Tuesday, December 28, 2010

2010 Christmas Time on Temple Square




Dreams Do Come True

So yes, one and all!!! My dreams are coming true!

Let me share with you how!!!! First of all, my mother and father are so amazing. Earthly and Heavenly but right now I'm specifically talking about earthly- I know they let a lot of you know I was struggling and that's a good thing because your letters and love helped soooo much!!! I will get back to you all asap! I love you! Thanks for having my back!!! I got support from all sides- heaven and earth! Ok so how are my dreams really coming true? Well let me tell you.............

I'm getting to be besties with the homeless people! No joke! Ok well one man in particular. I know a lot of them by name. But I probably shouldn't be name dropping on this blog!! Just know that my dreams are coming true! Sister Littlejohn and I were walking to the Beehive House (historical Brigham Young's house. GO BYU!) and on our way there to find where all the fire pulls and panic buttons were (because I'm a newbie) a homeless man stopped us! He was epic!! He said he just got off probation and therefore could now and would like to be baptized. I was like- GET ME A Q-tip! WHAT???? It was awesome. So he actually does have a place of address (even though he's "homeless"! we all knew that anyways) and so we could call him and we did call him!!! and have already begun teaching him more over the phone. The SLC elders will be getting in contact with him asap I hope :) and he knows now how to contact them as well! and he is so open with the biggest desire for
hope.

Well this gospel is all about hope :) Ether 12:4!!!!!!!! It was amazing! And I am learning the homeless people's names and I wish them a good morning and am so chipper with them!!!! This place is cleaning up one soul at a time :) Are you impressed? Well you should be- be impressed with the Lord and his work moving forward!

So another one of my dreams coming true: I went through the Salt Lake Temple this morning! I've loved it since I was a little girl and today I got to do a session! It was so beautiful! All the pioneer artwork and history! The unique way to learn about the Savior and I saw many brides!! It was very tender and it made me miss a HUGE lot the fact that Laur and Dall were just those cute couples a month ago-ish!!! But that's okay!!!! They can come to my SLC wedding :) Bahahah. I laugh, but I'm not kidding!

Ok so another story for y'all..... this is spiritual and funny. Which is what my mission can be summarized as!!! Ok so we are taking this Tennessee baptist couple around and this tour is intense! They are well-versed with the Mormon doctrine and he himself is a televangelists that travels all over the world. Basically by the end of the tour we agreed on many things, we just emphasized how the power of Christ and His authority is in this Church. He didn't deny it, but he didn't see the significance of it. He gave us these colored beaded bracelets that represent the steps we need to follow Christ's gospel (baptism, repentance, death, etc.) and I am actually wearing it right now- it's a legit bracelet. It's significant to me because I know this Church has that same power and priesthood that John the Baptist had!!!

It's amazing! It's okay that he wasn't jumping at the bit to be baptized. We were both edified and now I'm sure he's a little more prepared on his journey. I love learning about all of God's children and their love for God!!! So in the middle of the tour we are in the Tabernacle, and I am speaking first because I know the least about history so I say what I know and Sister Littlejohn adds on. So I'm talking about the acoustics of the rough and the dates and looking back at the couple taking them towards the middle aisle-BAMMMMMMMMMM!!!!!!! yes that's right. As I'm looking back trying to make eye contact and invite the Spirit with my message I ran SMACK DAB HARD into one of the pillar columns. And not like- oh that's awkward she stumbled. But like BOOOOOOOOOM, bruised the side of my face and caused a commotion! Unfortunately Sister Littlejohn was looking down and missed the initial contact but she heard the noise and was doing a great job at holding in her laughter..... the couple was floored. They were very concerned and it was hard to get the conversation away from my stupidity and invite the Spirit again. But the tour went on and everyday I am reminded and we laugh. A lot. Oh mamma!

Ok so one last story- we took an awesome tour earlier this week with a beautiful couple (I think they're dating. maybe they're just friends. idk. we didn't pry) from San Antonio. They are in their young 20's and were on a road trip around the country for Christmas Break. It was one of the most spiritual moments of my mission. Yes, they had tattoos, gages, piercings, and a different style of dress but they were sooooooooo elect! They were amazing. I learned so much about love, kindness, and open-mindedness from them!

The most amazing part of the tour was when we were in the Conference Center looking at some of the paintings of the Book of Mormon, they were so stoked and shocked that more people didn't know about this other Testament of Christ. The Holy Spirit is such a source of truth and power!! Feeling it and having it as a companion- so amazing!!! It's amazing! Christ really did come and show himself after he was resurrected to the people of the Ancient Americas and to other parts of the world! 3 Nephi 16:1-3!!!! And it is amazing! How I can take this gospel for granted! But to see other people learn it for the first time- nothing like it! We get to teach them on the phone, after their road trip, the first week of the New Year!!!

There are fistfuls of stories everyday and these are just a couple I'm sharing now!!! Temple Square really is a beautiful place! I am so grateful for the prophet and his apostles calling me here and that I get to testify everyday of all that I know and that I am continuously learning!


If you are struggling at all- I've been there! Just start from where you are- Christ's atonement is infinite and eternal. He has sunk lower than all of you- I promise you that! If you have the smallest desire for hope and joy, just start reading, studying, and that will start your journey!!! The Spirit testifies and directs a moving vehicle. It's kinda hard to steer a parked car! Get going!!!!

There is so much joy in this crazy world and so much progress we can all accomplish in Christ's love and amazing atonement!!!!

Monday, December 20, 2010

Miracles on the Square

WELL HELLO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! It's Marissa.

Thank you for joining me here on this site today! AND Merry Christmas!!!!!!!!! I am having a great time here.

Temple Square is beautiful. Adjusting and riding the high's and low's!! Let's see what shall I talk about- this weekend has been crazy with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir and David Archlietta (spelling wtv) fiasco concert!!

It brought people from ALL OVER THE WORLD. sad story: a couple flew from South Africa just for the event but didn't realize it was ticketed. Um- heartbreaking! But we got to take them on a tour. This happened often this weekend and we were contacting like crazy!

I have to take my "history test" soon with my zone leaders. I'm not really nervous because I'll just be myself while holding hands with the Spirit of course (ps those of you who aren't Mormon- we don't really believe we "hold hands" with the Spirit. I'm just being poetic).....but the dates- I'm constantly quizzing myself with my companion. Temple 1853 -1893. Tab 1863- 1875. Assembly Hall 1877!! Oh yeah!!! P.S. with this crazy busy weekend that brings opposition- aka protestors. WEARING Santa Clause suits. WHAT? I had to laugh. I did laugh. Too loudly probably. But are you serious? ODD!

I got to use my French many times this week it was cool: on the phone with two Canadians, on the chat with some pepes, a man from Togo (Africa) came to the square, 3 RMs from Belgium,France, etc. missions, and me and my companion (Sis Littlejohn is awesome and we are really warming up to each other- but it's kept at an appropriate level of fun and reverance. shifty eyes. we're all good!) and she speaks Spanish so we speak back and forth in Spanish and French. We actually understand each other quite well. Pres Holmes promises me that I'll be completely fluent by the time I leave or even better than I am now- hmmmm miracles happen on temple square everyday!!!

OK SO SOME GREAT NEWS: our friend from Kansas from last week is an IRC (which is a temple square goal) Investigator Referral Confirm!! It means that the missionaries are in continous appointments with them. He is GOLDEN!!! I wanna meet him someday! He has really helped me gain a testimony for chat and Referral Center Calling missionary work! We also are teaching a man who lives in Bangkok for work but is from Nigeria and is dating an LDS girl on-line in Chile. It's NUTS and he is so prepared too!!!! I learn a lot from him and feel blessed for this crazy lifestyle to talk to people all over and work like crazy! I have talked to all continents multiple times (except Antartica).

Oh we are having a New Years Talent show within the mission- tell me why me, Sis Littlejohn, and another companion ship are doing a hardcore lyrical/contemporary piece. To a Christian rock band. Haven't taken dance seriously since Singapore but it's all coming back to me. It's good to dance and have that time of the day to let loose and do something I love. Video coming soon!!!!

Oh we also talked to a wonderful woman on the square this week that is soooo golden, too! Her husband received a Book of Mormon in the 90's and she just found it in their house and started reading. She was in town from Pheonix and we took her through God's Plan For His Family video and at the Christus, seeing the light of Christ light up in her eyes and feeling both of our testimonies strengthened- there is nothing like it!!!! I am so grateful for the opportunity to be an instrument in Christ's hands!!! We get to continue teaching her on the phone in Phoenix and she already said she wants to get baptized! Temple Square is a place of miracles!

The Pioneers went through a lot and I am glad it is turning over such miracles still 200 years later!!! I love this gospel! Even though I can lose perspective or become frazzled, this really has been one of the most amazing chapters in my life. My own testimony has been so strengthened. I have known for some time the truthfulness of this restored Church and the love of our Savior. But solidifying it and dealing with it 24/7 is such a blessing. Joseph Smith is the Moses of our day and how lucky we are to have a prophet now, Thomas S. Monson! We can talk to God personally and hear counsel for the whole church through the prophet. So many ways to receive revelation! Scriptures, prophets, prayer, church, etc!!!!! All of this is possible and centered on the atonement and love of our Savior. I am so grateful for him and this Christmas time where the whole world can be reminded! He is miraculous and the only way!!!! I love this gospel and hope you all are having a Merry Christmas!!!!

Until next week, may God answer your prayers! I am praying for you and love you all!!!

Merry Christmas

P.S. soooooo i really am an unfortunate soul in the health department. funny, sick story for the week. I took some of my new medicine (HIGH IRON PILLS) and I guess my stomach didn't like that too much but the shower was being used in our apartment. so I grabbed a trash bag for emergency. Then I knew I was going to throw up...... um..... I ran across the hall to the zone leaders apartment and knocked on the door. They opened the door (they're all having companionship study in their living room) and I'm puking in the bag. They are shocked! They rush me to their bathroom. It was embarrassing and a good way to be teased for the rest of the day! My poor issues!!!!! At least the WHOLE floor wasn't witnessing it. But of course I had to include my own apartment and another in my humiliation. That's just the way I roll!!!!!!! ok great!

MERRY CHRISTMAS!!!!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

MERRY CHRISTMAS from Temple Square

Oh mammmmmmma!!!!! Struggles! Merry Christmas from Temple Square.

I've gotten the message from my many visitors- Thank you :) My days are very busy and of course it's crowded so seeing me is hard! I hope to see you, Taryn though!! And just hit y'all with the Spirit like crazy! Ok ok yah!!!! So Temple Square is amazing!!!

I have already found out how real of a mission it is. It's hard but very rewarding! It has it's own challenges- some that I didn't even imagine! So we spend half the day on the square contacting and getting referrals (which are essential! ALWAYS have a referral of a non-member when you come to Temple Square) and then the other half of the day on the phones, chatting, and using technology to teach! It switches off every day but it's amazing. I have seen many miracles already.

We found an amazing young man on chat from Kansas- wow he is prepared! It's awesome teaching him on the phone and the missionaries should be by this week. We get to talk to them on the phone until the missionaries have seen them at least twice. There are a lot of nitty-gritty rules and details but that's the gist of it. I also was calling some pepes from the Manti Pageant and MIRACULOUS (long story short) got to talking to this non-lds girl from Vernal! It was amazing. She is meeting with the missionaries, too! We are teaching her more later today!! I met an amazing man on Saturday night! We are out contacting and uplifting people at the bottom of the spiral staircase at the bottom of the Christus in the North Visitor Center and this college-age kid walks up
to me and asks "So I was wondering if I could get a Book of Mormon and meet with the missionaries!" WHAT???? It was legit! We got his info and back in Idaho, the gospel is spreading! I've met many people from all over the country and all over the world already! I can already see how amazing this Temple Square mission is! It's so different and cool as a missionary!

I feel like an insider of church head quarters! With our special cards that get us in personnel doors and in the back rooms! Suh-weet! I am making great friends and having great experiences already! My companion, Sister Littlejohn (yes I think of my fav movie RHMIT all the time) is from the Bay area in Cali and was going to BYU and she is
super sweet. A little more shy but a GREAT missionary. I'm learning a lot and struggling at the same time!! You get TOUGH skin on temple square. Had some run-ins with anti's already. Oh the Marissa within me has some struggles with that but Sister Schroedter takes over and is so pleasant and proper and spiritual. Bahhaa.

Of course this place has beautiful scenary. Amazing walking down with all the sisters in the morning and seeing Temple Square- a great way to start off your mission everyday! I've always been obsessed with the SLC temple- this just adds to that! Church was exciting yesterday- President Hinckley's son (Elder Richard Hinckley) presided. Apparantely that is a rare treat! It was awesome!!! Sister Phillips sang an amazing duet for the musical number! I didn't even know she could sing like that. Wonderful! The spirit is amazing here- so huge and such a blessing! SOOOO much to do this P-day. Stressed but coping. Thank you for all the shout outs. I'll try to get back to you all that have written over the last month as best I can.

Pdays and priorites are hard to balance. I am so focused on the work and feel so much love and prayers. Keep them coming! I love walking around temple square with just my badge, smile, and Book of Mormon. It's simple and that's all that is needed to spread the good word and bring people closer to Christ.

Christ has helped me sooooo much this past month! Especially this past week. Oh my word!!!!! Now something unique I mentioned is that we spend half the day on the computer. While that brings a lot of success- it also brings opposition. Opposition in all things! Um. okay..... let me just say- the anti's are everywhere and Satan is working hard! I cried the FIRST full day on Temple Square like a baby because of getting harassed. It was embarassing and a great impression but I am so glad you all cannot even imagine some of the things that get said to us.

And we use our first names. SO they will say "ALIGEOIUHOTUAHJLE OAIHGOEIJTLI *@($UHGLAJKIGE )@*(HJGNA, Marissa!" and it is the most shocking, offensive, perverted, satanic evil I have ever been exposed to. Ok well maybe not the most but it's definitely tied! It is incredible horrid!!!!! So the first day- I was so green. And BAM!!! It was like a cloud of evil!! I wasn't warned or prepared. It was rough! I felt so hopeless but that's why we have Christ on our side! I know that Jesus looks out for his missionaries and gives us strength! I am still appalled everyday.

How can someone talk to a woman like that? They obviously know when it says "Alison and Marissa" that we are girls. and they know we are young missionraies. What I wouldn't GIVE for them to talk like that to me to my face with Chase, my dad, Garrett, Dave, Chad, Lance, Dallin, Taylor, Grant, Josh, or some other protective guy nearby! Smackdown! But of course we handle it all with care and with love. But let's just say- If you thought I had hard skin before- oh mamma!!! A mission definitely has highs and lows- we get to be the sweetest, most endearing individuals and the most hardcore, tough individuals!

I am so grateful to represent the Lord and wear his name on my tag/badge/name thingy at all times!!! Oh yah- yesterday we got to go to Music and the Spoken Word. It was beautiful. My first time in person! We don't get to go next week because it's a ticketed event but have fun with Archilletta (those that are going ;)!!!!!!)

I love you alll soooooooo much and am seriously struggling but I know soon I will just be so adjusted and flying high. They always say the first transfer and the first three weeks are really a crazy time here. I can do this!!! Your mail and love and prayers are greatly encouraged!! I love you all!

And HAPPY BIRTHDAY WEEK, JOSH LOUD!!!!!! love you!!! and your wife and daughter :) you are amazing- you genuis soon-to-be doctor of Cali!!!!! I love you all and am doing my best and leaning to the Lord for all understanding and strength! I know he places you angels in my life, too!!!!! HELP!!!! The Lord helps me everyday! I love you! You are in my prayers!!!

Friday, December 3, 2010

4 MORE DAYS!!!!

Four more days till I'm in my white field ready to be harvested! aka
church headquarters! WOW WOW WOW!!! so since Wednesday I have been in
Temple Square district. It's just us and 25 Temple Square sisters and
3 Washington DC Temple Square Sisters! It's fantastic! I'm learning and
applying so much! My mission- I AM SOOOOO LUCKY! and I'm not just
saying that! It's absolutely fantastic. I feel soooo blessed to be
apart of this great work! Some interesting things: the sisters in my
district going to temple square: where are they from? Taiwan,
Pakistan, Bolivia, Hong Kong, USA, Fiji, Tahiti, Australia, Brazil,
Germany, Mongolia, Peru, Armenia!!! It's so crazy awesome! We all
leave at 6 am Wednesday on our shuttle. We go to the airport first (to
drop off the sisters taking planes) and then we take I-80 (I'm
guessing) to beautiful downtown Salt Lake! I'm so excited! Let me
tell you some cool stats and things I've learned about my mishy mish!
Visitor Center referrals have a 25% chance of baptism while tracting
in the field only has a 0.05% chance for every person you meet to
become baptized. Which makes sense because people feel a SPECIAL
spirit at temple square and are brought there for a specific reason.
Also, when visitor center sisters are picked.... (it's a little
different than Conference talks) Dallin H. Oak said that they pick the
Visitor Center missionaries first and that each apostle that picks a
sister can personally feel the relationship the sister has with Jesus
Christ and his Atonement. And after my last two years, I can tell you
that impression they got MUST have been strong! I've never learned
more about our Savior or his atonement and saving friendship than I
have in the past two years! It has really prepared me for Temple
Square :) I CANNOT WAIT TO GO THERE WEDNESDAY!! We also are going
there Saturday from 3pm -9pm (DO NOT HARRASS ME!) I'm just telling you
because I'm stoked to get paired up with an oldie sister and have her
show me around Temple Square. I know my excitement is going to grow
even more- I feel incredible!!! oh yah- we said goodbye to our Iowa
and New Mexico District Elders this week- that was hard! But I'm going
to their homecomings with Chase in arm! They are looking forward to
it! hahahahah! you all can come with me!!! enhance the awkwardness and
joy!!! happy birthday Dave Anderson (FFIL!!!!) yesterday!!!! I just
got out of the temple. Yes, mom we've been going. Well not last pday cuz
it was Thanksgiving. But we went as a district (elders and sisters)
and did a session my first pday and now we went as T square sisters and
did initiatories. I LOVE THE TEMPLE!!! Make it a goal, people!!! Me
and my 2 companions are singing in sacrament meeting. just us three!
"Joseph Smith's First Prayer" to the tune of Come Thou Fount! It
sounds awesome!!! ps thank you for the christmas package Andersons. I
love the stocking!!!! Kelly- kisses!!! So I wanna share two more
things!! This week I cried for the first time- WHY? Because the MTC
doctors ticked me off sooooooooo bad!!!! The doctor was saying how
dangerous Ulcerative Colitis is on a mission and the number one reason
people come home and how I really need to think about doing something
else and all this garbage. He was making me so mad and sad- well he
meant well but I was overanalyzing and being a freak about it! So he
said it's protocol for all ulcerative colitis missionaries to have a
check up in the MTC - ughhhh! So me and my companions got to go OFF
MTC grounds and go to my gastro in Utah Valley Medical Center. It was
weird and I was super bitter but we loved being out- WHY? because we
could breathe and realized that same spirit of the MTC was still in
our hearts and.....are you ready for how the Lord works in mysterious
ways??? WE DID MISSIONARY WORK!!! We got referrals, passed out pass
along cards, and talked all day about our Savior! I have the strongest
hope for this one referral we got for a man in Washington!!! I am
soooooooooooo stoked. I repented immediately for my bitterness and
realized this is why I needed to go to the doctor :) and it was nice
to talk to mom TWICE on the phone about the doctor. lucky duck!!!!
Last thing I wanna share- Sister Nichols shared the most inspiring
spiritual thought in our companionship study: when she opened her call
and struggled with it, her dad shared with her the story of Naaman (in
2 Kings 5! verse 13 is my favorite!!! look it up!!!) and it talks
about the guy who had leprosy. The Lord through his prophet Elisha
asked something simple of Naaman but he was stubborn. Her dad
related it to our mission call. If the Lord called us to Russia,
French Polynesia, Italy, Florida, etc. we would go with confidence but
sometimes it's harder to go to a simpler place (like Temple Square) or
to a place that you don't see why the Lord would call you there. Well,
ladies and gents- I AM NAAMAN!!! and even though it has taken me
sometime- I am finally so grateful for the simple small task of Temple
Square!!! I am so grateful to my Lord! I Know it's going to be hard
and it will be rough- but I know I can do it and it will be a
succesful mission! The Lord called me to this mission in the
pre-existence and I know I accepted then and I am accepting now!!! I
CANNOT WAIT!!!!!! I am loving life and I love all of you!!!! have an
awesome week! I know I will. you are all in my prayers!!!! I hope to
hear from you soon!!!!!!!!!! I know that our Savior lives!!!!!!

Friday, November 26, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving from the MTC

Alright alright!! Where to start?
WOW what another incredible week :) This place is amazing! I'm
starting to get antsy to leave already :) Half way done!!! But I'm
still loving every second. It's not a prison- Taylor, repent for your
past attitude :) But then again I'm here for 4 weeks. Not a thousand
like Romanians :) Even though I've been here two weeks, I am still
horrible with directions. So horrible! Good thing Sister NIchols and I
have Sister Alejandro. She is a master jedi at directions. We will be
walking and sometime Sister Alejandro just tries to mess with us and
take us in huge loops- me and Sister Nichols NEVER catch on!!!! That's
what companionships are for :) To balance out your weaknesses. haha ok
not really but it helps :) So i have been sicker than a dog allllllll
week! I'm finally better but from like Thursday to Monday I was almost
six feet under. I would say I was about 5 3/4 feet under. It was
ATTRACTIVE. Of course I never rested or anything- just drugged myself
up in class (It's not alll mental, Tii!) I blame Elder Carico and
Elder Morales- those bum nuggets! Got me sick!!!! But I'm better now
:) I even did the weekly temple walk on Sunday in a BAD snow storm!
I'm such a trooper! Storm trooper! The pics were worth it though :)
P.S. It may sound like I'm not humble but I promise this place humbles
me more than anything ever could! Still could improve though :) One of
my favorite things to do every day, every hour is stand in front of
closed doors and wait for the Elders to open them; when I do, I say
"Thank you, Elder (ex.) Smith!" he looks at my name tag: "You're
welcome, Sister Uhhhh Sc....uhhhhh" HAHAHAHA gets them everytime. I
don't always say "Thank you" in the beginining though. I always spice
it up: Grazzi, Otikato, Gracias, Xie Xie, Merci, ASL, etc!!! Anyways,
GRANT- Marcel the Shell quotes have been stuck in my head alllllll
week but no one would ever know what I'm talking about so I keep it to
myself!! Guess what I use to tie my skis? A hair! OK OK i've been
dying to relate that to someone who will know what I'm talking about!
Thank you thank you family and the FELTS for my package :) SOOOO
delicious. My district thanks you too! Thanks to the Wilders for their
Thanksgiving wishing too :) I love how Amanda and Adam were grouped
together- the two single Wilders. Makes y'all look like a couple.
Hilarious!!! So I'm assuming Lauryn got married! Nah, I know she did
:) Thanks to Mom and Kelly!!!! CONGRATS LAUR and DALL!!!! I know you
looked like Beauty and the Beast (post spell broken!) those are my
favorite disney characters so I had to use them!!! I am loving it
here! I love how my testimony is growing spiritually and knowledgably
too (they are teaching me new words here: like knowledgably!!!) This
is amazing! After dating Chase whose influence was everything, this is
the best decision I ever made :) I needed to make some GOOD ones for
the bonehead I normally am :) I love the MISSION!!!!! So did I tell
you last time?? 3 weeks of being with the elders and all that and then
the last week is JUST visitor stuff. We really do go up to Temple
Square 4 of those days and do this and that! I've already bonded with
the new Temple Square sisters and I love them all :) I cannot wait to
really get into Temple Square stuff. IT's hard for me to apply some of
the lessons learned here to Temple Square so I look forward to all the
application that will be given to me :) My elders leave this Monday!!!
and wednesday!!!! HOW DID TIME FLY SOOOOOOO FAST? good and bad :)
We'll keep in touch and facebook will always connect us. hahahaha.
P.S. HAPPY ANNIVERSARY mom and dad! good work at not getting divorced
and loving like crazy and showing TONS of PDA that day, I'm sure :) I
love you guys :) Best parents ever! Who gave me the best family ever
:) Credit to the Lord, too!!! I found
ALLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLL of Taylor's notes!!!! It was a
challenge but I did it! -11. um let me just tell you about one
specific "incident." Sister Nichols and I dropped off Sister Alejandro
at an appointment and then went looking for notes in 5M (any of you
Return Missionaries knows where this is going) Some nice boy opened
the door for us- we look around the hall. WAIT THIS DOESN'T LOOK
RIGHT?! ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh we were in a boy's dorm! How
would we know that? Why didn't the male seem suspicious that we
entered when he came out at the perfect moment so we didn't need to
swip our cards and realize we would have been denied! We scuttled back
to the entrance and freaked out! "They're gonna see us on the camera!'
ACCIDENT! help!" we look at the camera staring at us in the eye and
try to look apologetic and scream sorry!!! Boys pass us (probably like
30 of them) giving us the stink eye. We finally find a nice boy that
will help us and he goes back to the lobby and climbs ON a vending
machine to find my note! Thank you, kind stranger. I didn't even get
your name!!!! AND TAYLOR- HOW DARE YOU ALMOST GET ME KICKED OUT OF THE
MTC!!!! now I see why you said "good luck with this one!" it never
crossed my mind. hahahahahahahahhahahah good one, Tii!!!!! P.s. Kelly-
bahahahahahahahahahah your letters and goodies are the best. P.P.S. I
showed my companions the line about you feeling sorry for them that
they have to be with me ALL the time especially with my LOVE for the
bathroom. I promise you- they suffer!!! we have a code! I look at them
and say "Bring your scriptures!" then they know it'll be a nice long
visit! bahahahahahahhahahaha. Keep the letters and love coming, to all
of you! They are amazing! You all are amazing!!!! P.S. WE GET JIPPED
this Pday (thanksgiving nonsense going on) and next PDay so letter
replying will be lame. But I'll do my best! P.S. AGAIN: You all will
LOVE my memory card! preview: hilarious pics, wii tennis with me vs
the elders, choreographed dance in the girl's residance hall, and
other hilariousness! Oh this place is the best! Laughter but a
Spiritual boot camp! I am so blessed! Everyone be grateful :)
ESPECIALLY TODAY :) Happy Thanksgiving!!!! I miss you all but I am
LOVING IT HERE!!!!!! xoxoxox (air kisses and if your a girl real hugs
but if a boy- then not so! just one of those hand intimate hugs!!!!!)
P.s.s. i have taught my whole district the phrases "Inappropriate."
AND "Oh you would." AND "I miss you already!' AND "when I say we I
mean you" or "when I say happy I mean crazy" ETC!!!!!! Marissa-isms
mixed with being a humble servant of the Lord- NOTHING BETTER! (p.s.
MOM- Chase's emails didn't get to me AGAIN! can you forward me them
via dearelder :) hotmail i believe. thanks! reprimand him for me!!!!!)
Thanks for upkeeping this blog and being the best! Farewell, Marissa's
fan club! Until Next week :) [my pday is Friday next week because of
all the temple square intensity changes!!!!!] I'm doing well! Prayers
for you all :) Keep praying for me too!!!!

Thursday, November 18, 2010

The Best Week of My Life!!!!!

 Hello OUTSIDE WORLD!!! It's
me :) Sister Schroedter. OH MY WORD THIS IS SOOOO WONDERFUL!!!! I am
loving it here. It was a whirlwhind coming here and it's just gotten
better all the time. I've been all smiles and no tears (are you
surprised? my tear ducts are kinda stubborn!) But I haven't even
wanted to cry!!! It's been fantastic!!!!! I am so happy here! My
testimony has grown and even though this place is like a MAGNIFYING glass
for your inabilities, weaknesses, and insecurities- It's still so
wonderful! I just wanna start off by saying- if you have even thought
about going on a mission and even have the SMALLEST desire- DO IT!!!!
don't "try" but actually DO IT!! I love my Savior and have felt His
Spirit and His love more than ever before. Just this past week will
make a mission worth it :) I said I wasn't going to write LONG
mission blogposts but this week has been so crazy that this one might
be a titch long!! So let me also say. My return date: APRIL 22,
2010!!!!! you know what that means? only three months, baby!! and when
I say baby- I mean Chase aka Elder Anderson!! and Grant, NO DATING
until I get back. I think you can wait 3 days. I can chaperone. Or
maybe we can make it a double with me and Chase. hahahaha. jk jk. I am
not looking that far ahead anyways. but I just wanted to tell y'all!
HOLLA!!! So more deets. My companions are awesome. That's right I have
TWO and sometimes three girls can be drama but it's not. Because we
are all so different and dedicated to our purpose: to invite others to
come unto Christ :) We are all going to Temple Square!!! They told me
how they cried and I said I was just laughin in hysterics. Bahah
hence- why I'm in the MTC to try to tap into appropriate emotions.
haha. So also, I LOVE MY DISTRICT!!!! There are 8 boys and us 3 girls.
Oh my companions names' are Sister Jess Alejandro and Sister Caitlyn
Nichols!!! That's right, Sister Jenkins!!! Anywho. I LOVE THEM SOOOO
MUCH ALREADY!!!!!! Oh oh oh!! TAYLOR-
hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahhaha all your notes that you hid me.
BAHAHAHA I have only found half of them so far but GOOD WORK, buddy!!!
I love them. I love your honesty and the length of them. You are a
superstar!! I was walking down the courtyard from 8M (my class
building) to the cafeteria and like 15 guys stopped me and were like
THERE YOU ARE!!! and I'm like WHAT THE HECK? and who are all these
strapping young men just elated to see me? Taylor's Romanian
brethren!!!!!!!!! It was so awesome to talk to them. They said and I
quote "Your brother is a legend!" and blah blah blah and then about
packages: "Everyone knows when they pass Taylor's residence that he is
the package king!!" I guess word spreads pretty fast about that kinda
stuff because I'm already known as the mail queen :) Holla to the
Schroedters! My companions always sing that soundtrack from Wicked
'Popular. Popular! LAR LAR LAR!' It's quite interesting but then again
pretty awkward to be that kinda spotlight. Ah who am i kidding? I can
handle it ;) So in case your wondering? How's my health? ehhhhh.....
the Lord has strengthened my back but not necessarily my load :) It's
always fun to get TWO sisters instead of one at any time to drag them
to the bathroom because of the good principle of being in sight and
sound with your companions!!! A lady was cleanign the bathroom one day
and RIGHT when she got done cleaning a stall, I threw up in it.
UMMM.... sorry custodian lady :( bahahahah but then it gave us
something to laugh about the rest of the day. Oh gym gym! I LOVE IT!!!
being a girl has SOOOO many advantages. (1) When Sister Alejandro and
I play basketball- it's like we are a plague. The boys can't guard us
or even mock us! BAHAHA. It only stinks when sister Alejandro laps
circles around me and I forget I'm the only one that can guard her and
then I let my team down. oops. bahaha. but my fav has been knock out
(cuz that's ANYONE's game!) and foursquare (if you have the right
elders) can be wickedly intense. but not tooooo competitive cuz that
drives away the Spirit :) I love gym time. I love it here! Can I say
that enough? I Love IT!! laughing and laughing! I love my district. we
are all so close already and yet we can be real and sincere when it
comes to being spiritual and learning from His Spirit. I love this
gospel!!!! I also LOVE my teachers. Sister Ward and Brother Bonin. OH
OH BEFORE I FORGET- LAURYN HAVE AN AWESOME WEDDING DAY!!!! I WISH I
COULD BE THERE TO HOLD YOUR TRAIN AND SNEAK MY WAY INTO EVERY PICTURE!
JK!!! THIS IS YOUR SPECIAL DAY. I LOVE YOU SO MUCH! ENJOY MY
POWERPOINT! I LOVE YOU!!!!! I LOVE YOU!!!! I LOVE YOU!!!! DALLIN AND
LAURYN- CONGRATS!!! oh another funny thing is that sisters get to cut
lines and the elders have to stand up when we enter a room and we get
all these special treatment! EAT IT!!!! I hope my hubby (yeah listen
up!!!) better treat me like this if not better!!! thank you thank you
thank you for all those who have made my days that much better: Mom,
Dad, Grant, Caleb, the Anderson, Kelly, Lauryn, Amanda Wright, Jessica,
Chase, Tay, Kina, and all those who are praying for me as well!!!!!
And you others out there- please write me :) k thanks. I have seen
Elder Miller, Noren, Redfearn, Petersen, MOODY, Taylor's Romanian
pepes, Elder Jenson, Sister Bryers (O'grady's neice also going to
Temple Square), Sister Michaels (BYU summer freshman year), Sister
Swan, Anna Moore, A temple square sister from Blanding who knows
Colleen Raisor ( I forgot her name), Elder Matthews (who trained Elder
Beard in Idaho and knows Bryce Tobin) and MANY OTHERS THAT WILL COME
TO ME AFTER THIS EMAIL TIME IS UP FOR SURE!!! Ok I only have 2
minutes. ahhhh. p.s. mom can you print off taylor's romanian email and
dear elder it to me. I didn't have time to read it. thanks. dad, I
want some more of your mission stories. I love you and allllll you do
for me. mom and dad- thank you for all the financial and emotional
support. my sibilngs and neices. I MISS YOU!!!!! p.s. chase- I need
more of those 3 knotted- wish bracelets!!! I tried to attach pictures
but I cannot in the MTC so pictures soon :) I love you all and am
praying for you. Sorry this is sooooo scatter brained! it will be
better next week! love you. I love the mission. I love this
gospel!!!!!

Friday, November 12, 2010

Entering the MTC - Nov. 10, 2010

Elder Noren was her host. He is serving from our Katy ward going to the Ukraine.
She is ready to go!!
Thanks Greg and Lisa for sharing your home with us and friends.
She looks good in those missionary clothes.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Pivotal

Waiting at the Stake Center to get set apart :)
I was FOR SURE born of goodly parents!
I'm officially Sister Schroedter. My awesome stake president, President Allen of the Katy Stake :)
A big support and blessing in my life. I love family :)
With one of their missionaries :)
The Lord and His Priesthood means everything

Sunday, November 7, 2010

the last hooplah

So this weekend has been awesome :)
It also got me thinking about what Chase's last weekend was like.... before his Wednesday MTC day was like.
I remember Lance's hilarious birthday extravanganza at Pirate Island.
Going to the funnest roller rink, bouncy castle fun-land ever with Kina and Chad.
His farewell. And a great setting apart
and precious moments :)
And I have loved my last hooplah week very much, too :) Friday I took Caleb to Chuck E. Cheese with Mom while Grant and Dad froze their butt off water skiing and camping with the teachers of the ward. Water skiing when the temperature is 44 degrees. ARE YOU CRAZY? Bahahahah pro!!
Loved skyping baby Aubs and Shelby after CEC :) Bahah i LOVE seeing her walk and "shake her booty!"
Last night, I had some close family friends over and we played games and had a fun ole time :) Even if Spencer tried to throw me in the pool, when it was practically snowing outside!

And Tuesday is also what I'm looking forward to! I love all the support, hospitality, and lasting friendships. I love you all! My whole big fam with be there :) Ross, Schroedters, Browns, Brunsons, Andersons, etc :) AND MILLIE MILLIE MILLIE MILLIE!!!

But what I'm MOST looking forward to is Wednedsay :)
I'm getting set apart in 10 hours and 30 minutes! AMAZING!!!
So I haven't had any anxiety since Monday which is miraculously beautiful. The temple is a big part of that :) On Tuesday, I got some reiterated, GREAT insights on how this mission will be so beneficial and why I've been preparing for this for so long!!
One thing that came to mind was the fact that "Because I have been giving much, I too must give!" I have always loved that song---Singing it with Mary in Church when we were beehives. Singing it with Natalie in Primary from the pulpit. Oh good times! I love that song! I remember singing it in French in our Versailles ward. I just love that song!
And today is Sunday which means the Sabbath. which ALSO means it's the day i flip a page in my "Chase and Marissa" weekly book. and TODAY is another testament of the beauty and miracles of life! I can't believe part 1 of 2 is almost done! His one year is sooo close :) It's crazy! Anyways, look at this weeks page :) Besides the intimate kissing, the setting and quote make it the PERFECT page for me entering the MTC this week for my Temple Square mission. I love Chase. I love this opportunity. I love the Lord and his organized mission program :)

enter MTC + Chase + Hymn lyrics= a beautiful thing


AND NOW FOR SOME UP-CLOSE and personal time with Mr. Chuck E. Cheese!
Man i LOVED working there in high school. It was the perfect job for me :) I got to dance, throw out coins and tickets, be a bouncer at the door, stand on counter tops and do the macarana, give out prizes, and dress up as a giant mouse!!!

i FINALLY took Caleb to C.E.C. because he always does these little chores for me and is my baby slave and i always say "i'll take you to chuck e. cheese if you go get my phone." or "ahh i need socks! go upstairs and get 'em and i'll take you to chuck e. cheese." and i promise this about 10 times a day and I've been here about a little over a month. So that's like 500 promises for ONE visit. good deal!!!
i gotta come through for him so the next visit, he will know i mean it!! i gotta show results! he will remember and my promises will be reliable!
he loves Chuck E. Cheese! ALMOST AS MUCH AS ME :) and my mom, she came because i twisted her arm and used the line "i only have a few more nights left!! next friday night you can sit home and watch jeopardy!" It works everytime!!!
AND if for some reason i can't graduate from BYU, i will just be a manager at chuck e. cheese to be happy in life! i will have a productive, fulfilling life :) these next 18 months are a guarantee as well!

We LOVE ski ball!! and i am so lucky because this machine broke down and spit out ALL the tickets that were in the machine! 200 tickets with one coin! lucky duck!
we hit the jackpot!!! his smile says it all. bahah so photogenic! genuine! he was excited to be there. can't you tell?
I love this little guy. He always makes me happy. Love you, Cay!
Why are you holding up your pants? BECAUSE THIS IS ABOUT TO GET SERIOUS!!!
OH MAN!! that's right. A huge spectacle at CEC! a crowd gathered around and some BIG mocking laughter!!! I made it to the 12th best score of all time at this CEC location, it was tough!! Got my jumping-rope work out for the day!

cashing in all our tickets!!!

Ok well life is beautiful! I'll talk to you guys soon! Maybe I'll write some inspiring words after I get set apart tonight :) It's going to be epic!
p.s. I LOVE(D) deactivating my facebook! Sweet serenity :)

Friday, November 5, 2010

calm the nerves

there are many options
#1. scriptures are an easy fix
#2. another illegal word of wisdom breaking kinda fix
#3. write a missionary
#4. have some caleb fun
#5. sleeeeeeep
#6. watch The Middle
#7. drink ice water

i've done five of the seven today!!
some giggles and chuckles.
this accentuates our BEST features :)sometime our happy face comes off a little strange
we don't really have the concept of personal space down yet
this is our kissy face. caleb's kisses are often too sunctiony.
how could this not cheer me up?
we'd make an attractive totem polethen i discovered some gems of my bros!! i need one of garr. ah grant looks a lot like garr when he was that age. so it works.
i heard people in Romania kinda look like that. he'll fit right in.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

last minute rambling

yes it's getting CLOSE! yes i have small moments of anxiety! and YES i am excited SOOOO excited. there so now that we're all caught up.
5 days and 6 hours and 22 minutes till i get set apart :)

cute story for you

the family is playing a game kinda like catch-a-phrase.
you pick up a piece of paper and it has a person's NAME written on it (i.e. George Washington, Will Farrell, Justin Bieber, Edward Cullen, Thomas Monson, etc.) and you try to get your team to guess as many names as you can from the bowl in 30 seconds.
so caleb: "this person is a pest. they're in this house."
my thought process: it may be me. (this thinking happened in 1/2 a millisecond) and then i shout out : "caleb"
caleb: "THAT'S IT!!"
good, frank, hilarious clue giving my brother!!!
p.s. that was a pretty good clue because my mom always says me and caleb have similiar personalities. when i was little i'd go sit on anyone's lap or approach anyone (actually i am still the same way. hahaha.) anyways, he does the same! we talk to anyone we see. we are daredevils. we are loud. etc.
i don't know if it's a good thing to be compared to an 8 yr-old but this little 8 yr-old is awesome! so i'll take it as a compliment :) my mom always calls us either a PEST or a NINNY!

nin·ny

[nin-ee] Show IPA
–noun, plural -nies.
a fool or simpleton.
she's a nurturing beauty queen :)

she's actually voting right now! all citizens should vote! i am registered to vote in Utah so i'm exempt.

oh sidenote. a funny 5 minute convo (it took wayyyyyyyyy longer than necessary because of the confusing english language!)
mom: do you wanna come vote?
me: i don't. No.
mom: you don't know?
me: i don't, no.
it goes on like this!!
mom: what?
me: oh!! not idk- i don't know. but like as in No, I don't. like I don't, NO!
mom: why would you phrase it like that in the first place?
bahahahahahhaha that confusion was 90% my fault!

loved going to the temple today with mom and tina :) last time before the provo mtc temple trips :)
i love you guys! and the Lord. and His holy home :)
loved talking to amanda, kelly, and lauryn via the phone :) muah muah!!
mail from one of my missionaries :) t.l.schroedter!!

one day at a time :) one hour at a time!!!!!! i'm a blessed daughter of God :) and my earthly parents are pretty cool, too!!!

Thursday, October 28, 2010

happy halloween

so first thing first
TODAY IS CHASE'S BIRTHDAY :) happy birthday!! enjoy elder bednar visiting your mish this week!!!! happy happy happy birthday :) i love you!


two of the most important ppl in my life. my biggest fans in life. and the people i'm biggest fans of!!!
it's Chase's 21st birthday and my BEAUTIFUL MOTHER's 30th birthday on saturday:) happpppyy birthdays!!!!! it's y'all's BIRTHDAY WEEK!!!

and what else is happy this week? happy halloween! can't wait to spend it with the fairwell family and be grinches and not pass out candy on the sabbath. bahahaha.

and halloween wouldn't be halloween without carving pumpkins :)

working hard and sketching out the faces before the irreversible carving begins
gotta get those seeds out :)

just happy about halloween
my dad taught me how to be cool
my brother caleb the creeper has halloween in the bag
i love this father-son interaction. typical: dad doing all the work.
we went for a look-alike :) you can't really see but that jackie-o-lantern has a missionary nametag on the side :)
just some family love! i love my youngster brothers :)
frightening!!!! happy halloween

Sunday, October 24, 2010

makes me wanna be an EAGLE SCOUT :)

so this week has been crazzzzzzzzyyyyy busy with service. and that's a beautiful thing, ladies and gentleman.
i cannot wait to do more gospelish service :)
actually...well any service is the work of charity which is the pure love of Christ. so the gospel is being carried out in all kinds of ways :)
so one of the great projects i took on this weekend (with much help from Exxon mobil, my dad, and a whole crew) was fixing up this house in the scary part of town- if you know what i'm saying. i'm not trying to use slang or degrading terms. but i'm defnitely glad tall, strong men were with us as we were repairing, paneling, wiring, and painting this house!
apparantely it's similiar to what an eagle scout project could look like :) i wanna know how to be an archer, tie a square not, and build a tp fire now :)
p.s. let's all LOVE exxon mobil. i know there are some oiler haters out there but TAKE IT EASY!! exxon does a lot economically for this country and for the community. it's the best company and really takes care of business no pun intended!!!
so we got on the road at 645 AM and got back home at 630 PM. just a BUSY, long, exhausting, fulfilling day of giving giving!
who knew painting for 10 hours gives you a kink in your wrist. well i didn't. because this is literally like the second time i've ever really painted a big project like this. i need to get out more!
the 82 year old widow, Albertene, was super sweet and so gracious. i love serving even more when the people are the sweetest.
p.s. remember how after the project i was sitting in the backyard cleaning off all the paint brushes and got ATTACKED by FIRE ANTS? i do!! cuz it KILLED! (well not literally killed but very much figuratively) dang houston. are you kidding me? oozing bites all over my right arm. close to my tweeked wrist- so double burning pain. just perfect.
just because i sat on your ant farm hill home, doesn't mean you have to get personal and BITE ME!!!
anywho
it was also great to serve with the Fairwells, Grant, Dad, and some other new friends.
helping the time go by faster by thinking of ALL of jim carey's movies. or will smith. or julia roberts. or sandra bullock. or adam sandler. or rachel mcadams. or will farrel. etc!
or thinking of all the countries in the world that start with C or the letter A or the letter T, etc.
or belting out "Mine" by Taylor Swift with 3 sophomore high school girls... and getting really weird looks from the neighborhood.
Or quoting Diary of a Wimpy Kid or Marcel the Shell for an hour.
As i got to know new people like Exxon workers or children of Exxon workers or friends of Exxon workers, I told my little life's happenings like four times that today because explaining that your brother is serving in Romania and that you're going to be serving in Utah can take some time to clarify and explain. It was fun and strengthened my testimony and got me even MORE excited about my mission 2 weeks away :) i have felt nothing but a desire to serve and a great excitement to get this party started!
one funny story from the day was i was just bambling like an idiot to Scott and Grant and my dad was like "Marissa? why are you telling Scott you're gonna cut him?"
and i'm like "DAD! that means i love you in Romanian!"
and then later my dad walks by and overhears more ridiculousness and reprimands, "Marissa why do you threaten Grant with a 2 by 4 straight to his knee joint?"
and i'm like "Dad, you just don't understand Romanian culture. TAY AY-OO-BESK, Dad" which is how you say Te iubesc. which means actually does mean I LOVE YOU in Romanian. thanks tay for teaching me the Romanian language. and when i say language i mean a couple phrases here and there.
I'm pretty much fluent in Romanian, Portuguese, French, and English now :)
anyways back to the story.....
This Exxon exec comes up to me and says "What's your issue with Romania?"
i look at him dumbfounded and ask the inevitable question: "are you from Romania?"
he says.... "Um yah"
bahahaha so then i quickly catch him up on how i'm just joking and not trying to be offensive and that my brother is serving there so i have an obsession now with making Romanian part of my life and it turned out to be a great conversation.
i asked him to tell me all about Romania- and boy did he :) i learned a lot of great stuff! I prolly know more about Romania than Taylor :) well at least till he gets more hands-on experience with Romanians.
haha i'm jk Taylor is all knowledgeable. we know that :)

anyways so here's some picy pics for you :) with some entertaining, ridiculous captions as always! i'm soooo tired. i don't even know why i'm still up right now. i need some sleep so this rebuilding Houston body can recover!!
p.s. i gave my farewell talk today and i was gonna put it on this public blog but i thought twice about it. this was the first time i've never had a word for word written talk and i think it went best that way :) really helped me speak through the Spirit and the present audience.
if you wanna copy of it i can forward it to you via email :) mristar13@hotmail.com. email me and let me know. it was a great day and a spiritual experience for me to bear my testimony and speak before this great adventure of a MISSION :)
i have it copied word for word now because my mom had the brilliant idea to record my talk via cassette recorder for Chase so i thought BONNE ID√ČE. done!!
so after church today, i went back and listened to the tape with many "pauses and plays" and wrote down my talk word for word specifically so Taylor can read it. your welcome chase, taylor, and others who i will be sharing it with that couldn't be in the sacrament meeting today :)
ok now for the pics of the exhausting, amazing day in the ghetto ope i mean the scary part of town.
i am so glad spencer, scott, allen, dad, and grant could be there :)

a bright sunrise! starting the day off right with a service and a smile!!!! this is the third time the crew has worked on the house and so much has already been done with lots more to get done on this final day :)
spence and dad working hard of course. boys are best with power tools. i struggle and inflect pain on myself or those nearby when i try! so i just take the pics.
working hard painting. got a hat to protect my hair. safety goggles to protect my eyes. but let me tell you what i forgot......
that as i was doing the eaves.... i forgot that I PERSONALLY just painted the side of the house and was rubbing my pony tail all up on that stickiness. NOT a good time washing that out. it took like four shampoo rinses. barnacles.
later in the morning. me and grant know how to make service look GOOOOOD! love you gii.
and then we took a break for lunch!!! exxon takes care of us so well! merci! delicioso (she says in the dora explorer voice) yum yum yum yum (says Backpack)
so we ran out of paint for like twenty minutes. so OF COURSE while an adult ran to home depot to get more, the children decide to act like animals!! a little wrestling match. me owning scott at first...... or so i thought....... HE HUSTLED ME!!
this is the way nature intended it. males>females. BOOM ROASTED :(
like the day wasn't already exhausting enough. me getting beat by someone 6 years my junior? well that's just embarrassing for me.
so then i decided maybe i can beat my own kin. me and grant having it out.
ahhhhhh this isn't looking good...... p.s. notice the pants- necessary to protect me from the swamps AKA mosquitoes.
another failure by yours truly. well this keeps me humble. silver lining.
and then we got back to work and the house was almost done and things were really coming together!!!! it looks wonderful!
three hard-workin Exxon buffs!!! thanks dad for always being a good dad and leading by example on how to serve in every aspect and area of your life. i love you.