This week we did a lot of service. If sore & tight muscles are a sign of all the hard work we did, I embrace it. I love Ontario, it's so tiny that everybody knows everybody in town. The small town feeling is so cozy, it reminds me of that song by Tim McGraw called "Meanwhile Back at Mama's".
Monday was Leap Year and also little Allison Meza's birthday! She is 4 years old, but technically she is only 1! Crazy how that happens. Ekonomo and I went all out and gave her balloons and a card that said happy 1st birthday. It was more of a joke that the older kids could understand than her noticing the joke herself, but I think Ally still thought it was the most amazing card ever. Her smile lights up my day. The trophy for cutest laugh goes to her, hands down. Later that night, we went on exchanges with the sisters in LaGrande....2 and a half hours away!! I drove because Sister Sorenson had a headache. We talked about a lot of stuff during our drive back. The next day we went to a service activity at a crazy lady's house. She had us take wallpaper off from what she called the 'bunny room'. Afterward, we went to see some other people and had lunch at a Thai restaurant. I got my favorite, yellow curry chicken, so good!!
Thursday, we saw an investigator named Josephina. She is the mother of one of the converts in the Branch and she is probably the best self-progressing investigator I've ever met. She would get baptized today if she could and she is working on some things and also trying to get her birth certificate fixed from Mexico. We went over because she asked us to help color her hair. As we were talking, she told us that she is planning on getting married in April/May. I was so happy for her!! She is dying to become a member of the church and a faithful, covenant keeping convert. Our prayers are being answered for her :)
Later that day, we went to the Webster's home so I could make a goodbye blanket for Ekonomo. She is going home in 2 weeks:( I bought material and asked Sister Webster for her help in cutting and tying the ends. Eko was so happy to see and feel her blanket because it was really soft! I will miss her.
Saturday, we went to a baptism in Nyssa for Norma, a girl that I helped teach during my exchange with the sisters. Norma had asked that I be present, so we switched things around a little bit so we could go. The baptism was great and the Spirit was strong. I was so glad I got to go. Also, to our wonderful surprise, ALL the hermanas in the mission were there!! It was funny because at least one hermana in each companionship has been in Nyssa and taught Norma. Thank goodness I was involved in teaching her too, I love baptisms and I am grateful I got to see Norma make covenants with her Heavenly Father. That's why I am here! I even got to see Hermana Nora because she drove the Caldwell sisters up for the baptism! (oh how I miss Caldwell...) Anyway we all got Denny's for lunch afterwards and took a hundred pictures together.
Later Saturday night, we were enlisted to help serve food for a wedding in Fruitland. Apparently it was super last minute, and they needed all the help they could get. Not many people showed up except for close family and friends because the couple getting married weren't getting sealed in the temple. It was one of those occasions where we don't ask and they don't tell. There was some extra time where we got to see a part of the ceremony while sitting in the back row. The bride and groom were both happy looking at each other lovingly, but there was something missing. I had a serious contemplation moment in that chapel: I realized that I will not sacrifice a temple marriage for anything or anyone! Why would I want to be with someone or have kids with someone that I couldn't be sealed to? I won't chance getting married to a non-member and hope that he would accept the Gospel in the future. It just isn't worth the risk, plus we would be missing out on eternal blessings all along the way.