Soldotna, French Toast Friday, and Wild Game Dinner

Monday, November 14, 2016

Hi doods. So I decided not to voice record my email this week because I feel like I left a zillion and a half things out last week that I wanted to tell y'all about but I can still send some if you want. Whatevs works. You tell me. Also, the stream of emails I get from everyone on Sunday night makes my heart so happy, so thank you💕

Hopefully you're all staying warm down there because at one point this week I was knocking doors in single digit weather. Happy November in Alaska. PS: I know that I make all these sassy remarks about Alaska being ridiculously cold all the time but I still love it anyways #manyarecalledbutfewarefrozen. 

We had exchanges down in Soldotna this week and I got to go and be down there with Sister Williams for a day (blessings on blessings). Soldotna is dope! I actually got out of Anchorage for the first time in forever (#quotesFrozeninweeklyemailandnoshame)! Sister Williams showed me around all over Soldotna; the pretty part (all the glacier melt rivers and lakes that are crystal blue and the super dense forests) and the sketch part (we saw a house that had 9-12 old cars in their front yard and the back of the house was smoking (it had been on fire for a couple of days haha), a guy riding his snow bike with a laundry machine tied on the back, a mannequin riding a stuffed moose (not like a stuffed animal moose, like a moose that was once alive but was shot and now is stuffed kind of animal), and all this other random stuff. Then I met one of their new converts who is an Alaskan native and he's super nice. He is going to baptize his daughter in a few weeks too so that's pretty cool. It's a little more than a three hour drive from Anchorage to Soldotna so we met back up at a sketchy cabin motel spot near Hope to exchange back on Thursday. Our drive back to Anchorage was super duper sketchy. It was snowing, hailing, and raining (at the same time) and then under the thick layer of slush on the roads was ice. Want to talk about some PTSD from my Tin Cup car accident?! Yep. Thanks Alaska roads. Once we got to Girdwood, the roads cleared up a little more and so Sister Ewing and I pulled over for a quick sanity check/Dunlop needed to get out of the car and breathe moment. We somehow made it back to Anchorage in one piece #missionariesareprotected.

When I was at home, Mama Laura celebrated "Cookie Friday" every Friday. It was the best! But now I don't have Cookie Friday up here and so I decided to start French Toast Friday because we somehow ended up with a ton of the extra bread from the Mission Office. It's a new holiday (in addition to the pre-established every Friday holiday known as, "Flannel Friday"). It's awesome. I smashed up Cinnamon Toast Crunch and then put it on top of our French Toast before we baked it in the was amazing!! Trademark that. We also tried it with crushed up Captain Crunch, and it was good but not AS good. I don't even need Pinterest...JK, I miss it everyday. Everyone is invited to join in our happy French Toast Friday celebration if they wish. 

On Saturday, after morning district tract in Brayton (where it was raining ice, not snow or raindrops, ice. Go Alaska) our district went to lunch at Sam's Club (yay greasy and cheap pizza). Then Sister Ewing and I went over to the Heckel's house to help them prep and cook for the Wild Game Dinner later that night. The Wild Game Dinner is an annual activity that the Oceanview Ward hosts at the end of autumn where members cook up all their extra random game meat from their summer hunts and then we all eat it. It's way sketch haha. There's bear, elk, caribou, moose, reindeer, halibut, salmon, frog, wild boar, turkey, pig (not ham, it's "pig"), and a bunch of other stuff. We made caribou kebabs with Brother and Sister Heckel which turned into a real life episode of "Chopped" because they realized they were missing a bunch of ingredients so Sister Heckel made some crazy substitute concoction that worked out somehow. Cool. PS: I don't remember if I told y'all this last week, but the Heckels were on date to be baptized, then they weren't, then they were, and now they are (long story- I'll tell you when I get home) and so they are scheduled to all be baptized on December 7th! What's really cool about this date is that it's the nine year anniversary mark of Sister Heckel's convert baptism. Cool, huh? And what's bonus cool about it is that Brother Heckel is working on getting the Priesthood so he can baptize them. Booyah! 

The Wild Game Dinner was so...Alaskan. I don't know how else to explain it. It was kind of a mad house with random meats and desserts and whatever all over the place but that's about how all Mormon Ward activities go really. There wasn't any muktuk there so that was a bummer (I promised myself I wouldn't leave Alaska without trying it) but they did have just about everything else. Moose, caribou, and reindeer aren't all that bad but I haven't decided how I feel about eating bear yet. It just smells really weird. And it's a bear, like I'm eating a weird. Also, I met Mont Mahoni there. He's a Third Nephite from Big Lake. And he was wearing a Utah State hoodie, so he's definitely a righteous one (#goaggies). You'll have to ask Elder Bird for all the sources, stories, and evidence of all of Mont Manhoi but basically he's real and I met him at Wild Game Dinner. If I was a Third Nephite, I would hide out in Alaska too :)

Sunday was the Primary Program for both the Bush Branch and the Oceanview Ward. It's pretty much the greatest Sacrament Meeting all year. The Bush Branch program was so cute because there's only like four Bush families with primary age kids in them and so each of the kids had a mini talk on something and then the whole family would sing something like "I Love to See the Temple" or "We Thank Thee O God For a Prophet". President Andersen, the Mayhues, Sister Ewing, and I were laughing the whole time. One of the kids got up and said, "You shouldn't do anything that's bad for you, because that makes it hard to have a testimony". Wise words from a kid that's going places. The Oceanview Ward Primary president asked us to come and sit with all the kids on the stand for their program (basically to make sure they all stayed in their seats and got up when it was their turn to speak) and then sing "Called to Serve" with them. Super awkward but whatever. 

That's about all I've got. I'm making Sister Ewing and the Huffman sisters come hike Flattop with me (because I'm sick of lame P-Days we've been having just playing volleyball in the gym with the Elders) later today so I promise to take some photos to share with you next week. We get to go to the temple this week and I turn 3 months old on Thursday! Yay! Other fun news: I had my first Alaskan wipe out this week and landed straight on my face after slipping on some ice (Sister Ewing just laughed and kept walking). That was joyous. But mostly painful. I'm a survivor. Christmas is in 41 days!
Love y'all, Sister Dunlop the Eskimo⛄️

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