Monday, March 2, 2015

Bennington, VT #18 "RIP Sister G"

Dearest Family,
This may be a shorter letter because we have so much to do lately!
So, Tuesday was amazing this week because we just pounded Bennington and had nine lessons, one new investigator (who has 5 awesome kids woot woot) and set Maggie (Charlann's friend) on date to be baptized! She has to quit smoking by March 10th to be baptized on April 11th so pray for her!! It seems like it's gonna be harder than Charlann's was.. I am a firm believer that if we work super hard on Tuesday, then the rest of the week will be set!
Wednesday we had our "black dinner" with the Behunins. Basically... a funeral for Sister G cuz she's "dying" as a missionary :) Pretty depressing actually, but we had a ton of fun!!! I laughed harder that night than I think I ever have in my entire life. Brother B did something super weird and hilarious during the game we played and Dylan, Danielle and Marvin were all crying laughing at one point. So fun to see Dylan and Marvin showing so much emotion :)
Thursday we had District meeting (don't know why it was moved) but it was sad having everyone say goodbye to Sister G and Elder Arbuckle. The brownies we made for the ZLs this time said "Bye Now!" in frosting because the people here say that instead of just "bye" and because it's Elder Arbuckle's last brownies from the Bennington sisters. I felt very grateful that I get to be with Sister Gochnour for a few more days than everyone else!
We then blitzed Glens Falls (/Hudson Falls)!!! SO SO good! We tried to change so many little habits they had fallen into and it was awesome. Sister North is really amazing because she is so teachable. She knows things are struggling big time there, but she has a huge desire to change it, she just didn't know how. Now she knows how! I am obsessed with miracles, so that was basically the whole focus of the exchange. To show them that miracles can happen in Hudson Falls and lots of miracles did!! We found a lot of people there who are ready and it just showed those sisters that there are more people out there that the Lord wants THEM to go find! It was also really fun even though I was so sick the entire time. Sister Snowplow. I tried so hard to plow through the blitz, but that morning, I was like dying and so sweet Sister Gochnour, like, took care of me while the other sisters played basketball with the elders. I felt so bad! I love Sister G so much. I can't even remember most of that morning, but I remember Sister G was so happy to give me pills and find more toilet paper to blow my nose and walked around saying how much she loves feeling like a mom. Haha!
Friday, we drove home around 2, finally go to see the Hickeys that day!!!!! (we've seen them a few times but they're easily the busiest family in America and are never home because of sports) but it went well! We had dinner with the Murphy's that night. We found out he's the one who told the stake pres. and Pres. Wirtlhlin that I am amazing. I was still so sick, so it was rough, but okay! That night though........ I came out of the bathroom and was like, "Ha! I'm not training! President never called us!!" Sister G told me he could still call in the morning. Right then, we got a call from the mission home. AHHHH. I love President Wirthlin. He asked me if I could be a trainer next transfer. I told him I could. He said I was being released as a STL. (thank heavens) He hung up and Sister G's all excited and so proud and I was just saying "I'm so scared!" over and over again. But I was also really excited right after that. During all of my mixed emotions since that call, I keep remembering how excited I was that whole night and how I felt so ready. We waited for a bit to see if the Hudson Falls sisters would call us. They're out of control! Haha They called us screaming. Sister Kastigar's moving as we all thought and Sister North's gonna be a STL for Toga!!! I'm so happy about that! It will be perfect for her. And we'll get to exchange again :)
Saturday, we cleaned Charlann's house up again!!! SO fun! We moved on to the family room. Danielle was there again. Dylan had basketball so he couldn't come. It was fun having my bud Maggie there too! We drove to the Brownlee's and when we went out teaching Less actives they chose, I told them I know the way to our usual meeting spot. I really do know it, but halfway there I thought we were lost... Ugh. We got way lost after we tried following the gps and Sister G was kind of mad at me and it made me really discouraged to be training next transfer. Are we going to get lost in these forests and die?? Probably. But Sister G's awesome and tried comforting me.
Sunday, was crazy. We sang in church and Brother Behunin played the guitar! He was sooo nervous. I was nervous for him, but he survived and my throat healed itself just for our song and then I was back to being sick! We sang Come Thou Fount. Everyone expected me to be amazing so that was scary. The rumors that have been going around our branch about my singing are ridiculous. People will say "I heard you were on American Idol!" or "I hear you play in a band back home." Who is spreading these things... I don't know but I assume it's Brother Behunin :) Then everyone got up and bore their testimonies and talked about how amazing we are. Haha! It was just fine :) The Finnegan's son just got home from his mission so there were tons of Scottish accented people there! So cool! At the last second, we got asked to teach Gospel Doctrine which is basically teaching everyone who goes to sacrament meeting. yikes. But we did fine! That made me nervous to be a trainer too. We had a linger longer/ break the fast. A family that has never had us over before randomly invited us over for dinner that night. It was so fun. They're one of the wealthiest people in our branch. it's become so weird for me to be in a normal house after living in Bennington for four months.
Today has been super fun, but also sad. Sister Gochnour didn't have to say goodbye to Brother B at breakfast because he helped us move Maggie from Charlann's house to her new apartment! I loved it for some reason! But, when Sister G had to say goodbye to Brother Behunin... it was really sad and kind of awkward for me. 
Brother Behunin is obviously my best friend here and he's really been helping me tons with my silly worrying about becoming a trainer. He told me yesterday that out of all the sisters he's had over each week for these past 20 years, I have been most prepared to be a missionary. He could tell I would be a leader from that first night in the field when we had my green dinner. I act so suspicious, like I don't quite believe him, when he tells me that, but every word of it is huge to me. There's so much going on here in Bennington and I am worried that the new sister will have such a hard time adjusting that it will hinder the work in some way (silly silly). I also worry that because I didn't struggle with what new sisters usually struggle with, that I won't be able to relate at all and I won't be able to help her with anything more than missionary stuff. Lots of worrying. I need to learn to trust her even before she gets here. We're praying for her now all the time. Pray for me too! :)
I sure love you guys so much! Seriously, thank you for all of your help. I have the best friends and family supporting me by prayers and examples.
Sister Brynnie Hallsted

1. Our district photo.... We had to act like gangsters in honor of Elder Arbuckle leaving.

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