(Amber Garvin from Provo, Utah served as a missionary for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (also known as 'Mormons') in the Richmond, Virginia area (Now called the "Virginia Chesapeake Mission"). 'Sister' Missionaries are able to serve at age 19 for a period of 18 months. They leave their homes, families and educational pursuits to love and serve their fellowman, and to teach about how families can be together forever. All are invited to follow her missionary experiences.)

*I have now returned home to Utah and will continue to share the experiences of being a returned missionary. :)

Monday, December 30, 2013

Monday, Dec. 30, 2013, Rocky Mount, North Carolina, LDS Sister Missionaries

I suppose that I ought to write an incredibly long letter about each person that I talked with on Christmas, everything that we did, the wonderful time that we had, and all the food that I ate.
But it's easier to write it in one generalized, unspecific paragraph.  So there ya go.
We had a Christmas Mission Conference on Christmas Eve, which I may have mentioned last week... I don't remember.... But it was great.
I had a cold.  Which was gross.  I lugged around an entire box of tissues in my purse, and had to stuff the used ones in an empty purse pocket.  Don't worry.  It was dignified.  Because I'm a missionary.  Also, one of the things that makes me feel the most self-conscious is blowing my nose in public.... So I tried to keep that to a minimum.
The conference itself was really great!  President Baker put on 'Muppet Christmas Carol' movie, and we ate some good food, and there were many talented, and courageous people that performed musical numbers for our enjoyment and benefit.  So we had a good time.
It was weird though because it was sunny and 80 degrees.....also, the grass is still green.  But it's the spirit of Christ that makes it Christmas, and I was feelin' it.
Being able to talk with you my family (including all of you that I spoke with) Was the best Christmas present that I could have asked for!
I hope that it wasn't too demanding to pick a time for me to call, but I loved it.
Also, sorry if me crying made you uncomfortable.  It's a new part of me that I'm trying to learn to embrace, but sometimes it makes people uncomfortable.  So, uh..... yeah.... That happened.  I was crying all over the place.  What a new experience-- to go right along with the green grass and 80 degree weather I suppose.
In conclusion, and summation (which I'm hoping that word means is another form of summary---sometimes I use words that I don't know the meaning to.... I have a dictionary though and will look up the proper definition of that word when I get home, and if I'm off base y'all have permission to laugh....) Christmas was good.  I don't have a cold anymore, and I learned much from people about focusing on what the true meaning of worshiping the Savior's birth is: following His example, service, love, compassion, charity, doing things of eternal value, developing meaningful relationships, and being kind to all those you meet.
These attributes have a much greater value than material possessions, and that is what made my Christmas here special.  LOVE.
I hope that we can make everyday in this new year a Merry Christmas, and I propose that it can be.  If the Spirit of Christmas is feeling the love of our Savior Jesus Christ can we not feel it year round? 
We can! And we should.
Now add it to yer'  New Years' Resolutions, (but really stick with this one for the whole year. :)
I love you, and wish that you will each feel the joy that comes from feeling love, and loving others in this next phase of "our" lives.
Talk to you next year! ;)
Love forever,
Sister Amber Garvin

Monday, December 23, 2013

Monday, December 23, 2013, Rocky Mount, North Carolina - LDS Sister Missionaries

Wow!  Can you believe it's Christmas?! Also..... it was 80 degrees yesterday. It's muggy and rainy, and hot.  It's a new experience for sure-- not to have cold weather on Christmas! :)  But I really am so so excited to be able to spend Christmas with some of the people here!  They have made such an impression on me and I love them!
We had a wonderful Christmas program in Church yesterday.  The chapel was PACKED! There were a lot of visitors as well as people that haven't been to church in a long time that were able to make it.
We sang in the Ward Choir as well as sang a song with some members called In the Bleak Midwinter.  It is a hymn that isn't in our hymnbook, but is in many others. President Monson quoted the last verse of it in the Devotional on December 8th.  There was a really sweet spirit in the room, and I think that combined with the otherr music and the Primary children there must have been at least one person in the congretation that learned and felt something that they needed to.
I love our ward!  They are so good to us!
This is another short email.
I'm just really excited for Christmas, and to see your beautiful faces, and hear your angelic voices (Andrew can be a Bass angel. :)
I love you!
Thank you all for taking the initiative to help others feel of the love of their Savior during this time of year!  I know that there are many all over the world that have need to feel it, and I hope that as any you have reached out you have been able to feel the Savior's love for you as well and what the true meaning and spirit of Christmas are.
I learned an important lesson this week.
We have each been blessed with unique capabilities and gifts, and Heavenly Father will provide a way that we can use those capabilities and gifts within our means to build His kingdom.  There is no one "right" way that everybody does it.
If there is a specific plan and purpose for our lives, as I know there to be, then there must also be a specific plan for how we can build God's way. 
I don't know if this makes sense or if it's just redundant.  We'll just say that it makes sense to me, and I'm working on figuring out how to use what I've got to build the way that I need to build.
(Maybe we won't include this in the book of wisdom that I know someone has got to be compiling. :)
Oh, P.S. We got a new Elder to work with!  One of our other ones finished his mission and went home.  We're really excited to keep the work moving forward, and there is a lot of new energy and excitement since our new Elder has just been out since our mission was created.  It's going to be "Excellent!"
I love you!
Sister Amber

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Christmas Goodness - Sister Missionaries

This post is from me; Sister Garvin's Mom:

Thanks to Karyssa Watt for this beautiful photo of her sister and my daughter.  :)  
Social Media is an amazing way to connect with one another in this great cause of Missionary Work.  It's been wonderful for me to connect with some of the members in Rocky Mount, Sister Holloman where they live, her son the assistant ward mission leader, and…also Sister Watt's family.  Wow.  It's thrilling to all care about the same work; that of bringing souls to Christ. 

Thank you Karyssa (and everyone else)!!!!  
You're all in our prayers!!!

Sister Garvin and Sister Watt with sweet little "Ava".  Tree is from Sis. Holloman; dear member they live with.

Monday, December 16, 2013

I'm Staying: Rocky Mount, North Carolina, December 16, 2013

Well, I'm staying in Rocky Mount with Sister Watt another transfer.

There weren't many transfer calls because ITS CHRISTMAS!  I think that President Baker was sensitive to that.

So we'll be here in Rocky Mount, 'til the first week of February.

I'm grateful to be able to continue to be with this ward.  I have learned so much from serving here, and serving among others who are so willing to reach outside of themselves and serve.  It's really wonderful to be here!

And now you can meet the family that I am living with Via SKYPE!

Next week yo!  Then I'll remember your voices and faces.  It will be good.  I'll even do my hair and wear make-up for you. :)

Map of the area of Rocky Mount, NC
This is short because that was the biggest event for this week.

And I don't really want to type a long email.  By bed is calling me.  I've had the chills today.  And there is a heated blanket on my bed.

I should sound more grateful.

Sorry that it is hard to portray appropriate emotion through email. 

It's sometimes easier to have social skills though.  It has the potential to be a one sided conversation that never ends, and there aren't any awkward silences.  There will probably be some of those when I get home.  I don't remember how to talk to people unless it's about the gospel.

Random thought, but I was thinking about it. :)

Anyway, it will probably get worse over the next 9 months.

I'm going to be half way next month!

Is time fast for you, or slow for you? Or fast-slow?

Love you forever!

Sister Amber

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Tuesday, December 10, 2013 - Rocky Mount, North Carolina

Sister Missionaries
These last two transfers have seemed to ust fly by!  I feel like it's only been a couple of weeks that we have been in Rocky Mount, but it's come closer and closer to possibly being the end of our time here. (no speculation involved.  It's just probably that there will be a change here since we've both been here two transfers. :)

I am increasingl grateful for the time that I have been able to spend here.  I remember how it felt the first couple of weeks to just have to try to start from almost ground 0 with our teaching pool, but we have a solid building block now, and I know, that because of the help that we have had here, and the things that have been done, that future sisters will be blessed in being able to work off of something.  It's neat to have been a part of that, and a part of the lives of so many people that I love.

I've been reminded (by my Mom) that I haven't shared much about this area, and part of that is because I never want anything to be read out of context or in a different spirit than intended.  I'll apologize in advance if anything of the sort occurs. :)

As part of this Christmas season I have become even more aware of the need of the people here.  I have heard from different sources that parts of where we are serving have some of the lowest poverty rates in the United States.  I am continually amazed at the cheerfulness of those who have less than I have ever had.

I have learned that just because your belongings are falling apart it doesn't mean that your life is falling apart.  There is still fulfilment with out material possessions.

I'm not serving in a third world country, so maybe I don't understand what it truly is to have nothing, but from the expanded perspective that I have gained I know that I haven't gone without anything really.

I remember my mom saying that when she came home from her mission she felt like a rich person because there was carpet on the floors.  I feel like a rich person for having internet, and for being able to turn lights on any time that I want, and for being able to heat the house during the Winter without propane heaters. (I think that's what they are run off of….)

President and Sister Baker have proposed that service is going to be a key to not being homesick this season.  I know that there are going to be many, many opportunities to serve different people here, and I am grateful to know-- from experience on Thanksgiving-- that service is the best medicine for a hurting heart. :)  I will miss all the people  and family that I love, but I know that it's going to be alright.

On another sparadic note:  We had Elder and Sister Perkins of the Seventy come do a mission tour on yesterday.  We learned "many great and important things…"

And something that really stuck out to me was:

The key to revelation is asking a specific question that requires action.

So my new goal with personal and companionship study is to have a quesiton for every study session.  I'm excited to act on the answers, and see how it works.

This is one of the times that I have decided I just have to faithfully try.  But I'm going to faithfully try whole-heartedly, and just see how it goes. :)

I love you!
Have a marvelous week!
Sister Garvin

With a Special Family

Serve others, Serve God

Monday, December 2, 2013

Monday, Dec. 2, 2013 Rocky Mount, North Carolina, LDS Sister Missionaries, 'Mormons'

Today is the second day of the last month of the year.  That's pretty final.  I have to say that I am truly grateful that the world didn't end in 2012-- because now I can be on a mission!  And... I had some great Thanksgiving food.
I don't really know the full history of the Thanksgiving, I just know that it is a day that I truly enjoy, and I know that I like food.
There is this thing called 'corn pudding' it's like a sweet corn souflet (sue-flay--I thought I'd put a prounounciation just in case I spelled that wrong. :)  And I think that it is one of my new favorite things.  I'll have to make it for you next year.
Also, lemme tell ya: casseroles are for the benefit of man.  I would like to know the history of casseroles.  The person that figured those out was on track.  I like whoever it was already. :)

Serving Thanksgiving Meals at Community Center

Sooooo, There are so many miracles!  We have been able to see us beautiful miracles in this area!  The work is truly moving forward!  We had 5 investigators at church yesterday!  We were so excited!  I know that I wrote all about it before, but the Lord TRULY is in the details of His work!  I can see it everyday.  Sometimes I take it for granted and forget to look, but it is definitely there. :)
I forget what we did all last week, but it was a holiday, we served on Thanksgiving at a community outreach center, and ate with different members of the ward that gathered together.
We took a 30 minute nap.  
We taught the Gospel.  (That came before and after the nap. :)
We conversed about our blessings and showed thanks by writing in some lovely gratitude journals that a member gave us.
--Also, I have reached the end of my first mission journal.  (We picked a good journal mom!)  It has lasted me 8 months!  I don't know how many missionaries have that kind of luck. :)
But I'm excited to start another one!  It's like writing a sequal!--
We taught some investigators, and gave some people copies of the Book of Mormon.
We bore our testimonies.
You know!  Missionary life!  :) 
I have just continued to grow in love for the people in Rocky Mount.  This is a chapter of my life that I will never forget.
On that note:  We had fast and testimony meeting at church yesterday, and there was a little boy who bore the sweetest testimony and said something very profound that I would like to share this week.  He said: "The present is a gift. You have to enjoy it--otherwise you wont be ready for your future."
Isn't that so true?
I love it! 
I know that I'm far from perfect at enjoying the present.  If you read some of my past letters you probably could attest to that fact.  I sometimes wanted to come home, (still do sometimes) I sometimes wanted to leave an area, or just move on instead of focusing on the things that I could enjoy in each day.
It's sometimes hard to end a hard day and look for the good in it.  Sometimes you just say " I'm done, I'll go to sleep and it will be tomorrow, and it will be better. "  I think that I would like to change my attitude to be better in alignment with the principle of enjoying the present.  Saying something like "Well, today wasn't the best, but I know that God's hand was [here] and I am grateful for [this].  I loved today because..." I think that would make us a happier people, and it would make me a happier person.
Sorry, sometimes I feel like my letters are just a long jumble of random thoughts, but thank you for reading and growing with me anyway. :)  There is simple truth mixed in with the complete circle of thoughts that I have. :)
This week could be the best week of your life, the best day in your year could be tomorrow, but sometimes you have to make it so.  We can't just wait for happiness to fall into our lives day by day.  There are no "I'll be happy if...." happiness is not conditional upon events.   Happiness is only conditional upon our agency.  You are happy if you choose to be.  Let's face it -- we have a responsibility for our personal happiness.
That is what I know this week.
(also that) I love you SOOOOOOOOOOO much!  (And I wrote you on the card of things that I'm grateful for around the Thanksgiving table. :)
Sister Amber
Sorry for the spelling and grammar errors.  Partly because I've forgotten how to be correct, and the computer didn't have automatic spell check . :)

Monday, November 25, 2013

Monday, November 25th, 2013, Rocky Mount, North Carolina

This week was filled with many different opportunities and miracles.  Let me tell you something that is a good principle that I learned:
One time (last Thursday...) we were setting many goals.  These goals were SMART (specific, measurable, achievable, reasonable, and timely) EXCEPT: there was one.
There was one goal with which we have been not a SMART about.  Namely, finding new investigators. 
I will just say that I'm still learning ways that we can do that.
BUT!  We devised a plan.
Instead of setting a low SMART goal as we had been previously we would set a HIGH SMART goal knowing that it probably wouldn't happen, but knowing that it would be a high number and that we would be forced to think about it throughout the week.
Let me tell you something.  I think it was a major 'lightbulb' moment because....
We reached our goal.
And we did it while doing all the same things that we have been doing in the last 6 weeks.
So I learned that Heavenly Father makes it possible for us to accomplish great things in the midst of our everyday activities.  You don't have to do something outstandingly different to make a difference, just be willing.
I think that as far as members of the church go, sometimes we think that finding people who might be interested in the gospel is independant of what we do in our lives already-- it's a different activity.
It's not!
I can say it as a member, and as a missionary. 
All that we are asked to do is be commited to doing what the Lord has asked.
If we are commited, TRULY committed, and we set an insired goal, He will make it possible for us to accomplish that goal in a way that we may not have thought it would happen, and in a way that suits our personal strengths and our personal lives.
So, everybody:
Christmas is coming fast.  Are you commited to finding a person with whom you can help feel of God's love?  Are you really committed?  If you are, I can promise you that the Lord will trust you enough to place somebody in your path that is ready and needs to feel of that love.  It may be in an unexpected way, but it will happen.

Epiphany:  Miracles do not come from casual commitment.  I just thought of that just barely as I was typing this to you.
Now you know my thought processes. :)
I hope that each of you will commit to finding that "one" and loving that "one" in the same way that the Savior would love them.  Will you do that? It will bless not only them, but you. I KNOW that as we have Christlike love for others, we feel of Christ's love for us because I have learned for myself through service, and through that love that He loves me.
I know that this is a season and time in the gospel as well as year to reach out in love to others and help them, and invite them to feel of the love that Heavenly Father and the Savior have for them!
I LOVE YOU!!!! And I hope that you know it every time that you feel "low".  I am one of the three people that loves you a million much!!!!! :)
Talk to y'all nest week!
Sister Starvin (for a Thanksgivin' feast) Garvin

Monday, November 18, 2013

Monday, November 18, Rocky Mount, North Carolina, LDS Sister Missionaries

Dear Family,
I was going to start of my letter by saying something funny about how I hadn't received a letter in a week, and then call you all to repentance, but then I found out about how your computer crashed, and other things that are happening in your lives, so I think I will just start out by being grateful. :)

(Also, Thanksgiving is nigh upon us, so twill be fitting!)

I'm so grateful.  I'm grateful for miracles, I'm grateful for love, and I'm grateful for you.

I know I have said it before, but I often wonder if anything I have done has been for the bettering of anyone besides myself.  It's so easy to see all the things that I'm not doing well, or not doing right, and wonder-- what on earth drove me to make a decision that would cause as much of an emotional roller-coaster as serving a mission.

I woke up thinking this exact thing this morning.

Why on earth did I decide to serve a mission? 

Well it's a miracle! And I remember why a little bit more since emailing you today.

As a part of one of the miracles which I have seen as of late:

I just received news that an investigator that we were working with in Jamestown has decided to be baptized!  Yay!  (I don't really know how to describe it any better. :)

I didn't come out here for worldly gratification, but it does make a difference to know that something I have done mattered. 

So in a summation of all the things that I could continue to say today I just want to end with this.  Thank you for making it possible for me to matter.

I know that you each are dealing with things in your own lives that are challenging to you specifically, but you have made a difference for me, and you matter to me.  So remember that!  Remember that to at least one other person in the universe (besides Jesus Christ and Heavenly Father) you have made a lasting impression on the person that I am and the person that I will continue to become.

My invitation to all that read this letter this week is this:  Tell everyone that you run into this week that had made a positive impression or influence in your life that they matter.  It's not awkward. 

To Andrew:  (everytime I type your name I miss the w and type an s so your name is almost always Andres. ;)
I love you!  You matter to me!  And you are a miracle in my life!  I'm so grateful to have the best brother in the whole world!  You are amazing!  And I know that you make a BIG HUGE difference to so many people! (ya done good kid!)

To Ashley:  (haha!  Just typed you as Ashlet.)
I love you!  You matter to me!  Way to go on the GED!  I know that you leave an imprint of joy, and delight on every life you touch!  
Every time I see the photo of Winnie-the-Pooh that you drew me, I remember that joy, and delight!  Thank you for being my delightful best sister, and for making me happier! :)

To Mom: 
You hear from me more than anyone else.  I wish that I could tell you all the things that have made you matter to me.  But I think that unconditional love and support would be the best that I can type up short. Thank you for always making me important. :)  And I love you!

To Steve:
I have lots of nice things to say about you, and to you!  But in short: Thank you for being willing to help, and for sharing as much love as you do, and for making a difference in my life! You are thoughtful, and reach for the kindness within yourself to serve others who may be in need.  You matter!

To Brock:
You matter to me because you always sacrifice for my benefit.  You always do everything within your power to make things for me better, and easier.  You also are probably the most honest and hard working person that I have ever met, and I look up to you for that.  I hope it is an attribute(s) that I have inherited. :)  

I love you all so much, and I don't know if you'll all read this, but now you can know that you matter, and that I'm grateful for each of you, and the impression that you have made on my life.

I would go through all the people that I know, but I only have 15 minutes left and I know that if I forget someone in my extended family and friends that would defeat the purpose of this being an uplifting email. Sooooooo......


Thank you very much, that's the nicest thing anyone's ever dun for me.....

Love forever,
Sister Garvin

Monday, November 11, 2013

Monday, November 11, 2013, Sister Garvin in 'North Carolina'

Missionaries: Goldsboro Zone
So transfer calls were yesterday (which I can hardly believe....).  I've been here for 6 weeks already, and I get to stay at least another 5!

We are having a 5 week transfer next time because otherwise the new missionaries would be coming in on Christmas day.  Also it's no good to spend the entire week of Christmas getting ready to leave all the people that you love.  Now we get to spend the week before doing that.  Which is still no good, but it's better than the worst, and I can be content-ish with that.

Anyway.... I'll know if I'm leaving Rocky Mount on December 16.  Then I can tell you. :)

This week was adventurous.

On Saturday at exactly 5:00 AM our fire alarm started chirping every single minute.  The battery was low, and it was awful! We tried to take the battery out, but it was still attached to the ceiling, and had a back up power source, so it still chirped. We turned all the lights on, and I stood on my companion's bed to try to do something about it.  I just wanted my extra 1.5 hours of sleep left! 

We reached the conclusion that we were just going to have to sleep with ear plugs, but we said a little prayer over the battery, and put it back in.

Guess what?..... It worked, and the alarm stopped chirping!

Whether by miracle or happenstance it matters not, because I believe that it was an answered prayer.  Especially since at 6:30, as soon as my alarm went off it started chirping again.

We woke up and it was 61 degrees in our house.

We went to the store and got a battery at 6:45 a.m., as soon as we had put on skirts, and brushed our hair.

It was a long day, but I learned that as many bad things that there are in one day there are at least as many good things too.  There is always enough good to combat the bad.  It's just really hard to shift your perspective.

Oh P.S.   It was my 7 month birthday yesterday.
I'm growing up so fast!  In January I'll be half way done!

I read some good missionary (and life) talks this week-- both by Elder Bednar.

The First "That We Might Not 'Shrink",which I may have made mention of before.  It's great.  Everyone should read it.  It helps with the whole perspective business.

The second "Becoming a Preach My Gospel Missionary."

They helped me this week. :)

I don't really know how to end this week.  I've run out of things to say that are inspiring today.  Except rhymes.... If you're inspired by rhymes.... Then I am still full of inspiration.

add, bad, cad, dad, fad, gad, had, lad, mad, pad, rad, sad, tad, wad, zad, orange, grape, artichoke.

Haha.  I really make myself laugh.
I'm so weird, I hope that you still like me when I get home, and have no social skills.  All I'll know how to do is bear my testimony. 

Oh, Ash!  The member that we live with-- Brother Holloman had a 'hippie van' that had red white and blue, with American flag curtains on it.  You would really, really like him. :)     
(note from Amber's mom:  Amber's younger sister, Ashley, LOVES 'hippie vans' and wants one 'really bad'.)  :)

I hope you can meet (by Skype) at Christmas!

Love always, and forever!  even when its colder than 60 degrees.

Buenos Nachos! ;)

-Sister Garvin

Hakki! AKA: 'Hello' Via Ashley.

Monday, November 4, 2013

November 4, 2013 - Amber in North Carolina

I didn't monitor my time wisely this week: Thus the really short update.

It's November.  In case anyone missed that Memo.

I AM SOOOOO GRATEFUL for Daylight savings.

It seriously changed my life on Sunday.  I had an extra hour of sleep.  It was great.

Beautiful Scene - North Carolina 
This week we drove to Portsmouth for a Sisters Conference.  It was fun.  President Baker taught the difference between being light-hearted and light-minded.  And he had me laughing so hard that I cried.  It was great.
I'm grateful for laughter.

I'm also focusing on 2 things this month that I know will make a difference not only in my mission, but in my life.  Patience, and Prayer. 

I just barely realized how interconnected those two words are. 

I thought I was patient, but then I came on a mission and it was all tried, then it ran out.  So I'm restoring my reserves of patience.

I thought I'd let you know. ;)

The leaves are finally starting to change color, and it is beautiful!  I like it!

I'm grateful for seasons. (And that cold here only lasts from Nov-Mar.) 

I'm grateful that I have a companion.  Literally, and spiritually with the Holy Ghost.

NC has lots of Cotton Fields that glow in the Sunset Sunshine.
Missionary work would be devastatingly hard if I had to do it all my myself.

Also, I'm grateful that right now I feel like I have enough stamina to do this for 11 more months. 

Can you believe that? 

I know I say it every week, but it really blows my mind!

These 18 months are a speck in eternity, and it determines so much. 


I wish I had time for more, but most of all I'm grateful for you. 

You are my most treasured everybody!

Love Forever,
Sister Amber Garvin

Ward 'Trunk or Treat"- we shared treats and 'pass along' cards

Monday, October 28, 2013

Monday, Oct. 28, 2013 - Rocky Mount, North Carolina

This week marks the first week of some intense holiday-ing.

We are also doing something spectacular.  We are making a missionary truck for the ward trunk-or-treat.  There will be candy.  There will be Copies of the Book of Mormon.  There will be pass-along cards.  There will be The Gospel, and IT WILL BE GOOD.

I'm pretty pleased with this idea, and feel that it is inspired. :)

Also, President Baker was there for this inspired decision, and I think was inspired to inspire the mission.  So there is a whole lot of inspiration going on all over the place.  Isn't a living church wonderful? :) (AKA modern revelation...otherwise it sounds kind of like I have no idea.... but less understandable than modern revelation. )

That ties into some of the great thoughts that I had during personal study this morning. 

Cross Reference Docrine and Covenants 109:37 with Acts 2:2

The Spirit is referred to as a "mighty rushing wind".

I think that is really neat!  And I had deep thoughts about it, but I also had a faithful thought about it:  You can't see the wind, you can't see the Spirit, BUT you can FEEL the wind, and you can FEEL the Spirit.

Yeah, I know that your minds were just addled.
(I learned that word from our assistant ward mission leader last week, and wanted to try using it in a sentence. Success?)

Using unusual words helps me gain confidence in speech.  I'm going to invest in a dictionary at some point. :)


Last week I got a horrible cold.  I thought that my head was literally going to EXPLODE.  I don't know if I've ever had sinus pressure so bad in my entire life.

I have a greater appreciation for bodies though!  It's amazing that bodies have a natural way diffusing nasal bombs.

I tried to think of a more grosser way to say that, but I thought the first way it came out was a gem..... Sorry. 

That's gross, but also, it made me laugh.

Bodies are amazing.  I'm glad that I have one.  And I'm glad that it heals itself.  It's a good one.  I need to take better care of it.

Last night I couldn't sleep--on my bed, on the couch, or on the floor. 

So that why this letter is so on topic, and serious.

It'll be better next week.

Guess what?!

I come home in Less than a year.....

Just let that sink in.

Yes, it hit my like a freight train too.  I can't hardly bahleve it.... Mind again, addled.

I think that's all for this week.  Miracles are happening everyday, and we are living in a time more important than we even recognize.

It wont last forever. 

Recognize the importance of a second chance now.  It's better to take it now, rather than wait until you almost miss the boat, or do miss the boat entirely.

I love you always!


The One and Only,
Old and Wise,
(I'm almost 7!)
Sister (almost Trunky, but not quite there) Garvin

Monday, October 21, 2013

Hello Whole World - From North Carolina, Monday, Oct. 21, 2013

Hello whole world.
Sister Garvin and Sister Friend from High School

Sister Garvin here, with news from the North Carolina front.  Or west-east, I don't really know.

Anyway, there is this thing called the sun, and I pretty sure that the world revolves around it, and it just so happened that today it is shining.  So it's a good day.

I keep thinking and saying that one quote from Finding Nemo--"The sun is shining the tank is clean, and we are getti... AHHHH the tank is clean!"

That's basically a metaphor for life.

Preparation Day is tank cleaning day.  And nap time. 

It means a lot.

This week was a little bit overwhelming, but great too.  We met with lots of people and had some of the highest key indicators in a couple of areas that I've ever had, so I'm thrilled to know that it's possible, that it's happening, and that I'm a part of it.

We worked really hard to stay busy all week, and there was so much going on.  So many new people, so many appointments, and just so many manys.

I have the need to nap so that I can process information.

Something that I have learned from this area is that I have not had it as bad as I sometimes think, in terms of life and experiences.

People have real struggles, and the movies are more accurate than I thought. 

I love them so much for their desires to find something better, and to be better, and my knowledge of this one fact has increased: God doesn't create a no-good anything or anybody.

We all have goodness within us, it is who we are.  And I think that is one of the reasons that we look for happiness.  Happiness is a good thing, and two good make an even better.

Yes, we fall short, and sometimes we look for good, and for happiness in the wrong areas, but we are doing the best we can with what we know and with our current capacities.  And life is a hard thing.

We were listening to a talk tape this week by Mary Ellen Edmunds, and she said something that struck my thoughts at the time "Happiness never was misery." and "Happiness doesn't mean a lack of sorrow."

There is great wisdom in that.

These are scrambled thoughts, but the I hope you get the gist.

Also words of wisdom from me:

1) Look for happiness in the right places!  The Lord has provided the correct and good resources for us to find those right places.

2) Endure to the end!  There will be sad times, but next year you probably wont remember them.
I know that I'll look back on my mission and I wont remember the times that were hard--which is at least 80%.  I'll remember the joys, and the happinesses.

So, yeah.

I still love you as much as I have always if not more!


Sister Amber

Our 'District"
Sister Garvin, Sister Watt, Yolanda