Friday, July 5, 2013

MTC pics ... This place is amazing!

Oi minha familia!!

I got a bit of a late start today!  Last night we got to go watch the fireworks and stay up past our bedtime!!!!  HOW EXCITING!!!   hahahaha.   It was awesome though!!!  ahhh!   We got to go to a devotional, which was amazing as always, and then watch “17 miracles!”   The movie!   It was SOOO GOOD.  I never saw it before so yes, I was crying so much haha.   Luckily, the sisters in my district also cry a lot so we just had a huge box of tissues and passed it around. It was really funny. but yeah that movie is literally one of my top movies...... I recommend it to everyone!!   But just keep in mind you will cry. ): or maybe it’s just cause I’m here and emotional anyway haha.

We got to stay out til about 10:45pm!   wow!   Hahaha.   So sad cause I was soooo tired and I was like,  its almost 11!   I need to sleep!  I feel like an old lady :P    But, yeah, we slept at like 11:30-11:45 ish, so we had a harder time waking up this morning.   I realized just how lucky I am to have such good will power when it comes to waking up early.   This is why i was able to go to seminary all the time.   But, yeah,  it’s a good thing, because some of the sisters here have a realllllyyyy hard time with it.   I  have a hard time as it is, but they really just can’t get up sometimes. It’s hard especially when I'm supposed to wake up the same time as my comp. 

So I've gotten over the shock of being here, took me long enough, and I've gained back all the weight I've lost from the first week here--and more ): haha.   But it’s okay.  I’m enjoying American food while i can!   Mmmmmm … fat and processed sugar!!!

I'm soooooo ready to leave the MTC, sometimes!!   It is tough sitting in a class room all day and just studying and planning all day.   I know it’s good for me, but I wanna go teach real people now!!   ahhh!!   But I know I’m still not ready -- Yet I feel like I never will be ready so they might as well throw me straight in!!   haha.  But I will definitely miss the AC.....  Every time we do a temple walk or something for gym outside, I’m dyyyyying  and I’m thinking, “NO! DONT SEND MEOUT YET! I LOVE AC!!”  I met another teacher here who came back from Teresina!!   He said basically the same things Sam Chiba said...... you shower twice a day in cold water, but step out and are sweating again.   yayyy.... i hate sweat. ):

I’m really relying on your blessing dad!  I need to acclimate fast!!!   haha.  But anyway, I’m sure it’ll be okay.   The best thing about that story was that he (the teacher who served in Teresina) was speaking only Portuguese while he told us about Teresina!  It was really cool cause I understood like 95% of it!!   He was definitely not speaking as fast or as slurred as a real Brazilian but I was so excited!  I just really hope I can learn more by the time I leave. 

I got the bread from Donna Stamm!   … and the letters!  Soooo cool!   I was really excited! I got a picture with the portrait!   I’m trying to figure out how to attach pics here!   It’s not working!! ):   But I'll try again later today.   I have a lotta pics of my district and my comp. and the temple and the fireworks!!    woooh!   I realized I probably don’t need to send those.   You have fireworks, too!  haha.  And they probably looked better.   THAT WAS LIKE THE HIGHLIGHT OF MY WEEK!   Talk about excitement at the MTC!   hahahaha.   Yeah.... We definitely need some excitement here, but it was super fun!

Please tell Donna Stamm thank you soo soo soo soooooo much!   That bread was sooooo good and I really enjoy reading the journal entries!   Or what I can understand of it.  haha. Spanish is really close to Portuguese!   fun!   But yeah thank you so much!  I will try to write a letter back today!   Please thank Grama and Maryann and Michael Barnes for their support!!  Maryann's cookies helped so much with the homesickness transition   :)

I got a letter from the Bertagnolli’s and from the Garrett’s!  I really appreciated the letters aloooot!!!   I love hearing from the ward and just what’s going on with life back home!   Thank you all sooooo much!!

I sent a letter to Travis and Emily. I hope they got them. I will email too hopefully.   If I have time ahh!   Who knew P-day would be so stressful.!!  haha.   Anyway about the duffle bag. I’m not sure what size 24 and 29 mean........ but I’m guessing if the 24 is big enough it will be perfect. The one I have is good.   Wheels would be good.  Whichever you think would work best. Sorry!  I don’t have a lotta info... I can buy a phone card here for when I leave to be reassigned or whatever and I will still have to find the atm. sorry. I will try it today and write a letter home for this week. soooo check the mail!  Haha. 

For music,,,,, Just the church stuff.   Sorry.  No Weird Al, Emily!   :)  There's a playlist from Travis on there. with Vocal Point on it.!!    Please and thanks!

Okayyyyyyyy sooooooo I just wanted to thank Mom for sharing that story of Joey from our ward.  I can tell you how much that hit me this week. I am soo amazingly proud of Joey and hope you can tell him for me.  I can't believe how strong he is. I only got to speak with him a couple of times at home, but he is so fun and happy and such a good kid.   I read your letter, Mom and It was amazing.  You know that analogy of how testimony can be like a sunrise, gradual and then lit, (dad you can expand on it haha thanks) or a light switch with a huge sudden light"?   Until now, I've only had sunrises. which is fine, because eventually I realized I did have a testimony of a lot of things I didn’t know about.   But this was a light switch moment, where really it just hit me how much this gospel can mean to people who haven’t grown up with it.   I knew this before but this just hit home for some reason.   I just felt sooo much of God's love for Joey and his family and I wanted so badly to be home and just be there to help them feel it and benefit from all the blessings of the gospel!  But then I realized, thats's not my job.   That’s the missionaries' job back in California.   My calling and responsibilty was to those in Brazil and to where ever I’ll be reassignned.  My job is to do that same thing for the hundreds of others going through similar things around the world!   My thoughts instantly went to the people suffering in Teresina and I was sooo overwhelmed by how lucky I am to be the one who brings this message of joy and hope to those in Brazsil.   How blessed I am to be the one who gets to help them come closer to Christ and to be able to witness the miracals in their lives.  I reread that letter often this week.  It really is a spiritual high here at the MTC, yet its amazing how many times a week we still need to be reminded why we're here.  This letter reminds me every time I read it exactly why I’m putting myself through 16hrs a day of study and work, waking up at 6 and trying to work with people so different than me.  It’s insane, yet so worth it.   So thank Joey for being such a good example to ME of how to really change and rely on the Lord in all things.   He is amazing and has really helped my testimony of this work.

The other day, last thing -- we were at the temple and I went with a question in my mind – “How can I make my companionship work better -- We'd been having real challenges working together when teaching one of our investigators.  I prayed and prayed yet nothing came.   I never really was good at receiving promptings and just couldn’t figure it out.   By the end, I just kept hearing my own voice in my head saying “Patience, love and kindness” over and over.   I thought my brain was just trying to make some answer up so I could go home but then I realized it literally came out of nowhere. and it was just repeating in my head.   It helped a little bit that day and the next  but soon it was forgotten.  The next week my comp. asked if there was anything she could do for me since I had said I would pray for her language, I didn/t have anything in mind but then that story popped in my head and I told it to her—the story about the "patience, love and kindness" thought that kept repeating in my mind as I prayed.   She said "You know, there's actually a scripture I just read with those words in that order. and it said that patience, love and kindness equals charity".  It was a weird eye opener for me.  Dad had written about "charity" related to the "gifts of the spirit."  That really was my answer from God that day and I just didn’t realize it.  The only way I realized it was when I was prompted to tell my comp that story and she knew exactly what it meant.  It meant nothing special to me until it was tied together by my companion.   We really were put into a companionship by inspiration.   No matter how hard it is, this answered my problem -- I have to have charity, AND I have to have my companion.   hahaha. She was the only way any of it made sense to me.  It sounds really simple and non-spectacular but it was enough to get me to stop being so selfish and realize that I DO need her and the only way I can make this work is by seeing her through God's eyes.  I know how much God loves me, yet i keep forgetting just how much he loves HER too.   I need to remember that and treat her as such, especially when it’s hard.

Well that was my big lessons this week.  haha.   I hope all is really well at home!!  I’m so happy to read the letters and articles dad sends me and everyone else!!  I love it and it really keeps me going sometimes!   I hope I didnt forget anything!   I'll try to come back on later if I have extra comp time! LOVE YOU ALL!

Miss you tons and love love love you!!!
eu amo portugues!!!   :DD its coming slowly but i love it!

-Sister Lauren Yoshimoto


p.s.  My feet don’t hurt … just a bit numb.  I will get them checked out soon!   Here are some pics!!! :D
This is my district at the temple!! They’re all soo  cool!! 
p.s.  I wanted to add to the last email about how much I appreciate all the support and love from family friends and everyone!!   God blessed me so much with this family and with friends that I have and the ward I am in because He knows how weak I would be without you all and how much I need each of you all.   Thank you so much for being there for me!!!

I pray for each of you individually every night!  … even Rusty!!! MISS YOU GIVE HIM A BIG HUG FOR ME!!


Irma Yoshimoto in front of the Tree of Life Painting.  The model for Lehi is Donna Stamm's father.  Donna was Lauren's mother's missionary companion in the Spain Sevilla Mission many moons ago.  Picture was on the cover of the August 2004 Ensign.
Irma Lauren Yoshimoto and Hermana Camille Garrett

Irma Nilsen and Irma Yoshimoto

Irma Nilsen

Sister Nilsen, Sister Yoshimoto, Sister Merrill, Sister Jorgensen, Sister Horrocks, and Sister Clark.  Elder Engstrom, Elder De Jesus, Elder Tolman, Elder Wright, Elder Polson, and Elder Hogan.

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