Monday, April 15, 2013

no email? just kiddin

Hey Family!!
When I first got on and saw there was no email from y'all my first reaction was to write back to ya "what? no email.  guess you won't hear back from me either. haha just kidding."  But then I waited around a bit and saw your email come in so all is good.  Don't worry I still love you guys and I will always email y'all.  :) even when you don't have time to email me...*mm Emily mm* just kidding but seriously I want to hear from you. 
Thank you for calling the office after Grandpa passed away and letting President know.  He called me friday afternoon to inform me of grandpa's passing.  He just said that he had some bad news and that grandpa had passed away last night.  Asked me if we were very close, I said yes.  Asked if I would be okay, I said yes.  And yeah.  And he actually gave me permission to call home to find out funeral arrangment and what not but I chose not to because I don't think it would've made the situation any easier.  Plus there's less than a month until mothers day!  I was gonna call Big Grandma but I ended up not because I didn't know what to say to her at the time and I know that next week will be harder on her.  Let her know though that I'm praying for her and think about her often.  I said a special prayer after we stopped driving for grandma and the spirit was really strong.  So instead of calling I wanted to write to her.  Here's some things I wanted to share with her that I was thinking about the rest of the day so if you could let her know that would be great.  
When someone knows they're about to die, the last words they always say are cherished and remembered, right?  Knowing this, in Enos 1:27 it says, "And I soon go to the place of my rest, which is with my Redeemer; for I know that in him I shall rest.  And I rejoice in the day when my mortal shall put on immortality, and shall stand before him; then shall I see his face with pleasure, and he will say unto me: Come unto me, ye blessed, there is a place prepared for you in the mansions of my Father.  Amen."  These were the last words Enos wrote before he passed away and I love them.  Heavenly Father has a place prepared for each of us and he's waiting for us to come back home.  It's no easy task losing a loved one, but it makes the loss a little bit easier knowing that He is waiting for us and is there ready to greet us.  And then in Alma 40:11-12 "Now, concerning the state of the soul between death and the resurrection-Behold, it has been made known unto me by an angel, that the spirits of all men, as soon as they are departed from this mortal body, yea, the spirits of all men, whether they be good or evil, are taken home to that God who gave them life.  And then shall it come to pass, that the spirits of thos who are righteous are received into a state of happiness, which is called paradise, a state of rest, a state of peace, where they shall rest from all their troubles and from all care, and sorrow." I know that death isn't the end, it's the beginning.  At this time Grandpa is really beginning his life and he's free from everything on the earth.  Know that you are never alone and that you've been promised angels to bear and lift you up in hard times.  And I can assure you that Grandpa is one of those angels surrounding you.  I love you Grandma.          
Sarah you're leaving back to Rexburg this Saturday!!!  Boy does time sure fly or what.  Haha and you'll be surprised to know this but I already knew Amanda was gonna be your roommate.  She wrote me a letter earlier this week and told me you were one of her roommates.  Now she gets to live with me once and you...lucky duck.  Be sure to tell Dee and Amanda I say hi and love them.  Are you excited for the new semester to begin?  Oh hey and take my fan for those hot summer days.  I feel like all the missionaries here go to BYU-I so just be warned if some random person comes up to you saying hi they could've possible served in Louisiana.  I miss you Sarah and don't worry about writing back as soon as you can.  I'm sure things are crazy with the start of school and moving.  
Haha Dad, my emails are all so positive because I'm serving in one of the best wards in Louisiana!  I mean I've never been anywhere else, but I hear stories of bishops down in other cities hating the missionaries because they think they aren't doing any work when really they are.  So basically no ward support which makes missionary work quite impossible.  But we've got the best ward around.  Our stake president likes to call our ward united nations because there's so many different cultures and races.  It's great.  :) plus it helps when you've got an awesome companion and district.  I did receive the GPS on Friday.  Thank you so so so so much!!!  Seriously it's a life saver and without it we would be so lost.  Well, actually it's possible to go without it, but it makes us use our time more effectively and as you know, time is the most precious thing we have.  Oh and just fyi if you're ever thinking of buying another GPS I would definitely recommend Garmin, it's way easier to use.    
Mom maybe since you guys will basically be empty nesters once again you and Dad could start volunteering at the temple or something.  Who knows though...just an idea.  :)  I hope all is going well at work and home though.  Oh and hey before I forget.  If you have some extra time would you mind finding me some more shirts to send to me?  We really have no time to go shopping here and I would love more colorful pattern shirts that are lose and don't show all your sweat ask Emily about colors that don't show your sweat as much (summers coming) if you don't know what I'm talking about.  You can take some money out of my account to buy them with.  No rush though...maybe just think of it as an early birthday present.  Thanks mom, you're the greatest and I love you dearly.  :)
Here's just a couple miracles to start off this week:
numero uno: Alexis is officially progressing!!!  I'm not sure exactly what I told y'all before about her so I'll just say it all now.  Her grandparents are active members in our ward and her mom is less active.  She's eleveen right now and has been coming to church basically on and off her whole life.  I'm not entirely sure why she wasn't baptized when she turned eight.  Anyways, the yw president asked us to teach her and it took us about a month to get in contact with her.  I randomly called her to come to the yw broadcast and she came!  Sister LaPorte asked her if she wants to be baptized and she said yes so we've been teaching her ever since.  Basically she already knows everything so it's awesome teaching her and she's even been keeping all the commitments.  She stayed for all three hours of church yesterday despite the fact that her mom left after first hour.  And she's so excited to get baptized.  So if things keep progressing as they are her baptism date is set for April 27th.  We're so excited for her and her family!!  Even her mom is so supportive and listens in on all the lessons.  The hardest part is getting her to come to activities and church because they live out in the boonies and yeah.  
numero dos:  We went over and visited Barney Cutchen this past week and seriously he's the sweetest guy!  Be sure to tell Sister Crowley that I stopped by and that he talks very highly of her.  :)  While there he even let us come to lunch with him and it was delicious.  According to him he's been attending 2nd ward and working with the bishop on preparing to enter the temple.  He recently moved into our ward though so we're gonna try and get him to come to church sometime soon.  Everyone down here has word of wisdom problems so he said he's trying to quit drinking coffee but it's hard, also he needs to stop drinking tea.  But he's a great guy and so sweet with great stories.  
numero tres:  we survived saturday after riding our bikes literally the whole day.  We were running low on miles for the month so we decided to make it a bike day.  (the last one we had was with Sister Calderwood and that only lasted probably 30 mins) but Sister LaPorte was super excited to go biking so we planned out who we should see and planned different roads to avoid.  Anyways, we were literally on our bikes for four or five hours straight because no one was home.  We went way far away from home too and our legs and were burning we seriously couldn't go any further.  Haha and to make it worse we were fasting.  Eventually we decided to break our fast and eat dinner and we called the tiger bend sisters to come pick us up.  It was quite the experience to say the least.  But hey at least it makes us way more thankful for our cars.  And we randomly asked a family where the closest gas station was to use the bathroom and they just let us into their home.  We talked about what missionaries do and this week we're gonna take them by a thank you card and a Book of Mormon.  
So to say the least it's been an interesting week but a very exciting one.   What crazy new stories have there been from back home?  I miss y'all but I love ya so much more!!
Love Always, Sister Schmutz
p.s. here's a great lesson I've learn...never cancel any plans with the missionaries.  It's seriously the worst news we can receive because it messes everything up.  Also invite them over for dinner on Sunday's.  I don't know why but Sundays are always the hardest days and members never invite us over for dinner then.  Y'all are the best!! 

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