MERRY (almost) CHRISTMAS!!  I hope you are all doing well and enjoying the holiday season!

WELL, let me tell you a little bit about my week. It was a great week with lots of tender mercies, trials, changes and blessings. We started off the week with exchanges, so Sister Hodgson (our sister training leader) came into Great Falls and we were in a trio with her for the day, which was so fun! I always learn so much from the Sister Training Leaders. On Tuesday night we went to the Bellessa's home for dinner and for dessert they made this chocolate cake that I'm pretty sure is just like the cake mom makes me for my birthday (tender mercy)! It was so yummy and reminded me of home :)
THEN Wednesday morning we woke up at 6:23 and exercised, then around 7:05am we got a call letting us know that it is one of elder's birthday! So we quickly pull together a little surprise party for him, we spent our breakfast/getting ready hour preparing little gifts, cookies, etc for his birthday and it was so fun. THEN Sister Hodgson gets a call from the Overlook  Ward sisters, and told us that she needed to be dropped off at their home. So we went to drop her off.  We walked into the Overlook ward sisters home and something was a little off. I was talking with Sister Crosland and I asked her if she was coming to practice the song for zone conference (because we had scheduled as a zone to practice the songs at 11am that day) and she said no.
When I asked why, she took Sister Nez and I into their room and said "Surprise!!" There were suit cases and clothes all over the place. I looked at her and said "You aren't coming because your room is messy?!" She responded with "No! We are getting emergency transferred to Missoula." Then it all started clicking in my head. I held it together for a good 5 minutes before we were all in tears haha. It is funny because I know I will probably serve with them again, we were just all so surprised that it felt very devastating. BUT I know the Lord needs them elsewhere right now.
So after many hugs and tears, we headed back to the church for song practice and for Elder C's surprise birthday! We got everything set up and when he walked in he was so surprised! It turns out he hates birthdays (lol) but he looked happy so we will consider it a success. It was super fun. THEN we practiced the songs we were suppose to be learning for Zone Conference. It went pretty well, but my emotions were still all over the place because of previous events that morning, so at one point during the rehearsal everyone started laughing SO hard because we were really struggling to learn the songs and then all of a sudden my laughter tears turned into real tears and before you knew it I was crying SO hard, it was very embarrassing haha. I feel bad for the poor elders, they all thought I was crying because their singing didn't sound good (which was obviously not the case, they sounded great) but yeah talk about a roller coaster day of emotions, and it was only Wednesday at that point!!

Thursday we woke up at 5am for the Christmas Conference in Helena! Luckily I didn't have to drive on the way to Helena. The roads were pretty icy, but we made it there safely and 45 minutes early! It was so fun to see so many missionaries, we took lots of pictures and had such a fun time. President asked a few missionaries to share their testimonies on the Savior's atonement and then he and Sister Wadsworth shared a few of their most memorable Christmas memories, it was very sweet. After the devotional we all headed into the cultural hall which was beautifully decorated.  We had a very nice dinner and they played this slide show of pictures of all the missionaries when they were younger. There was a big "awww" when everyone saw the picture of me as a bald little baby on Christmas, it was hilarious hahah.
As we were all mingling and taking pictures, President Wadsworth RUNS into the room screaming that Santa is on his way (he had told us how his job in his home Ward had been to get all the kids excited for Santa to come at their Ward Christmas parties) and it nearly scared me half to death hahah!  Out come the assistants, one dressed as an elf and one dressed as Santa. It was hilarious hahah. So we all got to take pictures with Santa which was way fun! We also got goodie bags with little treats in it from the mission office AND a letter from home! It was so sweet, I started tearing up. I loved all the kind words and sweet thoughts from my family, it was awesome.
 Other HIGHLIGHTS from the week :)
1. We build a ginger bread house with a family in our Ward and it was the craziest little ginger bread house ever, it was so fun!

 2. Some members gave us BUFFALO JERKY! we haven't tried it yet, but we are assuming it is going to be amazing.
3. Dinner with President Strausbauch!! He is the elders quorum president in our Ward and he had us and the Roe River elders over for dinner. We showed up and he had planned this super fancy dinner for us, it was so sweet! He even had a "Hawaiian Christmas Tree" aka a pineapple with ornaments on it. It was SO AWESOME!! He gave sister Nez and I these beautiful glass angels he had had someone make for us as Christmas gifts, they are beautiful!

4. Christmas Caroling!! We went as a district to different homes in our area and Christmas Caroled, it was rockin! And we actually sounded pretty decent! (Except for at the last house where I started Silent Night WAY to high and nobody could reach the notes and we all just started laughing because it sounded awful haha but the members laughed right along with us so it was fine:)
5. Christmas Sunday :) We sang with the Ward choir and it was really a beautiful program. ALSO Sister Nez and I wore matching outfits, so it was pretty amazing.
 It was a crazy week, it went by so fast, but it was so awesome! I am excited for this week, I can't believe it is Christmas already!!Everything is great in Great Falls! I hope you are enjoying the sunshine and warmth. I am praying for my first white Christmas!! I love you all so much.

Love, Sister Wong


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