Saturday, June 29, 2013

Guayaquil, Ecuador

What  a day!! First day in Gayaquil was AMAZING!! First thing we got picked up at the aeroporte by President Amaya and his wife and they took us to lunch at Rioko (which was sooo good and it was very elegant) then we were taken to the mission office and met with several of the missionaries who now call me Hermana Sadita hahaha. The office had a beautiful view of the mountain and of the fountains down below. Next the Amayas took us to our house. We got lost a few times getting to our house and ended up taking an hour or so to get here. When we got to the house I was instantly mesmorized by the gorgeous flowers and the ginourmous eight foot wide and about twenty foot tall wooden door. The house is amazing with a beautiful pool and waterfall. I have already fallen in love with beautiful Guayaquil. With flowers of all different varieties everywhere and the beautiful hills and historic buildings it was hard not to love it. While I miss everyone and am terribly scared to go to church tomorrow I have also become very excited and happy here in my new home. I never thought it was possible that I could even be somewhat happy this soon but it happened. Heavenly Father could not have picked a more perfect place for me and my family, all of us are so comfortable and calm. Heavenly Father knows what he is doing and has our best interest in mind. If I had just trusted him in the first place it would have saved me alot of pain, sadness and greef. Although this is just the beginning of things I have a feeling things are going to get much better. (Besides the flood in our house on the first day haha but that was taken care of and the two lizards in the kitchen as well as a lrage cocroach) Love to you all. Keep in touch. I´ll post pictures soon!!

Friday, June 28, 2013

Lima, Peru

Hello!! Phewf! What. A. Week. Yesterday was our last day in Utah and in the United States. We left at 8:30 in the morning for Atlanta, Georgia.. what a long plane ride!! So tired yet not able to fall asleep. Once in Georgia we waited about three hours to fly to Lima, Peru. Afterwards on the plane we got to Lima after another five hours. Going through customs and retrieving bags took about an hour then we boarded the buses and took an hour to get to the hotel. At three o'clock in the morning we arrived at the hotel very tired. We slept for four hours and then left in the morning for a meeting. While the adults were in the meeting all their kids went to another mission presidents house who was preparing to return home. More friends were made and we all had a wonderful time, playing games in the park, jumping on the trampoline, eating, talking and helping out the mission president's wife. Tomorrow we will leave to Ecuador at six thirty in the morning and arrive at about one. Tomorrow will officially begin our mission!! It's been so crazy but.. ha that was only the beginning! I have been pretty good.. sad off and on but more excited than I was.. I know heavenly father has been helping me because usually if something like this happened where I was parted from people I would just be depressed all the time but I haven't been I've actually been okay. My parents are doing great too and getting excited. I'm so proud of them. They have been dealing well with everything and have been trying to make the best of things. I still can't say I'm absolutely happy about this but I know I will be eventually. Heavenly father is helping me and for that I am grateful.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

1 Day

Well here it is! My last post before I head off on my adventure to Ecuador. While I am very scared I am also very excited. I am so excited to get out there and serve the lord weather it be by serving in an orphanage, helping out a friend or missionary, going on splits or being a good example. I am sad to be leaving everyone, but I know that it will bless the lives of me, my family and my friends. I love you all and hope the best for every one of you. I know this is what heavenly father wants me to do and I know he loves me. While I feel like this is the end of alot of things I feel like it is also the start of many things, the beginning of a 'new' life and a new me. I hope that I will learn to deal positively with the negative things I am given, with every trial I am given I hope that I can grow from it and become better and better with each day. Leaving in itself is a trial but I know there is more to come. I hope I can learn to be strong and never again feel that I am alone. There was a time in my life that was very dark and alone. A time where I felt no one cared and no one was there for me. How wrong was I?!? I have had depression since about fifth grade and I had become a very negative person. I never felt valued or of worth and I wondered if heavenly father was even listening to my few prayers or if he was even there. I would like to give you my testimony now, that I now KNOW that he was there and that all the while he was trying to reach out to me. With every situation I handled badly he wanted to comfort me but I had distanced myself. Since then I have grown to be better. A resent trip to EFY did a lot for me. It grew my testimony and I have been able to feel heavenly father's love with me at all times. I hope with this challenge that I will be able to maintain a spirit within me and be able to grow from whatever is thrown at me. Failure and rejection have scared me badly in the past but I am choosing to start dealing with things more positively on not doing it alone like I have previously done. Please keep us in your prayers and in your hearts and please keep in touch. The next you will hear from me is in Ecuador.. so until then, thank-you and au revoir!

Friday, June 21, 2013

5 Days

Today was an incredible day. I repeat, incredible. We woke up at about 8:30 this morning and got ready then we headed off to the church office building were my dad would be set apart as a mission president for the Guayaquil west, Ecuador Mission. We drove down to the underground parking and went inside the cozy lobby. There we were received by Elder Christopherson's secretary (who was very nice)  and taken to an elevator which let us off at the first floor. We were directed to some glass with gold doors and ushered inside another door to a conference room. Once all of us (Me, Josh, Mom, Dad, Jorge, Monica, Aaron, Cameron, Megan, Ryan, Tyler, Grandma, Anne, Tia Dominga, and Tio Omar) were inside in walked Elder Christopherson. Never before have I felt the spirit so strongly. His presence brought with him a warmth and a kind air. Kind he most definitely was, as he shook all of our hands, (which I have to say was pretty cool)  said hello, and introduced himself. As we were all seated in the chairs around the large table my mom and dad first said a few things to us all after which commenced the setting apart done by Elder Christopherson. Next my mom received a blessing and was set apart as a full time missionary and companion to my dad, which I know touched her very much, things were said and blessed in both  that we as a whole family had been praying and fasting about. Next, I received the great privilege of receiving a blessing. As all the preithood holders who had come stood around me with there hands on my head I couldn't help but cry a little. Just previously the day before I had been speaking with my aunt about some of the things that were troubling, and to my great appreciation, he addressed ALL of them and more. I could not have asked for a better blessing than the one I received today, just by being in the presence of one of god's chosen apostles, but heavenly father blessed me with more, just as I'm sure he does for each one of us everyday. I have a new found faith and confidence that this is the lords will and that I will be alright. Although worry still lingers a bit, I am not frightened, neither need I be.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

1 1/2 Weeks

So.. one and a half weeks now and I'm really starting to feel it. It was feeling unreal until now and now it's right on my door step. My dad is being set apart on Saturday by Elder Christopherson and my mom, brother and I are receiving blessings and my parents will also be leaving to the MTC. I am starting to worry even more and I'm getting pretty scared. I went to EFY last week and one of my friends that I made there told me something that really helped me, he said " Sarah I'm sure the lord is sending you and your family down there for a reason and to be a blessing to others just like you've been to me and the rest of our company." I hadn't thought of something up until then.. what if I'm going to make an impact on someone else's life? What if I befriend someone and completely turn their life around? This kind of hit me hard because even though I'm not serving a literal full time mission.. technically I am. So.. I've decided that when I start feeling sad I should start thinking about the people I'm going to help instead and think about the difference I'll make. I'm going to miss everybody so much and already am but I know I'll see you all again someday, weather it be in person or weather it be at the feet of god, I feel reassured that I will. Please keep in touch. I'll write next week before we leave on Thursday. Only one and a half weeks left in Utah, one and a half weeks until starting over again with heavenly father. 

Sunday, June 2, 2013

4 Weeks

So today is our third to last Sunday. The time has gone by so quickly, too quickly you might say. I find it hard to believe it is only four weeks until we leave, the movers are coming to take everything tomorrow and we will be living off of suit cases the next little while. Today our family got together every child and grandchild of my parents, and we had a testimony meeting. Never have I felt the spirit so strongly. Though tears were shed and sadness was lingering the overall warm feeling overcame it all. I am going to miss my family and friends so much, I cant think about it in order not to cry, this being the last week of school and all. I just cant help but think there are some people I might never see again but I feel so strongly and sure that we are meant to go on this mission. I know Heavenly father knows what he is doing and has our best interest in mind.. he knows and can see the big picture even when we cant. I know that this has been already and will be one of the greatest trials for our family but at the same time one of the greatest blessings. I have really come to understand two things: One being that you never know what you have until its gone. And two, trials are really blessings in disguise. This has been such a hard week for me.. everything I see weather it be the mountains or a friend or a family member, even my school, everything just makes me want to cry. While I know this is hard I know that this too shall pass and as everyone keeps telling me "It can only get better." I truly hope so. In  this area I really have no other choice than to put my trust in the lord, because only he knows what will happen and what our needs are. If its not too much to ask, please keep my family in your prayers. It is the prayers we need the most. "God is making things happen for you. Even when you don't see it, even when you can't feel it, even if it's not evident.. God is working on your prayers."