April 22, 2013 / 1st email from Texas!


Hello family!
I’m alive. Barely… I’m living in Humble, Texas. Pronounced ‘Umble’… It’s a little po-dunk town next to Kingwood. Kingwood is awesome! It’s called the livable forest. Once upon a time, there was a beautiful forest (trees, who knew!). Then a mean man came and chopped a bunch down to make roads and houses. The end. And that’s Kingwood! A subdivision/town with HUGE oak and pine trees in every yard, in the middle of the streets… everywhere. It’s beautiful but sad once you think about it. The neighborhood streets are about 5 lanes wide; gotta leave room for those trees in the middle! The houses are beautiful; all brick. It’s stunning work.
Well… It’d be okay with me if I came home. I’m really struggling with my companion. We don’t see eye to eye on anything. I don’t know what to do; it’s making it difficult to feel the spirit. I usually just silently cry at night wishing either she or I would die in our sleep. Or if I could call president and beg him to send me home. I’d be fine with either at this point. I can’t hardly look at her half the time cause I just know she’ll say something that will make me wanna smack her. So during personal study I look at chapter six of preach my gospel; Christ-like Attributes! How to develop them(: Yay.
Our apartment is livable… meaning it’s tiny, lacking kitchen supplies, but has running water and beds. It’s not as bad as another area though… They had some crazy stuff happen and the President had to go and pick them up, pack their bags, and haul them to the mission home.
Our ward doesn’t trust missionaries very well, which stinks for them because with 22 missionaries coming out and only 2 going home, a few areas were created and a couple split. Ours was split so it’s now the Humble West and Humble East. We share the Humble ward with a set of Elders. So that just makes our ward super excited… MORE MISSIONARIES! for them to feed, go on lessons, and offer rides to! They love us(: ha. ha. no… they don’t. I just feel bad for our Elders cause they live on the West side, which is far, and they don’t have a car. So they have to beg members for stuff more than we do.
Yes, we have a car. Every set of sisters has a car. We only get to drive a certain amount of miles though, so we attemp to ride our bikes on nice days. Attempt meaning: it’s hot. We rode them once last week and it wasn’t too bad. I’m so glad Texas is flat. My bike is lavendar; so it’s cute. My helmet is super adorable of course. I love that baby! Never wanna take it off… Not. But I didn’t complain out loud(:
On Thursdays our mission does this really cool thing called H.O.P; Hour of Power… It’s when we have dinner from 5 to 6 with a member, ask them to say a prayer that we will have success while tracting from 6-7, and then ask them to set an alarm on their phone to say a prayer the next week at 5:55. So potentially: we will have all of the wards in all the areas praying for all the missionaries while we all tract at the same time. The success is incredible. It is really powerful! I loved it. It will probably be the highlight of my weeks. We set 3 return appointments, got 6 people’s contact info, and handed out a lot of Resoration pamphlets and BoMs.
So… that’s pretty much it. Oh – one cool story. While we were riding our bikes, we took a break to eat an apple and rest. While we were sitting, a lady was walking past us and so we said hello. She then crossed over and just started talking to us. We learned all this stuff about her; how she’s looking for a church, just got divorced, is living in a battered women’s shelter… crazy stuff. This is on saturday. We taught her the 1st lesson right then and there, comitted her to church the next day, and set a return appointment. Missionary language: that’s a progressing investigator! haha so that’s pretty awesome. Her name is Mary. She’s so open to everything and very humble. she’s had tons of stuff happen… Poor sweetie.
The heat isn’t too bad yet. It’s been a nice 70, very low humidity. So tracting has been pleaseant. I got super burned on my arms while bike riding though… (: yay! There’s a ton of black people here (they’re hilarious) and so when they see my burnt arms they say stuff like, “Ohh poor little white girl! Yous redder dan a lobster. Yous needa git some sun pro-TECT-ion! Dang baby girl! Lemme get you some water…” it’s great. yay pity!
It was actually pretty funny though. When we were tracting, I couldn’t stop scratching my hand. a few minutes earlier I had killed a bug on my other arm (sheer panic had taken place), so I was afraid poison was in the hand that killed it! Finally, my comp was walking in front of me, so I just had a break down and yelled, “SISTER HALLER. I THINK I’M HAVING A REACTION TO SOMETHING!” That’s when we realized I was just burned and it was irritated. Whoops…
Well I have tons of people to write
The church is true. Heavenly father has a sense of humor.
Love you all!
— Sister Stockinger

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