Thursday, July 19, 2018

bye boise

This has been one of the most emotional weeks of my life, I think the mission makes you more dramatic lol but with everything I'm feeling, the most prominent feeling is one of gratitude. I love this place and I love these people - serving a mission was something that I needed to do to grow and become a better version of myself. 

I was sitting with Sherrie and Matt yesterday, Matt had just told us his conversion story and was looking at me and crying, and Sherrie asked my why I came on a mission. I almost couldn't speak - I gave her the answer I always give but this time I really felt it in my heart and how special this has been for me. I told her that I came on a mission because I had seen the Gospel bless my family, I had seen how it has made us happier and closer. Matt always says that you need to go on a mission because of Jesus Christ and that's true, but I think I came to learn that while I was out, the true love that the Savior has for you and others and when you're helping and loving those around you, He lets you feel a little bit of that love that He has for them, and it hurts to let go. 

I'm so grateful for the things that I've learned and felt, for the spirit that comforts us and heals us and helps us know that we're God's family and that we're all going through crap together, we're here to help each other out. Thanks for all of your love and prayers, couldn't have done it without you. 

More love than I can express,

stay fly

I love the 4th of July because your fam gets together and you eat some ono foods and smell like firework smoke and it's hot and not cold, you get to do fun stuff and hang out with people you love, sometimes I think being away on the mission on the 4th of July is harder than Christmas cuz no get no beach, no sand, but this one was so so good. I think the people that you surround yourself with (or who surround you lol) make up all the difference and I was so happy I couldn't stop smiling the whole day. Someone gave me a sparkler at night and I thought back to a year ago in Boise when the Quezada's gave us sparklers and I was reminded this week that the relationships that we build with people here might not last as long as we'd like them to, but they're so valuable and they're a huge part of what makes you happy. I love this work a lot and am so grateful for it - who knew you could fall in love with Idaho? 

Thanks for being the best, loads of love,

*crying constantly but super happy*

Our Ward Mission Leader had us over for dinner this week and we walked in, he stuck his head out of the kitchen and was allllll dirty (he cuts wood in the mountains everyday) and said "I'm making fish & chips just for you so you better love it" and then his phone rang and he answered it and started cussing at his brother (out of love) - slowly coming to the end of my mission I'm appreciating the little stuff and the good jams that help me feel at home and realizing that we're all in this crazy journey together. 

After dinner we went on splits, I went with him and his wife to visit one of their friends and shared a short lesson about commandments and obedience and how when we follow the commandments, we "prosper," or we're happy. She expressed that she felt the spirit so strongly and wants to make some changes in her life and I'm grateful for the gospel and that it makes us happy. You deal with a lot of crap, but when it comes down to it, it's a lot simpler than we make it out to be. 

I was reading through some old letters that I had gotten from friends because I've been feeling really alone lately and scared and not completely sure what I'm gonna do after this, and I read something that totally stuck with me that a good friend had written for me that I wanted to share -

"Let go of what you can't control. Quit worrying about expectations. Don't compare. Let go of trying to be perfect. People come in and out of our lives constantly so love on them while you can and let go when it's time. Close your eyes and imagine that you're being held in the palm of God's hand because that's how it is." 

Change comes and goes and life constantly goes on, up and down and makes crazy unexpected turns that you hadn't anticipated. And in the end, it all turns out good. Trying to calm my nerves and thank the lord it's almost 4th of July so I can cruise w some good homies, really remembering and reflecting on how happy this journey has made me. It's helped me find who I am and who I want to become - you don't need a tag to do that. Maybe I did. But really, it's about becoming a disciple of Jesus Christ and living like He did. I'm so grateful for the experiences that I've had that have helped me grow, the good and the bad. 

thanks for everything. take care of yourselves and remember to take some time for you, then take some time fo' da neighbors (sometimes taking some time fo' da neighbors ends up being da time fo' you!), eat some good grindz and cruise with your favorite people in the world. stay cherreh

Out of the Weekend

I've had a Neil Young song stuck in my head for the entire week and I don't see anything wrong with that. sbi. 

People keep talking to me about going home and it makes me nervous, I didn't think I'd be this scared, I know that Hailey will be hard to leave. I feel like you make such unique relationships with people on your mission and I'm scared to let that go - to leave it behind. I'm not a hundred percent sure how I'll find how to do that without the tag, but I'm stoked for other things like hiking everyday and spotify. you now me. 

We went on splits this week and had the best experience - I went with Lisa, one of the members that we live with, and we taught two lessons - one to this girl named Shellsy. We walked in and Lisa was like "Hey!! I know you!" Apparently Shellsy works at Wells Fargo and has helped Lisa with the ATM before, we had the best lesson with her and she came to church with us on Sunday. They were doing all the sustaining because it was Ward Conference and she turned to me and was like "wth is going on" and I laughed and was like "dude idk either" but after that I know she felt the spirit and she gave us big hugs when we left and thanked us for inviting her, and that she'll be back next week. 

After we taught our lessons I kinda just sat in the car and talked to Lisa for a long time about life and about love and the gospel and it was really good for me. I got home and sat on the canal and watched the sunset and listened to the birds and just cried and cried. I feel like I'm feeling every emotion all at once and it's not the funnest thing in the world, I know that God always keeps his eye on you and you'll be taken care of, and I've been SO taken care of. I'm so grateful for my mission. 

Lisa said that the #1 thing that she had taught her kids is that the gospel is about love. It's all about love. That really resonated with me and I was reminded of my own family. Sometimes I don't think God even cares about some things, He just cares that we're trying our best to be like Jesus and to be good to others. I've loved being able to see such sweet examples of this on my mission and being able to appreciate the love that others have shown to me (saved my life) 

Thanks for your love & prayers homies, hope everythings good wherever and whenever you are. Let me know if there's anything I can do for you! Smoothies! Tacos! loves! 

Dad Day

We've been running running running and can't stop (won't stop) even though my body feels like it's breaking still g fam! Cody and Amy made us Elk tacos this week and we taught them the Restoration. It was way good, Cody hasn't been to church in a little while and we were like "we're gonna teach about the Restoration of the Gospel" and he turns to Amy (not a member) and is like "oooooh this is a good one." 

Shoutout to everyone that has helped me stay sane - I've got so much love this week it's unbelievable. Unko Doug let me jam on his ukes with him and Gene & Peggy made us ono shrimp and it rained last night and HF straight up takes care of you when you need it. 

The homies in Dietrich really hooked us up this week and we had 3 people come to church with us. We drove down there early Sunday morning to go translate Sacrament Meeting and Mike gave a Father's Day talk that really stuck to me. He told a story about (it was some apostle's homie, let's just call him Jeff cuz I no can remember da name) so Jeff went up the mountains and got his truck stuck in the snow. So braddah gets out and loads up with firewood cuz he's all like "well might as well use my time and cut some firewood cuz it stay cold" and so when he loads his truck, the weight that's in the bed helps him get un-stuck and he drives out of the snow and heads home to make his family a fire. So it was the load that he was carrying that helped him move forward. Mike talked about how we each have specific loads that we hold, on our shoulders, that help us move forward and get un-stuck.

I loved that and thought about how the loads that have been on my shoulders have, in the end, helped me move forward. 

Thanks for all the love fam - hope your week is nutzzz

mission hangover sbi Inbox x

One of our homies, Mike, over in Dietrich (which has got like 700 people in it) threw a Hispanic party at his house on Saturday and had a great turnout - his house was packed with like 40 mexicans (the dream). As soon as we got there, everyone was yelling and the kids were shooting all the adults w/ nerf guns (classic) and Mike yelled (who doesn't speak spanish) yelled, "The Sisters are here, we're gonna have a prayer!" I got to offer a prayer in Spanish - not one of these people were members of the church - and you could feel the Spirit enter the room immediately. Everyone calmed down and then we all ate together and Jessica made the best dang Horchata I've ever had in my life. This is what it's about fam! 

I can't even say how grateful I was to not have to go to Transfers on Thursday and to lay on my bed playing my uke, listening to the canal and watching the sun go down. This area has brought so much good to me. Uncle Doug ordered a bunch of li hing mui this week and ginger and mango and all the blessings. 

I've been reflecting on my family a lot this week and how I have been taught to live the gospel - I've seen that so prevalent here in Sun Valley. It's mostly about doing good for others and love, we've been able to teach some really good lessons this week. We taught Erika down in Dietrich and she asked us, "When can I be baptized?" on our second lesson. But mostly what has impacted me has been to see the way that people treat each other, and that's when conversion is the strongest. When we're kind and Christlike and even make horchata for others or just are friends. 

My body feels a little broken and my back hurts all the time but other than that, I feel so healthy & good and eat lots of watermelon everyday. I'm so grateful that the Lord takes care of us when we need it the most. 

Love you all aunties & unkos let me know if there's anything I can do for you!

time to get uncomfy to get comfy

This week I had kind of a mid-mission crisis but I'm way past the middle of my mission (but isn't your whole mission a crisis??) idk what it was but I freaked out a little bit but it's all g. I was just sitting watching the broadcast by President Nelson for the Youth (we brought a group of the young women with us, it was great to chill with them and do some missionary work) and I just kinda freaked and was really tired of looking at a screen for a sec and listening to someone talk. I really think the gospel is about what we do. It's about what we act on. We could listen to someone talk all day, we could watch a screen all day, but if we're not loving and caring for others with our hands and our words, what are we doing? It was a good reminder that the gospel is about loving through actions - getting up and DOING something about what you feel and what you think. That's what Jesus did. 

I saw this love expressed to me several times this week. Savannah, one of the YW in the ward, came out to a lesson with me - this was the first time she'd been out with a missionary and has been learning Spanish in school - and she did so incredible. It kind of blew me away, because we started teaching (it was a new investigator so fressssshie lesson) and she started literally teaching the first lesson with me. I felt like she was wearing a tag. She said she loved teaching and has been struggling with whether or not she would like to go on a mission and I was like "aunty we need you out here" 

Uncle Doug had us over to help weed his tree farm and in the morning he made us scrambled eggs with elk and kim chee. "Uncle Doug's Scramble"

Elder Taylor came this week for a mission tour (he played for BYU Basketball so you know I was in love) and he taught us some valuable things about teaching and finding, but I think the main thing that I took away was that missions are made exactly for us. One of our old investigators, Diana, got baptized this week in Twin Falls and we were able to go down for it and I thought of all the experiences that I had there, and how tough it was each day. But if I hadn't gone through that, I wouldn't be the Hanatea I am today (or try to be lol). God gives us stuff that makes us good, it makes us lean outward and leap forward in uncomfortable ways that end up being way comfortable in the end. God never gives us stones or serpents, He gives us bread, fish, and eggs. And it's our job to help people recognize those eggs - not by watching, but by doing. Not by preaching, but by living. Does that make sense? 

Loves to you all, I can't thank you enough for your friendship and prayers and love and actions and good things. Let me know if you need anything. Here's to being happy