Wednesday, November 25, 2009

One tired Sister Missionary!!

One of the sisters in Sammi's ward found me (Mom) on Facebook. It has been so much fun chatting with her about Sammi and hearing firsthand how she's doing. Keydi has been awesome about taking pictures of her and posting them so we can see her in action. This one is CLASSIC Sammi!!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

November 24, 2009--More pictures!

Sister Ellsworth's mom just emailed me some pictures she sent this week. LOVE getting more pictures of our Sister Denson!!

Outside their apartment Tuesday in Boca Raton.

Sister Moore and Sister Ellsworth

"The Braids!" Remember President Hale wanted to see Sammi's hair in "soft curls"? Well, this is the process! She said she LOVES that Sister Eland and Sister Moore love to play with her hair!

The Boca Raton Sisters!!
Sister Denson, Sister Ellsworth, Sister Moore, and Sister Eland.
Aren't they BEAUTIFUL!!??

Monday, November 23, 2009

November 23, 2009--Hey Guys!!

Can you believe I've been out for 4 months????? Time is flying WAY TOO FAST! Okay before I forget, Maddi, yes I got Elder Swains letter (Wednesday or Thursday) and the cutest picture of him and his companion "bored on p-day." It is such an adorable snap shot. I hope he sends it to you too. The only thing is that he has his tag on the wrong side. Silly Elder Swain. I haven't gotten anything from Lauren yet. Its making me really really sad. Is she sending them USPS? and I'm EXCITED for Jessika's letter!!
Okay, I'm glad you guys had a fast-paced week. I did too! Zone Conference was amazing. I can't even tell you how amazing. They are so powerful! After each one, I'm like completely spiritually drained. Oh, and I gave a talk too! They give us a talk each time to study so we can be prepared for the day. Then they call 4 missionaries to give a talk. You've got about 3 minutes notice to give it. Yeah, I gave a whole 3 minute talk with NO notes!!! ME! Someone who had to write her farewell talk word-for-word! Heavenly Father is blessing me so much!
Sister Gwynn is my favorite. She updates me daily on facebook. Haha I don't think it was the best choice though to take pictures in Sharing Time... Oh well, it's done.... She is from Honduras, and her husband is from West Jordan area I believe. They are so missionary minded and she is so willing to go when we need her because she loves to help out with her Spanish. I'm not officially learning Spanish, but I feel like we are meeting more and more Spanish speaking people each day. I just asked her to help me because 1) I love her to death, and 2) I've just had this feeling that I need to learn Spanish. Hmmmm......
Sister Eland and Sister Moore both braided my hair Monday night because president wanted to see it with soft beautiful curls. It turned out more crimpy than anything because they put 5 braids in it!! I felt like Snoop Dogg. A wanna be black girl. I'll add some pictures. President loved it and while I was talking to him he told me about Brother Bradley (Shawn) and how he was trying to remember my name while talking to president. He couldn't remember my name and so he goes, "You know, she looks like (such and such actress--Pres. Hales words).." President was like I have no idea who you're talking about. Missionary or actress. Shawn was like, you know, she's in this movie. President was like "I still have no idea who you are talking about." So President goes on to say that they finally figured out it was Sister Denson, but he still has no idea who the actress is. Sister Pirotta was standing next to me and goes, "Gwyneth Paltrow." President was like, "What??" She repeats and he was like, "That's it! How did you know??" It was funny. So President goes, "So, Sister Denson, a celebrity thinks you look like another celebrity!" Haha awesome..... I told him that I get told that more often then he thinks. He loved it though. Even though he doesn't know who she is.
Anyway! Thanksgiving Dinner--I will forward you President's email that talks all about it. He says to limit the dinners to 2 families and to keep them at 2 hours each. Good! I don't want to have to go family to family stuffing my face! Sad thing is we've had 3 invites! Ugh! Now we have to tell someone that we can't come. But our main focus that day is to find a family! It explains everything in Presidents email.
Neither Oliver or Alex got baptized this week. It's sad because both are SO ready to be baptized, but they just don't have any faith in themselves. Total bummer. We're giving Alex some time because he is really not willing to live the Law of Chastity. We're seeing Oliver tonight to see how we can help in any way.
As for the bikes: I got the same email you did. I don't know if I'm supposed to respond to the email, or what. I'll think about how I would do on a bike and then tell President on Wednesday when we see him for PPI's. I wouldn't mind it, because I want to get in shape, but if I stay in Boca I would hate it because our area is HUGE!! I'll talk to him about it though and let you know what he says.
I'm excited to get my bag this week! I'm also excited to see what else comes in that package, because it is the end of the month.... A new month starts..... A new pillowcase!!! I'm excited! I can't believe that we're practically done with November already! I feel like it just started a little while ago. Time is flying so fast!!!
I'm so excited that you guys get the missionaries over for dinner on Friday night. Ask them a lot of questions and tell me all about them! I'm so happy!!!
Well, we didn't have a very eventful week either. Sorry.
Have a wonderful week and a BEAUTIFUL Thanksgiving. Oh, another challenge that Sister Hale has asked us to do is to have one prayer each day to say everything we are grateful for. A prayer of thanks. I love it. Its just telling Heavenly Father everything you are grateful for without asking for ANYTHING! Try it! It's so wonderful!
Well, I feel like this is another one of those scattered emails. I'll try and get better at making them more flowy.
I LOVE YOU GUYS!!!!!!!!!
Have a wonderful week!!!
Love, Sister Denson :):)

Monday, November 16, 2009

November 16, 2009--Sounds like fun!!

Hey Family!!!!!!!!

It sounds like you guys had a pretty fun night last night! I wish I could be there, but I had an AMAZING day on Friday, so I'll tell you all about that.

First though, last week at Transfer Meeting, Sister Hale talked to us about Grace and how we see the grace of God in our lives daily. She challenged us to study it and then to recognize it daily. She's amazing. So Wednesday Sister Eland and I were at an appointment, was provided with dinner from the Gwynn family (the family that just moved from Utah). We were debating if we should go home and eat it, or if we should go to the church and eat it. We're not supposed to be in our apartments after 6:00, so we just felt right to go to the church and eat it there. So we microwave the dinner, and as Sister Eland is blessing it we get a knock on the door in the kitchen. I open my eyes and look over there and tell the girl at the door, "Just on minute." So when Sister Eland finishes the prayer, I go to the door and open it for this girl who is just sobbing! She walks past me and says, "I just need someone to talk to." Sister Eland gives her a big hug and we go down the foyer where we can sit and talk. I get her a glass of water and she just pours her heart out to us. She had been sitting at the Calvary Chapel across the street (a VERY popular chapel here in Boca) and didn't like it. All the people were so happy, but the chapel it self was just too flashy. She wanted a simple church and had always thought our church looked nice and simple. So she proceeds to tell us all the struggles she's been going through and asked for help. We told her if she was willing to do anything she needs to do in order to grow closer to Christ, we could help her, but she had to be willing to do anything. She was, so we gave her a Book of Mormon, some of our pamphlet and told her to go home and read them. She said she would. The most amazing part of the story is that we were SO close to going home to eat, but something-obviously the spirit-told us to go to the church. We definitely saw the grace of God in our lives on Wednesday.

Friday was AMAZING!!! Brother Bradley isn't freakishly tall. I don't really like how you make him sound like a monster....Sorry, I don't mean to sound rude, but he a completely normal person, just taller than most. He communicates with his wife just as any other man would communicate with his wife. They are so normal, I love it! President introduced them and then turned the time over to Brother Bradley. He is told a little bit about his life in the NBA and how he and Sister Bradley met. He served his mission in Sydney, Australia and she served here. They are both SO missionary minded. They carry a box of English and a box of Spanish Books of Mormon in the back of their car to give to EVERYONE! The woman in the post office, the man that takes their groceries to their car, and to the members on each of the teams that he's played on. They give them out for Christmas presents to teachers and to friends and to the teammates. Its so awesome!! She told a lot about her experiences while here on her mission and gave us a lot of GREAT advice! We were able to ask a lot of questions after they spoke to us. One asked what he did for work now and he said that he is the Vice President at a "non-denominational/gospel based correctional facility for troubled teens." I thought that was super cool, but didn't know they lived in Utah (Duh Sister Denson, they are both from Utah!) During lunch, I had the pleasure of sitting with them and talking about their family and what they do. I asked what facility, because I had learned they live in Murray, he said Westridge Academy. I was like, "That is so cool! My brother was there while it was Utah Boys Ranch!" (I hope that is okay with you Zack! Sorry if it's not! I won't mention it to anyone else) He asked me about you and how you are doing now and was SO SO SO happy to hear that me, you and Kenzi were able to go through the Temple together. He is so proud of you! He LOVES, LOVES, LOVES success stories like that. He is no longer the Vice President, but is still on the board and actively involved. He said that they look over old files to see if there is any way they can help with current boys and girls. I would not be surprised at all if he goes home and looks at your file now. He was SO happy!!!! They are SO humble for how famous they are!! I LOVE IT!!! He is now ranching and loving life out on the farm. Obviously, not right now--yesterday I was told about the blizzard earlier this week--but still loves that he has a ranch.

I love that you guys were able to spend time with Jason. I would have loved to have been there, but I was enjoying myself with the Lakes. President Lake, is from the mission presidency. He is in our ward and just LOVES to tease me!!! Ha ha EVERYONE here loves to tease me. It's a good thing I can take it and dish it right back!!! Hahaha I love this ward and I love being a missionary! Seeing miracles daily is the most amazing thing!

Alex and Oliver are doing great! Alex was supposed to be baptized on the 14th, but is having doubts in himself. He knows it's what he needs to do, but he doesn't think that he'll be able to commit to it for the rest of his life. We found out on Saturday that his is NOT willing to live the law of chastity. He doesn't' want to stop what he's already started and is afraid he wont get married until he's like 50. We will meet with him again this week and clear up any problems that he is having.

Oliver pretty much has the same problems. He's excited to get baptized, but is planning on moving in with his girlfriend soon. He's got a lot of questions about the word of wisdom and the law of chastity, and repentance, so when we meet with him tonight we'll clear up anything that he is having problems with too. He's set for this Saturday for baptism, but doesn't think he is going to do it. Right now at least.
They are both amazing and buddies now too. Ha ha they talk about what they learn and what each one is struggling with. They met at church a couple of weeks ago and just hit it off. It's awesome. Pray for them!!

Tomorrow is Zone Conference and I'm so excited!! If you get the chance read the talk, "Seek Learning By Faith" by Elder Bednar. It's amazing! I love it!

I love the pictures that you sent! I want to see the finished product of Char Char though!

Oh, I got to teach the 8 year olds yesterday at church and get to do sharing time next week! I'm excited! This primary is so different from our primary at home, but I love that it's the same at the same time! Kids are just a bit more crazy.

Well, the pictures I'm attaching are from Sisters Conference. Our goofy president just wanting to know what it feels like to be 7'6"; Sister Call, Olson, and myself (we thought all our moms would like that--it's not the best picture. Sister Pirotta just sits there snapping pictures, plus the wind was blowing) and one of the Elders here that is 7'2" with his companion and Brother Bradley. It was such a fun day!!! Oh! and one of me and Sister Hale! Gosh, I LOVE HER!!!!!!!!!

Remember last week I told you President wants to see my hair with soft beautiful curls? Well Sister Moore and Eland are going to braid it tonight so they I can show him tomorrow at Zone Conference. He is excited. He reminded me at Sisters Conference on Friday.

I'll take pictures and show you how it turns out!
Have a great week!
LOVE, Sister Denson!!!!

More pictures from the Sisters' Luncheon

It is absolutely unbelievable to me that someone can be this tall!! Sammi said they are completely amazing and she had a great opportunity to talk with Shawn. Oh the blessings she's receiving on this mission!!

President Hale wanted to see what it would be like to be 7'6". I can't imagine!!

Sammi with some sweet sisters at the Sisters' Luncheon. The picture was taken outside the Hale's home. BEAUTIFUL!!
Sister Olsen, Sister Call, Sister Denson

Friday, November 13, 2009

November 13, 2009--Sister's Luncheon & Training

Dearest Sisters,

You are all invited to attend the Sister’s Luncheon at the mission home on Friday, November 13th at 10:00 am. We welcome our guest speaker Sister Annette Bradley, a former Ft. Lauderdale missionary, mother of six and wife of former NBA star Shawn Bradley, who stands seven feet six inches tall. He will introduce his “senior” but much shorter companion, Sister Bradley. The event will be appropriately themed, “Walk Tall, You’re a Daughter of God.”

Sisters – we love and admire you and pray the Lord’s choicest blessings will be yours,

President and Sister Hale

This was held at the Hale's home! BEAUTIFUL!!

CHECK IT OUT!! Sammi sitting right next to Shawn Bradley!!
Left to right around the table: Sister Olsen, Sister Lowe, Sister Bradley, Brother Bradley, Sister Denson, Sister Eland, Sister Call.
What a GREAT day these wonderful Sisters had!!

Sisters with cute, little Sister Hale...President & Sister Hale's youngest daughter. (She even has her own "Sister Hale" name tag!! CUTE!!)

Monday, November 9, 2009

November 9, 2009--HELLO!!!

Hey guys!!! How is everyone?

I'm doing really good! Mom, President called me just after he got off the phone with you. He told me that he had a hard time believing you when you told him that I was shy at home. The only reason why he believed it was because it was my mom that told him it. He thinks I'm going to be the General Young Women's President some day and has requested tickets to General Conference. He was like, "Please don't forget about me when you get called to that amazing calling." Haha silly president. I made him promise me though that he wouldn't forget about me when he's called to be a general authority. Haha it's a deal we have between us now. When I was on the phone with him, he was like, "Is Sister Eland just standing by you staring at you doing nothing?" I was like, "She's actually braiding my hair! Its a win-win situation. She loves to do hair (she's the cosmetologist I told you about a while ago) and I love my hair being played with! It's perfect!" He always compliments me on my hair, so he said, "I bet your hair would be very pretty with beautiful soft curls in it." Haha how hilarious, so I told him that Sister Moore has braided it before and then I slept with it in and when I took it out I did have beautiful soft curls. He loved it, so he's requested that I do that for Zone conference so he could see it. Haha I love President Hale.

So, as you can see, Sister Eland is my new companion and as you read in my email to President, we are two very different people. When I heard we were companions, I was like What?? We are so different!!! But I love her. She's amazing and I love the way she does missionary work. Sister Ellsworth told us all about her family and missionaries on the drive home from transfers. Yes, I knew about Sister Call and her brother. I think you told me about them before I came out. I do remember hearing Elder W....'s name, but didn't get to meet him.

We are all very connected down here. Everyone knows everyone and everyone knows everyone's story. Very unified. I'm sure you've seen, but Elder Langford is in my district. He's awesome and such a gentleman. I love serving with him. And Sister Olson and Call are together and on bikes. Cool huh. They were so excited!! They are the only 2 sisters on bikes. They are like the Guinea pigs.

We haven't had a very exciting week... Oh, except we set 2 baptismal dates! Oliver, the one who was high the first time we met him, and Alex. I think I've told you about him. Let me know if I haven't.

Have you guys heard from Lauren? The last thing I've heard about her is that she sent me a letter and 2 weeks had gone by, but I hadn't gotten it yet. I still haven't heard from her and its making me really sad!!!!!

My navy blue skirt is 27.5 inches. I LOVE that skirt and the length it is. I would love a black one just like it. I forgot to tell you last week, I remembered right as we got in the car, that I didn't tell you about the bags. I would totally take either the black or brown one!! They are so dang cute!!!!! I think I like the black better though:)

I know this is so all over the place, but I'm trying to remember what has happened this week, and can't remember anything. It has been a really LONG week. We had 3 investigators at church yesterday. Alex, Oliver, and Jacquel-Alex's 11 year old step-sister. They all loved it and I'm so excited for them!!

I'm going to add a couple of pictures. One is of Sister Moore, me and Sister Lowe before we got split up and the other is of Sister Eland and I on our first night together. Elder Stewart, one of the Assistants, was talking to me at transfers and he told me I was going to be more angelic this transfer than I have ever been in my entire life. Hahaha I have ABSOLUTELY no idea what that is supposed to mean. I told that to President and he just chuckled and said the same thing. When Elder Stewart says some thing though, just nod your head and obey. President told me that when they are talking about who should attend what meeting and there is an elder sick president will suggest that they not let that elder come because he needs some rest, Elder Stewart will be like, "President, why don't we just go heal him?" He does it in such a serious way though. He knows with all his heart the power and authority that we hold. Every single person thinks he's going to be an apostle some day. He's AMAZING!!! So, if you notice that I am becoming more angelic through the weeks let me know. haha

Well, I know this is super short, but we are meeting a member for lunch at California Pizza Kitchen in 20 minutes. I'm not a fan of when they sign up to take us out on our p-day, but they do it without knowing it's our p-day.

I'll let you know how the sisters conference is. I'm so excited for it!!
I LOVE YOU ALL and Pray that you will have a good week!!
LOVE, Sister Sammi Denson

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

November 3, 2009--And the verdict is...

I'm staying in Boca Raton:) I love it here and don't want to leave. We have met some AMAZING people in the past week that I don't want to leave. They each have a special place in my heart, and I want to be here to witness each one of them get baptized.
I don't know who my companion is going to be. You never find that out until your name is called along with your new companions during transfer meeting. I knew all about the transfers with Hermana Call and Sister Pirotta because they were emergency transfers. Don't worry about those. It's not President Hales doing, it's strictly the Lords. President is a man called of God and when he commands something, you do it. No questions. So mom, I promise I am not covering up anything in my emails. What I write, and how good I am doing is exactly how I am feeling. Promise:):) I have ABSOLUTELY LOVED serving with Sisters Moore and Lowe. They take a different approach to missionary work that I love and have learned a lot from each of them.

I loved getting a package this week. It was super fun to open. Ha ha and I LOVE my pillowcase. We all LOVE the CD you sent too. I actually already had it, I got it when I exchanged the ones Melissa Nelson gave me. I hadn't listened to it until recently, but absolutely LOVE it. I think I burned it onto my laptop, so you should check it out. Number 10 is probably my favorite. The sisters also love when I get packages because they are so fun to open. We always know they will be good:) Did Zack and Mal get their package that I sent them? I was hoping to get it there on their birthday, but obviously it didn't. Let me know what you guys think of what I got you.

Mom, I was wondering if you could send me a couple of things? I don't need any of them right this second, so take your time. Sister Lowe wants a copy of the ward cook book. She absolutely loves it. Could you ask Tara Cannon if it is possible to order another copy? Let me know how much it will be and I'll tell Sister Lowe. This one is random--remember that vitamin E oil that I put on my scar so it would heal pretty? IF we still have it could you send that? I get misquito bites on my ankles and they stay there FOREVER! Of course, I scratch them and they get a scab. Thing is, the scab stays even longer! There are so many sisters that have gross scarred legs because of mosquito bites, and I don't want to be one of those sisters! It's gross!!! Remember the Biolage shampoo and conditioner I bought before I left? If you guys haven't used those, could you send them to me? I almost out of mine and don't want to have to go find a salon that sells them for a decent price. I need a refill of Relpax. I've had to take 2 this week because I got a headache from fasting and then it turned into a migraine. Silly me. I've been told to fast until I feel a headache coming on, and then eat. I don't like that idea, but oh well. A ward member gave me a copy of the latest Deseret Book catalog. I can't believe Jason's books are already out! Time has gone by fast! I got to tell them how your friends and how he's going to do a fireside for the stake. They thought it was pretty cool. Look up Brad Wilcox and some of the books he's written. We've been told that he's speaking at our Christmas Conference, and I've heard he's AMAZING. There were a few CDs in the catalog though that I wouldn't mind getting for Christmas....Another Testament: Music of the Living Savior (it's done by the same people that did the one you just sent me), Nearer: A new collection of favorite hymns (could you look and see if "There is a Green Hill Far Away" on it. If so, I really want that one!), and the last one is Alex Boye Be Still, My Soul. He's got a couple of songs on the one you just sent me (number 10, my favorite) and he's got an amazing voice. So beautiful!! I know it's a lot to ask for, but I just want that and a skirt. I'll measure the navy blue one when I get home and let you know next week.

Oh, that reminds me. Tell Jessika that she will for sure getting a letter from me this week because our P-Day zone activities are no more so that we can focus on our studies and to write letters. I have a list of people that I have been meaning to write, but am never in the mood to actually write once we get to the activity. Sorry! But I promise. Today is the day.

We got a media referral late Sunday night, that just requested a missionary visit. We were in the area yesterday so we stopped by to see her, Emily Mason, and she is also amazing. She moved here from Connecticut in May, where she was meeting with the missionaries. She never felt ready to be baptized, but has been praying about it a lot lately and is finally ready. One of the first questions she asked was, "When can I be baptized??" She's only been to church once, so she needs to come one more time and get the rest of the lessons and then she can be baptized. We told her she could pick her own date because she is so ready for it. She picked November 14. Cool huh!! We are so excited to finish teaching her and then see her baptized!!! So pray for her and Liza, who I mentioned in Presidents email. Especially on Saturday because that is the day of the Iron Man. She's going to be swimming 2.4 miles, biking 119 miles, and walking (supposed to be running) 26 miles. She's amazing and wants to run so bad, but if she does she'll make her stress fracture even worse and will never be able to run again. She needs all the prayers she can get!!

Maddi-I love your new car. It's way cute! Navy blue though? Never would have guessed. It's cute though! I have to say though that I liked the picture of Jessika the best though. What on earth was she???

I'm attaching a picture of us three sisters and Liza. She's a doll and has been through so much! I'm excited to stay here so we can teach her and see her get baptized!
Also the sisters showed me a HUGE red truck the other day and then Sister Lowe asked the guy if we could get pictures of it. He pretty much did a photo shoot for us. Ha ha it was fun though. HUGE though!!! The last picture is of a statue I saw while knocking on someones door. Ha ha I just loved it and wanted to share it with you guys. I know it is a Greyhound, but a dog nonetheless who is scratching his ear while standing up. Libby??
I LOVE YOU GUYS SO MUCH!!! Have a wonderful week! Thanks for all your support!!! Give the pups butt rubs and kisses!!!
Love, Sister Denson