Ya, I bet it makes quite a different without all the girls home! Ha. And that is sooo crazy! Steff is done with a semester of college! Ah! Three more and she will be caught up to me! That is sooo crazy! I am so excited for Cassy to do the NSHS! She will love it and it will be worth it because she will be able to be so much further ahead! And that is so fun that Megan in on the Dance Team! Make sure she doesn't develope a little attitude though. ;P Ha. JK. She is super cute. And I am excited for Steff to go to BYU Idaho. I know she will love it! I hope she can find a job! She should as long as she looks and asks everyone. At least I hope so. Ya, we were told we get little fees each time we take money out from our card. But does it show fees even when it looks like I used it to pay at a cash register? And that is crazy!!! So did you put all my stuff in the play room? or in boxes? Ya, I know I have a lot of stuff. Ha. Yay, and about the stars on my ceiling. I never took them down cause I liked them plus it seemed like a lot of effort. Lol. So they have been there for years since Tavin put them up. (: The language books I thought Steff would like to look at since she loves Italy so she can learn Italian (Or some basics of it) and then if she chooses to serve a mission maybe she will be sent to Italy! ha. I am glad he likes the shirt! I was excited when I thought about that. I should have gotten a Portugal one for you but I didn't think about it....Not soon enough at least. The clothes I sent home I just don't want with me. I had too much stuff. (: I got your post card you sent from Hawaii! I got that a while ago. I just don't remember if I told you that or not. I haven't gotten your letter though... How long ago did you send it? Oh! I hope she is super careful!! Ha. That does make me so nervous that she is driving her. (Yes, it is a she ha) But I guess that is ok..... Ha jk. Ya, Of course that is ok. Just try not to put too many miles on her. That would be my only concern. :) Oh! Did you guys get the crack filled in the windshield? I am glad Cassy got my letter! And I am glad she liked it! Now she just has to write me back! Ha. :) Ya, I figured it would be a problem to get them to write me back because we were all terrible with Tyson. And Steff probably still hasn't written Cheyanne back. Ha. So This past week has been good! Well, depending on what the definition of good is. In this case I am still happy and loving my mission! But we aren't having a ton of success. But we are working hard everyday! Sis. Brooks and I were talking about how our feet are just doomed and we can't wait till after our mission for when we can be pretty again. Haha. I love her! We joke around with eachother all the time. I will be so sad when we get split up! Which will probably be next transfer... but thats ok. I still have 5 more weeks with her! So our new District Leader is terrified of dogs! Like deathly afraid. And the thing about Portugal- at least here in Viseu- is they are everywhere! It breaks my heart, but there are a ton of stray dogs on the streets. And literally everyone has at least one dog. Like, he runs from them! And afterwards, he just bends over trying to calm himself down. It is serious. It is so sad. So when he saw me petting the dog on the other side of the gate he asked Sister Brooks if I wasn't afraid of them. Ya, he thinks I'm crazy. But I love dogs so much! I don't know why he is so scared of them. I miss our dogs! So, when we went to talk to Cristina at her work (she works at a bar and I think I told you the story about how last time when we went there one of the drunk Portuguese old guy took my Book of Mormon out of my hand and kissed it... ya! I couldn't believe that had just happened. And I didn't feel to good about it. But ya it is a little funny now thinking back on it. I think he thought it was the Bible) But there was another drunk guy and he recognized us and started talking to us about how his alcohol is good for him. Ha. And we told him it is better to put good things into our bodies like fruits and vegetables. So he randomly got up and left. Then when we came back. He came back with fruit! hahaha. And he showed it to us. He had Cristina go wash it for him in the back. And he gave one to Cristina to eat. (I think it was a peach or something) But yeah. it was just funny cause he decided to go eat something that was good for him. So guess what! When we were at Sofia and Armando's house, Sofia had her little boys give the prayers! it was sooo cute! each time they went in front of her and she held there arms so they kept them crossed and they repeated everything that she told them to say in the prayer. It made us soooooo happy! It was the cutest thing! I love them so much! So we met with Ana Paula again. (She is the recent-convert less-active, she was baptized about a year ago and pretty much hasn't come to church since) But she said the prayer!!!!! We were so excited! And that same day she gave us a ride to church! So she still remembers how to get there. And that has been her excuse everytime as to why she doesn't go to church, that she can't drive because she doesn't have money for gas! Plus she gave us a ride because she really likes us. (And she never gives rides to the missionaries- at-least all the ones since she was baptized I guess weren't super nice or something, so that made me sad.) But she said she would go to Church this past sunday and we knew she would because we had faith and she drove us there! But.... she didn't show! And we were soooo sad yesterday because of it.... But we found out she didn't know who Thomas S. Monson was. I don't know if she even knew we had a prophet. Which I don't really get how because that is a baptismal interview question... But she was baptized without having received all the lessons. So our plan is to teach all of them to her again. So do you remember Maria? The one that said I looked so familiar to her yet she knew we haven't ever met before. Well, she basically dropped us really nicely and my heart broke.... I was trying so hard not to cry in front of her. At least to not let a tear come out. But I think she could tell anyways. But basically what she said is there are so many church's and they all talk about good things and when someone talks about God and it is good and I feel good about it, I believe it. But that she isn't ready right now to make big changes in her life and that she still wants to talk to us because she loves the peace we bring when we come. But ya... she doesn't want to be baptized. That was what made her turn away. She has been baptized 3 times and we already talked with her about the three things we have to have to be baptized correctly. (Authority of God, Immersion-like Christ, and accountability-or age, 8 yrs. plus-) But ya.... So basically that night was really hard for me because I loved her soooo much! I still do! And it just breaks my heart that so many people are so confused because of how many church's there are. And I wish they would just really try to find out for themselves that this really is Christ's church re-established on the earth. It isn't new. It is the same church that Christ established when He was here. But I think that was the first time I truly had a hard time out here on the mission in regards to an investigator. I didn't think it would be so hard to let someone go because they just didn't want it... Anyways. To lighten the mood! Ha. Remember Adair and Elias? (they are the black boys that have crushes on my and Sis. B) So basically, we ran into them because they are going to be working at the Fair! So Elias basically told me that he will wait for me till I am done with my mission and Adair told Sis. B that he loves her and that they can go back to America together! Hahaha. It was sooooo funny! Afterwards, Sister Brooks was like, "I never have had to determine the relationship before the mission, I never thought that the first time would be ON the mission. haha" I died laughing! She is sooo funny! So she said it pretty much went like this Adair- I love you! Sis. Brooks- I'm a disciple of Jesus Christ, so..... Ha. Ya. We laughed a lot. So about the Fair! It is like a huge thing here in Portugal! It started on Friday I think. And it goes for a whole month! So we are going to go today!!!!! I am excited! Though it is a little hot outside so I hope it cools off a little before we go. But we already ate some ice cream from it! I had two ice cream cones! Sis. B wanted to but her stomache doesn't like dairy so she eats a little still. But she can't eat much... Oh! And she is a vegetarian I don't know if I told you guys that. So another funny thing is when she was giving directions. We both didn't know what the word for hill was. So she called it you know, that thing that is like a "pequena montanha" Haha. A small mountain. I don't know if things are just so much funnier on a mission or I'm just weird, but that made me laugh so hard! Anyways, they have a horse here! At the fair! I got to pet it a couple days ago. It is so pretty! I really want one some day! so yesterday morning, we went to go pick up Sara and see if she was home because she said she would go to church with us. So on the way over there we got stuck (Cause the fair has interferred with our walking course so we have to find ways around it... it is a little annoying. But thats ok) But we got stuck because the gate we were hoping would open didn't open. And if we were to turn around we had to walk a long way back and around. So we decided to hop the fence in our skirts! Ha. I wish I had gotten my camera out! It was so funny! I just happened to choose to wear my white longer skirt, so that was fun. (: My skirt did catch at one point, so I was just soooo greatful that I didn't end up falling and killing myself. And then I got to watch Sis. B climb over. Ha. Sister missionaries just aren't meant to climb tall fence things. Anyways, Sis. Barlow was Sis. Brooks's first comp\trainer and she finished her mission so her and her parents were here! They came over to the church and we talked with them for a little and them they drove us to our appointment! Which saved our feet cause it is super far. But it was so weird! Because it was her parents! I haven't seen American parents in sooo long it seems like! so it made me wish you guys could come pick me up! Ha. But I still have a long time left to go. :)Anyways, I gotta go but I love you!!! Make sure you tell all the girls how much I love them too! And miss them!!! :) Cause I know they will see this email and might now want to read it. Haha. Till next week!
Sister Amanda Stokes