Thursday, July 25, 2013

Week 5 has Flown By!

Terve! Hei! Moi!

Yep, there are a billion ways to say hello and I just love it! So now I've been here over 5 weeks. Which means that in 3 weeks from Monday I'll be on a plane to Finland! Its super crazy to think about! I speak to a Finnish sister here (like she's actually from Finland) and sometimes it freaks me out and other times it motivates be, so I'm just excited to see what it'll be like to get into the field!
This week was pretty much the same. We got to teach TRC on Thursday and it was great just talking in Finnish with some RMs and sharing a scripture or something and really working on our small talk Finnish instead of our gospel lesson Finnish. Sometimes I don't know simple phrases like "How are you?" But I can teach all about the resurrection. So yeah, I've been working on non-religious Finnish this week and it's been coming along pretty well. On Monday I did kinda what's called a concentration day where I didn't say a single word of English the entire day. And you know what? Somehow, I got along just fine! My companion had to translate sometimes when I would speak to MTC workers or other non Finnish missionaries, but you really are surprised with how much you know when your limited vocabulary is all you're allowed to say! So the language is coming slowly but steadily and I'm very greatful for that. I'm now at the point where things like Thank you and You're Welcome and Hello only come out of my mouth in Finnish and then I sit there confused for a sec as to why the person I said it to didn't know what I said. I mean come on, doesn't everybody speak Finnish?? Well they will in about 3 weeks when I'm in Finland!!
Other than the language, nothing much changes from week to week here at the MTC. All of my 6 week friends who came when I did leave on Monday and so we're all super sad to say good bye to them. But after Monday we'll officially be the oldest people at the MTC! Oh and this week I jammed my finger pretty bad playing basketball. And since there's no doctor here at west campus, I wore this dumb make shift splint for a couple days until it stopped hurting and the swelling went down. And of course it was on my middle finger so I spent those days trying not to flip people off since that's not very missionary like... But this is nothing compared to mom's injury! Is that your first time getting stitches?? I want a picture! Dang our family gets hurt way too much.

(Kathryn with Elder Heiner)

Well the house and the ward sound awesome. All of the kids told me about how much they all love the creek and playing outside and just enjoying Utah's not hot summers. All of the little girls have also asked me how many boyfriends I have here at the MTC... Yeah I'm not sure they quite understand what a mission is yet...But it makes me and my district all laugh so that's okay :)
Well this week our district has really been focusing on patience, which is not an easy thing let me tell you... Our district is only 6 sisters in a classroom together for like 10 hours a day and sometimes tensions can get pretty high. But we have 2 amazing teachers who always remind us why we're there and why we're on missions and with our goal of patience, we all get along great :)
On P-days (Today) We get to go to main campus and eat and we absolutely love it. We all think that food is heavenly! So if any of my friends at Main Campus ever complain about the food just send them to West Campus where our cafeteria is a pool house. I'm fine with the food here, but we only get to go through the line once. Which means that all the Elders and all the Sisters here get the same amount of food. And I eat my entire plate so I can only imagine how some of the Elders feel, but hey, at least they won't gain weight here in the MTC!
Also shout out to my Companion's mom, Sister Howell, who sent me brownies this week (Of course my companion ate them too). I've loved getting all the letters and Dear Elders and I just feel so much love and support from everyone it's amazing :) I also forgot to mention that I did get the family pictures a while ago and I absolutely loved them! Ya'll are so good at keeping me updated on everything its great :) Minä Rakastan Teitä tosi paljon! (I love you all so much!)
Sisar Crandall

Friday, July 19, 2013

Pictures from Week 4

More of my companion, Sister Howell . . .

Elder Gaebler, Elder Schoefield, and Elder Smith . . .

My awesome district . . .

I'm the Map . . .

Thursday, July 18, 2013

July 18, 2013 -- One Whole Month!

Hello there!
Well I've now officially been on a mission for one whole month! And that's just a crazy thought to me! Seriously though. In just 17 short months I'll be flying home to SLC and probably crying the whole way. Just thinking about it makes me try and work harder becuase I realize that time here flies by when youre immersed in the work! And I just love it!
Well this week was a pretty typical one at the MTC. The Finnish is coming along surprsingly well (Okay not that surprisingly well considering the gift of tongues is real). I've come to learn that Finnish is such a cool language! Tons of words in the language are compound words and it's so cool putting them together! Almost like a puzzle! Like the word for schedule is time board and the word for missionary is sent preacher and everything is just awesome! Also the word for charity and love are the same! How cool is that! Were now up to teaching two finnish lessons a day! One to our teachers and one to another sister missionary who plays as an investigator (theres not many people to practice finnish on). This means that I also get to play the investigator which is pretty cool sometimes! funny story. While I was in the room waiting for the missionaries to come teach me, they knocked on the door., And since I was so used to being the missionary and not the investigator I just knocked back! It took us a couple seconds just sitting there until we both busted out laughing and figured we were better missionaries than investigators. We also get to teach a lesson to a member every Thursday in TRC. usually its RMs who come in and we teach them and can practice giving lessons like we would after a dinner appointment or something. It's pretty cool but kinda intimidating because we cant just teach the basics like we can with the investigators but it's still fun and I love it!
Every Friday here we get Papa Johns pizza and it's like the best thing in the world. Everyone goes around shouting PIZZA PERJANTAI (Pizza friday) and its awesome. The little things mean a lot on a mission. Speaking of, Thanks so much for all the letters and the package! Shout out to my mom for sending my homemade bread and homemade jam! I ate it for literally every meal for a couple days and all my district had some as well and it was delicious!
Well I heard that Rhett and Savanna sang and played in church and I heard it was awesome! Good job guys! I'm so proud of you! And dad suggested that you guys do it again at my homecoming so keep practicing!
Well I hope you had a wonderful birthday mom! And that the move and everything went smoothly! Let me know how you like the ward and everything. I'm sending some pics now, but they take a while so sorry if I have to send them in like a billion emails. I'm also super jealous of the family all going to the reunion in VA without me! Send my love and hugs to everyone there!
Other than this, not much is new! I play speed at gym everyday and beat everyone as expected... There's this elder here who can sing all of the countries in the world in one song (kinda like 50 nifty untied states) and its pretty cool so he keeps us entertained. We practice our Finnish constantly and have days where we can only speak Finnish about 3 times a week now. Our last week here is going to be ONLY FINNISH So i getting ready for that!
Thank you so much for the wonderful Dear Elders and letters of support and love! I love all of you and I'm just excited to get to Finland! Only one more month left here in the MTC! I hope all is well and Im praying for you all! (In Finnish I might add). Stay awesome! Minä Rakastan Teitä!
Sisar Crandall

Thursday, July 11, 2013

July 11 MTC Pictures

The Zone . . .

The District . . .

Elder Sellars and Sister Nielsen

Sister Hubner, Sister Dayton, and Sister Vincent

An Eternity and a Day!

Hello there!
Well I've now been at the mtc for three weeks and it seems like an eternity and a day all at the same time!
This week was great. For the 4th of July we got to watch 17 miracles (highly recommend) And then we got ice cream and sat on the lawn watching the Stadium of Fire fireworks. It's pretty cool that they let 3400 missionaries all do that. Then the rest of this week was pretty normal. We have a Finnish lesson basically every day and it's getting bumped up to twice a day soon. Its a lot of preparation but it's sure making the Finnish come fast! We now do SYL (Speak your language) days where we can only talk in Finnish the whole day. Everyone's a lot quieter, but then we are surprised how much we all really know!  I'm surprised how easy it is for me to remember vocab and how I accidentally say the Finnish words around the Spanish elders and then am confused as to why they dont understand because I dont even realize I do it! Dont get me wrong, Finnish is extremely difficult, but for some reason I'm not overwhelmed by it or anything and am progressing really well. its so nice when were in a lesson and the investigator answers one of our questions and I know I've never heard a single word he said before, but somehow I know exactly what he said.  It's pretty sweet.
Our investigators are really our teachers and sometimes they like to make us answer really difficult questions because they know the answers are really hard to say in Finnish. This week my teacher made me say 1820 in Finnish (Its like 50 letters long) and he just smirked as I struggled through it because I had been trying to say it all day and couldn't. So yeah they think they're funny, but really its a blessing that they push us. He also asked a very specific question about the fall of Adam because he knew I didn't know the word for fall. But I sure learned it after that lesson!
I also ran into an Elder Wright from Monticello who is friends with Kevin and Chris Webb so if you read this, he says hi!
We got a bunch of new Albanians and new Hungarians in our zone this week so now were up to 55 missionaries! I think that's a lot but I'm not sure compared to the other branches. We speak 4 different languages so all of our church meetings are in English but its cool being around each other. I can now say hello in Finnish, Estonian, Hungarian, and Albanian! its crazy how all these missionaries are going to be all over the world in just a month or so!
Oh and congrats to Camille and her awesome AP scores! Following after her big sisters I see! Oh and I ran into Elder Sellers (Dylbot) A really good friend from BYU so that was super fun!
Well, on another random side note, HAPPY BIRTHDAY MOM!!! Of course I didn't forget! So everyone wish my dear mother a happy birthday on Monday okay? Okay good.
This letter is kinda shorter than normal, but I just wanna say thanks for all the wonderful love and support ive received! I think every member of my family writes me every week and its so awesome and i just love it! I also got some really nice notes from Suzanne, Aunt Roxanne, and Grandma Webb and lots of others so thank you so much! A mission is much more enjoyable when youre not doing it alone.

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Documenting the First 2 weeks

Kathryn's companion . . . Sister Howell

Traveling to the Finnish Consulate . . .

And the rest of her fun pictures . . .

Happy July 4th!

Hello there! Well I've now been here at the mtc for two whole weeks and the time is sure flying by! Here's how everything is going,

Finnish, I read outloud from the Book of Mormon all the time, but i have no idea what im saying and all of you would probably laugh if you heard me because it just sounds like jibberish! But finns do roll their Rs so spanish helped with that. ive got most of the pronunciation down, but sometimes i have to say words really slow (Especially when theyre 20+ letters long like the word P day, valmistautumispäivä) I have no idea what im saying half the time but its coming along great! I absolutely love my teachers. Theyre both RMs from Finland and are sooo extremely patient with a district of all girls. Im just impressed how many questions they answer from me like no big deal because theyre that nice! I also got about 15lbs of grammar and finnish material (no joke, we weighed it) and we kinda laugh at the spanish missionaries who think their preach my gospel and dictionary is spanish weigh a lot. Not sure how im fitting these all in my suitcase but ill sure need them! We had a SYL (Speak your language) day all day yesterday and it was tough, but i was surprised how many words i knew in finnish once i was forced to say them! So yeah, were doing that every wednesday now and im really excited to be progressing at this alarming fast rate! Dont get me wrong, its extremely difficult and i have to pray waaayyy more often and waaaayyy harder than usual but its gettin there!

MTC, Well the MTC is going good! The food is pretty gross actually but I got a bunch of healthy snacks from my wonderful mother that will definitely last me the remaining 7 weeks! Which is a good thing because the food here and lack of fruits and vegetables has made me pretty sick and tired but I've gotten over it now. There's no options like at the other MTC so instead of it being just cafeteria food, its now cafeteria food with one option 3 times a day or else you go hungry. so yeah, I'm not complaining though! I'm alive and well!
Oh so another cool thing is my badge! Were the only country and language that has to have Jesus Christ on 2 lines because its so long! So here's what it says,

Sisar Crandall
Myöhempien Aikojen Pyhien

I just love putting it on everyday and wearing it around all proud! And we actually get to go off MTC campus on P day so we do actually get to be around non missionaries and then it's even cooler to be wearing this badge!

So some funny stories. A lot of Finnish words sounds alike and sometimes the literally difference is one A at the end instead of 2 As so its pretty hard to distinguish. So, a girl in my district mixed up the word for personages with the word for carrots and then the word for vision, naky, with the word for sausage, nakki. So, she proceded to tell her investigator that Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ were two heavenly carrots who visited Joseph Smith in The First Sausage. Yeah we laughed pretty hard about that one. Then, another girl in my district mixed up the word for God, Jumala, with the word for ice cream, Jäätelö. So one day when there was no ice cream in the cafeteria, she told the entire MTC that there was no God! Ei Jumala! So that one got us laughing too. Fortunately, I havent had any too embarrassing mix ups (That I know of)
Well this week I went to the MTC devotional and ran into all my old friends at the Main MTC! I saw Elder Hakes, Hermana Pearson, Elder Tanner Smith, Elder Willis (A bunch of wardies) and it was awesome! As much as I love them im really glad im at this MTC so I'm not distracted and can just focus on my Finnish!
Speaking of, I decided that there was a reason I was sent to finland (obviously) but i didn't think I'd figure it out this early! So what i realized is that I'm a very prideful and stubborn person who likes to rely on herself. So, the lord got my mission papers and knew that the only thing big enough to make me humble myself was the hardest language in the world! We've taught about 5 lessons in finnish and only 1 in english but I have the spirit so much more in the finnish one because I have to solely rely on it! I cant keep talking or anything to make up for it i just have to sit there and struggle to bear my testimony and i must say, its great! I've learned a lot and it makes my english lessons sooo much better because I know how to teach with the spirit now!

On another random side note, mom, rememeber that watch we bought, well this week I found out it glows in the dark. haha the little things mean a lot when youre on a mission!

So  yeah, life is good! Thanks so much for all the letters and Dear Elders! (If you don't know how to dear elder, just ask my mom. It's way easier and free and I get them daily instead of just on p day or something) I feel everyone's love and support and I'm just excited for everything that's going on! Keep me updated on life and I'd love to hear from you all!


Sisar Crandall