Tuesday, March 15, 2011

March 15, 2011

Hey hey!
To answer the questions from your email before I forget. Yes, Lisa is engaged! It's super exciting! :) And yes, I know someone in Vocal Point. His name's Jake Hunsaker. If you get a chance to talk to him, tell him I say hello. He's really an awesome guy. As for the questions from your letter, I don't think I need anything else. At least not that I can think of. I'm not sending that much stuff home. I'm actually hoping to get the package off today, but we'll see how that works out. As for mailing to Russia, I have no idea. It's going to take a long time, which is why they have pouch mail, so for letters for now I recommend DearElder still, and I'll let you know more as I learn more. I really have no idea how often I'll be able to get mail or what will be going on with that. I do however get my travel plans sometime this week, so in the email next week I should be able to tell you when I'm flying out to MOTHER RUSSIA!
Because we're leaving in just 2 weeks, we have now started our "English Fast." Pretty much everything is to be done in Russian, as if we were in the field. There are exceptions, of course, since not everyone in the MTC or who we interact with speaks Russian, but for the most part we do SYL (Speak Your Language) all day, every day from here on out. It just started last night, but it's helped so much just since then. And on Saturday, I think, we were studying outside (It's been SO lovely outside, so we've been taking advantage of it before we go have to experience the end of winter again) and one of the Russian teachers we don't know (I think he's teaching older couples, because we know pretty much all the other Russian teachers) came up and started talking to us. The conversation was entirely in Russian and he said that we understood Russian really well, which was great, because I've been more worried about the understanding and knowing what the conversation's about so that I can reply than the actual speaking itself.
Thanks for the stamps. And to answer Dad's question about why I need stamps...I send a lot of letters. Contrary to popular belief, I do have friends. ;) Haha, but really, they're much appreciated. I'm hoping to not have to buy stamps for the rest of the time I'm here, so thanks! They start to add up. And thanks everyone for all the mail and packages. This week I got a package 3 days in a row! And lots of mail. It really does make a missionary's day to get mail.
So, one of my teacher's roommates teaches Spanish (Espanski) here and so sometime earlier this week we taught their district in English and then they taught us. One of the sisters is from American Fork, so I asked her if she knew the Ashbys. Turns out she does, and she even said that I look like an Ashby. Apparently any Ashby just has this "look" about them, since I look more like Mom, but people have still told me that I look like Laura and Katherine and now the AF Ashbys.
It's really fun being able to see Elder Bezas around. We've gotten to talk quite a bit in meal lines or at the temple on Sundays. I didn't really know the Keazles; I just heard Matt and the fam talk about them, so I haven't been looking for him. I have no idea how to spell their name either. Anyway, the point is that I haven't seen him, but if he's Russian speaking I can try to look for him. He's probably in the other zone, but I see them all the time too.
The closer we get to leaving, the more excited I get and the more scared I get and the more I realize how much I will miss the MTC. I absolutely love it here, despite all the downsides. Mostly I will miss my district and zone. I will get to see lots of my district quite a bit in Moscow, I think. But still. I love them so much, and we are just family. It will be weird to not be around them all 24/7 anymore. I will really miss Cectpa Clark, especially. But at the same time, how many sisters can there be in my mission with only 48ish missionaries total, and we have 3 of them in our district right now, plus another one in our zone, so I am pretty sure I will get to see them quite a bit, at least. Ya ne znayou. It's really weird to try to transliterate Russian words.

This past Wednesday we hosted new missionaries! That was super fun. There were only 20-something sisters that came in, so we each only got to host one sister, but it was still great. I hosted Hermana Sevrinsen, from Salt Lake going to Houston East, Spanish-speaking. She was super cute and will be a great missionary. What is really exciting is that tomorrow we will most likely get to host again and this time there are over 100 sisters coming in. It is going to be awesome. I love Elders, and I'm really not just saying this because I am a sister, but Sister missionaries add so much to the MTC and their districts. We have a district in our zone with no Sisters and I just feel sad for them, especially since my group had so many sisters that came in.

Um. I am not sure what else to say, although there's like 7 minutes left on my email...hmmm....I'll send this one off and then mybe think of more to say before I log off.

Sister Rach

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