Monday, April 22, 2013


Haha cute comp pic... I NEED some SUN in my life! #whitegirlprobs

Living it up in the sun! 

Our room... guess which bed is mine! Haha.

The night we said our goodbyes to Boxy :(

"Hasta la bye bye!" -Elder Boxberger

CHECK OUT all the missionaries at the temple!

Me trying to keep my eyes open while we do this Korean heart thing we learned from our roomies... lil finger hearts

Sweet mirror pic from the banks around the temple... mi hermanas y yo :)

Tengo Gozo En Mi Alma Hoy!

Man, the weeks are really starting to blend together and it's taken me all morning to think of what to write about this week.  We are almost at our month mark!  Pretty exciting.

So on Tuesday night for devotional, we had the privelage of hearing from Elder Richard G. Scott!! It was amaaaaaazing. When he first got up to the pulpit and looked at all of us he said, "I feel like I just died and went to heaven!" He said he wished he could sit down individually for an hour and get to know us... and then said how we have that opportunity to speak with our Heavenly Father in prayer whenever and wherever we want to.  He went on to give this awesome talk about prayer, mostly, and here are some things that stood out to me:

"Every good thing in my life came because I served a mission." (So did Jenine!)

" I can assure you you will never regret the service you will give."

"To reach a goal never before attained, one must do things one has never done... the Lord will help you through your faith."

"He [Heavenly Father] doesn't care if your feelings are clumsily expressed, He is your loving Heavenly Father and you are precious to Him."

"Kneel and pray and talk to your Father in Heaven... Let Him know your honest and sincere feelings."

He told us there are three kinds of answers:
1) Peace, comfort, assurance
2) Unsettling feeling, stupor of thought
3) No answer-- To have us grow through exercising faith in Him. We are not passively waiting, but acting in accordance with His teachings. The Spirit will alert you if it is a wrong choice. This is a blessing because He trusts us.  Waiting for an answer increases our character and faith.

"Answers seldom come during a prayer, but during quiet moments of pondering and meditation.  Find time to be still."

"Challenges stretch us and allow us to grow. Don't complain. Ask the Lord what you're supposed to learn."

"I know Jesus Christ lives because I know Him."

"The Lord has called you to succeed, not to fail... Remember, you have been called."

...and my favorite...

"This is an opportunity for you to discover a capacity you never knew."

I hope you enjoy all of that, I know I did! Elder Scott is just the sweetest.  I know he really cares about each of us missionaries and wanted us to know how to be our best.  He gave an apostolic blessing to us of peace and to master our mission language.  He said we will not be asked to do something we cannot do, but we will be strengthened.  He said many times that each of our callings are inspired.

Other than that things are pretty much the same.  Elder Boxberger got his visa and let Thursday morning for the Lima CCM.  We are all way sad he's not with us anymore.  He brought such a joy to our district (good thing he'll be in my mission!).  Now there are just eight of us, four Elders and four Hermanas.  We are a super tight group now.  It was Elder Frehner's birthday on Saturday and we all got him a card and signed a t-shirt. We also took various fruit from the cafeteria and made a fruit basket for him. Haha.

We are also, as of today, the oldest district in the zone.  Elders Bowler and Frehner are now the new Zone Leaders and yesterday I was called to be the Sister Training Leader. CRAZY.  I'm grateful for the opportunity to get to know the Hermanas in my zone better (the ones left in my district and two others in district B) plus the ones who arrive this week.  I'm supposed to talk to them about modesty and rules and stuff... it's SO unlike me to be kind of a rule-enforcer.  As you know, I'm usually pretty laid back.  But I'm learning already it's an opportunity to be stretched in ways I never have been before!  I also get to interview the Hermanas individually to get to know them and help them out with their MTC experience.  I am praying so much for the Spirit to help me help them.  It took some adjusting for me my first few weeks here, so hopefully knowing exactly how they're feeling as a brand new missionary will be helpful.

And speaking of being stretched... I accompanied on piano for SACRAMENT MEETING yesterday.  I guess that's what I get for having a companion who is Music Coordinator :) Thankfully, it wasn't a total disaster.  It was good practice because I know I'll be doing it in the field.  And it was kinda cool to really get pushed out of my comfort zone.  The first song I played was "Tengo Gozo En Mi Alma Hoy" so that's where I got this title from!

There is also "gozo en mi alma hoy" porque we finally got a sunny P-day!  We are loving it.  Life is good.  I'm not yet at the point where I'm DYING to leave.  So that's good.  Oh, and "Fabian" got baptized!  We are getting a new investigator soon.  We have also been teaching "Eliana" lately and she has made some commitments so right now we are rollin'!

I love and miss you all!  I was looking through some pictures today and thinking about everyone.  I hope y'all are doing well and that my friends taking finals survive this week :)  My teachers are all sick and stressed out.  I don't miss that

Peace and Blessin's!

Hermana Bledsoe

This week...
Words of Wisdom de Elder Boxberger:


When we were talking about music: "It helps me to say that I miss my music but- and 'but' excludes it- I have made a commitment to keep my eye single to the work."

"If you don't have a plan, what else have you got?"

...and my favorite:
"Never stop living the Gospel... LIVE IT UP."

Monday, April 15, 2013

La Vida Buena

Just another day in paradise here...haha. Provo's weather is, as usual, sunny one day and snowing the next.  It always snows or rains on our P-day so we have yet to really enjoy the sunshine!  S'all good.  That just explains why I probably look like a pale vampire in all of my pictures! ;)
So this week we haven't taught a whole lot.  Our teacher, Hermano Wells (who is Fabian, our investigatior) just became a dad so we only had one appointment with Fabian this week.  Hermana Weller and I went into it thinking we would teach him more commandments before his baptism.  When we met up with him, he expressed his concerns that he would not be able to be able to live up to the covenants that he makes and that he was unsure how to obtain salvation.  We really listened to him and followed the Spirit to know what to say.  Hermana Weller whipped out this awesome testimony and told him that we love him and how we know that folllowing Christ will make him truly happy.  I had brought a Plan of Salvation pamphlet in Espanol that I had been reading and felt prompted to share something that I had read before.  In the back of the pamphlet was a list of definitions of words and I had him read aloud about grace.  He just stared at it for like 10 seconds before he read it to us and the Spirit was so strong.  I explained to him in broken Spanish that because of Christ's Atonement, he could be cleansed AND be blessed with divine help to improve a little each day.  I told him that I am not perfect, but this doctrine helps me every single day in my life, especially as a missionary.  The whole lesson went really well.  Later on, Hermano Wells gave us feedback and he said he was blown away by us and how well we listen to Fabian.  He also was amazed that I had chosen to teach Fabian about grace because "Fabian" is an actual convert that Hermano Wells had on his mission in Chile.  The real Fabian had been going through the same issues before his baptism and Hermano Wells and his companion had taught Fabian grace, which led him to commit to baptism.  I know that I was guided by the Spirit to say that and I knew what to say because I had studied it beforehand. That really showed me how important it is to constantly be studying, and more importantly, it showed me how AWESOME it is when the Spirit works through you to help you say exactly what that person needs to hear.  I LOVE it.
Also, we had a few great devotionals this week.  We heard from Gerald N. Lund, who wrote the Work and the Glory series.  He taught us a lot about personal revelation, and how we can determine if something that comes in our head is a thought or a prompting.  He said that if it is good and causes you to do good, it is of God (like it says in Moroni 7).  This was the night after the Fabian appointment and that really confirmed to me that the Spirit is the real teacher here, not me.  I'm just the instrument-- but I get to experience seeing others come unto Christ, which is the best feeling in the world, even if it's not a real investigator :)
We also heard from Greg Droubay, the Director of Media for the Missionary Department at last night's devotional.  He showed us how the Lord is hastening his work and gave us a lot of cool examples.  He showed us the "I'm a Mormon" campaign that just started last week in London with advertisements all over the tube stations, double decker buses, and billboards.  The "Book of Mormon" musical is playing there, so it has actually sparked a lot of interest in our church.  He also showed us the "Christmas is ___" campaign the church did in NYC last Christmas with HUGE billboards all over Times Square and all over the city. He has the coolest job EVER!  The work really is hastening :) D&C 88:73
Also, two Hermanas in my district got their visas this week and are now in Peru! For a while, because there was an odd number of Hermanas, so Hermana Norton was added to my and Hermana Weller's companionship for a trio until Hermana Price left this morning.  So there's hope the rest of us will make it there! It could come at any time!
The week I got here they changed the email rules so now we have an hour to email! Super awesome.  And if anyone wants to write me, I get Dear Elders the day you send them and it's free :) hint hint :)
Hermana Bledsoe
You know you're a missionary when...
- Seeing knees makes you uncomfortable. Como, GIRL (I mean, Sister), cover those UP!
- You find yourself listening to the Brandon Flowers "I'm a Mormon video on repeat during TALL (computer) time because it's the only non-hymn music you've heard in weeks. ("Crossfire" is a SWEET song, btw)
- You have calluses on your knees from praying... I don't yet, but my American roommates learning Korean do. They've been here for almost 7 weeks. Bless their hearts.
- You start to call the attractive people around you "blessed." (i.e. Elder McPherson: "Ella es bendita!")
- "Ye Elders of Israel" is your JAM. And I'm not even an Elder!

Elders "swag sitting".... they're great.
Hermanas "swag sitting" in class :)
Bye bye Hermana Price :'(
Okay this is hilarious.  The pamphlets in different languages have the SAME exact pictures but with different races. This is our favorite picture to compare.
The trio with a cool vacuum #nerds
 Don't do drugs!
Hangin' en la clase

Monday, April 8, 2013

Vale La Pena (It's Worth It)

(In Spanish that would be I, I, I! haha)

So the MTC is still great!  We are just getting so much spiritual strength up in here (up in here) that you can't help but be happy all the time.  I'm still not loving the whole sit at a desk for 4 hours, take a break to sit and eat, and then sit back down again for more hours thing, but ya gotta do what ya gotta do!

What makes all of this so fun is my district.  They are SO fun to be with but we also have amazing spiritual experiences together too.  We are all way close now and we've only known each other for 2 weeks!  We are all getting better at Spanish and now we know the baptismal invitation in Spanish as well as "Our Purpose."  After every devotional and after conference we all share our thoughts and impressions or things we liked and each one ends in tears from both the Elders AND the Hermanas.

Oh, and "Fabian" is getting "baptized" this week!  We are giving him his last lesson tonight.  I am still amazed that we can have these amazing discussions with him in complete Spanish already. El don de linguas es REAL.

So I heard this analogy from someone and I thought it was kinda funny so I want to share it:

The MTC is like the Hunger Games because...

You are divided into districts.
You get messages over an intercom several times a day.
You're fed tons of food that you will never see again in the field.

...So get excited new missionaries! Haha. It's a really cool place and I know I will miss it... someday ;)

So some things I want to share with you:

1) Conference was awesome.  We all watched it together as an MTC and it was so cool.  Every time someone would give a shoutout to the missionaries, people were cheering and high-fiving.  I think it confirmed to everyone that this is where we need to be and that we will touch SO many lives.  I won't go too much into it right now because (hopefully) y'all saw it, but there was a lot said about obedience.  It was a great reminder, especially for us missionaries, that this work needs to be done the Lord's way. 'Nuff said.
Also, Hermana Simonsen in my district is from St. George and goes to SUU and has been talking all week about how she's sure a temple in Cedar City would be announced this weekend, not really serious.  Sure enough, it was announced on Saturday! That was way cool.
Conference is like a holiday here because we have no schedule besides watching the sessions.  That + P-day today (Monday) = 3-day weekend!  It was really nice :)

2) Last night we had a devotional with Vocal Point (BYU's acapella group) and it was so uplifting.  We in the audience all got to sing hymns with them and the Spirit was so strong.  Totally brought the house DOWN... just when we thought we were feeling on top of the world spiritually.  The power of music is amazing.

3) If any of you get the chance to listen to or read Elder Bednar's devotional given at the MTC called "The Character of Christ," DO IT.  It will change your life.  Holy moly, that was the best talk I've ever heard. I was bawling throughout it, and those of you who know me well know that I only cry in stupid animal movies like "Fox and the Hound." ;)

4) Last Tuesday we had Elder Ringwood of the Seventy speak to us and he gave an awesome talk about Enduring to the End.  One quote that stood out to me was when he said, "There was a reason that Nephi went back to Jerusalem for the plates before he went back for a wife."  Just think about that for a second. I know that my mission will prepare me for THAT step further down the road... missions prepare you to endure to the end.  He also quoted a lot from 2 Nephi 31, one of my favorite chapters of the Book of Mormon and said a lot of other cool things that I wish I had time to write.  One big thing I took away is the difference between testimony and conversion. We want new members to be converted, not just baptized.

5) We went to the temple today and there was an older Hispanic couple taking out their endowments in our session.  The joy I observed between them and their family afterwards as they were hugging each other was undeniable.  I swear, that is what heaven is like.  It made me think of my mission and why I'm here.  I hope I can be a part of that for a cute old Peruvian couple someday :)

I am just so happy right now.  It feels great to know that the Lord loves you and has a plan for you and it's even better when you know that you can share that principle with others who need this in their life.  My visa may not come in the next 6 weeks, but I've accepted that that will be okay because if I end up reassigned in the US for a while, I will be where the Lord needs me.  This will all be be worth it when I get to meet my Peruvian people!  I really do feel like they're my people. I already love them and the Spanish language.

I LOVE YOU! Thanks for the support :)

-Hermana Bledsoe


"My folks, my blokes, my artichokes." (In a Scottish accent)
-Elder Boxberger

"I LOVE machetes!"
-Hermana Simonsen

"...So he's tall and flakey?" (flacco)
- Boxy

"You eat like, a family of chickens at every meal Boxberger!"
- Elder Bowler

"To me, that's like putting kerosene on a fire... it's like saying, 'I'm angry' and then going and listening to Linkin Park."
-Elder Boxberger

"Brother Halsey is running around all sexy-like"
-Elder Frehner

"I haven't heard that much nasalization since the last Bob Dylan song I listened to."
- Boxy

"You would like my bed."
- Elder Frehner

Picture Update!

Laundry room fun on P-Day
We got our scrips and Himnos' engraved. Rockin' the middle part :P
The Lima East bunch in my district. East side represent.
SO ready to go to PERU! :)
My General Conference Experience
Pretty Hermanas at Conference :)
We were REALLY excited for the Sunday Morning session.
Photobombed by some Elders headed to SAO PAULO INTERLAGOS
Hermana Weller y yo con Samuel Smith statue... every op is a photo op at the MTC!
Our district at the Temple on our Sunday afternoon temple walk.  We are the cutest! :)
The Elders being, well, themselves...
Mi companera! :)
THROWBACK to our first day here with our dork dots :)
One of our first days of class ;)
Classroom LYFE
We HEART Peru! (This is a way better version of this picture from the first I sent)
Peru + Colombia!
Hermana love!
Some of our district at Conference :)

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

MTC pictures

 The typical missionary name tag pic #SWAG
 My district! We all wore red on Saturday. There is a trio of Elders in our group! Elders left to right: Boxburger, Bowler, Adams, Frehner, McPherson. Hermanas left to right: Price, Harmon, Weller, Simonsen, Bledsoe, Norton
 Hermana Weller y yo taking a typical MTC map picture

Hermana Weller y yo at the temple in the rain!

***Also I (Sadie-her sister) was talking to her about keeping a journal of the things that she would tweet if she had access to twitter on her mission, so she sent me these "tweets"***


Waiting until Easter to open packages/letters is almost harder than staying awake in language study #MTCprobs @sadiebledz

Hermana Norton may have accidentally made up a nickname for Elder Boxberger... #FoxyBoxy #itstuck

You'd be surprised how many sisters here have left boyfriends for this! #props

A good April Fools prank to play at the MTC is to go up to Elders you know and pretend to go in for a hug... GREAT reactions! :)

Monday, April 1, 2013

MTC Life

Hola Familia y Amigos!

Since this is my first P-day (Mondays are my P-day btw), I'm going to try and write as much as I can in this letter that will go on the blog and then try to answer individual emails after if I have time. But know that I love you and I am so appreciative of all the mail, Dear Elders, and emails y'all have sent my way! Special shout out to Sadie who rocks at writing me and sent me a fun Easter package :)
I can't say enough how excited I am to hear that she will be serving in the Brazil Sao Paulo Interlagos Mission!!! South America!! (BTW, I met an Elder Leavitt here in the MTC who is headed to that mission, he is from Temecula and knows our Bledsoe cousins there!)

So the MTC is a great place. Sure, it's not great in every way, but there is such an amazing spirit here!  Most people you meet are super friendly and have the Spirit with them.  When we first got here, we had a big meeting with the MTC President and sang like 5 songs in a row : Go Forth With Faith, Called to Serve, As Zion's Youth In Latter Days, etc.  Eventually we got to the Primary song We'll Bring the World His Truth.  The words were up on screens for us and in the chorus, we sang instead of "and we will be the Lord's missionaries," we sang, "and we are now the Lord's missionaries."  That was crazy powerful for us to realize as we had only been there with name tags for about an hour.  I still can't believe I'm actually here and my mission has begun!

So mi companera is AMAZING.  Her name is Hermana Weller and she is headed to the Peru Ariquipa Mission!  She was inactive for most of her teen years and about a year ago she realized she needed the gospel in her life and is now on a mission!  She has a super strong testimony and I learn from her every day. I just LOVE that Sister.  My district is also so awesome!  The Hermanas have grown pretty close already and it's so fun!  And I LOVE the Elders in our district.  Not like that... they are all 18 and 19 year olds and are just adorable.  I feel like I am at their maturity level most of the time so I laugh and joke with them a lot and they are super fun.  Everyone in this district will be so great on their missions.  We are all headed to Peru (except Elder Bowler who is headed to Colombia) and waiting on our visas so we could be leaving at any time! Many are headed to Ariquipa, Chiclayo, and Lima Norte.  Elders Frehner and Boxberger are headed to Lima Este like me! So it's fun to get to know a lot of people in my same situation.

Learning Spanish is hard and I'm so humbled by the experience, but I have to give myself credit for learning SO much on a few days.  I can pray, bear my testimony, and even teach in Spanish now! Hermana Weller y yo have been teaching "Fabian" lately (our teacher Hermano Wells) and we'll see if he commits to baptism tonight!  The schedule has also taken some getting used to, I get pretty tired in class but I'm adjusting to sitting in a chair for hours on end.

I spent Easter in my dorm porque Hermana Weller was sick and throwing up, but it was still fun!!

The church is true!!

Love you guys!

-Hermana Bledsoe