Wednesday, June 19, 2013

MTC letter--June 12, 2013

IN ABOUT 20 DAYS I SHALL BE IN THAILAND!!!!!! Excited? I have no idea what you are talking about?
Monday we had to go to the doctor's so while we were waiting to be called in, we were talking to people. Real people. I really like real people. I don't think you understand how nice it is to talk to actual people--not ones associated with the MTC. Now the reason that MTC people are not real people is because the MTC is not a real place. Time does not work the same here and I refuse to believe that I am only about 10-15 minutes away (walking time) from where I have been living for the past year. The MTC is a bubble in a different universe and I refuse to be told otherwise. But anyway, back to the real people. They are just so interesting and fun and real. We talked to this little old Japanese lady who met her husband when she was a nurse and he was in the air force. The height difference was great but they were just so cute together. She commented how young missionaries are getting. I have a story about that I need to tell you. We also met a man from New York in a sleeveless green shirt with tattoos. He was really cool to talk to and he agrees that nothing can beat East Coast pizza. Nice bonding moment. We also met a lady named Sylvia who is super sweet. She was fun to talk to as well. There were other people we talked to but our conversations were not long enough to learn a lot about them.
So you are probably curious why we were at the doctors. If you weren't, I'm telling you anyway. :) Sister Hughes had to get her throat checked out and she is currently at the doctor's again (this time with Sister Phelps) getting her tonsils out. In one devotional we were told to expect and look for miracles. Well, we found one. The doctor here at the MTC made it seem like Sister Hughes would be out of action for 3-4 weeks and another doctor (at the hospital) said they wouldn't be able to schedule an appointment for a week or two. While, here is the miracle: We scheduled her surgery for two days later (so today) and because they aren't taking out the entire tonsil, she will be recovered in 2ish weeks which means (wait for it) SHE'LL STILL BE ABLE TO COME TO THAILAND WITH US AT THE SCHEDULED TIME! I'm sooo happy and she is (obviously) as well. Sister Phelps and Elder Astle are excited for her surgery because she'll get pain killers. Sister Stack had to take pain killers and it was hilarious and now Sister Hughes will have to.
         Sister Hughes: "Don't worry, I'll be on pain killers for days."
         Elder Astle: "That is what I like to hear."
Hm, I guess I should probably explain something about our companionship and the companionship of Elder Astle and Elder Passey. Elder Astle and Sister Hughes are (read: act like) siblings and Elder Passey and Sister Phelps are (read: act like) siblings. I am the best friend next door that hangs out with the siblings a lot. It's a lot of fun. Our two companionships are insane together. Don't worry, we still abide by page 33 though.
  • Note: Page 33 is referring to page 33 in the white handbook for missionaries. That page tells us not to flirt with each other. We used to joke and tell each other to look at page 33 because it is just really funny. Now we have decided to not joke about that rule because it is there for a reason and not really something we should joke about. 
Have I told you about my district members yet? Elder Astle is from 'Las Wegas' Newada' (Thai people cannot pronounce V's). He is absolutely hilarious. He makes the funniest faces and noises. When he needs to be seriously, however, he can be. He is very kind and likes to help out if someone is struggling with the language. He worked in the temple and in the primary before he came and says he loved both equally.
Elder Passey is from Utah. He graduated the same year as I did but is only 18. He is proof that this age change was totally inspired because he is just amazing. He was really quiet at first but now that he is comfortable with us, he is also a total goof-ball. His companionship is so funny. They sit next to us in class so it's great. Their companionship is also amazing Preach My Gospel wise. They read it and use it a lot which is great. They also teach our companionship when we are pretending to be investigators and they are amazing at teaching. Elder Passey is also really short which Sister Phelps teases him a lot on (she is tall).
Sister Hughes and Sister Phelps. Both are from California. I love them so much. We have gotten the hang of teaching in a trio which is amazing. Last Sunday we gave a lesson to our class (they were pretending to be investigators) about repentance and it went really well. On Monday we had a companionship exchange so Sister Phelps and Sister Du Plessis switched places. Sister Du Plessis was shocked at how different things are in a trio, especially in lessons. That's all we know though so we really enjoy it. I honestly love being in a trio. Planning lessons was hard at first because we all had such different ideas but they were all right. Now things are much easier. Sister Hughes speaks French basically fluently and did a study abroad in Paris for 3 months. She loves speaking French. Sister Phelps plays guitar, wants to be a nurse, and speaks some Spanish.
Elder Hill and Elder Winsor. They are both from Utah. Elder Winsor played soccer for Dixie State and Elder Hill is a theater kid. They were both slightly worried when they found those facts out about each other. They get along great though. Elder Hill says it is great because they are both stubborn so they can help each other. Don't ask me, it just works really well. Elder Winsor is our amazing District Leader. Elder Hill is amazing at studying at every moment possible. Elder Winsor was also really quiet and serious when we first met him but now he has unleashed his silly side. Elder Hill says the craziest things and they are just so funny.
Sister Stack and Sister Du Plessis. Sister Stack snorts whenever she is scared or startled so she snorts a lot. A lot. And she sits right next to the door so whenever the door opens, she snorts. Sister Du Plessis has been nicknamed Pocahontas and her theme is now "Just around the river bend." During volleyball she chases the volleyball in an hilarious manner and once spent at least 5 minutes following a butterfly around during gym time. She loves the outdoors like no other and loves jumping up and trying to touch the tree branches. Sister Stack makes amazing battle cries as she goes after the volleyball. When Sister Stack was on painkillers, her Thai improved a lot. We realized it was because while she was on painkillers she was totally confident. She has now become more confident when she speaks and her Thai improved so much because of that. Honestly, a huge part of speaking a language is being confident.
I guess I'll tell you about the other district tomorrow. Oh! Guess What! We get our new Thais today!!!!! There are 22 new Thais but only 8 are sisters. We also get our new Cambodians but there are no Sisters. We are adding 48ish people to our district today. Crazy, right?
Oh! the story about young missionaries. Sister Phelps met an Elder here that entered last Wednesday. Guess when he graduated high school. The day before. He graduated high school. Had grad-night. And the VERY NEXT DAY entered the MTC. We have 2013 graduates here now. What? That's insane. But soo exciting.
  • To Dad's comment about enthusiasm: Thank you so much. One of the things I realized during the devotional last night was the importance of constantly being cheerful. (excerpt from Linden's letter to Abbie: "A week or so ago I was in some stake meeting where we were discussing some youth activity. They were talking about how to get the word out to the youth, to create a buzz and excitement for the activity. I thought of you, and how you were able to get the stake youth enthused about activities. You set a high standard for others to follow.") 
  • Also, time here is crazy. I feel like I've been here forever and yet still feel like I've only been here a week. A day feels like a week and a week feels like a day. It's crazy.
  • I approve of the FHE attempts. Exact obedience brings miracles :) (Barbie is determined that we get back on track with having Family Home Evenings again. She taught an excellent lesson using President Uchtdorf's article in the June 2013 Ensign Walking in Circles.)
  • In response to the mention of Chrissy, if you see any of my friends in the future, tell them I say hi please :) That's really cool that you saw her and I'm glad she is doing well.
  • Tell Sister Peterson that I am sorry I can't help out with Young Women's camp this year. :) That's exciting that Patty, Ali, and Megan can do it again though. I loved being a YCL. And congrats to Paige!!!! That's sooo exciting!!! The Japanese are in our building and they are really fun people. We like them a lot. 
I'm going to attach some pictures (I think) so I'm going to end the letter here.
Love you all! :)

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