Notes from Montreal

Yesterday I received three impossibly delightful packages from The Cookies, Momo, and Glorianna! Thank you so much! They were far too lovely. And they came at the perfect time because I came down with a very nasty flu-type thing last week. After a day of rest (I think I slept around 16 between yesterday and last night), I'm feeling much better. I'm not exactly healthy, but I'm much better.

And while it's never fun to be sick, it's particularly unpleasant to be sick away from home. But the people here are really kind and caring. Our investigators sent me special remedies and treats, less-active members called to make sure I was ok and to coach me on how to recover quickly, and members called to offer any help I needed. It was very heartwarming. Y'all should know I'm being well taken care of :) 

For much of last week, missionary work took the form of caroling. We teamed up with two of the other sisters and went around singing in four part harmony with our very own guitar accompaniment. It was a really special way to pass the days before and after Christmas. And having the time to visit those we recognized as being alone, and to spread a little holiday cheer through music, cookies, and the message of Christ's love was an amazing gift. A lot of the people we visited said we were their only visitors for the holiday season. We also put on two concerts at old folks' homes. It wasn't (isn't) easy being away from all of the people I love most - especially during the holidays, but it is gratifying to know that I'm using my time for good - and to see that being here does make a difference in others' lives. (We were so busy last week that we didn't have much time to help people shovel sidewalks during the day. Instead we adopted the habit of using the 30 minutes after our last appointments of the day to take part in night-shovelling! It was a little odd. But also probably good exercise.) 

Perhaps in an effort to repay us for our efforts to uplift and inspire, one of our friends decided to give us some pretty elaborate gifts. For my companion, the gift took the form of some saucy, spiky, sandals. And for me....A winter coat with a giant fur collar. As in, real. dead. animal. Hanging all over my neck. I didn't really know what to say -! and thank you! And that's faaaaar too nice of you. *Eeeep*. She's keeping it for me until I have a place to put it......

We're spending New Years with some of our investigators. They are also Haitian and apparently all Haitians eat special independence soup on New Years. It a French soup which Haitians weren't allowed to eat before winning their freedom. So it's kind of a big deal now. Imma make some lentils, too. Just to be sure :)