Thursday, January 16, 2014

Week 1 -- Welcome to the Missionary Training Center


My querida familia!!!

How are you all??? Oh my goodness this week feels like it has been a year! I can't believe a week ago today Dad dropped me off. I am really adjusted and started to catch the missionary fire! 

Please tell everyone to not be offended if I didn't personally answer your email! I have been writing some letters answering you I promise! We just only have an hour on the computers and it goes by so fast.  Also I just learned that I can't send pictures from these laptops...we have to use main campus, so hopefully I can get you my pictures soon!  Just a recommendation...if you use print off what you type and put it in my mailbox! I have time during the week to read them and write letters back if that's easier! It's just another option!  

There are eight hermanas in my district and I am the Sister Training Leader! (aka District Leader for girls). My companion is Hermana Daniel and she is the cutest! She is from Provo and we are literally best friends. We get along so well and we're both easy going and it's kind of perfect. P.S. we take the best selfies ;) 

The Spanish is coming along! It's amazing to me how much of it has already come back to me just from the years I did in high school. Something I've learned this week is just how long Heavenly Father has been preparing me for this mission. I always loved Spanish in school and it usually came pretty easy to me. This has been such a blessing this week since we've already taught four lessons all in Spanish and the person we're teaching only speaks Spanish to us! 

During gym time Hermana Daniel and I rock the Four Square! We know it sounds lame, but it is so fun! I jammed my finger though the other know...sports injury ;) So every day we wake up at 6:30, have breakfast at 7:30, and then we are in class pretty much all day. We have a break for gym and a break for lunch and dinner, but we're in class until 9:30! They days are long, but somehow on our way home, Hermana Daniel and I are always ready to get at it the next day! 

Hermana Daniel studied American Sign Language so she's never had Spanish before. When I first got here I was so worried about whether or not I was a good teacher, how good my Spanish was, how well I was doing, and I'm learning that although it's important to work hard, focusing on myself won't necessarily make me the best missionary. My new goal is to focus on Hermana Daniel. I want to help her as much as I can with Spanish and really focus on helping her become the BEST missionary that she can be. This past week we have been teaching Malaquias. Rumor has it that he is a teacher here at the MTC, but we don't know yet! All we know is that he only speaks Spanish to us! It is the most incredible experience to sit in a lesson and just be able to understand. I don't understand everything, but I have been able to pick up so much. I feel so much love for him and the things that he is going through and thoughts come into my head to share with him and for the most part I'm able to translate them into Spanish. Teaching is by far my favorite part of being here even if we get a little nervous before hand! It's kind of interesting...I know he's probably a teacher, but when we're teaching him, it doesn't feel that way at all. It feels real. I feel like I am really being a servant of the Lord. I love being a missionary. I have just learned so many things this week. 
I love all of the teachers here at the MTC. Hermana Kellogg, aka Mandy's cousin, is adorable! We love working with her! All of our teachers here are so patient and they really try to only speak Spanish to us. 

Elder Bednar came and gave our devotional last night! Him and his wife are just incredible! One of the things I really took from his devotional is considering "what are my motives?" Why do I want to be a good missionary? Why do I want to be good at Spanish? Why am I serving a mission? I walked away really doing some introspection. I want to be sure that I have the purest of motives and intentions. I know this is something that I will help from Heavenly Father with for sure! 

To be honest, it is a roller coaster here every day. You can experience the highest of highs and the lowest of lows. I know that Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ love each of us. I know that one of the most important reasons I am here is to learn how to wait on the Lord, to learn how to be patient. I know that if I keep working hard and trying my best, everything will work out. They have given me this call and they will qualify me for it. If you ever think you are alone...YOU'RE NOT. Jesus Christ knows every little thing you could ever experience. Cast your burdens on Him and trust Him to take care of you. 

Yo se que, este Evangelio es verdadero. Yo se que Jesucristio y nuestro Padre Celestial viven. Yo se que nuestro Padre Celestial es amoroso. Yo se que nuestras familias pueden estar juntas para siempro. Nuestras familias son eternas. Yo se que estoy hacienda las cosas correctas. Yo se que mi mision es una bendicion. Yo se que el amor de Jesucristo y Padre Celestial es real. 

I love you all more than you know! 

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