Tuesday, May 30, 2017

"A Swollen Colon"

What a week. This has been one of the most crazy weeks ever in my mission. I have had such a fun time with Hermana Starke this week! We are pretty much best friends! Hermana Starke and I have been having a lot of fun catching up from our time in the Mexico City MTC together and it has been so great to see how much we have changed and grown, personally, and in the Spanish language! We have had quite a few adventures....

First this week I said goodbye to Hermana Nelson, which was hard but I am so excited for her and all the amazing things she is going to do in life! She was an awesome companion and I was so lucky to serve with her. This week I had a fun time introducing Hermana Starke to all the members and also sharing our talents with others. Hermana Starke before her mission was going to major in Opera Performance. She has a beautiful voice so we have been singing for all the members and they have been loving it! 

Now on to our biggest adventure of this week.... Once upon a time Hermana Starke was mildly Lactose intolerant. Saturday night we were fed a lot of Lactose. So, Saturday night we were up late because she was in a lot of pain, we found ourselves on the ground singing the songs from Pete’s Dragon trying to distract her from the pain.

Sunday, we were dead tired but pushed through and went to church. Then during church the pain kicked up again. A member gave her some meds and we stayed to the end of Relief Society. After church, we went home and took her temperature which was 102.5 so we called President and he told us to stay inside for Knockout. Well Hermana Starke told me she would be ok if we went to our dinner appointment so we did. Then after dinner we had to sit down on a curb because she was so sick.

Fast forward and Sister Fairmond and Sister Turner (our new mission nurse) came over to our house and decided that we needed to take her to the ER. Our Zone Leaders ran over and gave her a blessing really fast. The Elders raided our cupboards and put together bags of food for us to take and then we left.

We got to the ER and we were there until 3:30 a.m. Long story short Hermana Starke has a swollen colon and intestines. So, she is on a liquid diet for a few days and some major meds. They pumped her with Morphine and my favorite thing she said was to her nurse. Her nurse’s name was Tony and she turned to him and said, "Hey Tony I like your name, my name is Starke and together we make Iron Man”, 10 months on the mission and she still got game HAHA ;). She has been really loopy and I have had a front row seat in the Hermana Starke Comedy Show. It was a crazy night and yesterday (Memorial Day) we stayed inside all day and the Zone Leaders brought us Jamba Juice. 

So, it has been an adventure not too much missionary work happening but we are going to get her better soon:)! Also, it was Rafael’s birthday this week and we had 2 people at church this week!

Hope you guys had an awesome Memorial Day and have a great week!

-Hermana Hadley 

Saying Goodbye to Hermana Nelson <3

Helping Hermana Nelson pack the night before by eating some farewell cake. :)

The New Companionship!!! 
Hermana Starke and Hadley are together!!!

Mom Note: These darling girls left on the same day for Mexico City MTC. Before McKay's mission we took a trip to Portland, Oregon and McKay was insistent that we go inside the Portland Temple Vistor's Center. Right when we walked in the doors we were greeted by Sister Missionaries and McKay told them she had her call and where she was going. The Sister's were so excited, grabbed their phone and instantly called a girl in the ward where they were serving who just the night before opened her mission call to CASF Spanish Speaking and entering the Mexico MTC August 2, 2016. 

The missionaries said on the phone, "Sister Starke, we found your Companion" and quickly handed the phone to McKay.  The girls quickly became "Facebook Friends" and enjoyed communicating the 2 months before their missions.  This is a very special memory for our family and so grateful for this friendship and that McKay followed her prompting.

The New Spanish Crew!

Grilled Mexican Street Corn 
Grilled Corn, Mexican Creama, Cotija Cheese and Chili Powder

Rafael's Birthday Party!

Our ER Adventures

Mom Note: We also have become friends with the Starke family in Portland and we received this proud parent moment text from Hermana Starke's mom. 

"Hi Lynette! I just wanted to say thank you for raising such a sweet daughter. Ally has been sick and has had a really rough week, including the ER. She said that McKay has been amazing, kind, understanding, and just all-around wonderful. She was so grateful for her compassion.  She said she's is one of nicest people she has ever met. Thanks again!"

It is messages like this that make each day easier to send your child out on a mission. <3

Sister Fairmond our mission nurse who is leaving soon. 
We love and appreciate her service in our mission and we will miss her so much!

A picture that a Spanish Member sent to McKay's parents along with a video of Hermana Hadley playing the piano and Hermana Starke singing in Spanish "I Know That My Redeemer Lives" in their home. They were very touched by their sweet spirits. Glad these Hermana's have now taken their show on the road. :)


Monday, May 22, 2017

"When Life Gives You Lemons...You Stop and Smell the Roses"

Hey everyone, so there is a ton of stuff that happened this week and a lot of things I want to share so I am just going to jump right into it. So, this week was crazy. We have been busy getting ready for Hermana Nelson to fly back home to South Africa. We had interviews with President Henrie this week on Tuesday. It was so good to sit down and talk with President. He is such an awesome man and I am so lucky to have such a great Mission President. We talked about all the growth that I have seen in myself as I continue on this amazing path of being a missionary.

On Friday, we had a little adventure. That was the day when Hermana Nelson went on her departing temple trip. So, I was in a trio with the Sister Training Leader's for a day. We woke up early to hurry and get on the road to beat the traffic. We started driving at 7:10 am and we were in some traffic and got up to the mission office a little after 8 this was when our adventure started.

I was 95% sure I knew the way back let me just say that much. Well we hit a TON of traffic because we were heading towards LA on a Friday morning, then we got lost and accidentally ended up at the Burbank Bob Hope Airport... opps. We were one exit away from leaving the mission. That was a little crazy and we didn't end up getting back to our apartment until about 10:00. Then at 4:00 we had to drive back up to the mission home to pick up Hermana Nelson and then back.  In total I drove 4 and a half hours and 110 miles later we finally were done driving around all of California... it was a long day and I was so sick of traffic. 

I would like to share some special spiritual experiences I have had this week. The first was on Saturday we had a very special Women’s Broadcast for a few of the Stakes in California. We were able to hear from many of the sisters in the Women’s General Presidencies. One of them spoke to us on Keeping Christ in the center by doing a "High Five" 

1 Prayer: Have sincere personal prayer with our Father in Heaven.

2. Scriptures: Learn of Him

3. Sacrament: The Heart of Sunday

4. Service: When you are in the service of your fellow beings you are only in the service of your God.

5. Temple: Regular temple attendance brings the Spirit into your life and into your home.

I loved hearing their stories and about how often we start to look inward and not outward. 

Now for my little personal revelation I received this week. On my mission, I have really noticed a reoccurring theme of aligning our will with the will of the Father. I was reading an article in one of my studies this week that really hit home. I would like to share some things that I learned with all of you:

1. Everything we go through happens for one purpose only: to give you opportunity to respond by applying in your life the teachings of Jesus Christ. As you do this you will become more like Him.

2. Give yourself to Him (God). He cannot work with what he doesn't have.

3. "Give me yourself and in exchange I will give you Myself. My will shall become your will. My heart shall become your heart."- C. S. Lewis 

4. Desire + Dedication= Divinity

To end I wanted to share a personal experience that I had this week. I joined my family in a special fast for one of my dear sweet cousins who I love dearly. She would be getting results from a test to see if she had a Genetic Disease. Saturday I knelt down to start my fast and really pondered what exactly I wanted to fast for. This was when I realized how much I had changed.

Pre-mission McKay probably would have fasted so that the result would come back negative. But then I realized something that I had learned, God has a plan, he has his will and what we need to do is learn, grow and apply the things we learn from Him. I fasted for comfort, peace, and understanding with whatever the results would be. I knew that sometimes we can’t ask God to make something happen but we need to ask him for understanding.

Today when I got online to email my family I found out that the results came back positive. It is hard to be away from family at this time but I knew that this is part of God’s plan for her and Christ knows exactly what is going on and what she is feeling. I know that whatever we go through in this life is because it is part of God’s plan for us. I love my cousin so much and I know without a doubt that Christ is there with her every step of the way. I know this gospel is true and I know that we have a Father in Heaven who loves us so much and I want to share that with you in the name of my Savior Jesus Christ, Amen.

- Hermana Hadley 

Love You "Josie Rose"!

Some random fruit we found it is a cross between a Lemon and a Grapefruit

The Spanish Dream Team for the Last Time

A ton of unhealthy yumminess!

Hermana Nelson and I having a good last laugh :) 
Gunna miss that Girl <3