Thursday, June 20, 2013

Cuatro semanas!

Ay yay yay! I can't belive I only have 17 months left. When I think about how fast this last month has gone by and I only have 17 more of those it seems like it is going to FLY. I only have 1 more P Day left till I am in the field! I don't know what writing will be like there..  I will let you know when I can. I know sometimes it might seem like it's crawling but overall I know it will be over before I know it. I am so excited to get out in the field, but I don't feel 100% ready.. But I don't think I ever will. So I am excited. I am 99.9% sure that I am going to be reassigned. No one is getting visas for Argentina.. I heard yesterday that Argentina hasn't received any missionaries since October! Which is really bad.. So I am just assuming that I will be somewhere else probably for a long time before I go to Argentina. I will let you know where I am going as soon as I find out.
 My spanish is coming along great! In my lessosn with investigators I do REALLY well. Sometimes I am a little slow at remembering conjugations, so that will be my focus for the next two weeks to memorize those. And I know so much about gospel language but not really any normal language.. haha but I know that will come and The Lord will help me if I do my best and right now I know my main focus should be on learning the lessons. So that's what I am doing! I love teaching. We just started teaching each other as a district so I get to be an investigator! It's really good because I can see how they teach and if they answer my questions the way I need them to be answered.. and it's really cool to be on the other side of things. I know it will help me to become a much better teacher.
I also am really loving being a sister training leader! We have already been able to help a few hermanas out and it feels really good to serve them. Yesterday our district got to host the new missionaries who come in. Mom and Dad do you remember when you dropped me off and there was that nice sister missionary waiting to escort me? That's what I got to do! I helped 2 sisters and it was soo fun. I loved it. It was so fun to help them around and get all their things and take them to class. Although I messed up both times. The first one I accidentally forgot to get her books before taking her to class so we had to go back to get those and then the second girl, I accidentally took her to my building for class because we were talking and I forgot to pay attention to where we were walking! So I probably just confused them some more.. Pero esta bien. I think I made them feel welcome instead of overwhelmed which was my goal. Hopefully..
This Sunday!!! I am soo beyond excited for this Sunday. I can hardly wait! I am in the choir to sing for the PROPHET! AND ALL THE APOSTLES!! It's going to be so amazing to be so close! I can already feel the spirit just thinking about it! It's going to be so great. And Mom and Vanessa get to come! That is the best news ever! We will all be in the same room with the prophet! I hope I see you guys sitting or something. Also, yeah I am not supposed to look for you, but if I see you it's okay to say hi and hug but we aren't supposed to look for each other. But see if they show my face on the big screen! Cause I can't watch that I have to watch the director!  The choir is combined with 1300 missionaries and I think 1000 ish members too. So it's going to be so cool! Mis hermanas and I have been practicing. I get to sing the alto part! It's so fun I love it.
So this last Sunday during movie time we watched The Testaments which is probably my favorite church film. We were so excited to watch it and we weren't disappointed. The end is my favorite part. When Christ comes to the Nephites and he heals Helam. So good! The hermanas and I were crying! And it was so wonderful. I love our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ with all of my heart. I could not do anything without Him. I know that now more than ever. He is in everything that we do. The Lord's hand is in our lives! I wish you all could see it as well I do! I know it's like I am on a spiritual high but I really want you all to look for ways that He is there and that He helps you. And then write me and tell me about them because they are so helpful to me. My testimony just continues to grow of the savior and what He truly did for us is amazing. I am in awe whenever I think about it. I know I have a long way to go to become like Him but each and every day He helps me work on something else. I know life is hard and I forget even here in the MTC the most spiritual place I have ever been, all that Christ has done for me. But God knew we wouldn't be perfect, that's why He gave us His beloved son. God hears us. He helps us. He loves us. It's wonderful. Keep going everybody! Pray for help and strength! He will help you. I also seemed to focus a lot this week during study time and lessons about getting through hard trials and how sometimes we may feel like we are alone but we never are. Even if you think you are doing things on your own, I promise He is there. Leading you along.
We have taught TRC's 3 times now! That is where it is like family home evening where we go teach member volunteers usually in spanish! And the first time was really hard and the next week was good and this Last week was amazing. We all spoke so well in Spanish and the spirit was so strong. I love the spirit. He truly is the teacher in all of this. Not us. We play a huge role and have a lot of responsibility to help him but he is one heck of a guy, I can tell you that.
I loved hearing about the Trek! It sounds like it was awesome! This week we worked out really hard with one of the new Sisters in our district who had this insane workout and Hermana Moberly and I haven't really been able to move for a couple days.. Every time we have to stand up or open a door we make this uncontrollable groaning sound. haha but it felt really good at the same time. I am sure you guys probably felt similar during the Trek. I remember you guys making me go on that thing twice! Ay yay yay.. I miss working out though. I seriously don't think I had worked out like that since High School.. Which is sad. We made a goal to do that at least 1 gym time a week. Then I just barely realized as I was typing that is only 1 more gym time! OH MY HECK. I can't believe it. I can't believe it. Crazy and scary but exciting and new and adventurous and spiritual and I can't wait to become even better!
I don't have a lot of time left but I am so grateful for all the love and prayers and letters and packages! I miss you all and pray for you all each night(it's a really long prayer especially since it's in spanish). Tell Mark and Nate to write me! Did Nate get my letter? Somebody tell me what's going on! I feel lost sometimes over here. Extrano mis hermanos! Okay, Adios! Love you all! Until next week!
Also, I got a shot a few days ago and I had to pay for it with the cash that I had here but I sent you guys a form with all the information like the insurance form and everything so you can get the money back from that. Because I will definitely be needing that money back before I leave the MTC for my travel money. Also could you send me a new SD card? Mine doesn't always work in my camera.. I sent it to Seth to see if he could get the pictures off of it so invite him over for dinner again so he can bring that to you and if you guys could take the pictures off and fix it or send me a new one or something.. Because I can't take any more pictures without it! Tell Sara she can pick some off of it for the blog that are her favorite. There is a really cool one of my whole district in a circle that I really like. Also one with mis hermanas! Also any news on the contacts?? And if someone could send me a contact case that would be great. Kay seeya!

Terecer Semana! (Third week, I think that's how you spell it)

Hola familia y amigos!
Esta semana.. has been wonderful. It was a little rough at first but then I always am reminded why I am here when I start to feel bad for myself. Literally everything we do here involves Christ and it makes it so much easier to concentrate and focus and get back on tr ack. Sometimes I get really tired in the mornings.. Because I like to take really long showers and that means I have to wake up earlier.. Which is no bueno pero esta bien. And so sometimes I start to drift off during personal study but the last few days I haven't even been close to falling asleep! I just say a little prayer and thank the Lord for this opportunity and ask for his help and he gives it to me! Truly, when we knock he answers. Not always right away and I haven't felt it so much until I was here.. But i feel like that is because I have never given my life to the Lord before. Because I am serving him he blesses me. :) It feels great and the more he blesses me the more I want to serve him! It's a really great cycle to get into. He always blesses me more than I serve him though..
So a cool thing is happening in a couple weeks! I am in the MTC choir and we are going to sing at a special mission conference thing.. Or devotional or training or something.. But it's at the marriot center and The WHOLE FIRST PRESIDENCY AND THE APOSTLES WILL BE THERE. So sweet I can hardly wait. We have been practicing the songs for it. I am so happy to hear that Dad got a couple tickets for it! It's sad that he won't be able to make it. :( But you guys can watch for him. So we also had a devotional at the marriot center on Tuesday and it was pretty cool walking over there with thousands of missionaries. Hermana Moberly one of my companions, her mom saw us on KSL news!! Except she said you could only see my head if you knew I was there because I am so little.. Haha but you can see my companions! Hermana Moberly and Hermana Helms! It was a really good devotional. Also on Sunday nights they call it "Move night" or maybe that's just what we call it but you get to choose from talks to listen to or sometimes they play the joseph smith movie or legacy etc. This time we watched a talk by Elder Bednar that he gave in the MTC a couple christmas' ago. It was SO amazing. It was all about the character of christ. So I have been studying the character of christ a little bit in my personal studies and if you really think about each situation it is incredible how unselfish, compassionate, and charitable the savior is. We always say it but when you really study it, it's ridiculous.. It makes me feel like it's impossible to reach that kind of a goal to become christ-like but the alternative of not trying at all and just giving up is much worse. I know that it will take a lot to reach that level of perfection and it's true we can't do it alone but we can through the Atonement. Christ wants to help us.
So, on Sunday we at lunch we had our whole zone empty two whole cereal canisters! It was sweet. I had 3 bowls, Hermana Helms had 3 bowls and Hermana Moberly had 5! Hahaha it was so funny. The canisters are so big. But we kind of got in trouble for it.. So we can't do it again but it was pretty cool.. Also, we play volleyball practically EVERY gym time. We love it. Yesterday we got a bunch of people from our zone to play and it was soo much fun. I love volleyball. I am not very good and  I don't know how to aim very well and get under the ball.. And so I am sure everybody else on my team doesn't have as much fun when I am playing.. But it's soo fun! I am getting better so that's good. :) and everyone is so nice and we aren't supposed to be competetive and we don't keep score so nobody is ever really mad when I mess up. But my hermanas and I are always making fun of each other. Luckily they aren't good either. haha. Our district is soo close we are literally like family. It's awesome. One of the elders in my district looks like David Archuleta. But there is no relation. There is one elder who sometimes drives me crazy.. But somehow we find a way to appreciate each other and get along. Truly, a miracle. :)
My camera SD card isn't working anymore. I have pictures I want to show you all but it won't work! So I am going to send it back in a letter to mom and dad and hopefully dad can fix it when he gets back off the trek so you can see all my district and zone! A district left this last week and it was really sad. It was the hermanas who helped us a lot in the beginning. They were the sister missionary training leaders. We miss them already. The elders in the district were great too. We got another new district though last week and then yesterday we got another district! The second disrict has 6 hermanas in it! So we talked to them a little and guess what! Mis hermanas and I are going to be the new sister missionary trainers next week! I can't believe we have even been here long enough to be them! But that's how long the other hermanas were here for when they became the sister missionary trainers. Time flies in here! It's crazy! I feel like last P day was two days ago.. But then sometimes it seems like we have been here forever. It's weird. But I love how productive I am! It's so great! Anyways, I am 3 minutes past my time! So much for exact obedience... Uh oh. Adios!
Love you all,
Hermana Garrett
P.s. Thank you so much for the package mama! The shirt fits so much better! It's wonderful! Stop doubting your sewing abilities! You always do a great job!
P.p.s. Thanks to everyone who helps keep my puppy happy! I miss him so much! And thanks to everyone who keeps my boo Seth happy and busy too! I am so happy for him I can hardly stand it! Ahh!

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Buenos Dias!

Ay yay yay!
That's what I say all the time here. Spanish is coming along great! We learn literally triple the amount then I ever learned in any spanish class! It's fantastic. I am so flustered after FINALLY finding out where Seth is going that I can hardly think about what has happened this week to tell you all.. HE IS GOING TO GUATEMALA! SPANISH! I am soo happy. Luckily I made a small list of things to say so I wouldn't forget. First I wanna say thank you for the packages! Mama they were fantastic! You know how I love caramel popcorn and those charity quotes were perfect! The skirt was better than new! Stop doubting yourself! It is perfect! And thank the Gehring's for the yummy treats! My whole district has been enjoying them. :) I am soo grateful for you all. Sometimes it gets hard like right now I wish I could have been at Seth's mission call opening and then I think about all the things I am missing and get really homesick. Plus Leann is gone now to Texas and so I won't get to see her anymore when I start to get nervous or upset.. But even though I feel a little sad right now I know that the Lord is with me. I can literally feel Him with me as I type comforting me. I have never felt that before. It doesn't necessarily take the pain away but it reminds me that I am not alone and that I can do all of these things with His help.  
Leann is gone now. :( Which is really hard for me to grasp. I only saw her 3 times but it was amazing every time. It hasn't really hit me yet because we only saw each other every few days but I am going to miss it.. But I know she is doing great things and she is going to be a great missionary and I can't wait until we get back from our missions and can sit in my room and watch netflix (except we will be so productive after this we probably won't wanna be lazy and sit around watching netflix anymore.. Who am I kidding, yes we will). We will talk about all the miracles we experienced and the people we were able to help and bring unto Christ and it will be the best conversation and time spent together that we have ever had. She has been such a strength to me these past few years. But you don't need to send her boots anymore mama because I will just have to send them back. :(
I left my camera in the classroom last night so I can't upload any pictures today because I would have to get all dressed up to go to the classroom and there is no way. It's PDAY! I am wearing my GAP comfy hoodie(the one me and Sara both have) and some black jeans and my cozy slippers! Feeling real good! So I am not about to go change to get my camera. Sorry! Next week I will just add a few extra photos although it's really annoying because I can only send one picture for each email because apparently they are too big.. But I'll do my best for ya'll. P days are so nice. They are so relaxing and we get to go to the temple which I am so excited about. It is wonderful there. And I can't remember if I said this or not but somebody sent me some names to do endowments for.. I have no idea who they are but the elders are helping because there are a lot of male names. It was pretty cool to help someone who needed them. I can't believe it's been 2 weeks. It seems like we have been here forever but when I think about last Sunday it FLEW by. It is really great here. I have never in my life felt so productive, and the growth is huge. My testimony has tripled I swear, my faith is so much stronger, I feel like I can do anything. Also as a person, I am nicer and more productive.. It really already has been so great I can't imagine the difference the next year and a half of my life will make. I know it's because I am literally letting the Lord shape and mold me into the best me I can be. There are no distractions to keep me from progressing it's wonderful. Well, there are distractions.. But WAY less and I am able to forget about them and move on which I am sure most of you know, I don't move on easily.. Haha a funny/bad thing that happened yesterday.. We were playing a game of trashketball while practicing spanish yesterday and I got REALLY competetive.. You guys know how I get when I lose.. Haha so I definitely have stuff to work on. But you will be happy to know that my companion Hermana Moberly won and I was happy for her! Which was a miracle. Haha just kidding. But really it is so wonderful to see myself progress. I never want to leave because I dont' want to stop getting better and I feel like my growth rate is so much better here! Because the Lord is my focus. I wish I would have realized this kind of stuff before. I guess I did a little but not really. As human beings we limit our growth but if everyone could just understand that they just have focus on the Lord and let Him help them and teach them it would be wonderful! Especially myself. I am determined to continue growing especially after my mission. I know I can with the Lord's help.
We have a new investigator! He is a 16 year old boy named Randy. His girlfriend is a member but he isn't sure that he believes in God.. So it's a little tricky. But he wants to become a better person and change. So we have our second lesson with him tomorrow. We learned a new model of teaching that we are going to try which is a lot simpler than what we have been doing and helps involve the investigator a lot more. By the way I keep writing words in spanish as I write and spelling things wrong. Like investigador instead of investigator.. No bueno. I have to erase and rewrite so I don't have as much time! Pero, esta bien, porque Yo aprendo much espanol. That's probably not correct sentence structure but I am getting there! One day I will write a whole letter in Spanish it will be GREAT! Another thing I wanted to mention. My district is soo great. I love them all. We are like one big family. We all got along so well from day one and it has been so amazing. Funny story, you guys know how I am shy at first before you get to know me.. So we had this absolutely AMAZING testimony meeting the other night. Just with our district. No teachers or any leaders at all. It was after the devotional. It was just soo amazing to see how much we had all grown since we came here and it strengthened us so much as a group. I am so proud of all of us! But during Elder Stanworth's testimony he said something like this, "We have all grown so close and progressed together it's been great. Hermana Garrett would hardly say two words to any of us that first day and now she's all LOUD." Hahahaha so you can see I am able to be myself here. :)
Lastly, I only have a couple minutes left so I have to hurry. I LOVE the Book of Mormon. I really want to finish it before I leave here. I am in Helaman and it's kind of hard because even during personal study you are always thinking about your investigador to study for. So sometimes it seems like it's not for my own personal testimony, but as I have been studying it no matter what for my testimony of that book has grown so much. I KNOW it's true. I KNOW the things it teaches are true and it CHANGES lives. I believe that 100%. If any of you are doubting the church at all I promise if you will read the Book of Mormon and really study and ponder what it teaches the spirit will speak to you and teach you something every time. It's crazy! I go through all my phases of reading those self help books and try changing my life for the better, and those are wonderful and they really work, but when I study and read the Book of Mormon and apply its teachings to my life, it changes me more than any other book I have ever read. I know it can help us through pruebas(trials)through challenges, tiempos deficil(difficult times), or even just getting a better outlook on life or getting along with your family or friends. It is amazing. I absolutely love it. It has so much power. I really want all my family to read it with me every day and study it and help me to learn things that you see because everybody learns something different and I see that in my district how many different interpretations we can get through one verse because everybody has different outlooks or situations. I gotta go. I love you all so much!
ESCRIBAME! write me :)
Hermana Garrett

Friday, May 31, 2013

HOLA!!! First week in the MTC! | May 30th, 2013

Oh my goddness I do not have a lot of time. I will type soo fast and then maybe come back later if I can to finish or write more. But it is SO great here. The spirit is everywhere! We pray at least 50 times day! Over food, before personal study, before lessons, after lessons, before choir practice(which is fantastic! We are singing at some devotional or event or something in 2 weeks at the marriot center! So if you can go you should because you will be SO close to me!) after choir practice, before bed, when you wake up! there is so much praying! Even when we just feel like we can't focus in class or during study time you say a prayer and then you feel great again and can focus! Almost EVERY time. That is something that was hard for me on Saturday. But after Sunday I was doing absolutely great! So I made a promise to God that I would wake up the exact second the alarm went off and that I would be HAPPY about it which I totally wasn't before and guess what! It's a miracle! Those days that I woke up right on the dot or before I was able to concentrate and study much more effectively and focus! God is great everybody. :) Also another really cool thing that has happened to me while I have been here..
I SAW LEANN!!!!! BEST THING EVER! I have only seen her twice and I didn't see her until Saturday. But this is what was going on. I kept searching for her everywhere! Everyone kept telling me that I would see her.. I would see her but I WASN'T SEEING her. So I was getting really upset but I tried to stay positive then Saturday morning rolls around and I have lost all hope. I am walking out of our residence hall my head down questioning everything.. Getting down on myself because of the lesson(I will tell you later) and just wondering if this is really where I needed to be. If I could really do all of this every day for 18 months. I lift my head up for a second and out of the corner of my eye guess who I see??? LEANN ELIZABETH ALLRED! I am not kidding I told my hermanas (i'm in a trio by the way super cool) That's her! And I RAN to her. Actually sprinted. She was going the other way and everyone was watching me run through the courtyard and it was a little embarrassing (You know how I get embarrassed) But I didn't care! I practically tackled her. It was really great. We both cried and hugged for a really long time but we couldn't really talk too much because I had to go and she had to go (our schedules are strict and very busy) but it was so worth the wait. All the sudden I felt soo good! I was happy and positive and ready to get to work! It was a miracle. The next time I saw Leann same thing! We went to the mail room after waiting all weekend including Monday because no mail on memorial day! And I was just dying to recieve mail and there was nada. I was feeling so bad and angry(which was stupid because later that night I got letters...) and then I could feel tears welling in my eyes when I see Leann's beautiful face walking towards me! We run to each other again and all is well. The lord knows what I need and he knows exactly when I need it. I have been able to see his hand in my life this past week soo many times I can't even count. It's fantastic. Like the praying thing where I prayed to be awake. I just had to promise him something. I had to prove that it was important to me. He rewards us when we do what He asks. Kind of like Mark giving me his computer and I didn't use it for months. Finally he said the same thing he always says, "If you don't use that then I am going to give it to someone else!" I think oh my gosh.. What a jerk. But he is not a jerk! He just wants to see his gifts being used! God is like that too. So if we don't use our gifts from him enough times he probably isn't as excited to give us more gifts. (BTW MARK WRITE ME I need your positive vibes)
Okay I already love everyone. Our district is like my family. We got along literally from the FIRST DAY. It has been amazing. I don't really get annoyed every. I have like 2 times and you guys all now that I usually do not last that long with the same people for more than 48 hours with them. But it's not even like that here! It doesn't even feel like I am putting up with anything! I love them all! It's like I can feel my love growing for everyone and everything. Also something I coudln't do before but now I can is sitting in class for 3 hours straight twice a day then studying scriptures for 1 hour then studying language for another hour(really all day but one specific time set for that) and then more of companionship study.. I don't know if you can tell but there is SO much learning. Constantly. All day every day. At college I could hardly stay in a 50 minute class without falling asleep, getting distracted, and wishing I was doing something else(especially math). Obviously this is so much different than regular school but still! It's a miracle! The Lord really is here and is able to help me every step of the way. He leads me, He guides me, and walks beside me. :) I know it. I can see the improvement that I have made in just one week. It's fantastic! I don't want to stop! Sometimes it's hard and a little overwhelming but like I said literally every time I feel frustrated or overwhelmed in the slightest, the Lord finds a way to lift me up! I have never experienced something like this in all my life. 
Let's see... what else. My Pday is always Thursday and I can write at 7 in the morning till 8 ish depending on laundry and stuff. So everyone be awake and write me back fast so I can here from you maybe a little. It's hard waiting a whole week to write to everyone. :( But it's worth it. I know I couldn't concentrate as well if I could do this everyday. But everyone keep writing me! I love all your letters!
Nate and Gigi! Thanks for your letters I loved them! Nathan your letter made me cry! I am so happy that you experienced that. Prayer is amazing! I testify of the truthfullness of that. If you ask in faith knowing that God will help you, MIRACLES can happen. You just have to have faith. And even without faith the Lord blesses us. Without even realizing it the Lord does so much for all of us. Like for example, I decided to work on charity this week... Our topic for ALL SPIRITUAL THOUGHTS just happened to be charity.. Coincidence? No way. And we taught a lesson to our investigator Jose about some really great stuff and the devotional on Tuesday night... Exactly what I had been studying for my lesson! The Lord is constantly preparing me and shaping me and molding me into the best person I can possibly be. And I need all the help I can get so I am so grateful!
Oh yeah we have taught 4 lessons in SPANISH now! Our frst was on Friday and it has been such a wonderful experience. I have learned so much about the gospel, the language, how to study. Gotta go but I love you all! Don't stop writing me!!!
Hermana Garret