week I would love to share a quote I read from an Ensign talk. It is in the November 2006 Ensign in a talk called Wherefore, Settle This in Your Hearts by Larry W. Gibbons. He quotes Heber J. Grant and says, "President Heber J. Grant said: “There is but one path of safety to the Latter-day Saints, and that is the path of duty. It is not a testimony, it is not marvelous manifestations, it is not knowing that the Gospel of Jesus Christ is true, … it is not actually knowing that the Savior is the Redeemer, and that Joseph Smith was His prophet, that will save you and me, but it is the keeping of the commandments of God, the living the life of a Latter-day Saint.”


It is by small and simple things that great things are brought to pass. The everyday little things such as being kind to one another, scripture study, prayer, and laughter that is going to save us. Keeping those simple commandments (which are really just going to bless our lives even more) and just trying a little harder to be a little better everyday. Heaven and complete joy in the Celestial Kingdom with our Heavenly Father is possible for everyone who has lived, is living, and who will ever live.
This is my testimony. This is truth. The light. The way.


Hey, I love ya'll! Thanks for all of your support and love.
Keep being awesome and have a good week!


Love, Sister Dickson

This is a legit road sign. Not something to be taken lightly. People here LOVE their cats

Monday, November 2, 2015

Trick or treat.. Actually it was more like smell my feet

So as missionaries we aren't aloud to go out on Halloween. So we had
to be in our apartments by 5. This is what the call deep clean
Halloween. I scrub a rub dubbed all up in the hizzle. Singing along to
MoTab of course.

Another weird thing about New England is some towns celebrate
Halloween on the 30. So half our area celebrated on the 30th and the
other half on the 31st. I don't know why, don't ask me why, who knows
why, I'm pretty sure the natives don't even know why. But it's chill.
DOUBLE THE CANDY. ha.. Just kidding more like double the stinky feet
for me.

On the 28th though the Ward had their Halloween party which was
awesome! Sister Maxwell and I got to decorate a room. We did it 50s
themed. Yes, the lameness of my life continues and I didn't take
pictures sorry๐Ÿ˜ญ but I do have a video of me failing at trying to get
a donut off of a string. Hahaha.. It was a great activity. Lots of the
members brought their nonmember friends so it was great getting to
meet them.

Sad to say that no dogs tried to eat me this week. But I did carve a
pumpkin. Which I did remember to take a picture of๐Ÿ˜€

So we are having a special zone conference on Friday and an apostle
from the 70s is coming to speak to us. President Stoker says that this
is pretty much the prom night of your mission so you can assume that I
am PUMPED! I'm gonna paint my nails pink woo! So anyways, the gave us
a special pre study for this zone conference and it was a talk in the
April 2012 Ensign talk by Elder Bednar called the Atonement and the
Journey of Mortality. Great talk I really recommend it. But there is a
quote in there that I loved which I would love to use as my spiritual
thought this week. “The purpose of the gospel is … to make bad men
good and good men
better, and to change human nature.” By Elder David O. McKay

Change. That word has been on my mind lately. Did you know that
repentance is really just a Greek word that means change? That
repentance isn't some scary and demeaning, hurtful painful Thing?
Though sometimes it may be hard to change, it is such a blessing that
we are able to even change. All because of our wonderful Savior. He
will make up the strength we lack so that we can change and reach our
true potential.

Woohoo! You can do it! Don't give up on trying to become your best
self. It is always possible with the Savior's help.

He loves you so much.

Hey guess what? I love you all to๐Ÿ˜€
Have a lovely week my sweet cakes!
Love, sister Dickson




Monday, October 26, 2015

Just because it was hard doesn't mean that it was bad

well, i am not going to lie.. this week has been one of the hardest weeks of my mission. Actually I take that back, probably one of the hardest weeks of my life.

But just because it was hard doesn't mean that it was bad. 

To start off with I got to go on an exchange with my Sister Training Leader named Sister Danner. She is pretty cool. She goes home in 3 weeks so it was cool getting to learn a lot from her. She had a lot of really good advice that really helped me try to be a better missionary. The area I went to is the Portsmouth area which is BEAUTIFUL! We went tracting in Durham which is where University of New Hampshire is. It is the cutest little college town that I have ever seen. 

I'm sorry I am lame and didn't take pictures.. please don't hate me. I just forget sometimes! But it was really cool. 

On Wednesday we had interviews with the President which was really good. I really am lucky to have such great mission parents. 

GOOD NEWS! We got a new investigator this week! His wife is a recent convert and he is so prepared! We will hopefully get a baptism date for him this week! 

So SCARY STORY! Last Monday night Sister Maxwell and I were in South Berwick trying to contact a less active member. So it is like 7 o'clock and like pitch dark and the GPS takes us down this dirt road down the middle of the woods. Which didn't concern me at first, because a lot of houses here have really long driveways through the woods up to their house. But it was pretty creepy when we pulled up to the house and I felt like I was the stupid girl in horrors movies that still goes up to the creepy house even though everyone in the audience was screaming at her to DON'T GO IN! But, we are missionaries and we must bring these souls to salvation, so we made our way up to the house (aka our ultimate uncertain death). The house was dark except for a light on in the kitchen so we knocked and out of no where these two HUGE dogs (and when I say huge I am not exaggerating, they were practically moose) came running up and howling at us. I felt like all they saw was to big slabs of meat and they were ready to take a chop right into my head. 

So Sister Maxwell and I do what any rational young adults would do and we ran like the wind! Now, most of you know me and know that I am not a runner. If you see me running you better start running too because either something very disastrous is behind me or either something yummy and delicious is in front of me. But man, I don't think I have ever ran so fast before in my life.

So as missionary, we have this rule where one missionary has to stand out and back out the car to avoid wrecks and all that fun stuff. So to make matters worse I am standing out trying to back Sister Maxwell out while these two bears were barking at me in the middle of the woods, in the dark, in the middle of no where. 

Since I am writing this email you can assume that I didn't die. But I sure was convinced that I was going to. 

We found out later that wasn't even the less actives house anyways. #storyofourlives

Other than that we have been doing a lot of tracting and a lot of knocking and a lot of cookie making. We made like seven thousand cookies trying to give them to less actives so they would love us and let us come to church. It didn't work but we tried! 

So you maybe wondering why this week was such a hard week. Well being a missionary is hard in every form, physically, spiritually, mentally, and emotionally.. I don't know if I will ever be able to describe how hard it is because you just won't be able to understand until you've done it for yourself. So while I was sitting in my apartment after a long day of work work work I felt discouraged. I felt like I wasn't doing any good and that there wasn't really a point for me being here. That's when I remembered a quote I heard from Jeffrey R. Holland pop into my head which says, "Don’t give up. Don’t you quit. You keep walking. You keep trying. There is help and happiness ahead. You keep your chin up. It will be all right in the end. Trust God and believe in good things to come.”

So here I am, still on my mission. Not giving up and trusting in God that there really are good things to come.

And there is. For you and for me. So I would like to echo Elder Holland's words as well. Don't you give up! there is always happiness and help and comfort and love and grace and mercy ahead. You can do it! Whatever it is!

I love you all and I hope you have a great week! 
Love, Sister Dickson

Walk eat work potty sleep (maybe) work ๐Ÿ’—



This week we just worked our little toushies off.


First of all its starting to get very cold. No we didn't get any snow in my area but it has been cold. The weather has been mean this week. It keeps trying to trick me into thinking it's nice and warm and sunny out, but once I step out its like BAM a wall of cold and misery hits me. Sister Maxwell keeps telling me to just wait because it's gonna be so much worse. ๐Ÿ˜ญ๐Ÿ˜ฑ๐Ÿ˜ฐ


So the goal for our mission in 2015 is to rescue 1000 people. And I order for that to be possible that mean we need to rescue 67 people in our zone y the end of the transfer. Which means our area needs to get 11 people. Rescues are either baptisms or reactivating a less active member. So we have been running around like chickens with our heads cut off trying to find people who are prepared to hear the Word. ๐Ÿ‘Š๐Ÿป


We got a new investigator this week which is awesome! She is so normal and nice it's awesome! And we are going to be working with 4 less actives so this is a totally realistic goal that I know we can make with the Lords help of course.


This week was the Exeter Stake Conference (which is the stake I am in right now in case any were confused) and man oh man was it FABULOUS! We got to go to the adult session on Saturday night where Kim B. Clark of the Seventy came and talked to us about keeping the Sabbath Day holy. Then on Sunday he talked to us again about how forgiving and letting go of anger will bring us closer to God and make us happier.


I would like to focus a little in what he said on Saturday night. He read the parable of the use man who built his house upon the rock. The rock is Christ, the Foundation is our covenants, and the house is our daily lives. We talked about how we have to maintain our foundation so our house will stay strong and tall and so we won't fall off of the rock of Christ. We talked on how keeping the Sabbath Day holy and partaking of the sacrament are some ways we can maintain our foundation.


Besides the obvious pray and read your scriptures, what are some other ways you can maintain your foundation? Get down on your knees and ask your Heavenly Father with true intent to do those things He wants you to and He will tell you. One thing I have been trying to do to maintain my foundation is to pray and ask if the things I have studied and taught are true at the end of each day. Not because I don't know that they are true, because they are, but to help rekindle and reassure that I am doing what He wants me to do. I can feel myself growing closer to him and it's awesome!


So there is my invitation to you this week. Ask God what it is that you need to do right now to maintain and/or repair your foundation.


He will answer you because He loves you!


I know that the gospel of Jesus Christ is the only way to have stronger and lasting happiness in this life and complete joy in the next. Embrace it, learn it, live it, and love it. It's so true you guys. Put the gospel to the test, I promise you will come out with a passing grade A+++


Things are going well here. Winter is a brewing and man I love hot chocolate. I am safe and happy and I wouldn't want to be anywhere else right now.


I love you all soooo much!
Have a great week ๐Ÿ˜˜


Love, Sister Dickson 

















Monday, October 12, 2015

Small and simple

Well, it's the day you've all been waiting for. My new companions name is Sister Maxwell and she is from Southern Utah and has been out for about a year. She's a little tiny thing and I could kill her just by sitting on her. She's very sweet and I love her much! 

Some exciting things that happened was that on Saturday we got to help out at the Somersworth pumpkin festival. We helped at the scare crow booth. It was really fun. I know I am lame and didn't take any pictures.. I'm sorry:( we were just so busy the whole entire day! The festival was really cool. It was a family centered festival and they would pay for this wristband to do all of the activities together as a family. There was cookie decorating, make a scarecrow, pumpkin painting and pumpkin carving, a pumpkin smashing booth, mini golf, and a costume judging place. They had really yummy food and a live band playing. It was way fun!

This week was a whole lot of finding and a whole lot of tracting. No new investigators yet, but no worries we will keep bugging everyone until they listen! 

The leaves here are wonderful! I am really enjoying the fall weather! It's perfecto! Our Ward is doing a service project all together. The service is making hats and scarves for local homeless shelters and safe houses. So an amazing lady in my ward who I am very close to taught me how to knit this week. So I am knitting a hat. Haha I really really really hope it turns out. Pray for me guys! I need the prayers! Haha 

I'm really sorry I really wish I had more exciting this to say. Trust me, I REALLY could us some excitement all up in here. But God apparently thinks that that's not a good idea right now. Sooo I guess I will just move right in with the spiritual thought. 

So every Sunday night we have a Book of Mormon study class with some members and I really enjoy it. I find myself understanding things in the Book of Mormon that I have never even realized before. Like in 2 Nephi 5:4 it says the the Lord warned Nephi. Same thing goes for us. We will always be warned of danger. But it is up to us to decide whether or not we can hear that warning. It got me thinking of some ways we can be more in tune with the Holy Ghost. We can study the scriptures, pray, go to church, be kind and all of those other primary answers that we are so used to hearing. Yes, those things are very simple and they have been repeated to us time and time again. But oh my goodness they are so important. I love the quote, "small efforts sustained over time can produce significant results." By Devin G. Durrant

So I would like to challenge all of you this week to pray to Heavenly Father and ask Him what you need to do to be better and then put those small and simple things into action! The Holy Ghost will be able to give you personal guidance on how you can become your very best self. 

I promise you that if you do that you will be able to see Gods hand in your life more. I know this is true because it is currently happening to me right now.

I guess it's good my letter is short and simple because it goes well with my letter! I totally planned that. 

God is real.
There is no way He's not real because too many miracles happen everyday. 
Look for those miracles
And remember that He loves you.
And so do I
Even though His love is better.

Have a great week and be safe my lovely cupcakes ๐Ÿ˜˜
Love, Sister Dickson

Ps here is a pic of Sister Maxwell and me

Come what may and love it

Hello loved ones!

This week has been a hard week but not a bad week.

We went apple picking on Tuesday for a sweet lady in the Ward, which was very fun except I got scratches all over. #battlewounds

This week was the last district meeting of the transfer and now everything is going to change. *sound the trumpets playing sad music* I've really enjoyed my district but I am excited to be able to meet new people. 

Hallelujah I am safe in Somersworth for at least one more transfer.. Unfortunately Sister Bee is leaving and I am getting a new companion. Do you all remember the lady in my very first email who I met at the airport and is in the Ward? Well she has a very sarcastic, yet very scary sense of humor and she came up to me a week ago while we were talking about how we hoped that Sister Bee wouldn't get transferred, and gave me a big hug and whispered in my ear "Sister Bee is leaving and you are going to get a companion who is crazier then me." *scary violin music* I am sure I will love my new companion just as much though!

Well unfortunately we didn't run into any crazy people this week. Sadly all of our investigators told us they were not interested anymore except for 2. So this week was a lot of walking and a lot of finding. People and their dang agency.. It's irritating! But God does have a purpose and a plan for all of us. 

I hope everyone LOVED conference as much as I did! It was so wonderful and really helped boost me spiritually. Sister Bee and I got us some treats and blankets and went and watched it in the chapel. Which was very different but it was nice because I feel like I could feel the spirit a lot better. 

So I thought it would be nice to share some of my favorite highlights of conference. 
So of course Elder Uchtdorf "Am I making my discipleship too complicated?" 
Elder Ballard says questions can and will be answered through the atonement 
Neil F Marriot says Gods way leads to more permanent and everlasting happiness in this life
My favorite talk by Larry R Lawrence says be humble enough to ask the Lord what we need to do to improve and be faithful enough to put it into action
Robert D Hales says you are rich when you live happily within your means
Another favorite of mine was Jeffery R Holland who said motherhood is the love of the highest order
Hugo Montoya reminded us to smile
Our beloved prophet Thomas S Monson reminded us to be pure in heart 
Russel M Nelson made me proud to be a women 
Henry B Eyring helped us know how to have the spirit with us more
D Todd Christofferson stated that this religion is not about self,it's about helping and serving one another.
Devin G Durrant invited us to ponderize a scripture weekly
Von G Keetch told us how lucky we are to have barriers to protect and bless us
Carole M Stephens proclaimed that the commandments equals love 
David A Bednar payed loving tribute and deepened my testimony on prophets and quoted "Come what may and love it" 

I know that's a lot of highlights but it was so hard to narrow it all down, I loved conference so much! I hope you all enjoyed it as much as I did. 

Well that pretty much sums up my week! I have a feeling that next week will be quit an adventure. Adventure is out there! 

I will leave you all with a little testimony this week that I will forever be grateful for the gospel of Jesus Christ. I know it's true and amazing things are going to be happening! 
Stay true
Remember that God loves you
And so do I 
(Even though His love is better)

Love, Sister Dickson 
Fall

Colored Sis Bee's Hair

Fall

Fall

Final District Meeting

Final District Meeting

Tracting in the rain