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Dec 20, 2011

Buone Feste

Okay, I was getting pretty sad about coming home but now that I know that there is a FOOSBALL table in my room I guess I will be coming home in January! Though I imagine me trying to get over jetlag while Will and Caleb are battling. Do I have a bed still? after much thought and prayers and counseling with President, who just told me to make the decision myself, I decided to come home then.
He said that's when they had me to go home anyway.

So, you can start counting down,
I just don't want to hear about it :)
because as much as I love you,

I will NOT be counting down these last six weeks.

So sort of funny that you were confused about why I was with Slla Stebar, I guess I forgot to mention we did a scambio...which is now referred to the scambio-that-will-not-be-mentioned by me and Slla Camp because it seemed like everything went wrong. But turns out...In about two hours I will be officially companions with..

.BOTH Slla Camp and Slla Stebar. wooooo.

I am terrified, never say "I never want..." when you are on a mission, because I specifically decided I never want to be in a threesome and here we go, my last transfer as a final test. I'm sure it'll be great. We just need a new name because Laverne and Shirley are adding one more! But we have already written her a welcome song to the tune of "All I Ask of You". Transfer call made me sad though because I know the next time they call there'll be no news for me just "well, ciao."

When we got our transfer call we were washing windows

for a new/old investigator, new to us, but she knows missionaries from before. She is great, just really, really, busy with two kids and about four jobs she is balancing. People here are incredible, everyone is feeling the effects of the crisis and somepeople face it so well with a "well, let's get to work attitude".

And while we are stressing about how to fit three into an apartment for two (not that we can say that when all our Romanian friends are crammed 3-4 in a room without complaint, so I wont complain either) we are stressing even more about OUR BAPTISM THIS SUNDAY!

Wooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo. Was that enough o's to show our excitement?
Well, we are excited and even better than that HE is excited. He just called us this morning and told us how he can't stop thinking about it and how he is just so excited and he told us we have to invite everyone. And he stopped drinking tea and he doesn't care that no one outside the church is supporting him because he knows it's true and what else matters??

We are starting to feel the Christmas spirit here, especially after the most Christmasy Zone Conference ever.

We got to go to the villa (mission home)

for lunch and

there were stockings hanging up for all of us!

We just adore Slla Kelly.

I brought the spirit more abundantly on the walk over there getting some of the other sorelle to join me in a joyous chorus of, "It's in the singing of a street corner choir it's going home and getting warm by the fire." and some joyous muppet inspired dancing...well, I find out later that Slla Camp was on the phone with Stefano who was on his way to a funeral for a friend of his and she is trying to console him but all she can hear is me singing and dancing in the background. Oops.

For part of Slla Kelly's training we reinacted the nativity and I was Mary, there are pictures on someone else's camera, but basically she came up to Slla Camp and I and was like "have any of you ever been Mary in the Nativity..." and we were like, um...Because all I could remember was that one picture from Christmas long ago and I think I was a sheep. Then she asked if we had ever been an angel and I was like, "Yeah, when I was seven or something" and well, she told Slla Camp she would have to be Mary and I say, "Um, she can't be Mary, she doesn't look Jewish at all." So I was Mary and Slla Camp was the angel.

She also talked about how each of us are innkeepers who get to decide if we are going to make room for Christ in our lives. I liked that a lot.

Zone Conference was also exciting because Anz Wright was in Rome getting a surgery and I saw Anz. Peideira who came to get his

We went to the First Presidency Christmas broadcast and that was so good too. I like how they talked about simplifying Christmas, I remember last year when I woke up and it was cold and there were no presents or cinnamon rolls and my first thought was,
"Santa isn't real
but my second thought was,
"I am so grateful for the blessings that aren't temporal"
for...myself, for lack of a better word, that I am me that I have a body created by God and a spirit created by God, that I was raised well and have a testimony and the power to overcome difficulties and find joy in almost any situation, that I am loved, even by people far, far, away and that I can feel that love even without physical manifestations of it. That as much as I LOVE presents (because I do) they aren't, of course, what really matters. That love is eternal and isn't constrained by time or space.

The festivities continued when we decided that we had to open ALL the presents because we didnt want Slla Stebar to feel left out,

so we were opening like four a day. And this picture shows the stress of being a missionary

and celebrating Christmas at the same time. haha.

There was also a Relief Society activity where we got put in charge of making the Christmas cards. They provided us with some white paper and stickers and we blew their minds, "Americans are always good at these kinds of things." Thank you, mom, for the scrapbooking skills. Meanwhile at the other table they were gluing pinecones to baskets and we still don't really know why.

After the activity there was a scuffle between a husband and wife who are getting separated and we went home with her for a while to talk and I felt like a Relief Society president and I am just so grateful that my capacity to love has grown from being awkwardly like, "um, i don't know how to help you" to learning that listening really isn't hard at all.

Well, Slla Camp and I just laugh and sing all the time and it's the best and everyone thinks we are nuts, but we've decided that we are just Italian. And Italian=passionate and they aren't phased when you start banging the table while you're teaching or waving your arms about. That's your heads up, you may want to invest in helmets before I come home. Or at least sturdy furniture.

Sunday I gave a talk and I felt like I wasn't prepared at all but it ended up going well, they called and asked me to talk about the Final Judgment, but I just focused on Repentance because that's the important thing, what we do to prepare for that day. I shared some thoughts from Anz. Christofferson's talk, that was a really good one.

For the baptism I came up with this sort of cool arrangement where we sing the words to the Baptism song from the primary to the tune of Come Thou Fount and then come in with the original words at "Jesus sought me when a stranger wandering from the fold of God". Because that's Stefano's story. He just felt one day that he needed to come back, he felt a "call" he said. We are just so glad we have been able to play some small part.

Tell Caleb to get a haircut, Ringo and give Molly a kiss for me. You know what they call babies here? Little meatballs. Like as a term of affection. Everythings about food.

Okay, Christmas is kind of up in the air, but I will call either Christmas Eve or Christmas day in the morning-ish...are you going to the Smiths? Will Zoe be there? Will Katie be there? We just got to figure out where we are going to be and if they have Skype, but they should. We are having dinner with the bishop. But I'll be seeing you soon anyway, so...maybe I don't need to call.

that was a joke. keep breathing.

I love you all, hear from you sooon.


Sorella Laws

i heard lion king came out in 3d...is it still in theatres? i am eating lion king chips right now...aka regular potato chips with a lion king toy inside.

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