Monday, July 27, 2015

Frogs, Thunder and Pioneers

Hello friends,

Guess what I did last Monday?  Just guess.  Betcha couldn't guess. Well here it is. I ate frogs legs! Yep, frogs legs. They were nasty! Okay, wait. They actually weren't like bad tasting, it was just the thought that a slimy little frog hopping around on a tree was now cooked and in my mouth. We were out with a family in our ward at a Chinese Buffet and they were eating frogs legs and I said, "What is that?" Bad question to ask. They said that it was frogs legs and that I should try them. So I said I would if Sister Lively would, then I did. 
About to Eat Frogs Legs
So we took a bite at the same time. It really did taste like chicken, but I really didn't like it. I didn't eat the rest of my leg. Well Dad, I hope you're proud of me. Also Grandpa, I thought you would be interested to know that I said, "Ew" the whole time. 
Sister Lively Did Not Enjoy It
First Bite

This week was exchanges and so that is when one companionship will switch one companion with ours. I got to go to Charleston, West Virginia with Sister Charlesworth! She is so great! I learned so much from her. She is one of our Sister Training Leaders and we went out to proselyte together. She is so bold and she is good at talking to people on the street about the Book Of Mormon. She is awesome! I got to stay with her for 24 hours in Charleston and then I got to go home to Kentucky and back to my favorite person Sister Lively.

The day after exchanges, we went to teach one of our investigators, Susan. She has two little girls and she is trying to find out what church is right. She had some bad experiences with church when she was little and so now she is searching. We went over there and taught her the Plan Of Salvation. It was so cool!! The spirit was SO strong, and Sister Lively and I were so in-sync the whole time! It was amazing. We we really able to teach Susan by the spirit and truly let the spirit testify to her that these things are true. We left the lesson and Sister Lively told me that she thought I was so bold with Susan and she felt like I was a whole different person. She said that the lesson went so well, because of the spirit that was there and we feel like Susan is slowly starting to progress. IT WAS SO COOL.

Friday was Pioneer Day and no one celebrates it out here so Sister Lively and I wanted to Celebrate it. We had planned to go over to our investigators house that day and watch 17 Miracles (which we are allowed to watch as missionaries because it is a church movie). Amy is our investigator and she is so cute! She is married to Jared and he is a less active member. They have a little girl named Evelyn, or Evee is what they call her. We are good friends with them and we have taught her all the lessons and she is ready to be baptized! We haven't set a date, because Jared wants to baptize her and he needed to talk to the bishop about it, but they have been coming to church and he got to talk to the bishop yesterday so it looks like we will be setting a baptism date soon! Anyways, we went over to have dinner and to watch the movie. Jared's nephew Josh was also there, and he is a member. It was so cool to watch and see what the Pioneers went through. All of their hardships, but also all of the miracles that happened. There was no way they could have done the things that they did without Heavenly Father's help. It is so inspiring to see how faithful they were and it was so cool to show and teach Amy about the Pioneers. The spirit was so strong and my testimony has truly been strengthened on the Pioneers.

Also, random thought, but Jared showed us this book that he made. It made me laugh so hard. He took a Jehovah's Whiteness version of the Bible and rebound it so that when you opened the book you were going to read, "The Fellowship Of the Ring". It was so funny!

Ever since I got here to Kentucky I have been breaking out in this rash, and it hasn't gone away! I doesn't hurt or itch and I have no idea what it is. It has been on my stomach and my back and it has only spread more! I showed Sister Lively my back and she got really worried. I told her to not make any rash decisions. Haha. But she made me call the mission office and they told me to call the mission doctor. So I did and I described it to him and he tells me that he knows exactly what it is. He says it is something called Pityriasas Rosea. He says there is no cause, it isn't contagious and he says it will go away on its own. I said that it was so weird and then he says to me, "Yup, you're one of the weird ones!" 
So I guess I am weird now, by definition of a doctor.

I hope you all are doing good and enjoy my emails! 

C H U R C H  I S  T R U E 


Mosiah 2:41

~Sister Willis 

Huge Moth We saw Outside of an Apt
Another huge Moth
Pulling Vines OFF of Granny June's Tree

I love hearing from you! Write me letters.

Canadian for a Day: Went to Jim Horton's
Sister Kayla Willis
1508 Luci Mae Drive 
Flatwoods, KY 41139

Monday, July 20, 2015

Tough Week: Blessings, Storms, and Sweat...

Hey everyone,

Sister Lively and I were really having a tough week. Appointments were falling through, people were canceling on us and we felt like we were getting nowhere! We were praying and trying to study for help and guidance. What we were doing wasn't working, so we decided to try to do something else. We decided to try to contact some former investigators and in the process of us doing that, we met a man named Michael. We knocked on his door and started talking to him, he is not a former investigator. He is very friendly and it was an interesting interaction. He complimented me on my necklace, (my young woman's medallion) and while we were asking him about church he told us that there needs to be a restoration! We were about to scream! Sister Lively said, "There has been a restoration!" and we gave him a pamphlet to read and we are going to go back to teach him tonight. We are so excited! We felt like he was truly prepared by The Lord to hear the gospel and we went back to the car to thank Heavenly Father for leading us to him. We learned so much through this experience.

Another thing I have learned this week is; if sweaty people come to your door, you give them water! The reason I say that, is because we have been walking a lot this week. We only have a certain amount of miles to use on our car each month and it is kind of hard because our area is so big and everyone is so spread out from each other. We decided to have a car fast and not use our car for the whole day. I don't mind walking, but it is SO HOT and its SO HUMID.
Walking into a Tunnel - 1

Walking into a Tunnel - 2
Okay, I'm a baby, but we were are sweating so bad that our glasses are sliding down our faces. My hair just kind of does whatever it wants out here but sometimes I am so sweaty that it looks like I just washed my bangs in the sink but its actually sweat. It has been 100 degrees some days here and about 75% humidity. GROSS. Oh well! We walked about 3 miles to someone's house one day and then we walked about 4 to get to someone else's house. It took us about an hour and we sang songs while we walked.
Tin Man outside a house
One of those songs included "Pioneer children sang as they walked, and walked and walked and walked". We also sang songs from the movie Hairspray and then we realized that they probably weren't mission approved! Ops. We like the same music so it is hard! Anyway, we got to the last place we were going to teach one of our investigators - Amy. We began teaching her and then we all got texts on our phone of flash flood warnings and we looked out the window and the storm looked huge! It looked like a hurricane. At least what we think it would look like. We were stuck there for a few hours before it passed! The lights flickered a lot and the apartment complex was shaking. The storm was like directly over us at one point and I'm not going to lie I was scared. Storms are scary! We got a ride home though! That was a blessing!
Ohio River
Cat Under our Car

We went to do service for Granny June again. We can't teach her more of the lessons because she has dementia, but she loves us and lets us come over every week to have lunch and to let us do service for her! This week we decided to leave her with a spiritual thought and sing a hymn for her! We read a story out of the ensign for this month and then we sang, "Be Still, My Soul". Granny June started closing her eyes after about one verse of the song and by the last verse she was snoring! I have never sang an old lady to sleep before! It was funny! We tried to sneak out, but she kept waking up when we would open the door and want us to sing her another song! But then she would fall asleep again. We finally told her that she was tired and needed to sleep, then we left.

Sunday at Church
To Celebrate Birthdays:  A Cookie Cake
We visit a less active woman named Janet who can't come to church, because she is in a nursing home, and we went right before dinner so that we could take her down to dinner. One day we took her down and we were talking to some of the other lady's in the nursing home. We asked one lady how she was, and she said with a lot of confidence, "fat and sassy!" I did my best not to die laughing! When we got into the car Sister Lively and I laughed forever!

This last Friday was my Click Day! That is something that missionaries say, it means that I have been out for one month! Isn't that crazy!! ONE MONTH SINCE I LEFT. It seems like a lot longer than that haha. So on Friday I got to click my pen once because its been one month! 
Dressed Up Like Cows to get Free Food
Eating Dinner in the Car:  PB&J

I am so grateful that I am here in Kentucky and that the Lord has trusted me to teach his children at this time. I have learned and seen so much already and I know that as I am faithful and diligent I will continue to learn and grow even more!

Proverbs 3:5-6


-Sister Willis

Write me here:

Sister Kayla Willis
1508 Luci Mae Drive 
Flatwoods, KY 41139

Monday, July 13, 2015

When It Rains, It Pours

Hey pals!

This has been a CRAZY week! It has most certainly had its ups and downs. Sister Livley and I have been trying so hard to work on finding new people to teach but we have only experienced disappointment so far. We are still having fun though! If you aren't having fun, you aren't doing it right! Last night Sister Lively and I had a slumber party. We slept on our couches and ate ice cream and watched The Restoration, then went to bed at 10:30. If that isn't a party I don't know what is!
Member Took Us Out for Frozen Yogurt

I have learned not to trust GPS's. We have been lost so many times! 

Street Post in KY
One day, we were looking in our area book and we thought that we should try to visit this guy who was a potential investigator. We typed in the address and we are just driving along and then we got really confused because it was taking us to a place where there weren't really houses at all. Then we see some people and we get outside our car, and it really stinks! We walk up to the people and they kind of give us a funny look and say are you lost? And we say I think so, and they say you must be because this is a landfill. It was a place where people take their garbage! That's why it smelled bad! 

There were a few times that we got lost again in the week. We were out in the middle of nowhere and we were listening to my MOTAB CD. "Dear to the Heart of the Shepherd" came on and one of the lines in the chorus says "Hungry and helpless and cold!" and we kept saying it because we were tired and hungry and lost! I thought it was funny. It made me think of Morgan (Sister Bowser) because its her favorite song. I hope you think this is funny bae! 

Hey mom, did you know that I HAVE A TWIN. Okay well kind of. It's Sister Livley! We don't look much alike, but WE ARE SO MUCH ALIKE. ITS SCARY. I first noticed that we both have big glasses. But we also do a lot of things the same! Like we both LOVE SOCKS. She has a drawer full of them! We always wear socks around the house, and to bed. We also both hate seafood, we both hate milk, we both love blue power aid and don't drink soda, we both love flowers and we both love to laugh at stupid things! I feel like there are a whole bunch more similar characteristics, but I am forgetting them at the moment. We also say things at the exact same time! I think we have jinxed each other more than 20 times this whole week. One day we were passing by our church and we both looked out the window and said "Hi church" at the same time!! I LOVE SISTER LIVELY. She makes me laugh so hard, because she feels like she can be her true self when she is with me. She is so easy to get along with, because she is just like me.
Making Funny Faces
More funny Faces
Sister Livley is so Much Like Me

Sister Livley and I after District Meeting

It has been raining so much! And I have NEVER seen rain like this before in my life. It has rained almost everyday. I have been here and even the people say it's not normal. Everyone we talk to tells us that it's the 'signs of the times'. 
Rain and Dark Clouds
It hasn't really bothered us, because we have a car to drive so we aren't really getting wet... until last Friday. We had to drive to Huntington, West Virginia, which is only about 45 minutes away, for a zone meeting. We drove up and it was really hot and sunny. The zone meeting was AWESOME. We talked about truly knowing our purpose as missionaries and how we can be our most effective. We learned so much and I was PUMPED. 
The other sisters in our zone + the sister training leaders
The meeting lasted about 3 hours and we came outside and it was really, really dark. We got in the car and we started driving. It was lunch time and we really wanted a soft pretzel, so we went to Sam's club to get one. 

Sam's Club Pretzel
We went in and ate one and then we came outside and IT WAS POURING! 

Rain on One Day
Rain on Another Day

I have never, ever see it pour like that it Utah.  Sister Livley is from Arizona and it doesn't really rain there either! We needed to run to the car to get to a teaching appointment, and we couldn't wait. We made a run for it! I was SOAKED. INSTANTLY.
I have never been soaked from rain before! It was crazy. There was also a really big puddle that of course we stepped in. My shoes were completely submerged and weren't dry for two days! It was so funny! We also got a flash flood warning later that day! We were so scared.
Flash Flood Warning
We just drove to the church, because it was close.  We sang Christmas songs on the way there, because who doesn't love a little Angels We Have Heard On High, right? That is both of our favorite Christmas song. Another similarity we have.

I'm must be getting good at giving talks because I have given two since my farewell talk! In the MTC they assign you a talk in sacrament right before you have to speak, and guess who's name they said, Sister Willis! I gave a talk on the holy ghost and recognizing it, which was no problem for me because that is probably like one of my favorite topics! So then my first Sunday in my ward in Kentucky, the bishop asked me to give a talk! So I just gave that one yesterday. It was on missionary work, specifically member missionary work. I talked about service and how just by reaching out to somebody you can be a missionary, because we are all missionaries.

I want to Challenge each of you to reach out to someone this week, doesn't matter who it is and it doesn't matter what you do, just reach out and serve them, however they may need it.

The work here is hard it Kentucky, most people have already been baptized into another church and they say that they have already been 'saved'. It is hard to talk to people because a lot of people turn us away. But I know that The Lord sent me here for a reason, there are people here who have been prepared to her the gospel, we just haven't found them yet. We are trying to be diligent and try to share the gospel with everyone, because when you get an opportunity to share and you don't, you are denying that person's chance to hear the gospel. I love this gospel and I am hoping for more opportunities to share it.

If you are in need of strength and comfort: Isaiah 41:10


-Sister Willis

I love hearing from you! Write me letters.

Sister Kayla Willis
1508 Luci Mae Drive 
Flatwoods, KY 41139

A Gross Slug Outside My House
Black Clouds from the Storms
Sister Livley and I Made Earings

Pretty Sunset in Kentucky - Camera didn't do Justice

CTR on License Plate
Pretty Countryside When it Wasn't Raining
Me Wrapped up in Plastic Wrap from a Package

Monday, July 6, 2015

Happy 4th of July from Kentucky

Hello my friends,

I AM IN KENTUCKY. I don' think many people know this but my mission covers parts of 6 states: West Virginia, about half of Virginia, and little parts of Ohio, Kentucky, Pennsylvania, and Maryland. So I am here in Flatwoods, Kentucky! 

It is SO GREEN here. I have never seen so many trees before. 
A road in Kentucky
It is very pretty and the people here are crazy (in the best way) They are so friendly and they will just talk and talk to you for hours. They love pet names too, I have been here for 5 days and already I have been called angel, baby, sweetie, sugar and some other ones I just can't remember. We were in Walmart and there was this old guy just playing this Harmonica and just having a grand old time! 

There are also churches on every corner, but instead of Mormon Churches like there is in Utah, they are all these crazy random churches! It is weird to me. The roads also throw me off because they just kind of go where ever, there are so many twists and turns and I get so confused! I am too used to Utah's grid system. Almost every house here has a huge porch on it, because I guess they like to sit outside and talk, but its so humid and there are so many mosquitoes I don't get it. My legs are so ugly from mosquito bites, and they are so itchy! If anybody has a magic remedy to keep the bugs away from me please tell me!!

When we left the MTC we had to wake up at 2:30 in the Morning! It was bad because we were up until 12:30 packing. I have never been up so much in my life! It was hard, we all got onto a bus and then onto the front runner and then we were at the airport. 
On front runner to airport
We had a layover in Atlanta and then our plane got delayed. When we finally got on the plane it got delayed even more because somebody passed out and one of the seats were broken. We finally got to West Virginia and our Mission President was there waiting for us. 
First view from airport

Bridge in WV
I don't have a picture of him yet but he totally looks like an older version of Hawkeye from the Avengers!! I didn't realize it until I saw him in person but he is totally a Hawkeye look-alike! 

We went to the presidents home and had a really yummy dinner and had interviews with the president, then we went to bed. We stayed with some sister missionaries in Charleston. The next day we went to this museum in Charleston that has tons of information of West Virginia! It was huge and it was so cool! Then we just did some training for the rest of the day.
Museum in WV
With comps in the museum

President Salisbury (my mission president) and Sister Salisbury are THE BEST!! They gave us each a temple recommend holder with a picture that they took from the sacred grove. It says West Virginia Charleston Mission on it. It is so cool! They also gave each new missionary a hard copy of the Book of Mormon, and it has our names engraved in. It says Sister Willis, and it is so cool! They challenged us to read through it and to mark every time it references Christ. I have started to do it and it is so cool!
Book of Mormon from President "Hawkeye"
The next day was transfers, so all the missionaries who were transferring, or having their companions transferred met in the church building. Then all the new missionaries had to stand up and say where they were from, and if they could have a super power, what would it be. I said that I would want the power to grow. Everyone laughed. Then I found out I would be serving in Kentucky!

My companion who is also my trainer, is Sister Ferrio-Livley, but she just goes by Sister Lively. She is from Mesa, Arizona and she has been our here for 6 months. She is so funny and we have a lot in common. We get along really well, and she has been trying to teach me so much! Before we go to bed, we each say one reason why we loved each other today and one way our testimony's grew. I love doing this it is so cute! One night she said, "I just love how happy you are, like this morning when we woke up, you just woke up with a smile on your face and I don't know anybody who can do that." She is so sweet! 
Sister Lively and I
For the past couple of days we have just been going around meeting with investigators and members of the ward. I love talking to them and hearing the stories they have to share! We went to visit an investigator couple, their names are Kevin and Sabrina. They are so funny, and when we went to leave Kevin hugged us! I looked at Sister Lively, because I didn't know what to do. We are trying to figure out a way to tell him that we aren't supposed to hug him without offending him. 

We visited a woman who we call Granny June. She is a Christian but she loves the Sister Missionaries and so we come over and do service for her every week. She calls us her angels and holds our hands and guides us through her house. She was very excited when I told her that I used to have a grandma named June and a little sister whose middle name is June. I didn't have my photo album with me but she insisted that when I come back that I have it so she can see my family. June has a typewriter, it is so cool! She let us play with it and we typed up some letters. 

I want to tell you about ever single person that we have met and talked to but I can't! But I wanted to tell you all about a funny thing that happened yesterday. We went to a members house after church to eat and visit. Her name is Sister Hannah. After we ate dinner, she said "Take off your shoes" so I did. Then she got Coconut Oil out and started to rub my feet! It was so funny because I loved it and Sister Lively didn't want to do it. My legs and feet were so smooth though, and she massaged my feet and it was so nice! I was just laughing at Sister Lively because she reminded me of Keltsey and how she doesn't like people to touch her feet! It was funny.

I am so excited to be a missionary at this time, The Lord is hastening the work. I know that there are people here who The Lord has prepared to be taught and I am so excited to see the change the gospel can make in their lives.


-Sister Willis

P.S. Missionaries LOVE mail!
You can mail letters me directly to my house here:

Sister Kayla Willis
1508 Luci Mae Drive 
Flatwoods, KY 41139

If you send packages it has to be priority mail :)

Members took me out in WV
Eating a burger

Fireworks from the 4th
After haircut in MTC

Before haircut in MTC

MTC district in MTC

WV Capital Building
Packing in MTC with Sister Robinson