Tuesday, July 30, 2013

HAPPY PIONEER DAY!!! And SOOOO many blessings!​!!

HEY EVERYBODY!!! WOW!!! WHAT A WEEK!!! This week has been jam-packed full of a million tender mercies and blessings and miracles!!! Tuesday we had dinner with a member in our ward who is married to a non-member and they have the cutest little baby boy and they are the most adorable family! I LOVE them! I REALLY hope that now that we know them a little bit that we'll be able to start teaching the husband sometime! :) After that, we visited with Rob (a less-active in our ward), and it was really good! It had been a little while since I'd really seen him, so I was happy that we were able to visit with him then! He's such a great guy, I just hope that he will decide to come back to the church fully one day! :) Wednesday we went to the Potomac Nursing Home and visited with sweet Alma! It was SO good! :) After that, we street contacted and walked and walked and walked and walked - for like THREE hours!!! I kept on telling people "Happy Pioneer Day!", but none of them were from Utah - plus they were definitely African-American or Hispanic, so they just looked at me confused and like I was crazy. It's fine. I'm proud of my Utah heritage and pioneer ancestory! :) Then that night we had a really powerful lesson with Reacha! A member of our ward came with us (her name's Natalie), and it really added SOOOO much to the lesson! Reacha even told us that night that she definitely wants to get baptized!!! She just wants to go to church first and think and pray about a date! WOO HOO!!! I REALLY hope this really happens!!! I love Reacha SO much!!! Thursday we did a lot of street contacting, too. We walked to dinner at a member's house (about a half hour walk from where we live), and dinner was really good! After dinner, we walked to the Chamber's home and dropped in and said hi to them and visited with them for about an hour or so! It was SO good (as always)! And they, of course, couldn't leave us empty-handed, so they had us leave with a goodie bag! I LOVE them!!! :) That night, we stopped by the apartment complex that Negeset (the Ethiopian woman who Sister Woodbury and I check on and talk to about once a week) works at and visited with her very briefly. She's SO sweet! She gave us both a hug and a kiss on the cheek when we came in! :) Friday we were able to have a lesson with every single one of our progressing investigators - so three lessons in one day!!! That was SOOOOO exciting! We had a lesson with Reacha earlier that day, then we saw Jan, then we saw Keren that night! And all of the lessons were SOOOOO good!!! Jan had actually been studying in the Book of Mormon since we last saw her on Monday and she was LOADED with questions for us! But they were all totally valid and good questions that showed us that she's genuinely interested in this and seeking truth! It was SUCH a powerful lesson! :) Also - in the middle of Reacha and Jan's lessons, we stopped by and saw a member in our ward named Sister Palkki because she happened to have some old clothes that she wanted to give to us! I just inherited a new rainbow-striped maxi dress and a black maxi skirt! Plus she gave us two ADORABLE cardigans to share! Our ward is AMAZING! :) Saturday was... interesting... Haha! We had been planning on going to a stake activity (it was a Pioneer Day Picnic - OF COURSE I wanna go to that!!!) and we were planning on a couple of our investigators coming, but then at the last second, neither of them were able to show. However, we still felt like we should go and mingle with the ward members - particularly because Sister Palkki told us that she has a couple of non-member friends who would probably attend who she wanted us to meet. So anyways, long story short, we were NOT meant to go to that picnic for whatever reason! Somehow tomtom (my GPS) got us going in the wrong direction, and we may or may not have temporarily COMPLETELY accidentally crossed the Potomac River and left our mission for a minute or two... I PROMISE it was an accident! That's how close we are to DC! If we just miss ONE exit, then we cross the Potomac! So now I've learned! NEVER go that way - even if tomtom says so! Sister Akin and I were FREAKING out! ...but laughing hysterically at the same time. But it really is funny how truly guilty we felt leaving our mission, even though it really was a complete accident! Later that day, we went over to Keren's apartment and I CUT HER HAIR!!! She asked me to just cut her bangs at first, then after she saw how great her bangs looked, she asked to trim the rest of her hair, so I did, and it looks FANTASTIC! I had SO much fun doing that! :D After that, we visited Sister Kuang shortly, and then we went back over to Keren's and waited about fifteen minutes or so until her ride came to pick all of us up and take us to a BAPTISM!!! Yep. Keren told US about a girl's baptism and invited US to go with HER. ...kinda the opposite of how it's supposed to be, but she was invited to that by some guy in the single's ward and she told us about it. So anyways, we went to the baptism and it was SO good! Keren had a lot of questions about our church, but in a good way! I really hope that she gets baptized soon! I LOVE her! :) Sunday (yesterday) was SUCH an incredible day!!! We witnessed the Lord's hand in our lives then more than ever before! it was a day packed full of Chinese people! It was AWESOME!!! At church we met a new investigator from China who Sister Lamborn and Sister Kreamer met street contacting and had a lesson with a few days before! Then after church we visited with our two newest recent converts - Sister Kuang and Wu Biao - and they both are doing WONDERFUL, as always! Then later that night, while we were street contacting by the 23rd street chapel, waiting to go in for the Chinese fireside put on by the Chinese Elders, another miracle happened!!! We street contacted into a father and daughter who are on vacation here from China, and after only talking to them for about ten minutes or so, we invited them to the fireside and they said "Ok"! So they came to the fireside and stayed the whole time and they told us that they enjoyed every minute of it! The daughter, her name's Yao, even told Sister Akin, "I think that everything that they talked about is true." YES!!! SOOOOOOOOO amazing!!! Then the father, Ping, wanted to meet with us again and even insisted that they take us out to dinner on him! So we're going out to dinner with Yao and Ping tonight and we're also going to teach them some more things about the gospel! I know that this doesn't count as far as any key indicators go (except for AR's, of course), but I know that I am helping to bring children of God closer to Him and to Christ, and that is what I am out here to do, so I am SO excited! :) And the best part is, Yao will be coming back to the U.S. to go to school, so I'm sure that she'll continue to look into it more when she gets back to the states! :) The new Chinese investigator and his wife (their names are Hong Bin and Yu) both came to the Chinese fireside tonight, too! So Sister Akin and I had too many investigators there to sit with them all together, so I sat with Hong Bin and Yu, and she sat with Ping and Yao in the row right behind me! It was SO incredible!!! :D I LOVE being a missionary!!! I LOVE Crystal City (Arlington) and I LOVE Sister Akin! There is no doubt in my mind that this is truly the Lord's work, cause all of that was definitely divinely inspired - where I am, and who my companion is, and who I've met - EVERYTHING! Sister Akin and I have talked about it, and we both feel like there's something more to our companionship than just learning from each other; we truly feel like together we have SO much power to be SUCH strong, powerful power-house hell-shaking missionaries!!! :) THE CHURCH IS SOOOOOOOOOO TRUE!!! :D I love you all!!! Love always, Sister Aubrie Orrock P.S. Aubs - THANK YOU SOOOOOOOO much for your letter!!! I love you SOOOOOOOO much, mi hermana!!! Daddy - Yes! I got the birthday letter and money! THANK YOU SOOOOOOOOO MUCH AGAIN!!! I LOVE YOU!!! :D

Birthday Week and TRAINING!!​! :D

HEY EVERYBODY!!! This past week has definitely been filled with its ups and downs, but overall, it's been a wonderful growing experience - AND, of course, MI CUMPLEANOS (MY BIRTHDAY)!!! First things first - unfortunately I didn't get any letters or packages on, or right before my actual birthday (although I DID get a few unofficial birthday letters that had been held onto until transfers the Thursday before my birthday, so I got them at Transfer meeting). But I DID get my first birthday package from Mom the day after my birthday (it's ok, Mom! I know you REALLY tried! And your package was ADORABLE! It just made my birthday prolong and last throughout the week, so I didn't really mind too much!), and then my second birthday package on Saturday! And then I got a couple of letters throughout the week, so THANK YOU SOOOOOOOOO much to those of you who wrote me and who have been writing me!!! You really have NO idea how much it means to me to receive letters! :) Anyways, back to my birthday! Haha! My cute lil' trainee, Sister Akin, baked me gluten-free brownies that morning out of a mix that we had in the apartment! Then we did our laundry and grocery shopping and e-mailed (got all of the necessities out of the way), then we PAR-TAYED it up for my 21st in DC!!! ...and by partied it up, I mean we hung out with my mission "mom", Sister Woodbury and her new companion, Sister Goates, and went to a few art galleries there and looked around. Maybe not the most exciting thing in the world, but I didn't care what we did, I just wanted to hang out with Sister Woodbury in DC! So I am SOOOOO happy that we did that! And we also went and got some frozen yogurt and even a snow-cone while we were still in DC after we finished looking at the art galleries! It was SOOOO fun! After that, we went straight to dinner at the Chambers house, and they treated us (and me especially) like PRINCESSES!!! Seriously! They sang happy birthday to me while they carried out a fruit-tart with a birthday candle in it and I made a wish and blew out the candle! They also have a chair to help them go up the stairs, so they let us ride that up and down the stairs once! That was SO fun! Plus, on top of all that, they gave us our usual "goodie bag" and the other half of the fruit tart to go, plus they gave me a birthday card! They are truly incredible people! I am going to miss them whenever I am forced to leave Crystal City! I LOVE this area SOOOOOO much!!! After dinner, we headed straight over to Jan's house (one of our investigators), and she COMPLETELY spoiled me with giving me a whole gluten-free chocolate cake that even said, "Happy Birthday 21" on it, a helium balloon that says "21", cherry blossom hand lotion and shower gel, a pink stationery set, and a pink stuffed bunny! And on top of all that, she gave us some gluten-free pasta and pasta sauce! And then to top it all off, to go with the cake, we had Martinelli's (apple flavor) and drank that in fancy glasses. It was SUCH a wonderful birthday!!! But then the birthday just kept on going on! A cute couple in the ward baked me gluten-free brownies and left them on a plate with a card and a present in front of our apartment door! The present turned out to be gluten-free brownie mix just in case the brownies didn't turn out good, but they were DELICIOUS!!! I also got a birthday card from President and Sister Riggs (my mission president and his wife) that day! It was definitely the PERFECT birthday! :D ...but if anybody still wanted to send me a lil' birthday card or letter, I wouldn't mind! Cause a lot y'all have been slackin' lately on writing me! Haha! Seriously though! I miss y'all and I wanna hear from you!!! :) Tuesday we went to District Meeting that morning and I got my birthday package (as I already said before)! Then right after that, Sister Akin went to a new missionary expectations meeting, so we did a mini exchange and she went with another new Sister, and then I went with the other Sister's companion, who's name is Sister Steadman. She's great! I love her! It was SUCH an interesting day! NOTHING worked out like I had planned! First of all, since Sister Akin took our car to go to the meeting, I had forgotten to take the apartment key off of it, so the plans of Sis. Steadman and I staying in my area for the afternoon and working there and eating lunch there didn't really end up working out. So we went to her apartment to eat lunch, and luckily she's still pretty close by, so it worked out. ...until we wanted to call someone and we realized that her companion had her phone (which was in the original plans), but Sister Akin ALSO had our phone. ...so we had sent our "babies" out there, with virtually NO WAY to contact us, and we had no way to contact them - or anyone else, for that matter. We ended up just doing some street contacting, but then my feet started KILLING me since I was wearing my cute flatts since we were just at a meeting, and I didn't have my good working shoes on. So eventually I had the idea come to me to go to the club house of my apartment building and get a spare key from them until our companions came back. Luckily we're really good friends with most of the front desk people there, and our favorite lady, Mary, was working at that time, so she immediately gave us a spare AND let us use her cell phone for a minute to call and at least leave a message for our companions to tell them where to meet us since we didn't have a steady way of communication. ...Yep... ONLY on a mission would ANY of this happen - or even matter, really. Funny. Later we visited Alma and that was really good! I love that woman! She's wonderful! Anyways, everything ended up working out and Sister Akin and Sis. Steadman's companion got back safely and got our message and met us back at Sis. Akin and my apartment. It was just funny! That night was REALLY good! We got two SOLID AR's, and even have an appointment with one of them for this Friday at 3:00 pm! WOO HOO! :D Anyways, unfortunately I'm about outta time now, so I guess I'll hurry and wrap up and just give you the high-lights of the rest of the week, but at least I've told you the main important and good stories now for the week! Wednesday was really good! It started off where I was just feeling kinda off and having a hard day, but then we street contacted into a REALLY great lady who helped me to feel like I'm doing a great job and fulfilling my purpose out here as a missionary! It was just what I needed! :) Later that day, we visited with Sister Kuang at Tati's home (a member of the ward), and Sister Kuang told us that she just recently had a great idea come to her to come back to the U.S. (specifically Crystal City and the Crystal City ward) in two years once they are able to get a visa to come out here again, and her son, Shun-Fan (who's six and will be seven in September) will be baptized out here, and she'll go through the temple!!! That made me SOOOOOOOO happy!!! I told her that I'll do all that I can to come back here after my mission and BE THERE WITH HER!!! We hugged and cried with happiness a little bit! :) Sister Woodbury called me that night and ended up stopping by to pick up some things that she forgot cause she was in the area on an exchange! I sure love Sister Woodbury! :) That night while Sister Akin and I finished off the night street contacting in the park, we met a LOT of interesting people! One lady actually yelled at me just cause I was trying to hand her a pass-along card! She had her nose stuck up in the air and had her head turned from the time she was about a quarter-mile away and she saw us coming, then as I tried to hand her the card, she said, "No," So, of course I still persisted and encouraged her to check out the website mormon.org and told her it's about Jesus. Again, she said, "No!" a little bit louder this time. I still wasn't about to give up, so I said again, "It'll bless your life!" and she screamed, "NOOOO!!!" ...Seriously??? And she was like in her mid-forties or something. Honestly, she was treating the pass-along card as if I was asking her, "Hey! Can I please give you cancer? It'll be really fun! Are you sure you don't want it?" Seriously. That's how people treat us sometimes, and you just have to smile and not let it bother you, as hard as it may be at times. So after that lady reacted that way the third time, I just let her go and loudly said after her, "God bless!" and did my best to just smile! But it's ok cause we finished the night right! We met a really nice, funny lady - not at all religious or interested in religion, but she was nice to talk to. She looked at our name-tags and said, "What's with the name tags? Is that, like, Jesus' business card or something??" HAHAHAHA! I LOVE that! I thought that was absolutely BRILLIANT!!! :) The rest I'll just give you the high-lights and (hopefully) fill you in on the main details later! Thursday we saw Jody and Chenj and brought a Chinese Book of Mormon over to them and then had a mini lesson with them about the Book of Mormon! It was really good! Chenj's a professor at George Washington University and he even told me (without me asking, I will add) that he could give me a really good referral, and probably even get me into that school, if I wanted to go there after my mission! Cool, huh? :) We had dinner with the Fishers that night, which was really good! I love them! (and I still love the Fishers back home in Utah, too!) Then that night we went to part of the ward Relief Society activity and both Jan and Keren came! It was AWESOME! We couldn't stay the whole time cause we had to go to ward corillation meeting and it was at the same time. Friday we had a lesson with Reacha, which was really good, then we visited with Jan, then finished the night off by having a REALLY powerful lesson with Keren! :) Saturday we went to Launching Leaders that morning - SO good! Then after that, we spent most of the afternoon writing nice notes to investigators and less-actives who we felt prompted to write notes to, and then dropped them off at their houses! It made me feel REALLY good to do that! :) That night, we had dinner with the Babitz - a cute, fun couple in the ward! I LOVE Sister Babitz! She LOVES Harry Potter, too, so we bonded over that! :) Then we topped the night off by seeing Keren for the THIRD NIGHT IN A ROW and going to the temple visitors center with her and a couple of other members! It was a concert for Pioneer Day, and it was SOOOOOO good! Right after the concert, we got a tour for Keren from a Sister in the Visitors Center (we called ahead and scheduled that), and it was INCREDIBLE!!! SOOOOOO powerful!!! She's amazing! I LOVE HER!!! Sunday (yesterday) was REALLY good! Church was great! After church we did our usual routine and studied, then got our other things done that we didn't have time to do on Friday or Saturday (such as our progress record for the week). Then we stopped by the Behnke's (an AWESOME couple in our ward! I LOVE them! And they DEFINITELY love us! We're their favorites FOR SURE over the Elders!) and picked up a bunch of kitchen supplies that they just wanted to give to us! They're great! I LOVE MY WARD!!! After that, we went to dinner at a member's house, her name's Nate' (pronounced Naw-tay), and she's awesome! Then we went to a stake fireside, and Bobby and Keren BOTH came to that!!! And a member of our ward - Sister Lopez - brought them, and she called us and told us after she took them home that both Bobby and Keren told her that out of any Christian church, the Mormon church is the most true and they agree with it the most! So now they're just deciding between Mormonism and Judaism! AH! I LOVE THEM!!! I LOVE THIS WORK!!! I LOVE BEING A MISSIONARY!!! THIS IS AWESOME!!! :D I love you all!!! PLEASE write me! I'll write you back as soon as I can, I promise! Love always, Sister Aubrie Orrock P.S. Aunt Gaylynne - there's an Elder Skyler Heiner in my mission. Are we related to him?? Haha! Small world!

Monday, July 15, 2013


HEY EVERYBODY!!! I don't have much time to e-mail right now because Sister Akin (my new companion - yes. It's true. Sister Woodbury - AKA: my "mom", as far as mission lingo goes, was sadly transferred on Thursday and is now a Sister Trainer Leader, and I'M TRAINING A BRAND-NEW MISSIONARY!!! AHHHHHHH!!! Yep! But it's ok. It's actually been SUUUPER good so far! I LOVE my new companion! She's a sweetheart!) and I are getting ready to go to DC with Sister Woodbury and her new companion, Sister Goates, for MI CUMPLEANOS!!! That's right - I'm going to be partying it up for my 21st birthday in DC!!! Can it get much better than that?? I don't think so. ...Unless you hike Mexican Hat, of course. Then maybe, ya. Haha. Oh good times at MH! (HEY! Michelle Hansen! PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE write me!!! I love you and miss you! And I've been wanting to at least send you a quick e-mail, but I don't even have your e-mail address! PLEASE WRITE ME!!!) Here's my past week: Tuesday was interesting, but good. We had dinner with Huget at a really good restaurant, and since she's so funny and particular with everything, the manager is always making sure that she's happy; she even has a VIP pass there, so the waiter charged us barley anything! It was AWESOME!!! :) We also visited with Sister Kuang and that was wonderful! I love her! Wednesday was SUUUPER packed, but good! We had another lesson with Reacha, which went REALLY well, then we visited with the Chambers (former investigators who still love us and feed us every month, and Sister Akin and I are going to have dinner with them tonight); then we visited with Alma and Sis. W told her she was leaving the area, and Alma was sad, but was happy to hear that I'm staying; next we visited Rob (a less-active in our ward), and it ended up being more like a bible-bash with his athiest friend who he lives with (Sister W and I were NOT doing the bible-bashing, but Rob and one of the Elders were...); we had a quick dinner, then we visited with Jan! Then we ended up staying SUPER late while Sister Woodbury talked and giggled and said our goodbyes and Sis. W. finished packing. Thursday was transfers, and I'll be honest - I was SUUUPER nervous (and a little bit terrified) to train at first, but as soon as Sister Akin and I were put together, all of my fears, and most of my nerves subsided, and I felt like God was already blessing me with strength and confidence! It was (and is) an incredible feeling to be a trainer! Although I knew that I was going to train WAY ahead of time, it's still kinda really nerve-wracking at times to know that you have to be on top of everything and be setting the perfect example that will shape this new missionary's life! But I wouldn't trade it for anything! I LOVE training! And I love my trainee! She's SO sweet and wonderful! And we have a LOT in common! And yes, Mom - in response to your question about me driving, yes. I actually started driving (just every once in a while so that I could get the hang of it around here) a couple of months or so ago, and I can honestly say that I HATED IT. It was terrible. I HATED driving around here with all of the crazy DC drivers! But it's funny because since I've become a trainer and I'm forced to be the "designated driver" - at least for the first three weeks or so, until Sis. Akin gets more aquainted with the area, and how to drive around here - I've grown to be a LOT more comfortable with driving here! I guess that it's just something that you can't really ease into being comfortable with - you have to just jump right into it full-force, and then figure it out. Kinda like learning how to swim or something... Haha. Friday was AMAZING!!! Sister Akin and I street contacted for a little bit that night (we were doing weekly planning most of the afternoon), and then we got a text from our investigators Bobby and Keren (who Sister Woodbury and I hadn't seen for almost two weeks or so), inviting us to come over right then! Well, we just-so-happened to be street-contacting RIGHT UP THE STREET from their apartment building, so we booked it over there right away! We then ended up having an INCREDIBLE lesson with them!!! Keren is very curious and is reading the Book of Mormon with a completely open mind! Bobby has been reading, too! They’ve COMPLETELY turned around! I really feel like they might start progressing now! Keren started to tell us right away about how she had hung out with Vanessa (a girl in the Single's Ward who had driven Bobby and Keren to a baptism for us a couple of weeks ago) and went to a Zumba class with her, and then how Vanessa got Keren to download the Book of Mormon in Hebrew (since that's Keren's first language cause she's from Jerusalem), and Keren told us that she's already read the first 25 pages of it! She had only downloaded it TWO DAYS BEFORE!!! That's impressive!!! We then went on to have an INCREDIBLE spiritual lesson all about the Book of Mormon, and I gave her the soft baptism invite, and she ACCEPTED IT!!! Her answer was REALLY clever and kinda funny! She said something along the lines of: “Well, ya. I mean, I’m looking for truth, so if I come to find that this is true, then ya. I’ll be baptized.” She then told us about a video she had watched, where a rabbi and priest were talking to one another. The priest asked the rabbi what he would do if he came to know that what he was telling him was the true. The rabbi said something along the lines of, “I’ll go to McDonalds with you. I’ll eat pork. I’ll do whatever I’m supposed to do.” Then Keren said that is essentially how she feels, that if she comes to know it is true, she will do whatever is asked. Keren is still learning about The Book of Mormon and this gospel, and although at this time she still feels that the truth is in Judaism, she is honestly seeking for the truth!!! Bobby talked about how he studied the Bible with the intent of coming to know the character of Christ. He then asked how the Book of Mormon helps to further show the character of Christ, and how it has blessed our own lives. We gave him some examples of this, and testified of how it has blessed us. We sent him a chapter in the Book of Mormon to read that we felt impressed to send, and we asked him to read it. We're planning to meet with them every Friday night from now on! Saturday was really great, too! We visited with Alma and had the most incredible spiritual talk/lesson with her that I've EVER experienced with her! The spirit was SOOOOO strong! It was SO cool! Right after that, we went over to Jan's house and visited with her and she of course shared some amazing spiritual experiences as well! Sunday was AMAZING!!! We started the off at church with Sister Akin and I singing "I Know that My Redeemer Lives" in Sacrament Meeting. It actually went really well! :) A member of the Bishopric announced that it's my birthday over the pulpit in Sacrament Meeting, and that made me feel really special! Then a couple in the ward told us to come stop by their apartment that night cause they had a birthday present for me! When we went there, they gave me a box of Joe-Joes! They're gluten-free OREOS!!! I literally almost cried with happiness! THE CHURCH IS TRUE!!! The rest of the day was really amazing, too! We had a really great lesson with our new Chinese investigators, Jody and Chenj, and we talked a little bit about the Plan of Salvation, and then talked A LOT more about the Book of Mormon. We also gave them the soft baptism invite, and they said that they really WANT to believe in God and Jesus Christ, but since they've come from such a communist country, they want to rebel against anything organized, which I can understand seeing their point of view. However, they agreed to read and pray about the Book of Mormon! :) Later, we visited a less-active member of our ward named Rick; we took a lady in our ward named Sister Mickelsen, with us to visit with him so that we could go inside and visit with him. The visit went REALLY well! He even half-way joking said, "Maybe I'll come back." After twelve years of being less-active and not coming to church, I sure hope he comes back SOON! AHHHH!!! I JUST LOVE THIS WORK SOOOOOOOO MUCH!!! I LOVE meeting all of these wonderful people and blessing lives! THE CHURCH IS SOOOOOOOO TRUE!!! I LOVE YOU ALL!!! LOVE ALWAYS, Sister Aubrie Orrock

Thursday, July 11, 2013


This past week has definitely had its challenges, but it has also had its blessings and tender mercies! I have definitely seen the Lord's hand in my life over the past few days MUCH more than usual; and although I've had to go through HARD HARD days to see it, I absolutely LOVE it and I am SO grateful for these experiences!!! :)
First of all, the Fourth was SOOOOOOO fun!!! We started out the day celebrating our nation's birth by eating at a Mexican restaurant with a non-member. ...Hey, why not? We had a SUUUPER lame Cinco De Mayo celebration that Sister Cushing (Sister Woodbury's MTC companion) called Cinco de Americano cause we celebrated it the day after Cinco De Mayo and ate at Burger King. Ya. BIG mistake. But it's fine. So we thought we'd make it up by eating some real Mexican food on this blessed day. :) Later, w
e went with some members in our ward to see the fireworks and it was really cool! I am SOOOO grateful that I have the BEST MISSION PRESIDENT EVER and he let us watch the fireworks!!! ...as long as we stayed within our mission - AKA: no going into DC. But it was still cool cause we're close enough to DC that we could see them really well from where we were! :D To finish the night off since we were able to stay out til 10:30 (we had to be IN by 10:30, but that's still an hour and a half later than our normal curfew, so it was a BIG deal!!!), after the fireworks were over, we went with the Williams (the members who we watched the fireworks with) back to their apartment building and went on the rooftop and just looked at the city lights. It was a really cool view. ...until some semi-high guy walked over to us and handed me a freshly-lit sparkler... I grabbed it and held onto it for about half a second until I remembered that it specifically says in the white handbook that we CANNOT play with fireworks!!! Not even sparklers! So I did what anyone else would do in that situation and I panicked and dropped the sparkler on the ground. Sister Williams said, "I'll take that for the group," and picked it up off the ground while the guy gave me a weird look and walked away... It was fun. Haha!
Friday, the day after the 4th, was when all of the challenges started. It was just a terrible day, let's be honest. We all have those days, but the important thing is that we don't dwell on the negative and we take the hard things and learn from them and let them make us stronger. I'll honestly say that I know that this day has strengthened me more than almost anything else in my mission so far. We started the day off with the temple - THANK HEAVENS, or I don't know how we would've gotten through that day - which was really good. People in DC are just used to life being WAAAY fast-paced, which I am NOT used to AT ALL, so it was a little bit different feeling a little bit rushed at the temple, but overall it was still a wonderful experience. I LOVE the temple!!! From the moment we got back from the temple, Satan started working on us and our day started going downhill from there. NOTHING was working out. Appointments were falling through left and right, and on top of it all, Diane (one of our seemingly SOLID progressing investigators) DROPPED US. We cried a little bit on her porch. And then nobody was talking to us or listening to us on the street. People were NOT happy to see us. It was terrible. But this wasn't all - while we were finishing dinner, it dawned on me that we COMPLETELY forgot about a lunch appointment that we had with a non-member (one of the receptionists at the club house of our building, actually. Her name's Mary and she's wonderful)!!! We totally stood her up - COMPLETELY unintentionally, but we stood her up non the less. That was the final straw. We felt AWFUL! We both started crying and ran to the club house to see if Mary was still there to see if we could make it up to her somehow, but she had already left. We were DEVASTATED. As hard as we tried to keep our spirits up and be positive after that, we just couldn't do it. But we pushed through and went out and kept working! And you know what happened?? God began showing us his love and tender mercies left and right because we were still doing our best to serve him - despite everything that had happened that day. 
We went to an apartment complex to check on a member, and it was a lock-out building, and a nice guy waited a minute or so as we walked up to the door and he was going out, and held the door open for us! He said to us, "You guys look like visitors, so I thought I'd hold the door open for you!" Well that right there was enough to begin to raise my spirits! THANK YOU, KIND SIR!!! I don't think he realizes how much of an impact that simple act of holding the door open made on me and Sister Woodbury, but it really meant A LOT. After that, we went to check on the members, but they weren't home. So instead we stopped by to see some other members (the Williams - who we watched the fireworks with), and they were home and immediately welcomed us in with open arms and let us sit down and talk with them and eat fresh blueberries. That would've been just great if that had been the end of our tender mercies, but Heavenly Father doesn't work that way. :) As soon as we walked out of the apartment complex, I had a strong feeling that we should go to the Potomac Nursing Home. At first I thought that it was to visit Alma, but that would've been silly since we had just visited her the day before. Well, just before we walked into the Potomac, I knew why we were there. It wasn't to see Alma; but it was to see another resident, Rene, who we had met a few weeks before who had played the piano and sung for us. As soon as we walked in, Rene was sitting there at the front desk, as sad as ever because of family circumstances. We were able to talk with her and help cheer her up, as well as talk with the receptionist, Myeesha, who loves us and said that she wants to come check out church sometime!!! We gave her all of the information for church as well as our phone number! Pretty soon, we were on FIRE and back to being better than we were before! :) But it didn't even end there - we stopped by to visit another non-member (kinda) investigator named Negeset, and we had a lovely talk with her and since we told her that Sister Woodbury should be leaving this week, she gave us both a hug and told us how much she's appreciated our visits! :D
The Lord truly knows what's in our hearts, and just as it says in D&C 4, "if ye have desires to serve God, ye are called to the work." He WILL provide a way for you, I KNOW he will, because he did for Sister Woodbury and I. He pulled us out of the depths of misery and endless woe... Ok, that was a little dramatic... But seriously though. When you feel like you're at your lowest of your lows and just can't cheer up, no matter how hard you try, He WILL raise you up, I PROMISE He will!
Saturday was a MUCH better day! We went out to lunch to Chipotle in the Mall with a less-active member of our ward named Rob. It was our last little sha-bang together before Sister Woodbury leaves the area. After we were done eating, we stopped in the candy shop called "Sweet Factory" and I may or may not have accidentally spent $16 there... I'm sorry Mom and Cory! I didn't realize how much gummy worms and peachie-O's weigh (cause they charge per quarter-pound), and I guess I got over a pound of that... I'm sorry again! Happy early 21st Birthday to me! Haha! :)
Sunday was really good! We had our third lesson with Reacha (I think I mentioned in my last e-mail that we had dropped her a while back cause she wasn't keeping commitments, but she just recently came back around and REALLY wants this now!!!) and I think she's really trying this time! She's keeping all of our appointments and is really genuinely interested in understanding the scriptures! I love her SOOOOO much! She's WONDERFUL!!! Thank goodness for her coming back to us because (of course we LOVE her like crazy and we've missed her) we only had four lessons this past week, and Reacha was three of those four! I LOVE REACHA!!! And Sabrina, her niece, sat in on our lesson last night, too! I REALLY hope that they continue progressing! :)Today has been WONDERFUL so far!!! We were able to go to Great Falls with Sister Williams and her adorable little one-year old boy named Isaac, and hike around for a couple of hours or so! And the best part is - our MTC companions, Sister Lochridge and Sister Cushing (who just so happen to be companions now), came, too, and we hung out with them! It was SOOOOOOOO good to see my sweet Sister Lochridge again!!! I've missed her!!! Plus, Great Falls is a BEAUTIFUL place - in fact, Mom and Cory - you might wanna consider stopping there when you plan your trip 15 months from now when you pick me up! I really think y'all would LOVE it! :)
The Church is SOOOOOO true!!! My testimony is still growing each and every day! I love it SOOOOOO much!!! :) Today I studied 1 Nephi chapters 20 and 21. POWERFUL chapters!!! I STRONGLY encourage y'all to study them! :) Also - for zone conference tomorrow morning, they asked us to study Alma chapters 48 - 50. ...I'm not gonna lie, I've been forgetting to read them, so I'll be studying that tomorrow during personal study, but that should be a great thing to study as well! :)

I LOVE YOU ALL!!! Thank you SOOOOOOOO much for your constant love and support!!! :D
Remember my birthday a week from today! :)

Love Always,
Sister Aubrie Orrock

P.S. I just remembered something else about last week that I forgot to mention in my last e-mail. On Wednesday afternoon while we were walking down the street, we saw a lady standing in her yard, so we went to talk to her. She was holding a HUGE knife (almost butcher) and was just pointing it right at us as she walked toward us. It was pretty intimidating, I'm not gonna lie. But no worries, she put the knife down eventually. Haha. Crazy, crazy people!

Thursday, July 4, 2013


I'm SO SO sorry that y'all had to wait a couple of days to hear from me!!! Sister Woodbury and I switched half of our P-day to today so that we can write and half to Friday so that we can (hopefully) go to the temple!!! We haven't found a ride to the temple yet, so I REALLY hope that that ends up happening! I hear that the DC temple is BEAUTIFUL!!! I can't wait to go!!! :)
This past week has been really good! Last Tuesday we did some service for a family in our ward who's moving to Africa and helped to clean their house for them! We ended up getting the lucky job of cleaning out the fridge and got to take any food that we wanted to keep! YAY!!! I LOVE service! The Lord loves missionaries and He always rewards our efforts - whether through immediate blessings of food, or other more spiritual blessings. But either way, He know exactly what we need at the time, and food is DEFINITELY what we needed then! :)
Wednesday we had the whole mission conference, which was, of course AMAZING!!! I LOVED seeing my sweet MTC companion, Sister Lochridge, there! That was SO fun! :)
Thursday we went to the Potomac Nursing Home and helped out with the activity and helped to paint some cute old lady's nails! It was really fun! Then we visited with Alma and read with her in the temple prep book. She's going through the temple in August as soon as it's her year date after baptism! I'm SO excited for her!!! :)
Friday was interesting. We had a lesson with Diane, which was really great. However, the catch is that she may or may not have been slightly extremely intoxicated during our lesson... The funny thing is that we had originally planned on teaching her the Word of Wisdom, but when we saw the circumstances, we thought it would be best for us to post-pone that lesson until she could actually remember it... Haha. But on the bright side, we know that she's not an angry drunk. She's VERY spiritual, so that's awesome! She even accepted the soft baptism invite! We tried to shoot for a date, but then she wasn't really understanding it and we thought it would be best for us to wait to set a date for when she's NOT drunk. Haha.
Later that night we had an INCREDIBLE lesson with Jan and we went to the Essig's house (a family in our ward) and watched the talk by Elder Brad Wilcox, "His Grace is Sufficient" (y'all NEED to watch that if you haven't already, by the way. It's truly INCREDIBLE!!! It strengthened my testimony A TON!!!) and then invited her to be baptized WITH A DATE!!! Baptism is a REALLY sensitive topic for her since she's already been baptized, so we were REALLY gentle and understanding of her concerns in the way that we presented it to her; however, by the end of the night, she agreed to pray about August 24th to be baptized! THE CHURCH IS SOOOOOO TRUE!!! :D
Saturday we had Launching Leaders and it was SOOOOOO good!!! We went over Moses chapter 1 and talked all about our potential and how we need to NOT settle! We need to live up to the potential that God sees in us! I encourage all of you to really study that chapter! It's REALLY incredible!!! :)
Later that day we saw (and I met) Irene - a former investigator who Sister Woodbury taught a couple of lessons to a while back before I got here. We didn't get to have a lesson with her, but we're hopefully going to get to see her at least one more time before Sister Woodbury leaves next week! ...Oh ya. Did I mention that transfers are next Thursday, which means that Sister Woodbury will probably be off training someone else, and with the influx of Sisters coming out right now, most Sisters will probably train. Which means that I will more than likely be training someone as of next Thursday!!! Yes. That's right. Little me who's only been out here three months. Yep. But it's ok. I know that it's all in the Lord's hands and I feel very strongly that He wants me to train - which TERRIFIES me in some ways; but in other ways, I know that if the Lord wants me to train, He'll give me the strength and guidance that I need. :) Kinda exciting, right? Hopefully I'll know for sure before I e-mail again on Monday and I'll let you know. :)
Also on Saturday, most of the time that Sister Woodbury and I were street contacting that day, NOBODY liked us and nobody would talk to us, or even listen to us and give us the time of day. I started to feel pretty crappy about myself and felt low and like a real missionary with that experience. I prayed and prayed that someone would at least be nice to us, if nothing else. Sister Woodbury had MUCH more faith than I did at that time, I am embarrassed to say, and she said, "It's ok. We're going to meet someone and they're going to listen to us and be nice and we're going to place a Book of Mormon tonight. It'll happen." I didn't really believe her at first, but no more than ten minutes later, lo and behold, we met a guy named Ken who was VERY nice and we talked to him and he listened to us and we gave him a Book of Mormon and he said that he'd read it! We're gonna call him sometime this week to see if we can set up an appointment to meet with him! The church is SO true!!! :)
Sunday we went to church, of course, and it was really good! President and Sister Riggs ended up giving us a surprise visit to our ward and taught a special Sunday School lesson about missionary work to the Priests and Laurels in the ward! It was SOOOOO cool! And the Bishop invited us to sit in on the class and talk a little bit about missionary work, too. :) After that, we had combined Relief Society and Sunday School and President talked a little bit in there, too. It was a really special Sunday! :)
Monday we visited our Athiest friend, Nan, and watched part of President Monson's talk on Obedience from General Conference with her. We skipped to the part where Pres. Monson's so cute in talking about setting the forrest on fire and the lessons that he learned from that! She really liked his story and now has at least a little bit of respect for our beloved Prophet. :)
Now onto this week! Monday night we had dinner with Huget, which was interesting. Haha. She didn't take it well, to put it lightly, when Sister Woodbury broke the news to her about leaving next week.
Tuesday (yesterday) was quite the day!!! We FINALLY had a lesson with Reacha (our investigator who we had to drop a couple of weeks ago cause she wasn't keeping appointmentss)! I called Sabrina (her neice) on Monday and Reacha answered and said that Sabrina wasn't going to be able to meet with us, but that she would love to meet with us tomorrow! We said "Ok!" and had a wonderful lesson with her yesterday! She even told me that when Sister Woodbury's gone, that I need to make sure that I still keep her on track and that I don't let her get out of appointments that easily. She said, "You need to say, 'Reacha, we have an appointment for right now and we're going to meet with you.' Don't let me get out of it that easily. I need my study." I said, "Ok! Will do!" We even invited her to be baptized again with a date, and she said that she'll have to think about it a bit to see if that date will work, but she does still want to be baptized!!! :) After we got out of her house, while we were walking to our car, a guy called over to us from accross the street. We thought that surely he must know one of us. Nope. It was just some creeper 55-year old African-American guy named Curtis who thinks we're cute and made it VERY clear that that's all he was interested in talking to us about. We kept on trying to talk about Jesus, but he kept on saying things like, "You're very beautiful". He even said that he'd marry either of us. Ya. Ew. Then he said that he likes them more "thick" about ME! Yep. He basically called me fat. That was the last straw. We left shortly after that. He's also Baptist and invited us to come check out his church on Sunday and said that he'd come to ours. Cool that a Baptist invited us to their church, but unfortunately I think that this one has other motives behind it. EW. CREEPER.
Later that night we visited a lady in our ward who's very terminally ill named Tati. I know that our visit to her really meant a lot. :) As soon as we walked out of her apartment and we were walking towards our car, we met another guy named Eric - only this guy was AMAZING! We ONLY talked about the gospel and gave him a Book of Mormon! We totally would've met with him, but unfortunately he doesn't live in the area, not even in the state. He just comes here for business a lot, so he said that he might give us a call sometime when he's back in town! :)
Also - another cool thing that happened sometime in the past few days, but I don't remember exactly which day - haha - while we were street contacting, we met a Baptist guy who we got talking to who was actually really nice to us. It's really uncommon for Baptists to be so kind to LDS people... unless your name's Curtis... But his wasn't! Haha. Anyways, he thanked us for our service in spreading the good word and thinks it's wonderful that we're trying to bring others closer to Christ! He even added that the Baptist church looks highly on the Mormons (...I don't think that's really a church-wide thing, but that's cool that he thinks so)!
One last quick thing: On Monday night while Sister Woodbury and I were street contacting, I realized that I would be in need of a bano fairly quickly, but the problem was, something REALLY funny had just happened (but I of course can't remember exactly what it was), so I started laughing REALLY hard. The following is described in Sister Woodbury's words:
"To end off that night while we were walking to the car Sister Orrock got laughing about something and realized she would need to be finding a bathroom in the near future. While she stood there in the well known pee stance I did what any good companion would do.. I made her laugh more until she actually did have a little accident :) Good thing we were on our way home! I know I'm mean but she was a good sport about it."
...Yep... It's true. Embarrassing?? Maybe slightly. But it's ok. It made for a good story that I'm sure all of you will NEVER forget. ;)
Anyways, I gotta run now! Sorry for such a long e-mail, but I guess that's what happens when you don't e-mail for a week and a half! :)
I LOVE YOU ALL!!! HAVE A HAPPY FOURTH OF JULY!!! :D And yes - President Riggs has given us all permission to watch the Fireworks tomorrow night!!! I can't wait!!! :D We have to go with a member (or non-member or part-member family, we just can't drive ourselves) and we need to not do anything stupid, and be home by 10:30! WOO HOO!!! HAPPY FOURTH, INDEED!!! Plus, we're also going to a bbq at Diane's house tomorrow afternoon. She invited us while we had our lesson while she was intoxicated. She invited us twice. She REALLY wanted us to come. We'll see if she remembers inviting us when we get there... haha!
Sister Aubrie Orrock
P.S. CONGRATULATIONS TO DESI AND JENS!!! YOU'RE ENGAGED!!! I KNEW you two would get married while I was gone!!! And I even knew that y'all would get engaged this summer! I am SOOOO excited for Jens to join our family!!! Congrats again!!! :D
And CONGRATULATIONS TO MARCI AND HER FUTURE HUBBY!!! Although I don't know him that well, I know that you're happy, Marci, so I am SO happy for you two!!! Mawage! Wuv! Tawoo wuv! The bwessed awangement... Haha! Anyways, I'm done! But SOOOOOO happy for you!!! I love you, Marci!!! :)
Brienne: I've got your letters and I've been meaning to write you back, but I just haven't been able to yet! I'm so sorry! But I PROMISE you'll get a letter/postcard from DC in the near future! Thank you SOOOOO much for your letters!!! They really mean the WORLD to me!!! I love you SOOOOOOOOOOO much!!! :)
Daddy: Thank you SOOOOO much for your letters that you always faithfully send me every single week! I love you SOOOOOOOO much!!!
Family: I LOVE YOU ALL!!! Give Lola-kins LOTS of loves from her mama! :)
Just a reminder that it's my 21st birthday on July 15th (12 days from now!), so if you want to send me a nice letter or package or whatever, PLEASE send it SOON!!! :D Mail takes a little extra time to get to me cause it needs to be forwarded from the mission office. So if you want to send me a package, please send it by Monday, and if you want to send me a letter, please send it AT LEAST five business days before - so by about Tuesday next week. Thank you all SOOOO much for your support!!! I'm really NOT expecting anything big for my birthday, all that I ask is for you all to write me - even if it's a short letter and a picture of you, that would really mean THE WORLD to me!!! Thanks again for all y'all do!!! I love you!!!
Love always,
Sister Aubrie Orrock