Monday, December 4, 2017

i accidentally ended up in Transfer 12

well, tomorrow i will see my dad for the first time in 18 months and then in about a week, we’ll be flying home together to the great state of texas. to say that i’m freaking out would be a major understatement . i’m not sure what all is awaiting in my life, but i do know one thing: God has a plan. 

i’ve learned a lot on my mission and i’m so grateful for all the experiences that i’ve had here and for the person i’ve become. for this last email, i want to kind of steal what huntzinger did in hers, so here are 18 things i’ve learned in the past 18 months:

1. God is very real and loves us very much
2. His timing is perfect, even when we don’t think it is
3. the mission is the best and the hardest thing ever and no one really knows how to explain it
4. there’s always room for another bite of food
5. never take the same path going home every single night at the same time, otherwise a creepy dude might follow you
6. eating gelato everyday is awesome :)
7. you never know what anyone else has gone through or is going through, so just love everyone no matter what
8. saying goodbye never gets easier
9. the gospel of jesus christ is real and it works
10. it’s never as scary as it seems
11. drinking water is important
12. jesus christ is the bread of life a.k.a. bread is life
13. hard work and a lotta prayer results in a lotta miracles
14. work hard play hard is my favorite motto
15. hedgehogs purr
16. food is the way to people’s hearts. that and american cookies (is that the same thing?)
17. being grateful makes you a happier person
18. the stars at night are big and bright... deep in the heart of texas

see y’all soon,
sorella meager (ancora)

p.s. i will be landing in the dfw airport friday december 8th. if you want the deets, ask my mom 

p.p.s. my homecoming is december 10th at 10701 east lake highlands drive dallas, texas 75041 at 9:00 and then there will be an open house at my house at 18:00. email me or message me if you have any questions :)

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

i'm still alive but barely breathin

explanation of the title: i was cleaning the kitchen at 7:30am and then the gas alarm started going off and we couldn’t figure out how to stop it because we didn’t want to wake our neighbors up... so we called the office and they told us to shut the gas off and evacuate, so we shut the gas off and unplugged the alarm....๐Ÿ˜ฌ and then we plugged it back in and it didn’t beep again so i think we’re good ๐Ÿ‘ 

we were both sick as dogs on one of the days in this past week. idk which one, but we slept in and a member gave us some tea and we felt literally so much better. other than that, it has been another fan-freaking-tastic week here in italia. and i don’t want to leave. like seriously. 

anywayyyyyyys, this week was way awesome and so i’ll skip right to the good stuff:

we had a christmas celebration on saturday in mestre. why were we celebrating christmas in november, you ask? i have no idea. nonetheless, it was awesome and i loved singing and listening to others sing because i freaking love christmas so much and i’m s excited for christmas.
sunday was literally amazing. words cannot describe the spirit that was in the chapel that day. okay, so rewind to 3 minutes before sacrament starts, when president bison comes up to me and asks if i can give a talk because a member fell through... i freaked out. mineer and i had prepared (actually she prepared and i was kind of winging it) to share our testimonies in sacrament so i was freaking out a little. but i just prayed and i felt a confirmation of the spirit that it would be okay. that morning, i had been listening to church hymns while i was getting ready and the words of the hymn “be still, my soul” were repeating over and over in my head. honestly, when i got up to do my talk, i don’t really remember anything that happened except that i shared the words of the hymn and then i told them about my best friend, zoe, and i started crying my eyes out. then i shared my testimony of the special plan of happiness that god has for us. and idk but the spirit was really strong and i could see tears in the members eyes. then mineer gave her testimony and she cried, too and brought the spirit in so strong and we ended by having aurora, our 12yr old investigator share a scripture from the bom and her testimony. THEN long story short: we talked to aurora about baptism picked her own baptismal date of december 23!!! and said she was gonna talk to her mom about it.
monday and tuesday morning we had scambio in verona and that was one of the funnest scambi of my whole mission. i was with the beloved sorella roloff and  we saw juliet’s balcony, her wall full of love letters (and gum), the markets, and we got la romana gelato. also, we fed the homeless tuesday morning. it was a really good start to the week. :)
2 times in the past 2 days, i’ve started talking with a girl that’s in her young 20s and i tell her about being a missionary and then she asks about our church. and you know what that leads to? the restoration. so i share a 5 min resto and at the end of the first one (francesca), she wanted a book of mormon and my facebook. at the end of the second one (vera), i taught her about the pos too and we showed her the website and she wanted all of our facebooks. it was really such an incredible opportunity and i feel so blessed to be a missionary here on earth at this time. 
we went to venice again today and man, i never get tired of that place. we bought a magnum bar that’s like dipped in chocolate and loaded with stuff and we shared it with 8 anziani. it was way yummy. #sharingiscaring

okay, since tomorrow is thanksgiving, i just wanna make a short list of some of the things i’m grateful for:
my companion
jesus christ
my family
italy ๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡น 
football americano
food, mostly gelato
the book of mormon
a current prophet
my friends
and so much more

“Sincerely giving thanks not only helps us recognize our blessings, but it also unlocks the doors of heaven and helps us feel God’s love.” -thomas s. monson

be grateful y’all and play some football for me
sorella meager

Friday, November 17, 2017

I promise Sara loves me; Italian Dad; she did our hairs; 1st cannolo; fav district foto; I love neve

I Am A Child of God

also, so i didn’t send an email last week, because i resent the one from the week before, so i’ll explain in this email what happened last week. sorry if that’s a little confusing.... okay annnnnnnd here we go:

-i had my last fast sunday as a normal missionary and my comp and i and our member sara, and her best friend aurora we all bore our testimonies and it was so sweet. (aurora is not a member, yet)
-we visited gerini (hinckley’s italian twin) because he broke his ankle and he is so sweet. we’re gonna make him lunch friday 
-we taught the cecchin twins and they are AMAZING and the mom is not super happy that we’re teaching the, but we’re doing our best
-there was a party for a member, angelica, who turned 9 and we met lots of cool people there that kept asking us who we were and what we did as missionaries
-we ding dong ditched the bison family and they thought we were thieves hahaha but then they saw the lemon poppyseed bread and the card that we left by their gate
-we had fhe with our favorite people: fabio, deborah, and valentina and i will talk about it below...
-we had pizza at agostino’s and it was literally so much goodness
-the anziani came with us to give a blessing to a member woman that is sick and she said she is coming to dallas to see me in december!!
-we had la romana with valentina and then met her grandparents and they’re awesome and he speaks olandese so i pulled out the only phrase i know which is “hoe gaat het meneer” (i don’t actually know how to spell it, only say it thanks to The Best Two Years) so i said it and pointed to my companions name tag and everyone laughed.
-taught zoe (daughter of a member mom and non member dad) who we found out is only 7yrs old, but vabbรจ. she was such a sass and she spoke half in italian and half in portuguese 
-went to our service place wednesday night for a party and everyone was very curious and excited to meet the girl missionaries.
-for pday we played sports in pordenone and had a bbq and mamma mia i’m so excited for texas bbq. good stuff
-afterwards, we went to hang out with aurora and get to know her outside of church and my comp showed her some dance moves because she’s a ballerina and it was way cute and then she begged us to stay for pizza so we got to meet with her dad and they’re are so so awesome. she’s need for the waters.

fhe with fabio and our fav girls: i’m actually just going to copy paste what my comp said because i feel she explained it perfectly. 
“I'll try to type this as best as I can, and you try not to laugh. We had Family Home Evening with Fabio and Deborah and Valentina on Monday. (Fabio, member and returned missionary, Deborah and Valentina, fiancรฉe and daughter, non-members.) They are like family, I compare going over to their house making me as happy as going to Disneyland! Okay well it is good when missionaries are happy, am I right? Well this night my comp and I were both super happy! Everyone was laughing the whole entire dinner, and we just had an awesome time! Well it comes time for the spiritual thought. Sadly, uncontrollable laughter and the spirit don't really work hand in hand. We had asked Fabio to give a spiritual thought, but he forgot and said missionaries are ALWAYS prepared with a spiritual thought! Well of course! He told us maybe we could sing I Am a Child of God, because the words would be a great message for Deborah and Valentina. First miracle comes right then when we agree to sing a song. We ran to a closet nearby and as Sorella Meager and I practiced in our tone deaf man voices and we couldn't control our laughter. We finally went out in front of them and Fabio agreed to sing with us. Well after his voice cracking like a 15 year old girl and starting over 4 times all of us were in tears of laughter. Fabio left it to us to sing. Well the laughter couldn't seem to contain itself. We decided to say a prayer. We prayed for the spirit and to help us not laugh. y’all. you can pray for literally anything. We started the song again and sang all three verses. We made it through without laughing once. I honestly do not know how. We ended with every person telling us what the lyrics meant to them, and I have never felt the spirit so strongly before. In that moment I truly felt God's love and so lucky to be his child. Deborah and Valentina both prayed that night and Fabio was grinning ear to ear. I love seeing how much happiness this Gospel brings into people's lives.”

also, i balled my eyes out because of the spirit and also because i love these people so much, it hurts.

i just want to end with my testimony of the truthfulness of the lyrics of that song. 

I am a child of God,
And he has sent me here,
Has given me an earthly home
With parents kind and dear.

2. I am a child of God,
And so my needs are great;
Help me to understand his words
Before it grows too late.

3. I am a child of God.
Rich blessings are in store;
If I but learn to do his will
I’ll live with him once more.

Lead me, guide me, walk beside me,
Help me find the way.
Teach me all that I must do
To live with him someday.

i know that we are all children of our heavenly father, who loves us and has a very special plan for each one of us. i know that he understands us perfectly and knows our needs before we even know them ourselves. he is always watching over us and guiding us, if we allow him to. my invite for y’all is to pray to him and find out what his plan is for you. i promise he will answer. you are never too far away for him to hear your prayers. he’s always listening. in the name of jesus christ. amen.

love y’all
sorella meager 

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

Ask & Ye Shall Receive

hey sorry y’all. i sent this last week but it didn’t send. SO HERE YA GO

today marks 17 months with the name tag and i could not be happier. i loooove being a missionary and teaching people and learning about the italian culture and giving everything to Him. it has truly been one of the most special experiences in my whole life and i am so grateful to be serving. one of the most significant lessons that i feel i have learned in my mission is “ask and he shall receive”. there are several scriptures that emphasize this phrase but i want to share my favorite:

“Do ye not remember the things which the Lord hath said?--If ye will not harden your hearts, and ask me in faith, believing that ye shall receive, with diligence in keeping my commandments, surely these things shall be made known unto you.” (1 nephi 15:11

the key things that i learn from this are:

1. be humble
2. if you ask in faith THEN you will receive
3. you have to keep the commandments a.k.a. do your part

but if you do these 3 “simple” things, you can receive anything, if it be in God’s will. which hey, He wants complete happiness and joy for you soooo He will do anything for you to be happy. and He knows exactly what we need in our lives to have that joy. here are a few things that happened to me this week that proved this scripture true:

we asked for our heater to be fixed because we kept trying over and over and calling people and asking advice. finally, the dude came and fixed it and now we have heating in the apt and hot water #hallelujah
we asked for a car because we live out in the boonies and we missed our last bus (20:43) out to our apartment twice and had to take a taxi. and they gave us one!! our circumstances were in dire need of a vehicle
i had been searching for my drivers license since i left my first city and thought it was gone for sure. then friday afternoon, i was looking for it in my bags and after a few minutes of ravaging through my stuff, i stopped and prayed to please help me find my dl and literally 2.4 seconds later, i find it.
the senior couple from the military base was coming to visit and they asked if we wanted any american items so now we have peanut butter, maple syrup, and lucky charms :):):) ๐Ÿ™Œ๐Ÿผ
we asked aurora (a 12 year old cute dancer best friend of our girl, sara) on sunday if she wanted to be baptized and she said yes. okay hold on, back up: so sara is a member and she is 13 yrs. aurora’s dad is a member, but her mom is not. however, she comes to church sometimes with her dad. so on sunday, like 2 minutes before class starts, pres pulls us aside and asks if we’ll teach young women’s. we’re like SURE we know young women, we can do this. it’s only sara and aurora and they both seem cool (at this point, we’d never met aurora and we’d met sara twice) SO we teach us and then afterwards, we’re just talking and eating chips and that’s when we drop the question. so, we still have to get her moms approval and teach her the lessons and everything, but we have a pretty good start!

now for some random updates about this week:
we had lunch with gerini and he seriously is like the italian version of gordon b. hinckley. in fact, we told him that and he just laughed.... which means they’re probably long lost cousins. (pis coming soon)
we carved pumpkins with our cute valentina and then made pancakes to surprise her mom and fabio with a gourmet pancake dinner . we made sweet (maple syrup and nutella) and savory (prosciutto, olive, and parmigiano) pancakes and HOLY MOTHER. they were some of the best pancakes i’ve ever had in my life. i’m gonna miss italy. and that family. p.s. they’re getting married december 1st. :):):) auguurrriiii 
we had a hopping halloween party in mestre and man, italians know how to party! tons of food, dancing, games, and they even made an escape room downstairs! we left with tons of numbers from people that want to learn about our church!
we went to venice again today and then also to murano (which is an island that specialize in blown glass) and we watched the, make a vase and y’all, watch a video of how they make blown glass cause it is so cool)
we got a secret tour from a venezian of this tiny shop full of crazy blown glass. the total of all the art in the room costs more than my house! for example: one glass bird costs €55,000.
lo and behold in venice, we ran into a couple from DALLAS. it was beautiful. and they had just gotten engaged the day before. AUGURI ๐ŸŽ‰ 

okay that’s it for this week! happy belated halloween ๐ŸŽƒ 

love y’all,
sorella meager