Monday, December 28, 2015

Week 45: Feliz Navidad!!!!!

Merry merry Christmas to all! it has been quite the crazy week! I can't believe everything that happened this week! I want to start off and say MERRY CHRISTMAS!!!!!! AHH! I had the most amazing Christmas ever!

Here is the week :)

Monday - Wednesday:
At emails on Monday Hna James said she was feeling really sick so we headed home. The rest of the evening she was throwing up in the bathroom. :( She didn't come out of there for a full 24 hours.  I felt so bad for her, but there wasn't much that I could do. The elders came over and gave her a blessing which I think really helped. Tuesday She wasn't throwing up, but she was still feeling pretty sick. Tuesday night I started to feel really sick too..... oh no... she infected me! I was sick Tuesday night and all of Wednesday. We were home for the majority of the time. I had a lot of time to study the scriptures, sleep, and talk with my companion. So that was the start to our Christmas week. I think that being home sick made Christmas Eve and Christmas that much better!!!!

Thursday: aka Christmas Eve!!
What a wonderful day! We had a meeting as missionaries (district meeting) in the morning and we were all so filled with the spirit of Christmas and all so excited that it was one of the best District Meetings I have been in for a while. Elder Moe, my district leader, read for us out of the Bible Dictionary what it said under Christ. Wow. The spirit instantly filled the room as we all sat there and thought about what our Christ has done for us. It says "He is the greatest Being to be born on this earth... He is Lord of lords, King of kings, the Creator, the Saviour, the God of the whole earth, the Captain of our salvation, the Bright and Morning star. He is in all things, above all things, through all things and round about all things; He is Alpha and Omega, the first and the last; His name is above every name and is the only mane under heaven by which we can be saved." I know that I have a Saviour and I am so grateful for him.

But as for Christmas Eve activities, we went to a members home and had a party! They invited us over (all 12 missionaries!) we had a Christmas song game, and then we ate dinner. (A whole bunch of crazy finger food). And when caroling at the neighbors home. It was really fun to get to share the spirit of Christmas with others on Christmas Eve. We came home that night and had a sleep over with all the sister missionaries here in Stillwater. There were six of us sleeping in our house. We read a story that is a family tradition in Hna James' family, made gingerbread houses for Hna Snowden's tradition opened Christmas eve presents, and then tried to sleep! we were all so excited, so there was a lot of chit chat haha.

Friday: aka CHRISTMAS!!!!!
Oh man! best day ever! We all woke up super early and went to the institute building to open presents! All 12 of us missionaries together super excited on a Christmas morning in pajamas was quite a sight! We all opened presents and then headed home to get ready for the day. After I was all ready we got to Skype home!!! Best thing ever!!! I can't explain how amazing it was to talk to my family. They are everything to me and to see them all happy and well was the best Christmas present I could have ever asked for. I think we as humans don't realize how much we love people until we are taken away from them or them from us. Then when we are able to see them again, you realized the extent and deepness of the love you really do have for them. I love you family!!!!!!  After Skyping we went to Sister Buckners house. We hung out and ate lots of food! We also watched "Once I was a Beehive" (of course approved by President Walkenhorst) and it was one of the funniest movies I have ever seen! and so accurate to what girls camp is like. After the Buckners that evening we went back to the Institute building and played games. I beat everyone in ping-pong! woohoo! Undefeated! it was really fun!  Then back home to crash!  I have to say it was one of the best Christmases that I have ever had. Thank you so much to everyone who made that possible for me!!!! I love you all!

We drove out to Cushing! IT was way fun. The weather is starting to get really cold and it is raining/icing everywhere! So we were out in Cushing in the freezing cold doing the Lords work! It felt so good to be back outside working hard after a week of being sick. We saw so many miracles out in Cushing. One of them being Kenny. We knocked on Kenny's door and we asked if we could share a quick Christmas message. He said Sure! And we went in. Turns out he works for a member and knows quite a lot about the church! He LOVED the Book of Mormon and is really excited to read it and have missionaries come back and teach him more. Sadly he is not Hispanic, so other missionaries will be teaching him, but I sure am grateful I was able to meet him!

We woke up, got ready to go to church... and then..... They canceled church!!! I don't think that has ever happened to me before! At least that I can remember. The weather conditions were bad enough that they canceled church and asked us instead to keep the spirit of the Sabbath and listen to Conference talks, so that is what we did! We were home all day because the weather was so bad. So a lot of study time and time to get things in the house cleaned up.

And here I am now talking to yall. While we were in Cushing we found a church sign that said, "If you're not hungry for God. You might be too full of yourself" It is soooo true!! I hope that we can all realized how much we are all blessed and this week make goals for the coming year on how we can be "hungry for God". I know I am going to be doing this. It is so important. I know that out here in Oklahoma as I have forgotten myself and searched for the things of God, I have been so much happier. It is a promise from our Heavenly Father that we will be happier when we do the things He asks. I know without a shadow of a doubt that God doesn't lie. Lets all search for happiness :)

I love you all so much!!!!
Hermana Hilton

Christmas Eve at the Pestridge's home!

Christmas morning with my mission "mom"!!! 

More Christmas morning with my Companion Hna James!!!! 

Thanks for the huckleberry pancakes Grandma Chick!!! 

This is Christmas Day at the Buckners home! 
Shout out to Sister Buckner! She is the best person on the planet!!! I love you Sister Buckner! 

This is Wyatt! He is the smartest kid I have ever met!!

Christmas party at the Institute building! #pingpongqueen! 

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Week 44: Maybe Christmas, the Grinch thought, doesn't come from a store, maybe Christmas perhaps means a little bit more...

MERRY CHRISTMAS!!!!! Only 4 more days until the big man comes stumbling down the chimney! woohoo! I love Christmas time so much and as a missionary it is even more amazing because you are able to focus on Christ. We have had a lot of activities this week that have helped me realize the Christ in CHIRSTmas.

Monday we had a group Noche de Hogar (family home evening) We went to a lady's house in the ward who had the most amazing Christmas tree display I have ever seen. It was literally jaw-dropping. I have currently misplaced the pictures of it, so you will have to wait a week more to see the picture of it. But holy cow! I couldn't believe it! The group members came and we had a wonderful evening together.

Tuesday was one of the saddest days. We said goodbye to Bartolo. We had a lesson with him at the Johnsons home. He told us that he changed plans and was leaving in the morning. Tear. We taught him about faith and repentance and baptism and the holy ghost and enduring to the end. To be honest with you guys. I didn't even want to say anything because I just wanted Bartolo to talk to whole time. His testimony is so strong and so powerful. He told us about some things going on in his life that are hard. His friends have noticed the change in him and are starting to make fun of him for it. He said it is hard. He also told us that his mom is really sick. He said something about chemotherapy so it can't be good. It broke my heart to hear him say all of this. But then he said something that I will never forget. He said, "Trials come, but I can overcome them because God is on my side. He is with me, verdad." He gets it. He gets that the gospel will help every situation. To see someone so new in the gospel understand the all compassing love and atonement of Christ is life changing. I can't explain the spirit that filled the already spirit-filled room when he said that. We can all learn a big lesson from him. I know I have. He has forever impacted my life. We exchanged emails so we will get to stay in contact! woohooo!

Wednesday evening we were at the church. Our meeting had gotten cancelled so we were out in the hall talking to Hermana Fox. Then she said, Do you guys want to go shopping? I can get you a Christmas present! So she took us to Walmart and got Hna James and I each a Christmas present! That was super duper nice of her.

Thursday we had our mission Christmas conference! It was amazing!!!! We had a bunch of trainings from our leaders and from President Walkenhorst. We talked a lot about what the color white symbolizes. Here is something that President said to us, "If we want to progress to the point where we know all things, we must be obedient. There is no other way. Christ is the only source of truth and light. Every time we reject light and truth we submit to "the Evil one" who seeketh to destroy light and truth. The only way to find joy, peace, and happiness in life and throughout eternity is by obedience to the gospel which increases the light and truth that we receive through Christ. Enjoy the Christmas lights and ponder to what degree you truly seek light and truth. Are you willing to do what is necessary to increase in light and truth until you know all things? Are you willing to be more obedient? I pray that you may bask in the Light of Christ this Christmas season." It is so true! So in reality, "Maybe Christmas, the Grinch thought, doesn't come from a store, maybe Christmas perhaps means a little bit more..."The Christmas season is such a special one! After the trainings we had a mini concert and then we all got gifts from home!! I want to thank everyone for the letters! I really really loved them!!!

Friday I was sick, so I stayed home for most of the day. We went on mini-exchanges so Hna James could get out of the house.

Saturday I was feeling better so we were able to go to a temple sealing!!! A couple in South OKC  got sealed, so we were able to go. It was  a beautiful sealing. It was amazing to see everyone so happy. I love the spirit that is in the temple. We listened to the session in Spanish. That was a first for me! I was surprised by how much I understood!  That night we went to a members Christmas party! There were so many people! I knew about 3/4 of the people who were there. We ate a lot of food and listend to so much Christmas music.

Sunday was our ward Christmas program. Hna James and I did two musical numbers. We performed "This is the Christ" and "Away in a Manger" It was a lot of fun to be able to perform.  Then that evening we made peppernuts and delivered them to the members in the ward. We had flautas for dinner and the were soooooo good! Luis, a recent convert, and his friend made them for us. So good!

I want to wish you all a merry merry Christmas. I hope we all can remember the true gift of Christmas and give thanks to him this season! Family, I can't wait to see all of your beautiful faces!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Con amor,
Hermana Hilton

This is the Christmas party that we went to on Saturday :) I am sitting next to the Guerrero family! They are the!

Selfie with santa at Christmas Conference!!! haha jk Santa is Elder Steed. He was my first District Leader and now is an AP.. crazy kid!

Monday, December 14, 2015


What a crazy crazy fun week.

 We had service Tuesday and the store we volunteer at was over loaded with Christmas stuff that we got to price and put out on the shelves. I have never seen so many odd Christmas decorations in my life!

Tuesday night we had a lesson with Rosi and Jenny. As we were talking we asked Jenny (she is 9 and the only member of her family) why she isn't coming to church. She told us that she doesn't like to go and see all the other families there and not have her's there. She said it is sad. A tear fell on her cheek and it wrenched out my heart. Jenny's mom, Rosi was sitting there listening to all of this. She started crying too. Pretty soon we were all crying. We testified boldly that Rosi needs to be there for her daughter. She needs to come to church. Rosi told us that she knows that. She needs to help her daughter. It was a very very spiritual lesson. I love Rosi and Jenny so much I can't even explain it. I would do anything in this world for them. 

We also met with Bartolo on Tuesday. We had a lesson with him at the Johnson's home. We retaught him the Restoration of the church. It was an amazing lesson. So I have good news and bad news about Bartolo. I will start with the bad news. He is moving on the 18th. So in four days... I am so sad. I don't know how I am going to say goodbye to that man. but! The good news is that in our lesson Thursday we had a heart to heart. He told us, "No se precupe Hermanas, Tengo los herramientos que nesecito. No voy a caer." (Don't worry about me Sisters. I have the tools I need. I am not going to fall.) When he said that to us this overwhelming peace filled me. I know that he will be ok. He has a work to do in another place. We have taught him everything that he needs to know to succeed in this life. He will be dearly missed because he is so dearly loved.

Another cool miracle. We met on Wednesday with a less active lady. We decided to teach her the Restoration of the church as well. She has some people living with her and one of them was in the kitchen as we were teaching Hermana Cortez. I looked over into the kitchen about half way through and Luis (they guy living with them) was totally listening! He was nodding his head as he was listening. I thought that was amazing. and then when we prayed to leave, he took off his hat, bowed his head and listened to our prayer!! how cool is that! Miracles are happening!!

Saturday we had our ward Christmas party!!  Oh man! it was a blast!! there was a huge turnout and we had a lot of Hispanics come too! We had 5 investigators there and get this! An in-active member came and brought a friend. It turns out she was baptized in Peru! So she is a member too!! We had a lot of fun entertaining the kids, eating and talking, watching the primary kids' nativity, and saying hi to Santa Clause!!!

Sunday. Guess who came!!! Rosi and Jenny!!!! I sat next to them and Jenny said that she was super happy that her mom was there with her. They look so happy. Watching that family grow slowly, but surely in the gospel has made me realize that the gospel really does make me happy! I read President Uchtdorf's talk from Conference titled "It Works Wonderfully!" This gospel really does work. It makes us happy. I am so thankful for it. I am so grateful for this Christmas season when we can celebrate Christ and all that he has done for us. 

Christ was born so I can be happy :)

I love you all so much!

Hermana Hilton

Monday, December 7, 2015

Week 42: The Waters of Baptism

Monday:  We had our very first Noche De Hogar (family home evening) as a group this Monday! It was way fun. We watched the Christmas video that the church put out (if you haven't seen it yet, watch it!! Then we played chair bingo and holy cow it was a blast! we had a huge turnout to the activity! 33 Hispanics! that is a lot!

Tuesday: I got to open my first 25 days till Christmas package from my family! that was so much fun. Hna James and I are opening a present every day and it makes it really feel like the Christmas season! thanks mom!  Tuesday is always our service day. we did about 4 hours of service and it was way fun. then we had dinner at a members house, and then we taught Bartolo at the Johnson's house. that was crazy....  Sister Johnson's parents from Spain were there and man.... they were intense and I COULD NOT understand their accents!! crazy.....

Wednesday: We ran over a squirrel.............. he was so dead!!! we were driving down this back road out in the middle of nowhere, and we came up on a squirrel. the dumb thing didn't move, so we hit it..... woops.

Bartolo had his baptism interview!!! We talked to Elder Moe (he held the interview) afterwards and he said that it was one of the most spiritual things ever and that Bartolo is so prepared and ready for his baptism! woohooo!!!!!

Thursday: We were in the Stillwater Christmas Parade!!!!! We decorated the Zone Leaders truck with and put our Christmas tree in the bed of their truck and hopped into the parade! it was so much fun. We saw a lot of members there and every time they saw us they got super excited to see missionaries in the parade! haha miracle. So we had a generator in the back of the truck to light up the Christmas tree. Before the elders set everything up, they made sure the generator worked. When they got to the parade no one could get the generator to start..... we were all really worried. after about 7 prayers and a lot of faith we were able to get it going so that the Christmas tree was lit and everyone could see us! The Lord answers prayers!!! even for the temporal things!!!!

Friday: 1 more day till Bartolo's baptism at this point! We met with him at 8, so our last appointment of the day. Holy cow... I think it was the most spiritual lesson of my time here in Stillwater. We were in the chapel, just talking Bartolo through everything and seeing how he was doing. The whole time he just testified to us that the church is true. He knows it. man. I have so much to learn from him. We also found out that he is going to be moving in January. so our time with him is limited. I am sad, but I know that he will go on and touch so many peoples lives!

Saturday: The bid day!!! Everything went super smoothly!!! When Bartolo walked in he had the biggest grin on his face! The biggest grin ever!!! he was so happy!!!!! The whole service was beautiful. Guess what else!!! we had 3 other investigators of ours there too! two of them were Bartolo's really good friends. They were super happy to see Bartolo so happy. The spirit was there and everyone felt it!!!

Sunday: The busiest sunday of my life!!! Bartolo was confirmed a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints!!!!! He just kept telling us that he was so  happy and he kept asking us how we felt. SOOOOOOOOO HAAAAAAAAAPPPPPPPPPPPPYYYYYYYY!!!!!!!!!!!!! It was fast and testimony meeting and when they opened the meeting up to testimonies guess who hopped up crazy fast and went.... yup! Bartolo!!! he bore his testimony! He was so sincere and so genuine. You could see the spirit working in and through him. While he was up on the stand, I looked over next to me where he was sitting, and there was a tithing envelope. He paid his tithing. *tear* His faith is so strong!!! After sacrament was over,  Bartolo recieved the priesthood!!!!! Oh my goodness I couldn't believe it! he was gleaming! He kept saying that he was super "contento y feliz" I wish you all could have been there.  that night he also came to the Christmas devotional and he watched the whole thing with us. We gave him a gift, which was his own set of scriptures (triple and bible), for the strength of youth, true to the faith and a letter from us.  He told us that night that he read our letter with his mom in Mexico and that they were both crying.

This week has been such an amazing experience for me. I hope you all had a wonderful week and that we can all keep in mind the true meaning of Christmas which is Christ and his love for each and every one of us. I love you all so much!!!!!

Yea, I say unto you come and fear not, and lay aside every sin, which easily doth beset you, which doth bind you down to destruction, yea, come and go forth, and show unto your God that ye are willing to repent of your sins and enter into a covenant with him to keep his commandments, and witness it unto him this day by going into the waters of baptism.

Hna Hilton