Thursday, April 30, 2015

Miracles, Miracles, Miracles...

APRIL 29,2015

Alright I'm pretty sure my email gets longer and longer each week but I just don't what to leave out. Too many miracles, too many words to write, not enough time. It was an AMAZING week though. Miracles, miracles, miracles. Sorry! 

We found so many new investigators last week. We just tracked from 6-9 in two different places and miracles happened. Funny story though. Sister Smoot went to ring a doorbell and all the doorbells are on the doors and so when she pushed it, the door opened and then we just freaked out a little and she was like "oh no, what do I do??" So she was about to close it but then someone yelled "who is it!?" So we were like "the missionaries, sorry we opened your door!" And we couldn't help but laugh and so it made it even more awkward..but it turned out to be a really nice lady who is searching for a church right now. Only problem is that the JW's have been teaching her every week, we will see how it goes. We are suppose to go see her tomorrow

I'm not sure why but I was so tired on Thursday. In the middle of weekly planning I just knocked out dead asleep. We were talking about what to teach one of the recent converts and that was the end of it. I was out! But only for like 5 minutes then I got up and ate some sugar and drank some water haha. 
While tracting we knocked on this door and an older man answered and we started explaining how we had a video about Jesus Christ to show him and then some other guy from around the corner was like "no, we don't want to talk about Jesus in this house. You can leave" then he came around the corner to the door and he was like "ohhhhh, they are preettyy. Okay I wanna hear about Jesus." And then he yelled to his friend "hey dude, wanna hear about Jesus? They are pretty!" So it was super awkward. So we start showing the video and in the middle he turns to us and says "I believe in God, look!" And then he took off his shirt and showed us his tattoo on his back that said "only God can judge me." Oh man it was something. We were afraid he was going to try to kiss us. Interestingly enough, even though he won't be coming to church, the older man that first answered had been wondering what church was ours and said he wanted to come and he was legitimately interested. 
Later, we had a lesson with sister Mccreary and explained things a little more. She didn't fully understand the priesthood authority. But don't worry, now she does. We had a smack down lesson with her pretty much. So we changed her baptism date to May 24th.
We met with Mark (the one we tracted into on my birthday last week and pretty much saved his life) and it was SO good! We taught him about the plan of salvation with the Elders. He is a big body guard with tattoos and all tough. Well, He cried. It was awesome haha. At the end he asked if we could meet twice a week, which obviously we would want to but people never ask that. Pretty much he is awesome and he will be baptized. He just kept thanking Sister Smoot and I for knocking on his door at the right time exactly when he needed it. Bringing people the gospel is the best. 

We had a big mission conference for this stake in Newburgh on Saturday. It was for anyone thinking about a mission or preparing for a mission and then of course all the missionaries in the stake. President Morgan was there too. It was really fun. We discussed the inspired teaching pattern cycle and the Spirit so it was really good. Afterward President asked us how Monticello is and we told him it's awesome and we are having a lot of success and working hard and he jokingly laughed and said "ya right, like I believe that coming from you guys!" Haha 
When we got home we were both so tired. I felt super sick. I had bad a migraine and so we took a 15 minute power nap before our lesson. Then we went and taught fun and crazy sister Guaghan and then went tracting even though we really just wanted to take another nap haha. We were able to teach a lesson in Spanish too! It was so incredible how strong the spirit was. Lately we have been teaching quite a few lessons in Spanish but just little things. But this lesson was different. The gift of tongues is real. It was so awesome. 
The real miracle came that night. We looked up this lady named Ashley who told us to come back. At first she didn't seem toooo interested but it ended up being be coolest thing ever. She loved everything we taught, I wish I could explain it all but it would take like 20 paragraphs. Pretty much we taught how to begin teaching, the restoration, half of plan of salvation, and some of the commandments. We cleared up a lot of misconceptions. She asked if we can come twice a week. The little girl made her mom (Ashely) promise that they would go to church. Ashley and her boyfriend are getting married soon too and they know they need to. At the end we talked to him and taught him too and he loved it. They are so awesome. They will get baptized. They are super solid. Ashely also asked her mom to meet with us and her mom agreed so we taught her a little bit and she is going to join next time too. And I guess before we came they were talking about how they needed to find the right church and change and become better. She likes that as missionaries we are just guides to help her learn the truth of our message too. She is so excited about this. After we left we practically ran to the car and then had a moment of excitement. The Spirit was so strong and the lesson flowed so nicely. The lord has been blessing us SO much. It has been so incredible to see. 
We decided we are going to Email president today with some kind choice words telling him he can't make fun of Monticello anymore because it really is the place to be. Miracles are exploding here. I guess Enduring to the end is a real thing. I surprisingly might actually be fine to stay one more here since so many baptism dates are for next cycle! We'll see though!

Sunday we had a broadcasted stake conference from Salt Lake. We had some great speakers- Elder Anderson, Elder Hales, Sister Linda Reeves and Elder Katcher. Barbara came to church and so did Marc and Sister Mccreary and Brother King!! Sister Smoot just sat there with all of them like a big happy family. It was so cool. Sister reeves talked about repentance and baptism. it was perfect for all of them. During the hymns none of them were singing at first but by the closing hymn they were all singing and loving it. After church brother King wanted a blessing so his home teacher gave him one and then Barbara wanted a blessings because she has been having a really hard time so we went into a room with Marc, Barbara, and the elders and she got a blessing. During the blessings Marc started crying and then afterwards Barbara started talking to us about her life and then her and Marc were crying. We all just talked..well mostly listened..for a good half hour or so. Marc and Barbara bonded as they shared stories and experiences and fellowshipped each other haha it was so awesome. I couldn't help but smile after. It was the coolest thing. The spirit was so strong. 

During district meeting we did Tracting roll plays and it was so funny watching elder and sister Hsieh. I'll send you one of the videos we got of it. Pay attention to when they are talking about what day to coming back and then also at the end when elder Hsieh is taking about Gods love. Too funny, they are the best.

We went to the Hsiehs to have ice cream during lunch to celebrate because sister Smoot only has 100 days left and I hit 11 months. Tooooo crazy how fast time flies. Anyway, we did some good Tracting but ended up mostly just teaching little kids at the parks everywhere we tracted, they were pretty much the only people we saw. Nobody seemed to be home. Oh we also taught Michael, the one that is going to try out for American idol. He sang for us so we recorded it haha it was fun. I'll send you one of the videos. He was mad because he "didn't look good" while we were going to record it but oh man he is quite the character. 

This past week I have really felt Gods hand in the work. I have seen more miracles than ever. Each week just keeps getting better and better I can hardly bear it. The Spirit has been so strong as we have been able to speak the words that God puts into our mouths to bring the truth to others. I just can't stop smiling. We have been working harder than ever and it is really paying off. God truly is blessing us because we are trying to do His work His way. I am more exhausted than I have ever been in my entire life. It's incredible though. I know this work is important. I know that I am here in New York for a reason. I know the people in Monticello need me right now. I know God is mindful of me and more importantly of each of his children. He is constantly preparing people for us to teach. He expects us seek out those people and be the best examples to them. We cannot let God down. We have to do His will and give our all. I love it so much. It's weeks like these that make me never want to go home. I always hoped I could teach my friends back home, or bring someone into the gospel but this is the same thing. These people are like family and I love them. This is what I always wanted to do. Serving a mission really has helped me in so many ways. Ways I never could have imagined. I love my Heavenly Father. I love being a missionary. I know this gospel is true. I love all of you. 

I hope you have a fabulous week! Xoxo

Sister Tanner <3
Monticello can be pretty!

This is where I live!  (kidding)

Wednesday, April 22, 2015


Hello everyone! First of all, THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR ALL THE BIRTHDAY LOVE. I had the best birthday I have ever had, let me tell you. Wow it was amazing! Thank you for the emails, packages and cards. Thank you for everyone who helped me get those flowers and card to mom on Saturday even though it was a lot more complicated than it should have been! Haha but I'm glad you liked them mom! Anyway, I'll tell you more about it all after I tell you about the beginning of last week.

Well Sister Smoot dyed my hair while we watched Meet the Mormons! That was fun. I like it though, but what do you think?? It wasn't a box dye either, it was good stuff. We bought it at Sally's. It's really great because I don't have to wash my hair everyday anymore. 

Okay so on Thursday we got a phone call from Elder Gardner, the vehicle coordinator for the mission. So first of all, I don't think I told you this but like the day before transfers a couple weeks ago he called me and told me that I was on tiwi radar and that if my driving didn't get better then I would have to have an interview with him and president Morgan. Scary. So I told him that I thought our tiwi was broken. He said he would call and figure it out and then talk to me at transfers. Sure enough when I went to talk to him he told me he talked to the tiwi people and sure enough our tiwi sensitivity was off, So I knew that after that it wouldn't tell me I had aggressive driving anymore. I told him that I would be off his tiwi radar in no time. Well since the day it was fixed, it hasn't said aggressive driving once. So on Thursday he called me and I was so scared he was going to tell me I couldn't drive but instead he said he was calling to celebrate the fact that I am off his tiwi radar completely! Yay! I'm a good driver now! I have gained a tiwi testimony! You should be proud... 

On Friday we went and did service and then headed to Middletown to get our tires rotated and what not. That ended up taking 2.5 hours. So we had lunch at panera bread while waiting. Then we headed to Scarsdale so Sister Smoot could get her Tiwi card so she could start driving.
Elder hunt said that we could baptized everyone in monticello and it would still be a branch. Sad. Haha 
We didn't get home until 7pm. When we got home we grabbed some stuff and then headed to brother kings with the elders to make chicken and waffles with him! We just brought the stuff (us and the elders) and we all ate there and he loved it. While we were there I got to talk to sister King on the phone!! She took some sort of test and if she did good then she will get to get out in September! It just keeps getting shorter and shorter :) He isn't doing quite as well...his brother got stabbed to death this past week, and his cousin died last week. SO sad. He's great though and he loves when we come over. 

Alright so Saturday was AWESOME. First of all, let me Tell you it was 80 degrees and beautiful that day! So I woke up to sister smoot screaming (to wake me up) telling me happy birthday. She tried to record it but she forgot to push the record button haha...then while I was in the shower she decorated my wall by my study desk and then flipped over all the furniture again (because that is now my irrational fear. That we will walk in and it will be upside down again haha) then we studied and what not and then headed to middle town to pick up mail! We had a little five minute party in Middletown and the missionaries all sang to me and then we headed home. When we got to the apartment the elders had come into our apparent and moved everything around and decorated all over (I'll send lots of pictures). Then we made cake because Riss sent me a premade cake to put together! So that was fun, and then I ate cake for brunch! It was delicious by the way. It was the super moist chocolate cake that I absolutely love. And then we went to language study where the elders surprised me with another cake (the box funfetti birthday one you sent me) which they found in our apartment when they were decorating it and they sang again. And then we went home for lunch, I ate some more cake and pizza and then we went Tracting for an APF!  
So for the APF we had a contest to see who could pass out the most pamphlets (chasity pamphlets were worth 2 points) and the loser had to make waffles for the other people Sunday night for dinner. The pamphlets we passed out had to be explained to the people though. So we couldn't just leave it in their door. So the elders took 2 buildings and we took 2 buildings. We ended up being able to talk to so many people! It was amazing. We won by the way..and we passed out a chastity pamphlet to one guy who told us he was naked and to come back in 10 minutes. Haha when we went back he was dressed, but he needed it! 
One guy we talked to is named Mark (a different one) and he is awesome. He told us that we saved his life by going over there because he was having a really bad day. He had so many real concerns and he is so interested! We got him all set up with the elders for them to teach him next week. He asked if it was okay that he was catholic when he was little and he asked about repentance. The spirit was so strong as we talked to him. It was amazing.Then we met this lady named Celia who is from Brazil. She is so awesome. She will be baptized This year. I know it. Haha she loved us. We talked about the plan of salvation which ended up being SO guided by the spirit. She talked to us about how her son died and she didn't think she would see him again so she loved that message and the Spirit was so strong. We set up a time to go back and had a prayer and then she gave us water, told us she loved us, and we left. we took out her trash for her on the way out too and she was just in awe. It was so awesome. 
We ended up seeing a tire swing kinda by the of course we stopped and took a picture on it. It was really fun.. 
Then we had a few set lessons with newer members and we went to help Mikayla prepare her talk for this past Sunday. We did some more Tracting and looked up some more less actives and had a lot of really good lessons. We looked up one couple though that was very set on not coming back, she wasn't very nice but her husband was super nice so it was good. He would totally come back if it wasn't for her. She said things got too hard and church was her life so she quit. Super sad. When things get hard we can't quit! 
So Then we headed home for correlation/dinner with the Hsiehs and the Elders! The Hsiehs made us dinner so that was delicious because they always make really good food. Afterwards we went back to our apartment with everyone to share cake and show them our crazy apartment haha...they ended up putting the cake in my face which I should have knew I was coming but it was still really fun and everyone still ate the cake anyway! :) 
Pretty much it was a great day! Super fun! I am now the Age of perfection! (19 is a teenager, 21 is an adult, 20 is nobody..and nobody's perfect.) it was definitely the best birthday I've ever had. What better way to spend it than teaching people about Christ?! :)

While at church on Sunday we were in relief society talking about how to be valiant and what it means to be valiant. Sister Mccreary raised her hand and said "when I think of someone being valiant, I think of Sister Tanner. She is the most valiant person I have ever met! We have been meeting for about four months now and she never sways left or right, she is firm and knows what she believes. She is so valiant" and she just went on and on saying more about that. It was kinda awkward but sweet too! Haha she is the sweetest lady ever. Gosh I love her. 
After church we taught a few less actives and then everyone else fell through. Backup plans fell through, less actives weren't home, everyone we looked up didn't answer, it was just awful. So we were sitting in the car and we decided to pray to ask Heavenly Father to guide us to where He wanted us to go. Then we went to look up a less active...who wasn't home. So we went back  to the church with the intentions of walking across street to look up Monique (our Jehovah's Witness friend). When we pulled into the church parking lot there was a person sitting on the curb. At first we thought it was this less active guy but we have bad eyesight. It turned out to be this 16 year old boy who needed our message. He is so cool though. He is trying out for American idol in July because he loves to sing and his dream is to go to California. He was so funny, and he is actually A really good singer! He really believes in himself too. His name is Michael. We invited him to the talent show we are having on Friday so he is going to come sing and I'll record it. We just felt bad recording it right when we met him haha. We gave him a tour of the church and taught him and he said he is going to come to church. So ya, he's awesome and God answers prayers. 

On Monday we had to go to Middletown last minute for "a very big announcement". Turns out the announcement is that every companionship must do 3 hours of finding everyday (like tracting or contacting) no exceptions. Even pday(so from 6-9). I guess that is the revelation that president received for our mission to help us improve. For some companion ships that is crazy. For ours, well we have been doing that anyway pretty much so it's not that big of a change. But I'm glad, I think it will be really good for each area so that no area is dead. during the meeting the zone leaders told us everyone has to do it for three hours and then they said "even in Monticello" and we were like "hey don't be hatin on Monticello. We have been working hard" and then they agreed and told us we got the most lessons of all the districts this past week. Which is really sad because there are 2 companionships here and 5 companionships in their district and 3 in the other. So pretty much we killed it last week. We have been doing work here.

So Tuesday I went on a split with Sister Tzeng from Taiwan. I became good friends with a few people in that ward so that was fun. I helped one girl learn all about a mission because she is working on her papers and she didn't want to go but got the answer that she needs to. So she's like me. It was fun though. But anyway, let me tell you what happened in my area during the split! 
So they went back to Celia's house (met her Saturday^) and she talked about how she loves that we bring her new things, she feels so good when we come, and how she is so excited to go to live with he family again. Nobody has ever told her she can see her family again. She loves that we help her to improve so she can return to live with God again. I guess most people just bring her the bible and talk from the bible but it's nothing new that she learns so she doesn't like it. And she gave us 2 referrals for her friends that want to learn more! 
Then they went to Barbara's house (tracted into her a couple weeks ago and taught her. Then we went back Monday and Taught her again and then they went yesterday) so at first she said no because she was busy and all this stuff so she told them to leave and they were thinking "oh she hates us" but then she told them to come back at 7:30. So they did. They ended up teaching her a lot of things but the main thing is is that her and her 16 year old daughter now are getting BAPTIZED on May 24th! :) so that's awesome. They are so awesome and she loves us too. She always thanks us for knocking on her door. 

Today we got together as sisters in our zone and had lunch at this cute little Mexican place with real Mexican food. However, I'm not the biggest fan of real Mexican food. I'd rather have some Miguel's Jr. or Cafe Rio or something haha but they gave us free quesadillas and chips and salsa at the beginning of course and so that was good. I bought some summer shoes but then we got home and it was pouring rain. LAME. Oh well. I'll send you pictures from today though!

This week I finished up the Pearl of Great Price. As I was reading in Joseph Smith-History, the persecution that Joseph Smith received really stood out to me. He says...

22" I soon found, however, that my telling the story had excited a great deal of prejudice against me among professors of religion, and was the cause of great persecution, which continued to increase; and though I was an obscure boy, only between fourteen and fifteen years of age, and my circumstances in life such as to make a boy of no consequence in the world, yet men of high standing would take notice sufficient to excite the public mind against me, and create a bitter persecution; and this was common among all the sects--all united to persecute me.
23 It caused me serious reflection then, and often has since, how very strange it was that an obscure boy, of a little over fourteen years of age, and one, too, who was doomed to the necessity of obtaining a scanty maintenance by his daily labor, should be thought a character of sufficient importance to attract the attention of the great ones of the most popular sects of the day, and in a manner to create in them a spirit of the most bitter persecution and reviling. But strange or not, so it was, and it was often the cause of great sorrow to myself."

I think that is a testimony in itself. Satan is so real and he tries so hard to destroy the kingdom of God here on earth and stop our progression. Although it would be nice for satan to stop tempting us when we make good choices and come closer to God, that's not how it works. We always have to warn our investigators of satans tactics and how just because they learn more about the gospel doesn't mean life will automatically become easier. However, as we come closer to God we have more strength to resist temptation and our testimonies increase. It's that testimony we have that will carry us through everyday life. Just as Joseph Smith received great persecution and felt the force of the adversary, Heavenly Father gives us that strength to overcome it. He helps us to strengthen our testimonies so that we do not have to doubt.

I love that Joseph Smith really did restore this church and is a prophet of God. I know that God will help us through hard times just as he helped Joseph. This gospel is true. I love you all so much! Have a good week! Xoxox 

Sister Tanner <3
Marissa sent a cake already baked and I just had to frost it!  it tasted
amazing and was cute too!

Elders snuck in and decorated while we were out working!

This is their idea of decorating!

Michael, the new friend we met to teach
his voice is amazing!

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Saturday I will wake up an old woman!

Wow can you believe it is already the middle of APRIL?? What the heck, time needs to slow down! Also, Thanks for all the birthday shoutouts and for those who didn't know, I'll get over it!!!   Tomorrow (well Saturday) I will wake up an old woman!....  ;) [love you bay!]
Well it's been another awesome week. Spring is here!! (I think) the snow has melted and it's been between 50-70 like all week! Thank goodness :) Sister Smoot and I work well together, we go hard everyday so that is a huge blessing and it's much easier to do in warm weather.

On Wednesday last week after pday was over we went Tracting and met this lady named Amanda and her son Darius. Well at first she wasn't too interested. She's not religious, never has been, she believes in God but that's all. Then we showed her the He Lives video and everything changed! The Spirit took over and touched her heart for sure. She was super nice and loving and asked us to come back every Wednesday around the same time. She gave us her number as well and asked about church and all that good stuff. It was awesome. 

Thursday started off a bit rough, again everyone was canceling, we had to do this thing on the computer and the computer was broken, it was raining, nobody was home when we looked them up, everything was going bad. But it's okay, we kept working hard and eventually we talked to some really nice people! We talked to our JW friend so that we could go to church and she said "Ya come to my church, like you can go to both church's and then eventually you can just pick one. Maybe you will want to switch over. But I mean come with an open heart and an open mind and then you can see. I'll tell everyone you are coming so that they can welcome you and it can be really good. You will love it" haha she's awesome.

Okay get this, Brother King stopped smoking!!! Wahooo! Like legit he isn't just saying that too. You can really tell it's incredible! He feels the spirit so much stronger now, he tells us all about his Book of Mormon reading, he is doing SO good! We had prepared a lesson for him and were really nervous about it because the elders were coming and it's kinda stressful teaching with missionaries older(mission age) than you because they are more experienced and what not, so we really wanted it to be good. Let me tell you, the lesson we picked was direct revelation from God. Everything we planned to talk about, he brought up within the first 2 minutes we were in his house. It was awesome. We focused mostly on the talk "stay by the tree" from Kevin Pearson. The spirit was so strong and guiding us through the whole thing. It was AMAZING.

This is kind of random but I wish Liv was going on a mission right now or something! It would be so fun to take her (or any of you) around Tracting and to lessons and stuff. A few of the missionaries here did that. Like this one elder had his brother (who received his mission call already and would be leaving just before the older brother got home) come stay with him for 5 days. President Morgan picked the younger brother up from the airport and took him to the older brother and they were in a trio for that time. That would be sweeeeet. I wish you all could be here loving these people along with me! They are GREAT! 

Friday, wow I don't know where to begin. Friday was SO fun! It was Sister Hsiehs birthday. So for lunch we ate with the Hsiehs which was delicious as always. Afterwards we went to get the Hsiehs spare key from the Elders so we could secretly decorate their apartment later for her birthday. Well when we got there the elders had already left...but their door was unlocked. So we went inside and turned their couch around and then locked it for them and left. We went and worked and tracted and what not, and then when we got home, all of our furniture in the front room was upside down! Haha it was pretty funny because we said after we left "watch them go into our apartment and mess up all our stuff" and then it happened. So we flipped it all back and haven't said anything to them yet. I guess it's kinda fun when we all have each other's keys (it's so that if we lock them inside we can still get in). Anyway, then we went and decorated the Hsiehs apartment and then went and watched meet the Mormons with our branch which was so fun because that movie is SO good. After the movie we raced back and went into the Hsiehs and turned off the lights and waited for them until we could yell surprise. Then the elders came and we all had cupcakes and took some pictures. I'll send you a video we took! Sister hsieh made the longest wish ever and then after we went and had her chase a deer haha. She wanted to "go deer hunting" which to them is just finding and running after deer. It was cute because all day we were telling her to do something crazy for her birthday and that's the craziest thing she could think of. Gosh they are so cute. I love them. 

Here is my name in Chinese! 
Kiera (shi-ann-la)
Colette (col-lay-tah)
Tanner (tang-ner)

On Sunday we went to the Kingdom Hall after church! (the Jehovah's Witness place) and it was really But we answered questions so that was fun. He asked a ton of questions and would call on people to answer so we decided we should contribute and he called on us. It was pretty exciting. We are going to go one more time, just tomorrow, so that we can see how they do role plays because I guess that's what they do on Thursdaynight-Door approach role plays. It should be interesting, and then our friend will come with us to ours.

Monday we went and taught a new investigator of ours who we met Tracting last week. Her name is Barbara. She is really nice and seems super interested. We talked about the restoration and all that good stuff and so she loved it. She asked if we can meet with her twice a week so that's what we are doing! And the Hsiehs are going to pick her up for church on Sunday too! 

Yesterday we had a lesson with Sister McCreary (our neighbor) and she set a bap date!!! We were expecting her to pick a date in like May or June but she picked April 26th!! So pray for that please! Even if it doesn't happen on the 26th, I know it will happen soon. Super crazy and awesome. Gosh I love her so much. 

This week I was thinking a lot about how Sharing the gospel is like a train station. Our job is to drive the train up and invite people on, but we can't force them. We don't shove people onto the train, but we explain why they should get on rather than just stay on the platform. Although the train leaves, another one comes and we keep trying. It may take a whole lot of trains before they get on but that's okay. Some people may get on the wrong train for some time, and some may just stay in the platform for a really long time. But we can't ever give up. One day they will see the good in jumping aboard and even if that day isn't today, at least we help contribute to them taking a step closer to the train door and they increase their faith. 

During the good, the bad, and the in between we need to trust God and rely on Him for strength. Only through Him are all things possible. Even when it seems like everything is going wrong, we can remember that God has a plan for us and wants to help us be happy. Turn everything over to Him and rely on Him. "Behold, God is my salvation; I will trust, and not be afraid; for the Lord Jehovah is my strength and my song; he also has become my salvation." 2 Nephi 22:2 

Anyway, I love you all so much! I hope you all have a fabulous week! Party it up! Xoxo

Sister Tanner <3
my companion sister Smoot and I

Elders turned over our furniture while we were out

Surprise Birthday party for Sister Hsiehs  - We taught them the "hang loose sign"

Sunday, April 12, 2015

Dangerous, I know ! But hopefully it will be good.

April 8, 2015

Hello everyone and Happy Easter! I hope you have had a good week! We definitely have. Thank you for all the prayers!

First off, thank you so much for the Easter package and all the Easter cards I got! Wow you guys are the best. Seriously I think I'm the most loved missionary out here thanks to you all! I absolutely LOVED all of that package too! Perfect balance! You're the best!! And thank you for all the Easter cards and letters! :) [also I got another letter from the stake presidency and my name is now spelled correct! Wahoo!]

1. Who was the best financier in the Bible?
2. What man in the Bible had no parents?  

Sister Smoot is really fun! Something I really wanted and needed right now. She is from Utah and also the middle of 5 kids. She is super pretty and has the cutest clothes. Goodness it makes things hard. I never get to have lazy days because she is always looking so cute! Lame. Anyway, it's good! She doesn't like peanut butter or breakfast..which are like obviously my favorite things ever. She loves junk, which I'm not a big fan of. She loves soda..and I don't drink soda. She hates working we can't go to the gym anymore and therefore we can't see our gym friends :( she is 20, worked before the mission, and has a brother out on a mission and a brother that just got home from a mission. (Her and two of her siblings were adopted and so they are around the same age). she goes home in August and so she wants to work really hard to finish strong which I love. So ya, that's about all I got for Ya! 

Last week at transfers president was telling us how when the new mission president comes they will only spend about an hour together but they aren't allowed to talk about missionaries at all and he won't leave behind any notes or anything for the new president. Then at the end of transfers I was walking back into the chapel as president Morgan was walking out and he stopped me and asked how I was feeling about staying in Monticello and all that and he asked about sister Quackenbush and how she was doing. I explained how work was really picking up her and he said "well bishop Nixon asked me when you are going back to Manhattan" and so I said "Ya president! When am I going back?!?" And he laughed and said "never! Not while im here!" And then I said "okay fine, I'll just tell the new president that I want to die there" and he said "well maybe that will be the only rule I will break! I'll leave him a note and tell him no!" And then he laughed walking away haha I told him he is rude and then he laughed even harder. he thinks he is sooo funny. haha i love president Morgan though! 

The week was roughhh. Our Thursday was awful. Everyone cancelled again! We tracted ALL. DAY. Talk about a rough way for my new comp to start an area, geez embarrassing. But president keeps telling us to work hard no matter what. So that's what we did. We didn't give up. Friday we had an APF with the a Elders. Well I'm the one that has been in this area the longest (but I'm the youngest mission age wise btw) so they asked me to pick where to tract for the APF). So I decided to go to the apartment complex across from the church. I prayed so hard about this area because since its right by the church I knew it had been tracted up and down a thousand times. Being the youngest missionary, I didn't want to lead them to an area that was awful for their first couple days here in Monticello, but I felt it was good. So we tracted 2 hours there and we found quite a few people to teach and so did the elders! It was good. I was very happy that we all had some success there. Definitely an answer to my prayers...but then later it became interesting. One of the guys we talked to for about 15 minutes texted us like 3 hours later and told us he really liked all we taught him and that he wanted to learn more......well it took a turn for the worst when he turned out creepy and didn't stop texting us even when we didn't reply. But he came to conference on Sunday. So we introduced him to the elders to have them teach him. He has really good genuine questions but he is 39 and his wife is 24 and He kept saying to us "man I wish I was twenty..and Mormon!" So that's awkward. He also told us he stopped smoking the day we met him and he isn't sure why. Like he legitimately seems like he wants to know more, it's just a little awkward haha. But then when he was going to meet with the elders he said his wife said no because she like hates Mormons. She has all these misconceptions about us. Anyway so he kept asking if we parties and drank and stuff and then he asked if he could just meet with just us two and we said no and explained how we have to have someone with us and he wouldn't go for it unless it was just us two so we said ya nope and he said he would let us know when he was ready  to learn more. Pretty much he dropped us. Lame. But good cuz he was creepy haha 

Something that happened while Tracting was that we tracted into a Jehovah's Witness! You might be wondering why that is cool, well she was really nice and gave us each a silver Bible of hers! Haha we are going to go back so that we can go to her church with her and in return she will come to ours hopefully. Either way, she was awesome so it's fine.

So did you guys watch Saturday sessions of conference?? Did you hear the people yell to oppose?? That was crazy! Then he said that if someone opposes they need to contact their stake president woww I would hate to be that stake president. I'm not sure how some on can oppose the prophet of God. I mean I guess that prob happens a lot but you normally can't hear it. Another thing I thought was different was that I thought they do the statistical reports Saturday morning not afternoon? Maybe I'm wrong. But also poor president monson, he hardly spoke. He didn't even close the conference with goodbyes. And he only spoke at the beginning of the first session rather than the end. The prophet always speaks at the end of the first session right? Anyway, it was An amazing conference, I think my favorite session altogether was Saturday afternoon, but I really loved Sunday. I don't think I can pick a favorite talk though.  
I loved how a common theme, especially Saturday morning, was families. It's Cool because in February our initiative from our mission president was on families and the family proclamation to the world. President Morgan is just so inspired. He's going to be a general authority one day. 

Sunday morning was weird. I'm not sure if I have ever told you about Susan. If not, let me do so. So Susan is a person that has been coming to church for about a month and a half now. "She" use to be a "he" and it is weird. We aren't sure how she became friends with one of our members but he brings her every week. So before conference she kept following us we decided to talk to her. We asked what she likes to do and she told us she likes to go shopping at Victoria's Secret. She preceded to tell us about a three in one bra she likes there so it got awkward and we asked what else she likes to do. She said she likes to go on yachts with other women to get a tan. Then she said "I'm not a man...person" and oh my goodness was it awk. Then she started talking about this cake that was in the kitchen and she said "I'm the girl that jumps out of the cake!" Awkward. So ya, that's monticello for ya.

The rest of the week was good. People cancelled so much this week. Yesterday everyone cancelled so that was lame. We have been Tracting more than I ever have in a week I swear. And we have done a ton of less active and potential lookups. It's been good though! We have a lot of fun while Tracting. We took sister hsieh with us for like two hours and had her contact people and it was hilarious. She would always introduce herself and say she is from Taiwan and people would just laugh haha it was cute though. It's a lot of fun Tracting with someone, so if you ever have time, go tract with the missionaries. They would love it. Afterwards we asked her if she liked it and she said "no, that was not fun. Nobody wants to accept the gospel. It's so sad." Haha she is great. 

Yesterday we were suppose to have language study with the elders but they cancelled so we did language study with the hsiehs and taught them text lingo and it was hilarious. We taught them everything, old stuff and newer stuff, things Like btw, lol, ttyl, brb, nvm, np, jk, bae, rofl, ty, l8r, all that kind of stuff. It was hilarious. They are the greatest. 

Today we are having lunch at the hsiehs and then sister Smoot is going to cut my hair! Yep, i am going to let her touch my hair with scissors. Dangerous, I know! But hopefully it will be good. 

1. Noah. He floated his stock [animals] while the whole world was in liquidation.
2. Joshua, the son of Nun. 

I love this scripture..."Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends. Ye are my friends, if ye do whatsoever I command you” (John 15:13–14). IF we WANT to be his friend, we have to follow his commandments. I don't know about you but I sure want to be Christ's friend. He is the best listener, He gives us comfort, He knows exactly how we feel, He died for us, He was resurrected for us, He loves us. All we have to do is get to know HIM. He knows us perfectly, he knows how to help us when we are sad. He knows what makes us happy, what better friend is there than that? So it's up to us to choose to be His friend by keeping the commandments and doing what we are suppose to. 

I know that this gospel is true. I know that each of us have a specific purpose here. We are each a piece of a puzzle and every trial we have is its own piece just as elder pino said in conference. I know that families are of God and that we will be able to live together for time and all eternity and not at "death do we part." I am so thankful for the chance that we had to hear from the prophet and apostles and other leaders of God. Conference is the best. We are so lucky to have such a loving Heavenly Father who ensures that we are guided in the right direction. 

I hope you all have a good week! I love you so much! Xoxox

Sister Tanner <3

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

We had such an awesome week


Happy birthday baby brother!! Good job on getting your license!! Good job finishing the birthday tradition strong :) and happy Easter everyone! Anddd happy April fools day! 

Well I have good news and other news. So I'll start with the good news of course. We had such an awesome week. We taught more lessons than Anyone has ever taught in this area and met some incredible people. And they were all such incredible lessons as well. Mark (the guy we tracted into a week or two ago) came to church and loved it, a less active family is now preparing for the temple, brother King is like family to us. He's doing awesome.

The other news, so my new companion is Sister Smoot. She was just companions with sister Orme, my trainer! Other than that I don't know much about her so it may be an interesting cycle to say the least. Not too much else to say but extra prayers these next 6 weeks will be much appreciated. I'm sure it will be good and fun though! :) ...good news again, I get to skype you at the end of this cycle for mothers daaayy! :)

So for the rest of the week...
On Wednesday night we were having dinner at a members house and she was talking about how all the cities have central schools where it's k-12 and she said "except Monticello because the population of Monticello is HUGE!!" And sister Quackenbush and I busted up laughing haha oops. The population of Monticello is not huge though. 

Thursday was super lame. All our solid appointments cancelled. 5 people cancelled and back up plans cancelled. So we did our best to do look ups and work around it and then we ended up taking a little break and getting frozen yogurt because it was a really rough day haha so that of course made it better! :) 

On Friday We had an awesome day! We did like 3 hours of Tracting and met some really awesome people and then we also got to teach a few recent converts and some less active members. After Tracting we took a 10 minute brain break at a park and it was really fun haha we were the only ones there so we took a bunch of pictures and then left. I'll send you the pictures :) pretty much it was our most successful day of the entire 3 months though. It was awesome. One thing prescient Morgan says is "there are a lot of good finding efforts but there is no better way to prove to Heavenly Father that you want to work hard, be obedient, and increase your teaching pool than through tracting." I know that's true. It makes you feel great too. Even though 98% of the people don't answer or yell at you, the other 2% are awesome. 

At night we went to see brother King with the hsiehs. The night before we called him since he had to drop off sister King at the jail that morning and the poor man was a wreck. It was soo sad. He just talked to us for like 15 mins and we hardly understood anything but we could tell he was frustrated and overwhelmed. So we decided to bring him some pizza! He was really grateful for it. It was so good to sit down and talk with him and help him feel the spirit. He was really grateful we could go over and asked if we can keep coming every week. Sadly we will have to pass him to the elders but hopefully he will start coming to church. We are still calling him every week because we did when she was home and he is really understanding the book or Mormon again and so it has been so awesome just to see him change so much. 

We went on a split on Saturday. We first had a big stake relief society birthday party brunch so that was fun. Then we went to this ladies house who just had a big surgery to do service. We had to help her make dinner, walk the dog, feed the deer and birds, teach her, read the Book of Mormon with her and then we had to just sit with her for like 30 minutes until the next people came to be with her. It was weird but really fun haha

I hope you guys watched the general women's Conference because it was so good! I know that "God gave us families to help us become what he wants us to be," but I also know that our families are given to us to help us be happy. I love sharing the knowledge we have that the gospel helps to strengthen families no matter what challenges they may of had in the past. I'm so grateful for all of you who have helped me so much, I know I have the best family ever! :) 

On Sunday we went to a less actives house who was at church that day and showed her and her 4 granddaughters the because He Lives video. Afterwards she was bawling and she goes "there's not a dry eye in the room" and nobody else was crying but her so her granddaughters were just like "grandma you're crazy" haha 

On Monday I gave the designated driver spot to sister Quackenbush for the last three days so I could breathe for like 5 minutes. It was glorious. I just got to sit back, relax, and sing along. I felt so free and it was soo much less stressful. Rather than me stressin at tiwi she got to. It was nice. But now I'm back to driving cuz my comp can't. But now I am back to driving again until my comp can...but I don't think she can. So hopefully my license comes in the mail soon or else we are going to be carless. 

Yesterday we got to teach Mark (tracted into him) which was SO awesome and he is going go get BAPTIZED. But we have to give him to the elders now for real since he is a man. Turns out, he does live here, he was just at his dad's when we met him, and he works in the city like everyone else. But he is so solid and said this is what he is looking for and he isn't sure why yet but he knows it's good and right. He loved church and will be there for conference. We taught the restoration and invited him to be baptized because the Spirit prompted us to and he accepted so pretty much it was an awesome lesson. It was cool because he lives on hope street and all week sister Quackenbush and I have been working on hope. Coincidence? I think not. 

This week I have really been focusing on love and mercy. Especially since transfer calls came and Easter is approaching, God is so merciful to us because He loves us so much. Christ chose to give His life for us because He loves us and wants us to return to him. We can each be more merciful as well. It is really easy to accept negative things about others, or think we are better than others, but when we are filled with mercy we rid ourselves of pride, judgements, envy, conceit, etc.. We have to be compassionate, loving, grateful, positive, kind, etc.. We cannot let ourselves judge others or accept negative things. Being positive and having a good attitude about things has made a huge impact on me throughout my mission. I know that as we exercise faith in God and repent, He will help us and forgive us and provide us with the love we need to press forward especially during the hard times. 

I love you all so much!! Have a good week! Don't forget to watch conference!! Happy Easter And Happy April fools day! Xoxox 

Sister Tanner <3