Monday, October 29, 2012

Day 34: How has is only been ONE month??

Hola amigos! I feel like I've been here forever but I also feel like time flies by.

I should probably tell you all about my wonderful investigators. I came to Moses Lake at just the perfect time! We have 8 people on date for baptism! Isn't that awesome!? First is Ana and Walter. Ana is from McAllen! I knew it even before she told me. She just seemed like she was from the valley. I was super excited to talk to her about it and tell her about my grandparents. She speaks perfect english but Walter doesn't so we teach in Spanish for them. They are the IDEAL investigators. They really wanted a change in their lives and want to be converted to the gospel of Christ. They always pray and read to find things out for themselves. They have incredible faith and strong testimonies. Walter is so kind and thoughtful and he really wants this to be a permanent and wonderful change in his life. They were supposed to get married last week but they couldn't get a wedding license because Walter doesn't have the right ID. So we are praying that they can figure it out and get their license this week and if they do they will get married this Saturday and possibly even baptized that day too! It is super exciting. They will always be faithful members.

Then Virginia and Arturo. They are an older, married couple. Virginia is rock solid. She has a great testimony and understanding about everything. She is so committed and ready to make this step and she is getting baptized this Saturday too! Arturo is planning on getting baptized too but he still seems a little hesitant. We have talked to him about prayer and faith and we are hoping that he can commit to this step. 

Claudia, Jonathan and Genaro are awesome. So Claudia is the mom and Genaro is the dad. They have four kids. Anthony is 13 and he was baptized two weeks ago! He is preparing to receive the priesthood pretty soon. We are super excited for him. Jonathan is 9 and yesterday he had a little part in the primary program singing the song, "I will go, I will do!" It was so cute. I loved it so much. Claudia and Genaro aren't married and that is what is holding them back from getting baptized. We are working to help them move towards that step but Claudia has so much faith and hope. She is so good-hearted. Love them so much!

We have really good luck with Spanish speaking investigators. We only have one investigator for our English ward and we are going to work and pray really hard to find someone this week. I know there is a family waiting to hear the gospel of Jesus Christ and have it change their lives!

So yesterday was the Primary Program in our Spanish branch and it was SO precious. All the boys had matching red ties and the girls had matching red flowers. They looked so cute. Most of the leaders in the branch are converts so they didn't grow up in primary so I think they worked SO hard to learn the songs together and put on the cutest little program. I love my Spanish branch! A lot of returned missionaries who speak Spanish get called to be in this branch to work and build it up. I love all the little efforts of everyone here. 

After church we went to visit a family that we had met the previous Sunday. Only the mom was there and she was locked out. We talked for a few minutes and then she said, "ok, I have a question for you...What is the Book of Mormon?" It was a spiritual goldmine for a missionary! I opened up the Book of Mormon and talked to her about how it's a record of Jesus Christ visiting the people of America. Like the bible, it contains the words of God revealed to His prophets. We shared our favorite scriptures and explained how reading this book brought us closer to God and increased our faith. She was excited and said, "I am going to read it!" Then I asked her if she prayed to know it was true, and if she received an answer, would she be baptized? Part of the training of the new missionaries is that I take the lead in a lot of the lessons and all the invites. It can be a little daunting, but you just feel the spirit so strong that I have to ask her! We don't like to beat around the bush as missionaries. We are called to be servants to bring others unto Christ. This is His work and His glory and we try to take it seriously! She didn't initially accept but she wants us to keep coming. She wants her family to have a good influence of Christ in their lives. I am so excited! Our next appointment is tomorrow!

Well, my companion is the traveling sister so that means she coordinates the exchanges between the sisters in our area. Which is awesome and scary because we do exchanges nearly every week. Which means one of us switches spots with a different sister in a different companionship. For this first one, I stayed in Moses Lake and Hermana Hicks went to Warden. I was SO nervous because now I was in charge of the area and our investigators! But thankfully, Hermana Hicks switched with Hermana Sanchez, who was the last sister here before me. So she knew the area and all our investigators. Not to mention, her spanish is perfect. So the day went great and it was cool to see missionary work with a new companion. Lots to learn from everyone around me! We are doing another exchange tomorrow and I'm going to Leavenworth! I'm excited!

Sister Hicks is the best! We are super similar and it's really great because she always understands what I'm going through. She will encourage me and tell me of how things went for her. She's so funny too. Seriously, we are always laughing and joking. It makes hard days easier. When we have door after door shut on us, and it seems like nobody wants to hear about Christ or listen to us, it can be pretty rough. A lot harder than I thought actually. I'm surprised how hard this mission has already been. Being on this side of the fence of missionary work is just so different than I ever imagined. My perspective is so unique. I could never have imagined the things I would feel and learn as a missionary. You think you know and then you get out here and it's crazy. Crazy good and crazy bad. But I love it. I'm learning to enjoy each moment and love the people I serve.

I've still got quite a few more mountains to climb before I come home.

Well, that's all I can think of now.

Keep sending letters! I love them so much. Everyone always knows just what to say. I love you all! At the end of the day, I love being a missionary and serving the Lord. His tender mercies are endless!


Hermana Judd

P.S. Here is Sister Judd's address for the next 2-3 months if you'd like to drop her a line!

Hermana Emily Michele Judd
562 Young Rd. NE
Moses Lake, WA 98837

P.P.S. I don't mean to brag, oh wait... I always mean to brag, but she sent me my own little personal email about sisterly things and it made my day! I love that short little girl so much and I'm so glad we get to hear about her adventures each week! If you have any suggestions of some uplifting music to send her, please send them my way! 

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Day 27! "But to us he gives the keeping of the lights along the shore"

She made it to the "amber waves of grain"! Here's her first email from the field:

Querida Familia!

WOW, wow, wow. SO much has happened in the last week, I will just start from the beginning:

Monday morning at we left the MTC at 5 am and rode a bus to the airport. I'm grateful for Elder Legarra from my MTC district who helped me with all my big bags. There truly was 22 of us on our air plane. It was crazy and so funny to see this huge line of missionaries board the plane. We were taking over the place! President and Sister Mullen greeted us with open arms at the luggage claim. I knew instantly I would love them. President Mullen has a big, loud voice and he is SO full of energy. Sister Mullen might be the most adorable person ever. OH, I love her so much. We went out right away and did something called "fear-busting" which looking back now, really wasn't that scary. We went out with a temporary companion, an experienced missionary who knew the area, and then just contacted people on the street or knocking on doors. I was so worried that I wouldn't know what to say, and it was in English! But it was fine. Sister Morgan was my companion and she was super nice and energetic. It got me excited to really do good work. Spokane Valley is super beautiful. Pine trees everywhere. It is so scenic and picturesque and I loved downtown Spokane. It's a pretty cool city with really neat buildings and architecture. But I don't know how much time I will really spend in the city. Well, then we went to the stake center and had lunch. Sister Mullen made cookies and then also but cookie dough balls on the plate because she thought we might like them too. That's when I really knew that we would get along great. Hello?? I LOVE cookie dough. We did some quick training on cars and medical things and then we interviewed with President Mullen. He is so great. He made me feel so comfortable in being here and I am so excited to be working here under his guidance. He shared a scripture with me that I think I might use on my plaque: D&C 64:33-34. It talks about not being weary in the work, because we are laying a good foundation. I've been sharing it with a lot of my members here to get them excited about missionary work and to encourage them in their own efforts. President Mullen encouraged me to stay happy and positive and that it would really help me, my companions and my investigators. My first two days here all I could think was, "can you die of happiness?" I was just so excited and ready to get to work.

I spent the night with a family in Spokane Valley and they were so kind and nice. They have twin boys serving missions right now so everything the mom was saying, made me think about how my own family felt about me serving a mission. It's funny to be on the other side of missionary work now. I see things through different eyes. 

Tuesday we headed to the church and had a little more training before we met our companions! I'm serving with Hermana Hicks in Moses Lake, WA. In our area we work with the 6th Ward (English) and the 9th Branch (Spanish). Moses Lake is so different from Spokane Valley-it's just all this flat farm land-not a tree in sight. BUT I LOVE IT! We'll be driving in the car and I just turn to Hermana Hicks and say, "I LOVE it here! I just LOVE IT!" I've never lived in a place like this and it's so cool to be transplanted in this little part of the world with my people. I totally belong here. The population is like 20,000 and there are 4 chapels! There are so many members and everyone here is Christian or knows someone who is mormon. Oh man I love the people. It's cool to serve both English and Spanish at the same time. We split our time pretty evenly working with both wards. I am constantly touched by how kind and good the people here are. They are so willing to serve and help us. We have a car and our area covers A LOT of land so we don't really bike, but members give us a lot of rides because we only have 1000 miles each month. Hermana Hicks is super diligent and has been in the area for 3 months so the members really love and trust her. It's been good for me because it helps me to earn their trust as well. At first I was worried we were spending a lot of time in members homes and not enough time finding new investigators, but I really see how having the members help us really is vital to the work. Missionaries NEED members! Members are crucial in helping invesigators feel welcome and church and to really help them feel an outreach of love. It's really so neat to be here. Everyone is a good ol' farmer and just works so hard. It's the harvest right now and most people are spending their whole day working in the field to harvest their crops. I think it's so cool! Members are always giving us stuff like freshly picked apples and potatoes, fresh grape juice, dessert galore. They love the missionaries here. The rule here is that we only eat with members during the week if there is an investigator at their home also. I guess most members are afraid to ask their friends because we never eat in members homes. Only on Saturday and Sunday which I guess are exceptions to the rule. But it's great because then we can eat quick and easy healthy meals at home.

Ahh! I have so many thoughts to tell you so I will try to get them all down.

Hermana Hicks is awesome. I'm so grateful she is my trainer! Heavenly Father really knows everything because this is her last transfer and had I stayed in intermediate Spanish at the MTC then I would not have been here now and had her as my trainer, or even met her! She reminds me a lot of Arielle Driggs because she is just so down to earth and cool. We laugh A LOT. Which is so great cause when things get tough we can just have a sense of humor and enjoy the moment. She is super positive and always making me feel good and ok about what I do. She wakes up at shouts, "It's going to be a GREAT day!" each morning which is good and what I need cause it's hard to wake up most mornings. We are super obedient and always go to bed on time, but missionary work is exhausting. We go running every morning for exercise which is awesome. I am eating mas o menos healthy each day and working out so I just feel good all around. Hermana Hicks says she is motivated to go running in the morning because it means when we get home to stretch we can listen to Lower Lights. She loves my music and I do too! It seriously lifts me spirits a lot. Even though she is nearly done with her mission, she is super dedicated to serving still. I don't feel like I've quite adjusted to being a missionary yet, because really it's all happened so quickly, but she helps me stay grounded and to feel that I CAN DO this! I didn't think it would be so hard some days, but I think a lot about why I'm here and why I'm doing this. I think Satan is trying to work against me and make me feel like I'm not doing an important work. But there are other moments where I just love missionary work SO MUCH. Most times it's when we are with people and talking to them and teaching them that I feel better about life. When we are out busy and teaching, I feel so good and right about where I am. When we are feeling the spirit in our lessons I really LOVE being here. 

I feel discouraged sometimes that I am not perfect at speaking Spanish yet or that I can't 100% understand everything everyone says but I am trying and I know if I really give it my best effort, it will come. I mean I can teach now and I can say things, but I rely a lot on Hermana Hicks to understand what all our investigators are saying. 

Oh man, I am nearly out of time. These pictures are from my last few days at the MTC. Next week I will send pictures from my area now and my companions and OH! I live at a member's house except that the members are on a 3 months tour to Samoa so we leave in this big, beautiful house all my ourselves! We have two dogs and two cats so I might be the only missionary ever to have pets! It's tough here but I really do love it at the end of the day. I can do hard things and I love following the spirit and serving the people here!

So many people need the light of Christ in their lives and I just want to share my love and happiness with everyone we see! 

I wish I could write and tell you more about our investigators and the miracles I've already experienced. Maybe, I will write a hand written letter too.

Here's my address. Please send me stuff, I would love to hear from you!

562 Young Rd. *SE
Moses Lake, WA 98837
*still trying to figure out if it's NE or SE... TBD

Hermana Judd

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

A letter from President Mullen

A letter from Hermana Em's Mission President:

Dear Brother and Sister Judd,

I was pleased to welcome your daughter, Sister Judd, to the Washington Spokane Mission this week.  I’m happy to report that she arrived safely.  I had the privilege of meeting and associating with her the day of her arrival and note that it is evident that she comes with a great desire to serve Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ. Sister Judd understands the role of the Holy Ghost in accomplishing the work here in the Washington Spokane Mission and has committed to live worthy of that power.

After prayerful consideration, I have called Sister Hicks  to serve as Sister Judd’s training companion in the Moses Lake, Washington area.  It is our objective to call only the best missionaries to serve as trainers and I believe that your daughter is in excellent training hands.  We expect that your missionary will serve in this area for the next 6 to 12 weeks as she begins her mission.

I have attached photographs of your missionary and assure you that Sister Mullen and I will love Sister Judd.  Our great desire is that her time here will further establish her on the path of righteousness, as well as bless the many people she will serve.

Attached are the new updated recommended guidelines we have for parents.  These guidelines are based on many years of accumulated missionary experience, especially those guidelines concerning personal contact with your missionary. Sister Judd needs your good example.  I sincerely request that you consider them for the benefit of your daughter and her fellow missionaries.

Thank you so much for sharing Sister Judd with us. 


Donald E. Mullen, President

The mission has a website

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Day 18! oh babylon oh babylon!

Here is her second letter from the MTC. She heads out to Spokane on Monday! (I know I'm a little bias, but I love this girl so much. She's already doing great things!)

Mi querida familia!

Hellooooo everybody! Thank you for all your letters. I feel so loved and supported! All my elders are jealous of all the mail and packages I get but I am just really grateful I have so many people who care about me! After the first few days, time at the MTC just flies! I can't believe I'm already leaving on Monday! I still feel like the new missionary who just got here on Wednesday sometimes but I am so excited to get to Spokane! President Mullen sent me a letter with all the details for Monday and it's going to be SO great. We get in at 9:30 am so we still have a wonderful full day! President and Sister Mullen will pick us up at the airport and then we'll go to a stake center for lunch. There are 22 missionaries in my travel group and my flight is a direct flight so I think that means there are 22 of us going to SPOKANE! Isn't that crazy and great?!!! Speaking of, HELLO general conference! It was the best conference of my life. Conference through missionary eyes is seriously the coolest. Maybe it was just me, but every talk was about missionary work, right? Or becoming more like Christ and the doctrine of Christ which is pretty much all we talk about here. LOVED it! When President Monson made the amazing announcement about the new missionary age limit we were going crazy here at the MTC! I was holding my breath thinking, "he can't really be saying what I think he is saying!!" And then he said it and we were all cheering. We were just so HAPPY! How cool that I will forever know where I was for this amazing, historic announcement! I can think of like 20 people who will probably leave on missions now! I am so glad I am here being a part of this amazing work! I just feel so right where I am. I am glad that I had the two extra years to prepare and learn for my mission. I know I'm serving at the right time for me but I also know the Lord has been preparing the sisters and elders who are leaving sooner. The Lord is hastening his work! He wants it done. That's why 22 missionaries are headed to Spokane on Monday! 

ALSO, for Tuesday's devotional, Elder Bednar came and spoke! It was so unexpected and awesome! The Apostles are the super heroes of missionary work. There was an incredible spirit in the room. I listened and knew that he was an apostle of the Lord and a witness of Jesus Christ. He gave us some good advice to use in our personal study of conference and other things. First, listen for the doctrine and principles. 2nd, Pay attention to the invitation for what we need to do to follow that doctrine, and 3rd, listen for the blessings promised. He outlines every talk like this and that looks for themes and where the spirit taught him and how he can improve his life. It is something I will definitely be doing once the new conference Ensign comes out. 

Yesterday, I had in-field orientation and it was easily, one of my favorite days here. We do a lot of cool things here and I really have taken the counsel to "embrace each day" to heart. I really have loved every moment of my mission! But yesterday, all the missionaries preparing to leave gathered together for a full day of workshops. We talked about planning our days, using members as our allies, and depending on faith. My dear friend Ellie (hansen) Newell, was working a couple rooms so seeing her was also the BEST! I have loved running into my friends who work at the MTC. The whole day was really exciting and just made me pumped to get out to the field. I am a little nervous but I know the Lord has so many amazing things in store, I just can't even imagine them! I am so excited to teach the people too! I can't wait to have real investigators and love them and serve them! The gospel changes lives and I get to be a part of it! I am so happy!

My new district is great. At first, I was having a hard time adjusting. But i love my elders so much! They are good guys and they have such strong spirits and testimonies. I know they will be amazing wherever they serve. Some are a little older and it took them a little longer to get out on their missions but I am so proud of them. I just love where they came from and where they are going with their lives. They really are focused to serve. I mean, yes, a lot of times they are just a bunch of rowdy boys, but they are my rowdy boys, my dear elders and I'm really grateful I had these two weeks in the MTC as a solo sister to learn from them. BUT I am REALLY looking forward to having a sister companion again and to have more girl time. 

My roommates are super wonderful and even though people told me I'd make great friends on my mission, I am still surprised at how many friends I am making and how many people I love and want to see after my mission! 

I am nearly out of time, but here are some pictures: 

My solo nametag. Que triste, verdad? It's hard to be without a sister companion sometimes.

My district with our teacher, Hermano Erquhart who served in Dallas and Mckinney! 
 Pointing on the big map. I can hardly reach my mission!
Me and my elder companions, Elder Beltran and Elder Barrett. They are so kind and patient with me and have really helped my Spanish! They are both headed to Bolivia on Monday.
(She's wearing my shirt here. So obviously I'm a pretty good sister for finally sharing my clothes with her after all these years)

Have a great Saturday! Love you guys! Missionary work is the best! Everyone should serve a mission, EN SERIO! It's already changing my life!

Hermana Em

Sunday, October 7, 2012

DAY 10 and I'm still ALIVE!

We got our first email from the MTC! Guess her P-days are on Fridays? Enjoy!

Mi querida familia!

I will try to write as much as possible in this short amount of time but I have so much to say! SO much has happened in the last 10 days I can't even believe it. I'll break it down into two parts because I just don't know how to explain this whirlwind experience!

Part 1: District 11C

So I got to the MTC and the first person I see when I walk towards my classroom is HERMANA BROWN! And we found out we were roommates! It was the best tender mercy ever because I really needed her help and advice the first few crazy days here. Then I met my companion, Hermana Bartschi. I knew right away we were going to get along. We both are just happy, fun-loving sisters. Hermana Bartschi is from Montpilier, Idaho and she's just a good ole' gal who loves the outdoors and being active. She is so loving and patient and we were making jokes with each other right off the bat. Heavenly Father really blessed me with Hermana Bartschi. I will forever use this companionship as an example of how I would love my other companionships to be. There were only 6 of us in our little district, Hermana Bartschi and me, Elder Scheeder and Elder Yancey, and Elder Hall and Elder Merkley. I LOVED these peeps so much. We just were a little family and we all loved each other so much. I also had a really great Zone. I was just blessed to be in the best, happiest place in the MTC and I was feeling so happy and content. My branch president, President Tyler was just so wise and kind, like an extra grandfather in my life. He is so knowledgable in the gospel and he was always spewing out scriptures and advice. It was like general conference 24/7 with him around. I knew pretty early on that my spanish was better than the rest of the class, but I was just so happy where I was! Hermana Brown assured me that I would do fine in the advanced class, and I was really conflicted. I prayed each day to know which class would be better for me. But I was still confused. I just asked that one class would stick out more to me and by Friday, I was pretty sure that I would stay for the 9 weeks. It just felt right. I felt really good and calm about it. BUT THEN, Saturday evening, one of my teachers pulled me aside and asked me if I would take the advanced test. I explained what I was thinking and how I was feeling. I told him how much I loved being with Hermana Bartschi and that I felt like I had a lot to learn still in the MTC but he told me that in missions there will always be challenges and if there is work to be done already in Spokane, Washington and I don't need more time to learn the language then I need to get out to the field. So I went and took the test and they asked me a lot of questions. One thing I found since being set apart, is that Heavenly Father really is blessing me with so many things. My tongue has been loosened here. It's so much easier for me to talk and say the things I want to in Spanish. So I spoke with ease during my advanced test and I knew I would probably move up. BUT THIS IS NOT WHERE THIS STORY ENDS. They told me they still had to check with the head language guy and they would probably get back to me on Tuesday. Hermana Bartschi and I had to warm up to the idea that we would probably no longer be companions because moving up, meant switching districts and zones so that was pretty sad. We had set goals earlier that week on being more Christlike and we were focusing this week on being more humble. One definition of humble is "submitting your will to the will of Heavenly Father" so even though I thought I had prayed and received the answer that I would stay for 9 weeks, I knew that wherever Heavenly Father needed me that is where I would go. Well THEN, on Sunday, my branch presidency called me in to talk. President Tyler knew I had been debating moving so he asked me how that was going. I told him everything that happened and he told me that he knew why I felt like I should stay the 9 weeks. And then he said, "Hermana Judd, the Lord would like you to be the coordinating sister of this Zone." All I could say was "oh? oh. oh!" Coordinating Sister is similar to Zone Leaders for elders. I attend the weekly orientation meetings and check in with the sisters each night just to make sure their needs are being met. I felt overwhelmed because I was being tugged in every direction. I mean, now I wasn't going to move to advanced?? and now I have to love all these sisters?? All the presidency and the 2 Zone leaders assured me that they had all received a clear answer and that this really was a calling from Heavenly Father. So I was just praying that I could serve the way Heavenly Father needed me to. Then during sacrament meeting, they announced my calling over the pulpit. So it seemed legit enough and it seemed like I really was staying.

Does this story already seem complicated?? Well, just you wait!

On Monday, I get a Big Brother call over the intercom in our residence hall asking me to come down to the front desk. When I get down there, they have the things ready to switch me to the Advanced class. I explained that I couldn't switch now, because my priesthood authority, my steward had called me to stay! So they call in the Big guns. The day before I left for the MTC I was joking with some friends that I would be the talk of the MTC, everyone would know me. I was kidding, obviously, but then it seriously was true! President Hummert of the District Presidency sits me down in his office and he says, "Let me draw you a picture to show you the line of authority." So it goes like this--The MTC Presidency--then 2 District Presidencies--and under each person in the District Presidency are about 10 or so Zones. So President Hummert is above President Tyler he says. And then he says, "Hermana Judd, it may be great and good that you serve as a Coordinating Sister and help the other sisters, but it is also important to remember Hermana Judd and where she is needed." So I say, ok. Then he says, "So I'm going to call your mission President and we'll see what he says." So I have to wait another day, still being pulled in every direction, and absolutely so uncertain of what I was doing and where I was supposed to be. "I'll go wherever you want me," I prayed.

Well, so you must know what happened next. President Hummert called President Mullen, and President Mullen was giddy. He said he would be delighted to have me come in the next two weeks. And just like that my PART 1 MTC experience was over. I was now a SOLO sister, I had a new district and I wasn't going to be Coordinating Sister after all.

PART 2: District 8E

I'll admit, it's been a hard adjustment. I loved where I was. And this new district was so different. 8 new, rowdy Elders, who grew up speaking spanish and so they are all a little more cocky. But thankfully I have wonderful teachers who have really helped me feel better. As a solo sister, now I have 2 elders who go with me everywhere. It's been pretty fun, actually and they help my spanish a lot. I was sad to say goodbye to Hermana Bartschi but I still see her often and we actually spent our whole P-Day together, today. On Tuesday, after I switched classes, I got to talk to President Tyler again, one last time. He said, "You know, I kept wrestling with Heavenly Father as to why I felt so strongly that you needed to be Coordinating sister, and then a small, quiet voice came to me, ' I needed Hermana Judd to have the confirmation that I trust her.'" I really needed to hear that from him. And it will be the tidbit I am going to remember and use on my mission, when I feel less adequate, like I just can't do it. My father in Heaven trusts me. Little ol' Hermanita Judd.

So, I'm nearly out of time. But I know this: Heavenly Father knew I would be in the advanced class, but he knew there were things I needed to learn in the intermediate class first and especiallly from being with Hermana Bartschi.

I will just close with this: I love being here. I am learning so much about myself and my Savior. I LOVE being a missionary. I just know this gospel is true. Missionary work is incredible. There is so much to be done and I can't wait to love and serve my investigators. I am here to invite others to come to Christ and I feel so strongly that I am where I need to be. I know my Heavenly Father loves me and I know that families are forever!

Love you all,
Hermana Judd

p.s. Let Janae know that I got her package and I am SO GRATEFUL. It was everything I needed.
ALSO, my cameras on my battery stopped working. Can you send me rechargable batteries and a charger? double AA?

OK, happy conference weekend!

Oh! P.S. My address changed too. My mailbox is #295 now and Ieave on October 15th! So make sure to send my bedding to the mission office too please! These pictures are Hermana Bartschi and me at the temple and during our service time and also me and Hermana Brown right before she left. What is Nan and Pampa's address and Jacob's too? Ok. Love you all! Miss you lots. But, my teacher Hermano Erqhart said something I've been thinking a lot about. He said, the further he got on his mission the more he realized he wasn't just homesick for his home, but for his Home in heaven. He missed his Heavenly Father too. And I thought that was neat. Pues, adios!

p.s. wasn't that the cutest thing you've ever seen when she accidentally said her "cameras on [her] battery stopped working"? OMGOODNESS precious typo!


Hermana Em and Hermana Bartschi at the Provo Temple
Hermana Em and Hermana Brown (Erika from back home!)
Cleaning? Who even knows. 
Besties already? Probs.

Monday, October 1, 2012

First letter from our girl!

Hey Friends!

Our dearest little Hermana Em sent us her first handwritten letter straight from the MTC! She gave us permission to type it up and post it on the blog for all to see.

Thursday, Sept. 27, 2012

Mi querida familia, 

I'm here! I'm at the MTC! It's been crazy & wild & fun and sometimes I can't believe it's actually real. I love love LOVE my companion, Hermana Bartschi- she's from Idaho going to California- and we get along so well. She's tall & athletic so she's motivating me to be healthy! Our Spanish is similar- I probably know a little more grammar & vocab but we speak & understand each other a lot. We are going to see how class goes today & if we do well we might try & move up to advanced together. Pero vamos a ver.  So- guess what?!? My first (of MANY) tender mercies at the MTC is that Hermana (Erika) Brown is one of my roommates here! It's so great & crazy. We just keep hugging each other cause it's like an answer to our prayers. I'm really happy we'll always have these memories at the MTC together. She leaves Sunday though, but she's already been a big help to me. I've seen all the other McKinney peeps too so that's fun. I have lots of friends at the MTC! It's really great here. Truly- like BYU on steroids- we are ALWAYS going- boom, boom, boom. Sometimes we don't have a chance to catch our breath. But ti's the 2nd day and they say if I can make it to Sunday, then I'll be ok! Already, I've seen miracles from Heavenly Father & just felt enveloped in His spirit & love for me. It's great to be a missionary! So, I don't know if this letter will arrive before my email on P-day, but they encouraged us to write our family so you know I'm safe. This might be my only hand-written letter to y'all.  (If you want to type it up and post it- that's cool) I love this gospel! The gospel of Jesus Christ changes lives & heals hearts- I'm so excited to love the people of Washington and invite them to come unto their loving Savior, Jesus Christ. I love you guys lots! I always pray for you. I'll write more in my email! 


Hermanita Judd

So that's that. Isn't she wonderful? We're so excited to get the next email! And we're so glad she has Hermana Brown as a familiar face to be the support she needs. 

And if you want to be on the email list, please don't hesitate to comment on here with your email address, or send me (Hannah) an email or contact me on Facebook!