Tuesday, December 27, 2016

All You Need is a Dancing Snoopy

CHRISTMAS was amazing!!! It was such a great week! First I need to send out a huge Thank You to all my family and friends for all the letters and gifts! I felt so loved and so spoiled this Christmas!  Christmas is so different in the mission but it is for sure something special! I am so grateful that I was able to spend my Christmas celebrating Christ's birth and talking with my amazing family!

We had a great Christmas Devotional as a mission. It started out with a ton of traffic because there were so many accidents and a lot of rain so driving was a little hard. It took some people 2 hours to get to the church house! We had hot chocolate and cookies as we waited and then we sang Christmas songs for a while. We had a very funny performance done by the AP's, my Zone Leaders, and Elder Hatfield and Myers. Elder Hatfield and Myers rewrote the words to "Walking in a Winter Wonderland" and then also “The 12 days of Christmas”. It had everyone laughing and they were really proud of themselves. We ended the night with a spiritual message from President Henrie and some musical numbers. I played my favorite version of “Silent Night” for the program and the Spirit was so strong that night!

Christmas Eve was spent with another road trip with the Elders. I had made a ton of Christmas cookies for us to go and take to people in our branch with little Christmas tags! The members loved it! We then went to the Henao’s for a Christmas Eve party. Latinos celebrate Christmas on Christmas Eve and they open up all their gifts at midnight, I don't know why but we went and had an awesome time at their party.

When we first got there Hermano Henao wasn't there and when a male is not in the house the Elder’s cannot go in. It was cold outside so the Elders had to get a little creative, I will send a picture.

We spent the rest of the night there and read the Christmas story of Christ's birth from the Bible in Spanish with their family. It was an awesome night! It was different not being able to do my families normal tradition of eating Chinese takeout and watching “A Christmas Story”, but I was able to focus on the real reason of Christmas. 

Christmas morning was great! We opened all of our gifts and listened to Christmas music! Me being me started freaking out like a 5 year old when I opened my last gift from my parents. It was a dancing snoopy doll. I was so happy and so excited I pushed the button over and over again as I watched it dance back and forth. Then at the bottom of the box was a cute book my mom had made of pictures of my family and I got so emotional it was a crazy little roller coaster but it was so amazing!

I made french toast for our Christmas breakfast as I wore my new missionary apron and we had our mission nurse over for Breakfast. We went to church where we did a musical number as missionaries and we sang “Away in a Manger” in Spanish. Church of course started 25 minutes late because they all run on Latino time but it was a very great sacrament meeting.

We went over to the Allen's to Skype our families! It was such a special moment to see and talk with my family! Then the Allen's gave me a gift and it was ANOTHER dancing snoopy but it was a Mexican one that danced to Feliz Navidad!!! Now I have TWO dancing snoopy’s!!!! 

Defiantly one of the best days ever! It’s been a great Christmas and we have already seen so many miracles this week with 3 new investigators!!! I am so happy I am here as a missionary of our Heavenly Father. Have an amazing New Year everyone. Set goals and make plans! It works:) Love ya!

-Hermana Hadley

PS Hermana Johnson had Elder Hatfield cut her hair... it was adventure

Valencia Zone at the Christmas Devotional Party

Singing and waiting for other missionaries to arrive with Sister Parker from Hawaii, 
Hermana Robertson and me.

Elder Cardinal from Canada, had a pretty festive suit

CASF Mission Christmas Devotional

The AP's, my Zone Leaders and Elder Hatfield and Myers 
at the Christmas Devotional

Some more entertainment from the Devotional

Elder Hatfield and Myers not placing a foot in the door at the Henao's 
until Hermano Henao arrived Christmas Eve

The Six Spanish Missionaries in the Santa Clarita Valley
 on Christmas Eve at the Henao's

Our Christmas Tree with gifts for the four Hermana's

I was really excited about this Snoopy!

Cooking Christmas Breakfast with Hermana Johnson

Christmas Breakfast with Sister Ferrimond, our mission nurse.

Snoopy Number #2 from the Allen's, Spanish Snoopy! 
Feliz Navidad!

Elder Hatfield cutting Hermana Johnson's hair

You can see the stress on my face

Feeling more pleased with our work

Finished Product

Monday, December 19, 2016

Temple Trip and Santa's Elves

Merry Christmas everybody! I hope you are all enjoying the holidays! This week has been awesome getting ready for the Christmas Season! It still doesn't really feel like Christmas here because there is not any snow but we have covered our apartment with paper snowflakes so it looks like a winter wonderland! This week has been a little slow as far a missionary work goes because I managed to get my companion sick as well so we worked as much as we could without pushing it. But we are feeling better now so that is good! 

My highlight of the week was going to the temple!!!!! It was so beautiful and perfect! I have missed being able to go to the temple whenever I want and it was such a blessing to be able to go and sit in the temple feeling that special peace and spirit! I have gained a testimony of the amazing blessings and miracles that come from the temple. The LA temple is so pretty and very big! The sweet Allen family drove us and it was awesome to see so many missionaries all gathered together to go inside. I felt so blessed that day!

The other part of my week has been working with our Relief Society President on wrapping gifts that have been donated to families in our branch who can't afford Christmas this year. It has been so exciting putting it together and then going with other missionaries to carol while delivering the gifts to these cute families! I loved being one of Santa's Elves!

I have really recognized the true meaning of Christmas this season and focusing outward and not inward. I know that as we work to being more Christ like around this Christmas season we will see the amazing blessings that come from improving ourselves and serving others! I hope you all have a great Christmas and to always remember CHRIST!! Love you all and may all your Christmases be bright! 

-Hermana Hadley

PS I am still finding cactus needles everywhere. It’s become a game! 😂 

Hermana Robertson and I at the LA Temple

Brother and Sister Allen who took us to the temple 
with our mission for Christmas!  Love them so much!!!

Los Angeles Temple

A family from the Phillipines and their daughter leaving on her mission to 
Honolulu, Hawaii Korean Speaking leaving January 18th

Missionary Christmas Elves!

Gifts to be delivered to homes of needy families

Monday, December 12, 2016

When Love was Born

What an awesome week! I have a new companion Hermana Robertson from Herriman, Utah and she is so great!!! We get along so well and we are instant friends! This is her last transfer and so I get to have the wonderful opportunity of killing her haha (Definition of Killing in the Mission Field- last companion before going home).

We have seen so many miracles already from our companionship. Our very first day together we did "knock out" and EVERY door we knocked that day we got a return appointment! That is so crazy and that never happens!! We have a ton of work now because of that knockout and we are so excited! That day we were in charge of taking care of the sisters that were going home so that meant we had 10 sisters in one apartment! Let’s just say getting ready in the morning was crazy especially because 6 of them were going home that day and they all had to look perfect, it was really exciting. 

The rest of the week has been filled with a ton of Christmas craziness but it has been fun. Saturday was nuts! We went to the English ward's Christmas Breakfast on Saturday then over to set up chairs for a Christmas program. After we had Branch soccer then that night we had our Branch Christmas party that was an experience all on its own. Latinos do Christmas differently and we found out they were "partying" at the church until almost midnight... they are crazy. We had a few of our investigators go so that was good and they really enjoyed it!

So this week I got the flu/cold so that’s been exciting. On Saturday my companion and I were laughing because it really was not my best day and I wasn't feeling good but we had a lot to do and people to visit so I pushed through.

What happened was we visited a family whose cat jumped on me and so I was having and allergy attack with my eyes swelling up on top of being sick and then I ran into a cactus... yup.... I had a ton of needles in my sweater, arm, and fingers. Some of them are still there. But through it all I was just laughing and so was my companion. I was a mess but I was having the best time because it was a very funny situation to be in. It couldn’t get any worse and you just have to laugh. 

Sunday was my favorite day in the mission so far. We were able to help out with an amazing program that our stake puts together every year. Richard Rich is in the English ward and arranged, composed, and directed the whole thing. He is very famous from being the director of Disney's "The Fox and the Hound", "The Swan Princess" and "The Black Cauldron".  He now is the owner of Rich Animation Studios.  

We as missionaries have been helping with this for a few weeks and it has been amazing to see it all get put together. They took out some of the pews in the chapel for a huge orchestra and a 120 voice choir and children’s choir. It was one of the most spiritual and well done Christmas concerts I have ever seen.

It was called "When Love was Born" and we had Kirby Heyborne, who is also in the English ward, narrating the concert.  He is the actor in “The Best Two Years” and “The RM”. We are around a lot of famous people here because we are so close to LA and many people work in the filming industry.

It really was amazing to feel of the Spirit. My favorite Christmas song is “Still, Still, Still”. As they sang that song it was nice to reflect on that still moment of the day of Christ's birth where He was lying in a manger, still as could be, and being welcomed into the world that His hands had made. I am so grateful for Christmas time and for my Savior! I hope you all have a great week!


Hermana Hadley

Sister Anna Hoffman (Portland, Oregon Mission), Hermana McKay Hadley (San Fernando Mission), and Sister Emily Hoffman (San Fernando Mission).
These two were some of the departing missionaries.  My mom was roommates in college with their mom and my dad grew up in Bountiful with their dad Mike Hoffman.  Anna was able to come down here to San Fernando and they were able to finish their last day of being missionaries together as each others companions.  So sweet!  

Their parents came to California to pick up their daughters and to visit both of their missions.  
The Hoffman Family has 10 children (9 girls and 1 boy with 2 sets of twins) 
and now live in Pennsylvania.  
The Hadley's and The Hoffman's have been friends now for three generations!

Lynette (Condie) Hadley and CaMarie (Cooper) Hoffman 
Roommates at Utah State University 1993

Our last Zone picture with our matching Zone shirts!

Transfer Day

My new companion Hermana Robertson!

Christmas Party

Santa and Me!

The Elder's and Hermana Robertson and I at the Christmas Party