My First Birthday

Dear everyone,

On September 2, 2015, I walked into the Missionary Training Center. It’s hard to believe it’s been a year. It’s been a wild ride but I’ve loved it so much and am beyond grateful I still have 6 months:)

Guess I’ll do a quick recap of areas/companions? I don’t know.

* MTC with Sister Choo
* Strasburg with Sister Kastner (and a baby donkey)
* Strasburg with Sister Sherwood

Thornton (left-to-right):
* Me and Sister Wick
* Me and Sister Smithson

Sister Training Leaders and Sister Mendenhall


My nine month mark (traditional burning of an item of clothing)


* Aurora with Sister Mitchell (“Fit to the Finish” 5K)
* Arvada with Sister Johnson


Ft. Collins temple open house

And missionary life just gets better and better:) Seriously this has been the best decision of my life!

Here are some pictures of the Ft. Collins temple:

Anyway, I can’t decide if I’m a temple open house missionary or a proselyting missionary. Oh well. We were up in Fort Collins more than ever this past week and got to see lots of miracles:) On Wednesday (I think…the temple days are all blurring together) we met a woman coming into our video room. We said hi to her and she started a conversation. She’s a non-member from south of Denver, about two hours away from Fort Collins, and she heard about the open house and said she felt drawn to it. She’d had a reoccurring dream about being submerged in water and she had come to the temple open house looking for answers. Obviously we were excited! We showed the introductory video to her and the others in our room and they went off to the temple. After a while it was our turn to go to the reception area behind the temple, so we went over and lo and behold, there was our friend! We talked with her, and she had spent a lot of time in the temple. And she had gotten her answer:) She told us she knew this was right, so we and the other sisters got her information to have the missionaries in the Denver South mission visit her. They better take good care of her!!

On the way up to the temple we stopped and bought a doughnut as big as my face.  It lasted us all the way through our 6-hour shift!

This week will finish it off. Our last days up there are Thursday and Friday, and the last day of the open house is Saturday. It’s going to be strange to not be going up there anymore! On Friday after the last tour, Sister Johnson and I went through the actual temple for probably the last time on our missions. It was pretty sad. Then we just sat outside and looked up at the temple all lit up and beautiful. It really is a beacon of God’s light, and it’s been amazing to see that in the people going through it. I love the temple so much!

Halloween at the dollar store

It has been hard to balance the open house with normal missionary work lately. With it ending, Sister Johnson and I are really starting to think about goals for our area. We also just got a new ward mission leader on Sunday, so it’s basically a new start all around. We’re making lots of goals and plans for the things we need to be doing and how to work effectively with the ward. It’s actually really exciting and just reminds me that when one door closes, another opens:)

I just love missionary work!! There are lots of ups and downs and ins and outs and everything in between, but it’s all worth it:) I love the Lord and I love His work! And this IS His work. If I’ve learned anything, I’ve learned that:)


Sister Stratford


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