Monday, December 29, 2014

Week 29: The Gospel softens you....spiritually and physically.

HELLO EVERYONE!!! I hope you all had a fabulous Christmas and have some really super great plans for New Years!! So...Happy New Year!!! :) So weird that 2015 is in like...3 days.

It was so great to talk to the fam, I love them all so much!! I just wanted to hug you all!

Spanish news: I said a couple bad words in Spanish this week. Always brings a good laugh to Sister Guillen and I :) hahaha

Yes, I have gotten more sensitive to everything so far on my mission. Not so much when someone is teasing me, but of course just more sensitive to all things spiritual, which means more tears! But...with that, the mission pounds are comin on. haha Sister Guillen is going to buy a scale today...then it will be the moment of truth. Am I a little nervous about what the scale will say? Maybe. baha don't send me any more sweets, okay? :)

We went to DiAnn's house the other day and Brad (a guy who lives with them) was on the phone while he was watching something on TV and he said "yeah, BYU is playing Gonzaga right now.... 40-41...." and I kind of lost it. hahaha we started talking about basketball and BYU and what I want to study and how I went to the BYU-Gonzaga game last year....Brad has always been kind of hard towards us, but when we were leaving and we finished our blessed BYU conversation, he shook my hand and said "love ya!" it was so sweet! Leave it to some BYU Men's Basketball to soften a heart! Thanks Tyler Haws! It was a little tender mercy from the Lord to get to talk about my beloved BYU.

Sad news: Jackie will not be getting baptized for a while. She told us she didn't want to continue learning right now because things are kind of crazy with her family. We are bummed, but we know she will keep reading the Book of Mormon and praying. We love her so much!

We saw tons of miracles this week!! The day after Christmas, we were led to 3 new people who want to learn about the Gospel of Jesus Christ. From those first meetings, they are now all on date to be baptized in January :) We are very excited!! We met a wonderful family - we love them so much and they already love us! The single mom, Shirley was born Catholic and then started going to a Christian church, but has always felt like something was missing so she doesn't really go super often. She loves the church and the people, but she just can't get over that feeling of being spiritually empty. We testified of the truthfulness of the Gospel and this is what she is looking for. She and her son both are excited to be baptized in January!! 

Another very sweet tender mercy from the Lord this week: we are sitting in Gospel Principles (a class about the basic beliefs of the Church) and someone's phone goes off and it sounds like a bell. The teacher then said "oh! An angel just got its wings!" very nonchalantly and continued with the class and I was just so grateful!! For those of you who don't know, that comes from the Christmas movie: "It's a Wonderful Life". My family watches that movie every single year during Christmastime. It warmed my heart to have a sweet reminder in such an unexpected place of cherished traditions with my wonderful family. :) 

I testify that Heavenly Father loves each one of His children so unconditionally. He is mindful of all of us. I am always amazed with how well He knows ME. Just being a young girl in Kansas trying to serve Him the best I can, how could He care specifically about me? But I KNOW He does. He knows our specific needs and He knows how to help us if we let Him. We are so blessed. :)

I love you all so very much! Again, Happy New Year!

Con todo mi corazon y mi amor, 

Hermana Shumway

Thanks family!

Future missionary :)

Garden City, errybody! Noheli making me feel
better on Christmas :)

Saturday, December 27, 2014

Week 28: Love is Motive

Merry Christmas!!! It's SO weird that Christmas is this week. Just a normal week for a missionary! ;)

From John 3:16 "For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son..." we learn that God's motive for sending Jesus Christ into the world was LOVE. Our loving Heavenly Father, knowing that we would not be able to return to His presence if we were spotted with the sins of the world and the weaknesses of mortality, gave us the infinite and eternal gift of His Son, Jesus Christ, who can cleanse us and strengthen us so we can live with God again. How grateful I am for Him. Just like love is God's motive for everything He does, love should also be the motive for everything we do. I love thinking about that! :) Merry Christmas, all! :)

Thank you, thank you, thank you to so many people this week!
Thank you to Uncle Tim and Aunt Stephanie and family for the Christmas card - everyone looks so grown up! Especially Tyler and David! What happened?! Thank you to Clifford Nelson for the card! Thank you to Grandma Carter and Sister McLendan for the sweet cards you sent too! Hopefully I'll get a little something sent out to all of you today! Thank you again!

We went to the zoo today! The zoo here in Garden City is FREE! It was so fun even though a lot of the animals were put away for the winter. We had a really good time :) I'll attach some fun pictures we took :) from last week.
We worked really hard this week to find new people to teach and to build up our teaching pool. The whole week we found no one. The Lord blessed us with 3 new investigators on SUNDAY. The last day of the week. And 2 of those 3 came to church on Sunday! We definitely feel so blessed.
We are still working with a super prepared 13 year old named Jackie. She is the CUTEST girl ever. So stinkin sweet and so in tune with the Spirit. She is reading the Book of Mormon every day and is so committed to doing everything we invite her to do because she knows it will help her draw closer to Jesus Christ. It is SO cool. I love her so much. So so much. She will get baptized very soon :)

I had some really cool experiences with the Spirit this week. There were a couple times when I was teaching and I would get the thought to say something and I would say it then realize I had never thought of whatever it was like that before! You always know it comes from the Spirit when you are learning new things about the Gospel as you are teaching someone else. They were some very cool experiences. :) I am so grateful that I have the blessing of having the gift of the Holy Ghost to guide and direct me on my mission. I can definitely feel his power more and more as I humble myself and am exactly obedient and know and expect that the Lord is guiding me :)

I love you all so very much! Thank you for all of your support and love!

Con todo mi corazon y mi amor,

Hermana Shumway

April, Cesar, and their cute family.

Cool lion seat.

Sister Guillen and I at the entrance!

It's all about that Book of Mormon!

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Week 27: Silent Prayers are Answered :)


What a beautiful day it is today! It's a little windy and cold here in the Garden City, but it really is such a great day today!!

I am so sorry to cute Jarrett that I have forgotten the past TWO weeks to tell him happy birthday, so HAPPY BIRTHDAY J!!! I love you!
And also happy birthday to Brenton!!!
And also happy birthday to the one and only Eric!! I hope both of you have such a wonderful memorable day today :))

Lots of thank-yous to go through today! Thank you to Mom, Dad, and Cara for the awesome Christmas package! Sister Guillen and I LOVE it!!! I will attach a video of our thanks! :) Sister Guillen is REALLY good at guessing the gifts. Really really good. She hasn't been wrong yet! Thank you to Matt, Gina, and Rena Pursel for their Christmas card - it is DARLING. Thank you to the Hancock family for the Christmas package! I love all the sweets :) AND thank you to Brother and Sister Jarnagin for the card! Congrats on the mission call!! You are going to be the best!! I love all the Senior couples we have here in the KWM!

I found out that Sister Hymas is the Sister Training Leader here so I got to go on exchanges with her this past week!!! It was so much fun, I just love her so much. I'll attach a cute pic of us :)

So the story I have for you this week is when a silent prayer of mine was answered almost immediately. It was SO cool. Let me tell ya about it! So. As a mission we have been focusing a lot on the Questions of the Soul listed in Preach My Gospel. These are questions that almost everyone has. Questions like "Is there a God?" "Is there life after death?" "How can my family be happier and more united?" All of the answers to these questions can be found in the Book of Mormon. So as a mission we have been working really hard to use these questions of the soul more in order to help people see, in a very personal way, how the Book of Mormon truly brings us closer to Jesus Christ. We were in a lesson with an investigator, just kinda following up on wasn't really going anywhere and I was just praying so hard! I thought "Heavenly Father, I really feel like we need to use the Book of Mormon to answer a question of the soul...but I have NO idea what question to ask her that would bring one up!" So I just kept praying and listening to her when all of a sudden she said "I went back to church a few times after my brother died...just looking for comfort and peace..." It came! Just like that! I was/am so grateful. Then we were able to ask her if she would like to know what happens after death. And she said yes, and we were able to open up the Book of Mormon and tell her right then and there. She got very excited, felt very at peace, and told us she was going to read the chapter (Alma 40) over again AND share it with her family. It was awesome!!! I found out later that Sister Guillen was praying for the same thing.
It was such a wonderful experience. I know that Heavenly Father hears every prayer. Silent or spoken. Although it may not be answered that quickly every single time, the answer does come every single time.

I am so grateful for all the experiences I have had on my mission. I can't wait to learn and grow so much more in the next year :)

I love you all so much! Thank you again for all of your love and support! Talk to you next week!

Con todo mi corazon y mi amor,

Hermana Shumway

Sister Hymas and I!!! Reunited.....and yes, it does feel really
good. haha

Ugly sweater Christmas party!! I'll send a close up of Sister
Guillen's and mine next week!

Thank-you!! Coming to you live, from Sister
Shumway and Sister Guillen!!

More pictures that go with last week's post:

Walking day!


Ward Christmas party.

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Week 26: "He is the Gift"

Okay. Apologies from last week:

Sorry about my awful grammar with the pictures I sent "ME and Sister Guillen"... I know Dad noticed and I was a little ashamed. haha (Lucky for you Audge, you have a sister-in-law that corrected your grammar in your blog post :) But, it's still probably good you rectified it with your dad since he saw your original caption:))

MOM! I got your package and thank you so much! I LOVE all the warm things! I have been enjoying them :) it has been pretty warm here the past few days, but they are still getting used, I promise :) thank you!

Thank you so much to the Hancock family for the sweet note and gift card! I love you!

Hmmm. I feel like this week went by SO quickly, I don't even know what happened...hmm. Well. Update about April and Cesar: They are having some Law of Chastity logistics issues and we are unsure how the Bishop and Mission President want us to move forward. We are still waiting to know what direction to take. We and them of course want them to be baptized as soon as possible, but we don't want to break up their family. I just love that little family oh so very much!! We will see what happens this week.

We saw some awesome miracles this week!!! A young woman in our ward went with us to contact one of her friends, Jackie, this week. She was really sweet and sounds like she really would like to come to the activities and things. The YW texted us this morning and told us that Jackie's dad told her how proud he is of her and that he and her mom are really excited for us to meet with them!!! We are really excited :))

AND we met a teenage boy on a doorstep who accepted the Book of Mormon and baptism for the 24th of December and seemed really excited so we are stoked to meet his family too and start teaching them! It's gonna be a goooood week!

This past week and continuing this week we have been using the new church video "He is the Gift" in order to invite people to learn more about the restored Gospel and Church of Jesus Christ. If you haven't seen it. SEE IT.  It makes me cry every single time and Sister Guillen always laughs at me :) haha it brings the Spirit SO strongly, you just can't help but cry! I have been thinking a lot about how I feel when I receive a gift at Christmas. I'm excited about it for like a week or maybe like a month at MOST and then the excitement and joy that came from the new gift is gone. Then I thought about how I would feel if that excitement and that joy never went away. The gift given by Heavenly Father, His beloved Son Jesus Christ, is a gift that will never stop bringing us joy and happiness. It is eternal. It is infinite. It can be used every day, every minute, every second. And the feelings we get when we "open the gift", or use the Atonement of Jesus Christ, will never lose their power and will never stop bringing us eternal happiness. The only way to open the gift and access His power is through baptism by the power of Jesus Christ, the priesthood, that can only be found in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. HE is the gift. From a merciful Father who loves us enough to give us a Savior so we could return to live with Him again. I am so excited to be a missionary right now!!

Discover the Gift.
Embrace the Gift.
#SharetheGift with everyone you know!


Con todo mi corazon y mi amor,

Hermana Shumway

Reunited!! Hermana Adams and I. So awesome to see her
so often!!

We will #ShareTheGift by baptizing twelve in the
Garden City Zone this month!!

Singing in the Christmas Party talent show with
Noheli and Marisabel :) So fun!

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Week 25: "English is my second language."

WOW!!! Garden City is the place to BE!!!
I love Garden City. EVERYONE looks familiar to me here. It's super cool :)

For Thanksgiving we just visited tons of members and we found a couple new people to teach so I was fed very much both temporally and spiritually :)

Sorry for the confusion, Hermana Guillen is a native SPANISH speaker. She was born in Mexico, but she is from Washington State! The subject of this email is something she always says when she makes little dumb mistakes in English. hahah she's such a punk because she's fluent in both, but that's her excuse when she gets tongue-tied in English. She is super great - we are smiling and joking all the time. I love her! I'll attach a pic!

We are teaching some kick bootay solid people who I am just SO stoked about!! I want to tell you some stories:

DiAnn. Okay. So this story TOTALLY strengthens my testimony about how living and showing your faith can change lives. So one of DiAnn's acquaintances invited her to go to Utah with him to see the mountains (haha I thought that was funny - only in Kansas..) So she went and on the way back, they got in a really really bad car accident. Both of her legs, an arm, and a hip were broken. She was sent to the LDS hospital in Utah where she met TONS of LDS people (obviously). She was in the hospital for about 4 months. One of her aids got her a Book of Mormon with her name engraved on it the first day she was there. While she was there the missionaries visited her, taught her all the lessons for baptism, took her to church and the Salt Lake temple and just were as nice as could be to her. She wanted to get baptized there but the missionaries told her she should come back and meet the missionaries and the people here and get baptized here. She got back on Wednesday and we saw her on Thanksgiving! She raved about her experience in Utah and how kind and loving everyone was to her. She told us that she told her son she was going to be Mormon soon. :D haha so I just asked her straight up "So DiAnn, when would you like to get baptized?" :) And now she's on date for baptism for the 13th of December!!!! We are so excited :) Her daughter is working towards baptism too!! :) DiAnn always says that it was divine intervention that she was in Utah, maybe in not so good circumstances, but God needed her to stay there long enough to learn the gospel. She already has such a firm testimony of the truthfulness of the restored gospel of Jesus Christ. It is just so awesome :)

Cesar and April: THEY ARE SO AWESOME!!! I just love them so much. The first time I saw them, Cesar told me I look really familiar to him too! I thought it was the kind of familiarity that I have been feeling the whole time I've been here but then he went on to say that I look like a model from a TV show and I was like "ummm nope!" haha it was funny. They are so awesome and so prepared. They are so willing and ready to do everything they have to in order to be baptized. It is so cool!! We talked about temples last night when we went over and they are so excited to be sealed as a family in the temple in a little over a year. They asked if we would be able to be there with them when they go to the temple and we of course said "YES!!!!!" Brothers and Sisters, this is the true joy of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. :) They are preparing to be baptized on December 20 :))

I LOVE BEING A MISSIONARY!!!!!!!!! The miracles TOTALLY outweigh the disappointments. OH! We found a family to teach by going to church on that was pretty cool :D haha Sister Guillen says that happens all the time in western Kansas. I guess this family had been to church many times before and had been taught by missionaries, but had lost contact with them because of transfers so they never got baptized! We are excited to meet with them this week :)

So, just to recap. I love Garden City. I love Sister Guillen. I love being a missionary. I love the Book of Mormon. I love Jesus Christ. :)

And I love all of you :)

Con todo mi corazon y mi amor,

Hermana Shumway

Sister Guillen speaking Pig Latin, trying to teach
me "Spanish". The punk. haha I love her!

Sister Guillen and I with some members of the ward at
a birthday party!

Sister Guillen and I on a beautiful day!

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Week 24: Garden City / Garden of Eden Bound

HEY-LO!!!! HAPPY THANKSGIVING this week!! That is just absurd!! How is it already Thanksgiving? I dunno...but I hope you all have a wonderful holiday full of all of the things that make you happy :)

HAPPY BIRTHDAY this week to CARLY KAY!!! I love you so much, sister! I hope you have an awesome day :) Thank you for all you continue to do for me.

Yup. This little missionary is headed OUT of Topeka and out WEST into Garden City!! Say, what? I never thought this day would come, but I have been here in Topeka for 4 months...crazy stuff. I'm super excited to see more of the heartland and have some more super awesome experiences with Hermana Guillen, a native!!! We will be teaching in Spanish and English, but I'm so stoked to learn a ton from Hermana Guillen :) AND I will be in the same district as one of the Elders who was in my district at the MTC: Elder Cole! He is my new district leader!! AND I will be in the same Zone as Hermana Adams, who was my companion in the MTC!!! I am sooooo excited to see them :) But. I am very sad to be leaving Topeka and all of the people I love so so much. This email won't be terribly long because I have to go home and pack because they want us to be in Wichita TONIGHT rather than tomorrow morning. OH! Sister Seigfried is training a new missionary!!! She is really excited and I am too. She is going to do a great job :)

So before Sister Seigfried and I went to our appointment with Elvia, the investigator we found at church last week, I said "She's going to have read all of the Book of Mormon and she's just gonna ask us what she has to do to be baptized." Then when we got there she told us that she had had a Book of Mormon for 2 years over in Mexico but had left it there when she came to the United States and that she was really close to finishing it when she left Mexico. She told us a few things about the struggles she is going through and she was crying and all of this and out of nowhere Sister Seigfried threw out the baptismal invitation!!!! Then she said "You tell me. What do I have to do to prepare myself?" I was blown away. haha so I just threw down the Law of Chastity and the Word of Wisdom right there and she accepted them right away and we put her on date!!! Like, wow? Faith works. It is a principle of POWER and ACTION!!!

A couple of weeks ago, all the missionaries in the mission were issued a challenge to read the WHOLE Book of Mormon by Christmas. Yes. Just over a month to read it all. How awesome, right?! Yeah. It is. And let me just tell you. Never in my life have I been SO excited to read the Book of Mormon and get everything done early so I have time to read it. And I LOVE it. As I have tried to use it in every single teaching appointment I have felt my testimony of it grow stronger and stronger. I know the Book of Mormon is true. Like we always tell those we teach, by their fruits you shall know them. The fruits of the Book of Mormon are countless. One of the greatest of its fruits is the undeniable Spirit when you read it with the intent to know truth. One of Sister Seigfried's and my favorite verses that we've read a lot is 2 Nephi 33:10. If you believe in Christ, you WILL believe the Book of Mormon. It has become so precious to me and I feel so blessed that I will have the Book of Mormon for the rest of my life to feast on and learn from.

I love you all so very much, I hope you know that :) You are wonderful. Please let me know if there is anything a little missionary in Kansas can do for any of you. I would love to do it :)

Have a wonderful week and make sure you "delight in fatness" on Thanksgiving!!!

Con todo mi corazon y mi amor,

Hermana Shumway

Pictures of the good-byes:

Ladies at Doorstep - secondhand clothing store where we
went every week!

Some members of the branch who I absolutely ADORE.

Bye Retanas!

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Week 23: Inactive Members make for some Proactive Miracles


So I realized in my last email home I didn't end with "Con todo mi corazon y mi amor" and it made me really sad! But I promise I wrote it with all of both of those things :) haha

It's starting to get a little chilly out here in the heartland of America...on Sunday morning when we were driving to remind some people about church, a sign said 18.1 degrees. 18.1!!! I wish there was a way to capitalize numbers, because I totally would have done it just then. "!*>! degrees!!" <--- that's what it would have looked like... anyway, it was pretty brisk. We also got some snow this that was pretty ridiculous. Had to scrape the car off and everything!!

BUT! On Sunday we had 53 people at church!!! 53!!!! Again. Want to capitalize the numbers. I have NEVER seen that many people in our branch! Such a miracle! So many less actives came and a couple investigators too! Actually one of our "investigators" that came became a new investigator AT CHURCH!!! She came with her son who is a member - miracles all over the place!! Just when I was feeling so unworthy to receive Heavenly Father's blessings - He rains down a TON.
One of the less-actives that came was one that we visited this week. I have only visited her twice and this time when Sister Seigfried and I went (unplanned visit), she just broke down and cried, saying she's so lonely and stuff and it was one of those moments when you know that Heavenly Father needed you there in order to lift her up. We were so happy she actually did come to church. It was a miraculous Sunday :)

With all of this talk going on about the Phoenix Temple dedication and all, I have been thinking a lot about temples and the wonderful things that happen there. This week, we went and visited Sonia and Jose and Sonia told us (in Spanish, obviously) "my dream is to get married for eternity in the temple, it's my dream!" So the whole time we were there we talked about how wonderful temples are and what we need to do to be prepared to go and make those sacred covenants with the Lord (and our spouse). I am so thrilled that she has already set her eyes and her heart on entering the temple and she is already taking the necessary steps to prepare. We have been talking to Jose a lot about the Priesthood and going to the temple for baptisms for the dead and they are both just so excited to go :) I love it. I love temples. :) It made me a little sad that I don't get to go super often anymore, it's like I'm having withdrawals. haha I pray I get to go sometime as a set-apart full-time servant of the Lord. I just think that would be the coolest experience :)

I am learning a lot about being humble. I have realized that I am a lot more prideful than I thought, in different ways than I thought. I am learning how to really use the Atonement of Jesus Christ to strengthen and uplift me when times are good and when times are tough. I know that this restored gospel of Jesus Christ is real and it's true. I know that Heavenly Father gives us trials, shows us our weaknesses, so that He can make us stronger if we allow Him to. I am so grateful for Him and His love for all of His children. I pray I will be able to develop His pure love in order to serve the people of Kansas as the Savior would. :)

I love you all so very much!! Thank you so much for all of your support, you just don't know how much I appreciate it!


Hermana Shumway :)

We went bowling with a member of our branch, Omar!!
I got over 100 in two of the three games we played
and I even did really silly shots! I won two of the three
games too! It was a lot of fun :)

ICE. :(


Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Week 22: "We be Preachin' Jesus"

Hello my glorious family and friends!!

Elder Landroche (my District Leader and co-missionary in the Spanish Branch) wrote a song called "We Be Preachin' Jesus" and he, Sister Seigfried, another Elder, Elder Chlarson, and I sang it! We love it! I attached it to the email! It'll be on the next Kansas Wichita Mission CD!!! 

How in the world is the world goin?! I hope fantastic! We saw a bit of the world this week! There was a Veteran's Day parade going on, but before we saw the parade, we saw protesters of the parade! From the Westborough Baptist Church! Who knew their origin...headquarters....? or whatever! is in Topeka, Kansas! Yeah. It was pretty crazy the stuff their posters said... Makes me so sad. Sister Seigfried and I wonder what their Sunday services are like... I can't imagine they're uplifting. haha

I forgot to say thank you's last week for cards and letters and things! I'm sorry! Thank you to Sister Hymas for the super sweet card she sent to me - I love her so much! Shout-out to Sister Berry who reported for her mission last week! So exciting. :) Thank you to Mom for the card and the letter! I loved reading both of them! AND thank you to Nathan Edwards for the thoughtful letter! I appreciate all of you OH SO MUCH!! Thank you, thank you :)

A few stories from this week...
We knocked a referral's door this week...she threatened to call the cops on us. That was a first! I'm convinced if she woulda opened the door the Spirit woulda hit her in the face and she would be getting baptized this week. haha we walked away laughing!
The Branch President told us not to tell everyone to bring a refreshment to our missionary activity because everyone would stay home from church in order to prepare their piece. These are my kind of people, they don't mess around when it comes to food :D For the missionary activity we had, we asked the Branch Pres to bring some cookies and a member of the branch to bring arroz con leche and we ended up with an ARRAY of refreshments. EVERYONE brought something. haha it was awesome. I love these people. :)
TONS OF ONE-WAY STREETS IN KANSAS. It kills me sometimes. haha
We raked tons of leaves!!! Pictures are included!

Some really cool stuff is happening in Topeka.
We visited 2 investigators who weren't going anywhere in the past (when Sister Hymas was here) and we have return appointments with both of them and one of them was even reading in the Book of Mormon!! We are really excited about it!!

The work is changing and progressing and we are really learning how to work SMART. Meaning helping the MEMBERS with the things they are doing to be missionaries and building them up which will then lead us to teach the people they love and care about. We taught Relief Society on Sunday and the topic was missionary work!!! It was awesome. We testified that we are here to help them. That we need their help to do this work. They know their culture, they know their language, they know their people. They have been blessed with the gospel in order to be a light to their own nation and guide their own people to the church. It was so powerful and we are SO excited to see the work just EXPLODE!!! 
The missionary activity was wonderful! We had a fun part where they did a relay race sort of deal which included tying ties, ironing shirts, finding a golden investigator and leading them to baptism through an obstacle course while they were blindfolded. It was very fun :) We invited some of the Spanish speaking RMs in the area to come to "investigators" with concerns. We split the members into companionships and gave them 15 minutes to prepare a lesson according to the concern their investigator had - they had all the tools a missionary has. Then they taught them for about 20 minutes. Then we had a testimony meeting. It. Was. AWESOME. Everyone loved it and the Spirit was so strong. Again, so stoked to see this area take off. The Lord is totally changing how we are doing missionary work and I'm excited to just keep stepping into the darkness, following the will of the Lord until He lights the way :) 

We have a ton of meetings this week - one of them with a general authority! So excited for some MAD revelation!!!! :D

I love being a missionary! It's the best!!!
I love you all so much, thank you for all of your support and love! 

Have such an amazing week, all!

Hermana Shumway

Cleanin' up the ojas (leaves). Straight cheesin'!

I wanted orange juice....."NO JUICE"...well. That's awkward.
Halloween!! We dressed up as elders!!

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Week 21: "Get a life Satan!!!....oh wait. You can't."

The quote from this week is from Sister Seigfried! She said this a while ago, but it made me laugh really hard soooo I thought I would share it this week :) bahaha so funny.

So. Last week was a pretty good week. We saw a lot of miracles just with being in the right place at the right time. There were a couple times in the week when we really knew we were being instruments in the Lord's hands. Such a cool feeling :) One lady we tracted into and ended up having like an hour+ conversation about how Heavenly Father knows us all personally and is aware of everything we do. We testified of the divinity of the Book of Mormon and the restored church of Jesus Christ. She was so excited to read the Book of Mormon and go to church. We referred her to some English sisters and are so excited to hear about her progression :)
The other woman we met on the street as well. Her name is Christina. She walked past us, we said hi, and we walked opposite directions. Until she turned around and called to us again. She said she felt like she needed to talk to us because we were carrying a Bible (I had my Spanish scriptures in my hand). We ended up talking to her as well for about an hour about truths of the gospel of Jesus Christ and it was just amazing! I love being a missionary and having experiences like that.

We are going to have a missionary activity in the branch this week called "Un Dia en la Vida Misional" or "A Day in the Mission Life". We are trying to help the members understand exactly what we do as missionaries and help them have a spiritual experience in a mock teaching situation so they will be motivated to share the gospel with others. It should be a pretty fun activity so we're excited about that :)

This week I am going to start what is called the 40-Day Missionary Fast. It's a process of sanctification. It's where you fast from the things the Spirit tells you to for 40 days. Let me tell you, this is going to be TOUGH. And I'm scared and totally nervous out of my mind, but I know that leaping into the dark is what Heavenly Father needs me to do. I am excited but so...just. I don't know what's gonna happen! And I think that's the scariest part. We'll see where the Lord takes me in these 40 days. Probably down to the lowest low so my faith can be raised to the highest high. Please pray for me!

We worked in the bike shop this week and I learned how to seat a tire! That was fun. We are going to start going every week and I am super excited to learn all about bikes! It's awesome service and all of us missionaries in Topeka love doing it!

Well, I hope you all had a great Halloween! I love you all so much and I'm so grateful for such a wonderful family and great friends. Really. You all mean a ton to me. Thank you for all of the love, support and prayers you're sendin out to a little missionary in Topeka, Kansas. She appreciates it so much :)

Have such an amazing week all!!

Hermana Shumway

Some fall colors!! I love going down this street because
 there are so many leaves and colorful trees!

Dinner at Cici's!

Bike shop!

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Week 20: "At least you have a toe to stub!"

Happy birthday to my nephew Brendon this week!!! Love you little bud! Keep rockin Kindergarten and soccer!!

AND HAPPY HALLOWEEN EVERYONE!!!! Woot! I love Halloween. Please enjoy all of the festivities!!

Thank you to Elder Sam Alger and Melissa for the letters!! And thank you to Mom and Dad for my Halloween package! I loved it all :) AND! Thank you to Sister Michelle Neal and Tyler for the little note! I loved coming home to it!

So. This week I have been thinking all about my 8th grade volleyball team, where the subject for this week comes from. Mrs. Murkley would always tell us to be positive. She would always say, "when you stub your toe, just be grateful you have a toe to stub!" hahaha such an exuberant lady... anyway, that has been on my mind a lot this last week because I had an ingrown toenail on my big toe and on Wednesday I got some minor surgery on the little guy! They numbed it with two syringes full of anesthesia (it was super huge from all of that stuff) then they cut my toenail in half, yanked it out and cut out some of my skin on the side with the ingrown toenail in it. It bled a LOT. It has been pretty painful, but don't worry, they told me not to walk on it. My thoughts: "ummm I'm a missionary...?" so, of course I did anyway! :) First time in my life I have taken prescribed pain pills and antibiotics! On my mission - who knew?! I'll attach some really cute pictures of it :)

I keep forgetting to tell you that we went to Texas Roadhouse with some members of the branch a couple of weeks ago and they told me to put a pencil in my mouth to learn how to roll my Rs and it worked!! I looked like a fool, but I did it, and it's getting better! They always tease me because I can't do it....that's okay! I'm getting better :)

I ate a moldy pepper at a member's house.....yeah. It didn't look moldy but the inside definitely was...that felt good. haha! We have learned never to eat ANYTHING off of our ward mission leader's table. baha!

Some other random things about Topeka....
The sidewalks aren't right next to the streets...there's like a random space of dirt/grass between every road and the sidewalk. That's not how it is everywhere, right? No, it's not. I remember now!
Another interesting thing: NO streets are well lit.

As far as the Topeka missionary work, it is just goin along! Sister Seigfried and I were very successful in our finding this past week and we found a couple members that are ALWAYS willing to come out with us to lessons and they are AWESOME!! We are excited for this busy week ahead with appointments, the ward Halloween party, zone conference and tons of other fun stuff!

I love you all so very much! Thank you so much for all you continually do for me, please always remember that there's a little missionary in Kansas who just really appreciates all you do for me.

Con todo mi corazon y mi amor,

Hermana Shumway

YAY for Halloween package!! Thanks mom and dad!!

I just thought this was kind of funny:)

Before anesthesia....

After....(the black is the cauterized blood!)

Super cute, right?!

Minor Med!!! Will forever be a place close to my heart ;)

Kevin spray painted his hair.......silly boy.

As it looks now.

Monday, October 20, 2014

Week 19: "Mexicans be like....'comida'."

Hello my wondrous family and friends!

This subject for this week is a quote from a young man in our branch hahahaha we were talking about Mexican Parties and he randomly just said this. We DIED laughing. It was pretty funny. We are invited to eat a LOT throughout the day. I love to eat, and eat a lot, but sometimes it is a TRUE struggle to eat all the offer me. These people are just so generous!

Thank you to my Mom for the letter, thank you Kaden, Brendon and Landon for the wonderful drawings, I love them and they are currently hanging up in my room :)
Happy 9th Birthday to my oldest nephew, Kaden this week!!! :D I love you so much and hope you have such a wonderful day! Aunt Audge will be thinking about you lots! :)

This last week was an emotional one. Saying goodbye to Sister Hymas was TOUGH. Oh how I love her. My new companion is Sister Seigfried from Houston, Texas area. Taking over the area has been stressful, but it is getting better! I know that Heavenly Father will bring things/people to my remembrance, just gotta be humble enough to listen, hear, and do!

We had an AWESOME Mission President's Devotional yesterday where some recent converts bore their testimonies. It was SUCH a spiritual experience. Something I definitely needed - perfect way to end my week. It buoyed me up to go out and FIND the people looking for the gospel and take them by the hand and help them come unto Christ.

Sorry, I can't really describe how powerful it was, but the Spirit was so tangible. It made me think about how much I love the Gospel. And then I wondered if the people I'm teaching know how much I love the Gospel of Jesus Christ. I made a decision to do better at being ME and making my love for the Gospel and this restored church more apparent when I teach. Because I really do love it.
I'm grateful for the hard experiences that bring me closer to Christ and help me develop a stronger faith in Him. :)

I love you all and hope you have a wonderful week! Thank you for all you do for me!

Go to the Phoenix Temple Open House and go see Meet the Mormons!! Share the gospel. Flood the earth with goodness :)

Con todo mi corazon y mi amor,

Hermana Shumway

Monday, October 13, 2014

Week 18: "Hi, I'm Sister Hymas!"


Thank you to Mackenzie Berry for the letter and to my wonderful mother for the 2 packages and to Eric Schofield and VANESSA Schofield for my AMAZING package!! I really really appreciate it and love all of you oh so much! Thank you :)
Shout out to everyone still emailing me - thank you to you too :) I love hearing from all of you!

So the reason for my subject today....Sister Hymas is leaving me so this email is in part to honor her. :( Transfers are this week and LOTS of changes are happening. I'm in a different district and our zone is being split. Sister Hymas is being transferred to Dodge City to be a Sister Training Leader! I've been joking that I trained her to be an STL....if she can get through being my companion, she can do anything!! haha ;) just kidding... My new companion's name is Sister Sygfried and she will be joining me here in Topeka on Wednesday! So crazy that I'm done with training....
 Okay. Reason for the subject...for a couple of weeks, I would introduce myself as Sister Hymas on doorstep approaches. Don't ask me why, but I would!! Hahaha it made for a couple awkward moments as I say "wait no! I'm Sister Shumway!" and Sister Hymas would say "and I am Sister Hymas" hahaha they say we need to be unified, right...? Or something like that. haha

I am so grateful for Sister Hymas. She and I have really grown to be so close. We have so much fun together and she has taught me so much about how to be a missionary who works hard but has SO much fun. A lot of times missionaries can get stuck being robots, but the best way to share the gospel is to be ourselves!! I will miss her so very much, but I know that Sister Sygfried is exactly who I need right now to grow and become who Heavenly Father needs me to be :) I'm so excited for the growth that is about to happen!!

So this past week I had my first Bible bashing encounter! It was pretty interesting...the Spirit was NOT there....I opened the Book of Mormon, thinking to share a scripture, but I just couldn't. I couldn't read the Book of Mormon without the Spirit. It was awful. I felt awful afterwards. Meh. Anyway, thought I would share that milestone on my mission!

Soooooooooo something super legit happened on Friday. We had a zone training....Elder Jeffrey R. Holland sent President Bell a link.....for all the missionaries to watch....MEET THE MORMONS. It was AMAZING. Everyone needs to see this movie. It is 6 different stories of 6 different Mormons around the globe....a woman MMA fighter in Costa Rica, the naval academy football head coach in Maryland, a convert missionary mom in Utah and 3 others just doing their best to follow Jesus Christ. It is a FANTASTIC movie. I felt the Spirit so strongly while I watched it. I cried...I laughed... It was just another testament to me that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints is so true. How cool it is that I get to be a missionary when the Church is really reaching out in the media - they made a MOVIE that was IN THEATERS for heaven's sake! It's incredible. I loved it. Everyone - PLEASE GO SEE IT. 
I used a lot of caps just then. 
I just love the gospel of Jesus Christ. 
I love His Church.
I love being His missionary.
I love representing Him.
I love Him.
And I love all of you. :)

Con todo mi corazon y mi amor,

Hermana Shumway

Spanish Branch homies!! We are all being split up....:(

Random chickens in Little Mexico.

MEET THE MORMONS!!! :D The best!

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Week 17: "How do you even spell Capita(o)l?"

Monday, September 29, 2014

Week 16: Revelatory Comp Studies and Linguistic Break-Downs

Hello my dearest family!!!!!!!

I hope you all had a fabulous week! 
Start off with an apology, Aaron and Alicia, HAPPY ANNIVERSARY last week!!! I love you both oh so very much and am so grateful for your examples to me!

Thank you to everyone who continues to email me, I really appreciate the love, support, testimonies, and advice I receive each and every week - you are such a strength to me! Thank you to Eric Wade Schofield for the letter this week :) So great to hear from best buds from home!

We had a pretty great week this week! I don't know if I have too much to report, but we are still working really hard with Sonia and Jose and their family, please continue to send prayers their way!
We have started to teach a few families and we hope we get the opportunity to meet with them all again! 

Linguistic break-downs. haha so many times I try to say things in Spanish that I would say in English and they just don't translate well..hahah it's pretty funny. Like "nunca mente" for never mind. Yeah. Doesn't work. haha and yesterday at church I was asking a young single adult about this girl and I asked if he "liked-liked" a girl and he was like "whoaaaa...we are having a linguistic break-down" and it was just really funny :)

This week Hermana Hymas and I have had some AWESOME comp studies. One was when we were reading in the Book of Mormon in Alma 32. I just got so much more out of that chapter than I ever had before. I realized so powerfully that when someone hears of the restored gospel of Jesus Christ and does what is necessary to nurture their faith (pray, read the scriptures, go to church), their faith grows and is strengthened and they are able to gain a testimony of it's truthfulness. But, when they receive the gospel and DON'T do those things with a true desire to act on their faith in Jesus Christ and experiment/learn more about His gospel, they throw it aside and decide that it isn't truth. But this isn't so. The seed (our faith) didn't grow because it isn't true, but because our ground is barren! It was just really really cool! 

I know that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints is in reality the true church of Jesus Christ with all of His organization and HIS teachings. He is at the head. Our loving Father in Heaven has made that so apparent to me. This is real! This weekend, we have the amazing opportunity to hear from His servants on the earth, even the Prophet and the 12 Apostles who are all called of God to lead and guide His children. I am stoked out of my MIND to listen and receive revelation directly from Heavenly Father. I invite you all to think of a question or 2 to take to General Conference and EXPECT an answer. I know they will come as we listen with our spiritual ears and hearts. :) I love you all so very much. Thank you for all of your continued love and support that strengthens me every day!

Con todo mi corazon y mi amor,

Hermana Shumway

At the Woman's Conference with some other sisters
in my zone.

This is for Mom: TONS of carne asada for dinner last


1. Anything interesting or quirky about where you're living?
Hmmm. We are about right across the street from our church meetinghouse, right by the freeway. Haha my apartment's AC doesn't shut off when it gets to a certain temperature, so when we turn it on for the night it stays on ALL NIGHT. When we wake up, we are FREEZING. haha there have been a couple times when I've worn sweats under my skirt. Yeah. That's quite the look. ;)

2. Have you eaten anything interesting? Did you like it?
I think the one that takes the cake is that chicken feet stew I had the 2nd week I was here. And with that comes pig skin tacos....and my favorite, corn with mayo and cheese and tajin :)

3. What are you supposed to do if there's a tornado?
We made a plan for where to go if there is a tornado, we have 3 different places to go! Scary stuff!

4.  What kinds of things do you do for P-day?
Pday activities. Clean the apartment, clean the car, go to the store, laundry, write letters, email, hang out with the district, go to historical sites... and sometimes just sit. hahah :)

5. Any treats or items you need or want?
Well NEED, never. :) There's always items I WANT, but I think I am alright! Thank you :)

6. When are your next transfers?
Transfers are October 15. My training will be over...weird.

7. What do you get to do for general conference? (I was meaning where she got to watch it, so I guess I should have been more specific:)

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Week 15: "Just another day in the mission..."


How's that for some Spanglish. Gotta love it :) haha sometimes I'll be teaching someone - speakin Spanish and all - then just randomly say a word in English in the mix of it all even though I know the word in Spanish...weird. haha it always makes me laugh.

Thank you for ALL of the letters this week!!! Thank you to my loving mommy and big sister Cara and my wonderful friend Elder Trey Branham in Costa Rica, and my fabulous CCM companion Hermana Ricci Adams for the letters you sent me! And also, thank you to my wonderful parents for the package!

The subject of this email is from a young man in our branch named Omar. He drove past us the other day at a stop light and I guess our faces looked not super excited or happy. hahaha so he demonstrated what we looked like and then said this. We. Were. DYING. I was laughing really really really hard. Maybe it was just cuz we were really tired - who knows? But I thought I would share - hope it made you laugh :)

Another funny story. I almost got eaten by a German Shepherd. Just trying to share the gospel! We walked inside the gate to the house, the dog immediately stood up on the porch. Sis Hymas decided it was time to go. The house looked so friendly though - not something you see on every street in Topeka! We closed the gate and started to walk away, but the dog started walking towards the gate, head down. I walked back towards it saying "Well, Sister Hymas what if it's a nice doggy!" I bent down and started talking to it through the gate, it growled and jumped up on the fence and I quickly jumped back and said "Whoa! Not nice, NOT NICE." hahaha Sister Hymas was laughing SOOOOO hard. It was funny. But I really did want to knock that door!!! We'll have to go back...haha :)

Awesome spiritual, Heavenly Father-is-totally-guiding-us story for this week! So we received a referral a couple of weeks ago from some Elders in our zone for a girl named Wendy! We went and met her and taught her the first lesson. Sister Hymas and I both felt like the lesson didn't go as well as it should have so we were kind of bummed about that, but Wendy ended up going to church last week with her boyfriend so that was super awesome! At church they called them "investigators" (please don't call anyone that), and we talked about some not-super-deep-but-still-not-quite-surface-doctrine and some other things happened so we were really concerned with what she thought of it....

We went and saw her and asked her what she thought of it. SHE LOVED IT. Can you say miracle? I can. ;) anyway, she loved it. And as we were talking her mom and step dad show up at her house. She tells us she's moving to California with them in like 2 days - wait, what? And her step dad told us that he is a LESS ACTIVE MEMBER. Wendy didn't tell us ANYTHING about that!!! What?!!? Then he said that he hadn't been active for 20 years and that seeing us made him feel like he really needs to go back again, but he felt bad because he and Wendy's mom aren't married and there are some legal issues going on, but we told him that he just needs to GO! And Wendy got all excited about them all going to church together in California :) It was a lot cooler, but I am running out of time so that's all I can share about it. Oh! Then Wendy's mom gave us super cute watches from Charming Charlie's just completely out of the blue!! They are so nice!!! I love them so much and the missionaries in California are getting some awesome people :)

Anyway, love you all so much! Know Heavenly Father is guiding me! I love this work, so grateful to be His servant and His missionary!

Con todo mi corazon y mi amor,

Hermana Shumway

Thanks for the package!!

Mustache binky!! (Carly I knew you would love this!!)

Thanks for the CTR rings!! I love them, and Sonia, Jose,
and their little brother, Kevin, do too. I will give them
to everyone I help come unto Christ through baptism!!

Tons of personalized license plates here.......