Monday, January 30, 2017

the meal with 200+ carbohydrates

Hello all!
So this email should be a little bit shorter since I just emailed on thursday. but there are still things to share!
Redlands temple is small but very beautiful! there are lots of windows inside and with all the natural lighting it so very very beautiful! 
​At the Redlands temple. It was so sunny behind the temple that we look super dark (not as in like tan dark but you know)

This week we taught a new investigator, Antonio. He is super cool and wants to learn more and even came for part of church this week! He could only stay for like the first 40 minutes because he had to go to work (he works at Los Altos- one of our favorite mexican restaurants here and they have the BEST tortillas!). We will see him tomorrow but the sad news is he is moving to mexico... on wednesday... so we'll get his info and send it to the missionaries in mexico.
A lot of this week was trying to visit less active families and pausing investigators because they aren't keeping their commitments. One of our investigator families were in the hospital this week and so we haven't seen them at all for awhile. 
mountainy view from seeking last week. literally around the corner was like the edge of this cliff thing and all you could see was the mountains. 

We visited with Jacqueline this week! She found her little kid picture book of mormon finally! yay! It is awesome to see how much she remembers and she just loves answering our questions and basically teaching the lesson for us!
Update on Carlos: We visited with him some more and he is doing pretty well! He really just loves to feel the Spirit! He texted us the other day and just told us his life is changing for the better- all in just 1 week! 1 week ago today we found him outside his house. Crazy! Sadly he didn't come to church. He texted us saying he'd be late and then I guess it was late enough that he couldn't come at all. We are seeing him tonight anyways for a family home evening with a member family. 
Mom & Dad- I think I found the latino version of you two. He is the 1st counselor in the obispado (don't remember how to spell it in english). I don't know them well but yesterday it just hit me. Pretty similar to you two, but latino!
So dinner I mentioned in the subject line. We didn't have anyone signed up for dinner saturday so we called Hna Conchita who you can rely on for a good, spicy Mexican meal. She usually feeds us a decent amount, but nothing like saturday! We started w/ mexican noodle soup and tortillas. And a mango juice throughout the meal. Then we had a GIANT plate w/ a 1/3 being mexican rice, 1/3 of a potatoe casserole, and 1/3 being turkey. Ended with sweet potatoes in a caramel sauce. It was decently spicy so you just keep drinking more and more of this sweet, sugary mango juice. Either way I'm not sure how many carbohydrates it really was, but over 200. Hna Conchita has now won the award for carbiest meal I have eaten on my mission. I'm pretty sure my stomach grew like 4 inches from entering and leaving her house. Man- it was a lot of food!
I'll go and send the pictures I have from the past 2 weeks.
​Hna Chandler and I #blurry

Till next week (tuesday b/c we have interviews on monday).

Hermana Schooff

Thursday, January 26, 2017

a crazy 1.5 weeks worth of an email

Hi everyone!
So yes it is Thursday. We have pday today because we get to go to the temple! yay! So this email will be especially long and confusing because it is a week and a half's worth of stories, plus new transfer/companion, and a lot of things to talk about! So excuse the mess and here we go! (it'll be worth the read, I promise!)
I will try to do this in chronological order as best as I can. Last Monday I had to say goodbye to Hna Jensen which was so sad! But now she is at home and doing fine! My new companion is Hna Chandler. She is from jonesburrow (something like that) arkansas. She is the oldest of 8!! First kid on a mission. She went to arkansas state studying dietetics and is a runner for the university! she's been out for about 7 months. and she loves fuzzy socks! but who doesn't?
I got a grand inheritance from my mission mom (hna Jensen). Included is food stroage, lots of office supplies, more food, hand sanitizers, etc. It was quite the grand inheritance.
So the beginning of the transfer was a little bit hard. Saying goodbye to Hna Jensen was sad and it was my first time changing companions completely (meaning not being in a trio and having one companion remain with you). I wasn't worried about taking over the area, but still the change of being with a stranger who does things a little differently was a little hard at first. No worries- all is very well now!
Even though last week started off a little rough for me, it quickly improved. I'm not really sure what happened, but every since like a week ago I have been feeling much more content being a missionary. Obviously I've been enjoying being a missionary these whole past 4 months, but even more so now. I come each day and think, wow being a missionary is a super great thing. 
Without being in training, we have a lot more time to work! It feels like we have at least like 2 extra hours each day to work, but I'm not sure how that really works out! Some days we've been able to have multiple lessons in before dinner/seeking time which is amazing!
Last week we were able to do my first church tour with part of the Hernandez family (the mother and daughter). Neither of us had done a church tour before, so it was a new experience, but a great one! As soon as walking into the church, Hna Hernandez kept talking about how she knew they needed to come to church. She enjoyed learning more about the different classes/organizations for her and her kids. Obviously the best part was going in to the chapel and having our lesson of keeping the sabbath day holy in there. Everyone could feel the spirit and Hermana Hernandez knew they have to make this a priority. She kept saying yes we need to come and I need to talk to my husband about changing his work schedule so he can have sunday's off. It was a super cool experience! Sadly, they did not come to church because it was the daughter's birthday. but we are working on them for this coming sunday!
On night we had a member with us and we were trying to see if this potential was home. The address is in the little old folk's circle. We get out, and the potential's neighbor was standing outside (remember it's dark). So our Hna says "buenas noches" and this lady just stares at us. Anyways we go up to the house and the potential isn't home. We walk back to the car and the lady outside asks who we are and what we're doing. We explain. She then says, "well this is a senior community and we don't like it when  people drive in here at night and run around doing things! So I suggest that you don't go running around here at night!" it was funnier/weirder in her exact words, but I will say we were not running around this little old folks neighborhood. 
It was super rainy this past week! and cold!! but we survived. Everyone- I am such a wimp. It'll be 50 degrees and I was on a coat. I am such a wimp! But it is really cold haha. The only bad thing is when we have to tract in the rain, your planner gets wet and all the pages messed us. And it is a brand new planner! :(
Let's talk about Sunday! Crazy day that was!
First rain. We heard it was suppposed to rain a ton on sunday. We got out of sacrament meeting (so it's like 2pm) and got a text saying President wants everyone to be in their apartments in 15 minutes b/c of flash flooding. Unless you are currently in church. Then finish church, go to dinner, and go home until further notice. So that's what we did. Yes the roads were partially flooded (California has like no sewers basically), but not like a ton more than I've seen before. So not much got done Sunday.
But let's talk about the other part of sunday! The crazy part! Now begins the story of Carlos: (i'll tell it how we learned it because you can understand our confusion better)
Sacrament meeting ends. Our elders come up to us saying there is a man who lives in our area sitting by them who is talking about baptism. We go up to him to introduce ourselves. He says I've talked to him in the street before. I didn't recognize him at all (we talk to like 100 people in the streets every week). We tell him we can talk more in the next class, and he goes out to tell his ride he'll be staying longer. We wait for him to come back. He doesn't. All we know is his name is Carlos and his street name. Find out later he talked to an english bishop and he said something about wanting to be baptized so they took him to our ward's sacrament meeting. 
So! The next day we determine we need to find carlos. We drive to the street he lives on, not huge but not small. I start to remember seeking there before w/ some of the english sisters. Then I remember talking to him and vaguely what the house looks like. So we're driving slowly down the street trying to reach back into my memory (we probably looked creepy driving that slow). There's multiple houses that I think might of been it. We're thinking we might just have to try these houses and see if a Carlos lives there. Keep driving and I remember the house, and Carlos is out there working on his car!!!! We talk to him, get his information and an appointment for the next day. He kept asking when can he go to church next? multiple times a week? Anyways we set an appointment for the next day at the church. 
Next day at the church. In walks Carlos w/ a woman who turns out to be his cousin who is a member of one of the english wards. Apparently on sunday she said, hey lets go to church and they did. I guess he talked to her bishop and got into our sacrament meeting. We start by doing a mini church tour. First question he asks- I want my children to be baptized. THey live in san diego. Can we do that? Second question later on- what to i have to do to be baptized? Wow. All this before the first lesson, even a first prayer!!! So we have the lesson. Spirit was so there folks. So there. Put on date for baptism on Feb. 26. Wants to read the scriptures. Wants to pray. REALLY want to go to church again. He said he grew up catholic but never felt anything there. But he feels so good in this church, especially sunday. He said he believed everything. And he wanted to meet again the next day, so we did. When he said the closing prayer, he asked for help to find work. (we didn't know he was unemployed). 
So yesterday was our second lesson with him, again at the church. We asked him what he read in the book of mormon, and wow his face just lit up folks. He only read the introduction, but loved it. We teach him more about the book of mormon and keeping the sabbath day holy. At one point he tells us, last night I prayed to God to help me find work. This morning I got a job. It's not a job in his field (he lays tile, the job is construction), but he got a job. (and he has sundays off thank goodness). Let me just say this man is so ready! So prepared! I am just so lucky we found him- that he came to church which started it all, that we could recognize his house and find him again, that he feels the spirit so strongly and wants to feel so often, that his prayer got answered so quickly. It is super cool! I can't wait to update y'all more next week!
Thus ends the story of Carlos. For now.
More about yesterday. Crazy one again but for different reasons. We started off having a worldwide broadcast for missionaries. First part was training over the doctrine of christ and our purpose as missionaries! all very good stuff! The next was announcing various changes. (get ready to freak our RMs). It appears they haven't put it out on lds.org yet, but I'm sure they soon will. They are changing the key indicators to only 4: baptized/confirmed, investigators on date, investigators who went to church, and new investigators. This is to help us focus more on the really MOST important parts of missionary work. The other change is to the missionary schedule. Each mission president can customize the schedule according to the area. Like how in some parts of the world missionaries should really be inside as soon as it gets dark b/c it is so dangerous. But in other areas it is best to work at night when people are home from work. (I didn't get to write down all the changes so this is just what I remember). Lunch is now only 30 mins. We do daily planning each morning. On pday we only do personal study, so we have more time on pdays (yayyyyyyyy). the 12 week training program is only 30 mins. each day. Companion and language study can be between 30-60 minutes each day, depending on the needs of the missionaries and the daily schedules. As missionaries, we can decide where to put these things in each day. So right now we do all our studies in the morning and leave after lunch to work all day. But we could maybe do like 1 hour of study, go out and work, maybe finish studies in the afternoon, etc. just depending in our schedule for the day. Also we can go to bed between 9:30 and 10:30. So we don't have to wait til 10:30 anymore! yay more sleep! I'm not sure how this will effect us in riverside. In like 2 weeks President will announce in meetings what our schedule will look like. But for now everything is normal.
Also yesterday. We were leaving the church from the broadcast and Hna Chandler went to close the gate to the parking lot. Well the gate like attacked her, and while walking back to the car, she realized her foot is bleeding- and not like a little bit. So we rush back into the church, try and clean up the wound to check it out. Not it's not like spewing blood, but it's not like a little scratch either. So we call the nurse, put pressure on it forever, etc. Go home to put antibiotic on it and the nurse/sister mullen tell us to go up to riverside to go to urgent care (because health care in hemet is always a little sketch). So we drive up to riverside for like 45 minutes (it's not so urgent when you have to drive all the way over there) to get her checked out. by this time the bleeding has calmed down but still not stopped fully. They glue her up w/ skin glue and stick on stitches, wrap her up in an ace wrap and send her off. 
Anyways that has been our week more or less. (make that less). Things are going well here in Hemet! It's sunny now, a little chilly, but we're staying busy! Hopefully this coming week will be a little less crazy.
On Monday (yay a normal pday) I'll probably send a shorter email and pictures. Because now we have to leave to meet the member who is driving us to the temple. Yay! 
Thank you for your diligence in reading this long and crazy email. I hope it was worth it and maybe you got a laugh out of it somewhere.
Have a great.... 4ish days!
Hermana Schooff

Monday, January 16, 2017

#trained

Hola! Como estan?

These computers at the family history center are really kind of struggling today w/ speed, so we'll see what we can do!
I had my first real enchiladas this week! Real enchiladas: you dip the tortilla in some sort of sauce and fry it a little bit. Then add whatever you want in the middle and add your toppings. There really wasn't much sauce or spiciness in these ones, but they were still real enchiladas.
​from the rain this week!

It RAINED A TON this week! Which made it hard to seek w/ faith. Hna Jensen went to the temple thursday w/ the other outgoing missionaries, so I went w/ an hermana in the ward and she came out and we tracted (we tract instead of seeking when it is raining b/c nobody is just outside in the streets). We got soaked! Luckily like our last two houses we tried both let us in and share a little message (only can go in if they speak spanish). One even let us use an umbrella! So we took this hermana's car but for some unknown reason to me, she left the windows partially down. So when we came back from seeking the inside part of the car doors were wet. And she kept them open while driving. In california there are tons of deep dips in the roads for some unknown reason. So the dips becomes rivers in the rain. So then either we were splashing the water in the dips or other cars were splashing us. 
I think I talked about this last week, but the Hemet theatre where we give service showed "meet the mormons" on thursday and friday. Our zone got to help out thursday. Not many people came, but it was still fun to watch the movie in a real theatre. 
Transfers!!! I am staying here in Hemet (obviously). Today Hna Jensen goes to Riverside for dinner and the outgoing testimony meeting. Tomorrow morning she'll fly home to wyoming! sad! But my new companion is Hna Chandler! We don't know much about her yet, but she's been about for about 6 months now! Something like that. More details obviously coming next week. Oh and she is not an STL so yay for RPM (regular prosolyting missionary)
​Hna Jensen's last time seeking w/ faith. 18 months worth of seeking- DONE!

This lovely green stuff behind us is called Hemet grass (well at least so the missionaries call it). It is ALL OVER THE PLACE since Hemet was designed to be an old folks town. So they literally paint rocks green so the yards kind of look like grass, but the old people don't have to take care of their grass. Also b/c of the lack of water. Tada! hemet grass! now you know!

Hna Jensen's mom sent us wyoming shirts for christmas. So last pday we finally got to wear them and match!

A lot of people from our zone are leaving so it'll be almost a whole new zone! wow!
So yes with the new transfer I am officially done w/ training! Wow I'm a real missionary! It'll be weird having only 3 hours of studies and not 4 and not having an STL companion. Basically we have a bunch more time now which should be good! 
Not much news in our area this week. We taught this man Luis a couple more times. President Mullen has this new, really specific but cool way of teaching the church commitment. So we taught it that way for the first time to him. He said he'd come, but in the end he didn't. We are seeing him tomorrow and we can see what happened. 
That's all I can really think of. Usually I read through my journal to remember what I should say, but last night and this morning we were mostly just helping Hna Jensen pack up. Haha she didn't want to pack until sunday night! 
Until next week then!

Hermana Schooff

thanks mom for the chia pet. growing strong!
We were out seeking this week and at the end of this neighborhood was this dirt road that connected to the next main road. Well as you can see there was all kinds of debris and unwanted furniture just all around. Pretty sketch. We used it as a photo op and went on our way




Monday, January 9, 2017

"How do you feel walkin' in the hood?"

Hola!
So to explain the subject line: We were seeking in faith in just a neighborhood along our way to our dinner appointment. Was not the nicest area of Hemet. But we talked to this one guy and then as we were leaving he asked, "how do you feel walkin' in the hood?" Hna Jensen just explained that we only walk in the light so we feel fine. Then just like further down the street we were talking to this other guy and we explained to him that we work w/ the spanish congregation. He asked if we like chose to learn spanish, so we explained we were assigned. Then he says, "wow they chose two of the whitest people for that!" ........ I mean he's not far off, but.......
My spanish is improving! So that's good! We had dinner w/ the Cuevas family this week and after the lesson they were both just like, "I remember when you first got here! but now your spanish is really improving!" so yeah that was nice haha
This week was kind of crazy. I had like a 2 day exchange, but I wasn't really on exchanges. Thursday Hna Jensen went to MLC (a meeting for mission leadership), so she and the other stl in our zone left and I went w/ the companions of the other stl. BUT then the next day the STL's had really exchanges w/ the sisters who serve up in the mountains. So Hna Jensen was in our area, so then I went with the same other companions. That was my first time not being in my area so that was weird! 
We didn't have a lot of time to do seeking w/ faith earlier in the week so we did a lot saturday. We taught this guy, Jose, who told us he is perfect and doesn't sin. And because he is perfect he would come to church. Well folks, I am here to tell you that nobody is perfect except Christ. And proof of that is that Jose didn't come to church. He was a weird guy. It is hard for me to understand people's personalities when I'm focusing on translating what they're saying haha. 
I don't remember if I talked about this the last couple of weeks, but apparently all U.S. missions will be using Ipads by the end of the year. So now there's a ton of rumors and speculation about when we will get them. I'm still debating whether or not I'd want one. But if we get them near the end of this year, they'll just give me one to use on my mission and I'll just return it once I leave. Otherwise I'll have to buy one, but have it at home too.
Last night be picked a new investigator named Luis. Sis. Jensen found him while seeking w/ faith during exchanges. Anyways he seems pretty elect! We did not have much time to teach him at all, so we literally just taught the first part of lesson 1, god is our loving heavenly father. Taught, shared a scripture, invited him to be baptized and he accepted and we put him on date for feb. 19! He seems pretty prepared and willing to learn more! He wanted to come to church but couldn't but now he really wants to come next week. 
This week is my last week in training and my last week w/ Hna Jensen (and her last week all together). It'll be super weird w/o her! But this should be a pretty busy week! ZDM, President/Sister Mullen are coming out w/ us Wed. night for 2 lessons (President does that every other transfer for leadership), thursday Hna Jensen gets to go to the temple w/ the outgoing missionaries so I need to find someone to be w/ me. Also! We give service at the "hemet theatre" here. It's an old, kind of gross movie theatre type place and we usually just help clean up. But they are showing "meet the mormons" for free this thursday and we get to go and help out! That'll be cool! 
Saturday night we get transfer calls! So 99% chance I'm staying here, but I'll get to figure out who my new companion is! Stay tuned!
Hermana Schooff

Tuesday, January 3, 2017

a year's worth of cleaning and more (Jan. 3, 2017)

Hola!

Get ready for another scattered email! We are still having to use public libraries so not sure how much time I will have on here... yay!
Last week I had my first REAL tamales! I had a sweet strawberry one in like my first week here, but we had real like meal ones last week. And they were Guatemalan! Yum!
We had exchanges this week. I stayed in my area w/ the other STL (Sister Nai- she is from Australia!) Anyways, it seems like every time we have an English Sister in our area we always end up eating w/ this one hermana who cooks REALLY spicy! I mean I really like it, but it was really spicy. Haha poor english sisters...
We got a referral from some ENglish sisters for this romanian family. Turns out I think the wife's first language is romanian, but his first language is Spanish, and they both know little english. So we're teaching them in Spanish.
We had multizones this past week! Really good, but not as exciting in this area b/c we are always w/ the other zone because they're in our stake. 
We picked up a new family this week, the Hernandez family. Wife, husband, 11 yr old girl, 2.5 yr old boy. The wife says she was baptized mormon at age 7.... But the dad is on date for the 12th of February. In our second lesson they got super excited for coming to church and reading the book of mormon! so we're excited to see what happens
New Years Eve our 2 zones just got together and played sports games and like board games. Brian will be happy to know one elder had the game "poo". 
Sacrament meeting on sunday was different but cool! Our bishop likes once every year to have a sacrament meeting of just singing hymns. So members could go up and announce a hymn they would like to sing and why. It was pretty cool!
Also on Sunday Jacqueline was confirmed! Yay! They walked in just in time for her to get confirmed, but it happened and she is doing well! She lost her kids book of mormon the other week but has now found it and is super excited to keep reading! And she's remembering so much from out lessons!
We have church at 1pm now. It's weird doing our studies all morning, going to church. Then basically you have dinner and only like 2.5 hours to do work. no.....
Yesterday all missionaries had to do a deeply, twice yearly cleaning of our apartment. Keep in mind, our apartment had like nobody living in it until like August. So yes we found lots of gross, dead bugs and a tiny, dead, baby mouse. Sister Jensen was using the vacuum hose to clean the kitchen cupboards and thought the mouse was just dust. Nope. And the mouse got stuck in the hose. Lovely times. 
This week is week 11 in the training program- which is the week where the trainee (me) takes the lead in everything! ah! it'll be interesting folks! Stay tuned til next week!
Last night we were trying to contact a referral, but he didn't live in the address we had. But the guy still let us come in and teach his 3 teenagers. So we teach all of lesson 1, but then the dad is like, no I don't want to read the book of mormon. And also he wouldn't let us make a return appointment. He wasn't rude about it, but still was the first time I had somebody be like, no don't come back. They were pretty catholic, but they actually knew a lot about catholicism unlike a lot of people we meet. So it was cool having them explain their baptism/confirmation process. 
We are hoping to get in with a lot more people now that the holidays are over.
Well that's all I can think of for now! Hopefully I'll take pictures this week, but like always it should be pretty busy and crazy!

Hermana Schooff