Monday, June 29, 2015


Hello Family! I am so glad to hear that you celebrated my birthday! I was even happier to hear that you celebrated it by watching all my favorite peeps and dances! haha That is great! I LOVED the greetings from Heaven envelope that you sent me too! When I opened it I let out a joyfull explosion of noise and started cracking up! Sister Gerard came running from the bed room to make sure I was ok! lol I guess my joyful explosion sounded a little more like I was being attacked or something. Any way, it made my day! (The envelope contained pictures of Donald Oconner, Fred Astaire, and Bing Crosby, a few of Emma's favorite people) Thank you as well for everything else that you sent me in my birthday package! I have been thoroughly enjoying all of it :) I really enjoyed receiving that huge card from the whole family too :) It was nice to hear from them, even if it was just one liners. I'm glad that they're all doing so good! So, my birthday was great :) Not a whole ton to tell as far as was weekly planning day so we were in the apartment for most of it. We had a thunder storm though and a ton of rain and that was a pretty neat birthday present from Heavenly Father. The best birthday present though came in the form of a new investigator named Shannon. She is a YSA! We have been trying to find investigators for YSA since I have been in Branson! So it's pretty neat that we are finally starting to see some results! Any way, she had investigated the church before but had been dropped and we had been trying to get in contact with her for a long time. Finally though, we were able to contact her through the members. Brydon has set up an invitations by assignment list that has been working pretty well where fellowshippers receive assignments to invite certain non members to activities. Personal invitations seem to work best :) Any way, so Shannon got invited to an activity and SHE CAME! Then she asked if she could come to church the next day, so she came and we got to meet her and we had an awesome lesson with her about recognizing the Holy Ghost in Gospel Principles. Then on Thursday night we got a text from Kendra saying that Shannon had texted her and asked how she could become a member of the church. WHAT?! We also got a text from Shannon right after that telling us exactly the same thing. What a great birthday present!!! We set up a lesson for Friday night, my birthday, and boom! New investigator on my birthday. Best present ever. Any way, sorry this is such a short email :/ I will write a letter though! Love you all so much! Sister Cryer One of the missionaries in Emma's District sent some pictures of their recent caving activity.

Friday, June 26, 2015


Letter Dated 22 June 2015 Dear Family, Hello my people! How is life for y'all? First of all let me say how proud I am of you for having such a thrilling week! Holy cow! That was some good stuff that went down! Also, one other item of business that I have to cover. Sam, I was dying laughing as I read your letter to me this week. Thank you so much! I had myself a very much needed laugh. OK, week. Let me get my planner out and remember what I did. I swear, I can't remember anything without my planner! I'm going to be one of those return missionaries who is still using a 6 week missionary planner 6 months after I get home, I just know it! Anyway, last Monday we went caving. If Elder Hess did what he said he was going to do then you probably got pictures of the fun that we had. It was pretty great. We had a mud fight at the back of the cave and boy was that a blast! I got nailed in the jaw and had to do some spitting to get the stuff out of my mouth. YUCK! Super fun though. Then after we washed off in the river. That was SO fun! I kind of couldn't believe we were doing it, but...we did it anyways. It was a blast and honestly I couldn't believe the amount of mud that came off of me! It was nuts! Me and Sister Gerard were pretty wiped out by the time we got back home. In the white handbook it says that preparation day activities should prepare you to work more effectively the rest of the week...Caving doesn't really do that! It's a blast though and we both decided last night that we would do it again in a heart beat! Luckily though we are playing it a bit more low key today. I even got a nap in this morning. Ronan is back!!! He was gone for a long time and we weren't able to meet with him but he's back now. It was so great to see him! Poor kid, he ran over to give me a hug and I had to stick out my hand real fast! He kept saying, "Can I please give you a hug?" I had to just keep telling him no, BUT I would give him a great big one after I got off my mission. Love that kid. I seem to have a thing with animals right now....well, two in particular. One is a cute little dog named Honey Bunch (you can just imagine to yourselves how cute she must be with a name like that) and the other is an old, grey, toothless cat named Miso. Honey Bunch started the whole thing. We went over to teach a lesson and Honey Bunch came right over and plopped down next to my feet and forced me to pet her through the entire lesson! Would you believe it? The entire lesson. Then Miso pretty much did the same thing. She just came over and jumped in my lap and forced me to pet her through an entire lesson. And it was a lesson with Austin so it took longer than most lessons do. Anyway, Honey Bunch did it again on Saturday so we'll see what happens with Miso next week. At that lesson with Austin we found out that he can see/sense people's auras. He said mine was cyan. We had Kendra look up our colors after the lesson and she said cyan meant: inner peace, positive, selfless, trust, intuition, communication, spiritually minded and unselfish (plus some other stuff that I didn't have time to write down). Pretty cool huh? Let's see, what else?...we found a pretty solid new investigator. His name is Logan. He and his girlfriend live together and are going to have a baby soon. He is super cool though. He reminds me a lot of ZM in Springfield. He just seems to recognize goodness and truth very easily and naturally. Anyway, we met him while trying to contact a less active, Sister C. She wasn't home so we decided to knock on the door across from her and met Logan. We ended up talking to him about family history and he let us set an appointment with him to come back and show him around the website. When we went back though we just seemed to flow very quickly and naturally into the gospel and the Book of Mormon. We promised him that our message would bring him peace and asked if we could share more and he said, "Yeah! I'm feeling the peace, so keep sharing." So cool! He was feeling the spirit. Anyway, Logan is super cool. I'll have to keep you updated on him. Actually, while I'm already talking to you about him I might as well tell you about the cool experience we had the other day while trying to contact him. We were on exchanges with Aimee when we went to visit Logan. We had set the appointment the day before so we were pretty confident in ourselves that he would be there. Well...he wasn't. We stood and knocked on his door a few times to no avail. While we were standing there though the door behind us opened and a lady came out and went downstairs. It took a few seconds before we realized that that might have bee Sister C! Well, Logan wasn't answering so we went downstairs and outside and almost immediately we saw our possible Sister C. in a van about to drive away. She saw us though and called us over and we were able to meet her and set up a time to meet with her. Awesome! She left and we went back to our car to decide what to do and saw Logan walk into the building! OK then! So out we go from the car, back inside and up the stairs and lo and behold we got to meet Lindsy, Logan's girlfriend. Let me tell you the Lord's timing is absolutely perfect! Just couldn't have been any better! Let's see, what else happened this week? We got our apartment inspected....on a weekly planning day. In order to illustrate the significance of that let me just tell you that our apartment generally looks like a bomb went off on weekly planning days with books and pens and sticky notes and papers all over the place. So yeah. Not the best day for an apartment inspection. Having said that, we only had about 3 minutes notice to clean up the place before our peeps arrived to inspect and we got 117 points out of 120. BOOM! It was pretty funny though when they texted and told us they were on their way, I was laying on my stomach and texting and I literally jerked, yelled and dropped the phone in order to fully express my horror that they were on their way with the apartment the way it was. Pretty funny. Well, my hand is starting to cramp up so I am going to stop writing now. I love you all! Have an incredible week! Love Sister Cryer


June 24, 2015 email Hello family :D Did you get pics from an Elder Hess this week??? He said he would send them, so if he didn't I'll have to get onto him. Any way, stuff about the week :) ...we got a flash flood warning on Thursday night :) That was exciting. We didn't have any problems but apparently there were some houses and roads and stuff that did get flooded. There has been a lot of rain lately. It's probably my fault, being from Oregon and all. ;) We had an exchange with Sister Hughes the other day. That was good times. The first house we went to go visit we ended up getting stuck in the drive way (because we were in a stick shift and the drive way was super steep) and we had to call Andy Hughes to come and get us out of that jam! haha That was fun. It was totally worth it though because he had cinnamon bears in his car and he shared them with us. Then the next house we went to we couldn't find. We stopped to ask a guy sitting outside for directions and he actually knew Kristina Hughes! So we got to talk to him for a while and it was really cool! We asked him if he would like to learn more about the church and he didn't seem too sure, but he said that we could come by any time and that he had really enjoyed talking to us :) So, it was a positive experience at the very least :) Sunday, was FATHERS DAY! I'm glad that you liked your note dad :) We actually got to spend Fathers Day at the Bretts house with their family. It was really fun. There were lots of people there so it kind of reminded me of our family reunions only on a smaller scale. There was lots of talking and laughing and they even broke out the lap top to watch a funny music video (kind of like we would do some evenings after dinner) and they all just busted up laughing watching this thing. I didn't watch it, just for the record, but I couldn't help hearing it, and I was dying laughing as well just listening, so I can only imagine how funny the full effect would be! Today has been nice. Not much to say though. We basically just stayed in and wrote letters. We did rearrange the living room though! Now we will have a table when we do our weekly planning instead of just being on the floor so that will be nice :) Well, I honestly think that is about all my news for right now...not very exciting I know, BUT I do have a letter for you that will be in the mail tomorrow so I don't feel bad :D I hope y'all have an amazing week! I love you all! Sister Cryer

Tuesday, June 16, 2015


June 15, 2015 email Hello Family! So guess what I'm doing today? Going down to Springfield and going caving!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I am super excited! Because of that though, this might not be the longest email ever, and I can't promise a letter. I think I will have time when we get back from caving but I'm not totally sure. Any way, stuff about my week! Well, first of all it sounds like you had a good one! Congrats Sam! That is so awesome! (Sam graduated from OSU with her BA) I wish I could have been there freezing in the stands with the rest of the fam, but I was there in spirit. Instead I was out here sweatin' in the heat and humidity! It is so flippin' hot here! haha We went tracting the other day in Kimberling City; 95deg and I am pretty sure it was something like 80% humidity. hot. Hot. HOT. That's ok though :) We got to talk to some pretty cool peeps :D We thought we found a potential investigator for YSA but when we tried to contact him by phone his mom pounced on us and told us to get lost. Not in those words or that way exactly...but basically that's what she did. Oh well. He is moving out soon so... We had a kind of cool experience on Tuesday. We went out to Rockaway Beach to teach a less active, Austin, who ended up being sick and not able to be taught. Lame sauce. So we decided to go try and visit another less active named Jared. It took us a little bit to find his house, (I was the navigator and I guess I left a little bit to be desired...) but we did eventually and went and knocked on his door a few times. It didn't seem like anyone but the dogs were home but eventually someone opened the door! Yay! Patience is a thing. Any way, it wasn't Jared, it was his room-mate Daniel who IS NOT A MEMBER. He was a really cool guy and we got to talk to him for a while and share the Book of Mormon with him. It was great! He seemed really interested and when we asked if we could come back and talk to him more about it he said we could :) We set up a time for the next day and then left for the night. When we came back on Wednesday no one was home! NO!!!! But again, we just stood there for a while and talked with Lauren (our YSA exchange. She is awesome! She served her mission in England) and low and behold Jared pulled up in his car! He said that Daniel wasn't home (lame) but as we kept talking to Jared we found out that Daniel had talked to him about the Book of Mormon the night before and Jared was really excited about it! He really wants Daniel to read in the Book of Mormon and when we asked if he would be willing to help Daniel by reading with him he said yes! I just love how the Lord works! Here is a less active who is going to help his non member room-mate receive a testimony of the restored gospel and probably through that come back into activity himself! SO COOL! Any way, it was pretty great. Thursday we had a fun thing happen. We were out with Sister Brazeal from the West ward trying to visit some people that Bishop had asked us to go see. One of them was out in Reeds Spring and we could not find the place for the life of us! I am pretty sure the address was for an empty lot. Any way, in the midst of trying to find this house though, we met some other cool peeps! Shannon (actaully a man) and his son Ethen. Ethen was out playing basketball and Sister Gerard challenged him to a game of PIG with the deal that if we won we got to tell him about the Book of Mormon. He agreed and the game began :) Lot's of prayer going on during that game of PIG! Sister Gerard won and we were able to talk to him about the Book of Mormon. Nothing seemed to really come from it. He said that he appreciated what we were doing but he wanted to stay with his church and didn't even want a copy of the Book of Mormon. Well, we went around the house to get Sister Brazeal after our talk with Ethen and found that she was talking to Shannon and had invited him to church and he had said that he might just come! He invited us to his church as well, which President has given us permission to go to other churches to see what they're like, so we might just do it! We think that if we go to their church they will be more willing to come to ours. Keep your fingers crossed! Hmm. I can't really think of anything else. I left my list of things to write about back at the apartment, of course. lol Hopefully I will have time to write you a letter! Have an amazing week! I love you all! Listen to a little Bing Crosby for me :) Sister Cryer


Letter dated 8 June 2015 Dear Family, Well will you just look at this. An actual letter! Aren't you lucky!...Yeah, sorry about the whole letter writing thing. I am repenting. So, I don't know if you've been keeping track of the transfer, but IT'S ALMOST OVER! We get transfer calls this Saturday. Crazy. I have a sneaking suspicion that I will be leaving, but I hope I'm wrong. This transfer really has been a blast though. I feel like I have been learning and re-learning so much about missionary work and how we do missionary work and...just everything. It's been a bit of a roller coaster but I am all up for learning, so no complaints here! One of the things that I am learning about is the importance of members. I thought I understood the importance of members, but I am realizing that I still have tons to learn about it! I always just want to get out and get things done. I don't want to wait for or rely on the members! BUT, I tend to kind of leave the members in the dust a little bit when I do that. So I am still trying to get the balance between working with the members and just working on our own. I'll get it at some point! So, kind of funny, kind of sad story. First, last Sunday we had a sign up going around to bring stuff to the Break the Fast. Sister Gerard and I decided to set the example to support the activity and signed up to bring a dessert. Throughout the week we kept forgetting and then being reminded that we had signed up to bring something. We had no idea what we were bringing and then (hallelujah) Sister Gerard got a package sent to her with a lemon bar mix in it. So, the decision was made, we knew what we were making and Saturday night we made it....kind of. We mixed everything up and then tried to bake it, but our oven quit working! So after 20 minutes of baking it was still very much unbaked, and by then it was almost 10:30 NO! So we had to stick it in the fridge overnight and then Sunday morning we baked it. Well, they didn't turn out so hot, as attested by the practically full pan that we took home. I decided to test them and see how bad they really were. They were BAD. Let's just say that when I was making them Saturday night and hoped that they didn't taste like they smelled (like playdough)...well, yeah. That hope didn't come true. They tasted like playdough. Super gross. So yea, that happened. On Saturday I got as close as I've ever come to being attacked by dogs on my mission. We were out on a street just walking, looking for people to OTM when all of a sudden we hear some really intense barking and growling going on from behind some tall grass at one of the houses. As I peered through the grass from the other side of the street I could see two dogs. Not nice looking dogs. I couldn't tell if they were behind a fence or tied or anything though. Sister Gerard decided to venture a little further and see if she could find out if they were contained in some way. As she moved further up the street the barks and growls escalated. And then, the dogs ran around the house and then came out on the other side still barking. Well, so they weren't tied, and we could see by this time that there was no fence holding them back. There must be something though because we could tell that they wanted to tear us to shreds! We figured there must be an electric fence/shock collar system in place or something. Not withstanding, we decided that we should probably not keep going up the street! So back we went, and maybe a little quicker that we had come! That also reminds me, we were foiled in our attempt to contact a referral by a stupid black wasp that was hanging out by their door. Neither one of us was brave enough to go up and knock with that black whopper of a bug sitting right there ready to attack us! We had one of our investigators, Eric, sing Amazing Grace to us standing on his front porch. Dang, can that man sing or what?! Anyway, that was cool. OK. Lets get spiritual for a second now. I have been studying boldness. Today I read Proverbs 28:1 and 2 Nephi 9:40 and from those I went to Moroni 7:37? (the one where he talks about charity). Anyway, I learned that to be lovingly bold requires charity because you need first, a love of God and truth, and second, a love of the person your are talking too. Both of those things are included in charity. It was a cool realization for me. Well, I'd better go. Hope you have an amazing week! Love Sister Cryer

Monday, June 8, 2015


Hello!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! So this week has been pretty great. On Monday we got together with the Elders in our zone and a few youth from the 1st and 2nd wards and played soccor and football. Boy did they have a time explaining foot ball to me! haha! I kept pulling Elder Pederson aside and saying, "Ok, in Sister Cryer language, could you tell me what they just said?" It was funny. He was having a good laugh about it. I have been learning to love sports since I have been out that is for sure. I don't know why that seems to be so necessary for me, but I guess it is. On Wednesday we had some fun with tracting! I have never had doors slammed in my face until now, and honestly it kind of made my day! I was laughing so hard after the first one, so much so that we had to wait a few minutes for me to compose myself before we knocked on the next door. On Thursday we had our zone conference. last time seeing the Shumways. Sad Day! We are sure going to miss them. We have Until July 1st with them and then President and Sister Loveland will come in the OTM will be gone. The mission home is moving to Bentonville Arkansas so the mission will be the Arkansas Bentonville Mission (the ABM) from now on. Weird. Any way, it was a really good zone conference! We actually talked a lot about the Bible. President Shumway has so much knowledge about the history of the Bible! It was really neat as he went through and talked about the Nicaen Creed and the Trinity and all this stuff that began and make up the common christian belief of today. He said something interesting though that I really liked. Well, a couple things actually. One was that the Bible is NOT common ground. A lot of times we use it as such because people always want to know if we believe in the Bible, but President Shumway talked about how it's not common ground because we only believe in the Bible as far as it is translated correctly. He also talked about how we sometimes try and use the Bible to prove the Book of Mormon. That doesn't work. Why not? Because of doctrine! We can find in the Book of Mormon (Mormon 7:9) that the Book of Mormon is meant to prove the Bible. Not the other way around. So the power of the Book of Mormon comes when we use it to prove and clarify the Bible. So cool! Any way, it was such a good zone conference and I was able to feel the spirit. Sorry, this is a really short email! ...But you WILL have a letter from me this week! How do I know? Because it is sitting right here next to me just waiting to be stuck into the mail! So you will have a letter :) Have an amazing week! Love Sister Cryer Here are some pics from a hike we took.

Tuesday, June 2, 2015


June 1, 2015 email I am actually really glad that picture worked out for the plaque! It was may favorite :) So I was super lame last week and didn't send you a letter! The reason for that was our preparation day was cut short (we had a dinner apt at 4:30) and we kind of lost track of time a little bit playing basket ball and ultimate Frisbee (with a football) with the elders. It was a whole ton of fun and I got super sweaty. Ultimate was my favorite. We just went out and found a field at the rec plex and went for it, three on each team. I even managed to be an asset to my team! It was pretty great. :) Sister Gerard has been teaching me about sports. Making dinner the other night she told me about some of the rules in football. I didn't retain much, but after playing some football today with the Elders, it made a little bit more sense :) I CAN BE TAUGHT! Any way, we are having a great time. I actually LOVE training! I didn't think I would but I really do. It keeps me on my toes and SO much better than I feel like I would be otherwise. It's just awesome :) So, let me think what news I have that I can share from my little life :D Oh, here's something. I don't know if you know or not but I HIT MY 9 MONTH MARK LAST WEDNESDAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Crazy. It feels like...not that long. I mean, I am halfway done with my mission! What the heck. Any way, that's something that happened this week :) Um...We had a miracle on Monday night :) We were on exchanges with Patrick and we were out of ideas! We had tried to visit some potential investigators and less actives with no success and we had about 20 minutes left of the night. We came out of an apartment complex after knocking on someones door with no luck, and just kind of stood there, unsure of what we needed to do. It was raining a little bit and we had a pretty good thunder and lightning storm going on. As we are standing in front of the apartment complex who should pull up on his bike but Nick, one of the YSA's and actually a YSA that we had been trying to see for a few weeks! We said hi and asked him what he was doing and he said he was going home. Patrick said that he hadn't known that Nick came this way to get home. Nick paused for a second and then said, "Well, actually I've never come this way before. I just felt like I should tonight." Whaaaaaat! Me and Sister Gerard looked at each other. Obviously we were supposed to talk to Nick. So we did! We stood outside in the rain (and it started pouring) and had a lesson with him, and it was really great! ...actaully why we didn't stand under the covered area of the apartment complex is beyond me... That maybe would have been a good idea. Oh well. So that was a miracle. I love when Heavenly Father does that! He leads us along, plans fall through, and then he shows us what he wants us to do. It's awesome :) On Wednesday I SAW FIREFLIES!!!!!!!!!! Oh my goodness it was the best thing EVER! They are so pretty! We were on exchanges with President Grady when I saw one for the first time and I just started dancing around and laughing and then I ran over and hugged Sister Gerard because I needed to hug someone I was so happy! President Grady just stood there and laughed. On Thursday we got to do service at an old historic home on a hiking trail. We were cleaning up the garden in front. Saw a snake (Elder Alen freaked out, even though it was only a little grass snake. Poor guy. He is terrified of snakes!) and a wolf spider. Super big. Me and Elder Alen traded spots! I told him, "I will deal with the snake if you deal with the spider!" Then from that I got at tick on my arm which I found Friday morning. That was fun trying to get that little bugger off (pun intended). My first tick. Crazy life. What was funny about that was I was fine during the whole pulling it off procedure. Sister Gerard did the honors. But after it was off and gone I felt super sick and actually had to sit down on the kitchen floor! Haha! Don't know what that was all about went away so it's all good :) Well, That's about all I got right now. Love you all! Sister Cryer