Sunday, June 9, 2013

June 8, 2013

Kumusta Everyone!
(picture me doing the missionary happy dance.) WE GOT OUR TRAVEL PLANS THIS WEEK! WHOOP WHOOP! man it was like Christmas morning last night! Monday the 17th we are leaving for the airport at 7:30 am to catch our flight to LA, then to TOKYO (thats right im am going to Tokyo!) then finally to MANILA! and then probably a bus ride up to Baguio! I thought tha my excitement would subside from when i got my call but right when i think i couldn't get more excited, BAM i get more excited! I am so blessed to be on a mission right now!! most days i just cannot believe it!
We had the opportunity to SKYPE with the Philippines this week for TRC! technically it was with a lady from the Philippines that really lives in California...but she only spoke Tagalog so it was practically the same thing... :) It as yet another reassurance that I don't know very much Tagalog...but the Lord has blessed me with the gift of tongues more than once at the MTC already and I know that everything will be fine! I love talking to people from the Philippines here at the MTC! they are all soooo nice and loving! Sometimes when i am taking to other missionaries that don't speak Tagalog i automatically say things like yes, and no, bathroom, and food and Tagalog and they look at me like I'm crazy and then i remember that they understand English not Tagalog! i guess that is a good sign! :)
Last week our district got the Chance to host for the first time for the new missionaries that come in on Wednesday! I hosted 4 new sisters! and get this, there were over 900 new missionaries that came into theMTC last Wednesday!! WHHHAAATTTT??? I'm sure you are wondering how in the world these missionaries are going to fit in the MTC, well Brothers and sisters, THE CHURCH IS BRILLIANT!  I don't know how they do it but it all works out so perfectly! I love all of the girls that came in! they were all so excited to serve! even though they had impossibly heavy all worked out and i got a good workout ;) some of my friends from College and High school came in and that was so fun to see them and give them encouragement. There are some new friends that are coming in this week that i can't wait to see! our district gets to host the new missionaries again! suprma exctied ako!
So we have continued to teach Angelica and Jesus. we have asked them both to be baptized and they said that they would but that they are not ready yet! Sister Miller and I taught a super great Lesson with Jesus! It taught me so much about missionary work! He hasn't been praying...about anything. it has been super frustrating! I asked him why he thought that prayer was important and he said that it is important to pray at church and in your heart but he said he is too embarrassed to pray out loud when he is not at church. Finally i could understand everything that he said to me!!!! (gift of tongues moment.) in the best Tagalog that i  know i told him that i know that heavenly father loves his family and him so much and he wants so bad for him to pray and ask for guidance for him and his family. Suddenly the Spirit was INCREDIBLY STRONG and i asked him if he would commit to praying out loud to the lord and ask him if our message might be true. he said that he would and that he would try and pray with him family! the spirit was so strong and he was so thankful!
I am so excited to get to the Philippines and find people like Jesus and Angelica and invite them to come unto Christ!
I love being a missionary and i love being called sister sites! This week is going to be a tough week saying good bye to my MTC district. all of our elders are going to olongapo and the sisters are going to Baguio! I cried a tiny bit when i saw that they leave a day before us. They have been such great examples to me and i wish we were all going to the same place! I know that they are going to be great missionaries!
I hope that everyone has a great week! Thank you for all of your prayers, letters, e-mails and goodies!
mahal Kita, 
Sites sites 

i'd like everyone to meet elder sith lord! :) somedays we get so bored in class so this is what we do! :) 

Saturday, June 1, 2013

June 1, 2013

June 1, 2013

Kumusta Everyone!
   I hope that everyone has had a good week! This week at the MTC has been pretty rainy and cold so staying in a classroom all day has proved to be a challenge as far as none of us have very much focus left!
This week we have continued lessons with Jesus and Angelica! They are both completely different investigators as far as spiritual needs go! Angelica always wants us to come back and teach her! I am no sure that she completely understands the lessons (mostly because my Tagalog sounds like gibberish.) but she loves having people that believe in her! so My kasama and i have been trying our hardest to make the lessons as simple as we can! Doesn't that kind of sound like anoxy moron? Haha it is. It take a great focus to make the lessons simple.... for me anyways!
  Then there is Jesus! He is soooo smart! and he loves listening to us and having us tell his boys what they should be doing to be good boys. We taught him how to pray this week and he like that...but when we asked him to say the closing prayer he wouldn't. He also told us that he doesn't really feel like he needs to pray about if the Book of Mormon is true...he says "well what you tell me is good, so why wouldn't it be true?" I guess that is how a lot of Filipinos are...Hindi KoAlam. hopefully this week we will be able to truly teach him about our purpose and about the Doctrine of Christ. Hopefully he feels the spirit enough to get up and do something about it! :) I am excited for him and his family to gain a testimony of The Book of Mormon and of the Gospel!
   One of the first things we learned about Learning a language is that it is NOT a gradual up hill learning is more of a very up and down, bumpy, crazy up hill scale...! (so picture in your mind and very squiqally line going up hill!) at times i feel like i am an expert but this week has been more of a "wow, i know nothing about this language" week! I have to remember that when we teach it is more about having the spirit with us than how much language we know. So i have to always remember that. One thing we are encouraged to do at the MTC is SYL! (speak your language!) I am really good at the words "Hi! how are you? can i go to the bathroom? I am doing good. can you please repeat that and slow down? slow down please. Thank you! good morning. Good night! I love you!" and i think that is about it! hahaha sometimes it is really hard but when i finally figure it out i say "PALA!" which means a sudden realization of something!
This week Craig Zwick from the 70 spoke to us in the Tuesday night devotional! he taught something that i really admired! He called it the 6 ways to develop Christ like Attributes! (his construction company builds temples so he also uses these 6 steps in building.) 
1. Start with the end in mind. 
2. Strong desire and commitment 
3. Willingness and discipline to work hard. 
4. Prepare for challenges
5. Structural and spiritual testimony
6. Total Dedication to the Lord.
I love all of these! I think they can apply in so many ways in all of our lives! Especially in missionary work! And i have learned that you have to have ALL of them. Working  on one or two of them just isn't enough. I have learned that Enduring to the end requires us to give our whole heart and soul and ALL OF OUR PATIENCE. We are going to have trials. Everyone does. But that is a part of the Beautiful plan that the Lord has for us!
I love missionary work. I love the spirit here at the MTC! I cannot believe that i only have 15 day left until i am off to the Philippines! I really appreciate the love and support from all of you! I am so grateful for all of you and the great examples you have been to me throughout my life! Thank you for the support you have given my family. It is such a relief to know taht they are in good hands :)
I saw my dear sweet Cousin this week! Sister Ali Walker just got to the MTC! I ran up and gave her a big hug when i saw her! she has such a Strong willingness to serve!
I also saw one of my Friends from high school! Sister Cali May Trunell is going to the Washington DC south mission Spanish speaking! Just right below the mission that Wayne is serving in! It is so funny when i see people that i know! i get sooo excited!
Here's to another fabulous week at the MTC! My district gets to be hosts for all the new missionaries on Wednesday and on Thursday we are skyping with the people in the Philippines for TRC...should be awesome!
Much much love, Sister Sites
Mahal Kita

May 25, 2013

May 25, 2013

When i sit down to write my e-mails I think back on what happened at the beginning of the week and it seems like it was weeks ago! life goes so fast at the MTC but i love it.
This week we Taught Angelica and Jesus for the first time! I really love teaching Angelica. My Tagalog is terrible but she is so helpful and helps me out a ton. We taught her how to pray in our last lesson and she committed to praying and reading the book of Mormon. Hopefully she comes through with it! i know that she will be blessed! I love the youth so much! I hope that i can relate to her as much as i can and she will be able to feel my testimony.
The first time we Taught Jesus was a little rough... He once wanted to be a catholic priest and so he is really stubborn. But he is really curious about the Book of Mormon so that is so helpful! He is reading the Book of Mormon now and hopefully praying about it. He works three jobs and has 5 boys! He has such a great family and he plays his father role so well! I know that the Gospel will truly bless his family!
We are teaching them both next week!
I have learned so much this week! My Kasama and I have become so close! We have definitely had our differences and offended each other. But we both have strong strong testimonies and great desires to serve! so through that we have been able to overcome our differences! She has taught be so much about the Gospel! She has only had the Gospel for 18  months and I have had the Gospel for the entire life! I feel like she knows so much more than i do! but she taught me that It is in my brain somewhere. and I know it is. I have become a missionary for my investigators and a missionary for myself!
The Language is coming very slowly. I have to remember to have confidence in myself...haha so i study and practice more than i every have for anything! I am learning how to study and not get stressed out! I am so grateful for that lesson!
At the MTC I have prayed harder and longer than i ever thought that i could. I have been so frustrated and so anxious that i can hardly stand it. I was talking to one of the teachers about it and he was so inspired to tell me "Sister sites, The atonement applies to stress. give it to him." Instantly i was comforted. I now use the Atonement daily with all my heart. So remember that. "the atonement applies to stress, give it to him."
An amazing scripture that i found this week is Mosiah 4:10 ". . .if ye believe all these things, see that ye do them." I love that. I have a testimony of so many things in the Gospel and i believe everything, But do i live them truly? Unfortunately i don't. Now i have a better understand of WHAT I AM SUPPOSED TO BE DOING ALL THE TIME. So please live what you believe. always. I promise doing this will bring so many blessings!
now for a good laugh:
ang watawat na winawagayway ay nakakapagpakabagabag!
This is my favorite tongue twister!
it means The flag that waves is disturbing. apparently its funny in the Philippines... haha 
have a good week everyone! I love hearing from everyone and i love getting letters! I promise i will always write you back!
Love always, 
Sister Sites

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Good morning everyone!!
This week has been so great! I feel like i have done more this week then i have in the last 2 years!! We are in class for about 8 hours a day and as terrible as that sounds...its actually pretty great! I love learning Tagalog and i love learning about the Philippines and the Gospel and how to teach it!
We finished teaching Rodrigo and he is "going back home to the Philippines" to talk to the missionaries there and to get baptized with his family! We now have 2 new "investigators"! Angelica who is 15 and Jesus who is married with 5 boys! we are teaching Angleica Monday and Wednesday and Jesus and his 5 boys on Tuesday and Wednesday! I am so excited to get to know them more and to understand their needs and desires! I already love them! I am so excited to teach angelica because of my LOVE for young women! I hope that i can really relate to her!
I have struggled with the concept of teaching. Elder Holland said that you have to be converted your self before you can convert others. So part of my teaching method has become figuring out what i know in order to teach my investigators! I want them to know what i know so bad so i am learning how to put everything into words! Sister Penjueli is really good and figuring out what i am trying to say and i am so grateful for that!
Tagalog is finally starting click for me! "PALA!!" I am still very terrible at speaking it but the structure is making since and what a relief that is! The lord has helped me so much along the way! It is very exhausting but i am getting used to "earning my pillow" at night and i really love the work! Missionary work is so much fun and so rewarding!
I have seen a lot of Elder Fackrell Lately! he told me yesterday that he is leaving on Monday for AZ! I am so excited for him! i know that he will be an incredible missionary! It is fun to see him and say hi to him! 
I also saw Elder Nielson!  I used to play basketball with his older sister sadie! she is on a mission right now too! he just got reassigned to Washington until his visa comes from Argentina!
We got our district leader this week! his name is Elder Smith! he reminds me so much of zach! he always laughs at me and he always has something to say about everything....hahaha he puts up a great argument as well! he also has such a kind heart and such a desire to be a missionary! I love that he reminds me of zach!
(sorry that this e-mail is kind of random...)
While we were at gym time the other day, I was working out with sister Hansen and we always like to go on the elliptical and listen to conference talks and Mormon messages! one of the Mormon messages was from President Monson! he said something that i really liked! You have probably heard it before! "dare to be Mormon, dare to stand alone, dare to have a purpose firm, and dare to make it known!" I love that so much! So to everyone out there: Don't be afraid to testify of what you believe. You don't have to have a mission badge on! Please, bear your testimony as often as you can. Missionary work is about inviting others to come unto Christ. Why would we keep that from anyone! Be Christ like, Love your neighbor, love your enemy and pray for them. If your desires are righteous they will be answered if you pray. So what are you waiting for.
Thank you for your prayers and Love! I feel them everyday!
Mahal Kita!
Sister Sites

Saturday, May 11, 2013

May 11, 2013

Mangandag Umaga Everyone! That means good morning!
So the first day at the MTC was sooo great! i think that the hardest part of the day was walking away from my family...i remember the look and tears on mom's face! there should be a better way...that was so sad! when i first got to class My teacher (Sister Watkins) only spoke Tagalog to us! and she still only speaks Tagalog to us! i was kind of expecting that so it wasn't overwhelming. Sister Watkins is so loving and kind and she has so much patience! she loves all of us and that means so much to me esspecially when she can tell that i am frustrated from not understanding something.
   I had no reason to be nervous though on the first day. My emotions have definitely been going up and down. mostly up! so that is so good! i am so grateful for the comfort the lord has given me! The food at the MTC is mostly great...i have figured out that it depends on what i eat...but there are a lot of options so its not bad at all! Zach told me to stay away from the orange juice? i haven't tried it yet! Haha i am too scared! I think that the salad wraps are my favorite!
   So about my district. We are District 16D! there are 6 sisters and 4 elders! All of the sisters are going to Baguio and the Elders are going to a different mission that i don't know how to spell...or say! haha my sisters names are Sister Hansen, she is from California, she is really sweet and sooo thoughtful! Sister Tongo is from California, she is so loud and so funny! Sister Miller From Pleasant Grove, she is so nice and always had good things to say, Sister Ve'haekiu (van-nay-oocoo) is from Tonga! she is sooo funny! all Tongans are so funny! she laughs A LOT and her laugh makes us all laugh harder! i am so grateful for that! My Kasama (companion) her name is Sister Penjueli! she is from FIJI! how cool is that?? she is a convert of 18 months and she is the only member and missionary in her whole family! she has so much faith. she has been a little bit  home sick and she is still getting used to the American "preservatives" so we have visited the health clinic  a lot... but that is okay! I hope that she gets feeling better soon!
   Our first "investigator" is named Rodrigo Olit! I love him so much! he is so nice! he is all the way from the Philippines and he is in the United States to get surgery for his Diebetes. The first lesson i was so nervous but my Kasama and I decided to pray for the spirit and for kalaskasam (strength) before the lesson. and once again, i was nervous for nothing. Rodrigo doesn't speak and english but he was so patient with us and so nice! we challenged him to read and pray about faith! our second lesson is on Monday so i hope that he reads and prays about faith! i find my self thinking about rodrigo a lot he is great motivation for me to study and do well!
Sometimes i get frustrated here but that is because i want to be perfect so i have to take a step back and realize that it only my 3rd day here! I feel like i have done more in these 3 days than i have in months!
I love the MTC so much! my sisters are amazing and I am surrounded by great and encouraging sisters! I am definitely in my element!
Love you so much! = Mahal Kita!
Thank you for your e-mails and prayers and thoughts! I love to hear from all of you!
Mahal Kita!
Sister Sites
Sister Watkins tells us this all the time: kayo Ninyo ito! it means you can do it! so remember that when life gets hard and you want to quit! :)

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Sister Kathryn Sites went into the MTC at 1:30 today in Provo. She was so excited and it was a bitter sweet  moment for all of us. I'm Katie's sister Kristyn and I will be updating this blog on a weekly basis and putting her emails and any pictures on here for all of you to see! These next 18 months are going to be hard but full of blessings and tender mercies that come with having a missionary out in the field. Katie is going to be a great missionary and I'm so excited to see all the progress she makes and all the lives she touches in the Phillipines along with you guys! 

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Preparation? Preparation is great.

I love people. People absolutely fascinate me! Lately people have been asking me the same 6 questions. 

1. Oh you're going to serve a mission, where are you going? 
2. When do you leave? 
3. Are you excited? 
4. Did you always want to serve a mission? 
5. What are you most excited for? 
6. How is your preparation going? 

Don't get me wrong. I'm not writing this because I am tired of people asking me these questions, I'm writing this because I wish I could sit down with each of you and tell you exactly how I am feeling. Those of you that know me, know that I could talk your head off about anything. So instead of taking up all of the time in your life when you run into me, I decided to write it all down! 

So here we go. 

1. Oh you're going to serve a mission, where are you going? 
          Yep! I sure am! I have been called to the Philippines Baguio Mission! I am going to be speaking Tagalog and whatever other dialect/language the Lord needs me to learn! 

2. When do you leave? 

        I enter the Provo MTC on May 8, 2013! 13 days from today to be exact! Sounds soon right? well actually I have been waiting and counting down since January 24th at around 8:00 pm, so actually, ITS ABOUT TIME!  
3. Are you excited? 

      Is this even a question??? Well maybe it is for those of you who don't know me very well....So the answer is YES! I am beyond excited! I am excited to be humbled! I have always been blessed with everything that I have ever needed in my life and more! I'm thrilled to be in a place that is beyond poor! I know when I get there I will probably cry and it will be really hard, but that is exactly what I want. I cannot explain why in the world I want this...but I do! 

4. Did you always want to serve a mission? 

    Hmmmm... this is a really good question! The answer is yes and no. When I was growing up it was the farthest thing from my mind. I was more concerned about how my hair looked, how I could do my makeup different to impress some guy at school that I had decided to crush on that week, if my grades were good enough, what chores I had to do, and whatever else consumes a naive teenage girls mind.
     At the end of my Senior year of High School, Serving on a mission started to cross my mind when most of my guy friends had started receiving their mission calls. When my best friend Wayne received his call the the Washington D.C. North mission I thought about serving more and more. I was and still am so proud of all of these boys that plan their whole lives to serve the Lord, and frankly I was super jealous! 
     When I got to college I met more and more great returned missionaries! I loved hearing about their missions and I loved hearing the conviction in their voices when the explained how much they learned from and loved their missions! I am so so grateful for their examples! These experiences made my desire to serve grow every day. The only thing that made me hesitate was the uncertainty of where I would be at the ripe age of 21! I might be seriously dating someone or even married! I could be anxiously engaged in a program for school! by the time I'd turn 21 my best friend would be home from his mission and leaving him for 18 months didn't seem like a fun idea! 
      Then good old General Conference came around in October 2012 and President Monson looked at me and told me that I could serve a mission if I wanted to right now! And the timing couldn't be more perfect! I knew at that moment, that the Lord needed me to serve a mission! Where I would serve never mattered to me. 
      In short: I love the Gospel and I love sharing my growing testimony with everyone around me! the thought of doing that for 18 months is incredible to me! I AM SO EXCITED!

5. What are you most excited for? 

     Well my General answer is that I AM EXCITED TO SERVE A MISSION! But if I had to pick some things I would say that I am so excited for the food! I love food! (except peanut butter, peanut butter is gross.) I am excited for a new culture! I am excited to be in warm weather!!!! And I am excited to have the conviction I have seen in sooooo many returned and current missionaries! 

6. How is your preparation going?? 

      I am not sure how mission preparation is suppose to go! I imagine that it is different for everyone! I have figured that there are two main aspects of mission preparation! The Physical aspect (the clothes, apts., other stuff) and the Spiritual aspect. 
      As far as the Physical aspect goes...I have more than enough clothing, plenty of makeup, Tagalog scriptures, Preach My Gospel, durable shoes, a good bag, 3 large suitcases, I could go on and on and on and on...
     The Spiritual Aspect is completely different!! Am I ready spiritually? well most days I am! then there are those other days when Satan works extra hard on me...I was able to receive my endowments in the Logan Temple back in March and I have to say that I feel extra strong ever since that day. It was THE BEST day of my life. But there are always those days when I feel completely inadequate! those days sneak up on me and I hate them! So I came up with a plan for those extra hard days: 
       I have surrounded my life with Christ. I always wear my CTR ring to remind me that I feel so much better when I am making good choices and doing what I am supposed to be doing. I have amazing friends. Friends that know what I stand for and always respect that. If occasionally I find myself in not so great company and know that I am not strong enough to handle it, I remove myself from the situation. I call my loving mother, who never fails to tell me that she is proud of me and that she loves me. She helps me get my head on straight when I almost make very rash crazy decisions! I read my patriarchal blessing or my favorite scriptures to bring the spirit back to my heart! And last but certainly not least, I read my mission call letter out loud to myself! every time I read it, I get that incredible feeling I got the first time I read it! 
       Naturally some days are better than others, and I am super stubborn, so it takes a lot for me to break down and turn completely to the Lord to carry me through those rough days. But I know that I always can turn to the Lord and I am soooo grateful for that. 

So behind the " it is going good" answer,  that is truly how my preparation is going. 

I am so grateful for the strength My Heavenly Father has given me just PREPARING for a mission! I know that if I always have faith, I will be given the strength to complete the full mission that my Heavenly Father would have me complete :) 

Thank you SO much for taking the time to read and understand my super long answers to these same 6 questions that I will always love to answer. 

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Called to Serve. Finally.

Wednesday January 23, 2013.

This supposedly is the day! the day I am to receive my mission call. I have been waiting 3 weeks for today! Words can not describe how I am feeling! All I can do is keep myself busy until I get some sort of conformation. Since I am between apartments, I decided it would be safe to have my mission call sent to one of my Aunts house. So I am anxiously awaiting a phone call or a text from her! I went to work and luckily it is a very busy day so time flies just like I need it to. Then I hear my ring tone (which happens to be Shikira's  Waka Waka song.) Rip it from my pocket and answer is with so much excitement only to hear the same words that I heard last week. "Kate, it didn't come!" all I want to do is sit on the floor and cry. There was no way I can wait another 7 days...

Then my Aunt says "Wait! Monday was a holiday wasn't it? yeah! it was Martin Luther King Day! So the mail is delayed a day!! it could still be here tomorrow!"

I have never before been so frustrated with a holiday but at the same time I had my hope and excitement back.

Tomorrow. It will be here tomorrow.

Thursday January 24, 2013

Holy Toledo. I have everything planned for my call to come. and now all I can do is kneel and tell my Heavenly Father how grateful I am to him that he has given me the opportunity  to serve a mission at 20 years old! I also tell him that I don't care where I go. The only thing I ask is if it could be a humble circumstance and that I will be allowed to grow and teach as much as he would like me to. Since I don't work today, all I can think of to do is to finish the 2nd season on Downton Abey until my phone rings once again.

Today, time was not flying. It seemed like I finished the season in just a few minutes and I still hadn't heard anything. So I decided to go grocery shopping! My grocery shopping sort of turned into walking down each aisle aimlessly with am empty cart just staring at my phone.


Instead of a call I get a text from her. but not just any text, its a picture message! containing this unforgettable picture.

I have never received a more beautiful picture!

With my uncontrollable excitement, I screamed and jumped in the air a couple of times in the middle of the freezer section! a sales associate approached me and said "i know right!? what an incredible sale on Rodes rolls!"

I laughed so hard and then I told him "well that is great! but wanna know something even more great??? my mission call is here!!!" I immediately floated up to cloud 9!

6:30 pm could not come soon enough.

I sent out texts to everyone letting them know that it was finally here. Then I got busy making brownies and ice cream.

6:00 came around and my incredible friends and family gathered around me showing me their love and support.

Once everyone was there my dad made a beautiful announcement about how much he loved and supported me going on a mission. He then handed me his pocket knife and I couldn't open that envelope fast enough! I saw the cream colored paper and I pulled it up just a little too far and I immediately saw where Heavenly Father was sending me.

I was completely speechless  I leaned over and started crying! and then I heard someone say "Read it!" So with a broken voice I read the words I had been dying to read for weeks.

"Dear Sister Sites,
       You are hereby called to serve as a missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. You are assigned to labor in the PHILIPPINES BAGUIO MISSION. It is anticipated that you will serve for a period of 18 months.
      You should report to the Provo Missionary Training Center on May 8th 2013. You will prepare to preach the gospel in the Tagalog Language."

As soon as I was finished reading I looked right at my beautiful mother. She immediately had tears in her eyes and looked at me with the most loving and proud eyes. I will never forget that look. And I will forever be grateful for it!

Then I heard everyone yelling and clapping around me. As soon as I stood up I was attacked with hugs and congratulations.

This was the happiest day of my life. I am so excited to serve the people of the Philippines and to bring them the true and everlasting gospel.

Thursday, January 10, 2013

My Final Decision.

". . .we have also given consideration to the age at which a young woman might serve. Today I am pleased to announce that able, worthy young women who have the desire to serve may be recommended for missionary service beginning at age 19, instead of age 21."(President Thomas S. Monson of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints October 2012 General Conference)

This moment forever changed my life. I had always thought about serving a mission. When people would ask me if I would ever serve a mission I would always say: " Well, if I am 21, not married, or involved in a program I would totally go!" As I got to college I met so many amazing returned maissionaries and I LOVED listening to stories of their missions, both guys and girls. I remember praying for any kind of missionary experience because I wasn't sure if I was going to serve a mission. Luckily the Lord put quite a few missionary experiences in my life at that time! Some that I could handle and some that brought me to tears! My desire to serve a mission grew so much every day. 

There have been a two major experiences in my life that have sparked my interest and desire to serve a mission.

 Here they are.

 Fall of 2011 was my very first semester in college, I attended Utah Valley University in Orem, Utah. Attending UVU also meant moving about two hours from home (which I was so excited about). I moved down with a close friend from high school and for the first few months I was having the time of my life. I was dating a guy that I would have never dreamed of dating, I was in an amazing singles ward that I will never forget, and I had 5 amazing roommates that I will always be friends with. Around Thanksgiving I fell really hard off of my "dream college life" cloud. My Best Friend Allisa Berry was re-diagnosed with brain cancer. Before we were best friends I faintly remember her fighting hard the first time and I remember when she won. We had become close my junior and senior year, we even celebrated 1 year of her being "cancer free". We never really discussed her cancer we both just had an optimistic attitude about it. In fact it turned into one of those "out of sight, out of mind" things. Life went on normally: we both took the ACT, planned on college, painted our nails, and then before we knew it we were throwing our graduation caps up in the air. After I left for college we frequently called, Skyped  and texted each other. One day I got a phone call from her that changed my life. She told me that her tumor had come back and that she wasn't going to fight it again. She told me that she had been to the temple and that she knew it was her time to return to our Heavenly Father. I am pretty sure I have never cried so hard in my life. I begged and begged her to change her mind, but I knew that she was right and that it was her time to return home. Two months went by and I spent as much time as I could with her and I told her everything that I ever wanted to tell her. On January 6, 2012 at 8:00 am she passed away. She was no longer in pain. She was home and she was perfect. I however fell into a pretty bad place. I was always worthy, but I didn't have any desire to progress. I never told anyone how upset I really was because I knew that Allisa coming back was the only thing that would make me happy and I knew that was never going to happen. My amazing roommates were GREAT supporters and listeners, my Home teachers always had the right messages and gave me the support and friendship that I needed. One day I went to the temple to preform baptisms for the dead, and all of the sudden I had an overwhelming feeling that Allisa was sitting right next to me, comforting me with a warm sweet hug. My feeling after that was beyond words. She also visited me in my dream that night and basically told me in her "just suck it up and deal with it" attitude to get my act together and that I had way more to do in this life. So from then on I knew that the only way I could keep Allisa's spirit and light with me was to always keep the spirit with me. Always. So that has always been my goal.Another experience that sparked insane interest in me to serve a mission was last winter. I was dating an amazing returned missionary (my home teacher at the time, lets call him Andrew) , he served righteously and faithfully in Finland and he always told me of his experiences. Andrew and I could talk for hours at a time, and we did, all the time. When we first started dating he told me that I "had the testimony of a returned missionary". I was surprised because I felt like my testimony was completely inadequate compared to his! He often encouraged me to serve a mission if  I was able to when the time came. I will always be forever grateful for his encouragement and example. We only dated for a little over a month when we realized that we were better off good friends. After that I decided that not only wanted to marry someone who's testimony and knowledge was as strong and touching as Andrew's was but also someone who loved their mission as much as he did. But that wasn't enough, I wanted to KNOW what all of that felt like. I wanted to literally "have the testimony of a returned missionary". I wanted to serve a mission. My 21st birthday couldn't come sooner.

 Fast forward all the way to Sunday Morning October 2012 general conference. There I was, sitting on my Aunt Susie's couch when the Prophet looked into the camera and announced that I could serve a mission at 19 years old. My jaw dropped, my heart started racing, and tears ran down my face. 

This was the moment I will never forget. Susie, my Brother Zach, My parents, and I started planning right away. I was dating another great guy and so I had to pray about either continuing to date him, or serving a mission. I got the answer almost instantly and made an appointment to talk to my bishop! I began my papers and, well, the rest is history....

As of January 8th my Mission papers were submitted and ready to be assigned. Doctrine And Covenants 4:3 says ". . . if ye have desires to serve God ye are called to the work;" 

So here I am, writing yet another blog post, biting my time until I finally get to read: Dear Sister Sites, you are hereby called to serve.....

 I don't care where the Lord calls me. I want to serve a mission more than I have ever wanted anything in my life. I Love the Lord and this Gospel more than dating, school, chocolate, and anything else that I love.

 So to all future or returned sister and elder missionaries I want to hear of your similar experiences! I want to know why you want to serve a mission and what experiences you have had! feel free to comment or e-mail me! your examples, stories, and testimonies strengthen my testimony and desire everyday!