Monday, August 29, 2011

E-Mail #13

 E-Mail #13
August 29th, 2011
Hello everyone!!!
Did you know on Thursday the 1st marks me being away from home for a entire 3 months.....who knew it was possible?!!? I DIDN'T!!!! This week has not been as crazy awesome as last week, but it was still a good week. I had some really big struggles this week, and really had to find a way to work through them, I'm glad to say i came out a better and stronger person. Its amazing how quick mission life can change you, and sometimes it is SUPER hard to deal with, but i know its for the better and i know i have my Heavenly Father supporting and helping me. Last week i went on exchanges to Lawrence. That was fun, it was fun to work with another sister that i haven't met before and to spend time with her. It was nice to be in Lawrence on a car week, but this week when i go it is a walking week, so on Thursday say lots of prayers for Actually this week i will be doing back to back exchanges, i will be exchanging in Manhattan tomorrow until wed, and then from wed to Thurs in Lawrence. So it will be crazy. I guess its just prep for upcoming transfers. I honestly cant think of much to write about today. I don't know why. I guess this week was not as eventful. But i did learn a lot this week. I learned the importance of being strong in weak moments and how i need to rely on the lord better. I find myself not letting the atonement work fully in my life because i feel bad putting all my pains and struggles on the lord, which i know sounds dumb, but its true. I've realized that there is no point in me carrying all the stuff i feel around with me every day when someone so amazing has already suffered for me, and is willing to remove that. Its still a struggle and I'm not good at it yet. But i am trying. Today we are having a district PDAY and me and sister dent are off to Manhattan to have fun with the elders and sisters down there. We are looking forward to it! It will be lots of fun! and on Sept 8th is transfers so I'm excited to see what changes are made and if there are indeed elders coming into junction city to join us. Sorry this is super lame and short, but know i love you all and hope you all are doing good. Thanks for all the continued prayers and love and support it MEANS THE WORLD TO ME!!!!!
Love you all,
Sister Barnum
(P.S. this is Brittney, her sister, and she e-mailed me this picture while we were talking this morning to show to my boys and I am not sure if she wanted it on here or not but it is a cute picture and I know that I LOVE getting to see pictures of her so I thought I would share. Enjoy!!)

E-Mail #12

 E-Mail #12
August 22nd, 2011
(Again sorry a week more e-mail and we are caught up...thanks for hanging in there waiting for us. Enjoy.)
Hello Family and Friends!!!
Well do i have one heck of a week to tell you all about!!! But to start off i have to tell you why its been a week of miracles! Last Sunday the Spanish Branch started a 40 day fast for missionary work!!! That does NOT mean one person will fast for 40 days, but that means for 40 days straight there is someone in the Spanish branch fasting for us!!!! So that is pretty awesome! The day the fast started we received our first miracle. We got a call from the Elders in Manhattan who said a guy had showed up to their ward and wants to take missionary discussions and be baptized. YEA...I KNOW!!!! He is engaged to a LDS girl who has set the standard that she is getting married in the temple! WOOHOO!! So the week went pretty amazing. We went to Interviews and training on Wednesday. I was able to sit down and talk with President and Sister Keyes. I love them so much!!! President Keyes and i had a great interview, we even have top secret stuff that wasn't to leave that room, and we will check up on each other next time we have interviews!! I LOVED IT!! i feel so special having a secret between me and the president. lol. I also so Elder Christensen from the MTC at the interviews so that was pretty fun. NOW.....lets get to the week of MIRACLES, this all happened between Thursday and Saturday!
Thursday, sister dent and i had a goal to find a new investigator, it was 830 and we had to be back to our apartment by 9....we had to run to a appointments house and reschedule. So while we were driving i was making a few phone calls and sister dent noticed this big group of apartment buildings we drove by and felt like we needed to go there. So after we canceled our appointment we went back, We were guided by the spirit which building of all of them we needed to go to, then we couldn't decide between two buildings. So we prayed, and choose one, and went to the very top and choose a door and knocked! A girl came out and was SUPER NICE and very interested. We gave her a book of Mormon and she said she was going to go straight in and check out and she said she'd think about coming to church(but she didn't come) and we have a appointment with her again on Friday! IT WAS SOOO COOL!!!! sister dent and i were like on cloud 9!!! It was awesome! Then Friday we had a appointment with a Less Active, Part Member Family. Who we have been trying to see for a WHILE, and we finally were able to go. So we went and had dinner with them and we talked about the gospel and everything. The wife and daughter and super receptive and became investigators. I know it will be a really slow process with them, but i KNOW they will be members eventually because they are GREAT! I feel very passionate about this family and feel like i was meant for them, so i LOVE IT!!! We also go a new investigator when we had a appointment with another investigator....we were reading a few scriptures from the book of Mormon and before we knew it, this other lady just kept reading and reading as we were talking and she was super interested so we gave her a book of Mormon and set up a time to go back! Then we also had a appointment with the guy who went to the wrong church last week and he is AWESOME and is so ready for the gospel!! We also had a appointment with another referral who's husband is a member and she has been around people in the church all her life, she is awesome, and her and the other guy showed up to church yesterday and we have another appointment with them this week. So between Thursday and Saturday we got 6 new investigators!!! INSANE!!!!! we are so excited!!!
So everyone out there, look for missionary opportunities and have your own miracles because they DO HAPPEN!!!!
To end, i will finish with a sleep talking story for you all!!
So Thursday, i woke up and i thought, wow i had a good nights sleep, it felt GREAT!!! Went about our morning routine in silence because we just don't talk in the, not cause we don't like each other, we just are quiet in the mornings, which i like! we sit down to do comp study and pray and all that, and sister dent tells me about my sleep talking that night and how i woke her up. She said she heard me talking and was thinking what the heck, so she rolled over and i was sitting on the edge of my bed......PRAYING.....OUT LOUD!!!! she was giggling, she said her favorite part was my leg was hanging off the edge of my bed and it was just bobbing up and down like a little kids. She just laid there and watched me and listened to my prayer, which i guess was pretty clear to hear, it wasn't even mumbling. Then she said i finish 'in the name of Jesus Christ, Amen....then sat there for a minute and crawled back under my blanket and went to sleep!!! HAHAHAH!!!!! I was laughing SO HARD!!!! So there is your funny story for today! I hope you enjoy!!
Have a good week
Sister Barnum
I attached a picture of the primary class we teach in the Spanish branch. I LOVE THOSE KIDS!! They are awesome and so adorable.
Left to right: Lilly, Rebekah, Gabbi, Behind me is Danny, Me, Tomas(my little heart melter), and Jose.

E-Mail #11

 E-Mail #11
August 15, 2011
(this is Brittney and sorry again for being so far behind...we hope you enjoy the e-mails and photos.)


Hello everyone out there!!!
Well i survived another week. Last week we found out that they moved transfers and that this transfer is only 5 weeks instead of we will have transfers the first week of Sept on the 8th. Its really weird that they are happening that soon. But I'm okay with it. We are getting a TON of new people in our mission this transfer, so there will be LOTS of changes, and we found out from our WARD that we are getting ELDERS in this area....I'm guessing at the transfers they will be putting Elders out here, along with us. They want the elders to work on post (Fort Riley) but the ward and us sisters don't quite understand that idea because a lot of husbands are deployed so elders would not be able to get in the home. But whatever is meant to work out, will!! It will be fun to have 2 sets of missionaries out here though. The work could for sure us it!
Last week we know....out and about doing missionary work....crazy i know. But we stopped by a part member family home. The sister was outside, so we went up and talked to her. She was super up tight and not to nice to us, but i was like DETERMINED to break down her walls and talk with her, so i just ignored her attitude and kept talking it up with her. It was a fun experience. By the time we finished talked to her she had warmed up to us, and i THINK she MIGHT have thought, maybe once or twice about going back to church. Either way, it was a good experience, and one step closer to the right timing for her to come back into the gospel! We have spent a lot of time on post the last couple weeks. Its been great, i love working on post and wish so bad we could knock doors, because you know there are people on there ready for the gospel and comfort it would provide them in such a tough place, of army and deployment. But we do our best to try and find people without breaking rules they have. We met a referral on post, and she is a super awesome person and i really look forward to continuing to teach her, and i know she will take to the gospel if she lets it happen. She will be awesome to share the glory of the gospel with. This week we also stopped by an elderly womans house who we have stopped by before, and she is just AMAZING. I love her. She is not active due to a few things, and her husband is suffering from cancer. But she is AMAZING. She is an immigrant from Germany, and she is this strong willed and amazing woman. I love listening to her stories, and she cares for us so much, is always giving us advice on which side of town to stay away from, and not be out after dark, and gives us food. She is super cute. I am going to attach a picture of me and her to this email. Because i just adore her!!
For those of you reading this and aware of my picky eating habits. I mean, I'm still a picky eater. But you wouldn't believe, i have had AUTHENTIC KOREAN food TWICE since being out here, and its YUMMY!!!! also mom....and have NOT experienced carne asada(not sure if that's spelt right??) until you have come to Kansas and had some amazing Spanish ward members cook it for you!! you have no idea what you are missing out on...i could eat it ALL DAY...EVERY DAY!! AND we have FHE with some Spanish ward members tonight, I'm praying for some AMAZING FOOD!!
 We also are teaching a cute little guy in our ward, he is 9 and hasn't been baptized yet, so we made some cupcakes with him and taught him. Then on Saturday we went to a little town about 20 minutes away called Milford and went tracting, we knocked 3 houses in a ROW that were interested in what we had to say gave some book of Mormons away, and all that. It was so fun i look forward to seeing where that goes! One lady was SO CUTE!! her husband went and got her, and when she came out she said OOOH I LOVE YA'LL I CAN FEEL YOUR was SO CUTE!! i loved it! So i am looking forward to seeing her and her husband progress it will be fun! and then as far as Sundays go, it will be super weird the day that i only go to church for a 3 hour block....instead of 730AM to 400PM!!! man church is great, but by the end i just want to fall of my chair and go to bed. lol.
PS thank you singles ward for the letters, i loved them!!! thanks for all your support and love!!
Until next week!
Love Sister Barnum

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Email #10

E-mail #10
Aug. 8th, 2011

Again, I am sorry for posting this almost a full week late. Please forgive me.

Hello everyone!

Well the big news is....I'm still in Junction City with Sister Dent. I am way happy to still be in Junction City, I don't know if
I could have handled change very well AT ALL! So I know Heavenly Father is watching out for me. I am the first companion that Sister Dent has had for more than one transfer. I feel bad that she has to deal with emotional me for another 6 weeks, but I guess we will both grow and learn from it. I don't really have that much to tell this week. It has not been to busy, Sister Dent and I were struggling a lot this week because we just are not finding people who are willing to progress! It's very frustrating, because people are willing to hear what we have to say, but they just DON'T keep commitments, it makes me super sad because they are all such GREAT people, if only they would keep those commitments and feel their Heavenly Fathers love SO STRONG in their lives! So that's been a bummer. Sister Dent avoids tracting at all costs, which I understand why, its not the best way to find people, most people just hate us for knocking on their door. But because we were feeling so stuck, we went tracting out in a little town out of Junction City called Chapman. Well the first door we went too.....very cute old lady, super friendly....BUT when we told her what church we were from and that we wanted to share a message she was not so nice anymore. And she was SO EAGER to close her door on us, that she SQUISHED her dog in between her door and screen door, we could see it and heard it was so sad....and yet kinda funny, but mostly sad. Then we went to another house, again, a very cute older lady...and AGAIN when we told her what church we were from she just walked away, like AS we were talking to her, and started closing the door, it was super awkward! So Sister Dent and I were not a fan of how things were going, so we went to a members home. They were way nice and made us dinner because we didn't have dinner signed up for that night. While she cooked, we went tracting some more in her neighborhood. THANKFULLY that time was much different. Every door we knocked on they were super nice. Some didn't want to hear from us, but they were nice anyways. We even met a guy who was very clear that he had different beliefs than us, and didn't want us to come back, nice but very clear with it.....and when we went to leave he offered us a glass of lemonade....i thought that was wayyy nice! So tracting started off pretty rough, but it ended on a good note. Other than that, not too much has gone on this week. The heat has FINALLY had a break in it, we have had some good storms roll in, and let loose, so the humidity has been crazy, but the heat is SO MUCH BETTER!!! Last night there was an INSANE storm, literally lightning lite up the sky not even 3 seconds apart from each other. The lightening here is crazy. Like lightening that I am used to will like strike once and go away, but the ones here are like crazy.....I swear they stay lite up in the same spot for...ever! lol. It's pretty intense. But its fun to watch from the comfort of our apartment, now walking out in that....NEVER GONNA HAPPEN!!! Speaking of, I realized the importance of a rain coat, and I need to go buy We also have been working really hard on our Part Member families list. We have met some great people that I just KNOW are ready for the gospel in their lives! There is one particular sister who we met that I feel VERY strongly about helping her feel her Heavenly Father's love! I really enjoy being around her and can just feel His love for her when we are at her house. I want her to know that so much, and we started her off my committing to pray about starting the repentance process to get closer to Heavenly Father again, and hopefully going to the temple! like she said she wants too! Anyways. I'm keeping things kinda short today. But I am doing well. and love you all! PS you can keep writing me to

104 W 4th St #207
Junction City, KS

I will be here another 6 weeks!

I think this week I'll end with a little testimony....

Well, as a missionary life is HARD!!! I can not tell you how crazy I was to think that it would be easy, and when I say easy, for some reason I thought as a missionary that I would be free from Satan, like doing the Lord's work and I am GOOD TO GO! But I have NEVER in my life had to fight Satan as much as I have as a missionary. Through all the struggles and the words of advice from others, and blessings, telling me to rely on the Lord, I would always think, I already am, how am I supposed to rely even more?! But I have found myself putting EVERYTHING in Him, my worries, my concerns, my being so tired I don't want to talk about the gospel right now, my I'm struggling with reading my scriptures, I am homesick....I just want to find people to teach...everything, I talk to Him about EVERYTHING and He helps me SO MUCH. I feel Him carry me SO MUCH and I am so thankful for that. I couldn't do this without Him. I know that. And I am thankful for this opportunity to learn so much about the gospel that I never knew. And to change peoples lives, show them happiness they have never felt!! I love knowing that my Heavenly Father KNOWS who I am, what a great and strong thing! I love this gospel with all of my heart, and I want everyone to know of it's beauty. I love you all!!

Love Sister Barnum.

Friday, August 5, 2011

E-mail #9

E-mail #9

Sorry this is late, folks :)

Well hello there family!!!

It has been a fabulous week. I am officially 23!!!!


well this week has most DEFINITELY had its ups and downs! As I'm starting to realize that it is just part of missionary life and i should get over it. But its still super hard to deal with! But after i sent my email to you guys last week we got a call from the assistants to the president, telling us that sister Keyes was going to spend Wednesday with us.....yep you read that right....THE MISSION PRESIDENTS WIFE was going to come to the field and work with us.....SO AWESOME!!!! Well Wednesday came and sister Keyes was not feeling well, but we still went to Manhattan to go to lunch with the mission president, his wife and our zone leaders...HOW COOL!!!!!! We ate at olive garden and it was super fun to be with them. Sister dent told me once that your not as much called to your mission area as you are called to the mission president. So i was thinking, well so was i called to president Vankomen or president Keyes. That lunch i realized its for the Keyes'. I feel SO AT HOME when i am with them. I just love it!!! I wish i could see them everyday, it would make the ups and downs so much better! I love being around sister Keyes, she just feels like a mom and i adore that! Makes things easier when i cant be around my own mom. We went to do service on my birthday, and i LOVE service, we do service at the local food pantry and the people there are HYSTERICAL!! they are so fun to be around. They knew it was my birthday so they all sang to me, and surprised me with a cake/bread. It was sooo yummy. I love being around them, it just made my birthday even more awesome. I also appreciate the birthday presents and packages. Lots of stuff that I'm not sure what to do with....but i love being remembered. also i LOVED THE CARD is so great to hear you guys, i listen to it EVERY DAY!!! Sister dent laughs at me about it, but i just love hearing you guys! Oh and i totally forgot to mention sister dent made me breakfast in bed!!! How sweet is she....she woke up two minutes early and made me a bowl and cereal and brought it to me in bed!!! HAHA!! AWESOME!! oh and she bought me lucky charms for a present, and made me a super cute decorated missionary planner for my next 6 weeks....and a PURPLE pen....and some stickers and stuff. She's super awesome!!

This week is transfers......AHHHHH!!!!! sister dent and i both feel like I'm going and she is staying. In fact we are basically set on that. Which makes me super nervous, where am i going? what am i going to be doing? will i be able to handle it? yea....kinda freaking out here. I've had lots of anxiety about it, but last night i was talking with our district leader and he made me feel better, gave me some awesome words of advice and i am feeling more at peace, than i have the last two-ish weeks.

So if anyone is sending from today until next week all mail must go to

517 West Walnut Independence MO 64050

So that way they can forward it to my new address (if i am transferred) and then next Monday i will hook you up with my new address. If you ever want to be safe rather than sorry just send it to the mission office, they will always forward it to wherever i am.

Well like i said this week has for sure had its ups and downs. I have not been my best, but I'm trying. An example of how this week has been. Last night we didn't have a dinner appointment, so i ate dinner then went to rest for about 10 minutes before we needed to hour later i woke up....i felt SO BAD!!!! i couldn't believe i had slept through all of my study time. SO LAME! I felt super guilty, but i realize I'm not the first missionary to fall asleep and miss a study time, so I'm not feeling to bad about it. I think HF knew i needed to rest.

I am doing my best to keep learning and growing and find peace when I'm struggling, which has been a lot this week, I'm not really sure why....i think multiple things played into it....Hopie's heart surgery, my birthday, not being focused, being exhausted.....its just been a rough week. But I'm doing better today. I feel that peace inside and i know heavenly father is aware of me, and is taking care of me. Our teaching has not been the best this week, we didn't get as much done as we hoped for, and both of us felt annoyance when we got turned away from people. All i can think is I'm out here trying to share something amazing, life changing, and pure happiness with you, and you don't want to hear it. And how sad are you going to be when you realized what you turned away?! but then i also think of the things that i do, that I'm sure heavenly father is like....well i wish you wouldn't do the door swings both ways. All i know is a mission gives me this want to be like amazingly perfect when i go home. I want to be the BEST visiting teacher....i want to be the BEST at fellowshipping people....i want to be someone the missionaries can rely on to call last minute if they need help....because that happens WAY TO OFTEN....I just know this has given my life a whole new light. Its crazy.

Anyways, that all I've got for now. Keep me in your prayers this week. Its going to be seriously nerve racking during transfers.....we get the DRAMATIC call tomorrow night telling us what will happen!! AHHHH!!!!

Oh and i must tell you about this morning's events. Me and sister dent, super excited for pday.....because we LOVE PDAY....go out to go do our usual routine...and our car doesn't' start!!!! HOW SAD!!!! we had to go through all this people, get someone to come jump our car....blah blah now we are not a fan of today, because we haven't even gone shopping yet...and our pday is just going by way to fast. Neither of us feel well today so we were wanting to take naps...but there is just too much to get done! So that's super lame! But we got a call saying our car is fixed, so once we are done emailing we will be good to go!

Love you all LOTS AND LOTS AND LOTS!!!!