Monday, February 27, 2017

Yo. It was a crazy week with transfers (*cries because Pike is down in Anchorage now), blizzards & melting snow, and then a double baptism at the end to top it all off. Mish life is crazy.
Transfers: sad but good.
Sister Pike is killing it down in Jewel Lake now and Sister Fa'anunu came up from Juneau on Thursday night. Poor Sister Fa'anunu is stressed out of her mind having to learn this area. She has been out for almost five months and was trained in Juneau so Fairbanks 5th is only her second area. She's from Tonga and is learning English on her mission (baha jokes because that means she studies it with her companion and baha jokes because I have no idea how to teach English). Good stuff. Also, I taught her how to scrape ice off our truck the other day and she was super confused why we needed to plug the truck in before we went in at night haha. She keeps saying, "send me back to Juneau," lol sorry kiddo. Welcome to Fairbanks. 

Christina & Dylan's baptism: SO GOOD.
Dylan caught the flu that morning but was a such a champ and toughed it out and was baptized. His dad (who is not a member of the Church) came and supported Christina & Dylan which was super cool. All of the chairs were full of our awesome Fairbanks 5th Ward members - I adore this ward. Go team.
Funny story: Dylan gets in the font to be baptized and all the little primary kids gather up in the front so they can see and some KID drops his handful of RAISINS in the font. But at first, we didn't realize what they were so Sister Fa'anunu and I panicked because we thought it was bugs or poop or something so that was awkward. Whatevs, Dylan was baptized and then Christina was baptized. Awesome. Moving on...after the baptism, we had to wait for all the water to drain out and then I had to be the brave senior companion and go see what it was. It was raisins. Nasty nasty. 
Before Christina left, she was like, "thanks for letting us use your tub". Hahaha I adore her. Sorry that was probably the lamest email ever.
Love ya!
Xoxo Sis Dun

Truck and Transfer Calls

Monday, February 20, 2017

Yo peeps! Sorry that this week is a modge podge of random things that have happened. It's been kinda crazy with transfer calls, Elder Arden of the 70 and his wife coming up for a mission tour, the sun shining, new cars, and all the other Alaskan stuff. I just want everyone to know that a couple of times this week, we went outside in only our hoodies. And we didn't die. Miracles are happing up here in Fairbanks. It was above zero for more than an hour! Also, saw the Northern Lights! Check that off the Bucket List. TBH, they weren't all that exciting because it hadn't been very cold that day, they were just green streaks in the sky. That is pretty cool I guess. I take that back, I saw the Northern Lights this week and it was awesome! Also, there were dog mushers out the wazoo in Fairbanks this week and we saw the finish line so that was pretty dope too. I love Alaska.

In other news, Fran (our Jeep that froze last week) is still MIA. The original plan on Tuesday was that the Zone Leaders would take her to the shop and get her fixed then bring her back so we could go out and be missionaries (side note: we don’t actually live in our area and it's too far and too cold to walk all day so we were a little trapped without a car #alaska). They magically got her to start and drove off to the shop but apparently Fran died like four or five times on the way there. So the ZLs come back and are like, "you don't have a car anymore..." *starts crying a little bit. So then we had to call the 2nd Ward sister missionaries and have them take us to a lesson, drop us off, and pick us up. Then we went to a lesson with them and then they had to drop us off for another lesson at Christina and Dylan's but they weren't home yet so Sister Pike and I walked around the neighborhood freezing our lives away until they came home. It was just a mess. On our little walk, we called President Robinson and we were like, "yo homie...this no car thing ain't gonna work for us kiddo," (kinda in those words but actually not really). And so he worked his mission president magic and made it so that we could have the ZLs other truck- that they had previously wrecked, hence "other" (go elders)-that had just come out of the shop that day #tendermercies #miracles #lovemylife #happyvalentinesdaydunlop. 2nd Ward took us to get the truck keys from the ZLs and we happily drove away in our new truck. WE LOVE OUR TRUCK! Her name is Spice (like Ginger Spice from Spice Girls) and Sister Pike and I LOVE her. Sorry Fran, you've been replaced.

We got our transfer calls and Sister Pike is heading down to South Anchorage (I love, love, love, love South Anchorage #promiseland) to be in the Jewel Lake Ward and Sister Fa'anunu is coming up from Juneau to be in 5th Ward with me! So sad that Sister Pike is leaving but also so excited to #1 stay in this area (this ward freaking ROCKS and I'm still recovering from my heartbreak of a "one and done" in Lazy Mountain, I love that place!) and #2 have Sister Fa'anunu come up with me! It's going to be super duper awesome and I'm way pumped for it. 

Elder Arden and his wife came up for a mission tour this weekend! They flew up with President & Sister Robinson to Fairbanks on Friday and we were in a training with him all day. It was really cool/really long but also really awesome. He talked a lot about overcoming trials and having faith, hope, and trust in Heavenly Father that will help us get through. There have been moments on my mission that have been some of the hardest moments in my life, but there have also been moments that have been some of the happiest. I wouldn't trade serving in this frozen ice land for the world. I love being a missionary. 

Want to talk about happy moments? How about Christina and Dylan getting baptized on Saturday?? Happy. Moment. I'm probably going to cry but whatever. I am so excited for them. They are fantastic human beings and they're some of my favorite people ever. I adore them! It's going to be awesome! Get stoked.

So anyways I love y'all, I love Alaska, I love being a missionary. Life is good up in the frozen north. Peace and blessings.

XOXO Sister Dunlop

This photo makes my OCD crazy...LOOK AT THAT GAP SCOOT OVER ELDERS

Chicken Tacos, Bingo, Frozen Fran

Monday, February 13, 2017

Hey! DUDE WHAT THE HECK HAPPENED AT HOME?! FOR REALZIES?!! Holy shooooooot. The world is ending down there. Anyways, it was kind of a weird week up here. Sister Pike was sick for the first part of the week and so we had pretty chill days visiting people that talked our faces off. Alaskans can chat. Forever. Awesome! Side note: homegirl Mama Laura sent me a keyboard for my iPad and it's super fun to type on (and it keeping my fingers warm) so this is probs going to be a long email. Sorry. You can just skip to the photos if you want, that's what I would do. But, here we go:

We had amazing chicken tacos with Christina and Dylan this week. I don't know what it is about tacos and Alaskans, but they make some real good tacos. What a blessing. We thought that their husband/dad was going to eat with us but after we finished eating, he came in the door from work and as soon as he saw that we were there, he just went upstairs and took a shower. Super awkward. Like you could've cut the awkward with a knife. So we left. It wasn't that bad, but it could've gone a lot better/worse too I guess.

We go and do service every Friday afternoon at the Pioneer Home and play Bingo with elderly people. It's service because we just sit next to them and help them find the number/letter combo the Bingo caller called. It's a good time. I sit with this lady named Candy and we lose hardcore every time- we've literally never won. On Friday after the first few games of us totally losing, she leaned over to me and was like, "I think if I just crawl under this table and die I'd be more likely to win than just sitting here. I'm not coming back next week, I'm done playing Bingo". Then took her little walker and peaced.

Frozen Fran. Our Jeep's name is Fran (I think I've told y'all that before) and she was frozen solid Sunday morning. Like nothing was going to start her. So we called our YSA homegirl to come and save us and she dropped us off at church because her ward didn't start until later in the afternoon. We were like 30 minutes late and church was only two hours long because it was -38 outside. *AK rule: if it's -40 or colder church is cancelled all together, in the -30s it's just two hours, and if it's -20 or warmer, it's all three hours. Also, all the military dads/husbands are back from NTC now so it looked like there was a totally different ward in 5th ward during sacrament. Super cray. I get to go meet all of them because they've been gone since I have been in Fairbanks.

After church one of our ward missionaries told us that she had jumper cables in her car and that she could take us back to our apartment and help us jump poor frozen Fran. She told us she was driving her friend’s car because her truck died at UAF yesterday. We were like, "whatever we don't care" because we were just glad we didn't have to walk a zillion miles home in -35 or something. We go out to the parking lot and it's the ghettoest ghetto little car crammed full of snowboarding stuff and it smelled like weed, like lots of weed...killer. So we get to our apartment and she has super short cables so she pulled around to the front side of our car but was still too far away then her borrowed-weed smelling-snowboarder friend's ghetto car got STUCK in the three inches (max) of snow that was on the ground. Like stuck, stuck. It was ridiculous. Then we spent half an hour freezing our faces off (our eyelashes were all frozen and we couldn't feel our fingers) trying to rescue this ghetto car out of a tiny patch of snow. We eventually got it-after digging it out with the sharp edge of our window scrapers and pushing it. She pulled the sketch car around and we put our car in neutral and pushed it out so that the short little jumper cables could reach from her car to Fran #girlpower. We hooked up our cars and then for the next 45 minutes tried to start Fran. It wasn't going to happen. So she was like, "maybe it just needs to warm up," and then she left. IT'S NOT GOING TO WARM UP UNTIL LIKE AUGUST WE ARE IN FAIRBANKS! It was super nice of her to drive us home and try to help us though haha. About an hour later the first counselor in the bishopric and his wife came (praise them!!) to try and save us but to no avail. He told us that it was something more than just needing to have the car jumped. So they left and we called our AAM car guy and told him what was going on then he told us to go to the car place tomorrow and have them take a look at it. But we can't drive the car anywhere. The Zone Leaders came and tried to save us but they couldn't fix it either (PS please remember it's like negative a billion degrees outside). Then the elders in Badger Road called them because their truck wasn't starting either so the Zone Leaders left us to go and help them way out there and they took our car keys with them. We were just stranded. Our homie first counselor and his wife came and got us and we went over to their house for dinner and then they drove us over to the church so we could teach our "Preach My Gospel" class to the few kids that showed up despite how freaking cold and dark it was outside. Then they dropped us off back at our apartment and we are just having the 2nd ward sisters drive us around today because we are currently car-less. It's a good time. We don't really know what to do so the Zone Leaders are figuring it all out. Cars hate me.

This upcoming week: it's supposed to be like +25 degrees on Wednesday and I'm pumped out of my mind! THAT'S ABOVE ZERO. LIKE A LOT. I don't think I've been in weather that warm since October in Anchorage #tendermercies. We get our transfer calls on Thursday night, so that should be exciting. With the way my transfer calls have gone so far, I'll probably get another companion next transfer (boo) or get another "One & Done" bump to a new area. I've had a new companion every transfer so far...what the heck Dunlop. I freaking adore Sister  Pike! We've had so much fun together and have seen so many awesome miracles here. But she was trained in Fairbanks 5th and then I came up and greenie broke her- so she's been here for a while and I think she's about ready to head down south where the sunlight is in Anchorage or something. What else for this week? Oh! Elder Arden, of the 70, is coming up to the AAM this weekend for a mission tour and he's flying up to Fairbanks with President & Sister Robinson for our zone conference on Friday. That's going to be super duper awesome. I think that's about all I've got. Sorry it wasn't very exciting- just a frozen cold car, a little Bingo, and some chicken tacos with Dylan and Christina really. Anyways, love y'all. Peace & blessings xoxo/Sis. Dunlop

Here's a lame selection of photos from this week:


Monday, February 6, 2017

Hey peeps.
Sister Pike & I somehow survived another week up here in this frozen land they call Fairbanks. It was above zero a couple of times, so that was a perk. Also, there's a little girl in our ward who is a Girl Scout and so we scored some Thin Mints and Samoas from her this week #blessingsonblessings.  
Missionary work wise, it's been super duper awesome (*knock on wood to not jinx it). There are so many miracles and awesome things that are happening right now. Fairbanks 5th Ward freaking rocks. Christina and her nine year old son, Dylan, came to church yesterday and stayed the whole time with us! Dylan goes to school and tae kwan do (is that how you spell it? I have no sorry) with a bunch of kids in his Primary class and during the opening hymn for Sacrament Meeting was like, "Mom, when am I going to go and get wet like the Sisters said I could?". I died. He's so excited to be baptized in a few weeks with his mom! We are super excited too. Christina & Dylan invited us over for dinner later this week and we are going to finally meet their husband/dad there and hopefully that goes well. He isn't interested in learning more about the Church (yet) and doesn't totally support Christina & Dylan's decision to be baptized (yet) so we're hoping this isn't terribly awkward. We met with Ryan, the guy living in his car, again and he told us how he wants to meet with someone "higher up" in the Church food chain than just us little sister missionaries to learn about the gospel. Even though our missionary job is teach the gospel. Whatevs. He was astonished (big word, go Dunlop) to hear that people actually get baptized after meeting with the missionaries. Crazy, I know...I guess the gospel must really be true or something. We don't quite know if we are going to keep teaching him or not. We think he's just curious more than he is wanting to actually do something with the things we are teaching him. We're passing him on to Bishop Bolland to call the shots I'll keep you updated from there.
We've also been meeting with Aaliyah, who is a nine year old that was fostered and then adopted by this super cute member family, and teaching her the missionary lessons. She finished all of them and is wanting to be baptized on the same day as her friend in another ward and so that should be happening pretty soon. Woo! There's another family in our ward, the Auamau's, and the dad is not a member but he comes to Church every week and he is totally a Dry Mormon. The transfer before I came to Fairbanks, he said that he would think about being baptized and so every time we go over for dinner, Sister Pike and I sneak in a missionary lesson. He only needs two more before he's had all of them! We don't know how to be like, "hey so baptism...?", without it being really awkward so we're still figuring that one out haha. But he's super awesome and his kids rock and I'm a huge fan of their fambam.
Other stuff really quick that I can't remember if I've told you or not: we've started teaching a Preach My Gospel class for the youth in our ward and it's sweet! The youth in Alaska are so cool! We go and do Family History with a group of the recent converts in our ward so they can take their family names to the temple #dressedinwhitetwice and it's way fun. Luckily there are ladies in there to tell me how to do Family History because I'm so clueless. We rolled out a brand new Fairbanks 5th Ward mission plan yesterday and it's way, way awesome and we are really excited that we can get it rolling in the Ward now. 
We had Zone meeting this weekend and President & Sister Robinson flew up to do interviews too. It was also President's birthday on Friday and he rolled up in a cherry red rental convertible something something (I need the elders here to tell me what kind of car whatever it was) car and he walked into our meeting pretty pumped about it haha #happybirthdaypresident. During interviews, President told us that it takes a special set of tough sister missionaries to brave a winter in Fairbanks. We laughed but in reality, we just wanted to cry because we are so sick of being frozen all the time. Then President laughed as he told me, "Sister Dunlop, I don't know what kind of joke a God is playing on you making you start your winter in windy cold Palmer and then finish it out in Fairbanks...". Haha too true, too true. The other day Sister Pike & I daydreamed about what it's going to be like this summer when we don't have to bulk up and put a zillion layers on to survive the thirty second walk from car door to front door. It's going to be great #pumped #stoked #yayforthesunshine. Part of the area we cover is on the military base and every time we drive in, there's a big huge sign that says, "Fort Wainwright: home of the U.S. Army's Arctic Warriors". We think it's pretty funny (missionaries think everything is funny) and always joke about being sister missionary Arctic Warriors. It's true though! I'm so excited for when the temperature gauge doesn't have a negative sign on it. Anyways, that's my life right now. It's awesome, no complaints. Just cold. But what else is new with Dunlop? Nothing. Anyways, love y'all. Stay warm down there. Peace and blessings. 
xoxo Sister Dunlop