Thursday, October 30, 2014

it was a ding-dong ditch

Hello family! Sounds like an eventful week! I'm glad you are all doing well. Can you believe it's the end of October already? Time flies so fast! 

We went to the temple today so that was amazing like always. The temple is the best. I feel so blessed to have a temple in my area. 

How is your Book of Mormon reading going? I don't know if you read today's chapters yet, Alma 32 and 33 but I just love those chapters so much. They are so marked up in my scriptures from studying them so often, and I'm not even close to being done. The pages are beautiful though. I love it. The Book of Mormon is the best. I've never loved it so much until I came on my mission and really studied and applied it every day. Everyone should read Alma 32 and 33.

Okay so everyone has asked me about Halloween. So we have to be home at 5:45 now. So that means we will need to leave our area about 4:45 or 5. Then we are going home and having dinner with our roommates and just hanging out. Our instructions were "to eat candy until we puke." I won't do that but ya it should be fun. We will pass out candy if anyone knocks on our door with pass along cards that say "the gospel is a treat." Kids around here trick or treat from store to store I guess. Apparently all the shops along the roads have candy. Also they shut down a street and have a big Halloween party with some trick or treating that way. We also have trunk or treat on Saturday, even though it's after Halloween haha so ya, that is Halloween in NYC! 

So on Saturday we were teaching Thelma and we had her read 2 Nephi 28:30 and she busted up laughing. And then she said "that's so mean!" And we were really confused so after she stopped laughing she said "I used that how teenagers use it. Like a good kind of mean. It kind of means cool or true. But they say mean instead. It's a good thing" haha! soooo …I don't know if that's a thing or what but she is 63 and thought that scripture was hilarious. 

I went on a split last week with Sister Hubbard who is a new missionary. She's only been out 2 or 3 weeks now. So that was fun to be so someone younger than me in the mission...except 5 appointments cancelled, nobody was in Central Park or any other park for us to talk to because it was raining and freezing. And then when we were tracting we were having no luck and then all of the sudden we got to this door and knocked once and then we ran. So pretty much it was a ding-dong ditch type of thing but oh well. We both just got this really bad feeling about it and felt like we should leave so we got out of that project building as fast as possible. And then we went to look up the new records we received that nobody knows and they were just addresses for high schools or hotels and the people weren't there. And then the media referral we looked up was fake as well. So it was a realllllly successful split... Haha so ya that was the worst. But it was fun to be with Sister Hubbard for a day! 

We started this new service project with a group called street smart NYC. We pretty much deliver boxes to people who order the street smart NYC cards. The cards are given to people in need of food and they just have a list of all the food kitchen places and stuff like that on the island of Manhattan that those people can go to. So pretty much we are UPS delivery people because that's what we do. This week we are delivering a box to a NYC cop. Hopefully she will be able to tell us about some more service opportunities. 

On Sunday we got to go to a mini sacrament meeting all in Spanish and I led the music... It was great! So our bishop holds a sacrament meeting for brother Lopez (because he only speaks Spanish really) and because he absolutely can't get work off and so he has a sacrament meeting at 6:00pm on Sunday's. Other people who work can go as well. So on Sunday sister brown and I went to this sacrament meeting and we got to see brother Lopez bless the sacrament for the first time. It was reallly incredible! 

So we are loaded with New investigators.....all who live out of area. Awkward. Well except for the lady with the granddaughters from Utah. But she hardly speaks English. And then Norma who has been being taught for a while but she is moving up to Albany which isn't in our mission. So that's sad. But that's okay! I feel pretty certain that she will get baptized up there though. 

So as you know I met sister Wiggintons mom, aunt carries friend! That was fun to see her :) and then Quentin smith and his wife are in my ward. He played volleyball at BYU and so I talked to him about knowing Aunt Kera, Uncle Steve and Taylor haha so that was fun. 

So our music selection is getting changed to no more EFY music or anything like that. Only Mormon tabernacle choir because people have been pushing the limits I guess. They started doing anything that can be bought at desert book..which turned into all sorts of music I guess. So that's lame. So in two weeks no more efy music. So livv, send me that efy cd today so that I can listen to it for a week :) haha 

So this week I was studying a bit about how we came here to be on earth to change, not to change Him. We have to change our own actions and not try to change or alter he commandments. When we accept and choose Christ, we choose to be changed. We can't fight the waves and storms, that won't make them stop. We have to learn to live in them and we can only do that peacefully with Christ’s help. There are three parts to following the savior. The first is to keep the commandments. When we follow the commandments we are choosing Christ. In Alma 41:7 it says we will be our own judges to decide whether we follow good or evil. Secondly, we have to ask Him for help and he will answer us. And finally, he will confirm it with us. When He asks us, We will be in perfect alignment with what he can provide. That alignment comes from following Him completely and perfectly. One thing our stake president said was that If we question the prophet then we may not have a testimony of modern revelation. If we question the commandments then we do not have the faith and confidence that He is all knowing. If what Christ spoke and taught was not true then why would it matter what he said? Why would so many want to tear him down?
I love that. It's so true. I think it goes along nicely with the talk "which way do you face?" From this past conference. I know this church is true. I know that if we better align ourselves with Gods will, we will be blessed. As we pray to our Heavenly Father in the name of Christ, the Spirit will be with us to help us along the journey we face in life. 

I love you all so much. Have a good week and a Happy Halloween!! 


Sister Tanner <3
With Sister Hubbard on splits (she's brand new out!)

Thursday, October 23, 2014

So many tender mercies . .

First of all let me just start off by saying that when we were in line to buy groceries today at Trader Joes a random Member from another Ward who we have never met came up to us and insisted that she pay for our groceries. Afterwards she told us to treat ourselves to something fun. So that was a great start to the day! Just know that even in this big city we see members everyday who are so nice to us and take care of us! :) 

Today we are headed down to help someone move (seriously helping people move like everyday) and then hopefully to Chelsea's market. We went there with Riss and David last time we came and had crepes and walked around. I guess they decorate for Halloween, so since we have to be in by 5 on Halloween then we want to celebrate today :) hopefully it'll be fun! 

This week has been SO good! No, we didn't have a baptism. No, we didn't find some solid new investigators. No, we didn't get any member referrals. No, we didn't pass out 100 copies of the Book of Mormon. And No, we didn't get to talk to any apostles this week. But we did have so many tender mercies that make the whole mission worth it. 

We got to have interviews with our mission president this week, which was awesome! I just love President Morgan so much he is the best. We had a nice little chat. He told me I will probably be here another 2 months or my fingers are crossed. He could just be saying that though. So we will see! 

On Wednesday we were able to have a family home evening with the Davis girls (Sasha and Natasha), sister Macuilt, and the Lopez family. Brother Lopez was there, which is a miracle. He works a lot and every time we go to visit he is sleeping because he works night shifts at a well-known restaurant so he gets really tired. From the first day we met sister Lopez, 4 months ago, she asked us to pray for her family and pray that her husband will come back to church and get the priesthood. Each time we visit she asks us to keep praying for them. He doesn't speak much English but at FHE we told him the Spanish we know and he was impressed and happy we try. We read from the Book of Mormon with them in Spanish, and had his sons translate the rest. At the end of FHE he invited us over to have family night with them every Monday whenever we can. A couple weeks ago he was able to receive the Aaronic priesthood and then on Thursday we saw them coming out of the temple after doing baptisms together. What a blessing it was to see our prayers answered. The Lopez family is wonderful. 

On Thursday we were able to go to Lioudmillas (Russian lady) with a member in Our Ward (Brittany) who served in Russia. We watched a video in Russian and then Brittany was able to translate the message we shared. We talked about praying and waiting for an answer with patience. We didn't think much of it, but then Brittany called us later and told us about Lioudmillas home attendant who was listening to our message and said she really enjoyed it and was in need of that. She told us about how after we left, Lioudmilla and the home attendant kept talking about the message we shared and how it touched their hearts and how they wanted to read more scriptures about it. It was neat to know that we were able to teach them by the Spirit.

Then Thursday and Friday were super rough. Everyone cancelled. Nobody would talk to us. People rejected us left and right. And nobody was home when we did look ups. We kept praying and praying to find someone. Then on the way back to the subway we saw a man selling those light up things that hunt plays with at the beach. So we decided to stop and talk to him. I was holding a Book of Mormon and after casually talking to him a bit he asked what it was. So we explained our purpose and what we do and told him about the Book of Mormon. He told us he needs religion in his life and that he has been struggling. He said he knows a religious family that is so intelligent and respects them a lot and it's what he needs. He asked for a Book of Mormon so we gave it to him and got his contact Info. He lives in the Bronx though but it was neat to hear his story and testify to him about how we can all change and that is why we are here. I know he will remember what we said to him. Even if we never see him again, we were still able to plant a seed in his heart.
So on Saturday we set out to recover from our tough week. As soon as I sat down on the train, the girl I sat by turned to me and said "you don't really believe it, do you?" You can imagine I was a little taken back. Not only did someone talk to me on the subway first, but they talked to me about the church. So I asked what she meant exactly. She proceeded to tell me that she grew up Orthodox Christian and that now she is much happier without God and that she finds it really hard to believe in God or believe in Jesus Christ. She said she likes to believe that we as humans are smart and that we can create our own good thoughts. She mentioned how she knows it says in the bible that all good things come from God but she said she doesn't believe that either because she is so happy without religion in her life. She told me about how her mom told her that God would never care about her or listen to her because she doesn't believe in shim anymore. She said it's much easier to live without rules and that it is not worth it to live by so many commandments and guidelines (although she does believe in the basic 10 commandments apparently). I was a bit taken back. But I was able to testify to her of the truthfulness of God and how He loves her and knows her. I talked to her about prayer and about how I came to know the gospel is true and God is real. For the rest of the train ride I was able to testify to her of so many different things that she needed to hear. The Spirit was definitely there. It was incredible. She thought it was neat and good to hear that God is still mindful of her even during her struggles. By the end she said "okay well Ya maybe it makes sense that there is a God but I don't know about Jesus Christ..." And then it was the end of the train ride so I went to give her my number and our card and she said she already follows a lot of Mormon blogs and they all have on them. Her name is Mary though and she is 23. Although I may not ever see her again in this life, I feel so strongly that she will accept the gospel one day and come to know our Savior. She was so kind and the conversation we had was so good. 

Later that day, we ran into Elida (A former investigator from a while back) who told us to come over Sunday. On Sunday we went to go visit her house. Then we got to teach a woman named Arily who has a wonderful family. We talked about prayer and the spirit was strong as we testified to her of the power of prayer and how prayer will help bless her family. It was so neat. I just want to teach her family. She might not be too ready just yet. But the seed has been planted. We will give her a bit of time to think about our message because I know she felt something. She will accept the gospel one day though. 

When we got back from that lesson we went to the church to prepare for an APF (area proselyting activity) and a man walked in and wanted to know more. He said he has been searching for a church and wanted to try this one out. He asked how much he needed to pay to come to church. We explained that it was free and we were able to get his info and invite him to church on Sunday. However, he lives in queens so we will have to transfer him over there. But it was still awesome to plant another seed.

Then a little later we had an APF where we asked people how they have seen the hand of the Lord in their life. At one point a lady came up to us. She said "Sisters! It is soo good to see you. Thank you for being here. I am a member. I'm from LA and Utah. I have been working here in NY and I've had a really rough week. But God has helped me. I got busy working here and stopped going to church and acted as if I didn't need God. But he showed me the way back. And seeing you sisters reminds me of the many blessings from my mission in the DR." Then with tears streaming down her face she thanked us again for being there at that very moment for her. It was such a testimony to me that we are placed in people's path and whether they make it known to us or not, we are helping positively impact other people all the time.

So this past weekend was stake conference and it was amazing! I don't think I have ever been to a conference that was that good. Our stake president, President Buckner, is incredible and went all Elder Holland status and it was soo cooool. He was just like Elder Holland. Super powerful. On Saturday night we were told that we would be singing at conference on Sunday. So All the missionaries serving on the island of Manhattan (about 70) sat in the back and then we sang called to serve as we walked to the front and it was the coolest thing ever. It was so powerful and tons of people were crying and everyone was smiling so big. And then everyone joined in for the second verse and it was so loud in there. Mom if you were there, you would be crying haha. It was probably better than the musical number at my farewell too.. 

A couple days ago we were reading the Book of Mormon with Sister Macuilt and it's hard for her to understand. Reading it in Spanish is even harder for her though. But in English she doesn't understand a lot of the words. So after we read a chapter with her then we decided to retell her the story using different names to apply it to her life. As we were talking, she was smiling so big and just beaming. Afterwards she was like "wow! You make it so easy to understand! That was amazing." And It's moments like those that I live for and serve for. It was so wonderful to see her so happy because she finally understood the beginning of the Book of Mormon. I just love Sister Macuilt :)

We got to visit the girls from Utah again, Ariana and Amanda. They aren't toooo less active. They will come back soon I think. One of them said she will come and the other said no but they are nice. We gave their grandma a Book of Mormon in Spanish. Also, it turns out they live in a building with 8 apartments in the building and 3 of the 8 are members. Our Ward mission leader lives right next to the grandma. Coincidence? I think not. Haha so hopefully we can get her learning about the gospel, she is super nice and relaxed.

So back to stake conference, it was amazing. Did I mention how much I loved it? The topic was “Thy will be done.” No matter where we are at in life, we each need to come unto Christ today. We need to align His will with ours so that we are following Him. We have to be willing to let go of things, even good things. Like we learned in general conference, we have to choose the best things not just the good or better. So I've been thinking about what I can do to better align myself with Gods will. One thing I decided to do is learn to better listen to the spirit. I've been thinking about how I can tell when it's the spirit and not my own thought because a lot of times it requires going outside of my comfort zone to do something good. I believe that. One thing I hate is doing that first street contact of the day because we seem to always get rejected. I realized though, that after that first hard-core rejection of the day, I can do anything. I talk to everyone. Nothing matters anymore because we already got rejected haha so even though I feel like it's the spirit telling me to talk to someone so I do and then We get rejected, I know that I learned from it and that there is only progression left. Maybe that is my way of learning and overcoming that fear and that is how the Spirit teaches me. Everyday we need to take a second and think about what we can do to better align ourselves with Gods will so that we can receive eternal peace and joy. 

I love you all so much! Be healthy and happy! Have a good week :) 


Sister Tanner <3
Area Proselyting Activity "How have you seen the Hand of the Lord in your Life?"

My new companion Sister Brown

Chelsea Market (I love the spices!)

Experiencing a little Halloween in NYC

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Elder L. Tom Perry in the house

 Hello Hello, 

Happy birthday to Elder Westin Coggins yesterday and Uncle Tom Harper today. And happy birthday to Liv next Tuesday! Hope you have a good birthday baby sister!! 

Today we are on the east side for pday just at the church playing games with the zone. The church here is super cool but let's be honest, the west side is the best side. Oh ya anddd I got a haircut today! Chopped like 5 inches :( but it's okay cuz it was Sooo dead and it'll grow back. It needed it.

So my new companion, Sister Brown, is just what I needed. She's from South Jordan Utah. She has been out 7 months and spent the whole 7 months upstate in Newtown, Connecticut. We are so different and it's the best but we are also so alike. We were in a few of the same classes at BYU. She was doing pre nursing too and then switched to exercise and wellness. Except she actually wants to major in exercise and wellness and I don't haha. She loves to exercise in the mornings so I am so grateful for that. She eats practically nothing. She's tiny. She is vegetarian. She is the pickiest eater ever and I eat just about anything and everything. She doesn't really like any of the same things as me. She is not shy at all with people. She is super bold In everything and not quiet when asking about people or things that probably shouldn't be asked out loud haha. I like to be quiet in the morning Because everyone else in the building is asleep when we go out to exercise but she likes to be loud and slam the door really loud and stuff so that's kinda funny. We are working on that haha. I am so excited for this transfer cycle though. I hope we stay together for a while because I know I will learn a lot from her (and I already have). 

So this week we saw "Meet the Mormons". I think I mostly loved it because of the missionary part. Mom, you cried huh? I bet you did. Seems like moms with missionaries out would. But it was good! I'm glad we got to see it :)

Last week we got to make birthing kits for women in Haiti. Oh and we took a taxi to get there and that was the first taxi of my mission so that was fun! But anyway, It was really neat to be a part of helping make those especially because we talk to so many people who's families live in Haiti. I guess when the sister in our Ward called to tell the man in Haiti that we were making 60 he was in shock because most people make 10 so that was cool. 

On Sunday I woke up sick kinda like the flu. Luckily I didn't throw up but I was so dizzy and weak and couldn't focus during studies so I went back to bed for a bit. I still went to our meetings and to church and everything. That night we got to hear from Elder L. Tom Perry so I wasn't going to miss that either. I was just kinda miserable the whole time. But anyway, Elder Perry stayed at the mission home so that was lucky for our mission president. After the fireside we all got to Shake his hand. That was neat. When it was our turn he said "I bet you sisters are staying busy here! (Then he looked at us and said Sister brown, keep an eye on sister Tanner here okay?" And he I guess an apostle feels I need be looked after or something. Haha

Yesterday we got to meet two girls who are 16 and 17 who just moved in with their grandma. They are from Utah though and I guess some family stuff happened so they were forced to move here. I'm not really sure what happened. They didn't say. But their uncle who is active and lives in New Jersey called us and gave us their info. They are super nice girls but they have no friends here so liv I need you to come here and be their friend! The grandma is really nice so you can live with her :) they were baptized but they aren't active but we are going to start working with them :) I'm excited to help them :) and we are going to activate their grandma too. Unless she isn't a member. Then we are going to baptize her, even though she speaks Spanish. We will figure it out :)

So this week I read alma 5. I love that chapter. It gives us so many questions we can apply to our lives and think about. If you guys didn't get a chance to read it, then do it today. I love it. Everyday we should be living in such a way that we are better than the day before.
The Book of Mormon is amazing! I've never understood it so well until I got here and I really have the Spirit with me to help me learn and study and understand. I wish I was better before about really understanding and studying by the Spirit because I love the Book of Mormon so much more now :)

Sister Tanner <3
Elder L. Tom Perry came!
Delicious pie from "little pie company"

Chapel on the east side is sweet

In a taxi with my new comp. Sister Brown

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Conference is the best!

Hello Everyone!! 

Wow! Hasn’t it been an incredible week? Hearing the words from our living prophet and his counselors has been so incredible. Conference is the best! Yes, we watched it at the church. My whole district was there but we didn't sit together. We try not to make missionary mobs. And there were also quite a few other people. Ron came and so did Thelma so that was awesome. A guy named Al and his wife Monju came too. They aren't members but they come to church every week I guess and so on Sunday I am going to talk to them :) oh also, don't worry, on Sunday I wore my Christmas pajama shirt from last year to watch conference in so I could feel right at home :) I took a picture so I'll send that.

I absolutely loved all the talks. There were too many good ones to pick a favorite. It was wonderful! But Did you notice that David A Bednar shared the SAME story that he told when we met him in Rochester last year!?!? So now I have heard the same story twice from Elder Bednar in New York both times. 

On Saturday we planned to get to conference early right? But when we left it was pouring rain. Luckily we had umbrellas though. But we got to the subway station at 135th and it was CLOSED!! So we were like oh my goodness. Guess we will go to 145. But nope, it was closed too! And we had just missed the bus to take it to 125th to see if it was open. So we decided to take the 1 train. It ended up being like a 10 minute walk to get to it which was a lot longer than we remembered and then when we got on the train it was delayed for like 5 minutes. Our roommates were running late too but they caught the bus and took it to 125th. So at 11:58 the train arrived and so we booked it. We went running out of the station to the church. All of the sudden the other sisters came running from the opposite direction (they took the A train) and we all ran in and the guard of the temple/church (aunt Millie) opened the door and was like "lets go! Let's go! Gets go!" Luckily we made it just before the opening prayer! It was definitely close. But we didn't miss anything except that first song so it's okay! (The next 3 sessions we were sure to get there 30 minutes early :) ) 

On Sunday before conference I got up and showered first and then made some eggs and waffles for my companion and our roommates :) yes they were homemade, and they were quite delicious. It was convenient that the first session of conference started at 12 here because we still got to do our normal daily routine.  
Well today are transfers and after 4 months of being together, Sister Orme is leaving! She is headed up to Yonkers and I am getting Sister Brown as my companion from South Jordan, Utah! I am currently waiting for her here at the church where we have city transfers because she is coming from Connecticut. I have heard all good things about her so I am excited for a little change :) 

I forgot to tell you that we did another APF (Area Proselyting Focus) with free lemonade again last week with just my district. It was much more successful than the one in the rain. It was a pretty hot day, I actually even got a tan line on my feet and we were only out there for like an hour or so. We did it across the street from the church/temple where the bus stop is, the subway entrance, and the waffle truck. So it was busy and we got to talk to a lot of people. I'm pretty sure we talked to the humans of New York guy too! (I didn't ask him though because I didn't want to be disappointed if it wasn't him). He said that on the way too and from work he takes pictures of people in Central Park and around New York and learns about their stories. He took a picture of us altogether handing out lemonade so if you ever see a picture of that, then I'll know it was him. But for now, let's just believe it was him :) 

Okay so last week I had a dream that I went on a split with President Eyring (hahaha) I'm not sure why. It was weird, but sweet! I guess I was really excited for general conference.

On Thursday night our roommates who are the STLs (sister training leaders) got a call from someone in Salt Lake saying that they wanted to film them during their morning companionship study/planning. Of course they said yes and the people asked for their address. So they texted president morgan to ask if it was legit or not before they gave them our address just in case. Turns out, it was real. So president said "all I know is that you better clean your apartment really well. They will be there on Tuesday and so will I." So for the past week every chance we got we have been cleaning Sooo much. The apartment was sooo dirty before so it's good that we cleaned it and organized it. I feel much better. Even though our new furniture isn't here yet and we still have a big dip in the bathroom floor, it is still looking pretty good. President didn't end up coming but the film people did. It took foreverrr and we had to stay because it was all men doing the filming and so the sisters weren't allowed to be here alone. Pretty much sister Orme packed while I got things ready for sister brown to come. 
Okay so on Friday we went tracting for general conference in one of the nicer project buildings. After a good amount of tracting we were on the 4th floor. After that we wanted to go down to the 3rd. Since that building has 26 floors, the elevator alwayss takes foreverrr and its sooo slow. So we decided to take the stairs since it was only one floor. Normally we don't ever take the stairs in project buildings because they are super sketch and that is where all the scary stuff happens normally. So we tend to stay away from that. As we were heading to the stairs though, the elevator door opened on the 4th floor and nobody pushed the button and there was nobody inside. We joked about how that was a sign that we needed to take the elevator and not the stairs...but we didn't. So we walked down the 15 steps or whatever to the 3rd floor..but the door was locked. So we were like "oh I guess that means we shouldn't tract the 3rd floor" so we went to the second...but the door was gone. There was no door for the 2nd or 1st floor. So we freaked out thinking we were locked in and we ran all the way back up to the 4th, took the elevator down to the 1st and left the projects :) I guess maybe the spirit told us to take the elevator in the first place but we didn't listen. Not sure what happened or what could have happened or what, but we are safe and next time we are going to listen to the thoughts we have :) I promise! :) 

Alright so back to conference :)
I loved Jörg Klebingat's talk and the 6 suggestions he gave. So good! And Lynn G Robbins about which way do you face. I love how he talks about how the Savior is fearless because he NEVER forgot which way he faced. We need to constantly be repenting and remembering that we are accountable to God and not to man. I think about how at times I get nervous to open my mouth to start talking to someone and how I shouldn't because that is what I have been called to do. I don't need to be afraid. So that was good to hear that. Something else that I loved that Elder Bednar said was something along the lines of "because once you feel the love of Christ, it's worth it." When I was in the MTC we always talked about why we each decided to come on a mission in the first place. Now that I am serving I think about Why it is that I am staying here on my mission. That is the very reason. Because feeling the love of Christ makes it all worth it. I know that this is the true church. It brings me so much joy and happiness. I love sharing the gospel with everyone here in NYC. It's the best.

I love you all so much. Have a good week!! Keep reading the Book of Mormon. Like Richard G. Scott said, studying the Book of Mormon is more important than sleep and homework and everything else. So do it! 


Sister Tanner <3
My conference outfit - Yep that's my Christmas pajama sweater! haha
With Louise
Jack Tanner.  He is my favorite!  Always tells his parents to invite us for dinner and of course he knows my name.

Breakfast I made everyone before conference
Only Kisses we get!

With Sister Weyandt who went home today - She is awesome!

With Sister Bolton my roomate and STL she is so awesome too!

Last Picture with my companion Sister Orme before she gets transferred

Something always going on in New York! Right now it's the film festival