Wasilla 9/11/17

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

This last week: It was Elder McGee's birthday last Monday and so our whole zone went out to lunch at the Trout House and Sister Pike and I (the STRAIGHT UP MOMS of this zone full of elders) planned this whole elaborate birthday celebration. It was freaking sick. We love parties, but mostly planning them. We made him this for realz birthday cake-not like a box cake but like a legit cake cake #gosisters-topped with nineteen trick candles. Trick candles are fun for like five candles, not nineteen but we didn't really realize that until it was too late. Oops. We smoked up the whole restaurant but in all reality, this restaurant was like a bar with fourteen missionaries, a bunch of old local dudes, and some tourists inside. No biggie. Everyone even sang "happy birthday" with us. Alaska man, I love it. We also made Elder McGee this birthday book with a ton of notes in it from the missionaries who have served around him and it had all these photos and quotes and things. It was pretty freaking fantastic, just saying. He loved it. Then all the elders wanted to go and play volleyball at the park...why the heck would you play volleyball when these mountains are like a ten minute drive away?! IDK. Whatever. Sis. Pike and I just went and hiked in the mountains by ourselves haha.

There's this less active lady we go and visit every Tuesday afternoon who lives in this shack thing full of black mold and it's dark and humid in there and she has all these little birds in a cage that just tweet and chirp our entire lesson with her and imma freakin lose my mind #dunloplearnspatience. She has this dog tied up outside and every time we walk by, it's barking it's head off and I'm just waiting for the day that it breaks free and bites my leg off. Stay tuned, it’s terrifying.

Sister Oliver came on exchanges with me in Memory Lake and it was the first time I've driven since Fairbanks and we were just lost like all day. Alaskan road systems make literally zero sense making my Sister Dunlop life really freaking hard. It's fine. Sister Oliver is adorable. We went and tried to contact a few people then went and helped Bobby with his yard with Elder Morley and Elder Rider, good stuff then Bobby's neighbor, Peggy (a former), invited us over to her house for s'mores. She pulled these rock solid marshmallows out of the cupboard and started a fire in her fire pit full of garbage and had us roast these break your teeth marshmallows over it. For some weird reason, all our marshmallows caught on fire and fell in the fire...weird. The next morning, we got a frantic call from Sister Pike and Sister Jewel because we had a meeting for the sister missionaries serving in the Valley (Lazy Mtn., Colony, and Memory Lake) and it was Sister Anderson's birthday. The next hour and a half proceeded to be a hot mess scramble to pull a birthday together but like I said, love party planning, so it somehow all worked out. Cupcakes and party hats and everything. And twenty more trick candles. But this time, we were in the church building and as soon as she blew them all out, we realized how stupid we all were and opened all the windows and tried to fan all of the smoke away before the fire alarms went off. Sister Dunlop never learns.

Sister Pike and I were asked to teach the Young Women's class yesterday at church. There's only four young women in the Memory Lake Ward and they meet in this itty bitty corner classroom of the church building, way sad for those girls but they're the sweetest. We talked about words and how what we say has the power to either build others up or tear them down. We shared this really awesome video, I'll add it on here but words are so powerful. I think that sometimes we don’t really realize their impact but seriously, everything that comes out of your mouth makes a difference.

We magically convinced some of the elders to go up to Talkeetna with us for PDay today. It was sprinkling rain the whole time but I freaking love that little mountain hippie town. Their mayor is a cat. I'm serious. Google it. We didn't get to meet him though, he was probably busy with meetings or something today. That town is totally run by a cat. We ate good pizza at this little hut called Mountain High Pizza Pie (#tbtjhole) and then and played tourist at all the gift shops and walked down the train tracks to the river and took photos by the bridge. We were there when the train and the cruise ship busses dropped all the people off, and it was just like Jackson in July-people were swarming the little two street town. I love it.

Upcoming week: Remember how last week I raved about how President Toone just crazy believes in us and thinks we're amazing (and we are all still recovering from trizone where he challenged us to step it up)? Yeah okay well we are having this General Authority just like spontaneously come up to Alaska and so all the six zones-North & South Anchorage, Chugach, Palmer, Wasilla, and Soldotna-get to head down to Anchorage for an impulse conference with him and Fairbanks and Juneau will just Skype in. It's like when President Nelson came, except it’s not President Nelson and I actually get to be there in real life for it instead of just watching it on TV and missing the first hour of it because the connection isn't working. It's going to be awesome. TBH also way excited for it because I get to see a ton of my missionary people who I love with all my heart, not going to give any shoutouts though because it keeps them humble. They know who they are.

Transfer calls on Thursday night. Scary. But also not really because the Sisters in AAM are freaking dope and so I'm not too worried about it. In interviews a few weeks ago, President Toone dropped that Sister Pike and I are getting separated next transfer *tears. straight tears. I freaking love this chick. IDK why we got blessed enough for #roundtwo but I'm not mad. I'll probably be camping out in Memory Lake for another round but with the pattern that my mission has gone so far, I really have no idea and just don't even guess anymore #blessthismess. And the fact that I only have four transfers left is scary too. I probably will have one more area before going home but again, I really have no idea and just don't even guess anymore. Mission life is crazy, but I absolutely love it.
Anyways, hope life is happy and sparkly down there. Go be great.

XOXO Sister Dunlop

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