This week has been absolutely ridiculous! And before I tell you too much... THANK YOU SO MUCH for all the DearElders and packages (although I can't wait to open the one tomorrow for thanksgiving and I have a third one I haven't picked up yet haha)!
So the first day Aunt Terra dropped me off and whilst others were crying with their family I was trekking up a hill with my host headed off to get materials. I was glad I didn't have to cry (that was already done haha) and I could just be happy and excited :) So I met my wonderful companion, her name is SISTER POUTU! She is from New Zealand (sorry no blog) so her accent has been rubbing off on me a bit. She is the sweetest person ever and has such a wonderful spirit! I learn a lot from her... maybe some stuff I shouldn't... jk haha she is wonderful! We have four sisters in our room, me, sister Poutu (Poe-Too), Sister Alaiasa from Hawaii and Sister Timuia who is Samoan but from Arizona. Yup. In in a room with a bunch of Polynesians! And they are so wonderful! Sister Timuia is super sarcastic (in a good hilarious way) and reminds me of Alex.
We love to make fun of each other and I’m learning a lot of new Maori words like ma hine which means white girl...cause I’m white and everyone else is brown haha. Also jutulae which means "wanna die?!" but we say it so lovingly it’s hilarious...don't be worried, im safe! :P also momo means poo and popo means kiss :P all of us sisters in our district are going to the same mission (only four of us) and we have three Elders in our district, Elder Shupe, Elder Platt, and Elder Aldous going to Manchester new Hampshire mission. The elders leave Monday morning and sisters leave Tuesday morning.
When we got in, it really was like drinking from a fire hose, there was so much they were throwing at us, and we crammed all the learning we'll need for the field in like a week, although we still have about a week left...it feels like it’s been a lot longer O.o I’m feeling better cause when I went in on wed I was really sick, but I’m still congested. For almost the first whole week I had a hard time sleeping, just kept waking up in the middle of the night or got too cold. But better now!
It’s kinda on and off whether or not I like it or love it, but I don't hate it. Ya, food is bad. The good thing is I’m not getting homesick really, just miss my momma, my cats, and the ocean a lot. But the weather and scenery around the campus is a lot similar to how WA looks right now, love seeing the mountains and birds flying around and trees! My companion has never seen snow, so we are excited for that to happen :)
The scariest thing I think that has happened so far is when we were in class and they said "you'll probably almost always invite members on the first lesson visit to be baptized." I was like...WHAT THE HECK!? That’s crazy! But I understand it now, because it’s not just that, it’s setting a goal for the next visits, progressing their faith and knowledge so they can prepare to be baptized by the date you set for them.
Yesterday we had a devotional with a member of the seventy and I sang in the MTC Choir, we sang "Jesus Once of Humble Birth” and we get to sing "Hope of Israel" tomorrow for the Thanksgiving Devotional, which yes, will have a member of the Twelve Apostles speaking... and the devotional will be broadcast to all the MTC's around the world! It’s been really wonderful to be here and feel the spirit so strong (no headaches really though haha).
The weather is so dry, I think I inhale chapstick and Vaseline. Not really, but I am getting used to it.
We already finished teaching our PI (progressing investigator which is our teacher) and our TRC (another type of practice investigator). Our first TRC lesson went well, but when we went to our second and last lesson she didn't even show up. I was pretty sad, but we wrote a letter and bore our testimonies in it and out it in a Book of Mormon and left it for her.
I miss everyone a lot, but I'm not homesick really. On Sunday it was really hard for Sister Poutu because she was very homesick and having culture shock and I didn't know how to comfort, because I didn't really know what she was going through, so I just prayed that heavenly father would help her be comforted because He knew what she needed so much better than I did. Right before she got her blessing a bunch of Maori people (Polynesians, New Zealanders, etc) came and were just comforting her and helped with the blessing. The spirit was SO strong and if I had any doubts that heavenly father answers prayers, I sure don't now! haha But it was a really great experience and it brought us a lot closer :)
On the second day (thur) we had a branch meeting and me and my companion were asked to be Sister Training Leaders and I was asked to be the senior companion...greaaaat. haha but it’s a lot easier for us because we don't have new missionaries coming in today (because of thanksgiving) and I’m just so excited to get into the field next week!
Try to find "The Character of Christ" somewhere online (by David A. Bednar) because it’s an absolutely incredible talk he gave to the MTC a few years ago Christmas morning. Apparently it’s only at the MTC, but you may be able to find it and it’s mind-blowingly just amazing!
Everyone is really nice, the Elders are awesome, and I REALLY MISS MUSIC! I was missing it so much I wrote down all the lyrics from three of the Women at the Well songs so I can sing them to myself :P
A couple times I have been a little homesick and I love the Dear Elders... but I’ve only gotten then from you mom! I wish I got more, cause they really do help, knowing that there are people thinking about you!
The elders and sisters make fun of me because usually when they get the mail it’s just like three dear elders from mom and like one for another person... and another package slip haha. We actually didn't even get any mail until Friday or sat I think...probably Friday.
Sorry this is such a long letter, but I’ll finish up! I love and miss you all, everyone! Email or write or dear elder, it really helps even if it’s just a quick I miss you or thinking of you or happy thanksgiving! haha
OH! I've also seen Jessie Crandall (she left already I think), Steven Kelly (didn't know he was even in the MTC) and Kaleena (although I never have my camera when I see her! ARGH!) But hope the pics are good, I try to remember to take them with our SUPER FULL and BUSY schedules, we have hardly a chance to breath! Love you and thank you!
-also mom, can you make sure your forward any missionary emails if needed from my other account
-WHATS IN THE THANKSGIVING PACKAGE, ITS KILLING ME!!! O.o haha
-did laundry today... yay! I can take care of myself! haha
-I did get a blessing on the third day I think to help me sleep and feel better, slowly working :)
-umm...trying to think of anything else...
-I’m super excited for tomorrow and can't wait to tell you all about it!
-miss the girls, tell Ella to feel better and pepper also (tell her Hannah says kindness shows Christ like qualities and it’s easier to be more positive by serving others...SERIOUSLY!)
-I'm being exactly obedient, of course! (Except bedtime is hard, haven’t been in bed by 10:30 yet, but I get up at six every morning...:P)
-forward this to dad, make pepper and Ella read it!
-LOVE YOU ALL! :) ♥
With Elder Kelly and their companions.
Sis. Johnson and Sis. Crandall
So fun that they were able to see each other one more time!
Sis. Puotu and Sis. Johnson in front of the Provo Temple
And... Hannah is even wearing heels... gives you some height perspective huh!
Elder Shupe, Elder Platt, and Elder Aldous
What a darling companion!
"The one of the alligator was my last kinder egg toy, i call it alli investi-gator! haha, get it!? :P she's our mascot... :D" We got that Kinder Egg in Cozumel... and she saved it!
Happy Sisters... I love it!