Monday, May 25, 2015

"The looney bin....No. That's the Jesus bin!" -Estevan....

Guess what....

KIM HAS A BAPTISMAL DATE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Clearly we are very very much excited :) JUNE 13!!!! Pray for her!! Especially that she will be able to quit drinking coffee. She can do it, she's tough. ALSO!! John, her husband that is returning to activity, is working towards receiving the priesthood!!!!! The progress they have made in the past couple of weeks has been INCREDIBLE!! 

Well, according to all of your emails today, you have all looked at the calendar today and started your own count downs. One month from today.....crazy. ONE MONTH!!! I never thought I would get to this point. And now that I'm here I so badly wish that I could run back to month 3 of my mission and just do it all over again. This past week I had a few lasts and I think it is finally starting to sink in that my time here in Ohio is drawing to an end. I had my last Zone Conference [that was ROUGH] and my last exchange. I got to be with Sister Jackson!! So that was really fun. We got to commiserate together over it being our last transfer.

Zone Conference was so amazing. Such a great one to end on. All the missionaries that are going home before the next zone conference always go up and have to share their testimony. I remember watching all those missionaries in all of my past conferences and thinking, "I'll never be up there." False. That was a hard place to be. Lots of tears shed, from all of us up on that stand. Then we sang the mission song while still standing up there. I just bawled and bawled!! We were all crying, President was crying. The past 17 months were just all flashing through my mind. So many amazing experiences. 

I love love love love LOVE you!!!! 

Sister Amber Olds

The beast has been tamed!! Poor handsome Sampson....

Yeah...that's a McDonald's hamburger in there...'MURICA!


"Sister Oldsmobile." "OHHH!!" If only I had a dollar for every time I said this in the past year and a half....

Saw these three letters in TJ Maxx today... we are funny :)

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

This ain't my first rodeo!!!...oh wait...yes it is...

Well, I have big news for you all....I have fallen in love....WITH THE RODEO LIFE!!! I now finally understand the saying, "This ain't my first rodeo." Because you feel like a big dummy and everyone can tell when it is your first rodeo!! This past weekend we somehow were able to get permission to go to a Rodeo with Aaron [on Sister Hemenway's birthday! yay!] and we were so terrified at first, but then it turned into the greatest thing ever!! Rodeos are so crazy but SO MUCH FUN!!!!! I was freaking out the whole time. Sister Hemenway and Aaron kept having to tell me that the bull riders were going to be okay. Ummm....false. That second guy was NOT okay!! He fell off and then the bull plowed him with his horns a few times and then stomped on him!! I could not understand why no one else was as scared as I was! He was down for a while. He got a broken nose and stitches!! What kind of sport of this??? I don't even know but I love it!! Y'all need to be ready for the closest rodeo to Gilbert come July! 

I LOVE THE TEMPLE!!! No, no...I didn't get to go, but the power in the temple works!! I asked Mom to put Kim's name in at the temple this past week and we had the most amazing miracle with her!! We went to go visit her Wednesday evening with Sister McKee, a sister from the branch that was only baptized back in August. Kim loved her; it was so great. We were teaching the Word of Wisdom which we were actually kind of nervous about because Kim has told us time and time again that she will not give up her coffee. She quit smoking all on her own before she ever even heard of the Word of Wisdom [Thanks Heavenly Father for that one! :)] but she was adamant about her coffee. And Kim is STUBBORN. So we knew going into it that it was going to be a bit more of a difficult lesson. WRONG-O!!! It went great!!! Clearly her testimony of Joseph Smith and the gospel have grown so much since we last brought it up. She accepted it all and even said she would live it!! But that wasn't even the best part. Halfway through our lesson she goes, "Oh yeah! I was going to tell you about this right when you got here but I forgot. This morning I woke up and couldn't get June out of my head. I just kept thinking, 'What am I doing in June? I can't remember....I better write that down.' Then I remembered! I was praying about baptism last night! I'm getting baptized in June!" YYYYYYYYYYYYYYYEEEEEEEEEEEEEESSSSSSSSSSSSSS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I immediately teared up and we were both trying so hard not to just get up and scream we were so happy!!!!!!!!! The progress that we have seen in the past few weeks has been incredible!! She is now praying about which date in June she wants to be baptized on. When we got in the car Sister Hemenway and I both just started screaming and hugging each other. [It scared Sister McKee half to death....] But she was so happy with us too!!!! It was such a memorable night. Then yesterday we met with Kim and John and had another amazing lesson. We were teaching about the 10 Commandments and the Law of Chastity, but then we ended up talking a whole lot more about the temple and answering a ton of their question. They are so excited to go to the temple someday! It is so precious! John's home teachers visited him earlier that day and talked a little bit about the priesthood. We were able to talk to him about working towards receiving the priesthood and he was on board!! How amazing would that be if John was able to baptize Kim in June?!?!? Then Kim was talking about how much she loved having Sister McKee come over and she goes, "It got me thinking....once I am baptized I will be able to do that. I can go teaching with the missionaries and help other people just like she did." IT WAS SO GREAT!!!!! I just love them both SO MUCH!!!!

Remember good ole Estevan?? Well he is back!! And he has a baptismal date for June 6!!! The branch members were all so excited [and surprised] to see him back at church yesterday :) 

We had a huge bonfire at Brother Yule's house this week and it was SO St. Marys. That is honestly the only way I can think to describe it. Huge fire, a tractor, corn hole, weenie roast, we introduced Ramiro to s'mores ["you're killin me smalls!!"], and so many people that I just love so much. It is times that like that I will miss so very much in 6 weeks. I love this area and these amazing people more than words can express. 

Miss you tons and love you more.
Sister Amber Olds

watching a rousing game of corn hole!

We have made it a goal to get a picture with every welcome sign of all of our little towns. Cute little Coldwater was the first :)

So funny story..when the Hombres were trying to tell us where the Rodeo was at we had the hardest time understanding them. They kept saying "mack arena" but all we were hearing was "macarena". They just busted up laughing when we asked if that's what they were saying, then proceeded to sing and do the macarena. They actually know all the words to it!! I showed them how Americans sang it and that just made them laugh harder. ["dununununununun MACARENA! dununununununu MACARENA!"] But no it was in fact at Mack Arena...not Macarena. 

Tuesday, May 12, 2015


YAYAYAYAYAYAYAYAYAYAYAYAYAYAYAYAYAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I GET TO DIE IN ST MARYS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! We got transfer calls last night and I am staying!!! I am so ecstatic that I will get to finish my mission here. I know that it will be so hard to leave in 6 weeks, but I would  MUCH rather do it then than to have to do it today!!

This past week was so chaotic, although I feel like I told you  most of what happened while SkypingSunday. [That was so much fun!!!!! I miss you all tons. You all look so good. I can't believe I will get to actually see you all in person so soon and squish those cute little faces!!! And it was nice to kind of actually meet you [again] Lex!] Our mother's day was so fun. We had some of the best ribs ever at the Davis' house and then all skyped there. It was so cute. I am pretty sure they were just as excited as us [if not more...] to Skype home. They loved watching each of us walk downstairs with huge smiles on our faces. :) Then that night we had dinner with Kim and John and they had the Joos' and the some of the Hombres come too!!! [Ramiro and Alfredo] It was a BLAST!!! Oh man. We weren't too sure how it was going to go because they didn't really even know them and ya know...don't exactly speak English all that well, but it ended it up turning out so great!! It was hilarious. Kim would tell one of her crazy stories and we would all laugh and then we would slowly translate it for Ramiro and then he would laugh, and then he would translate it into Spanish for Alfredo and he would bust up laughing. Chain reaction!! Kim just goes, "Yeah! I like telling stories like this!!" It was such a fun night. Then towards the end her two little grandsons came over and they are the cutest kids ever!! It made me want little brother so bad!! [Or sons....or nephews.....whaaaaaaat?!]

Last week Ramiro got a calling!!!! He is a primary teacher and he is the cutest primary teacher in the world!!!! He is so proud of it and has his little manual and binder with his class list in it that he was showing us. He is so precious!!! He always says that it is really hard, but really good because he learns a lot. :) Oh I just love him to pieces.

We had a real heartbreak lesson this week that actually ended up teaching me a lot about Christ-like love and Charity. It just astounded me that I felt so much love for this person, that 5 months ago I knew nothing about! As missionaries we love people so quickly and so deeply, then it breaks out hearts when they choose to turn away from the thing that will bring them the most happiness in life. It was just a good reminder to me that there is only so much that we can do as missionaries, then the rest is up to their agency and Heavenly Father.

Well, here goes my last one. These next 6 weeks are going to ROCK! Bring it on.

Sister Amber Olds

COWS!!!!!! I love St. Marys :) 

They literally all ran away when we asked them if they wanted to learn about the gospel..... -_-

We got to have the Zone Leaders' truck for the past day and I have LOVED IT SO MUCH!! I miss driving a truck. It is HUGE! Especially compared to our tiny car. 

Thursday, May 7, 2015

"Remember when we helped that friendly Mexican pay his taxes?" -SisterHemenway

Aye yai yai....what a week what a week!!

It was so crazy and all over the place yet awesome. Sorry I blew up your inboxes with a whole album of my week, but let's be honest. We all know that everyone likes pictures way more than reading whatever I drone on about each week. Hopefully that will make up for how short this email will be. I just never know what to write anymore. Symptom of a 17 month sister missionary. Wow....hey! HAPPY 17 MONTHS TO ME TODAY!!!!! A hoedy ho!! Look at that. I remember my first month out one of my old roommates wrote me [who was an RM] and told me how quickly the time will fly by and before I know it I will be hitting my 17 month mark. I just laughed at her and thought "Yeah right fool!!" Well....I humbly stand corrected now..... The time truly does go freakily fast! Last night I was reading in my journal from last Mother's Day and I wrote about how next Mother's Day when I Skype home I will be saying "See ya in a  month!" Never thought it would be here so soon. 

Oh as for the subject line, we had lunch one day with Sandro and we ended up helping him pay his taxes. Neither of us had ever done it before. It was quite the adventure.

We had another amazing lesson with Sam this week! We were planning on teaching about baptism and confirmation and were SO NERVOUS for it!! We had talked about baptism before with him and didn't want to come off pushy at all or that all we wanted was a baptism or something. But it was so great!! We had a really good discussion about it and then towards the end of the lesson he goes, "Ya know it's kind of interesting that this is the lesson tonight because I've been praying about baptism lately." .......-_-..... ARE YOU SERIOUS?? WHO IS THIS KID?!?! I seriously think we might actually be teaching one of the 3 Nephites trying to play a real mean trick on us. Please please please please please pray for him!!! 

Also last week we had a super stellar lesson with Kim and John on baptism and had them praying about a date for her. [He is already a member] She is getting so much closer! Them as well as Sam came to church yesterday too!! 

Sad new though, I have been sick for the past 4 days because a ton of residents at the nursing home we volunteer at were sick. And yesterday I gave it to poor little Sister Hemenway :(

I can't wait to Skype  you all this weekend!!! I can't believe we are on our last Skype call.....