Week 71 ~ Giant Satellites & Crazy Rastas

Hellllloooooo Everyone!

This week was a good one!  I’m finally feeling healthy again so we were able to get out and WORK this week and it felt so good!  It’s so crazy how just going out and talking to strangers about the Gospel can make you feel so happy and energized.
This past week Sister Skinner and I finished out a HUGE contact area. (called Corinth hills) In total we contacted 17 apartment buildings and over 50 townhouses, and we called on every door.  It took a transfer and a half.  It wasn’t the most prepared of areas, but we still found some really cool people.  We had a really cool experience with one of the people that we found last week named Lizzy.  We called in and she came out and when we asked her if she believed in God she said NO!  She is the first person on my whole mission that has said that.  So we were pretty taken back, haha but she kept asking us a bunch of questions about how if there is a God why would he let so much sorrow into the world.  Later in the week sister Skinner and I were teaching a lesson at a less active member’s house and we were watching a Mormon Message about the Plan of Salvation and how through the Atonement we can find peace in this life.  After the lesson we both said to each other at the same time, “Maybe we should go see if Lizzy is home.”  We went straight to her house and she was actually standing outside!  She had just barely gotten home from work in Port of Spain (the other side of the island), but she still allowed us to sit down and share a message.  We testified of Heavenly Father and Christ’s Atonement, how we are here to learn and to grow in this life and to prepare to meet God, and how trials help us to grow. The spirit was so strong and she was almost in tears.  She told us that both her mom and sister were killed and she is just having a hard time believing God would let that happen. At the end of the lesson, her heart was so softened and she was so excited for us to come back and teach her more.  For sure was one of the best spiritual experiences of the week 🙂
Since we finished contacting Corinth Hills we started a new area and this area is straight up BUSH.  It’s so cool haha.  On one side of the road is a really nice developed neighborhood and then on the next side is 10×10 feet board houses… typical Trinidad.
I love these areas though because the people are so humble.  They are either humble or super crazy so it’s never boring.  Most of this area is full of crazy rastas with incredibly long ras. (dreadlocks.)  But they are nice and let us pick their guavas and mangos so we are homies.  We had to bush wack to get to a few of the houses, but the people we met are AWESOME and they have so much potential.
Our district had a super sweet activity today… we drove to north side and went on a hike called Bamboo athedral. (Get ready for lots of pictures.)  It lead up to a place where in WWII the USA had a huge satellite base.  We climbed to the top of the satellite and almost died but we survived. 😎 This is the best district!
Have good week!

Sister Kimball 

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Week 70 ~ Just Serve.

Hey Everyone!

After being on the mend from last week, I felt better for 2 days and then got food poisoning again from Wendy’s (sad…. I’ll never be able to eat there again). hahaha
The doctors and nurses at Valsayn know me so well now.  Pneumonia, mono, and food poisoning twice in the last 4 months will do that!  It’s made for some funny mission memories, that’s for sure 🙂   I am starting to feel healthy again though so no worries! Thank you all so much for all the many prayers I get from home.
This week I have been reflecting on my mission a lot lately. (I was with Sister Tui for Missionary Leadership Council and whenever we are together we always talk about the MTC until now and reflect on how much has happened and how much we have changed.
I was thinking how happy I have been for the lat 16 months.  Which, when you think about it, it’s kinda crazy how happy missionaries are.  I have left everything behind that made me happy: family, friends, the mountains, the gym, ect.  I came on a mission, where I am always exhausted, the humidity makes me sick and people challenge our faith and beliefs.  So what makes me so happy?  It’s the Gospel of Jesus Christ and giving service.  I am so grateful for the opportunity I have to be a full time missionary and to give ALL my time and efforts to others.  I read a talk today by Carl B. Cook of the 70 and I loved this part:
“As we serve, we draw closer to God.  We come to know Him in ways that we otherwise might not.  Our faith in Him increases.  Ours problems are put into perspective.  Life becomes more satisfying. Our love for others increases, as well as our desire to serve. Through this blessed process, we become more like God and we are better prepared to meet Him”
I know that this is true.  I know that as we lose ourselves in serving those around us (Mosiah 2:17), we find ourselves.  I know that that has what has happened to me on my mission.  I know who I am more than ever before.  I know who God is and I know who Christ is.
Jesus Christ, our great Exemplar, gave His life to His Father’s work.  In the Grand Council 
before this world was organized, Jesus, chosen and anointed from the beginning, 
volunteered, “Here am I, send me.”  In so doing, He literally became the servant of us all.
Through Jesus Christ and the power we receive through His Atonement, we can also serve. 
Hope everyone has a good week!  Love you all!

Sister Kimball 

DSCF2279Here is me holding a dead iguana 😇

Weeks 68 & 69 ~ Almost died, but I’m good

Hey Everyone!

Well geez. This last week was ANYTHING but normal.  I’ll start from the beginning.  Two Fridays ago I started to feel really sick.  I got really nauseous and even threw up.  So I laid down for a couple hours while we didn’t have appointments and then we went back out to work that evening.  Saturday morning rolls around and I still am not feeling too hot (Started to have super bad stomach pains on top of the nausea), but we had 8 appointments set so I was just like, “NOT TODAY SATAN”.  We went out and worked hard the whole day, which is good because we found a really cool investigator named Aleeka! Blessings!  But by the time we got in for the night I could hardly stand up straight because I was in so much pain.  That whole night I didn’t sleep and spent the night throwing up.
Sunday morning I finally called Sister Egbert and told her I was sick.  Her and President were coming down to church in San Fernando so they stopped by with soups, medicine, sprite, and apple sauce :,)  They are the best.  Sister Xavier had a migraine so she stayed in with me the whole day while our companions went out together.  Monday morning we went to the doctor down in Sando.  (We usually go to the doctors on the north side of the island, but neither of us could drive so we went to the south hospital)  We had some doctor from India… THIS GUY!  He took THREE hours to see us and when he did he took my temperature, asked me a few questions and said, “well you are sick.”  NO DUH!!  hahah.  By monday night my stomache pain was so bad that I was blacking out.  President called me and asked me to describe the pain and I said, “Well, I don’t know what a contraction feels like but I assume it’s something like this.”  President:  “Well, that better not be the problem Sister Kimball!” hahahah. 😂  Long story short, they ended up driving down south at 11 pm to get me and took me to the hospital on the north side.  I was hospitalized for 2 days.  I had lots of Nigerian and Indian doctors inspecting me throughout those two days and lots of pain killers that they gave me through an IV that made my whole arm burn.  I didn’t sleep or eat for 4 days.  So basically last week was a nightmare!  They think I had either food poisoning or just a really bad stomach virus.  But all is well now and I am back on my feet working 🙂  I stayed a few days with the Egbert’s and mostly just slept. They took good care of me.  They are literally the most amazing mission parents!
One of the many things I took away from this experience is how important kneeling prayer and reading our scriptures is.  I didn’t do either of those things for about 2 days because of how sick I was (which really isn’t an excuse).  Between that and being completely thrown out o my normal schedule, I honestly felt so off!  When I finally got to go back down to my apartment, not only did I feel so physically weak, but I felt spiritually weak as well and it was really hard.  But as soon as soon as I read from the Book of Mormon and asked Heavenly Father to help me “get back in the game”,  I immediately felt so much better.  I know the book is true and I know Heavenly Father hears our prayers.  I’ve learned on my mission that it really is the little things that make such a big difference in our relationship with our Heavenly Father.
So I don’t have much to update about the area or investigators because we didn’t get to teach much but hopefully this week we will be able to see lots of miracles!  I am in a trio right now with Sister Skinner and Sister Montenegro due to Sister Xavier having eye problems and not being able to drive.  So we are covering two areas right now… pleasantville and Marabella!  It should be fun because I served more than half my mission in Marabella so I get to go back and see everyone!
Anywho, crazy week.  But all is well.  God is good.
Love you all!

Sister Kimball 

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Sister Skinner took this of me at 3 am hahah.  I was so drugged up that I looked at her and said, “Did you just take a picture of me dying?” and she said, “Well, you said you need to start documenting your mission more.” hahaha…. I love Sister Skinner.
IMG_0482Beautiful Trinidad
IMG_0489Brother Benjamin and Brother Gene… every missionaries dream… a convert fellowshipping another convert 🙂

Week 67 ~ Bats, Giant Cockroaches & LOTS of Spiritual Experiences

Dear Fam Damily,

I just survived the BEST/grossest district activity.  We went up to the other end of the island (my old area, we were literally down the street from Sister Xavier’s house haha!). We went to a place called the Bat Caves.  One of the coolest caves I have ever explored! Also, the grossest because there were roaches the size of my hand and bats EVERYWHERE! One hit me in the face hahaha.  At the end of the cave there was a big rock wall that Sister Xavier, the elders and I free climbed up. (sorry mom)  It was sick!  The drive up to the cave was cool too.  It was a super long curvy road through a really old village.  I forget how happy being the in mountains and climbing rocks makes me. 😊
This week was seriously SO GOOD.  So many cool spiritual experiences.  I got to have an exchange with Sister Montenegro (my old Peruvian companion).  It was super fun to be with her again. We contacted into a lesson with a super sweet lady named Enaz.  She is REALLY old and REALLY blind, but super sharp and SUPER hilarious.  Sister Skinner and I went to see her the day after and she let us do service for her!!!  Trini’s never let us help them out so it’s always really exciting when we get to do service.  She had us fold some sheets for her and plat her hair while she told us about how Trinidad was in the 40’s and her life story of being in an arranged marriage at 16 to a 72 year old man…. yeah she had a crazy life.  One thing I love about being a missionary is meeting so many strangers and hearing their life stories.  It’s the best.
So there is this man named Jody in our contact area that we contacted our very first day in the new area.  We walked by him and I thought he yelled out to us when we got further down the road so I turned around and he said, “Sorry, I was yelling to someone else.” and I said, “Ok that’s fine, we will talk to you anyway.” hahaha  We contacted him and he seemed really cool, but we were never able to catch him for a lesson after that because the man is so “busy”.  Well, on Saturday morning we were contacting in the rain and he saw us from his gallery and invited us in.  We had the coolest lesson with him!  We asked him about how he came to know that God is real and he told us this big long story about how he was once stranded on a river in Venezuela and he prayed for food and for gas to get their boat off the river and right when he ended his prayer a fish jumped in his boat and a man came down the river on a boat and handed them a tank of gas.  hahaha I was like, “No way! You can’t be serious.”  but his mom was there and said that he was telling the truth.  Him and his buddies were missing for a month on that river.  In the lesson we asked him what he thinks about the scripture that says we were created in God’s image and likeness and he went into how God has a body of flesh and bones and started talking about the Counsel in Heaven.  We asked him how he knew that and he said he’s had dreams about it.  He’s super cool.  At the end of the lesson he told us he knew a member in our ward!  Her name is Anastasia, when we saw her at church we told her we were teaching her friend Jody.  She was shocked because a couple months ago she put him on her 21 day promise.  (The 21 Day Promise is a challenge from M. Russel Ballard.  You make a list of people in your life that you want to accept the Gospel and you have to pray for them every day and night for 21 days.  The promise is that at least one on the list will listen to the missionary lessons.  The 21 Day Promise is part of our mission plan, we give it to all our members.)  But the area where Jody lives was shut down so she never gave the missionaries his info.  Pretty cool that we just “happened” to find him.  That was a really cool spiritual experience of the week.
We also are teaching a really cool rasta girl, who is 17.  And has 2 kids. Crazy! She is awesome though.  She is fun to teach because she is so eager to learn and has a bajillion questions every time and always reads more than we leave her in the BOM.  She is one the best investigators I have ever had!
This week was seriously such a great week!  This area is GROWING and we are seeing so many miracles, so I am happy. 😊 The Gospel is True!

Sister Kimball 

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IMG_0394 copyWe found a rope swing by the ocean…. so we pulled over haha.↑↓IMG_0385IMG_0390.JPGIMG_0363
I found Loui in our backyard! (Childhood pet:)
The rest….P-Day…District ActivityIMG_0397 2OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAP7170450.JPG

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WEEK 66 ~ Caffeine Is A Miracle

Hey Everyone!

Man, this week has been a fun one!  At the beginning of the week I got mom’s package that she sent a while back (thanks mama!) and she sent some little Cystal Light drink things that have caffeine in it to help me fight against the MONO. (oh yeah ps, I have had mononucleosis for the past 3 months.😅)  I tried one the day I got the package.  I drank it around 4pm and since my body is NOT use to caffeine, I was jumping off the walls!  I literally pulled an all nighter!  I laid in bed until 6:30 am and as soon as the alarm went off I jumped out of bed and started running around and talking to Sister Skinner. hahah  She was like, “who are you and what have you done with my companion.”  She has only known me with mono, aka…dead dog tired all the time.  So yeah, this week has been fun because of the amount of energy I have had! 😆
We’ve seen lots of miracles this week.  The woman, Gloria, that I talked about last week is seriously so prepared!  When we went to see her last Monday evening she opened the door before we could even knock and rushed us into her little family room and immediately started talking about the Restoration pamphlet.  She kept saying,  “I don’t know why this tract has fascinated me so much, but I just keep wanting to learn more and more about it!” During our lesson one of her friends stopped by her door and asked what she was doing and she said, “taking some PERMANENT studies with these girls.”  and then winked at us hahah. She is so awesome!  She actually met some elders in 1998 which also happened to be the year that she lost her husband.  She told us that the Lord must have been preparing her since then.  SHE even recognized that!  And it was funny, the day before we met her, Sister Skinner and I were talking about how we were wondering if anyone just sits and watches us walking up an down the apartments stairs a bajillion times a day and is waiting for us to come to their door.  Well guess what Gloria told us?… “I would sit and watch you go up an down the stairs and talk to all my neighbors and I was just wondering when it would be my turn!”  She is so great!  Tomorrow we are extending a baptismal date for the beginning of August.
We also found two cool investigators, Kyah and Sherisa.  They are 16 year old cousins. They remind me so much of me and Brooklyn!  They live together over summer vacation so we have been able to teach them together a lot this week.  They are really cool and really understand the Restoration.  I know the Lord is preparing people to receive this message because when we met them they said they have been trying to find the right church because they were raised Catholic and have kind of church hopped and said how the teachings are all really confusing and they just want to find the truth.  They are great 🙂
We had zone conference this week which was really awesome.  Sister Tuala and I taught together on “The Importance of Teaching the Doctrine in PMG”.  It went really well. President is also starting this thing called “Teaching AP’s”.  So there are the traveling assistants that go everywhere with president and now we are going to have Assistants in each country that oversee the quality of teaching.  I am going to be the Teaching AP for the sisters in Trinidad which means I get to do a lot more exchanges! haha  It will be really fun!
Hope you all have fun at the Cabin this week!  You all are in my thoughts and prayers. 😘
Love,

Sister Kimball 

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Me and a goat
IMG_0318Me every night after doing nightly review haha   aka…Mono
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Only in trinidad would someone build a cage over their lightbulb and the grocery run out of bags and start packing everyone’s stuff in spare boxes hahaha ↑↓
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The wise man built his house upon cinder blocks 😉

Week 65 ~ Happy Birthday, America!

Dear Family,

This week was one for the books. Brother Gene got baptized!!!!  Wooohooo.  It was such a great day 🙂  It’s days like that that make the long, hard, hot, days of contacting all worth it.  The spirit was so strong at his baptism.  It was really cool because a member named Brother Simmons baptized him, and they actually were childhood friends and grew up in the same church.  But they lost contact and so the first time they saw each other in years was when Brother Gene first visited the church!  Brother Gene’s wife passed away a little over a year ago and he brought a picture with her to his baptism and said, “Because of this gospel, I know that she is here with me, and she is proud of me today.”  The spirit was SO strong and everyone there was in tears.  Brother Gene is quite the character though and the last half of his testimony was him talking about how shocked he was when he came to the church and there wasn’t any white people running the church. hahaha  Oh Brother Gene 😂   He talks A LOT and he kept going on and on and then he looked over at Sister Xavier and I and said, “Oh, I think my daughters are giving me the look that I need to sit down now.”  hahaha   It was hilarious.
The rest of the week was really good.  We found a really cool investigator named Glora who is such a sweet soul!  She let us in as soon as we knocked on her door. (since we are contacting apartments we actually can knock on a door instead of yelling into the house hahah it’s so nice!)  After our first lesson with her, as we were being shuffled out the door, she said, “Thank you so much.   This was really important to me.”  We are going to see her tonight and I am super excited!
In celebration of tomorrow being the 4th of July, we had a sports day and bbq today at the Egberts.  The sisters were all in charge of planning the sports day and it was super fun.  We had a huge water balloon fight, some relay races and a volleyball tournament.  The field was super muddy though so it ended up being mud volleyball haha it was a blast.  And then Sister Egbert stuffed us with hot dogs and strawberry shortcake.  It was a 4th of July to remember!
Missions are the BEST.
Love,  Sister Kimball
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Week 64 ~ More Miracles

Dear Fam,

Sorry I am writing a day late again… ONCE AGAIN, it was a holiday here in Trinidad. Haha, I swear they have a holiday every other week.  This one was a Muslim holiday so we saw LOTS of Muslims walking around.  I must say, they are super dedicated to modesty.  I don’t think I could live in Trinidad and be completely covered in thick black cloth, except for my eyes.  So props to them.
We saw soooo many miracles this week!  This past Sunday was one of the best Sundays ever!  There was over 7 investigators and a bunch of less actives.  Russell, who is a recent convert AND less active came, which was a huge miracle.  He has a heart of gold, he just has a really bad drug problem and lives with his boss who hates the Church and will fire him if he knows that he is going.  So we haven’t seen him at church in a long time.  We had a lesson with him on Saturday evening about the importance of the Sacrament and how if he has faith, he will be able to make it to church.  AND HE DID!  He was so happy, it was the first time we have seen him smile in ages.  President Egbert and Sister Egbert came to the Sando ward and it was really cool because President noticed that Russel was there and sitting alone, so President got off the stand and walked down just to sit with him.  It was precious haha :,)
Then we also had Chenel come, also another recent convert who got into anti material a few months back and wanted nothing to do with us or the Church.  It was heartbreaking. We haven’t been able to have contact with her in a long while, but on Sunday, guess who just randomly showed up!  CHENEL!  Haha  I burst into tears when I saw her.  It made my heart so happy :,)
Another miracle of the week has been visiting teaching.  That has been something that this ward doesn’t really do so us Sisters have been really trying to get it up and running. After just a week of us assisting the members to do there visiting teaching, Relief Society was PACKED.  We had to bring in about 10 extra chairs.  It felt like being in Utah again. (other than I was the only white one in the room hahaha)  So yeah, lots of miracles happening in the Sando ward!
Sister Skinner and I have spent a TON of time contacting this week.  Our new contact area is a place called Corinth Hills, which has a lot of big apartment buildings. Our legs are sore from the amount of stairs we have climbed. 😂  But it’s so worth it.  I really like this contacting area because it is always really interesting.  We are meeting some really cool investigators and some really INTERESTING ONES.  We met a Hebrew Israelite family that told me I won’t be saved because I am white and that Jesus was black.  Lol, not the first time I’ve gotten that.  We also met an ex drug dealer named Jesus.  Yes, his name is Jesus. But he is cool.  We met him and his friend on the street, who are both covered in tatoos all the way up to their face.  But we went and talked to them and said we could teach them. We ended up meeting Jesus’ family later on in the week,  who actually were taught by elders in the past!  We met them when we were contacting.  His mom, Glenda, was cleaning the house and we asked if we could help and of course, like every other Trini, she said “no”. S o I walked in and grabbed the broom from her and started sweeping. haha She thought it was hilarious.  And then Jesus walked in and we realized it was his family. Small world.  His mom and sister are really interested so we are excited to start teaching them!  The only challenge is that there are a bajillion (adorable) kids living in that apartment that run around screaming all the time so hopefully when we go back it will be a little less chaotic so the Spirit will be there.
We also met a single mom named Natalie who seems SO prepared!  We contacted her and she invited us to come back the next day.  We got to know her and had a lesson about God and Jesus Christ, and the spirit was so strong.  She has such a good understanding about who God is and who Jesus Christ is.  It’s hard sometimes to find people who have that understanding!  We are seeing her tomorrow so keep her in your prayers please:)
The Gospel is true.  I know it because of the amount of miracles we see in this work every single day.  I am so grateful to be on a mission here in Trinidad.  I have no idea where I would be in my life without my mission and this Gospel.
Love you all!
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I FOUND INDY’S TWIN! I forced her to love me:)
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Look Mom, I’m not eating like a heathen any more;)
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From our back yard…Mango banana smoothie bowl with coconut!…Sorry Mom, I’m not coming home.
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Two Trinis at the apartment = Trini lunches on Pday 🙂