Thursday, May 21, 2015



So good to hear from you mama.

First thing I just need to say thank you. You are the sweetest. I hope
I didn't worry you to much. when I tell you things I do not tell you
them to make you stressed, though I know me telling you this will do
no good because you will worry anyway.

Also before I forget: tell carson thank you for making doodle happy
with dedicating that song to him. I don't know why but the small
things just mean the most. And i appreciate that you tell me those
things. Makes me feel like everyone is ok at home.

I already emailed dad and told him this and you can both read both
emails. I am not sending out a big one today, unless you want to
publish this one. I am good with whatever. But I am going to be real
in this email.

I am so far away from home. It makes my heart ache because ya, I have
never really done anything without you guys. This place is wonderful
though I was confused my first few days why my heart wasn't happier. i
mean for goodness sakes I have been waiting and pinning for 8 months
to get here. Then I came to this beautiful "small" city of Cherkassy
and just felt, sad. Because it is hard. We talk in Russian, yes I knew
we would be doing that. Ha! i remember the first time I heard a small
small child start talking in Russian and I panicked. SMALL CHILDREN
pretty crazy. One of the hard things about Cherkassy is the fact that
we have no investigtors here. We are searching everyday. Doing so
many different activities to try and find. We even teach two levels of
english classes to attract people. Most of the people tell us that
they don't need the gospel here. There have been real moments of
struggle as people warn us to never come back again or scream in our
faces. (Mom don't worry I am ok). But I love these people anyway,
because I know that God loves them and he wants them to come home.
They may just not be ready right now. And that is ok. We will keep
searching. there are rare but beautiful moments when we find people
on the street who will stop and talk and take the book of Mormon. But
they never want to meet later for more information. It is ok. I am
determined and I know that God is preparing at least someone here to
accept the gospel. We may just have to dig through the entire city in
order to find them. As for the Russian! This is crazy stuff. I can't
believe I am actually speaking this language. There is SO MUCH I do
not know. Also people talk a mile and hour here and I think I have
realized why. They have such giant words that no one would actually be
able to speak the language unless they fly over the words. ;P

Mama. The pain is real. I have never experienced anything like this
and I know it will continue to get harder. But all I can do is be
grateful. There is no other way I could so completely turn and rely on
my Savior and grow this much. I feel him with me everyday. I pray all
day and it brings me a lot of peace. Satan is very real. not only to
the people here we are trying to help, but he is real for the
missionaries. He does not want us here. He knows the prophecy that
there will be 100's of thousands of people converted to the Lord here
and temple spires dotting the land and he is persistent. I am learning
that we have to be more persistent than the adversary will be.

Now for a great moment of much importance.
there was a baby SPIDER in the hair of the Babooshka we were teaching
the other day. I took it out with my BARE HAND. how incredible is
that? President Packer says we need to celebrate and count each
victory we have during the day since this mission is really hard.
Well, VICTORY!!!! It was a huge deal for me. Because I hate spiders so
much. After I took it out I wanted my hand to fall off. BUT there was
no way I could just leave it there. I really love that Babooshka.

Cherkassy is beautiful. everything is so green and the buildings are
just fantastic. Oh, did I mention that my church building is PINK?! It
is. I love it oh so much. We had about 40 members there on Sunday and
there is many inactives as well that we work with. I bore a 5 minute
testimony on the book of mormon in sacrament! Can you believe it? I
was embarrassed because the branch president could see my legs just
shaking behind the podium.

I know it is all going to be ok. I so appreciate your prayers. I feel
them so strongly and hearing from you all really does make everything
ok. This is really hard but I want you to know that I am ok and that
this is worth it. Pray for these people, pray for me and my companion.
It is hard because this is her last transfer and she has to train a
new B who is so reliant on her. I understand it is tough and she is
awesome. Hopefully my Russian will just grow better and better. I love
you guys so much.

Mom read dad's email too because it explains more.
I am so glad AK had a great birthday and you have all been doing so
great. Mom you really do fly up that hill don't you?1 so excited for
you to train me on the bike when I get back :D I know that I can do
this, because God is here. This is his work. I am lucky and blessed to
be a part of it.

I love you so much! Have a wonderful amazing grand week! I will too.
love KY

PS: I will try to send some photos :) <3

PPS: I wish I had more time. :(

cherkassy week 1

Dad my friend Sadey just got called to Fortaleza East

Also reading your email I am just here crying. I am so far away from
you all. It is hard to be so far and the people only speak Russian and
my city is HARD. The people here tell us they do not need the gospel.
but we also have a church building here. It is pink and it is awesome.
We had like 40 some people at church yesterday (all members) we have
no investigators. The members are awesome. I bore my testimony about
the book of mormon for 5 minutes in sacrament yesterday and then I
said a prayer in Sunday School. A man came up to me and asked me how
long I had been in Ukraine (thinking this was not my first transfer) I
told him only a few days and he was shocked at how well I can speak.
It was nice because I don't really feel that way. I know it takes time
but I do not feel that I speak well. But I am happy to be here. I
smile no matter what and it really does help my day be better. i have
only cried 2 days I have been here. Which is a really good thing for
me. Though today we were planning family home evening and I just
started crying for no reason because I am supposed to explain some
foreign concept I never learned how to talk about in the mtc. My heart
sometimes throbs. President Packer warned me it would be painful. I am
started to understand better how Jake felt when he first went out. My
3rd day here my companion was ignoring me and i was sad because
everyone on the street had just yelled at us and I went to the
bathroom and cried because I just wanted you. I wanted my dad because
I know that you experienced this. I don't tell you this to worry you
or to make you feel sad but I tell you because I know that you
understand because you have done this before. I know I will be okay. I
really do love Ukraine and I would not give this opportunity up for
anything. I am realizing now more than ever how much I have to rely on
my Savior. I basically pray all day long. It brings me comfort. It is
really hard for me to just walk up to people and start talking to
people about their salvation in RUSSIAN. But I know that it is God who
called me here to do this and that He knows better than I do and that
these people do need this. One of my goals is to talk to EVERYONE I
CAN. EVERYONE. Talk about facing my WORST fears. It is crazy.

So fun to read your email. You got to eat Brazilian food and talk to
mission guys. My heart is happy. I love the emails. Dear Elders are
good too, but I can only pick them up when I go to Kyiv which is 3
hours away. I will be there thursday though so if you want to send one
before then I can grab it in the office. but then after that I won't
be in Kyiv for I don't know how long. You can do both if you want. I
do not mind catching up on stuff. I love you daddy.

Glad to hear about AK. He is one of my main priorities out here.
Sounds weird cuz I am so far away but I really pray and I study
scriptures for him and I want to be a good example and for him to
realize he needs a mission and so he needs to be worthy. It is hard
but I know that he is amazing person with a really special soul. I
love you and mom so much. Thanks for taking care of each other. I will
try to be patient and happy. I am happy. I will take care.

So great to hear you are visiting grandma and grandpa. I miss them.
Please tell grandma she can't go anywhere until I get back. Grandpa
too for that matter. I need to see them again IN THIS LIFE. It sounds
like you have had a great and eventful week.

Pray for me and my companion. This is her last transfer and I feel she
is ready to go home. She doesn'
t really want to be here and it is hard
because she has to train a new person and I heavily rely on her
especially because she is native. Pray for this area. They need the

I will keep going and keep doing!
I love you the most.


My Pink Church in Cherkassy

Sister Fedas

On 5/18/15, Tom Karren wrote:
 Hey bird,

 By the time you get this, you’ll have been gone from Provo for a week (at
 least) assuming your p-day is Monday. We were excited to hear that you got
 there safely and of course anxious to know how things are going for you.
 Sounded like from your letter that things were going to be very real with
 your new area and companion and all.

 I remember how it was when I first arrived in Brazil. Everything so so
 different. It was a real shock and challenge in so many ways. I think that’s
 partly why I turned pale when you got your call. I knew that it meant so
 much change and challenge and I was anxious for you - not because I don’t
 think you are up for it, but just because I know what it is like. So I hope
 it’s going ok for you little, and I know how weird and challenging it may
 feel. We pray for you and think of you constantly so I hope you can feel
 that comfort.

 It’s been raining here non stop for the last week, and really going back a
 couple weeks. This week it rained so much we thought we might need to get
 the boat out. I went on a motorcycle ride with some friends for a couple
 days and we got very wet.

 I might be going to Germany at the end of June to speak at a conference. If
 I do, that would be cool because I’d be closer to you! Mom is super jealous.

 We had a good weekend for AK with his birthday. He is growing and changing
 fast. He went to a party Friday night and had a lot of fun. We found out
 he’s got pneumonia so he’s been really sick from that, but I think the
 medicine is helping and he seems to be improving. It’s a big year for him,
 turning 17 and headed to 18. I remember how much you changed that year.

 I am watching mom write your letter. She has like 5 open screens up on her
 computer. She is watching talks, pulling things from all kinds of places.
 Now that you are out of country, I think she is putting all her 'super mom'
 care into your letters. In case you haven’t noticed, she loves you a lot. I
 do too!

 Mom was at the temple this week and had some special feelings about Austin.
 I have been talking to him a lot about getting more serious about his
 preparation. We will keep reading the Book of Mormon and saying family
 prayers. I hope that as this year goes by AK can grow, mature and prepare in
 quickened ways. I hope he can feel the pull and find within himself the
 person that he needs to become to be ready to serve.

 Parker came by Saturday to give us his graduation announcement and to talk
 to us. He sat in the kitchen as we worked on preparing food for Sunday and
 told us about his mission preparation. He’s made a lot of progress in a
 year. Really glad for him and hope he can have a great experience.

 We had dinner at grandma and grandpas last Sunday for mothers days. The food
 was kinda low tech, but it was fun to hang out there with granny. Faffy, and
 Laura came. The next day we went to the Payson Temple open house. We took
 grandpa and grandma. It was really cool. They have these beautiful stain
 glass windows in the sealing rooms. Very peaceful. After we went to dinner
 with the kids and grandpa and grandma to celebrate Austin and Grandpas
 birthdays. We went to Los Hermanos in provo. It was fun except grandpa
 plugged his ears when they came to sing the birthday song. He is a funny
 grandpa sometimes.

 I went to lunch this week with some guys from my mission at a Brazilian
 restaurant in South Jordan that I like. We talked about the mission days,
 shared some stories and even ran into some Brazilian elders. It was really
 fun and brought back a lot of memories. I have a special bond with those
 guys that goes beyond a lot of even my current friendships.

 Today coming home from Church I noticed Doodle was outside collecting
 rolly-pollies in your old crab tank. He stayed out there for a half hour or
 more collecting lady bugs and rollies. Such a cute little guy. He put some
 leaves and stuff in so they would have a habitat.

 I hope it’s ok that I tell you all this random stuff about how things are
 going here. I know how busy you are and how you just have a little time to
 write, so just enjoy the letters and let me know if you would prefer Dear
 Elders or if the emails are better. I worry that if we do Dear Elder’s you
 won’t get them as frequently. Hopefully you’ll have time to read this - or
 you can just print it off or something!

 I love you sweet girl. Stay strong and stay patient. All things will come to
 you in due time. Please know we love you so much and miss you so much. Take
 care ok?
 Love Dad

just for you guys :)

An email just for you guys this week :) 

Seeing you guys was the best and a reassurance that you are real and love me! I always know that but when you are gone you start to think maybe you are just crazy and you are making your family up. ;) No really though, they usually don't have missionaries see their families because they think it hinders them and makes it harder for missionaries. I don't feel that way. It gave me an extra boast to see you and talk to you and still be a missionary and then I get to head to Ukraine in 4 days time. It was pretty epic. Plus I get to talk to you all again on Sunday for 30 minutes. PS I will be calling at 3:15 Sunday until 3:45. 

Deed yesterday I forgot to ask you how work was doing? Update me please? 
Also dad do you think Scott would read my big emails if he was on the list? Or that maybe I could send missionaries to him? I want him to come back. My heart is really aching for him right now and I am not sure why. Maybe no to all of the above but just know I am praying for him because I just want him to realize he can come home and that he needs to. 
How is grandma doing?

So glad the boys got to hear my testimony in Russian and I AM SO PUMPED TO HEAR THEIR VOICES. Tell Bridger I got his dragon and it is literally amazing. Because of him my whole district decided to be dragons now. EPIC. 

You are all such good examples to me. Life is busy and life is hard but yet you decide to continue to read together in the morning, to talk as a family and eat together, to love one another, and though we all make mistakes, whether big or small I am proud of you all for learning the process of repentance. We all need to repent always, and how beautiful it is we have the opportunity. I used to think repentance was such a scary thing. Especially when you would make the same mistake over and over. Sometimes you feel so guilty it is hard to get down on your knees. But being here and speaking with investigators and studying and learning and trying to become more like my Savior I am starting to understand what a beautiful thing repentance is. Of course you feel gross BEFORE you repent. Your soul is good and does not like it. The feelings of guilt cause you to want to do something to fix it, and then you get on your knees and you pray. When you are praying I don''t know about you but I feel so much peace. Like Heavenly Father is so proud and happy that you are trying to be a better person. Then when you are forgiven it is the best most happy feeling in the world.  Repentance to me feels like this: It is like you have been working hard all day in the hot sun and you are sweaty and dirty, and you come home exhausted and you take a nice shower and you get all clean, then you sit down to a home cooked meal with the people you love. Repentance is happiness and it is joy. Never be afraid to repent. Because it is wonderful and an amazing gift that because God knows we are imperfect He gives us a way to come home.

Well. I don't have much else to say but I am SO EXCITED FOR UKRAINE. I am finally getting to go to this place I keep dreaming about and loving more than life itself. I get to meet her and her people and I get to talk about my favorite thing in the whole world which brings me the most happiness. God's children are made for the stuff of eternities. So let's get going bringing his children home to Him. Our father in heaven is in this work. I truly know that it is His and how glorious it is. I love you all. 

I will talk to you soon. FOR REALS! 

Love Ky

PS scariest email of my life today. I want to smack this elder. Before he left the MTC he found me fasinating I don't know why and asked me for my email like 8 times in many roundabout ways. So finally I gave it to him. He is in Cambodia and he is nice but there is just no chance. So mostly he just sends weekly stuff out to everyone but today he sent me this. First he calls the subject BEAUTY and just gag. Second the reason he wants to get to know me it beacuse I am pretty and cool?! WHAT DOES A LIFETIME FRIENDHSIP EVEN MEAN. and his two main reasons suck. and he doesnt know this but my heart is SO ELSEWHERE AND HE IS A missionary so why even try?! My goodness. I am not writing back. End of rant. Enjoy his stupid email. 

Hey! I just wanted to write you a short little email about you. Being here in Cambodia has made me realize how attractive people are just about everywhere else in the world. And I thought about how pretty you are and how cool you are! Don't ever feel like you aren't pretty enough because you are beautiful! 
     I know this email is out of the blue but I feel like I should tell you that. It's very true. I hope to be able to make our friendship last a lifetime for multiple reasons but the two main reasons are because of how cool you are and how pretty you are. 
     I hope everything is going well. What's going on in your world? How's life outside of the third world country of Cambodia? Also, I want to get to know you more as a person so tell me about some of your interests! Good luck in life! Hope to hear back soon. 
      Love, Elder Lamborn

Tuesday, May 12, 2015



So Ukraine is real. And I am really here!!!!! So sad I could not call in the airport. We tried for about an hour and our "International Calling Cards" don't actually work is what we discovered. So we didn't get  to call and that put a damper on things. But the flights were good. We travelled forward in time which was crazy! I am so so tired. We got here yesterday in the afternoon and we went contacting in this gorgeous park where Elder Packer dedicated Ukraine for the work of the Lord many years ago. It didn't go so well when I started to speak Russian to a man who quickly stood up, only wanting to speak Ukrainian. All well. The President stepped in and helped me out. Today I am going to meet my trainer. I already know who she is. Her name is Sister Fedas. She is a native Russian and it is her last transfer (I am so scared) but I am also so excited. I just wanted to send you a quick email letting you know I am alive and well. Ukraine is magical. It is so green and there are plants here I have never seen. We are all doing well. I am going to a city called Cherkassy it is about 3 and a half hours south of Kyiv, and 2 hours from Odessa. I have already been asked to accompany someone at our zone conference next week in front of a 70! I actually don't know if I can even play the song so I may have to say no. awkward. MOM AND DAD I AM IN UKRAINE. 8 MONTHS I HAVE BEEN IMAGINING THIS. I AM FINALLY HERE. THIS PLACE IS MY NEW HOME AND I AM GOING TO SPEAK RUSSIAN AND TELL PEOPLE ABOUT GOD AND HIS SON. CRAZINESS. I AM EMOTIONAL PROBABLY BECAUSE I AM SO TIRED. The President is amazing. His family is adorable and I know I am going to learn so much from him. He is so personable and so in this work. Everyone he runs into he speaks to about the gospel. He tells them, "It is your lucky day! Do you want to know why? Because these missionaries have a special message that will bless your life forever." Grateful to be here. So nervous I can hardly stand it. LET'S DO THIS! GAME ON. 

I hope you are all doing well. Can't wait to hear from you.

сестра кэррен

PS: Mom I had to send some stuff home and it made me so sad. They only took 50 pounds on the airline we were going to so i would have had to throw stuff away and I couldn't do that. Go through it and see what may be important to send to me? I am so sorry! I don't think I will need the straightener (maybe) because it is so humid my hair is curly. See what you think. I love you!!!!!\\\I 

I LOVE YOU GUYS THE MOST!!!!!! Thanks for being the best family in the whole world.

President and Sister Packer
Sister Young Sister McDermott Sister Rubio
Kyiv Ukraine Temple