Tuesday, 26 December 2017

December 26, 2017 – Boxing Day

I hope you had a great Christmas! It is always a fun time of the year!
This has been a busy week it was transfer week so Sister Thomson left and she went to Saskatoon and I got a new companion! Her name is Sister Silvennoinen! She is from Finland that is why there is a lot of "n`s" in her name :) She is really sweet she has been out for 6 months now. 
We got to help make food hampers for those in the area in need and help deliver them :) I also got to do missionary work in Warroad while I was waiting for Sister Silennoinen to come so that was fun! We got a group together on Christmas eve in the afternoon and we went Christmas caroling which was great! It was great to sing to those who need that! I am so grateful for the members out here willing to help us with anything and it is like home out here! I am grateful to be out here and for the experiences I have learn! 
As the New Year is approaching we can reflect on this year 2017 and see how the Savior has helped us through it! I know that he lives and all we have to do is open our hearts and let him in! Set a new year’s goal to let him in and how we can help other in 2018!

Love you! 

Sister Russell
Ether 12:4 
 Hope is the anchor of the soul

Monday, 18 December 2017

December 18th, 2017 - Merry Christmas

Hello Everyone,

This has been a busy fun week! The highlight was when Jessica got baptized on Thursday evening!!!!! We had a lot of opportunities to provide service this week including stacking firewood, hauling groceries and helping to clean homes. We also had the opportunity to attend a native sharing circle.  It was nice to attend a function on the reserve.
We had our church Lutefisk Christmas party and there were a lot of people from the community that joined us! The Lutefisk even tasted good! (I think I have been here too long.... if I enjoyed Lutefisk)
We got the transfer Email today and............ I am staying here :) I will be in Bergland for Christmas :) .  At this point who my new companion will be is a little in the air.  It is supposed to be a Sister who is from Finland but since we have to cross the US Canadian border so often that may be changed.
I hope this Christmas season treats you well and that you are enjoying light the world!
I look forward to our Christmas day visit.
Love you and Merry Christmas!

Sister Russell

Monday, 11 December 2017

December 11th, 2017 - I am dreaming of a White Christmas

14 more days till Christmas isn't that exciting :)
So we made it safely to Winnipeg and back! The roads were bad to Winnipeg; it took us 6 hours to drive there but we made it safe so that is what really counts!  I got to go on exchanges with Sister Atwood she is from Cardston Alberta. It was weird going on exchanges with someone younger in the mission than me.... I think that means I am getting old.....

On Wednesday we had our Christmas zone conferences! Those are the best ones! The spiritual high! I got to see some old companions which is great! And I got to be with Sister Kostiuk all day. It was so nice seeing her again!!!! I just wish we had more time to catch up. We got to watch a movie as well!  We got to watch “It's a Wonderful life”! It was 2 hours long which was also nice. A lot of it could be related to the gospel but there was too much kissing for my missionary mind....

So we had a lesson with Jessica and she was telling us she even had a countdown until she is getting baptized on Friday and everything.  We left her home and we got a text from her 30 minutes later asking us if she could get baptized in January instead. We were like she was so excited to get baptized on Friday what happen. I kinda had to go the bathroom and so I was like let’s just go back and see what happen. She did not want to wreck her sister’s birthday party by having her mom and her gone and she wanted her siblings there as well and we were like, how about you get baptized on Thursday instead and see was like okay! And so Jessica is getting baptized on Thursday at 7! So we are really excited!

We went over to the Johnson`s and joined their family for going in the bush and cutting down a Christmas tree!!!!!! I think I should do that with my family next year ;) It was so much fun! 
We had an all time record church attendance since I have been at Bergland.  We had 37 people at church!

So transfers are next week! And that will let me know where I will be for Christmas!

Love you! Enjoy lighting the world!
Sister Russell

Ether 12:4 
 Hope is the anchor of the soul

Monday, 4 December 2017

December 4, 2017 - It is beginning to look a lot like Christmas

Wow it is already December!
Where did November go! 
The First Presidency Christmas devotional last night was amazing! The middle speaker was very funny!
Well we got to do a lot of visiting teaching on the 30th because it was the last day of the month our bad... we will be better this month!  Our landlords who are not members took us out to a little Church for Supper on Saturday! It was so cute! And there were so many people in that little church and after the meal we got to sing Christmas carols! It was a great way for the people to see us out and about! We got a text from Jess Selena`s daughter telling us that she want to be baptized before Christmas and she leaves for Kenora on the 16th so we have a baptismal date set for the 15th so we have to pretty much teach her all the lessons before that date so hopefully we can see this miracle through! 
One of our local members just got back from her mission to Sweden.  She agreed to help us with a lesson this week. It was more like tripanning than a member present lesson which was really nice
Well today we are off to Winnipeg in some snowy weather to do exchanges with the STLs and for Christmas zone conference! I am so excited for Zone conference, it is the best one! But the weather is really bad today so I am not excited to be driving there today
Have fun lighting the world this week!
Love you!
Sister Russell

Ether 12:4 

 Hope is the anchor of the soul

Monday, 27 November 2017

November 27, 2017 - Have you watched it?

Have you watched the light the world video!?!!!! I am getting so excited! Tonight we are having a FHE/fireside on it to get the members here ready for it! The video is so good!.   I watched it on Friday on President Craig’s phone with 7 other missionaries! You should see if the Elders have the little light the world booklets like last year. Our mission did not get them this year so if they have one you should ask for it so I can have it as a keepsake :) 

That is exciting about the football team! Wow Chris babysat?! How did that go?

You remember last week I talked about Lutefisk being a big thing here. I got to help at the Bergland Hall at the Lutafisk supper that they have every year! We went and started helping them at 1230 and we finished helping 830! They really enjoyed our help they did not have a lot of help so it was much appreciated! I am glad we got to help and let them see us in the community as well not just knocking on their doors.

Well we went to International-Falls for district meeting and interviews.  I got to have a good visit with President Craig! My district and I also went out and had district lunch! It is always fun being with other missionaries! On the way back we got to take some pictures of this really tiny church! 
Well I am running out of time! I hope you have a great week! And don't forget to light the world on Friday!  
Sister Russell

Ether 12:4 

 Hope is the anchor of the soul

Monday, 20 November 2017

November 20, 2017  - I ate Lutefisk

Transfer week was here and gone and I didn't even know it right?! :)
Lutefisk, well it is a big thing here this time of year. We were at a member’s house and they fed it to us just in case one of us got transferred so we could say that we have tried it before we left. It was just jelly like jello texture but it tasted like fish.... ya 
(For those who don’t know Lutefisk or lutfisk is a traditional dish of some Nordic countries. It is traditionally part of the Norwegian julebord and Swedish julbord. It is made from aged stockfish or dried/salted whitefish and lye. It is gelatinous in texture)
Well not a whole lot happen to talk about this week! 
We got to help out with the Bergland craft sale on Saturday! It was a lot of fun we were in the canteen! And I got to flip burgers so it was pretty easy.  They had about 21 tables and that is the biggest one yet! It was fun to see the community come out and let them see us here, and then we come knocking on their door right!  
We got to paint for a member this week to which was a lot of fun! Ya
I hope you have a great week and look for miracles around you  they are there. 
Sister Russell
p.s. watch the Light the World video on Friday!!!! It will be amazing!!!!

it is hunting season can't you tell!!!!

Walking to save K`s :)

Monday, 13 November 2017

November 13, 2017: Hello! 

It is transfer email today! AND my whole district is staying the same how often does that happen?! Like never!
So I am going to be with Sister Thomson another transfer! I am excited I just love this time of year! 
Well this week has been good but went by so quick.... 
We had a Family home evening with Barb and Derek! It was so much fun! We played a game where you cannot say the word you are describing and the person that is trying to guess can only ask questions trying to figure out the word or the saying! 
We got the last of our wood so we should be good for all winter! 
There is just so much to write about we have found 3 new investigators this week which is great! 
And we had 20 people at church yesterday including us missionaries!
We had a Branch book of Mormon read that we have every Sunday night and we were in Mosiah 3 and 4! It has been a good week! And I am excited for the next one!
Love ya!
Sister Russell

District photo
Sister Thomson and I 
Landscape this is Rainy River.... notice all the houses

Monday, 6 November 2017

Monday November 6th, 2017 – chinchillas

Hello I don't have a lot of time today! But it was a good week!
We drove to Winnipeg on Monday
Tuesday we had zone conference and it lasted most of the day and we got to Talk a little bit about light the world! Which I am so excited about that again. We also got told that our mission is going to get smart phones which is a really weird thought. Well we were not allowed to go out on Halloween night so we ordered pizza and had a little party while updating our area books and eating! It was a lot of fun! 
Wednesday I went on Exchanges with Sister Jimenez and had supper at a member house and they have chinchillas! It was really cool! It was nice being on exchanges too! 
When we came back there was a fair bit of snow here and ice is forming. 
We got to have a Family home evening with Selena and her family which was a lot of fun! 
Well I love ya! And hope you have a great week and look for miracles in this winter season! 
Sister Russell

Who was I for Halloween any guess? :)

Monday, 30 October 2017

October 30, 2017 – 2 Holes in My Boots
Well, we got the first snow of the season which was a blizzard....
I found out that one pair of my boot have holes in them.... I guess I will have to wear them when it is dry out....
Wednesday- Well in the cabin that we live in it heats with wood and there is a church member that said we could have 2 cords of her wood because she wasn't going to use it and wanted to give it to us. Well she said that we needed to get it before the snow came so we called one of the members and ask if he would help us and we could load it into his truck and he was more than willing to help us. And even brought a trailer so we could load in the trailer and the back of his truck so it was the three of us doing it because it was going to snow the next day and the other members could not help us until evening and it would be to dark at that time so we loaded it and then we followed him to our place to unload and we were making good time, we even thought we could get the last of the wood unloaded before it got dark well as he was driving out his truck stalled just like my car did a few years ago so he called one of the members to tow him home and so that was very eventful but it was a miracle that it did not break down on the high way and that we were able to get the wood unloaded before it got rained and snow on.
Sunday- Well at church we kinda ran the show well sort of any ways. We got asked on Thursday night if we could both speak and give a musical number as well at sacrament meeting. So we did that,  I spoke on Elder M. Russell Ballards from this conference this trek continues or something like and Faith in every footstep from him in October 1996 talk it is really interesting you should read them! We got a call that morning asking us if we could teach youth Sunday school so we did that. Then we ended up teaching primary for the last hour of church. So it was really busy but it was good!
Well I am going to Winnipeg today! We have zone conference tomorrow but since we cannot proselyte on Halloween night we have to stay another day for exchanges so we will get back out here on Thursday! Sister Thomson drives in this area because she was here first and that is usually how it goes unless the other person can’t drive. You asked about the Flu shots and usually the church heath nurse is the one that pushes it but she has not yet I will try and get a shot from a health clinic....
I hope you will have a great week and look for them miracles around you!
Sister Russell
Sister Thomson in the snow
A swan that was in the middle of the road and it was dying so we moved it to the side so no one run it over 
The blizzard

Ether 12:4 

 Hope is the anchor of the soul

Monday, 23 October 2017

October 23rd, 2017 – Indian Summer

Funny moment of the week! Well we went to one of our investigators houses and we invited him to church on Sunday and he said that he was going to go fishing instead so Sister Thomson and I decided to give him a break for a while before we go back and teach him again. Well anyway we went with a member visiting teaching and the house we end up at was the same guy. We had talked to him less than 30 minutes before and he is the one that answered the door of course but luckily the member that was with us did the talking asking if the person lived there, yah.. You got to love a home with so many different people living in the same house :)

In my studies I found a great verse on Charity and how important it is to have it! It is in 2 Nephi 26: 30 wherefore, the Lord God hath given a commandment that all men should have charity, which charity is love.  And except they should have charity they were nothing.  Wherefore, if they should have charity they would not suffer the laborer in Zion to perish.(Book of Mormon | 2 Nephi 26:30)   It is so true!!!!

We got an text from Elder Smith at 6:33 in the morning and said Sisters when is the next time you are coming in to Winnipeg and we respond October 30 and he said can you go into Baudette TODAY
and so we made an appointment so we took our car in the that day and because Baudette is in the states we walked back to Rainy River Ontario, over the bridge to make it to Canada, we had a 10 minute lesson with one of our investigators there and then walked back to the states to pick up our car it only took like an hour to walk from the car shop to the investigators house and then we had to walk back in the wind but somehow we did it faster  because we were running late. So that was another adventure of the week!
Well I hope you have a great week!
Sister Russell

Ether 12:4 
 ​ ​ 
 Hope is the anchor of the soul

Monday, 16 October 2017

October 16, 2017 – Berglund Branch

Monday- well we had supper at the Rencher`s and had a thanksgiving feast. Then we stopped by had a lesson with Millie! It was a great thanksgiving! There is just so much to be thankful for!
Tuesday- We had district meeting over skype we got most of it and it only cut out a few times! It is a true blessing to have technology to be able to do that sort of thing! We went to Rainy River and visited with some of our investigators there. And we got to help Selena and one of her daughters make a scripture box for her scriptures. we had Supper with Mary! Then we went up to the reserve got to be part of a sharing circle up there it was really cool to learn more about their culture!

Well we talked to a guy on the reserves but he told us to come back tomorrow so we did with fellowship We taught him and he even turned down the volume of the baseball game and we left him with the book of Mormon but he said it was to small so we told him that we have reading glasses in our car but we didn’t drive our car up. so the next day we were up and we gave him the glasses he put them on first thing and then as we were walking away I saw that he had already grabbed his book of Mormon and started reading that was the tender mercy moment of this week. Like what are the odds we have reading glass in our car right?! 

My companion is Sister Thomson from Ottawa, Her brother Kevin used to be Chris’s roommate in Lethbridge.  He served in Claresholm for 7 days while he was waiting for his missionary visa to come through and had supper at our house once.  So Kevin Thomson is Sister Thomson younger brother isn't that cool!!!!

Sorry I ran out of time to finish the email! All and All it has been a great week!

Sister Russell

Our cabin with a wood stove, I've now learned to make a fire 
What are these used for? 

Monday, 9 October 2017

October 9th, 2017 What I am Thankful for.,. Being back in Bergland

Happy Thanksgiving!!!!
Wow this has been an eventful week to say the least!
Monday- We helped someone clean her home and then she fed us supper :) Then I went over to Sister Varey`s and so I could say good bye to her. I am really going to miss her and Gateway I have really grown to love it!
Tuesday- I said goodbye to Peggy and then Sister Patac had a meeting at the mission office so I got to be an office missionary for an hour or two that was nice :) Then after we had to move. So we shoved as much stuff as we could into both our vehicle and the other missionaries. We had help from both the London elders and sisters and the gateway elders and we did a few trips....It was a very interesting move to say the least ;) 
Wednesday- We had district meeting and then we went to the Griffiths and raked leaves! It was so much fun. It was Sister Patac`s first time raking leaves! Then we cleaned the old apartment and then we went to the ward correlation meeting. After that I started packing...
Thursday- We had apartment inspections. Then we went over so I could visit Sister Antonio before I left and she made us  lunch. The we headed to the church for transfers.... And I got to go to Bergland!!! It is great to be back and we now have a different place to live. So now we are staying at a cabin it is beautiful!!!! We are right on the lake it is so pretty we have one of those wood stove heater things that Uncle Donald and Aunt Vicki have so I get to build fires and I will be cutting wood soon. It feels like I’m camping! MY companion sister Thompson is from Ottawa! 
Friday- Weekly planning and we got to do some stop bys!!!! Had supper at the Fisks !
Saturday- We did some more stop by did some tracting. We saw a guy with a gun so we went to a different street. Then we got to teach a guy named Jorty! He is great we met him that day and we got a member with us in the evening to teach him!
Sunday-We had church and there was a lot of people there we had 29 people so it was a lot (must have been because of thanksgiving ) Then we got a member with us and we had a lesson with a guy named Braden and had a book of Mormon read with him. Did some more tracting and then had supper at the Larson a big thanksgiving feast!
I hope you all have had a great week and Happy Thanksgiving!
Sister Russell
Ether 12:4 
 Hope is the anchor of the soul

Monday, 2 October 2017

October 2, 2017: Transfers are here

Hey Everyone,
 I hope you had a good week! I am getting transferred out to Bergland, Ontario again!!!!! I am so excited!!!! My companion`s name is sister Thomson! I am sad to leave Gateway but I am so excited to go back to Bergland!!!! Sister Kostiuk (My companion when I was in Bergland last time) did tell me that it is really cold there in the winter
This has been an exciting week for me.  We have done a lot of tracting but we’ve also had some good experiences with both our church members and in teaching some who have not yet chosen to join the church.  I’m starting to pick up a bit more Tagalong which I have been enjoying. 
Wasn’t general conference fantastic?  If you haven’t seen it yet you really need to take the time to watch it. 

I love you! And hope you have a great week!

Ether 12:4 

 Hope is the anchor of the soul

Thursday, 28 September 2017

September 25th, 2017 There are Geese everywhere.

Hello Everyone,
Monday- We played round the world ping pong. I never knew how intense ping pong could be :) We had a supper appointment with the Cormacks and we join them for FHE and then we helped a member move more things to her new house.
Tuesday- We got to teach Alexandre and Caroline ( we taught them the first day Sister Patac got here and we helped them move into our area) It was a really good lesson you could see on their faces they have a true desire to learn the truth! They are great! Then we had supper at Sister Mentita! I love Philippine food! 
Wednesday-We had district meeting. We had lunch with a member and she took us to Empress of China for lunch and then we helped her move some things around to help her for her move to BC.  And then we had ward correlation meeting!
Thursday-We helped an old man move boxes around with the Elders so he could throw things away. Then we had a lesson with Ru she is a new investigator she is from China and wants to learn how to speak English. Our lesson was mostly through google translate so we typed what we wanted to say and it showed it in Chinese so she could understand it . She is so sweet though!  We had a lesson with Jamie it was a really good lesson the only thing is I think he is too scared of his wife to act on what he is feeling.
Friday- We did weekly planning 
Saturday- I got to attend the first funeral on my mission. We got asked on Thursday night if we could sing with the elders so we sang I am a Child of God and Teach me to walk in the light. And we also prepped food and then we got left to clean up the food and wash the dishes so we were at the church all morning. I am so happy that the members trusted us to get it done and that they can count on us! There was a stake Relief society thing at a different chapel so that is the reason everyone left.  After that we had a lesson with one of our less active members. Then we drove to Ru`s place and taught her how to pray in English.  And she also fed us Chinese food. Then we headed to the R.S. activity to have supper and watch the broadcast. Which was AMAZING! 
Sunday- We went to church. Had ward council then we had a lesson with Fred. Then we had a rescue instruction meeting with all the ward council members in the stake .
I hope you had a great week! 
Sister Russell

There are so many Canadian Geese 
After a crazy Saturday

Tuesday, 19 September 2017

September 18, 2017 How Much Watermelon can you eat?
Hello Po!
I hope you week has been good. Mine has gone by super quick.

Monday- We had a meal appointment with the Famini`s it was really good they cooked Philippine food it was a great way to star t the mission fast!
Tuesday- We help a member hang up curtains and then were able to do some tracting and it was 35 degrees out super hot we had someone let us in Fred and Sheila so we taught them about the Book of Mormon and to do some visiting teaching 
Wednesday- We visited a less active member and then a member took us out for Chinese food and I got to read about being an ox because it was the year I was born.  Then we got a call from a less active asking if we could help her move some stuff from her old house to her new one so we did that till we had to go to our ward correlation meeting. Then we had supper and we had a watermelon that a member gave us 3ish weeks ago and I figured we had to eat it so we cut the watermelon in half and had a contest. I won. Sister Patac is slow when it comes to cooled things. I have never eaten a half of a watermelon before that was a lot!
Thursday- We visited a less active. Then we started Weekly planning because we could not do it on Friday this week. Then we went to the Bishop and Sister Dimelalun`s house and pulled weeds and they fed us supper. The elders in our ward and the Fort France’s distinct elders were there because of exchanges and I got to meet one of the new elders. His name is Elder Russell from Cardston. 
Friday- we had zone conference! It was a tri-zone conference so there were lots of missionaries there. I have never seen so many missionaries in the same place since the MTC. Elder and sister Anderson of the 70 came and spoke to us it was really nice! Then we had supper at Sister Varey`s.  Sister Patac was shaking she has never experienced anything cooler than plus 15 degrees and it was 9 so she was really cold.
Saturday- we got to give service to the Wahl`s so we weeded for them. Then we did more tracting like always
Sunday- we had church and then it was ward potluck. Gateway has pot luck every 3rd Sunday of the month. After that we took Karen, she is preparing to go on a mission, and had another lesson with Fred and Shelia then did some stop bys. And ended the night by tracting.
I hope you all will have a great week!
Sister Russell

September 11, 2017; Its Monday already, where did the week go?
Hello po!
Wow this week has flown by.
Well here in Winnipeg on Labor Day nothing is open not even Wal-Mart that`s saying something so we got permission to do shopping on Tuesday all the missionaries for a hour. On Monday we got a text at 5:45 pm from our bishop to see if we could come  help a family who moved to another house set up beds. So we went the there right away. Well IKEA beds can be hard to make. So we got there and the first step was really good. the second step not so easy. We worked on getting the  bed frame made. so we got the head board and the long side thing on one side it took about 15 minutes. Well I thought that the one side took a long time to put together. Well the other side we were working on it for a hour and I was so frustrated with it so we texted the elders to help so they were close by and they came to see if they could but that piece together we I started putting a few things back and the pole that had the nuts I realized that it had two sides and the side that we had it on was the opposite side so I fixed it so we didn't need the Elders after all so they went down stair to build another bed and we finished that one... That was our Monday night.
Tuesday we went to a Family home evening it was a lot of fun! With lots of Philippine food :)
Wednesday we had a member lesson with an orderly lady she is so sweet then she made us supper :) !!
Thursday I got to cut a lady in our wards hair so I am glad I could do that service for her! Late that night we went and helped at the soup kitchen! I love giving service!!!
Friday we got rid of the keys to our old apartment on Jefferson with bed bugs to the Elders so they could move all the furniture out and throw it away so we are officially done with that apartment which I am happy about!!!
Saturday The Elders had a baptism and I got to give the talk on the Gift of the Holy Ghost and after that we went to a Philippine members house and we had supper! I love Philippine food!!
Sunday we had church and then ward council then we went over to the ward mission leaders house and they fed us lunch!!! Then we went to a different Philippine member’s house and they fed us supper!!!! 
This has been a fast week and we got fed lots which is great!!!!! I hope you all have a great week!

Sister Russell

We are matching!
Member present lessons are the way to go! :)

soaked after the car wash we are more wet then the car :)

Tuesday, 5 September 2017

September 3rd, 2017  25 perogies later
Sorry for all the pictures but that pretty much explains my week. The top three is Sister Patac and I tracting and we decided we were going to knock on every door even if they don't have steps to them! Then guess what we found. And then it is a picture we took because it was pretty outside just like how wonder the gospel of Jesus Christ is! A picture of my skirt before I burnt it for my one year mark. I one year picture and a cake to celebrate. The shirt while it was burning. The district photo for after district meet.  perogies because we had a perogies eating contest and I ate 25 perogies in 20 minutes because I did not one to do the punishment. (the most  someone ate was 55) And no one puked so that is good right. I felt like I was going to but I didn't.
The picture of the skirt after it was burned 
I got to see Sister Smith this week! It was great seeing her! 
Sister Patac made me a sign for my year mark 
I had an exchange this week with Sister Jimenez and we came out together. It was a lot of fun!
I saw this sign on my exchange and thought it was funny 

Well I hope you have a great week!
Sister Russell

August 28, 2017 I am losing my marbles!

Hello Po!
I hope you are all doing well and got to see the eclipse sadly I didn't it rained all day :( 
A year ago today I gave my farewell talk in sacrament meeting. It has been memory lane this week. 
Well, we got a media referral on Monday and she pretty much wanted to know the plan of salvation. So we taught that to her twice and we are planning to see her again this week! We got to teach a little bit to a former investigator and we will see her again this week. On Thursday morning we got a text from a member in another ward giving us a referral to his friends and he asked us to come to their place so we could introduce ourselfs to the friends and we got to teach with him to his friends on Thursday night so it was after transfer that day so I had Sister Patac with me so it was a really spiritual  lesson. The reason why we taught them is because on Saturday they moved in to our ward boundaries! I am so excited to teach them again!!!! Helping them move was a lot of fun to!!! Well this family’s old apartment was by these giant marbles and Sister Dungan and I always wanted to take a picture with the will I got to take pictures after try a few times and it never working!  Sister Dungan is in Regina she is happy to be close to the temple for her last transfer. Sister Patac has been out 9 months. She served 6 months in the Phippines waiting for her visa. And she has been in Canada for 3 months! 
Well I hope you have a great week! 
Mahal Kita!
Sister Russell