I am on a MISSION! Wahoo!!!! I have been looking forward to P-day ALL week so I could write you. Well, it's been a long, good week! Liz, Sarah, and Julie dropped me off at the MTC and I was crying. Soon after, I was off to find my room and meeting lots of new people. I met my companions when I went to class. I am in a three-some with Sister Alger and Sister Brandley. Sister Alger and I had a class together a couple of semesters ago, so we already knew each other. She is from Milad, Idaho. Sister Brandley is from Vancouver, WA. They are both so wonderful and it has been fun to work with them. I will admit it is challenging at times; things are always harder when there are three people. My district consists of the three sisters and eight elders. Four of the elders are going to Toronto West with us and the other four are going to Seattle. I couldn't believe how close our district was after just a couple of days. There are a couple of people in our district that make it kind of challenging to be unified, but we pray together and try our best. You won't believe what happened the second day of class haha. Some of the elders were asking questions about the schedule and such and I just happened to know the answers because I had already read about it. They started calling me "Mom Barton!" Hahaha. I laughed along with them because I know they are just teasing me. I don't like to be referred to as a know-it-all, but it was pretty dang funny. They called me that until we all read in the white handbook that we shouldn't use nicknames. They still ask me whenever they have a question and I just laugh.
The first few days here in the MTC were pretty rough. I wasn't really homesick, but it was just hard spiritually. I went home feeling discouraged much of the time. Or else I would have a really good first half of the day and a bad last half. The past few days, however, have been much better and my spirits have been high. It started the day my companions and I had our first investigator at the TRC (Teaching Resource Center). Her name is Gloria. She "isn't a member" but her friend is and she is in need of some comfort. Her husband died about a year ago (in real life as well as in her role as an investigator). We brought her a message of God's love and that we know that she will be with her husband again. We teach her again on Monday. We also get a new investigator tomorrow. Her name is Audrey and she has a lot of LDS friends who are really happy. She wants to know more about why they are happy and what brings them joy. My companions and I have found joy in teaching and have felt the power of the Holy Ghost.
Gym time has been fun. My comps and I played frisbee with our district leader and his companion the other day and it was really fun. I'm always looking at the cars that drive by just in case I see someone hehe. My companions and I wake up at 6:00 am each morning to go to a gym class that isn't required. Sometimes I do the workout and sometimes I just read while they do it because I'm tired haha. Sounds like me, eh?
My shoes hurt SO bad the first few days. I had to use duct tape around my ankles and I got blisters. I think the leather is stretching out now though and they are much better. I really wish I had the pair that I took out of my backpack though. They would be nice to have. As far as I know I still don't have room for them though. Oh well :) Maybe I'll buy an inexpensive pair in Canada or something.
Our first Sunday here was fast Sunday and that was a little hard. We eat SO much here and I get so full. I don't think I've ever been hungry except when I first wake up. The food is delicious hahaha. I try and eat some healthy food, but all I can say is that it is a good thing I am only here three weeks.
I have found it to be SO fun to see people that I know here. I know a lot of teachers and have a lot of friends. Sister Crowther (Marsali from choir) lives two doors down from me and we see each other many times a day. She is my angel here :) Sister Haggard (McKenzie, old roommate) also lives down the hall and it is fun to chat with her sometimes too.
We had a devotional last night and Elder Hales came! It was absolutely incredible. He spoke all about obedience, sacricie, baptism, theand light. It was very powerful. I loved when he said "There is nothing that you gave up of greater importance than what you will be doing for the next 18 months of your life." I know that to be true. I am called of God and am supposed to be here at this time to teach the people He has prepared for me to teach. He also said "When we have the fear of man, darkness comes upon us, and we do not share the light that is in us." I love apostles. They truly are men of God.
I hope you have a WONDERFUL day! I love you so much and can't wait to hear from you. You can write me letters, e-mail, and send DearElder letter. I LOVE YOU! May God be with you :)
Sister Barton :)