Tuesday, February 23, 2010

23 Feb 10 letter

Dear Mom and Dad (Madre y Padre)

¡Te Amo! (You, I Love) Yes it is verdad (true).

I received a letter from Grandma Ochs and I wrote her back. Man we really have the best families in the whole wide world. Tell both Grandmas and Grandpas that I love them mucho mucho!

Mom you are welcome to any of my art supplies and scrapbook stuff. There is that blue scrapbook under my bed you started for my senior year of high school, hint, hint.

Wow, I just got done talking to Elder Ochs! I really haven't got to talk to him. We are usually on our way to places but I was able to just talk to him before the Devotional. Man he has some really good stories! I know he told you already but the pillow room story! Man I haven't heard a story like that in a long time! I miss just sitting around telling and hearing stories. John always has fun stories. That was a really good laugh! I write to you guys pretty much all that is going on but I really haven't had a chance to tell him all this stuff. Wow, I don't really recognize my brother sometimes. I think he is definitely looking older. There is something different, good different. John and I were also talking about how all our older districts are leaving and we are becoming the older districts now.

We are less than one month away from leaving into the field, crazy. We used to have sisters (other sisters) in our room but now they are gone. So are the other hermanas in our zone. Two of them are going to serve at the Oakland Temple Visitors Center. You will have to keep an eye out for them. Hermanas Hanson (Red Head from Texas) and Stapley (Blond). They are awesome! They leave tomorrow morning.

I love you,

Hermana Rachel Ochs

23 Feb 10 email

Hola mi familia y amigos! Hahaha , I am not going to write all in Spanish, cause it would take way too long.

Yes this last Sunday was the half way mark here in the MTC! Only 4 more weeks until it is off to Panama! This week starts the all Spanishness! Our teachers speak all Español now and we teach in Spanish! It is getting easier but still there is so much to learn! I love Español!!!! hehe I have to tell myself that.

Yes we started a quote wall now. With all this language learning and switching our thoughts and everything into Spanish, things that always made sense to us before are now confusing, haha. So yes we have said some really really funny things. Or well at least everything seems funnier to us now. I have way too many quotes on the wall, like "Is there such a thing as daughter in laws", "What's Georgia?" (with a Spanish accent) and "Usted Lavo Me!" Ya that last one was bad. We were giving examples to our teacher of reflective verbs and I was trying tell him that he washes himself but I said "You wash me!" hahaha. Yes, so we are going crazy but learning crazy bunches about teaching the Gospel!!!! I love teaching in Español! Because I can only use so many words and I am able to keep things much more simple! Teaching in English is way harder! As long as I know my Escrituras and rely on El Espiritu all things are maravilloso!!

Wow so this Sunday we had a change of leadership because we were half way through. So Elder Anderson is the new District Leader Elder Rumsey's companion (The old district leader) and Hermana Graham is our Hermanas cordinator. Ooo, And I am the Senior Companion now! I was a little bit scared at first but now with the support and help of my Companion I am excited! We are working so much better together as we learn, teach, set goals and achieve them together! Hurray for Missionary Work and Companions! And we pretty much have the best Elders in the MTC!

In Relief Society we had Sister Janice Perry come and speak to us! I had no idea how famous she was until now! She has written so many Church songs for the Primary and the Church like “As Sisters in Zion.” Man the spirit speaks so strongly in song! I want to get the Childrens song book for the mission in Español!

So pretty much all the teachers, tutors, leaders, and missionaries are great here!

We had another great Fireside talking about the Humanitarian Missionaries around the world! They are so awesome! Some day I want to serve a Humanitarian Mission! They help so many needy people!

So I hope your day is great! And Remember Charity is everything! Caridad es...todo!

loves from Hermana Ochs!

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

16 Feb 10 letter

Dear Mom and Dad,

So I am in choir right now and the tenor's are practicing their parts. I love choir and music in general. We can't listen to music here at the MTC because there are just too many people, it would be crazy with everyone playing their music. But we sing a lot! I love singing in Español! Did I tell you that Eric Ochs and his family sent me a letter. Eric said he really loved coming up and spending time with us and singing the Spanish hymns with me. I wrote back already, but it is just so so awesome to have such support from everyone.

Wow Mom and Dad, you hit a huge Bullseye with every goodie you sent. I love all of it. See's Candy, perfecto! Peanut Bars, awesome! Good and Plentys, love em....and I don't have to share those because none of the hermanas like Black Licorice.

I like spelling in Spanish way better. Pretty much all the letters sound like how you spell it. Now the problem is to understand what words are said. Spanish is so fast!
I forgot I wanted to tell you that I just saw Johnny walk into choir! I Love him!

Today was Temple day! I love the temple. It was really very nice. I could have taken a nice nap in the couches their if they would let me. The Lord's house is awesomely awesome!

Our TEC task again was rushed. They told us originally 6:00pm then switched it last minute to 5:00pm. We got out of dinner at 5:15pm so we had to run again, but it was a good learning experience as always. We had to go pick up our investigator for church and ask them about how they did on their commitments in Español. Then we had to teach the same investigator the Plan of Salvation in English. Wow, so now our teachers are starting to talk in Español around 75% of the time. After this week it will be all Spanish from this time out.

Funny story about the TEC lesson. Elder Ramsey (our District Leader) and Elder Anderson were using the Plan of Salvation diagram pictures and their investigator was a young lady around their age. They were at the part of the lesson were they told the investigator that the little man in the diagram represented them. Well, Elder Rumsey added “except your hair is a lot longer and your eyes are more beautiful!” Awkward! The girl was a bit embarrassed but Elder Rumsey was way more. I guess the little guy that they had in their Plan of Salvation diagram had some really weird looking eyes...

Yesterday was the day of fasting and only speaking Español. By the end of the day all of our Districts brains were pretty frizzled. At the beginning of our class that night we just all started laughing and just couldn't stop. Later that night the sisters just kept randomly laughing all night. I was saying my prayers and was just praying about how great they were when they noticed what I was doing and they started, “shoosh, Sister Ochs is praying!” I told them, “don't worry, I am praying for you”, and that got them all going again. I think we just needed to get some stress out.

Spencer V. Jones is going to be the speaker tonight at our Devotional. I will tell you about it after.

I wanted to tell you that we were just talking about as sister missionaries we will be much stronger as people and mothers.

Spencer V. Jones is such a witness of our Savior! His testimony was so powerful! It filled my soul. I want to feel that kind of testimony of my Savior Jesus Christ. I am greatful to be a servant of my Heavenly Father. I know he knows me and will empower me with his spirit to do this work. I want to be worthy of his spirit at all times!

Love you guys so much. Tell everyone that I love them!


Hermana Ochs

Map of the MTC (Hermana Ochs version)

16 Feb 10 email

Hola Familia y amigos!!!! Yo amo ustedes!

So this week has been an adventure! We are always being fed both spiritually and physically. Wow, thank you so so so much for all the treats! I eat them everyday, haha. But I think I need to start sharing them. I don't want to get diabetes before I reach Panama. It is just that I love to partake of your love hehe. So Anna sent me a huge box and there was stuff from Israel also, haha. Anna even had stuff for Elder Ochs. I gave it to him in the Cafeteria.

Wow is it so great here in the MTC. The Elders have been opening doors, taking our trays after every meal, and now in effect by our Mission President they are letting us go to the front of all the lines! This morning we got up early to get breakfast and there was a huge line. The Elders were saying, "Go ahead sister's" and then they were like "and especially Sister Ochs." Hahaha it was Johnny's Zone Elders. I guess they all know who I am because I will randomly hear my name being whispered by Elders walking by and I was like "what in the world, I don't know you!" Haha and then they were saying "You're Elder Ochs's sister haha". So when we were leaving I saw Johnny in line. He was like "wow you get special treatment." Hehe pretty much. I love mi hermano!!!

So yes we have had lots of great meetings! Learning about our purpose! Bringing people to Christ is center to our purpose! We have been learning so much about how to teach to the needs of investigators. Also, that it is so important to remember the purpose is to help them enter into the gate of baptism.

Wow, in our Zone we talked about overcoming fears! And that to really overcome all fears of preaching the Gospel is to have Charity for the people! We have a saying here with our Zone and District: Caridad es....todo. Hahah, the pause is essential. It is so fun to say but also it is so so so important. We are working hard to have that charity for all!!!! Pray for charity for the people of Panama!

Wow, Domingo was awesome! Happy Valentines To everyone and a Happy Chinese New Years!!!! We had a great day of love. In Relief Society we heard a talk from Sister Staples. She said this work is the work of love, and what better way to show love than by sharing the Gospel! Caridad es ....todo, haha. Wow then the Fireside was awesome too. We watched this video where Brother Heaton asked us to pay attention to the people in white passing a basketball and count how many times they pass it. And I was, well I think a lot of people were thinking “we are going to get this answer right.” We were counting and I heard a few people laughing but I had no idea what about until he replayed the video. In this same video that I was paying so much attention to a man in a gorilla suit walked in, danced a little then walk out. We were paying so close attention to the ball that we didn't even see the gorilla. That taugh me a lot. Ok so I have got to finish

So Yesterday was our Español feast! We spoke Spanish allll day long! Wow my brain almost exploded!!! I can't believe how fast we are learning and how much we still need to learn!!! I love it here! Our teachers are awesome and they think we are so awesome too! I love you guys way way mucho much!

Thanks for all the love back!

Thursday, February 11, 2010

11 Feb 10 Pictures

Hermana Ochs in front of the MTC.

There is a statue in front of the MTC that looks amazingly like Hermana Ochs.

Hermanas Ochs and Kennedy

Hermanas Brewster, Kennedy, Ochs, Graham

First Day at the Temple with the Hermanas

Me and Hermana Brewster as totally opposites, we did not plan this at all!

Top: Elder Christianson
Next Row: Elders Rumsey (District Leader), Haskell
Next Row: Elders Anderson, Anderson, Piena
Next Row: Hermanas Graham, Kennedy, Brewster
Front: Hermana Ochs

11 Feb 10 Letter

Dearest Masha and Fasha! ♥

I love you very much! I can't wait to get your package! I will be getting some pictures developed on Thursday so I will send them as soon I get them so that you can have a Valentine's present! ♥

Well, today was awesome. We did our laundry and I wrote letters like crazy, then emailed you. That email countdown time is so stressful to me. I do not like that timer. But then we ate lunch and went to the temple. The Provo Temple is so pretty! I did a Endowment session and loved it. ♥ It was a pretty sunny day today.

So here is my schedule here at the MTC:

Some mornings they give us a sack breakfast, which you have to wait in a line out in the cold. We huddle together like penguins on those mornings. Dinners at 4:30 are a little early. I always get snacky at night so I sneak oranges to my room, and eat the snacks you have sent me.

Wow, I got the pictures today. I am going to send them off tomorrow.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

9 Feb 10 email

Ok so I am so glad to write you, but also sad because I wanted to send you pictures. The pictures won't be developed until Wednesday so next week I will send you copies!

So this week has flown by once again! Craziness! Our last TEC lesson was rushed. We were late and only had five minutes to talk and make an appointment in Espanol. Then right after that, we had to teach the first lesson in English. Our teacher assured us that it was alright, he said, "this is real missionary work you will be running to everything" haha. So I felt a lot better and more comfortable this time. My companion and I need to work on breaking up our talking into smaller chunks and alternating between us and the investigators. This week we have to pick up the investigator and take them to church on the auto bus, in Espanol. Then we have to teach the Plan of Salvation in English. We are also moving onto studying the second lesson. Oh, and I am so excited to make my own Plan of Salvation diagram to teach with!!!!!

Sad news. Our teacher Hermano Anderson is leaving us because his schedule is crazy with school and he is taking some big something or other test that he has to study for. So we have a new teacher, Hermano Zerkal. Haha, he served in Spain Bilbao also. So far we have had a lineage of Spaniard teachers. Bro. Anderson was with Bro. Zerkal, for a night, and Bro. Zerkal worked with Bro. Bingham. I think I told you that Bro. Bingham knew Sister Patten, also from the mission. Awesomeness! Really we have the best teachers!

Fast Suday was Great! I fasted for a full 24 hours! Wow, I didn't know if I could make it but I did!!! It was the best dinner I've had here yet. Mom, I though of all the great Fast Sunday meals you made and was wishing it was your food. But the best part was the ice-cream! So at the Fireside that night I saw Elder Ochs sitting up in the very front! So I went to say hi! Johnny was like Hola and was going to give me a hug!!!! Ooooo nooooo. I said, “Johnny we aren't supposed to do that.” His Zone was giving him a hard time. But I promised I would give him I big hug before we part are separate ways. I love my brother!

Hey I hear that you started a blog. Awesome! Haha I really don't know much about what that is but, thanks!!!!

I got a letter from Brandon Elder Ochs! He is doing great! I love his enthusiasm!

Last P-day we were able to go to the Temple, and I got to do sealings. I was sealed as a child to their parents. It was way awesome!!!!

I am really learning what is takes to be a servant of the Lord!!! It is awesomeness! We need to be worthy of the spirit in our lives. We need to pray with faith. I pray for you guys everyday!!!!! Yo Amo ustedes!!!!! I tell everybody how great you guys are, ALL the time! I am so lucky to have such great parents and family!!!! Happy Valentines to everybody!!! Like I said I wanted to send pictures but next time!

I got to talk to an older couple missionaries the other day and they are just so neat! Don't do this to me again! The clock says I am almost out of time and I am not even finished yet. I love this Work!!!!! Stay true! Serva con una Sonrisa!

Lots of Love!

Hermana Ochs

Monday, February 8, 2010

2 Feb 10 letter

Thank you so much for all your diligent letter writing and for keeping things all in order. I just got done writing the thank you notes to everybody so that is why I started all neat and spaced then I thought wait a minute I want to write lots and fill this page up! ☺

I was thinking to save on stamps I would send all of the thank you letters to you. I mean I have like 10 letters to send today. Man I really have been working hard to address everybody. Tell Grandma and Grandpa I love them too, they are so wonderful. ♥ Dad, thanks for the huge letter with all your Stake Conference notes. They were awesome! Sounded like a great meeting. I loved the apple saying (You can count the number of seeds in an apple, but you can't count the number of apples in a seed.) I had heard it at a fireside a while ago but thanks for helping me remember it. I am really having to organize myself. Started a Study Journal.. Wow how the MTC can change you!

Another successful laundry day! I am starting to settle in around here and know what, when, where and how to do things. Don't worry I am getting my exercise! Mom you are so great. You really do have a special talent for caring for others. I know Rose loves you and I am a bit jealous that she has you, hehe. I know I will always be your Princess! Being here helps me understand my love for you guys as my parents better. I really can't imagine not having you two!

Loves and Big Hearts.

Hermana Rachel Ochs

P.S. I got the package right before we went to the temple! I just opened it! Thanks so much! I will get John's package to him. I love the fishes (Goldfish Crackers).

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

2 Feb 10 email

So wow this week went by super duper fast! I don't know if that is a good thing or a bad thing... It is good! So I don't know why everyone rags on the food cause I like it a lot! But don't worry I love the gym too. I run on the track a lot and play volleyball. In gym I meet another Elder going to Panama! He has this Awesome T-shirt that has the Panama flag! He said you can get it in the Book store so I want check into getting one!

I love Choir! The director is Awesome and the music is beautiful! Johnny I mean Elder Ochs is in the choir too! This last Sunday for the Devotional we sang hymns that missionaries and the leaders liked. It was Awesome!!! Tonight we have a Devotional and Tuesday is the night where we have special vistors! I just can't believe how much the spirit resides here! I really can't remember a time where I was surround by the spirit this much and this long before, besides the Temple! Speaking of Temples, The Temple is so beautiful! We get to go to the Temple today also! Happiness! We get to take temple walks up to the Temple on Sunday's too. I love all the snow still. My Companion thinks I am weird for liking it so much. But really it is so beautiful here. Maybe my feeling for the outdoors is heightened by the fact that we don't get out much, but it is truly wonderful to look out the windows and see huge snow covered mountains!!! I am really hoping that we get at least one outside gym day before we go. I don't know I told you but my planned departure date is March 23. It seems so far away but I know it will come faster than I want.

I am learning patience. And Spanish!!!! It is really is fun and challenging. Wow our first TEC was crazy! We had to pretend we were in a park and meet someone, introduce ourselves, invite them to listen to our message, then testify in Spanish. It was mmm interesting. Then we had the change to teach the first lesson. Wow I can tell you that this teaching stuff is a lot harder than I thought. Our first lesson with our fake investigator Soiarxte. It is our teacher Hermano Anderson. He is atheist, has a girlfriend in the church, and wants to know where the book of Mormon came from. That was quite the experience. He said that he has read the Book of Mormon up to Alma 30. And that he relates to Korhor the Anti-Christ. I was lost for words and I felt like I couldn't answer him correctly. In this work you really have to find the needs of the people. So I know that I have so much room to grow! I grow every time I teach. It is really hard also to just get comfortable teaching with your companion too. Cause we both have different ways to approach the subject. But we are getting there! I mean really it is the Gospel and as long as we are teaching the Gospel and following the spirit it will work out!

I got so many letters! Thank you guys so much! It really helps! They bring me comfort just at the right times! I love this work! I love my Savior and try to follow his example everyday! I know the Heavenly Father Loves me and I love him! I love you guys so much! Johnny Elder Ochs is Awesome also! I love seeing his face and his diligence! I tell him I love him every time I see him.

Wow ok that clock scares me, 2 minutes left.

I love you! Tell everyone I love them too! Le AMo!