Monday, July 27, 2015

Do you know the Onion Man?

Hahaha Yes, I know the onion man! 
Who lives in Union County? ;) 

That was such a blast! I wish you could see Gonzales in that picture too though. He was just off to the side, but it just looks like I am in a room full of Women by myself. :P I hope it doesn't get me in any trouble! Haha it'll be fine :) The benefit was so great!! Unlike in a huge city like West Valley, everyone in Union came. Literally the entire time we were there, people didn't stop coming through the doors! It was so great, and they did so much good for that family. :) 
We are excited because we did meet a whole lot of people, and got to talk with so many about what we. I love it.

I was thinking the other day about all the missions in the world. How many missionaries do you think will want to go back and visit their missions? I think it really depends on the people in the mission, and your own personal outlook. :) The Southern people are so easy to love, because what is theirs is yours. You are their family. You always feel so at home. The Southern people are some of the weirdest, quirkiest, funniest people I have ever been around, but they are without a doubt the best, nicest, and sincere people. :) I love it, and I will be coming back here after I go home. :) We are helping a man from Boston move back to Boston on Tuesday morning, and he was talking about how he had been able to sit down with missionaries multiple times since he has been in Union. He's the nicest guy, and would honestly give you the shirt off his back if you needed it. I told him how I have a friend serving her mission in Boston, and he asked if I wanted to see her, and told me that he would pack me up and just take me with him. Haha He's so funny. I wish he wasn't moving so that way we could get to talk with him more. We'll let the missionaries up there take care of him :) 

Our lessons with the RM are so great :) He was a great missionary and you can tell that he was obedient. He helps give me a refresher course on the rules and how I can be a better missionary, and it is so good to have him with us, because he is like a third companion that wants to work hard. :) We love the kid! 
Transfers are on August 18th, and we have Interviews with President Turner on August 7th. 
Things are going just fine! 
Love y'all!

Monday, July 20, 2015

Servants of Jesus Christ

T's baptism
The baptism was amazing. Her dad was able to baptize her which was awesome! 
I love baptisms in Union, the spirit stays so strong. :)

This week has been different. 
I am learning a lot of new things, including patience, which I have never really ever been good at, and other things that come through enduring tough things, but I love tough things, and I am the first to do tough things!
We contacted some of our former investigators that the missionaries have worked with before; but stopped taking the lessons for whatever reason. We love looking through the paperwork and finding these people, because it is such a better use of our time than knocking would be. These people have already talked to the missionaries, and have had time to think about the information they received. Well, we contacted this one man, he is very friendly. We went back, and taught him the restoration and had a great lesson. Everything we talked about, he said he already knew, and he was just waiting for his answer if it is true or not. He has read the Book of Mormon cover to cover, and we invited him to open it back up and continue reading it. Well, we tried to set a date for him and his wife to be receive their answer and be baptized, but he was pretty hesitant.The spirit was so strong in the lesson, but there was something missing. We explained a couple more things that he'd had questions on, and he was pretty happy with the answers we gave him. We said a prayer with him and set a time for us to come back, and he said he would have some stuff prepared for us when we came back. I asked what kind of stuff, and his attitude changed. He got really serious, and leaned forward and said "A question that NO ONE has ever been able to answer, and no one ever comes back!" well, spirit left the room, didn't feel very good at all. I just smiled and said, "well, I can't promise I'll have the answer, but what's your question?" He then asked a question about the Old testament having to do with Abel and Cain. I answered it to the best of my knowledge, and told him anything else that he couldn't find his answer to in the scriptures wasn't meant for us to know quite yet. He was pretty satisfied, and told us he was looking forward to our next visit. :) 

This last Friday, Elder Benji Roberts got home from his mission, and we have loved getting to know him. He gave a great talk about the atonement on Sunday, and we had an awesome linger-longer after church. :) We let C  know that we weren't going to be able to make it for supper after church because we would be at the linger-longer, and he jokingly told us we would run out of food. Well, Sunday morning rolls around, and we get a call from him and he asks us to stop by before church. We go over there, and he has cooked a bunch of stuff for us to take to the church. Who does that?? It was sooo good too. :) There were like 4 different kinds of green beans, hams, chicken, sweet potatoes, Mac 'n Cheese (The real stuff, nothing that comes out of a box) cornbread dressing, rolls, cornbread, and so much more. Man it was good.  Even with exercise and all the walking/biking, I am surprised that I haven't gained a ton of weight since I have been back!

I talked with Elder Roberts, and he will be coming to some of our appointments with us on Tuesday, and he will get to meet the man I spoke of earlier. I am excited to go back there. 
We had about 50 people at church with the homecoming, and the talk of there being food, and it was so nice to see some of the people we hadn't seen in a long time. 
We have a lot of appointments in the coming week to visit the less actives that we saw, and we are being fed by some of them. It will be so great, and I hope that we can be professional enough that they will recognize us as servants of Jesus Christ, and allow us to come back, and they will come back.

We are going into week 9 of the 12 weeks I have been training Elder Gonzales, and I have learned a lot from being a trainer...I have loved it, but it has been hard. Looking forward, I don't have much time left, and that thought scares me, but I just pray that I can makes the best out of everything, and work my little tail off.
Love y'all! 

This is the book that the Branch President's daughter made for me, she is adorable :)
President called us one morning, and said "I know this sounds weird, but can either of y'all braid hair?" I said I could and he said "we'll be over in a few". Well, his wife was out of town, and little K NEEDED her hair braided. Nothing else would do. Haha so she sat down, and I braided her hair. She hugged me, stole a fruit snack, and they left. They say I'm the only missionary she has really gotten attached to. :) she's so cute! 

This is Dwayne, he speaks Pompeii, and only Pompeii. But I got him to say some English words :)
I lost ;)

Found a tick on a squirrel.
Did you know that squirrel has it's own very distinct taste, but it is very similar to chicken?......

Monday, July 13, 2015

We plant the seed, and just let God take over.

Hi Momma! 

I am glad y'all liked the turtle! He stayed with me for a little bit to make sure he wouldn't die, and he loves Cheerios. :) I am so happy he got there safely! Was the box in okay shape? I did my best to package him safely!!

I hope Sawyer tells me all FFA COLT training. I miss that kid to the moon and back. I am so excited to be able to see him again! I'm sure he had a blast. He only acts like he doesn't like people; he killed it at scout camp! He does better than Alec and I combined did! ;) I'm so proud of him!

I will be praying for Savannah, I know she'll do just great. :) She always does! I was so blown away by her singing! It was amazing!! :) She'll do so well!
Time is flying by like crazy.

Okay, this week has been fun being a missionary! We have been trying to meet all the less active members, but haven't been able to catch a lot of them at home, but we will keep trying! We talked with a bunch of former investigators that haven't talked to the missionaries in a while, and there are a lot of good leads that we have found, and have appointments to come back this week! I am excited.
 We met a man named D*****, and he is very familiar with the missionaries, but hadn't been visited in 5-6 months. Well, we talked to him for a while on his front porch, all three of us just dripping with sweat, it has been so hot. He asks us "either of you hit 20 yet?" And Elder G. points at me, and I say "I have" And he goes "Guess what, you're an old fart now!" Hah! I was just like Gee thanks :P It was funny. We are going back to teach him and his family the lessons again, and we hope to get them on date to be baptized. 
We did a lot of knocking this last week, and didn't have too much success, but we did get a lot of funny rejections! We had an old guy come to the door while we were talking to his 30-40 year old son, and he ripped the pass-along card of Christ out of his hand, threw it at us, and pulled his son in the house. We walked away as he was telling his son not to talk to us or ever take anything from us. We kind of laughed because some people get really crazy about not liking missionaries. I don't really understand it, but hey,We plant the seed, and just let God take over. 

I am thoroughly anti-squirrel, and really wish I had my pellet gun. 
Every single tomato my plants have grown, has been stolen by the little critters, and they have begun breaking the branches off, and eating the inside of the plant. Grrrr...
I worked hard for those plants! 
It's okay though, If they die, I'm just going to dig 'em up and plant a bunch of flowers. 
My Carolina Reaper is doing awesome! I have 2 little peppers growing, finally! And I hope that the animals have enough common sense not to eat the hottest pepper in the world. :P 
Anyway. Good week :) 
Baptism coming up! 
Love Y'all! 
-Elder Sunshine Barker!

I love this man, he takes such good care of us!

I finally got to do real service on a car!

             Sweet Southern Peaches

Strawberry fields

 I decorated my planner.

Do you like it?

The turtle did arrive safe and sound and was swiftly named Elder Cecil. He has been called to serve in the West Valley City, Barker mission and it is anticipated that he will serve for a period of 30 years........

Monday, July 6, 2015


This is Elder Barker not getting to swim :(
Chigger bites suck, but they are livable. They itch a lot, and you are almost guaranteed to get them when you are walking through any type of grass, but especially through pine needles, er, sorry. Pine straw ;) 

I am so glad that y'all had fun in Fremont! I am way jealous, but I know it will be there when I get back, and nothing down there ever changes, except maybe a dirt road or two. :) 
Thank you for the pictures of my truck and Grandpa looks like he is doing so good! I haven't ever seen him lift that arm that high! That makes my heart happy. Has he already had both surgeries? I think about that man so often it would surprise you. :) I get to do plugs and wires on a Bronco tomorrow, and I am way excited! I think he would like to know that!

This has been a really fun week. :) We are doing a lot of finding, and helping some of the less active families come back to church. We average about 40 people at church every week, and we have so many more families that just don't come, so we have a lot of work to do. It is just really hard to catch these people at home! You'd think it would be easier being in a small town, but sometimes you have a better chance finding them at Walmart rather than their home! which we usually do.

As of now, we have 3 investigators on date to be baptized, but only 1 has been coming to church, so I think we need to focus more on the importance of coming to church and reading the Book of Mormon. 

We had a good Fourth! You know me, I don't like fireworks too much, but we got to have dinner with the S family, and played some horseshoes before :) We had to be in by 9 like any normal night, but we got to watch them light of fireworks and have a good time :) Their 4 year old daughter ran and hid behind me because she was scared, and I got to sit down on the ground with her and show her that she didn't need to be afraid. We had fun trying to guess when the BOOM would happen, and we got her giggling instead of crying. :) We had transfer calls on Saturday night. My buddy, Elder Dillree, will be leaving on Wednesday to a new area, and I will miss him a lot. All of the people I came out with go home this week, and we will be getting a new AP. I am still in Union, and I am still training. :) all is well!