Tuesday, October 26, 2010
First off....Happy Birthday Mom! I hope you're having a really good day and Dad isn't making you work too hard ;) j/k! I love you and wish I was there but I asked Brandi to give you a hug for me! :) Ok, so first off...last Tuesday, at the devotional the security guy stood up and told all of the Elders to put their suit coats on and reminded us that if we were to see one of the brethen (first pres or the twelve) during our stay at the MTC that we should stand. Ok way to get people excited! About two minutes later we were all singing, 2500 missionaries, and in walks Elder Russell M Nelson! Everyone stood and kept singing but it was amazing! The minute he walked in the room you knew something changed! Thanks to singing in the choir, I was about the length of your new living room from him! It was amazing! He didn't talk very long, about 20 minutes, and then sat down but what he talked about was the basics. It was so good to hear a general authority talk directly to us! And at the end of his talk he gave us an apostletic(spelling?) blessing. He told us we would all be safe through the duration of our missions and come home in better health than we left. He assured us all again that we would be safe (as long as we were obedient...so no trying to out run trains I guess). It was so great! So not that you were worried, but now you really don't have to be worried! :) Ok so...thank you so much for the packages! My shoes work perfectly and the district loved the chex mix and jerky...they were gone in two days! Not kidding...those Elders are pigs, and I say that with the most loving voice I can of course! ;) But seriously they downed the stuff. I told them I was trying to figure out if I was more impressed or disgusted. They said impressed works better for them, so I was impressed! But they sent out a thank you card so you should get it soon! Thank you for the stamps and labels! They save so much time! About 15 minutes worth of writing my address on envelopes! Ok so to answer some of your questions
cause I don't have all of the dearelders with me now...I'll answer the other ones in the letter I send out...and I'll also be sending pictures either Thursday or Friday! There are good ones again! Me, Sis. Margolies, Sis. Whitney, and Sis.Kakaoha did a scavenger hunt for the elders of our zone the week before the new missionaires came in and we have pictures of that! So that was a lot of fun! It was to congratulate them on making it through the first half of the MTC! Anyways...questions...Travel plans for the zone...we don't know the specifics yet, we should get them in about two weeks, but we don't all leave at the same time. It depends on the connecting flights. The last district that left, all of them went out at different times, some went a day before others. But for our district, we'll all probably go to the airport together about 4-5 in the morning, and leave separately from there. Sis. Margolies will probably be leaving a day before us cause she is going to the other side of Russia. I'll be a solo sister for a day! Maybe not sure yet! Ok so I did forget to tell you that half of the distict is going to Ukraine: Elders Noren, Bangerter, Smith and Young. Russian speaking though so thats why they're in our district! I don't have cups for hot water but I can check today at the store to see if I can buy some! Dad, the picture of the bikes in mid air was actually a one shot thing! It just happened to turn out really good but it wasn't my picture. Elder Windham took it and made copies for everyone who wanted one cause it was so cool! We had FHE again last night. Elders Noren and Bangerter were in charge and they did a direction activity around the MTC. It was fun but so cold! It started to snow yesterday for like 10 minutes. Nothing stuck but the mountains have some now! It's definitely feeling like winter! Me and Sis. Margolies are in charge of the game for FHE next week and the spiritual thought! Ok, so E. Bangerter is the funniest person ever! And he says some of the most random things. This one I had to tell you. He walked into the room the other day and just stood there looking perplexed. We asked what was wrong and he said, "I was just thinking about western movies. I think they should make one where they say, 'actually the town is big enough for the both of us. Let's be friends.'" It was hilarious! So random but even had the teacher laughing! It's hard to get down when you have people like that around! Ok, so I'm so excited to be an aunt again! I was so happy to get Brandi's letter/package! It made my day and week for sure! I can't believe he's really here! Can you send a picture if you have one?! You said you were going to the bank to takl about me going to Russia but I just wanted to make sure, my debit card will still work here right? So I'm trying to remember some of the fun things that happened this week! The new missionaries came in which is a lot of fun! We now realize how far we've come in the language. :) So on Sunday, we had a fireside and I forgot the name of who spoke but he's the administrated director of the MTC. And he said something that really caught my attention. He said that as missionaries we're literally fighting the war against evil everyday and because of that the Lord has put us on the front lines. He said that since we're on the front lines, we're taking the blows that Satan is throwing and that Satan is so mad that we won't fall. I thought a lot about that and it's so true. I love being a missionary. It's the best thing that's ever happened to me! But there are blows, ones I've not seen coming and that knock me down for a little while. This isn't easy, it's hard. It wasn't meant to be easy. No one fighting a war on the front lines comes back and says it was a piece of cake. This is hard! But the thing he said after...we're taking the blows, and we won't fall. We won't fall because of Jesus Christ. Even if we come close to falling down, He's right next to me waiting to pick me back up. He said as missionaries we feel that power everyday of our lives. That through Jesus Christ, we're winning. this is hard, but it's the best thing ever! I love ever minute of it, even the times that I hate! It doesn't make sense I know, but being Christ's representative, to wear His name on my badge, it's the best thing I could be doing! I didn't want to leave the RS girls, or my family or firends, but I've been able to get to know my Savior more in the last 7 weeks than I have my whole life! As much as I miss everything else I wouldn't trade this experience for anything! Don't ever worry about me! Even if I get knocked off balance, Christ will never let me fall! I love both of you so much! Thank you for everything! I miss you and love hearing from you! Take care and I'll write soon!
Tuesday, October 19, 2010
Mom and Dad,
Hi again! I can't believe it's already been another week! Ok, so before I get to questions this time, I want to tell you about last night! I told you about our progressing investigators...I can't spell their names cause it's an english keyboard! :) Well last night, we committed one to baptism! It was the most nerve wracking amazing experience ever! Bro. Wood plays different investigators for each companionship and we've been teaching Ke-reel(english pronunciation) for the last four weeks every Monday night. And last night I don't know what happened..well yeah I do but it was so amazing! I asked him to read a scripture and since it was in Russian, I said the wrong one! Oops! But it ended up being a scripture about baptism so Sis. Margolies ran with it and told him what baptism was, then she looks at me and just stares! My heart was beating so fast I thought I was going to faint...in a good way, so I testified of Jesus Christ as our Savior and extended the baptismal commitment...he said in Russian...yes, thank you thank you, that's what I want! I of course was crying cause apparently I have no control of my tear ducts, and testified again and scheduled some things! We have another appt on Saturday and I am so excited! Even though it was a fake investigator, the spirit and revelation was real! I have never felt the spirit that strong in my life. I literally felt like my whole body was shaking but it wasn't. It was amazing! After we closed the lesson, the district started yelling and screaming! We were all so happy! Bro. Wood said we did great in following the promptings of the Spirit and the elders said that the whole room was on the edge of their seats waiting for me to commit him to baptism. I kinda knew that considering I could hear Elder Noren behind me making noises like he wanted to jump in and do it himself. :) It was great! Ok, so anyways....I'll write more about it later today! I just wanted to tell you about it so bad! Bro. Wood said that the feeling we had at that point is only about a 1/4 of what we'll feel when it's real! I want to go to Russia so bad right now! Even if I get doors slammed in my face, yelling grandma's, or rude comments, the ones that come to Christ, like last night, those will make it all worth it! If it wasn't for the fact that I...well can't speak enough Russian to save my life....I would leave now! Ok so onto questions...yes we got moved into our room and it's amazing! Sis. Alexeenko left for Hawaii yesterday so it's just the four of us now! We have nightly talking/eating sessions! it's really good to be able to talk at the end of the day with sisters who are going through the same things! I'll send a picture of us soon. We are planning on taking Matrix and light saver pictures today during our "personal time"....yes it's as cool and dorky as it sounds but apparently it's like a right of passage if you're here 3 months! They'll be cool! :) And no I can't believe that we've been here more than 1/2 the time! We're getting our talks on being examples cause the new districts come in tomorrow and they want us to be mature! :) We only have four more temple days! :( Speaking of which...our temple walks got cancelled cause too many Elders were meeting family or significant others at the temple on Sunday. We don't know when we'll be allowed back there but probably not before we leave! I'm sorry but how awkward is that? You ask your girlfirend to meet you at the temple so you AND your companion can shake her hand, and talk about the gospel...seriously? Let go...she'll be dating someone new in a few months anyways! :) Ok that wasn't from me...Elder Bangereter said that! But it's true! No you can tell me when people get their mission calls! I'm really anxious to hear! So if anyone gets one, let me know please! It's so exciting! And if I can guess...Jordan is going to either Texas or Mexico, and Alex is going either Florida or Ukraine! Those are my guesses! They haven't told us anything about what we'll need money wise or credit card/debit card stuff. I'll ask next time I see whose in charge, but I think they start talking to us when we have three weeks left. I'll let you know when I find anything out! And thank you thank you for the packages! The district loved the over the hill one! They weren't as excited about my clothes! ;) Mom, they said they are going to call you Sister Debbie cause Sister Wilson was confusing to them(considering, to them, that's my name) and District 9B Mom was too impersonal. They love you so much! And they talk about your beef jerky literally everyday! And thank you for the sweaters! They are so nice and warm! It's getting colder here by the day which I love....weird I know, but I'd like to somewhat be used to some kind of cold before stepping off that plane in Moscow! And the pants fit great! Thank you! Elder Bahr is the new district leader since Elders Noren and Bangerter and Zone leaders now. He's doing good! We've decided we're going to do FHE as a district...but since it's during Study time, we play grammar and sentence games! Sounds boring but we had so much fun last night and learned from each other! It was great! I saw Jenna Sunday night before she left! She left this morning! She's doing so good! And looks very happy! It's hard not to though! So I learned...I won't be allowed outside AT ALL on New Years Eve/Day...something about Russia being the Vodka capital of the world! Fun stuff! And the Russian is coming faster by the day! the grammar is the worst part but it's amazing that when the Lord wants you to get something...you get it! Slowly but surely, I'll be speaking Russian one day! :) Ok, I have to get going! Laundry time! I'll try to write more today....and if my hand gets tired, well you know who'll end up writing! Elders are such gentleman...at least the Russian ones are! :) Cause they're the only ones I know! I love you both so much! Thank you for everything you do for me! I can't wait to talk to you in 5 weeks and maybe even say something in Russian! ;) Take care! Love Sister Wilson!
Tuesday, October 12, 2010
Ok, so I don't have all of your letters with me but I'll try and remember to answer all of your questions. But first for all the fun excitement we've been having the last week! I am no longer in a tripanionship. Last Thursday night they talked with Sis. Alexeenko, Elder Windham, and Elder Ortner and informed them they will all be moved into a new district. They all had previous Russian language experience and they took about 4 other missionaries and combined them so that they can learn at a different pace. We were all pretty upset cause our district got along so well and it was hard to watch three of them leave, but we're on missions and it's called a transfer...and the good thing about this kind of transfer is that they are all just right across the hall. But I do miss Sis. Alexeenko! I really loved being companions with her! She was so much fun! And we lost a teacher too...we only have Bro Wood and Toone now, but they are my favorites so that didn't affect me too much! and with only two teachers we have more personal study time! Which well...it's needed! :) But it's ok. Change happens and we've actually had so much fun as a smaller district! We have more leg room and class :) And we are getting to know everyone better since there's less of us. So of course that means a new, and hopefully last district picture will be sent out of Thursday along with a bunch of other really fun ones! The older district left today so on Sunday we all went to the temple as a Zone and took tons of pictures! It was so fun! Ok so for the other thing! So excited! After I'm done emailing Sister Margolies and I get to move rooms!!! We'll be in a bigger, nicer room with Sis. Whitney and Sis. Kakouha(the only remaining sisters in the Zone)! We've been waiting for this for like well 5 weeks and we're so excited! We have ideas for scavengers hunts for our elders and holiday plans! Making decorations will be a fun night job! So with the old district leaving, it means next Wednesday the new ones come and we found out yesterday that there are going to be 21 new Russian speaking sisters between the two Russian Zones! 21! Right now we only have 12! They are almost doubling our amount of sisters which is great!
So Elder Bangerter and Elder Noren are the new Zone leaders! They are so good! I love all of the elders in our district! :) You'll see why in the pictures! And thank you thank you thank you for the package and the pictures! The elders love you so much! And they downed that beef jerky! They all said it was the best they ever had and Elder Bangerter said that's saying something cause he's a huntin' man! :) So if you ever make it again, and have leftovers, I'd love some! I didn't even get a piece before it was gone! But seriously you're both amazing! We appreciate the packages so much! You have no idea! 12 weeks is a long time and we definitely have our down days and things like that always pick us up! So thank you! Ok so I'm so happy for Daniel!!! That's awesome! I'm so excited for him! That made my day yesterday! Ok, so to answer some questions...yeah we have some culture classes...not a lot though. But we've definitely learned some things that we can't do, like put anything on the floor. If you put the scriptures on the floor, even if it's carpet, they get very offended. And we can't sit on the ground, you have to squat or stand. Apparently the old wives tale is if you sit on the ground you go sterile, and the Babuska's(grandma's) yell at you! yep....no sitting on the ground for me! I have a feeling we'll experience enough yelling in Russia! :) Oh and if you stand against a wall and your foot is against it instead of on the ground, that means you're a call girl...so...definitely good things to know! I'm not a call girl, and I don't want to be sterile, so the culture classes were a success! At the temple this morning I met a lady who said I looked familiar to her. We found out that her son served on Whidbey Island when I was in high school. Elder Carr. The name sounds so familar but I can't put a face with it! So maybe you'll know! :) Tell Brandi that I did get her cookies in the mail! And I loved them, and of course so did the elders! They pretty much think my family is amazing! So do I! :) What about the Russian tomatoes? Anything ever happen with them? Apparently they have pink tomatoes in Russia! Exciting! Oh I saw Chris Chord yesterday! It was wierd! We saw each other and took a second to realize we knew each other! I almost hugged him but stopped right beforehand...something to get used to! He said he's know seen Devin, Aleta, and me. He works there now, so that's cool! Well I better get going! I'll write you a letter later today with more stories, but I just never have time in 30 minutes! Thank you so much for everything you do! You're both amazing! I couldn't have asked for better parents! I love you both so much! Take care!
Tuesday, October 5, 2010
Ok, so you had a lot of questions this week which is great! So again, I'll try to answer all of those first! Sorry if it gets confusing! But first off, thank you so much for the package! The district loved it and another card is on the way to you from them! Thank you it was so amazing of you! Ok so for the questions...the gym was closed while they re-finished the floors which made all 2100 elders so excited that they couldn't play basketball, but its open again. Above the gym is a track and weight room with bikes and elipticals. It's pretty nice! Always something to do! No, the workout isn't for the district, just the girls...its actually a rule cause apparently there has been a problem in the past with "jogging" dates! It's ridiculous that had to be made a rule but it is! We workout everyday except Sunday and P-day for one hour. You don't get anymore time than other districts though, we're just in the MTC longer, that's all! We see our district on pday at the temple and of course when we all as a big happy family do laundry together...talk about awkward but its ok! They keep us entertained! We do stay in the same classroom through our stay here, same desks, but when the older district leaves next Monday we get their cushions! So excited! i can't believe we'll be the older district next week! Scary but so exciting! The spikes you sent should be fine! thank you very much! As for investigators, we have the same four, and they are all progressing! last night was another amazing lesson with Kereel(that's not how it looks in russian, but that's how it sounds). It's fake, but the spirit that comes is so not! it's amazing! The language is coming! :) When I look at the progress I make in a day, it gets discouraging, but when I look back on each week, it really is amazing how much the Lord can teach you! Still far, oh my goodness so far, from speaking it fluently or even close, but its coming! The weather finally turned a little colder. The sun still comes out, but we're using jackets now, so hopefully it'll snow soon! I know it sounds crazy but I'd like to kinda be somewhat familiar with the cold before going to Russia...maybe it'll help me adjust! :) I did get to see Jenna, actually about three times now! She's as adorable as ever and seems to be doing really good! Eston and Aleta left yesterday. I got to say goodbye to Eston like twice, and I saw Aleta in the morning but we didn't meet up again. They'll both be great! About my teachers...they're all amazing! Bro. Wood is my favorite only because it's more of a fun environment and not a strict one. Bro. Toone and Sis. Chenina are my other teachers and I love them too...they're just more serious than Bro. Wood. We just see them throughout the week according to their school schedules. they all go to BYU, so they're between the ages of 24-26, I think! :) Time is definitely going by fast! I can't believe a month of my mission is already over! Conference was amazing but I do have to admit that I fell asleep for about 5 minutes (same talk you had trouble with Mom :)) and woke up only cause Elder Windham was sitting next to me and he wanted to see my watch so he tapped me on the shoulder not knowing I was asleep. I made a nice little girly noise and was embarrassed for awhile until I looked around and like half the MTC was asleep! It had been a long
day! :) The MTC Choir was amazing! We watched it the next day and yes, Elder Bahr and Morris were there, along with a bunch of other elders we know! if you want to look for them, you can see them in the Called to Serve one! It was so powerful, we loved watching it! Ok, so onto some of my own questions...FHE on Tuesday? how did that happen, I quess my more interesting question is why did that happen? It's cool though...it splits up the week more, but I'm worried about you guys...how do you watch NCIS? :) J/k! How's Max's job? Done yet, or should I not ask?! How is everything going?! I really do like hearing how everything at home is! Ok, so for what's going on here...well..on Friday night, a sister burnt popcorn and the firealarm went off, evacuating about 100 sisters at night onto the grass, right outside the elders residence. So you know, being the mature, 19-year old boys...sorry men...that they are, they viewed 100 sisters on the grass in their pj's as a Kodak moment! First time in my life I think I've seen as many flashes of cameras as a celebrity! It was all good though! So for conference, we all thought that Pres. Monson standing up to begin with and talking about people going on a mission was amazing! we were given a statistic here that it really sad. The mission department figured out that out of all the priesthood holders that can serve a mission, only 37% are actually doing it. That's pathetic...37% I'm sure is still an F on the grade scale! I wish there was a way to help people feel the spirit and the closeness to the Savior you only get while being his representative. We had a lesson in a large group meetin about our tags and the majority of everyone was crying. the teacher asked us how we felt about wearing the tag...and we were all really excited to do it! It feels so good to look down and see it! well he then gave a detailed description of how we're going to feel when out Stake Pres asked us to take it off, not to put it on again. I can't describe the emotion I felt, that after one month, I don't ever want to take this tag off! It's one thing to know that Christ is my Savior, it's a whole other thing to literally take upon His name in everything you do, and teach people, as an official representative of Christ himself! When the time comes, I'll be excited to come home, but after one month, I can tell you I will not be excited to be done. I wish that whoever is thinking they don't want to go on amission, who is able to go, could know that! Christ gave up His life for us, He's asked us to sacrifice only 2 years, or 18 months. It's not a lot, when you consider what He's done. Elder Holland said, "you'll never regret serving a mission, but if you don't go when you could've, you'll always regret it." I forgot my nametag this morning going to the temple, and when I realized it, I felt uncomfortable. people didn't know who I was, or who I representated and it bothered me. But once the tag went on, it was such an amazing feeling! I am so grateful for the opportunity He's given me to represent Him! And thank you both for all of the support you've given me to help me get here! I will always appreciate everything you do for me and I love both of you so much! i hope you're all doing good and I'll hopefully have time today to write! Take care!
Love, Sister Wilson