Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Hello MTC!

One week ago, today, we dropped Sister Barrett off at the Missionary Training Center.

It was awesome!

Background:  we had a fun summer getting Hannah all ready for the MTC.  It didn't feel like we procrastinated:  We ordered skirts early in the summer (We liked eShakti where we could customize skirt length and sleeves.)  We bought shoes in June.  But then our summer got busy - girls camp, youth conference, missionary friend farewells, family vacation to Yellowstone, family reunion in Oregon, scout camp, appendicitis. And suddenly we had about 2 weeks to MTC.

Let me just say that Rapid City is not the center of fashion.  Our mall is very small.  Tiny!  We did have good luck at Eddie Bauer and JC Penny's.  I think we shopped every single day those two weeks.  We ordered long johns and boots (Nordstroms had the best boot selection in the July.)  We shopped for warm weather things in the middle of summer, just before the back to school collection came out.  Not that easy!  Finding the perfect makeup case and watch and skirts just the right length with a certain cute style is hard work, but it was a really special time with Hannah!

Hannah was set apart as a missionary on Sunday, August 11th by President Schmitdlein.  That night there was a fireside at the church by Vai Sikahema, who served a mission in Rapid City about 30 years ago.  It was a sweet talk and really inspiring to the missionaries in South Dakota.  He told us that REAL MEN are called to the SDRCM (South Dakota Rapid City Mission)  Hannah says the first devotional she attended at the MTC this week was by-----  Vai Sikahema!

first photo of the official Sister Barrett, along with the rest of the Barrett Family and Vai Sikahema.

Then, early Monday morning, Sister Barrett, John, Emily, and I headed to Utah to deliver her to the MTC.  Nathan just couldn't miss more work this summer, and Sydney was in the middle of tennis try outs.  I wish we could have all gone, but it was still a really special trip.

Because Hannah was a set apart missionary, she was supposed to be following missionary rules and was not allowed to be alone!  That was a little tricky if one of us had to use the bathroom while the other was getting gas... We also couldn't listen to the radio.  12 hours in the Suburban listening to classical music and church music and talks was really inspiring!

notice the cute missionary sachel!

We had a nice visit in Utah with Grammy and Grampie.  We were able to go to the temple on Tuesday morning.  Lovely!

We did all of our favorite Utah things - lunch at Cafe Rio, berry picking, carmel making, and cousins!

I was feeling a lot more in control of my emotions than I thought I would.  Last year when we were getting ready to send Hannah to college, I was boo-hoo-ing all over the place, but this summer I was fine... right up to Wednesday morning.  Then Sydney sent Hannah a sweet text and I just got so sad!  Not sad for Hannah, just a little sad for me!  I'm going to miss that cutie!  Like John told me later, "I felt sad, but happy for her."

And suddenly it was time to go!  Everything fit in just two bags - it was a miracle!

We hugged everyone one more time,

and got Hannah all loaded up into the car.

The construction around BYU, heading to the MTC was terrible, and we thought we might be late for Hannah's 12:30 drop off appointment, but we made it about 3 minutes early.  A big thank you to my sister Laurie who drove for us.  I wanted to make sure I had time to jump out and help Hannah with her bags and give her one last hug before we were waved away from the curb, so Laurie sweetly offered to drive.

The MTC is so great!  A sweet senior missionary put a pink sticky note on our windshield and directed us toward the missionary drop off zone.

There were lots and lots of missionaries lining the drive! It seemed like hundreds of them - Waving and Smiling and Waving!

It was so exciting!  It was also confusing, because the taxi drop off was on the other side of the road and missionaries were crossing the street and a police man was frantically directing us by, but if we did what he wanted we would have run over a suitcase or two...

We were waved all the way down the drive way to parking spot #22.

A cute sister missionary popped right over and welcomed Hannah to the MTC.

  Then we got her bags out.  

Had one more hug

said goodbye,

and watched as Sister Barrett walked right into the MTC!

We love you Sister Barrett!

Then Laurie drove us home while we all cried.  Thanks again, Laurie!

Here is what Hannah said about her first day at the MTC:  (yesterday was like Christmas around here - we got our first email from Søster Barrett and then TWO letters in the mail!)

Hej!  I made it through my first day!! So, here's a brief overview of what happened.  The host Sister Missionary showed me around and I got my name tag and a dorm room key!  We went to my room (I was the 1st one there) and then she showed me to the teaching room where all my classes will be (I was the 1st one there as well).  My teachers only speak in Danish!  It's fun to try to figure out what they say. 
I finally met my companions!  We are a trio, woohoo!  They are Søster Hale and Søster Grant.  I love them!  We're the only 3 Danish Sister Missionaries in the whole MTC right now.  Cool, huh?  So then we had all kinds of meetings and classes, it was pretty crazy!  The only Danish phrase I can remember is "Hemmelske Fader" - Heavenly Father.  That's a good thing to remember though, right?

 It was a special time, and a special day.

If you want to see a little more about the MTC, KSL did a 5 part report in 2010 about the Provo MTC. We watched it this weekend, and it was fun to see inside!

Yay for Missionaries!

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Søster Barrett

Our little Hannah is a missionary!  During the October 2012 General Conference, there was a big change in the missionary ages for the Mormon church.  Young women are now able to serve missions at 19 years old (before they had to wait until 21 years old) and young men are now able to serve missions at 18 years old (19 years old is what the requirement used to be, not a huge change, but it allows boys to go out as soon as they graduate from high school.)  That Saturday, during conference, we talked to Hannah and she said, I'm going!  

Way back in early November she started her missionary paperwork.  In mid February she submitted all of her paperwork, and on March 7th, she got the big white envelope in the mail!

She is called to the Denmark Copenhagen Mission!
I can't get the video to upload here, but you can see the video at our Facebook page.  But maybe only if we are facebook friends...sorry!

We headed to Utah for Easter to go to the Provo Temple with Hannah!

We were so lucky to see some of our good friends from Hawaii!  Diane Alailima just happened to be in Utah to visit her son Tavanah!  Aloha!

I'm not sure if you notice something odd about that picture... am I really that short?  yes

We had lots of family there to go through the temple with Hannah!  It was such a special day!

Grandma and Grandpa Barrett were there, along with Aunt Barbara and Uncle Keith Damon.

Uncle Terry and Aunt Lori Barrett were there!  Even Jennah Barret was there!

Grandma and Grandpa McBride were there as well.

It was an incredible day!  I'm so glad that I was able to share that day with Hannah.  That Hannah girl just shines so bright!  

She has been in the MTC for one week!  And she is doing great!  She is blogging about her mission over at Livet er Dejligt (Life is Lovely)  Posting up her thoughts has made me want to make sure to journal my own thoughts, as well.  Tomorrow I will post about the MTC drop off.