I'm sitting at the computer CRYING with happiness because of all your emails. I promise I read all of them and loved them all. I don't have a lot of time, like normal, and a LOT to tell you.
PLEASE TELL EVERYONE I LOVE them and it gives me anxiety to know I can't respond to them all. especially because I can't write letters except preparation Day anymore. and we have like no time to do so. Makes me so sad.
You can send me packages and letters. It's a really safe area. but if you would feel more comfortable, valuables can be sent to the mission office too and someone will deliver them to me.
Oh wow. where to begin. Ahhh. It's been a REALLY hard week. Really hard. when I first landed in Maryland, these were my thoughts; "lol those are not the mountains. those are hills." "So many orange leaves by the bay and the ocean WOW so pretty" "It's not even that humid here. It's like California. but whatever."
The Christiansen's (mission president) are AMAZING. As soon as they greeted us in the airport, I could feel their love for me and their desire for me to be happy and safe and well taken care of. We drove to the mission home, and by this point, I'm feeling excited. I stepped out of the van and my heart almost burst. It is SO BEAUTIFUL here. It smells like autumn and the trees are magnificent and beautiful and the ground is painted with orange leaves. I just had a feeling of Gratitude and it was almost like the spirit whispered to me " I knew you would like it here."
The president and his wife rented this fancy hotel for all the sisters on Tuesday night, but we got like no sleep. Haha. We stayed at the mission presidents home really late, playing games and bearing testimonies and talking about the area and eating a homecooked meal that I was so so grateful for.
The next morning we went to transfer meeting, and that was when we were going to find out our area and our new companion. They had all the new missionaries bear their testimonies and then we were told who our companion was. it was crazy, as soon as I saw her I knew she was going to be my trainer, before they even said her name. Her name is Sister Bartschi (Bart-chee) and I LOVE HER. She is such an angel and is so patient with me and she teaches me so much and I can be myself around her and I just adore her. we have a lot in common.
the Hard part. I have been shotgunned. We got to our little town home (Which is super nice and spacey and I have my own bathroom and everything) and the Area book was completely empty. Sister Bartschi has only been out 3 months and she doesn't know how to open an area. We have been going through this week almost completely blind. the apartment has never been used by missionaries before, so it was COMPLETELY EMPTY. we had to spend our limited funds on things like shower curtains and trash cans and stuff. I was pretty convinced we were going to starve, but we are managing fine. They didn't even have like salt or pepper in the cabinet. Sister Bartschi says that never happens.
The members of the word are So great. They are so kind to us and they make sure we are fed almost every night. They are super involved in missionary work, which helps us out a TON, especially because we have ZERO info about the area. It's crazy to me, we met with the relief society president, shes amazing, and we went through the ward list and more than 60% of all people on the ward list are inactive. So different than what I am used to. A lot of our work right now is trying to reactivate people and just get to know the members and gain their trust.
It's crazy, Street Teaching was really really hard for me at first, I was so bad at it and it felt so awkward to just approach people. But I'm getting a lot better at it. Sister Bartschi is making me do hard things and I love it. The people here are just amazing. AMAZING. you run into the most incredible people with the most incredible stories and most everyone is very kind and friendly. Last night we went to go visit a former investigator and there was this HUGE party going on at her house. I expected her to give us a better time to come back, but her and her husband totally invited us in and gave us some cupcakes and water and were very interested in what we were doing. the kindest people. Really. Hahhahah the brother in law offered us some Rum Coke and Sister Bartschi didn't understand what that was and she was like "Wow that sounds yummy" And I was like "Uhm, no actually we don't drink you ding dong" Hahaha We laughed about that for a long time. We got a return appointment with Sarah and she said she's interested to hear more about the gospel. Which never happens.
Also, I'm tired all the time. I'm going to come home and sleep for five days straight. Hahaha.
Also, everyone thank you for the support and prayers. It is hard but the Lord is holding me up. I love you all!!
**Her address has been updated! Hand written letters would be nice so she can read them anytime and not only when she has pday**
**Sorry there was not post last week. She flew out on her MTC pday and we spoke only spoke on the phone:)