Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Baba Babelor

This has been a fun last week. I still can't believe I'm going to be going home. Anyways...

Sora Mesco, me and Ileana
So, we had a fun lesson with Ileana this week. Well the fun part was more after the lesson because we taught her about the law of chastity. Glad I won't ever have to teach one of those again! But while we talked, her daughter Daria, started playing with scarfs and put them on a like the old ladies here do (or a baba). She ended up roping us all in eventually, and she called herself Baba Babelor;  which means the "baba of babas." Sora Roberts and I were laughing so hard! That was the phrase of this week; seeing as it was my last week, I truly am the baba of babas (the oldest sister in the mission). Ileana and Andrei are still planning on getting married in December, which is sad but people have their agency. She is still one of my favorite people from my mission, and I know that she will get baptized and do great things. I love her so much. 
Baba Babelor

We went and visited Cristina Borbea and her family this week, twice. The first time was to have a lesson with them. When we got there Sora Borbea asked us why did we come in skirts, how were we supposed to help do service. So we came back the next day in jeans :)  

One last picture with Cristina and Cats
We had a taco party this Saturday instead of game night. Most of our friends had never had a taco! Craziness!! They also taught us how to do some Romanian dances :) It was a ton of fun. 
Me, Sora Roberts, Alexanda and Emma Miron

One more visit with George
George came and visited us on Saturday and Sunday. He wanted to come for my last testimony, which ended up being a talk, because the member that was supposed to speak couldn't do it. I got a phone call Saturday if I could give a talk instead of just my testimony. So that was fun....but it went well. A lot of members thanked me for my service and all that I have done here in Brasov. That meant a lot to me. I love these people so much. 

Sora Roberts found out that she will be going back to Mihai Bravu after I leave, so we both have been packing all of our stuff and our apartment is small. So that has been a little crazy. We also have to clean it really well because no one will be living there for 5 weeks.  
Crazy Packing!

I'm not going to try to sum up my mission or all that I feel about it in an email, but I am so grateful for the opportunity I've had to serve, especially here in Romania. It will always have a special place in my heart. I'm so grateful for this gospel and my savior Jesus Christ. I know there were definitely some moments in my mission where I couldn't have done it with him helping me. I love you all! Thank you all for your love and support! I will see you all soon! 
Worn Out Sandals


 Sora Vann 

Monday, September 11, 2017

Our phone is a transformer.....

A Romanian piata! (market)
So our phone has been dropped one too many times and so now apparently to people who we talk to, it sounds like there are transformers on our phone. We are working on getting a new one, but it might take a while.....#mission-life.

I honestly have no idea what to write about this week because I may have lost my planner; which I am really sad about and feel a little lost without it. Hopefully I can find it today! 

We really pushed member missionary work this week with all the members we visited and they all seemed to be excited about it.  So hopefully that really starts to take off :) Member missionary work is where people who are members of our church share what they believe and love with their friends and family. Its good stuff :) 

We also had a super spiritual lesson with Ileana this week. She tried to cancel on us because she was sick and didn't want to get us sick. We made her cookies and came over anyway :) She wants so badly to be baptized but Andrei is not budging on marriage. We told her only God can tell her specifically what to do for her situation but she has to be willing to do what he says. We talked about 1 Nephi 3:7 with her, 
"And it came to pass that I, Nephi, said unto my father: I will go and do the things which the Lord hath commanded, for I know that the Lord giveth no commandments unto the children of men, save he shall prepare a way for them that they may accomplish the thing which he commandeth them."

Hiking overlooking the mountains!
and talked about how God will help her do whatever he wants her to do; even if that's moving out. On Sunday, the Elder's investigator, Bianca, received the Gift of the Holy Ghost and was confirmed a member of the church. Ileana was crying afterwards. We asked her about it and she said that she just wants that so badly. She can have it, she might just have to fight for it. 

Other fun things: 

Ropes course!
We did a rope course with a member and her friend, that is interested in learning about the gospel.  It was a ton of fun but we were really sore the next day. ha-ha

Selfie with Alexandra Miron and the Elders
I had to play the piano for the baptism and it didn't go so well...So Alexandra Miron (a member that I love dearly), tried to rescue me and play the closing hymn, but that didn't go too well either. ha-ha At least we failed together! 

We had a super good impromptu to lesson with Vali this Saturday. We talked about prophets and about Joseph Smith. It was really great! The spirit was super strong. 

Selfie with the cross!

Sora Roberts got an MRI this week and kinda died afterwards (poor thing!) 

and we made lots of yummy food :) (like homemade chicken nuggets, biscuits and gravy, and chicken tacos) 

AND today we went to Busteni and hiked to a cross that is a World War I memorial and is huge! It was a ton of fun! 

I think that's about everything! I can't believe this is my last week...craziness! Wish me luck! Have a great week! Love you guys! 

 Sora Vann  

At the cross !!

Monday, September 4, 2017

I'm out of ideas this week...

Companionship Selfie!
Sora Roberts and I were walking to emailing today and she asked me what even happened this week. I thought for a couple seconds and came up with nothing. We both laughed about it. Eventually, we remembered what we did this week. 

We visited two less actives, who I visited regularly when I was here as a new missionary, but Sora Roberts had never met. They were both very glad to see me! Both need a lot of help and love. So we are going to help and love the heck out of them :)

We made No-Bake cookies
We had another awesome lesson with Ileana this week! She is so prepared! She even said that herself ha-ha We also scripture attacked her door this week. Kinda like heart attacking but we wrote scripture references on notecards all cute-like and put those all over her door. They were home while we were doing it, so we had to be super quiet. I thought Sora Roberts was going to wet her pants, she was so nervous! They didn't catch us though :) and she loved the surprise. 

Our District
My cool experience of the week though, happened this Sunday. I randomly decided to sit next to Cristina (my favorite little young woman) this week during sacrament meeting. During the closing hymn she started crying, and I could tell from the way she was crying, and crying that way myself, that she was crying about Daniel, her older brother who recently passed away. I just held her through the song as she cried and we went straight to the bathroom after the prayer. I just stood there and held her in my arms. As I held her, I thought about the Savior. How because I knew what she was going through in such a personal way, that perhaps I was able to comfort her in a way that no one else could. The Savior knows us perfectly. He knows everything we are going through, everything we are feeling, and He knows how to comfort us because He has felt that Himself. I am so grateful that I was able to be there for Cristina, and I am so grateful that the Savior is always there for all of us, no matter what. 

The car plate with my initials
Other fun things of the week: 
I finally found a license plate with my initials! 
Transfer boards came out, and surprise, I am staying with Sora Roberts for my last two weeks. ha-ha 
Teo was in Brasov so I got to say hi to her :) 
We played basketball with some friends we have made :) 
Sora Andrus visited Brasov with her parents and George! I can't believe both my sisters from the MTC are gone now! 

After playing Basketball
I think that's everything.

I love you guys! Have a great week! 
 Sora Vann 

Monday, August 28, 2017

Aia este pisica ta?

Is this your cat?- 
As we were leaving to go grocery shopping this morning, we noticed this kitten that we are always seeing on a balcony below us, was just walking around the courtyard by itself. The balcony is only on the first floor, so we figured it just jumped off the balcony. I picked it up and loved on it while we took it back to the owner. When we knocked on the door a teenage boy answered and just looked at us. I said "Is this your cat? ", he said "Yes, thank you" and took the kitten. When we came back with our groceries the kitten was out napping on the balcony :) Our good deed for the day. Sora Roberts reminded me once or twice that we 
couldn't keep it. 

The Lost Kitten
Chilling at the Food Festival
We spent half of our week in Bucuresti, but that's okay. The DeSpains were wonderful! It was like staying at Grandma and Granddad's house. Oh, cool thing! When we got into Bucuresti last Sunday, we happened to run into Teo, my friend my Cluj, at the train station! It was so good to see her! Also, George came to say hi to us there :) 
At the Food Festival

The food festival came to Brasov! It was the same one that was in Oradea. It was more crowded here though. 

Saying good-bye to the Winders

We said actually goodbye to Elder Hubbard this week and to the Winders! They will all be dearly missed! 

Real good-bye to Elder Hubbard

I hit my last "in country mark" this week (I will be three days short of it when I fly home), and decided to celebrate with a covrig! (chocolate filled pretzels). I will miss them! 

Celebrating 15 months in the country with my covrig!!

We had another awesome lesson with Ileana this week! She just wants to get baptized so badly, but they are still working on things with getting married. I have never prayed for an investigator so hard. They had decided to wait until till December to get married and for her to get baptized. She said she was okay with that, but as we talked about it more, her true feelings came out. So we are working to get everyone on board with a marriage now or someone moving out.

I think that's about everything for the week! As a cute old man who lives in our block said to us one night "weekend good"! I love you guys! 

 Sora Vann

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

What to do when your companion is sick . . .

So  . . .  poor Sora Roberts has been sick all week! We are actually in Bucuresti right now trying to see some better doctors. We are having some luck, so hopefully we will have everything figured out with her soon! 

I don't have a ton a time because Sora Roberts needs to go home and rest so; here are the highlights of the week! 

Daria (Ileana's daughter), me, and Ileana
We had two awesome lessons with Ileana and her daughter! She is progressing great and cannot wait to be baptized! We taught her the plan of salvation and Sora Roberts and I were both able to bear powerful testimony. The spirit was so strong! 
Sora Roberts grilling on the balcony

We had a tiny cook out on our tiny grill :) and then had our upstairs neighbor come and yell at us about the smoke and said if we didn't put it out he would call the fire department. Romanians are very dramatic like that. Oh well. 

We bought and set up a hammock on our balcony, and it's my new favorite place. I have done a lot of reading out there this week, while Sora Roberts was napping (poor thing). 

Saying good-bye to Elder Hubbbard
Elder Hubbard is going home this next week, so we said goodbye to him! He will be missed! 

Hopefully next week, I will have a more exciting email for all of you! Hope you guys have a great week! 

Love you all! 

Sora Vann 

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Basically a week in Iasi

On the train to Iasi
Well, we really only spent two days in Lasi, but  then we spent a day getting there and then a day coming back. It was a nine and a half hour train right there.  Man, the train was so hot, but it was a good amount of fun. We had our Elders there to keep us company. I will miss fun train adventures in Romania. We took a sleeper train back though and that thing was miserably hot. Sora Roberts and I both did not really sleep at all! That's mission life for you. 
Sora Roberts and me in Iasi

Also Sora Roberts finally went to the doctors this week for this pain she has been having for a  while and it turns out that she has tonsillitis and possibly a dislocated jaw. So we have kinda laid low for the past couple days.... except for our awesome lessons with Lleana! Such a cool story! 

Ileana and her family
So Lleana was first taught by Sora Jerez before I got to Brasov at the beginning of my mission. Once I got here Sora Jerez would tell me all the time how awesome Lleana is so ready to get baptized and all this stuff. Unfortunately, we were never able to meet with her. I come back to Brasov and her boyfriend, who is a less active member, has started coming back to church with her. Carmen (a member here) sets up a lesson for us with her because she wants to get baptized! Our first lesson with her, we teach her the restoration. The spirit is super strong. She says she already knows this church is true and can't wait to get baptized! So - we set a baptismal date with her for September 9th, because her and her boyfriend have to get married first. Sora Roberts and I are hoping she will let us help her plan the wedding :) Her and her daughter are so cute! We love them so much already! 

Other fun things: 
I went on exchanges with Sora Gleason! (I totally forgot to take pictures) 

Loving our mac and cheese!!
Also, Sora Roberts and I finally ate some of the mac and cheese I have! I miss mac and cheese so much! 

The Elders kind of tried to steal our investigator this week, this resulted in Sora Roberts calling them very angrily at 10pm at night and telling them she wasn't happy with them. She put the fear of God into them a little bit. They apologized and we did to, so it's all good now. 

Romanian countryside
I think that's about everything. I love you guys! Hope you all have a great week!
Sora Vann