FYI: This blog is being taken care of by Sister Martin's mom Sharon Martin - She is posting emails and pictures that I am sending to her each week.

Monday, 2 December 2013

Loving living in almost Scotland!

Hello Laddies and Lassies!! (yup......Carlisle is pretty much Scotland....if you could hear the accents here you would know what I mean!)

It has been a crazy few days! Carlisle is absolutely lovely! So much shopping it blows my mind! The people in our branch are so nice! I love being in a small branch...after only a couple of days here I almost know everyone already (makes it easier to jump straight into the missionary work here!). We had 2 baptisms my 1st Saturday here (a part-member family. Teenaged daughter joined the church a couple of years ago, and then her mom and younger sister finally got baptised this weekend!). They are the funniest family ever!! I love them dearly! And they are great cooks too! Their story is great! They live next door to members. Since missionaries obviously spent time with these members, they were able to find this family through them. It was beautiful to see the friendship that these neighbours have, and how strong it has gotten through the gospel! Proof that members CAN do missionary work if they really actively pray for and seek the opportunities to do so!

Highlight of the baptism for me though? These recent converts have a really good family friend who is originally from Ukraine....therefore she speaks Russian. Sis. Shchur and I had just started working on teaching me Russian right before I left (I'm very determined that I'll learn to speak one day! It's a beautiful language!!) and I was devastated when she left and I had to stop. So this lady has offered for me to meet with her and do language lessons. She came to the baptism and we had a nice long chat in English and a brief short chat in my terrible Russian, so Sis B and I hope that through spending time with her that we can teach her in the future! Who knew that my pathetic Russian would one day lead to a potential investigator!?

There is a lot of work to do here! Luckily I love it here so I don't mind one bit! With these baptisms that have now come and gone, we need to find people to teach! We have 2 investigators that have good potential to be baptised in the future, but mostly we need to hits the streets hard and start building up this area! I'm excited for the potential and pray that I can make a massive impact in Carlisle!

Sis. Burridge is great. She is veryyyyyyy laid back and chatty. We are a funny combo, but it's working well! Bonus! She is only about an inch shorter then me so we can share clothes!!!! Pretty sure this is the 1st time ever in my entire life that I've had the option to share clothing with someone :) She is also in my good books because she has loads of Tim Tams in the house, so I can still have my Tim Tam slams after a long stressful day!

Random Awkward Moment:
There is this super long pedestrian alleyway that goes from one village to another. For whatever disgusting reason, it is just infested with dog poo every couple steps. So Sis. B and her last comp. always called it Poo Alley. Well we were talking with our investigator and getting directions to somewhere. Sis. B goes "Oh! You can get there by taking the Poo Alley....ummmm I mean that alleyway by the river". Super awkward. Love those missionary moments!

My district:
So it's like a giant reunion out here! There are 3 or 4 of us in this district that are from my original MTC group. And Elder Greaves (who I served with in Telford for 2 transfers) is in this district. We laughed so hard when we realized we had been reunited again (after only 1 transfer of being separated). Seems like a nice district!

Scottish Moments:
So we were at the Branch Presidents home (they are the loveliest couple! In early 30's. No kids. Great people!!!!) and as we were leaving his home to go off to teach an investigator with them, he suddenly says (in his big Scottish accent):

"Sister Martin, can I ask you a personal question. What size shoes do you have?! Those are the biggest ladies shoes I've ever seen! Do you chop down trees with your bare hands back in those B.C forests?"

Well that certainly boosted my confidence....not! Haha! Thankfully, I was pretty much raised on sarcasm, so I have a pretty thick skin (and big feet to go with it har. har. har.)

Fact: Yes. My feet are wayyyy too big. It really is unfortunate!
Fact: No. I do not want to be a lumberjack.
Fact: Because I'm the biggest girlie girl on planet earth.

I think it was the accent that made me find the whole thing so funny. If it had been in an American accent it just wouldn't have been the same!

Lamest Email Ever:
I honestly don't have much more to say than that! I haven't been here long enough to really have any crazy stories (I'm always a little more behaved when I'm 1st meeting members. Once they get to know me, then the good stories will begin!)

Love you all dearly! Hope that December brings lots of love and joy and the Spirit of Christ into your lives!

Hope the time goes quickly for you and slowly for me!
<3 Sister Martin

PS:  From Erika's Mom...Erika's feet are way too big.  She wears a size 12 shoe and a size 13 boot.  The sole on her only pair of boots (and trust me it was almost impossible to find them!) has come off and she has it in the repair shop now.  I was quite worried about her having no boots right now and have been online looking at UK shops desperately trying to find boots to order for her (she can't buy boots in any store in her size).  She happily reported that since being bootless that it hasn't rained at all so her feet are dry. Hopefully her boots are repaired before the rain returns!  Tender Mercies...

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