Monday, January 19, 2015

Bennington, VT #12 "Oh baby"

(Amanda's labor was in full swing as Brynn was writing this letter!)

Freakin' out...

Dearest Family,
It's hard to write a letter as my sister is having a baby :) If nobody even reads this weekly email because there's too much excitement, that's totally fine!! This niece is going to be the death of me. I have had an absolute roller coaster of a week, but my how much I love every single person here in Vermont. The whole branch knows I am freaking out about this baby and they've been so wonderful to me. Especially my companion! I have had more baby/birthing talk than I ever think I wanted and... I am now probably ready to birth a child myself.

This has been the longest week of my mission so far. But once I changed my attitude, we got some miracles! It felt like a super rough week but we somehow taught more lessons this week than ever! 31 lessons, almost reaching our obnoxious goals we always set for ourselves, but way surpassing our mission standards. I still don't know how... this transfer has been named #miracletransfer and I have this incredible feeling when I wake up in the morning that some big things are gonna happen this transfer!

So, yeah, we're staying together! President called us to tell us we're still Sister Training Leaders (woot woot) so we already knew when the Zone Leaders called us. Speaking of Zone Leaders, I guess there's a ridiculous tradition that the Bennington Sisters make them brownies week 5 for District Meeting and they give us icecream. So we wrote them a poem about how great we are and wrapped each line in tin foil and baked them in the brownies :) They called us later... apparently we're "baller". Yesss. 

On Wednesday, before we had district meeting, we had my 2nd Transfer Training which was amazing and spirit-filled, but I still don't really understand why they have those. I slipped on ice and biffed it on the way in :) On the way home, we tried eating the ice cream while we were driving.... stupid idea. We almost got in a crash. We ended the night wonderfully at the Behunin's house, as always. I think those Wednesday nights get better and better each time. I've told Brother B that I have to be here for Dylan's baptism because I love him more than any other sister ever has, but he has to finish some Catholic classes first before his mom will sign. I am praying SO hard for him to hurry and finish!

Saturday was our miracle day! We pretended The miracle was finding a former named Pat. The most beautiful old lady I've ever seen. She said the only reason she wasn't a Mormon was because she doesn't believe that coffee is bad. I said the prayer before we left, but had forgotten her name, which was super awkward cuz she asked me to pray for her. Haha We'll be back to see her soon!

Sunday was amazing because everyone we invited to church came! Also, Brother Behunin came and I just love him. It was the primary program which was hilarious. I loved seeing half the primary be children of our investigators :) Brother B is in charge of telling me when Amanda has her baby, and he got up in the middle of the program with his phone in his hand and walked over to sit by me. That gave me a heart attack! She wasn't born yet, just a text from mom :)

Last night I found out how much I love these people. We were at Jessica's house (recent convert) when we got the text from our branch president saying that her sons Sean and Jacen (our investigator) can't get baptized on the 31st unless both parents sign. Her ex-husband refuses to sign and is being awful about it. Jacen went and told Sean in the other room and you could hear him crying and yelling. It absolutely broke me when he came in and said "Why does my daddy hate me?" and started to sob. Then I started to cry, which was sort of embarrassing, because it was the kind of crying where I was like gasping for air. My heart literally hurt for these boys and Jess. I am so so grateful to have parents who love the church and support me. I totally take that for granted. We fasted for a lot of kind of personal things that are going on with our friends here, but we're going to fast again for the boys dad to change his mind and agree to let them be baptized. Please pray for them.

I can't remember everything in this crazy week, except that Leah is most likely going to be baptized Valentines Day!! That will be so cute. And we got extra brave and told Chad and Mary Beth that having their wedding on Valentines Day would be the cutest thing. Now they've switched and MB wants to do it, but Chad doesn't. He thinks it's too soon to tell his mom. MB basically bore testimony to him that she feels like Heavenly Father will help them with the mess that they're in right now if they just do it, because she knows that's what He wants for them right now. That made us so happy to hear her say that! Also, our investigator Brianna's mom randomly showed up at church yesterday too. Maybe as her mom starts coming, she'll want Brianna to be baptized :) Also, our old investigator Maggie came back from Boston today randomly and she's been wanting to get baptized for a while! If we can get her to stop smoking like Charlann did, she will be baptized. I love her, so that'd be amazing to see!

This has been a super wild for me and we counted it up and concluded that I've cried more this week than I have my whole mission. I have been so so worried about this baby, especially with her being so late (and sad that I'm missing her being born...), but having Brother B texting you guys has helped me an unbelievable amount! I am so happy she's finally coming!!! We are constantly praying for Manda and her baby here in Vermont! I sure love you all so much!

Love,

Sister Hallsted


Quotes:
"Did you already marry Jesus?!" -Charlann to me :)
"I find the fact that you don't know how to order your eggs refreshing." -Brother B
"I could be a great country singer, but I'd rather just stay home and take care of my cat. I give him free concerts." -Mary Lou
"Do you want a boyfriend?" "I would LOVE one!" -Michiko
"I often fall asleep on the toilet for so long that my legs cramp up... then I can't get off of the toilet!" -Char
"The Holy Ghost is haunting me." -Hannah Grace (Yes! That's her name too!)
"Yeah, I'm poopin'!" -Sister Thao yells from the bathroom. "Good to know!" -Me

1. Charlann fell asleep during our lesson so we had a photo shoot around her for like 20 minutes. Haha!
2. Our poem to the Zone Leaders :)
3. Eating our ice cream sandwiches.
4. Our usual walk through the cemetery but in the pouring rain. I LOVED it!





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