I seriously cannot believe I'm doing this right now! My first email home, AH! I don't even know where to start........haha
Well, first off. The MTC is everything that people said it would be: crazy, fun, spiritual, frustrating, exciting, exhauting, tearful, fearful and great! There have already been ups and downs, but it's teaching me to trust in the Lord and I am starting to understand how this is all going to work for me! The food here is just like what I was eating at EFY, so I'm kind of already used to it! Sestra Compare and I are just realizing how much we're going to need to pace ourselves because we feel like we are eating all the time. Not good. We have gym time almost every day and we're making sure we get a good sweat in, don't worry Mom. :)
Second, I LOVE SESTRA COMPARE! Thank you for sending the pictures in the package, especially the one of her and I. I love it! I am so grateful everyday that we are companions. We are very close already and I think we're just going to get closer from here! She is from Vermont and was studying International Relations at BYU. She's SUPER smart and has been studying French for the past 8 years. It's funny because in Croatian you are supposed to roll your R's, but in French you say them in your throat which sounds just like the Croatian H. When we talk to each other I get confused because I can't figure out the spelling of the word she is saying, because she is using the wrong pronunciation. hahaha We laugh a lot! None of her family are members and I'm just blown away that she is here serving the Lord. She's such an example to me!
Third: Croatian. Well, I almost jumped out of my window the other day because of this subject, but don't worry, it's okay. hahaha The language is FACINATING! It makes a lot of sense becuase each letter in the alphabet makes the same sound all the time, no matter where it comes in the word. I'm struggling mostly with retaining words and being able to speak them correctly. I can speak, but I have to think about it for a LONG time before I say it. I can tell this is going to be a big challenge for me here at the MTC, but I'm going to work my hardest and put my burdens on the Lord and speak Croatian! Oh, one smalllllllll detail........................
..WE'RE LEARNING SERBIAN
TOO! The mission president just put Sisters in Serbia the Wednesday we
came in and wants us to be prepared! The nice thing is the Serbian is
pretty much the same language as Croatian, but uses the Cyrillic (sp?)
alphabet like Russian. We're mostly focusing on Croatian until we can
speak a little bit better, but then we'll start spending more time in
Serbian. I can't believe Serbia is open to Sisters! It's amazing
that our mission is just opening right up and we'll be there to help the
people feel the joy of the gospel for the first time in years! I can't
Fourth: Our District and class. Coming into the MTC I had heard so many stories about funny things that happen in class, the Elders in your district are crazy, yaddah yaddah. Well, mine is a little different. Sestra Compare and I are the only people learning Croatian in the whole MTC, therefore we have our own class! It's just the two of us with our two teachers. hahaha We've been a little intimidated up to this point because there's no room for goofing off and we have to answer every question! At the same time, we're lucky becuase it's kind of like personal tutoring. We're still learning the best ways for us to study and learn the language in our free time, but we'll get it soon enough! We have two other Elders that are going to our same mission, but they are speaking Slovene and are in their own class as well. The four of us make up our district! They're nice guys. One is a two-year convert from Texas, Elder Benson. He and I actually Facebooked a little before we got here. The other Elder is from Olympus high school (ABBY) and is named Elder Burdette.
Fifth: Spiritual stuff. To be honest, the first few days I didn't feel like I had a good scripture study because I was so overwhelmed with the language. We had 7 hours of class in a day, pounding our brains with grammar and vocab that I wasn't sure if I was going on a mission or working for the CIA! In the past few days, there have definitely been some definite times where I felt the spirit.
The first was when we taught our first investigator, Maja. We had to teach her in Croatian and it was on Friday. Yeah, two days after we got here! We had pretty much written a script down and read it to her, but then forgot to study how to make another appointment! The end of the lesson turned into charades with us trying to depict that we wanted to come back as soon as she had time to see us. Ugh. what a mess! Today we're teaching her again, so I'll let you know how it goes!
Wow, time is going fast!
Mom, thank you for the package. It was so nice to have mail! Also, I got a bunch of letters my second day here from DearElder which was SO AWESOME!!!!! I feel so loved. I was struggling pretty badly in day after that and reading all those letters again definitely helped me through!
There is an Elder in our Zone that doesn't get much mail, his name is Elder Yee. I'll find out his address and mail it to you! He's a convert and after he was on his mission for a week, his parents disowned him and told him never to come back. He's another big example to me. What a trooper!
Hvala for writing! I LOVE YOU ALL!!!!!!!!!!!!! Thanks for the thoughts, prayer and letters.
You're the best!
P.S: I'm trying to attach pictures, but I can't figure it out! Sorry. :( I'll try to get some to you soon!) Love you!!!!!