Saturday, December 26, 2015


Hello all!  It´s P-day again!  

Due to the LOVELY holidays we have had 3 non-proselyting days in a row, Julafton (Christmas Eve), Jul (Christmas), and Annan Dag Jul (Another day of Christmas, or the day after!) They just changed p-day to Saturday for this week and next! 

Well, it has been a lovely week over here in Sverige!  I hope all of you have had a wonderful Christmas week! It started off with a fun Family home evening night with one of the Families in Täby!  The Emmanuelsons, they are just such a lovely family!  They had us over for dinner, and then Syster Bateman and I gave the FHE lesson and activity, and then we got to help them put up their tree and decorate it!  It was SO fun!  Oh that just made us two of the happiest girls ever!  Decorating a Christmas tree, classic Christmas music in the background, and being with this wonderful family!  I just love it here! 

{With the Emmanuel Family on Christmas Eve}

Tuesday we went to one of my favorite ladie's home and we got to help her clean and put up Christmas decorations for Christmas!  It was so fun!  I just love that people want us to come and help decorate, it's my favorite thing!  After that, we went to help a member, Azam... she is really cool, she's from Syria and let me tell you, I have never seen someone with as many clothes, shoes, and bags as she has.  No joke.  It's impressive!  After helping for a few hours she fed us dinner.  But saying she fed us dinner is an understatement.  It was like a feast but more.  

She has us sit down at the table and comes over with this HUGE plate of pasta!  HUGE!  I swear that thing was suppose to be for 6 people at least.  She goes and puts it in front of Sys. Bateman.  And a minute later she sweetly brings over my plate for 6!  I don't know how much she thinks people are suppose to eat... but I think that the amounts might be just a little high!  So, prior to coming, Sys. Bateman had warned me about her serving sizes...but this was bigger than expected--and surprisingly, after we overlooked the pile and powered through, we walked out and Sys. Bateman said, "You got lucky... it´s usually bigger than that!"  WHAT?!  I physically cannot see how that is possible!  But we did it!  

After Azams', we had a District activity of Christmas Caroling!  It was so fun... we went to one of the main train stations and stood outside as people were coming in and out, and then we had one or two companionships at a time walking around contacting and passing out pepprakakor cookies!  It was so fun, and people were actually stopping to listen--and we talked to a lot of people and showed "En Frälsare Är Född"! ("A Savior is Born").  It was so fun!  And then we all went to Täby Centrum (a mall right by where we live) and got hot chocolate!

Wednesday we went to a less active members house like an hour and a half away--and we love going over there because we get to take this awesome double decker bus and its so relaxing, and I can't seem to go on it without thinking of Harry Potter, when they are on the bus.  Anyways, we were going to Veronica's house for a Julbord! Which is like a bunch of random Swedish foods that you put together during Christmas time... She was so sweet and it was fun having my first Julbord at a home, since the only ones we have been to were church activities. 

{Syster Campbell's favorite seat on the double decker bus}

Well, after eating she said okay. Let's give that a minute and then we can have some glas (ice cream) for dessert... literally a minute later, okay are we ready for glas? Haha yeah okay.  So we get the bowls out and scoop the ice cream and she said, "I'll be right back, I'm just going to go do something you guys aren't allowed to do!"  We just look at eachother and we are like, okayyyyyy..... so um, what's that supposed to mean!  Haha!  We were so confused! 

We just sat down at the table for like 5 minutes and we had no clue what to do!  The ice cream was already soup because she asked up to bring it and we had to travel an hour and a half to travel, so it was soup!  So here we are, sitting, not knowing where Veronica went, not knowing if we should eat our soup or not--but then we hear her call out, "you can go into the living room!"  So, we grab the bowls and make our way to the room we thought she was talking about.  Still totally confused, and we just sit there... in the dark, so we just decide to eat our ice cream soup.  

A few minutes this side door opens right by me and I freak!  It scared me so bad!  Then all of a sudden this overwhelmingly strong cloud of smoke flows into the room, and Syster and I just look at eachother and just start laughing to ourselves!  We had been so confused and then all of our questions were answered.  She just needed a little smoking break!  Haha! We keep just saying, "I'll be right back, I'm just going to go do something you guys aren't allowed to do!"  Oh man, good memories are being made! 

{Their apartment--Annie is pretty proud of their "MORMON.ORG sign in the window!}

Then Thursday....CHRISTMAS EVE!!!  Julafton!  Oh, we started on a great note...woke up and went on a run right away.  After running for a little bit, I just choose to do a random little heel click and then told Sys. Bateman to do one, too!  She then goes on to try...jumps up--good form--but just can't seem to actually make the heels click!  Shes like "Hey! That wasn't too bad, for not even being able to see anything without my contacts in!"  She then proceeds to do another and this time she jumps up and comes down right in a HUGE puddle!  Oh, I just about died!  I don't know if I have ever seen a better reaction!  Oh, just pure shock and just the fact that she trudged through the rest of it... it was DEEP!  Haha! Past her ankles, and I was just laughing SO hard!  I kept saying "do you want to go back? ", but she just wanted to keep going!  So we did!  It made my morning! 

{Helping the Emmanuel Family with their Christmas decorating on Christmas Eve}

Then a little later, the Elders came and picked us up and we were on our way to the cutest little family-the Percivals--for Julafton! (a young mom and dad, two little boys and the grandparents).   It was so fun because Swedes celebrate Christmas Eve more than Christmas Day, so it was so fun to be able to be part of that!  We got to see all of the cute traditions that Swedes do and we all just fell in love with it!  

We started off with a delicious Julbord (Swedish Christmas Feast type of thing), and then we wathched "Kalle Anka"! Which is bacically Donald Duck!  EVERY Swede watches it on Julafton and it was just so fun!  It was just like a movie length compilation of old Disney clips...  it was so cute!  But honestly, between 3:00 and 4:00pm on Julafton,  you won't see a single Swede out, because they are ALL in watching "Kalle Anka"!  Everybody says they don't know why they watch it, but EVERYBODY does!  It is the funniest thing!  

After a while, they all opened their presents and then Jultompten (Santa) came!  One of the grandpas dressed up in this quite elaborate Santa costume and knocked on the door, and then they had the little boys go open the door...and it was the cutest thing...they were SO happy!  Then we didnt want to overstay our welcome, so we went on a lovely Christmas Eve walk until our ride came! 

Then Christmas!!!!  Oh, Christmas was just lovely!  We were fortunate enough to be able to go to President and Sister Beckstrand's house for Christmas, along with the AP's and our office Elders.  It was so fun, and just the funnest, most relaxing day!  And best of all...I GOT TO SKYPE MY FAMILY!!!!  

Oh, it was just so wonderful!  Cried quite lots, but it was so wonderful!  Even got to connect with my dearest Sister Sarah in Argentina for a little bit!  Crazy--she comes home in 3 WEEKS!  How is that possible?!  

{Syster Campbell in Sweden and Hermana Campbell in Argentina--what a wonderful Christmas blessing for our family!}

But it is pretty crazy to be on the other side of the screen with the nametag!  Oh, but it was just the loveliest day--we had a big homemade breakfast, and then played some games, watched a bunch of Disney shorts, then opened presents! 

{The District on Christmas Day with President and Syster Beckstrand}

Okay and we just have the BEST Elders ever!  So, apparently its been made clear that I love soccer and I'm dying to play again, and our wonderful Elders got me a soccer ball!!!  

They're bringing the presents over to President and Sys. Beckstrand, and then just bring one over to Sys. Bateman and I, and we are just like "Crap! we got them cheesy little things and they probably got us legit things!"  So, they all tell me to open my present--and its this big box I thought it was just going to be the Book of Mormons we recently ordered...but I open it and may have screamed a little...It was the best present EVER!  Oh, it was so fun!  They said, "it was pretty easy to know what we could get for you!"  Haha, oh it just made my life!

Throughout the rest of the day, we were all just playing with it and passing it around.  It was SO fun!  Then, after everyone skyped, we had a lovely Christmas dinner and then watched the new "Cinderella"!!!  Oh, I just love that one, and nobody else had seen it--and I assured them that they would like it if we watched it, and I'm happy to say I didn't let them down! They all loved it, and it was just the most magical Christmas! 

Well, I must be off, but just know that I love you all dearly and remember who you are and what you are doing. You are here for a reason, and never forget that.  Although Christmas may have passed, there is no need to not think about the true meaning of it everyday.  Never forget the Savior and never forget what he did for you.  Its truly been amazing to be a missionary right now.  Just getting into the mission field when they have asked us to really push the Christmas initiative "A Savior is Born"--its pretty amazing to see what it has done for people.

A Savior Is Born

Although just a two minute video its has become part of us.  Its been amazing to hear from my sweet sister all the way in Argentina talking about her using the video, and what an impact it has made for her.  The Spirit of Christmas and the Spirit of Christ are strong.  Let us never forget them but carry them with us continually!  

There is a special love that people seem to find again every Christmas Season--but what if we never let that go?!   What if we made it a point to think of the Savior everyday throughout the year like we do around Christmas?   

Thats my challenge for anyone who will take it--to really try everyday to have that same light and spirit about you that you have around this time.  Carry it with you everywhere you go, remembering Christ in all you do.  I love you all... NEVER forget that! 

Med Karlek, 

Syster Campbell

Wednesday, December 23, 2015


Familj, hej hej!!!

Wow... another week has gone by, this is just so crazy!   I still can´t believe I am here in Sweden and I am still constantly amazed by everything about it!  Needless to say, I LOVE it here!  Which is a good thing since I´m going to be here for a while! 

Well, its been quite an eventful week here!  The numbers aren´t real high as investigators go here, so we are building that up!  Like I said last week, we are just really trying to find people, which means contacting and tracking... and a lot of it.  

One of the biggest successes of the week though was going from DREADING contacting to actually enjoying it!  Seriously though, its pretty sad.  Last week and at the beginning of this week I just did not like it!  I would hope that people would´t be out so I would´t have to talk!  Pathetic, I know.  

But on Tuesday, we had a double Zone Christmas Conference, and it was SO great!  

(Thank-you to the Mission Blog for the following wonderful pictures of the Conference!)

(Their theme for the Conference was, "What Gift Will You Give Him?")

The Stockholm Zone!

And then, lunch, of course!

Santa and Mrs. Claus read them all a story...

And then, a really fun Christmas gift exchange!

(Back to Annie's words!)

Needless to say, President and Sister Beckstrand are just amazing and so are our AP's, and they just talked about our purpose and why we are here, and it really got me thinking about contacting and why I wasn't enjoying it.  I decided from then on we were going to contact until I liked it.  That we were going to double our contacting numbers and I was going to love it! 

So the next day, we go out and the first guy comes and I say, "Hej hej, ursäkta, vi är missionarer med var kyrka, Jesu Kristi Kyrka, och vi är ut ikväll för at prata med, om Jultiden! Och vi har en cort filma från var kyrka om jultid kallad, En Frälsare är föd..." Basically saying who we are, and were hear talking about Christ and Chistmas and sharing the video "A Savior Is Born"!!!  Oh, it is the BEST!  I constantly have it going through my head in Swedish! 

Anyways, I go up, say it, and I'm immediately turned down after like three words... time goes on and nobody wants to hear, but I actually start to enjoy doing it!  We talk with everyone and once in a while there are people that think we're just here calling everybody out on their sins--many do a little 'pity tap' on our arms and walk away--and then you come across the most loving, most beautiful people that listen and love it all, but just don´t feel like they need it.  It is hard, but I love this work! 

{Annie loves seeing this:  people use ski poles while just walking around town for an added workout!}

I have just been out here for 2 weeks but it feels like I have already had a lifetime of experiences!  I have met the coolest people from ALL over the world.  I thought I had seen diversity in America... but not compared to Sweden! I absolutely LOVE it! 

The coolest part is that every day, THOUSANDS of refugees cross the boarders into Sweden and look to start a new and better life here.  These people are just beautiful, and they truly are turning to God.  I feel very blessed to be here at this time to meet with these people and just get a glimpse into their lives. 

We have talked to people who have just been here for a few days from Iran, Afghanistan, Ukraine, Iraq, Pakistan... and so many more, but these are just most LOVING, and sweetest people I think I have ever met.  Many of them hardly know any English or Swedish, but it is just amazing talking to them, and interestingly enough--talking to some in Spanish!... so we are just on the streets sometimes just speaking to one family, and we are using parts of English, Swedish and Spanish!  It is just the coolest thing!  I love it! 

Then, onto adventures... Gamla Stan!!!!  The most gorgeous and oldest (gamla) part of Stockholm!  We got to go last  Monday for p-day, and it was absolutely stunning!  

I didn´t quite know what to expect, but little did I know that I would basically be walking through Pinterest and Google images.  Seriously though--Look up Gamla Stan, Sweden on Pinterest and Google and you will see what I mean!  It was BEAUTIFUL! 

It was FREEZING and I was just in Heaven!  You basically just walk in between all of these OLD, beautiful buildings full of cute little shops and bakeries and just feel like you are in Heaven.  I don't know how else to describe it! 

Sys. Bateman must have been so sick of me saying just how beautiful everything was!  Then, after walking through all of the shops and things we got to the end of the road, and in the middle of this beautiful Old Swedish Christmas Market!  It was so cute!  

There were all of these bracelets and things made of Reindeer and Moose skin... and other awesome stuff.  And one place selling Reindeer meat, and jerky.... okay, basically just picture the store owner guy from "Frozen", the movie, who says, "hej hej, big summer blow out!"  

Yeah, it was like that but times that by 50!  Seriously... I am in Heaven!  Oh, and then we stood outside the palace and I got a picture with the guard!  It was awesome--and he actually talked! 

Swedish Food!  Its pretty dang good!... for the most part!  So every Swede LOVES their Fika.  That is just like a little snack of some sort--for Mormons, usually herbal tea and Luciacatter!  

The Lucia thing is like a cinnamon roll as far as the shape goes, but just imagine rolling the cinnamon roll half way--and then for the other half deciding to go the opposite way... wow--thats confusing.  Just look it up if you're not followin' me!  Bottom line they're good... and they are just a Christmas treat, or a Jul godi, so we are bombarded with them now, and then we will have to say goodbye to them for a year! But literally every house you go to they just bring out the Luciacatter! 

Oh and Kladkaka... amazing.   Sounds gross, I know--and if you are thinking about the line from "My Big Fat Greek Wedding," then your on the same page as me, because I think that every time I hear that word!  But, it is basically the best qualities of a chocolate cake and the best qualities of a brownie--and then you put them together and it is kladkaka... so yes.  I am saying that it is better than cake and brownies.  Sorry, but its true! 

{"MY kind of food!"}

But now for the opposite side of things.  One of our sweet investigators Pontus...he had us over, and he told Sys. Bateman that he was going to make something very traditional for me.  Thankfully, it was not Surrstroming, which I have heard many, interesting things about... but this one is called  Smorgastarta.  And if you know anything about me and what I like to eat you will love this:

Smorgastata: the Swedish sandwich cake! - MsCritique – An Australian Lifestyle, Travel, Food and Beauty Blog:

1. a stack of bread, (like 4 cut out bread circles.)
2.Filled with a shrimp and cream cheese filling. 
3. SMOTHERED in Mayonnaise. Literally oozing out of the sides.
*and best for last...
4.Topped with RAW shrimp.

Swedish sandwich cake. Done with shrimp or other seafood, roast beef, and different fillings with bread stacked between layers!:

NOT COOL!  What is this!  I'm just sitting there staring at it thinking... I can´t!  I honestly don´t think I can put a single piece in my mouth!  Nevertheless...with a prayer in my heart I ate that whole thing.  We better get our dear Pontus in the font for that one...

But while were still on the topic of food...we are set for the week!  We are going to a Swedish family's house for all of Christmas Eve Day!  Then the 7 Täby missionaries will spend Christmas Day at the Beckstrands, and then anothers member's house for Annandag Jul! Here we can't proselyte the day before, the day of, or the day after big holidays!  I'm not complaining will be pretty nice!  But here, Swedes celebrate Christmas Eve more than Christmas Day, so its cool that we will be with a Swedish family for Christmas Eve, and then Americans for Christmas Day!  It is so exciting!  So we have an exciting week coming up!

Well, our little act of service for this week was to our Elders!  They are so great.  We actually have 7 missionaries in this ward because we have the AP's, the office elders and then us--the Sisters--who are the full proselyting missionaries of Täby.  The 7 of us are known as the Täby Titans!  Pretty epic name if I do say so myself!  Oh, and you say it like "teby", fyi.  

Anyways.  Act of service...I made peanut butter cookies and Sys. Bateman wrote them all notes, than we wrote on a whole bunch of sticky notes and went over to the mission office, put down the cookies, quickly tried to stick on all the sticky notes while they were flying around in the freezing winter wind--and then banged super loud on the door, ran as fast as we could, and actually got to the bus stop right as it pulled up, and were able to escape right away! 

We later got a picture after they had found it, and they said that we scared the heck out of them when we knocked!  But they all do so much, and we feel like they hardly get any credit for all they do, so we thought that would be fun to do!  We're hoping next week for service we can go and help out at a refugee camp.  I honestly cannot say it enough how cool it is to just work with these amazing people here in Täby.  I feel so blessed, and everyday wonder how I got to start my mission here in this amazing place.

A few quick random things: 

--We just found out that we are probably moving.... during our meeting with all the missionaries and the ward mission leader, I am just sitting there trying to follow what's happening, catching like one out of every 20 words while one of the AP´s was saying something, and then they all looked up at us and I was like, "wait what happened?", and Sys. B. just says, "WHAT! seriouly!!!" I was just like WHAT!  I dont like this whole different language thing right now!  Then they just say... "um, you will probably have to move soon!"  LAME, so yeah.  We have no clue, but fun stuff! 

--Sys. Bateman´s dad sent her a puzzle for Christmas and wanted to see if she could finish it before Christmas.  So, she pulls is out, and we come to find that there is no box.  No picture.  No way of finding out what this puzzle was supposed to look like!  She pours out the pieces and they are all dark and tiny.  How in the World!!  Yeah.  I'm both sad and proud to say that we just finished it last night!  Well, mostly she did, but it was done in just like 4 days.  But don't worry. That was just done during our meal times!  Absolutely not cutting into our work time!  It was actually quite relaxing and I think I actually like puzzles now! 

Well, one last thought... a few days ago I was just thinking about all of the cool people we have been meeting and how we are just meeting people from all over the world.  I thought, here we are learning about all of these different people, their stories and helping them in just a little part of their story.  But, as we do this, we are making our own story and it helps us find our own. 

{photo sent by Kimberly Pence--she and her beautiful daughters met Systers Bateman and Campbell for lunch on Monday--so grateful for angels in Sweden!}

I feel so blessed to be here at this the beautiful land of Sweden, during this great time of change.  Getting a glimpse into culture from all around the world and being able to help them come to find their Savior at this wonderful Christmas time. 

I know my Savior lives.  I know that He died for us and that He rose again so that we could all do the same.  I know without any doubt that He loves each and everyone of His children.  I have felt that, and I CANNOT DENY that.  If I have felt or learned anything the past week and a half of being here, it is that our Father is SO very aware of ALL of us and He knows and LOVES us. I have felt such a distinct love for the people we talk to while contacting, and there is No doubt that it is the Love that we are feeling is the love that Christ has for them.  It is truly remarkable. 

The Reality of Christmas by Bishop Gary E. Stevenson LDS:

Lastly, as my duty as a missionary, I will leave you with an invitation:  An invitation to spread the Truth.  That A Savior is Born, and His name is Jesus Christ.  He lives--and what a perfect time to let everybody know that.  He is the true meaning of Christmas.  LOVE this holiday season and remind somebody who they are and why they are here.  I love you all and hope you enjoy and remember the true meaning of Christmas!  En Frälsare Är Född.

Med Älska,

Syster Campbell