Monday, July 25, 2016

Week 25: The Dog Days of Summer

Ç'kemi! How's everyone??

It's hot hot hotttt out here in Vlore. I'm always completely drenched. Sorry if that's TMI. But we've been outside all week finding, finding, finding! This has been one of the hardest weeks of my mission. No one seems interested... we're struggling to find people to teach. Have you seen the Mormon parody of "Hello"? Sooo accurate. This week I keep thinking "Hello from the outside...."

BUT I'll put my baby violin away now. We got to help our friend K paint his home so that was a nice service project! And I've been having a lot of fun with my companion Motra Milanj. Unfortunately this week she's finishing her mission early :( so I don't know what I'm doing... I may be staying here in Vlore or I may get transferred somewhere else. I'll know by Thursday. I hope to stay here in Vlore. It's been really hard but I know that I've been sent here for a reason. I think there are people I need to find and "bring back to the fold" so to speak here. 

I hope you're all having a rockin summer. Ju dua, shume!

Motra Fulop
Motra Milanj and I when we were out painting

The Relief Society

Say hello to my Albanian grandma, Motra Durmishi :) love her

Ina, Motra, and I <33 she always helps us tracting

We see THE PRETTIEST sunsets from our balcony! We can just barely see the beach

​Language study lovin' for my trainee :)

Monday, July 18, 2016

Week 24: I Think We Found Paradise


It's been a great week! Motra Milanj and I have been working really well together. I'm training her on missionary lyfe and she's training me on the area and language. I don't know if I mentioned this before... but the dialect between here and my last area in Kosovo are completely different. In Prishtina they spoke Gheg and here in Vlore they speak a dialect called Tosk. It's been quite the adjustment. I still feel like I don't understand people at all. But luckily my Albanian comp is a great help :).

This week we started meeting with a girl who was in our English course. She's a little crazy not going to lie. She brought her cat to church last week in a little grocery cart and she and the cat were robed in American flags. We had a few lessons with her this week but we'll see where it goes. It's an interesting situation. Also we've been meeting with the family of a missionary, Sister Ç. She's the only member in her family so we've been teaching her sister L and she's been taking the lessons well! 

We had a zone training this week and one of the things we were counseled that stuck out to me was that when we make goals, we need to pray and let God play a part in our goal setting. I applied this yesterday when we went tracting. Before we left the house, I prayed that we would find one person that was prepared to hear our message. We knocked on a ton of doors and they were meaner than I've ever witnessed before.... one grumpy nene (grandma) threatened to throw us down the staircase because we knocked on her door. We tracted about five buildings and didn't get a single number. It was starting to get dark and we decided to do one more building. We tracted it top floor to the bottom. The last door.... success! The girl that answered was interested and gave us her number! I really believe that she was that "one soul" that I had prayed to find. That experience strengthened my testimony that God has the elect prepared and waiting for me but I need to do my part and show Him my faith by knocking on every door and enduring the hardships to find them.  I think that this principle can be applied in many aspects of our lives. I hope you can apply it to yours!

Have a great week! 

Motra Fulop xoxo
And from my BFF Maddie.... THANK YOU I LOVE THIS

...yeah I think we found paradise today

Look what I got in the mail?! THANKS ABBY! I put this up next to my bed :)

We went to the prettiest beach today! near Dhermi

Comp retreat was a success

So pretty can't even

Cool shot with an old Greek Orthodox church

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Week 23: Miresevini to Vlore!

Mire ditaaaa how is everyone??

This has been a week of adjustments! So Monday we drove down to Tirana where I switched companions. I had to say goodbye to my trainer aka mission "mom" Motra Henderson - crying - but I got a new comp named Sister Milanj! She's Albanian and she speaks English perfectly. She's a "mini missionary" so I'm training her for the next six weeks, showing her what missionary life is like! It's pretty weird that the tables turned so quickly - just last week I was getting trained - but we're having a lot of fun together.

Anyway we ended up staying in Tirana most of the week so that I could get legal in Albania. Then Thursday we took a bus to Vlore... and holy cow it is SO pretty down here! I'm loving it. I can see the beach from our balcony. One bummer though is that someone in our building isn't paying their rent... so instead of evicting them the landlord has turned off the elevator until they pay. Not very fun for us because we're on the 9th floor and it is hotttt. Nese...

My first day here we had a great lesson with a girl named S. She seems really prepared! We got her on a baptismal date. There is so much work here to be done. I'm just getting my feet wet... I'll have more to report next week. 

I've been reading in the New Testament lately and these verses really stood out to me this week:
"Come unto me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light."Matthew 11:28-30 

Christ has given me the strength to bear my burdens with ease. I have been called to do hard work. I can only successfully do it by relying on Christ. I know that no matter the task we are given, no matter how hard it may seem, God provides a way for us to accomplish it. He plays a part in every aspect; we just need to recognize His hand and "learn of him".

Ju dua! Have a great week!

Motra Fulop
Frands. Motra Milanj is the second from the left

Volleyball and frisbee playin

Beaching. Kills me that I can't stick my feet in the water.


Mom and I at the mission office

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Week 22: One Transfer, Countless Lessons Learned


So my training transfer is officially OVER! We got transfer calls Saturday night and I've been called to... VLORE! I'm pretty dang excited it's a beautiful city next to the sea. But with that being said... I'm leaving all of my friends here in Kosovo. :( It's been pretty sad saying goodbye to the amazing members, B, and H. But I'm sure I'll see them again sometime over the next year.

I have to mention though... I mentioned a girl named H. Wow this girl is great. She was in our English Course and we started to teach her the discussions the past two weeks. She's the most genuine, honest person I've met out here. She knows the church is true! She says she feels the happiest she's been in years! She's going back to her village for the summer but in September when she comes back for university in Prishtina she'll get baptized :). I'm sooo happy!

Something Kosovar: We went to a festival on Saturday in a small village. There were about 250 people there but we stuck out like sore thumbs as the only Americans. They asked Motra Henderson, the senior couple, and I to come up onstage and say a few words. They were so welcoming and friendly. It's crazy how much they love Americans here. Today everyone's wearing red, white, and blue haha.

It's been quite the adventure here in Kosovo. I've learned a ton up here and grown to love the people. I have learned countless lessons, but most importantly my testimony of the Savior has strengthened tenfold. I'm excited for what is to come in my next area!

Te dua! Happy 4th of July!!!

Motra Fulop
District squad. Seriously going to miss these peeps. This is the church in Prishtina
Went mini golfing today at this sweet spot the Larsons found
Happy 4th of July!!! Last day with Motra Henderson though (crying)