Monday, January 13, 2014

family first

Hey Family!
How are y'all doing?  Thank you for always writing, Mom and Dad!  Hey and before I forget to answer your question...I've been wearing my retainer every night so we'll see what ends up happening there.  So nah, I don't think I need to go see the orthodontist down here, I'll just wait until I get home.  Thank you for trying to figure everything out! 
Dude, Emily went to mission prep last night!  That's so exciting!  Not that my opinion counts or anything...but a mission is definitely worth it.  So think about it.  :)  it's amazing to say the least.  Who's teaching it by the way? 
And Andrew's flying down to New Zealand this weekend.  Goodness you're just traveling all over the world lately.  Lucky you!
Hey Sarah while I was thinking about it with my deferment from school it said I have to do something a couple months before I get back but I can't remember what that is.  So could ya go on and try to figure that out when you got a little time?  Thank you so much!
Oh yeah, did y'all hear?  They called the new mission president that will be coming in July.  This is what President Wall sent to us: 
"Some of you may have already heard from friends or family that the Church News listed the newly called mission presidents and their wives over the weekend. For those of our missionaries that have not heard, Reed Hansen and his wife Mary Anne, from Boise, Idaho have been called to preside over the Louisiana Baton Rouge Mission, beginning July 1st of this year. Sister Wall and I had the pleasure of talking with soon-to-be-President Hansen and sharing with him the great blessing he will have in serving with each of you. We could tell from our conversation that he has a wonderful spirit and desire to love and work along side you.

We thought you might like to read a comment that was on the web site where the announcement was listed.

"Baton Rouge, Louisiana Mission: You are about to get outstanding leadership in Reed & Mary Anne Hansen. Reed was our Bishop in Boise a few years ago. He and his wife are such loving, kind, and wonderful leaders and friends. We were so excited when we heard about this call. Mary Anne is from the South and will feel right at home in their new setting. Lucky missionaries; lucky people in Louisiana mission!""
Sounds pretty exciting huh?  Man it's a bummer though that I'll have one transfer left after President and Sister Wall go home.  I'm gonna miss them so much!

To describe this week in one word I would say freezing!  Mom you were right when you said you got these feelings that I was gonna need warm clothes.  For a couple days it got down in the 20s and the high was in the 30s but with the humidity the cold just goes straight to your bones.  Luckily the weather's getting back up there and it's in the 60s again. 
There's been so many tender mercies from this past week I don't even know where to begin!  
I guess the first was monday evening.  We were trying to find this less active that someone asked us to see.  Well this lady answered the door and we asked if so and so lived there and she said no...she moved away.  But it was freezing cold out so she quickly invited us in!  Well, the less active we were looking for is her daughter.  But long story short Blanche, the lady that let us in is super nice!  Her daughter and her husband are members of the church so when she visits them she goes to church with them.  Her son in law taught her all about the church but she's one of those born catholic die catholic people.  We asked her if it'd be alright if we came and taught her again even though she doesn't want to convert and she said yes.  So we're going over tomorrow!  She's just a super sweet lady...offered for us to come over whenever we wanted to and she said she'd do anything..take care of us when we're sick, feed us, everything.  She's basically like our mission grandma.  Man, she's just the sweetest and I'm super excited!
Another little tender mercy was we got to rake Bettie's leaves with all the Elders.  And let's just say she's got a billion leaves, but for real.  I think it would've taken probably around a hundred bags to bag them up so we just piled them up on the road and burned them.  It was a lot of fun and she was super grateful.  Now as soon as it quits raining we're gonna have to go back over and finish up the rest of her yard. 
Our investigator Ama came to church yesterday too!  The sisters have been teaching her since around June but she's a born and raised catholic that doesn't want to change.  She's pregnant and due in march though and I think it'll just be a matter of time before she joins the church.  She's from Venezula and is the sweetest lady.  Everyone loves her!
This week is gonna be a crazy one!  Elder Perkins of the Seventy is coming down for a mission tour so on thursday we got to go to zone conference in Baton Rouge.  I think it's gonna be more like a mission reunion because the whole mission will be there except the New Orleans and New Orleans Spanish Zones.  I'm excited to hear what he'll instruct us on.  And then Saturday and Sunday we have stake conference down in New Orleans and he'll be speaking down there as well.  So we'll be getting to drive all over down here this week. 
Transfers are next week too.  I kinda feel like I'm leaving but not sure...what do y'all think? 
A scripture I wanted to share with y'all this week is 1 John 4:16 "God is love; and he that dwelleth in love dwelleth in God, and God in him."  That is what everything is all about, love.  The love God has for us is so unbelievably much and he always will love us, that's the amazing thing.  While serving on my mission I've met some amazing people, completely amazing.  I think the amazing people are the ones that you can immediately feel their love radiating around you.  I can instantly name just a couple of them and those include Dale and Blanche.  Those two I've only talked to both of them for maybe fifteen minutes at the most.  But you could just feel this love and concern radiating off of them.  We visited Blanche on one of the freezing cold nights and I just had a little jacket on because I didn't think it'd be that cold.  Haha here's the experience...she tells me she'll be right back.  She goes and grabs twenty bucks and hands it to me telling me to go buy a hat.  I try to convince her that I do have one and can't take her money but she won't take no for an answer.  In the meantime my eye just starts burning so then it looks like I'm crying.  Yes, my eyes are just'd do it all the time back at work and it will burn until I go put water in it.  Walking away from that experience I truly felt like someone really loved me here, and that was God's way of showing that he's watching out for me.  I guess what I'm trying to say is God shows us that he loves us through the people he puts in our lives.  And I'm so grateful for that. 
I just want to say that I love y'all so much.  Truly, I do.
Love Always, Sister Schmutz 
p.s. it's kinda a terrible picture but these are live oak trees.  I'll try to get a better one soon!       

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