Wednesday, May 29, 2013


Guess what.... I'm in TEXAS!!! Ahhh I love it here!!!  My transfer was the biggest transfer in the Church, 43 of us, so they took a picture of all of us, and are planning on putting us in the church news, be looking for that. After dinner at presidents house we all got split up and transferred to different homes to stay for the night. All the Hermana's and I went to stay at Sister Mortens house. It is HUGE!!! I wish I would of taken a picture,but I was way to tired. The next morning we went to our mission office which is a church and had a big breakfast. I went with Sister Morten to a Calache restaurant and bought like 20 dozen calache's, calache's are like a roll filled with breakfast foods or really anything. They're originally from Czech and were brought to Texas, and they are HUGE here and really good! I'm trying to find a recipe so I can make them. :) All day Wednesday we had training with the President and his wife, and some of the office missionaries. We were taught about all the bugs, snakes, and hurricane season. I guess they said last week they got 12 inches of rain and all the missionaries had to walk in rain that went up to their hips in some areas. I need a rain coat as soon as possible. :) After training's we went and met our trainers. My trainer is Hermana Wilzbach and she is from..... Kansas City, Missouri! This is her third transfer out here, she's new too. ha She took years of Spanish before she came out, and was an answer to my prayers. I was praying for a trainer that would have the patience to teach my Spanish and she was praying for someone she could teach Spanish too. The Lord really does answer prayers. We are perfect for each other. And we have lots of connections. She's from Kansas City, Missouri and guess who her temple worker escort was........ Grandma Watkins!!!  Also, she has cousins in Vernal. Tyra Anderson's family, and Eric Caldwell.  Small world. Also, l've been asking her if she knew the Brundidge family, but last night I remembered Amanda's married name and I was like do you know Amanda Orelman, and guess what?? She and Amanda were good friends up at BYUI until Amanda got married!  Basically I love my trainer and we work really, really well together. 
After meeting Hermana Wilzbach President announced where are areas will be. Hermana Wilzbach and I are in the Houston 1 NW mission. Which is right outside Houston City. My area is as North as you can get in the South mission. Don't freak out, but I live in the GHETTO's! For real! We are the only white people in our area. And it's the third most dangerous area in America. But like I said don't freak out. I can't even explain how safe I feel here. I love it!  Everyone else is Hispanic or black. Which is SWEET! We are in a ONLY bike area. We don't have a car, but I love it! I love riding my bike around. We can talk to more people that way. :) Our area was just opened the beginning of the year, and the President said it's been a dead area and hasn't had much success so he's decided to put sisters here to see if that will change it up, and it has!! We Pink washed the area! We are the first sisters to be in this area. Originally the Elder's would get the like four lessons in a week, but we have had at least two a day since we've been here. Blessing! I love all the people we have taught.
Coming here I thought I would be really stressed, and would be freaking out about the language a lot, but everything is going really, really, really well. I wish I could explain how much I love it here. I feel like I'm home! And I feel like everyone here is like family to me. They really are, but I've never really noticed it till I got here. The nice thing about this area is we have a dinner appointment every single night!! Yeah buddy!!! Good thing I'm on a bike or else I would be very fat!! My bike has been eating my skirts. My white one is toast!! Most of my skirts have holes in them now, but oh well I'm doing a great work here. 
Right now my mind is like blank, but we have taught a lot of fun people. We've met people who are from Honduras, El Salvador, Nicagauga ( I don't know how to spell) and tons from Mexico, and  know is from America. Ha Everyone here drives a mustang or a really expensive car. We have seen the gang leaders in their fancy cars. They're really nice actually. I stop and talk to everyone on the road. That is my specialty and my favorite thing to do :) Even though I can't speak a whole lot to them I can usually get across who I am and the message I have for them. Hermana Wilzbach does most of the talking in the lesson's,but I share my testimony on things, say one of the prayers, and ask for referrals from everyone. I love it!!  I have seen so many miracles being here. If were doing what were supposed to we will be blessed, and we see it everyday. We have four lessons planned everyday this week and hope to have more from street contacting. :) The only thing I hate about riding bikes is all the people that honk and whistle at us. I love when they ask us for our number, because then we give the a little card that has the number to receive a free BOM and I tell them to call that number, and to check out Ha in one of the apartment complex's we go to there's I have a group of little hispanic boys who are my friends. They wait everyday for us to come by and we play and joke around with them, and tell them to tell their parents to let us in. Ha 
Our favorite place to go is called Cancun apartments and it is probably the most ghetto place I have ever been, but I LOVE It! :) On Sunday after church we had a dinner appointment there and after we just decided to do more tracting there and see if some of our investigators were home, and checking on an investigator  to see why he didn't come to church, but we had this feeling like we needed to leave and next thing we know there's all these nice expense cars that drive by and do this weird honking tune. Everyone told us to leave, and that the honking means there will probably be a drive by soon. Yesterday Hermana was sick and we were late getting out tracting. We started over in Cancun and we show up and there's cops everywhere, ambulance, and crime scene tape. The spirit was not there at all and we decided not to go there till later that night. When we went back we asked him what happened and there was a drive by shooting and someone died. Again I tell you this, because it's kind of a cool story, and I'm super protected here. DON'T FREAK OUT!! I love it here, and I know I am supposed to be here. I will stay worthy of the spirit to keep this protection. The Lord want's me here. 
 I had I older man stop me on the streets one day and he told me I look like a Angel and wanted to know what he did to deserve someone like me... Next thing you know it we have a lesson planned with him later this week, and we are going to tell him EVERYTHING!! When we were talking to him a Hispanic guy came up with his baby daughter and asked Hermana and I if one of us would like to be his babies mom..... it was really weird!! 
Well I have lots and lots to say, but I can't remember everything. I love my mission! I love my district and Zone. My district and Zone leader are companions.  Elder Watts is my district leader and his first name is Ross. Cool huh! 
I love you all!!! I love Texas. I love this Gospel! I love EVERYTHING!! I will write down everything I want to tell you next week. Have a great week. No freaking out about my stories! Thank you for the prayers. 
Hermana Watkins

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Last P-day in the MTC!

Feliz Miercoles!!!! :) haha
 So I bet your wondering about my results from the doctor??????? I had a miracle happen. It happened because of all the prayers and fast everyone said and did for me. I know that without a doubt!! Dr. Sutton said that in both tests it look like I had infection all over and a lot of the tissue had been damaged, but everything has been healed over and I don't have ANYTHING wrong with me. He took me off all of my medicines,but said to keep taking the prilosec, especially with the mexican food I will be eating soon. I love my Heavenly Father and Savior, Jesus Christ with all my heart, and I KNOW they live. They will help everyone. Only if your willing to be patient, and keep enduring. I and the doctor's know that something was seriously wrong with me, but through my endurance and patience, and with all the prayers and fast I HAVE BEEN HEALED! I am meant to be out on this mission. I have a purpose, a good one! God knows that, and was testing me to make me stronger. I am willing to receive any trial and challenge God has in store for me. Because in the end they're really blessings. I will be a better missionary because of this experience and all the other trials I have had. Look for the good in the bad ( or in your trials) Turn your hearts outwards and not inwards. Have all Faith in Christ. Show your faith through being EXACTLY obedient. I promise blessings will come. :) Ahhhhh how cool is this Gospel! It is AMAZING!! I can't wait to share it with the people in Texas.
This week has been miracle after miracle. Guess who came and spoke at yesterday's devotional? Another apostle! Elder Russel M. Nelson :) How awesome is that! I was in the third row to with mine and Hermana Florences friends that are going to Czech.  Elder Nelson and his wife both spoke to us. Sister Nelson spoke about how we not only have people here on earth praying for us, but the people I will be teaching have family on the other side of the veil praying for me to go and find there family and to teach them. I had never thought about that, and it's so cool to think that there are that many people praying for me and all the other missionaries out in the field. She also talked about how we can pray to have angels help us on our missions. We can pray for certain angels that speak our language or that have certain powers like Elijah, and the power to turn the hearts of the children their fathers. I love family history work and can't wait to get to know people and there families. Elder Nelson didn't have a specific topic, but just a lot of different things he want's us to know for our missions. One thing he really talked about and seems like everyone else has been talking about, is EXACT obedience. After listening to President Monsons talk from Generel Conference about obedience I wrote down in my journal that I wanted to have exact obedience in my mission. At first it wasn't to hard, but having a companion makes it a lot harder, because you're with them the whole time. If they're running late, so are you :( I have learned to have a lot of patience not only with myself, but the Lord, and everyone else around me. PATIENCE is key!! The one part I really loved about his talk is to forget about yourself. I need to become like Christ. I am taking the position of Christ right now. I am doing what Christ is unable to do right now. I can't be like Christ if I'm not being EXACTLY obedient or having patience, and seeing good in others. Throughout my mission I really wan't to work on all the attributes of Christ and become more like him. Elder Nelson challenged us throught out the mission and life to go to the Tropical Guide in the scriptures and read all 18 pages of scriptures on Christ. That way we can know exactly who he is and how we can be more like him. He also talked about being bold with the people we come across on the streets or teach in a lesson. Act like a doctor and ask them where they are hurting, and how you can help them. That way we can know exactly how to help them, and how to bring Christ  into there lives.

Every Tuesday after devotional we have our own district devotional with a member of our branch presidency where we have our own little devotional with a testimony meeting. After the devotional I now have a leadership meeting with everyone in the zone that has a leadership position, and President Cosgrave. During the meeting I had some person revelation come to me. I was thinking about the exact obedience and how I can apply it more in my companionship and in the district. In Relief Society on Sunday they talked about how we need to follow our pday schedule's to the exact so the temple and cafeteria's scheduled don't get mixed up. We have never followed that rule, because we wanted to start off earlier at the temple. Well I had this feeling come to me that the time they have been given us is on purpose, and if we follow it we will probably receive more revelation and or run into people that God wan'ts us to run into. After that thought came to mind it really made me think about all the times I had been disobedient and what I had missed out on because of it. Well this morning we went to the temple at the exact time we were supposed to, and after our session we were walking back down to the MTC and there was a girl that looked so familiar to me that was taking pictures with her family at the temple right before she enters the MTC. So I go up to her and told her how familiar she looked to me. She asked where I was from, and I told her Vernal. She started freaking out. She said she used to live there when she was little. I then had an impression to ask her if she ever went to girls camp in Vernal before. She had!!!! She is Mike Hadlock's little sister. Who I had a long talk with at girls camp. WOW!! Mikes dad came up to me and told me he remembered me from Mikes funeral and told me how proud he was that I was serving and he knows Mike is proud of me to.

Yesterday morning was Hermana Florence's and my first TRC experience. Where we go and teach people that are volunteers, but this time it was on Skype. Elder Haper-Smith and Porter got to teach three people from Mexico. One of the girls is getting baptized next week and her friends are non members, but thought it would be fun to talk to people in America. We got to talk to a return missionary who lives in Provo. We talked to her about personal revelation through church. The connection was really bad and I got super frustrated that I couldn't hear what she was saying, and how I could help her. Her husband was actually one of the computer tech's that was helping us with the sound. After we were done teaching her he told us that a couple months ago she was diagnosed with brain cancer and is having a baby in a week. After she has the baby she will start treatment. After we are done skyping the "investigator" emails us what we can  improve on and if we helped them. She emailed us and told us that we will be awesome missionaries and have very sweet spirits about us. She also said that even though she couldn't hear a lot of the things that we were saying, that the spirit taught her the things that she needed to know. I am so grateful for the spirit, and I know that I am not the teacher, but the spirit is. I would not be able to do this if it wasn't for the spirit.

I believe I told you I received my travel plans. I will be waking up at four in the morning next Tuesday, and getting on a bus that takes us to the Front Runner train and then takes us to the airport. I will be calling you around 5:30 6ish, and I will be calling Mom's cellphone.  I received a letter from my Mission President yesterday, saying how excited he was to meet me. Once we get off the plane we will go straight to the mission home and start having interviews. After the interviews we will then have dinner and a testimony meeting. That night all the sister's and Elders will go stay in apartments by the mission home. Wednesday morning we will go out and meet our trainers and start this wonderful work. Ahhhhhh I can't wait! I don't care if I can't speak the language perfectly yet. I am planning on going up to everyone the spirit tells me to and introducing myself and my purpose. :) There are 26 of us flying to our mission. I believe most of us are Spanish speaking, and some English, Vietnamese, and one other language. It's fun being here in the MTC and hearing the different languages and seeing people I know.

Real quick I am going to tell you about my position as a Sister Training Leader. I'm basically a district leader in women form. I have two meetings on Sunday, and one on Wednesday. Last Wednesday we received a brand new district in our zone, so I go to help the zone leaders orient ( I don't know if that is a word) them and help them know what is going to happen in the MTC. On Thursday we gave them a tour of the MTC and gave a short lesson about companionship inventory and the importance of being in a companionship. Every night I go and visit with all the girls and just hang out and ask how everything is going. I interview them once a week also. I love this position, and it has helped me grow as a missionary and truly be EXACTLY obedient, because they are all following my example. I love getting to know all of them and hearing their testimonies.

Mom and Lindsey good luck with the last week of school! That's super exciting. Alesha thank you for the package I LOVED It! I really, really, REALLY want more pictures of Charlotte!!!!!! I miss her TONS!! I also want to see pictures of our yard and the new chickens :)

On Sunday Janice Kapp Perry came and talked in Relief Society. She is the one that wrote A childs prayer, I love to see the temple, love is spoken here, and As sister's in Zion. She rewrote As sister's in zion to As sister's OF Zion and totally changed the words. I loved the new version. We we're the first ones to ever sing it too. :) She is writing a whole new album for sister missionaries. Also my stake president from Orem came and spoke at the Sunday night devotional. :) He is an amazing guy. And is the one that signed my papers. :)

This is a really REALLY long letter, and the funny thing is that I haven't even wrote half of what I wanted. But I have things to do. I love all of you very much, and I can't wait to talk to you on Tuesday!! :) No crying!!! Have a great week, and know God loves each and everyone one of you. All you need to do is turn to him and have all faith that he will help you, and he will I PROMISE!!!


Hermana Watkins

Friday, May 10, 2013

Birthday and a calling

I will never, EVER, forget my 20th birthday
Thank you soooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo much for the flowers. I loved all the gifts I received from you guys, both grandparents, David & Ronda's family!! The Flowers are what really, really cheered me up!! They are BEAUTIFUL, and smell so good!!! When I recieved them I was walking back to my dorm and everyone was coming up and smelling them. They are the prettiest flowers I have ever received!! Even though my birthday was not fun.ha the flowers made everything better, and the notes and cards I received from people.

Tuesday morning came and I was exhausted, and looked super unhealthy, I have lost 15 pounds. I was sitting in class and I was called to the clinic. The clinic had been calling people all day and trying to get me in, and not wait for Wednesday, and I KNOW without a doubt because of all of your fasts and prayers they were able to get me in. I had a feeling that morning not to drink any liquids, and thank goodness I didn't, because I had my procedure at one and your not supposed to have any liquids or food 12 hours before. :) Thank you, thank you, thank you for  the prayers and fast. They were not wasted!!!! I wouldn't of been able to go another day on only liquids, and I wouldn't of been able to get the procedures.

The procedure went great!! I don't remember anything!! ha Hermana Florence said I was hilarious when I woke up and I was speaking in a lot of Spanish, and flirting with one of the guy nurses there. Haha whoops!! I was at the hospital from 1-5 I was having a really hard time waking up.  Doctor Sutton left some pictures for me of my intestines. They are our new room decorations. Thank goodness we don't have roommates. He told my companion that the colonoscopy went great and everything looked great, but he didn't say anything about the endoscopy except he took some biopsy's. He also took biopys's from my colonoscopy. I will find out the results next week. Hopefully all is well. I'm really not to worried. I have had blessings from the elders in my district, and I know lots of people are praying for me. I have stayed pretty positive throughout all of this because I am SO grateful for challenges. I wouldn't be ablet to be out here serving if it wasn't for all my challenges before my mission that have made me stronger and made me a better person. I know that this challenge will only strengthen me. I will not let it weaken me and bring me down. This is Gods plan, and if I'm doing my part and doing what's right I will be blessed, and become stronger. I don't think my health problems will ever really go away, but that is okay with me. It is really hard being sick and having to sit out from things, but I keep reminding myself or how strong I am going to be.

I have such a strong testimony of priesthood power, and the power of prayer. I am here because of both of those powers. There is no way I would be able to go to class and function without them. I am so grateful for all the Elders and men in my family that have the priesthood, and are worthy to use it. Keep yourself worthy!! One of the days when I was really sick I had some random elders come up and give me a blessing. They were worthy and ready at that time. If they weren't I don't know where I would be or how well my health would be. I have so much faith in my Heavenly Father, and Savior Jesus Christ. Use the Atonement everyday! Do not let a day go by where you don't repent. We all mess up, and we all need to be using the Atonement in our lives. We can always do  more. I've noticed that with being sick. I noticed the days that I was in my room all day if I read and kept studying, my day and my health would be a lot better, but if I didn't and just slept, my day were worthless and I would get down on my knees and repent. Please use the Atonement!! I am so grateful for my Savior and all that he sacrificed for me. I love him so much, and want to all I can to be with him again.

Besides all of my health problems a lot has happened in the last week. Chad Lewis and his wife came and spoked to us Sunday night at the devotional. Me and my district were asked to be ushers for the deovtional so I got to wear a cool white tag that said USHER, and help sit people in the auditorium.I felt really cool! :) I wish I had my camera to take a picture of my cool USHER tag.  I'm pretty sure mom knows who Chad Lewis is, but if not he played for the NFL Eagles team. He was AWESOME!! I didn't know he served a mission. He talked all about his mission and how hard it was, but how much it has blessed his life. His first companion told him that when he gets home he should try out for the BYU football team, and he did!! He made the team and years later was asked to play for the Eagles. There is no way he would of if it wasn't for that companion.

Thank you for all the letters and emails. They make my day!!! I can't explain to you how much it means to me to hear from everyone! Last week I received a letter everyday! :) :)

I love all of you!!!!!!! Sorry I don't have enough time to write down everything big that happened.

OH I almost forgot. I get called to be a Sister Training Leader!! I am so grateful and humbled to have this position. President pulled me aside and he told me that he wasn't for sure about giving me this calling, but the Lord was! I get to meet the new district tonight and help orient them. Also, every week I meet with each sister and interview them and help them with anything they need. :) :) :) I cannot wait to help them. I love CHARITY!!!!!! It is for sure the best thing on earth!

I love you, I love you, I love you!!!!

Hermana Watkins

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

No Fun Weekend

Wow!!!! This past weekend has been CRAZY!! Like I told you in my letter home last week, Hermana Florence was sick Thursday and Friday. Saturday we were so excited to be finally in class, and then I started getting REALLY sick!! As you know I went to the Urgent Care on Saturday, ER on Sunday, and the MTC clinic on Monday, and then Tuesday the clinic wanted meet with a specialist....... It was so hard for me to be sitting right next to the secretary while she called you mom. I was bawling like a baby. It was so hard to hear your voice, and yet I couldn't talk to you.

Next Tuesday I will be getting an endoscopy, and if my stomach still hurts Friday, after taking all my prescriptions then they will do a colonoscopy the same time as the endoscopy. I am now on five different medications....... no fun! Lucky for me my Branch President is a doctor and is helping me out a lot! Even with all the medication I am still in a lot of pain. I have lost my appetite,but Hermana Florence makes me a like ten bites of everything. All I do is drink lots of water, and salads or wraps. I'm not to worried about my health. I know I am working during the Lords time and he will bless me. It's just another trial that will make me stronger as a missionary, teacher, and mom. :) The specialist told me that I probably didn't need to get my gal bladder out, he thinks it has to do a lot with my intestines.... fun!! ha The one thing that I hate about this, is that my companion is missing out on study time and learning the language. We have both fallen really behind in Spanish, but we have a teacher that is going to pull us aside and tutor us one on one. I can't wait for that.
The packages are delivered all through out the day, and I can open packages when ever, but I have to wait till 9:30 to open my letters. I LOVED my greenie package. I received it Monday when I wasn't feeling very good. Thank you!! It made me feel a lot better

I have received letters from Elder Memmott, Rex, my friends from the temple, you guys, grandma and grandpa merrell, Lindsey V. Anna, and (paco) Elder Wong.
It's really crazy to think I only have 2 1/2 more weeks left here..........Wow... where did the time go!
I sleep like a baby now :)

I have a really funny story that happened to me a week and a half ago. Hermana Florence and were walking up the stairs to go and teach our investigator Mathias. I tripped and fell on my face on the stairs, and a older guy behind me was asking if I was okay or if I needed help, and I started to laugh and covered my face and said oh embarrasado. I thought at the time that it met that I was embarassed, but I get to the top of the stairs and the older guy was like, I don't think you are embarrasado, he said I wouldn't be able to serve a mission if I was. I was really confused, but then he told me that that means I'm PREGNANT!!! Bahahahahha we then told Mathias about that story and he thought it was HILARIOUS!! ha I'm just glad I figured that out before I got to Texas. ha
I don't have a whole lot to say this week. Probably because half of the week I was either asleep or at the doctors. Thank you for all of your prayers. There's no way to doubt the church. I have received so many tender mercies the last couple days, and God is helping me A lot!!
I'm so happy Lindsey received her license. That's super exciting... and it's ABOUT time!! haha Love you Lindsey!! 
 Yesterday I found out Sister Merrett who's husband is in the branch presidency, teaches school at one of the schools here in Provo, and we figured out that she taught Drake. She said Drake was one of her favorite students and talked very highly of him and his family!! :) I also met Elder Coon who knew Sam really well, and we talk quite a bit.
Sometime today Hermana Florence and I are going to go smell a random tree at the MTC. Apparently it smells like butterscotch... we have to smell it. haha We watched like 50 people smell it the other night while we were studying outside on the lawn. haha

I Love you, Love you, Love you
Hermana Watkins