Thursday, July 13, 2017

Week 80 - My birthday, the 4th of July, and getting ready for Naadam!

It's a beautiful day in the neighborhood!  Naadam is tomorrow -  endless huushuur, wrestling, dancers, horses, archery, and sunscreen!  I live right by the stadium, so I've been watching them set up for the past week.  When the performers practicing get hungry, they just hop on their horses and grab dinner.  It's been quite fun to watch!  
My birthday was a raging success!  I had a birthday party with cake and ice cream and tacos and pin the tail on the donkey.  I felt like a queen.  My mission sisters are the best!  The evening ended and I wondered how my life could get any better…  
I'll tell you how it could:  The next day was my actual birthday, and it started with chocolate chip muffins and eggs for breakfast, followed by the typical study schedule.  Then we made a quick trip to the church to get some stuff and then went out to lunch with Sister Hill and her daughter who spoiled me rotten.  I ate lasagna and Crème Brule.  I think I died and went to heaven.  But I was quickly revived and taken to our sweet grandma's house.  We read the scriptures with her and listened to her.  She loves to tell us all sorts of stuff we can't quite understand, but the love abounds when we are together!  On our walk home (the weather was absolutely perfect, by the way!  Happy birthday me!!) we ran into a returned missionary who recognized Sister Austin from a previous ward, and she insisted on buying us KFC.  On any other day at any other time would have been great, but we were so full we just got ice cream - and it was so good! Then we did more studies and then went to Hard Rock with Sister Hansen and Sister Wilcox.  We had a blast talking and laughing and eating and eating.  We walked home and had some more muffins and ice cream and Sister Austin sang happy birthday and it was the perfect way to start my 25th year!  Good things are coming this year!  I'm so blessed!  
We met with our cute investigator girl, and her family wants to take the lessons now.  She loves the Gospel and can't wait to learn more. These miracles just never get old.  They make me so happy.
I also got to go on a split with Sister Brezenski on Saturday. I love that girl!  She's such a good missionary!  We had a grand old time and ended the evening with a meeting at Munkhgerel's house!  Munkhgerel is my one and only Mongolian companion who is now home from her mission and married to her sweetheart.  It's a little disgusting to see how in love they are, but I loved being there so much.  They shared just what I needed to hear, and I held back tears because I really didn't want to cry.  It started to occur to me how hard goodbyes will be in the next few weeks.  Luckily, I won't have to say goodbye to Munkhgerel until my last Sunday!  She's coming to my ward that week!  She's also coming for ward conference before that, so it's all good! :)  
I love Mongolia so much!  I love my mission!  I love the people!  So, I'm going to go out there and use my last few weeks to love more and more!  Miracles are happening every day!  And I love being a part of it!  Love you all!

Sister Bottorff

What a fun birthday party! Cake, games, and great friends!

I love this city by the river...

And then there's the Hard Rock...

Dinner with Sister Hansen

Happy Fourth of July!

Horsemen practicing for Naadam

Good times with Munkhgerel :)


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